FORTY-FOUR
WALK INTO THE TOWN

The court seethed with whispers. The three were surrounded by friends and walked to the door. I waited, with Porson and Getliffe, until we could leave ourselves, watching Mr. Passant come out of the crowd and take George's hand. Gossip was already in the air. "They didn't expect --" someone said at I went out with Getliffe. People were laughing with excitement, face after face suddenly leapt to the eyes, vivid and alive.

Getliffe talked in the robing-room until Eden fetched him.

"It's been nice to be together again." And then: "Well, one's pulled it off for your people. It was a good case to win." He smiled. "We'll have a crack about it in the train tonight. I've learned from it, L.S., I've learned from it."

When he had shaken hands with Porson and followed Eden out, we heard his voice, cheerful and a little strident, down the corridor. I went across the room to say good-bye to Porson myself. His eyes were narrow with unhappiness.

"I ought not to say it to you, I suppose," he said, "but it's incredible these clods of juries should --" then he stopped and laughed. "Still, good-bye, my boy. We'll run together again one of these days. I hope the job goes well. Let me know if I can be of any use, I expect I can."

On the pavement outside the court, George and the others were being congratulated by a large party. Olive and Jack had their arms round each other's waists. Soon I was shaking Mr. Passant's hand, listening to Olive and Jack and their friends, being invited to visit them later, saying good-bye. In the crowd, someone had put an arm through mine, our voices were raised, there was a great deal of laughter; simply by being together, we were filled with intimacy and excitement. We were careless with the relief, greater and unmixed because

-305-

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