the best of the matter, and took
possession of the property which
refused to be lost.
He resolved to. make just one
more attempt to dispose of the
opal. If that proved as great a
failure as his previous efforts had
been, he would keep the ring
come what might.
At two o'clock that afternoon
he made his way to the Shirley
theater, where there was to be a
popular priced matinee for chil
dren. As he expected there was a
large crowd collected before the
entrance. Into this seething,
pushing mass of humanity Ash
ton forced his way by slow de
It seemed an ideal place to lose
anything, whether one wanted to
When he could advance no
farther, Ashton slipped the ring
from his finger, and without so
much as glancing at those about
him, slyly let it fall; then he
backed out of the crowd as rap
idly as he could, and hurried from
Early that evening, as "he was
smoking a lonely pipe, and con
gratulating himself upon the fact
of his having at last lost his un
lucky opal, the door was flung
open and Ted, the curly headed
young brother of Marion Hul
. "Door was open down stairs so
I just came right up," said Ted
nonchalantly. "Got a note from
sis," and, making a sudden dive
into the depths of his trousers
pocket, he drew forth a crumpled
note which he tossed to Ashton.
Ashton opened it with tremb'
ling fingers and read:
"Please come to me this even
ing. I wish to restore you something-
of value which you have
He got rid of Ted in short 6r-v
der, and then struggled into even
"Poor little girl," he thought
commiseratingly, as he hastened
his preparations, "she's had as
hard, a time of it as I have had,
and now she's given in and sent "
for me to tell me that she wishes
to make up and restore herself to
me. It's tough for her to have'to
own up that she's been in the
wrong, so I'll make things as easy
for her as I can, by acting as if
nothing had come" between us."
So when he t entered the Hul
berts' parlor, Ashton, not notic-
ing or heeding Marion's embar
rassed demeanor, sprang forward
and clasped her unresisting form
in his arms. The quarrel was
speedily a thing of the past.
It was not until a triumphant
Ashton was bidding a blushing
Marion good-night, that that
yaung person remembered to say:
"There, I came near forgetting to
give you your lost property:"
"I supposed that you had al
ready returned it," Ashton re
plied with a meaning smile.
"Of course not,'' Marion pout- -ed.
"I wanted to g"ve you your
"Where on earth did you get
it?" demanded the amazed Ash
ton. '1 took my small niece to the
theater and when I reached home,
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