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- Seven Maids of Far Cathay - 6/10 -
5th Moon - 1st day - Last week I make return unto College. All Honorable Teachers and Chinese girls give greetings of gladness. This place so dear home I make wish all time here to dwell, then before mind come the Magnificent person of the Honorable Head Master of St. Marks and I think to change wish.
I tell unto Dr. Ewing of the Deformities of my Imperfect Betrothed and it seem as if I cry to death. If I do not will to marry with my Imperfect Betrothed, Peace of Fervid Mind and Ardent Heart will dwell no more within me. On the contrary, Lifelong Disgrace will sit by side forevermore. Nevertheless I cannot to possess him for husband.
This morning Dr. Ewing go unto my August Father to tell to him the useless troubles of his most useless daughter.
Firstly - August Father was of so great anger, his ears listened not unto Beloved Doctor making to speak, but he tell with lengthiness and loudness of voice of meddlesome persons' intrusiveness.
By and by August Father make pause to catch up breath, and Dr. Ewing quick to speak Deformities of Imperfect Betrothed, then August Father rest tongue and lend ears.
Lastly - August Father is again with so great anger that his Official Friend (my Exalted Father-in-law) hath not related unto him the story of his son's misshapen members, August Father give of promise unto Dr. Ewing that if she can to make arrangements of honorableness with Exalted Father-in-law, he will not marry poor, useless me unto Betrothed of Deformities.
At Tiffin arrive Community Doctor. With him Dr. Ewing hold much speech on Hospital-balcony.
From balcony went Dr. Wardoff to House of Capable Mother-in-law there to make visitation upon Imperfect Betrothed.
Tonight Head Boy of Community Doctor bring chit. I watch with carefulness Dr. Ewing making reading. She look see my interest of face and say, "It will all come right, Moonflower. Tomorrow afternoon we hold council. Run along to bed, now." I give unto her good night partings and retire within my Mieng but sleep not.
5th Moon - 2d day - When sun glow in window I arise and make entrance into garden. It is my week to make daily providings of flowers and I prepare many bouquets, one of greatest importance.
That I may know of Consultation Meeting, I ask of No. 1 Boy where shall repose my most important bouquet. No. 1 Boy say, "At Two of the clock, in Teakwood reception room our Honored President hold visitation of moment. Establish there the bouquet of so great importance." I so do. Thereupon look see all about. No person present. Quick I make withdrawal of screen to balcony window and go away.
At Two of the clock I stand behind screen and give heed to August Father and Exalted Father-in-law making greetings unto Honorable President. Dr. Wardoff also make entrance. No. 1 Boy produce tea and much speech of so great politeness take place.
"I am the bearer of ill tidings," say Dr. Wardoff unto Miss Powers.
"I am sorry," say Miss Powers. "Speak on."
Dr. Wardoff tell to her he has been to consult about son of his friend Wong Ging (Exalted Father-in-law make most honorable bow) and that son's heart is of so great enlargement that at any hour may come death to friend's son. (August Father shake head in sorrow deep), Miss Powers much sad, much shocked, much surprised.
Dr. Wardoff say on: "Therefore Wong Ging wishes me to state that it is with great sorrow he requests that the betrothal of his son to the beautiful daughter of his friend (Ling Ang) be now terminated."
Mental pain and much lamentation at the once come unto August Father; of so great sympathies for his Exalted Friend that tongue cannot to tell.
My Exalted Father-in-law partake of pain and sympathies freely; with him, also, tongue cannot to speak sorrow.
Destiny in face of August Father and Exalted Father-in-law dwells. I behold face of two from behind screen and catch at breath.
My Exalted Father-in-law make beginnings. "All things are possible to the Mighty! The Powerful are ever Generous! What sayeth my Mighty Friend? Will the loss of my most unhappy son make strainings of his Mercy?"
"It is well," my August Father make answer. "Wong Ging, thou art a worthy father of a most worthy son. To be Master of Accidents as well as of Arts is for one Noble Person of great enrichment and gaining!"
All Honorable persons arise and with cup of tea in hand take sip.
