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Newspaper Page Text
AN OLD MAN'S DREAM
By H. M. Egbert
Gerald Holmes was what the world
called a successful man. ' At 50 he
had won a place in the estimation of
his community. He was rich, a wid
ower of several years' standing, and
the father of grown-up children. And,
like many successful men, he knew
that life had been for him a failure.
His marriage had been happy
enough. Hardly any one knew, and
none of his own children knew, the
story of his early love affair with Lil
lian Huntley. They had been class
mates at college, they had loved each
other since they first saw each other.
They were engaged to be married as
soon as Holmes had established him
self in his profession as a scientific
engineer. Often in afterdays, when
he was called from end to end of the
great continent to achieve success at
this profession where other men had
failed, Holmes would recall how he
and Lillian had fought over those
problems together in her little room,
where she, with her trained mind,
was able to aid even him, the first in
the class at the university.
Their lives had had such prospects
of rich fruit; they were so perfectly
satisfied with each other, that
Holmes had always felt their joy was
to be snatched from them. Lillian
fought for five days against pneu
monia. "Tomorrow will be the crisis," said
But when the crisis came Lillian
could not withstand it
He was called to her bedside in her
last hours. The struggle for life had
ceased and her beauty, her strength,
her faculties were going out swiftly
on the ebb tide.
"I want you to be happy, Gerald,"
she whispered. And, seeing the look
nn his face, she added, with a faith
that amazed him :
"1 know that all good comes to,
those who wait I know that some
day the perfect life will unfold for us.
I want you to marry and. be happy in
this life, Gerald, and, some day, I I
will come to you again."
Then her eyes closed and she be
gan to pass into that place from
which none return, sci far as we posi-
tively know, though we all hope that
we may meet there.
For days after her death Gerald
shut himself up in his room and .re-
"Belongto Whom?" Queried Holmes.
fused to see any one. Then, all of
a sudden, just when his friends had
begun to despair of him, he changed.
Something had been at work to
change the nature of the man. It
seemed as if he had resolved to for
get all his memories of the past He
worked hard and he played hard. He
was now called callous. He married
in due course and sons and daugh
ters were born to him. This his wife
died and he lived with his children in
his fine house in a suburban district,
undertaking only occasional work oj