Newspaper Page Text
THE BmiLINGTONFREE3fRE5S;TTIURSDAY) APK1L 7, 1802
9 52"S5fs BY AMERICAN PRES5 ASS'N, 1831. BOOK ONE-INHOOENOE. CHAPTER I. My mother died in giving mo birth. M fattier was a very rich man, ft rail way magnate, so called, absorbed in great business enterprises. Tims it hn pened that I ww brought up between two fires my father's sister, Aunt Ag Uefi, and my mother's sister, Anut Helen. Aunt Agnes was prim, but cultivated. Bhe wrote for reviews and wore oye jlasses, and lier library table was habit ually littered with pamphlet and tomes. On the other hand, Aunt Helen w:w a neat, dapper little woman, who lived in it gem of a house and delighted in bric-a-lr,ic and entertaining. Thoy were both rpiusters. Each of them passed one even ing in every week with mo. On Tues days I dined with Aunt Agnes and on Fridays with Aunt Helen. Thus 1 was alone only two evenings out of eoven, fir on Sundays my father did not go to the club. From the ngo of ton until I was fifteen i attended a private school. I proved ambitious and quick at my books. Aunt Heien was anxious that 1 should bo well grounded in tho modern languages, while Aunt Agnes wished mo to pursue what sue styled "serious" studies. In my efforts to please them both I broke down in health. My father was the first to observe my pallid cheeks, and at the advice of a physician 1 was taken away from school. For nearly a year 1 was idle, save that I read at random in my father's library. Then my aunts for onoo put their heads together and in sisted upon my having a governess. They told my father that the next threo years were the most important in my life, and that the best way to foster my health was to find some judicious person to bo my companion. Aunt Helen was in favor of one who had youth and good spirits, but Aunt Agnes thought it important that a gov ernor sh uld inspire respect. 1 was not consulted, and my father declined to nrbitrate botween them. In tho end, the favorite ot Aunt Agnes was installed, tbroau,h the chanco discovery that the other applicant had been at one time on the stage. Alisw Junks was a kind but solier dis ciplinarian of fifty. I was her pupil until I was eighteen, and ,,ongh I was none the less lonely because her com panionship, I am in her do today for the pains she took to systematize my heterogeneous acquirements and teach me tho evils of superficiality. Her views of lifo were autumnal in tint, and her laugh was never heart'. She rarely conversed with mo nt length; but if I made inquiries concern ing any matter of knowledge I was sure to find a book or pamphlet on my denk the nest day, with slips marking thu valuable pages. She kept me so steadily employed during the hours I was not in bed or in 1 e fresh air that I had no timo for novel ading a pastime I had in dulged in formerly to a considerable ex tent. 1 thrived physically under this regimen, but I became silent and grave. Miss Jenks seemed constantly on her guard against undue enthusiasm, and, abetted by her example, I inclined to in trospection and over conscientiousness. I picked up pins, and went out of my way to kick orange peel from the aide walk, on principle Jhcn mi aunts insisted upon my fiav inij a tjtivti'MSS. But apart from, or rather concurrent with, this sobriety of character I was a dreamer in secret, and delighted to givo the rein to fancy. I liked to picture my Fdf in some of tho romantic situations of which 1 had read and to build castles for tho future. But all those imagina tions were of a reulistio order, as dis tinpuished from ghosts and fairies and other creations of that class. I was com pietely free from buperstitions. It was not for luck that 1 picked up pins, but tnat they should not be wasted. In 'like manner 1 never hesitated to let a horse shoe lie in tho road, to' walk undor a lad der or be one of thirteen at table. And vet I was distinctly a dreamer. If it was in tho way of lovers my thoughts were entirely subjective, I knew no young nwii except the boys at dancing school; and they, as a rule, avoided me, for 1 was shy, and for the present ouly moderately pretty. I think I tried in my day dreams to form an ideal of what a lover's mental and moral Attributes should be without ever en dowing the abstraction with a head. 1 found a happiness in doing so niuoh, akin, I fancy, to that of the votary who kneels before a shrine of which ilia doors are closed. It was tho consciousness of a great iiosslbl happiness that thrilled ine. rathV thaii any definite vikion. I When lliss Jenks left us I wa3 a well MM educated girl for my ngc. What