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THE INDIANA STATE SENTINEL. WEDNESDAY, JULY 24 1889.
THE. LADY OF THE CLUB. Beiford'a Msjraalne.1 The old and somewhat cynical eaying, that philosophers and reformers can bear the griefs and woes of other people with a neroi?tn and resignation worthy of their creeds, would have fitted the case of Ko land Barker only when shorn of the inten tional 6ting of earcaaiu. It is, nevertheless, true that even his nobly-gifted nature, his tender heart, and his alert brain some times failed to crasp the very pith and point of his own argument?. He was a wealthy man whose sympa thies were earnestly with tho poor and unfortunate. He believed that he under stood their suffering, their ambitions and their needs; and his voice and pen were no morn truly on the side of charity and brotherly kindness than was his purse. It was no unusual tbing for him to at tend a meeting, address a c!ub, or take part in a memorial service, where his was the only hand unused to toil, and where he alone bore all expense, and then after dressing himself in the most approved and faultless manner became tbo guest of honor at some fashionable entertainment. Indeed, he was a leader in fashion, as well as in philosophy, and at once a hero in Avenue A and on Murray Hill. On the eveninsr of which I am about to tell you he had addressed a club of work inmea in their little dingy hall, taking as his subject "Realities of Life." He had f oucht to show them that poverty and toil are not, after all, the worst that can befall a man, and that the most acute misery dwells in palaces and is robed in parole. He spoke with the feeling of one who had himself snü'ered as, indeed, he had from the unsympathetic associations of an uncongenial marriage. He pictured, with deep feeling, the chill atmosphere of a loveless home, whose wealth and glitter and luster could never thrill and enrapture the heart as micht the loving handclasp in the bare, chill rooms where sympathy and affection were the champions of poverty. I bad admired bis enthusiasm as he pictured the joy of sacrifice for the sake of those we love, and I had been deeply touched by his pathos a pathos which I knew, alas, too well, sprang from a hungry heart whether, a now, it beat beneath a simple coat of tweed or, as when hours later, it would still be the prisoner of its mighty longing, though clothed with ele gance" and seated at a banquet fit for princes. The lat words fell slowly from his lips, and his eyes were dimmed, as were the eyes of all about me. His eyes, bo full of ieelina had har.lly ceased to throb when far back in the little hall arose a woman, thin and worn, and plainly clad, butshow in? traces of a beauty and refinement wnich bad held their own and fought their way inch bv inch in spite of pov erty, anxiety and tears. The chairman recognized her and asked her to the plat form. "No.'' she said, in a low, tremulous tone.which showed at once her feeling and ber culture "no, I do not wish to take the platform; but since you ask for criti cism of the kind speech we have just lis tened to, it hao seemed to me that I might Ser one, althou?h I am a stranzer to you all." Her voice trembled, and she held firmly to the back of a chair in front of her. Tho chairman signified his willingness to ex tend to her the privilege of the Coor, and there was slight applause. She bowed and began again slowly: "I sometimes think that it is useless to ever try to make the suffering rich and the suffering poor understand each other. I do not question that the gentleman has tasted sorrow. All good men have. I do not question that his heart is warm and true and honest, and that he truly thinks what be said;, but and here her voico broke a little and her lip trembled "but he does not know what real suffering is. He cannot. No rich man can." There was a moment of impatience in the room, and some one said, loud enoueh to be heard, "If 6he thinks money can bring happiness she is badly left." There was a slight ripple of lauehter at this, and even the serious face of Roland Barker grew almost merry for a moment Then the woman went on, without ap pearing to have noticed the interruption: "I do not want to seem ungracious, and heaven knows, no one couid mean more kindly what I say; but he has said that money is not needed to make us happy only love, and ajrain h'e quotes that base less old maxim, 'The love of money is the root of all evil.' " She paused, then went p'owly on as if feeling her way and fearing to lose her hold upon herself: "I know it is a sad and cruet world, even to the more fortunate, if they have hearts to feel and brains to think. To the unloving or unloved there must be little worth; but rhey at least are spared the agony that sits wLere love and poverty have ßhaken hands with death' her voico broke, and there was a painful silence in the room "where those who love are wrung and torn by all the thousand fears and appre hensions of ills that are to come to wife and child and friend. The day has passed wten all this talk of poverty and love that love makes want an easv thing to bear the day has passed, "I say, when sane men ought to think, or wise men ppeak, such cruel, false, and harmful words. He truly says that money without love cannot bring happiness; but that w only half the truth, for love with poverty can bring, does bring, the keenest agony that mortals ever bore." There wa a movement of dissent in the hall. She lifted her fac a moment, con tracted her lips, drew a long breath, and taid : "I will explain. Without the love, pov erty wf-re lijiht enough to bear. What does it matter for one's self? It is the love that gives the awful sting to want, and cakes its cruel fingers grip the throat as never tie cr grappli'ng-hook took hold, und torture with a keener zest than fiends their victims! Love and poverty! It-is tho combination that devils invented to i.:ake a hell on earth." All eye were fastened on her white face now, and she was rushing on, her word?, hot and impassioned, striking firm on every point she made. ,kCet me give you a case. In a home where comfort is or wealth a mother pits, watching by night and day the awful hand of death reach nearer, closer