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1950_08_05--032_SP [Clever Women Are Dangerous Too]

THE SATURDAY EVENING POST 59 ITS A CINCH TO ROLL GRAND-TASTING CIGARETTES WITH CRIMP CUT PRINCE ALBERTI When I got away from it, I felt all right. The lights were on at the Blakes'. I thought maybe some of our guests had dropped in on Janey, and I could use a drink too. That's all there is to it." "I wonder, Miss Maynard," Swede Carlson said. " I hear a lot of people talkin' around about things that aren't any of their business. But they still talk, and usually there's a good deal of truth mixed in what they're sayin'. You can throw me out if I'm wrong, but the idea I get is that all things bein' equal, you'd a damn sight rather spend the time alone with Gus Blake than with his wife and your guests. You left them mighty quick last night, I hear, to go out with him to Wernitz's. And if you figured they were in there, you must 'a' figured one of 'em would take you home, and not Gus." "Aren't you being rather insulting, Mr. Carlson?" Her yellow-green eyes contracted slowly as she looked across at him. CLEVER WOMEN ARE DANGEROUS TOO (Continued from Page 32) "No," said Charlie, remembering the battles in the office with determined young women who knew too much. The gray in his hair had come only after he'd joined the magazine. "But I wish I'd known sooner." Joy squinted at him again and bit her lower lip. " What's the matter with you? There's something going on in that overpaid skull of yours —" "I'm just tired of smart, clever, independent, brainy women, that's all," said Charlie. He leaned back in his chair, relaxing completely, struck with a beautiful thought. "I'm thinking of marrying a bird-brain, like Imogene." " You sound like a bird-brain yourself," Joy said. Again the wayward hair was pushed back. " You'd be as bored as blazes within a week. All that girl has is a sun tan and a Size Thirty-six. You need more than that for a successful marriage." "Such as?" said Charles. " None of the clever women I know has appealed to me in the way Imogene has. None of them has what she has." " Maybe we have. Maybe we just don't display it the way she does." Joy tried to rearrange the shape of the lemon linen, but she would have had more success shaping a sugar bag. "Anyhow, you're too old for her. You're old enough to be her father." "If I were, I'd have been a child bridegroom," said Charlie. " You're no teen-ager yourself." "I'm twenty-nine," Joy said. "Ten years older than she, and old enough to be — er — matured." She slapped her knees. " Golly, I think I'll marry you myself." Charlie laughed hollowly. "I'd rather see myself dead." "So would I," said Joy. "In preference to your marrying Imogene with the light-brained head." The door opened and Imogene made her entrance on cue, clad for the street. Charlie couldn't think of a street where she wouldn't cause a commotion, but he knew there must be one somewhere; the world couldn't be that small. The plunging neckline of her dress had developed into a headlong dive, and elsewhere, when she moved, the seams sang like taut guy ropes in a gale. "I'm just tellin' you the local gossip. If it's insultin', don't blame me. I've been watchin' you, Miss Maynard. The way I figure you is that you know what you want and you go after it. Fair means or foul. And then you get sort of scared. Or maybe your conscience gets to botherin' you. A lot of women are like that." "Are they indeed, Chief Carlson?" She lifted her perfect brows. "You've learned a lot about people, haven't you? May I ask what you think my reason for going to Blakes' was?" "Sure," Swede Carlson said. "Glad to tell you. In view of what happened there last night, I figure you knew somebody was goin' to break in the Blakes' house. I figure you knew who it was and why they were doin' it. That's why you weren't interested in the phone call out there at Wernitz's. Maybe you'd agreed to keep Gus away long enough for 'em to go in and do what they were goin' to do. I figure that sittin' out there in the car, your con- " Beautiful," said Charlie; he was fast developing an entirely new outlook on women. "Going to a masquerade, darling?" Joy said. Imogene didn't know what a masquerade was, but she didn't bat an eyelash. Smart as a whip, she said, " I'm going to dinner with Charlie." "She certainly is," Charlie said, springing to his feet with more agility than he'd shown in months. "I'm going to show her something of life with a capital L." "Picture books were made for girls like her," Joy murmured. " Well, I wish you anything but a boring evening, Imogene. And I'll want you here at seven-thirty in the morning." "Oh, my goodness!" Imogene said. "But that's almost when the sun comes up." "The farmers have been up three