I knew I know thoroughly, nnd tho wishes of both my aunts had been respected. Per haps tho most striking circumstances connected with my bringing up, however, were that at eighteen I hud no idea I was the heiress to an enormous fortune, and that I could pass young men in tho 3treet without self consciousness. Strangely, too, 1 had grown up without having formed an intimacy with any girls of my own age. 1 have never quite been nblo to decide whether the ability I thus acquired to think for and by myself was more valuable than tho happiness that results from such friendships; yet I have never distinctly regretted not having made a confidant among my contem poraries. "Here is something that icillmakc your toiht more complete." Miss Jenks went away in October, and a few days later Aunt Helen broached the subject of prepnrations for the win ter. 1 was to go into society, and she had taken upon her shoulders the burden of having me well dressed and "present able," as she call ! it. My clothes, or dered from Paris, were at her house, and she took even more pleasure than 1 in studying their effect when tried on and in selecting from my mother's jowelry the mut impropriate articles for my toilet. There were certain trinkets among them which she told mo were all the rage, and she concluded with a homily that 1 was very fortunate to be able to have Mich expeiihiio tilings to wear, and that many girls had to be content with two ball droiws or. in soino instances, with one. I was glad to put myself en tirely in her hands, for 1 felt that she know about such matter. My own sen sations were a mixture of timidity, be wilderment and exultation. One evening a short time previous to the beginning of the gay season my father turned to me and said: "There is something I wish to tell you, Virginia. I have recently made my will. With tho exception of a few legacies for charit'ible u-os and a bequest to each of your aunts 1 have left everything to you. Very likely it may be a surprise to you to hear that you will bo very rich. It is proper and right you should know it now, just a1- it was important you should remain in ignorance ot the fact during childhood. 1 have requested hitherto your aunts and your governess to make no allusions to your future prospects. Jf I am not mistaken you learn the truth from mo for the first time." He paused as if expecting ar answer. "Yes, it lias never occurred to mo to inquire about the future," said I. "1 knew that we lived in comfort. Beyond that I have not thought on tho subject." "It is as 1 supposed," said my father. "Unless 1 see reason to alter the present distribution of my property, you will be one of the richest women in town. When you were a child, Virginia, 1 felt badly at times that you wero not a boy; I wanted a sou to inherit my name and fortune. But one day it occurred to me that though a daughter could not make money, she might learn to spend it as well as a son. The thought comforted me; for I have made all tho money wo can need for many generations to come, ; and my only desire is that when I am J gone thero shall be some one to me it as 1 would like. There is an idea, I know, I that women are not fitted to comprehend j the value of money, and that it is un I wise to givo them tho control of large ' sums. However correct that may be, the tendency of all modern legislation shows that tho world is in favor of their administering their own affairs. At any rate, I propose to make the exeriiiient. Unless you conviuco mo beforehand that 1 am mistaken, 1 shall leave you at my death tho mistress of over three million dollars." While I was trying to form a definite idea of so much wealth iny father rose, and going to a side table took up a large tin box, on thu top of which lay a plush covered case and a pile of pamphlets. "In this trunk," he said, "you will find one hundred thousand dollars in first rate securities registered iu your name. I want you to learn, so far as is possible for a woman, the care of prop erty. These newspapers and reports will help you somewhat. I shall be glad to answer all your quostions, and will keep you supplied with tho latest intelligence relating to your property, for I givo you thoso stocks and bonds to uho as you see fit. You will find a check book and a bank book inside. One must learn to appreciate tho value ot money iu order to uso it well. I would not advise you to change your investments at first wjtjh out consulting rue. You must ojcpeot to make mistakes at thu outset, but I have CHAPTER XI. & ', wJBP great confidence in your good witise. 