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About The Red Cloud chief. (Red Cloud, Webster Co., Neb.) 1873-1923 | View Entire Issue (Dec. 1, 1905)
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"Well." lie exclaimed at last, "I mu.tt
nay that boats niel Deduced It! That
whs iiilijlity clover."
Again I bowed my acknowledgments.
"And tliat'fi all you vm tell me?" b
'I'm afraid that's all."
"Very well. Thank you for that
much," and be illckod the ashes from
bss cigar. "Now, I fear that I must
kve you. I've a. good dMl of work
to do, and you've opened up a very
Interesting line of speculation. I as
sure you that I've passed a very pleas
ant evening. I hope you've not found
"Quito the contrary," I said brtlly.
"Fvc enjoyed myself Immensely."
"Then I'll ask you oue last favor.
My cub Is at the- door. I've no fur
tfier use for It, and I beg you'll drive
Lome In It"
I aw that he really wished It.
"Why, yes, certainly," I assented.
"Thank you," he said.
lie took me down to the door, called
tbo cub and shook hands wltli me
"Goodby, Mr. Loiter," ho said. "I'm
gjad of the chance to have met you.
Vv not really audi a myHterlous In
dividual. It's meroly a trick of the
trade. I hope we'll meet again somo
"So do I," I Hald, and meant It.
I naw him Htand for a moment on the
curb looking after ua an we drove
away, then he turned and ran rapidly
lip the stepn of the elevated.
The driver seemed In no hurry to get
me home, and I had plenty of time to
think over the events of the evening,
but I could make nothing of them.
"What result hu had achieved I could
not Imagine. And yet he had seemed
satisfied. As to his theory, I could not
bnt admit that it was an adroit oue;
even a masterly one a better one, cer
tainly, than I should have evolved un
aided. The cab drew up at my lodging nnd
I up rang out, tipped the driver and ran
UD the stops to the door. My landlady
met me on the threshold.
"Oh. Mr. Lester!" she cried. "Such a
time as I've had this night! Every live j
minutes there's been somebody here '
looking for you, and there's a crowd of
them up in your room now. I tried to
put them out, but they wouldn't go!"
1WAS quite dazed for the moment
"A crowd of them in my room!"
I repeated. "A crowd of whom,
"A crowd of reporters! They've been
worrying my life out. They seemed to ,
think I bad you hid somewhere. I
hope you're not In trouble, Mr. Lester?" i
"Not tho least In the world, my dear
madam," I laughed. And I breathed a
long sigh of relief, for I had feared I
know not what disaster. "I'll soon fin
ish with the reporters." And 1 went
on up the stair.
Long before I reached my rooms I
heard the clatter of voices and caught
tho odor of various qualities of tobac
co. They wore lolling about over the
furniture, telling stories, I suppose, nnd
they greeted mo with a cheer when I
entered. They were such Jovial fel
lows that it was quite Imposslblo to
feel nngry with them. And, besides, I
knew that they wore gentlemen; thnt
they labored early nnd late at meager
salaries for the pure lovo of the work;
Hint they were quick to scent fraud or
trickery or un worthiness and Inexora
ble In exposing It; that thoy loved
to do good anonymously, remaining ut
terly unknown snvo to the appreciative
few tehind the scenes. So I returned
their greeting smilingly and sat mo
down In a chair which one of them
obligingly vacated for mo.
"Well?" I began, looking about at
"My denr Mr. Lester," said the ono
who had given mo tho chair, "permit
me to Introduce myself as Rankin of
the Planet. These gentlemen" and ho
included them In a wide gesture "are
my colleagues of tho press. We've been
anxiously awaiting you hero In order
thnt wo may propound to you certain
"All right; flro away," I said.
"First, we'd like to have your theory
of the crime. Your work this after-
noon convinced us thnt you know how
to put two nnd two together, which Is .
more than enn be said for tho ordl-
nnry mortal. Tho public will want to
know your theory the great public."
"Oh, but I haven't any theory," I
protested. "Besides, I don't think tho
great public is especially Interested In
mo. you see, gentlemen, I'm quite out
of tho ense. When we cleared Miss
Holladay our connection with It ended."
"But Is Miss Holladay, cleared?" ha
Canrijht. 1905, by
lUary HoU and
persisted. "Is It not Quito conceivable
that In those two lioui'H she waH absent
They greeted mo vAth a cliccr when I en.
from her carriage she may havo
changed her gown, gone to her father's
otllce, and then changed back again?
In that case, would she not naturally
have chosen a green gown, since Bhe
never wore green?"
