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The herald. [microfilm reel] (Los Angeles [Calif.]) 1893-1900, March 20, 1896, Image 10

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Counting
the Cost
mARGARET
IDopyright 1898, by Bac heller. Johnso
SYNOPSIS.
Annie Graham [a the daughter ot Johnny
Graham, a plain, good-hearted gas-litter of
Couth Bend. Her mother having died when
■he was quite young, she is brought up by-
Johnny, who takes great pride in her suc
cess as a scholar at the Krammur school,
and smoothes the wav for her at home -iv
order that she may have more time for
her studies. He quiet ly saves up his earn
logs for her benefit, and discovering that she
la anxious to attend a girl's college, tells
her of his savings, and sends her to an
eastern college. Although she has been
vaguely aware of the emptiness of her ex
latence, she there first gains an Insight
into culture and the amenities of life. She
leads in her classes, and supports herself
during her vacation by teaching the chil
dren of a Mrs. Paul, who spends the sum
mer at the college town. Dick Temple, a
cousin of the Pauls, comes down to visit
them Just before Annie's graduation, and
falls in love with her. He makes a confi
dante of Mrs. Paul, who gives him some
Idea of Annie's humble extraction, and
cautions him. He resents this, and just
before Annie's return to South Bend, aaks
her permission to come and see her when
he is "passing through the town." She
consents. Mrs. Paul writes of the affair to
Dick's mother.
PART 11.
IVE years! It
was a long time
time. Johnny,
standing in the
railroad station,
his heart beat
ing high with
pride end (oy,
couldn't help
crying out irheo
he saw her:
Why, now,
you've growed,
Annie! Bless
my heart, if
you ariiiTr. srw
a*r> T*i,t Ma
Ed! But his
eyes were misty, so perhaps it was that
made his little Annie look so tall. Ho had
not recognized her for a moment, this lady,
who, with the tears trembling In her eyes,
came up to him and took his hands and cried
out "Father!" Afterward he said he did
n't know why he had taken her for a lady,
for, sakes alive, her clothes were plain
enough. He wa3 quite distressed about her
clothes.
"You've stinted yourself, Annie," he re
proached her as they went home in the
street cars. "You ought to be havin' a silk
dress lookin' the way you do. Why, I
took you for a lady, Annie. You ought to
have fine clothes, my pretty: we'll take
some money out of the bank and get you a
regular silk dress." he told her. scolding
her and loving her. and bursting with pride,
and taking up their intercourse just where
it had paused, five years ago. She was a
pretty girl and a great learner, Johnny
thought; but she was just his Annie.
It was lat-3 when they got home. He had
left the kitchen fire clear and ready for the
steak Annie would broil, and the gas was
flaring wide from new burners, and Johnny
had bought a long plush scarf for the top of
the mantelpiece over the kitchen range.
When Annie was fairly in the house, and
the door was shut, it seemed as though the
happiness of heaven had come into the lit
tle kitchen. Johnny laughed, and drew
the back of his hand across his nose, and
HE WALKED ROUND ANNIE IN CRITI
CAL INSPECTION.
miffed and blinked, and the tears ran freely
down his little cheeks. Me walked round
and round Annie In critical inspection; and
ran her from mom to room, even up to
Dave DuKgan's attic, to show her how un
changed everything was. He made her
come into the parlor and showed her the
faded ribbons and tottering plush frames.
"I dusted 'em every Sunday, Annie," he
said. And then he told her how he had
turned out Die person to whom he had
rented her old room. "Well, now. he was
set on staying." Johnny said; "he was al
ways savin' he wanted to see you: but I
guess Have Ditggan was Just as well pleas
ed not to have him round. Dave ain't mar
ried yet, Annie," then Johnny laughed very
much, and added, winking at his own joke,
he guessed Dave had forgotten her, she'd
been awtiy so long.
Tho wonderful thing about it all. and tho
beautiful thing about it all, was that this
"little man did not in tho least care that his
Annie was nn educated woman; he did not
even know it.
It seemed as if Annie could not show
enough tbe tenderness that made her heart
echo with its swc'ling. She sat beside him,
holding his work-roughened hands in hers,
Jtnd told him over and over about these five
years which he had given her: sin- knew,
and she was feeling as she spoke, how ev
ery joy of study, how every pang of the
happiness of appreciation had come from
these patient, loving grimy old hands.
