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About The Red Cloud chief. (Red Cloud, Webster Co., Neb.) 1873-1923 | View Entire Issue (Nov. 24, 1899)
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By Author of
CHAPTER XIII. (Continued.)
After much opposition on my part
and quiet, steady determination on
John's, Meg was sent for. 8ho was
not a very attentlvo, but Bho was a
very cheery nurso. Sho forgot my
medicine one hour, and gave mo a
double doso cheerily the next, and
laughed gaily at her own mistakes.
And in spite of her mistakes, I got well
But, long after I was well, Meg con
tinued to atay on with me.
"You have nicer dinners than we
have at homo," shevwould confess with
isweeteat candor, "and your chairs are
softer. And I feel that I am doing an
act of benovolenco in staying. I save
you and John from eternal tete-a-tete.
Now confess, Kitty, that you aro duly
I was silent.
"Silence means confession," Meg de-
She stayed through almost all Nov-
ember with us. Whenever sho spoke
of going John gravely interposed and
begged her to remain; and sho re
mained willingly. Sometimes I wlBhed
ungratefully that sho would go and
lcavo mo alone; but John seemed to
have moro fear than I of those teto-a-tete
talks from which she saved us.
Yet, one day, it struck mo that John,
too, wns growing tired of her long
visit. Meg was late In coming down
s stairs; ho and I wero alone for a min
ute at breakfast. He held his paper1,
but ho was not reading It; presently
he put it down. Glancing across at
him, I was pained to seo how worried
.and anxious ho was looking.
"Meg is staying all this wook,
Kitty?" ho asked mo suddenly us he
caught my questioning glance.
"You asked her to stay, John.
"Yes, I know," he said; and ho took
tip his paper again with u little sigh,
I DON'T SEE WHY I
and it again struck mo tnat bo aia noi
Mog camo down stairs, gaily hum
ming as she came. As she passed
through tho hall the postman arrived,
and she brought in the letters, looking
carefully in a perfectly open way at
each one.'' Suddenly tho smile faded
from her face; she glanced quickly at
John with a half-questioning, half
, John rose and put out his hand to
lake tho letters. He was more eager
than usual to obtain them. Meg gavo
them to him slowly, ono by ono.
"Only three," she said. "Ono from
Madame Arnaud. One from a person
who ought to go back to copy-books"
John took tho lottcra sho held out
to him. She still retained the third.
"Let mo have tho other, Meg," he
Bald in .a tone of tired forbearance
She put the letter down upon tho
table, but she was still holding it.
"Whoso writlngjs.that?" she, asked.
Jptin's face puzzled mc. Ho was
evidently striving against a sharp, Im
patient answer. He was anxious to
obtain possession of tho letter, and
anxious that Meg should not any
longer examine It. Meg, too, was
graver than her wont as she stood
looking doubtfully, first at him, then
again at tho handwriting on the en
velope. "I know that writing," sho said half
deflantly. "I think not." said John.
"Toll me whose It Is."
"I am very sorry. I cannot toll you.
It Is a prlvato correspondent,"
Meg said no moro. Sho relinquished
the letter meekly, and John took It un
opened Into his study and did not ap
It wn3 a cold, boisterous day, but 1
had shopping to do, and was out alone
all tho afternoon. I came In to find
Meg sitting pensively beforo the fire,
her hair untidy, her morning dress un
changed, her elbows on her knees, her
cbla on her hands. She was looking
-SSSSSHiyyvvvvxy'SC -v-S Sau
beforo her Into tho flro with n far
away gaze, and started when I entorcd
the room; sho looked round at roc,
her eyes laughing, and yet with some
thing of mingled melancholy In their
"Why, what aro you doing, Meg?" I
"Thinking, dear an uncommon
thing," answered sho; and she shook
back her fair, rippling, pretty hair, and
seemed as though sho would shako
away her thoughts with tho same Im
patient gesture. "I've seen a ghost,"
Bho said. "Tho vision has, been jaunt
ing mo all day. Don't I look llko it?
