II H Black Hull was not an or
dinary Inn - rather a survival
of the wayside house of rest.)
v woon 01 pines suoie;ic(i
1 ho rear down to tin- river, and
the cheerful while front of Hi house
Mood out from tin gloomy background,
beckoning wihunu! like it
On cadi side the porch were
where the fanners Hat on
days exchanging the gossip
countrywide. Indoors the best
kin In n
was the gathering place.
On a rrtiii,ji March morning a lire
of pine logs blazed Su the grate, and
tin side window was thrown open to
let the breeze from the pine wood
stray In. Contrary to precedent, the
hostess of the I'daek Hull was a spin
ster. While her father lived she had
M t as'do nil offers of marriage, and
flood staunchly between the old man
and his besetting siu of conviviality
till she laid him, honored and la incut-
td. In the klrkyard ou the hill.
One suitor had remained persistent.
Robert .Turd it ip, of The Willows. Illy
farm was on the Duinfriossnire hill,
mid hp looked down on the I'.lack Hull
from Its gable windows. Hut he did
not content himself with that. He was
n frequent visitor, and Esther Morri
son's face took a tinge of pink, and
she gave a ha s.ty touch to her smooth
hair as she heard his voice Jn the
porch. She was a prim, precise young
woman with fixed ideas, and Robert
Jardine was easy-going and genial; so,
by law of contrasts, they were made
lor one another, lie was a man of few
words, and It was enough for him to
stand with his back to the fire, strok
ing his brown board, and watching Es
ther. No. one would have taken him
for a wooer, and yet, in his slow fash
Ion, he was bearing down steadily on
the port of matrimony.
"It's real hoartsonie up yonder the
'now," he said. "The sole-thorn's a' In
bloom hi the lane, nn' the birdies are
fdngln' and the lambs skippin' in the
meadow It's real heartsome at The
It was not the first time Esther had
heard the charms of The Willows,
varied only by the season.
"'I wouldn't wonder," she assented.
"The country's aye nice iu the spring
time. Is It a good season for the
lambs, Kobert V"
"Well, I lia'e seen better. There's a
good few 0' them dousy enough like.
I'm no' so rich the year as I thought
to be. Ye see, I was reckonin' on get
tm the house new pap-eved an' painted
this spring, but," with a wistful glance
at her, "I'm waitin'."
"John Robinson was askin' me if
you'd a mind to sell the Hlack Hull
He'd give ye ,1 good price for't." He
did not look at her again, for he knew
by heart the obstinate upcast of her
chin when he mooted this topic,
"An' what for would I sell the Hlack
Bull, Robert Jardine? Folk shouldna
be iu haste to make changes. They'll
be the longer 0' ruein' them."
"Well, I must be movin' home,
though there's nobody carin' much
what road I go. I'm missiu' the old
mother more every dayr."
The words touched her. She held
out her hand, and It was lost in his
"Some day, Robert, maybe there will
be one to watch for your hame comin'."
His face flushed, and he- laid his
bands on her shoulder, but she-drew
"Oh, I'm no sayin' who it will be,'
"There's but one woman in the world
for me,' an' well ye ken that, Esther,"
he paid sternly, and strode away.
lne little town among the lulls was
an uneventful spot, and sensations
were rare and precious. One of these
was the yearly visit of Signor Jacobi
with his circus and menagerie. It was
the market day, and crowds stood
gaping at tlK gay procession. In start
ling contrast with the ladies in velvet
and spangles was a monster ape in a
cage bringing up the rear. His crafty,
old bewTinkled face looked out from
between the bars, and Ik put forth
a stealthy hand to seize nn inquisitive
old farmer's spectacles or snatch a
swain's gay necktie. Suddenly, no one
could tell how or why, a hubbub arose
shrieks and jostling and' scrimmage',
The fastenings of the ape's cage had
Riven way, and, with a wild dash for
freedom, he bounded, jabbering and
chattering, over the heads of the ter
rified crowd. Signor Jacobi smoked
bis pipe that afternoon in the porch of
the Hlack Hull. The performance was
postponed, while his troupe scattered
in quest of the missing number.
He has the cunning of fifty foxes
has old Jargo," he said, "lie ha
doubled; on me more than once; but he
turns up when he gets hungry. He's
a crafty old boy."
"You'll come with ne to the show,
I',stuer.' ' asKeu .larume, wuo loved a
'Va. 'no, Robert, I cannot leave the
house. I promised the maids to let
them go; besides, 1 have 111 v accounts
to make up, 1 must be bankln' my
You aie gtttin' to be 11 rich woman,
Esther. I wish The Willows was doln
us well as the Hlack Hull; sheep farm-
In' is risky business."