or four hours by that time," Joy said. " Why don't you get one of the farmers, then?" Charlie said, and laughed at his own repartee; he felt like a comedian who'd just found a new book of jokes. "I would," said Joy, "if I could find one who'd look good in a Bikini bathing suit." "What do you want with her at that hour?" Charlie said. "She'll be here at nine. Like any respectable working girl," "She'll be out of a job, if she is," said Joy. "And let's leave respectability out of this. It's irrelevant to the subject tinder discussion." All this multiple-syllable talk was above Imogene's pretty blond head, but it made no difference to her; she just loved the sound of the words. " I am protecting the girl from herself . . . and you. Something tells me you aren't the Charlie Harriss I've known all these years," said Joy. "I want her to have an early night and I want her here at seven-thirty in the morning. Understand?" "Imagine being married to you," Charlie said. "If you were," said Joy, "you wouldn't be allowed out with any plunging necklines." "Are you married to Miss Conlan?" Imogene said to Charlie. " No," said Charlie. " Fortunately." " Oh, good," said Imogene. " Let's go to dinner." " Watch your figure," Joy said as they went out the door. "Her figure's all right," said Charlie. science began to hurt like hell. You saw what murder was like, and it suddenly began to worry you ... that who'd ever killed once could easily kill again. And I think that's when you got what you call upset, .Miss Maynard. That's why you had to get Gus home so fast all of a sudden. I think that's why you went inside when you got there—just to see what had happened. And when you found Janey alive and you got all over your jitters, you started right back on the same track again. Does that answer your question, Miss Maynard?" Connie Maynard had straightened up and was sitting rigidly erect on the yellow sofa, her dry lips parted, listening in a stupor of stunned fascination to the fantastic compound, half of it falsehood, half truth. It was a ghastly net, being woven right in front of her; the truth as damning as the falsehood, the falsehood as damning as the truth. (TO BE CONTINUED) "I was talking about yours," said Joy. Charlie wondered if the sedentary life was giving him editor's spread. Imogene and Charlie went to a little restaurant in King's Cross. The waiter handed Imogene the elaborate menu and stood waiting for her to order. Imogene studied the menu for almost five minutes, her eyes crossed in concentration and her red lips caught between her teeth; international treaties had never received such careful scanning. Then she looked up. "Steak and eggs, please." Charlie shrugged and ordered the same. Over dinner, the conversation was light and inconsequential, about the weather and bathing suits and the pain in Imogene's mother's side. Imogene wasn't one to let the conversational ball gather dust in a corner. Charlie, for his part, ate his steak and eggs, and rested his brain. Imogene was as good as a vacation. Later they drove out to Tamarama and parked on the road that skirted the top of the cliffs. Below them the waves thundered on the rocks, and far out the moon was rising out of its own reflection on the sea. It was a night for romance, and the girl's intellectual capacity didn't count here. Imogene was leaning back in the seat, the moonlight striking sideways across her face and the plunging neckline. Charlie looked at her and was glad he was sitting down; his knees had gone. "Have you ever thought of marriage, Imogene?" he said. "Oh, yes," said Imogene eagerly. "To what sort of man?" "Oh, any man would do," Imogene said; she wasn't hard to please, like some girls. " How old are you, Charlie?" " Thirty-two," said Charlie. "Don't scream." " Why, that's not old," Imogene said. " Why, daddy's forty." Charlie felt better. He put an arm about her, protectively. She turned toward him and he felt her lips press on his. He had only a dim idea of what was happening to him. Behind her head he saw the moon splinter on the sea and his blood began to thunder louder than the surf below them. Your blood pressure's caught up with you, he thought. You're older than you think. This is the beginning of a stroke... . "You'd never know," Imogene said. "Know what?" (Cmi in reed on Page 62) • It's easy to see his Pipe Appeal attracts her at first sight. And you can guess by his happy look that he has a pipeful of Prince Albert — America's largest-selling smoking tobacco. Get P.A.! Prince Albert's choice, rich-tasting tobacco is specially treated to insure against tongue bite. gatiefealVer,Cd(-6 "444, ‘'44‘' ro Air -11M -40 Aly '41w


1950_08_05--032_SP [Clever Women Are Dangerous Too]
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