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Dawn O'Hara Edna Ferber

Mostly Eggs

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"But you're not going to drag this wonderful being up here just for me!" I protested, aghast.

Max pointed an accusing finger at me from the doorway. "Aren't you what the bromides call a bundle of nerves? And isn't Von Gerhard's specialty untying just those knots? I'll write to him to-night."

And he did. And Von Gerhard came. The Spalpeens watched for him, their noses flattened against the window-pane, for it was raining. As he came up the path they burst out of the door to meet him. From my bedroom window I saw him come prancing up the walk like a boy, with the two children clinging to his coat-tails, all three quite unmindful of the rain, and yelling like Comanches.

Ten minutes later he had donned his professional dignity, entered my room, and beheld me in all my limp and pea-green beauty. I noted approvingly that he had to stoop a bit as he entered the low doorway, and that the Vandyke of my prophecy was missing.

He took my hand in his own steady, reassuring clasp. Then he began to talk. Half an hour sped away while we discussed New York--books--music--theatres--everything and anything but Dawn O'Hara. I learned later that as we chatted he was getting his story, bit by bit, from every twitch of the eyelids, from every gesture of the hands that had grown too thin to wear the hateful ring; from every motion of the lips; from the color of my nails; from each convulsive muscle; from every shadow, and wrinkle and curve and line of my face.

Suddenly he asked: "Are you making the proper effort to get well? You try to conquer those jumping nerfs, yes?"

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I glared at him. "Try! I do everything. I'd eat woolly worms if I thought they might benefit me. If ever a girl has minded her big sister and her doctor, that girl is I. I've eaten everything from pate de foie gras to raw beef, and I've drunk everything from blood to champagne."

"Eggs? " queried Von Gerhard, as though making a happy suggestion.

"Eggs!" I snorted. "Eggs! Thousands of 'em! Eggs hard and soft boiled, poached and fried, scrambled and shirred, eggs in beer and egg-noggs, egg lemonades and egg orangeades, eggs in wine and eggs in milk, and eggs au naturel. I've lapped up iron-and-wine, and whole rivers of milk, and I've devoured rare porterhouse and roast beef day after day for weeks. So! Eggs!"

"Mein Himmel!" ejaculated he, fervently, "And you still live!" A suspicion of a smile dawned in his eyes. I wondered if he ever laughed. I would experiment.

"Don't breathe it to a soul," I whispered, tragically, "but eggs, and eggs alone, are turning my love for my sister into bitterest hate. She stalks me the whole day long, forcing egg mixtures down my unwilling throat. She bullies me. I daren't put out my hand suddenly without knocking over liquid refreshment in some form, but certainly with an egg lurking in its depths. I am so expert that I can tell an egg orangeade from an egg lemonade at a distance of twenty yards, with my left hand tied behind me,and one eye shut, and my feet in a sack."

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Dawn O'Hara
Edna Ferber

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