She looked at him anxiously. She
knew that his father hail bun a
"waster," and It was uphill work to
restore1 the farm to prosperity; but It
was not her way to express sympathy.
The town was very quiet next oven-
li,g; every one who could afford It was
at the circus. I lie side windows of the
best kitchen wore wide open, and tlit
spring breeze waited the muslin cur
tains inward. Esther sat at a table
with the contents of a leather bay
spread before her a heap of sovereigns
glittered In the light from the pine
logs. She lifted the gold In lier lingers,
counting it with a pleased expression.
She had a self-satisfied conviction that
success like hers must be the reward
of a good church-goer and an upright
woman. She had no fear to be alone
in the house with so mueli money,
for thieves were rare in Annamlale.
There was a rustling sound among the
shrubs at the window, but she did not
hear it. The bell of the outer door
jingled, and, gathering the coins Into
the bag, she set it on a shelf and went
out. It was old Mr. Meldrum, a fre
quenter of the inn; he was an elder of
the kirk, and he gave her his opinion
at length on "playact in' an' a' sic de
vices 0' Sawtan." As he was leaving
her she heard hasty footsteps run down
the passage to the kitchen, and at the
door she met Robert Jardine. He was
Hurried and breathless.
I'm late for the show, Esther; you
avou t comer v en. 1 Drought you a
posy to keen you from feelin' lone
He patted her shoulder and rushed
out. .The kitchen was filled with frag
ranee from a bunch of violets on the
table. She buried her face in their
cool, purple beauty.
'He's a faithful soul, Robert Jar
dine," she said to herself. "A body
might do worse than take him at his
word some day
She turned to take the bag and lock
it up In the safe. It was gone! Two
of the sovereigns lay on the floor. A
hasty hand had snatched the bag and
dropped them out. She saw It all in a
dreadful vision, and the hand she saw
was Robert Jardine's' It all flashed
in grim detail 011 her limited brain
His hints of losses, his flurried air
There was a mortgage on The Willows;
perhaps the interest was not ready,
He knew she could never charge her
father's friend and her own with theft.
And so she thought bitterly he had
robbed a lonely woman. She paced
the room wringing her hands. The
nine logs were dying into ashes, and
the air was chill. She closed the win
dow, picking up her overturned work
table. Robert Jardine a thief! And
this was the end of it all. She never
knew till then how strongly she had
cherished the thought of a love-lit
home and little children round her
1 x . . 1
Kuee. .o, sue eouiu never marry a
thief. But, surely, it had been a sud
den impulse; he would come back and
explain. She would lend him all he
needed. She heard the servants' voices
at, th? rear. Ihe show was over. The
farmers' springcarts flew past, the
east Aviud sighed through the pines
She listened for the rapid hoof-beats
of Robert's chestnut. Yes, there he
comes slower; he is going to stop
No; he passes on. She buries her face
in her hands, and, like a dirge of lost
love, comes the murmur of the river
now nig uown irom lricstane Brae.
Then she started up, and seizing the
violets his sweet gift she flung them
into the fire, piling fresh logs upon
them, and watching them writhe and
squirm like living things.
Hut when the maids came in she was
calm, and none of them guessed that
their mistress had touched the boider
land of tragedy that night.
A week passed, in which she did not
see Robert Jardine. She said nothing
of her loss; It would be her secret
and his. She heard among the gossips
in the porch that he had gone to Glas
gow, and that he was making some
improvements on the farm.
"He'll be takin' hame his wife some
0' thae days, Miss Esther," said old
Mrs. Burrows, tha matchmaker of the
town. "An' she'll no can say him nay.
It's lang he has waited, an' it's a guid
fairm. The Willows; an' he's a gey
decent lad, Robert Jardine."
Esther smiled at her.
He came on market day, but there
was a crowd in the porch, and the
benches were filled with smokers. She
did not see him till afternoon. He
took his usual stand on the hearth, and
"Your violets will be withered by
now?" he said. 'Til bring you fresh
ones. They're line the now down the
bask where mother planted them, an
the daffy dywn tlidies, as Mollv calls
.. in. are coniln' out. In the lung
meadow. You're fond (' flowers, Es
ther? They're r ,m1 Ik ai isoinc."
"Yes," (.he answered coldly. "I'm
for labia' In more ground at the leaf
1111' pla nt In' a Mower garden.
He 1 1 a red blankly nt her.