I've seen tho ghost of an old lovo, Kit
ty." Sho spoke lightly, Bcofllngly, and yet
there was an undercurrent of deepor
meaning In her tone. I knelt down
upon tho rug beside her chair, and sho
put her elbows once more upon her
knees and her chin upon her hands,
and agnln looked musingly into the flro
"You didn't know I had an old lovo?"
sho said, still in a scoffing tone. "You
didn't know that I went about tho
world with tho smallest posslblo
fraction of a heart, did you, Kitty?
un tno whole, I got on very well. Ono
cnJoyB tho world better without a heart
than with ono, I think. Pretty bonnets
aro moro satisfactory than lovers."
"Meg," I said, looking closely and
curiously at her, "I don't understand
you I don't understand a bit what you
"Nor I," said Meg, with an odd llttlo
laugh that was half a sigh. "A person
who has seen a ghost may bo allowed
to bo balf-wltted for half a day. I saw
a ghost at breakfast-time this morn
ing. I took it in from the postman at
the door. It is residing now In John'3
study, I suppose. And, if it wero not
for an old-fashioned fdea of honor, I
SHOULDN'T TELL YOU.
would go ant) rifle John's study and try
to find It."
"Aro you talking about the letters,
Meg, that you took this morning?"
"Oh, wise Kitty! About one of those
I looked at her in perplexity. For
many minutes sho did not speak again.
"I have a score of love-letters all in
that samo handwriting," she said at
laBt, turning her head to smile at me
"tho only lovo letters I ever had, or
ever ahall have. Presorvo mo from
having any more."
She claspod her hands behind her
head and 'laughed.
"It was such a foolish affair, so
childish, so silly," she added, with a
lingering regret In her scornful tone.
I thought I had forgotten all about It."
Toll me about it, Meg."
"Toll you about itj Kitty? Thank
you, dear, I would rather not."
I did not urge 4her any further.
With her hands clasped behind her
head, sho Bat looking beforo her.
Presently she turned and looked mus
ingly at me.
"I don't seo why I shouldn't tell
you," she said. "It may amuse you.
Poor little Klttyl Life Is dull enough
for you; you want a glimpse of com
edy now and then to make you smile.
Woll, smile at this. When I was six
teen, Kitty, I lost my heart. I had a
lover my only lover laugh, dear."
"I don't want to laugh, Meg."
"Don't you? Is the story so tragior
I assure you It's comic, too. I nsed to
play truant from school in older to go
for walks with him, Was that comic or
tragic or only Improper?"
"Who was ho, Meg?"
"His name doesn't matter, dear. He,
at all events, thought that It didn't
matter. He called himself Arthur Les
lie. I found out afterwards that tho
rest of tho world called him Arthur St.
"That was Madame Arnaud'a name,"
I said vaguely.
"He wob related In some way, I
think, to Madame Arnaud. It was from
him Oial I first heard of her; wo wore
talking about tho theater, and ho told
mo her story, though not qulto ns I
havo heard It since. I don't
know why I am tolling you
all this. I don't know why
I am thinking of It. I ought to
bo ashamed to remember such a silly
episode. I used to write letters on
pages of my cxcrclso-books and loavo
them for him nt a pastry cook's. Ho
used to lcavo his lcttors for mo every
day nt tho samo place, and a young
lady with golden rlnglots would hand
thorn to mo with an acidulated smile.
Tho same young lady Is at tho samo
pastry cook's still. I nover go through
Meg's lips woro trembling a llttlo,
though hor eyes wero laughing at mc.
"How long Is this ago?" I asked.
"Oh, a century agot When I was
sixteen, nearly four yoars ago."
"And no one know?"
"No ono. Only tho golden haired
lady who sold us jam-puffs and lemon
ade and ices."
"And was ho as young as you?"
"No, not as young as I," she said
drily. Ho must have left school tec
years before. He had left colloge. Ho
had left tho bar I think perhaps ho
had left half a dozen other professions
which ho never mentioned. Oh, yes,
Kitty, ho was in ovcry way a hero, old
enough, tall enough, dark enough,
wicked enough, I dare say I"
'You wero In lovo with him, Meg?"
