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The day book. [volume] (Chicago, Ill.) 1911-1917, October 21, 1913, Image 19

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Persistent link: https://chroniclingamerica.loc.gov/lccn/sn83045487/1913-10-21/ed-1/seq-19/

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she could not help taking it out ana
reading it.
Her first refusal to send money was
answered with urgent pleas and
promises of marriage. Lucy did not
write again, not even to tell the fellow
that she was married already. The
next letter was indignant, the" next
abusive. Then threats followed. They
were just the sort of threats that
would terrify an ignorant girl. Form
less, they struck terror to Lucy's
She had one consolation. Frank
could not find her. In the last days
before her marriage she had had no
friends. She could not leave the
house. None knew where she had
gone to live when her meeting with
George Gray led to their marriage.
The last letter, received a month
before, had terrified the girl. Ben
nett wrote that he was returning
.East; all his speculations had failed;
and he was resolved to discover the
meaning of her silence. After that
she had not gone to the postoffice
She was seated upon the porch of
her new home. She had come to love
her husband more than she had
thought possible. That morning, for
the first time in months, she felt at
ease. She was not thinking, of Ben
nett at all when a man entered the
gate and came quickly up the path.
It was Frank Bennett Lucy knew
him at once. He had grown much
older and looked dissipated; his trim
mustache was gone and his clean
shaven face gave him an indescrib
ably coarse appearance.. Half para
lyzed with terror, she sat mutely
watching him fascinated, as a bird
by some hideous snake.
He ascended the steps of the porch,
and, taking off his hat with a flourish.,
stood watching her. -"'
"I'm selling books," he announced.
"I have here " he touched a pack
age "a complete guide for "the
housekeeper. It is very useful for
young wives. Makes their husbands
contented and keeps their love."
Hs hideous mockery had no note
of pity in it. He must have learned
of her marriage and have come there
to torture her. ,
"I don't want any books," said
Lucy in a strained voice. .
Bennett, without answering, unfas;
tened the package.
"One dollar down and one dollar
monthly will give you full possession
of these three companion volumes,"
he continued. 'JYou'd better take
them. Don't you want to make your
husband happy? Don't you want to
surprise him with "
"I tell you I don't want any books,"
exclaimed Lucy, indignantly, rising to
her feet The thought of years that
she had wasted on .this worthless
man, the memory of his threats and
insults, had driven away her fears.
Anger replaced them. -,
"You think you d&tft1 want them,
eh?" sneered Bennett. "Then I'm sor
ry for your husband. Maybe he's so
well-to-do that he keeps a couple of
servants and ybu just have to doll up
and sit around all day? Nofr, see
here! I'm going to leave those books,
and whenlyou've thought the jnatter
over you're going to buy 'em. I shall
come back here tomorrow td get my
"If you're not out of her within
one minute, I shall telephone to my
husband to have you .arrested," said
Lucy. Take yourself and your books
out of here, and don't ever let me see
your face again, or you shall be
To her amazement, Bennett calmly
picked upthe books and began to
go down the garden walk. He did not
say anything nor seem indignant He
shut the gate .behind him, and a
couple of minutes later Lucy saw him
entering the house next to her own,
beyond the -vacant lots adjoining.
All at once the explanation flashed
on her. He had not recognized her!
He had simply been trying to ped
dle books in his own characteristic,
impudent way. She did not know
the transformation that love had"
W.. a T..k rt- 1t

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