The frontier. (O'Neill City, Holt County, Neb.) 1880-1965, November 21, 1935, Image 3

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    THERE’S $1
ALWAYS i
ANOTHER
YEAR
MARTHA
OSTENSO
IW.N-U. SC * C €.
CQPYfttOHT MARTHA OSTCNSO |
SYNOPSIS
Anna ("Silver") Grenoble, daugh
ter of “Gentleman Jim,” formerly of
the community, but known as a
gembler, news of whose recent mur
der in Chicago has reached the town,
comes to Heron River to live with
Sophronla Willard, Jim Grenoble's
sister. Sophronla's household consists
of her husband, and stepsons, Roder
ick and Jason. The Willards own
only half of the farm, the other half
being Anna’s. On Silver's arrival
Duke Melbank, shiftless youth,
makes himself obnoxious. Roderick
is on the eve of marriage to Corinne
Meader. Silver says she wants to
live on the farm, and has no Inten
tion of selling her half, which the
Willards had feared. Silver tells
Sophronia (“Phronle," by request)
something—but by no means all—of
her relations with Gerald Lucas,
gambler friend of her father. Roddy
marries Corinne. Silver again meets
Lucas, who has established a gam
bling resort near town. She Intro
duces him to Corinne, though against
her will. Friendship between the
two develops, to Silver’s dismay. At
a dance Duke Melbank insults Sil
ver. Determined to break up the
growing intimacy between Lucas and
Corinne, Silver tells Roddy she has
decided to sell her portion of the
farm. Not understanding, he re
proaches her for her "treachery."
Roddy finds he Is falling in love
with Silver, and is dismayed. Silver
warns Corinne against Lucas. De
spite herself, her love for Roddy
grows, but she determines to save
Corinne from disaster. Corinne re
turns, with purchases little suitable
for farm life, and having spent all
the money Roddy has given her. His
mild reproaches are bitieriy resented
by Corinne.
CHAPTER XI—Continued
—11—
“I can't stand this business of
counting every penny like a news
boy In the street! If that’s what
you want me to understand, you
may as well know now that I never
shall. I won’t try. You may be
used to this hand-to-mouth exist
ence. You probably love it—be
cause of your precious land! I’m
the one that has to suffer. I sup
pose I should have bought a two
dollar dress and a flve-dollar coat
and a pair of shoes in a bargain
basement!’’
She gripped the bnck of a chair
and spoke in a voice so charged
with vindictiveness that Roddy
found it hard to credit his senses.
“You’re evidently too much of a
clod—born and bred—to have any
ambition beyond groveling in a corn
patch ! You’ve got me to the place
now where I’ll have to do my own
housework. You want to make a
slattern out of me. All right—I’ll
do my best to be one!” Her voice
rose hysterically. “But I am going
to tell you one thing—it won't be
for long! If I ever get the chance
to get away from it. I’ll go!”
Roddy came over to her. Co
rlnne’s tempers were by now noth
ing new to him.
“You don’t mean that, Corrie,” he
said gently.
She snatched her hands away.
“Why wouldn't I mean it?” she
flamed. “What have you done for
me?”
noddy aid not Know nrrerwaras
how it came about. He knew only
that some frozen area of despair
within him seemed suddenly to
burst and boll up into an overpow
ering rage.
"What have I done for you?” he
rasped. “Do you want to know?
I’ve lost my self-respect—and I’ve
almost lost my mind—trying to
make you happy!”
Insolent and cold still, Corinne
watched Idm with a wary fascina
tion, her hands on her hips. Then,
at her small tinkling laugh he lost
complete control of himself. He
stepped toward her and the soft col
lapse of her shoulders beneath the
grip of his hands as he shook her
only Incited him to greater fury.
She wrenched herself free and at
that moment a handkerchief dropped
from her blouse and fell to the floor.
There was a sharp metallic click
and Corinne sprang to pick up the
square of lace and linen. Some
thing in her manner prompted Rod
dy to snatch It from her before she
had quite recovered it. Folded In
the handkerchief was a mono
grammed onyx and gold cigarette
case—a smaller replica of one Rod
dy had seen in the possession of
Gerald Lucas.
