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Newspaper Page Text
THE BITER BIT
By Roy Angus Howells
"It can't be done not now, any
how!" spoke Farmer TJarjow, posi
tively. "I'm too poor, son too poor."
"Why, dad, you've talked of bump
er crops all summer and now they're
here," expostulated his son, Ike.
"The crops don't make up for the
$2,000 I lost in that investment in
the city," reminded the old man.
"Tell you, son, that was a fierce blow.
All ready cash, too, and it was like
throwing money in the fire."
"You know you promised to give
me the forty acres and build me a
house when Sally was ready "
"That's true, son, but circumstanc
es alter cases. You'll have to wait
until I can make up that lost money.
You have patience and wait another
season or two."
"A season or two!" echoed Ike in
profound despair. "Why, by that time
Sally will be off with some likelier
man and I wouldn't blame her if
Ike strolled off, doleful and dispir
ited. He was crude and lowly, but he
knew what it was to love, and he and
Sally Marvin had planned ever since
their engagement in June to get mar
ried before the end of the year. Ike
had reason to expect a promised re
ward for staying on the farm. The
forty-acre lot and a four-room house
had been promised as a wedding gift
"It was dad's own fault, putting
that $2,000 in a gold mine swindle,"
echoed Ike forcibly. "The company
has gone to smash, the mine worth
less and abandoned, and I'm out $50
of my own money looking up the
chance of getting something out of
it There's nothing to hope for, but
I got some information. How I'd like
to get a comeback chance at that ly
ing trick promoter, Vanderbilt K.
Cash! Say, I've got an idea!"
With the swiftness and surety of a
revelation Ike fixed his mind upon a
powerful suggestion that had come
to him. As has been said, when he
had looked up the mining company
in his father's behalf, but at his own
expense, he had plumbed the total
depths of that plausible fraud. He
had not visited its promoter, for Mr.
V. K. Cash had temporarily "retired
from business." A day or two since,
however, Ike had read an advertise
ment in a city newspaper connecting
the energetic promoter witn a new
and specious stock-selling exploita
tion. Ike chewed a string rumina-
"I Wish to Buy Some of the Stock."
tively for about ten minutes. Then
he sought out his father in the turnip
"Dad," he observed, "I think I see
a way out of my difficulties."
"You've got no real ones," growled
the old man. "Being done out of
$2,000 is a difficulty. Getting married
is another why rush?"
"I've two questions to ask you?"
remarked Ike, holding to his theme.
"If I get back thajt money you in
vested in that mine can I have it?"
"Sure thing. Get it back? Why