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Newspaper Page Text
tem. On Saturday nights there was
often a sum of two or three thousand
dollars in the safe. The night watch
man was an old man. The safe was
not a new one. The bey's part would
be simply to engage the old fellow in
conversation until the confederates
got their opportunity to hit him on
the head and take the keys. For that
$500 was to be his.
And, so strangely is the human
mind fashioned, that the boy had felt
that, to tell Vincent, would be a be
trayal of confidence. The atmos
phere of the packing room was not a
good one. The boy had gone home
and flung himself down on his bed,
and his mind was in a turmoil.
In the next room the girl had come
home and flung herself into the an
cient arm-chairwith which the land
lady had supplied her when it became
too shabby for use in the parlor. She
felt utterly unwrought after her day
at the department store.
She had worked there as $6 a week
for nearly half a year. When she left
the little country town, equipped with
a good education, she had confident
ly expected to take the city by storm.''
In fact, she was an artist of rare,
But what is the use of ability un
less someone has brains to recognize
it? So day by day she had besieged
the offices with her drawings. Once
she had sold one, and she-had lived
on that lingering "hope until the re
mainder of her money was, gone.
Then ,at her wits' end, she had ac
cepted the position which -the land
lady told her could be obtained at
She had lost all faith in herself.
She had worked like an automaton
for four months and had done noth
ing. Her best drawing, one which
she had thought could not pass the
observing eye, had never been re
turned to her from the magazine to
which she had submitted it, and she
had lacked the courage to call and
inquire about it.
At Darrow's she had toiled behind I
the counter of the hosiery depart
ment, at the beck and call of vulgar,,
frock-coated floorwalkers, a cipher
among ciphers. She felt crushed by
thia atmosphere that surrounded her.
She felt utterly out of place among
the young women of a different typet
and education, with whom she came'
into touch; and they, sensing the dif
ference, were not slow to let her per
ceive their resentment ,
Then temptation had come to heir
It had been in less loathsome guise7
than with the boy. It was not one
of the floorwalkers, but the son off
the owner, young Darrow, fresh from
college and taking his fling before
settling down in the world. He had
come into the store with his mother
who was making some purchase
With worldly wisdom he had not
approached her while the other clerks?
were present But he had found the?
means to see her twice or three times.
And he had asked her to dine with
him the following evening.
She was not ignorant of the worlds
She saw from his demeanor that it?
did not occur to him that she waaf
anything but one of the underbred?
underpaid drudges in his father's
store. She had known what signifi-
cance would attach itself to her acr
ceptance. But she was desperately;
lonely, and the thought of an evening;
in a restaurant, and at a theater af
terward, the sight of other faces, the
touch with life was overwhelming
"I'll have to accept or go home,
she thought wearily. '
If she could have known at that
moment a letter signed by the editor
of the magazine, enclosing a check
for seventy-five dollars for her draw
ing and asking for more, lay in the
wire basket Teside the desk of the:
editor's stenographer, ready to bet
posted on the morrow if she coulcf
She got up from her chair. The
boy was going out of his room at the
same moment They knew each