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Newspaper Page Text
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A MOONLIGHT IDYL
By Mildred Caroline Goodrich
j Hans Breitung, fat, slow to move,
a first-class musician but a better
i gourmand, seated himself at the stern
, of the excursion steamer Dryad, with
a grunt of satisfaction.
He was glad to rest and to be away
from the noisy clatter of band music
. martial, ragtime and sentimental.
Hans was the violinist of the excur
sion boat band. At the picnic grounds
he and his fellow musicians had dis
coursed varied melodious strains at
intervals all day long. Now, return
ing after dark, the celebrants were
too tired out to dance, the instru
ments were packed away and, his
cherished violin in his lap, he settled
himself to take a nap after the ardu
ous ex.ert.ion of the day.
Alas for poor Hans! The camp
stool he sat in had not been made
to sustain the weight of 240 pounds.
The rail against which it rested was
flexible. The stool collapsed, Hans
was thrown under the rail, he rolled
The water choked him and pre
vented an immediate outcry. That
part of the boat where he had sought
seclusion was deserted and dark. He
went under the surface to come up
with the boat lights fading fast.
Ach! The instrument my Cremo
na was his first thought, and he
shot out a hand to seize and stay his
drifting violin case.
Its floating qualities might have
helped to sustain him. His feet as
sisted. He was too clumsily built for
an expert swimmer, yet he managed
to keep afloat Then hope shone in
his eyes. The moonlight showed land
not fifty feet distant
But not the mainland. As Hans,
panting, dripping, well-nigh exhaust
ed, struggled up a sandy incline, a
sudden shock assailed him.
"Ach!" he gasped, "I remember
now the haunted island."
He stood spellbound, an eerie chill
overspreading him. On the way down
the lake a fellow musician had told
hif a weird story of the little island,
it was called haunted. Years ago,
the story ran, a young musician and
a virtuoso in the refined arts had
lived in the select summer resort on
the mainland. He was a genius, he
had money, he was an idolized pet of
society, but all soul and sentiment.
He had loved the fairest of the fair
among the aristocratic coterie. The
end was disappointment and heart
break. She had wedded another. The
He Was Glad to Rest and Be Away
From the Noisy Clatter
stricken lover had immediately aban
doned the social world. He had pur
chased the lonely isle. He had be
come a recluse. Haps recalled warn
ing signs, forbidding trespassers,
scattered over the little body of land. .
He had been told that the exiled lover
was rarely seen. Perhaps he was
dead now. At all events, old settlers
on the mainland spoke gruesomely
of the island.