It was a halt, too, in my association with his affairs. For several weeks I didn’t see him or hear his voice on the phone — mostly I was in New York, trotting around with Jordan and trying to ingratiate myself with her senile aunt — but finally I went over to his house one Sunday afternoon. I hadn’t been there two minutes when somebody brought Tom Buchanan in for a drink. I was startled, naturally, but the really surprising thing was that it hadn’t happened before.
They were a party of three on horseback — Tom and a man named Sloane and a pretty woman in a brown riding-habit, who had been there previously.
“I’m delighted to see you,” said Gatsby, standing on his porch. “I’m delighted that you dropped in.”
As though they cared!
“Sit right down. Have a cigarette or a cigar.” He walked around the room quickly, ringing bells. “I’ll have something to drink for you in just a minute.”
He was profoundly affected by the fact that Tom was there. But he would be uneasy anyhow until he had given them something, realizing in a vague way that that was all they came for. Mr. Sloane wanted nothing. A lemonade? No, thanks. A little champagne? Nothing at all, thanks… . I’m sorry ——
“Did you have a nice ride?”
“Very good roads around here.”
“I suppose the automobiles ——”
Moved by an irresistible impulse, Gatsby turned to Tom, who had accepted the introduction as a stranger.
“I believe we’ve met somewhere before, Mr. Buchanan.”
“Oh, yes,” said Tom, gruffly polite, but obviously not remembering. “So we did. I remember very well.”
“About two weeks ago.”
“That’s right. You were with Nick here.”
“I know your wife,” continued Gatsby, almost aggressively.