little and made the hair streak on her forehead. Then there was a patch of chilly sunlight. They sat down on the root of a big beechtree and looked up at the long redbrown pointed buds that glinted against the sky. Their noses were full of the smell of the little cyclamens. Dick felt steamy from the climb and the wet underbrush and the wine he'd drunk and the smell of the little cyclamens. He turned and looked in her eyes. "Well," he said. She grabbed him by the ears and kissed him again and again. "Say you love me," she kept saying in a strangling voice. He could smell her sandy hair and warm body and the sweetness of the little cyclamens. He pulled her to her feet and held her against his body and kissed her on the mouth; their tongues touched. He dragged her through a break in the hedge into the next field. The ground was too wet. Across the field was a little hut made of brush. They staggered as they walked with their arms around each other's waists, their thighs grinding stiffly together. The hut was full of dry cornfodder. They lay squirming together among the dry crackling cornfodder. She lay on her back with her eyes closed, her lips tightly pursed. He had one hand under her head and with the other was trying to undo her clothes; something tore under his hand. She began push- ing him away. "No, no, Dick, not here . . . we've got to go back.""Darling girl . . . I must . . . you're so won- derful." She broke away from him and ran out of the hut. He sat up on the floor, hating her, brushing the dry shreds off his uniform.
Outside it was raining hard. "Let's go back; Dick, I'm crazy about you but you oughtn't to have torn my panties . . . oh, you're so exasperating." She began to laugh.
"You oughtn't to start anything you don't want to fin- ish," said Dick. "Oh, I think women are terrible . . . ex- cept prostitutes . . . there you know what you're getting."
She went up to him and kissed him. "Poor little boy . . . he feels so cross. I'm so sorry . . . I'll sleep with you,
Dick . . . I promise I will. You see it's difficult . . . In Rome we'll get a room somewhere."
"Are you a virgin?" His voice was constrained and stiff.
She nodded. "Funny, isn't it? . . . in wartime . . . You boys have risked your lives. I guess I can risk that."
"I guess I can. borrow Ed's apartment. I think he's going to Naples tomorrow.""But you really love me, Dick?""Of course, . . . it's only this makes me feel terrible . . . making love's so magnificent.""I suppose it is . . . Oh, I wish I was dead."
They plodded along down the hill through the down- pour that gradually slackened to a cold drizzle. Dick felt tired out and sodden; the rain was beginning to get down his neck. Anne Elizabeth had dropped her bunch of cyclamens.
When they got back the restaurant keeper said that the others had gone to the Villa d'Este, but would come back soon. They drank hot rum and water and tried to dry themselves over a brazier of charcoal in the kitchen. "We're a fine pair of drowned rats," tittered Anne Eliza- beth. Dick growled, "A pair of precious idiots."
By the time the others came back they were warm but still wet. It was a relief to argue with Barrow who was saying that if the ruling classes of today knew as much about the art of life as those old Italians he wouldn't be a socialist. "I didn't think you were a socialist any more," broke in Anne Elizabeth. "I'm sure I'm not; look how the German socialists have acted in the war and now they try to crybaby and say they wanted peace all along."
"It's possible . . . to rec . . . to reconcile being a so- cialist with faith in our President and . . . er . . . in democracy," stammered Barrow, going close to her. "We'll have to have a long talk about that, Anne Elizabeth."
Dick noticed how his eyes goggled when he looked at her. I guess he's out after her, he said to himself. When they got into the car he didn't care whether Barrow sat
next to her or not. They drove all the way back to Rome in the rain.
The next three days were very busy with President Wil- son's visit to Rome. Dick got cards to various official functions, heard a great many speeches in Italian and French and English, saw a great many silk hats and decora- tions and saluted a great deal and got a pain in the back from holding a stiff military posture. In the Roman Forum he was near enough the President's party to hear the short man with black mustaches who was pointing out the ruins of the temple of Romulus, say in stiff English, "Every- thing here bears relation to the events of the great war." There was a hush as the people in the outer groups of dignitaries strained their ears to hear what Mr. Wilson would say.
"That is true," replied Mr. Wilson in a measured voice. "And we must not look upon these ruins as mere stones, but as immortal symbols." A little appreciative murmur came from the group. The Italian spoke a little louder next time. All the silk hats cocked at an angle as the dignitaries waited for the Italian's reply. "In America," he said with a little bow, "you have something greater, and it is hidden in your hearts."
