Chapter 108111986

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Chapter NumberXLI.
Chapter Title
Chapter Url
Full Date1888-11-07
Page Number7
Word Count2752
Last Corrected0000-00-00
Newspaper TitleEvening News (Sydney, NSW : 1869 - 1931)
Trove TitleMystery of the Red House: An American Story of Thrilling Interest
article text



? Bt Mart E. Bryan.

(Commenced in the Evening JSeivs of Sep temler 20 .) - CHAPTER XLI. Continued.

I3ut Max was thrilling all over witn the thought that KAidee was not to be married that day, that she was to go away with him — that he was to have his darlvnsr back. No

stratagem should ever get her away iroza him again. ' Ycu will tell Mr. Carleon,' asked LoLtie. Mas; sank his voice to a whisper. ' Mr. Carleon would, not know,' he an BTvered- ' Bs {ell, trying to rcercss the ladder after he had rescued Eilde^- He was taken up for dead, but ho was not dead. He was alive this morning, the paper says, but insensible, with scarce a shadow of hope for bim — poor fellow. He acted crandly last night. I don't want Kiidee to know or tbe catastrophe until she has recovered from j the ehocn-.' An hoar later, Kildee was dressed for travelling:— Lottie supplying whatever was needed in making her toiler. Lottie ordered breakfast to be sent up, and persuaded Kiidee to eai. something. They put on their hats, Kiidee ticing- aveil over her face,, and joined Mas in the hall. The carriage was waiting. He took them out to ir. A few men who were on the verandah stared at the two ' well-shaped actress girls,' none of them suspecting that on'e of these was the supposed victim of the fire they were read ing about When they were in the carriage, Kiidee turned to Mai. ' Did you speak to Mr, Garleon ? Did lie promise — ' Max nodded ' He will never teLL Xou need not be afraid,' lie said He did not say ihai bo had written her request and left ifc in a scaled envelope to he given to Cavleon, i:i case he recovered

his senses . T he man in whose hands he left the letter was a miuistsr, who had been praying beside Carleon's bed when Max entered. He was a very unclerical person as 1 o dress and looks He might have passed for a soldier in the garb of the bourgeoisie. His eyes had a restless, repressed fire in their depths But they were softened as wiih. tears when he bent over the white, unconscious face. ' Gjd's will be done,' he muttered ; * but I thought He had a great Avork for this man to do in his vineyard.' The un-clerical-looidng preacher was Sam Brown, lie came to Carleon'8 bedside as soon as he hesrd of what had happened. The brusque looks and words of the physi cians — one of them an agnostic, the other a cultured, cynical, disciple of Voltaire — had no effect upon him He remained day and night in that room ever which the Death Ansel hovered, praying, watching, nursing, Kiting the bruised and broken frame in his strong arms, so tenderly helpful that the physicians ceased to sneer, and put up with. the ' parson's prayer's ' for the sake of his cool nerve and intelligent comprehension as an assistant. Eildee kepi; her veil dov*n during her drive Jo the depot. Lottie suspected she was crying. She Jcnged to look into the girl's he.irt and know if she really did not care for the man she was to have married on thh day — so fair after last night's storm Kildeers voice, usually so sweet, was husky trhen she spoke ' There is one thing that distresses me about going away — St. Peter I hate so to leave him behind I know he will be taken care of, but he will miss — ' Mas laughed out. ' Catch a weasel asleep,' he said. ' St. Peter is not left behind,' ' 'Why, where is he ?' ' Safe in the smoking-car of our train. 3- left, him there ten minutes ago fiddle, Zack, and all. He found- me last night and knew me. He stuck to me through everything. When I got np with you into the carriage, lie climbed up beside the driver and rode with us to the hotel. Where he stowed himself last, nig at 1 don't know, but the first thins I heard this morning was the fiddle We ba?e all three of oar prodigals back — you and your two proteges — I feel happy enough to kill a dozen fatted calves. Everything is as it was before.' ' Every is as it was before.' Lottie re peated the words to herself doubtingly as she looked at Kildes, Her ' child ' was i here beside her, gentle, lovely as before, tat yet not ibe same She would never be the same, Lottie said to herself. Those dark, Bweet eyes held a secret. Could not Has tell it in the very tone of the gentle voice — that low yet intense vibrating chord, indescribably tender and sad — that chord which had been unknown to Kildee's voice before ? ' She has suffered,' said Lottie in her own little sympathising heart. ' She did love that man. She has fciren him np because she thinks he lores that other woman and will be happier with her. Poor Max. But he is so good snd so devoted to her, sue can't help caring for him. They* Will marry at last, and be happy ' CHAPTER XLIII. The funeral of tbesnppossd Miss Gonzalis, fiancee of Mayor Heathciiff, was largely attended. The remains of the poor factory girl received a stately buriaL and more than I one heart was heavy _wich grief as they were l-jjrered into^ce earth. Mme. Jean and her lmsband stood hand in hand looking on with tears streaming down their faces ,- Monsieur I had brought ill the' flowers his little garden I boasted.' He put them on the coffin' fiist I before it was lowered. Miss Faust, sifting I alone in , Heathciiff 's carriage at a distance I from the grave, heard the clods fall with a Btrong shudder and sob behind her double veil,' ; ??.,?:;,?/ ':?'.'??.? ' : ''''??''.-.':. Heathciiff bimHeif stood beside the giaye, hia hat drawn _pyer his%yjes./'Ee had not( slept for many hour3 ? his heart ached for the loss of the girl who ? had so endeared herself to hjm^who jra* to-day io: Lave teen his v$ie. He 'fiaa meant to cherish her tenderly, in caring for her nappinese, in seeing her ripen.nnder iindl^ influences, he had hoped to find compensation for what Jie had lost in losing the supreme love of £13 life. ? ? ? -??'' :?.?'??? / ?:? ? His face was blistered, hia hair and beard scorched by ithpipery vrdea^ot last night; One arm had been so^iadly Ibiirned. that- lie was forced to ; Uare .' it ;inV a «ling- Honor Montcalm Baw Jiim-f remher -carriage ' JShe '?'''': 'r . ?????''?-'?' vr-'^-'!**: ;- '? '' ? ?. '::

