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The St. Charles herald. [volume] (Hahnville, La.) 1873-1993, December 01, 1917, Image 3

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Persistent link: https://chroniclingamerica.loc.gov/lccn/sn85034322/1917-12-01/ed-1/seq-3/

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Synopsis.—Louise Maurel, famous actress, was making a motor tour
of the English Cumberland district, when her car broke down late one
evening and she was forced to accept the overnight hospitality of Ste
phen and John Strangewey, recluse woman haters living in a splendid
old mansion on a great farm. Before she left next day she had capti
vated John and he had fascinated her. Three months inter John, on a
sudden impulse, went to London and looked up Louise. She was de
lighted to see him and introduced him to lier friends of the artistic and
dramatic world, among them Sophy, a light-hearted little actress, and
Graillot, a playwright of remarkable mental gifts. The prince of Seyre,
a wealthy French noble, whom he already knew, became his guide, and
he entered the gay bohemian life of the city.
— 5 —
The lights were lowered a few min
iutes later, and John paid the bill.
}, "We've enjoyed our supper," Louise
»whispered, as they passed down the
fc-oom. "The whole evening has been
.delightful !"
I As they drove from Luigi's to
jKnightsbridge, Louise leaned back in
5ier corner. Although her eyes were
only half closed, there was an air of
aloofness about her, an obvious lack of
jdesire for conversation, which the oth
ers found themselves Instinctively re
specting. Even Sophy's light-hearted
'chatter seemed to have deserted her,
«omewhat to John's relief,
f They were in the very vortex of
London's midnight traffic. The night
was warm for the time of year, and
about Leicester square and beyond the
pavements were crowded with pedes
trians, the women lightly and gayly
clad, flitting, notwithstanding some sin
ister note about their movements, like
butterflies or bright-hued moths along
the pavements and across the streets.
JThe procession of taxicabs and auto
mobiles, each with its human freight
pf men and women in evening dress on
their way home after an evening s
pleasure, seemed endless.
Presently Sophy began to talk, and
Louise, too roused herself.
I "I am only just beginning to realize,
the latter said, "that you are actually
In London."
"When I leave you," he replied, I.
too, shall And it hard to believe that
we have actually met again and talked.
There seems to be so much that I have
to say," he added, looking at her close
ly, "and I have said nothing."
"There Is plenty of time," she told
him. and once more the signs of that
slight nervousness were apparent in
her manner. "There are weeks and
months ahead of us.' , .
, "When shall I see you again? he
"Whenever you like. There are no re
hearsals far a day or two. .*' n K ® e
on the telephone you will fl " (
number In the book-^or come and lunch
with me tomorrow, if you 1 ' ke ;
"Thank you," he answered that
just what I should like. At what time?
"Half past one. I will not ask either
— Mr.
smns»»«." she .aid. Uff« her «*«
to his "Good nißht . ,
He helped her out, rang the hell, and
watched her vanish through the swlft
watcheu Then he stepped back
IntoThe taxicab Sophy retreated into
^"YTa'rVgoTngto'take me home, are
y Tf 1 ouie!" H he e reP^ d ' hls eyeS ^
"Of course, • * t upon the
fixed with a sh ige - g mtle house,
closed door of 8tre et" he told
10 Southampton street,
SX.ÄSL'*-*""- so»"- 11 »'"
"Ttunttd ™»na a« «P"" »
more into the network of Ijnnc .Tflhn
lient, «»a
while, humored him. &OJL -
with perfect seri
° U TSiieve so," he admitted, "but I
. 1 m !nt like to say that I am abso
SiLTrtI I naee come here ..
*t.p£Ladeu' S rocked
tC l'ïon «re the dMred. nneeres^d«^
I hare erer ".et . *£_" ïotl Blt
holdlns tishtly » ]ons ns 0 „adle,
there with a » are in love
WO H der rfrl<Tr not! Well, I am not go
are you
— hir he declared. "I never
ÄÄ™ ,lte
"OSS t»-»«SE w. «
jejted, "end eec the dancla*.
just have something to drink,
needn't have any more supper."
The eab stopped a few minutes later
outside what seemed to be a private
house. The door was opened at once.
Sophy wrote John's name in a book,
and they were ushered by the manager,
who had come forward to greet them,
into a long room, brilliantly lit, and
filled, except in the center, with sup
per tables. John looked around him
wonderingly. The popping of cham
pagne corks was almost incessant. A
lightly voluptuous atmosphere of
cigarette smoke, mingled with the per
fumes shaken from the clothes and
hair of the women, several more of
whom were now dancing, hung about
the place. A girl in fancy dress was
passing a great basket of flowers from
table to table.