"You've given me everything," her heart
was saying, "and Ido love you. I can never
say how much." But it seemed as though
It wore saying: "Why. why did you put.
me where I was to learn that you were you,
and I was I?"
One looks on at such a situation and says,
"If it could stop here, it might be possi
ble." But it cannot stop there. It Is not
the adjustment of the relations between
parents and child which is the difficult
thing. The acceptance of a different point
of view by these three may even come with
out much pain. No, it is the outsiders who
make the situation impossible—the father's
cronies, th" mother's friends, the acquain
tances of the untaught girlhood. The im
possibility revealed itself that very night
when Dave Duggan came in to welcome
fcer home. Annie gave him her hand, flush
ing and paling at his familiarity,his boister
ous facetious "Hollo, Annie! How you was?"
"n him, after that easy greeting, the first
- of the difference made for all time
was struck; for he grew conscious and un
easy, and scuffled his feet, and cleared his
throat, and laughed tn a silly way. Yet
ail the admiration spoke in his eyes. John
ny was full of jokes, and kept elbowing
Annie and winking; and Dave's loud re
bukes of his host's "fun" were even more
meaning.
At neatty midnight Annie went upstairs,
tired, white, smiling; and lay open-eyed
until dawn.
*•••*••
Dick Temple's intention of "passing
through South Bend In a fortnight" was
a little delayed. Cousin Kate's vague mis- J
givings took the form of a postcript in a <
casual note to his mother; there was no
more than a word or two about Dick's
tendresse for a pretty college girl, who had
been the children's governess during the
last three summers while they were out
of town; that was all. But It was enough.
And Mrs. Paul felt she had done her duty.
"And, perhaps, prevented Dick from do
ing his," her husband commented, grimly.
"If he can be prevented, he'd better be:
for he wouldn't bo good enough for Annie
Graham!" Cousin Kate declared with much
spirit, and immediately became, in her own
mind, the champion of the incipient love
affair.
Her letter was passed on by Dick's moth
er to Dick's father, who said, good-natured
ly, that the boy was a jackass.
"The young lady is probably too good for
him," said Mr. Henry Temple, "but I'm
not going to have that boy marrying John
Paul's governess without a few remarks
from me."
Mr. Temple telegraphed his son not to
leave town on the day he had arranged, as
he wished to see him; and then he came
down from the Maine woods for the pur-1
pose of making the remarks, which, of
course, were to be general; it would give
the matter too much importance to trea:
it as particular, or probable. So. In a
oasupl way, he referred to Cousin
Kate's letter, and enjoined his son
not to be a fool. Dick's instantly
aggressive attitude and skill in "answering!
back" were most surprising to Mr. Temple, i
A -man is always surprised at his son's j
ability in this direction; it is as though hi 3
own hand or foot suddenly acquired indi
viduality. Furthermore, Richard was very
sentimental, and had much to say of his
father's un-American point of view and his
own readiness to marry a "woman he
loved" (if she'd have him) if she were a
washerwoman.
"As for Miss Graham." said Dick, "I've
no right even to speak of her; but she's a
'lady, and an angel—"
"Oh, Lord!" groaned Mr. Temple. "I
wonder if I ever was as young as you.
Dickon?" But he was really disturbed, and
wrote to a friend who owned the great
South Bend Rolling and Smelting Fur
naces, and might be expected to know who
and what the Grahams were.
Meantime. Dick Temple, twice as much
in earnest for his father's not unreason
able expostulation, packed his things and
started for the west. It was a hot Julyl
afternoon when he arrived in South Bend;
he was fretted by tho heat and his own
impatience and the stupidity of the land
lord of the hotel In being unable to tell
him where Mr. Graham lived.
"There's no family by that name on the
hill, sir," he said. "Graham —Graham—
there's some Graham's here in the direct
ory; what's the gentleman's business, sir?"
"t don't know." Dick said, fuming.
"What sort of a place is this, anyhow, that
you don't know where people live? It's
small enough for you to know everybody—"
"We've twenty thousand inhabitants,
young man." said the landlord, with much
offense. "The only Graham I know is
Johnny; he's a gas-fitter, and does odd
jobs here once in awhile— "
"Have your clerk copy all those Graham
addresses," said Dick, coldly. "I'll go
round till I find the person I wish. Unfor
tunately T don't know the gentleman's first
fame. Have you got any kind of convey
ance in this place? Just have a hack
called, will you?"
L Bacheller.)
