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LUTRATID 4- L
CHAPTER i-John Vallant, a rich so
ciety favorite, suidenly discovers that tile
Valiant corporation, which his father
founded and which was the principal
source of his wealth, has failed.
CHAPTER II-He voluntarily turns
over his private fortune to the receiver
ior the corporation.
CHAPTER III--Ills entire remaining
Ipwessions consist of an old motor car,
white bull dog and Damory court. a
lwlected estate in Virginia.
CHAPTER IV-ITo learns that this es
'tate came into the family try royal grant
and has been in the possession of the
Vallants over since.
CHAPTER V-On the way to Djamory
court he meets Shirley aindridge, ian ni
burn-haired beauty, and dcides that hok
is going to lik Virginia Iminensely.
CIIAPTElR VI-An old negro tells Shir
ley's fortune and Ipredicts great trouble
'for her on account of a man.
CHRAPT I- Un v cr--irio Jefferson, -an old
negro, takes Valiant to Dlamory court.
CHAPTER VIIT-Shirley's ninther. Mrs.
Dandridge, and Major Bristow exciango
i'eminiscences during which it is revealed
that the major. Valiant's father, an] 11
man named Sassoon. were rivals for tho
hand of Mrs. Dandridgo in her youth.
Bassoon and Valiant fought a duel on her
account In which the forruer was killed.
CITAPT'iT TX-Valiant finds Dlamory
court overgrown with weerls and oroep
'ers aid the hilldigs in a very much
)neglectei conlition. Uncle Jefferson a nil
Rhis wife, Aunt Daphne, are engaged as
C[APTIE:R X-Valiant explores his 0
CeStral home. ito Is surprise'i t'y a t fx
hunting party wihichii invales his estat'.
le recognizes Shirley at tile ii-ad of tih'
' ust thei fron the reu-r of the house
camne a strident voice:
"Ye', ltaih'el Talie y' han s
outer den cherries! IDor' yo' kiowv of
yo' swallahs demi ar pits, yo' gwi neter
hab 'pendegeettus eni iti l 1) enl die?"
'The sound of a slap and shrill yelp
followed, and around tle porch dashed
an infiantile darkey ts nude as a block
Puck, with his haida full of cherries.
who came to a sudden demuralized
stop in the embarrassing foregrouni.
'"Ralph! " thundered the doctor.
"Didn't I tell you to go back to that
"Yes. suh," resIonded tha Imp. "Hut
yo' didn' tell tme tet' stay dar!"
"If I see you out here again " roared
the doctor, I'll tie your ears back
and grease you-and S\\'A .1OV
you!" At wich grisly threat, the
apparition, with a shrill shriek. turned
and ran desperately for the corner of
"I hear," said the doctor,' resumnting.
"that tle young man who caie to fix
the place up has hird Uncle Jeffer
son and his wife to help himt. \\'ho's
- responsible for that interesting infor
"Rickey Snyder," said 'Mrs. Mtson.
"She's got it spy-glass rigged up inl
a sugar-tree at. Miss Mattio Sue'SA
and she saw themi pottering around
there this morning."
"Little limb!" exclaimied Mrs. Gif
ford, with emphasis. "'site's tas cheeky
as a town-hog. I can't imnaginie what
Shirley D~andridgo was thinking o1'
when she brought that low-bornm child
out or her sphtere."
Something like a growl camne from
the doctor' as he struck open the
scree-door'. " 'Li2mib!' il bet ten
dollars site's an antgel in a cedar
tree at a churmch fair comp la red with
somte better-born young om-s I knows
of wh'lo are' 0only lit to live when
they've got the scar-let-Cev'er and who
ought to b)e in the t'ef'ormnatory long
ago. And as f'or Shimrley Dlandlridge,
it's my opintion she and het' nmothler'
and a few others like her' have got
abotut the only drops otf the milk of
human kindn'-ss in this w~ hole aban
"Dreadfutl man! " said Mrs. Gifford,
sotto voce, as the door biangedl vicious'
ly. "To think of his being born a
Southtali! Sometimes 1 can't believo
Mrs. Mason shook her' head andi
smiled. "Ahi, but that Isn't the real
Doctor Southall," slit said. "That's
only his shell."