“What’s this?” he demanded.
"I bought it,” Corinne said In
sullen, defiant voice.
He looked at her for a moment
before he spoke. “You’re lying to
me,” he said at lust. “Who gave It
to you?”
“What right have you to ask?”
Corinne screamed. “Do you ever
give me anything? If I live to be a
hundred—’
“Keep still!’’ Roddy said frigidly.
“You don’t have to tell me who
gave you this thing.” He tossed it
on the tab’e. then turned and faced
her. “Corrie,” he went on, ‘‘it be
gins to look like a show-down be
tween yon and me. Perhaps 1 did
you an Injustice in marrying you.
But I loved you. When you mar
rled me—it was Just a way out for
you, wasn’t it? It wasn't because
you were in love with me. Isn’t
that true, Corrle?”
Site stopped suddenly. The look
of panic and helplessness that dark
ened her eyes as she turned them
upon him now created in him a feel
ing of utter frustration.
“I can't stand this!” she cried,
and flinging herself down upon the
couch, burst Into tears.
Itoddy dropped his hand Inertly
at his side and went from the room,
through the house and out the back
door.
He stood leaning against the pas
ture bars, as he had done one night
almost a year ago after he had
proposed to Corlnne Meader. At
the sound of a footfall behind him,
he turned and saw Silver Grenoble
coming down the palely lit hillside.
There was an embarrassing dlffl
dence In her manner as site came
and stood beside him.
“You heard the racket, I sup
pose,” he said abruptly.
Silver hesitated. “I couldn’t help
hearing It,” she told him. “I was on
my way up to the house to see what
Corlnne had bought—"
"It doesn’t matter,” Itoddy re
plied, resting his arms on the bars
once more. “H—1 —nothing matters
much!”
“That isn't true, and you know
it isn’t,” Silver answered quickly.
“You’ve got to take care of Corinne,
Roddy. There’s no telling what she
may do when she gets into a mood
like this. I’m afraid for her. You’ve
got to be patient with her.”
“Patient!” he echoed. "I’ve been
too d—n patient! I’ve let her go
and hang herself.”
Silver tightened her lips. “There
isn’t any use of my trying to talk
to you, I see.”
He turned on her suddenly. “What
do you know about it? I suppose
everybody is aware of what has
been going on under my nose—
everybody but me."
“I don’t know what you’re talking
about,” Silver replied In a remote
tone.”
“I’m talking about this rotter, Lu
cas—who followed you here from
Chicago. He and Corinne have been
together in the city.”
“Are you sure?"
Roddy hesitated. “I’m not sure of
anything,” he evaded finally. “And
I’m not asking any , questions,
either. From now on I’m going to
take a little less for granted. If
“You Heard the Racket, I Suppose,”
He Said Abruptly.
Corinne wants to go around with
Lucas and his gang, she can do
so—but she can’t stay here.”
Silver put her hand on Roddy’s
arm. “Don’t talk like that," she
begged. “Corinne will realize that
she wants you more—more than she
wants anything else. Co on back
to the house and be nice to her.”
Roddy patted the hand that lay
on his arm. “That’s all right, kid,"
he said abstractedly. “I know what
you’re trying to do. But the fact is,
it may be impossible. Just now I
don’t feel like being particularly nice
to anyone. I’m not going to force
myself on Corinne.”
“You're just being proud and
stubborn,” Silver argued.
"All right. Let it go at that.
There’s a place for pride—and stub
bornness, too.”
She withdrew her hand and for
a moment there was silence be
tween them.
“You’d better run along to the
house," he said finally, “and leave
me to work this out in my own
way."
Without a word Silver slipped
away into the darkness. A sensa
tion of being suddenly bereft suf
fused Roddy as he watched her go.
Cool and remote as Silver Grenoble
always seemed, she had a warm
and generous heart. He knew that
now. She had a warmth of soul
which Corlnne, with all her physi
cal lusclousness, could not ap
proach.
CHAPTER XII
rOR days Silver went about with
" n feeling of a physical weight
pulling downward on her body, as
though she had got herself en
tangled in an ugly gray mesh from
which there was no escape.
