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Bunker Bean was wishing he could be different. This discontent with himself was suffered in a moment of idleness as he sat at a desk on a high floor of a very high office-building in "downtown" New York. The first correction he would have made was that he should be "well over six feet" tall. He had observed that this was the accepted stature for a hero. And the name, almost any name but... more...

I. Green rushes, long and thick, standing up above the edge of the ditch, told the hour of the year as distinctly as the shadow on the dial the hour of the day.  Green and thick and sappy to the touch, they felt like summer, soft and elastic, as if full of life, mere rushes though they were.  On the fingers they left a green scent; rushes have a separate scent of green, so, too, have ferns, very... more...

A LIBERAL EDUCATION "There's ingratitude for you!" Miss Dolly Foster exclaimed suddenly. "Where!" I asked, rousing myself from meditation. She pointed to a young man who had just passed where we sat. He was dressed very smartly, and was walking with a lady attired in the height of the fashion. "I made that man," said Dolly, "and now he cuts me dead before the whole of... more...

CHAPTER I The people of Castle Barfield boast that the middle of their High Street is on a level with the cross of St. Paul's Cathedral. The whole country-side is open, and affords a welcome to storm from whatever corner of the compass it may blow. You have to get right away into the Peak district before you can find anything like an eminence of distinction, though the mild slopes of Quarry-moor... more...

CHAPTER I THE LESSON "Then he's such a prig!" said Olga. "You should never use a word you can't define," observed Nick, from the depths of the hammock in which his meagre person reposed at length. She made a face at him, and gave the hammock a vicious twitch which caused him to rock with some violence for several seconds. As he was wont pathetically to remark, everyone bullied... more...

CHAPTER I. THE LABOURER; AND HIS DAWNING DISCONTENT. Roger Acton woke at five. It was a raw March morning, still dark, and bitterly cold, while at gusty intervals the rain beat in against the crazy cottage-window. Nevertheless, from his poor pallet he must up and rouse himself, for it will be open weather by sunrise, and his work lies two miles off; Master Jennings is not the man to show him favour if... more...

CHAPTER I The patient, an old-fashioned man, thought the nurse made a mistake in keeping both of the windows open, and her sprightly disregard of his protests added something to his hatred of her. Every evening he told her that anybody with ordinary gumption ought to realize that night air was bad for the human frame. "The human frame won't stand everything, Miss Perry," he warned her,... more...

CHAPTER I. A SOUND COMMERCIAL EDUCATION. The beginning of this yarn is my poor father's character. There never was a better man, nor a handsomer, nor (in my view) a more unhappy—unhappy in his business, in his pleasures, in his place of residence, and (I am sorry to say it) in his son. He had begun life as a land-surveyor, soon became interested in real estate, branched off into many... more...

I "It is so good of you to come early," said Mrs. Porter, as Alice Langham entered the drawing-room. "I want to ask a favor of you. I'm sure you won't mind. I would ask one of the debutantes, except that they're always so cross if one puts them next to men they don't know and who can't help them, and so I thought I'd just ask you, you're so good-natured.... more...

Chapter I As the streets that lead from the Strand to the Embankment are very narrow, it is better not to walk down them arm-in-arm. If you persist, lawyers' clerks will have to make flying leaps into the mud; young lady typists will have to fidget behind you. In the streets of London where beauty goes unregarded, eccentricity must pay the penalty, and it is better not to be very tall, to wear a... more...