to her precious bat, and nothing that kill or science can suggest w ill stay the hand or heal the aching heart; and yet there ia comfort in the thought that all was done that love and wealth and skill could do, and that it was nrtture's way. But take from her the comfort of that thoujrht. She watches with the same poor, breaking heart, but with the knowelJge, now, to keep her company, that science might, sh! couid, push back the end, could even rare her babe if but the means to pay for skill and change and wholesome food and air were hers. Is that no added pang? Is poverty no curse to her? a curse the deeper for her depth ot love? The rich know naught of this. It gives to life its "wil iest agony, to love its deepest hurt" She paused. There was a slight stir as if f ornc one had thought to offer applause, and then the silence feil again, and 6he tean anew, with shining eyes and cheeks aflame. She swayed a little as ehe poke and clutched the chair as for support Her voic grew hoarse and trembled, and ehe fixed her gaze upon a vacant chair. "But let me tell you of another case. A stoüe's throw from this hall, where pretty things are said week after week, and kindly meant. I know of poverty and love of the blessedness of these, there is a living illustration, worth more than all the theories ever spun to tell you what 'realities of life' must be where love is great and poverty holds sway. Picture with me tho torture and despair of a re fined and cultured woman who watches hour by hour the long months roll through and sees the creeping feet of mental wreck and physical decay, and knows the mortal need of care and calm for him who is the whole of life to her, and for the want of that which others waste and hold as dross h? must work on and on, hastening each day the end he does not see, which shall deprive him of all of life except the power for ill. She will be worse than widowed and alone, for ever by her side sits Want, for hiui, tearing at every chord of heart and soul not for herself, but for that dearer one, wrecked in the prime of life and left a clod endowed only with strength for cruel wrong, whose hand would sheath a knife in her dear heart and laugh with maniac glee at his mail deeds. She saw the end. She knew long months ago what was to be, if he must toil and strain his nerve and brain for need of that which goes from knave to knave, and hoards itself within cathedral walls, where wise men meet to teach tho poor contentment with their lot. She knew he must not know; the knowledge of the shadow must be kept from his dear brain until the very end, by smiles, and cheer, and merry jest from her. Who dare tell her that riches are a curt-e? and prate of 'dross' and call on heaven to witness that its loss is only gain of jov and harbinger of higher, holier things? "Who dare call her as witness for the blifs of poverty with love?" Fhe slowly raised her hand and, w ith a quick-drawn breath, pressed it against her side, and with her eyes still fastened on the vacant chair, and tears upon her cheeks, falling unchecked upon her heav ing bosom, she held her listener silent and intent on every word she spoke. The time allotted anyone was long since over run ; but no one thought of that, and she went on : "With love! Ah, there is where the iron can burn and scar and open every wound afresh each day, make povertj' a curse, a blight, scourge, a vulture, iron beaked, with claws of burning steel, that leave no nerve untouched, no drop of blood unshed. "With love! 'Tis there the hand of poverty can deal the deadliest blows, and show, as nowhere else on earth, the value of that slandered, hoarded thing called wealth." There blazed into her face a fierce, in dignant light, her voice swelled out and struck upon the ear like fire-bells in the dead of night. " 'The root of evil !' 'poverty with love !' Hypocrisy, in purple velvet robed, behind stained glass, with strains of music falling on its ears, with table spread in banquet ball below, bethought itself to argue thus to those itself had robbed; while, thought less of its meaning and its birth, the echo of it lving, treacherous words came from the pallid lips of many a wretch whose life has been a failure and an agony bo cause of that which he himself extols. A lie once born contains a thousand lies, and holds at bay the struggling, feeble truth, if but that He be fathered by a priest and mothered by a throne as this .one was! 'The root of evil' is the spring of joy. Decry it those who will. And those who do not love, perchance, mav laugh at all ih need can mean; but to the loving, suf fering poor bring no more cant, and ceaso to voice the hollow words of ignorance and hypocrisy. It is too cruel, and its deadly breath has long enough polluted sympathj and frozen up the springs oi healthy thought, while sheathing ven omed fangs in breaking hearts. Recast your heartless creeds! Your theories for the poor are built on these." She sank back into her chair white and exhausted, There was a wild burst of applause. A part of the audience, with that ear for sound and that lack of sense to be iound in all such gatherings, had forgotten that it was not listening to a burst of eloquence which had been duly written out and com mitted to memory for the occasion. But Koland Barker sprang to his feet, held both hands up to command silence, and said, in a scarcely audible voice, as he trembled from head to foot: "Hush, hush! Mie has told the truth! She has told the awful truth ! I never saw it all before. Heaven help vou to bear it. It seems to me I cannot!''' Several were pale and weeping. I turned to speak to the woman who had changed an evening's entertainment into a tragic scene; but she slipped out during the ex citement. I took Barkers arm and we walked toward the avenue together. Neither of us speks until we reached Madison square. Here the poor fellow sank into a seat and pulled mc down be side him. "Don't talk to me about theories after that," said he. "Great God! I am more dead than alive. I feel fifty vears older than when I went to that little hall to teach those people how to live by my fine philosophy, and I truly thought that I had tasted sorrow and found the key to resig nation. Ye