Mr. Wilson's silk hat stood up very straight against all the timeeaten columns and the endless courses of dressed stone. "Yes," replied Mr. Wilson, "it is the greatest pride of Americans to have demonstrated the immense love of humanity which they bear in their hearts." As the Presi- dent spoke Dick caught sight of his face past the cocks- feathers of some Italian generals. It was a grey stony cold face grooved like the columns, very long under the silk hat. The little smile around the mouth looked as if it had been painted on afterwards. The group moved on and passed out of earshot.
That evening at five, when he met Anne Elizabeth at Ed's apartment he had to tell her all about the official
receptions. He said all he'd seen had been a gold replica of the wolf suckling Romulus and Remus up at the Capitol when the President had been made a Roman citizen, and his face in the forum. "A terrifying face, I swear it's a reptile's face, not warmblooded, or else the face on one of those old Roman politicians on a tomb on the Via Appia. . . . Do you know what we are, Anne Elizabeth? we're the Romans of the Twentieth Century"; he burst out laughing, "and I always wanted to be a Greek."
Anne Elizabeth who was a great admirer of Wilson was annoyed at first by what he was saying. He was nervous and excited and went on talking and talking. For this once she broke her pledge and drank some hot rum with him, as the room was terribly chilly. In the light of the street lamps on the little corner of the Spanish Stairs they could see from Ed's window, they could see the jumbled dark- ness of crowds continually passing and repassing. "By God, Anne Elizabeth, it's terrible to think about it. . . . You don't know the way people feel, people praying for him in peasants' huts . . . oh, we don't know anything and we're grinding them all underfoot. . . . It's the sack of Corinth . . .
they think he's going to give them peace, give them back the cosy beforethewar world. It makes you sick to hear all the speeches. . . . Oh, Christ, let's stay human as long as we can . . . not get reptile's eyes and stone faces and ink in our veins instead of blood. . . . I'm damned if I'll be a Roman."
"I know what you mean," said Anne Elizabeth, ruffling up his hair. "You're an artist, Dick, and I love you very much . . . you're my poet, Dick."
"To hell with them all," said Dick, throwing his arms around her.
In spite of the hot rum, Dick was very nervous when he took his clothes off. She was trembling when he came to her on the bed. It was all right, but she bled a good deal and they didn't have a very good time. At supper after-
wards they couldn't seem to find anything to say to each other. She went home early and Dick wandered deso- lately around the streets among the excited crowds and the flags and the illuminations and the uniforms. The Corso was packed; Dick went into a café and was greeted by a group of Italian officers who insisted on setting him up to drinks. One young fellow with an olive skin and very long black eyelashes, whose name was Carlo Hugobuoni, became his special friend and entertainer and took him around to all the tables introducing him as Il capitan Salvaggio Ricardo. It was all asti spumante and Evviva gli ameri- cani and Italia irridenta and Meester Veelson who had saved civiltá and evviva la pace, and they ended by taking Dick to see the belle ragazze. To his great relief all the girls were busy at the house where they took him and Dick was able to slip away and go back to the hotel to bed.
The next morning when he came down to drink his coffee there was Carlo waiting for him in the hotel lobby. Carlo was very sleepy; he hadn't been able to find a raggaza until five in the morning but now he was at the orders of his caro amico to show him round the town. All day Dick had him with him, in spite of his efforts to get rid of him without hurting his feelings. He waited while Dick went to get his orders from the military mission, had lunch with him and Ed Schuyler; it was all Ed could do to get him away so that Dick could go to Ed's apartment to meet Anne Elizabeth. Ed was very funny about it, said that, as he'd lost Magda, he wouldn't be able to do anything worth- while there himself and was glad to have Dick using the room for venereal purposes. Then he linked his arm firmly in Carlo's and carried him off to a café.
Dick and Anne Elizabeth were very tender and quiet. It was their last afternoon together. Dick was leaving for Paris that night, and Anne Elizabeth expected to be sent to Constantinople any day. Dick promised he'd get himself out to see her there. That night Anne Elizabeth went with
him to the station. There they found Carlo⊥ waiting with a huge salami wrapped in silver paper and a bottle of chianti. The fellow that was going with him had brought the despatch cases, so there was nothing for Dick to do but get on the train. He couldn't seem to think of anything to say and it was a relief when the train pulled out.
