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About The Red Cloud chief. (Red Cloud, Webster Co., Neb.) 1873-1923 | View Entire Issue (July 30, 1914)
RED OLOUD, NEBRASKA, CHIEF
fe LAPSE of
tiSr ISABEL GORDON CURTIS
Author rf "The Woman jrom WoJverr:or5"
ILLUSTRATIOISST ELL3VOKm YOUNG-
COPYRIGHT, ISW BY F.C.DROWME fr.CO.
From the Top Gallery.
On tho samo night that ZUIa Paget
took up hor resldonco In tho Wont
worth homo a rant Oswald sat bcsldo
hi desk, dictating letters to his dec
retory, lie listened while the tlnklo
of the overture coasod.
"Has Mr. Wentworth come In yet?"
1m askod when an usher entored with
"No, sir; we're watching tor him.
Nobody has seen him."
"Ask him to como hore as soon as
None of the employes of the Gotham
recognised a man boslde the stair of
the upper gallery, where a steep Iron
railing Jutted out upon the side
street. Tho rain fell softly and he was
muffled to the chin In a drab overcoat.
A felt hat was drawn over his eyes.
He emerged suddenly from the shadow
to lay his hand upon the arm of a
boy who went springing up the grated
"Here, do you want to mil your
ticket for a dollar?" ib asked.
"Sure," cried the boy emphatically.
"Say, mister, why don't ye buy one
rer yerseltT They're fifty cents, If
yet git In line at the window."
"I don't want to stand In line."
The boy thrust the sp of paste
board Into Wentworth's hand, seised
the money, and fled to tako his place
at the end of the lino which straggled
round the corner from Broadway.
Bnoch waited until a throng began
to press Its way up the steps. He
pulled his hat down close about his
forehead and the rim fell to his ertsa.
When ho reached out his hand to the
attendant at the door, the man did not
look at him; he was trying to stem
tide of human beings and make cer
tain that each one had paid his way.
Wentworth movod Inside the door
and glanced at the gray coupon, then
lie passed to an end seat In the third
row. He laid his hat upon the floor,
pulled off his damp coat, and waited
tor the curtain to rise.
The curtain rose. People who sat
close under the roof listened with a
tense stillness, which was never dis
turbed by the rustlo that occasionally
ran through the orchestra. The story
of the play had grown old, threadbare
and uninteresting to Wentworth, but
tt moved these men and women to the
.quick. During the first act the girl
beside him turned to her sweetheart
and spoke In a tremulous whisper:
"She's a cruel devil 1"
Her eyes wero bent with hatred and
corn upon Zllla Paget, who stood
looking down at Merry. His guilt had
been discovered. Ho sat besldo a table
with his face hidden In his out
stretched arms, while tho wife hurled
upon him a torrent of bitter contumo
ly. Once his body shook with a half
stifled sob. Littlo Julio clasped his
hand, but her terrified eyes were
turned upon her mother. Wentworth
had seen the woman In a towering
passion; now sho 'throw herself Into
the fury of hor role as sho had done
tn real life, pacing tho floor llko a
caged tiger. Sho paused at Merry's
sldo half exhausted.
"Think of the child." he pleaded
"The child to perdition with the
Enoch stared at the rest of the play
through moody eyes. When tho cur
tain fell on tho second act Zllla Paget
appeared on tho stage alone to moot
uproarious applauso mingled with
Jeers and hissing. Wentworth grlppod
the arm of hts chair as ho watched
hor Bweep tho house with a triumphant
gaxo. A brand of hate which has tho
red of murder in It tore at bis heart.
He rose, tossed his coat across his
arm, groped beneath the chair for his
hat, then he slammed down tho Boat
and went out On tho stair ho met
"Mr. Wentworth," crlod the boy.
"I've been looking everywhere for you.
Mr. Oswald wants to see you in his
office about some bookings."
Bnoch descended without answering
him. He paused once to push his
arms Into his coat, but he did not
entor the office; Instead, he turned and
walked down Broadway. The rain
had ceased, the sky was clear, and
the stars were shining. He tramped
on heedlessly. He realized suddenly
that he was far down town in the
business heart of tho city. Overhead
hung the sign of an old-fashioned ho
tel. Ho opened the swinging doors
and walked to the desk.