The month drew to a close In
parching and unseemly heat. Ex
cept for an Ineffectual shower or
two there had been no rain. So
phronia weeded and watered the
vegetable garden with an almost
religious zeal. She and Sliver car
ried water sprinklers where the hose
would not reach, and moved on
hands and knees down the long gray
furrows of earth, pulling weeds
and watching against the ravages
of insects.
At nine o'clock, old Steve had
gone to lied In Roddy’s house. There
was no one else on the Willard farm
except Silver. She had finished
basting the seams of a figured linen
dress and was taking It to the sew
Ing machine In the corner of the
dining room when she noticed that
the sky had darkened curiously, and
that the dry, hot wind that had
been coming in through the dining
room window had suddenly died.
Hopefully she went to the door
way and looked out. But no. The
rain was passing to the southwest,
and a baleful, green-white rim on
the distant mass of cloud meant
that somewhere farther away the
tender new fields would be leveled
by hail.
Silver thought apprehensively of
Sophronia, who had gone to the
Ericksons’ with only a light sweater
over her shoulders.
It was a little after ten when she
had the last stitch of her dress cut
and tried, and was about to put it
over her head when the outer door
opened.
Silver looked around and saw
Duke Melbank close the door behind
him and lean against it, smiling.
“I’ve been peeking through the
window,” he chuckled. “I wouldn’t
'a' had the nerve to come in if any
body wns round.”
Silver backed away from him,
one hand feeling the way cnutlously
behind her.
“How dare you come in here!”
she said quietly.
“I told you I wns coming to see
you some night, didn’t I? Well, this
is the night.”
“Get out of this house!” Silver
ordered him.
He came weaving toward her and
Silver realized that he had been
drinking.
“There’s no use in you pretending
to me, Silver," he said. “I seen you
come out o’ Lucas’ place In the
morning, didn't I? I’m a better man
than him—and I’ve been thinking
about you ever since that night I
saw you in Chicago.”
Silver was aware of only two
things: Duke Melhank’s infinmed,
greedy eyes were the eyes of all the
men who had tried to stroke her
hair or touch her bare arms during
those years when she had been In
desperate fear of them all, during
those years of undercurrents of vio
lence before her father had died;
and somewhere, behind her, on So
phronia’s sewing table, there lay a
heavy crystal paper-weight, a half
sphere that held magnified within it
a scene of Niagara falls.
“You don’t have to be afraid of
me, Silver," Duke persisted. “I want
to marry you."
“You’re drunk!" Silver tempor
ized, and moved back cautiously
toward the sewing machine.
“Sure I am—drunk with thinking
about you,” Duke laughed. He
lunged toward her. “You’ve got aw
ful pretty shoulders, Silver."
He was perhaps ten feet away
from her when she stretched her
hand out behind her and took a firm
hold of the heavy crystal sphere
that stood on Sophronia’s sewing
table.
It was then that the kitchen
screen door opened with a sharp
twang from its creaking hinges. A
footfall sounded at the rear of the
house.
Duke drew back Immediately,
looked once toward the kitchen,
then vanished cat-like through the
front door.
Silver sank down upon the chair
beside the sewing machine and
buried her head in her arms.
A moment later, Roddy stood In
the doorway to the kitchen. He
looked at her for a moment, per
plexed, then came and leaned over
her.
“What’s wrong, Silver?" he asked.
She strove to speak. "Duke Mel
bank—he was here—just now.”
“Duke Melbank! Where Is lie?"
Silver made a gesture toward the
open doorway. “He went—when he
heard you coming.”
Roddy hurried to the door and
stepped out Into the darkness. Pres
ently he came back and stood si
lently beside her.
"Something will have to be done
about that fellow," he said tersely.
“I’ll have to talk to him when I go
to town tomorrow. I came down to
see if the folks were back.” His
voice was uneven with the efTort he
was making to speak at all. "Jase
and Paula are already expecting an
addition to the family."
Silver raised her eyes and saw
his face. For seconds they stared
at each other, tense and motionless.
Then, Involuntarily, Silver lifted her
trembling hands toward him. Rod
dy caught them and knelt swiftly
beside her. With a soft cry she
slipped into his arms.