Sophy sat with her head resting upon
her hands and her face very close to
her companion's, keeping time with her
feet to the music.
"Isn't this rather nice?" she whis
pered. "Do you like being here with
me, Mr. John Strangewey?"
Of course I do," he answered heart
ily. "Is this a restaurant?"
She shook her head.
"No, It's a club. We can sit here all
night, if you like."
"Can I join?" he asked.
She laughed as she sent for a form
and made him fill it In.
"Tell me," he begged, as he looked
around him, "who are these girls? They
look so pretty and well-dressed, and
yet so amazingly young to be out at
this time of night."
"Mostly actresses," she replied, "and
musical-comedy girls, I was in musi
cal comedy myself before Louise res
cued me."
"Did you like it?"
"I liked It all right," she admitted,
"but I left it because I wasn't doing
any good. I can dance pretty well, but
I have no voice, so there didn't seem
to be any chance of my getting out of
the chorus; and one can't even pretend
to live on the salary they pay you, un
less one has a part."
"But these girls who are here to
"They are with their friends, of
course," she told hlm. "I suppose, If
It hadn't been for Louise I should have ;
been here, too—with a friend. j
"I should like to see you dancehe ]
remarked, m a hurry to change the
hurry to change the
"I'll dance to you some day in your
rooms, if you like," she promised. "Or
would you like me to dance here?
There is a man opposite who wants me
«If We Were Atone," She Whispered
'I should Want You to Kies Me!"
he Insisted,
to. Would you rather I didn't? I want
to" do just which would please you
"Dance, by all means
"T «mould like to watch you."
and a minute or two
She nodded, .
later she had joined the small crowd In
table opposite. John leaned back in
his Place and watched her admiringly.
Her feet scarcely touched the ground.
She never once glanced at or spoke to !
, n
her partner, but every time she passed
the corner where John was sitting,
she looked at him and smiled.
His eyes grew brighter, and he
smiled back at her. She suddenly re
leased her hold upon her partner and
stretched out her arms to him. Her .
body swayed backward a little. She
waved her hands with a gesture in
finitely graceful, sul*ly alluring. Her
lips were parted w ith a smile almost of
triumph as she once more rested her
hand upon her partner's shoulder.
"Who is your escort this evening?
the latter asked her, speaking almost
for the first time.
"You would not know him," she re
plied. "lie is a Mr. John Strangewey,
and he comes from Cumberland.
"just happens that I do know him.
the young man remarked. "Thought
I'd seen his face somewhere. 1'sed to
he up at the varsity with him. Ill
speak to him presently."
•T expect he'll be glad to meet you
again,'* Sophy remarked. 'He doesii t
know a soul in town."
The dance was finished. They re
turned together to where John was
sitting, and the young man held out a
weary hand.
"Amerton. you know, of Magdalen,
lie said. "You're Strangewey, aren't
"Lord Amerton, of course!" John ex
claimed. "I thought your face was fa
miliar. Why, we played in the rackets
doubles together!"
"And won 'em, thanks to you," Amer
ton replied. "Are you up for long?
"I am not quite sure," John told him.
"I only arrived last night."
"Look me up some time, if you've
nothing better to do, ' the young man
suggested. "Where are you hanging
"The Milan."
"I am at the Albany. So-long! Musi
get back to my little lady."
He bowed to Sophy and departed.
She sank a little breathlessly into her
chair and laid her band on John's arm.
Her cheeks were flushed, her bosom
was rising and falling quickly.
"I am out of breath," she said, her
head thrown back, perilously near to
John's shoulder. "Lord Amerton dances
well. Give me some champagne!"
"And you—you dance divinely," he
told her, as he filled her glass.
"If we were alone," she whispered,
"I should w unt you to kiss me !"
The stem of the wine glass In John's
fingers snapped suddenly, and the wine
trickled down to the floor. A passing
waiter hurried up with a napkin, and a
fresh glass was brought. The affair
was scarcely noticed, but John re
mained disturbed and a little pale.
"Have you cut your hand?" Sophy
asked anxiously.
"Not at all," be assured her. "How
hot It Is here ! Do you mind If we go?"
"Go?" she exclaimed disconsolately.
"I thought you were enjoying yourself
so much!"
