Ikey Schoenstein was the night clerk of the Blue Light and the friend of his customers.
The fly in Ikey's ointment (thrice welcome, pat trope!) was Chunk McGowan.
But he was no outfielder as Ikey was; he picked them off the bat.
"Ikey," said he, when his friend had fetched his mortar and sat opposite, grinding gum benzoin to a powder, "get busy with your ear.
Ikey's left forefinger was doubled over the edge of the mortar, holding it steady.
"I don't see then yet," said Ikey, shortly, "what makes it that you talk of drugs, or what I can be doing about it."
"You will excuse me, Chunk," said Ikey. "I must make a prescription that is to be called for soon."
"Say," said McGowan, looking up suddenly, "say, Ikey, ain't there a drug of some kind--some kind of powders that'11 make a girl like you better if you give 'em to her?"
Ikey's lip beneath his nose curled with the scorn of superior enlightenment; but before he could answer, McGowan continued:
A better reader of men than Ikey was could have seen that his tough frame was strung upon fine wires.
"When is this foolishness of running away to be happening?" asked Ikey.