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Newspaper Page Text
drinks," said Openta. "You would
think him a dragon, but at heart
he is not an all-natured fellow."
"I gad ead do bore," said old man
Openta suddenly. He rose and placed
himself with his back to the stoye.
Odeskalki drew out afat silver
watch and scowled at it. -
"Tune for us to be off," he said
"It is really too bad," said Openta
to the bride, "but I could not seem
to make them understand. And if I
were to stay with you I should lose
my place. But next week I shall be'
put on the day shift. It was all I could
do to get off this afternoon to be
"When do you think you will come
back?" said Olenka.
'Terhap3 not before one or two
o'clock," said Openta.
"Tonight," said Odeskalki sulkily,
"there, is to be a large dinner for men
given by a young man who is going
to be married. There will be a real
lake in the middle of the table with
banks of ferns and red rosesand live
ducks swimming in it. It is impossible
to say when the affair will break up,
for there will be a great deal of hard
drinking and not ordinary white
wine like this, I can tell you. Those
young fellows will not have anything
but the best imported champagne,
costing you, perhaps, six dollars the
bottle. That's the kind of a feast to
"You see," said Openta gently,
"this envious fellow and I will be kept
busy serving courses and drawing
corks until the last guest goes. There
will be eight of us waiters, one for
every four guests. But I will come
home as soon as may be, and I will
wake you up."
"But I shall not go to sleep until
you come," said Olenka.
Old man Openta, from his position
in front of the stove, suddenly cov
ered his face. He clutched the seat of
liis trousers with both hands and
sprang forward. Then tears came in
to his eyes and he began to tremble.
"Whai has happened tD you, fath
er?" cried Openta.
"Id is dotig," said the old man in
a choking voice. "I baf purned by
pridges pehind be."
Odeskalki scowled at the old man.
"You ought to have known better
than to stand so close to the stove,"
he said. "Come, Openta, or we shall
The old man scowled at Odeskalki.
The young men put on their over
coats. Openta hesitated, looked for a
moment sheepishly at Odeskalki, and
then, turning tb the little hride,, open
ed his arms with complete frankness.
She ran into them.
Odeskalki fixed his handsome,
scowling eyes upon them. "I hppe
you will be happy," he said, "but I
do not think much ever comes oi
For two hours Odeskalki, Openta
and six other waiters worked swiftly
to promote the comfort of thirty-two
young gentlemen who had come to
sit on the outer edges of a hollow
square and make beasts' of them
selves. The hollow" In the white linen
square wast occupied by four de
scending banks of maidenhair and
roses which terminated at the edges
of a square, mirror-bottomed tank.
In the tank a pair of gorgeous ducks
swam. Occasionally food was tossed
to them m the shape of bread pellets,
celery ends and feven olives, which
rthey ate with avidity. But the sup
ply became at length greater than the
demand, and the water in the tank
began to lpok less like good Crotop.
than bad i soup.' Whenever their
duties brought them lose together
Odeskalki whispered sour comments
"Let them look to us for good man
ners! That fellow withTed"hair has
no more breeding than a hog. Give
me wealth ana champagne, and I
would not talk like a sewer."
He became more and more dis
pleased with'hls 'own lot and was in-