1 should have been afraid to make tho ex periment in tho case of many girls." Those words of my father brought the tears to my eye-i. He had been watch ing me after all, whilo I sometimes half fancied him oblivious of my existence. At tho moment I was too confused to do more than thank him and gather up iu a dazed way the pamphlets he placed beforo me. Ho put the little key that dangled fromlho tin box into the lock, and disclosed to me tho parchment se curities within. "Carefully managed, that ought to yield you six per cent, net," said he. "But what am 1 to do with so much money every year," I cried aghast. My father laughed, and said: "That is for you to decide, Virginia. You will learn only too soon the part that money plays in the world," ho added gravely. "Prepare yourself to be courted and flattered for its sake. Some people would say. 'Do not, destroy her faith in human natuiv. She will learn tho truth soon enough. 1 believe that to be forewarned is to be forearmed. Good and truo men nro abundant, but there am iinsrriiiiiilniis ' and mercenary ones as well, who will woo you for the sake of your fortune and not because they love you, "One word more," said ho, without regard to tho expression of pain that overspread my face at his last speech. "Do not be afraid to use your money. Avoid foolish extravagance, but learn to enjoy life and the blessings at your dis posal. It ued to bo f,nsidered wrong by our forefathers to surround them selves with b"autiful tilings and any but the simplest comforts. Some people , are of that opinion still, but I do not ! agreu with tliem. Your own good sense ; will be tho best criterion of what is un- ' duly ostentatious, but never hesitate to I have anything you may wish because you fear the verdict of others. Iu short, ' be independent, and think for yourself , if you wish to bo happy. Your Aunt 1 Helen has undertaken tho charge of your wardrobe; that is something of which I know nothing. 1 can tell when a young lady is well dressed, but I am not capable of selecting her dresses. I Here, however," he said, taking the ' plush covered cape from the table, "is something that will make your toilet more complete.'1 I started with delight on raising tho ! lid to discover a superb necklace of tho , largest pearls. Under the impulse of the moment 1 flung my arms about my ' father's neck and kissed him. Ho seemed touched by my impetuosity, and stood for a moment with my head be tween his hands looking into my eyes. I "1 believe yon have in you the making of a noblo woman, my dear," he said proudly. "You havo your mother's sweet disposition, and also I think my fixity of purpose." I lay awake that night for hours. It seemed to me that I had grown fivo years older in a single day, and I felt a new responsibility in living. My father's trust and generosity had stirred me deeply, and I mado many a solemn vow not to prove unworthy of such confi dence. But athwart the satisfaction these thoughts inspired, roso tho recol lection of what he had said regarding the insincerity of men. I had of course read in novels of fortune hunters, but no suspicion of their existence within the pale of the polite society of which I was so soon to form a part had ever marred the rosy simplicity of my im agination, This was my first peep at the world's wickedness, and it shocked me to think that human nature could bo so base. I had seen but little of my Aunt Agnes during the auluuin, perhaps because I more than half suspected she did not sympathize with the plans and prepara tions for my social education. I remem bered some years before, at the timo when the question of my attending dancing school was being debated, to havo heard her express disapproval of girls who frittered away their time and health in the pursuit ot what she called "vain pleasures." I had not conversed with her on the subject, but I had ob tained an intimation lrom her short and acrid manner on the one or two occa sions when we had met of late that slie was quite aware of what was going on, and condemned it unequivocally. Although 1 knew that Aunt Agnes was very lond of me, and I in turn loved and respected her, she was apt to inspire mo with awe even ou ordinary occasions. Her character was as upright as her figure, which, in defiance of tho relaxed customs of tho day, was always arrayed against a straight backed chair. Con ventionalities ot every sort were an abomination to her. Black silk was the full extent of her condescension in tho matter of what she was pleased to call Babyloniau attire, and sho had no patience with the ordinary vanities of her sex. She received me frostily when I went to visit her a few days after tho conver sation with my father, and suffered mo to kiss both her cheeks in turn without evincing a sign of being mollified. He inembering that sho was fond of direct ness, 1 opened fire at once by observing that I was invited to a ball at Mrs. Dalo's a week hence. "All girls are fools," she answered ab ruptly, after a moment. 