The Efficiency Expert

By Edgar Rice Burroughs

Page 41

a woman is not safe from insult even
though she be properly escorted, while in Feinheimer's a woman with an
escort was studiously avoided by the other celebrators unless she chose
to join with them. As there was only one class of women who came to
Feinheimer's at night without escort, the male habitues had no
difficulty in determining who they might approach and who they might
not.

Jimmy Torrance was as busy as a cranberry merchant. He had four tables
to attend to, and while the amount of food he served grew more and more
negligible as the evening progressed, his trips to the bar were
exceedingly frequent. One of his tables had been vacated for a few minutes
when, upon his return from the bar with a round of drinks for Steve
Murray and his party he saw that two women had entered and were
occupying his fourth table. Their backs were toward him, and he gave
them but little attention other than to note that they were unescorted
and to immediately catalogue them accordingly. Having distributed Steve
Murray's order, Jimmy turned toward his new patrons, and, laying a menu
card before each, he stood between them waiting for their order.

"What shall we take?" asked Elizabeth of Harriet. Then: "What have you
that's good?" and she looked up at the waiter.

Jimmy prided himself upon self-control, and his serving at Feinheimer's
had still further schooled him in the repression of any outward
indication of his emotions. For, as most men of his class, he had a
well-defined conception of what constituted a perfect waiter, one of the
requisites being utter indifference to any of the affairs of his patrons
outside of those things which actually pertained to his duties as a
servitor; but in this instance Jimmy realized that he had come very
close to revealing the astonishment which he felt on seeing this girl in
Feinheimer's and unescorted.

If Jimmy was schooled in self-control, Elizabeth Compton was equally so.
She recognized the waiter immediately, but not even by a movement of an
eyelid did she betray the fact; which may possibly be accounted for by
the fact that it meant little more to her than as though she had chanced
to see the same street-sweeper several times in succession, although
after he had left with their order she asked Harriet if she, too, had
recognized him.

"Immediately," replied her friend. "It doesn't seem possible that such
a good-looking chap should be occupying such a menial position."

"There must be something wrong with him," rejoined Elizabeth; "probably
utterly inefficient."

"Or he may have some

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