As soon as he reported to Colonel Edgecombe he was sent off again to Warsaw. Through Germany all the trains were late and people looked deathly pale and everybody talked of a bolshevik uprising. Dick was walking up and down the snowy platform, stamping to keep his feet warm, during an endless wait at a station in East Prussia, when he ran into Fred Summers. Fred was a guard on a Red Cross supply car and invited Dick to ride with him a couple of stations. Dick fetched his despatches and went along. Fred had the caboose fitted with an oilstove and a cot and a great store of wine, cognac and Baker's chocolate. They rode all day together talking as the train joggled slowly across an endless grey frozen plain. "It's not a peace," said Fred Summers, "it's a cockeyed massacre! Christ, you ought to see the pogroms." Dick laughed and laughed. " Jeerusalem, it makes me feel good to hear you, you old bum, Fred. . . . It's like the old days of the grenadine guards."
" Jez, that was a circus," said Fred. "Out here it's too damn hellish to be funny. everybody starved and crazy."
"You were damn sensible not to get to be an officer . . . you have to be so damn careful about everything you say and do you can't have any kind of good time."
" Jez, you're the last man I'd ever have expected to turn out a captain."
"C'est la guerre," said Dick.
They drank and talked and talked and drank so much that Dick could barely get back to his compartment with his despatch case. When they got into the Warsaw station
Fred came running up with a package of chocolate bars. "Here's a little relief, Dick," he said. "It's a fine for coucher avec. Ain't a woman in Warsaw won't coucher for all night for a chocolate bar."
When he got back to Paris, Dick and Colonel Edge- combe went to tea at Miss Stoddard's. Her drawingroom was tall and stately with Italian panels on the walls and yellow and orange damask hangings; through the heavy lace in the windows you could see the purple branches of the trees along the quai, the jade Seine and the tall stone lace of the apse of Nôtre Dôme. "What a magnificent set- ting you have arranged for yourself, Miss Stoddard," said Colonel Edgecombe, "and if you excuse the compli- ment, the gem is worthy of its setting.""They were fine old rooms," said Miss Stoddard, "all you need do with these old houses is to give them a chance." She turned to Dick: "Young man, what did you do to Robbins that night we all had supper together? He talks about nothing else but what a bright fellow you are." Dick blushed. "We had a glass of uncommonly good scotch together after- wards . . . It must have been that.""Well, I'll have to keep my eye on you . . . I don't trust these bright young men."
They drank tea sitting around an ancient wroughtiron stove. A fat major and a lanternjawed Standard Oil man named Rasmussen came in, and later a Miss Hutchins who looked very slender and welltailored in her Red Cross uniform. They talked about Chartres and about the devas- tated regions and the popular enthusiasm that was greet- ing Mr. Wilson everywhere and why Clemenceau always wore grey lisle gloves. Miss Hutchins said it was because he really had claws instead of hands and that was why they called him the tiger.
Miss Stoddard got Dick in the window: "I hear you've just come from Rome, Captain Savage . . . I've been in Rome a great deal since the war began . . . Tell me what
you saw . . . tell me about everything . . . I like it bet- ter than anywhere.""Do you like Tivoli?""Yes, I sup- pose so; it's rather a tourist place, though, don't you think?" Dick told her the story of the fight at the Apollo without mentioning Ed's name, and she was very much amused. They got along very well in the window watch- ing the streetlamps come into greenish bloom along the river as they talked; Dick was wondering how old she was, la femme de trente ans.
As he and the Colonel were leaving they met Mr. Moorehouse in the hall. He shook hands warmly with Dick, said he was so glad to see him again and asked him to come by late some afternoon, his quarters were at the Crillon and there were often some interesting people there. Dick was curiously elated by the tea, although he'd expected to be bored. He began to think it was about time he got out of the service, and, on the way back to the office, where they had some work to clean up, asked the Colonel what steps he ought to take to get out of the service in France. He thought he might get a position of some kind in Paris. "Well, if you're looking for that, this fellow Moorehouse is the man for you . . . I believe he's to be in charge of some sort of publicity work for Standard Oil . . . Can you see yourself as a public relations coun- sel, Savage?" The Colonel laughed. "Well, I've got my mother to think of," said Dick seriously.
