The Laslett Affair - Harold Begbie - ebook

The Laslett Affair ebook

Harold Begbie

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Opis

According to many people, true friendship lasts until the end of life. However, what happens if something goes wrong? The Laslett Affair novel was written on this subject. A story about friends who believe that there is nothing stronger than their friendship and nothing can prevent their friendship. However, everything changes with time...

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Liczba stron: 639

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Contents

CHAPTER I BACKGROUNDS

CHAPTER II MISCHIEF

CHAPTER III MAGNETISM

CHAPTER IV DANGERS

CHAPTER V MISUNDERSTANDING

CHAPTER VI CHECK

CHAPTER VII NEW BEGINNINGS

CHAPTER VIII DELUSION

CHAPTER IX DOWN AND DOWN

CHAPTER X BUT FOR YOU——

CHAPTER XI MEMORIES

CHAPTER XII THE IDOL

CHAPTER I. BACKGROUNDS

I

One winter morning in London, a young man, dressed in almost bridal splendour, hastened through the Narrows of Bond Street with an air which suggested that he was new to freedom, new to a cheque-book, and new to the glances of women, so that many people noticed him, some with amusement, and some with envy.

He was tall and loosely built, with dark hair, small sullen dark eyes, a sulky full mouth, and a skin so intensely fine and bright that the sharpness of the frosty December morning flushed his cheeks to a shining scarlet.

The nervous brightness of his eyes, as well as an increasing flurry in his haste, witnessed to a character as yet unsophisticated. The boy, who no doubt wished to be taken for a man of the world, was plainly aware of glances, and disconcerted by stares. A sense of being uncomfortably different from every one else appeared to agitate his mind. No doubt he found himself wishing that there were more top-hats in the street, and fewer overcoats; and was perhaps unpleasantly conscious of the white carnation in his button-hole as a too conspicuous advertisement of youthful exuberance. In any case he attracted an unusual amount of attention, and the more attention he attracted the unhappier he seemed to be.

A girl coming out of a shop turned to the elderly man who followed her, and said, “Did you see that boy?”

Her companion looked, frowned, and asked, “The silly young ass without an overcoat?”

The girl said, “That’s Stephen Laslett, son of the company promoter. I danced with him the other night.”

The man tossed up his head, and grumbled, “He’ll be worth millions, I suppose; that is if he doesn’t die of pneumonia before he succeeds.”

The girl said, “He was at Eton with Reggie, and he’s now rather a nut at Cambridge; writes amusing verses for the Granta, and makes brilliant speeches at the Union.”

“Oh, does he!” chuckled the old gentleman, very well satisfied. “Then I’ll bet you a bob, my dear, that he’ll illustrate the truth of a great saying in America.”

“What’s that?” she asked indifferently, drawing up before a shop window.

The old gentleman replied, “That there’s only one generation between shirt-sleeves and shirt-sleeves.”

II

Mrs. Laslett and her daughter Phillida awaited Stephen in the lounge of the Ritz Hotel, where the family was staying till their house in Belgrave Square had recovered from its dedication to War work.

They were both beautifully dressed, and were not undistinguished-looking–Mrs. Laslett, a brunette, upright and vivid; Phillida, a blonde, delicate and pale.

“Stephen is very much en retard,” said his mother, who was unmistakably a lively lady, and might have been described as all eyes and appetite. She leaned forward to look down the long corridor, which was comfortably warm and pleasantly populated. “I must smoke another cigarette,” she announced, and opened her vanity-bag. “Shall I order my little lambkin a cocktail?”

Phillida replied languidly, “Let’s wait till Stephen comes.” She was watching with absorbed interest a group of laughing and loud-voiced young things in the distance.

“He oughtn’t to be late to-day,” Mrs. Laslett declared, with a certain amount of impatience.

A smiling waiter came forward to light madam’s cigarette, after which he moved the table between the two ladies a shade nearer to Mrs. Laslett, wiped it with his cloth, and slid an ash-tray in her direction.

“Shall I bring you a cocktail?” he insinuated.

“We are waiting for Mr. Stephen.”

“Ah! I will come again.”

This is a free sample. Please purchase full version of the book to continue.

This is a free sample. Please purchase full version of the book to continue.

This is a free sample. Please purchase full version of the book to continue.

This is a free sample. Please purchase full version of the book to continue.

This is a free sample. Please purchase full version of the book to continue.

This is a free sample. Please purchase full version of the book to continue.

This is a free sample. Please purchase full version of the book to continue.

This is a free sample. Please purchase full version of the book to continue.

This is a free sample. Please purchase full version of the book to continue.

This is a free sample. Please purchase full version of the book to continue.

This is a free sample. Please purchase full version of the book to continue.

This is a free sample. Please purchase full version of the book to continue.

This is a free sample. Please purchase full version of the book to continue.