"I've heard that he has another
side," responded the ether with
guarded grimness, "but if he has, 1
wish he'd manage to shmow~ it seine
Mrs. Mason took off her- glasses ar.d
wiped theta catrefully. "I saw it when
my husbantd died," she said softly.
"That was beflooyou camte. TIhey
were old frientds, yott know, ie was
sick almost a year', andt the dioctor'
used to carry himi out htei'e on the
porch ever'y day in hiIs armns, lIke a
child. And then, when the typhus
camefi that stumnmer among the~ negr'oes,
he qul~aantinedt im iself withI thelm-the
-oply white man thtere---anid treate'd
and nursed them nd but Itried the deadI
with his own hands, till it was
stampe I out. Thant's the real Doctor
The rockers vibrated in silence for a
moment. 'Ten Mrs. Glifford said: "I
never knew before thatt hie had any
thing to (10 with that duel. Was he
one of Valiant's secondls?"
"Yes," said Mrs. Masoni; 'and the
major was the othier. I was a little
girl wheni It hatppened. I cans barely
remember It, but it made a big sensar
"And over a love-affair!" exclaimed
Mrs. (ifford in the torte of one to
whom romanice wasi daily bread.
"I suppose it was."
For a time the conversation lan
guished, Then Mrs. (Afford asked sud- I
desn1s- "Who do yon sunnoae ihe,
-ould have been?-thie girl behind that
Aid Valiant affair."
Mrs. Alason shook her head. "No
mne knows for certain-unless, of
aourse, the major or the doctor, and I
wvouldn't question either of them for
6vorlds. You see, peoplo had stopped
gossiping about it before I was out of
school. Thero's Major Bristow at the
gate now. And the doctor's just com
ng out again."
The major wore a suit of white
linen, with a broad-brimnmed straw
[tat, and a pink was in his button
iole, but to the observing, his step
night have seemed to lack an accus
:otetd jauntiness. As he caein up the
ath e doctor opelled is ollice.
'llow do youi feel this morning, Ala
"Feel?" rumbled the major; "the
,vay any gentleman ought to feel this
imo or the morning, salh. Like hell,
ihe doctor bentt his gaze on tho
ilarious blossom in the other's lapel.
'If I wvere you, Iristow," he said
tcathingly, "I reckon I'd quit galivant
ing around to bridge-lghts with per
'umery on my handkerchief every
3venintg. It's the devil of an examniplo
.0 the young."
The rocking-chairs behind the
screening vines became motionless,
ind the ladies exchangd sirrepLtitious
smiles. If the t.wo geitlemnenl were
twaire of each otlier's sterling quail
]es. their mu tual a )preciationl was in
nverse rat io to its expression, and,
is the lluci lnin mysteries, cloaked
yefore the world. In paublic the doctor
,vas wont to remi-rk that the tajor
alked like a Caesar, looked like a
ian.0.-tun1C' aId was the only man ho
lad over seen who cotild strut uit
ing down. Never were his gibes uo
arbed as when Iainehl.d igainst the
najor's white-waistc-ated and patri
11t valin, and ''oiversely, never did
he major's bland suavity so nearly
ipproach ann undigiflied irritation as
'hen r-ni vingfm tite envenomned darts
ar that accomalitished cynic.
Tho major set tied his black tio. "A
AIttle wholesonie exercise wouldn't be
i bad thing for you. )octor," he said
mccinactly. "YoWre looking a shade
"Exercise!" snapped the other
riciously, as lie pounded down the
steps. "IMa. ha! I suppose you exer
fe--azying ot to the Dandridges
me a week for a jilep, and the rest
>f the time weaii ing out good cano-bot
LOns and palm-leaf fans and mussing
i1 the heat. You'll go off with apo
Ilexy one of t hese days."
"I Shali if the *y're scared enough to
2all you," tl Imiajor shot after him,
tettled. Bilt the doctor did not pause.
1le Vet on down tiho street without
urning his head.
