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Mary Roberts Rinehart
This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 252 pages of information about Bab.

He then looked at a piece of mauve note paper, and said: 

“How much to take me up the Greenfield Road?”

“Where to?” I asked in a pre-emptory manner.

He then looked at a piece of mauve note paper, and said: 

“To a big pine tree at the foot of Oak Hill.  Do you know the Place?”

Did I know the Place?  Had I not, as a child, rolled and even turned summersalts down that hill?  Was it not on my very ancestrial acres?  It was, indeed.

Although suspicous at once, because of no address but a pine tree, I said nothing, except merely: 

“Fifty cents.”

“Suppose we fix it like this,” he suggested.  “Fifty cents for the trip and another fifty for going away at once and not hanging around, and fifty more for forgetting me the moment you leave?”

I had until then worn my gogles, but removing them to wipe my face, he stared, and then said: 

“And another fifty for not running into anything, including milk wagons.”

I hesatated.  To dollars was to dollars, but I have always been honest, and above reproach.  But what if he was the Theif, and now about to survey my own Home with a view to entering it clandestinely?  Was I one to assist him under those circumstanses?

However, at that moment I remembered the Reward.  With that amount I could pay everything and start life over again, and even purchace a few things I needed.  For I was allready wearing my TROUSEAU, having been unable to get any plain every-day garments, and thus frequently obliged to change a tire in a crepe de Chine petticoat, et cetera.

I yeilded to the temptation.  How could I know that I was sewing my own destruction?

IV

Let us, dear reader, pass with brevaty over the next few days.  Even to write them is a repugnent task, for having set my hand to the Plow, I am not one to do things half way and then stop.

Every day the Stranger came and gave me to dollars and I took him to the back road on our place and left him there.  And every night, although weary unto death with washing the car, carrying people, changeing tires and picking nails out of the road which the hackman put there to make trouble, I but pretended to slumber, and instead sat up in the library and kept my terrable Vigil.  For now I knew that he had dishonest designs on the sacred interior of my home, and was but biding his time.

The house having been closed for a long time, there were mice everywhere, so that I sat on a table with my feet up.

I got so that I fell asleep almost anywhere but particularly at meals, and mother called in a doctor.  He said I needed exercise!  Ye gods!

Now I think this:  if I were going to rob a house, or comit any sort of Crime, I should do it and get it over, and not hang around for days making up my mind.  Besides keeping every one tence with anxiety.  It is like diving off a diving board for the first time.  The longer you stand there, the more afraid you get, and the farther (further?) it seems to the water.

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