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About The Red Cloud chief. (Red Cloud, Webster Co., Neb.) 1873-1923 | View Entire Issue (March 10, 1905)
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"By "Booth Ta.'Rkijgtojv
Copyright. 1899. btf Voubteriay 3L McCturt Co.
Atit tin k . ,V ,, ,)
(CONTINUE!) FIIOM LAST WEEK.)
"Kilt It did. I am remembering very
fast. If you will wait a moment I will
tell you xonie of the things you said."
The girl laughed merrily. Whenever
Bin; Inuirhed lie realized that It was be
coming terribly ditlleiilt not to tell her
how adorable she was. "I wouldn't
rial; It IT I were you." she warned him,
"because I didn't weak to you at till.
I shut my lips tiht and trembled all
over every bit of the time I was danc
ing with you. I did not sleep that
night, and I was unhappy, wondering
what the .real llarkless would think
of me. 1 knew he thought me uuultor-'
ably stupid because I eouldn't talk to
' bliu. I wanted to send him word that'
1 knew 1 had bored liliu. 1 eouldn't
endure that he shouldn't know Unit I
knew 1 had. Hut lie was not thinking
of me in any vny. lie had gone to
sen again in his white boat, the un-
gratcful pirate, cruMng with .Mr
"Ilow time does change us!"
John. "You are wrong, though.
think or tm. 1 have ul"
"Vox," she Interrupted, tossing her
head In airy travesty of the stage co
quette, "you think so 1 mean, you say
no now. Away with you and your
And mi they went through the warm
noontide, and little he eared for the
heat that wilted the fat mullein leaves
and, "jade the barefoot boy who passed
by skip gingerly through the burning
dust with unguMicd mouth and watery
eye. Little he knew of the katydid that
suddenly whirred its mills of shrillness
in the maple tree and sounded so hot,
hot, hot; or that other that railed at the
country quiet from the dim, cool shade
around the briek house, or even the. rain
crow that Mit on the fence and swore to
them In the face of a sunny sky that
xney siiotiiu see rain ere the day were
milk and apple butler llavored like
spices of Arabia and fragi'ant, tlaky
cherry pie and cool, rich, yellow cream.
Llge Willetls was a lover, yet lie said
he asked no better than to Jusi go on
eating that cherry pie till a sweet,
deatii overtook him; but railroad sand-1
j, wiclies and restaurant chops might i
have been, set before llarkless for all
the difference, it would have made to'
At no other time Is a man's feeling of .
companionship with a woman so strong
ns when he sits at table with her, not
at a "decorated" and becatered and bo
wallcrcd table, but at a homely, appe
tizing, wholesome, home table like old
Judge I'.riscoe's. The very essence of
the tiling in domesticity, umWhc im
plication is utter confidence and liking.
There are few greater dangers for a
bachelor. An insinuating Imp perches
m his shoulder and, softly tickling the
bachelor's ear with (he feathers of an
arrow shaft, whispers: "Pretty gay,
Isn't It, ehV leather pleasant to have
that girl sitting there, don't you think?
Enjoy having her notice your butter
plate was empty? Think It exhilarat
ing to hand her those rolls? Looks nice,
doesn't she? Says 'Thank you' rather
prettily? Makes your lonely brenkfast
seem nighty dull, doesn't it? Ilow
would you like to have her pour your .
llMIl.,i'.l!..'..1..'..'.A.'.AJ..1.A.t..l.J..I..1.J..t..t,.).J.,t..4..l..l.....I..I.A.I..I..t..., . . ....
done. Little the young man recked of """ , ..' V , UL"""" ' 'u'1
what he ate at .Indue Hriscoe's good V . '.' W"n"r n,'Ut
noon dinner-chicken wing and young " ; ! x l'ss' ';v c'ar' "
roas'n ear, hot rolls as light as the Unit ,,e" 1 ?,l,d my llpl,r" !
f .. snmmm- ..ln,.,ll..t ,1 l,,.,. .,.,,1 BI,oku U lOIWH.
-sm ....- . iwitiBii mill IIWHt.l lllll I
coffee for you tomorrow, my boy? HoW Mr. Martin and determined not to sit
would it seem to have such pleasant , within a hundred yards of him; here
company all the rest of your life? rolled In the orbit of habit the town
Tretty cheerful, eh? It's my conviction bacchanal, Mr. Wllkerson, who politely
fhnt your one need in life Is to pick her' answered In kind all the uncouth roar
"fip In your arms and run away with ' ings and guttural ejaculations of Jun-
her, not anywhere In particular, but
Just run and run and run away!" I
After dinner they went out to the
veranda, and the gentlemen smoked.!
