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Millie And Mollie

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"I've come to ask you for the hand of your daughter," said young Bromley, stumbling to the seat offered him by the girl's father. "Which one?" asked old Dimmock, the coal merchant, laying down the newspaper. "Soruetimes I think it is Mollie, and again I am sure it is Millie," replied yoxing Bromley, genuinely perplexed. The old coal merchant looked syrnpathetic. "You can 't have both," said he, after an awkward pause. "They're splendid gir)s, good enough for anybody!" exclaimed the young man. "I could be happy with either of them." "I'm disposed to think," observed old Dimmock, "that you have been happy with both of them. " "Sothey've told memore thanonce, " said Bromley, with the pleasantest light of recollection in bis eyes. "Well, can't you makeup your mind which girl you want to marry?" Young Broruley did not answer for a moment, and then he said slowly: "Which do you think sounds the better - 'Millie Bromley' or 'Mollie Bromley?' Sometimes I've looked at it in that way. " "I don't think there's much to cboose, ' ' returned the old coal merchant, weighing the question with every desire to be fair. "You know," continued the young man, "there have been times when I've gone to bed perfectly charmed with the name 'Millie Bromley,' and in the morning 'Mollie Bromley' has caught my fancy. Millie, Mollie! Mollie, Millie - it's an awful puzzle." ' ' Of course you ' ve proposed to one of the girls?" inqnired their father. "Oh, yes, indeed," said young Bromley. "Then that is the girl you want to marry," exclaimed the old man triumphantly. "Why, it's simple enough, al'ter all. You've taken quite a load off my mind. Which one was it?" "It was Millie, I think, " answered young Broruley hesitatingly. "Think! Good Lord, don't you know?" The young man flushed and looked reproachfully at the coal inerchant. "Mr. Dimmock, " said he, "I'll put it to you as man to man. Which is Millie and which is Mollie?" "Don't cross examine me, sir, "rejoined the old man. "If you want to marry one of the girls, it's your business to find out. ' ' "Heaven knows, " cried young firomley in anguish, "Iwant to marry either Millie or Mollie, and have her all to myself. It's trying enough for a fellow to be over head and ears in love with one girl, but when there are two of them it's inore than flesh and blood can stand." "There, there, my boy," eaid the old coal merchant soothingly, "don't take on so. Either girl is yours with my blessing, but I want to keep one for myself. Let me 6ee if I can help you out, " and going to the open French window he called : "Millie, Mollie! Mollie, Millie!" "Yes, papa, we 're coming," sounded two sweet, well bred voices froni the shrubbery. There was a tripping of light feet along the stone walk under the grapevine, and Millie and Mollie bloomed into the room. "How do you do, Mr. Bromley?" they said together, with the same intonation and the same merry glint in their eyes. Millie had auburn hair and brown eyes. So had Mollie. Millie had a Cupid's bow of a mouth, little teeth like pearls, and a dimpled chin. So had Mollie. Millie's arms, seen through her muslin sleeves, were round and white. So were Mollie's. There was nothing to choose between Millie's bust and Mollie's bust as they stood side by side. "Well, papa?" "Young Bromley tells me," began old Mr. Dimmock, after he had taken drafts of tbeir fresh young beauty by looking flrst at one and then at the other and then dwelling upon the features of both with one eye sweep, "that he proposed to you last night. " "Oh, not to both, you know, Mr. Dimmock, " interjected young Bromley. "He asked me to be his wife, " said Millie demurely. "He told me that he couldn't live without me," said Mollie mischievously, "How is this?" said the old man, turning to young Bromley with a severe look. The young man blushed furiously and lifted his hands in protest. "I'msure, " he stammered, "one of you is mistaken. I asked Millie to be my wife in the summer house - and - I kissed you. That was before supper, and later in the evening, when we sat on the front steps, I said that I couldn't live without you, and that we must get married. ' ' "Before we go any further, " in ter - rupted the coal merchant, "which is Millie and which is Mollie? When your ïear mother was L.'i,ve, süe could tell the difference sometinies, but I don't know to this day. " "Oh, how dull you are!" said the gjvls in duet. "I think this is Millieon the right, " spoke up young Bromley. "Why, Mr. Bromley, " said she, "I am Mollie. " "Verygood; now let's go on," said their f ather. ' ' Where were we? Oh, yes, young Bromley says that he asked you to be his wife, Millie, and declared he couldn't live without you. " "I beg your pardon, papa," said Mollie. "He told me that he couldn't live without me." "Well, let's get our bearings, " continued the oíd ooal inerchant. "Brornley you asked Millie to marry you down in the summer house, and you kissed her? That's correct, isn't it?" "There's no doubt about that, sir, " said Bromley eagerly. ' ' And af ter supper when you sat together on the stoop you told Mollie that you couldn't live without her?" "That I deuy, sir. Oh, I beg your pardon, Molly, you needn't look so angry. I meant no offense. " "Did you kisa Mollie?" went on the old man relentlessly. "No, sir; I"- "Yes, you did, Mr. Bromley," flared up Mollie. "I admit, " said the young man, etruggling with his emotions, "that I kissed her when I said I could not live without her, but it wasn't Mollie. " "Oh, Mollie!" said Millie. "How could you?" "Now, Millie, do be reasónable, " said Mollie. Old Mr. Dimmock looked mystifled. "It seems to me," said he, with a show of impatience, "if I were in lqve with one of thosa girls I could teil the difference between them. So far as I can make out, young man, you have asked Millie to be your wife and have tried to make Mollie believe that you could not without her. Now, to any one who does not know Millie and Mollie your conduct would appear to be perfidious. Of course as between you and Mollie I must believe Mollie, for the girl certainly knows whether you kissed her. " The old man eyed both his daughters. Millie was biting her nether lip, and so was Mollie. But Mollie was trying to keep from laughing. Old Mr. Dimmock had an idea. "I would like to clear up this thing to your satisfaction and my own, Bromley, " said he. "Let me know whether Mollie kissed you when you told her ycra couldn't live without her?" The young man got very red in the face. "You mean Millie, of course, " he replied, with em barrassment. "Perhaps she wouldn't mind my saying that she did kiss me in the summer house. But she didn't kiss me on the stoop. I kissed her." "How is that, Millie, Mollie?" asked their father. "Papa, "said Mollie deoidedly. "I couldn't keep Mr. Bromley froia kissing me, but I assure yon I didn't kiss him. " Mollie looked her father straight in the eye and then shot an indignant shaft at Mr. Bromley. Millie hung her head and her face was as red as a poppy. "Ithiuk, " said the old man dryly, "that it's plain 111 keep Mollie and we'll have that marriage before you inake anothcr mistoke, young man." -


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