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Newspaper Page Text
BELOW FREEZING POINT
By Myra Ellis Terhune
It was so cold that the catchup
jars in the cellar of the Alden farm
house were popping like champagne
corks at the rate of several a day,
and some prime deer meat had to be
sawed and then chopped before a
steak could be put on to cook. It
was a typical hard winter spell, and
people along the Canadian border
line kept well under cover.
,For all that, Roger Blaine was pre
paring to go forth and brave the
chilly blasts sixty miles on horse
back and through a barren and un
inhabited district. Love impelled
him, however, deep and sincere, and
that impetus kept his spirits far
above freezing point.
"Bound to go, are you?" demand
ed Farmer Alden, and Roger glanced
with a soft admiring eye at Gladys,
his daughter, and answered care
lessly: "Just a little exercise for my horse.
I expect to make it and return in
"I wish I could dissuade you,"
Jhere spoke Gladys, concerned and
tremulous. "Please do not risk it,
"But what about those saddle
bags, Miss Alden?" proposed Roger.
"Oh they will be safe, if they
were ever safe, a week from now.
Then the weather will let up and it
will not be so dangerous."
"You don't know the average In
dian, declared Roger, shaking his
head sapiently. "This fellow,
Vaka, who brought back your horse,
said he had left the saddle in his
home dugout. Perhaps, and perhaps
not. Even if so, his wife, his children,
his neighbors may take occasion to
rifle it. Vaka has promised every day
for a week that he would go after
"Which he won't do until the last
cent of that hundred dollars is squan
dered," predicted Mr. Alden. "Ever
since he got the money he has been
pouring whisky down that leather
lined throat of his. Why, the first
night he slept in the shed here. Next
morning he showed up with a box
holding a new rig out. Then, leaving
his old togs behind him, he started
out like some dandy with a new plug
hat, patent leather shoes and kid
gloves to do the town. See here!"
And with a chuckling laugh the farm-
Looking After Him Till He was Out
er drew from his pocket a small card
It showed the tawney Vaka seated
in a mock scenery automobile, puff
ing a big cigar, a woman beside him.
"Vaka wandered into our town pic
ture gallery," explained Mr. Alden.
"He insisted on the wife of the own
er of the place sitting with hinuTake
the photograph, Blaine. It mayhflp
you get track of Vaka's people outta
the wilderness yonder."
"Oh, I have a pretty good idea