cods!'' "Perhaps you have," I said. "Yes, yes," he replied impatiently ; "but suppose I had to face life day by day, hour by hour, as that woman pictured it and ehe was a lady with as keen a sense of pain as I what do you suppose my philosophy would do for me then? Do you think I could endure it? And I went there to teach these people how to suffer and be strong!" "Look here. Barker," I said, "you'd bet ter go borne now and go to bed. You are cold and tired, and this won't help mat ters any." "What will?" he asked. I made no reply. When we reached his door he asked again: "What will?" I shook my head and left him standing in the brilliant hall of his beautiful home, dazed and puzzled and alone. The next time I met Koland Barker he grasped ray hand and said excitedly: "I have found that woman I What she said is ali true. My God ! what is to be done? I feel like a strong man tied hand and foot, while devilish vultures feed on the flesh of living babes before my eyes!" "Stop, Barker," I said; "stop and go away for a while, or you will go mad. What have you been doing? Look at your hands; they tremble like the hands' of a palsied man; and your face; why, Barker, your face is haggard and set, and your hair is actually turning gravi What in the name of all that's holy have you been doing?" ".Nothing, absolutely nothing!" ho cx- rlaimed. "That is the trouble! What can I do? I tell vou something is wrong, Gordon; something is desperately wrong in this world." "She is only one of a great many," I sug gested. Koland Barker groaned: "My God! that is the trouble so many that the thing seems hopeless. And to think that on every one of these poor souls is laid an other burden that that stone spire may go untaxed!" "Barker," I said, laying my hand on his arm. "tell me what has forced all this upon you with sucb a terrible weight just now?" "Not here, not now," he said. "I have written it down just as she told it to me von know I learned stenography when I began taking an interest in public meet ings. Well, I've just been copying those notes out. Thev are in my pocket," he said, laying his hand on his breast. "They seem to burn ray very soul. I would not dare to trust myself to read them to you here. Come home with me." When we were seated in his magnificent library, he glanced about him, and, with a wave of his hand said, with infinite satire: "You will notice the striking appropriate ness of the surroundings and the subject." "No doubt," I said. "I have often no ticed that before, especially the last time I heard a sermon preached to three of the Vanderbilts, two Astore, five other mil lionaires, and about sixty more Christians, all of whom were wealthy. The subject was Christ's advice to tho rich young man, 'Sell all thou hast and give to the poor.' But never mind; go on; the day has pasted when deed and creed are supposed to hold the slightest relation to each other; and what is a twenty-thousand-dollar sal ary for if not to buy " sufficient ability to explain it all sweetly away and administer at the same time, an anaesthetic to the natural consciences of men." I settled myself in a large Turkish chair on one side of the splendidly carved table ; he stood on the other side sorting a man uscript. Presently he 'began reading it. "When I married Frank Mellvillo he was strong and grand and brave; a truer man never lived. He had been educated for the law. His practice was small, but wo were able to live very well on what he made, and the prospect for the future was bright. We loved each other but, ah! there are no words to tell that. We wor shiped each other as only two who have been happily mated can ever understand. We lived up to his salary. Perhaps you will say that that was not wise. We thought it was. A good appearance, a fairly good appearance at least, was all that we could make, and to hold his own In his profes sion, that was necessary. You know how that is. A shabby-looking man soon loses his hold on paying clients. Of course he would not dress well and allow me to be ill-clad. He he loved me. We were never able to lay by anything; but we were young and strong and" hopeful and we loved each other.'" .Barker's voice trembled. He looked at me a moment, and then said very low: "If you could have seen her poor, tired, beautiful eyes when she said that." "I can imagine how she looked." I said. "She had a face one remembers." After a little he went on : " 'We had both been brought up to live well. Our friends were people of culture, and we it will seem strange to you for me to sav that our love and devotion were the ad miration and talk of them alL " 'By-and-b' 1 was taken ill. My hus band could not bear to think of me as at home alone, suffering. He stayed with me a great deal. I did not know that he was neglecting his business; I think he did not realize it then; ho thought he could make it all up; he was strong and he loved me. At last the doctors told him that I should die if he did not take me away; I ought to have an ocean voy age. It nlmost killed him that he could not give me that. We had not the money. He took me away a little while w here I could breathe the salt air, and the good it did me made his heart only the sadder when he saw that it was true that all I needed was an ocean voyage. The cli mate of his home was slowly killing me. We bore it as long as we dared, and I got so weak that he almost went mad. Then we moved here, where my health was good. But it was a terrible task to get business ; there were so many like him, all fighting as if for life, for money to live on from day to day. The strain was too much for him, and just as he be gan to gain a footing he fell ill, and and if wc had had money enough for him to take a rest then, and have proper care, good doctors, and be relieved from imme diate anxiety, he would have gotten well, with my care I loved him so. But, as it was shall I show you the end?" Barker stopped; he wa3 trembling violently, his eyes were full of tears. I waited. Pres ently he said, huskily : "Shall I tell you, Gordon, what I saw? I have not gotten over it yet. She laid her finger on her lips and motioned me to follow. The room where we had been was poor and bare. She took a key from her bosom, opened a door and went in. I followed. Sitting in the only comfortable chair which had been handsome once was a magnificent-looking man, so far as mere physical proportions can make one that. "' 'Darling,' she said tenderly, as if talk ing to a little child. 