I agreed that his campaign was perfect, and Beulah Sands said in her usual quiet way, “It is entirely in your hands, Mr. Brownley. I don’t see how any advice from us can help.”
Bob went back to the Exchange and I into my office. Bob had been right again. In ten minutes the tape began to scream Sugar. With enormous transactions it ran up in fifteen minutes to 188, in three more it dropped to 181, and then steadily mounted to 1851/2, dulled up, and was healthy steady. Presently Bob was back and we sat down again.
“I’ve bought 20,000 more for you, Jim, on that bulge. I’ve 38,000 in all of the last 50,000, which leaves me 12,000 reserve. The average is ’way under 75, and there must be $400,000 for you in it now and a strong $1,400,000 in Miss Sands’s 20,000, and $1,800,000 in our 30,000. They say it’s bad business to count chickens in the shell, but ours are tapping so hard to get out I can’t help doing it this once. I’m going to keep away from the floor for an hour or so, then I will go over and wind it up and—good God, Beulah—Miss Sands—are you ill?”
The girl’s face was ashen gray and she seemed to be gasping for breath. I rushed for some water while Bob seized both her hands, but in an instant the blood came to her cheeks with a rush and she said, “I was dizzy for a moment. It must have been the thought of taking $1,800,000 back to father that upset me. With that amount father could make good all the trust funds, and have back enough of his own fortune to make us seem, after what we have been going through, richer than we were before. Pardon me, Mr. Randolph, won’t you, when I say—God bless you and every one whom you hold dear, God bless you? What could I or my father have done but for you and Mr. Brownley?”
She turned her big eyes full upon Bob, filled with a light such as can come only to a woman’s eyes, only to a woman before whom, as she stands on the brink of hell, suddenly looms her heaven.
Sharp and shrill rang Bob’s Exchange telephone. The ring seemed shriller; it certainly was longer than usual. Bob jumped for the receiver.
He Listened a moment, then answered, “Stand on it at 80 for 12,000 shares. I will be there in a second.” He dropped the receiver. “Jim, we have struck a snag. Arthur Perkins, whom I left on guard at the pole, says Barry Conant has just jumped in and supplied all the bids. He has it down to 81 and is offering it in 5,000 blocks and is aggressive. I must get there quick,” and he shot out of the office.
I sprang for Bob’s telephone: “Perkins, quick!” “What are they doing, Perkins?” I asked a moment later.
“Conant has almost filled me up. He seems to have a hogshead of it on tap,” he answered.
“Buy 50,000 shares, 5,000 each point down; and anything unfilled, give to Bob when he gets there. He is on the way.”