She returned to Chicago to find that her uncle was in town. He had left a message asking her to join him for dinner over at his hotel.
It was pleasant to be dining with her uncle that night. The best possible antidote she could think of for Ann’s father was her dear uncle the Bishop.
As she watched him ordering their excellent dinner she wondered what he would think of Ann’s father. She could hear him calling Centralia a God-forsaken spot and Ann’s father a benighted fossil. Doubtless he would speak of the Reverend Saunders as a type fast becoming obsolete. “And the quicker the better,” she could hear him add.
But she fancied that the Reverend Saunderses of the world had yet a long course to run in the Centralias of the world. She feared that many Anns had yet to go down before them.
At any rate, her uncle was not that. To-night Katie loved him anew for his delightful worldliness.
Though he was not in his best form that night. He was on his way out to Colorado for the marriage of his son. “There was no doing anything about it,” he said with a sigh. “My office has made me enough the diplomat, Katherine, to know when to quit trying. So I’m going out there—fearful trip—why it’s miles from Denver—to do all I can to respectablize the affair. It seemed to me a trifle inconsiderate—in view of the effort I’m making—that they could not have waited until next month; there are things calling me to Denver then. Now what shall I do there all that time?—though I may run on to California. But it seems my daughter-in-law would have her honeymoon in the mountains while the aspens are just a certain yellow she’s fond of. So of course”—with his little shrug Katie loved—“what’s my having a month on my hands?”
“Well, uncle, dear uncle,” she laughed, “hast forgotten the days when nothing mattered so much as having the leaves the right shade of yellow?”
“I have not—and trust I never will,” he replied, with a touch of asperity; “but I feel that Fred has shown very little consideration for his parents.”
“But why, uncle? I’m strong for her! She sounds to me like just what our family needs.”
He gave her a glance over his glasses—that delighted Katie, too; she had long ago learned that when her uncle felt occasion demand he look like a bishop he lowered his chin and looked over his glasses.
“Well our family may need something; it’s the first intimation I’ve had, Katherine, that it’s in distress—but I don’t see that a young woman who votes is the crying need of the family.”
“She’s in great luck,” returned Katie, “to live in a State where she can vote.”
He held up his hands. “Katie? You?”
“Oh I haven’t prowled around this town all summer, uncle, without seeing things that women ought to be voting about.”
He stared at her. “Well, Katie, you—you don’t mean to take it up, do you?”