"I want a room," he said peremptor
ily. "What price T" asked the clerk.
"I don't give a damn about price.
I want a room whero It la quiet, where
there Is a good bed, and where I can
sleep as If as If I wero dead."
sufferer from InBomnta necks relief In
on opiate. It did not bring ease, how
ever, either of body or nilnd, He went
about In a dull, half-sickened stupor,
hating himself and tho world. Ono
night, In a lonely room of the hotel
where ho hod taken refuge, he sat In
the darkness for hours thinking; then
llko a flash ho saw himself. It seemed
to him that for a second a shutter
somowhere, perhaps In some remote
lobe of his brain had flashed open
and be saw not only his present con
dition, but his future. It was not a
A half-empty bottle of whiskey stood
at his elbow. Ho stared at It for a
minute with a scowl, w.. If it were an,
actual enemy. A feeling of nausea
crept over htm. He lifted It, carried It
to the wash-bowl, and poured the
liquor down tho drainpipe. Then he
laid the empty bottlo on a tray and
sot It outside the door. He filled his
pipe'' with tobacco, pulled a chair to
the window, sat down, and stared at
the lights of the city. He fell Into
ono of his Introspective moods. He
began to trace backward every step
ho had taken since tho day he exacted
tho forfeit of Merry's bond. Ho felt
llko a vessel which had slipped Its
moorings and had been unmercifully
buffeted by one tempest after another.
Each one had done Its work so ruth
lessly that ho was a human derelict
left swamped and scuttled. The phrase
"a human dorellct" stuck obstinately
In his brain; It described him vividly.
Already ho bad had more than his
deserts. The vengeance of Zllla Paget
was tho last straw. The woman's
Image flashed before his eyes; he
heard her satanlc laugh and saw a
fleeting vision of his picturesque golden-haired
lovliness as ho had slammed
the door and left his homo.
Wentworth gritted his teeth savage
ly, then he looked at hts watch. It
was close to midnight. He went
downstairs, paid his bill, ordered a
carriage, and drove to the Waverly
Place house. As he stood fitting the
key noiselessly Into the lock his heart
beat tumultously for a second or
two. He opened the door stealthily
and passed through the vestibule. The
house was still and a lamp burned
dimly tn the hall, as Jason always left
It until his master returned. He hung
bis hat on the rack, stole upstairs to
his own room, switched on the elec
tricity, and glanced about. He locked
Ifsssf iBSrBBBsVni "
Looking Everywhere for
Facing the Situation.
Enoch ' had never boon a drinking
man. Tho sight of druukonness had
frequently aroused in him a apoclos
of Btomachlo revolt; thcroforo mora
physical repulsion bad douo much to
keep him from one form of dobauch
ery. During tho days of utter deso
lation that followed hla slater's de
parture ho turned to whiskey as the
the door and undressed swiftly. Ten
minutes later he was sleeping the
death-like sleep which follows com
plete exhaustion of brain and body.
Ho did not wake till noon. Jason
answered his ring. The old negro en
tered with hesitating steps.
"Good morning," said his master.
"Jason, do you know how a guest lives
In a hotel when he wants to be alone,
absolutely alone? Ho oats In his own
room, his matl Is brought to him, he
goes and comes without a word being
spoken to him by anyone In tho bouse.
"I wish to have that sort of service
tn my home until your mlstreBB re
turns, if It Is necessary, engage an
other servant to look after your du
ties. I want you to wait on mo ex
actly as I havo explained. You can
do It, Jobou?"
