OCR Interpretation


The Advocate and news. [volume] (Topeka, Kan.) 1897-1899, April 12, 1899, Image 10

Image and text provided by Kansas State Historical Society; Topeka, KS

Persistent link: https://chroniclingamerica.loc.gov/lccn/sn85032019/1899-04-12/ed-1/seq-10/

What is OCR?


Thumbnail for 10

xo
THE ADVOCATE AND NEWS.
APRIL 1
FANNY AND THE FIREMAN.
BY CY VVARMAN.
(Coprrlcht, 1809, hy th Author.
CHAPTER L
"Sit here, please, " said Fanny, and
she stood with hor shapely bands upon
the back of a cbair that she bad drawn
a little wny oat from the table. It was
the boast of the proprietor that be hud
the handsomest lot of table girls on the
road, and the queen of the collection
was Fanny McCann. That's how she
happened to be bead waitress, for she
could not know much of the business,
She bad come to the eating station part
ly because her widowed mother was
poor and partly to gratify a consuming
desire to pose as the prettiest girl in the
place, for she bad been consulting her
mirror.
The fireman frowned, but took a seat
next the proprietor of the Mint Julep.
The fireman's face, newly washed and
bard rubbed, glistened in the glare of
the electric light, and the same light
played upon the jeweled bands and im
maculate shirt front of the Julep man.
The fireman bowed coldly, and the oth
er, feeling a certain superiority in the
matter of dress and personal appearance,
smiled.
The head waitress, taking a position
at one of the windows, stood looking at
the two men, both of whom had made
love to her. She had purposely seated
tbm so as to get their faces in one
face was crushing. lie remembered how
be had begged her to keep out of the
eating bouse and tried to hint to her
motner tnat the place was full of lures.
"It's only a short step in the direc
tion of danger, " hosaid. "Apublicdin
ing room, camp meeting, the skating
nntt and
"Stopl" said Fanny's mother.
will not have you hint even that Fanny
is capable of being bad.
And so the fireman had been Dower
less to prevent the pure young girl from
putting herself in this Edon ho fre krht
ed with poisonous fruit.
Promptly at 9 o'clock he called for
anny. bhe would be out m a moment.
ner motner said.
During the half hour in which he
waited for the expiration of a woman's
"moment" the fireman noticed a num
ber of now pieces of furniture; also he
noticed that fanny g mother was a lit
tle mite remote. Fanny herself, while
amply deliberate, was irritable and
nervous. Conversation seemed to gc
slowly with them, like a heavy train on
an up grade, and when he shut off they
ippeared to be going back.
When they entered the ballroom, the
Qddlers were already fiddling, and thev
fell in line for the opening walk around.
Over in one end of the hall there was a
IO7 7t immT7,
j 4k. M IJ
1"'. . VTAW tl
if l 1
: 1 .
mm I
HE TOOK THE CARD AGAIN TO SELECT A NUMBER.
frame, as It were, for she had been un
able to forsake one and cleave to the
other. She respected the fireman she
had loved hini once and had acknowl
edged it to him but she was dazzled
by the handsome, well groomed proprie
tor of the Mint Jnlep. Once or twice
the fireman ventured to look up, but
each time he saw her gazing upon his
rival and his heart was filled with
dread.
"What time Bhall I call?" he asked
as Fanny punched bis meal ticket.
"Not before 9. I detest being first in
a ballroom."
"Suppose we say 8:80? It will be 9
by the time we reach the hall."
"Nine," said Fanny, smiling and
nodding at the Julep man as he passed
out, with his chinchilla thrown grace
fully over his shouldera
"But I'm on the reception commit
tee." "Then go and recepand come back
for me. I shan't leave the house before
9. My, how jay you are!"
The fireman went out with a heavy
heart. Fanny was getting on. She had
not used such language to him before,
and it cut him to the qukk. He had
felt it himself, but to have her see it
and tell him of his shortcomings to his
bank of plauta' and ferns, loaned by
leading citizens for the firemen's annual
ball, and just in front of the oasi3 stood
the Jnlep man, immaculate as ever and
wearing the only evening dress suit in
the room. My, but he was radiant, and