TV major lifted his hat gallantly
.0 t00 hldies. whose presence he had
"llo sit doawn, Major," said Mrs. GIif
rordi. ''There's a quiestion I'm just
lyinig to ask you. We've had such an
inter-stinlg conversation. You've
he'ardl the inew s, of courise, that young
.\ir. V'aliantt is contmig to Damory
Theii major sat down heavily. In the
bright light hiis face seeimed sudtdently
pale antd old.
"No '' the ladly's tone was arch
"'I Iave all theI rest of us really got
rihead of you for once? Yes, it's true.
There's sotme one there getting it to
rights Ne'w here's t he qjuest Ion.
T'here was a womnan, of course, at the
bo01ttom1 of the V'alIint duel(. I'll never
:Iream of aiskinag you wh'lo sihe was.
init which was it sihe loved, Valiant
:r Sassoon ?"
Wh'en'l thle mtajt'or ntered htis room,
er1-bourat, h is a nen ot body-servant,
was daiiwdllinig about pttinmg tings to
right s, htis seamedl'( visaigo untder his
white wool suggesting a charred
41tumip beneathi a crisp powderiong Of
41now. "J1edige Chal malhs dlone ieily
roam ter ax yo' ovah tot' Glahden Ilalu
es sutppaht t er-ntightI suh,'' he said.
''Teil himit not totiight, .lorry,"' said
te othier weariily. "Somte othetr time."
''Te old dar'ky ruintatedI as he
plioddedl downi to the dloctor's tele
phione. '"W\hut do mtattah ntow? le
tot dlat at' way-off-yottdah look ergen."
lio shtook htis head forebodingly.
Thle major had, indeeOd, a far-away
eok as Ito sat there, a heavy lonely
Igure, that bright morning. it had
dilppedl to his faco with the news of
he ar'rival at l)aam'ry Court. Hie told
ilmtself that he0 felt queer.
Suiddoenly he( sefeed to hear elfin
voice's close to his ear:
"Which wvas It she loved? Valiant
It was so distinct that ho started,
rexed and( (listutrbed. Really, it was
ibisurdc. le wvould 1)0 seeing things
text! "Southall tmay b~e right about
htat exercise," 1)e tmuttered; "I'll walk
ntore." 11(1 began the prtoected no
rm withou~it delay, striding up aind
lown te r'oom. I ut the little voices
>resently sounded agalit, shoutting like
;nomtes inside a hill:
"Which was it? Valiant er Sas
"I wish to God I knew!" said1( the
ntajor roughly, standiag still. It si
ncd them, but tho mnd ofhi ow.
voiee, 'as 11ough 'it -had been ~a~ pre
concerted signal, drew together a hun
dred inchoate images of other days.
There was the well-ordered garden of
Damory Court-it rose up, gloomy
with night shadows, across his great
clothes-press against the wall-with
himself sitting on a rustic-bench
smoking and behind him the candle
lighted library window with Beauty
Valiant pacing up and down, waiting
for daylight. There was a sun
lighted stretch between two hemlocks,
with South'all and he measuring the
ground-the grass all dewy sparkles
and an early robin teetering on a
thorn-bush. Eight - nine - ten - he
caught himself counting the paces.
He wiped his forehead. Between
the hemlocks now were two figures
facing each other, one twitching un.
certainly, the other palely rigid; and
at one side, hold emreen-wle, a raised
umbrella. In some ghostly way he
could see right through the latter
see the doctor's hand gripping the
handle, his own, outstretched beyond
its edge, holding a handkerchief ready
to flutter down. A silly subterfugo
those umbrellas, but there must be no
actual witnesses to the final act of a
"gentlemen's meeting"! A silly code
the whole of it, now happily out,
grown! The scene blurred Into a sin
*gle figure huddling down--huddling
"Which did she love?" The major
shook his head helplessly. It was,
after all, only the echo, become all
at once audiblo on a shallow woman's
ips, of a question that had always
haunted hint. It had first come to him
on the heels of that duel, when he
had stood, somewhat later that hate
'fu morning, holding a saddled horse
before the big pillared porch. Lt had
whispered itself then from every mor
'tng leaf. "Sassoon or Valiant?' It
she had loved Sassoon, of what use the
letter Valiant was so long penning in
the library? Hut-if it were Valiant
she loved? The man who, having
sworn not to lift his hand against the
other, had broken his sacred word to
her! Who had stained the unwritten
codo by facing an opponent maddened
with liquor! Yet, what was there a
Iwom1ani might not condone in the one
man? Would she read, forgive and
send for him?
