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The San Francisco call. [volume] (San Francisco [Calif.]) 1895-1913, October 16, 1904, Image 15

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Jim E$c munched the cocky _ and
feasted hia eyes on the neat, graceful
form cf the rcd-haaded girL He w»s
not rivea to daydreams.* Still as' he
sat there, he conjured xro a. homely
vision, of domestic bits* ta the loy house
on the lower eighty. Mr. Weaver bad
talked cf renting out the lower eighty
next year. If
"Now, Jim Ben, yoa toddle along out
o' here. How you s'pose I'm ever gala*
to get my work dene cp. an" you aU
the time foolla' "round ia the wayf -
- Not being *ble to answer thistrery
pointed cuestion, he slouched out and
went to mend the fence around tha
hog pasture. Ha. was ia such a high
humor that he never swore once, not
even when a strand of the barbed wire
broke, much to the demoralization cf
h!s "overalls."
When milking time came Jim Ben
¦uckled the calves, as he was accus
tomed to do. and then. — which he was
not accustomed to do — gallantly c2ered
to milk the Ho!3tein cow, a notoriously
hard milker. H? sat en a stool under
the Hoiateia and milked with both
hands while Rand7 was milking the
Jersey. They kept cp a running fir*
cf repartee — "sayin* smart things." ia
the vernacular. They were having
quite an enjoyable time, until Jim Een.
somewhat deficient in finesse, made the
pretended error of mistaking her au
burn tresses for the setting sun. A
stream of milk shot across the Inter
vening space. It took him fairly in
the face, and he Ced In sheer terror,
fearing the bucket of milk would fol
low. For two days ha was in disgrace,
and then came the .singing school. .
When the supper was done and tha
dishes washed- that evening Jim Ben
mads his appearance In the kitchen.
clean shaved and clad In Sunday rai
ment. As Randy looked at him she
could not help thinking he was a
really manly fellow, though his mouth
was too large to permit ef his being
called. handsome- She did not tell him
Randy listened a moment.
"I thought I heard Mia' Weaver call-
In'," she explained. "No, sha - ain't
a-caHLn*. She'3 jus: a-singin' cut oa
the front porch. She'3 dgla" some sew-
In* out there." She gave Jim' Bea a
cooky.
•'La. I bet my ccokies is burrtin' this
time, fer shore!" She turned to the
oven and withdrew therefrom a pan of
cookies that were done to a tern. The
odor came tantaiizin^Iy to Jim. Een's
nostrils. He hesiiated a. momenf and
then remarked, tentatively!
"I use<l to sort o* liks fresh ceokiea—
like them."
with little curved decoratiens marked
on It with the butter paddle. "How do
you like the locks o* that?" she asked.
"That's tha genuine truck, shore
enonj-hr I beryou're the best hired gal
that's been in this Idtchea in the last
ten years!" «2**
Th« r-d-beaded girl turned her fac<»
to his with a happy smile and said, aj
he kissed the patch cf freckles ca her
cheek: .
"TTc-huh* But I bet I make yoa
think cf yer ma mcre'n cne-, Jim Beat"
(Cocrri^i fc7 3. 8. Ttf-C3ur» A. Ox)
"Randy— I— that la— I've g^t JSCO laid
up. Next spring I'm thinkln* ef buyln*
a spaa o' bosses and r^ntla* the lower
eighty. TV. do It— and wall g-> Into
business fer ourselves — If you Ju3t sa7
th? -word: TO you?"
••Randy"— hl3 heart was thumping so
loud he -felt sure sh* must hear It—
"Ton bet It ain't!" ferv»nt!y respond
ed Jim Ben. "And Tve alway3 said.
when I did ?et married I was gcin* to
hev a wife that cculd come up with her
at butter makin' and housekee*?'.'*
Randy's hat slipped from her lap ta
the ground. Both, reached fcr It. and as
they stooped they bumped heads.
"Shore sign- we'll be tcg-ether this
time nex* year." observed Randy. Fcr
answer Jim Een'3 big band closed
gently ca her slender, unresisting fin
gers.
"Randy, 1*11 take back what I said
t'other night — about your hair, yoa
know. It's mighty perry hair, if It
13 redjr
'"She gave bins a gratsfnl little
glance.