On wings of thunder come sounds of bombs outside in City. I make movement. Window at back fall down; screen in front fold over. No person look see. All have much callings from garden. Dr. Wardoff alone to me say, "Bombs mean much trouble. Go quickly and bid Dr. Ewing to come at once to Community Hospital."
In garden I make pause beside Boy bringing chit. "Bad man think to kill Governor of Province," say Boy. "Twenty men dead, many maim on Bridge of the Ten Thousand Ages."
5th Moon - 3d day - All of night we stay outside Compound at Community Hospital. Dr. Ewing grow so great tire I try to make lie down. She say, "No, No," and tell of one more leg to cut. Dr. Wardoff make arrival with cutter. Dr. Ewing help; I hold to sponge. Leg go off. Beloved Doctor face grow all of a whiteness; body sway, I try to catch but Dr. Wardoff give to me a push and take unto himself the body of unknowingness of Dr. Ewing. "She belong to me," he say. "Bring water." I bring of water and all time he say, "Darling-Dearest-Love!"
6th Moon - 12th day - It is night and the daylight sleepeth while the Moonbeams play. Fireflies make journeyings of pleasurings with their so small lanterns. Only the wonderful river Ping toils on in its silver bed. Under my window roses of fragrance beckon, beckon, with heads of wisdom. Perhaps I may win the favor of the Gods! The garden is full of the whisperings of Chance! Youth is headlong. I will descend.
Later - When I depart into garden I come upon Dr. Ewing. By side walk Y. M. C. A. Secretary. He of inconsiderableness of body and extensiveness of feet.
Dr. Ewing make silent beckonings to stand by side. I so do. Honorable Secretary of Y. M. C. A. most cross. "Send the girl away," he say, "I have not finished."
"But I have," Dr. Ewing say, with so great loftiness of head. "My answer will always be 'No!"
Then appear the son of the Consul and depart the Honorable Secretary of the Y. M. C. A. I make movement to proceed. Dr. Ewing link arm in mine and put stop to movement. Son of the Consul look see, with little sob make laugh and say, "So Moonflower remains. It's all the same! You can't put me off! I will say it! I love you!"
All time of speech Dr. Ewing try to make son of the Consul to stop. "Very, very sorry," she say, but of no use.
With so great sadness the son of the Consul take leavings and we make entrance into Hospital.
At our approach Community Doctor arise from shadow on balcony and stand forth in sheet of silver moonlight.
Dr. Ewing make pause and face seem all of a whiteness in moonshine. Community Doctor say, "Is it yes?" and open wide his arms of bigness that Dr. Ewing may creep therein. No more she beckon, "stay here," no more link arm; and I make entrance into office with heart of so great heaviness. Strange sounds of Kissings (an American custom) follow after; I put up thumbs unto ears and it seem as if I would cry to death; no longer Beloved Doctor hath need of poor, useless me.
Next day - Dr. Ewing tell to me this morning that all of arrangements are now perfection. To my Betrothed of Deformities (that once was) hath mine August Father given his Tea-House in Shanghai.
Tomorrow, to Teakwood reception room, at Four of the clock, cometh Quong Lee, the Honorable Head Master of Magnificence. To him in my so fine silken robes will I make appearance. The sun of my fortune is newly arisen! The event of my life approaches! It is well!
Every day since learning that upon me the so great honor fall to become Essayist, I have secretly and with great carefulness searched within the libraries of each of our Honored Instructors to find out what Essay is, and to gain information about this thing.
At last, O, so great happiness, I find in Miss Powers' library one great and important book called, "Essay on Man," by Honorable Pope; also one small, unimportant book called, "Studies in Prose Essays." Now surely all these things I can to know about Essay.
All day, all evening, and again next day, I read most secretly, hiding book quickly if any one come near, for no one must know of these readings in Honorable Pope.
"Surely," I say, "By and by I will find part easy to understand." Another day I read and hide away books, yet no more can to understand what Honorable Pope make meaning. This time head ache, eyes ache, heart ache. Truly all too sad, too sorrowful.
Next day have no heart to read more, but try one little while. Then, O too great joy, one part not before found reveal new meaning to me! Here all parts separate with large, plain numbers - 1-2-3 - like questions in great Examination. "Possibly," I say, "one Essay I can do like book of wisdom." The great and wise book say:
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