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A TALE OF THE FRONTIER 8YNOP8I8. Major McDonald, commanding an army post near Fort Dodge, seeks a man to Intercept his daughter, Molly, who Is headed for the post. An Indian outbreak is threatened. "Brick" Hamlin, ser geant who has just arrived with mes sages to McDonald, volunteers for the mission. Molly arrives at Fort Ripley two days ahead of schedule. She decides to push on to Fort Dodge by .stage in company with "Sutler BUI” Moylan. Gon sales, a gambler, Is also * a passenger. Hamlin meets the stage with stories of depredations committed by the Indians. The driver deserts the stage when Indi ans appear. The Indians are twice re pulsed. Hamlin and Molly escape In the darkness. Molly is wounded. Hamlin Is much excited at finding a haversack marked C. 8. A. He explains to Molly that he was In the Confederate service and dismissed In disgrace under charges of cowardice. At the close of the war he enlisted In the regular service. He says the haversack was the property of one Capt. LeFevre, who he suspects of being responsible for his disgrace. Troops ap- Gar and under escort of Lieut. Gaskins oily starts to Join her father. Hamlin leaves to rejoin his regiment. He re turns to Fort Dodge after a summer of fighting Indians, and finds Molly there. Shots are heard in the night. Hamlin rushes out, sees what he believes Is the figure of Molly hiding In the darkness and falls over the body of Lieutenant Gaskins, who accuses Hamlin of shoot ing him. The sergeant is proven inno cent He sees Molly In company with Mrs. Dupont, whom he recognises as a for mer sweetheart, who threw him over for LeFevre. Mrs. Dupont tells Hamlin Le- Fevre forced her to send him a lying note. CHAPTER XVII.—Continued. “Because I chance to know more than you suppose. Never mind how the 'information reached me;, had it been less authentic you might find me now more susceptiblo to your pres ence, more choice in my language. A carefully conceived plot drove me from the Confederate service, ih which you were as deeply involved as Le Ifevre. 'Its double object was to advance him in rank and get me out of the way. The plan worked perfect ly; I could have met and fought either object alone, but the two com bined broke me utterly. I had no spir it of resistance left. Yet even then— in spite of that miserable letter—I re tained faith in you. I returned home to learn the truth from your own lips, only to discover you had already gone. I was a month learning the facts; then I discovered you had married Le Fevre in Richmond; I procured the af fidavit of the officiating clergyman. Will you deny now?” “No,” changing her manner instant ly—‘‘what i 6 the use? I married the man, but I was deceived, misled. There was no conspiracy in which I was concerned. I did not know where you were; from then until this after noon I never saw or heard of you. Molly told me of her rescue by a sol dier named Hamlin, but I never sus pected the truth until we drove by the barracks. Then I yielded to my first mad impulse and sent that note. II you felt toward me with such bit- "Will You Deny It Now?" tefness, why did you come here? Why consent to meet me again?” 'My yielding was to a second Im pulse. At first I decided to ignore your note; then came the second con sideration —Miss McDonald.” "Oh," and she laughed, “at last I read the riddle. Not satisfied with saving that young lady from savages, you would also preserve her youthful innocence from the contamination of my influence. Quite noble of you, surely. Are you aware of our rela tionship T” “I have heard it referred to—gar rison rumor.” “Quite true, in spite of your source «f information, which accounts,'in a .measure, tor my presence here as By Randah Parrish of toe '"'Borderr M y lady of t>oubi , lfiybadyofac &outn7 t COfYKMHTWIS BY A.C.M c CLURO ft well as my Intimacy In the McDonald household. And you propose interfer ing, plan to drive me forth from this pleasant bird's nest Really you amuße me, Mr. Sergeant Hamlin." "But I have not proposed anything of that nature,” the man said quietly, rising to his feet. "Itr Is, of course, nothing to me, except that Miss Mc- Donald has been very kind and seems a very nice girl. As I knew some thing of you and your past, I thought perhaps you might realize how much better it would be to retire grace fully." "You mean that-as a threat? You Intend to. tell her?" "Not unless It becomes necessary; I am not proud of the story myself." Their eyes met, and there was no shadow of softness In either face. The woman’s Ups curled sarcastically. "Really, you take yourself quite se riously, do you not? One might think you still Major of the Fourth Texas, and heir to the old estate on the Bra zos. You talked that way to me once before, only to discover that I had claws with which to scratch. Don't make that mistake again, Mr. Sergeant Hamlin, or there will be something more serious than scratch ing done. I have learned how to fight In the past -few years—Heaven knows I have had opportunity—and rather enjoy