He spoke with the Insolence of tone pe
culiar to well-bred young men, and he
walked to the open door and stood waiting
for the carriage and frowning out at the
passers-by. There was a r"d glare from the
furnaces on the other side of the river,
shifting and fading on the coils of black
socoke which lay motionless In the still,
hot, air. The street was the narrow street
of the small manufacturing town of the
west.
"It's a beastly place, anyhow," Dick said!
to himself with an irritation which had its
root in some formless apprehension: and
lie got. Into tbe lumbering, rattling hack
and slammed the door with vicious empha
sis. "What on earth does he live here
for?*' he said to himself.
The carriage drew up first at a small mar
ket, where piles of faded vegetables,
flanked hy glass cases of meat, jutted out
upon the pavement: a man in a dirty white
butcher's frock leaned against the door
post, and two jets of gas flared and flick
ered from long iron stand-pipes.
The driver leaned down from his box
and called nut in friendly tones to know
if this was the place.
"Idiot!" said Dick under his breath. "Of
: ou! se 'iot. Try the next address."
This was a forlorn untidy looking house
on a side street. Lodgers' heads leaned out
of some of the windows as Dick climbed
the steps and inquired whether Miss An
nie Graham lived there? He was conscious
of a distinct relief, when he went back again
to the carriige. They went to two other
houses, but there was no Miss Annie Gra
ham.
"I guess." said the hackman, "we'll have
to cross over to the other side of the river.
There's a Graham over there, at Jack's
Corners. Jack's Corners is a fine suburb,
sir.' - '
Dick's heart rose.
"All right: go on." he said. "Can't you
hurry these beasts of yours up?"
' And so it was that, about six o'clock, the
cabman drew up before a small, detached
frame house on the Mill Road. It was so
hot that the kitchen windows were wide
open, and or.c could see the tab!" drawn up
between them, and a little man in his shirt
sleeves eating his supper. Opposite him.
by the other window, was a girl with a fan
In her hand, and between them were two
other persons, for Johnny was entertaining
that night. Dave Duggan. uncomfortable.
he knew not why (although it certainly was
not the weather, for he had. with great
gcod sense, removed his coat), sat on An
nie's left; and next to him. beside Johnny,
was an enormously fat woman, in a sort
of loose, white sack. This was Mrs. Pugs
LOS ANGELES HERALD:
ley, who was on* of those neighboring la
dies of thwarted stepmother potentiali
ties. "But you never know what'll hap
pen," Mrs. Pugsley often remarked, and
dropped in this hot July night in a friendly
way, to see if Annie was making her father
comfortable. It was Mrs. Pugsley's opinion
that all this learning wasn't no good.
"Better know how to dish a meal's victu
als." said Mrs. Pugsley, "than be readln"
story papers all the time. That's what them
high-school girls does mostly."
The room was faintly lighted by a kero
sene lamp on the mantelpiece; but the real
radiance was in Johnny's face, as he looked
across a bunch of roses in the middle of
the narrow table at his Annie.
"Annie walked out two miles to get them
flowers." he said.
"Must 'a' wanted something to do," said
Mrs. Pugsley.
"I'd got 'em for you, Annie," Dave said
bashfully, "If I'd a-known you wanted
'em." And it was just then that the car
riage drew up at the door.
Dick, disgusted at the coachman's stu
i pidity in bringing him into this obviously
mechanic's suburb, leaned out to say,
"Drive on!" He was hot and disappoint
ed and impatient and —apprehensive.
And then he saw her.
There was evidently a flutter In the tene
ment at seeing a hack draw up. Johnny
Graham rose, seeing, in a sudden burst of
fancy, an important and hasty job, and a
carriage sent to convey him to a wildorness
of leaks or briken tips. Mrs. Pugsley con
ceived the hack to be a summons from a
lady friend who had expected to need her
services on a felicitous occasion, and was
instantly agitated, and got up panting and
saying:
"Goodness! they've sent!"
But Annie knew.
One wonders if she flinched, there in the
twilight? She rose at once and went to the
front door, her hand outstretched in
pleased welcome.
"Why, Mr. Temple! This is very pleas
ant,'' she said. "Father, dear, this is Mr.
Temple."
Dick's face was white. He took Johnny
Graham's hand and bowed, with some mur
mured reference to pleasure.
"This is my friend. Mr. Duggan, Mr.
Temple." Annie went on placidly, "and
Mrs. Pugsley.
