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Newspaper Page Text
"Because," said the lawyer,
"Mr. Burman had a position in
life which had to be maintained.
And yon were the fruit of a mes
alliance, a juvenile indiscretion.
Mr. Burman decided, quite right
ly, that he should not be held re
sponsible." "I see," said Maggie. "So he
put the responsibility on my
mother. Where is she?"
"She died when you were born.
And now the point is this: Mr.
Burman has left you an annual
income of seven thousand dollars,
to be held in trust for you, upon
two conditions. First, that you
agree to go to a school in Paris
which has been selected for you,
and to remain there two years.
Secondly, that, after you have
been polished, you will' reside
with Mrs. Burman as her niece,
and that no hint of the secret
ever passes your lips, under pen
alty of forfeiting your income.
Ah, by the way, there is a third
condition, but it is too unimport
ant tp lay much stress upon it.
I believe you have considered
yourself engaged i to a worthy
young man by the name of Mans'
field? A mere clerk, I think. Of
course that episode is ended now
and forever. Well, Miss Durham,"
you are a lucky young woman and
I congratulate you with all my
heart. All that is now requisite
is that you sign a document which
I have here embodying these
terms. You will then receive a
quarterly installment of $2,333 33
from me. And of course your
past life ends here. You will
never leturn to your boarding
house. You will go to an apart
ment which I have already order
ed for you, being under the care
of your chaperon, Mrs. Griggle, a
member of an aristocratic fam
ily. Here is the paper." He be
gan shuffling among the sheets
Upon the table.
Maggie rose up.
"Good-bye, Mr. Altemus," she t
said. She bowed to the widow
and her daughters.
"Eh?" said the lawyer.
"Declined with thanks' said
Maggie. She began to grow red.
"Do you think I'd sell myself into
slavery for the pleasure of mixing
with your crowd?" she demUnd- ',
ed. "Why, there isn't a drop of
real blood in your veins. There
isn't a particle of decent feeling
in you. No thanks! I've got
something none of you will ever
have or ever have had, and that's
the love of a good man who's jo
ing to ma"ke me happjkand give
me-a home. Declined!" ,
"Stop! Stop !" shouted the law
yer. "If you refuse you must
sign a release attested 'by four
witnesses and drayn Up in the
presence of a notary public ac
cording to " ,
But the front door had slam
med. "Mercy!" ejaculatedthe widow, f
fanning herself briskly. "Thank
heaven I haven't got that incubus
on my shoulders.. A very vulgar
young woman, Mr. Altemus, but
upon my word I m almost inclin
ed to forgive her low insults in
view of what has occurred. Do
you think you cart get the release
signed for certain, Mr. Altemus?"