The Street of Seven Stars (Chapter 7, page 1 of 13)

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Chapter 7

For three days Byrne hardly saw Harmony. He was off early in the morning, hurried back to the midday meal and was gone again the moment it was over. He had lectures in the evenings, too, and although he lingered for an hour or so after supper it was to find Harmony taken possession of by the little Bulgarian, seized with a sudden thirst for things American.

On the evening of the second day he had left Harmony, enmeshed and helpless in a tangle of language, trying to explain to the little Bulgarian the reason American women wished to vote. Byrne flung down the stairs and out into the street, almost colliding with Stewart.

They walked on together, Stewart with the comfortably rolling gait of the man who has just dined well, Byrne with his heavy, rather solid tread. The two men were not congenial, and the frequent intervals without speech between them were rather for lack of understanding than for that completeness of it which often fathers long silences. Byrne was the first to speak after their greeting.

"Marie all right?"

"Fine. Said if I saw you to ask you to supper some night this week."

"Thanks. Does it matter which night?"

"Any but Thursday. We're hearing 'La Boheme.'"

"Say Friday, then."

Byrne's tone lacked enthusiasm, but Stewart in his after-dinner mood failed to notice it.

"Have you thought any more about our conversation of the other night?"

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