'Darling, I have brought you a present. Are you glad ?' "She handed him a withered rose that I had carelessly dropped as I went in. "He arose, bowed to me when she pre sented me, waved me to his chair, took the tlower, looked at her with infinite love, and said: 'To-morrow, little wife; wait till to-morrow.' "Then he Bat down, evidently uncon scious of my presence, and gazed steadily at her for a moment, seeming to forget all else and to struggle with some thought that constantly eluded him. She patted his hand as if he were a child, smiling through her heart-break all the while, kissed him, and motioned me to precede her from the room. "When she came out she locked the door carefully behind her, sank into a chair, covered her face with her bands and sobbed as if her heart would break. After awhile she said: 'A little money would have saved him, and now it is too late, too late. Sometimes he is violent, sometimes like that. The doctors say the end is not far oir, and that at any moment he may kill me and afterward awake to know it? It is all the result of poverty with love!' 6he said. Then, passionately: 'If I did not love him so I could bear it, but I can not, I cannot! And how will we bear it if he ever harms me and I not there to help him?' " Barker stepped to the window to hide his emotion. Presently he said, in a voico that trembled: "If she did not love him so she could let him go to some asylum ; but she knows the end is sure and not far off, and that the gleams of light he has are when he sees her, face. She has parted with everything that has made life attract ive to keep food and warmth for him. She is simply existing now from day to day one constant agony of soul and sense waiting for the end. She allowed me to take a doctor to see him ; I would have come for you, but you were out of town. He only confirmed what others had told her a year ago. He advised her to have him put in a safe place before he did some violence; but she refused, and made us promise not to interfere. She said he would be able to harm no one but her, if he became violent at the last, and she was ready for that. It was easier far to live that way and wait for that each day than to have him taken away where he would be unhappy and perhaps ill-treated. He needed her care and love beside him every hour, and sho she needed nothing." Here Barker Hung; himself into a chair and let his head fall on his foided arms on the table. "That is the way love makes poverty easy to bear," he said, bitterly, after a time, and his trembling Lands clutched tigtit together. "Did you give her any money?" I aeked. He groaned. "Yes, ves. I that is, I left some on the table under her sewing. She isn't the kind of woman one can offer charity. She" "No," I said, "she isn't, and besides, for the pain that tortures her it is too late now for money to help. Only it may re lieve her somewhat to feel sure that she can get what he needs to eat and wear and to keep him wann and allow her to be free from necessity of outside work. I am glad yoa left the money. But but Barker, do you think she will use it, coming that way and from a stranger?" He looked up forlornly. "No, I don't," he said ; "and yet ehe "may. I will hope so; but if she does, what then? The ter rible question will still remain fust where it was. That is no way to solve it; we can't ball out the ocean with a thimble. And what an infamous imposition all this talk is of 'resignation' to sueh as she ; for her terrible calm, as she talked to me, had no hint of .resignation in it She is simply calmly, quietly desperate now and she is one of the many." He groaned aloud. "Will you take me there the next time you go? I asked. "She said I must not comeback; she could not bo an object of curiosity nor allow him to be. She said that "she al lowed me to come this time because on the night we first saw her she had stepped into that little hall to keep herself from freezing in her thin clothes as she was making ber way home, and she saw that I was in earnest jn what I said, and she stayed to listen" his voice broke again. Just then the drapery was drawn back, ind his wife, superbly robed, swept in, bringing a bevy of girls. "Oh, Mr. Barker," said one, gayly. "you don't know what you missed to-night by deserting our theater party ; it was all so real love in rage, you know, and all that sort of thing; only I really don't like to see quite so much attention paid to the 'Suffering poor with a bigS,' and the lower classes generally. I think the 6tage can do far better than that, don't you? But it is the new fad, I suppose, and after all I fancy it doesn't do much harm, only as it makes that sort of people more insuffera bly obtrusive about putting their ill-clad, bad-smelling woes before the rest of us. What a beautiful vase this is, Mrs. Bark er! May I take it to the light?" "Certainly, my dear," laughed Mrs. Barker: "and I agree with you, as usual. I think it is an exquisite vase and that the stage is becoming demoralized. It is pandering to the low taste for representa tions of low life. I confess I don't like it. That sort of people do not have the feel ings to be hurt the fine sensibilities and emotions attributed to them. Those grow up in refined and delecate surroundings. That is what I often tell Roland when he insists upon making himself unhappy over some new 'case' of destitution. I tell him to send them five dollars by mail and not to worry himself, and I won't allow him to worry me with his Christy street emotions." Barker winced, and I excused myself and withdrew, speculating on certain phases of delicacy of feeling and fine sensibility. I did not see Barker again for nearly three weeks, when one night my bell was rung with unusual violence, and I heard an excited voice in my hall. "Be quick, John ; hurry," it said, "and tell the doctor I must see him at once. Tell him it is Roland Barker." John had evidently demurred at calling me at so late an hour. "All