"I've naver went with a gal afore."*
be went ca.. "Never keered to. some
way, cf *aci come tr-j to what
mother used to bvs_- Si-'» c^ad. yoa
know. Mather was an awful geed coc'i.
.thocgh. sometimes she'd get a leetl*
too mu~h sady fa the biscuits: She was
neat as a pin abour her houseksepta'.
too. I tell you. she xzsed to salt? me
w alk chalk when I cere In ths kitchen
with mud en my boots: Tea put ce in
cind o' her la lots o' ways. That's why
I brought the water and get the kind
lin's and sort o* wait on yen like. And
her butter and your'n tastes edzacly
alii?." '-"
" 'Tain't everybody tiat knows how
to make gacd butter." shyly admitted
Bandy.
-Nothin' much. Xothln' but taka
the hired girl to the singin'^schooL
Run aions. si33y. an* git yer things,
an* don't kee» me waiUn".**
Strange to . saj. the hired girl
obeyed.
Singing school was over aad they
ha"d reacheri tb»- front gate en their
way bear*. Th* stars were abashed
and ©ale in -th*-prcs«ac«t«of the> re
spIerrdenC; full" I moon. The coupl*
stood by the gate In silence fcr a
moment, paying involuntary tribute
to the glory of the night. They sat
down or/ the horso. b'q^k 1 by the gat*.
Randy tock cTZ her.' broad hat and h<*r
glossy hair rejected thp moonlight in
a shadowy way. until something very
like peetrr awdltV'ffrthe- heart of Jim
Een. aad be thought of ths halo abou:
the head of tha Madonna that hung
on th* walL cf,.tlia._best_room- H*
pondered for axaornent and then said:
so. She ohIt remarked'.
"Land alive.' VTbafs the Uttla boy
goin* to do now?" »
ELLSWORTH E.KEU*EY
AN OLD-FASHIONED WOOING
THE HUNGER OF A MAN'S SOUL
"I— I think Mr. Hawardea Is doing
right," she said softly, "only be
ought—'* She stopped, \rtth flushed
cheeks and shining eyes, for Jack Ea
warclen stood In the doorway.
Tha Englishman's comprehension
was quick enough this time to take ta
the whole situation.
"Alec I" he cried reproachfully.
turning to his friend, "you've told!**
"Jack,'* returned Bruce, spreading
asked the artist.
"No. He has visited every Hawarden
in the city' and none has any knowl
edge of the old lady. He has found the
record of the death cf a, John Haward
en who came from England twenty
years a?o and who died shortly after
his arrival."
"That was undoubtedly the real
nephew." said the girl with the violin;
"an old person does not realize the
change there would be in a young man.
She would expect her nephew to look
as he -did when he left England, and
almost any big, blond young English*
man would correspond to the picture
she has carried in her' memory all these
years."
"What does Jack intend to dor*
asked Miss Fairlie.
"Take care of her as long as ehe lives
— It can't b« so very long-, poor soul.
and she hasn't a cent. Jack says prov
idence has sent him an aunt and he
shall do his duty by her. She admitted
a day or two ago that perhaps she
might not b« his real aunt, but she was
his 'negotiable h'aunt.* Of course the
poor old lady hasn't the slightest Idea
of the meaning of *nesotlable.* but un
der the circumstances — the way sha has
transferred herself to Jack— you'll ad
mit it's funny. He's upstairs now ask
ing Mrs. Gray to go to sec the old
lady."
He turned abruptly to th« cuslc
teacher, who bad remained silent.
"What do you think of Jack's Quixot
ism. Miss, Stuart?" v
out his hands tragically, *T have — all
except- about the pill box — and that
I'm going to tell now."
"Alec I" protested Jack, desperately,
"you're really going too far — you've
no right — "
"That's where your ideas of right
differ from mine," said Alec coolly.
"I have my instructions from the 'ne
gotiable h'aunt' herself, and I Intend
to carry them out. You see." he con
tinued, : turning to the Interested little
group, "I've called frequently on ths
old lady and she has taken a great
fancy to me as ths friend of her dear
•Jock.' Last night she gave me this
little box and asked me to give It to
the young lady of Jack's choice, with
the request that she make use of it In
furnishing a home."
Ha took from his vest pocket a
tiny, fiat box of tin. hardly more than
an Inch square, and held It cut on tha
palm of his hand. It was sealed by
having a thin strip of .paper-pasted
over the Joining cf the box and Its
cover.
