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" IlALLIE LUl
L1.U3TRATrD gy- '
CHAPTER I-John Valiant, a rich so
lety favorite, Ouddenly discovers that the
Valiant corporation, which his father
founded and which was the principal
source of his wealth, has failed.
CHAPTER II-Ho voluntarily turns
over his private fortune to the receiver
for the corporation.
CHAPTER III-His entire remaining
possessions consist of an old motor car.
a white bull dog and Damory court, a
neglected estate in V!rginla.
CHAPTER rV-He learns that this en
tate came Into the family b1 royal grant
and has been in the possession of the
Valiants ever since.
CHAPTER V-On the way to Damory
court he meets Shirley Dandridge, an an
burn-haired beauty, and decdes that h
going to like Virginia Immensely.
CHAPTER VI-An old negro tells Shir
Ay's fortune and predicts great trouble
or her on account of a man.
CHAPTER VII-Uncle Jefferson, an old
negro. takes Valiant to Damory court.
CHAPTER VIII-Rhirley's mother. Mrs.
Dandridge, and Major Bristow exchange
reminiscences during which it is revealed
that the major, Valiant's father, and A.
man named Sassoon. were rivals for the
hand of Mrs. Dandridge in her youth.
.Sassoon and Valiant fought a duel on her
account in which the former was killed.
CHAPTER IX--Valiant finds Damory
court overgrown with weeds and creep
ers and the buildings In a very much
neglected condition. Unclo Jefferson and
his wife, Aunt Daphne, are engaged as
CHAPTER X-Valiant explores hip an
cestral home. He is surprised by a fox
:'unting party which invades his estate.
lIe recognizes Shirley at tho head of the
CHAPTER XI-Hie gives sanctuary to
the cornered fox. Gossips discuss the al
vent of the new owner and recall the
tragedy in which the elder Valiant took
. APTER XII-Vallant decides to re
habilitate Damory court and make the
,hapd produce a living for him.
John Valiant Makes a Discovery.
"I'm so sorry," was what he said, as
be kneeled to release her, and she was
grateful that his tone was unmixed
with amusement. She bit her lips, as
by sheer strength of elbow and knee
he snapped the offending bole short
off-one of those quick exhibitions
of reserved strength that every wom
"I don't know how I could have
been so silly-thank you so much,"
said Shirley, panting slightly from
her' exertions. "I'm not the least bit
hurt-only my dress-and you know
very well that I waan't afraid of that
ridiculous dog." A richer glow stole
to her cheeks as she spoke, a burn
ing recollection of a rose, which from
her horse that morning at Damory
Court, she ha- glimpsed in its glass on
Both laughed a little. He imagined
.that he could smell that wonderful
hair, a subtle fragrance like that of
sun-dried seaweed or the elusive scent
that clings to a tuft of long-plucked
tanish moss. "Chum stands ab
olved, then," he said, bending to
sweep together the scattered Jesse
niine. "Do you-do you run like that
when you're not frightened?"
"When I'm cauight red-handed.
He looked puzzled.
She pointed to the flowers. "I hjaa
stolen them, and I was trying to
''scape off widi 'em' as the negretes
say. Shocking, isn't it? But you sesg
nobody has litet here since long be.
tor I was bor'n, and I su1ppose( the
flower-thIeving habit has become in
"But," he interrupted, "there's acres
of them going to waste. Why on earth
,'Mbfuldn't you have them?"
"Of course I know better today, but
T ere was a-a special reason. We
eve none andi this is the nearest
where they grow. My mother
('op 'tnome for this particular day."
('yen heavens!" he cried. "You
Mr's. W'u you can't go right on tak
home hra ? Why, you can ''scape off'
'vhllethe whole garden any time!"
rep- dr'oli little gleam of azure mis
.tolef darted at him suddenly out of
her eyes andl th'-i (lodged b~ack again.
"Aren't you jusb a littld rash with
other peopie's property?"
"What will the owner say'
Ho bent back orie of the long jessa
mine stems andt wound it ar'oundi the*
othere. "I cane answer for him. Be
sides, I owe you something, you know.
I robbed you this morning-of your
She looked at hIm, abruptly serious.
"Why (lid you do that?''
"Sanctuary. Fits two heady eyes
begged so hard for it. 'Twenty raven
ons hountds.' they said. 'and a dozen
galloping horses. And look what a
poor shivering little redl-brown mor
*jel I am!' "
For just, an Instant the bronze-gold
head gave a quick imperious toss, like
a, high-Inettled pony undier the flick
of the -whip. But as suddenly the
shadow of resentment passed; the
mobIle face u~nder the bent hat-brim
tm-ned thoughtful, She looked again
at him, "1)o you think it's wrong to
kill tilings?" she asked gravely.
