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"And that's an idea," Jeff said thoughtfully. "Jimmy's talkin' of going. Says he'd had enough of circuses an' wants to run a pig-farm."

"An' he might do that, now, afther playin' this long time with Toby," said a cheerful voice, as Micky came in. "Is it to take on his job you're thinkin' of, Jeff?"

"No, but I was thinkin' an Irish clown 'ud be no bad thing."

"Yerra, I've had me dreams of it," said Micky, sitting down on his blankets. " 'Tis the only way I'd ever get me own back on the Boss for some of the merry things he do be sayin' to me when he's excited. D'ye remember the night Joey sat down on his hat? That's a plisant thing to be thinkin' of when the Boss tells you how many kinds of a fooi y'are."

"He told Joey all right afterwards," grinned Jeff.

"He did—but 'twasn't me, so it doesn't spoil the memory. An' when I think of the Boss all civil an' gay in the ring, with his hat like a shut concertina, an' himself ragin' inside with fury—well, 'tis meself wishes I was a clown! I was niver afraid of payin' for me moments of glory. But there's not many of them about a Big Top job."

"Jeff's got a rise—and you've got to get one too!" blurted out Hugh.

"D'ye teil me, now?" The little man was on his feet with a quick movement. "What is it, Jeff, lad?" He pumped Jeff's hand as the good news was unfolded to him.