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»Between Two Fires® By ANTHONY HOPE "A wise man will make more opportunitie* than he finds." —Francis Bacon. CHAPTER ll.—(Continued.) ""Yes," continued the President, "owing So the recent sains of your real property in this country (sales, due. 1 fear, to a want of confidence in my administration), you have at this moment a sum of $300,- OQO in the bank safe. Now (don't inter rupt me, please) the experience of a busy iiife teaches me that commercial reputa tion and probity depend on results, not •an methods. Your directors have a pre judice against me and my government. That prejudices you, with your luperlor •opportunities for judgment, cannot share. Ton will serve your employers best by •doing for them what they haven't the :sense and courage to do for themselves. I propose that you should assume the re sponsibility of lending me this money. The Jtransaction will redound to the profit of bank. It shall also," he added, slow -ly, "redound to your profit." I began to see my way. But there were 'difficulties. "What am I to tell the director*?" I masked. » "You will make the usual return of investments and debts outstanding—mort ises —loans on approved security—but ;yoii know better than I do." "'False returns, your excellency means?" "They will no doubt be formally Inac esirate," the President admitted. "What if they ask for proofs?" said I. "Sufficient unto the day," said the "Toil have rather surprised me, sir," I «*id, "but I am most anxious to oblige and to forward the welfare of Au- T*ataland. There are, however, two points **hich occur to me. First, how am I to oe insured against not getting my lnter <Mt? That I must have." "Quite so," he interrupted. "And the second point I can anticipate. It is, ™hnt token of my gratitude for your time vj assistance can I prevail on you to ac •ospt?" "Your excellency's knowledge of human aafnre Is surprising." "Kindly give me your attention, Mr. Martin, and 1 will try to satisfy both ;yoiir very reasonable requirements. You 3tivs» $300,000; those you will hand over "A cn<\ receiving in return government ft cent bonds for that amount. I will 'tivn hand back to you $(>.">,000; $4. r >,ooo &r* will retain as security for your in •f*rest; in the ovent of any failure on the •;>art of A areata la nil to meet her obliga tions honorably, you will pay the inter 'J*t on the whole $300,000 out of that sum. That secures you for more than two years against absolute failure of in 'Jejv-st, which in reality you need not fear. "Till the money is wanted, you will have "3s)s use of it. The remaining $20,000 I lv>g <>f you to accept as your com .-jiMision, or rather ns a token of my es •wem. $20,000 absolutely—s4.l,ooo ns .'ir<£ as the Aureataland pays interest! Ynu must admit I deal with you as one .-gentleman with another, Mr. Martin. In "At result, your directors get their inter wt, I get my loan, yon get your bonus. W«! are all benefited, no one is hurt! All v:bis is effected at the cost of a harmless atratagem." I was full of admiration. The scheme was very neat, and, as far as the Presi vfent and myself were concerned, he had i»i;n no more than just in pointing out ,?ts advantages. As for the directors, they would probably get their interest; nny 4W, they would get it for two years. Tfcere was risk, of course; a demand for •svirtenee of my alleged investments or a sradden order to realize a heavy sum at •siart notice would bring the house about 7x>s « - ars. Hut I did not anticipate this. ■"Well, Mr. Martin," said the President, •Mo you agree?" X still hesitated. The President rose ■•iiVil put his hand on my shoulder. "Better say yes. I might take it, you %nou-, and cause you to disappear—be 'ikiwe me, with reluctance, Mr. Martin. It £• true I shouldn't like this course. It nmuld perhaps make my position here un- Hut not having the money would ■serliiinJ.v make it untenable." I saw the force of this argument, and ttsid: "I can refuse your excellency nothing." "X'bcn take your hat and come along t»> tht bank," said he. This was sharp work. ~Yonr excellency does not mean to take money now—to-night?" I exclaimed. "Not to take, Mr. Martin—to receive it "from you. We have made our bargain. TFhat is the objection to carrying it out promptly ?" "Hut I must have the bonds. They •3i(i«.t tie prepared, sir." -They are here," he said, taking a Knivlle from the drawer of a writing ta- ID,(MX) li [>er cent stock, signed '£%f myself, and countersigned by Don An tonio. Take your hat and come along." 1 did as 1 was bid. CHAPTER 111. it was a beautiful moonlight night, ami Whittitigham was looking her best as tvis made our way along the avenue lead in* to the Piazza 1871. The President '.walked briskly, silent but serene; I fol fo-aeed, the trouble in my mind reflected in a somewhat hang-dog air, and I was mnch comforted when the President broke ""Jus stillness of the night by saying: ""You have set your foot on the first rang of the ladder that leads to fame and .