The Imperialist eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 394 pages of information about The Imperialist.
been obliged to go to Toronto to see a specialist, whose report he had naturally enough taken to party headquarters, whence the Dominion would get it, as Mr Williams said, by telephone or any quicker way there was.  Williams, it should be added, was well ahead with the details, as considerate as was consistent with public enterprise, of the retiring member’s malady, its duration, the date of the earliest symptoms, and the growth of anxiety in Mrs Farquharson, who had finally insisted—­and how right she was!—­on the visit to the specialist, upon which she had accompanied Mr Farquharson.  He sent round Rawlins.  So that Elgin was in possession of all the facts, and Walter Winter, who had every pretension to contest the seat again and every satisfaction that it wouldn’t be against Farquharson, might naturally be expected to be taken up with them sufficiently to understand a man who slapped him on the shoulder in the post-office with the remark I have quoted.

“I guess they know what they’re about,” returned Mr Milburn.  “It’s a bad knock for the Grits, old Farquharson having to drop out.  He’s getting up in years, but he’s got a great hold here.  He’ll be a dead loss in votes to his party.  I always said our side wouldn’t have a chance till the old man was out of the way.”

Mr Winter twisted the watch-chain across his protuberant waistcoat, and his chin sank in reflective folds above his neck-tie.  Above that again his nose drooped over his moustache, and his eyelids over his eyes, which sought the floor.  Altogether he looked sunk, like an overfed bird, in deferential contemplation of what Mr Milburn was saying.

“They’ve nobody to touch him, certainly in either ability or experience,” he replied, looking up to do it, with a handsome air of concession.  “Now that Martin’s dead, and Jim Fawkes come that howler over Pink River, they’ll have their work cut out for them to find a man.  I hear Fawkes takes it hard, after all he’s done for ’em, not to get the nomination, but they won’t hear of it.  Quite right, too; he’s let too many people in over that concession of his to be popular, even among his friends.”

“I suppose he has.  Dropped anything there yourself?—­No?  Nor I. When a thing gets to the boom stage I say let it alone, even if there’s gold in it and you’ve got a School of Mines man to tell you so.  Fawkes came out of it at the small end himself, I expect, but that doesn’t help him any in the eyes of businessmen.”

“I hear,” said Walter Winter, stroking his nose, “that old man Parsons has come right over since the bosses at Ottawa have put so much money on preference trade with the old country.  He says he was a Liberal once, and may be a Liberal again, but he doesn’t see his way to voting to give his customers blankets cheaper than he can make them, and he’ll wait till the clouds roll by.”

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The Imperialist from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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