Well, a year ago I began to hear things said again. And then I found letters and bills. It was the same thing all over. He hadn’t kept his word.
But what did he say?
I let it go for weeks, hoping he would say something. But never a word.
He loved you so. How he must have suffered!
Yes, I suppose he did suffer. But if he cared so for me why did he try to keep it hidden, the one thing I would hate most?
That was his way. It made him ashamed.
Well, he couldn’t keep it dark forever. Mother almost found out.
Almost found out?
Yes. So of course I stepped in. We had a frightful row.
When was that?
Six months ago. I got him clear. It was hard—this time the woman almost got him.
I helped him. But I did it on one condition—that he go to work.
Work? What about his music?
That’s what he said. But I asked him if he had thought about his music when he got into these scrapes. He couldn’t say a word. So it was all arranged for him to go into my office, right under my eye, when mother was taken sick. Then she wanted him to stay near her, so.... And then she died. And the accident. Well I don’t see what more I could have done.
No.... Of course, it wasn’t as if you turned against him. And the office—he was to pay you back that way?
Pay me back? Why, if he could, naturally; but that wasn’t my idea, that was only incidental. My idea was to get him into the habit of hard work.
But he always did work!