In Maytime

Anne Maynard Kidder

In Maytime
by Anne Maynard Kidder
Edited by Margaretta Morris and Louise Buffum Congdon
"In compiling a volue of Bryn Mawr stories, the editors have been conscious that such a book could never adequately represent the college life. Its strong subtle character that commands the devotion of every Bryn Mawr student is something difficult if not impossible to depict. Yet there comes a time in the life of a college, as of an individual, when self-expression is inevitable. Such a time, the editors believe, has come for Bryn Mawr...."
In Maytime
Timothy Trask was an eminently correct young man. His dress, his speech, his manners were all the most correct of their kind. If he discovered that anything was the proper thing to do, he always did it, even to the extent of playing very poor golf in an irreproachable pink coat. He was a great lover of the antique, which is in itself a very correct thing to be at the present time, and he possessed a collection of ancient armour, which was hung about on the walls of his wide front hallway, a grim line of swords and battle-axes, and great round shields.
Large as this collection was, in the mind of the fastidious Timothy it was incomplete without a certain Crusader's dagger, exposed to view in a New York dealer's window. Timothy had stood looking at this dagger with longing contemplation, for once unconscious of his pose before the public gaze. His imagination had conjured up an enticing scene in which Timothy Trask figured as the centre of an admiring throng of acquaintances, all watching with breathless eagerness while he told the story of the ancient dagger and pointed out its jewelled hilt and the fine gold chains attached to each end. Then he had counted over his railway stocks, his mortgages and government bonds, and had sadly taken the train back to Philadelphia.
The dagger continued to fill an unobtrusive place in the New York window, and an altogether too prominent place in the mind of poor Timothy. All his antiques grew tiresome and commonplace in comparison with this one little jewelled hilt. At last one evening he decided that he must have it if it ruined him. With a sudden burst of confidence he told the whole story to three friends in his smoking room, and announced his intention of going to New York the next day.
Unlucky confidence for Timothy! A look of subtle meaning passed from one to another of the friends. One of them, in spite of warning glances from the others, picked up a copy of the Ledger from the table, and nonchalantly pointed to a full-page account of a May-day fte, reviving the Elizabethan plays and dances, to be given the next day at Bryn Mawr.
"Here's a lot about the learned ladies. Going to give some sort of show or other. Elizabethan! Hm! Reading extracts from history, I suppose, perhaps all dressed up, like a Dickens reading. It says something about 'correct costumes.' I wonder if Tim's cousin is to be in it. Look here, Tim, when are you going to take us out to see that pretty cousin of yours?"
"I have not seen Marion Hall since she was a child, and have no desire to make her acquaintance," said Timothy icily.
Because Timothy was so correct, he particularly detested and disapproved of college girls. They represented to his mind a mixture of spectacled phenomena of learning, and of cheering, basketball playing New Women. In either capacity he found them peculiarly objectionable. He often said of them, with a fervent horror he might have expressed towards wild Indians, "I sincerely trust it will never be my misfortune to meet one."
His feeling towards college girls was well known to these friends and it had occurred to one of them that it would be delightful to see Timothy at the May-day festivity, surrounded by hordes of college girls on their native heath. The incongruity of the picture was so pleasing to the others that the idea had been instantly seized upon, and they determined, by some hook or crook to get Timothy to Bryn Mawr.
Now the avowed trip to New York gave them their opportunity. One of them could meet him at the station and manage in some way to lead him astray.
The victim serenely played into their hands. When the conspirators appeared Timothy was just in the agony of trying to hide his near-sightedness and at the same time discover which was his gate. All the officials seemed occupied at that moment, and he had no time to go back to the bureau of information.
"Hello, Jenks, where are you bound for? I have just two minutes. Can you see which is the New York gate?"
"Over there," replied Jenks, unblushingly pointing to the sign "Bryn
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