The major laughed out suddenly,
harshly, in the quiet room, and looked
down as if he expecte(l to see that
-letter still lying in his hand. But the
laugh could not still a regular pulsing
sound that was in his ears-elfln like
the voices, but as distinct-the sound
of a horse's hoofs going from Damory
H-e had heard those hoof-beats cho
in his brain for thirty years!
* * * * * * * .
Till the sun was high John Valiant
lay on his back in the fragrant grass,
meditatively watching a bucaneering
chicken-hawk dr, w widening circles
against the blue 111d listening to the
vibrant tattoo of a "pecker-wood" on
a far-away tree, and the timorous wet
whistle of a bob-white. The whole
place was very quiet now. For just
one thrilling moment it. had burgeoned
into sound and movement: when the
sweaty horses had stood snorting and
stamping in the yard with the hounds
scampering between their legs and the
riding-coats winking like rubies in the
Had she recognized him as the
smiudged tinkerer of the stalled car?
"She saw mec drop that wre'tched brute
through the wvindow," ho chuckled. "I
could take oath to that. liut she didn't
give mae away, true little sport that
rshe was. And she won't. 1 can't
think of any reason, but I know. Was
she angry? I wonder!"
At length he rose and went back
to the house. W\ith a bunch of keys
lie had found ho went to the stables,
after some dilliculty gained access,
and propped the crazy (loors and win
dows open~ to the sun. Trho building
was airy and well-lighted and1( con
tainedl a dozen roomy box-stalls, a
spacious loft and a carriage-house.
The straw bedding had beent unre
mnoved, mice-gnawed sacking and
rotted hay lay in the mangers, and the
warped harness, hanging on its pegs,
was a smelly mass of mildew and
decay. ie found a stick, mowed away
the testooning cobwebs, andl moved
the debris piece-meal.
"Thero!" ho said with satisfaction.
"There's a placo) for the motor-U
Uncle Jefferson ever gets. it here."
It was noon when lie returnied, after
a wash-up in the lake, to the meal
wvith which Aunt D~aphne, in a costume
dimly suggestive of a bran-meal poul
tice with a gintgham apron on, regaled
him. Frzied chicken, corn-breadi so
soft and fluffy that it had to be lifted
from the pan with a spoon, browned
Ipotatoes, andl to his surprise, fresh
milk. "'Alh (dono druv ouah oh' pow
ovah, suh," explained Aunt Daphne.
"'Case she getter 1)0 milked, or she
run dry ez d10 Red Sea fo' do chillon
"Aunt Daphmno," inquired Valiant
with his mouth full, "what do you call
this green thing?"
"Dat? Dat's jes' turnip-tops, suhi,
wid or hunk er bacon in d1o pot. Laws.
er-me, et cer'n'y (10 me goodI ter see
ye' git arter' it dat. way, suht. Iteck'n
yo' got er app~ertite! llyuh, llyuh!"
"I have. i never guessed it, before,
and it's a magniicent discovery. I low
ever, it stuggests unweicomno reflee
tions. Aunt D~aphne, how long dor you
estimate a man can (1ino like this on
--well, say on a huIndlredl dollars?"
"Er hiun'ed dllahs, suhb? Dat's et
right smart heap o' monmey, deed et isi
Well suh, 'pen's on whut, ye' raises
Ef ye' raises ye' own gyarden-sass or1
chick'ns on nigs, Alt reck'n ye' il
live longahi dan daft ar Methoosalum
en still haf mos' of it in de 01' stock
"Alht I can grow allis thosa thingi
imyself, you think?r
"Yo' cert'n'y kin," said Aunt Daphne,
"El'ybody do. Do chick'ns done peak
Ifo' deyselves en do yuddah things-yo
o'ny gotter 'courage 'em en dey joe
Valiant ate his dessert with a
thoughtful smile wrinkling his brow.
As he pushed back his chair he smote
his hands together and laughep aloud.
