"I don't see how Mr. Crewe could have resisted such an overwhelming demand," said Austen. "He couldn't shirk such a duty. He says so himself, doesn't he?"
"Oh, go on!" exclaimed Mr. Tooting, who was not able to repress a grin.
"The letter of the twenty must have been a great surprise to Mr. Crewe. He says he was astonished. Did the whole delegation go up to Leith, or only a committee?"
Mr. Tooting's grin had by this time spread all over his face--a flood beyond his control.
"Well, there's no use puffin' it on with you, Aust. That was done pretty slick, that twenty-prominent-citizen business, if I do say it myself. But you don't know that feller Crewe--he's a full-size cyclone when he gets started, and nothin' but a range of mountains could stop him."
"It must be fairly exciting to--ride him, Ham."
"Say, but it just is. Kind of breathless, though. He ain't very well known around the State, and he was bound to run--and I just couldn't let him come out without any clothes on."
"I quite appreciate your delicacy, Ham."