That Young Gadabout

The party was a tremendous success, for all that nobody would clearly remember it the next day. Most people were still clustered around the magnificent bar that filled one end of the room, but by twos and threes others had moved along the length of the room, holding their various martinis, cocktails, and highballs.

Two men, wearing expensive and jazz-coloured suits, stood by the fireplace, listening to a third man talk.

“…and he was talking, quite out of the blue, of course, about how everything always works out,” he was saying. He was in his middle thirties, with hair swept back from a dramatically high forehead. He looked at the two gaily coloured men through the amber filter of a tumbler of whiskey. “I suspect him of faith, and faith is so unfashionable.” He put one hand in his coat pocket, thumb hooked outside like Edward G. Robinson, and rocked back on his heels.

The other two men laughed, appreciatively, cynically. It was not a fault that one might lay at their door.

The third man smiled, eyes hard and bright with malice and anger, and fingered the cross that lay hidden within the smart creases of his immaculate suit.