"Oh, dlear, no," ho smiled. "I
haven't a single ism. I'm not even a
"But yell would be if you had to kill
your own meat?".
"Perhaps. So many of us would.
As a matter of fact, I don't hunt my
sett, but I'm no reformer."
"Why don't you hunt?"
EN1 RIVEI PQ3T(ImW
"I ion't enjoy it." Ho flushed
slightly. "I hate firearms," he said, a
trifle difficultly. "I always have, I
don't know why. Idiosyncrasy, I PtY
pose. But I shouldn't car- for hunt
ing, even with bows and arrows. I
would kill a tiger or a poisonous rep
tile, or anything else, in 'case of neces
sity. But even then I should hardly
enjoy it. I know some animals are
pests and have to be killed. Some
men do, too. But I don't like to do it
"Wouldn't that theory lead to a
wholesale evasion of responsibility'?"
"Perhaps. I'm n'o philosopher. But
a blackbird or a red fox is so pretty,
even when he is thieving, that I'd lot
him have the corn. I'm like the
Lord ligh Executioner in 'The Mi
kado' who was so tender-hearted that
he couldn't executO anybody and
planned to begin with guinea-pigs and
work up. Only I'm afraid I couldn't
even nianage the guinea-pigs."
She laughed. "You wouldn't find
many to practice on here. Do you
raise guinea-pigs up North?"
"Ah," he said ruefully, "you tag me,
too. Have I by chance a large letter
N tattooed upon my manly brow? But
I suppose it's the accent. Uncle Jef
ferson catalogued me in five minutes.
He said he didn't know why I was
from 'de Norf,' but he 'knowed' it.
I've annexed ' im and his .wife, by the
"You're lucky to have them. Unc'
Jefferson and Aunt Daph might have
slipped out of a plantation of the last
century. They're absolutely ante-bel.
lum. Most of the negroes are more
or less spoiled, as you'll find, I'm
afraid." She turned the conversation
bluntly. "Had you seen Damory
"Do you like the general plan of the
"Do I like it?" cried John Valiant.
"Do I like it!"
A quick pleasure glanced across her
face. "It's nice of you to say it that
way. We ask that question so often
it's become mechanical. You see, it's
our great show-place."
At that moment a patter of foot
steps and shrill shrieks came flying
over the last-year's leaves beyond the
lilac bushes. It's Rickey Snyder," she
said, peering out smilingly as two
children, pursued and pursuer, burst
into view. "Hush!" she whispered;
"I wonder what they are up to."
The pair came in a whirl through
the bushes. The foremost was a
seven-year-old negro girl, in a single
'short cottonade garment, wizened,
barelegged and bareheaded, her black
wool parted in little angular patches
and tightly wrapped with bits of cord.
The other was white and as freckled
as a turkey's egg, with hair cropped
like a boy's. She held a carving
knife cut from a shingle, whose edge
had been deeply ensanguined by poke
berry juice. The pursued one stum
bled over a root and came to earth in
a heap, while the other pounced upon
her like a wildcat.
"Hold still, you limb of Satan," she
scolded. "How can I do It when you
won't stay still?"
"Oh, lawd," moaned the prostrate
one, in simulated terror; "oh, Doctah,
good Doctah Snydah, has Ah getter
hab dat operation? Is ye' she' gwine
ter twitter aroun' mah insides wid
dem knives en saws en things?"
"It won't hurt," reassured the would
be operator; "no more than it did MIS'
Poly Glifford. And I'll put your liver
right hack again."
"Wait er minute. Ah jes' remem
babs Ah fo'go! ter make mahi will. Ah
"Nonsense!" objected the other trrt.
tably. You mnade- it yesterday. They
always d!o it becfonctand."
"No, suh; Ah done clean forgot et.
Ah leabs mahi thimblje ter de MetodiW'
;,hurch, en malh black en w'lte kitten
tr Rickey Snyder, en
A twig snapped undler Valiant's foot.
Both scrambled to their feet. the black
girl to look at themi with a wide self
conscious grin. Rickey, tossing her
short hair- back from her freckled
face, came toward them.,
"My good ness, Miss Shirley," she
said, "we didn't see you at all." She
looked at Valiant. "Are you the man
that's going to fix up D~amory Court?"
she inquired, without any tedious for
"Yes," said Valiant.
"Well," she said critically, "you've
got your job cut out for you. But I
should say you're the kind to do it."
"Rickoy!" Shirley's voice tried to
be stern, but there was a hint of
laughter in it.
"What did I say now?" inquired
Rickey. "I'm sure I meant it to be
"It was," said Valiant. "I shall try
to deserve your good opinion."
