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and they told me you were engaged
to be married. So I came to see."
Marcia stood perfectly silent The
proximity of the man she loved re
called poignantly to her those years
of their engagement, the transports
of love, the anguish which he had
made her feel. Dishonest though he
was, and partly brutal, he had arous
ed emotions in her which the quiet
John Wells was powerless to evoke.
"By George, Marcia, I am glad to
see you," said Hambley, in the old,
brusque, captivating manner. " when,
you broke our engagement because
you found out about the hank, I
swore that I would straighten things
out and then come back and claim
you. Well, I've won out, Marcia.
I've been in Nevada making a mint
of money. And I've paid the bank
in full, so that they've agreed to drop
the proceedings against me. And I'm
just in time, it seems. When are we
going to be married, Marcia?"
He had flung his arm around her.
Marcia grew faint with fear. She
knew that she was as wax in the
"I don't bear that other fellow any
grudge," Hanibley went on. "I guess
he knew a good thing when he saw
it. But I'm Johnny-oh-the-Spot. And
say, kid, do you know how much I've
got? Ninety thousand dollars. Yes,
sir, I've got an offlce in Chicago, and
another in Philadelphia. They say
Philadelphia's slow, but you ought to
see the suckers trooping in to buy
our gold-plated mining stock. It's a
great big hole in the ground, and the
people are falling over each other in
their eagerness to get a share. I tell
ybU, Marcia, it's going to be worth
a million to me before I gefthrough."
Suddenly Marcia found new
strength. As he bent to kiss her she
sprang from him and faced him,,
white with anger.
"Do you think I am going to be
false to the man whom I am engaged
to, in order to marry you?" she cried.
"I hate you.!"
Hambley stared a. her. In his easy,
confident way, he had felt sure of
her. He did not understand.
"Say," he snarled, 'maybe you
don't think I'm giving it to you
straight, eh? Well, take my tip, you'll
be making the mistake of your life
if you don't believe me. I "
"Will you go, or do you want me to
telephone for help?" cried the girl.
"Oh, I'll go all right," sneered the
man. "And now I don't mind telling
you I've got another woman in mind.
You ain't no spring chicken, Mar,cia.
I'll go all right, but first I'm going to
burst in that fellow Wells' head.
Lawyer, ain't he? I've got no use
He waB gone at last and Marcia
lay almost unconscious in her chair.
She felt benumbed by the ordeal; the
man's brutality, his knavery how
had she come to love such a creature
as that? Yet, if he had not come, his
image would have stayed in her heart
She knew the secret. It .was his
virile courage. He -was a man, after
ail. John wduld never have come to
her in that bold way. Jbhn would
have written humbly and waited her
reply. A momentary contempt came
over her. Poor Johij was not a hero.
And this brute meant to attack and
perhaps injure him.
She ran to the telephone and tried
to get him. John was not at home.
She tried again and again till after
midnight At last, desisting, she flung
herself upon her bed, undressed, to
snatch a few hours' sleep. She must
call up John the first thing in the
morning, to put him on his guard.
Yet it was John who surprised her.
He was waiting in the parlor when
she came in, haggard-eyed and
"Marcia, I must tell you some
thing," he began, before she could
speak. "It's about Hambley.- I'm sor
ry to say he has come back."
"I know, John," cried the girl.
"He's under arrest, Marcia, for sell
ing fake mining stock. You must bo