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-lr,v THE OHIOAOO HSJLOlLiHS. -.J iJJVIII V tjrf'MsFaaaiaiaaiaWWVB CHAPTER XVH.-(Cont!nned.) Henchard was not left long In suspense, lucetta was rather addicted to acrlb Hag, and hardly had Elltabeth Jane gone way when another note came to the Mayor' house from High Street Hall. "I am In residence," ahc said, "and com fortable, though getting here ha been a wearisome undertaking. You probably know what I am going to tell you, or do you not? My good aunt Tcmplcman, the banker's widow, whose rcry existence you used to doubt, leave alone her affluence, has lately died, and bequeathed a great deal, of her property to me. I will not ntcr Into details .except to aay that I hare taken her name. You probably are ware of my arrangements with your daughter, and hare doubtless laughed at tke what shall I call lt?-prnctlcal Joko ef my getting her to live with me. But my first meeting with her was purely an accident. Do you see, Michael, why I have done lt?-why, to give you an excuse for coming here as If solely to visit her, and thus to form my acquaintance nat urally. In haste, yours always, "MJGETTA." The excitement which these announce ments produced In Henchard's gloomy oul was to him most pleasurable. He Mt over his dining tablo long and dream ily, and by an almost mechanical transfer the sentiments which had run to waste since his estrangement from Elisabeth Jane and Donald Farfrae gathered around Lucetta beforo they had grown ury. o was la very comlng-on disposition for Marriage; of that there could be nodoubt. But what else could a poor woman be who kad given herself to him so unluckily at first? There was no doubt that con eclenee no lew than affection bad brought ktr here. On the whole be did not blame To feel that he would like to tee Lu ettta waa with Henchard to atart for her house. He put on hit hat and went. It waa between eight and nine o'clock when ke reached her door. The answer brought him was that Miss Templeman was en gaged for that evening, but that she would be happy to tee him the next day. Expectancy aat visibly upon Lucetta the fit morning. She dressed herself for Mr. Henchard and restlessly awaited his call before midday; as he did not come ahc waited on through the afternoon. But she did not tell Elisabeth Jane that the person expected waa her stepfather. The Saturday afternoon alipped on thus desultorily. The market, which fronted the house, changed from the sample howlng hour to the Idle hour before starting homeward, when tales were told. Henchard had not called on Lucetta, though she bad stood so near. Ho must kave been too busy, she thought. He would come on Sunday, or Monday. The days came, but not the visitor, though Lucetta repeated ber dressing with scrupulous care. She was dlsbeart teed. .. Tuesday was the great Candlcmaa fair. At Breakfast she said to Elisabeth Jane quite coolly: "Miss Henchard, will you go en an errand for me as soon as breakfast la over? Ah, that'a very good of you. Will you go and order " Here she enumerated several commissions at sun dry shops, which would occupy Elltabeth Jane's time for the next hour or two, at least. ., eilubeth hastily out on ber things and departed. "I wonder why sho wants to get rid of me to-day?" the said, sorrow fully, at the went. That her absence, ativ than her services waa In request. had been readily apparent to Elisabeth Jane, simple at the seemed, and difficult a It was to attribute motive, for the She had not been gone ten minutes when Lucetta's servant was aent to Henchard's with a note. The contents were, briefly: "Dear Michael: Sou will be atanding close to my house to-day for two or three kours in the course of your business, so do please call and see me. I am aadly disappointed that you kave not come be fore, for can I holp anxiety about my own equivocal position-specially now my uat'a fortune baa brought me more prom inently before society? Your daughter's presence here may be tke causa of your eglect, and I have therefore aent ber way for the morning. Bay you come on business. I shall be quite alone. "LUCETTA." When tho messenger returned, ker mis tress gave directions tkat If gentleman called ke was to be admitted at once, and aat down to await results. A little later aha heard the servant showing In visitor, shutting the door ipon kirn, and leaving aa If to go and look for ber mistress. Lucetta lung back tbt curtain with nervous greeting. CHAPTER XVIII. The man before her waa not Henchard. A conjecture that such might be the case had, Indeed, flashed through ber mind when she was on the point of bursting out, but it was just too late to recede. He waa years younger than the Mayor ef OaBterbrldge; fair, fresh and slenderly handsome. He wore drab cloth leggings with white buttons, boots and Infinite lace holes, light cord breeches and black velveteen coat and waistcoat, and' he