Drusilla with a Million
"Drusilla Doane, O Drusilla Doane!" came waveringly around the corner; and the
quavering voice was followed by a little old woman who peered at the line of old
ladies sitting in the sun. "Is Drusilla Doane here?" she inquired, darting quick
birdlike glances from her old eyes at the curious faces that looked up at her
A little white-haired woman stopped the darning of the tablecloth in her hands
and looked up expectantly.
"Yes, I'm here, Barbara. What do you want of me?"
"There's two men in the parlor to see you, an' Mis' Smith told me to tell you to
hurry. I been lookin' for you everywhere."
Drusilla Doane let the cloth fall into her lap, and all the other women stopped
their work to stare at the announcer of such wonderful news.
"To see me, are you sure?"
"Yes, they asked to see Miss Drusilla Doane. You're the only one of that name
here, ain't you?"
Drusilla folded her work and placed it in the basket of linen by the side of her
"Yes, I guess it must mean me," she said, and rose to go.
As she passed around the house all the old ladies moved as if by a common
"Come right here, Barbara Field, and tell us all about it. Who are the men?"
"What did they look like?" questioned another.
"Take this chair and tell us all about it," said Miss Harris, the youngest of the
ladies; and a place was made in their midst and the line closed around her.
"Put your teeth in, so's we can understand you."
Barbara groped around in the pocket of her apron; then, holding the end of the
apron up to her face, adroitly slipped her teeth into her mouth, and sat down to
become for once the center of interest to her little world.
"Now tell us all about it--what you waiting for?" said one of the ladies impatiently.
"What'll I tell?" said Barbara. "I was passin' by the door and Mis' Smith called me
in and said, 'Barbara, will you find Drusilla Doane and send her here? Tell her
that there are two gentlemen who wish to see her.'"
"Two men--two men to see Drusilla Doane!" cackled one old lady. "She ain't
never had one to call to see her before, as I knows on."
"No," chimed in another. "She's been here five years and there ain't a livin' soul
before asked to see Drusilla Doane. What'd they look like, Barbara?"
"One was tall and thin and sour-lookin'--looked like a director of a institution; and
the other was short and fat and pussy and was dressed real elegant. One had a
silk hat and he wore one gray glove and carried another in his hand with a cane.
That was the skinny one. The pussy one wore a gray vest--that's all I had time to
see--and his eyes kind o' twinkled at me."
"Did you hear what they wanted Drusilla for?"
"No, I didn't hear nothin'."