1 bowed my hoad submissively and awaited tho storm. "I expected better things of you, Vir ginia," she continued, "I hoped you wore too sensible to follow tho herd, and waste the best years of your lifo in folly." "Folly?" I echoed faintly. "Yes, folly. What els is it but folly to sit up night after night, until tho small hours of thu morning, waltzing with brainless young men?" "But, Aunty, my father wishes mo to go into society." "Pshaw! What does ho know about balls nnd parties? He is under tho thumb of your Aunt Helen. At your age he was working hard for his living, and learning to be of ute in tho world." "But I have not to earn my living," said t. "So much the worpo for you. Humphl You have found that out, liava you" I understood that soo tefweea to What my father had told mo. "Ycj, I know my father is very rich. If I do not go to parties, how am 1 to learn anything about life?-' "Life! You nro very simplt?, child, if you expect to learn what life is by danc ing tho german. The first thing wo shall hear is flint you nro engaged to some young dandy who is after your fortune. Then you will be enuffed out. Yon will become a fashionable simple ton, who goes to bed at four and gets up at noon. Lifo, indeed!" This cruel insinuation, following so fnon upon what I had lately heard, cut like a knife. 1 answered firmly: "My father has already warned me to bo on my guard against insincere per sons." "Much good a warning would do if you wero to tako it into your head to like anybody! Tell me! I may not un derstand girls" (this was a thrust at Aunt Helen, "but I know the disposi tions of my own family. When a Har lan gets a fixed idea it takes a deal of pounding to drive it out; and you're a Harlan, Virginia, if there over was one." This last reflection seemed to console her a little, or at least to suggest the fu tility of trying to alter my determina tion; for after sneaking of other matters for a few moments she exclaimed: "Well! girls will bo girls, I suppose, to tho end of time" and rising sho went to an escritoire and took out a small parcel, which it was evident sho i had intended to present to ino from the first. "There, Virginia, if you are bent on being frivolous, is a bit of old lace that your Aunt Helen, or anybody else, would have to hunt a long time to equal. You will find a locket inside which I wore when your father was married. 1 shall never use such frippery again, and you might as well havo tliein now as when I am dead." Knowing that she meant to be gracious, 1 thanked her warmly. But having doubts regarding her taste, 1 abstained from opening the package until 1 readied home. Then I found that the lace even surpassed in exquisiteness tho estimate Aunt Agues had put upon it. Aunt Helen was fairly envious, and spent the evening in wondering "where on earth" her rival could have come into possession of such a treasure. But tho locket a cameo, bizarre, and out of the run of ordinary personal orna ments excited her contempt. "It is tit for a woman of forty, and would make you look like a guy, Vir ginia." The idea of looking different from other people did not disturb me. Indeed, 1 had resolved 1o be thoroughly inde pendent. So, on the evening of Mrs. Dale's ball, I announced my intention of wearing tho locket, and of reserving my necklace of pe.uls for some more brill iant occasion. Anut Helen, who super vised my toilet, was greatly distressed at my obstinacy. Nevertheless I left the house with it on. But at the last mo ment my courage failed me; 1 slipped it off and put it in my pocket, thus mak ing a courtesy to conventionality on the threshold of society. CHAPTER HI. 57 3 J T' I if if : "What dries your frmd Mr. tialc do?" ulic ashed one day. i My recollections of tho first few par ties I attended are confused. A great many young men were introduced to 1 ine, but I scarcely distinguished one from another. I was alternately dazed and dazzled by the attention., I received, j Thero is no object in disguising tho fact that 1 had become very handsome, and , ' my brilliant financial prospects were, uf course, well known. i . My emotions wero doubtless those of an average society