"I thought I was, dear. Ono can
lmaglno most things when ono Is six
teen, or a llttlo over."
"How did It end, Meg?"
"It didn't end. Ho left a note ono day
with the golden haired lady, asking mo
to go for n walk with him by tho.Sor
pentlno. I left a noto In answer to say
that I would come. I went; but ho
forgot tho appolntmont. Ho never
wroto to me any moro. I havo not soon
him or heard of him from that tlmo to
this. I havo often been very glad."
It was hard to know what to say. I
sat looking at her thoughtfully.
"Tho letter that camo for John this
morning was from him?" I asked.
"Yes I am sure of It," said Mog.
Sho rose from her seat, humming a
scrap of a song.
"I shall go and dress now," she said.
"When ono tells one's lovo stories one
should always tell them In picturesque
dishabille. Did I loojcsufflclently Jovjc-
lorn? Did I amuse you, Kitty? Well,
I am tired of looking ugly; I shall go
Sho went away, still humming, up
tho stairs, and I sat reflecting on all
that she had said. Was Meg laughing,
or was she In earnest. I did not know.
So deep was I In thought that I did
not hear tho door open, did not hear
"Kitty," ho said in a quick tone,
less calm and steady than was his
wont, "I want to speak to you. Come
Into the study with me; I want to
speak to you alone."
' "Meg has gone upstairs," I observed,
rising obediently, however to follow
Ho closed tho study door behind us,
and drew forward a chair toward tho
flro for mc. It was weeks since I had
sat alono thus In John's study with
him. I looked around the room. It
somohow looked more dreary than It
had boen wont to look. The dust lay
thickly on the chimney plcco and writ
ing table; there were no flowers any
where; tho hearth looked dirty; tho
flro burnt dull and low, and John him
self had changed since I had sat tlioro
with him lust. Ho looked sadder,
"Kitty," ho said, standing beforo me,
one elbow on tho chlmney-plcco, and
looking down nt me. "I am going to
entrust you with nn Important secret."
He waited. I looked gravely at him,
and did not answer.
"I feel sure that I can trust you."
"Yes," I replied simply, "you can
(To bo continued.) ,
A handy gato has been designed
which can be oponed without exertion,
a pivot pin being set In tho sldo of a
post, on which tho gato is hung, with
weights suspended on an arm at the
rar of tho gate to counterbalance it
In any position.
A summer street car hns been de
signed which has windows on tho sides
for ubo in stormy weather, tho win
dow frame being pivoted on the roc
supports and fitting tightly betweon
thorn when lowered, with a curtain at
the lower odge which completes tho
Playing cards can be rapidly and
evenly shuffled by a Boston man's de
vice, which is formed of a circular
box, fitted with a central stem, on
which it revolves, with a detent ar
ranged in tho top of tho box to Inter
mittently hold back a portion of the
cards as they revolve.
Streot-car conductors will appreciate
a now faro register designed for their
use, and tho cost to tho company Is
lessened by its use, the new apparatus
being held in the hand, with a sliding
yoko to bo grlppod by tho thumb and
depressed, registering tho faro on a
dial nnd ringing a bell.
Ether and chloroform can bo easily
administered to a pntient by a Ger
man apparatus, heving an ubaorbent
diaphragm fitted across one or1 of a
metallic tubo, with the opposlta end
shaped to fit tho face, a pneumatic
ring on the edgo affording an air-tight
cell and causing the Inhalations to be
taken from the diaphragm.
PROORBSS AND REFORM.
The Presbyterian Church of England
has Increased by 1,805 communicants In
tho last year,
Tho United Brethren church has re
cently opened a kindergarten and pri
mary school at Ponce, Porto Rico,
1. !. .1. k lit six Jit SIX S.X SIX SAX
&3 TH H S h )K
UNCLE EZRA'S THANKSOIVINQ.