all the more so by comparison, for not
a few of the respectable black suits worn
by the firemen and their friends were
beginning to take on that unmistakable
shine that comes with age I
"Oh. Isaac." exclaimed Mm Wi
stine to ner nusband, "what a beauti
ful young lady I Who is she ?"
"She eea not what you say a lady.
She ees waitress fum ze eating house."
"And who is the handsome gentle
man writing on her card?"
"He ees not one gentleman, my dear.
He ees ze proprietor of ze Mint 'Ulep."
Now Mrs. Wolfstine marveled that
this man should be there dancing with
the daughters of the best families in
this glowing western town. But why
should he not be there? Everv fireman
on the division had sold or tried to sell
him a ticket to the annal ball
Society had not vet become stratified.
and this wolf was still allowed to romp
wun tae iambs. .
After the ball, when honest neonle
were asleep, he would go and mingle
wun ms own una.
The fireman was surprised nnnn tnir
Ing Fanny's card to find that his rival
had already written upon it. A half
nour later no iook the card again to se
lect a n amber and found the face of it
black with :
"Julep."
"Julep."
"Julep."
This man bad been called by that
name so mucn that he bad come to an
ewer to it and write it. Indeed few
people in tho place knew that he had
another name.
It was two hours after midnight when
the fireman opened the eate in front of
the little frame cottage where the girl's
mother lived.
"Well." said the eirl. rnittinar the
gate between them, "was the ball a suc
cess 7
"For Rome people I think it was a
decided fiuiresH.
"And for others?"
"A flat failure."
"That's too bad," said Fannr. with
provoking carelessness.
"Oh, I don t know. Where there are
so many smooth runs and smooth run
ners there must always be a few wrecks
and failures."
Fanny yawned and ended it with a
forced, naif apologetic laugh.
"Fanny." sanr the fireman. "I want
to ask you one question before I go, and
1 would like a frank, honest answer.
"Well?"
"Do you love me?"
"I have said that I did."
"And you have shown that you do
not.
"Then why do you ask me?"
"For your answer. If vou can sav
truthfully that you love me now, fresh
uuiu uiu raaiance or tnat tinsel cod
Julep, I shall trust you."
"Oh, you don't need to trust ma if
you don t want to I I'm sure I never
asiredyouto. Good night 1"
"Fanny," exclaimed the fireman.
stretching his arms over the eate. "is
mis tne end of my dream?
I he eiil twisted the little, coin an
gagement ring from her finzer" and
tnrust it across the gate. Now the fire
man wondered that he had not until
now noticed the beautiful diamond thnt
sparkled even in the pale moonlight
CHAPTER II.
How strangely sad the orean sounded
in tne man s earsl He could scarcely
lemember when he had been inside of
a church. "It's all rot, Fanny, ole
girl," he had said. 'S'nough to give a
man tne jimjams.
'Mother of God. " wailed the woman.
falling upon her knees beside the flmnll
white cofiin, "take my baby, mv babvl"
And then she lay and sobbed above this
mite of cold, cold clay.
Ihe man turned his bloated, distort
ed face from the window, drew a silk
Handkerchief from his pocket and flicked
the dust from his patent leather boots.
And that s how the Mint Julen man
happened to hear the organ.
CHAPTER IIL
Fanny had just returned from the
little stony graveyard that had crown
up with the town. The grass of two
summers had grown green upon the
grave of her dead baby. Her husband,
the Mint Julep man. was no more. His
light had gone out in the midst of de
lirium, and his body had been sent bad
east to his people.
Thev hid seen men carrying a ma:
on a stretcher from the train across the
river to the hospital.
'Engineer hurt 1" shouted a freckled
boy going past the cottage, proudly
spreading the newa
"Who is it?"
"Dunno," said the dot. without
slowing down.
"Yes, it's him." said Fanny's moth
er, coming back from one of the neigh
bors; "caught under his engine leg
broke and badly scalded. "
Fanny nut her chin in her hand, and
the tears began to run down her pale
face. If only she could go to him. but
she had no right. Besides, he might net
care to have her. She had seen him but