belle, eager to drain tho cup of pleasure to the dreg-,. I lived I to dance, and cared little with whom J I danced, provided lie danced well. The meie physical satisfaction of waltzing, i coupled with the glamor of a universal ( i homage, contented inc. , j But this did not last long. 1 learned i ' to make distinctions and to generalize, I I and from this primary stage of develop- j I lneut 1 began to entertain positive likes ' and dislikes, I It was not, however, until tho wilder ! was waning that Mr. Roger Dale occu- j , pied a different place in my thoughts i lrom half a dozen others, although he had been polite to me fiom tho time of my first ball at his mother's house. It I would be difficult to say exactly what distinguished him from tho rest of their I admirers iu tho eyes of every girl with I any pretensions fo beauty or style; but I ho was uudeuiably considered at that timo in tho circle of my acquaintances j as the most fascinating man in society, j Ho was commonly spoken of as interest- I ing, and thero was a vague impression j tlmt he wn3 lacking in constancy. It was not unnatural, therefore, that I I should bo flattered at his singling mo out for assiduous attentions, especially I when ho possessed thu art of letting mo understand iu a quiet, gentlemanly fash ion, and without thu aid of garish com pliments, thut 1 was tho only girl in tho room for whom he carod a straw. 1 did not believe him, but I was pleased, for that was the way in which 1 wished to be wooed by tho one whom I wished to believe. So iu course of timo I became willing to retire with him into conservatories and ante-rooms to avoid iiitcrnintiou. I was btill loud of dancing, but 1 had re- covered from tho frenzy wlrich blinded me to everything but tho rapture of f ho moment. I liked fo hear Mr. Dale talk, and without an afilnity of ideas our in timacy mutt have died a natural death. Dut we found a common gronnd of sym pathy in our revolt against Uio suliservi eney in modem life if romance to mat ter of fact considorntions. Ho harped upon this string, and awoke a correspond ing chord in my breast. His ideas wero a correlation of the dreams of my girl hood. I felt that I was understood. Thero was such a thing as tho love I had Imagined; Mr. Dale had pondered over it, fathomed it, and could talk about it. Not that I considered myself in lovo with him. or him with mo. Wo simply wore friends that was all. But exist ence soemed nobler when illumined by his theories. He declared that the Puritan fathers and their descendants lacked tho power of expression. People wero afraid to ac knowledge they loved. Tho ardor that distinguished the passion of other races and made it beautiful was nowhere to bo found, for if it ever dared to manifest it self the breath of ridicule wilted its growth. The expensive "floral offering" was more prized than tho single dewy bud of the true lover, and the zeal and sentiment of chivalry had yielded to tho blighting pro-eof a commercial age. My Aunt Helen was tho first of tho family to comment on my intimacy with him. "What does your friend Mr. Dale do?" she asked ono day. "Do?" "Yes. I mean what is his business down town?" "1 don't know, Aunt Helen," 1 an swered, and I spoke the truth. J had never thought to inquire. "Thu D'lle blood is not the very best in the world." she continued presently, with her head bent over her work almost as though soliloquizing. "As regards position they are well enough, but two of this young man's uncles were ex tremely dissipated, and I fancy that tho father was not much to boast of. He died early, just after I was grown up. I remember him though. Ho was a handsome creature." I listened with glowing cheeks, but mado no response. "They have very little to live on, I imagine," she observed nearly five min utes later. i "Of whom are you speaking?" I in quired with dignity. The Dales, child, of course. It was generally supposed that Mr-. Dale was left very poorly off. I believe her hus band's life was insured for something, ami they own their hou.-e. Pussy al ways looks well dressed, ht they must have to scrimp in other ways." Pussy Dale was Roger's eldest sister, a girl of just my age. They wero a family of five, four of whom wero daughters. 