Newspaper Page Text
I 3 I uViiNER SUNDAY PORNING. PF.CL R5, lS-';-. j
I (Continued from f receding rnjr)
weekly market letter which wac to
be printed and to reach their mall
' - list by Monday morning with
,:- oracular analysis of "The Out
. ok," and its austere, almost satur
nine commendation of certain se
curities lo which the house of Cass
Liggett & Company wished to
A draw the particular attention of Its
(it. tomers past, present and pros
I ectlvc The floor member, who
i :-.J assisted at this rite, had al
i ski hurried away uptown. The
customers had all gone, only the
rlerks and bookkeepers were still
in their coces Otherwise Anthony
i end Liggett were alone In the lat-
i tor's private office.
'"Mrs. Vanleer has closed her ac
count and hasn't come back to us."
Liggett remarked casually, lighting
a. cigarette and holding out the case
to Anthony. "Wonder why? You
i sometimes see her, don't you?"
"Yes." said Anthony quietly, but
J "tin hand betrayed a tremor as he
I took the lighted match from Lig-
I gett. "Sometimes." he puffed,
j "Not too often, I hope." and Lig
gett gave one of his transient smiles
that left his features disturbed as
j little as possible. "An attractive
H J -woman," he muttered quickly with
I the same air of casualne?. "Too
I ' bad she lost her voice. Some sing
ers eat and drink their voices up.
j The blood had leaped into An-
theny's face A nauseating fear
I came over him that Liggett would
I say something to the disparagement
h of Yilma something impossible to
l forestall or to forget or to live
I "Oh er I ," he interrupted,
v that is I am engaged to her."
"Engaged!" Liggett exclaimed
His eyes blinked and a wintry chill
H visibly took possession of his broad
countenance and settled there.
H "Wnv how 1oug--sinee when is
H I "Just a few week::." replied An-
then? with a brave show of natural
I nesa But had a third person en-
j tt .-( the room at the moment he
I might well and properly have in-
I . ' Gentlemen, where is the corpse1'
Liggett was slow of speech, but
he thought rapidly A newspaper
l man who would have believed It?
1 These young men are supposed to
I be very shrewd and experienced
I and knowing in the ways of the
j world. So far as the "engagement"
is concerned, that will take cars of
itself. Vilma Isn't in the marrying
I business. If only the lad doesn't,
i come to gTief Must keep an eye
I on him. No use hurting him, how
ever. High strung. Too bad
"Oh, well, you see I didn't
I 1-now," and that curt laugh of Lig-
I rett'e was like the cracking of ice.
1 'Congratulations," he added quick-
H and rose to his
H ' "Thank you. Mr. Liggett." An-
thony answered clearly', SlSO rising
J and gathering up the papers which
H it was his business to leave at the
1 printer's that afternoon. The con-
H 7ersation had been brief. But both
men had a consciousness of heavy
fftort snd both were slightly por
H "I wish to Heaven." Liggett wa-
j thinking to himself as they went
H their separate ways, "1 wish to
ii vr , i ,Very we" thcn!,
I she cried,
'v, 'j jj&$Sfc flashing fury at him.
"""Sr 598' f Eire coin"
Heaven I hadn't introduced him to
that terrible woman."
That evening Anthony spent with
Vilma in a kind of reckless and
feverish gayety. He had received
and cashed hi' draft from home and
his impulse was to take her to dine
at Sherry's. But he suddenly felt
that Sherry's was a shade too sober
end conventional to suit his mood.
Moreover, ho had no wish to go
through the process of dressing.
He was craving an atmosphere with -a
little more noise and movement.
Tbey went to the French restau
rant where they were familiar pa
trons and where the owner himself
paused at their table to greet them
and to exchange compliments.
They drank sparkling wine An
thony was with Vilma and he was
happy But In the fitful gusts of a
ceeper consciousness he was aware
that the world was against him for
being thus happy, and then he
threw himself into the table gayety
with even more bravado.
When the rame home and Vilma
bad taken off her hat Anthony sat
down on the arm of the easy chair
into which she had sunk in relaxa
tion, put an arm about her shoul
ders and asked ber softly, ten
derly: "Vilma. dearest, when are you
rolng to marry me'"
"Marry ou." she repealed vague
ly speculatively, with half-elosod
eyelids, "but what is the hurry are
we not happy?''
"Yes, of course wonderfully hap
py But we can't go on forever
"Forever is a long word. But I
don't see why not f'ould the words
of a priest make us any happior?"
