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Irritably. "You can't do better than
you're doing here."
"I know it, hot in service, sir, but
I'm going into the livery business and
I'm going to get married."
"Well, I congratulate you, Hagan,"
said Horton, a little ungraciously.
"Thank you, sir."
"You must have saved up -a mint
Of money, though. How did you do
"Why, sir, it was that tip you gave
me once about Oil Preferred. That
netted me a thousand, and I saved
up another thousand. And now I've
got the two thousand in Mendlp Con
solidated, as you advised me, and I
will have enough when it's doubled
to start-in in a little way."
HortoH almost jumped in his chair.
He watched Hagan pouring out his
tea "and his brain was whirling.. It
was true he had advised his servant
to buy Meridip Consolidated, but that
was before the pool was started to
wreck one of the solidest stocks on
the market. Now Hagan would be
one of the sufferers.
It was awkward, because Horton
was attached to Hagan, in a way,
yet he knew that if he gave the tip
to Hagan it would fly with amazing
swiftness through the town. And
then he wanted Hagan's two thou
sand. Had he a moral right not to
take Hagan's two thousand when his
partners were in the deal with him?
"Hagan," he said, as the man was
about to retire, ''have you told any
body else about Mendips?"
"Well, yes, sir," answered Hagan.
"I told my young lady and she's put
ting $500 Into it. You see, sir, we
know that your word is as good as
gold. When you say a stock is going
up why, .it's going up, sir."
He left the room and Horton sat '
in his chair, sipping his tea and
thinking deeply. If he warned Hagan
well, the pool might as well be de
clared off. The slightest whisper
would be reflected everywhere; it
was the one essential point that no
suspicion should be cast upon Men-
dip Consolidated until the time came
to destroy it
Oddly, the scent of tuberoses still
persisted, although there were no
tuberoses or any other flowers in the
room. 'And Horton's mind wandered
back to the days when, a young,, am
bitious lad, he planned with "his
sweetheart the career which had aft
erward become his.
"I don't like your going into that
profession,"'the girl had said. "They
say such dreadful things about Wall
"But there are honest men," said
Horton. "You see, dearest, it pays
to be honest, even in Wall street."
"And I know you could never do'
anything dishonorable or I should
not love you as I do," said Doris.
That was when she picked the
tuberose and handed it to him.
Well, he had fought the fight, at
first quite squarely, then not so
squarely. He had done what most
men had to do he had compromised
with life". But until the scheme for
the poolwas broached Horton -had
never tried to plunder the public.
He would have declined, and had
at first declined to-participate in the
scheme. But the essence was this:
He' was one of the few men who un
derstood what was behind Mendips.
He knew the public confidence was
justified. But he knew that the com
bine could destroy that confidence
and reap in the money of the small
And if he had fought the combine
he would have been bankrupted,
and to no purpose. However, he had
to come in or oppose the deal; there
was no alternative.
He sat there, thinking hard. He
had never been so tempted. To back
out now meant but one thing to re
alize all he Could get and retire from
the game. His enemies would be
implacable. But he might pay his
obligations and retire with enough
to liye on.
As he sat there the scent of the
tuberoses seemed to become over-