"So I am," he answered, "but I don't
quite understand—"
He paused.
"Understand what?" she demanded.
I "Myself, if you must know."
i She set down the glass which she
; -- been . Q the act of ra ising to her
] queer yQU are! „ she mnr .
,-----, ,, r V nn haven't got a
"How queer you are
mured. ''Listen. You haven t
wife or anything up in Cumberland,
have you?"
"You know I haven't," he answered.
"You're not engaged to be married,
you have no ties, you came up here per
fectly free, you haven't even said any
thing yet—to Louise?"
"Of course not."
"Well, then—" she began.
Her words were so softly spoken
that they seemed to melt away. She
leaned forward to look in his face.
"Sophy," he begged, with sudden and
almost passionate earnestness, "be
kind to me, please! I am Just a sim
ple, stupid countryman, who feels as
If he had lost his way. I have lived a
solitary sort of life—an unnatural one.
you would say—and I've been brought
up with some old-fashioned Ideas. I
know they are old-fashioned, but I
can't throw them overboard all at once.
I have kept away from this sort of
thing. I didn't think it would ever at
tract me—I suppose because I didn't
believe it could be made so attractive.
I have suddenly found out—that it
does !"
"What are you going to do?' she
"There is only one thing for me to
do," he answered. "Until I know what
I have come io London to lea-m, I shall
fight against It."
"You mean about Louise?"
"I mean about Louise," lie said
Sophy came still closer to him.
"Why are you so foolish?" she mur
mured. "Louise Is very wonderful, in
her pUice, but she Is not what you want
in life. Has it never occurred to you
! . . _
j that you may be too late
"What do you mean? he demanded.
I believe what the world believes.
— —
: pnnee of Seyre.
'Has she ever told you so?"
Louise never speaks of these things
mly telling
to any living soul. I am
you what 1 think. I am trying to save
you pain—trying for my own sake a4
well as yours."
He paid his bill and stooped to help
her with her cloak. Her heart sank,
her lips quivered a little. It seemed
to her that he had passed to a great
"Very soon," John said, "I shall ask
Louise to tell me the trurti. I think
that 1 shell ask her, if I can, tomor
row !"
at the Milan was.
John's first cai!
in a way. a surprise to him. He was
sitting smoking au after-breakfast
pipe on the following morning, and j
gazing at the telephone directory, when j
his bell rang. He opened the door, to ;
find the prince of Seyre standing ou.
! side. „ !
i -T pay you a very early visit, I fear, j
the latter began. ;
! "Not at all," John replied, taking the j
pipe from his mouth and throwing
open the door. "It is very good of you j
i to come and see me. ' ,
The prince followed John into the j
î little sitting room. He was dressed, as ^
usual, with scrupulous care. His tie
was fastened with a wonderful pearl, j
and his fingers were perhaps a trifle |
overmanicured. He wore a bunch of
Parma violets in his buttonhole, and he
carried with him a very faint but un
usual perfume, whicli seemed to John
like the odor of delicate green tea. i
It was just these details, and the slow- ;
ness of his speech, which alone ac- ;
centuuted his foreign origin.
"It occurred to me," he said, as he
seated himself in an easy chair, "that
if you are really intending to make this
experiment in town life of which Miss
Maurel spoke, I might be of some as
sistance to you. There are certain
matters, quite unimportant in them
selves, concerning which a little ad
vice in the beginning may save you
"Very good of you, I am sure," John
repeuted. "To tell you the truth. I
was just looking through the telephone
directory to see if I could come across
the name of a tailor I used to have
some things from."
"If It pleases you to place yourself
in my hands," the prince suggested, "I
will introduce you to my own trades
people. I have made the selection with
some care. I have, fortunately, an
idle morning, and it is entirely at your
disposal. At half past one I believe
we are both lunching with Miss Mau
John was conscious of a momentary
sense of annoyance. His tete-a-tete
with Louise seemed farther off than
ever. At the prince's suggestion, how
ever, he fetched his hat and gloves and
entered the former's automobile, which
was waiting below.
They spent the morning In the neigh
borhood of Bond street, and John had
the foundations of a wardrobe more
extensive than any he hnd ever
dreamed of possessing. At half past
one they were shown into Louise's
little drawing room. There were three
or four men already present, standing
around their hostess and sipping some
faint yellow cordial from long Vene
tian glasses.
