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THE STARKVILLE NEWS.
VOLUME 11. I Kentland’s I I Devotion | | By HENRY HURSTON. | TO Kentlaiui’s supreme disgust Mrs. Van Doluh’s house party accepted with great enthusiasm Violet Har wood’s proposal that they all go over to the park and skate on the lagoon. Kentland looked around the snug lit- Te den on the second lioor, with the pen grate tire burning cheerily in one orner. He glanced through the half- H rawn curtains into the billiard room eyond, which was foggy with smoke, md which resounded to the merry .click of the billiard balls and the laugh ter of Mr. Van Dolah and Judge Stern, who were in the old people’s class, and, therefore, exempt from going to skat ing parties when they didn’t want to go. He looked ruefully at the dim little .alcove at the head of the stairs and thought of how he had planned, after he had beaten all of the conceit out of Mr. Van Dolah and Judge Stern at bil liards and smoked three pipefuls of to bacco, to sit in this alcove and have a ‘ nice, long, quiet talk with Violet. Then he pulled aside the curtain and looked out into the dark winter night with the gaslights flaring in the wind and thej snow 7 sifting gently down. Ihe winter spectacle r was more than ho •could bear. Kentland groaned and dropped the curtain with a shudder. “Tom Kentland,” said a voice at the door. “1 think you're an idiot.” Kentland looked up to where Kitty Clover was standing in the doorway. “O, thanks,” he? said, in his slow Bkdraw-l. “You’re too kind.” %“I don’t care,” went on Kitty; “some wiy had to tell you.” |H; And you; considered yourself the jHpsen instrument?” iß“\Vell.” said Kitty, o* •became into l&e den and sat down by Tom, “I really Wlieve 1 am. 1 have know n you so long. IK ages and ages, and because I am such fMa old friend I can say things to you iit others don’t.” Kf So careless of the others,” said mjt m, as he gazed sadly at the sparkling Tre. P “Tom,” Kitty looked at him severely; “I know that you are much in love with Violet.” “Fancy,” said Kentland. “Ves, you are, and there’s no use de nying it. And 1 know she likes you very much.” “Does she?” said Tom. “So much that she looks at me about three times a day. Where is she now, sitting on the steps with that little Harvard boy or singing at the piano while that fel low Towner, or whatever his name is, turns the music and looks like a cow whenever she happens to glance up at him?” “It’s your own fault,” said Kitty. “A man is supposed to try and please the woman he loves. He should siudy w hat she likes and doesn’t like and govern Himself accordingly. While you, with all your supposed experience, act as though you didn't know the first prin ciples of love making.” “No,” admitted Kentland, “I suppose I am what they call a poor performer.” | “It would be so easy,” went on Kitty. “Violet adores devotion more than anything else. That is why she likes that Harvard boy, as you call him, and Mr. Towner. They are devotion itself, while you —well, you don’t know what devotion means.” “Devotion,” said Kentland, “means the state of being devoted to any one thing, person or object. Strong at tachment. Ardent love or affection. P. P., of Latin uevovere, de-vovere, to—” “O, nonsense,” put in Kitty. “Why can’t you be sensible? Other men are devoted to Violet. She has grown to expect it. If a man isn’t devoted to her then she thinks he doesn’t care. You are so exasperating. Now, just the other evening, when we were talking about the fires and the Harvard boy had told how he had rescued a chum from the third floor of a blazing dor mitory, and Violet had asked if anyone would rescue her in case the house burnt up, and all the men had eagerly volunteered, what did you say-?” “I don’t know .” said Kentland, shak ing his head. “Something silly, I’ll be bound.” “J should say it was,” said Kitty. “You said you wouldn’t rescue her un less she was in a tobacco warehouse, because you didn’t like anj- smoke ex cept tobacco smoke. Then, to make it worse, you said you didn't believe in rescuing people anyhow 7 . That that was what firemen were paid for, and* that you belonged to a union and couldn’t rescue people because you were forbidden by your rules to do the work of other union men, which included the Amalgamated Firemen and Rescuers’ association, and that if this house burned you would be com pelled to sit in a saloon across the struct and watch a fat fireman in a gum coat and a black helmet carry Violet from out the devouring flames to the safety of the street below.” “Well, that’s what fat tiremen are paid for,” gently interposed Kentland. “And,” went on Kitty, “it made Violet angry. You might have pretended, anyhow, as long as there isn’t the faint est chance of your being put to the test. Now, there’s the skating party to-night. It's Violet that proposed to go. Hardly any of the men care about it, but because it’s Violet’s plan they have all taken it up. Everybody is making ready but you.” “It’s so cold outside,”said Kentland; “besides, 1 couldn’t skate ten feet if I was paid a thousand dollars a foot.” “Suppose you can’t skate! You could go