**alth, Mr. Martin." I was rather afraid I had set it on the '.sr«t rung of the ladder that leads to the But there the foot was; what I'iKi ladder turned out to be was in the Vttnia of the gods; so I threw off care, as we entered the Piazza I pointed fhe statue, and said: "Behold uiy inspiring example, your ex - aellency I" "Exactly," he replied, 'I make the mOst •>r my opportunities." .1 knew lie regarded nie as one of his '^fctinrtnnities, and was making the most •># cm. Tills is not a pleasant point of to regard one's self from, so 1 -changed the subject, and said: "Shall we call for Don Antonio?" '"Why?" ""Well, as he's minister of finance, I •fcought perhaps his presence would make the matter more regular." "If the presence of the President," said that official, "can't make a matter regular, I don't know what can. Let him sleep on. Isn't his signature on the bonds enough?" What could I do? I made one more weak objection: "What shall we tell Jones?" "What shall we tell Jones?" he echoed. "Really, Mr. Martin, you must use your discretion as to what you tell your em ployes. You can hardly expect me to tell Jones anything, beyond that it's a fine morning." We had now reached the bank, which stood in Liberty street, a turning out of the Piazza. I took out my key, unlocked ths door, and we entered together. We passed Into my inner sanctum, where the safe stood. "What's It in?" asked the President. "United States bonds, and bills on New Y'ork and London," I replied. "Good," said he. "Let me look." I unlocked the safe and took out the securities. He examined them carefully, placing each after due scrutiny in a small handbag, in which he had brought down the bonds I was to receive. I stood by, holding a shaded candle. At this mo ment a voice cried from the door: "If you move you're dead men!" I started and looked up. The Presi dent looked up without starting. Thero was dear old Jones, descending from his upper chamber, where he and Mrs. Jones resided. He was clad only In his night shirt, and was leveling a formidable gun full at the august head of his excellency. "Ah, Mr. Jones," said the latter, "it's a fine morning." "The President!" cried Jones; "and Mr. Martin ! Why, what on earth, gen tlemen ?" The President gently waved one hand toward me, as if to say, "Mr. Martin will explain," and went on placing his securi ties in the hag. In the face of this crisis my hesitation left me. "Mr. Martin received a cable from Eu rope, Jones," said the President, "in structing him to advance a sum of money to me." "Cable?" said Jones. "Where is it?" "We must have left it at the Golden House. I saw it was on the table just before we started. Though I presume Mr. Jones has no right ?" "None at all," I said briskly. "Yet, as a matter of concession, Mr. Martin will no doubt show it to him to morrow?" "Strictly ns a matter of concession per haps I will, though I am bound to say that I am surprised at your manner, Mr. Jones." Jones looked sadly puzzled. "It's nil irregular, sir," said he. "Hardly more so than your costume!" said the President, pleasantly. Jones being thus made aware of the havoc the draught was playing with his airy covering, hastily closed the door, and said to me appeallngly : "It's all right, sir, I suppose?" "Perfectly right," said I. "But highly confidential," added the President. "And you will put me under a personal obligation, Mr. Jones, and at the same time fulfill your duty to your employers, if you preserve silence till the transaction is officially announced. A man who serves me does not regret it." Here he was making the most of an other opportunity—Jones this time. "Enough of this," I said. "I will go over the matter in the morning." His excellency walked up to Jones and looked hard at him. "Silent men prosper best, and live long est, Mr. Jones." Jones looked into his steely eyes, and suddenly fell all of n tremble. The President was satisfied. He ab ruptly pushed him out of the room, and we heard his shambling steps going up the staircase. His excellency turned to me, and said with apparent annoyance: "Yon leave a great deal to me, Mr. Martin." lie had certainly done more than tell Jones it wns a fine morning. But I was too much troubled to thank him ; I was thinking of the cable. The President di vined tny thoughts, and said : "I must prepare that cable." "Yes," I replied; "that would reas sure him. But I haven't had much prac tice in that sort of thing, and I don't quite know —" The President scribbled a few words on a bit of paper, and said: "Take that to the postoflico, and they'll give you the proper form; I will fill it up." Certainly some things go easily if the head of the State is your fellow criminal. "And now, Mr. Martin, it grows late. I have my securities; you have your bonds. We have won over Jones. All goes well. Aureataland is saved. You have made your fortune, for there lie your $05,000. And, in fine, I am much obliged to you. I will not trouble you to attend me on my return. Good-night, Mr. Martin." He went out, and I threw myself down in my office chair, and sat gazing at the bonds he had left me. I wondered wheth er he had merely made a tool of mo; whether I could trust him; whether I had done well to rely on his promises. And yet there lay my