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I've Married Marjorie by Margaret Widdemer




Author of "Why Not," "The Wishing Ring Man," "You're Only Young Once," "The Boardwalk," etc.

A. L. Burt Company Publishers New York Published by arrangement with Harcourt, Brace and Howe

Copyright, 1920, by The Crowell Publishing Company

Copyright, 1920, by Harcourt, Brace and Howe, Inc.



The sun shone, that morning, and even from a city office window the Spring wind could be felt, sweet and keen and heady, making you feel that you wanted to be out in it, laughing, facing toward the exciting, happy things Spring was sure to be bringing you, if you only went a little way to meet them--just a little way!

Marjorie Ellison, bending over a filing cabinet in a small and solitary room, felt the wind, and gave her fluffy dark head an answering, wistful lift. It was a very exciting, Springy wind, and winds and weathers affected her too much for her own good. Therefore she gave the drawer she was working on an impatient little push which nearly shook the Casses down into the Cats--she had been hunting for a very important letter named Cattell, which had concealed itself viciously--and went to the window as if she was being pulled there.

She set both supple little hands on the broad stone sill, and looked downward into the city street as you would look into a well. The wind was blowing sticks and dust around in fairy rings, and a motor car or so ran up and down, and there were the usual number of the usual kind of people on the sidewalks; middle-aged people principally, for most of the younger inhabitants of New York are caged in offices at ten in the morning, unless they are whisking by in the motors. Mostly elderly ladies in handsome blue dresses, Marjorie noticed. She liked it, and drew a deep, happy breath of Spring air. Then suddenly over all the pleasure came a depressing black shadow. And yet what she had seen was something which made most people smile and feel a little happier; a couple of plump, gay young returned soldiers going down the street arm in arm, and laughing uproariously at nothing at all for the sheer pleasure of being at home. She turned away from the window feeling as if some one had taken a piece of happiness away from her, and snatched the nearest paper to read it, and take the taste of what she had seen out of her mouth. It was a last night's paper with the back page full of "symposium." She read a couple of the letters, and dropped the paper and went back desperately to her filing cabinet.

"Cattell--Cattell----" she whispered to herself very fast, riffling over the leaves desperately. Then she reverted to the symposium and the soldiers. "Oh, dear, everybody on that page was writing letters to know why they didn't get married," she said. "I wish somebody would write letters telling why they _did_, or explain to those poor girls that say nobody wants to marry a refined girl that they'd better leave it alone!"

After that she hunted for the Cattell letter till she found it. Then she took it to her superior, in the next room. Then she returned to her work and rolled the paper up into a very small ball and dropped it into the big wastebasket, and pushed it down with a small, neat oxford-tied foot. Then she went to the window again restlessly, looked out with caution, as if there might be more soldiers crossing the street, and they might spring at her. But there were none; only a fat, elderly gentleman gesticulating for a taxi and looking so exactly like a _Saturday Evening Post_ cover that he almost cheered her. Marjorie had a habit of picking up very small, amusing things and being amused by them. And then into the office bounced the one girl she hadn't seen that day.

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