'I don't see that their being poor is anything against them," 1 said, a little hotly. "Xo-o," replied Aunt Helen reflective ly, "perhaps not. But 1 don't know what your father would say to him as a son-in-law." "A son-in-law? You havo no right to make such insinuations, Aunt Helen," I protested. "Mr. Dale and I aro friends, nnd nothing more," "I am glad to hear it, dear, for though I should try to reconcile myself to whomever you chose, believing that a girl is tho best judge of what will con tribute to her own happiness, 1 own frankly that 1 should be better pleased with some one whose antecedents were a little more creditable." I grated my teeth and sewed indus triously in silence for the rest of tho evening. 1 felt injured without scarcely knowing why. Aunt Helen's accusa tions wero vague at best, it was im possible for me to doubt Mr. Dale. But on the other hand the idea of our mar riage was not a serious "onMderation. Still I felt annoyed and troubled, and 1 could not help thinking of what my father and Aunt Agnes had said by way of warning. But though I lay awaiio long that night. I fell asleep at last, con vinced that Roger Dale was the noblest nnd sincerest soul alive, and that to doubt him would bo to wrong the sacred name of friendship. This conversation tiiokplaeo in .March, but in tho next two mouths Mr. Dale was so much at our house that I was not surprised when my father asked one evening the same question put to ine by Aunt Helen. Our intimacy had con tinued without further development", except a constantly increasing devotion on his part and a corresponding pleasure in his society on my own. I did not mako my infatuation conspicuous by walking with him in the streets, but otherwise 1 did not attempt to disgnisu the partiality 1 felt for him. Had 1 mixed more with other girls before en tering society I might have been les guileless. But as it was, I never thought of tempering by coquetry tiie sutislnc tion visible in my faco whenever Mr. Dale appealed. This timo 1 was prepared with an an swer to the question concerning his oc cupation down town: "He is iu tho wool business, and doing very well." "A wool broker?" "1 think so." "Humph!" My father walked up and down tho room a few limes. "I have already cau tioned you, Virginia, against falso proph ets who ccmo to you in sheep's clotlv ini?." Ho was jocose doubtless so as to pass the mutter off lightly and to spare my feelings. But I choso to be offended, and answered haughtily: "I don't understand what you mean." "Ho stood still and looked directly at me. "Simply this, Virginia: I trust you aro too sensible to throw yourself away ou a man who is not worthy of you," "You do Mr. Dale a great injustice," I replied, with an assumption of dignity, "and mo too." Whereupon I swept-out of the room. 1 flung myself upon my lxl and burst into tears. Theso remarks of my father and aunt were stvawa, but they showed i mo how the wind was likely to blow. Thofo npon whom I had a right to roly 1 for sympathy were ready to desert mo (list of all. It was cruel and unkind. Had I asked to bo allowed to many Mr. Dale? Had cithor of us over hinted at tlie subject? Never! And yet my father was tho first to cast suspicions and make insinuations, for I understood his unjust taunt. Sheep's clothing, indeed! Detraction was the surest way to make ine love him; for if tlicro was any one under the sun whose sentiments wero noble and unselfish, tvliose motives were manly and disinfor isted, I believe it was Roger Dale. Why had my father spoken in such high torms of my good sense only six months ago if he thought it necessary to caution me again today? I felt bitter and wronged. Just then my glance chanced to fall on the tin box in which wero the securities my father had given mo in the autumn, and I blnshed as I reflected that except to deposit tho dividends that were sent to me 1 had dono nothing toward under standing the care of my property. 1 had used the checkbook to give a little money in charity and fo pay some bills, but the pile of financial pamphlets lay on the shelf of my desk still unread. I had not had timo to devote myself to them, or rather tho timo had slipped away before I realized it. There was some ground after all for my father's reproof. It was possible that my neglect ami apparent disregaid of his wishes had led him to speak se verely of Mr. Dale. Tho thought com forted me and brought sleep to my eyes. I rose early, and spent an hour Wore breakfast in reading tho annual report of ono of the railway companies in which I held stock; and I went down stairs with a confused mind, but with a sense of awakened virtue. 1 was cheerful and animated at table, and asked several questions concerning mortgage bouds and sinking fnnds that brought a pleas ant expression to my father's face. The reason why I felt so buoyant was not merely the light heartedness of re pentance. My romantic spirit had con ceived a scheme for convincing my father that ho had unjustly sneered at Mr, Dale's business capacity. 