"You're what? An' what fov would
you la? out money for other folk that
way, Esth-rV The Willows will be
ready for you, an' what's to hlndtc
the weddin'? I'm woaryin' for ye."
She looked Mraight In his eyes. How
could he meet her glance and know
he had robbed her?
"There'll be no weddin' for me, Rob
ert Jardine, she said. 1011 11 have to
seek your wife elsewhere."
He r.tarted forward to grasp her
hand, but she pushed him back.
No word more shall cross my lips;
but well you know I can never marry
Never marry me? An' what for,
do you think. I have been toilin' a'
these years If it wasna to make a
home for you? An now you say you
can never marry me.
lie stood before her, his face working
"I'm 110 great tilings, maybe, but I'm
your raitimu lover, i.sitier, an you re
not goin' to throw me over In the face
o' a' the neighbors. It's not as If we
were strangers; you uen me jang
Ay, tine 1 ken you, Robert," she
said drily.' "1 woul maybe be a hap
pier woman this day if I didua."
I'm hanged if I can make out wha
you re unvm at, lie retorted 111 an
er. "Will ye siieak straight, an' tell
me why you re tnorwin me over.'
You're mair glib wi' the speech than
'I have nothing to say If you have
not. I cannot help what the neighbors
think. I do not mean to marry you."
So bo it, then. You'll be fashed wi'
me nae 111 air. ic can spier me wnen
ye want nie back," he said, fiiugiii
out. She watched him mounting his
spring cart, and unwilling tears cloud
ed her sight.
Snow fell late that year, checking
the promise of spring, and the hedges,
iustead of whitening with hawthorn
buds, were weighted with a pallid
burden. There was much gossip over
the cessation of Robert Jardine s woo
ing, for every one was interested iu
the love story of the mistress of the
Esther's heart was heavy, and as the
suow began to thaw she turned her
thoughts to the garden she meant to
lay out to the edge of the pine trees.
She kilted up her skirts and made her
walk over the heaps cf last year's
leaves. In a hollow something red
caught her eye. Stooping over it she
saw that it was a scarlet jacket with
gay brass buttons. She took a branch
and cleared the snow away. Some
bulky thing lay beneath. A shudder
seized her; it looked like a human
body. Had some poor creature per
ished in the snow? There was a heap
of bones under the scarlet cloth. Again
a shudder seized her, though she was
not a nervous Avoman. She swept
aAvay the last remnant of snow, and
there lay bare a ghastly object the
gigantic skeleton of the lost ape!
She was turning away to make
known her discovery, when something
stopped her. This time it Avas the
glitter of gold. Under the fleshless
fingers Avas a leather bag. Some of its
contents lay on the earth. Conquering
her repulsion, she withdrew the bag
and gathered up the coins. It Avas her
A sudden faintness seized her; she
remembered In a flash the open Avin-
doAv, the overturned work-table. To
think that she had held Robert Jar
dine for a thief and lost him!
She concealed the bag under her
cloak. No one had knoAvn of her loss;
none need know of its recovery. She
went in by the back kitchen; the ser
vants Avcre whispering together in a
"Ilaud yer tongue, she'll hear ye.
Wha's gaun tae tell her?" 6ome one
"What is it?" she asked sharply.
She turned to her old Irish cook, whose
ruddy face had grown pale. "Speak,
Betty; what is wrong?"
"They're sayin', mistress, that Mr.
Jardine has broke his neck or some
thin," Biddy blurted out. "Hut 1
Avudn't be afther heedin' thim if I was
you. It'll not be a Avord av thruth'll
he in't at all, nt all."
But she did not hear the attempt nt
comfort; it seemed to her she had al
Avays known how the story would end.
The servants looked In silent pity at
her Avhite, set face as she passed out
of the kitchen. She locked the bag In
the safe, and set out for The Willows.
It Avas a long walk, but she felt the
need of action. As she ascended the
hill she could hear the bleating of the
sheep in the fields of The Willows
She had never guessed till now how
strong a hold this place had on her
nflections as her future home. A sal
low, dark-broAved Avoman onened the
"Lh. its no' yerse", Miss Morrison?"
sue uruy nsiveo. -y, me maisiei'S
bed a sair come down. The doctor says
he's no' to be disturbed by uaebudy,"
"Then he is not "
"Na, na, he s no" deid, though there's
them that hasna been czii'J muckle
Avhat cam" tae hie:.''
, l.o Mood blot king up the (1
E.-i In r pusln ,1 pat her.
"I'm pilng to him, Molly," .h s-ili.
