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Newspaper Page Text
son stood with, his back to the door;
Fremantle watched him with a dawn
ing sneer upon his lips.
"Now!" said Monson briskly,
"what have you to say for yourself?"
"Is anything necessary, Munson?"
asked the otheii
"You came here as my guest "
began Munson bitterly. Then he
checked himself. "No. Nothing is
necessary," he answered. "But you
did not know the type of man you
were dealing with. You have made
Mrs. Munson's name common gos
sip." "That's a lie, Munson. It is your
self," answered Fremantle furiously.
"Let me pass."
"You 'are not going to pass," said
Munson. "At least, one of us is not
going to leave this room."
"As you wilL Will you fight like a
gentleman, or like a tough?"
"Oh, like a gentleman of course,"
He did not stir from his position as
Munson, going to the wall, flung open
a cabinet and brought out two pis"
tols. Each had a. curious arrange
ment fixed ta ttie muzzle. Freman
tle looked at them curiously.
"You mesa it, "Munson? May I
ask what purpose these contrivances
serve? To catch the bullet?"
"Silencers," said Munson briefly.
He threw upon the French windows.
"The winner steps out upon the lawn
and gets away. You will have no dif
ficulty. ,1 have arranged my affairs.
There is a train In 20 minutes. Cne
shot apiece, at a yard's distance, in a
"You seem to have thought it all)
out," said Fremantle, sneering stilL
"But before you begin, you may as
well know "
"Are you ready?" demanded Mun
son. He saw his enemy's face whiten.
He was surprised at his own resolu
tion. Fremantle let the muzzle of his
weapon drop Irresolutely, but Mun
son held his own covering the other.
'I shall switch off the light," he 1
continued. "We will wait until the
clock begins to chime the hour. Then
we will fire together."
"You may as well listen to reason,"
Munson's hand went out and.
snapped the switch. The room was"
in complete darkness. The two men
faced each other, but each could see
nothing. Neither could hear the
other breathe. Munson wondered if
his pistol still covered his enemy.
There was a minute still, and out
of the darkness came the voice of
"You may as well listen, Munson,"
he said. "It won't prevent your
shooting. Mrs. Munson knew that
you had ceased to care for her. She
did all in her power to win your love.
At last I discovered what the trouble
was. You know we were like brother
and sister in the old days."
Munson set his teeth and strained
his ears for the chiirie. His pistol
did not waver in his hand.
"I suggested the scheme, Munson.
. told her that you were not a bad
sort of man, that if you realized what
you might lose you would feel differ
ently. I designed to make you jeal
to see. That's all."
"You lying hound!" snarled Mun
son. And at that instant he heard
the quaver of the clock as it prepared
to chime, and pressed the trigger.
There came no echo to the muffled
thud of the discharge. For a fearful
instant he hesitated. Had he killed
Fremantle? He strained his ears,
but could hear nothing save the clock
"Have you fired?" he demanded as
the chimes subsided.
There was no response. Nervous
ly he stretched out his hand and
switched on the light Fremantle
stood quite still, watching him, his
pistoL drooping in his hand.
"If that's all, Munson " he began.
Munson dashed his pistol down
and burst into tears from the reac
tion. "You've "had your triumph, curse