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"Very well, how shall I begin? Enlighten my ignorance and start
me right, I beg."
"Go about and see people, make yourself agreeable, and not sit in
corners observing other people as if they were puppets dancing for
your amusement. I heard Mrs. Van once say that propinquity
works wonders, and she ought to know, having married off two
daughters, and just engaged a third to 'a most charming young
"Good lack! The cure sounds worse than the disease. Propinquity,
hey? Why, I may be in danger this identical moment and can't flee
for my life," said Mac, gently catching her round the waist for a
"Don't be alarmed, but mind your steps, for Charlie is looking at
us, and I want you to do your best. That's perfect take me quite
round, for I love to waltz and seldom get a good turn except with
you boys," said Rose, smiling up at him approvingly as his strong
arm guided her among the revolving couples and his feet kept time
without a fault.
"This certainly is a great improvement on the chair business, to
which I have devoted myself with such energy that I've broken the
backs of two partners and dislocated the arm of the old rocker. I
took an occasional turn with that heavy party, thinking it good
practice in case I ever happen to dance with stout ladies." And
Mac nodded toward Annabel, pounding gaily with Mr. Tokio,
whose yellow countenance beamed as his beady eyes rested on his
Pausing in the midst of her merriment at the image of Mac and the
old rocking chair, Rose said reprovingly, "Though a heathen
Chinee, Fun puts you to shame, for he did not ask foolish questions
but went a-wooing like a sensible little man, and I've no doubt
Annabel will be very happy."
"Choose me a suitable divinity and I will try to adore. Can I do
more than that to retrieve my character?" answered Mac, safely
landing his partner and plying the fan according to instructions.
"How would Emma do?" inquired Rose, whose sense of the
ludicrous was strong and who could not resist the temptation of
horrifying Mac by the suggestion.
"Never! It sets my teeth on edge to look at her tonight. I suppose
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