"Hello. Hello. _Is this Nancy_?"
"This is Mrs. S. R. Ellicott." The voice seems extremely detached.
"Oh, good morning, Mrs. Ellicott. This is Oliver--Oliver Crowe, you know.
Is Nancy there?"
Nor does it appear inclined toward lengthy conversation--the voice at the
other end. "No."
"Well, when will she be in? I've got to take the five o'clock train Mrs.
Ellicott--I've simply got to--I may lose my job if I don't--but I've got
to talk to her first--I've got to explain--"
"There can be very little good, I think, in your talking to her Mr. Crowe.
She has told me that you both consider the engagement at an end."
"But that's impossible, Mrs. Ellicott--that's too absurd" Oliver felt too
much as if he were fighting for life against something invisible to be
careful about his words. "I know we quarrelled last night--but it was all
my fault, I didn't mean anything--I was going to call her up the first
thing this morning but you see, they wouldn't let me out--"
Then he stopped with a grim realization of just what it was that he had
said. There was a long fateful pause from the other end of the wire.