"Oh, nonsense!" I cried. "That's
puerile. Either sho would disguise her
self effectually or not at all. I ruipposo
If you were going to commit a capital
crime you would merely put on a high
hat because you never wear one! I'll
tell you this much: I'm morally cer
tain that Miss Holladay Is quite Inno
cent; so, I believe, la the district at
torney." "But how nbout the note, Mr. Les
ter V What did it contain?"
"Oh, I can't tell you that, you know,
It's none of my business." !
"But you ought to treat us all alike,"
ho protested. j
"I do treat you all alike."
"Bllt didn't Godfrey get It OUt of
"Godfrey!" I repeated.
"Get It out of
He stared at me In nstonlshment
"Do you mean to tell me, Mr. Les
ter," ho questioned, "that you haven't
been spending the evening with Jim
Godfrey of the Record?"
Then, In a tlasn, I understood, and as
I looked at tho rueful faces of the men
gathered about me I laughed until the
"So It was you," I gasped, "who
chased us up Broadway?"
"Yes, but our horses weren't good
enough. Where did ho take you?"
"To the Studio Sixth avenue."
"Of course!" ho cried, slapping his
leg. "We might hnve known. Boys,
we'd better go back to Podunk."
"Well, at least, Mr. Lester," spoke up
another, "you oughtn't to give Godfrey
"But I didn't give him a scoop. I
didn't even know who he was."
"Didn't you tell him what was In the
"Not n word of It. I told him only
"And what was that?"
"That the person who wrote tho note
didn't know that Rogers was color
blind. You are welcome to that state
ment too. You see, I'm treating you all
They stood about mo staring down nt
me, silent with astonishment.
"But," I added, "I think Godfrey sus
pects what was In the note."
"Well, his theory (Its It pretty close
ly." "Ills theory! What Is his theory, Mr.
"Oh, come," I laughed. "That's tell
ing. It's a good theory too."
They looked nt ench other, and, I
fancied, gnashed their teeth.
"Ho seems a pretty clever fellow," I
added, Just to pile up tho agony. "I
fancy you'll say so, too, when you see
his theory In tomorrow's paper.
"Clever!" cried Rankin. "Why, he's
a very fiend of cleverness when It
comes to a case of this kind. We're not
in the same class with him. He's a
fancy fellow Just the Record kind.
You're sure you didn't tell him any
thing else, Mr. Lester?" he added anx-
lously. "Godfrey's capable of getting a
story out of a fence post"
"No, I'm quite sure I didn't tell him
nny thing jslse. I only Itetoned to hi
theory with great Interest."
"And nssouted to It?"
"I said I thought It p'tMslbUf
..i. uoctrle shock to rui
nroun I the room.
"That's It!" cried Itnnklu. "That's
what he wanted. Now, it Isn't his
theory any more. It's yours. Oh, I
can sec bin hnndllniv.! Won't you tell
ua what It wnsV
I looked up nt him.
"Now, frankly, Mr. llankln," t nsksd,
lf you were In my place wonld you
He hoflltnted for a moment and then
held out bin hand.
"No," he said as 1 took It. "I
shouldn't. Shake hands, sir; you're all
right. Come on, boys; we might in
well be going."
They tiled out after him, and I heard
tlieni go singing up the street. Then
1 sank back Into my chair nnd thought
again of (Jodfrey's theory. It so mn I
to fit the case precisely, point by point
oven and I started at the thought
to Miss Holluday's reticence hu to her
wheronlKHitn the afternoon Iwfore. The
whole mystery lay plain In'fore me. I
some way she had discovered the ex
istence of her half ulster, had secured
her address; she had gone to visit her
and had found her away from home
It wan probnble, even, that the half
Hlster had written her, asking her to
come though, I that case, why had
she not remained at homo to receive
her? At any rate. Miss Holladay had
awaited her return, had noticed her
agitation; had, perhaps, even seen cer
tain marks of blood upon her. The
news of her father's death had pointed
all too clearly to what that agitation
and those blood spots meant. She had
remained silent that she might not be
smirch her father's name, and also,
Icrhaps, tlint she might protect the
other woman. I felt that I held In my
hand the key to the whole problem.
Point by point but what a snarl It
waul That there would be a vigorous
search for the other woman I could
not doubt, but she had a long start and
shoukl easily escape. Yet perhaps she
had not started. Bhe must havo re
mained In town, else how could that
note hnve been sent to us? She had re
mained, then but why? That she
should feel any affection for Frances ,
Holladay seemed absurd, and yet how
else explain the note?
