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The day book. (Chicago, Ill.) 1911-1917, April 06, 1916, LAST EDITION, Image 18

Image and text provided by University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign Library, Urbana, IL

Persistent link: http://chroniclingamerica.loc.gov/lccn/sn83045487/1916-04-06/ed-1/seq-18/

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ONE SUNDAY MORNING
By Harold Carter
(Copyright, 1916, W. G. Chapman.)
James Randall, standing at his
garden gate, was at peace with all
the world that sunny morning in
early summer. His wife and daugh
ter were at church; he himself had
been kept in by a cold, but the weath
er was so balmy it had tempted him
into the garden. As he stood there,
secure in his sense of social integri
ty, not a memory of the past trou
bled him.
Up the street came a tramp. Ran
dall frowned. Tramps were not en
couraged in that suburban district,
which prided itself upon its social
order. The man stopped at the gate
and regarded him quietly.
"Got a dime to spare, mister?" he
asked.
Randall's hand sought his pocket
It was his instinct to be charitable,
but on second thought he refrained.
The man might be an impostor. No
man needed to be out of work these
days.
"I guess there was a time when
you done your bit of panhandling,"
said the beggar, sneering.
Randall looked at him with grow
ing horror, clutched at the bars of
the gate and breathed like a man
with apoplexy.
"Yes, Jim, it's me Bright," said
the tramp. "I found you at last, and
I guess I'm going to talk to you. I
chose Sunday because, hearing you
was a church warden, I guessed you
wouldn't want folks to see us togeth
er. There's an hour yet before your
folks come home. You see," he add
ed, with a grin, "I got you pretty well
down in black and white before I
came here."
"Come into the garden," said Ran
dall feebly.
The tramp followed him in, and
they sat down on the bench in front
of the living room. The tramp could
pee into the neatly furnished house. 1
"Sort of spick and span, ain't it?"
said the tramp. "A little different
from the state penitentiary, I guess.
Maybe your memory carries you
back 15 years?" he added banter
ingly. "What do you want? Blackmail?"
demanded Randall roughly.
The tramp put out a bony hand
and gripped bim by the shoulder.
"More," he said laconically. "I
want the thing you hold dearest in
life, Jim. No, not your life, your
reputation. I'm going to put you out
Looked at Him With Growing Horror
of your home and make you ashamed
to meet the eyes of your neighbors,
you you blackguard, you cur!"
Randall did not say a word, but
Shivered upon the seat as if struck by
ague, in spite of the sun.
"Fifteen years ago," the tramp
continued, twisting his mouth as if
a spasm of pain was racking him,
"you and I was inmates of the peni
tentiary. Correct? I see it is. I was
serving three years for robbery and
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