right, Barker ; I'll be down in a moment," I callecLfrom above. "No, come up. You can tell me what is the matter while I dress. Is it for j'ourselt? There, go in that side room, I cän hear you, and I'll be dressed in a moment." "Hurry, hurry!" he said, excitedly, "I'll tell you on the way. I have my carriage. Dont wait to order yours, only hurry, hurry, hurry!" Once in the carriage, I said: "Barker, you are going to use yourself up this way. You can't keep this fcort of thing up much longer. You'd better go abroad." "Drive faster!" he called to the man on top. Then to me: "If you are not tho first doctor there, there will be a dread ful scene. They will most likely arrest her for murder. "Whom!" said I. "You have told me nothing, and how can I prevent that if a murder has been committed?" "By giving her a regular death certifi cate," said he, coolly, "saying that you at tended the case and that it was a natural death. I depend upon you. Gordon; it would lie simply ria famous to make her suffer any more. I cannot help her now, but you can, you must! No one will know the truth but us, and afterward we can help her to forget. She is not an old woman; there may be something in life for her yet." "Is it the Lady of the" Club?" I asked. We had always called her that?" "What has she done ?" "Yes," he said, "it is the 'Lady of the Club,' and she has poisoned her hus band." "Good God!" exclaimed I; "and you want me to give heraregular death certifi cate and say I attended the case?" "You must," he eaid; "it would be in famous not to. .he could not bear it longer. She found herself breaking down, and she would not leave him alive with out her care and love. He had become almost helpless, except when short vio lent spells came on. Theso left him ex hausted. He almost killed her in the last one. Her terror was that he would do so and then regain his reason that he would know it afterward and perhaps be dragged through the courts. She had been working in a chem ist's office, it seems, when she was able to do anything. She took some acon ite, and to-night she put everything in order, gave him the best supper she could, got him to bed, and then gave him that She sent for mo and told me as calmly as God! it was the calm of absolute despera tion. She sat there when I went in, hold ing his poor dead hand, and kissing it rev erently. She laid it down, and told me what t tell you. There was not a tear, a moan, a sigh. She said: 'Here is the money you left all except what I paid for his supper to-night We bad gotten down to that before I had the chance to steal the poison, or the courage to give it to him. I had not meant to use any of the money ; the rest is here. I would like it used if you are willing to bury him decently, not in the Potter's field, and I would like if you w ill take the trouble to have it done absolutely privately. We have borne enough. I cannot bear for even his ashes to be subjected to any further humilia tion.' " Koland Barker paused to command him self. "Of course I promised her," he went on, after a time. "She does not re alize that she maybe arrested and have his poor body desecrated to find the causo of death. That would make her insane even if Drive faster!" he called out again to the man outside. When we reached the house he said: "Be prepared to see her perfectly calm. It is frightful to witness, and I 'tremble for the result later on." When we knocked t the door there was no response. I pushed it open and entered first. The room was empty. We went to the inner door and rapped gently, then louder. There was no sound. Barker opened the door, and then stepped quick ly back and closed it "She is kneeling there by his bed," he said, "write tho cer tificate here and give it to nie. Then I will bring an undertaker and we can at tend to everything else. 1 did want you to see her. I think you should give "her something to make her sleep. That forced calm will make her lose her mind. She is bo shattered you would not recognize her." "Stay here, Earksr," I Raid: "I want to see her alone for a moment I will tell her who I am and that you brought me if I need to." He eyed me sharply, but I stepped hastily into the inner room. I touched the shoulder and then the forehead of the kneeling form. It did not move. "Just as 1 expected," I muttered, and lifting the lifeless form in my arms I laid it gently beside the body of her husband. In one hand she held "the vial from which she had taken the last drop of the deadly drug, and clasped in her other she had held her husband's fingers. She had been dead but a few moments, and both she and her hus band were robwd for the grave. When I returned to the other room I found Barker with a cots in his hand and a shocked and horrified look on his face. He glanced up at me through his tears. "We were too late," he said. "She left this note tor me. I found it on the table. She meant to do it all along, and that is why she was so calm and had no fears for herself." "I thought so when you told me what she bad done," said I. "Did you ? I did not for a moment or I would have stayed and tried to reason her out of it." "It is best as it i?," said I, "and you could not have reasoned her out of it It was inevitable after the rest. Take this certificate too; you will need both." When all was safely over, as we drove home from the new graves two days later, Barker said: "Is this the solution?" I did not reply. Presently he 6aid: "To the dead, who cannot 6ulier, we can be kind and shield them even from themselves. Is there no way to help the living. A few hundred dollars, two short years ago, would have saved all this, and there was no way for her to get it She knew it all then, and there was no help!" "Why did she not, in such a case as that, push back her pride and go to somo one? There must be thousands who would have gladly responded to such a call as that," he said. He buried his face in his hands for a moment and shuddered. At last he said : "She did she went to three good men, men who had known, been friendly with, and admired her and her husband. Two of them are worth their millions, the other one is rich. She only asked to bor row, and promised to repay it herself if she had to live and