“Silver—dear, dear Silver,” Rod
dy breathed and held her fiercely
close to him.
Sliver sobbed against his throat
“Oh, Roddy—Roddy I I can’t help
it I love you. I’ve known it from
the very beginning."
He strained her slender body to
him, then taking her tear-stained
“I’ll Be the Death of You, if I Don’t
Get On My Own Feet Soon.”
face into his hands, he kissed her
mouth with hard and solemn ve
hemence.
“We’ve both known,” he muttered
at last, “—deep down, from the be
ginning.”
Her hands moved helplessly along
his shoulders.
“That’s why I wanted to go away,
Roddy."
“I should have known that, too,"
he said unsteadily. “Lord—what a
fool I’ve been 1”
They clung together for a moment
in a desperate kind of Joy. It was
Silver who drew away.
“I’ll leave,” she said tonelessly.
“I must, Roddy. There Is no other
wny out for us."
He swung about and looked at
her, his eyes darkening In a sav
age, trapped way. With a desolate
feeling she watched him run his
fingers agitatedly through his rough
hair. But then suddenly a bleak
and frosty sort of calm seemed to
descend upon him. He came and
stood before her, his arms folded,
and stared down at her with a
twisted smile of hitter resignation.
“You are right, of course," he
said In a harsh voice. “You and I—
we have to do the decent thing—
by her. I don't know Just why—but
we have to.”
Silver stood up very straight.
“And you will keep on working
this land, Roddy," she said swiftly,
“until you buy It from me. You
know now that I never really want
ed you to leave It."
She stretched out her hand. He
held It tightly In his own for a
moment, then turned it, palm up
wards, to his lips. In the next mo
ment he was gone.
***••••
When Sophronla came home that
night, she was suffering from a
chill, and on the following evening,
Doctor Woodward told old Roderick
that she was threatened with pneu
monia.
• •••*••
Weeks of Illness had bitten deep
ly into the physical being of Sophro
nia Willard, but had not dimmed
the fire of her spirit. As Silver ar
ranged the cushions in the long
chair in which I’hronle reclined be
neath the great oak, she glanced
at the girl’s face and said sharply,
"Ry the looks of you, my girl, you
need this babying more than I do.
I'll be the death of-you, if I don’t
get on my own feet soon.”
“Don’t get Impatient, now,” Sil
ver rebuked her gently. “There’s no
hurry. You’ve done enough work In
your life to deserve a little rest."
She putted a pillow into place be
hind Sophronia’s head. “There, now
—lie back. You con read the paper
for about fifteen minutes, then you
must take a nap. No cheating, now
—just fifteen minutes! Doctor Wood
ward’s orders.”
Sophronla looked up at Sliver with
narrowed eyes. "I don’t like the wuy
you’re lookin’ lately,” she declared
with emphasis. "You’re peaked—
white. And your eyes are entirely
too big and dark around. What's
worrying you?"
“Nothing, except you—and I
haven’t been worrying much about
you since you started getting bet
ter,” Silver assured her, but the faint
flush that lay suddenly upon her
smooth cheeks was not lost on So
phronla.
“That fool of a Duke Melbank
hasn't been botherin’ you again, has
he?”
(TO BE CONTINUED)
Hefty Chap Omitted Few
Items in Simple Modesty
▲ hefty countryman on one of hla
rare visits to the big city entered a
small restaurant which advertised
a special lunch—as much as the cus
tomer cared to eat for two shillings.
The waiter showed him to a table.
“Wfll you take the special?" he
asked.
“What's It consist of?" asked the
countryman.
“There's tomato soup, oxtail soup,
grilled sole, boiled halibut, roast
beef, Yorkshire pudding, new pots
toes, apple tart and coffee,’ replied
the waiter, reading out the menu.
“That’s champion." said the coun
tryman. "Bring me tomato soup, ox
tall soup, sole, hailbut, beef, pud
ding. spuds. Jam roll, and some
ebeese and coffee.”
“Will that be all?” asked the as
tonlshed waiter.
-That’s all,” said the other.
