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mother, who had been a ballet-girl for a long, long time, and who had never been anything grander than a coryphée.

As Mrs. Purdie's brother continued to regard her with something of the stupefaction which he would have accorded to a pixy, she repeated, with an air of great conviction:

"I am a dancer."

But Mrs. Purdie, bearing down into the little room like a merchantman in full sail, ruined this statement by remarking with acidity: "Pay no attention to her nonsense, Ted. Dancer, indeed! Funny sort of dancer, I say, that can't ever get work. ... Go and fetch the hot plates, Polly, and don't you loiter so."