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Then came gloom, it might be
called desperation. She felt herself
to be a somber executioner of love.
She did not read the note of dismis
sal, disdain and severity again. She
sealed it, addressed it, affixed stamp,
put on her wraps and left the house
like some heroine going to her doom.
It was at a busy corner that Althea
came across tie first mail box. How
A her heart fluttered as she opened the
slot of the iron receptacle and held
the fatal missive poised. Eventhere
"F I believe I'll wait until morn
ing. Then I will be gone before he
knows of my plans," she cheated her
self into saying.
"Beg pardon, miss." .
But Althea only uttered a little cry
of concern and dismay, as a man
hurrying, for a car, jostled against
her. He had vanished by the time
she had fairly realized that the letter
had slipped from her fingers into the
"I I wish I hadn't!" she gasped.
, . "Oh, dear!"
She stood there, her troubled pose
attracting the attention of passers
by. She became conscious of this,
and, embarrassed, grossed the pave
ment 'to the shelter of an embrasure
in the wall of the nearest building.
Oh, that she had the letter back!
She knew not why, but all of a sud
. den her heart had melted. To think
that she had severed all interest with
the man she loved overwhelmed her.
Two men waiting for a car took up a
position not half a dozen feet 'dis
tant from her. Althea recognized
one of them. She did not know him
personally, but she recalled that
once on that street Roscoe had point-
ed him out as a young and rising
physician who was a very close and
. "You have no apprehension con
cerning Blinn?" his companion
asked, and Althea's heart fluttered
with keen apprehension.
"Not at all," replied the young doc
tor decisively. "He sent for me in
time. His only worry has been his
isolation, and, I fancy, his absence
from a young lady he particularly
adores. But he is free today, and "
Then they hurried to the car, leav
ing Althea shaken, in doubt, torment- i
ed with a thousand nameless fears. , !
She ran out to the letter box. She j
felt like tearing it from' its staple j
holdings. She strove to read the
hours of mail collections, but time
and grime had effaced the surface
of tiie information card.
"I must wait," she breather, "no
matter how long, until the postman
comes to collect the mail." '
Althea was so engrossed that she !
stood rooted to the spot Within her
stirred a mighty conviction that she I
had misjudged Mr. Blinn. , - 3
."I must get that letter back oh, I j
must!" she panted fervently. a
"Hi, there, lady!" '
"Out of the way see what's com
Althea heard the shouts. She turn
ed at a roaring, crashing sound. She
almost fainted as she saw dashing j
towards her a great loaded truck.
The horses were rushing forward )
with tremendous speed. Paralyzed
with sudden terror, Althea could not '
move. She felt faint. Her eyes
closed. She swayed.
Someone clasped her. She was
lifted back with swiftness. There
was a frightful contact The wheels ,
of the truck had struck the support
ing standard holding , the mail box.
This was shattered into a thousand
She paid no attention to the voice
of the deliverer. She never looked j
at him, she never rcognized him. She
saw only the contents of the shat- , I
tered box flying wide three or four v t
letters, her own among them. .
She identified her own. It was cov- j
ered with the mud of the street, but j
she secured it and thrust it-into her j
dress with a half-audible'cry of hys
"MIse Kendall Althea!" spoke a j
voice that thrilled- her. Turning, she