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Full text of "Laughing Torso"

LAUGHING    TORSO

CHAPTER XIII                                                                        PARIS
IN the late autumn Paris was very pleasant as all
the tourists had left and only the serious people re-
mained behind for the winter. There was a Russian
Ball at the Bal Bullier, arranged by Larionof. The
balls at the Bal Bullier were the best of all if one got
in intact. Outside one had to wait in a queue,
sometimes for nearly an hour. One very cold winter
night we had to wait for a long time and the people
behind started rushing the doors. If I hadn't been
protected by two men and a policeman I think I
should have been killed; as it was, a great many
people were badly hurt with the broken glass. B.,
my old friend, the man who had played soldiers
with Tuohy and the champagne bottles outside the
Dome, were at the Ball. When he got excited, after
Mandarin Curasao, he had a passion for climbing.
He would climb anything, trees, church-steeples,
pillars, anything he could find. He found a row of
pillars holding up the balcony and swarmed up one.
After becoming rather tired he descended slowly on
to the head of an infuriated Swedish diplomat. It
required a great deal of tact and some champagne
to calm the Swede. The little dwarf who played in
Romeo and Juliet was there. He was about three feet
ten high and had a large head. He came dressed as
a baby and wore imitation hands and arms and a
baby's mask over his face. Many people really
thought that he was about four and said, " Va te
voucher! Oh est to. Maman? Crest un scandale" The