"I'll be mighty glad to do It, Marse
Wentworth returned to tho theater
and took up his duties as It nothing
had happened. Hla associates greoted
him with their usual courtesy; still
ho felt as If a drop curtain had fallon
between him and tho world whore his
dally labor lay. Women and a few
men shrank away from him even while
they seemed trying to bo polite, some
ZUIa Pagot mado no secret of hor
cbango of residence. Sho flaunted the
news of tt abroad and Wentworth's
lapse -from tne conventionalities of life
made a nine-days gossip In theatrical
clrcleB. it even agitated moralities
which had been esteemed lenient. The
reason back of the Intensity of feeling
was not, in overy case, shocked vlr
tuo, but Dorcas was loved, while tho
Englishwoman was held In universal
contempt and hatred.
It was several days after his return
to business before Enoch met his sis
ter. Ho heard In a casual way that
sho had rented nn apartment and had
taken AHco Volk with the two chil
dren to live with her,. Their tlrst en
counter was an ordeal to each one.
They camo face to face In the foyer.
Enoch said "Good morning" and held
out hts hand. The girl held It for a
second, looking up Into his face with
eager wlstfulness. The ghost of a
smile broke over Enoch's haggard
face, then he glanced backward as tho
glass door behind him slammed, and
Zllla Paget camo rustling In.
He turned brusquely and entered
his office. Tho Jaded look in hts eyes
had changed to shuddering hate. Dor
cas passed out to Join the throng on
D road way. Sho felt chilled and lonely.
Sho did not realtze that the sun was
The Parting of the Ways.
"All I have left to say, Wentworth,
Is this we have come to a crossroad
and you must chooso between two
paths: either cut that woman out of
your life or don't expect to take your
placo among decent citizens."
There was a look of discomfort and
anxiety In Grant Oswald's pale, high
bred face while ho spoke, although
his voice was emphatic. Enoch did
not answer. He movod restlessly In
his chair once or twice, lifted a pro
gram that lay on his desk, and ran
his eyes through Its pages. Oswald
paused as If waiting for a reply.
"I can't understand your infatuation,
Wentworth," he went on; "the woman
degenerates every day of her life.
God knows," a bitter tone crept Into
his voice, "I feel culpable for even
bringing her across the ocean. Then
I ought to have let her go when I
spoke of It a month or two ago. She
was bound to do mischief, only I never
dreamed that you would fall Into her
clutches. I warned you."
Enoch sat In sullen stillness, with
his eyes fixed on a calendar which
hung above the desk.
"I wish," Oswald's tone was almost
wistful, "that you would at least talk
It over. I think I can deal with the
woman if anyone can. I have always
treated her with a certain stand-offishness
that she resents. She has tried,
more than once, to cross the line I
drew. She didn't succeed, and It galls
her. I never put Into words what I
think of her. She understands, how
ever, that I recognise her value dra
matically, while personally to mo-
she Is offensive. If she has you In
her power, won't you tell me? It
would never go beyond these walls.
She knows that I know her story. Low
as she has sunk, she realizes that it
Is not what tho world would call a
creditable story. I can handle her
A gleam of relief and hope drifted
for a moment across Wentworth's
face. Then he laughed nervously and
the sullen frown returned to hts eyes.
He rose and began to pace the office
floor with nervous footsteps.
"Won't you trust me?" pleadod Os
wald. "I have a real regard, Went
worth, for you as well as for your
genius., I would do It for your sis
ter, if for no other reason. There is
time enough yet to pull away, nut,"
he spoke abruptly, "it won't be long.
The woman has dragged more than
one man to the gutter or to suicide."
Wentworth laughed disagreeably.
"Well, It won't be suicide," be an
"Don't be too sure. When a man
who has always had a fair amount of
self-respect begins to lose it, he usu
ally faces two alternatives; that Is,
unless he has a solid anchor In bis
Enoch lit a cigar and began to
"Evidently It is useless to talk.
What passes my understanding Is bow
any man can turn out a woman like
your sister to give alienor to Zllla
Paget I hate to say It, Wentworth,
you will sot mo down as a cad, but I
prefer to have a separato office. I am
willing to take the littlo back room,
or you can. Ono suits me as well as
"Certainly." Wentworth leaped to
his feet alertly. "I'll chango at onco.
I'd hate to thrust my society upon
anyone who does not care for It."
