If Sidney was puzzled, she kept it bravely to herself. In her little room

at night, with the door carefully locked, she tried to think things out.

There were a few treasures that she looked over regularly: a dried flower

from the Christmas roses; a label that he had pasted playfully on the back

of her hand one day after the rush of surgical dressings was over and which

said "Rx, Take once and forever."

There was another piece of paper over which Sidney spent much time. It was

a page torn out of an order book, and it read: "Sigsbee may have light

diet; Rosenfeld massage." Underneath was written, very small: "You are the most beautiful person in the world."

Two reasons had prompted Wilson to request to have Sidney in the


operating-room. He wanted her with him, and he wanted her to see him at

work: the age-old instinct of the male to have his woman see him at his


He was in high spirits that first day of Sidney's operating-room

experience. For the time at least, Carlotta was out of the way. Her somber

eyes no longer watched him. Once he looked up from his work and glanced at

Sidney where she stood at strained attention.

"Feeling faint?" he said.

She colored under the eyes that were turned on her.

"No, Dr. Wilson."

"A great many of them faint on the first day. We sometimes have them lying

all over the floor."

He challenged Miss Gregg with his eyes, and she reproved him with a shake

of her head, as she might a bad boy.

One way and another, he managed to turn the attention of the operating-room

to Sidney several times. It suited his whim, and it did more than that: it

gave him a chance to speak to her in his teasing way.

Sidney came through the operation as if she had been through fire--taut as

a string, rather pale, but undaunted. But when the last case had been

taken out, Max dropped his bantering manner. The internes were looking over

instruments; the nurses were busy on the hundred and one tasks of clearing

up; so he had a chance for a word with her alone.

"I am proud of you, Sidney; you came through it like a soldier."

"You made it very hard for me."

A nurse was coming toward him; he had only a moment.

"I shall leave a note in the mail-box," he said quickly, and proceeded with

the scrubbing of his hands which signified the end of the day's work.

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