along anyhow. Why, the sight of you sitting in the cold up on the bank of the lagoon would prove your devotion and do you more good than if you were actually' skating and enjoying yourself.” “1 don’t take well to sitting on a snow bank in the dark,” said Kentland. “I look nicer in front of a grate, with the ruddy firelight bringing my noble profile into strong relief against the dim background beyond.” Kitty rose w ith great hauteur. “As I said in the beginning, Mr. Kentland.” said Kitty, “I say again: You are an idiot. I wash my hands of you. I want ed to help you. I don't care any more. If I were Violet I don’t think 1 would ever look at you again.” Then she marched sternly out of the room, and Kentland heard her tell the rest of the house party gathered at the foot of the stairs that he was too lazy to go skating. The front door slarqmed and Kent land, looking out of the window, saw the party tramping away to the park. “I suppose I ought to go,” he said, giv ing another dismal glance at the grate. He thought about it for awhile and then sadly went downstairs, put on his overcoat and cap and the white woolen mittens that Violet had given him. and went out into the darkness. A cold blast right off the lake struck him full in the face as lie turned the corner, and some snow leaped gleeful ly down his neck. “Wow!” said Kentland to himself. “Confound skating parties, anyhow.” “Please, mister,” whined a voice at his side, “gimme a dime; I’m freezing to death.” Kentland looked at the tramp for awhile. Then a brilliant inspiration seized him. “You come with me,’’ he said to the tramp. He led him back to Mrs. Van Dolah’s kitchen and gave him two cups of hot coffee and a generous slice of steak. Then he described to him a certain party of ten people who would be skating in a crowd in Lincoln park. He put his overcoat on the tramp, and the white mittens, and the cap. “Von go ii]) to the park,” he said, sternly, “and sit down near the bank in the snow somewhere so that you can be plainly seen from the lagoon. Don’t sit near enough so that the skaters can come up and talk to you, but not too far away so that they can’t take notice of this coat, and this hat, and these gloves. Sit somewhere near the electric light, but not too close. When this party sees you and waves at you, why, you wave back, and wHen you see them going to take their skates off you cut for this place as fast as you can. Don't try to talk to this party or I'll have you sent to the peni tent iary for life. And don’t run Hard Work All Aronnd. First Stranger (on railway train) So you are selling Prcf. Hlank’s new books, are you? • Strange coinci dence. I am Prof. Blank. Second Stranger —That so? Then you wj-ote the very book 1 am agent for? First Stranger —Y T cs. The hardest work I ever did was writing that book. Second Stranger —Well, well! That’s another strange coincidence. The hardest work 1 ever did was try ing to sell it. —Tit-Bits. Those Lotliik Girls. Edy th —Yes, I have decided to marry Jack for the purpose of reforming him. Mayme —Poor fellow 7 ! Is he really in need of such heroic treatment? —Cin- cinnati Enquirer* STARKVILLE, MISS., FRIDAY, MARCH 27, 1903. mway with this coat, for if you fol low my instructions I’ll give you one of my old suits and overcoats to morrow that will be just as good, and a pair of shoes and a five-dollar bill into the bargain, and maybe you can blackmail me into doing some thing else for you. Now go on.” Kentland fairly pushed the tramp out of doors and then with a sigh of joy went back up the stairs four steps at a jump. He reached the den unobserved, and moving a screen so that he would not be seen from the billiard room he noiselessly se cured a pack of cards and, lighting a cigar, sat down in front of the grate fire and gave himself up to the delicious abandon of solitaire. After he had beaten the 13 game twice he got down his favorite book and read it through. Then he sat in the window seat and smoked his pipe in silent comfort while he watched the falling snow' outside. Suddenly he heard a knocking at the side door. He hurried down and found the tramp outside. He hur riedly received back his overcoat, cap and gloves, while the tramp breathlessly told him that he had followed instructions to the letter. “They seed me lots of times,” said the tramp, “and waved their mitts at me, and 1 give ’em the glad ban’ rite back agen. They’re a-comin’ home now.” Kentland handed the tramp a five-dollar bill and gave him an address to call at the next day to get the promised old clothes. With a gurgle of joy the tramp faded away down the street and Kentland thoughtfully walked a ton ml in the snow on the top step and then rubbed his face wUh a handful of snow, until his countenance was a good, ruddy color. He hauled on his coat and mittens and reached the front hall just us he house party returned. “Why in the work didn’t you come home with us? ai .cd Kitty. W © all went over to whjre you had been sitting, but you wt| ; gone.” “Yes.” said the lxrv;.rd boy, “you ought to have helped carry all those skates home. 1 say, we’re just about turned to ice. Really, that