Yep, Thanksgivln' Day is playln' out,
er so It seems to mo,
For It don't mako no comparison to
what It uso' to bo;
Though tho turkey and tho mlnco
plos Is tho Bamo wo'vo nlw'ys
An' I'm here, an' Sary Ellen, but wo'ro
catln' 'era alono.
It's tho bulldln' of tho railroads thot
he mado It that-n-way
Thot hs tuck our children from us nn'
lies sp'llt our holiday
Holdln' out their wild shomeorlcs
about lan's that can't be beat
(But whar cyclonos digs tho taters, an'
whar chinch bugs mows tho
Why, It use' to bo thot youngsters dldn'
Bceni to want to go
From tho homestead of thn ol' folkB
BUT WE'RE EATINO 'EM ALONE.
any moro'n a mllo cr so;
They 'ud tnko things 'twas given 'm,
nn they'd settlo thnr an' stay,
An' they'd fill tho homcstld tnblo when
It como Thanksgivln' Day.
Law mo! yes, them times Is ondcdl
Llttlo Sary married fust,
An' Jim Mcddors 'lowed ho'd tako her
out to Idyho cr bust,
An' ho bustld, an' I've ben n-sondln'
money over senco,
Though It's more for llttlo Sary thet I
core than tho expense
An' then Chrlssy went to Texas
Chrlssy alw'ys was our pride,
But ho headed off somo cattle, an' ho
hurt his splno an' died.
An' now Sammy's in the city, nn' that
ain't so fur away,
But he's writ us that a baby's brought
'cm their Thanksgivln' Dayl
80 wo narrercd down tho tablo, beln'
by ourselves, you seo,
An' tho turkey'll las' forever, Jes for
Sary an' fer mo;
An' tho raisins in tho mlnco plo,
bought fer Sammy's special
Senco ho didn't como to cat 'cm, sorter
seem to bo a waste.
Yep, tho railroads tuck 'cm from us,
an' wo'ro all alono at Inst,
n' Thanksglvln's like I told yob, Jest
u mem'ry of tho past;
But wo'ro countln', mo nn' Sary, on a
better place, an' then
Wo will havo a big ThankBglvln', an'
the chlldr'n homo again,
A. B. P.
Tlnklo-tlnkle, tlnklo-tlnklo, tlnklo
tlnklo. Tho leading man engaged in an at
tempt to remove a black spot from his
dress cravat by menns of un applica
tion of whlto grcaso paint, paused and
"It's a mandolin," ho nalJ. "That's
n now wrinkle. Wo'vo had all kinds of
fiends In this company since wo started
out, everything from cigarettes to bi
cycles. Who's the musician, I wonder?
Oh, I say, Jenks! Jenksl Who's tho
Thero was n step In the narrow pas
sageway that led to the dressing
rooms, and Jenks, tho property 'man,
appeared In tho doorway. "Shi" be
said, "not so loud. Tho old man'll
hear you." '
The leading man started. "The. old
man, did you say not Merrlam?"
"Yes, Merrlam," in a whisper.
The leading man sat on his trunk.
"That beats me," he said. "The An
cient Mariner tinkling a mandolin.
Now I'm prepared to see Father Time
playing Ecntlmontal ditties un a Jow's
Jenks did not laugh, a fact which
helped to sober tho othor man. "It's
no surprlso to mc," said tho property
man, gravely. "I says to Mrs. Jenks
Just before I left tho hotel, says I,
'Mrs. Jonks, you know what night this
Is?' 'Thanksgiving,' she says. 'Why,
right,' says I, 'and it'll be a hard night
'"Poor old man,' says Mrs. Jonks,
a-wlpin' of a tear, 'Poor old man, I
suppose he'll be playing of his mando
lin again.' 'That ho will,' says I.