The Judge set his chair down on the
ground, tilled back in It with his feet
on the steps and blew a wavery, dom-j
cd city up In
the air. He called it
lie liked to sit out from '
under the porch roof, he said.
wanted to see more of the sky. The
others moved their chairs down to
Join In the celestial vision. A feath-j
ery thin cloud or two had been fanned
f across It, but save for these' there was
nothing hut glorious and tender brll-J
llant blue. It seemed so clear and
close one marveled the little church
Bpire In the distance did not pierce It.
Yet at the same time the eye ascended
miles and miles Into warm, shimmer
ing ether. Far away two buzzards
bwuiik aiu i,v in iiiiuiiui iimitwij iu iiiu
"O brluht, translucent, cerulean hue,
Let my wide wings drift on In you,"
Hnrkless ;yotcd, pointing them out to
"You seeni to got a good deal of fun
jiout of lliis kind of weather," observed
UgQ as he wiped his brow and shifted
bis chair into the shade. '
by McCturt. ThiUipj t3L Co.
"I expect you don't get such skies
as tills up !n Itoucn." said the Judge,
looking nt the girl ironi between his
lazily half closed eyelids.
"It's the same Indiana sky, 1 think,"
"I guess maybe In the city you don't
eee as much of It or think as much
about It, then. Yes, they're the In
diana skies," the old man went on.
"Skies ns bluo
Aa the eyes of children when tlir-y smile
"There aren't any others anywhere
Hint ever seemed mueli like them to
me. They've been company for me all
my life. 1 don't think there are any
others half as beautiful, and I know
there aren't any as sociable. They
were always so." He sighed gently.
and .Miss Sherwood fancied his wife
must have found the Indiana skies as
lovely as he had In the days of long
niro. "Seems to me thev are I lit- soflcv
and bluest and kindest In the world."
"1 think they are," said Helen, "and
they are more beautiful than the Hal-'
Ian skies, though I doubt if many of
lis Iloosiers realize It, and certainly no
one else does."
The old man leaned over and patted
her hand, llarkless gasped. "ls
Oooslcrs!' " chuckled the judge. "You're
a great Hooslor, young lady! How
much of your life have you spent in the
Btute? 'Us Iloosiers!'"
"Hut I'm going to be a good one," she
answered gayly, "and If I'm good
enough when I grow up maybe I'll be
a great one."
The buckboard had been brought
Around, and the four young people
climbed in, llarkless driving. Iteforc
they started the Judge, standing on the
horse block in front of the gate, leaned
over and patted Miss Sherwood's band
again. llarkless gathered up the reins.
"You'll make a great lloosler, all
Walt," said the judge, still holding
the little hand. "You'll make a great
lloosler some day; don't fret. You're
already a wry beautiful one." Then
he bent his white head and kissed her
"Good afternoon, judge," said John.
The whip cracked, and the buckboard
dashed oil' In a cloud of dust.
"Kvery once In awhile, llarkless," the
old fellow called after them, "you must
remember to look at the teanl."
The enormous white tent was tilled
Willi a hazy, yellow light, the warm,
dusty, mellow light that thrills the re
joicing heart because it is lotmd no
where else in the world except in the
tents of a circus, the canvas tillered
sunshine and sawdust atmosphere of
Here swayed n myriad of palm leaf
fans; here paraded blushing youth and
rosy ina'den more relentlessly arm In
arm than ever; here crept the octoge
narian, Mr. Hodcffor, slinking on cane
and the shoulder of posterity; here
waddled Mr. Snoddy, who had hurried
through the animal tent for fear of
meeting the elephant; here marched
sturdy yeomen and stout wives; here
came William Todd and his true love,
the good William hushed with the em
barrassments of love, but looking out
warily with the white of his eve for
gle and fen that came from the animal
tent in brief, here came with lightest
heart the population of Carlow and
part of Amo.
Helen had found a true word; It was
a big family. Jim Uardloek, broadly
smiling and rejuvenated, shorn of de
pression, paused in front of the "re
serve" heats, with Mrs. Uardloek on
his nrm, and called loudly to a gentle
man on a tier about the level of Jim's
head: "How are ye? I reckon we were
a leetle too smart fer eni this morning,
huh?" Five or six hundred people, ev
ery one within hearing, turned to look
at Jim, but the gentlerann nddrensed
was engaged in conversation with a
lady and did not notice.
"Hi! Hi, there! Say! Mr. llarkless!"
bellowed Jim Informally. The people
turned to look at llarkless. Ills atten
tion was arrested, and his cheek grew
"What Is It?" ho asked, a little con
fused and a good deal annoyed.
