love as his selfish nature would ad
mit had been- growing up in him.
In fact, he had once or twice made
tentative overtures to her. She had
repulsed them with the easy way and
the smile that covered such a multi
tude of regrets. If she had faced the
problem of her manner of living she
might have done What her instinct
prompted her left the office. But she
dared not face it, for there waa noth
ing saved; and so she left the respon
sibility with her employer and tried to
At lunchtime Sandford went up to
"Come, Miss Hilda, when is it going
to be?" he asked. "
"What is that, Mr. Sandford?"
"Say! You know 'what I've been
driving at for the past three months.
I mean honest now a diamond- ring
and a nice little flat somewhere."
She laughed, evaded him and put
on her hat. "We'll talk it over some
time," she .said evasively.
Yet when he had gone she con
fessed to herself that she did like
Harry Sandford. And she felt, with
a woman's intuition, that he was the
victim of circumstances. She knew
that his father had disowned him
when he was a boy, that he had run
away, returning horn to find his fa
ther dead and his mother, turned out
of the home by a greedy landlord,
gone for ever from the little village
where he was born. If he had had
When he came back-from lunch
Hilda Lorimer was bending over her
work very attentively.
"Well! any more suckers come in?"
When she did not answer him he
amazement he saw that there were
tears in her eyes.
"Why what's wrong?" he asked.
The girl looked up at him. "Every
thing," she answered briefly. She
could no longer fight down her rising
indignation. "The business, Mr.
"Say! Turning pious?" ,
"No, but listen, Mr. Sandford. IH -.
tell you why I couldn't listen to .
what you said. I couldn't marry a ,
man who who did these things. I'll
marry you if you'll do do something
honest and give back these people's
money to them." -; ,fi
Sandford whistled. "That's a stifM
price," he said. He tried to sneer, buf &
something in the girl's earnestness8
awoke a responsiveness in his owil'-'i
"That little old lady from Philadel- l
phia, Mrs. Burton, was in while youV
were at lunch," said the girl. "li
nearly broke my heart Because, yolS ' ,
see, she wasn't angry. She has sucfi.w
faith in you. She says she invested-V;
in your stock because she knew jrou.
had a good, honest name. And she
is coming back at 4 o'clock to rie'e-A
you." ' ' ''
"Thunder!" ejaculated Sandforff.-b
"Tell her I've gone to Oshkosh to see
my parents." " l-U
"Well, it comes to this' said the
girl defiantly. "I just can't stand for
this business any longer. Won't you if
won't you give her back her moUeyc '
at any rate? You see, she she re
minds me of my own mother, and-H
and she reminds me of what your
mother ought to have been." ' , f
Sandford felt a flush of shame,
creep up his face. He turned his heaijL'
away. But the girl still stood beside1'
him, waiting for his decision. tl
"I'll give her back her money tf.b
you'll stay," he said.
"That isn't enough. I can't jstayj,
unless " ?.
"Now, my girl, do you' thing. I'm
going to sacrifice all the money that's 1.
come in these last three months?"
he demanded resentfully. "Why, u
those suckers don't know how to take a,
care of their money. They're not,.,
fit to have money, Miss Lorimer. If-jl-I
didn't ease them of It somebody else
would. Now see here, if you'll marry J
me 111 quit the game, but I won't give
back the money. What sort of a-foolxl
would, I be if I did that?" :c $,
mmmmmmimm . v
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