" "I suppose It never occurred to the
old lady . that a great, big. hulking
leather-head." lingering lovingly over
the word3, "like Jack bad not dared
to tell the young lady— **;
No " one • spake. Hawardeli' sat In
horrified silence. Finally- Kathleen
Clyde broke out earnestly: Tit's a will.
cf course, leaving Mr. Eawr Vden a fins
estate in England and— "
Hawardea pulled . himself together
and came to . Bruce's side, trying to
smile. "
"There's no one to leave ce an es
tate, IHas Clyde. I really haven't a
relative ta the world, and my parents
were poor "people. - I. think the. old
lady Is not in her. right mind. I fancy
that what Alec calls a box fa really a
sort of tin locket, and probably con
tains a portrait of her lost nephew.**
He paused as if to gather courage
to go on, and his face paled.
"Dcn't. Alec!" he protested.
"Jack," said Alec, solemnly, "we are
bidden net to hide our light under a
bushel— you're trying to hide yours
In a pill bcx. and I «haH tell the girls
the whole story."
"I came to see Mrs. Gray," «a!d
Jack, rising. "I win find her upstairs
I think ™
As h« passed Brcce he whispered
fiercely: "Fcr heaven's eake. Alec,
keep that, thing to yourself."
Alec smiled and nedded, but as toon
as Jack bad disappeared he continued
seriously: "It's a thing you ought to
kne-a-, girls, and Tia determined you
shall. Jack is too modest — en. unusual
trait in an Englishman," he added,
tfccnxhtfully.
"Forget that you're Scotch and let's
have the story." cried the girl who
wrote stpries.
"Sure, rn begin right in the middle
so as to reach the denouement sooner.
Our Jack Is In love—"
Laughing exclamations of Incredu
lity f rcta the listening girls.
"H* Is^ — honest. *Hls aocl is tuned
to sweet accord with peerless strains
c'— **
"Never cind his soul." interrupted
Kathleen again; "tell ns the story."
"This isn't a wild Irish story. Miss
Clyde.'* he retomed. with an air of Im
patience. "This la the story of a slow
coving and a particclarly slow speak-
ry* LEC BRUCE turned around
f j «lowly en the piano stcol and
£— j faced the five stria.
JL "Probably you girls are- not
aware cf if, bat cur friend. Jack, has
been adapted—"
Jack Eawarden's tcnest face
clouded.
ing Englishman. He hasn't told his
love, because the young lady is earn
ing a fine salary and is seemingly hap
py in her work, and his position was
far from satisfactory. But the first of
the year he was promoted, with a gen
erous increase. He was screwing up
his courage (here Alec paused and
cade a strenuous imitation of a person
using a screwdriver) when he received
a message from the immigration au
thorities that changed all his plans."
The wily story-teller stopped as If the
narration .was complete.
"Do go on,'* cried some one Impa
tiently; "that surely is not the end?"
"What could the immigration author
ities want of Mr. Hawarden?" ex
dalced another.
After much urging Alec continued:
"When Jack went to the Immigration
office he found a clean, decent-look
ing old English woman, who fell upon
bis neck and called him her dear
nephew, and announced to the officers
that he was the living image of her
dear dead brother 'Jock.* Now Jack
hasn't & living relative and never had
an aunt, and he tried to explain this
to /the old lady and to the officers.
But sha would have none of It, and
the cfScers told him very gruffly that
If he didn't intend to support bis*auzxt
to say so at once, for ta that case
tha woman would $ave to be deported.
Eha broke down at this and cried in tha
cost pltlfnl way, and— well, it ended
In Jack tawny her away with Ti<t->.
Ha has a race for her la the house
where he's bearding and Is doing his
best to calcs her comfortable. Ha
spends most cf bis evenings with her,
and the old creator* is as happy "as
can be." %
"Jack's a brick!" exclaimed Kathleen
excitedly.
"It Is certainly very noble of him,"
said the editor warmly.
"Can't be nad the real nephew V
"Er— I thought— " he stammered. "It
is only rtfht that ocr friends 'here
should be the first ta knorw that Edith
and I are engaged.'*
. "Two souls with btit a single stamp."
quoth Alec, with mock solemnity, bet
the unfeeling remark was lest la a
ahower of good wishes and consrata
latlons.