"No, of course not, but"
"Oh, you're a droll boy," she
broke in with a laugh "You have
much to learn. You think once you
marry ou will live happy ever af
tor, like a story-book But life is
not like that You must take your
happiness when you find it. And
you're lucky to find it You will
know that some day, my dear. But
you Americans all go by story
hooks" A somewhat hard, world-weary
look came into her face She
stretched her arms upward ami
jumped from her chair.
"Oh," she said, as if driving a
flock of unwelcome thoughts away
from her. "lefus talk of something
else. 1 am not in the mood for
serious conversation to-night."
Then, noting his crestfallen air. she
"You're a sweet boy. You've been
very Jolly to-night. You've made
me very happy. We'll settle
those serious things some day
next time unless it was fastened
stop at the tailor's. His head, b9nt KhB
sharply down over that button, was
in reality trying to conceal a mask LLK
of shame, humiliation, mortifica-
tion that clung to his face, that H
covered it like so much thick, damp, H
oleaginous plaster. This had hap- B
pencd to him! H
He turned abruptly into the teeth . H
of the cold March wind into Its JJ
cutting sharpness that seemed in- tH
tent on biting pieces out of hi; fl
cheeks and forehead! He was still H
mechanically lingering the looso H
button as a hoy's tongue moves a H
loosened tooth. But the ley west
wind was good! It was biting at H
the mask as well as at the face. H
Where was he going? What had H
happened to everything? Every- H
thing was so incredibly different! LLH
Was it possible that this was I
s.ime Sixth avenue0 Strange! Ho Wk
felt as though he bad Just arrived
from a Ions Journey a period of H
years had turned into an old famil- H
iar thoroughfare, found it the same sJ
II L 4 .'' ' . . ( f fij<a' -4ka6 ' 'jjjnaL happened to everything? Every- Rfl
j PL . !'i4 ? y$K48'.' wX thing was so incredibly different! 19
'A $ . ;JHH i" v'vV' ' f,;i Was it possible that this was tho
' '. . il Bame Sixth avenue? strange! Ho m
'J&$U ,; , ; ; - Mt as though he bad Just arrived
fmm a Ions Journey a period of
' ' t irs had turned into an old famil- iEl
and Liggett were alone- in the lat- Heaven I hadn't introduced him to tC lS
tor's private office. that terrible woman." flm' ' - j? LB
H ''Mrs. Vanleer has closed her ac- That evening Anthony spent with . ' -tr-,
count and hasn't come back to us." Vilma in a kind of reckless and ,T- ' . v - . yet inflnltelv different. The things PH
Liggett remarked casually, lighting feverish gayety. He had received 4, ; ; r that can happen! lB
a cigarette and holding out the case and cashed hi draft from home and ' . .
to Anthonv. "Wonder why? You his impulse war to take ber to dine .. h thf J.ll ? , " "!
sometimes see her. don't you?" at Sberrv's. But he suddenlj felt soon." and she took his chin In her and little heard-of specialties and the cornei there was a window with
"Yes." said Anthonv quietly, but that Sherrv's was a shade too sober hand and kissed him on the lips. making money. ., ' a fllspiay ot liqueurs The bottles EUK
I Tls hand betrared a 'tremor as he and conventional to suit his mood. "Put now it is late, my dear, is U "I was Just telling Mr ludd," were of a q:;. , hall sur- ; .J
took the lighted match from Lig- Moreover, he had no wish to go not-for good people like us?" And Skinner was saying in his thin, mounted by a cross. Had he ever 3H
LLH .rptt ''SnmPtlmes." he miffed. throuch the nrocess of dressing. ibe laughed. Anthony laughed. raucous voice, "he better take his y seen them before. No. He could HH
soon." and ;he took bis chin in her
hand and kissed blm ou the lips.
"Put now it is late, my dear, is It
not for good people like us?" And
she laughed. Anthony laughed,
too. He had evidently not selected
the right moment.
"Now tell me whom you love?"
the demanded archly iu a little
playful ritual they had.
T love Vllnfa And whoso best
girl arc you?"
"I am Anthony's best girl." ,
And they laughed like a pair of
Yilma was the winner again, now
An Illustration out of an old his
tory book suddenly flashed before
his mind's eye. Two combatants
were standing In an arena in an
cient Rome. One was armed with
a small weapon and the other with
:i huge reta or net The possessor
ot the net aimed to enmesh and
entangle the other and then to dis
Mch him at his leisure. In that
age this was considered fair fight
ing, but to Anther.1, '- mind it had
always seemed that the thrower of
the net possessed every advantage.
