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Lola at the Music Hall


Lola at the Music Hall
Reading Level
     edHelper's suggested reading level:   grade 9
     Flesch-Kincaid grade level:   5.98

Vocabulary
     challenging words:    afternoon-an, backstage, contort, contortionist, curtseyed, enmesh, entreaty, extracurricular, haphazard, indisputable, indolent, man-serpent, meteoric, multimillionaire, offset, racing-how
     content words:    Lord Alverson, Lola Larson, Sir Terence, Lord Brant, Miss Larson, If Lola Larson, As Lord Alverson


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Lola at the Music Hall
By Brenda B. Covert
  

1     Lord Alverson turned away from his friends to scrutinize the program for the evening's performance at the music hall. The extravaganza featured Lola Larson, whose meteoric rise to fame could only be attributed to her departure from traditional performances. Sir Terence, one of his good friends, had secured a private stall for their party. They, along with Lord Brant and Freddie, Earl of Norminster, were prepared for the lovely Lola to tantalize and captivate them.
 
2     Sir Terence leaned close to Lord Alverson. "It is said that Miss Larson disappears after each show. No one who has hurried backstage to see her has ever been fortunate enough to find her there," he reported in a low voice.
 
3     Freddie, having overheard, shifted in his seat to look at the two men. "I say, why don't we try our luck after the program?" he asked with a twinkle in his eye.
 
4     Lord Alverson's indolent gaze masked the tingle of adventure that ran through him. If Lola Larson was truly the "Toast of London," as rumors claimed she was, he would be eager to make her acquaintance. However, before he could speak up, Lord Brant sighed audibly.
 
5     "You won't find her," he remarked. "It's a hopeless cause, not worth the fuss." He warmed up to his argument. "A crow flew in front of my carriage and spooked the horses this afternoon–an omen, no doubt, of trouble to come."
 
6     The other men, impervious to Lord Brant's nay saying, never allowed his gloomy disposition to spoil their plans. Inevitably he would choose to accompany them, if only for the opportunity to gloat later. Therefore, they remained steadfast in their decision to seek out the lovely Lola Larson.
 
7     The show began. As the orchestra played a lively tune, a spry old man in a powdered wig performed a juggling act. He was remarkably agile for a fellow his age.
 
8     Lord Alverson stifled a yawn. He had seen his share of jugglers in his nearly thirty years. This juggler, though skillful, was no better than most.
 
9     The next act was a chorus of dancing girls. Lord Alverson grimaced and elbowed Sir Terence.
 
10     "The theater's hiring manager has obviously grown lax," he said softly. "Have you noticed the haphazard movements of the girl on the far left?"
 
11     "Hush!" Sir Terence whispered. "That's Odette, the one with whom Freddie is currently infatuated!"
 
12     Lord Alverson grunted. "I'm beginning to believe that this is a wasted evening."

Paragraphs 13 to 32:
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