the excitement. How far would your word go with Molly, do you think? Or with the Major?” “That remains to be seen.” "Does it? Oh, I understand. You must still consider yourself quite the lady-killer. Well, let me tell you something—she is engaged to Lieu tenant Gaskins.” His hand-grip tightened on the rail, but there was no change in the ex pression of his face. "So I had heard. I presume that hardly would have been permitted to happen but for the existence of a Mr. Dupont. By the way, which one of you ladies shot the Lieutenant?" It was a chance fire, and Hamlin was not Bure of its effect, although she drew a quick breath, and her voice faltered. “Shot—Lieutenant Gaskins?" "Certainly; you must be aware of that?” "Oh, I knew he had some alterca tion, and was wounded; he accused you, did he not? But why bring us Into the affair?" "Because some woman was directly concerned in it. Whoever she may be, the officers of the fort are con vinced that she probably fired the Bhot; that the Lieutenant knows her Identity, and is endeavoring to shield her from discovery." “Why do they think that? What reason can they have for such a con clusion? Waß she seen?” "Her footprints were plainly vis ible, and the revolver used was a small one —a ‘36’—such as a woman alone would carry in this country. I have said so to no one else, but I saw her, crouching in the Bhadow of the barrack wall. "You —you saw her? Recognized her?” “Yes.” “And made no attempt at arrest? Have not even mentioned the fact to others? You must have a reason?" “I have, Mrs. Dupont, but we will not discuss It now. I merely wish you to comprehend that if it is to be war between us, I am in possession of weapons." She had not lost control of herself* yet there was that about her hesitan cy of speech, her quick breathing, which evidenced her surprise at this discovery. It told him that he had played a good hand, had found a point of weakness in her armor. The mystery of it remained unsolved, but this woman knew who had shot Gas kins; knew, and had every reason to guard the secret. He felt her eyes anxiously searching his face, and laughed a little bitterly. “You perceive, madam, ” he went on, encouraged by her silence, “I am not now exactly the same unsuspecting youth with whom you played so eas ily years ago. I have learned some of life’s lessons since; among them how to fight fire with fire. It Is a trick of the plains. Do you still con sider it necessary for your happiness to remain the guest of the McDon alds?” She straightened up, turning her eyes away. "Probably not for long, but it is no threat of yours which influences me It does not even interest me to know who shot Lieutenant Gaskins. Ho la a vulgar little prig, only made possible by the possession of money. How ever, when I decide to depart, I shall probably do so without consulting your pleasure.” She hesitated, her voice softening as though In change of mood. “Yet I should prefer part ing with you In friendship. In asking you to meet me tonight I had no In tention of quarreling; merely yielded to an Impulse of regret for the past—” The heavy curtain draping the win dow was drawn aside, permitting the light from within to flash upon them, revealing the figure of a man In uni form. "Pardon my Interruption,” he ex plained, bowing, "but you were gone so long, Mrs. Dupont, I feared some accident” She laughed lightly. "You are very excusable. No doubt I have been here longer than I sup posed.” The officer's eyes surveyed the soldier standing erect, his hand lifted in salute. The situation puzzled him. "Sergeant Hamlin, how are you here? On leave?” "Yes, sir.” "Of course this is rather unusual, Captain Barrett," said the lady hast ily, tapping the astonished officer lightly with her fan, “but I was once quite well acquainted with Sergeant Hamlin when he was a major of the Fourth Texas infantry during the late war. He and my husband were Inti mates. Naturally I was delighted to meet him again.” The captain stared at the man's rigid figure.” “Good Lord, I never knew that, Hamlin," he exclaimed.- “Glad to know It, my man. You see,” he ex plained lamely, “we get all kinds of fellows in the ranks, and are not In terested in their past history. I’ve bad Hamlin under my command for two years now, and hanged If I knew any thing about him, except that he was a good soldier. Were you ready to go. Mrs. Dupont?”