"I don't hear what ye say," shouted
Jim, putting his hand to his ear.
"What is It?" repented the young
mnn. "I'll kill that fellow tonight," ho
added to Llge Wllletts. "Some one
ought to have done it long ago."
l.lt ,...1.1 il 1.1 f
"I said. What Is It?"
"I Jest wanted to say me and you
certainly did fool these here Iloosiers
this morning. Hustled them two fel
lers through the courthouse, and no
body thought to slip round to the other
door and head us off. Ha, ha! We
were jest a leetle too many fer 'em,
From an upper tier of seals the rusty
length of Mr. Martin erected Itself
Joint by Joint, like an extension ladder,
and he peered down over the gaping
faces at the town marshal. "Kxcnso
me," he said sadly to (hose behind him,
but his dry voice penetrated every
where. "I got up to hear ,11m say 've'
Mr. Uardloek Joined In the laugh
against himself and proceeded with
his wife to sonic seats forty or llfty
feet distant. When he had settled him
self comfortably he shouted over cheer
fully to the unhappy editor. "Them
shell men got it in fer you. Mr. Hark
less!" "Hain't that fool shet upyltV" snarl
ed the aged Mr. HodelVer Indignantly.
He was sitting near the young couple,
nnd the expression of his sympathy
was distinctly audible to Uiem anil
many others. "(Jot u more regards
than a brazing calf-dlsturbln' a feller
with ids sweetheart!"
"The both of 'em says they're going
to do fer ye." bleated Mr. Uardloek;
"swears they'll ketch their evens with
Mr. Martin rose again. "Don't git
seared and leave town, Mr. llarkless!"
he called out. 'Mini 'II protect you."
Vastly to the young man's relief the
band began to play and the equestrians
and equestriennes en if red out from
the dressing tent for the "grand en
trance," nnd Hie performance com
menced. Through l he lung summer
Ifternoon it went on wonders of
torsfimiushlp and of horsewonianshlp,
iialr raising exploits on wires tight
and slack, giddy tricks on the high
trapeze, feats of leaping and tum
bling iu the rings, whjje, the tireless
musicians Ida I ted iusplrlngly through
It all, only pausing long enough to
allow Hint riotous lester, the clown,
to ask the ringmaster what he would
do If a young lady came up and kissed
him on the street, and to explode his
witticisms during short intervals of
rest for the athletes.
When It was over, John and Helen
found themselves iu the midst of a
densely packed crowd and separated
from Miss Briscoe nnd Llge. People
Were pushing and shoving, nnd he saw
her face grow pale. He realized with 11
pang of sympathy how helpless he
would feel If lie were as small as she
and at his utmost height could only
Bee big. suffocating backs and buga
shoulders pressing down from above.
He was keeping them from crowding
heavily upon her with all his strength,
and a royal feeling of prolecllvenes-'
came over him. Siie was so little. And
yet, without the remotest hint of hard
ness, she gave lilm such a distinct im
pression of poise and equilibrium. Shu
seemed so able to meet anything that
might come, to understand it ccn to
laugh at It so Americanly capable and
sure of the evi nt that. In spite of her
pale cheek, lie rould not feel quite so
protective as he wished to feel.
lie managed to gel her to one of tin.
tent poles and placed her with her back
to It. Then he set one of his own
hands against it, over her head, brac
ed himself and stood keeping a little
space about her and ruggedly letting
"Please don't do that," he answered.
the crowd surge against him as It
"would. No one should touch her in
"Thank you. It wns rather trying in
there," she said and looked up Into his
yes with a divine gratitude.
"Please don't do that," hd answered
In a low voice.
"Look like that."
She not only looked like that, but
more so. "Young man, young man,"
she said, "I fear you're wishful of turn
ing u girl's head."
The throng was thick around them,
garrulous and noisy, but they two were
more richly alone together, to his appre
ciation, Win if they stood on some far
satellite R' Mars. He was not to for
get that moment, and he kept the pic
ture of her, as she leaned against the
big blue tent pole there, In his henrt;
tho cleart gray eyesjlftedjo his, the
rpp-cr .y I U
"J I n I I n js LftJ2
) in A T i Mfl&Br
y I ) I l xM TBI
piquant face with the delicate Hush1
stealing back to her cheeks and tho
brave little llgtire that had run so
straight io him out of the night shad
ows. There was something about her
and iu (lie moment that suddenly
touched him with a saddening sweet
ness too keen to be borne. The forget-me-not
linger or the Hying hour Unit
could not come again was laid on his
soul, and he Telt the tears start from
his heart on their Journey to bis eyes.