(Copyright. 1304, by Otho B. Senga.)
"Fia sorry, you know." ba . said
slowly, "that Alec ha3 told the story,
but there is only one truthful way for
me to finish it."
He took the box from Brcce's hand
and passed it to Miss Stuart, saying
only. "Will you open the box?"
Her beautiful eyes filled with tears,
and, with trembling hands, she tried
to break the seal- -Peace* Gray banded
her a paletta knife, and as tha cover
fLevr off they all crowded around.
"If s nothing but a postage atanp."
cried Kathleen, Indignantly. **the hor
rid old woman! I'd Ilka to throw It
Into the fire!*"
Miss Stuart dropped tha .box aad
ran from the room, aad l£ any one no
ticed that Hawardea followed her no
one was silly enough to apeak cf It.
i "Glve*»e_-. tftat ...stamps .Kathleen.
Quick." commanded Miss Fairlie. *T2i«
<rid lady's mind Is all right." she add
ed, after a careful examination, "and
so fa her gift. This is a, fotrr-cent blua
ilacritlus of the Issne cf 1347 and Is
trarth at least sevfn thousand dollars.
The "negotiable aunt" has mada Jack
an easily negotiated gift."
Hawarden heard the Joyous exclam
ations that followed Miss Falriie's an
nouncement and case In. holding \n«
Stcart. blushing and ecbarrassed, by
the hand. "' _:- :
"Are you sure. Miss FalrEe^ b«
asked anxiously.
"Perfectly sure," she answered, with
the confidence bore cf knowledge, "one
was sold a few weeks ago fa T>rct(?qn
for CT^S*)." -.-¦:;,-- '\-^_
By OtHo B. Senga
HIS NEGOTIABLE AUNT
"It is granted." she returned coldly.
"Perhaps I chill have the hener cf
congratulating ycu — also"— the also
was added as an afterthought.
"It is that y=a will ten it all to c»."
Ee hesitated, through a sense cf deli
cacy. "If ycu mind, dear," he added
gently, "then den't."
Did che cind. she asked h-rseif.
No, she gloried in the opportunity. If
he sighed for his freedom he should
heve it. She weuld cake no effort
to hold him, but he should under
stand before she let him so that other
men thought- her desirable. Then he
ccuM eo with his freedom— and she
would marry any cne cf the ethers.
It made no diSercnce — she would take
the cne who next asked her. She was
e^-hteen and innnitely young. Tha
middle-aged man opposite felt that he
"wcnld barter his immortal scui to be
twenty-fcur— to be ycung with her.
"Shall I be^in at the beginning?"
the asked in v.eary tones. He winced.
~N"o." he replied, "that would In
clude me. Spare me that." There was
& long silence. "It is of young Trav
erse ycur tngagement— "
"Until to-cight," she reminded fa a
dall vcice. "I was engaged to yoo.
Ust — " her voice stuck. He was wait
lsjT'fer her to begin.
"Sirs. Carr from New Orleans was
at the Springs,** she began; "she ta
cne cf my mother's eldest friends. 3Ir.
Travers is her nephew. It was at one
cf her receptions that I cet him first.
Shall I till you everything?" Her voice
tad a new ring. He thought it was
fjcra speaking of her lover.
**Your rcses came just as I was start
1-j," ghe continued, "I wore the blna
dress, the one yea nsea to like ce
la—"
draw In the fragrance cf the red
reses and ta avcid his eyes, which
w*r% persistent. Ee was thinking of
hew ycung «-nd lovely she was. How
csuld ht expert her to love him? The
nirrcr cp-csite reminded him of his
7«ars.
Tea. ha would tell her — save her all
painful explanations. A young tel
tcw would make her happier. Once,
In* a hur^t c^ r ** T * ¦> '^ g^»w>
f"*A tsl4 h??~ ; hew sh-" hated younx
cea and new houses. It was childish
cf him. he tcld himself, to expect her
S3> kasw her owa mind.
"What cas I eat?" sht beamed at
fcla with ahin-ng eyes. "Anything.
fr«n a nice ycung man to an oyster!"
Here was the cpenmg, sccner than he
expected.
"Judith." h* began gravely, "it Is of
th* ycung can I wish to speak now.