bad awitch In hla band. Lucetta blushed and aald, with curious mixture of pout and laugh on ber face, "Ob, I've made mistake!" The visitor, on the contrary, did not laugh half a wrinkle. "But I'm very sorry I" be said, la deprecating tones. "I cams and Inquired for Miss Henchard, and they ahowed me up here, and at no band would I have caught ye so unman aerly If I bad known." "1 waa the unmannerly one," aald she. "But Is It that I have come to the wrona house, madame?" said Mr. Farfrae, blink ing little In bis bewilderment, and nerv ously tapping hla legging with his switch. "Oh, no, sir; sit down. You must come and sit down, now you are hero," replied Lucetta, kindly, to relieve his embarrass ment. "Miss Hencbsrd will bo here di rectly." Now, this was not strictly true; but that same something about the young man that Hyperborean crlspness, con stringency and charm, aa of a well-braced musical Instrument which bad awakened the Interest of Henchard, and of Elisa beth Jane, and of the King of Prussia's crew, at atght, made bis unexpected pres ence here attractive to Lucetta. He hesitated, looked at the chair, thought there waa no danger in It and sat down. Farfrae'a presence here waa simply the result of Hcnchard'a permission to him to see Elisabeth Jane, if he were minded to woo her. At first he kad taken no notice of Henchard's brusque letter; but a exceptionally fortunate business trans action put him on good terms with every ibody, and revealed to blm that he could pMf&liU irr, U he these. Thai who so pleasing, thrifty and satisfactory In every way as Elizabeth Jane? Apart from her personal recommendations, a recon ciliation with his former friend Hench ard would, In the natural course of things. flow from such a union. He therefore forgave the Mayor his curtness; and this morning on his way to the fair he had called at her house, where he learned that she was staying at Miss Temple- man's. A little stimulated at not finding her ready and waiting so fanciful are men he hastened on to High Street Hall, to encounter no Elltabeth, but Lucetta herself. "The fair to-day seems a large one," she said, when, by a natural deviation, their eyes sought the busy scene without. "Your numerous fairs and markets keep me interested. How many things I think of while I watch from hero!" He seemed to doubt how to nnswer, and the babblo without reached them as they sat voices as of wavelets on a lopping sea, one ever and nnon rising above the rest. "Do you look out often?" he asked. "Yes, very often." "Do you .look for any one you know?" Why should she have answered as she did? "I look as at a picture merely. But," she went on, turning pleasantly to blm, "I may do so now; I may look for you. You are alwaya there, are you not? Ah I don't mean It seriously! But It Is amus ing to look for somebody one knows In a crowd, even if one does not want him. It takes off the -terrible oppressiveness of being surrounded by a throng, and having no point of junction with It through a sin- ble Individual." "Ah I And la It that you are .lonely, ma'am?" "Nobody knowa how lonely." , "But you are rich, they say." "If ao, I don't know bow to enjoy my riches. I came to Casterbrldge, thinking I should like to live here." Thus the two. She had enkindled the young man's enthusiasm till he waa quite brimming with aentlment; while be, from merely affording her a new form of Idle ness, had gone on to wake her serious solicitude. Why waa tbla? They could not have' told. Farfrae waa ahown out, It having en tirely escaped him that he bad called to see Elisabeth Jane. Lucetta at the win dow watched blm threading the mase of farmers and farmers' men. She could see by bis gslt that he waa conscious of her eyes, and her heart went out for bla mod estypleaded that he might be allowed to come again. He entered the market bouse, and she could aee blm no more. Three minutes later, when ahe had left the window, a knock, not of multitude but of strength, sounded through the house, and the waiting maid tripped up. "Mr. Henchard." ahe aald. Lucetta had reclined herself, and waa looking dreamily through ber fingers. She did not answer at once, and the maid re peated the Information, with the addition, "And he's afraid be hasn't much time to spare, bo says." "Oh! Then tell him that aa I have -a headache I won't detain him to-day." The message was taken down, and ahe beard the door close. Lucetta had come to Casterbrldge to quicken Henchard's feelings with regard to her. She had quickened them, and now she waa Indifferent to the achieve ment. Several daya passed by and Lucetta's secret attachment for the Scotchman In creased. One morning after having spent a feverish night she told ber companion that ahe had something on her mind something which concerned a person In whom she was Interested much. Elisa beth waa earnest to listen and sympa thise. "This person a lady once