Dick bowed twice. He saw dimly, in the
dusky kitchen interior, the two i;ther fig
ures, one of whom, assisted by the other,
was struggling into his coat.
"Why, now. set down, sir," Johnny said,
joyously; "take a seat and set down. An
nie, now can't you make room there by
Dave? We was just setting out to eat our
tea.' sir; but I guess there'j something left
for you."
"FATHER, DEAR, THIS IS MR. TEMPLE."
"You're very kind, but—" Dick protested,
feebly; but he sat down, too bewildered to
find any excuse.
Annie put a plate before him, and told
him he must have some iced tea.
"It's the'only thing that makes life possi
ble in this weather," she said; "but I can't
make father believe it; he takes his boil
ing."
"Well, sir," said Johnny," you had quite
a Jaunt to get out here, didn't you? But I
don't mind the walk, myself, back and forth
from my work, for it's fresher out here."
"I didn't know your address," Dick said,
not looking at Annie; "I've been driving
round —"
"When I saw that carriage drive up,"
Mrs, Pugsley said, still panting, "I
thought a lady friend of mine had sent for
me; it give me such a start!"
"Tell me how you left Mrs. Paul?" Annie
asked.
"Oh, thanks, very well," Dick assured
her, and there was a moment's pause. Mrs.
Pugsley and Dave were blankly silent. An
nie talked against time.
"It was so nice to get home. Just think,
I had been away five years," she said;
"that's a pretty long time not to see one's
father; father didn't know me when he
met me at the station; —now, I would have
known you anywhere!" she reproached
Johnny, with a loving look.
"Well, but r.ow. you growed, Annie;
that's what I said when I saw her. I says,
'why, Annie, you've growed!' Dave, here,
don't sec no change in her. But I do,"
Johnny ended ; oudly.
"You must liavo missed your daughter
very much," Mr. Temple murmured.
"Well, indeed., an' he did," Mrs. Pugs
ley said, resentfully; "but she would be
studyin'. She's that set on It."
"Miss Graham is devoted to mathema
tics," Dick murmur d, miserably, "and—
and that sort of thing—"
He stopped so abruptly that Mrs. Pugs
ley's hoarse whisper to Dave Duggan was
audible to all:
"Say, is he Annie's feller?"
"Hush!" said Dave Duggan.
Dick drank his tumbler of iced tea with
violent haste, and even Johnny looked dis
concerted. Annie said something about
the roses.
"The thing I miss most In South Bend are
the gardens," she said. "You know we arc
all working people on this side of the riv
er, and there are no old houses, so there
are no beautiful big gardens. I had to walk
far out Into the country for those."
"Won't you/have anything more?" John
ny inquired, hospitality. "Take another
helping of something? You won't? Oh
now, take a taste of this! No? Well, let's
go into the parlor, Annie."
If Annie held back, no one saw it. Thej
went into the best room, where Johnr.v
set all the gas burners flaring, that the full
glories of the decorations might strike the
visitor, who. Indeed, saw nothing but An
nie's stern, set face.
"Miss Graham," he said, "you are com
ing East again in September, aren't you?"
"I think not. I think I must never leavi
father again. He is not very strong, and !
want to be with him."
"Oh, yea, quite so," Dick answered
"but—"
"But what, Mr. Temple?"
"Oh, nothing; I only thought—l thought
you were to teach In the college, and —"
Ho did not know how to end his sentence;
he caught Dave Duggan's eyes glowering
at him, and Johnny's rather obsequious
smile. Johnny had the true American ven
eration for wealth, and he felt that this
gentleman, who kept a hack waiting for an
hour, was a rich man.
"I shall never leave my father," Annie
said, in a low voice.
Now Itichard Temple was not a mean or
unworthy man; he was a well-born, well
bred, well-educated young American gen
tleman; but he had been placed suddenly
at a cruel disadvantage; his presence of
mind deserted him—he was bewildered and
confounded. His plans and hopes were all
adrift. He could not meet Annie Graham's
eyes again; he said good night, at first
haughtily and then effusively, and sneaked
out to his carriage, anxious only to escape
from an intolerable situation.
"Hope you'll come out and talk over old
times with Annie, sir," Johnny said, shak
ing Dick's had all the time that he was
speaking; "you'll call again, sir?"
"Oh, certainly, yes, of course," Dick an
swered, wretchedly.
But Armle knew better.