"But what a ghastly play!" ex
claimed Shirley, "Where did you
"We wore playing Mis' Poly Qifford
in the hospital," Rickey answered.
"She's got a whole lot of little peb
bles what they cut out-"
*"Oh, Rickey I" expostulated Shirley
with a shudder.
"They did, She keeps them In a
lIttle pasteboard box like wedding-cake,
with a blue ribbon around it, She was
showing it to Miss Mattie Sue yester
day. She was tellirig her all about it.
tho said allthewomenThrei showed
each other their cuts and bragged
about how long they were."
"You certainly have a highly devel.
;oped taste for the dramatic," said
'Shirley. "I wonder what your next
effort will be."
"It's tomorrow," Rickey informed
her. "We're going to have the duel
between Valiant and Bassoon."
The smile was stricken from John
Valiant's face. A duel-the duel-be
'tween Valiant and Sassoon! He felt
his blood beat quickly. Had there
,been such a thing in his father's life?
Was that what had blighted it?
"Only not hero where it really hap
pened, but in the Meredith orchard.
Greenie's going to be-"
"Ah ain'!" contradicted Greenie.
"Ah ain' gwineter be dat Valiant, no.
"You are, too!" Insisted Rickey,
wrathfully. "You needn't be so pickety
and choosety-and after she kills Sas
soon, we put the bloodhounds on her
Greenie tittered. "Dey ain' no dawg
aroun' heah'd tech me," she said, "en
"But, Rickey," Shirley interposed,
"that wasn't a murder. That was a
duel between gentlemen. They don't-"
"I know it," assented Rickey cheer.
fully. "But it makes it more exciting.
Vill you come, Miss Shirley, deed and
double? I won't charge you any ad
"I can't promise," said Shirley. "By
the way, isn't it about time Miss Mat
tie Sue had her tea?"
"It certainly is, Miss Shirley!" said
Rickey, with penitent emphasis. "I
clean forgot it, and she'll row me up
the gump-stump! Come on, Greenie,"
and she started off through the
Shirley looked at Valiant with a
deepening of her dimple. "Rickey
isn't an aristocrat," she said; "she's
what we call hero poor-white, but she's
.got a heart of gold. She's an orphan,
and the neighborhood in general, and
Miss Mattio Sue Mabry in particular,
have adopted her."
He hardly heard her words for the
painful wonder that was holding him.
His father had taken a man's life.
Was it this thought-whatever the
provocation, however justified by the
customs of the time and section
that had driven him to self-exile? He
recalled himself with an effort, for
she was speaking again.
"You've found Lovers' Leap, no
"No. This is the first time I've
been so far from the house. Is it nea'
"I'll show it to you." She held out
"It Won't Hurt," Reassured the Would.
her hand for the bunch of jessamine
and laid it on the broad roots of a
tree that were mottled with lichen.
"Look there." she said suddenly;
"Isn't that a beauty?"
She was pointing to a jlmson-weed
on which had settled, with glassy
wings vibrating, a long, ungainly,
needlelike insect with an odd sword
like beak. "What is that?" he asked.
"A snake-doctor. If Unc' Jefferson
were here he'd say, 'Bettah watch
out! Dah's er anek roun' erbout heah,
I ho'!' He'll fill you full of darky
Suddenly the slim path between the
tres took a quick turn, and fell away
at their feet. "There," she~ said. "This
Is the finest view at Damo'' ('ouirt."
They stood on the- '"
ravine which wvide
were covered Afl' graiy-green feath
ery creepers, enwoand with curly yel
low tendrils of lovI,-vine. Across the
ravine, on a lower level, began a
grove of splendid trees that marchedi
up into the long stretch of neglected
forest ho had seen from the house.
"You love it?" he asked, without
withdrawing his eyes.
"I've loved it all my life. I love
everything about Damory Court.
Ruined as it is, it is still one of the
most beautiful estates in all Virginia.
There's nothing finer even in Italy.
Just behind us, where those hemlocks
stand, la where the duel the children
spoke of was fought."
He turned his head. "Tell me about
it," he etd.
She glanced at him curiously. "Didn't
you know? That wan the reason the
place was abandoned. Valiant, who
lived here, and the owner of another
plantation, who w'as named Sassoon,
Quarreled. They fought, the story is,
under those big hemlock trees. Sas
soon was killed."
He looked out across the distance;
he could not trust his face. "And
"H~o went away the same (lay and
never came back; ho lived In New
York till ho died, H~e was'the father
of the court's present owner. You
never heard the story?"