"Wecl, ln-'s In the auld lolst it ,-s's
chauuiber, but I'll no' tak' the respon
Esther went softly along the corridor,
and opened the door. A sunbtiini
stunk through a corner of th" blind,
but the room looked bare and chilly.
Ills bandaged head nsted on tin- pil
low; his face was ghastly, but his
eyes turned on her with a look of glad
"Why, Esther:" he said.
"Hush, don't speak, Robert. I heard
you were hurt, and 1 came to you."
"Ay, I had a near shave, l'rinee
woudn't take the dyke. I've been a
bit reckless th'm while. Nobody cared.
ye see, Esther. Ills brow contracted
in pain, and he stopped.
"Yes, dear, I cared," she whispered,
stooping over him. A crimson blush
crept over her face and neck, and she
kissed 1dm on the mouth. Never In all
his long wooing had he ventured to kiss
her. Surely he must be dreaming
"You mind what you said to me. If
I wanted you I must spier you. (let
better, dear, for my sake, and then you
will let me come home to you."
She struggled with her shy pride to
bring out the Avords, and they revived
him like wine. The deadly depression
that had bafiled the doctor's skill lx
gan to lighten, and the patient revived
Avlth the tonic cf hope. Esther left the
Hlack Hull to the care of her maids,
and nursed her lover back to health.
The doctor rubbed his hands, well
pleased. "He's going to do, after all,"
he said. "Hut I don't know that I
have all the credit of the case. He
Avns bent on slipping through my fin
gers. Now ho Avants to get round,
and that's half the battle."
When the roses bloomed Avhite among
the Ivy In the porch of The Willows
Esther Jardine came home. John Rob
inson Is the landlord of the Black Hull,
and The Willows is more heartsome
than ever under the rule of its tidy
Now and again a memory comes to
her of the sinister visitor that almost
robbed her of life's treasure of love,
and she has learned to be very char
itable in her judgments. Scotch
Amefican. DERIVATION OF "LQAFER."
Cecil Rhodes May Have Understood It in
the Senfie of Josh Billings.
The question as to the derivation of
that word "loafer" which Mr. Rhodes' s
Avill is likely to elevate from the slang
dictionary is already getting acute.
The word is Spanish, and, like galoot
and others, came from Mexico through
Texas to the States. It is the Angli
cized or Americanized form of gallo
fero. "an idle, lazy vagabond," passing,
as any student of Bartlett knows,
through glofero, and glofer to lofer,
and ending up Avith the pretence of
having something English or Ameri
can about it, as "loafer," a man Avho
has no casual connection with the loaf
he does not earn.
Of the loafer Josh Hillings has given
in his "Alminax" a description which
Avould have gone to Cecil Rhodes's
heart, as of the type of man who Avas
not to inherit Dalham or any other
property that was his, if he could help
it: "The loafer is a thing who Is will
ing to be despised for the privilege
of abusing others. He occupies all
grades in society, from the judge on
the bench clear down to the ragged
creature Avho leans ngainst lamp-posts
and fights flies in August. He' has no
pride that is Avorthy and no delicacy
that anybody could hurt. During his
boyhood he kills cats and robs hens'
nests. During middle life he begs all
the tobacco he uses, and drinks all the
cheap Avhisky he can at somebody
else's expense, and does die at last."
The loafer in America would seem to
be more pronounced than his British
brother, if we take Henry W. Shaw
Josh Billings as authority. London
New IJiit vernal Speech.
"Have you noticed,'.' asked the ob
servant citizen, "that people nowadays
don't pronounce numbers as they did
when you and I went to school, or even
a ftAV years ago? We used to say 'one
hundred,' for instance, but .we don't
any more. We say 'one-0-0.' If Ave
Avant to toll somebody we live at 1030
'Blank' street, we tell him our number
is 'one-O-o-O.' If the number is 1'23,
Ave tell him it Is '1-2-3,' and so on.
The reason for the change is plain
enough it's the telephone. One needs
to speak plainly in telephoning, and
as figures in any communication are
usually important Ave have learned to
pronounce each one separately, so as to
avoid any mistake. Everybody uses
telephones now and so everybody has
caught the habit of pronouncing each
figure of'a number. Even the children
talk that way." New York Herald.
Oueer Xaines For Girln.
It is uot uncommon for a Japanese
girl to bear the name of a flower. Oil
the other hand, however, many girls
in Japan bear the names of some do
mestic utensil, as frying pan or dust
brush. Doubtless this results from the
custom common among some jieople
of naming a child from th? first object
that strikes the eye afte- the little or.e
has come intj the Avorld
tVHCN C03DY CDES A-C-'J ' TI'.C
Wh.-u !'..'! .-h v. ,o.u-
''1 14 .1 lliil ..lilt III-' '! !
