The Landloper eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 300 pages of information about The Landloper.

Farr laughed aloud at the humor of a thought which occurred to him:  he reflected that he would like to behold Colonel Dodd’s face and hear Colonel Dodd’s remarks if somebody told that gentleman that the man before whom he had quailed and grown pale was now starting what the man believed was a more effective assault on the dynasty than even a whole car-load of dynamite bombs could make, even if they were exploded in all the Consolidated reservoirs.  The remarks which would entertain, so Farr pondered, would come when the colonel was informed that the assault consisted of a lone iceman making talk to women in kitchens.

“However,” said the iceman to himself, as he checked a nick in a ten-cent cube at the back of his cart.  “I hold that my new motto is all right, and old Etienne will indorse it, and he knows what self-sacrifice consists of.  It isn’t rolling up your eyes and folding your hands and saying, ‘What can I do?’ It’s saying, ’I’ll do what I can!’—­and then keeping your hands busy!”

XV

WHEN A MAID IS COY

Mr. Richard Dodd came wooing.

He waited in his gray car at the curb in front of the First National
Bank block until Kate Kilgour issued forth into the afternoon sunshine.

He called to her, holding open the side door.

“I just had to see you,” he told her.  “I have come down from the capital, doing forty miles an hour.  You’re more precious than all the money I have locked up in the vaults.”

He did not find in her eyes any of that acclaimed glad love-light which eager lovers seek.  On the contrary, Miss Kilgour made just a bit of a face at him and was distinctly petulant.

“I do not want to ride, Richard.  I enjoy my walk.  I need it after a day at my desk.”

“But I’m going to take you on a long ride into the country.  We’ll have dinner at Hillcrest Inn and we’ll—­”

“I’ll go straight home, if you please.”

“Then come in here with me.”

“Oh, if you insist!” She said it with weary impatience.

“Are you tired?”

“Yes.”

He drove slowly.  “I don’t want you to work any more.  You know I don’t.  You know how I feel.  Kate, I have published our intentions of marriage.”

Her demeanor till then had been marked by tolerance, a bit pettish.  Now she turned on him the indignant stare of offended womanhood.

“Richard, I have not given you permission to do that.”

“But you are going to marry me!”

“Some day.  I will tell you when.  I am not ready.”

“You are playing with me.”

“I am not so frivolous.”

“But why do you keep putting it off?”

“A woman who gives herself has the right to say when it shall be.”

“My God!” he raged.  “I wish you would wake up.”

She did not answer.

“You don’t know what love is.  You won’t let me touch you.”

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Project Gutenberg
The Landloper from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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