reward; and I soon arose, put the government bonds and the $65,000 In securities in the safe, locked up everything, and went home to my lodg ings. As I went In it was broad day light, for the clock had gone five, and I met Father Jacques sallying forth. He had already breakfasted, and was on his way to administer early consolation to the flower women in the Piazza. lie ■topped me with a grieved look, and said: "Ah, my friend, these are untimely hours." I saw I was laboring under an unjust suspicion. "I have only just come from the bank. I had to dine at the Golden House and afterward returned to finish up a bit of work." "Ah, that.. is well," he cried. "It is then the industrious and not the idle ap prentice I meet?" referring to a series of famous prints with which my room was ABERDEEN HERALD, MONDAY, OCTOBER 1, 1906 decorated, a gift from my father on my departure. I Dodded and passed on, saying to my self : "Very industrious, indeed. Not many men have done such a night's work as I have." And that Is how my fortune became hound up with those of the Aureataland national debt. CHAPTER IV. After the incidents nbove recorded, things went on quietly enough for some months. I had a serious talk with Jones, reproaching him gravely for his outrage ous demeanor. lie capitulated abjectly on being shown the cable, which was pro cured In the manner kindly indicated by the President. The latter had perhaps been in too great a hurry with his heavy guns, for his hint of violence had rather stirred than allayed Jones' apprehensions. If there were nofhing to conceal, why should his excellency not stick at murder to hide it? However, I explained to him the consideration of high policy, dictating Inviolable secrecy, and justifying a some what arbitrary way of dealing with a trusted official; and the marked gracious ness with which Jones was received when he met the President at the Ministry of Finance on current business went far to obliterate his unpleasant recollections. I further bound him to my fortunes by ob taining for him a rise of salary from the directors, "in consequence of the favora ble report of his conduct received from Mr. Martin." Peaceful as matters seemed, I was not altogether at ease. To begin with, the new loan did not apparently at all im prove the financial position of Aureata land. Desolation still reigned on the scene of the harbor works; there was the usual difficulty in paying salaries and meeting current expenditure. The Presi dent did not invite my confidence as to the disposal of his funds; indeed before long I was alarmed to see a growing cold ness in his manner, which I considered at once ungrateful nnd menacing; and when the half-year came round he firmly refus ed to disburse more than half the amount of interest due on the second loan, thus forcing me to make an inrond 011 my re serve of $45,000. He gave me many good reasons for this course of conduct, dwell ing chiefly on the necessary unproductive ness of public works in their early stages, and confidently promising full payment with arrears next time. Nevertheless I began to sec that I must face the possi bility of a continual drain on resources that I had fondly hoped woul be avail able for my own purposes for a consid erable time at least. Thus one thing and another contributed to open a breach be tween his excellency and myself, and, al though I never ceased to feel his charm ns a private companion, my distrust of him as ruler, and, I may add, as a fellow conspirator, steadily deepened. Other influences were at this time at work in the same direction. Itich in the possession of my "bonus," I had plunged even more freely than before into the gaities of Whittingham, and where I was welcome before 1 was now a doubly hon ored guest. I became acquainted with the Signorina, the lady to whom the Pres ident had referred during his interview with me; and my acquaintance with the Signorina was very rich in results. This lady was, after the President, per haps the best known person in Aureata land —best known, that is, by name and face and fame; for her antecedents and circumstances were wrapped in impene trable mystery. When I arrived in the country the Signorina Christina Nugent had been settled there about a year. She had appeared originally ns a member of nn operatic company, which had paid a visit to our "National Theater" from the I'nited States. The company passed on its not very brilliant way, but the Signo riana remained behind. It was said she had taken a fancy to Whittingham, and, being independent of her profession, had determined to make a sojourn there. At any rate, there she was. She establish ed herself in a pretty villa, closely ad joining the Golden House; it stood op posite the presidential grounds, command ing a view of that stately enclosure; and here she dwelt, under the care of a lady whom she called "Aunt," known to the rest of the world as Mrs. Carrington. The title "Signorina" was purely profes sional; for ail I know the name "Nu gent" was equally a creature of choit-c; but, anyhow, the lady herself never pro fessed to be anything but English, and openly stated that she