watched him furtively from behind her veil, and in her heart she formed a resolve That evening one went to her father in hii study He laid down his pen and looked up anxiously at: her as she came toward him in her white dress ' You are looking badly, my dear You have not gotten over that horrible fright. It has made you lose your roses ' ' Some others have suffered a far greater Joss from last night's disaster, dear papa. I came an hour since from the funez-al of the girl who lost her life ' 4 You ought not to have gone out; it was imprudent.' ' Papa,' she said abruptly, *is your heart very much set upon being governor ?' He looked at her with much surprise. . ' Why do yon ask such a qnestion ?' ' I should not think you would care so much for the honor : you were in public life so long. Yon held a national position; this state office must not seem to you an honor to be greatly prized.' ' It is no mean honor to be put ore? suck a state as this by her people's choice — my native state, too But what are you aiming at ? You have some point you want to make. Come to ifc at once Don't beat about the bush ; ordinary women do that, and you are not an ordinary woman.' ' i'orgiye me, papa ; I will come to the point. I want you to withdraw from the gubernatorial campaign — withdraw in favor of Mr Heathciiff.1 ' The man whom yen were obliged to re ject because, as you told me, he was un worthy to be my son-in-law r1' ' The man, father^ to whom I owe my life — who, because of you and me; has lost his young bride and a part of his fortune.' 1 How because of you and me ?' ' Oh, papa, you must know ifc was those disaffected workmen who burned his houses ; and they were wronght upon to do it by the inflammable speeches and misrepresentations of Hazard Hall and his kindred spirits, working for your election — working outside your knowledge or authority, I know — but still working for you. And. through me Heathciiff lost the woman who to-day he was to have married. It was my bitter. mis- fortune that I swooned from tae stifling smoke and' the shock of fright — and in saving me she was left to perish. It is but justice that we should do what we can to make up lor what he has lost through us.' The General listened to her with a chang ing countenancs. His keen eagle eye scai'ched her face. ' Honor,' he said at length, ' do you still love Ira Heatheliff?' A wave of crimson swept over her face ; hsr eyes flashed a little. 'Father,' she answered, 'can a woman have no other motive for wishing a just act to be done to a man ? You have taught me to put honor above love. I consider that your — that my honor is concerned in this matter This man has lost heavily through us. He has saved my life at 'nearly the cost of his own- There is only one repara tion we can make him — let him have this office which is much to bim — whose foot is bnt just on the ladder of political im portance, and but little to you who would stand near its top. But for you his election ?would be sure. Under ihesB circumstances does not honor require you to -withdraw ?' The General was siient. His daughter's arguments affected him less than her simple wish He had never disregarded her wishes. At length, he said : ' You don't know the magnitude of what you ask. my dear This thing has gone a good way. My friends have not spared any pains on my behalf . I have no right to withdraw from this contest without consult ing them 1 promise you that I frill lay the matter before them, and if they think I can honorably take my name from the ticket, I will do it.' She came nearer to him and said earnestly : , leather' if the money that has been spent for you by your friends is all that stands in the way of your -withdrawal, cannot I re move that ? Eemember I have grand-, mother's legacy. It is mine, you said, to do with as I please It is in stocks or bonds or something. Take it . and repay your friends . Cancel your money obligations to them. ' \j. * Honor, remember iihis is searly aliyonr fortune. Are you really willing to have it sacrificed ?' ' I am ready to have it used by my father in cancelling1, obligations tbat stand in the way of his fulfilling a duty.' The General.lo iked at her wi&i misty eyes. But he thought it necessary to curb her too generous impulses. * J?or a. ?woman of good sense, you have very Utopian ideas, my child.' * Thjsy are not ^Utopian, my father. Ton taught them to 3n&; iMai wsBTears ago. , Of late — father,' don**^ let ' selfish, reckless spirits innuieltce you' in this ''matter.. I know how they will sneer. They sneer at every feeling of obligation higher; than inere self or party interest.' / **Tou are meaning Hazard , Hall; Poor fellow' ; you always have been hard upon him. You can never -d.p justice to that gifted boy- You are prejudiced— jealous, my Honor.* . : : * ftis not personal jealonsy,, father, Truie, I have aWays been firat in. you^ hearty, and deemed Ithis was of right,any plice.; And I 'have felt a little forsaken; and thrust .put of late. But itis iio^tlils ; it is ithat i-I do not want that boy-— gif^ed^Xgrant jon^l:b',inopu late jott^iththeppisonof his lax principles, ; hisiiarro%sr Eeif-seeking, his rrecTdeEsn©S3 {6f ihe claims, and rights of ianj who .aftaj chance to stand 3n\-i^.^ay..''-T'Tiw-.^M.j^bio the spirit of 'tiiS '-'Vtoyr :^piiii^]^^h^4B~^iilr : yon, any 'father, belong to ;iiBj$i||^^ipne£lj