"It Ib not your society I mean whol
ly. I object to Miss Pagot dropping
In hero as she did today. Don't hurry,
I did not mean that "
"I don't care what you meant. I can
make the change at once." Enoch's
voice was churlish. Ho began to drag
volumes from the bookcase beside him
and heap them upon the top of hlB
desk. "You mado yourself tolerably
plain, don't spoil It with politeness."
He pulled the papers from pigeon
holes In bis desk and tossed them
about In looso piles, dropping some
In the was'to basket and bundling oth
ers together with rubber bands.
Oswald's pen was traveling slowly
across a sheet of paper when some
one tapped softly at the door. Merry
entered. Enoch did not turn his head.
Tho actor seated himself beside Os
"I could not show up this morning'
when you 'phoned," ho explained. "I
have been arranging for a funeral.
It's ono of those funerals which have
no great string of carriages."
Oswald lald'down bis pen and stared
at Merry. "George Volk! When did
ho drift back to America?"
"Nobody seems to know anything
about him. It's a mercy though; It
sets Allco free."
"Is there anything I can do?"
"No. I'vo looked aftor everything.
Hut I want your advlco on ono point.
What do you think of not telling hor
till ho Is burled?"
"It's the best Wn. I supposed he
had fallon pretty low," ,
"Low!" Merry shrugged his shoul
ders. "I did not know such dives ex
isted as the placo where I found him.
Hn had been lying thcro soaked to the
point of Insensibility for two weeks.
Ho was too horrible a sight for the
eyeB of any woman."
"What au end!" exclaimed Oswald.
"Tho man onco stood on n pinnacle
Dropped an Armful of Books on' His
that many an actor would give half a
lifetime to win. He bad"
The Englishman and Merry both
looked up quickly. Wentworth had
dropped an armful of books noisily on
his desk. He opened the door which
led to the Inner office, passed through,
then slammed It sharply behind htm.
The Yellow Envelop.
More than one "summer show" .had
begun to blazon an alluring Blgn over
tho door of a Broadway theater be
fore "The House of Esterbrook" closed
its season. The fame of the play had
gone abroad through the country, and
night after night, long after the resi
dence part of New York showed a
labyrinth of boarded fronts, every seat
in the Gotham was sold before the
curtain went up.
The house was packed to the roof
on the ntght the play closed. It was
the mlddlo of June and the city bad
grown uncomfortably hot Wentworth
had spent a restless day. It seemed
to him as it the atr was filled with an
ticipation. Before the curtain fell on the last
act he strolled through the darkened
house and opened a narrow door be
hind the lower boxes. A few shad
owed steps led to the stage. A man
stood Inside with his Angers moving
over the buttons, which flooded the
stage with light or shadow. Went
worth pushed paBt him and walked
swiftly behind the drops until he
reached a corner which was compara
tively deserted. He Btood Inside a
wing, watching tho company take their
curtain calls. Last' of all came Merry,
alone. The Insistent applauBe Impor
tuned a speech. Wentworth smiled
grimly. Andrew's one terror was a
speech. He saw the actor glance
about him appeallngly, then his eyes
signaled to the man who controlled
the curtain. It began to descend with
quiet deliberation. Merry paused for
a moment, then he came back.
"Ladles and gentlemen," he began,
"I had hoped"
While Wentworth stood listening he
wondered why tho descent of the cur
tain did not stop. He turned and whlB
pored a command to the etagehand
who stood beside him. The man's face
was deathly white, he looked para
lyzed with terror. In a second Enoch
realized that something In the ma
chinery bad lost Us grip. The house
had grown still, while Morry stood
smiling and talking in bis nonchalant
fashion. A young man with a gleam
ing expanse of shirt front rose from
a lower box and Bet hlB foot upon the
railing, preparing to climb over to 'the
stage. A woman stood beside him
clasping her bonds, and staring at
Merry with horror-stricken eyes. Her
face grew as white as the lace robe
she wore. Then she shrieked, a long,
shivering cry of terror. Enoch sprang
toward the footlights with one swift
leap, holding bis arm over his head
as It to ward off tho heavy curtain,
which was still descending. He seized
Merry with a desperate grip and
tossed the actor far back on the stage,
then be fell with the ponderous cur
tain across hla inert body. His closed
eyeB wero facing the glare of tho foot
lights. Dorcas and Merry, In a swift motor,
reached tho Waverly Placo home be
fore tho ambulance, and a famous sur
geon came.closo at their heela. When
tho operation was over they laid
Wentworth upon hlB own bud. The
surgeon stood looking down on tho
unconscious faco. Blood was welling
Blowly from tho wound on his fore
head and made a wldo stain upon tho
snowy bandago. Tho man turned to
look at Dorcas: her mako-up lay In
I smudges upon her faco and sho wore
the bluo cotton gown which belonged
to "Cordelia" In tho last act; her fin
gers clenchod each othor, while she
turned an Imploring gaze tt tbo quiet
face of tho surgeon.
