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he was half ashamed of the proposition.
"What do you want?" and Rose looked up rather surprised at his
"I'd like to borrow some money. I shouldn't think of asking you,
only Mac never has a cent. since he's set up his old chemical shop,
where he'll blow himself to bits some day, and you and uncle will
have the fun of putting him together again," and Steve tried to look
as if the idea amused him.
"I'll lend it to you with pleasure, so tell away," said Rose, bound to
get at the secret.
Evidently much relieved by the promise, Steve set his top-knot
cheerfully erect again, and briefly stated the case.
"As you say, it's all right to tell you, but don't let the boys know I
blabbed, or Prince will take my head off. You see, Archie don't
like some of the fellows Charlie goes with, and cuts 'em. That
makes Prince mad, and he holds on just to plague Arch, so they
don't speak to one another, if they can help it, and that's the row."
"Are those boys bad?" asked Rose, anxiously.
"Guess not, only rather wild. They are older than our fellows, but
they like Prince, he's such a jolly boy; sings so well, dances jigs
and breakdowns, you know, and plays any game that's going. He
beat Morse at billiards, and that's something to brag of, for Morse
thinks he knows everything. I saw the match, and it was great fun!"
Steve got quite excited over the prowess of Charlie, whom he
admired immensely, and tried to imitate. Rose did not know half
the danger of such gifts and tastes as Charlie's, but felt
instinctively that something must be wrong if Archie disapproved.
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