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fcountry life. Why, here you could
have your pick of a dozen million
aires." Miss Elizabeth laughed softly and
looked at the Colonel with that inno
cent expression that always puzzled
"I'll prove it," said the colonel.
"I'm going to take you out to lunch
with me, and just you watch the men
stare at you."
Miss Elizabeth put on her hat and
accompanied him. She had never
been into a big restaurant before, had
never eaten cold jellied consome or
tasted champagne. She sipped about
two teaspoonfuls of .the ice cold wine
out of courtesy, although her parents
had been prohibitionists. Still, she
did -not want to hurt the colonel.
"I have had a most delightful time;
you were very good to me," she said,
when they returned to the office.
"Feel like repeating the experi
ment?" inquired the colonel, and Miss
Elizabeth nodded gaily.
That was the beginning of many
luncheons. At times the girl's heart
misgave her; she felt that she ought
not to accept so much kindness from
this friend. But he was always so
gentle, so entirely respectful to her.
Then one day the colonel invited her
to dine with bm and go to the the
ater. For the first time that night, after
she had left him at her door, Miss
Elizabeth began to dread that his in
terest in her was not wholly platonic.
There had been an undertone of
something that she did not under
stand in .his demeanor that evening.
And, what troubled her most, she had
somehow felt that it was not advis
able to make any reference to him in
her letters to Tom.
Tom was looking forward anxious
ly to seeing her when her vacation
came, the following month. Perhaps
then she would -tell Tom. Per
haps She went to bed with a conscience
not wholly free from problems.
, JCwas a day or two later that Miss
Elizabeth spoke of her vacation to the -colonel.
"Why, I have been thinking oft
that," he said. "I shall want you at
least, I should like to have you help
me, if you can. You see, Miss Eliza-
Lbeth, I am taking a little yachting
party to Key West, and I ought to
keep in touch with business affairs. '
If you could accompany us, you could,
have another holiday when w.e get '
The yachting trip was to take
about six weeks. Miss Elizabeth had
never been at sea; much as she want
ed to see Tom again the invitation
was irresistible. The colonel told iter
that there were to be three or four
other ladies. They were to go aboard
the vessel at the little private dock at
seven in the evening, a week thence.
Miss Elizabeth wrote a letter to
Tom, explaining the situation and
promising to come home as soon as
she returned. Then, at the appointed
hour, she accompanied the colonel,
who called at her boarding house in
a. taxicab, to the pier.
The yacht lay alongside, the wharf.
'A watchman paced her decks, but,
though they inspected her from stem .
to stern, there was no sign of the
others. They 'had sat down for a
moment in the dining saloon. The
girl was becoming a little nervous.
"We will have dinner now," said the
"Wait a minute," said the girl hur
riedly. "When will the others be
here? Your sister is she not ex
pected before we dine?"
The cplonel pulled his mustache
and looked hard at her. Then he
stretched out one hand and patted
"My dear," he said, "we are going v
to be the only two passengers aboard
The girl looked at him with terri
fied eyes and rose from her chair with
a little gasp. To the last day of her
life she always pictured the colonel
thus, seated before her, pulling his
drooping mustache and smiling at her.