Did— did — they say it Is young Tra
ver»? Eiill I release you?" The last.
ta the ear cf the girl. sevs.id an anx
locs, frenzied appeal fcr freedom. So
this was what made him so yiociay.
so unlike himself. He was tired of
fcer; he •wanted to be free. She was
pdling a rose to pieces and fitting the
petals over her ringer tips. "Shall we
r:ng the curtain down on our little
ccrredyr 'he asked in an "it'a-all-for
the best" tone. She nodded slowly.
She was beginning to see more deariy
every minute, just as one's eyes grow
accustomed to darkness ifter the first
bewilderment. H« wanted to be free.
"Judith," he said, "I shall ask cniy
cne favcr of ycu — "he hesitated.
IT was after the play, arfl they
were waiting- in the quiet little cafe
to be served. She leaned over to
By Campbell M* Leod
"Bob." sha said with all that pers
ons youth shining ts her eyes. "haV«
ycu fsrgottsa that tea dansa yoa
taught ce years ago?** No. with.
weary resignation, b*' had- set- fsrgot
tea It. •' •...':>
-Bob." with crcsl persl3tsh«« r -'*wl5*n
yon told ce that night thai you had
rather stay with ns than & g-> with
the eld ladles, did yoa ceaa it trcirr*
Tes. ha was sure* he meant It truly-
Tha cafe was deserted. Only Francois.
tha.. waiter, larked la the bacigronnd
and he couldn't speak KrgVja.
"Bob." coving nearer and laying %
confiding band ca fcij arc "Bob.
does your love 11» too deep for
words?" There was a pleading <yrtl!ry
ht her tones notto be resistad.
"ChUd." n» was holding- her chla fa
his cost comforting hand and exam
tnlng her eyes. - -, r
"Jack Travers didn't kiss nu truly,"
she ecrnferted. patting Bob's crd-gray
hairs tenderly. France £3 had dl3cre«rr
withdrawn, fully remunerated. "He
said that before I told him aboct —
ntcct how I loved yots — I — I— I told
hfca all aborct ns. Bo*> — " Bat ah<?
dida't finish. He undsrstccd. Bob
always understood.
"Child." he- whispered, with eyes la
which youth had core horna to» ltv«-.
~ycm must be the eldest persoa on
earth! Tea are straight Cress tha Gar
den cf Eden— with yoxrtb that -Is fresh
and genuine and eternal! .Tea. yota are,
childl" . . , , " . ; .
other lorers at the rprtngs. Bob.
It may be." sis tapped & say Ilrtl«
tcne with her fan. "that yoti inisht
find them diverting. " There was Dav»
Cary." she assigned her little ; Cng?r
to Yi'-m. "and Fred Langles." th-a next
finger to him, "both c? whom, pro
posed to me at tha picnis ca ths
fourth day of July. Then there was
Mr. Greyner. who proposed to m» at
th9 dance at Judg* Birrow's sen's
birthday — the-^scn also proposed, far
that matter. Dr. Spalding set csy wrist
when I sprained it and whea he dis
missed oa he asked ma to b« hia wife.
That's all the proposals I had at tha
springs. There were ftresiors wnea
I stopped to Tislt Lacy KHdar» ca my
way home." The caazi mads a- gesture
cf entreaty. Truly, he had cot dreamed
of i: beins thi3 bad. His beast fals
like a. church ca a weekday. Has*
could hs hava ever . beea fool esouga
ta expect Judith to ' lor* hira against
all these young men.
. "If ycu carry Travers— f It wu'k
cowardly subterfega to gat h«r away
frona tha others- His voice stn=3c Sh»
sat alert, with brilliant eyes.
"Tf I carry Tra>T«rs» whazT"-Bh*
asked.
"I dos't fciow." ciseraaly.
**I haven't exactly decided which
one I shall carry." Sha leacsd taci
languidly. " "
She rememieretS th» first" tfcsis' sha
ever saw htm. .Sha was delz# a -^drt
dance befara tha lens gilt cirrir ta
the bade parlor. . She .turned t» !s»t
a aid- wise vieTy cf herself, .and, there
in the d<xT ha was calmly watching
her. Tha ethers were at tha 'tahtj.
