By Walter Joseph Delaney
(Copyright, 1917, W. G. Chapman.)
"Why, what are you .staring at
The child retreated shyly, put her
finger in her mouth and swung
sheepishly from side to side.
"Please, Miss Ryford, I did not
mean to, for ma says that is rude."
. "Then why "
"Please, Miss Ryford, I was look
ing for the wings."
"Bless me! The wings? Child,
what is this nonsense? But tender
hearted little Margaret began to cry
and Miss Esther Ryford took her- in
her arms to solace her. When she
had calmed down her little visitor she
resumed her interrogatories, but
more gently now. ,
"Tell me what you mean, child,"
she said. "You don't offend me; you
only puzzle me."
"Well, I heard that stranger in
town, who is talking of building a
"You mean the man they call Boy
den?" "Yes'm. Well, 1 heard him tell Mr.
Pearsons that you was an angel."
"You naughty child? I mean the
impudent fellow. But here Miss Ry
ford paused, for she was blushing fu
riously. Besides that, the compliment
had overwhelmed her. She dismissed
her juvenile visitor with a nickel for
candy, sat musing on the garden
bench for an hour, roved . restlessly
over the house, fluttered, flushed and
acted altogether ridiculous.
Miss Esther Ryford was 26, fair,
neat, and the possessor of quite a
little fortune. She was, however,
very sentimental and easily im
pressed. She had met this strang
er, Mr. Boyden, and had not liked
him until now. She was all but en
gaged to another man, but flattery
was very sweet to her fancy. The
other man was Neil Taylor. She had
ast .seen him for ..ten years but he ,
was returning to Acton the next
"I left Acton because, being poor,
people might call me a fortune hunt
er if I married you," the letter from
the far west, which she had received
that morning, told her. "Now I am
coming to claim you, with lots of
money and lots of love."
It was in the perversity of Miss Ry
ford's nature to play with her hap-
It Was Signed With the Name of
piness, for that was just what she
did. Later she excused herself on
the ground of loneliness, on the will
ful and unnecessary delay of Taylor
in coming to her. She met Boyden
the next day. He talked as big as
ever about what he was going to do
for the town. in. the way of industrial
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