work after he were dead to do it!" "You do not mean to tell me that thev refused and they old friends and rich'.": I asked, amazed. "I mean to say just this; they one and all made some excuse ; they did not let her have it." "She told them what the doctors said, and of her fears? ' "She did," he answered, sadly. "And yet you say they are good men." I exclaimed, indignantly. "Good, benevolent, charitable, every one of them," he answered. "Were you one of them, Barker?" I asked, after a moment's pause. "Thank God, no!" he replied. "But perhaps in some other case I have done the same, if I only knew the whole story. Those men do not know this last, you must remember." "And the worst of it is, we dare not tell them," said 1, as we parted. "No, we dare not, he replied, and left me standing with the copy of the burial certificate in my hand. "Natural causes," I said to myself, look ing at it "Died of natural causes the brutality and selfishness of man and poverty with love. Natural causes! Yes." And I closed my office door and turned out the light. A COMEDY OF ERRORS. Krabarrasslns Kxperience of a Young Chi cngo Itrirle. Chicago IleialJ. "A very comely young woman opened the door, and Jones noticed that she seemed surprised at 6ceing him. She was about to speak when he inquired: "'Is Mrs. Jones in?' "The good-looking little woman smiled coquettishly, placed her fists on her hips, with her arms akimbo, and said very archly : '"It looks like it, doesn't it?' 'Then she burst into a very jolly laugh, caught Jones by the lapel of his coat and pulled him into tho parlor, where she reached her two plump arms up around his neck, and said to the astonished Jones: " 'First, kiss me.' "Jones would have thought he had struck a private asylum but for the fact that the little woman with her arms around his neck was very pretty, with big. blue eyes and golden hair, and not at all like a lunatic. Besides, she was hold ing her face upturned ready to be kissed, and he had no time to think. He kissed her as per request, and did it with as much ardor as any woman could ask. Then she said : "Second, tell me what brings you out here in the middle of the afternoon, and she pulled his head down and kissed him again. "I reckon there never was another man placed in such a trying position as that. Jones saw in a minute that he was mis taken for somebody else, but he didn't know whether it was a sweetheart or wife he had found, and he didn't care to take chances on deciding. He said: " 'I came to see if you would rent me a room.' " "The pretty little woman laughed again and pushed him into a chair. Then she sat on his knee, put her arms around his neck, and asked, shyly : "'Aren't you satisfied with your present quarters?' "She hugged him real hard as she said this, and kissed him before he had a chance to reply. When he got a 6how he braced up to a performance of duty and said: " 'I guess you've made a mistake. I'm looking for a room. You seem to take me for somebody you've met before.' "He said this as seriously as ho could, but the fun of the thing and that peculiar twist of the upper lip made him look as it he were half laughing. His remarks threw the pretty little woman into a great fit of laughter, but she didn't let go of him. "Finally she subdued her mirth a little and said: " 'Now quit teasing me and tell me how much you love me,' and she smothered him again. "Jones saw that he was getting into deep water and that he had better swim out He tried to take the pretty arms from about his neck and to disincumber his knee, but be didn't succeed. 'I'm not teasing you,' he said, 'I never saw you before. Who do you think I am?' "The arms were loosened and the two hands grabbed him by the shoulders. "'Why, Fred Jones?' said the little woman. 'What do you mean by talking tome like that? You know I don't like you when you tease.' " 'Fred Jones is my name,' replied Jones, 'but I am not your Fred Jones, nor any body's. I am a single man, and I came here hoping to find a room.' "The little woman bounced off his knee and stood looking at him a minute, evi dently in doubt as to whether he was crazy or only just playing a joke on her. She made up her mind to the latter and made a dive for Iiis neck again, and got it, along with another kiss. " 'Don't be silly, dear,' she eaid. That isn't a bit funny, now. It might have been when you first came in, but it isn't any longer. You never did know when to "end your jokes.' " 'I see you take me for your husband,' said Jones, as Ehe perched on his knee again. "'"Well, rather!' the little woman mur mured, as she snuggled her cheek down against his and tickled her nose with his mustache. " 'But I am not,' said Jones. "Up the little woman jumped again, and Jones took advantage of the oppor tunity to get up also. " 'fed Jones!' she said, and she began to get mad. 'I want you to stop this stupid pretense. I won't speak to you for a week if you. don't I told you that it wasn't funny. "Jones took her by the arm and led hsr to the bay window, the shutters oi which were partially closed. He threw them all open, squared himself before the tempting little beauty and said earnestly : " 'I'm not joking at all. I have told you the truth. . I am not j'our husband and I never saw vou till you opened the door and grabbed me. I advertised for a room in this neighborhood and you answered it to "E. 17." Here is the answer,' and he dived into his pocket and brought it out. " 'Look me all over and see if you don't realize your error. It's hardly possible that I should be dressed exactly like your husband, even if I do look like him in every other respect' "The little woman was dazed. She took the letter mechanically and looked at him, getting soared more and mere every min ute. Her eyes took in the cutaway suit of dark stuff he wore, as though it was per fectly familiar to her. "She looked searchingly into his face, and at the peculiar expression about the left corner of his mouth, and had got so far in a protest as "Oh, Fred, don't frighten' when her eyes rented on his necktie and the pin it held. The pin was a jagged little nugget of gold w hich Jones had got out West, and he had had a little diamond set in it. "Pretty Mrs. Jones' face