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Newspaper Page Text
THE QUICK AND THE DEAD
By Harold Carter.
(Copyright by W. G. Chapman.)
Miss Amanda listened stonily to
her niece Mary'sconfession of her
engagement to the man she had met
on her vacation at Bellmuir. Sympa
thetically, too, for the two old maiden
ladies, Miss Amanda arid Miss Doro
thy, were devoted to pretty Mary, the
child of their only brother, whom
iLJ( raf KMwMs U
"She Shall Never Inherit a Penny of
they had adopted when he lay dying.
But when Mary mentioned the name
of Ralph Lester an ominous look
came over Miss Amanda's face.
"Ap.d he says his father knew you
when you were a girl, Aunt Amanda,"
"pursued Mary, with all the innocent
confidence of twenty years.
"Yes, my dear," answered her
aunt, "and he was a black-hearted,
deceitful man. And no-hiece of mine
shall ever marry the son of Robert
Mary was heart-broken. To disobey
her aunt never entered her head. She
had owed everything to Miss Aman
da, who was the dominating spirit of
the two; and she felt that, as long as
she lived, slie would have to yield
her wishes to hers.
Ralph Lester, in the city, received
a despairing little note from his fian
cee the following day which he could
neither understand nor fathom. He
flung it away and buried himself in.
his'work. So time went by.
The two old ladies realized Mary's
sorrow. They did their best to cheer
her. But Mary grew thin and pale,
and they saw that it jpould be no easy
matter to make her forget. '
From timid Miss Dorothy the girl
learned the cause of Miss Amanda's
hostility. Miss Amanda had "once
been engaged to Ralph's father, Rob
ert, who had been dead some years.
They were to have been married in a
few weeks. Then Robert Lester had.
gone away and no letter had come
.from him. And Miss Amanda, too
proud to ask him for an explanation,
had let him go.
A year went by. The summer va
cation season came again. Mary did
not go away. She stayed at home
and brooded over thq past.
And then, one afternoon, a fair,
curly-haired young, fellow rang the
bell at the old iouse door and Miss
Amanda, coming to open it, round
herself looking Info the face of her
youthful sweetheart, Robert
"You are Mr. Lester?" the old wo
man asked, pressing one hand
against her throbbing heart.
"Yes, and you must be Miss Aman
da," answered the young mail. "My
father often used to speak of you."
"Come in," said Miss Amanda,
grimly. "Take a seat in, the-parlor."
She sat down beside him and
plunged at once, in her characteristic
fashion, into what lay nearest to her
"My niece is in-the garden," she