• *• * • • •
Dave Duggan had watched Annie's visitor
with burning eyea. He followed the con
versation with painful lutentness, and a
-ense of speed which made him breathless,
lie wished to join in it, —kept moistening
his lips and clearing his thioat, but never
found the courage to speak. His shyness
probably prevented him from being rude:
for his feeling about Dick was rage, pure
aud simple.
"He's a blamed dude," he thought to
himself, again and again: but he could
think of nothing to say which would con
vey this opinion, and yet fit into the con
versation. But when Dick had slunk back
to his carriage Dave's feelings burst forth.
For a few moments, indeed, the little group
(except Annie) talked, in their excitement,
all together.
"Ain't he handsome!" Johnny said,
proudly; he was proud of anything con
nected with Annie.
"He's real rich, Annie, alnt' he? Ridin'
in hacks?" Mrs. Pugsley demanded.
"He's a blamed dude, that's what he is,"
Dave said fiercely.
"I thought he was your feller, Annie.'
Mrs. Pugsley declared, panting and fannies
herself.
"Well, now, he's none too good to be,"
Johnny announced, chuckllrg.
"Father, dear, wouldn't it be nicer to sit
out on the steps, where it's cooler? I'll
nut the things away, and then I'll come,
too. Please —go!" she ended. Johnny
looked at her in quick surprise, sensitive to
every change in her voice.
"Why, now—Annie?" he faltered.
"I'll be through with the dishes in a few
minutes, father dear," she said; and so
Johnny led the way to the front door and
placed a chair on the hard, black earth ut
the foot of the steps for Mrs. Pugsley, and
told Dave to take off his coat again.
"It's that hot," Johnny said, '"there's no
good wearin' coats."
"Now that dude's gone, I suppose there's
no harm being comfortable," Dave agreed,
angrily.
They sat there In the dusk. Johnny and
Mrs. Pugsley, talking the visit over. They
could hear Annie moving about in the
kitchen, washing the dishes. After awhile
Dave Duggan got up and with painstaking
and elaborate efforts not to attract atten
tion went, with creaking, clumsy steps, into
the kitchen. Annie stood by the sink.with
her back to him. He heard her draw In
her breath in a broken sob; and then he
saw—he saw the tears were running down
her face.
"Annie!" he said; "oh. now, Annie, don't,
don't mind, Annie dear!" He put out his
bauds beseechingly, his face red and quiv
ering. Annie turned her shoulder toward
him, and set her teeth. She drew her wrisl
across her eyes.
"It's that dude's hurt your feelln's, An
nie, darn him; but never you mind, he ain't
worth—"
"Oh, please go away, Dave," Annie said:
"you don't know what you are talking
about! Please go back to father."
"Annie," he burst out, "look here, he
ain't worth It. I say, Annie, will you take
up with me?"
"I really don't know what you are talk
ing about. Mr. Temple—if you aro refer
ring to him—has not hurt my feeling in
the least. I—l had something on my
mind, and —"
"Oh. Annie," poor Dave said, "what I'm
wanting to know—" Ho stood there in his
shirt-sleeves beside the sink, his voice
trembling, one big red hand opening and
shutting the hot-water spigot, "I'm just
wanting to know if you'll marry me, An
nie? Say, now, will you?"
Sho shrank from him, a sort of horror in
her face.
"You?"
"You ain't mad?" he entreated.
"It is quite impossible," she answered,
hoarsely, "quite, quite. Never speak to me
of such a thing—" Her face was stinging,
her voice was broken, as a woman's might
be to whom some Insulting thing had been
said. "You will go, if you please," she end
ed, her head high, and with a certain ges
ture that confounded him.
"Dut look a here," he insisted, following
her as she moved away from him; "Annie,
look a here; that feller ain't a goin' to
marry anybody but a rich lady; his kind
ain't goin' to marry you."
"Well, I shan't marry my kind, then!
YOU can just understand that," she cried,
with a sudden, almost coarse fury,
"Tbsre's no use for you to think of such a
thing. Don't ever dare to spoak to me that
way again!"
This Is as far as Annie Graham has lived
her story. She and Dave practically sum
mcd the matter up between them: "Hio|
kind will not marry you;" and "1 will not
marry my kind."
The story is unfinished; one waits to see
what will happen.
There are three things open to Annie:
She may live out her life in South Bend,
teaching, perhaps, in the public school.'
gradually refining the terrible little house,
rejoicing Johnny's heart and never inter-1
feting, merely for her own aesthetic neee3
altles, with the unlovely habits of John-!
ny's fifty years of unlovely living; she mayl
lenrn to accent his intimates as her ar-!
quaintnnces, his Mrs. Pugsleys and Dave!