1 was resolved to consult him as to my investments, and I felt sure that the profits accruing from his sago advice would plead his ciwisi more eloquently than any words of mice. Lot but my father perceive my admirer's sterling qualities, and I know that he would lie eager to make amends for his injustice by pushing htm forward in busi ness. The idea took strong possession of ine, for ever since hearing Aunt Helen speak of Mr. Dalo's lack of moans I had been eager at heart to assist him. 1 would gladly have asked him to put my money into some commercial venture, and have insisted upon his keeping a por tion of the gains ; but to that I felt he would never consent. And yet I did not believe that 1 was iu love with Roger Dale. The thought never occurred to me. I was ready to have 'ur relations continue indefinitely as they were. But 1 was not able to re gard the hostility of my family without impatience that added a spice of martyr dom to my interviews with him. The very fact that others thought ill made it all tho more incumbent upon mo to be steadfast and undoubting. (TO BK CONTINUED.) HE HAD GOOD LUCK. Think of What Micht Have Happened I II Thing HhcI Ueen Othurwisc. A man with a long pennyioyal txnrd was Fcen to enws Vahington street yesterday inoniiii't and creep under a little ladder , tli.it re-ted against a lamppost. Iieiiuca-ked why hedid, he replied: ".lust i to lm.v sMjier-titious people the fallacy uf , their lieli.-K I always open my umhiella before noing out, and never look at the , moon ocr my right shoulder. 1 have broken every looking gla-s iu my house, beloiu' to the Thirteen club and make my i r. ife dion her dishcloth every time she , rli'.i ii- up the table crockery." "Are vou a lucky man?" 1 "I net a few earawav seeds in my beard once iu awhile, but upon the whole have little to complain ot." "Wnal's tho ni.uUr with your foot? You Rpp,-ar to be lame." I knocked my hie toe nail off tho other day while chopping Kindling wood. But I was in ky in not catting oil my wholu , font. Don't ou think -o'" I "I see inn have two lingers gono ftom i your lelt hand." "Ye,; f got them too near a buzz t. aw about ten years ago. but I was inighty 1 luck iu saving my arm. The uw wis humming at thu time, and it would have ; taken oil my arm as easily as it took ott my lingers." "You wear glasses; are your eyes weak:-" "They are a trille lame, yes. I had ptob ably the best pair of eyes in all Con coun ty when a joungman, but unfortunately one day 1 was fooling with a powder llasl; and the darned thing blew up. Hut by a stroke of good luck 1 saved my eyesight, though somewhat impaired." "I notice a bend in your back. Were you born so-" "Not. by any means. A few years ago I was as straight as an iron column, but one day I attempted to get abo.ml of a train that had stm ted, missed my footing and fell between the ears and the depot plat form. My back got a terrible wrench, and at one time it was believid that I was in jured for life. I cnuicout of it pretty well, liowecr, and eveis clay 1 ibanK iu lucky fctars that 1 did not go under the wheels." "How came that nick in your lelt ear?" "A big bulldog chewed that out when 1 was only thirteen yearsohl. It whs a pretty had affair, but I'm tarnation glad I didn't die from hydrophobia," and the lucky man continued his walk up the street. Hoston Herald. W.o-i'li-il II Im. Dashnway I have been up in the cottli try two or three times the last six month to see a girl, and now every one is talking about it. They say we are engaged. Old man, I'll tell you honetly, it worries nie. ('levcrlon IMiaw, you know how pen. nit talK. I wouldn't worry over a thlu; like that. Why, there isn't any truth iu it, is there? Dashawny N'o. That's what worries me, New York Sun. Satl.tled with III Work. Mr. Hoiuider My dear, you left the latchkey in the keyhole whuu you came In last idght. Mr. Hoiuider Well, if you had as much trouble getting it into the keyhole as 1 had you'd feel disposed to leave it here too. New York riuii KALEIDOSCOPE. IIf Could We Haas-tie, To. IFrom tuo Hfooklyn We, He 1 qm going to havo my life Inrored, lia What for ? lie What for t Why, uppoe I ibould die; what would you do '; She (lieartlonly) Marry ngaiu. Ho (calmly) Not uulasa my lite had boon heavily Inaurod. A Sleeping Cur Annoyance. I'rom Truth. First AVnkeful (In slepine car) What's that old rooster coughing so riolently about'' Bscoud Wakeful He's (ticked a pillow down his windpipe, I presume. II, and C. Limited, U'tom the Detroit I'roe Press. "Give me a plate ot hot beans," said thi man at the lunch counter. "Pork with It?" asked the waiter. "Yos." Then he turned to the hole In tbe wall and sane out: "boston aud Chicago limited," and beans with pork for ono came back. Afti;r Many V"rs. Strawbcr (proudly) Thut shirt wai worn by my grauilfatherin the warof 1612. Slngerly It's strange I never saw it be fore. Strnwber It just came back from tha laundry. Clothier and Furnisher. A Susgrntlriu. Old soylnps are all well enough in their way; And set tlicro is iuoiu for improvement, f tako it. 