1 I felt thnt I was getting tangled up
In the snarl again. There Boomed no
limit to Its lntrlcncles; so, In very de
spalr, I put tho matter from me as
completely as I could and went to
I The morning's Record nttested 1he
truth of Rankin's prophecy. I had
! grown famous in a night, for Godfrey
had In a measure made me responsible
for his theory, describing me with a
wcnmi or adjectives wnicn i imisn to
remember nnd which I have even yet
not Quite forgiven him. I smiled as I
rend the nrst lines:
A Ttrcord representative bad tho pleau-
pwiw ran nB oi aimng mm ir.
Wnrwlck locator, tho brilliant younff at-
inrnv xehn nchlnvpfl kiipH n rmnrk:ihlA
I torney who achieved nuch a rrmarkablo
victory before Coroner Goldberg yenter-,
day afternoon In tho lieu ting of tho Hol
laday cone, nnd, of course, took occasion
to dlncuHH with him tho latest develop
ments of this extraordinary crlmo. Mr.
Lester iisrocd with tho Record In a the
ory which Is tho only ono that fits tho
facts of tho case and completely and sat
isfactorily explains all Its ramifications.
'Hie theory was then developed at
great length, and the article concluded
with tho statement that the Record
was assisting tho police In a strenuous
endeavor to find tho guilty woman.
Now thnt the police knew In which
quarter to spread their net, I had little
doubt that she would soon be found,
since she had tempted Providence by
remaining In town.
Mr. Graham and Mr. Royce were
looking through the Record nrtlolu
when I reached tho office, and I ex
plained to them how the alleged Inter
view had been secured. They laughed
together In' appreciation of Godfrey's
"It seems a pretty strong theory,"
said our senior. "I'm Inclined to be
lieve It myself."
I pointed out how It explained Miss
Holiday's reticence her refusal to as
sist us In proving nn alibi. Mr. Royeo
"Precisely. As Godfrey said, the the
ory touches every point of tho ease.
According to tho old police axiom, that
proves It's the right one."
IHE body of IHrnm Holladay was
placed beside that of his wlfo
In his granite mnusolcum nt
Woodlawn on tho Sunday fol
lowing his death. Two days later his
will, which had been drawn up by Mr.
Graham and deposited In the ofllco
safe, was read and duly admitted to
probato. As was expected, ho had left
all his property, without condition or
reserve, to his daughter Frances.
Thoro were a few bequests to old serv
ants, Rogors receiving a handsome leg
acy; about half a million was given to
various charities In which ho had been
Interested during his life, nnd tho re
mainder was placed at the absolute
disposal of his daughter.
Wo found that his fortune hnd boon
overestimated, as Is usually tho case
wltli men whoso wealth depends upon
tbo fluctuations of tho Street, but thero
BUU remainea someuung over rour mu-
1,ons for 9 glrV-a pretty dowry. Sho
told w ajk onco thatBhewlshedJto kavo
her affairs In our hands and In tlnan
clal matters would be irulded entirely
by our ndvlce. Most of thin business I
waH conducted by our Junior, nnd,
while, of course, he told me nothing, It
was evident that Ming Holluday's kind-1
ly feelings toward him had suffered uo
diminution. 'Jhe whole office, was mor
or leui con vert-ant with the n'Talr nnd
wished him rum and happiness
Ro a week or ten days passed. The
utmost endeavor of newspapers nnd
police hnd shed no new llnht on the
tragedy, and for tiki great public It
had passed Into the background of
the forgotten, but for me, nt least, '
It remained of undiminished Interest
. . more than once I carefully rv
v.owe I its features to convince my
self anew thai our theory was Ihe
right one. Only oue point occurred to
me which would tend to prove It un
true If there was an Illegitimate
daughter, the blow sho had doalt her
father had also deprived her of what
ever Income he had allowed her or of
any hope of Income from blur, ho she
had acted In her own despite HUH,
Godfrey's theory of sudden passion
might explain this away. And then
again Minn Holladay could probably
be counted ujon, her first grief past,
to provide suitably for her sister.
Granting this, the theory seemed to me
Ono other thing put.lcd me how
hnd thin woman eluded the police? I
kuew thnt the French quarter had been
ransacked for traces of her, wholly
without Huccess, and yet I felt that
the search must have been miscon
ducted, else some trace of her would
surely have been discovered. Miss Hol
laday, of course, rigidly refused her
self to all tuqulrcrH, and here again 1
found myself on the horns of n dilem
ma. Doubtless she was very far from
wishing Hie discovery of the guilty
woman, and yet I felt that she must
be discovered, If only for Miss Holla
day's sake, In order to clear away tho
last vestige of tho cloud that shad
Then came new developments with n
startling rapidity. It was toward quit
ting lime one afternoon thnt a clerk
brought word Into the Inner office that
thero was a womnn without who
wished to see Mr. Royco nt once. She
had given no nnme, but our Junior,
who happened to be nt leisure for the
moment, directed Uint she be shown In.