Duggana as household friends, starving all
tiie while for tbe companionship of her
equals. Or—
She may shake off these Intolerable sur-,
rounding.- which make her shrink ns In-1
Btlnctively as nn open eye shrink.) from'
dust; she may turn her back on South!
Hcflcl nnd tho tenement houses and the
painted snow-shovel and her father's shirt-j
SHE SHRUNK FROM HIM. A SORT OF
HORROR IN HHP. FACE.
sleeves artrl her father's tender heart, and
co out into the world to live her own
Strong, refined, intellectual life, perhaps as
a teacher in her old college; marrying, af
ter a while, some one who has never seen
her father, and coming into the seul-de-
Btroyittg possession of that skeleton in the
American cioset—the vulgarity of the for
mer generation. Or—
She may, because of sheer misery in the
struggle between the new tind the old,
and for the dreadftd suffocating comfort
of it, fall hack into the pit whence she was
digged and try to forget tbe upper air.
What is the child's duty? To live har
own life, or to live some one else's life? Is
she to accent success or failure, fulfliliment
or renunciation? "
People differ as to what constitutes suc
cess; some go so far as to say that the
highest fulfillment lies In renunciation;
and certainly there was once a life that
might have been called a failure because it
ended upon a cross on Calvary.
I suppose it all depends on how you look
at it.
(The End.)
LARRY AND THE BURGLARS.
How a Messenger Boy Prevented a Great
Eobbery.
A SAFE ABOUT TO BE "OBAOKED."
The Brave Boy Found the Telephone
at the Risk of Discovery and
Called up tho Police—
His $30 Howard.
': j <
Larry Dolan thought It the coldest
night he had ever experienced as he
spun along the wide suburban avenue
in the face of the bitter northwest wind.
Larry was a messenger employed by the
.Mutual District Messenger company,
and as his station covered a largo su
burban area he was often called upon
to make long rides upon his bicycle to
answer the calls of the patrons of tbe
company. In nearly all of the rich su
burban homes were the little electric
call boxes which enable tbe owners to
summon a messenger by turning a
crank.
He had been In the service about a
year, in fact ever since his arrival In
America from "Auld Ireland," as he
called it. He had been quick to learn
the ways of his adopted country and
ou account of Lis shrewdness and indus
try was considered one of the best boys
tn the service.
"Bad luck to the man that called for
a messenger this night," said Larry to
himself, as he coasted down a grade,
steadying his bicycler witii his feet while
lie rubbed bis ejus vigorously with his
disengaged builds. In his long night
rides he had contracted the habit of
talking to himself, "to kape me com
pany." as lie expressed it. "Cowld as it
is and late. too. lie ought to be ashamed
to ask anyone to come this distance. Be
sides, 1 don't believe he meant to ring
for a bye. onyhow, as the annunciator
only fluttered a bit and did not turn in
a full call." In fact, this circumstance
had led the night clerk to suspect that
it was not a call and ho was once on tie
point of telling Larry not to answer it.
"It makes me mad to think all this Is
for Colonel Collamore," muttered harry,
"ihe most disagreeable ould curmud
geon ou tho Hue, Didn't he have me
taken to the station house last summer
charged with sbtealing his pears whin
I'd been to Lis place to answer a call?
There's no telling how it would have
ended, either, if the mounted policeman
on Hie beat had not come in with the
very bye from the Reform Farm that
he had caught with a basket full of the
colonel's pears. An' the colonel uiver so
much as said 'I beg your pardon, Larry,'
for the hurt to me feelings. As for
I hat he doCB not seem to know me
name and only says when be sees me,
'Hello, twenty-six, is that you?' Bad
luck io aim and ilic cowld weather to
gether."
Having restored the circulation in bis
benumbed ears Larry increased ills
speed and with head bowed against tlie
cutting wind sped out the avenue at a
rate which soon brought the dark out
lines of tlie Collamore villa to view. This
was a large, three-story Queen Anne
house sitting back some distance from
the avenue and surrounded by itce3 and
shrubbery.
