easy, ended in a slip to the knees or a clutch at the vaulting-pad. And that let down the Circus. In Jeff's eyes any sin might be forgiven except letting the Circus down.
Hugh looked back to the days when he had laughed at a clown as an old man might look back to early childhood. Nowadays he studied a clown's every action, from the moment he came through the curtains, noting exactly what he did to get his laughs. He knew now that Joey did not waddie about playing the fooi aimlessly, trusting to his idiotie make-up to amuse people; that, on the contrary, everything was studied, and that he watched, catlike, for a chance to grasp any fun-making situation that came along. Obeying Jeff, Hugh would sometimes spend most of an evening in trying to think himself into Joey's skin, planning just what he would do, were he Joey. The huge clown little dreamed that his small critic occasionally writhed at seeing a chance that the humorists in the ring had missed!
Big Dan must have seen Hugh often in the cheap seats—the yellow head was one not easily hidden—but he made no objection. Probably he had his own ideas concerning the small, grave spectator who so clearly was not there for fun. Hugh dreaded him as much as ever outside the Big Top; but in the ring the Owner seemed quite a different person. He even made a study of his methods, with a view to being himself a ring-master— in the Dream-Circus!
So the weeks went by, until the little home in the orchard grew more and more dream-like and far away,