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Newspaper Page Text
(. "STICK TO THE SHIP"
By George Elmer Cobb.
(Copyright by W. G. Chapman.)
Abel Darrow had two appurten
ances that were prominent and pecu
liar to himself a wooden leg and a
lawsuit. The false limb was old,
clumsy and splintery, for he could
not afford an artificial one. The law
suit also was frayed and worn and
v weak, for the reason, Abel declared,
that he did not the capital to push it
to a conclusion.
Abel worked in a bank, and his du
ties, like himself, were erratic. He
I Was Crossly Deceived.
had charge of the waste paper de
partment of the institution. That is,
every afternoon after banking hours
he collected all the waste baskets and
placed them in a little store room just
as carefully as were the money trays
set in the big safety vault of the
bank. Through the day, too, he pa
troled the institution, picking up ev
ery bit of stray paper thrown on the
floor or left at the depositors' desks.
"In my time," Abel had often af
firmed, "I have found as high as a
clean thousand in cash dropped by a
careless customer, and the checks
and drafts I fish out from the waste
paper mean a whole lot to the bank.
For this original occupation Abel
received a nominal salary, but .was
allowed to sell all waste paper to the
mills, and this amounted to quite
considerable in a year's time.
Abel lived in a garret room of a
boarding house kept by a Mrs. Smith.
Miss Eva Tracey lived at the same
place. She was a stenographer, and
through two years almost every day
Abel had bowed to her as they met
on the stairway or at table. Beyond
that, amid his troubles, Abel, in his
reticent self centered way, knew
her only casually as he knew hun
dreds of others.
One evening he came to know the
pretty maid very much better, how
ever, and it was a bright spot in his
dreary -life. He came home to find
that a defective chimney had scatter
ed sparks on the roof of the house,
and this was partly burned off before
the flames were extinguished. The
floor of the room Abel occupied was
covered with cinders and water, and
Mrs. Smith told him he would have to
sleep on a couch in the library for a
night or two until the damage was
After supper Abel repaired to the
parlor to pass the evening. He found
a book in a chair and began reading
it. He had been thus engaged for a
few minutes when Miss Tracey enter
ed the room. He nodded to her, and
then, as he observed her looking
about from place to place, remarked:
"I think you are looking for a book
I picked up, Miss Tracey."
'"Only to take it to my room," was
the reply. "But I have read it, and
you are welcome to the use of it."
That broke the ice. She sat down
near to him. The conversation drift
ed on pleasantly. If Abel Darrow had
been more observant,' he would have
noticed that the young lady seemed