"Back to the soil!" he said./ "John
Valiant, farmerl The miracle of it is
'that it sounds good to me. I want to
raise my own grub and till my own
soil. I want to be my own man! And
I'm beginning to see my way. Crops
will have to wait for another season,
but there's water and pasture for cat
tie now. There's timber-lots of It
on that hillside, too. I must look Into
He filled his pipe and climbed the
staircase to the upper floor. There
were many bedrooms with great four
posted, cagnopied beds and old-fash
toned carved furniture of mahogany
and curly-maple, and in one ho found
a great cedar-lined chest filled with
bed-linen and napery. In these rooms
wore more evidences of decay. The
bedroom he mentally chose for his
own was the plainest of all, and was
above the library, fronting the vaga
bond garden. It had a great black
.desk with many glass-knobbed draw'
'er and a book-rack.
He lingered longest in a room
whose door was painted The Hilarium.
:It had evidently been a nursery and
'schoolroom. Here on the walls were
many shelves wound over with net
works of cobwebs, and piled with the
oddest assemblage of toys. There
were school-books, too, thumbed and
dog-eared, from First Reader to
Caesar's Gallic Wars, with names of
small Valiants scrawled on their fly
leaves. lie carefully relocked the door
of this room; ho wanted to dust those
toys and books with his own hands.
In the upper hall again he beahd
from the window, sniffing the far
flung scent of orchards and peach
blown fence-rows. The soft whirring
sound of a bird's wing went past, al
most brushing his startled face, and
tho old oaks seemed to stretch their
bent limbs with a faithful brute-like
yawn of pleasure. In the room below
he could hear the vigorous sound of
Aunt Daphne's hard-driven broom and
the sound flooded the echoing space
with a comfortable commotion.
He went to his trunk and fished out
a soft shirt on which he knotted a
loose tie, exchanged his Panama for
a slouch hat, and whistling the bar
carolo from Tales of lioffmann, went
gaily out. "I feel tremendously alive
today," he confided to the dog, as he
tramped through the lush grass. "If
you see me ladle the muck out of
that fountain with my own fair hands,
don't have a fit. I'm liable to do any
His eye swept up and down the
slope. "There probably isn't a finer
site for a house in the whole South,"
ho told himself. "The living-rooms
front south and west. We'll get
scrumptious sunsets from that back
porch. And on the other side there's
the view clear to the Blue Ridge."
lie skirted the lake. "Only to grub
out some of the lilies-there's too
many of them-and straighten the
rim--and weed the pebble margin to
give those green rocks a show. 'll
build a little wharf below them to dive
from, and-yes, I'll stock it with
Ie was but a few hundred yards
from the house, yet the silence was so
deeop that there might have been no
habitation within fifty miles. All at
once he stop~ped short; there was a
sudden movement in the thicket be
yonId-thle sound of light fast footfalls,
as of sonme one running away.
Hie made a lunge for the dog, but
with a growl Chum tore himself from
the restraining grasp and dashed into
the bushes. "A child, no doubt," he
thought as he plunged in pursuit, "and
that lubberly brute will scare it half
Ho pulled up with an exclamation.
In a narrow wood-path a little way
from him, partly hidden by a wind
'fall, stood a girl, her skirt transfixed
with a wickedly jaggedl sapling. He
saw instantly how it had happened;
the windfall had blocked the way, and
she had sprung clear over it, not
noting the screened i'ncar, which now
held her as effectually as any railroad
In another moment Valiant had
reached her and met her face, flushed,
half (defiant, her eyes a blue gleam of
smoldering anger as she desperately,
almost savagely, thrust wild tendrila
of flame-colored hali' beneath the
broad curved brim of her straw hat.
At her feet lay a great armful of cape
A little thrill, light and warm and
jcyous, ran through him. Until that
instant ho had not recognized her.
(Continued Next Week.)
('heek Your A pril ('ough
Thawing frost. and A pril rain chill
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you head clears up, fever leaves and1(
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Rtelief 0or money b~ack. Pleasant
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Bee Dee"*ST C&POULTRY chatnop Tan
MEDICIE 25c, soc anrd $1. per can.
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