He suddenly saw Vilma as the com
batant with the net and as the Irre
sistible victor. Her arms were
about him and the warmth and the
weight of her were throbbing
"W hat are 3ou thinking about,
dear?" she whispered.
"I was thinking how beautiful yon
are," he replied. And Home and
areria and gladiators vanished like
B dream from his senses.
It was early in March. Anthony
was standing near his desk in tho
office in lively and humorous con
ersation with two of the custo
mers. One of them was old Judd
and tho other a pale, emaciated
young man named Skinner, who had
recently Inherited some thirty thou
: and dollars from an aunt because
of his diligence as a clerk and had
promptly fortaken both his clcrk-t-hip
and his diligence in order to
make himself rich, lie had already
: uceeeded In "dropping" about a
third of his inheritance, but he was
still, as he put it, In the ring
Skinner had been speculating in
the big, well-known stocks and
losing Judd. upon the other hand,
had licen grubbing like a fowl In
the barnyard among he obecure
(C) 1910. lnleni.-iUona
r-nd little heard-of specialties an4
"I was Just telling Mr, Judd,"
Skinner was saying in his thin,
raUCOUS voice, "he better take his
profits or he might forget what he
"Leave that to me, young man,"
was Judd's reply with a wink In
the direction of Anthony. "Have
I taken my profits or have I not?"
"You certainly have, Mr. Judd."
, Anthony corroborated, "and very
handsome they were, too."
"Yes. sir! Handsome is as gets
the mazuma," declared Judd. look
ing contemptuously at Skinner. "I
don't go pyramiding like some peo
ple I know. A bird in the hand Is
the best policy "
"Oh, yes, I know." mocked Skin
ner. "And a stitch is time is worth
two In the bush and all those old
chestnuts of yours." They all
The conversation was interrupted
by tho entry of a messenger who
handed a note to Anthony. The
envelope was In Vllma's haudwrb
ing and marked "strictly personal."
"Excuse me. gentlemen," mur
mured Anthony, and turned away.
"I am compelled to go at once
to the bedside of a friend, a girl I
have known all my life, who is ill
In the South. I have Just got the
telegram and I am taking the next
train So by the time you get this
1 shall he speeding South Please
forgive my haste. 1 would have
tried to see you had I been able.
But I must go. I shall write "U
;md explain more fully Don't for
get me. VILMA."
A SHOCK of startled incredu
lity was Anthony's first re
action to Vilma's message,
and then a flash of anger so violent
that for a moment the light and
the objects about him were a blur
and a confusion. Ho came back to
himself, after a long time it Beemed,
though It was only a few seconds
to himself and to a kind of chill
dismay; What did she mean by
treating him like that? By the timo
he received tho note she would be
"speeding South " How did sho
1 i'citurc Service. Ino Great El
know? Trains don't wait, like taxl
eabs, to be hailed at any moment.
She was evidently much disturbed
Poor Yilma! Who could this
friend in the South be? She had
never spoken of any friend in the
South, or North, or anywhere else.
He was not aware that she had any
cioso friends anywhere In America
though, of course, she must have.
Terhaps she had not yet gone?
Vilma was not an adept at estimat
ing time. Telephone! No. that in
itself would take time. He mur
mured a word to Salter, the order
clerk, about going out. seized his
hat and coat and hurriedly left the
From Wall street to Grand Cen
tral Station in the subway normally
tnkes about eight minutes. Per
haps the longest eight minutes An
thony ever' spent in his life crawled
their course that morning to the
tunc of what the city was pleased
tc call rapid transit The sense ot
icy dismay still pervaded him, and
the four stops of the express train
were so many evilly contrived bar
riers between him and his goal.
Vilma! Vilma' Vilma' The
clinking rattle of the cars, the grat
ing of the wheels against the rails,
.ill insisted upon a hypnotic repe
tition of the name of that woman
who had come to mean so much to
him Gone! How empty that word
sounded and how empty was the
i iiy without her! A strange, bleak
city, full of noise and impersonality-
Without warm human con
tacts I he city was literally a howl
ing wilderness. Without Vilma
but it couldn't be. Why did she
write him like that? There was
At Grand Central Station his first
Impulse was to scan the passengers
hurriedly In the hope of lighting
upon Vilma by a happy accident.
