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of this man,
to a suspicion that this might indeed be however, had humor; to her father's manHarlow; and yet Harlow, as Fenton had ner of speech she had added a lightness described him, would be the last man in that expressed itself drolly in self-mockthe world to subject himself to a laborer's ery. lot, much less impose exile upon a daugh "I always warn papa that we must reter, unless spurred by necessity. Welborn member that democracy isn't a complete saw the already vast area of his ignorance thing all tied up in pretty ribbons and
who had written a novel of never can be; it's strife, it's struggle for challenging power, extending beyond the a goal that never can be reached. If it range of speculation.
were all perfected, then we shouldn't have The door opened and he rose to con- anything to work for and fight for! And front a tall, fair girl who paused for a mo- then there wouldn't be any fun!” ment on the threshold and then advanced This she uttered quietly, with a smile quickly into the room. She wore a plain playing about her lips, that parted upon blue skirt and white waist with a wide even, white teeth. The color in her collar. Her abundant light hair was cheeks spoke for health and wholesome combed back loosely from her forehead. living. She imparted a sense of vigor, of Her eyes—they were a feminized version youthful zest and spirit, of fathomless reof Walters's—met his gravely. She gave serves. In her wonderful gray eyes alone her hand cordially, saying:
there were serenity and maturity; they “It's so kind of you to come when were enormously provocative. Welborn father couldn't go to you. I may know found himself awaiting with trepidation everything, too, papa, mayn't I? Won't those moments when she turned them you go right on with your talk at the upon him, or he caught them subdued to table?”
one of the fleeting reveries to which they She had placed a cup of broth at each appeared to be habituated. place before calling them, and after tast “That is true, very true indeed!” ing a spoonful Walters praised it, smiling Welborn affirmed. “It's a part of the at his daughter in a way that satisfied game to be patient and never to stop hopWelborn of their perfect sympathy and ing.” accord.
They had put down their spoons and “Helen is a public-school girl," Walters she rose quietly and took the cups away remarked "She took what the high and brought in broiled chops and vege. school had to offer and stopped there. tables and resumed her place. Her move. Beyond that we have made some little ex- ments were informed with a definite grace; periments at home."
it occurred to Welborn that she had prob“Knowing father is in itself a liberal ably trained herself to perform these of education,” laughed the girl. “But he's a fices with a minimum amount of effort, very, very hard taskmaster !”—this with deftly and quite as a matter of course a smiling glance at Welborn that con “The bread is my own making—if I veyed all necessary contradiction of this may brag a little,” she remarked, “so you indictment. “I've been fortunate in won't mind if I cut the loaf here. It was being allowed to learn without really Queen Victoria, wasn't it, who made a knowing I was acquiring knowledge. It's ceremonial of cutting her own bread?” an admirable system !”
"I'm glad we haven't altogether abanIf Walters himself was a mystery, the doned the Victorian customs,” said Welgirl was even more puzzling. Walters born, noting that her hands, which were was praising the public schools; they were long and supple, showed little traces of the great bulwark of democracy, he the labor to which she confessed. He was averred, but they had not yet realized all watching them fixedly when, glancing up that had been expected of them. Wel- from the bread-cutting, she saw the diborn noticed that any statements Walters rection of his gaze and reddened. Then made were uttered in such phrases as he immediately she laughed, saying: might have used in writing; he said noth “I see I'm in the way; you are really ing carelessly; he had lived intensely and not talking about the book at all! I want showed the strain of it. The daughter, to hear you say the things you wrote papa
Drawn liy Oscar F. Schmidt.
“We must remember that democracy isn't a complete thing all tied up in pretty ribbons ...
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about his novel; I shan't really believe “One good thing about your coming is them if you don't.”
that it keeps papa at home for a day. It's Walters seemed anxious that she very hard to get him to take a holiday.” should be satisfied as to all the details of Walters listened absently as Helen expublication. She expressed frank dissent plained, in answer to a question in Welwhen Welborn spoke of cuts that would born's eyes, that her father was busy evbe necessary for purposes of serialization. ery day in one of the great steel plants,
"It can be done, of course," she agreed and that his writing was done at night. reluctantly, when Welborn had men "Only two hours every evening! tioned passages which he thought might That's all I'll give him,” she said. “It's be compressed. “You see I do papa's remarkable how much he does in those typewriting and I know the story by hours after a hard day's work. And there heart. I can see that by dovetailing some are pages and pages in that manuscript of those earlier chapters the story would that have been rewritten a dozen times.” start more briskly. And it's important
." Walters roused himself to to break the instalments so the reader say, “I have a very stern critic here. will have something to carry him over the It's not my standard but hers that keeps month. I always hate serials myself; you me up to the mark.” lose the flow and movement of a thing.' "You must have other manuscripts;
“But there will be no such trouble with we want to see anything you have,” said 'The Heart of Life’!” Welborn declared. Welborn. “The public is going to be im"It marches like a mighty phalanx !" patient for more of Frederic Walters's
Walters, lapsing into silence, left these work." matters for her to settle with Welborn. Walters referred this to his daughter He roused himself presently to protest with a glance of uncertainty. against illustrations, but on this point she "Oh, there are other things that seem sustained Welborn's plea that pictures to me quite as good,” she said. “Perwere essential for the magazine but could haps ‘The Iron Hand’ would interest Mr. be dispensed with in the book. She Welborn." showed famil:arity with the work of the Walters consented that “The Iron illustrators Welborn suggested, and left Hand” might be submitted, and upon the table to bring a late magazine con- this promise they rose from the table. taining some drawings by Brockton, a “Suppose you go up to the study and new man who had illustrated a series of I'll come along later. Don't smoke too articles on the steel industry. Walters much, papa!” she admonished as they conceded their excellence and it was left the room. agreed that Welborn should telegraph The room above, designated as a study, Fenton to engage him.
