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Elsie In New York
by [?]

“Well, well, and so this is Beatty’s little daughter! Your father was one of our most efficient and valued employees. He left nothing? Well, well. I hope we have not forgotten his faithful services. I am sure there is a vacancy now among our models. Oh, it is easy work– nothing easier.”

Mr. Otter struck a bell. A long-nosed clerk thrust a portion of himself inside the door.

“Send Miss Hawkins in,” said Mr. Otter. Miss Hawkins came.

“Miss Hawkins,” said Mr. Otter, “bring for Miss Beatty to try on one of those Russian sable coats and–let’s see–one of those latest model black tulle hats with white tips.”

Elsie stood before the full-length mirror with pink cheeks and quick breath. Her eyes shone like faint stars. She was beautiful. Alas! she was beautiful.

I wish I could stop this story here. Confound it! I will. No; it’s got to run it out. I didn’t make it up. I’m just repeating it.

I’d like to throw bouquets at the wise cop, and the lady who rescues Girls from Jobs, and the prohibitionist who is trying to crush brandy balls, and the sky pilot who objects to costumes for stage people (there are others), and all the thousands of good people who are at work protecting young people from the pitfalls of a great city; and then wind up by pointing out how they were the means of Elsie reaching her father’s benefactor and her kind friend and rescuer from poverty. This would make a fine Elsie story of the old sort. I’d like to do this; but there’s just a word or two to follow.

While Elsie was admiring herself in the mirror, Mr. Otter went to the telephone booth and called up some number. Don’t ask me what it was.

“Oscar,” said he, “I want you to reserve the same table for me this evening. . . . What? Why, the one in the Moorish room to the left of the shrubbery. . . . Yes; two. . . . Yes, the usual brand; and the ’85 Johannisburger with the roast. If it isn’t the right temperature I’ll break your neck. No; not her. . . No, indeed. . . A new one–a peacherino, Oscar, a peacherino!”

Tired and tiresome reader, I will conclude, if you please, with a paraphrase of a few words that you will remember were written by him–by him of Gad’s Hill, before whom, if you doff not your hat, you shall stand with a covered pumpkin–aye, sir, a pumpkin.

Lost, Your Excellency. Lost Associations and Societies. Lost, Right Reverends and Wrong Reverends of every order. Lost, Reformers and Lawmakers, born with heavenly compassion in your hearts, but with the reverence of money in your souls. And lost thus around us every day.