Louise came forward to meet them,
and made a little grimace as she re
marked the change in John's appear
"Honestly, I don't know you, and I
don't believe I like you at all !" she ex
claimed. "How dare you transform
yourself into a tailor's dummy in this
"It was done entirely out of respect
for you," John said.
"In fact," the prince added, 'we con
, . ... „„.hör
pidered time ive bad achleped rat
* el-1
".'suppose 1 nwM loot u„oa four
fort as a compliment." !
'but it ! vou take up our
much o y • ... M s lraD ge- 1
manners and our habits. Mr. Strange-!
as easily as you wear
our i
"That I cannot promise," he replied.
"The brain should adapt Itself at
least as readily as the body," the
prince remarked,
M. Graillot, who was one of the three
men present, turned around.
"Who Is talking platitudes?" he de
manded. "I write plays, and that is
my monopoly. Ah, It Is the prince, I
And our young friend who inter
see. _____
rupted us at rehearsal yesterday."
Graillot held out his left hand to the |
prince and Ins right to John.
"Mr. Strangewey," he said, "I con
gratulate you! Any person who has
the good fortune to interest Miss Man
rel Is to be congratulated. Yet must I j
look at you and feel myself puzzled, j
You are not an artist—no? Y'»u do
not paint or write?"
John shook his head.
"Mr. Strangewey's claim to distinc
tion is that he is just an ordinary
man," Louise observed. "Such a relief,
you know, after all you clever people ',"
John shook hands with everybody
and sippi'd the contents of the glass
which had been handed to him. Then
. a butler opened the dcor and an
offer«*»! 1 er
»pped buck.j
•ge of the i
he decided. '
, ith a liCIe :
the way
to apolo
ronien to
the tele
nounced luncheon. L
hand to the prince, wl
"It shall be the I
stranger within our ga
Louise turned to J*
"Let me show you. then,
to my dining room. I ought,
gize for not asking some
meet you. I tried two on
phone, hut they were engaged.''
"I will restore the balance," the
prince promised, turning from the con
templation of one of the prints hut
ing in the hall. "I am Riviug a supper
party tonight for Mr. Strangewey, an :
I will promise hiin a preponderance >?
your charming sex."
"Am I invited?" Louise inquired,
The prince shook his bend.
"Alas, no!"
They passed into a small din ng
room and here again John noticed that
an absolute simplicity was paramount.
v it
i i I
1 Want to Sea You Alone," Ho Said
"When Can 1?"
| in£r ..
The round table, covered with an ex
quisitely fine cloth, was very simply
laid. There was a little glas3 of the
finest quality, and a very little silver.
For flowers there was only one bowi, a
brilliant patch of some scarlet exotic,
In the center.
"A supper party to which I tun not,
Invited," said Louise, as she took her i
place at the table and motioned John
to a seat by her side, "fills me w ith J
curiosity. Who are to be your guests,
"Calavera and her sprites," the j
prince announced.
Louise paused for a moment in the J
act of helping herself to hors d'oeuvres. '
She glanced toward the prince. For a
moment their eyes met. Louise s lips
were faintly curled. It was almost as
if a challenge had passed between
them. Louise devoted her attention to
her guest.
"First of all," she asked, "tell me
how you like my little friend?"
"I think she is charming," John an
swered without hesitation. "We went
to a supper club last night and stayed
there till about half past three."
"Really," said Louise, "I am not sure
that I approve of tins ! A supper dub
with Sophy until half past three in
the morning!"
He looked at her quickly,
"You don't mind?"
"My dear man, why should I mind?"
she returned. "It is exactly what I
hoped for. You have come up to Lon
don with a purpose. You have an ex
periment to make, an experiment in
I 'The greater part of my experi
; mm< „ hf , pIlinted oati -„„ds the help
•» »«U <- P«"-* •"« "
! '°she

moved a little uneasily in
chair. It might have been his fancy,
hut he Imagined that she glanced un
^ ^ ÄMllria nrin0f , of
der her eyelids toward the prince of
Seyre. The prince, however, had
turned almost ostentatiously away
friVin her. He was leaning across the
table, talking to Faraday.
"You have not lost your gift of
plain speech," she observed. "So de
lightful In Cumberland and Utopia,
so impracticable here!"
"Then since we can't find Utopia,
come back to Cumberland," he .sug
A reminiscent smile played for a
moment about her lips,
"I wonder," she murmured
I shall ever again see that dear, won
derful old house of yours, and the niist
on the hills, and the stars shining here
and there througti it, and the moon
coming up in the distance "'
"All these things you will s e again,"
he assured her confidently, "It is be
cause I want you to sec them again
that I am here."
