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"You?" she gasped, and her face
Tom simply bowed. He had folded
his arms and stood like a man await
ing anger, disdain, censure.
"Why did you come here?" she fal
tered. "For a purpose. You need not re,c-
em ogmze me, you muse noc Decray me.
ft You will know in a few davs."
Old Reuben was coming toward
her now and the, brief colloquy was
Tom Lee did not seek to meet
Nellie Waite again. He went about
his, work steadily. If old Reuben
Waite had been watchful, however,
he would have noticed that the eyes
of the new farmhand followed him
everywhere and that he sought to be
near him whenever he could.
It was three days afterward when
Farmer Waite came upon Tom Lee
mending a hay rake. His face was
stern and foreboding.
"You will have to go at the end of
the week, Lee," he said.
"Why, sir?" questioned Tom Lee.
"Be cause I found the clothes you
changed for my old suit You threw
them behind some brush. A striped
Tom Lee's chin sank.
"A convict's suit"
"That condemns me, doesu't it?"
inquired Tom Lee in a crushed tone.
"Do'you blame me? If the woman-
, folks or the neighbors know what
you have been, you can imagine their
v fears. Oh, I'm not going to tell on
you, Tom Lee. Of course you are an
escaped convict, but I sha'n't tell
anybody. I burned your old suit
safely that night Go your way when
ffh Saturday night comes and good luck
-to you. for you are a faithful
"Thank you, sir," said Tom Lee
Saturday morning early, Reuben
came around the barn to -halt stock
still and stare, and then, pitchfork
In hand, start on a rapid run. ,
There, carrying a great armful of
barley straw to the pig pens was
Tom Lee. And sneaking toward
him, just emerged" from behind a
stack, was a lurking evil-faced fel
low carrying a big, short but heavy
hickory cudgel; He raised it and
swung out a fearful blow. Tom Lee
went down like a shot His assail
ant drew back to repeat the blow,
when the big straw hat the pro-to-type
of that worn by Reuben, fell
"The wrong man!" shouted the
"Am I the right one?" announced
Reuben. "Stir an inch and I will
split you with the fork. Ha, Jim
Devlin, I see, I see! March to the
house, hands up, or I'll nail you
"Stay quiet, lad, you're In good
hands." In truly genial, almost af
fectionate tones spoke Farmer
Waite to Tom Lee an hour after
ward. The latter staged hard. He was ly
ing in- a'bed in the best spare room
in the house. His, head was band
aged. ' The farmer sat beside him.
'What has happened?" questioned
Tom Lee faintly.
"You saved my life, that's what,"
came the sturdy reply. "You looked
like me in my old suit and hat A
man named Jim Devlin did it A
fellow I sent over the road five years
ago for stealing horses. He swore
-then that he would have my life
when he got out He must have es
caped,, for he got a twenty-year
"Yes. he escaped, and I wlthbim,"
was the surprising statement of
Tom Lee. "I had only a week to
serve, but the' opportunity came and
because I knew he was aimed for
you, I joined him, slipped him and
came here to guard you against his
"Why?" littered the bewildered
"Because I loved your daughter