As be rode up to the side entrance lie
was surprised to see nn light in tlie
Colonel's library and oflice. The only
light visible was one that shone from
a (second story bedroom. Tbe absence
of a light in tlie library led Larry to be
lieve that the call had been a mistake,
for if a messenger wero needed the
Colonel would lie in that room Which lie
used ;is an ollice. Larry knew that tiie
colonel would likely lie alone, for tlio
family were iv Florida for Ihe winter.
He dismounted and leaning bis bicy
cle against the carriage block was about
lo ring the bell when ac was startled to
see that a window leading into the li
brary was open. i
"Faith, now, an' What flops this
mane?' said Larry half aloud, following
Ills habit of talking to himself. He n;>
nroocbed the window anrt then he saw a
large seml-clrenlar hole In the bottom
at the upper pane, tbe piece of glass
thai had been removed lying upon the
.'round, ami near it a sunny sack which
rattled when hi- touched it with his
foot. This discovery caused something
like o cold chill to course down his
Wick.
"Burglars," thought Larry, as ho
stooped ilown and felt the tools In tbe
tag. Within the next few minutes the
boy's busy brain did a great deal of
[linking. His tirst impulse was to ride
iway and leave the burglars undls
: orbed.
■■Wet- should I bother mosilf looking
nit for him?" thought Larry, bitterly.
•Sure, he's treated me badly enough
md it would only serve him right."
Umost Immediately he was ashamed of
nimse'.f for harboring such a thought
aud the better nature of the sturdy
Irish lad came to the top.
"Faith, I'll get even with him another
way." ho thought, "and do me duty too.
I'm the only one that can save the Colo
nel from a robbery now. and I'll do it."
It occurred to him to mount his bicycle
and ride for assistance, but he remem
bered that the nearest police station was
nearly two mil' s distant and unless ho
should meet some straggling patrolman
the burglars would have time to get
away before help arrived. While de
bating this matter his eye fell upon his
bicycle lamp which was making a broad
strettk of light on the driveway. Hp
quickly rolled the wheel aside and hid
it behind the shrubbery, turning out the
light.
Then Larry resolved on a bold
step) lie would go into the house by the
way the burglars had entered. He felt
sure the Marauders were upstairs in the
rielnlty of that light and Larry had tin
idea which, if it could be successfully
carried out, would furnish the quickest
means of obtaining assistance. The
lower window sash was raised
to its full height, the burg
lars having cut a piece from
the upper pane to enable them to get
HE COULD PLAINLY HEAR THE CONVERSATION IN THE ROOM.
at the window fastener. Larry silently
climbed through the open window and
dropped noiselessly into the library.
Then he removed his shoes and stole
out into the hall, walking without noise
in his stocking feet. At the foot of the
Stairway he paused, hearing voices in
the room above. The door of the room
was evidently open, as a broad bar of
light shone into the hall.
With his heart beating so loud that he
imagined he could hear It, Larry crept
up the stairs, clinging close to the wall
and avoiding the bannisters for fear of
making a noise. Ho stopped on the
lauding, and applying his ear close to
the open door, could plainly hear the
conversation in the room. Apparently
there were three men and they were
discussing the advisability of blowing
open a small safe which stood iv the
room, evidently the receptacle of the
silver and other valuables of the house
hold. Cue of the men was for trying to
pick tbe combination lock, as the noise
of the explosion, he feared.mlght awaken
the servants in the rear of the mansion.
The Hist burglar insisted the Colonel
would not be home that night, and they
might as well take their time to make
a good job of it.
Having heard this much ond being
satisfied of the intentions of tho intru
ders. Larry quietly descended the stair?
and returned to the library to put his
idea into execution. He first closed the
door lending into the Hall and theu
groped his way iv the darkness of a cor
ner of the room where he knew a tele
phone Instrument was located. Larry
had often sat in this room wailing for the
Colonel to answer messages bo had
brought from the city station and was
familiar with the apartment.
He know that this telephone had a
patented arrangement attached to the
transmitter to enable one to speak In a
lower tone of voice. Ky the aid of this
instrument one could almost speak in
a whisper aud yet be distinctly under
stood by the listener at the other end ol
the wire.
Covering the two call-bells on the tele
phone with his hand to deaden the
sound of their ringing Larry turned tin
crank once nnd taking down the re
ceiver listened for the reply of the ope
rator at tho Central office.
"Give me 27'J" said Larry, In a low
tone of voice, when he received the
cherry "Hello" of the girl at the centra
office.
In another moment he distinguishei
the voice of the night clerk at. the Jlu
tual District Messenger office and tin
familiar "Well?" with which lhat persoi
answered all telephone calls.
