ary complication, however, had
tied it up. He could not realise
in ready cash under a week. A,
heavy draft came upon the sur
plus funds, depleting the bank re
serve to a dangerously low figure.
Somehow a public rumor of all
this got out. The report was cur
rent that the bank was going to
fail. Result: The frantic, des
perate mob of frightened deposi
tors now clamoring at the great
Webster had sent a trusted em
ploye of the bank to a rich rela
tive in the city. He carried an
urgent appeal for succor. The
messenger had not reported.
A graver shade of feeling cov
ered the features of the young
financier as he thought of the one
dearest to him in all the world
Ethel Morris. They were to have
been wedded in a month, but if
the bank broke then Webster
well knew her proud, exclusive
family would scarcelv favor a dis
credited bankrupt. It was a for
lorn fight for business preserva
tion and love.
Webster hurried into the count
ing room as a great outcry arose.
He hoped it was his messenger
arrived : he feared it was a new
riot. It lacked just five minutes
of ten. A remarkable scene greet
ed his sight.
A whiskered, farmer-looking
man was talking to the excited
crowd. He was waving a great
bundle of bank notes in one hand.
There was a cheer. In his other
hand the stranger carried an old
battered satchel. With it he now
pounded on the door.
"Let me in. I must get in!"
the astonished Webster heard
him shout out, and then to the
people: "Don't get scared. Ran
dal Webster is an honest man,
and the Bank of Greenville is
solid as a rock!"'
Something in the determined
manner of the visitor caused the
watchman to open the door for
him. The stranger helped him
reclose it against the eager,
"Where is Mr. Webster?" he
demanded. "Ah, there he is,"
and he approached the counter
and nodded to the wondering
banker. "Remember me, Mr.
"Why, I can't say that I do,"
was the hesitating reply.
".Never mind. I've changed,
had to, wanted to," rattled on the
stranger. "See here," and he be
gan to bring from his pockets
bundle after bundle of bank notes.
"There's $20,000. Use it."
"But, my dear sir " began the
"Use it, I said, didn't I?" inter
rupted the stranger, unceremon
iously. "But we have no right; the con- '
dition the bank is in to receive
deposits," stammered the cash
ier. "Call it a loan, then," said the
stranger. "I know all about your 1
worry here. It won't last. Keep
the crowd good-natured. Pay
them off smiling. I'll guarantee
the run will soon stop."
Then he lifted the satchel. As
it ooened, the startled cashier,
used as he was to the sight of
xml | txt