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Newspaper Page Text
SOUL OF AN ARTIST
By George Elmer Cobb.
(Copyright by W. G. Chapman.)
"Better, old man?"
"Oh, infinitely," was the weak but
willing reply. "That, last medicine
seems to have put new life into me.
I'll be up in the morning brisk as a
cricket, see if I'm not,"
Ranald Stone, artist, smiled wear
ily. So far as pallor of face and tired
eyes went, a stranger would have
Lifted His Eyes to the Framed Study.
been puzzled aa to which of the twain
was the sick man.
Yet for two weeks Adrian Nash
had lain unconscious in the little al
cove off the studio of his friend, and
never had brother been more faithful
in care, and nursing, and sacrifice.
"Well, now, have a good sleep,"
spoke Stone with forced briskness
and cheer. "We'll begin i new life
in the morning."
"All right. What time is it?"
The hand of the artist went me
chanically to his pocket. Then he
flushed in some embarrassment.
The sick man put out his thin,
wasted hand. He grasped that of his
friend, who stood with averted face.
"For my sake!" sobbed Adrian
Nash brokenly. "As bad as that?
And the antique clock that stood in
"I was afraid its ticking would dis
"So you removed it to the pawn
broker's? Oh, Ranald! Was ever
such a friend!"
The speaker turned his face to the
wall, communing with his soul,
aroused to gratitude that over
whelmed him. Ranald eloomHy pass
ed into the next room. He sat down
on a stool before his easel and buried
his face in his hands. '
The strain of a year of hard pro
fessional struggling, of lack of work,
then deprivation, then the illness of
his friend, was beginning to tell. He
had carried that friend through a
dangerous spell of sickness but at
what a cost! At that moment Stone
was a month behind in the rent of his
studio, not a cent in his pocket and
every article of personal value sold
or pledged to provide medical care
for poor Nash.
All gone save one his picture,
"The Meadow." Ranald lifted his
eyes to the framed study hanging be
tween two windows, the masterpiece
of his efforts. It was a simple sylvan
scene and fellow artists poor as him
self had told him it was a gem. Even
the pawnbroker around the corner,
old Jacob Levi, had seen its beauties.
He had coveted it for a wedding pres
ent to his daughter.
"You will starve before the art ex
hibition comes on," he declared. "I
gif you fifty tollars for the picture
it is a standing offer."
With scorn Ranald had repudiated
the proffer. With pride he realized
that when the critics and public came