Daisy, in high spirits at the success of her ruse, went straight over to Patty.
“Patty, dear,” she said, sweetly, “I couldn’t withstand Mr. Martin’s persuasions, and I’ve promised him I’ll be the Spirit of the Sea. You know I told you I didn’t want to, but he overruled my objections and I consented.”
“All right, Daisy,” said Patty, without a trace of regret on her sweet face. She did feel regret keenly, for Guy had asked her long ago, and she had only hesitated out of generosity toward Lora, who also wanted it. But it was not her nature to resent such things, and she concluded that Guy thought Daisy better adapted for the part than herself.
“What part will you take?” Daisy went on. “Mr. Martin told me to ask you and arrange for you.”
Daisy’s manner showed such undue importance and ostentatious authority that Jack Pennington spoke up.
“Are you assistant chairman, Miss Dow?”
“Mr. Martin didn’t call it that,” said Daisy, smiling pleasantly; “he only left it to me to see that Miss Fairfield had a good place in the Pageant.”
“You bet Miss Fairfield will have a good place!” exclaimed Jack. “Don’t you bother about it, Miss Dow. Let me relieve you of that duty. I’LL see to Miss Fairfield’s place.”
“But Mr. Martin left it in my care,” persisted Daisy, getting a little frightened lest her deceit about the note should be discovered.
“Leave Mr. Martin to me,” said Jack, a little curtly. “I’ll explain to him that I relieved you of the responsibility of Patty’s place in the show. I say, Patty, let’s you and me be Dutch kiddies on the Holland Float.”
“Shall us?” said Patty, smiling in a whimsical way that meant nothing at all.
As Patty was preparing for bed that night, Mona came tapping at her door.
“Come in,” said Patty. “Oh, it’s you, Mona,—well, I am glad to see you! In the turmoil of this ‘house party’ of yours, we almost never see each other alone, do we?”
“No; and I’m sorry. But you’re enjoying it, aren’t you, Patty?”
“Yes, indeed! I love it! People running in and out all the time, and a lot of people all over the house,—oh, yes, it’s gay.”
“Patty, I’m bothered about this Pageant business. How does it happen that Daisy has taken your part?”
“It wasn’t my part. It had never been assigned, until Guy persuaded Daisy to take it.”
“Persuaded fiddlesticks! She made him give it to her.”
“No, she didn’t. She was determined not to have that part, but he coaxed her into it. She told me so herself.”
“Pooh! You don’t know Daisy as I do. You’re so sweet and generous yourself you think everybody else is. I wish I hadn’t asked her here. I thought she had outgrown her school-girl tricks. She was always like that.”