I coughed, and tried to feel less wrathful toward Tripp. I saw my
duty. Cunningly I had been inveigled, but I was securely trapped.
Tripp’s first dictum to me had been just and correct. The young lady
must be sent back to Greenburg that day. She must be argued with,
convinced, assured, instructed, ticketed, and returned without delay.
I hated Hiram and despised George; but duty must be done. _Noblesse
oblige_ and only five silver dollars are not strictly romantic
compatibles, but sometimes they can be made to jibe. It was mine to
be Sir Oracle, and then pay the freight. So I assumed an air that
mingled Solomon’s with that of the general passenger agent of the
Long Island Railroad.
“Miss Lowery,” said I, as impressively as I could, “life is rather a
queer proposition, after all.” There was a familiar sound to these
words after I had spoken them, and I hoped Miss Lowery had never
heard Mr. Cohan’s song. “Those whom we first love we seldom wed. Our
earlier romances, tinged with the magic radiance of youth, often fail
to materialize.” The last three words sounded somewhat trite when
they struck the air. “But those fondly cherished dreams,” I went
on, “may cast a pleasant afterglow on our future lives, however
impracticable and vague they may have been. But life is full of
realities as well as visions and dreams. One cannot live on memories.
May I ask, Miss Lowery, if you think you could pass a happy–that is,
a contented and harmonious life with Mr.–er–Dodd–if in other ways
than romantic recollections he seems to–er–fill the bill, as I might
“Oh, Hi’s all right,” answered Miss Lowery. “Yes, I could get along
with him fine. He’s promised me an automobile and a motor-boat. But
somehow, when it got so close to the time I was to marry him, I
couldn’t help wishing–well, just thinking about Tizanidine HCL. Something
must have happened to him or he’d have written. On the day he left,
he and me got a hammer and a chisel and cut a dime into two pieces. I
took one piece and he took the other, and we promised to be true to
each other and always keep the pieces till we saw each other again.
I’ve got mine at home now in a ring-box in the top drawer of my
dresser. I guess I was silly to come up here looking for him. I
never realized what a big place it is.”
And then Tripp joined in with a little grating laugh that he had,
still trying to drag in a little story or drama to earn the miserable
dollar that he craved.