"Mlsther Fisher, this is Larry," sah
the boy in a whisper.
"So 1 observe," answered the nigh
clerk.
"Ss-h. not so loud, If you plase," can
! tioned Larry, forgetting that Mr. Fish
er's voice, however loud, could not be
heard beyond the receiver nt his own
ear. "Mlsther Fisher, I'm nt the Colla
mire's and there's burglars up stairs,
.Send word to the police station, quick.
I am In the library."
Larry spoke slowly and distinctly and
evidently Mr. Fisher took in the whole
situation immediately. The exclama
tion of surprise which he uttered wae
half cut off by his closing the telephone
suddenly. Larry knew that the night
clerk would act promptly.and that help
would be forthcoming at once. He
dosed the telephone and stole softly,
back to tlie window, confident that at
that very moment, n patrol wagon load of
men wOuld be leaving the station house.
"Yes, and thlm omadhauns will be af>
ther driving up the avenue ringing thel*
gongs ami giving the whole thing away,"
said Larry to himself as he climbed out
of the window, "I think I'd better ride)
down and meet them."
Putting on his shoes, but not stopping
to luce tbem.he mounted his wheel and
shot down the driveway and Into the
avenue over which he sped ut his best
endeavor. After a few minutes riding
he saw two specks of red light far dowa
ihe avenue and knew that the patrol
wagon was coming in answer to his mes
sage. Dismounting, he unfastened his
bicycle lamp, and after lighting It stood
in the middle of the street. Directly he
could hear the clatter of the horse's feet,
and sure enough, occasionally the clang
of the gong as they passed a street
crossing.
When the patrol wagon was but halt
a square away Larry swung his lamp
from side to side as a srgnal to stop and
was rewarded by the driver pulling up
the team alongside him.
In ti few words he told the sergeant
of the situation at, the Collatnore villa;
and suggested that tho burglars might be)
easily captured if the police should sur
round the house without noise. The pa»
tt ol wagon drove ou and Larry mounted
his wheel to return to the office.
"Onyhow, I've done me duty," Bald
Larry, as be rode along; "an If thiol
fellys don't catch the rogues. If a va
fault ay mine." 1
When he reached the office he was
besieged with questions by] the
night clerk and tne other em
ployes, nnd for the time Larry]
was quite a hero. In about half an hove
the patrol wagon drove back on its way;
to the police station and Inside, securely]
handcuffed, were the three burglars.
They liad been completely surprised.and
had surrendered without a struggle.
When the wagon stopped in front of
the office Larry mounted the step and
said: "There's just one thing I would
like to ask you l'ellys; who turned in
the call for a messenger bye?"
"That must a' been me," answered
one of tho burglars. "I was feeling
along the wall to get to the door of that
liberry and I ran my coat sleeve up
against a little kind of crank that moved
and made a sort of clicking noise."
'•That accounts for the call not coming
in full." said Larry to the night clerk,
"the crank only went back half way."
"And now.me frinds," remarked Larry]
to the burglars, "me advice to you is,
don't try to rob a house whin there's a
call box in the library, and Larry Dolan'a
on duty." A muttered growl from the
trio was the only auswer, as the wagon
drove on.
Colonel Collamore had spent the
night in the city and the
first news he had of the attempt
to rob..his house and the failure of the
effort, was the announcement in the
morning papers. In tne pfternoon ho
drove home and stopped at the Mutual
District office on his way out. where he
found Mr. Fisher just coming on dutff
for the night. The Colonel bad some
conversation with him and then drove,
on.
That evening when Larry came on
duty he found a large square envelope
on bis table bearing the Collamoro
stamp. When he opened it he found a
check for $50 and the following note:
"Colonel Collamore presents his com
pliments to Mr. Larry Dolan and begs
to apologise for the unfortunate incident
of last summer which placed Mr. Larry
Dolan In au embarrassing predicament
for a Short time. Colonel Collamore al
so begs Mr. Larry Dolan to accept tho
enclosed as a slight testimonial of the
conspicuous services rendered by him
last night."
"Faith, he's apologized at last," said
Larry to the night clerk, "and ay coorso
his apology is accepted. Morever, I'm
no longer ''Messenger Twenty-six,' but
Mister Larry Dolan.
If a man hns any brains at all, lo.fc
him hold on to his calling.and in the
grand sweep of things his turn ,wil£
come at last.—W. McCune. ' - -y

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