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The Model Millionaire - Part 2

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The Model Millionaire - Part 1
picture: Oscar Wilde as a young man
Oscar Wilde as a young man
public domain

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That night about eleven o'clock, Hughie went into the Palette Club, a club for artists. There he found Trevor sitting by himself in the smoking-room drinking white wine and soda.
'Well, Alan, did you get the picture finished all right?' he said, as he lit his cigarette.

'Finished and framed, my boy!' answered Trevor; 'and, by the way, you've made a new friend. That old model you saw thinks very highly of you. I had to tell him all about you, who you are, where you live, what your income is, what ambitionnoun something that you very much want to do in your lifes you have..'

'Oh no!' cried Hughie, 'I'll probably find him waiting for me when I get home. But of course you're only joking. Poor old fellow! I wish I could do something for him. I think it's terrible that any one should be so miserableadjective very unhappy . I've got loads of old clothes at home. Do you think he'd like any of them? His ragnoun piece of old cloth used for cleaning etc; rags - clothes that are old and in very bad conditions were falling to bits.'

'But he looks so good in them,' said Trevor. 'I would never want to paint him wearing a suit. What you call ragnoun piece of old cloth used for cleaning etc; rags - clothes that are old and in very bad conditions I call romance. What seems povertynoun being very poor; not having enough money to live to you is picturesqueadjective attractive to look at; like a pictureness to me. However, I'll tell him about your offer.'

'Alan,' said Hughie seriously, 'don't you painters have any human feelings?'

'My dear Hughie,' replied Trevor; 'an artist's job is to show the world as we see it, not to change it. And now tell me how Laura is. The old model was quite interested in her.'

'You don't mean to say you talked to him about her?' said Hughie.

'I certainly did. He knows all about the lovely Laura, her father and the 10,000 pounds.'

'You told that old beggar about my private affairs?' said Hughie, looking very red and angry.

'My dear boy,' said Trevor, smiling, 'that old beggar, as you call him, is one of the richest men in Europe. He could buy all London tomorrow without overdrawverb withdraw (take out) more money than you have from a bank accounting his account. He has a house in every capital in Europe and eats off gold plate.'

'What on earth do you mean?' exclaimverb say something suddenly and loudly because you are surprised etc.ed Hughie.

'What I say,' said Trevor. 'The old man you saw to-day in the studionoun room where an artist such as a painter paints pictures; a building for producing TV programmes or films; small flat with one room was Baronnoun title used by members of the nobility or aristocracy (rich and powerful families given this rank by the king or queen) in Europe Hausberg. He's a great friend of mine. He buys all my pictures and that sort of thing, and asked me a month ago to paint him as a beggar. There you go, the fantasiesnoun a pleasant situation that is nice to imagine but is unlikely to happen of millionaires! And I must say he looked very fine in his ragnoun piece of old cloth used for cleaning etc; rags - clothes that are old and in very bad conditions, or perhaps I should say in my ragnoun piece of old cloth used for cleaning etc; rags - clothes that are old and in very bad conditions; they're an old suit I got in Spain.'

'Baron Hausberg!' cried Hughie. 'My god! I gave him a pound!' and he sat down in an armchair looking very unhappy.

'You gave him a pound!' shouted Trevor, and he burst into laughterverb start to laugh suddenly and loudly. 'My dear boy, you'll never see it again.'

'I think you could have told me, Alan,' said Hughie crossly, 'and not have let me make such a fool of myself.'

'Well, to begin with, Hughie,' said Trevor, 'I never thought that you went about giving away money like that. I can understand you kissing a pretty model, but giving a pound to an ugly one, certainly not! Besides, when you came in I didn't know whether Hausberg would want me to tell you his name. You know he wasn't dressed properly.'

'He must think I'm very stupid!' said Hughie.