admired a man much very much," sho said, tenta tively. "Ah," said Elltabeth Jane. '.'He did not think ao deeply of her aa she did of hint. But In an Impulsive mo ment, purely out of gratitude, he propos ed to make her bia wife. She agreed. But there waa an unexpected hitch In the proceedings; aa a result sho was so far compromised with him that ahe felt ahe could never belong to another man, as a pure matter of conscience, even If she should wish to. After that they were much apart, beard nothing of each other for a long time, and she felt her life quite closed up for ber. "Ab-poor glrll" '"She suffered much on account of him; though I should add that he could not al together bo blamed for what bad happen ed. At last the obstacle which separated them waa providentially removed; and he came to marry ber." "How delightful!" "But In the Interval ahe my poor friend bad seen, a man ahe liked better than blm. Now cornea the point: Could she la honor dismiss the first?" "A man ahe liked better that'a bad I" "Yes," aald Lucetta. "It la badl Though you must remember that ahe waa forced into an equivocal position with the first man by an accident that he waa not ao well educated or refined aa the aecond, and that ahe had discovered some qualities In the first that rendered him less desirable aa a husband tban she bad at first thought him to be." "I cannot answer," said Elltabeth Jane, thoughtfully. "It la ao difficult. Itwantt a Pope to settle that." "You prefer not to, perhaps?" Lucetta ahowed In ber appealing tone how much abe leaned on Elisabeth's judgment. "Yes," admitted Elisabeth. "I would rather not aay," Nevertheless, Lucetta seemed relieved by the simple fact of having opened out the situation a little, and was slowly con valescent of ber headache. "B.ring me a looking glas. now do I appear to peo ple" she said, languidly. "Well-a little worn," answered Elisa beth, eying ber aa a critic eyes a doubt ful painting; fetching the glass she en abled Lucetta to survey herself In It, which Lucetta anxiously did. "I wonder If I wear well, as times go," she observed after a while. "How many years more do you think I shall last bo foro I get hopelessly plain?" There was something curious in the way in which Elisabeth, though the younger, bad come to olay the part of experienced aage In these discussions. "It may be five years," she said, judiciously, "Or, with a quiet life, as many as ten. With no love you might calculate on ten." Lucetta seemed to reflect on this as on an unalterable, Impartial verdict. She told Elisabeth Jane no more of tho past attachment ahe bad roughly adumbrated aa the experiences of a third person; and Elisabeth, who In aplte of ber philosophy waa very tender-hearted, wept that night In bed at the thought that her pretty, rich Lucetta did not treat ber to the full confidence of namea and dates In ber con fessions. For by the "she" of Lucetta's story. lUatbtth had sot bets beguiled, CHAPTER XtX. The next phase of the supersession of Henchard In Lucetta's heart was an ex periment In calling on her', performed by Farfrae1 with some apparent trepidation. Conventionally spooking, he conversed with both Miss Tcmplcman and her com panion; but, In fact, It was rather that Elisabeth Jane sat Invisible In the room. Donald appeared not to sec her at all, and answered her wise, homely little re marks with curtly Indifferent monosylla bles, his looks and faculties hanging on the woman who could boast of n more Portcan variety In her pliasos, moods, opinions and also principles, than could Elisabeth. Lucetta had persisted In drag ging her Into the circle; but she had re mained like an nwkward third point which that circle would not touch. Susan Henchard's daughter bore up against the frosty ache of this treatment, as she had borne up under worse things, and contrived as soon as possible to get out of tho inharmonious room without be ing missed. The Scotchman seemed hard ly the same Farfrae who had danced with her and walked with her In a delicate, acrobatic balance between love and friendship that period In the history of a love which alone it can bo said to be unalloyed with pain. She stoically looked from her bedroom window and contemplated her fate as If It were written on the top of the church tower hard by. "Yes," she said at last, bringing down her palm upon the sill with a pot; "He Is tho second man of that story she told me." All this tlmo Henchard's smoldering sentiments toward Lucetta had been fanned Into higher and higher Inflamma tion by tho circumstances of the case. Ho was discovering that tho young woman, for whom ho once folt a pitying wermtn of gratitude, which had been almost chill ed out of him by reflection, was, when now qualified with a slight Inaccessibility and n more matured beauty, the very be ing to make him satisfied with life. Day after day proved to him, by her silence, that It was no use