At nine o'clock that night he found Grace. She had moved to a cheap

apartment which she shared with two other girls from the store. The others

were out. It was his lucky day, surely.

His drunkenness was of the mind, mostly. His muscles were well controlled.

The lines from his nose to the corners of his mouth were slightly

accentuated, his eyes open a trifle wider than usual. That and a slight

paleness of the nostrils were the only evidences of his condition. But

Grace knew the signs.

"You can't come in."

"Of course I'm coming in."


She retreated before him, her eyes watchful. Men in his condition were apt

to be as quick with a blow as with a caress. But, having gained his point,

he was amiable.

"Get your things on and come out. We can take in a roof-garden."

"I've told you I'm not doing that sort of thing."

He was ugly in a flash.

"You've got somebody else on the string."

"Honestly, no. There--there has never been anybody else, Palmer."

He caught her suddenly and jerked her toward him.

"You let me hear of anybody else, and I'll cut the guts out of him!"

He held her for a second, his face black and fierce. Then, slowly and

inevitably, he drew her into his arms. He was drunk, and she knew it.

But, in the queer loyalty of her class, he was the only man she had cared

for. She cared now. She took him for that moment, felt his hot kisses on

her mouth, her throat, submitted while his rather brutal hands bruised her

arms in fierce caresses. Then she put him from her resolutely.

"Now you're going."

"The hell I'm going!"

But he was less steady than he had been. The heat of the little flat

brought more blood to his head. He wavered as he stood just inside the


"You must go back to your wife."

"She doesn't want me. She's in love with a fellow at the house."

"Palmer, hush!"

"Lemme come in and sit down, won't you?"

She let him pass her into the sitting-room. He dropped into a chair.

"You've turned me down, and now Christine--she thinks I don't know. I'm no

fool; I see a lot of things. I'm no good. I know that I've made her

miserable. But I made a merry little hell for you too, and you don't kick

about it."

"You know that."

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