m - THE ACCUSING FOOTSTEPS
1 By Mary Lloyd Evans.
5 Always the footsteps behind me,
'dull, hollow, but echoing never be
fore. Did they" but precede I might
Jiave had hope, for then they might
My Manhood Cowered. Hatred, Cow
1 ardice, Guilt Held Me Spellbound.
. guide me to some haven of rest,
r peace for my tired heart
I was not a wicked man, nor a
mean man, nor a dissipated man. I
i was only a murderer to the world
never that, but to my conscience, yes.
r A thousand deaths were in my heart
and one poor victory if I could call
"I consent to the marriage."
, "'ecret, of course?"
) st be that way under the cir-
Burned into my brain were these
three sentences, for they started the
train of circumstances that resulted
in a terrible tragedy.
It was six weeks since that I over
heard Huldah Evans speak the first,
Vane Telford made reply. Then her
final words "my love, my adored
one!" She whom I worshiped was a
party to a clandestine complication
with a rival I had never feared, nor
before that even suspected.
He had come to the village, a
stranger. He had made several calls
on Huldah. I was curious, but she
never apprised me as to the person
ality of her new acquaintance nor his
motive in visiting her. That vividly
remembered afternoon I was lining a
high hedge, surrounding the "Evans
place when I heard the brief colloiquy
noted. I had come to the spot with
my heart full of hope' and love. I left
it vengeful, embittered, my sould im
mersed in the blackest despair.
I wandered towards the narrow but
deep rolling stream at the edge of
the town, my spirit dazed, my heart
distracted. This, then, was the end
of it all. She loved another! I flung
myself on the grassy bank, watching
the swift eddies just above the water
fall. It was an unfrequented spot for
the present, for the old foot bridge
had been condemned, as everybody
regular i townsmen knew, a new
structure being proposed, and the
roadway on either side of the stream
was blockaded some distance back.
There signs were up, warning the pe
destrian of periL
I sat in a daze, staring 'blankly at
the rushing waters, madly tempted
to plunge beneath their surface and
end all my misery. It was getting
on toward dusk when a sharp, cheery
whistle attracted my attention.
There, not -fifty yards distant, was
Telford. He was warbling a care
less carol, swinging aolng like a man
in love with life, .as if he had just
heard some joyful news.
In a flash I pictured the situation.
He, 'my hated rival, was beloved by
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