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WILLIAM AND THE WAXWORK PRINCE 103
Henry's overcoat around him and fiercely pushing down a bit of the lace collar that showed above it. " Come on and let's get back to my clothes. I'm sick of these things. I tell you I'd sooner go nakid."
They made their way down to the main road and walked silently towards the school.
A man was walking in front of them. So depressed were they that at first they did not recognise him. Then suddenly something famihar in his gait made Ginger stand rigid and draw in his breath.
" Crumbs ! " he breathed. " Ole Markie ! "
The Outlaws stared aghast at the figure that was striding on ahead of them towards the school.
" He can't-----" gasped William.
" Shurely he isn't-----" gasped Ginger.
" He never has before-----" gasped Douglas.
" Well, of all the-----" gasped Henry.
But they could do nothing but walk on behind him, apprehensive and aghast.
The school gates were now in sight.
" Praps he's jus' goin' for a walk," suggested Henry hoarsely. " P'raps-----"
His sentence faded away.
Mr. Markson had turned in at the school gates.
" Crumbs ! " breathed aJl the Outlaws in horror.
" Quick ! " said William breathlessly, " let's run round to the window. P'raps we'll jus' be in time
_______________5 5
They ran round to the window. But they weren't just in time. Already Mr. Markson was entering the door of his class-room. The waxwork still sat as they had left it, garbed in William's tweed suit, propped up at the desk, its head on its hands, before an open Latin grammar. Its face was hidden by its hands and the sleeves of its suit.
The Outlaws crouched in the bushes just outside the open window and watched and listened, horror-struck.
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