them so quietly that they had not realized his presence.
"Will I put him through, sir?" asked Jeff—not a little nervous, for all that his voice was unconcerned.
"You needn't. I've been watching you all through. He's green, but we'11 try him. That's all right, boy. Cut along."
Hugh obeyed, greatly relieved. His head was whirling with the new turn of events. A whistle followed him, and he turned, seeing Joey emerge from the tent. He ran back.
"We're to go an' have a heart-to-heart talk over things," said the clown, grinning widely. "Come along, son, an' we'11 plan how we'11 knock 'em silly tonight."
Jeff had stayed behind, obeying a beckoning nod from the Owner.
"You've been teaching the youngster?"
"Well—he knew a bit before he came, sir. I've just done what I could at odd times."
"Where did you learn how?"
"I was with another circus—Mellon's."
"Crowd that went smash," assented Big Dan. Jeff nodded, hoping he did not regard him as one of the causes of Mellon's failure.
"What were you with them?"
"Riding: ring-work an' a bit of tumbling."
"Name on the program?"
"Yes, sir. Not high up though," added Jeff, with a faint grin.
"An' now you're tent-hand. You don't drink, do you?"