retained her titlo simply because it was more musical that that of "Miss." (To be continued.) A JlarvfloM Tree. A marvelous tree is reported to liav« been discovered in the Snu Jacinto Mountains, 011 tiio borders of Mexico. Tiie leaves of tiie tree resemble those of tiie (lg In shape, but they are of vivid purple and covered with bristly hairs, which easily penetrate the skin, causing painful swellings. The flowers are red, and greatly resemble tarantulas. The most peculiar feature of the plant, however, is the heavy and sick ening odor it gives off. A few wliifTs of this produces unconsciousness. In fact, the discoverers of the tree were rendered insensible by it. As the plant seems to have no bo tanical name. It is proposed to call it either the "Tarantula riant," or the "Chloroform Tree." Sa«l Story. Kind Lady—Poor man! You look so lean and seedy. Did you ever have an occupation? Downan Outt —Yes, nnim, I used to be a book agent, but I made a dismal failure of it. Kind Lady—lndeed! What was the book called? Downan Outt —"How to Succeed," mom. Manner*. jimmy had come to school with dirty hands, says a writer in the New York World. Mis teacher was shocked. "Jamie," she said, reprovingly, "your hands are very dirty. What would you say If I came to school that way?" "I wouldn't speak about it," said Jim my. "I'd be too polite." Cornea Natural to lllm. Sinkers —lild you ever notice Keel ton's hook nose and flshlike eyes? Corker —Yes. It isn't any wonder that he tells such fishy stories. A Wmnvlnl Grief. There are tragedies, too, 011 the ve raiula, some that a bit of exercise might prevent or lessen. I have one in mind now. All day long on a lioardlng-liouso veranda not many miles from this city sits a young woman, large-eyed, sad-eyed, never smiling, seldom speaking, though at her side Is a makl companion hired for the express purpose of "cheering her up." 1 Every night the woman's husband comes from town, smilingly greeting her, nnd only a nod, never a smile In return. They sit at a table In a cor ner with meals altogether different from those served at the long table In the center. Great Jugs of cream, lus cious berries, bread made to order, a special brand of butter, artistic-looking salads", try to tempt the woman to heartiness and cheer. A year ago she must have been pretty. Now she is plain, though her every feature is per fect. Her hair is glossy and would wave except for her insistence upon the application of a wet hairbrush by the maid companion. She dresses once a day, nlways in plain black, with never a bewitching ruffle nor coquettish end of lace. Every morning the husband's cheery "Good-by, dear!" rings across the veranda, half hopefully, half dls couruged, for now It is five months since this woman's baby died, and she has not smiled since! Pinned to her plain black collar Is a brooch of the baby's photograph and containing his hair, clipped from him when in the collin. lie was three months old when he died, and after five months the mother does not smile. Somehow one wants to shake the wo man in black, pinch her, tell her that her mirthless life is a life of sin more terrible than almost any other sin of which one may conceive. For there Is the dead child's father to think of and the future children which she should take to her heart and mother. One would tear from her the horrid black robe and robe her in the pink which would brighten her skin nnd lighten her eyes. One would unroll her hair and scatter Its tresses to the sun till the god of light brought back the waves and careless curls. One would make her laugh till the veranda rang with echoes. One would take even tlie brooch from her throat and place it tenderly, lovingly away. And then one would have her fall 111 >011 her knees confessing her sin both to her husband and lit r God. For greater sin hath 110 woman than this —the spoiling of the life of the man who loves her, the refusal to look ltji and be glad and hide her heartache. Everything feminine wears beads, and the shops are yet full of dangling strings beseeching buyers. Lovely col orings are shown this year —pale, translucent rose, yellow amber, currant red, mauve and lavender and the strik ingly chic green jade, as well as the ex quisite pinkish white coral. Of the colors slated for popularity in the new season's costumes blue in its many shades and tones is much in evi dence. Its quite universal acceptance may lie due to the fact that it is a color becoming to almost every woman, but it's more likely that the real reason lies behind the fact that I'aris has gone daft apparently over this color and is sending it to 11s in gowns, coats and hats —together with accessories In every conceivable shade. Browns are also to be much worn, with beguiling shades of green, apricot, mode and champagne in cloths, silks and crepes, but even with tills wide color selection blue loses none of Its favor. A very dainty evening Mouse In tur quoise blue messallne silk, Intended for wearing with a skirt In nlnon de sole of the same shade exactly, Is made with full handkerchief folds, gathered 011 either shoulder, and then crossed In front and