Books > Old Books > Decent Fellows (1930)


Page 81

CHAPTER VII

shoulder. Harbord tripped heavily over the ottoman, and by the time they had reached his room, a wooden chair had been firmly jammed beneath the door handle.
Denis and Harbord stood outside in the passage. Suddenly, from two holes in the door, a stream of cold water fell on their heads. The holes were for extra ventilation, said the dame ; to see if they were reading by candle after lights, said the boys.
Denis and Harbord wiped the water from their hair and retreated a few yards. There was silence in Spencer-Mace's room. Spencer-Mace was just wondering whether he had not better apologise and make peace, when a terrific allied attack was launched against his defences. The heavy door creaked and groaned but the chair wedged it firm. The pair retreated, and while a group of lower boys watched the fun, hurled themselves again at the door. The brass door-handle on the other side flew off with a snap, the chair collapsed and Denis and Harbord arrived in a heap on the floor. " Get his arms," said Harbord ; the victim writhed, eel-like, in their grip. " I've got him," said Denis, " Give him hell." Harbord seized a silver knobbed malacca stick, of which Spencer-Mace was very proud, and gave him hell.
" Ow. Damn you. Shut up. Bullies, brutes, two to one. Help," he screamed. Harbord handed the stick to Denis. " Go on ; your turn." Denis was just adding his quota of whacks, when he heard a tired, supercilious voice behind him. " Whatever do you think you are you doing, you three ? "
They released Spencer-Mace and turned round. Freeman, the captain of the house, was standing in the door. " I don't know what this is all about, but I think you'd better all three come to the library after prayers." Freeman strolled away with his hands in his pockets. The three boys looked at each other.
" Now you've gone and done it, you pair of geniuses, and I shall tell Freeman exactly whose fault it was," said Spencer-Mace.

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