once since they parted in themoonlicht
at the gate. That was tha day her baby
was buried.
Lifting her eves from tha criva that
was closing over the white coffin, she
had looked into his face, and, seeing a
look of sympathy there, she bad almost
thrown herself into his arms, so utterly
lonely and miserable did she feel, but
he turned away, probably to hide his
own teara
It was a week later that tho kind
hearted Burgeon consented to allow her
to visit the injured man.
He was asleep when she entered, and
she sat down silently beside the little
iron bed. The sight of his pale but hon
est face so affected her that she took
his hand and held it in hera The sleep
er stirred slightly, and she put down
the band, but not until she had left two
tears upon itv When he could collect
his weak and wavering mind, the sick
man looked upon the pale, but still
beautiful face of the woman and whis
pered the one word, the one name, that
had been the sweetest name in the lan
guage to hini in his youth. He had tak
en her hands and now drew her toward
him. She turned her face away.
"Ah, Fanny, don't you think you
conld learn to love me again?"
I have never ceased to love vou."
she said, with her honest eyes upon his.
'It was all a mistake an awful, hor
rid mistake."
"Here, here!" said the doctor enter
ing. "If you're going to cry, I'll send
you away.
"No, you won't." said the engineer.
smiling and taking her hand in his.
"one s going to be my nurse.
The Weljfht of Kaln.
It is not until we take the rainfall in
the bulk that we can realize what a
stupendous quantity of water showers
down in Great Britain and Ireland in
one year, and even when we have the1
figures before ua it is difficult to realize
their magnitude.
To say, for instance, that 9.262.870.-
000,000 cubic feet of rain on an aver
age fall annually on the United King
dom conveys little or nothing, though
it implies something moist, and when
we runner learn that the weight of the
same amounts to 258.126.500.000 tons.
except for a feeling of thankfulness
tbat it did not fall on our toes all at
once, we are only conscious that it
makes a very pretty row of figures.
With the laudable intention of mak
ing these figures look small we will
merely say that the total weight of the
rain that falls in one year on the Brit
ish isles is only eaual to 1-119 Dart of
the weight of one paltry square mile of
the earth's surface, from the surface to
the center of the earth. When we con
sider that there are 121,000 square
miles of such surface in the United
Kingdom alone, one -can understand
what an infinitesimal fraction of the
total weight of the British isles the an
nual rainfall would amount to. Whv.
4,800,000 Forth bridges would almost
equal it. Ludgate.
Ilia Vocation.
In a well known college in one of the
gulf states an old negro named Timothv
and called old Tim by the students had
for many years served them in the vari
ous duties of general servant. Of course
the petty larceny which he steadily
practiced as a perquisite of office was
winked at by the students, who made
him the butt of jest and ridicule. One
day a student who had received a box
of edibles from home missed half of
the ponderous fruit cake which hia
mother had prepared especially for him.
ue Jcnew the thief, and when old Tim
came in eight he exclaimed:
"Now, Tim, what did vou steal that
fruit cake for? All of us share our good
things with you. but I sunnose vou had
rather steal them. Ah, old fellow, you
are bound for the evil one 1 Say, what
are you going to do. sir. when vou tret
down in his regions?"
I dunno, Mars Ed," answered Tim.
'douten I jes' keen on waitin on da
students. " Exchange.
Cnrlona Chicken.
The Galesbnrg Evenins Mail tells
this without a smile: A man not far
from Deer Creek has been trvinc tha ex
periment of mixing a little sawdust
with the usual meal. He was so pleased
wit a tne experiment tbat be determined
to give up the feeding of hia bens corn-
nieal and feed them sawdust instead.
Shortly after he set a hen with 15 egga
Last week she came off with 13 nrinn
looking chicka Twelve of them hud
wooden legs, and the other wis a wood
pecker.

xml | txt