"No," he admitted. "I--till quite re
cently I never heard of Damory
"That was the last Annl ever fought
In VIfrgii, ulig ~Iwas a drea
custom. I'm glad it's gone. Aren't
"Yes," he said slowly, "it was a
thing that out two ways. Perhaps Va
liant, if he could have had his choice
afterward, would rather have been ly
ing there that morning than . Sas
"He must have suffered, too," she
agreed, "or he wouldn't have exiled
himself as he did. I used to wonder
if it was a love-quarrel--whether they
could have been in love with the same
"But why should he go away?"
"I can't Imagine, unless she had
really loved the other man. If so, she
couldn't have borne seeing Valiant
afterward." She paused with a little
laugh. "But then," she said, "it may
have been nothir.g so romantic. Va
liant's grandfather, who was known as
Devil-John, is said to have called a
man out because he rode past him
on the wrong side. Our ancestors in
Virginia, I'm afraid, didn't stand on
ceremony when they felt uppish."
He did not smile. He was looking
out once more over the luminous
stretch of fields, his side-face towards
her. Curious and painful questions
were running through his brain. With
an effort, he thrust these back and re
called his attention to what she was
"You wonder, I suppose, that we
feel as we do toward these old estates,
and set store by them, and-yes, and
brag of them insufferably as we do.
But it's in our blood. You Northern
ers think we're desperately con
ceited," she smiled, "but it's true.
We're still as proud of our land, and
its old, old places, and love them as
well as our ancestors ever (lid. Do
you wonder we resent their passing
to people who don't care for them in
the Southern way?"
"But suppose the newcomers do
care for them?"
Her lips curled. "A young million
aire who has lived all his life in Now
York, to care for Damory Court! A
youth idiotically rich, brought up in a
superheated atmosphere of noise and
Ho started uncontrollably. So that
was what she thought! He felt him
self flushing. He had wondered what
would be his impression of the neigh
borhood and its people; their possible
opinion of himself had never occurred
"You think there's no chance of his
choosing to stay here because he
actually likes it?"
"Not the slightest," she said indif
"You are so certain of this without
ever having seen him?"
She glanced at him covertly, an
noyedly sensible of the impropriety
of the discussion, since the man dis
cussed was certainly his patron, may.
be his friend. But his insistence had
roused a certain balky wilfulness that
would have its way. "It's true I've
never seen him," she said, "but I've
read about him a hundred times in the
Sunday supplements. He's a regular
feature of the high-roller section. His
idea of a good time is a (log-banquet
at Sherry's. Why, a girl told me onee
that there was a cigarette named after
him-the Vanity Valiant!"
"Isn't that be!de the point? Be
cause he has bemau an idler, must he
necessarily be a-vandal?"
She laughed again. "He wouldn't
call it vandalism. He'd think It de
cided improvement to make Damory
Court as frantically dlifferent as possi
ble. I suppose he'll erect a glass
cupola andI a porte-cochere, all up-to
date .nd varnishy, and put orchid hot
Ihouses where the wilderness garden
was, and a modern marble cupid in
stead of the summ4 -house, and lay
out a kite-shaped tr -
Everything that was impulsive and
explosive in John Valiant's nature
came out with a ban,, "Not" he
cried, "whatever else he is, he's not
such a preposterous ass as thati"
She faced him sqaarely now. Her
eyes were sparkling. "Since you know
him so intimately and so highly ap
prove of him-"
"No, no," he interrupted. '"You mis
take me. I shouldn't try te justify
him." His flush had risen to the roots
of his brown hair', but he did not
lower his gaze. Now the red color
slowly ebbed, leaving him pale, "He
h as' been an idler-thatL's true enough
--and till a week ago he was 'idiotio
ally rich.' But his idling is over new.
At this moment, except for this one
'property, he is little better than a
She had taken a hasty step or two
back from him, and her eyer were now
fixed on his with a dawning half-fear.
ful question in them,
"Till the failure of the Valiant Cor
poration, he hadl never heard of Da
mory Court, much less been aware
that he owned it. It wasn't because
he' loved it that he came here-no!
H-ow could it be? He had never set
foot in Virginia in his mortal life,"
She put up her hands to her throat
with a start. "Came?" she echoed,
"lBut if you think that even ho could
be so cr-assly stupid, so monumentally
blind to all that is really fine and
"Oh!" she cried with flashing com
prehension. "Oh, how could you!
He nodded curtly. "Yes," he said.
"I am that haphazard harlequin, John
'Continmued Nex't Weexa.
I~ev. ('. II. N':bers of P' esin '
dlver en illusmtrated lectu re cn~ m e
land of Sacred Ritory" ini ti.e 0-..
P'. chu rch I' eveulV.
at '- oc
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