"I know you wouldn't, Pethick," replied Callum, 
very much interested. " What is it? What's the point?" 
"Well, I don't like to say anything, as much as I like 
you," replied Pethick, whose trousers were unduly nar- 
row, after the mode of the season, "but that young Hibbs 
is saying things around here about your sister." 
"What's that?" exclaimed Callum, straightening up 
in the noble fashion made and provided for all such 
cases. There is a standard of conduct which applies to 
every situation in all these would-be realms of perfection. 
They have a theory as to how one should conduct himself 
on each and every occasion—marriage, birth, death, 
adultery, family scandals, and so on—to say nothing of 
the ordinary polite occasions such as dinners, receptions, 
and the like. It is understood, Heaven knows on what 
authority, just how one must look and act. The eye- 
brows must be raised in a well-defined way, the face 
must blanch in a histrionic manner; one must under 
many circumstances look taut and dramatic, but always 
dignified and refined. On this occasion Callum did so on 
the instant. 
"What is it he says about my sister? What right has 
he to mention her name here, anyhow? He doesn't know 
"Now don't get mad, Callum; please don't, I beg you," 
pleaded Pethick, feeling himself to be the center of a most 
important event. Something really exciting was about 
to happen here, and he was the cause of it. A distinguê 
row between men of real distinction. Oh, joy, oh, pride! 
what could be more important? He laid a restraining 
hand on Callum's arm, but the latter, half angrily, half 
histrionically, pushed it away. 
"What was it he said?" he asked. "Tell me that. 
What did he say?" 
Pethick affected to be greatly concerned lest he cause 
trouble between Callum and Hibbs. He protested that 
he did not want to, when he was dying to tell. "Why,