“Every day boys an’ girls were droppin’ out o’ the clouds an’ goin’ to work tryin’ to keep up with Lizzie. The hammocks swung limp in the breeze. The candy stores were almost deserted, an’ those that sat by the fountains were few. We were learnin’ how to stand up.
“One day Dan came into my office all out o’ gear. He looked sore an’ discouraged. I didn’t wonder.
“‘What’s the matter now?’ I says.
“‘I don’t believe Lizzie cares for me.’
“‘How’s that?’ I says.
“‘Last Sunday she was out riding with Tom Bryson, an’ every Sunday afternoon I find half-a-dozen young fellows up there.’
“‘Well, ye know, Lizzie is attractive, an’ she ain’t our’n yit—not just yit,’ I says. ’If young men come to see her she’s got to be polite to ’em. You wouldn’t expect her to take a broom an’ shoo ‘em off?’
“‘But I don’t have anything to do with other girls.’
“‘An’ you’re jealous as a hornet,’ I says. ’Lizzie wants you to meet other girls. When Lizzie marries it will be for life. She’ll want to know that you love her an’ only her. You keep right on tryin’ to catch up with Lizzie, an’ don’t be worried.’
“He stopped strappin’ the razor of his discontent, but left me with unhappy looks. That very week I saw him ridin’ about with Marie Benson in his father’s motor-car.
“Soon a beautiful thing happened. I have told you of the melancholy end of the cashier of one of our local banks. Well, in time his wife followed him to the cemetery. She was a distant relative of Sam’s wife, an’ a friend of Lizzie. We found easy employment for the older children, an’ Lizzie induced her parents to adopt two that were just out of their mother’s arms—a girl of one an’ a boy of three years. I suggested to Lizzie that it seemed to me a serious undertaking, but she felt that she ought to be awfully good by way of atonement for the folly of her past life. It was near the end of the year, an’ I happen to know that when Christmas came a little sack containing five hundred dollars in gold was delivered at Sam Henshaw’s door for Lizzie from a source unknown to her. That paid for the nurse, an’ eased the situation.”