. "Oh, yes; we have exhausted all our reminiscences. Goodby, Sergeant; so glad to ha(ve met you again.” She extended her ungloved band, a single diamond glittering in the light. He accepted It silently, aware of the slight pressure of her fingers. Then the Captain assisted her through the window, and the falling curtain veiled them from view. CHAPTER XVIII. Another Message. Hamlin sank back on the bench and leaned his head on his hand. Had any thing been accomplished by this in terview? One thing, at least —he had thoroughly demonstrated that the charm once exercised over his Imagi nation by this beautiful woman had completely vanished. He saw her now as she was—heartless, selfish, using her spell of beauty for her own sordid ends. If there had been left a shred of romance in his memory of her, It was now completely shattered. Her coolness, her adroit changing of moods, convinced him she was playing a game. What game? Nothing In her words had revealed its nature, yet the man Instinctively' felt that it must In volve Molly McDonald. Laboriously he reviewed, word by word, each sen tence exchanged, striving to find some clew. He had pricked her In the Gas kins affair, there was no doubt of that; shf knew, or at least suspected, the party firing the shot. She denied at first having been married to Le Fevre, and yet later had been com pelled to acknowledge that marriage. There then was a deliberate false hood, which must have been told for a purpose. What purpose? Did she imagine it would make any difference with him, or did she seek to Bhield Le Fevre from discovery? The latter reason appeared the more probable, for the man must have been in the neighborhood lately, else where did that haversack come from? So engrossed was Hamlin with these thoughts that he hardly real ized that some one had lifted the win dow curtain cautiously. The beam of light flashed ucross him, disappearing before he could lift his head to ascer tain the cause. Then a voice spoke, and he leaned back to listen. “Not there; gone back to the dance likely, while we were at the bar.” “Nobody out there?" this fellow growled his words. "Some soldier asleep with his head on the rail; drunk, I reckon. Who was she with this time?” "Barrett?” "Who? Oh, yes, the fellow who brought in that troop of the Seventh. Lord, the old girl Is getting her hooks into him early. Well, as long as Gas kins Is laid up, she may as well amuse herself somewhere else. Barrett is rather a good looker. Isn’t he? Do you know anything about the man? Has he got any stuff?" "Don’t know,” answered the gruff voice. “He’s a West Pointer. Vera likes to amuse herself once In a while; that’s the woman of It. Heard from Gaskins tonight?” “Oh, he’s all right,” the man laughed. “That little prick frightened him though. Shut up like a clam.” “So I heard. He’ll pay to keep the story quiet, all right. As soon as he is well enough to come down here we'll tap his bundle. Swore he was shot by a cavalry sergeant, didn't he?” “And sticks to it like a mule. Must have It In for that fellow. Well, It helped our get-away." "Yes, we're safe enough, unless Gas kins talks, and he's so In love with the McDonald girl he'll spiel out big rather than have any scandal now. Wish I could get a word' with Vera tonight; she ought to see him tomor row—compassion, womanly sympathy, and all that rot, you know, helpß the game. Let’s drift over toward the Palace, Dan, and maybe I can give her the sign." Hamlin caught a glimpse of their backs as they passed out—one In in fantry fatigue, the other, a heavier built man, fairly well dressed in citi zen’s clothes. Inspired by a desire to see their features the Sergeant swung hlmßelf over the rail, and dropped lightly to the ground. In an other moment he was out on the street. In front of the hotel, watching the open door. The two passed within a few feet of him, clearly revealed in the light streaming from the dance hall. The soldier lagged somewhat behind, an Insignificant, rat-faced fel low, but the larger man walked straight, with squared shoulders. He wore a broad-brimmed hat pulled low over hlB eyes, and a black beard con cealed the lower portion of his face. Hamlin followed as the two pushed their way up among the Idle crowds congregated on the wooden steps, and peered In through the wide doorway. Satisfied that he would recognize both worthies when they met again, and “Some Soldier Asleep, With Hit Head on the Rail." realizing now something of the plot being operated, Hamlin edged In closer toward the sergeant who was guarding the entrance. The latter recognized him with a nod. "Pretty bu3y, Masters?” "Have been, but there will be a lull now; when they come back from sup per there'll be another rush likely. Would you mind taking my job a min ute while I go outside?” “Not in the least; take your time. Let me see what the tickets look like That’s all right—say, Masters, before you go, do you know that big duffer with a black beard in the front line?” The other gave a quick glance down the faces. ‘Tve seen him before; dealt faro at the Poodle Dog a while; said to be a gun-man. Never heard his name. Oh, yes, come to think about it, they called him 'Reb' —Confed soldier, I reckon. Ain’t seen him before for a month. Got into some kind of a shootin’ scrap up at Mike Kelly’s and skipped out ahead of the marshal. Why?” “Nothing particular—looks familiar, that’s all. Who’s the soldier behind him—the thin-faced runt?” “Connors. Some river-rat the re cruiting officers picked up in New York; in the guard-house most of the time; driver for Major McDonald when he happens to be sober enough.” “That is where I saw him then, driving the ladies? Knew 1 had seen that mug before.” (TO BE CONTINUED.) Frenchman Works