The occasioa was a dinner party anti
he had committed tha un.pard.cnAi la
effense cf being late. .That was^tija
beginning. He very cuch preferred
staying with her. h* declared.. If «h»
didn't mind. That was tha n!5ht sh«»
started loving Tii-r;.- Hadn't- he -«p«a:
weary hours over tha intrtcaciss - of
tae rf^rr^T'g to ccach her? Didn't Bob
always understand? The- tho'ogSS-thjit
he was Just across the tah-Ia and cot
engaged to her any cora almost suf
focated her. She couldn't stand It.
listen to the music That was the be
ginning; he carne next day for me to
drive with him. and told me that he
loved ne."
"The impudent ..yaxmg—" he foryot
that it was of her lover he was speak -
lns.
"He «aid he couldn't help it." she
apologized for hinx in world-weary ac
cents. "But they all say that." There
was no trace cf vanity in the remark.
The red of the rcse3 found brilliant ¦
rivals in her cheeks. "Then — then one
night," she hesitated. "It was moon
light — down en the fceach.— ha kissed
me — "
"He kissed yea?" the man exclalnaea.
"How dare he^ — how dare youtT
"Don*t bi* too hard en hlra," sh*
pleaded: "he said something about men
not despising a thief If he steal to sat
isfy his scui when he- is hungry." Bob
had risen angrily; a determined littla
hand pulled him back.
"Remember/* a cold voice reminded,
"yen desired me to tell you."
"Judith!" he reproved sharply.
"And that wasn't all." she flashed
defiant eyes at him. She remembered
how Jealous he had been- Once she
laughed and asked him tf be thought
the enamored air -went signing after
her, too. But that was when be had
really cared for her. Now he was try
ing' to get rid of her. **I had numerous
"Child, he brterruptea, "you do not
understand — "
"Yes, but I do." gayly. "I remem
ber it, every tit, ycu toW me that first
ni^ht I were it — do jrou remember it?
—what you whispered out there . on
the gallery about my 'renTr whit»
arms and shadowy hair?' It is a
pretty dress. I were your roses to
the reception — they were glorious
cnes." She was leaning en her elbows
en the table, her bis eyes fall of
mystery.
""When Mrs. Carr presented ilr.
Travers." she proceeded, "he told me
that he had been knowing me -for a
!cnj. Ions time and waiting -for me
to come, because his hands were tied.
33 It were, and he couldn't come after
tne. Then I laughed, because it wa3
such a good Joke — really. Bob, he said
it very much nicer than I can remem
ber. Then he went on to tell me that
it was before the war tre had known
me. He just graduated two years ago."
I am afraid I rather encouraged him
in the nonsense. It was such a relief
from talking to the women, and I
can't help being silly, you know.
Bob." . His heart felt old and "musty
and faded, and her every word was
giving it a fresh, blow.- She had made
a little pyramid of the rcse petals and
was nervously tearing- it to pieces to
reconstruct it.
"He was very nice." she continued.
"We went back to sit on the stairs to-
heade<i» ,100. I bet she's got a temper!
The redheaded kind always has."
Randy utterly ignored Jim Ben at
the supper table, although he went so
far a* -to ask. "What's them?" when
she passed him the plate of biscuit that
gave outward evidence of the inward
presence cf a superabundance cf soda.
After .supper he further violated all
precedent by jrettin-r the kindlings "far
th? mcrr'.-'g fire and filling the box
u :th weed.
When he had performed this work of
supererogation, he sat down just In
side the kitchen door and watched
•while she washed and vriped the dishes.
She handled them daftly and swiftly
anl moved about with light foot. Her
sleeves were rolled to her shoulders.
Jim Ben would have been less than
human if he had net best-.-wed sly; ad
miring glances en her white and shape
ly arms. She turned en him suddenly
and cau.f ht him fairly.
""What you ga-wkin' at me for?'* "
"I wasn't frawkin'! I was just won
derin' If they hurt!" ?
"What? My arms?**
"No, ma'am. Them freckles."
For answer she clouted him about
the ears £*tth the wet dishcloth, but
when he had Insloriously tied from her
province she gave utterance to a series
of delighted •jiss'.es.
Jim Een kept clear of the hired girl's
kln^Inn for three days, meal time al
ways excepted, cf course. Randy cob
lidsd to her mistress that of all bir,
awkinrd, clumsy stand-up-and-fall
dowiis he was the ve.~y wurst she ever
'lid see. It made her la-ash to lock at
him. Perhaps that.is,T.by she would
leek at him with. a tvisJbe in the tali
of her eye. while he was stolidly eating
fc-is meal and answering her questions
in curt monosyllables. Then, woman
like, she bezan: to make advances.
