“Stop your noise,” said Mandy, “or Mr. Pettengill will be out here. I’ll ask them if they want anything else,” as she rapped on the door. There was no response and she opened it and looked in. “Why, they have all gone to bed,” she said. At that moment the old clock in the kitchen struck nine. “It’s nine o’clock and you had better be going home, Hiram Maxwell.”
“I shall have to get some anarchy to put on my forehead,” said Hiram. “See that big bump, Mandy, that you made.”
Mandy approached him quite closely and looked at his forehead; as she did so she turned up her nose and puckered her mouth. Her arms were hanging by her side. Hiram grasped her around the waist, holding both of her arms tight, and before Mandy could break away he gave her a kiss full on the mouth.
He made a quick rush for the door, opened it and dashed out into the night. Luckily for him there was no moon and he was out of sight before Mandy could recover her self-possession and reach the door. She peered out into the darkness for a moment; then she closed the door and bolted it, took a lamp and went up to her own room. Standing in front of her looking glass, she turned up her nose and puckered up her mouth as she had done when facing Hiram.
“That’s the first time Hiram Maxwell ever kissed me,” she said to herself, “Mebbe it will be the last time and mebbe it won’t.” Then she said reflectively, “I didn’t think the little fellow had so much spunk in him.”
In a quarter of an hour she was dreaming of cupids, and hearts, and arrows, and St. Valentine’s Day, which was not so very far away.
A long lost relative.
Ezekiel Pettengill owned what Deacon Mason did not—a nice carryall and a good road horse. Ezekiel would fix no price, but Quincy would not drive him unless he paid for the use of the team. One dollar for half a day, two dollars for a whole day, were the prices finally fixed upon.
Quincy drove first to Mrs. Putnam’s. As he was ascending the steps the front door was opened and Lindy stood there to welcome him, which she did by extending her hand and then showing him into the parlor. She was evidently on the point of going out, for she had on her outdoor garments. After a few commonplaces relating to health and the weather, Quincy abruptly approached the object of his visit by saying, “I received your letter, Miss Putnam, and I have come to see if I can be of any service to you.”
“Oh! I know you can,” said Lindy; “you are wealthy—”
“I beg your pardon,” interposed Quincy, “I am not what they call a wealthy young man; the fact that my father is possessed of a large fortune has probably given rise to the incorrect impression just repeated by you.”
“I understand,” said Lindy, with a laugh. “What I meant to say was, that you are undoubtedly acquainted with wealthy gentlemen, who know the best ways of investing money. I find my money a great trouble to me,” she continued. “I had $25,000 invested in a first mortgage, but the property has been sold and the money repaid to me, and I don’t know what to do with it.”