Short Time. Recent Investigations into th< hours of work by officials of the French department of navigation have brought to light a record in gov ernment employment in the shape of an official whose dally “hours of duty" amount to exactly two minutes. This man dwells at a place on the Bel gian frontier, and his arduous labors consist in fetching from one office a list of the number of barges that have entered French territory the previous 24 hours and handing the said list in at another office. If the position be a sinecure, the pay is not high, the re muneration amounting to $1.40 a month. Improvement on Aeroplane. Capt. W. 1. Chambers’ invention of a catapult device to launch hydroaero planes from warships is characterized by Glenn H. Curtiss as “the most important achievement since wheels were put upon land machines.” The device, only 30 feet long, enables the aeroplane to fly Immediately after leaving the ship's deck. FOLEY KIDNEY PULS RICH IN CUR ATI VS QUALITIES MR RAOKAOHS. RHEUMATISM. KIDNEYS AND BLADDER SPECIALTOWOMEN Do yon realize the fact that thousands of women are now using A Soluble Antiseptic Powder as a remedy for mucous membrane af fections? such as sore throat, n&sal os pelvic catarrh, Inflammation or ulcera tion, caused by female ills? Women who have been cured say “It Is worth Its weight In gold." Dissolve in water and apply locally. For ten years the Lydia E. Plnkham Medicine Co. has recommended Paxtine in their private correspondence with women. For all hygienic and toilet uses It has no equal. Only 60c a large box at Drug gists or sent postpaid on receipt of price. The Paxton Toilet Co., Boston. Mass. PROVERBS BROUGHT TO DATE Unlike Those Generally Known, But Containing a Great Deal of Real Truth. A man with email feet hideth them not, and she whose hands ore well formed delighteth to play chess. Why djith tho virgin rejoice? Why readeth sho her love letters to her sisters? Behold, there is a compliment therein, and It shall not be concealed. Enthusiastic is women’s praise of a passable damsel; yea, they lift up their voice continually, saying, Lo, she hath fine eyes. But when she who dazzleth men’s sight approacheth, be hold their tongues are hushed, they whisper one to another in their con fusion, confessing her comeliness. As a man with his first automobile, so is an old wife with a young hus band; she Is fond, yet fearful. Tho shop damsel extolleth her wares, saying, Lo, 1 myself wear this kind. And the- customer smileth bit terly, and turneth away. To a clever woman, a man without audacity is a weariness to the spirit; and as for the timid one who obeyoth her, 10, she sendeth him upon errands. —Gelett Burgess In American Maga zine. Mr. Winkle’s House to Go. Two buildings In Birmingham asso ciated with Dickens have been de molished, and a third, Mr. Winkle's house. Is being pulled down. When Mr. Pickwick asked the wait er at the Old Royal where Mr. Winkle lived he replied; “Close by, sir; not above 500 yards, sir. Mr. Winkle Is. a wharfinger, sir, at the canal, sir." And Mr. Pickwick found In “a quiet, sub stantial looking street stood an old red brick house with three steps be fore It, bearing,.ln fat Roman capitals, the words, ’Mr. Winkle.’ ” —Pall Mall Gazette. Pardonable Curiosity. “I see the cake quite plainly,” said the guest at the restaurant table d'hote, as the waiter brought him strawberry shortcake for dessert, “but there’s one thing I'd like to know.” “Yes, sir?” replied the waiter In a tone of respectful inquiry. “What Is that?” "Merely this, what does the straw berry represent?” “LIKE MAGIC” New Food Makes Wonderful Changes, When a man has suffered from dys pepsia so many years that he can’t re member when he had a natural appe tite, and then hits on away out of trouble he may be excused for saying “It acts like magic.” When It is a simple, wholesome food instead of any ono of a large num ber of so called remedies in the form of drugs, he is more than ever likely to feel as though a sort of miracle has been performed. A Chicago man, in the delight of re stored digestion, puts it in this way; "Like magic, fittingly describes the manner in which Grape-Nuts relieved me of poor digestion, coated tongue and loss of appetite, of many years standing. "I tried about every medicine that was recommended to me, without re lief. Then I tried Grape-Nuts on the suggestion of a friend. By the time I had finished the fourth package, my stomach was all right, and for the past two months I have been eating with a relish anything set before me. That Is something I had been unable to do previously for years. “I am stronger than ever and I con slder the effects of Grape-Nuts- on a weak stomach as something really wonderful. It builds up the entire body as well as the brain and nerves.” Name given by the Poßtum Co., Battle ’ Creek, Mich. “There’s a reason,” and it Is ex plained in the little book, “The Road to Wellville,” in pkgs. - Ever read the above letter f ▲ aew •ae appears from time to time. They ' •re cenolne, true, aad full of humaat Interest.