“DEAR BART—Mr. Latour gave up and drove to Potsdam in the evening. Said he had to meet Mr. Parish. I think that he had seen enough of me. I began to hope he would stay—he was so good looking, but mother is very glad that he went, and so am I, for our minister told us that he is one of the wickedest young men in the state. He is very rich and very bad, they say. I wonder if old Kate knew about him. Her charm worked well anyway—didn’t it? My nose was all right in the morning. Sorry that I can’t meet you Saturday. Mother and I are packing up to go away for the summer. Don’t forget me. I shall be thinking every day of those lovely things you said to me. I don’t know what they will try to do with me, and I don’t care. I really think as you do, Bart, that God has married us to each other.
How often I read those words—so like all the careless words of the young!
THE BOLT FALLS
Three times that winter I had seen Benjamin Grimshaw followed by the Silent Woman clothed in rags and pointing with her finger. Mr. Hacket said that she probably watched for him out of her little window above the blacksmith shop that overlooked the south road. When he came to town she followed. I always greeted the woman when I passed her, but when she was on the trail of the money-lender she seemed unaware of my presence, so intent was she on the strange task she had set herself. If he were not in sight she smiled when passing me, but neither spoke nor nodded.
Grimshaw had gone about his business as usual when I saw him last, but I had noted a look of the worried rat in his face. He had seemed to be under extreme irritation. He scolded every man who spoke to him. The notion came to me that her finger was getting down to the quick.
The trial of Amos came on. He had had “blood on his feet,” as they used to say, all the way from Lickitysplit to Lewis County in his flight, having attacked and slightly wounded two men with a bowie knife who had tried to detain him at Rainy Lake. He had also shot at an officer in the vicinity of Lowville, where his arrest was effected. He had been identified by all these men, and so his character as a desperate man had been established. This in connection with the scar on his face and the tracks, which the boots of Amos fitted, and the broken gun stock convinced the jury of his guilt.
The most interesting bit of testimony which came out at the trial was this passage from a yellow paper-covered tale which had been discovered hidden in the haymow of the Grimshaw barn: