THE DESERT OF LUXURY
By John Fiison.
John Sharpless unlocked the door
of his flat and-let himself in. He
hung up his hat inhe hall and went
slowly into his library. ' The maid
was dusting; at the sight of. him she
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"I Am Going to Leave You."
gathered up her broom and pan and
hurried toward the door.
"Mrs. Sharpless said she'll be home
to dinner, sir," she said.
John Sharpless was conscious of a
slight sense of annoyance. The bank
er was not a man given to analyzing
his sensations; however, during the
past few days things had occurred
which had given a new turn to his
thoughts. And he found himself
scrutinizing his relations with Wini
fred with greater care than usual.
He had been married five years,
nd his marriage had been a failure;
there was no doubt about that. Win
ifred's parents had been poor. She
was country-bred, too, and the plunge
into New York's social life had been
a change, indeed. She ought to have
been grateful, at least, even if she
had no love for him.
John thought rather grimly about
those past five years. There had
never been a child. There might have
been, only Winifred was lazy and lux
urious, and seemed to think of noth
ing but her woman's clubs and tea
parties. John had nothing in com
mon with any of her friends. And
she never hesitated to sacrifice his
comfort to them.
Yes, it was strange, her coming
home to dinner. Usually she dined
alone, before he came in. He was a
very busy man, and had been "busier
than usual until that evening. In
future he did not expect to be so
Half an hour later he was seated
opposite his wife at the table. He
noticed her flushed cheeks; Winifred
was still as pretty and girlish as when
he married her. A sudden pang shot
through his heart. How different
things might have been! But was he
to blame for the coldness, .the es-
After dinner Winifred did not with
draw, but sat watching hm while he
drank his coffee. John Sharpless felt
dimly that something was impending.
Winifred had something to say to
him, as he to her. He would let her
speak first She did.
"John, if you have finished your
coffee, I want to tell you something,"
she said. "I am going to leave you."
The banker quietly sat down his
cup. So the blow had fallen at last!
And he was glad very glad! Under
the circumstances but that could
"I am going to leave you tomorrow, !
John," she continued. "I have made g
all my arrangements. I am going
abroad with my sister. She approves j
of my decision. I presume there need . i
be no vulgar squabbles about money. (
a " '" - -- - --. .,
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