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The Day of Days An Extravaganza   By: (1879-1933)

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THE DAY OF DAYS

BY LOUIS JOSEPH VANCE

THE DAY OF DAYS THE DESTROYING ANGEL THE BANDBOX CYNTHIA OF THE MINUTE NO MAN'S LAND THE FORTUNE HUNTER THE POOL OF FLAME THE BRONZE BELL THE BLACK BAG THE BRASS BOWL THE PRIVATE WAR TERENCE O'ROURKE

[Illustration: "What I want to say is will you be my guest at the theatre tonight?" FRONTISPIECE.]

THE DAY OF DAYS

AN EXTRAVAGANZA

BY

LOUIS JOSEPH VANCE

AUTHOR OF "THE BRASS BOWL," "THE BLACK BAG," "THE BANDBOX," "THE DESTROYING ANGEL," ETC.

WITH ILLUSTRATIONS BY ARTHUR WILLIAM BROWN

BOSTON LITTLE, BROWN, AND COMPANY

1913

Copyright, 1912, 1913 , BY LOUIS JOSEPH VANCE.

All rights reserved, including those of translation into foreign languages, including the Scandinavian.

Published, February, 1913 Reprinted, March, 1913

THE UNIVERSITY PRESS, CAMBRIDGE, MASS., U.S.A.

CONTENTS

CHAPTER

I. THE DUB II. INSPIRATION III. THE GLOVE COUNTER IV. A LIKELY STORY V. THE COMIC SPIRIT VI. SPRING TWILIGHT VII. AFTERMATH VIII. WHEELS OF CHANCE IX. THE PLUNGER X. UNDER FIRE XI. BURGLARY UNDER ARMS XII. THE LADY OF THE HOUSE XIII. RESPECTABILITY XIV. WHERE ANGELS FEAR TO TREAD XV. SUCH STUFF AS PLOTS ARE MADE OF XVI. BEELZEBUB XVII. IN A BALCONY XVIII. THE BROOCH XIX. NEMESIS XX. NOVEMBER XXI. THE SORTIE XXII. TOGETHER XXIII. PERCEVAL UNASHAMED

ILLUSTRATIONS

"What I want to say is will you be my guest at the theatre tonight?"

"You are the one woman in a thousand who knows enough to look before she shoots!"

Facing her, he lifted his scarlet visor.

He was Red November.

THE DAY OF DAYS

I

THE DUB

"Smell," P. Sybarite mused aloud....

For an instant he was silent in depression. Then with extraordinary vehemence he continued crescendo: "Stupid stagnant sepulchral sempiternally sticky Smell!"

He paused for both breath and words pondered with bended head, knitting his brows forbiddingly.

"Supremely squalid, sinisterly sebaceous, sombrely sociable Smell!" he pursued violently.

Momentarily his countenance cleared; but his smile was as fugitive as the favour of princes.

Vindictively champing the end of a cedar penholder, he groped for expression: "Stygian ... sickening ... surfeiting ... slovenly ... sour...."

He shook his head impatiently and clawed the impregnated atmosphere with a tragic hand.

" Stench! " he perorated in a voice tremulous with emotion.

Even that comprehensive monosyllable was far from satisfactory.

"Oh, what's the use?" P. Sybarite despaired.

Alliteration could no more; his mother tongue itself seemed poverty stricken, his native wit inadequate. With decent meekness he owned himself unfit for the task to which he had set himself.

"I'm only a dub," he groaned "a poor, God forsaken, prematurely aged and indigent dub!"

For ten interminable years the aspiration to do justice to the Genius of the Place had smouldered in his humble bosom; to day for the first time he had attempted to formulate a meet apostrophe to that God of his Forlorn Destiny; and now he chewed the bitter cud of realisation that all his eloquence had proved hopelessly poor and lame and halting.

Perched on the polished seat of a very tall stool, his slender legs fraternising with its legs in apparently inextricable intimacy; sharp elbows digging into the nicked and ink stained bed of a counting house desk; chin some six inches above the pages of a huge leather covered ledger, hair rumpled and fretful, mouth doleful, eyes disconsolate he gloomed...

On this the eve of his thirty second birthday and likewise the tenth anniversary of his servitude, the appearance of P. Sybarite was elaborately normal varying, as it did, but slightly from one year's end to the other.

His occupation had fitted his head and shoulders with a deceptive but none the less perennial stoop... Continue reading book >>




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