"I do not know yet," ho whispered,
answering the question In her eyes;
"It Is too soon to tell. He lived
through It, and It Is ono of those oper
ations when tho patient does not al
Somebody led her away. In a dazed
fashion she knew that Allco Volk
bathed her face and braided her hair
Into two long strands and changed her
stago gown for a soft kimono. Then
Merry took her hand and she followed
him to the library. Sho lay down upon
u couch feeling as if every nerve In
her body had au ear and It was listen
ing. The house was perfectly still.
Once in her mind she used that
phrase, "Still as death." Afterwards
she fell Into a shivering fit; the tears
eumu, and sho Bobbed so fiercely that
the agony Beemed to tear at her
From a shadowy corner near the
fireside Merry roso and crept across
the room. He dropped on his knees
beside her and soothed hor without a
word, as one broodB ovor an unhappy
child. Tho warm grip In which he
held her hand between his own gave
her courage and hope. She rose to
her feet and he led her to the window
where she sat down and looked out
Into the dark, quiet square. Out of her
memory rose the thought of an early
morning It was only a year ago
when she hod seen Andrew Merry for
tho first time, stretched listlessly on
tho pmk bench, with a gray, thin fog
occasionally blotting him from her
sight. It was here, too, she had sat
watching children scuffle through
wind-blown leaves, while she heard
her brother read tho manuscript of
"The House of EBterbrook." Merry,
sat silent at her Bide until the nurse
entered the room.
"Mlsa Wentworth," she said. "Dr.
Mowbray wanta you. Your brother has
been conscious for a tow minutes. He
cannot speak, but he wants something.
Will you come?"
Thoy followed the woman swiftly.
Enoch's eyes sought hers with piteous
pleading which was almost agony. She
rent to kiss him. His gaze traveled
to Merry and the agony seemed to
change to peace.
"You saved his life, Enoch." she
Andrew laid his Angers gently upon
the nerveless hand which rested out
side the sheet The eyes of the two
men met: In those of one was a mute
prayer for forgiveness. In the other's
shone gratitude and the old affection
Enoch's lips moved. He was trying
to speak. Dorcas laid her ear close
to his mouth.
"He wants hts keys," she said
The nurse left the bedside and re
turned with a bunch of small keys
strung upon a steel ring. Dorcas laid
them in her brother' hand. It was
pitifully inert! She lifted them and
ran them through her fingers, one by
one, as a Catholic tells her beads In a
rosary. Her gaze was fixed upon his
eager eyes. When she touched a shin
ing brass key a gleam of relief shone
in tho man's beseeching eyes. She
rose to her feet
"1 will go at once, Enoch, and And
it. 1 shall know what you want, what
ever tt Is, and will bring It to you."
Tho doctor followed Merry and Dor
cas to'tho door. "Don't come back un
less I send far you. The exertion has
been too much for htm."
"TMb Ib the key to a small drawer
In Enoch's desk." explained the girl.
"I can probably guesB what he wants.
I ought to show It to him. If his
mind Is so: on something he may sleep
quietly when he knows I have found
"I will call you If bo does not sleep,"
said the doctor.
Merr7f walked to tho window and
stared vaguely Into the darkness. A
little clock on the mantel struck three.
