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|The Wheels of Chance||H. G. [Herbert George] Wells|
XXXVIII. At The Rufus Stone
|Page 2 of 2||
This expression of extreme disapprobation had a very demoralizing effect upon Hoopdriver, a demoralization that was immediately completed by the advent of the massive Widgery.
"Is this the man?" said Widgery very grimly, and producing a special voice for the occasion from somewhere deep in his neck.
"Don't hurt him!" said Mrs. Milton, with clasped hands. "However much wrong he has done her--No violence!"
"'Ow many more of you?" said Hoopdriver, at bay before the umbrella stand. "Where is she? What has he done with her?" said Mrs. Milton.
"I'm not going to stand here and be insulted by a lot of strangers," said Mr. Hoopdriver. "So you needn't think it."
"Please don't worry, Mr. Hoopdriver," said Jessie, suddenly appearing in the door of the dining-room. "I'm here, mother." Her face was white.
Mrs. Milton said something about her child, and made an emotional charge at Jessie. The embrace vanished into the dining-room. Widgery moved as if to follow, and hesitated. "You'd better make yourself scarce," he said to Mr. Hoopdriver.
"I shan't do anything of the kind," said Mr. Hoopdriver, with a catching of the breath. "I'm here defending that young lady."
"You've done her enough mischief, I should think," said Widgery, suddenly walking towards the dining-room, and closing the door behind him, leaving Dangle and Phipps with Hoopdriver.
"Clear!" said Phipps, threateningly.
"I shall go and sit out in the garden," said Mr. Hoopdriver, with dignity. "There I shall remain."
"Don't make a row with him," said Dangle.
And Mr. Hoopdriver retired, unassaulted, in almost sobbing dignity.
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|The Wheels of Chance
H. G. [Herbert George] Wells
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