was about the coldest skating I ever did.” “Well,” put in Kitty, “1 suppose Mr. Kentland is even colder than the rest of us. We were moving about while he had to sit still up in that terrible snow bank. Door boy, 1 suppose he’s just about frozen to death.” All the girls crowded around Kentland and pitied him and told him how nice it was for him to sit there in the snow so heroically while thev were enjoying themselves. “I'm afraid we have ail been self ish,” said Violet, shyly. “Really, Mr. Kentland. I thought you were jok ing when you said you didn t skate. I am sorry we insisted on your go ing along.” “O, I’m all right,” said Kentland, cheerily. “Honestly, 1 had a fine time this evening.” Which was quite true. “I am afraid I have misjudged you all along.” said Miss Harwood a half hour later, us she and Kentland sat jjj the cozy corner alone, J thought you were rather —well—selfish, and that you wouldn't do anything but what suited your own pleasure, but when I saw. you sitting away up there on the bank in the snow and waving back at us so that we might feel you were with us in our sport I knew* that we had made a mistake. You can be awfully nice when you want to be.” Kentland resolved to give the tramp two suits of clothes instead of the one that he had promised. Later on in the evening, after more low-toned conversation with Miss Harwood, he decided to make it three and throw in another pair of shoes. —Chicago Tribune. Incurable Case. Husband (vituperatively) —I was an idiot when 1 married you, Mary. Wife (quietly)— Yes, Tom, I knew you were. Hut what could I do? You seemed m} 7 only chance, and I thought then that you might improve a little with time. —Tit-Bits. So Sadden! Mr. Dumhead— Nelson w as coming to call, but I told him you would be en gaged this evening— Miss Olemade (rapturously)—Oh, William!—Princeton Tiger. Quite Another Thing. “He was unable to meet his bills, I understand ?” “Well, that’s where you’re wrong. He couldn’t dodge them,”—Chicago Post. ALL THE STARS ARE AGLOW. Scientists Declare That Like the Sun They Are Masses of Barn ins Matter. During the last CO years searchers of the heavens have made the discov ery that the celestial bodies known to us as stars are similar in many respects to the sun, some considerably larger, others smaller, but on the average not much different in size and nature from the sun. They are —at least the vis ible stars are —great glowing globes of gaseous matter. Asa rule these vast furnaces burn steadily. Sometimes, however, the fires seem to die down and then blaze out again as of yore. Three hundred such stars are known to astronomers, says Chambers’ Journal; they are called variable stars because of the waxing and waning of their light. Now and again the seething tires prove too strong for the bonds of attractive force which hold the star together, and with one mighty upheaval the vast globe is shattered into fragments, blown into atoms, veritably “dissolved into thin air.” Thousands of years after this explo sion the record of the catastrophe reaches the earth, and a solitary w atch er in the old barony of Honnington, in the year of grace 1901, sees anew star suddenly blaze out in the mid night sky, to fade away only as its predecessors had done, leaving, per chance, not a trace in the sky to tell the spot where once a world existed. Among the millions of stars are to be found bodies in all stages of develop ment. Some are glowing with an in tensity of heat and light far beyond our utmost conception; others are slow ly cooling down —already they are dull red in color; some are cold and dark and dead. No telescope will ever perceive these latter bodies and no camera will de tect them. We only know that they are there by their influence over the light and motion of bright stars. One of the most icte r zsJinflections of the new astronomy deals with these dead, dark stars, and, although no eye has seen them, or ever w ill see them, still we are able to ascertain their size, weight and position just as if they were in the zenith of their glory. WANTED TO GO TO FRISCO. An Incident of Life in Alaska When the California Metropolis Was a Wonder. “In the pioneer days of Alaska,’ said Capt. J. S. Criter, an Alaskan pioneer, “San Francisco was the first place the natives ever heard of as associated with untold wonders. The person who had been to ’Frisco and back became the greatest man alive in the Sivvash esti mation. It was the ambition of every Indian, particularly the young men, to go to ’Frisco,” says the New York Sun. “One time two missionaries got into a quarrel at Nualato, and one killed the other. At that time people had to be taken to San Francisco for trial, and this missionary was arrested promptly and sent down there. Among the witnesses who were taken along was a young Sivvash Indian. “When he came back he was, of course, the lion of all the Indians in that district, and he made their un sophisticated eyes bulge, and aroused envy in every native breast by the tales he iold of what he had seen at ’Frisco. One young Indian became so enthu siastic that after thinking- the matter over, he decided to go to ’Frisco him self. “ ‘Me go to ’Frisco,’ he took to de claring on every occasion. “Not long afterward this Indian way laid and killed a white man near Cen tral City. He made no secret of it, and a delegation of miners took him into custody. “ ‘You kill w hite man?’he was asked. “ *Oh, yes! Me kill white man!’the Indian replied, eagerly. “ ‘Why?’ they asked him. “ ‘Oh, me kill white man; me go to ’Frisco!’ he replied. “That was ail. The missionary had killed a man and they had taken him to ’Frisco, so this Indian had simply killed his man so they would take him to ’Frisco. “The miners concluded, though, that to take the Indian to ’Frisco would es tablish rather a dangerous precedent in that country just then, so they took him out in a boat one night and dis posed of him otherwise. No Indian ever killed a man in Alaska again with the object in view of getting a trip to ’Frisco.” Literally Exact. The Politician —Now, don’t quote me as saying anything. The Reporter—Oh, no! I’ll simply publish what you said.—Puck, NUMBER 3. PLATINUM SELDOM STOLEN. ProfeMional Thieve* Realise That, Although Valuable, It Is Xot Ku*ily Disponed Of. One kind of valuable plate quite abundant in New York is seldom stolen by burglars, though the metal of which it is made far exceeds sil ver in cost, says the Times of that city. Every college chemical labora tory and scores of factory labora tories have costly vessels made of platinum. The plain metal is usual ly worth about its weight in gold, and made up into crucibles and other vessels used in laboratories it is much more valuable than in its ordi nary form. The makers of such ware, in fact, must earn large prof its, for their charges are high,* al though the metal is made into the simplest forms, without decoration of any sort. A tiny crucible, hold ing perhaps only a gill, is worth eight or ten dollars, and some of the larger vessels used by chemists are worth several hundred dollars each. The value of these vessels is so great th.it they are locked up every night in a safe in any well-conducted chemical laboratory, and frequently counted. Damaged vessels, and even the smallest scraps of platinum wire, are carefully treasured, and sent to the factory from time to time in order to be made over into new vessels. A chemist has some what the same feeling toward his platinum plate that a housekeeper has toward her solid silver, but the chemist’s plate is worth far more than any but the most elaborately wrought silver ware. It is also much more liable to damage. The presence of a small quantity of lead in a hot crucible of platinum is likely to bring about a puncture of the crucible. A punctured crucible must go to the factory, and repairs are very costly. Much of such ware used here is made in a little Pennsyl vania town by a single firm, and there are few workmen who under stand the art of handling platinum. Treated with care, platinum vessels are almost indestructible. They seem to suffer nothing from the high temperatures to which they are ex posed in the laboratory, and however long in use, a brisk rubbing ren ders them as beautifully-, bright as on the day when they came from the factory. They are ordinarily cleaned, however, by the application of hot water and acid solutions, as they gradually lose in weight by rubbing. One reason why platinum imple ments are seldom stolen by burglars lies in the fact that they are not easily disposed of. The metal is hard to melt, and a large vessel is not easily hammered out of recognition. Pawnbrokers are shy of accepting articles of platinum, because such articles, having a comparatively nar row use, are not hard to trace. Small crucibles and platinum ware and rods do occasionally disappear from laboratories, but the larger articles are rarely stolen. When a man presents himself in the shop with a metal worth in the neighbor hood of $250 a pound for sale, he is naturally expected to tell how it came into his possession. \ot Quite What He Meant. The man w.ho thought he had the knack of saying pleasant things, cal culated to warm the cockles of the oldest heart, was revisiting the town in which he had spent a summer 20 years before. “I'm Miss Mears. I don't know as you recall me,” said a coquettish elderly spinster, approaching him in the post office the day after his ar rival. The ready heart-warmer turned with his most beaming smile, and wrung her hand. “Recall you!” he echoed, reproach fully. “As if one could help it. Miss Hears! Why, you are one of the landmarks of the town!”—Youth’s Companion. One of Allen’s Stories. Apropos of modesty in politics, Al len told a story one day of an aspir ing citizen in Mississippi who used to quote grandiloquently the familiar saying: “The office should seek the man, not the man the office.” A few days later he was observed election eering for himself in the old-fash ioned style, with whisky, cigars, etc. Being reminded of his recent lofty utterances, he answered: “I still maintain my position. The office should seek the man; but, by gad! sah, the man should be around when the office is looking for him,”—Fran* cis E. Leupp, in Century. *