Once he looked over his shoulder at
Dorcas. He could hear the crackle of
stiff paper as she unfolded a few long,
narrow sheets which were tied In a
"I have found Enoch'B will and a
number of business papers. Here are
his bankbooks and the contract with
Oswald for the play. There are bonds
and things of that sort things I do
not understand. I imagine," the girl's
voice broke Into a sob, "It must be
the will he wants."
"Probably, It Ib, dear," said Andrew
gently. She laid the papers on the
desk ar.d lifted a yellow envelope.
Thore was no writing upon it; It was
unsealed. She took out a slip of pa
per and stood motionless while she
read It. Then her fingers moved In a
groping way to turn on a blaze of
electricity undo the green globe
above the desk.
"Tho room 1s bo dark." she mur
mured. She dropped the paper upon the
blotter In front of her and leaned upon
the desk with be face between her
"Andrew," cried Dorcas with a
stifled moan, "come berel"
He crossed the room and stood
looking down over the girl's shoulder.
"See," she whispered, "see what I
have found! Tell me what Is It?" Her
fingers pointed to the bond. She
stretched out her band as If search
ing for protection and help. The man
clasped It between his own, thon she
raised her eyes to his.
"Was It this, Andrew, this that lay
behind everything that mado you
glvo up your play and "
Merry's lips parted, but ho did not
speak. Dorcas glanced at the date.
Sho withdrew her hands from hla and
put her fingers across hor eyes as It
trying desperately to remombor Boma
(TO BK CONTINUED.)
The stomach is
power in til
to health. This
often needs help
in its daily work
and it is then you
"What did his wife do?"
"She nailed him on the spot, and
then Bhe hammered him."
"You can't hear a rreo's bark.
"You can't, but a dogwood." Banl
Important to Mothers
Examine carefully every bottle ot
CASTORIA, a safo and sure remedy for
infants and children, and see that It
Signature of CJLjt(rT&1iri
In Use For Over 30 Years.
Children Cry for Fletcher's Castora
Preferred the Lesser Evil.
"What are you going to bo wbec
you grow up, Jennie?"
"I'm going to be an old maid."
"An old maid,, dear! Why?"
'"Cause I don't think I'd llko to
klsB a man a hundred times and tell
him ho's handsome every timo I do
shopping. I'd rather earn money and
buy things for myself."
Carelessness Cause of Fires.
More than 50 per cent of all fires the
coused by simple carelessness, which
Is unnecessary and criminal. Repairs
to dilapidated buildings, the removal
all flre-breedlng material, care in burn
lug weeds and rubbish, the placing of
engines at a safe distance from build
ings, the removal, of oily waste, proper
ventilation In brief, plain common
sense, will minimize tho danger from
this class of fires.
"Why Is the scholarly-looking man
slamming down his windows sc
"I will tell you why the scholarly
looking man is slumming down his
windows so hard."
"Tho scholarly-looking man la
slamming down hts windows so hard
becauso the hurdy-gurdy out in front
Is playing the same tuneB that he
paid five dollars to hear last night al
grand opera." Judge.
The Tango In Church.
Mother, like countless other moth
ers, had been doing much tangoing
and hesitation ot lute. She had taken
dancing lessons. She practised the
various stops at home withfathoi. Lit
tle Frances bad heard much of the
lingo that goes with the tango and tho
hesitation. She knew all of tho
A few days ago Frances went to
church with her mother. Frances had
not learned all of the ceremonials of
the church, for, after tho mother knelt
outside the pew, Frances looked up at
her and whispered:
"Mother, what did you do the dip
for?" Indianapolis News.
.im.iigg"aggir wi ,. .'!, ,, .
Business or social en
gagement just a few
minutes for lunch can't
wait for service. What
can be had quickly?
with fresh berries or fruit
and' cream. They will be
served immediately, they
are nourishing and taste
mighty good, too.
Sold by Grocers
t ..!, '-JS-A- -..!
1 ff. V.. i
.1V Jt H- Ai ! . tj f
'iiu W'W&ywWV& "ifui-"' Aft '&
I ixttVLS vU
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