At the office Dick found two letters. One was from Mr. Wigglesworth saying that Blake had died of tuberculosis at Saranac the week before, and the other was from Anne Elizabeth:
I'm working at a desk in this miserable dump that's nothing but a collection of old cats that make me tired. Darling, I love you so much. We must see each other soon. I wonder what Dad and Buster would say if I
brought a goodlooking husband home from overseas. They'd be hopping mad at first but I reckon they'd get over it. Gol darn it, I don't want to work at a desk, I want to travel around Europe and see the sights. The only thing I like here is a little bunch of cyclamens on my desk. Do you remember the cute little pink cyclamens? I've got a bad cold and I'm lonely as the Dickens. This Methodist Board of Temperance and Public Morals are the meanest people I've ever seen. Ever been homesick, Dick? I don't believe you ever have. Do get yourself sent right back to Rome. I wish I hadn't been such a prissy silly little girl up there where the cyclamens bloomed. It's hard to be a woman, Dick. Do anything you like but don't forget me. I love you so.
When Dick got back to his hotel room with the two letters in the inside pocket of his tunic he threw himself down on the bed and lay a long time staring at the ceil- ing. A little before midnight Henry knocked on the door. He was just in from Brussels. "Why, what's the matter, Dick, you look all grey . . . are you sick or something?"
Dick got to his feet and washed his face at the wash- basin. "Nothing the matter," he spluttered through the water. "I'm fed up with this man's army, I guess."
"You look like you'd been crying."
"Crying over spilt milk," said Dick, and cleared his throat with a little laugh.
"Say, Dick, I'm in trouble, you've got to help me out. . . . You remember that girl Olga, the one who threw the teapot at me?" Dick nodded. "Well, she says she's going to have a baby and that I'm the proud parent. . . . It's ridiculous."
"Well, things like that happen," said Dick sourly.
"No, but Christ, man, I don't want to marry the bitch . . . or support the offspring . . . it's too silly. Even if
she is going to have a baby it's probably not mine . . . She says she'll write to General Pershing. Some of those poor devils of enlisted men they sent up for twenty years for rape . . . it's the same story."
"They shot a couple. . . . Thank God I wasn't on that courtmartial."
"But think of how it ud upset mother. . . . Look here, you can parleyvoo better'n I can . . . I want you to come and talk to her."
"All right . . . but I'm dead tired and feel lousy . . ." Dick put on his tunic. "Say, Henry, how are you off for jack? The franc's dropping all the time. We might be able to give her a little money, and we'll be going home soon, we'll be too far away for blackmail." Henry looked low. "It's a hell of a thing to have to admit to your kid brother," he said, "but I played poker the other night and. got cleaned out . . . I'm S.O.L. all down the line."
They went around to the place on Montmartre where Olga was hatcheck girl. There was nobody there yet, so she was able to come out and have a drink with them at the bar. Dick rather liked her. She was a bleached blonde with a small, hard, impudent face and big brown eyes. Dick talked her around, saying that his brother couldn't marry a foreigner on account of la famille and not having a situation and that he would soon be out of the army and back at a drafting desk . . . did she know how little a draftsman in an architect's office was paid en Amerique? Nothing at all, and with la vie chère and la chute du franc and le dollar would go next maybe and la revolution mondiale would be coming on, and the best thing she could do was to be a good little girl and not have the baby. She began to cry . . . she so wanted to get married and have children and as for an avortment . . . mais non, puis non. She stamped her foot and went back to her hat- check booth. Dick followed her and consoled her and pat- ted her cheek and said qu'e voulez vous it was la vie and
wouldn't she consider a present of five hundred francs? She shook her head but when he mentioned a thousand she began to brighten up and to admit that que voulez vous it was la vie. Dick left her and Henry cheerfully making a date to go home together after the boite closed. "Well, I had a couple of hundred bucks saved up, I guess it'll have to go . . . try to hold her off until we can get a good exchange . . . and Henry, the next time you play poker, for goodness' sake watch yourself."
The day before the first plenary session of the Peace Conference Dick was running into the Crillon to go up to see Mr. Moorehouse who had promised to get cards for him and Colonel Edgecombe, when he saw a familiar face in a French uniform. It was Ripley, just discharged from the French artillery school at Fontainebleau. He said he was in there trying to find an old friend of his father's to see if he could get a job connected with the peace dele- gations. He was broke and Marianne the Third Republic wasn't keeping him any more unless he enlisted in the foreign legion and that was the last thing he wanted to do. After Dick had phoned Major Edgecombe that Mr. Moorehouse had been unable to get them cards and that they must try again through military channels they went and had a drink together at the Ritz bar.
