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|Right Ho, Jeeves||P. G. Wodehouse|
|Page 4 of 6||
I began to see that the situation would require all my address and ingenuity. If the wedding bells were ever to ring out in the little church of Market Snodsbury, Bertram had plainly got to put in some shrewdish work. I had gathered, during my conversation with Aunt Dahlia, that there had been a certain amount of frank speech between the two contracting parties, but I had not realized till now that matters had gone so far.
The pathos of the thing gave me the pip. Tuppy had admitted in so many words that love still animated the Glossop bosom, and I was convinced that, even after all that occurred, Angela had not ceased to love him. At the moment, no doubt, she might be wishing that she could hit him with a bottle, but deep down in her I was prepared to bet that there still lingered all the old affection and tenderness. Only injured pride was keeping these two apart, and I felt that if Tuppy would make the first move, all would be well.
I had another whack at it.
"She's broken-hearted about this rift, Tuppy."
"How do you know? Have you seen her?"
"No, but I'll bet she is."
"She doesn't look it."
"Wearing the mask, no doubt. Jeeves does that when I assert my authority."
"She wrinkles her nose at me as if I were a drain that had got out of order."
"Merely the mask. I feel convinced she loves you still, and that a kindly word from you is all that is required."
I could see that this had moved him. He plainly wavered. He did a sort of twiddly on the turf with his foot. And, when he spoke, one spotted the tremolo in the voice:
"You really think that?"
"If you were to go to her----"
He shook his head.
"I can't do that. It would be fatal. Bing, instantly, would go my prestige. I know girls. Grovel, and the best of them get uppish." He mused. "The only way to work the thing would be by tipping her off in some indirect way that I am prepared to open negotiations. Should I sigh a bit when we meet, do you think?"
"She would think you were puffing."
I lit another cigarette and gave my mind to the matter. And first crack out of the box, as is so often the way with the Woosters, I got an idea. I remembered the counsel I had given Gussie in the matter of the sausages and ham.
"I've got it, Tuppy. There is one infallible method of indicating to a girl that you love her, and it works just as well when you've had a row and want to make it up. Don't eat any dinner tonight. You can see how impressive that would be. She knows how devoted you are to food."
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|Right Ho, Jeeves
P. G. Wodehouse
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