'Not at all. He was in an excellent mood after you left; kept laughing to himself and rubbing his old wrinkledadjective (skin) having lots of lines, usually due to old age. hands together. I couldn't understand why he was so interested to know all about you; but I see now. He'll invest your pound for you, Hughie, and pay you the interest every six months, and he'll have a great story to tell after dinner.'

'It's not my lucky day,' said Hughie. 'The best thing I can do is to go to bed; and please, Alan, don't tell anyone. I'd be too embarrassed to leave the house.'

'Nonsense! It shows what a generous person you are, Hughie. And don't run away. Have another cigarette, and you can talk about Laura as much as you like.'

However, Hughie wouldn't stop, and walked home, feeling very unhappy, leaving Alan Trevor still laughing.

The next morning, as he was having breakfast, the servant brought him up a visiting card on which was written, 'Monsieur Gustave Naudin, on behalf of Baron Hausberg.' 'I suppose he's come for an apology,' said Hughie to himself; and he told the servant to show the visitor up.

An old gentleman with gold glasses and grey hair came into the room, and said, in a slight French accent, 'Do I have the honour of speaking to Monsieur Erskine?'

Hughie bowverb bend your body forwards from your waist to greet another person and show respected.

'I've come from Baron Hausberg,' he continued. 'The Baron..'

'Please, sir, offer him my sincereadjective meaning what you say and dost apologies,' said Hughie, very embarrassed.

'The Baron,' said the old gentleman with a smile, 'has sent me to bring you this letter'; and he offered Hughie a sealverb (of letter) closed (stuck) with glue or wax ed envelope.

On the outside was written, 'A wedding present to Hugh Erskine and Laura Merton, from an old beggar,' and inside was a cheque for 10,000 pounds.

When they were married Alan Trevor was the best man, and the Baron made a speech at the wedding receptionnoun formal party held at weddings (wedding reception) or on other important occasions.

'Millionaire models,' said Alan, 'are rare enough; but model millionaires are rarer still!'
 





Vocabulary

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ambition
noun
+
 
something that you very much want to do in your life

Cam      Mac      Wikt
 

picturesque
adjective
+
 
attractive to look at; like a picture

Cam      Wikt
 

miserable
adjective
+
 
very unhappy

Cam      Mac      Dict      Wikt
 

rag
noun
+
 
piece of old cloth used for cleaning etc; rags - clothes that are old and in very bad condition

Cam      Mac      Dict      Wikt
 

poverty
noun
+
 
being very poor; not having enough money to live

Cam      Mac      Dict      Wikt
 

studio
noun
+
 
room where an artist such as a painter paints pictures; a building for producing TV programmes or films; small flat with one room

Cam      Mac      Dict      Wikt
 

overdraw
verb
+
 
withdraw (take out) more money than you have from a bank account

Cam      Mac      Dict      Wikt
 

exclaim
verb
+
 
say something suddenly and loudly because you are surprised etc.

Cam      Mac      Dict      Wikt
 

baron
noun
+
 
title used by members of the nobility or aristocracy (rich and powerful families given this rank by the king or queen) in Europe

Cam      Mac      Dict      Wikt
 

fantasies
noun
+
 
a pleasant situation that is nice to imagine but is unlikely to happen

Cam      Mac      Dict      Wikt
 

wrinkled
adjective
+
 
(skin) having lots of lines, usually due to old age.

Cam      Mac      Dict      Wikt
 

sincere
adjective
+
 
meaning what you say and do

Cam      Wikt
 

seal
verb
+
 
(of letter) close (stick) with glue or wax

Cam      Mac      Dict      Wikt
 

burst into laughter
verb
+
 
start to laugh suddenly and loudly

Cam      Mac      Dict      Wikt
 

bow
verb
+
 
bend your body forwards from your waist to greet another person and show respect

Cam      Mac      Dict      Wikt
 

reception
noun
+
 
formal party held at weddings (wedding reception) or on other important occasions

Cam      Mac      Dict      Wikt
 


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