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"I wonder!" breathed the artist to
He wondered if his reluctancy, to
leave-this fair sylvan scene and its
little queen was born of a deeper feel
ing than he had suspected. He won
dered if in later years, no matter
what success came to him, he would
not weary of hollow fame and long
for the wild free life of this lovely
paradise. And then he mentally
counted cash and prospects and
shook his head slowly and dubiously.
"You're coming, aren't you?" pro
pounded Hhoda eagerly early the
next morning. "See I've got fath
er's best fishing pole, and he says this
is biting day ior every fish m the
stream. It's down near the Hermi
tage where the best catches are. You
can walk two miles, can't-you?"
"Twenty, after that famous break.
fast of yours!" asserted Poland.
"And I've put up a fine lunch, and
we'll have a line try for supper," ran
on Rhoda. i
It was at the end of a two miles'
stroll that they came to where the
banks of the pretty stream formed a
kind of natural wharf. '
"Here's where father used to love
to fish," explained Rhoda "in' the
old days, before his trot&le, before
Judge Wharton over there turned us
Sne indicated the towers ojc a man
sion lifting from a grove hglf a mile
"Father was keeper there. The
judge and his family were away,"
narrated Hhoda. "One evening the
housekeeper was taken suddenly sick
and father ran all the way to the vil
lage'fo fetch a doctor. While he was
gone someone broke into the library
and stole a lot of the judge's papers
and some jewelry and money. They
got away across the river in a kiff.
When the judge got back he blamed
father for, disobeying orders and
leaving the place unguarded, though
the doctor said vthe housekeeper
might have died if he had not come
.quick. -Well, the judge discharged I
father from a position he had faith
fully filled for over ten years and we
"Was much of value taken?"
"The judge says he didn't care for
the money afyd jewelry, but there
was a little tin box filled with records
and papers of no use to others, but
of immense value to him. He has
had detectives out and has offered
five thousand dollars for the return
of the papers, but he has never heard
There was a lapse of silence, for
Rhoda had dropped a log to the shore
as a seat for Roland and had arrang
ed "pole, line and bait with sportsman
like expertness for her novice guest
There were' nibbles and catches
and at the end of two hours the fish
basket was pretty well filled. Sud
denly, as Roland pulled hard on his
Ufle, Rhoda exclaimed:
"Oh, you must have a big one!'
and, as the rod bent, amid her ex
citement she put out her hand to aid
"Why, what is it I have fished 'up,
anyway?" queried Roland.
Slowly, attached to the hook,
dangling and swaying, a small metal
box came int oview, the hook looping
its wirer handle. There it was sus
pended, swinging shorewards, land
ed. "Oh, it's the box!' almost shrieked
Rhoda, wild with excitement.
"What box?" asked Roland. '
"Oh, I know it isl I've seen i be
fore," fluttered Rhoda. "It's the one
that was stolen from the judge, the
one I told you about"'
"You don't mean the one they offer
that big reward for?"
"Yes,-1 do! See," and Rhoda, de
taching the box from the hook, show
ed where its lock was broken. "The
thieves probably saw no value to the
papers and dropped the box In the
river. Yes, the papers are inside,"
continued Rhoda, "and" oh, Mr.
Yorke, just think! you'll get that five
thousand dollars reward."
"Why should I?" challenged Ro-
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