drawn down under a deep walsthelt of the same silk, finished with tiny silk rosettes, each rosette centered with a miniature buckle in diamonds. Both hack and front the space between the folds of pale blue silk Is filled in just to the right height for the decol letage, with a chemisette of white tulle, bordered with silver lace. In and out through the silver lace a very narrow black velvet ribbon is threaded. Very charming bridesmaid dresses ore made of printed chiffon, large, soft tinted roses scattered over the surface or merely forming a wide border. There are also some beautiful grays and blacks among these printed which make up into attractive gowns for matrons. Then there is a black net, scattered all over with .tiny satin fig ures, that is very pretty, and grena dines, the real old-fashioned sort, with colored flowers and figures and satin stripes, are In vogue again. With these frocks moderate-width girdles of a col ored silk ure frequently seen, but black nnd white seems to have lost its pres tige for the moment. It never stays "out" for long, so we shall expect to to bob up serenely among the early win ter creations. Toilette* for Karlj- Fall. The cut nt the left represents a gown of mauve voile nioussellne. The skirt Is deeply trimmed with ruffles, headed by bands of guipure, over which Is 11 lattice work of narrow ribbon. The draped corsage forms three epaulet ruf fles, headed by a wide fold of the voile. It Is finished in front with bands of colored embroidery. The blouse and el bow sleeves are of guipure. Around tIM neck Is n double ruffle of Valenci ennes. The high girdle Is a taffeta, headed with folds of white and a large gold buckle. The other gown Is made of white radium taffeta. The princess skirt is trimmed with ruffles of Valen ciennes, with luinds and motifs of gui pure. The top is plaited, the corset be ing edged with a pointed piece of black velvet, ornamented with rhlnestone' buttons and bands of guipure. The blouse is plaited and trimmed with the guipure and lias a plastron of Va lenciennes. The elbow sleeve Is fin ished with a band of guipure, over a wide cuff of Valenciennes. Both are edged with a narrow ruffle of the lace. To Clenn Silver. When a big box of sterling silver came from the safe deposit vault the other day, a housewife who knows short cuts in her work made a solu tion of salsoda and cold water, put her silver Into it and let It stand live or six minutes. Then she took it out, laid It on a towel and wiped each piece with a polishing cloth. The work was quickly done and, judged by the gloss, was 1111 eminent success. Souvenir of DemlliniitN. A framed piece of needlework, con sisting of buttons sewn 011 a silk foun dation, was recently sold by miction in North T/ondon. It was made by the wife of n country parson who used to utilize In this way the buttons found in offertory bags in her husband's church. The peculiar collection covered p. number of years, and it was seldom, indeed, that a special collection of any kind was taken up without a number of buttons l>elng dejioslted, some by mistake, but most of them purjiosely. •louaewlfe'ii Table. Two wineglasses equal one gill. Tea ordinary eggs equal one pound. Twenty-flvedrops equal one teaspoon ful. One quart wheat flour equals one pound. Two tablespoonfuls liquid equal one ounce. One tablespoonful snlt equals one ounce. Four tablespoonfuls liquid equal one wineglass. Two tablespoonfuls powdered sugar equal one ounce. Three tablespoonfuls grnted choco late equal one ounce. One heaping tablespoonful sifted flour equals one ounce. One heaping tablespoonful brown or granulated sugar equals one ounce. At the best houses, napkins are still laid at the left of the forks or upon tho service plate If preferred. Sometimes they are half folded over with a small piece of bread or dinner roll Inclosed, though ordinarily these are now laid upon the bread and butter plate. The napkins Is folded square, with the Intlal or monogram of the hostess on top. Napkins folded In fancied shapes are not tolerated outside of country hotels and restaurants. The luncheon napkin may be smaller than the dinner one. Napkins should lie Ironed while quite (lump, so as to give them tho gloss and llnish so desirable in all table linen well laundered. How to Dry the Ilnlr. Some children catch cold very easily after having their hair washed. In order to dry it quickly and prevent this, use for the filial rinsing quite hot water in which a few drops of alcohol have been added. Then rub the hair well with alcohol and wring It out as dry as possible. Next take two or three towels, divide the hair and wipe each strand separ ately, says Home Chat Let the child sit in a warm room, or, if iiossible, in the sun: fan the hair and wipe each strand separately, and it will soon be perfectly dry. For ClluiltliiK Plant*. An ornamental wire trellis for the training of climbing plants van now he purchased for 12 cents a foot. It Is n great improvements over the chicken wire which has hitherto clone duty and comes In 12 and 18 Inch widths. The price mentioned Is for the narrowest width. STYLES FOR BOYS. About Kapklnn.