In the hurry of departure, Hurstwood was forgotten. Both he andDrouet were left to discover that she was gone. The lattercalled once, and exclaimed at the news. Then he stood in thelobby, chewing the ends of his moustache. At last he reached aconclusion--the old days had gone for good.。，
Carrie smiled to think of it.。， A light appeared through the transom overhead. It sent a thrillof possibility through the watchers. There was a murmur ofrecognition. At last the bars grated inside and the crowdpricked up its ears. Footsteps shuffled within and it murmuredagain. Some one called: "Slow up there, now," and then the dooropened. It was push and jam for a minute, with grim, beastsilence to prove its quality, and then it melted inward, likelogs floating, and disappeared. There were wet hats and wetshoulders, a cold, shrunken, disgruntled mass, pouring in betweenbleak walls. It was just six o'clock and there was supper inevery hurrying pedestrian's face. And yet no supper was providedhere--nothing but beds.
Hurstwood said nothing. To him the big trunk hustler was asubject for private contempt.。， Money came slowly. In the course of time the crowd thinned outto a meagre handful. Fifth Avenue, save for an occasional cab orfoot passenger, was bare. Broadway was thinly peopled withpedestrians. Only now and then a stranger passing noticed thesmall group, handed out a coin, and went away, unheeding.
This unique individual was no less than an ex-soldier turnedreligionist, who, having suffered the whips and privations of ourpeculiar social system, had concluded that his duty to the Godwhich he conceived lay in aiding his fellow-man. The form of aidwhich he chose to administer was entirely original with himself.It consisted of securing a bed for all such homeless wayfarers asshould apply to him at this particular spot, though he hadscarcely the wherewithal to provide a comfortable habitation forhimself. Taking his place amid this lightsome atmosphere, hewould stand, his stocky figure cloaked in a great cape overcoat,his head protected by a broad slouch hat, awaiting the applicantswho had in various ways learned the nature of his charity. For awhile he would stand alone, gazing like any idler upon an ever-fascinating scene. On the evening in question, a policemanpassing saluted him as "captain," in a friendly way. An urchinwho had frequently seen him before, stopped to gaze. All otherstook him for nothing out of the ordinary, save in the matter ofdress, and conceived of him as a stranger whistling and idlingfor his own amusement.。， "I don't know. He's got a high fever."
The next day Drouet called, but it was with no especial delightthat Carrie remembered her appointment. However, seeing him,handsome as ever, after his kind, and most genially disposed, herdoubts as to whether the dinner would be disagreeable were sweptaway. He talked as volubly as ever.。， "Well, I should say," said the other. "I've been just sittinghere thinking where I'd go to-night."
In the lobby of the Imperial, Mr. Charles Drouet was justarriving, shaking the snow from a very handsome ulster. Badweather had driven him home early and stirred his desire forthose pleasures which shut out the snow and gloom of life. Agood dinner, the company of a young woman, and an evening at thetheatre were the chief things for him.。， The next night, walking to the theatre, she encountered him faceto face. He was waiting, more gaunt than ever, determined to seeher, if he had to send in word. At first she did not recognisethe shabby, baggy figure. He frightened her, edging so close, aseemingly hungry stranger.
， "What time?"。， It was no pleasure to him, however, this stopping of passers-by.He saw one man taken up for it and now troubled lest he should bearrested. Nevertheless, he went on, vaguely anticipating thatindefinite something which is always better.