They talked far into the growing twilight of the afternoon. Tillie was

hungry for news of the Street: must know of Christine's wedding, of

Harriet, of Sidney in her hospital. And when he had told her all, she sat

silent, rolling her handkerchief in her fingers. Then:-"Take the four of us," she said suddenly,--"Christine Lorenz and Sidney

Page and Miss Harriet and me,--and which one would you have picked to go

wrong like this? I guess, from the looks of things, most folks would have

thought it would be the Lorenz girl. They'd have picked Harriet Kennedy

for the hospital, and me for the dressmaking, and it would have been Sidney

Page that got married and had an automobile. Well, that's life."

She looked up at K. shrewdly.


"There were some people out here lately. They didn't know me, and I heard

them talking. They said Sidney Page was going to marry Dr. Max Wilson."

"Possibly. I believe there is no engagement yet."

He had finished with his glass. Tillie rose to take it away. As she stood

before him she looked up into his face.

"If you like her as well as I think you do, Mr. Le Moyne, you won't let him

get her."

"I am afraid that's not up to me, is it? What would I do with a wife,


"You'd be faithful to her. That's more than he would be. I guess, in the

long run, that would count more than money."

That was what K. took home with him after his encounter with Tillie. He

pondered it on his way back to the street-car, as he struggled against the

wind. The weather had changed. Wagon-tracks along the road were filled

with water and had begun to freeze. The rain had turned to a driving sleet

that cut his face. Halfway to the trolley line, the dog turned off into a

by-road. K. did not miss him. The dog stared after him, one foot raised.

Once again his eyes were like Tillie's, as she had waved good-bye from the


His head sunk on his breast, K. covered miles of road with his long,

swinging pace, and fought his battle. Was Tillie right, after all, and had

he been wrong? Why should he efface himself, if it meant Sidney's

unhappiness? Why not accept Wilson's offer and start over again? Then if

things went well--the temptation was strong that stormy afternoon. He put

it from him at last, because of the conviction that whatever he did would

make no change in Sidney's ultimate decision. If she cared enough for

Wilson, she would marry him. He felt that she cared enough.

Most Popular