"Big time stuff," said Ripley, looking around at the decorations on the uniforms and the jewels on the women, "How are you goin' to keep 'em down on the farm . . . After they've seen Paree?" Dick grunted. "I wish to hell I knew what I was going to do after I got out of this manys army.""Ask me something easy . . . oh, I guess I can get a job somewhere . . . if the worst comes to the worst I'll have to go back and finish Columbia . . . I wish the revolution ud come. I don't want to go back to the States . . . hell, I dunno what I want to do." This kind of talk made Dick feel uneasy: "Mefiez vous," he
quoted. "Les oreilles enemies vous écoutent.""And that's not the half of it."
"Say, have you heard anything from Steve Warner?" Dick asked in a low voice. "I got a letter from Boston . . . I think he got a year's sentence for refusing to register . . . He's lucky . . . A lot of those poor devils got twenty years.""Well, that comes of monkeying with the buzzsaw," said Dick outloud. Ripley looked at him hard with narrowed eyes for a second; then they went on talk- ing about other things.
That afternoon Dick took Miss Stoddard to tea at Rum- pelmeyers, and afterwards walked up to the Crillon with her to call on Mr. Moorehouse. The corridors of the Cril- lon were lively as an anthill with scuttling khaki uni- forms, marine yeomen, messenger boys, civilians; a gust of typewriter clicking came out from every open door. At every landing groups of civilian experts stood talking in low voices, exchanging glances with passersby, scribbling notes on scratchpads. Miss Stoddard grabbed Dick's arm with her sharp white fingers. "Listen . . . it's like a dy- namo . . . what do you think it means?""Not peace," said Dick.
In the vestibule of Mr. Moorehouse's suite, she intro- duced him to Miss Williams, the tiredlooking sharpfaced blonde who was his secretary. "She's a treasure," Miss Stoddard whispered as they went through into the draw- ingroom, "does more work than anybody in the whole place."
There were a great many people standing around in the blue light that filtered in through the long windows. A waiter was making his way among the groups with a tray of glasses and a valetlooking person was tiptoeing around with a bottle of port. Some people had teacups and others had glasses in their hands but nobody was paying much attention to them. Dick noticed at once from the way Miss Stoddard walked into the room and the way Mr. Moore-
house came forward a little to meet her, that she was used to running the show in that room. He was introduced to various people and stood around for a while with his mouth shut and his ears open. Mr. Moorehouse spoke to him and remembered his name, but at that moment a mes- sage came that Colonel House was on the phone and Dick had no further chance to talk to him. As he was leaving Miss Williams, the secretary, said: " CaptainSavage, ex- cuse me a moment . . . You're a friend of Mr. Robbins', aren't you?" Dick smiled at her and said, "Well, rather an acquaintance, I'd say. He seems a very interesting fel- low.""He's a very brilliant man," said Miss Williams, "but I'm afraid he's losing his grip . . . as I look at it it's very demoralizing over here . . . for a man. How can anybody expect to get through their work in a place where they take three hours for lunch and sit around drinking in those miserable cafés the rest of the time?"
"You don't like Paris, Miss Williams."
"I should say not."
" Robbins does," said Dick maliciously. "Too well," said Miss Williams. "I thought if you were a friend of his you might help us straighten him out. We're very wor- ried over him. He hasn't been here for two days at a most important time, very important contacts to be made. J.W.'s working himself to the bone. I'm so afraid he'll break down under the strain . . . And you can't get a reliable stenographer or an extra typewriter . . . I have to do all the typing beside my secretarial duties.""Oh, it's a busy time for all of us," said Dick. "Goodby, Miss Williams." She gave him a smile as he left.
In late February he came back from a long dismal run to Vienna to find another letter from Anne Elizabeth:
Thanks for the fine postcards. I'm still at this desk job and so lonely. Try to come to Rome if you can. Some-
thing is happening that is going to make a great change in our lives. I'm terribly worried about it but I have every confidence in you. I know you're straight, Dicky boy. Oh, I've got to see you. If you don't come in a day or two I may throw up everything and come to Paris. Your girl,