"Then may 1 ask.’’ put In the
waiter quietly, “what’s wrong with
the apple tart and cream?”—London
Answers.
LONGEST FIRE BREAK
The Ponderosa Way. said to be the
longest fire break In the world, if
nearing completion. J. H. Price, writ
Ing in American Forests, reported re
cently. it extends lengthwise through
a major part of California, from the
Pitt river in the north to the Kern
river In the south, a distance of 650
miles. It varies in width from 50
to 200 feet, and follows the lower
edge of the Ponderosn pine-belt, pro
tecting the pines from fires starting
In the foothills below,
“Calumet sure gives you your money’s wortl^wkh that
Big New 10/ Gan!”
SAYS MRS. W. W. HICKBY. OF CHICAGO. ILK.
4
"THBRE’S a lot of good
baking in that 10c can of
Calumet,” observes Mrs.
Hickey. “It’s worth more
than a dime any day I
“Of course, with my big
family I get the full - pound
can—and it’s only 25c now.
As long as I bake, Calumet
will be in my pantry I”
Grandfather Rommel,
who was a baker for 40
years, says: “Calumet takes
the guesswork out of the
job nowadays.”
LOOK AT THE NEW CALUMET CAM |
A simple twist... and the Easy-Opening
Top lifts off. No delay, no spilling, no
broken fingernails/
WHAT make* Calumet *o dependable? Why 1* It different i
■ from other baking powder*? Calumet combine* two distinct
leavening action*. A quick action for the mixing bowl—set free
by liquid. A slower action for th* oven—set free by heat. Thla
Double-Action produces perfect leavening.
! \
All Calumet prices are
lower! Calumet is now selling at the
lowest prices in its history.. .The regular
price of the Full-Pound Can is now
only 25c! And ask to see the new 10c can
— a lot of good baking for a dime—with
Calumet, the Double-Acting Baking
Powder. A product of General Foods.
.
I
[GEE, DAD... COME ONj
OUT AND SHOOT/ f
IT'S SWELL FUN ! I
JM.VOU'RE MAKING
LIFE MISERABLE I
FOR ALL OF US B
WITH VOUR CROSS,
IRRITABLE WAVS'
iHIMnv^
I JUST WISH I
SOU HAD NW i
HEADACHES !
AND INDIGESTION!
SHE'S UJCKY
YOU DOMT<
] START ACTikIG
I AS MEAN AS
“W/OUFEEU
WIT 15 PPN, ISM’T It?
| VOUR OLD PAD HAS
| BCEN A NEW MAN
u siMce ne changed
\Tb PDSTUM !
later
(LISTEN,YOU.' LOOK AH
■ YOUR Own LOOK AT {
I Voc/f? SHOES ! GET INTO I
■ THE HOUSE... ANO STAY/
f SPOIL HIS FW /
l WN NOT ewe HIM E
)A 6000 LACIMG^J®
i'll bet akntUujg vouve!
GOT COFFEE-NERVES! - |
PERHAPS WRe ONE Off
THOSE WHO SaOULpNTj
0R.INK COFFEE! WHS g
OONTJOU change TO j
Tujus^
lAKesoul
uponthat
-1b SHOW
you how
wrong you
CURSES/ SHE*;
NOT WRONG/,
SHE KNOWS,
► POSTiM
[AUWNS
“1A#HY wal coffee
VV bad for you, Dad?
... I thought it was
bad just for us kids!"
“Oh, no! Many
grown-ups, too, find
that the caffein in cof
fee upsets their nerves.
causes indigestion or keeps them awake nights!
• • •
If you are bothered by headaches, or indigestion,
or can’t sleep soundly ... try Postum for 30 days.
It contains no caffein. It is simply whole wheat
and bran, roasted and slightly sweetened. It’s
easy to make ... costs less than half a cent a cup.
It’s delicious, too... and may prove a real help.
A product of General Foods.
F R E E I Let us send you your first week’s supply
of Postum free / Simply mail coupon.
General Foods, Battle Creek, Mich. w m u. ii-m
Please tend me, without coat or obligation, a week'* supply of
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Name—-——
Street . -. ... ■
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FiU in completely—print name and address.
(This offer expires July 1, 1936)