school, which recognises a higher motive than self-interest, which loDks co tbe good of tho people whose sufferages may have placed you over them In the vocabulary of that purer school, there is etill such a word as honor — honor tbat refuses to take unfair advantage, or to make use of a j stepping-Etone unless it be clean ; honor that bears on its shield the graad motto ' noblesss oblige.' in the face of that motto my father cannot but withdraw his claim to this offica in favor of a man wlioni he has unw ittingly injured and to whom he owes a heavv obligation — his daughter's life.' The light of the full moon came in at the window, and she stood in its soft stream, tall, pure, stately. The moonlight seemed to emeuate from her. General Monteaim stretched out his arms and drew her to him - It was lonsr since he had held her so He was proud cf his high-sculcd daashter, yet he was not prepared to grant her request. ' What a capital deader at the bar spoiled whea Fate wronged you ia the matter of Bex, my leve,' he said, when he had pressed his soldierly mousiached lips to her cheek. * ' Almost thou persuadest me ' — r.ofc quite, my dear. I must consult my friends ; it is their due. If I can obtain their con currence I will withdraw tor your sake.' ' For honor's sake, papa ' ' l?or honor's sake — and Honor's,' he said, Biniling as he kissed her ones more, and put her gently from him With this promise she was forced to be content Hazard Hall dropped in next morning as usual, and the General broached the matter of withdrawal to him. ' It is what I expected to hear,' cried the young favorite. ' It is your daughter's work. I recognise a woman's quixotic notions in the scheme. I know Miss Honor's lofty, but, pardon me, wholly impracticable ideas,, and I felt sure she would suggest the folly to you. Polls' it would certainly be. You are sure of being elected- You are the man the state wants. What does that fellow Heathciiff, with his machinist mind, know about administrating state affairs ? Then yon are bound to your friends. You are pledged to yonr backers. You owe some thing to them, and to the exponents of inde pendent party views. You ars the backbone oi: these. You were late in coming out; then your friends rallied arduiid you-— neart and souL — and purse- How can you go back on them without dishonor ?' ' The money obligations wonld be repaid, of course,' the General said, coldly. Hazard looked at him quickly. Instantly his shrewd thought divined that Honor Montcalm had offered her money to repay her father's backers if he should retire from the field. He uttered an inward oath. He set it down as due to her nnquenehed love for this hated Heathciiff. Would her folly usdo all his work in this campaign— make null the aims he was so confident of obtain ing ? ' He saw his game about to bs lost and instantly resolved on a bold throw. (TO BE CONTINtTED.)