“Don’t be so distressed,” he pleaded. “You will love me, I know, because you love me now. This means much to me, but it means more to you. You are the woman and you are the one whose happiness should be considered. I can live only in the hope that when I come to you again with this same story and this same question you’ll not be afraid to trust yourself to me.”
“You deserve to be happy for that, Monty,” she said, earnestly, and it was with difficulty that she kept her eyes from wavering as they looked into his.
“You will let me try to make you love me?” he asked, eagerly.
“I may not be worth the struggle.”
“I’ll take that chance,” he replied.
She was conscious of disappointment after he was gone. He had not pleaded as ardently as she had expected and desired, and, try as she would, she could not banish the touch of irritation that had come to haunt her for the night.
Brewster walked to the club, elated that he had at least made a beginning. His position was now clear. Besides losing a fortune he must win Barbara in open competition.
At the theater that evening he met Harrison, who was in a state of jubilation.
“Where did you get that tip?” asked he.
“Tip? What tip?” from Brewster.
“On the prize-fight?”
Brewster’s face fell and something cold crept over him.
“How did—what was the result?” he asked, sure of the answer.
“Haven’t you heard? Your man knocked him out in the fifth round— surprised everybody.”
NAPOLEON OF FINANCE
The next two months were busy ones for Brewster. Miss Drew saw him quite as often as before the important interview, but he was always a puzzle to her.
“His attitude is changed somehow,” she thought to herself, and then she remembered that “a man who wins a girl after an ardent suit is often like one who runs after a street car and then sits down to read his paper.”
In truth after the first few days Monty seemed to have forgotten his competitors, and was resting in the consciousness of his assured position. Each day he sent her flowers and considered that he had more than done his duty. He used no small part of his income on the flowers, but in this case his mission was almost forgotten in his love for Barbara.
Monty’s attitude was not due to any wanting of his affection, but to the very unromantic business in which he was engaged. It seemed to him that, plan as he might, he could not devise fresh ways and means to earn $16,000 a day. He was still comfortably ahead in the race, but a famine in opportunities was not far remote. Ten big dinner parties and a string of elaborate after-the-play suppers maintained a fair but insufficient average, and he could see that the time was ripe for radical measures. He could not go on forever with his dinners. People were