himself what happened when an unpaid hand found himself in tatters. That he should be paid for his services never occurred to Hugh, though Jeff and Micky, who had been equally worried about his clothes, had their own views on the matter. So, it seemed, had Mrs. Dan. She had a bombshell for him.
"Mr. Peterson reckons you're earning more than your grub now," she remarked. "Any one in the ring has a right to be paid. He says he'11 give you your clothes an' five shillings a week." At which announcement Hugh opened his eyes and mouth widely, bereft of speech.
"Of course, he won't give you all that money to fooi about with," she added; "he'11 keep four shillings for you every week an' let you have a shilling to spend as you like. How does that strike you?"
It struck Hugh with such force that words were still denied him. His eyes danced, but he could only gape at her. Mrs. Dan laughed.
"Don't you get it into your head that Mr. Peterson isn't a kind man," she said. "He has to be sharp, but he's just: an' if you try your best you'11 find he's a good friend. Here's your first shilling—he gave it to me for you." She laid it by his plate. It gleamed at him—his first earnings. He found his tongue, stammering thanks.
"That's all right," said Mrs. Dan, briskly. "An' Nita's been asking if you an' she can play about together sometimes; an' as you're a performer her father says you can. But mind you, no rough words or rough ways: you were brought up careful, an' you be careful with Nita. She's