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THE GRAY-HAIRED MAN MADE his way slowly through the crowd, frowning with concentration, careful not to spill the two plastic flutes of champagne. A band was playing selections from Gilbert and Sullivan on the sunlit lawn ahead, surrounded by hundreds of people sitting on white plastic seats. It took him a moment to make out his friend among them.
“Here we are,” he said, handing her a precious drink and sinking with a sigh of relief onto the seat beside her.
“Dear Emerson.” She smiled at him, noticing the flush on his face. “Was there