Far Country, a — Complete eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 501 pages of information about Far Country, a Complete.

Maude was grave.  “I should be sorry to think he wasn’t,” she replied.  After I had bidden her good night at the foot of the stairs, and gone to my room, I reflected how absurd it was to be jealous of Krebs.  What was Maude Hutchins to me?  And even if she had been something to me, she never could be anything to Krebs.  All the forces of our civilization stood between the two; nor was she of a nature to take plunges of that sort.  The next day, as I lay back in my seat in the parlour-car and gazed at the autumn landscape, I indulged in a luxurious contemplation of the picture she had made as she stood on the lawn under the trees in the early morning light, when my carriage had driven away; and I had turned, to perceive that her eyes had followed me.  I was not in love with her, of course.  I did not wish to return at once to Elkington, but I dwelt with a pleasant anticipation upon my visit, when the campaign should be over, with George.

XIII.

“The good old days of the Watling campaign,” as Colonel Paul Varney is wont to call them, are gone forever.  And the Colonel himself, who stuck to his gods, has been through the burning, fiery furnace of Investigation, and has come out unscathed and unrepentant.  The flames of investigation, as a matter of fact, passed over his head in their vain attempt to reach the “man higher up,” whose feet they licked; but him they did not devour, either.  A veteran in retirement, the Colonel is living under his vine and fig tree on the lake at Rossiter; the vine bears Catawba grapes, of which he is passionately fond; the fig tree, the Bartlett pears he gives to his friends.  He has saved something from the spoils of war, but other veterans I could mention are not so fortunate.  The old warriors have retired, and many are dead; the good old methods are becoming obsolete.  We never bothered about those mischievous things called primaries.  Our county committees, our state committees chose the candidates for the conventions, which turned around and chose the committees.  Both the committees and the conventions—­under advice—­chose the candidates.  Why, pray, should the people complain, when they had everything done for them?  The benevolent parties, both Democratic and Republican, even undertook the expense of printing the ballots!  And generous ballots they were (twenty inches long and five wide!), distributed before election, in order that the voters might have the opportunity of studying and preparing them:  in order that Democrats of delicate feelings might take the pains to scratch out all the Democratic candidates, and write in the names of the Republican candidates.  Patriotism could go no farther than this....

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Far Country, a — Complete from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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