to think of bringing her round by holding aloof; so he gave In, and called upon her again, Elltabeth Jane being absent. He crossed the room to her with a heavy tread of some awkwardness, his' strong, warm gate upon' her like the sun beside the moon in comparison with Farfrae's modest look and with something of a hall-fellow bearing, as, Indeed, waa not unnatural. But she seemed so transub stantiated by her change of position, and held out her hand to him In auch cool friendship, that he became deferential, and aat down with a perceptible Iota pow er. He understood but little of fashion la dress, yet enough to feel himself Inade quate In appearance beside ber whom be had hitherto been dreaming of as almost bis property. She said something very polite about his being good enough to call. This caused him to, recover balance. He looked her oddly In the face, losing his awe. "Why, of courso I have called, Lucet ta," he aald. "What does that nonsense mean? You know I couldn't have helped myself If I had wlshed-that Is, If I had any conscience at all. I've called to say that I am ready, as soon as custom will permit, to be publicly married to you." "It is fully early yet," she said, evas ively. "Why, for a man and wife to tatk to one another like this!" "We are not man and wife," ahe an swered, firing quickly. "If going to the registry don't make us so, I should like to know what it does make us." Lucetta burst In passionately: "How can you speak sol Knowing that It prov ed to be void by her coming back, and that It was entirely on your side that the blame lay which put me In so awkward a position, you ought to allow me to look at it as I choose. I suffered enough at that lonely, terrifying tlmo after I waa sent back from joining you not knowing what was to happen to me. And If I am a little Independent now, surely the priv ilege Is due to met" "Yes, It Is. It was a bad Job for you," he aald repentantly. "But perhaps you'll have the justice to own that I waa as In nocent as you?" "Yes, I believe you were," she said, more calmly, "Then let us be quick and legalise your state by going through the service again as soon as we can; and so, in spite of the mishap the first time, we shall wind up well at last. It is very odd," ho murmur ed, "that I, so little of a woman's man aa I be, should find It necessary to marry two women twice over. Well, what do you aay?" For the first time In their acquaintance Lucetta had the move; and yet she was backward. "For the present let thlnga be," ahe asld with some embarrassment "Treat me aa an acquaintance; and I'll treat you as one. Time will" she stop ped; and he aald nothing to fill the gap for a while, there being no pressure of half acquaintance to drive them Into apeech If they were not minded for It. "That'a the way the wind blows, Is It?" be ssld at last, grimly, nodding an af firmative to his own thoughts. A yellow flood of reflected sunlight Oil ed the room for a few Instants. It was roduced by the passing of a load of new y trussed bay from the country In a new wagon marked with Farf rao'a name. Be side It rode Farfrae himself. Lucetta's face became as a woman'a face becomes when the msn she loves rises upon her gate like an apparition. A turn qf the eye by Henchard, a glance from the window, and the secret of her inaccessibility would have been revealed. But Henchard in estimating her tone waa looking down so plumb-strslgbt tbst bo did not note the warm consciousness upon Lucetta's face. "I shouldn't have thought It-I shouldn't have thought It of woman!" be said, em phatically, by and by, rising and shaking himself into activity; while Lucetta waa so anxious to divert him from any sus picion of the truth that abe asked blm to be In no hurry.' Ho bad hardly gono down the stslrcase when she dropped upon the sofa, and jumped up again In a fit of desperation. "I will love him!" she cried, passionately; "as for him he's hot-tempered and stern, and it would be madness to bind myself to blm, knowing that. I won't be a slave to the past I'll love whero I choose!" (To be continued.) India's Clever Thieves. Recent Investigations In the prisons of India lmvo revealed a curious physi ological condition Induced by thieves for the purpose of secreting valuables. Thoy allow a heavy lead bullet to slide down the throat, and keep It In posi tion for bnlf-an-hour at a time. In about a-year a pouch Is formed, Into which anything under the slse of tea rupees may be thrust, without Inter fering with speech or breath, A real thief gifted with' some histrionic power is able to nse tho stolen contents of bis throat as an aid to an appearance of Innocence when be is being searched. At present there are In Calcutta gaol twenty prisoners who have successful ly assimilated themselves to monkeys, In order that they might with profit take Jewels and money. 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