"He hasn't missed it, as noar as I
can Judgo, for thirty years. As euro
as Thanksgiving night cornea, Just bo
sure bo gets out that old mandolin of
his and tinkles away. And It's always
tfe !ame tuno. God! But It does
make my mind go back. I'll nove for-
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six s.x SIX SAX six six sx sx six ,x -. S X St'
THAN Mi V lli :W
got tho first tlmo ho played It. You
seo, mo nnd Morrlnm hnvo been to
gether, oft nnd on, bo long that I know
his dtoty most ns well as ho docs him
Bolf. Not that ho over talks about It.
To-night, aftor tho show, that Instru
ment '11 go back to tho bottom of his
trunk, and It won't como out again till
this tlmo next year."
Tho leading man was all ears.
"Thirty years ago I was stago door
koepor at tho old California theattir.
Now, the ntftgo doorman nln't so un
important ns somo folks think. There's
mighty llttlo goos on that ho don't
know something about. Ho gets tho
flowers first, and ho usunlly sors tho
cards. Ho's n good frlond to tho actor
when tho actor's a friend to him, and
ho can do n favor now nnd then that's
worth tho whllo.
"Merrlam was Just beginning to
climb up tho ladder In thoso days. Ho
had como Into the stock three years
beforo ns utility, but he was n hand
somo chap, with brains nnd ambition
to back his good looks, nnd It wasn't
long beforo ho got to playing leads.
Say, when Morrlnm wont on nB Romeo
nt tho mntlnces you couldn't seo throo
rows In front of you for tho bonnots.
Mrs. Jonks used to live In 11 regular
garden thoso days, for Morrlnm
wouldn't hnvo nono of the flowers
tho silly girls used to Bend him. When
I'd offor to bring thorn homo to him
ho'd laugh, nnd toll mo ho reckonod
my wlfo enred moro for flowors than
"But I often noticed that ho came
into tho theater with n big bunch of
violets or roses that ho'd bought him
self to glvo to tho llttlo woman who
played opposlto parts to htm. I asked
him onco why ho didn't glvo hor the
flowers tho girls sont him, instead of
spending money thnt way. I took n
kind of fatherly Interest In Morrlnm In
thoso days. Lord bless you, to look
at him now you'd think ho was my
grandfather. Ho looks that old.
"Well, I scon how things was going
with him and Nelllo Mooro, and every
body olso seen It, too. Whon sho was
on tho stago ho stood In tho wings,
nnd his eyes followed every movo bho
mndo. I romombor ono of tho womon
saying that It was worth whllo to havo
a man enro for you llko that, and cer
tainly Nelllo seemed to llko it. Sho
camo to mo ono afternoon thnt
Thanksgiving I'm tolling you nbout
and said that sho was too tired to go
homo after tho matinee. Sho naked
me if I'd run ncross tho way and ordor
dinner for hor. Then sho whispered
In my oar that sho wanted It served
for two, and asked It I couldn t fix a
bunch light on tho stago, so Bho nnd
Morrlam could havo a cozy Thanksgiv
ing dinner all alono.
"Of course I dono It for her, and
whllo they wero catln' I went over to
my boardln' house. Thoro was to ba
I WANT YOU TO LEARN IT.
a change of bill that night, ao I camo
back early to got my props In ulupo,
as I had them to attend to as well as
looking after the door. When I camo
back to tho theater I heard Nelllo
Mooro playln' a mandolin. Sho was
always fond of music and carried tho
Instrument around with her.
" 'Now you try,' sho Bald, nnd Mor
rlam answered that ho didn't know a
" 'I'll teach you,' she said. Thero's
an air I want you to lenrn and remem
ber.' "'All right,' said Merrlam, and ho
took tho mandolin from her. Sho
showed him whero to placo his fingers
and kopt humming the tuno until ho
could play It with only one or two
breaks. Then she -went to hor dress
ing room to get ready, and Morrlam
sat thero thrumming until tho halt
hour was called.
"That night thero was n good doal
of hand-shnklng, and tho word went
around, that thero was to bo a wcddln'
"The next night on my way to tho
thentor I notlcod a crowd around tho
stago door, and heard talk of n run
away. I hurried up, and as I did so
Morrlam enmo out, his fuco as whlto
as a ghost's..