grew a shade Ealer and she took a step backward and urriedly snatched the sheet of paper out of the envelope. She opened it and read her own answer to the advertisement. Then she took another look at her hus band's double and ran to the other end of the room, as scared as though poor Jones had been Jack the Ripper. "'Go away!' she cried frantically ; 'go away !' "I suppose she thought of the affection ate reception 6he had given him and was writhing mentally. She dropped into a chair and buried her face in her hands and commenced to cry. This touched Jones, and he came over and sat down near her. " 'I'm sorry for what has happened.' ho said, 'and will go in a minute. First, I want to know something about yourself and busband. I gather that his name and mine are identical, just as we appearto bo in person.' "The little woman told him, between her 6obs, that she bad been married only three months; that her husband worked in a certain wholesale house down town, and they wanted to rent a room or two to help out the rent. That was why she an swered his advertisement. "When Jones departed she went to tho door with him, and smiled through her tears as ßbe told him she'could never be certain she had the right man unless sho put a mark on him of some sort. She wouldn't 6hake hands, and Jones came away. "He said he believed she was only half convinced that ho wasn't her husband then, and that if he had declared it all a joke she would have thrown herself into his arms. But he wasn't mean enough to do that. He sympathized with her in her dilemma. "Well, he came and told me all about it, and wo fixed up a scheme to go to the place where the husband worked and look at him. I was to ask for him and talk to him, while Jones stood aside somew hero and sized him up. "We did it. I asked for Fred Jones, and when he appeared I was so thunder struck that I almost forgot my part; but I managed to say I had called to see if he was a Fred Jones I had known in New York, etc. The two men were exact counterparts. "When we came away Fred was pale, and I knew he realized the mental load that pretty little Mrs. Jones would hence forth have to stagger under when he said: " Old man, I wouldn't be in that wo man's place for $1,000. Whenever that husband of hers steps out of sight a min ute the next time he appears he will have to be identified, and 6he w on't be sure then it isn't I. This suspicion that the man sho takes for her husband may be the other one will follow her through life and be like a specter to bob up in her path at every turn. It will make her gray-haired before her time if it don't drive her crazy. I guess the only decent thing for me to do is to go to some other part of the country and let her know that I'm no longer in the same town with her husband.' " "So he went to California the next week. He is in San Francisco now, and every week sends a letter to Mrs. Fred Jones in Chicago, proving that he is still there." If the man who told this story invented it, he ought to enter the list with Rider Haggard. The Face at tho Windoir. Detroit Free Press. "This letter is to my husband," she tali as 6he licked on a etamp at the window in the cor ridor of the postoilicc. "Yes'm." "Will it go to-day?" . "Yes'm." T.y first mail?" "Yes'm." "He oupht to get it day after to-morrow?" "Yes'm." "And I ought to have his answer by Satur day?'' "Yes'm." "It ain't overweight?" "No'm." "And if he gets it, and I get his answer by Saturday. I can write " "Please don't obstrnct the window, ma'am; there's forty people waiting." "Oh! thereare! That's always the way of iL I can't get a word of information out of this postoilice, try as I will. Good day, sir! I'.'l go across to Canada after this!" Wanted In a Dime Maeeuni. Lawrence American. St. Teter "Well, who are you?" Newly Arrived Spirit "I'm a newspaper hu morist." "Lver make a joke about the Chicago girl's foot?-' "Nop." "Or about the mother-in-law?" "No. sir." "Ever say that your umbrella reminded you of a certain season in the year because it was Lent?" "Never." "Just stand out there and I'll call the rest of the boys to look at you. With all these truth ful circulation editors and cheekless book agents and such men as you, we'll have to put on an annex pretty soon." II Saw the Proprietor. Epoch. Wife "John, I wish you'd po into Coffee fc Co's. when you're down town and see why they haven't sent up the groceries 1 ordered by postal card two days ago. li'a shameful to neglect ray order ao. Just give them a real hard scoldinff, will you, John?" John "I shall go there and see Mr. CofiVe himself about it." John (an hour later) "Mr. Co (Tee, here's an order on this postal card that I've carried in my pocket two days. I wish you'd get the goods up to the house early this morning, will you, please?" A Philosophic Memory. Pack. Jones (turning back to hail the congressman from hi district, who has just passed him without speaking) "Why, Col. Buneo, you don't know me! Don't you remember Jones of North Fork, who distributed tickets for you last fall?" Col. Dnneo "Of course I do. Why, Jouea, old fellow, how are you? Wasn't expecting to see you, you know. Knew your name per fectly, and was just trying to recall your lace when you spoke. How'a everything down your way Ab Evidence of Greatness. fPuck. Visitor (to host) "You seem to b a promi nent citizen here everybody turns around to look at you." Great Man (proudlyV-"Yea. There ain't a man In this town that I don't owe." Cnmte Chtmes. Texas Siftlngs. . Mether "Dar, now, I don tolo you not to flay wid dem white cbildens. Dsy lick all d awea of yer bread, tad den call yer nierl" R. R. R. RADWAY'S READY RELIEF. The Cheapest and Best Medl cine for Family Use in the World. In from one to Iwiutr minute, never fails to rsl'.essa PAIN w;!h one thorough appl cation. No matter taff violent or exeraciat ng the'pam, the Rlieumatio, Bed ridden, Infirm, Cnppied, Nervous, Neuralpic, nrproe tratcd wita d a rnayeu2er, RADWAV'B KLiCf KtLIEF wiU auord insiant relief THE TRUE RELIEF. RADWAT'S READY RELIEF 1 the ob rmi.! (rent in vorue tLat will inneatly Mop p&io. Icstat'.y ruiieves ana soon cures RHEUMATISM! NEURALGIA.! Sciatica. Toothache, Congestions, Headache, Inflammations, Asthma, lDnuen.a, ore Throat. D:'Jicult Breathing. Sum mt- Complain DYSENTERY, DIARRHEA. Cholera Morbus. It will la s few m!nut, when tnkeo sccrdisf ti direction, core Crnmpn, spasms, Sour fe'oniaoh. Heartburn, Nausea, Voiaific?, NV trockne. 