Jim Ben had lifted a barrel cf salt
unaided from the wagon to the eround.
Handy, who was ca her way from the
woodyard with, an apronful of chips.
stepped to watch this athletic feat;
When he had set the barrel .on the
ground v. ich apparent ease she compli
mented him. Sis said:
"My' It must b? awful nice to be
that strong'.'* Then she ran tcvard
the kitchen, saying: "I b'lieve I smell
rny cookies burnin''."
Jim Pen followed. He asked the
Qtzeen regent of the Weaver kitchen if
ht» might have a cup cf buttermilk. Sh»
rlUed for him a quart tin cup. When
he had drunk it all he wiped his moutii
¦with the back of his hand and said:
"Most zois lets the cream sour too
Ions afcre they churns. I call that
there buttermilk tiptop stuff, if you di'l
chum it."
F~andy smiled at this frank praise.
and. to show him that It had not fallen
en unaprreciative ears, brought forth a
roll of yellow cutter, solid and sweet.
r^TAlIES BENJAMIN SAUNDERS—
I be was called Jim B*a en the
1 farm where he had been •hired
hand" for the List ten years — cam*
cp en the Lack porch, wiped h!s
face ea the roller towei that hens by
the dcor. stepped to the window pane
that possess? 1 Ox quality cf dimly re
flecting a cccr.ter.arce before it. care
fully ccinbed his. hair azl tf&ea stepped
into the sracicus rood that served the
double purpose cf kitchen and dining
room. Before he reached his accus
texred chair in the corner he raised :n
Cpea-QOEthed astonishment. There uas
a new hired sriri in the kitchen.
Now, flaring th* Last ten years Jim
Een had seen h.'re-l girls com* and 50
frcm the Weaver kitchen by the score.
There had been a lens crcc-ssica o*
tall girls and short girls, fat girls and
lean p-.rla. maid* «twi widows, siris with
cemplexicns like reaches and cream
tzd stria 'with no complexion, whatever.
The new g:rl had freckles and red hair.
"Jerusalem I ** exclaimed Jin Ben.
"Den't yea dare ccme stearin* 'rcund
=y kitchen:" admonished the red
headed girl. " 'cause I went stand it—
ret a bit cf It!"
Her tcce was severe, btrt a comical
cmile played around" her mcuth. Net
being a society mas. Jini Sen was at a
loss fcr reply. He cemprcrmsed by
«hufi*Ling ca touarJ his chair.
*"Fer the lard sali-is! I don't know
what yer name is — " Kere Jim Ben
vstssieered Use desired information.
***"VeIl. then. Jim Ben. you so straight
cut and clean them boots. Lock-ee at
ye. a trackin' ur rrry clean Boor in that
¦ty'.el"
That •was the be;:-r::j of it.
After dinner Jim Ben did an unex
pected and wholly unprecedented thin?.
Of his own metier. lie tcck the empty
pall from the bench by the kitchen
doer, -went to the -ell. manipulated the
heavy eld "sweerv" returned -with- the
pail brimming full cf water and set it
carefully en the bench.
"I^cck-ee at ye now! If yea haven't
epilled s'trme water en my clean flscr,
you bir. 2-a-icard hulk! I've a
rctlcn to—** and she grabbed a dipper.
and enly the hasty exit cf Jim Een in
the directicr: cf Ott bam saved him a
liberal sprinkling.
Jim B-en smil»d to himself cocasion
al!y as he plodded along behind the
pi?**" tbMX afternoon. "When he and
Mr. Weaver stepped to rest at the
turrit? row, J:m Ben sat en his piow
beam and industriously whittled a clod
cf moist earth in a preoccupied way.
¦When h* had fashioned it into a cute
he turned to Mr. Weaver and asked:
'•^ay! Who is sh>r*
"Whc's who?"
"WJr, her; the new hired gal!'*
"Oh! That's Randy Klssins. Her
folks live down en Scatter Creek. Tea
know c'.i man Ei^^ins — him that runs
JL-n Ben nodded assent. Then be said:
"Gcsh! Ain't si-? freckled? s?ort o* rtd-
THE SAN FRANCISCO SUNDAY CALL.

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