"Now, then," she remarked in a
brisk businesslike way, "you try and
lift, the end of the wagon box while
I spt the screw under it"
She had rolled up the sleeves of
the jacket she wore. She pushed
back fugitive golden ringlets under
the close cap she wore. The air rang
with the true rapid strokes which
she delivered upon the bent axle. She
replaced the cracked hub iron with
a new one. She tightened up dislo
cated odds and jepds. She worked
like a beaver and also as an expert
"There! that will. last you till you
reach a better workman," she ob
served, in a satisfied tone and with a
"A better workman!' cried Mac
lay spontaneously. ,N "Why, you are
a wonder! Are you some good fairy,
devoting your admirable energies to
ward succoring the unfortunate in
A ringing laugh greeted the fanci
ful words. The bright eyes half mis
chievously, half triumphantly glow
ing youth and beauty and comara
derie into his own, made Pierce MaC
lay glad for the breakdown.
"Oh, dear, no!" declared the girl.
"I am only plain Lura Wooster. We
all have learned to work down at our
place or did," and the sweet face
"Your home" began Maclay.
"We have no home," came the
speedy interrupting response. "We
are seeking one now."
'"We?"' insinuated. Maplay.
"Yes, eighty of us. I am afraid you
do not understand. There are nine
teen other wagons. They will be
along soon. You see, my father is
Robert Wooster. He built the wagon
plant at Chester, put In all his money
and brought all our eastern neigh
bors out here a happy family. Last
week the plant burned down. Father
could get no insurance way out here
away from fire protection. All we f
saved was some wagons. We knew
enough to make comfortable houses
of them just like this one. Father j
feels a moral responsibility in caring
,for his workers. So, we are tramp
ing, as you may call it, till we find
just the place where they will en-,
courage a willing industrious group .
like us to locate and help build up
"Eighty of you?" spoke Maclay,
with new animation. "Why, that is
just what I am looking for. Dear
young lady, I must see this enterpris
ing father of yours."
"He and the others will soon be
along," replied Miss Wooster. "I drove
ahead to sort of blaze the way. There
is the first of the wagons now. There
is father. Yoo-hoo!" and the young
sprightly voice" rang out in a mellow
hail. Maclay drew asidfe as several
vehicles came into view. They all
halted. It was near the noon hour.
In a few minutes Miss Wooster ap
proached Maclay with a sun-browned,
sensible looking man.
"Father," she introduced, "this is
the young man I spoke to you about
He said a strange thing that may be
interesting to us. Anyhow, we must
show him what a good dinner we
strollers know "how to enjoy."
"Your daughter has explained .
your situation," spoke Maclay at i
once. I hope our accidental meeting
is as fortuitous as I have hoped. I -come
from Warrenton and I was on ,
my way to Maiden to try and induce
the furniture factory there to remove
to our town. The employes num
ber only twenty, though. We have a
big vacant building at Warrenton. J
In fact, I own it We need new in
dustries and we are disposed to en- .
courage and finance them.
"That looks pretty attractive to
me," spoke Mr. Wooster.
"Our main reason just now is that
if we can get a working factory and
fifty or more new residents, the
county seat choice will fall on War
renton." "We make a pretty thrifty city on
wheels," said Mr. Wooster. "The
prospect looks decidedly favorable,
I should like to consider it"
xml | txt