'Twould bo truer to fay, when wo quoto it to day "Where there's a will there's a way to break it." Truth. .1 IS Ir Job on Hand. Cleverton What's your hurry, old man? Dashaway I huven't a moment to spare. I've got to nttend n reception this evening, and I'm going around to my laundrymau to see if 1 can borrow one of my collars. Clothier and Furnisher. 'Clio Old Man. Skads You don't go up ou Cass arcnua to see your girl any more? Skids Xn, I've quit. Studs What's that for? Skids Aw, the old man kicked. De troit Freo Press. rie "Wat Accepted. With kindltUK ty.o the poet wrote To her hh words of love. The kindling's now dou'o by bis bands Each morning at tho stove. -Truth. Her Motive. Cora What got you in the notion to, marry that manufacturer of porous plas ters? Dora I want to find one man that will Etiek to me. Dpoch. if Ye'll J.hb Mo Alone. Oh, Larry, now Larry, it's no uso a tatkin. Ye'ro too timid oathirely to sultagiri's taste Yo'ro never cuiitent wid a shmlle an a curtsey. An here yu are now wid yer arm round my wnist! Vo bodther my lifo out wid beggin for kisses. An tho morn ye do set. why, tho bouldher ye're giown; An whin I don't give 'em, it Just makes no differ Vo take em, hut, Larry, now lave roe aloue. Faith, what would the misthrcss toy. man, did she (iud ye Koriver a toolin round me at my work? Vo'ro a tiant that tukea wliat yo happen to fancy No bettber, I'll swear, than a haythen born Turk! Oh, Larry, my lad, yo've tho tomrue for the blarneyl Sure, now, 'twould be mcltin the heart of a sthoue, Wid both hands in the douch I kin nivcr resist ye Ve know it- an yit yo won't lave me alone! Oh, Larry, now Lrry, be iwd anshtop taysln! There'" somcbudy cumin quit foclin and hiwh! An will I say "yes," will I have je? Oh. Larry, Ye'd bo eharmin tho very birds oil of tho hu-h! I must name a day soou when tho bans shall be published. Kin I uiver escape ye: och hone, lad, ocb hone; Must I nurry yo whedder nr no. ye're ,i villain, IJut, Larry, I will if ye'll lave ine alone! M. N. li. In Hoston Post. Me I.(,t Her. He had asked her to many him, nnd was waiting impatiently for her answer. "Will you expect me to keep house?" she finally asked. "No, indeed, my love; the servants will attend to all that." "You won't ask me to make the bread or broil beefsteaks?" "Certainly not, my angel; we will have a cook." "And I will not be compelled to pound the washboard?" "How can you ask such a question' No, no, no." "Then I cannot marry you. I have been brought up lo do all those things, and I could not lie happy in a life of idleness." When ho realized what a treasure hhad lost lie went ?ndly to his luxurious home and vowed to remain a bachelor forever. Detroit Free Fjdss. Ho Was ItlRhr. "I want to take the next train to To ledo," said a lady to the ticket young mail I at the Michigan Central station. "You can't do it, madam," he replied, with a subtle smile. I "Why not?" sho asked, iu quick sur- ' prise. I "Because, madam," and tho young man 1 looked solemn, "hc.iuo wo havo an engi- neer and conductor to do that, aud wu don't feel disposed to fill their place with an entire stranger." Detroit Freo Press. A Safit l'rnle1nl!. In tho life insurance office: Tho Fx aniinei May I ask why you eipeet to bo insured at half the usual rates for one of your ago? The Applicant Uocause of the absolute) safety of my calling. The Examiner And that calling ia what? The Applicant I am a Freuoh duelist, I'ittsburg Bulletin. Tho Ideal She I want to get a pleco of ribbon thai can be nicaly tied into a bow. Clerk Yes, madam. Perhaps you would like to see sotuething already made up' She N'o, indeed. You don't suppose I would allow my Fido to wear a ready made uooktie, doyou? Olothler and Fur nisher. Proof of Confidence. First Citlr.en Do you know anything about HuHwiukle, the butcher, Hrown it he is a reliable iiiun or uot ? Second Citizen Well, I'll say this muuh for Hutlwiukle; I've bought sausages from him for over live years. Ttaa Siftiugs.