"Just now, at this minute, I feel a
longing for them," she whispered, look
ing across the table, out of the win
dow, to the softly waving trees.
At the close of the luncheon for a j
moment she and John were detached
from the others. i
"I want
under his
She hesi
" - 1 am
Next v.ee
mi ulotn
••When e
et urn*
; it with yot:
win h 1 ft
! tnv firm b«
so busy!" she murmured,
k there are rehearsals nearly
every minute of the day."
"Tomorrow." John said insistently.
"You luiv* no rehearsals lîw n. I must
see vou. i must talk to you without
this crowd."
it was ills n^yuent. ll*-r iialf
fortned resolutions fell away hefora
tin* compelling ring in his voice and
the earnest pleading in his eyes.
'I will be in." she promised. "u>o»or
row at six o'clock."
After the departure of her guests,
Louise stood before the window of lier
drawing room, looking down into tho
street. Sti saw tin' prince courteously
motion John to precede him into hi*
waiting automobile. Site watched un
til the car took it c prface in the stream
flic and disappear« d. The sens*
of uneasiness Which had brought her
to the window was unaccountable, but
it seemed in some way deepened by
their departure together. 'I hen a voice
from just behind startled her. It wa*
Graillot, who had returned noi«ele*sly
j into tiie room.
d," be explained. "An im
ht me buck. A thought
v tuir d. I wanted to slum»
is a proof of th»> sentiment
exists between us. It is
ef that the same thought,
in a «lift-rent guise, was traveling
through your mind, as jou watched the
departure of your guests."
She motioned him to a place upon th*
couch, close to where siio had already
seated herself.
"Come," she invited, "prove to m*
that you are a thought reader!"
He sank hack in his corner. His
hands, with their short, stubby finger»,
were clasped in front of him. Hls eyes,
wide open and alert, seemed fixed upon
her with the Ingenuous inquisitiveness
of a child.
"To begin, then, I find our friend, the
prince of Seyre, a most interesting, 1
might almost say fascinating, study."
Louise did not reply. After a mo
ment's pause, he continued.
"Among the whole aristocracy of
France there was no family so loathed
and detested as the seigneurs of Seyr*
at the time of the revolution. Those
at the chateau lu Orleans and others
who were arrested in Paris, met their
death with singular contempt and calm.
Eugene of Seyre, whose character la
my small way I have studied, Is of
thd same breed."
Louise took up a fan which lay on
the table by her side, and waved It
carelessly in front of her face.
"One does so love," she murniure<3,
• to hear one's friends discussed in a
, friendly spirit!"
S "It is because Eugene of Seyre is *
friend of yours that I am talking to
you in this fashion," Graillot contin
ued. "You have also another friend—
! this young man from Cumberland."
"In him," Graillot went on, "one per
ceives ul! the primitive qualities which
go to the making of splendid manhood.
Physically he is almost perfect, for
which alone we owe him a debt of
gratitude. He has, if I judge him
rightly, all the qualities possessed by
men w ho have been brought up fre*
from the taint of cities, from the smear
of our spurious overcivilization. He 1»
chivalrous and unsuspicious. He is
also, unfortunately for him, the enemy
of the prince."
Louise laid down her fan. She no
longer tried to conceal her agitation.
"Why are you so melodramatic?" she
demanded. "They have scarcely spo
ken. This is, I think, their third meet
"When two friends," Graillot de
clared, "desire the same woman, then
ail of friendship that there may hav*
been between them is buried. When
two others, who are so far from being
friends that they possess opposite
qualities, opposite characters, opposite
characteristics, also desire the sain*
"Don't !" Louise interrupted, with a
sudden little scream. "Don't! Yon
are talking wildly. You must not say
such things !"
Graillot leaned forward. He shook
his head very slowly; his heavy hand
rested upon her shoulder.
Do you think that Louise ha«
been too close a friend to the
prince? And is John Strange
wey, with hls old-fashioned ideas
of rectitude, a fool to be letting
himself fall head over heels in
iove with her?
Rough Stough.
To indicate some of the difficult!*,
that our language presents to foreim
ers, a subscriber sends us this- "i
sat on the bough of a tree and began
to cough, having some dough in m
mouth and my feet in a trough I JZ
a j not thoroughly tired, though rou hi
used. Wasn't that tough?"--Yo
i Companion. oujj?

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