But this he realised was folly. Ho
made straight for a taxi cab. men
tioned tho address to the driver,
ond threw himself into it. In a few
moments he was there.
How familiar the doorway looked
a part, a moat intimate part of
bis life and oh, huw Btrange! If
itsin ItlchlB Reaerred.
ilma was gone this was merely so
much wood and iron. There was a
?avourlessness about it all, about
the very air odd and strange, llo
Ignored tho row of push buttons
Inside the door, and with his habit
of unobtrusive firmness began to
walk up the stairs. His heart was
beating like a piston.
"What is the use?" lie was think
ing. "She is gone " Nevertheless,
hr was full of a wild hopo that she
was not yet gone. Ho would try
not to reproach her. Her friend's
illness was evidently a shock. No,
he would be blithe and cheerful
with her. He would say:
"Hello, Vilma I Thought I might
got here in time to take you to the
ttation help you with your bags "
She would be grateful He imag
ined her relieved tones and word.s
He was at the door.
Just a; he was shout lo place his
lingers on the push-button he heard
A word or two in Vllma's rich
voice, then a quick reply in a man's
voice In German.
"So, you play while I am gone!
Who was the man who were the
men that took my place while I
was away? Who was it that en
joyed my ho.-pitality the apart
ment I provide, Vilma the food I
pay for' You ore clever, madame,
but 1 am not easily deceived."
"Ach, Karl, Llebchen!" Vilma's
tone was protesting. "No othor
man. Do you suppose I could care
for any other '
Anthony heard no more.
He found himself suddenly In the
street below with a sense of reeling
like a drunken man. He walked
straight enough, as a matter of fact,
so far as appearance went, but the
quivering, dissolving feeling in tho
muscles of all his limbs gave him
a lear that he was making a gpe
tacle of himself. He turned, stag
t ering as he believed, into a door
way. Mechanically he began lo button
his ovorcoat. There was a loose
button at the top That button
it would certainly come off the
yet infinitely different. The t!ilng9 IKH
that can happen!- RsLhI
At tho Cafe des Beaux Arts on H
the corner there was a window with H
a display of liqueurs The bottles lsH
were of a queer shape, a ball sur- HH
mounted by a cross. Had he ever fliB
seen them before? No. He could
not remember. He stood gazing at ELH
those bottles, fascinated hypno- PSLI
tized. Wonder what the liqueur in SjB
them tasted like? His throat was
cracking with dryness, as though LnEab&
he had eaten sand His lips were
irched a drink! No. he dared
not he would not pau-e. With I .-If"
head bent and hs hat tilted low on BHl
his forehead he walked on as though ftLa
lacing against something or some-
one running away from Vilma HLfl
Vilma Vilma! H
Deep beneath the mask of shame liB
and mortification, down at the iB
centre of his being, a faint voice ifl
was bidding him be glad, to rejoice sLk
at hi? liberation from an ignoble bLLmj
bondage. How completely she had B
enmeshed his heart, his life! He H
knew he ought to be g!ad. But his
feet, as he walked down Sixth ave- KIBu
nue. were leaded like a diver's feet. BBl
The wind was beaMng and buffet- WWmA
lug against him Vilma! He must LB
hurry. Soon he was moving with iLB
preater speed and gusto yet how LLH
inconceivably old be felt! H
His room thai was the one plp.ee LH
he desired to reach, his one goal Ul
his refuge. How incredibly far it HKI
J ' si''' avenue kept unrolling
like a scroll. It was receding from I
Imp as under soma mystical curse sLBa
He was only at Thirty-fourth street' i
He hated Sixth avenue :ad broke fl
Iiko a prisoner into Broadway That V
was somewhat better. Broadway H
was a lighter, livelier street with
no elevated trains grinding over BiBstog
ones i.rv.., There Tas MadiSon
Square what a huRe square' Ho
was at the door in his room at
Ho threw himself upon his bed- B
couch and lay still. His pulses M
were throbbing, but his brain was
rumb a clamping ache of numb
ness. Fortunately ,,ow he could
hide his eyes from human slchL 14 '
His face was flaming The mask tiftQ
was wearing thinner. He brushed Bfe. f
nt It as one misht brush at a aos- HHfl':ii
-amer web In a copse. A deep sigh B
escaped him. He relaxed and fill ?33f '
a great weariness drawing oif hi. tWl
body It was as though he had
bn badly mauled and beaten bout
the head and chest. J"wu flHi
To Be Continued Next Sunday