" 'For God's sake, got a doctor,
Jonks!' ho crlod.
"I ruBhod to tho nearest drug atoro,
and, luckily, found ono thoro. When
wo got back to tho stago door Morrlam
wan waiting, and, without a word, ho
lod us to a sofa In tho wings on which
Nelllo Mooro was lying. The doctor
bent down oyer her for a minute, shook
his bond and said ho was too late.
"An understudy played Juliet that
night and Merrlam as usual was tho
Romeo. Tho audience didn't know the
real reason for tho chango, but In the
tomb sccno I don't seo how they could
holp feeling It.
"ThoBo of us who aaw it from tha
wings will nover forgot It. Tho womon
woro In hystorlcB nnd tho stago hands
nnd flymon woro noarly ns bad. I don't
know how Morrlnm over lived through
It, but this I do know, Ho wns n dif
ferent man from that night. Ha
seomed to lono nil his ambition nnd ho
withered up 00, thnt whon I met him
nt a rehearsal two yoaro later, I hardly
know him. Ho was bent much nn you
Beo him now, and wbb playing char
actor old men, Every year ho droppod
down furthor, until they wouldn't trtist
htm with anything bottor than bits
and Borvants. Yes, sir, and thnt old
man hns played Romeo with tho bct
Tho story was finished, but tho man
dolin still tinkled. Tho loading man's
fnco was drawn, nnd Jonks sat think
ing. Perhaps tho formor was thinking
of his own high tldo of proaporlty, And
of what tho futuro had In ntor for
But sympathy and cur loot ty nro
closely allied, nnd Boon tho two men
woro tiptoeing through tho passage
way. They pausod before tho oia act
or's room. A ray of light flltorod
through a crnck In the thin plno door.
Morrlam was drosscd and mado HP for
a comedy servant. Ills groon llvory
cout hung on n peg on the wall, nnd
tho rod wig with which ho covered
his own whlto hair lay on tho dressing
tablo beforo him. Thoro, too, was a
faded photograph of a pure-faced girl
In tho drcsB of Jullot. Tho actor was
bent over his mandolin and tho load
ing man now cnught tho tuno for the
flrat tlmo, broken, but rocognlzaVo.
"When other hearts nnd other lips
Their tnlcs of lovo Bhall tell,
Then you'll remember, youll .omunv
Twang! Thoro was tho Bound of a
"First nctl All up for tho first nctt"
Tho callboy camo tumbling down tho
passago and tho llstonors hurrlod up to
tho Btago. A few minutes lator tho
callboy camo up, too, and ho found
tho stago managor fuming.
"Whoro's Morrlam?" ho cried. "I
can't hold tho curtain all night for that
doddering old fool. Hurry him up,
Tho bey disappeared, and roappoarod
"Mr. Merrlam'B " Tho tears
choked his volco and ho got no furthor.
Tho stago managor mado a rush for
tho stairs. Ten minutes lator ho camo
up dressed for tho comedy servant,,
but tho mnn whoso namo was down
on tho bills for tho part lay In his
drcBBlng room clutching an old man
dolin, with his eyes fixed on a fadod
Tlin Soldier In tisiti.
It Is not easy for the hearts In
darkened rooms today, mourning sons
and brothers to sec God's faco In tho
gloom, and if wo give thanks for
bravo men and bravo deeds, for the
heroism that faced death unflinching
ly in tho trenches or on the seas, it
should bo In humility, that tho world
has not progressed far enough in God's
way to bo relieved of tho curse of war,
but wo can bo unreservedly thankful
for the voices that havo rung out In
all the land for peace. Let us bo thank
ful that never beforo havo so many
mon and women been pleading for th
right In deflanco of the wrong. Never
beforo have bo many thoughtful ones
faced tho evils of the times, tho great
underlying causes of Bin and mlsory,
and sought to boIvo tho knotty ques
tions of our modern civilization.
Servanta at Dinner.
Thanksgiving dinner in the servants'
hall. Tho butler and housekeeper at-,
the bead azid foot of the table, ""
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