1 recognized her In nn instant, and so
did h it was Miss Holluday's maid.
I saw, too, that her eyes wore red
with weeping, and as she sat down
beside our Junior's desk sho began to
cry nfrcBh. ,
"Why, whnt's tho matter?" he de
manded. "Nothing wrong wltli your
"She ain't my mistress any more,"
sobbed Uie girl. "She discharged me
"Discharged you!" echoed our Junior.
"Why, I thought she thought so much
"And so did I, sir, but she discharged
me Just the same."
"But what for?" persisted the oUior.
"That's Just what I don't know, sir.
I begged and prayed her to toll me, but
sho wouldn't even see me. So I cnnie
down here. I thought maybe you could
"Well, lot mo hour about It Just as It
hnpponod," said Mr. Royco soothingly.
"Perhaps I can help you."
"Oh, If you could, sir!" she cried.
"You know, I thought the world and
all of Miss Francos. I've been with
her nearly eight years, and for her to
go nnd treat me like this why, It Just
breaks my henrt, sir! I dressed her
this afternoon about II o'clock, and
sho was as nice to mo as ever gavo
me a little brooch, sir, that she was
tired of. Then she went out for a
drive, and nbout nn hour ago enmo
back, I went right up to her room to
undress her, and when I knocked, sir,
a strange woman came to the door and
said that Miss Frances had engaged
her for her maid and wouldn't need me
any more, nnd here wns a nionth'u
Wages'. And while I stood there, sir,
too dazed to move, she shut the door
In my face. After I'd got over It n
bit, I begged that I might sec Miss
Frances, If only to say goodby, but
sho wouldn't see mo. Sho sent word
that she wasn't feeling well and
wouldn't bo disturbed."
Her sobs mastered her again nnd
Bhe stopped. I could sco Uie look of
amazement on our Junior's face, and
did not wonder nt It. What sudden
dislike could her mistress hnve con
ceived against this Inoffensive uud de
"You say this other maid was a
stranger?" he asked.
"Yes, sir; she'd never been In tho
house before, so fnr as I know. Miss
Frances brought her back with her In
"And what sort of looking womnn Is
The girl hesitated.
"She looked like n foreigner, sir,"
sho said at last. "A Frenchwoman,
maybe, by the way sho rolls her r's."
I pricked up my cars. The same
thought occurred nt that Instant to
both Mr. Royco and myself.
"Does sho resemble Miss Holladay?"
ho asked quickly.
"Miss Holladay? Oh, no, sir. She's
much older her hair's qulto gray."
Well, certainly, Miss nollnday had
tho right to choose any maid she
pleased and to discharge any or all of
her servants;, and, yet It jeemed
strangely unlike her to show Bucn
seeming Injustice to any ono.
"You say sho sent down word that
Bhe was 111?" said Mr. Royco at last
"Was tilie 111 when you dressed her?"
"Why, sir," she answered slowly, "1
wouldn't exactly any nhe wns III, hut
sho seemed troubled about something.
I think nhe'd boon crying. She's bctftv
crying n good deal, off and on, slncft
her father died, ioor tiling," she added.
That would explain It, certainly, ami
yet grief for her father might not he
tho only cause of Frances Holludny
"But she didn't seem vexed wlth
"Oh, no, sir; sho gave me a brooch,,
ns I told you."
"I fear I can't promise you any
thing," said Mr. Royce slowly, after n
moment's thought. "Of course lt
none of my business, for Miss Holladay
must arrange her household to suit
herself; yet, If you don't get back wlthj
your old mistress, I may perhaps bo
able to find you n position somewhere
else. Suppose you come Imck In threo
or four days, and I'll see what I cam
"All right, sir, and thank you," nhe
said, and left the ofllce.
( 'o Coiilinui'd )
When you nro hungry nnd
wnnt Homotliig nice in the
moat lino, drop into my
iniirkot. Wo have the nicest
mid incuts, fish, and game
In season. Wo think, nnd
almost know, that wo an
plenso you. Give us u
ROBINSON & BURDEN.
in every style. Ca
tering to parties and
dances a specialty.
Fresh Bread, Pies,
Cakes, Candy and
The Bon Ton
W. S. BI3NSE, Proprietor.
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Moving and other Heavy
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No. 52 ...PHONES. ...No. 79
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