8eexv. Wne.8, Cholera Morbus, fire Headache, STMMEÄ COMPLAINT, Diarrh ea. Dysentery, Colic, Wind IS tb Howe!, mid ail internal pa n. It is b'chlv important that evenr faTiilv kep rf p'yot' KADWAY S KKaUY KKLlEF alwaya tn thl boue. Its gw w 11 prove benea-ial no aU otaiona of pain or icknes. Thre is uothinc In the world that will stop ra:n or arrest tlie rrres of disess as qui klr as 1;. K. !i- Where epidemic Jiei prri1, airn a Fever, Pventery, Cholera. Icflj'nza, Diphtheria, Rrar. Fever and other T!).v'ipnaDt J'!eae. EADWir READY HEL1LF wi'.i. i! taken a direz-ied. prorr. the syetem against attacks, and if kUM with lcknee quickly core the patient. MALARIA IN ITS VARIOUS FORMS. TEYER AND AGUE, RADWAY'S M READY RELIEF. Kot only enre the pst'ent !e'zei with ma'aria, but If people rxpo?ed t-o it will, every rooming on rettlna" out ol 'bed, take twenty or thirty drop oi the kjraDT RKMFFina c!a of water, and drink, and eat a cracker, they will escape atLicka. Practicing With R. R. R. t MoNTAGFE. Teiaa. Dr. RadwaT Cn Thar See niii? your med:-jnes for the lict twenty reara. and In all cases of ChiUs and Fever 1 hve nevrr tailed to onre. I nev:;r use acythirg but BEADY RELIEF and PILLS. THOS. J. JONES. FRrtTXAVD. Iowa. Dear Sr: W are aeinv yme medicine lor Typhoid and Maiarial Fever with tii erratest beueflt. What R. R. R. and RadwaVe pir have done no one can tell. JOIIX SCHCXTZ. VALUABLE TESTIMONY! Croton Lavptng, N. Y., June 53, Mear. Radway & Co. Gentlemen: Lat aeaon 1 employed boot 150 men, and dnrine the season they bought r rue sixteen dozn bottle of Radway'a Ready Relie-f, a larpe nomlr of nose of Pi! a and some Rol venu. They use the Heady Riief in their dnnkmr water, 11 to lo drops in a plass of water, to prevent cramps and keep off fever and ajrue; they al ose It (exteraaUy') for b raises, aore hands, rheumatic pa ns vre throat, etc. If by any chance we run out of your tnediciaea, we have no poace nntil oar stock ia replaced. I, o:t self. take IL K. K. be ore coin? out in the vard eir!y in the morninc and am never troubled with fever and ague. This yvar I was attacked with rheumatism, and your Pills did me more good than any other modi cine I took. Yours trulT, Signed i 8. HAMILTON1, Jfc. Mr. John Morton, of Verplane Point, N. Y., prrw prietcrof the Hudson River Brick Manufacturing; Company, says that he prevent and cures attacks oi chills and fever in bis lanii'y ard amonz the mew in his emplov by the nse of Ratwat's Rr.nT Reuw Pills. Also the men in Mr. Frost "a brickyard at Lht same place rely entirely on the K. Ii. K. lor the cur and prevention of maiaria. There is not a remedy aeent In tb world thawd cure Fevtrr and Ague and all other Malarious, BiUona and other Fevers Raided by RAD WAY'S PILLS) a quickly as IMDWAY S READY BELIEF. Radway's Reay Relief is a cure lor every pais. Toothache, Headache, Sciatica, Lumbato, Nfirt1.;!, Rhenmatism. Swelling of the Joints, Sprains, Brnis", Pains in the Back, Chest or Limb. The applicn! ion n tie Ready Relief to the part W parts where the difficulty exists will afford lnstan eaee and comfort. FIFTY CENTS . FER BOTTLE. Sold by Druggists. BD AD WAY'S III Sarsapariiiian Resolvent. The Great Blood Purifier. Pure blood makes sonnd flesh, strcne bce anil clear skin. If yon would hsve yonr flesh firm. yoiT bones sound and vour complex :on lair, use KA.D WAY'S SARJSAPARILLA RESOLVENT. It possesses wonderful power in cur ne all forma of Beroiuloos and Eruptive Diseases, Syphiloid, doera. Tumors, Sores, Enlarged Glands, etc M rapidly and per manently. Dr. Randolph Molntyre of !t. riyacinibe. Can., sovs: "I comvlcteiy and inarve',on.iy cured a victim of 8cro!u!.i in its lat stase by following your advice p'.ven in your little treaties on tht disease. J. F. T runnel.' South Louis. Mo., "was cured of bad case of Sero;'ula after having been given up aa incurahle." Sold hj all DnijrsisUu ONE DOLLAR PER BOTTLE. DR. RADWATS REGULATING PILLS, THE GREAT LIVER AND STOVACH REMEDY. Terfert Pnrpatires, Snothin? Aperiente, AeU Without Pain, Alwav Reliable lad Natural ia their Operation. Perfectly tasteless, elegantly coated with sweet gum, purge, regulate, cleanse nd trenpthen. RADWAY'S PILLS for the cure of all oVaordera of the Stomach, L,iver, Bowels. Kidneys, Bladder, Nerr. ous Disease. Loss of Appetite, Headache. Constipa tion, C'ostiveness, Indigestion, Dyspepsia, Biliousness. Fever, Inflammation of the How da, Pile and all de rangements of the Internal Viscera. Purely vegetable, containing no mercury, minerals or deleterious dings. What a Physician Say of Raday' Pi". 1 am selling your R. R. Belief asd your Rerulatlnar Pills, and have recommended them above aU pill a.od sell a great many of them, and have there OD hand always, aud use them in my pracUoe and tn my oww lamiiy, and expect to, tn pre Vre nee of all piils. Yocrs rrsreotfullv. DR. A. C M1DDLKBK0ÖK, DoraTÜle, Oa. DYSPEPSIA. Dr. Radwsy'a Pills are a cure for tbi pornplaiat. They ret-ore'strength to the tomsvb and eoHi is t4 Scrtorm it functions. The symptoms of Dyapepaiai ;snpprar and with them the liability of the tjslem to contract disease. RADWAY'S PILLS AND DYSPEPSIA. Newport, Kt. Messrs. Dr. Iladway J; C Ge: I have been troubled with Dyspepsia for atxwt foor months. I tried two diSerenl doctors w-Hhout any permanent benefit, I saw your al. and two eeta ap bought a box of vour Regulator and feel a rreat deal teller. Your I'if.s have done me more good than ail the Doctor'a Medicine that 1 have tsk n, etc. 1 ana. yoors respecUuily, KOBLKT A. PAGL. Djspepala ot Long; Standing; Cored. Pr. Radway I have for many yeara been afflicted with Dvsoepala and Liver Ornplaint, and found bot little re'liei until I pot your VU; and Resolvent, and they made a pr'e-t cure. They are the best medicine I ever bad in bit lue. Your tr end forever. lUenchard, MicL. WILLIAM SOOSAX. ' Sold by Drujjgisit. Prioav So per Box. Bad way A Co., Vo. 11 Wamsa-eV, New Tore. To the Publia. Bs Tis aqd ask for Badwav'a and aea that the uad