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Abe and Mawruss by Montague Glass

Harkavy pondered the question for some minutes


"_Schon

gut_," Morris declared; "then you wouldn't got to go at all, because we ourselves would give you thirty."

"I moost go," Harkavy said, shaking his head; "my fare is paid."

"Pay 'em back the fare," Morris insisted--"we would see you wouldn't lose it."

Again Harkavy shook his head.

"I got a bonus too," he declared--"a thousand rubles."

"What are you talking about, rubles?" Morris said impatiently. "You ain't a greenhorn no longer. Do you mean a thousand dollars?"

"Six hundred dollars--about," Harkavy replied.

Morris whistled.

"Well," he said after a pause of some seconds, "put off going until to-morrow anyhow. Maybe we could fix up to give you the six hundred dollars anyhow."

Harkavy remained silent and Morris clapped him on the shoulder.

"If people is so anxious to get you that they pay you a big lot of money like that, Harkavy, you could keep 'em waiting anyhow one day. Come round and see us to-morrow morning at nine o'clock, wouldn't you?"

Harkavy pondered the question for some minutes.

"If you wish it, Mr. Perlmutter," he said, "I would do so; but I must got to go

away by eleven o'clock sure."

"Good!" Morris exclaimed. "Then I'll see you to-morrow morning at nine o'clock."

They shook hands on the appointment and Morris turned away and ascended the high stoop of an old-fashioned tenement. In the vestibule he encountered a boy whose right cheek was apparently distorted by a severe toothache.

"Do a family by the name Levin live here?" Morris asked.

The boy nodded and disgorged a huge lump of toffee, whereat the toothache disappeared.

"Dat's me fader," he said. "Fourt' floor front east. He ain't in, dough."

"Your father!" Morris cried. "Why, the people I am coming to see they are greenhorns."

"Oh, yeh," the youngster replied; "dat's me fader's uncle. He lives wid us."

"All right," Morris said. "Take me up there."

The youngster resumed his swollen cheek and escorted Morris up three flights of slippery brassbound stairs. Without the formality of knocking, they entered an apartment on the fourth floor where a woman stood washing dishes.

"Mrs. Levin?" Morris said.

The woman nodded.

"I want to see your man's uncle," Morris continued. Without looking up the woman cried in stentorian tones: "Mees-taire!"

In response a bent figure, clad in an alpaca caftan, appeared from an interior bedroom. He wore a velvet skullcap, and a thin gray beard straggled from his chin; his nose was surmounted by a pair of steel spectacles.


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