was a bedroom-one of three the cottage “I hope I may wire Mr. Fenton that afforded. Walters took a chair behind a we have agreed on terms and that he may long oak table and drew out a box of begin laying plans for the publication ? cigars. You see we have to be forehanded in plan "I prefer a pipe myself, if you don't ning numbers."
mind." The cigars were of good quality, The terms Fenton had authorized were and as the box was newly opened it was more generous than were usually con- patent that they had been procured for ceded to a new writer, but Walters seemed Welborn’s benefit. He seated himself in little interested in this phase of the mat- a low wicker chair which he assumed to be ter.
the special property of the daughter, and “If you think this all right, Helen, we'll Walters, his pipe alight, resumed the disconsider it settled," he remarked indiffer- cussion of books and writers.
had as yet only touched upon the changes “Yes, I'm sure we're in good hands,” he and Fenton had agreed would improve said the girl.
“The Heart of Life," thinking this was She brought a simple fruit pudding and better done in the daughter's absence. lighted the lamp of a patent coffee-ma- Writers, he had found, were sensitive in chine.
such matters and disposed to resent criti
cisms that involved additional labor. As previous moment of the three hours Welhe plunged into the subject he found Wal- born had spent with him. He rested his ters watching him intently. There was arms on the table, clutching his pipe. an odd look in his eyes-his lips quivered Welborn's thoughts turned again to Harinto a queer smile; but he merely nodded. low, and he was debating whether he
“The chapters you refer to are -?” should wire Fenton to join him on the
Welborn drew a memorandum from his morrow, to settle the question, when Walpocket and explained the feeling he shared ters, lowering his voice, made any appeal with Fenton that there were a few chap to Fenton unnecessary, ters in “The Heart of Life” that could be “I'm a sick man with little more time improved.
left me. I saw a doctor a month ago who "I think you are right,” Walters con- warned me; my heart's gone bad. "I may ceded, fingering his pipe nervously. “I drop off at any time. There are one or think I get your idea-that the grip re two things I want to say to you—I'll be laxes in those places. Very likely you are brief about it. My name is Harlow. right. I shan't quarrel with you. I have Fenton knew me well in the old days; he other attempts at the same chapters that was my best friend !” I can substitute.”
The disclosure was so abrupt that WelIn spite of this amiable acceptance of born was unable to frame any comment. his suggestions, Welborn was aware of a He wished to urge Harlow to return with distinct disappointment in Walters’s man- him to New York to see Fenton, to conner of agreeing to the changes. He settled sult physicians—to seek a change of air back in his big chair and a look of age and and scene; but, with a sigh, Harlow conweakness crept into his face. He ignored tinued: Welborn's eager denial that he or his chief “You will pardon me if I ask you a were disposed to insist upon alterations; question I've been waiting to ask some it was all a matter of Walters's own feel- one from—from the big world outside. ing; they merely thought that he should It's about Helen. She knows no other have the benefit of their views.
life than this,” he indicated the town “Oh, I see it; I saw it all along, I with a sweep of the arm. “She has had think!” Walters protested tamely. "I'll just such schooling as is open to any attend to it; I want it to be as good as it laborer's daughter. Her friends and accan be made. You see,” he said, sitting quaintances are limited to her schoolupright again, “I believe myself capable mates our neighbors' sons and daughof viewing the book with entire detach- ters. You will pardon me if—if I ask you ment; I wanted that kind of thing to be just how she impresses you? I will put done, and I'm not considering myself, my question concretely-can you imagine really I am not,” he declared earnestly. her adjusting herself to other conditions, "I felt that the iron in these hills, the to the higher social levels, we will say?" sweat on the faces of thousands of men The question was dismayingly direct should be got into a book. It was in the and Welborn hesitated; but Harlow's effort to get the secret of this phase of eyes were upon him with an intentness life that I have lived here. I wanted to that brooked no evasion. find out what men think whose backs are “She is very beautiful,” he replied bent under heavy toil; I've spent many slowly; "and she bears all the marks of a years trying to learn just that and I think cultivated woman. She has charm and possibly I know. I want it to be in that distinction-she is wonderful!” book. There are other attempts at the He hated himself for not finding better same thing; some earlier manuscripts. I phrases with which to satisfy the parental want you to read “The Iron Hand' pride, but Harlow continued, unheeding: Helen mentioned—I'll be curious to know “Fenton and one or two others of our what you think of that. But my other little group will look after Helen; I have stuff I'm going to destroy-it's bloodless, no fears as to that. What bothers mecolorless. There's none of the terrible the thing I shrink from speculating about passion of it all in those earlier things.” -is the effect on her of the change. It's He was more roused now than at any going to mean a lot to her. I can't see