He knew that he should always reinein-'
her that moment. She knew It loo.1
She put her hand to her cheek and
Hirtii'il iitvni (Yum lilt,, (i llMl.t tiitiitii.l
....... ..i...t, ....... ...in , miii; ii,i,i-
lously. ltoth were silent.
They had been together since early
morning. I'lattville was proud of him.
Many a friendly glance from (lie folk
who jostled about them favored Ills
suit nnd wished both of them well, and
many lips, opening to speak to Hark
less In passing, closed when their own
ers, more tactful than Mr, Hardlock,
looked a second time.
Old Tom Martin, still perched alone
on his high seat, saw them standing by
the tent pole and watched them from
under his dusty bat brim. "1 reckon
It's he'n three or four thousand years
seucc I was young," he sighed to him
self. Then, pushing Ids hat still farther
down over Ids eyes, "I don't believe I'd
ort to rightly look on nt that." lie
sighed again as lie rose and gently
spoke the naine of his dead wife: "Mar
Jle, I reckon you're mighty tired wait
In' for me. It's he'n lonesome sometimes"-
"Do you see that lull old man up
there?" said Helen, nodding her head
toward Mai tin. "I think I should like
to know him. I'm sure I like him."
"That Is old Tom Martin."
"I was sorry and ashamed about nil
that coiispicuousuess and shouting. It
must have been very unpleasant for
3ou. It must have been so for a stran
ger. Please try to forgive me for let
ting you In for It."
"Hut I liked It. It was 'all Iu the
family,' and It was so Jolly ami good
nn lured, nnd that dear old man was so
bright. Do you know," she went on In
n low voice, "I don't believe I'm so
much a stranger I think I love all
these people a great deal In spite of
having known them only two days."
At that a wild exhilaration possessed
him. He wanted to shake hands with
every soul In the tent, to tell them all
that he loved them with his whole
heart: but, what was vastly more Im
portant, she loved them a great deal
in spite of having known them only
He made the horses prance on the!
homeward drive, and once, when she
told him that she had read a good many
of his political columns In the Herald,
he ran them into a fence. After tills
it occurred to him that they were Hear
ing their destination and had come at
n perversely sharp gait, so ho held the
roans down to a snail's pace (If It be
true Unit a snail's natural gait Is not a
trot) for the rest of the way. unij they
'talked of Tom Meredith and books and
music, and discovered that they dif
fered widely about Ibsen.
They found Mr. Flsbee In the yard,
talking to Judge Mrlscoe. As they
drove up ami before the horses had
quite stopped Helen leaped to thu
ground nnd ran to the old scholar with
both her hands outstretched to him.
He looked timidly at her and took the
hands she gave him; then he produced
from his pocket u yellow telegraph en
velope, watching her anxiously as sho
received It. However, she seemed to
attach no particular importance to II,
find Instead of opening It leaned to
ward him, still holding one of bis
"Tlie.se awful old men!" Harklost
groaned Inwardly as he handed tho
horses over to the Judge. "I dare say
he'll kiss her too." Hut when the ed
itor and Mr. Wllletts had gone It wns
Helen who kissed Flsbee.
"They're coming out to spend tho
evening, aren't they?" asked Hriscoc,
nodding to the young men ns they set
off down the road.
"Llge has to come whether ho wnnts
to or not," Minnie Inughed rather con
sciously. "It's bis turn tonight to look
after Mr. Harkloss."
"I guess he won't mind coming," said
"Well," returned his daughter, glanc
ing at Helen, who stood npnrt reading
tho telegram to Flsbee, "I know If ho
follows Mr. llarkless die'll got hero
pretty soon after supper as soon ns
tho moon comes up, anyway."
The editor of the Herald was late to
bis evening meal that night. It was
dusk when he reached the hotel, and
for the first time In history n gentle-
man snt down to meat In that houso
of entertainment In evening dress. '
There was no one in the dining room
When ho went In tho other boarders
bad finished, nnd it was Cynthia's
"evening out" Ijjit tho landlord, Co
lumbus Lnndls, "fame nnd attended to
bia wants himself and chatted with
him while he ate.
"There's a picture of Henry Clay,"
remarked Lnndls iu obvious relevancy
to his companion's attire "there's a
picture cf Henry Clay somewhere
about the house In a swallow tall. Gov
ernor Hay spoke here in one, Hodeffer
says; always wore one, except It was
higher built up 'n yourn about tho col
lar and bad brass buttons, I think.
viu mini huuj ivmi nviu iikium iu-
jJiHiii, i lie mnuioiu cqimniieu, ciiaiig-1
Ing the subject. "He waited around f"i
yo a good while, but last he had to go.
