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carried asleep from the house, had
been placed" there.
"What is-it?" Insquired Ned solicit
ously. "My sister, Ruth! She is gone!"
And Nellie seemed on the point of
"She woke up just now," faltered
Mrs. Merrill. "I heard her ask for
"Oh, mother! Can she have gone
back into the house?" cried Nellie.
NedUiori caught the. half fainting
form of Nellie in his arms. The con
tact of that beloved form electrified
him to mighty endeavor.-
"Take her," he spoke'to the mother.-
"I will find the child."
"He caught the echo !bfthe bells of
theviilage fire wagon hastening down
the road He obseryedJ3oyd just aris
ing to' his feet, drenched and dis
comfited. Then Ned 'made, a dash for
a side entrance to the house.
The flames had ...not yet reached'
that part of "the "Building, but the
smoke was, thick, and suffocating;
Ned"was uhfainillar with the upper
portion of he structure, ,but he
breasted his way to a landing. Then
he noticed beyond an open doorway
a lighted lamp, "and started in that
It was a sleeping room, and despite
the "dense clouds of smoke pouring
into the apartment Ned could "Hi's-
cern outlines. A lighted, lamp, jtgpd
on a stand, rsea tnruiea at an impres
sive picture its rays disclosed. '
Pulling bver the'disturbed .cbrera'
of a trundle bed riearl;dra larger dne,,
was a little nfghtgowned gure.
Ruth was crying, .her eyes half blind
ed by the smarting smoke. ' '
"Why, Ruth!" spoke 'Ned; "what
are you doing here?"
"I'm looking for Betty, my pretty
dolly," sqbbed the little one, "and I
can't find her. Maybe she's burned
up! And it loses me to be in all this
smoke-oh, my! oh, my!"
"You sit right there for an instant,
Ruth;" directed Ned, lifting her to a
chair. "I'll find dolly for you."
1 In a minute or two he discovered
the coveted doll on the floor under
the trundle bed. He restored Betty
to Ruth. A glowing radiance in the
hallway warned Ned that he had no
time to lose if he would not be over
taken by the flames, and the stairway
route of escape cut off. A glint of
jewelry lying on a bureau, however,
had caught his eye; Ned ran to
There was a pin he had seen Nellie
wear, and there lay her watch and
chain. He slipped these articles has
tily into his pocket. Some laces, pre
cious to his heart because they be
longed to Nellie, followed.
Upon the stand where the lamp
stood, Nellie had apparently been
writing a letter vhen the fire, started.
She had abandoned a little keepsake
memorandum book, a ring and a gold
mounted penholder. Ned thrust these
also into the pocket of his coat. Then
he ran towards Ruth and snatched
her up in his arms. A hot blast swept
his face as he reached the corridor,
but he shielded the child as best he
could. 'Some way, although half suf
focated, he managed to get down the
stairs and into the open air.
"Oh, we thank you! We thank
you!" sobbed Nellie, as the little one
was brought to her.
Her hand clutched at that of the
rescuer with fervor. Her warm glance
thrilled Ned. He hurriedly handed
to her some of the articles from his
pockets all of them, he thought.
Neighbors cared for the family now
and the fire wagon finally saved about
"half of the building.
A telegram was received by Boyd
next morning, calling him back to the
city. Ned did not go with him. He
promised to go on the evening train,
but he must see Nellie at least once
again. An hour later, td his surprise,
,he found in a pocket of-.his coat a
ring and the memorandum book he
had saved from the fire.
It would serve as a good excuse for
calling on Nellie to return these. The
book fell open in his clasp. Ned could