And il blue cii t..t !"i l' uM i', ,:!i t ra
1 -i . f b'lt 'nil cllmv ,
Sl'lionif lil.e tin sI.uk a I . hoe;
Sie, uli.it 1. 1-4 m I )h!i It'll I "if lnil
In Ins liiiu,i!ily M'ii'i'M '"l lifim-, ii- w
iii'h ii n.iuli! y lcilow
Ard it's oh! fr dew linlv j, enn,'
from the f'ltrc,
Willi a Mnile fur Ins (."'el 1 in1 ! ; t . .oil
mm e, too, of 1 out -.
'i here m a rnic in his pn. Let - , r ! l.ny,
let me sec.
N--,v. Bobby, flop teasing -I Liov it'
Ainu 1 lobby rom-4 a ihfng
Down the street my l. itrt h .n -.'.g.
Like a l.nlv id dawn, an. I ahv.iy it it
" Hohliy lovt m me t nie! "
And my (ii'i'U thiv hln-li un-bi'y,
l''n!', my soul! tliev ic 1- unraiv'
And I tremble 11 m I d ism inb'e, f ir I don't
know what to do.
But it's Bo'ohv. K-v.'et BohLv, wli.) know
the be--t w.iy
For iirresiitnj sm h trouble how, I'll
Now. Hobby, be ;asy! -You'vt n-n-ilel
Sure, lad, von are crazy not one irore!
-I!. C. llo-e.
M.iry had a little lamb,
She sold it to the tru-t.
Slip's cutting Coupon now so f ist
Her scissors never rufit.
He "Many a girl wears a sailor hat
who can't row a boat." She "Ye!?;
and many a man wears a silk hat who
can't set up a stovepipe." Chicago
It's queer that people who are always
railing at the world are Leverthelcss
willing to pay the doctors a fortune to
keep them from leaving it in a hurry.
Miss Fortysummers "I had a pro
posal last night and refused it." Miss
Crusher "You are always thinking of
the welfare of others, aren't you,
dear?" Ohio State Journal.
First Reporter "Our city editor has
been discharged for Avasting time."
Second Reporter "How?" First Re
porter "Asking the reporters how they
got the news." Town and Country.
l'liysicians have him in their grip
Whichever way he lares;
He either pays the final duut,
Or else he owes them theirs.
New York iierald.
"It seems to make Seaddiugton's wife
as mad as a hornet every time h; boasts
that he began at the foot and worked
his Avay up." "Well, he started in as a
bootblack, you know." Chicago Record-Herald.
"How clean and fresh the landscape
looks to-day," said Mrs. Hillaud to her
husband. "I read something iu the
paper about detectives scouring the
country," explained Mr. Hilland.
"Come here, Johnnie," called his
mother, appearing at the window with
a cake of soap and a scrub brush.
"Goodby," said Johnnie sorrowfully to
his playmate. "I gotter go an' take thv
Avater cure." Boston Post.
"IIoav many quarts in a gallon?"
asked the teacher. "Six," answered
the little sou of a market man. "No,
no, Johnny. Only four." "Huh, I
guess I've seen 'em sell enough straw
berries to know." Baltimore Amer
ican. Intimate Friend "The assessor
hasn't listed your property at one
tenth of what it is worth? Then Aviiy
don't you increase your assessment
voluntarily?" Millionaire "I did that
last year, and everybody said I was
making a grand stand play for popu
larity." Chicago Tribune.
"We ought to do something to keep
the public reminded that Ave are re
markable men," said one statesman.
"That's so," answered the other. "Let's
have a little tilt on the floor of Con
gress." "Good. Come around to my
hotel next Wednesday and Ave'll re
hearse the affront." "Very well. And
you come to mine on Wednesday, and
we'll run over the apology." Wash-"
That l'ei distent Microbe.
"Mary, have you sterilized the milk?"'
"Have you soaked the beefsteak in
"Have you burned sulphur in the
"And boiled the ice?"
"And notified the undertaker to call
in an hour and see how Ave're getting
"Yes." . .
"Then I suppose it M be sate to
go ahead and set the table." -Haiti-more
Velocity of a ICifie Kutlet.
It appears that the greatest velocity
of a ritle ball is not at the muzzle, but
some distance in front. An aveiage
of ten shots Avith the German inf.r.i ry
rifle has shown a muzzle velocity of
f?et per second, with a niaxiin'ini
velocity of 'IV.yi feet per second cJ t-u
feet from the muzzle.
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