He's he'n mighty wrought up sence tho
trouble this morning an' wanted to see
ye bad. I don't know If you seen It, but
that feller M knocked your hat olT with
a club got mlglitv near tore to pieces
in the wd before ho got nway.
Seems some of the boys re-cog-nlzed
him as one of the Crossroads Skillets
and sicked ttie dogs on him, and ho
had a pretty mean time of It. Wlmby
says tile Crossroads folks Ml be worse
'n ever, and, says lie, 'Tell him to stick
close to town,' says he. 'They'll do
nnythlng to git lilm now,' says he, 'and
resk anything.' I told lilm you wouldn't
take no stock In what any one says,
and 1 kuowetl well enough you'd laugh
that ii-way. Hut, seo here, we don't
put not hln' too mean for them folks. 1
tell ye, Mr. Hnrkless, all of us tiro
Beared for ye."
The good fellow was so earnest that
when the editor's supper was llnlshed
nnd he would have departed, Lnndls
detained him almost by force until thu
arrival of Mr. Wllletts. who, the land
lord knew, was his allotted escort for
the evening. When Llge came (wear
ing a new tie, a pink one he had has
tened to buy us soon ns ids engage
incuts had given opportunity) the land
lord hissed a savage word of reproach
for bis tardiness In Ids ear and whisper
ingly bade lilm not let the other out of
reach that night. Mr. Wllletts replied
with a nod Implying his trustworthi
ness, nnd the young men went out Into
CH APTKIl VII.
Ill) moon had risen, and (hero
was a lace of mist along the
creek when John and Helen
reached their bench. (Of
course they went back there.) She
turned In him with a little frown.
"Why have you never let Tom Mere
dith know you were living so near lilm
less than a hundred miles when ho
bus always liked and admired you
above all the rest of mankind? I know
that lie has tried time and again to
hear of you, but the other men wrote
that they knew nothing, that It was
thought you had gone abroad. I had
heard of you, mid so has he seen your
name In the Rouen papers about thu
White Caps and Iu politics but he
would never dream of connecting thu
Plattvlllo Mr. llarkless with his Mr.
Hnrkless; though I did, Just a little, In
a vague way. I knew you, of course,
when you caino into Mr. Halloway's
lecture the other evening. Hut why
haven't you written to my cousin?"
"Houen seems rather far away to
me," he answered quietly. "I've been
there only once, half a day on business.
Except that, I've never been much far
ther than Amo and then for a conven
tion or to make a speech since I caino
"Wicked," she exclaimed, "to shut
yourself up like this! I said it was flue
to drop out of the world, but why have
you cut off your old friends from you?
Why haven't you bad a relapse now
and then nnd come over to bear Ysayo
play and Melba sing, or to seo Mans
field or Henry Irving, when wo have
had them? And do you think you've
boon quite fair to Tom? What right
lind you to assume that ho bad forgot
"Ob, I didn't exactly mean forgot
ten," In; said, pulling a blade of grass
to nnd fro between his fingers nnd
staring at it absently. "It's only that
I have dropped out of tho world, you
know. They rather expected mo to do
a lot of things, and I hnv"'t done
them. Posulbly It Is because I am sen
sitive that I never let Tom know. They,
expected me to amount to something,
but I don't believe his welcome would
bo less hearty to a failure ho Is a
"Failure!" she cried and clapped her
hnnds and laughed.
"I'm really not very tragic about It,
though I must seem consumed with
self pity," be returned, Twilling. "It Is
only that I have dropped out of the
world while Tom Is still In It."
" 'Dropped out of the world!' " sho
echoed Impatiently. "Can't you seo
you've dropped into It? That you"
"Last night I wns honored by your
praise of my graceful mode of quitting
"And so you wish me to be consist
ent," she retorted scornfully. "What
becomes of your gallantry when wo
abide by reason?"
"True enough; cquulity Is a denial of
"And prlvllego is a denial of equal
ity? I don't like that at all." Sho
turned a serious, suddenly Illuminated
face upon him nnd spoke earnestly
"It's my hobby, I should tell you, am
..... r. , . .'..WH.f . JWW, ..Ml
I'm tired of that nonsense about 'worn-'
en always sounding tho personal note.'
It should bo sou tided as we would
sound it. And I think we could bear
tho loss of 'privilege "
He laughed and raised a protesting
band. "Hut we couldn't."
(TO HE CONTINUED.)
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