Janet of the Dunes
by Harriet T. Comstock
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"He says she knows enough; an' he ain't goin' t' have her pestered."

"Well, t'-morrer I'm goin' on," nodded Davy, "an' Billy ain't goin' t' honey fugle me none. Arter I cast my eye on him, I'm goin' t' give myself orders. Sighted anythin' lately?"

"A schooner got mighty near the bar 'long 'bout sundown last night. Kinder skittish actin' hussy she was, but she turned out an' cleared off without much trouble. We was all ready fur her."

"Big sea, too!"

"Powerful! An' I tole Cap'n that I've got kind o' superstitious 'bout them boats as make a near call an' then sidle off. Twict durin' my time a real thing has happened soon after. Seems like they come t' see if yer watchin'; kinder gettin' yer attention, so t' speak, an' warnin' ye that ye ain't there fur fun. I'm goin' on 'bout three this afternoon. Sky looks nasty."

"It does that!" agreed Davy, "an' it's my turn up aloft t'-night. I somehow feel more certain when I'm there myself in foul weather. Mark ain't never done anythin' t' cause me t' distrust him, but Lord! he's got that unfortnit air of makin' ye distrust yerself about him."

"Mark lacks salt!" John laughed good-naturedly. "If he an' Pa had a dash o' seasonin' in 'em, they'd be all right; they're flat, that's all."

"Like as not!" Davy said; "but flats ain't the best kind o' things t' run on, in a storm."

So Davy held his peace regarding Billy's spell, until he could have a look at Billy himself; and all that cold, dreary day Janet worked at the small fussy things of her daily life, keeping her hands busy but having time and to spare for her active brain to wander far. She lived over again the summer, the wonderful summer. She felt the yearning for books and the quiet of the Bluff Head library. She recalled Devant with a sense of hurt and pity; but Thornly came to her memory with a radiance that grew with absence and, perhaps, forgetfulness on his part.

With the proud young womanhood that remained with the girl like a royal birthright, the knowledge of all that Thornly's renunciation of her help in his art meant brought the warm blood to her cheek and a prayer of gratitude to her lips. She could afford to live and work apart; she could be glad in worshipping her ideal of all that was brave and manly, even though she knelt forever before an empty shrine.

Billy and Davy loomed upon her near horizon in added splendor. Ah! she had known such good men! She was very blest. And so she sang as she worked.

About noon of the winter's day, James B. slouched down to the Light and entered the living room where Janet sat darning Davy's coarse gray socks.

"Has John Thomas gone on yet?" he asked.

"No," said Janet, "his boat is at the dock."

"I'm thinkin' of goin' on with him. Looks like a rough enough storm was comin' up, an' if anythin' should happen an' extry hand or two, over at the Station, wouldn't come amiss. Eliza Jane's been havin' feelin's in her bones that I better be over there."

Janet's eyes flashed, but the drooping lids hid them. She could not tell why, but every time James B. went over to the Station she resented it. It seemed as if he were keeping an eye on Cap'n Billy, and it aroused her dislike and suspicion.

"Eliza Jane's bones must be troublesome for the rest of the family," she said.

"They be!" nodded James. "I told Eliza Jane t'-day, that t' be rooted out in the teeth of the kind of storm this one is like t' be, jest fur feelin's in her bones, warn't exactly fair t' me."

"Why do you go?" The girl raised her great eyes and looked full at him.

His furtive glance fell.

"'Cause Eliza Jane said t'!" he answered doggedly. "She was down t' Miss Thomas's an' when she knew John Thomas was off, she sot her mind on my goin' on with him. I kind o' hoped he was gone."

"Well, he isn't. There he goes now down to the dock. It's queer he doesn't stop and speak a minute."

James B. slouched toward the door. "Any message fur Cap'n Billy?" he said.

"Just my love, and tell him I'm coming on to-morrow or next day. Shut the door, James, the wind comes in as if it were solid."

She watched the two men make ready the little ice boat, she saw them get aboard, and almost on the instant the steadily increasing wind caught the toy-like thing and bore it with amazing speed past the Point and over toward the dunes!

Then an anxiety grew in her heart. Of late she had been subject mentally to sensations that in a measure were similar to those that affected Eliza Jane's bones. She was depressed or elated without seeming cause. It annoyed and shamed her, but she could not control it. John Thomas's return to the Station without a word to her, his visit to his mother and Eliza Jane's prompt despatch of James B. to the dunes, grew to ominous proportions, as the lonely girl dwelt upon them.

"I wonder if my Cap'n Daddy is all right?" she thought wistfully. She was merely carrying out Billy's desire in remaining so much upon the mainland; her own inclination was for the desolate little cottage near the Station, and the loving companionship of Billy.

"I don't care what he says," she whispered to herself, "I'm going to go on and stay with him part of the time! I need him even if he doesn't need me." She wiped her tears upon the rough gray sock that covered her hand. "I'm just like Mark. Because I cannot do what I'm fit to do, I'm failing in everything. There is no use! I must go to Cap'n Billy, and learn to be happy with him and—nothing else!"

The determination to go to the dunes brought a sense of comfort with it, but a nervousness grew apace. It was as if, now that she had decided to go, she was in a hurry to start. She was conscious of a trembling eagerness in every act. She put her mending away; she prepared the noonday meal with vigor and intensity, selecting what she knew Davy most liked.

"This is a feast!" gloated Davy, looking around his humble board and sniffing appreciatively the steaming favorites. "Looks like ye'd caught on, Janet."

"So I have, Davy, I've gripped for sure and certain."

"Didn't tell ye, did I, that Mark is goin'?"

"Going where?" Janet laid down her knife and fork, and looked interested.

"Him an' Pa is goin' t' build, 'twixt here an' the Hills, an' open a inn. They plan t' move the old house down, an' jine it on."

"An inn?" Janet laughed.

"Them was his words. A inn! Sometimes it seems like Mark was walkin' o' a dark night on cold, wet sand. He slaps down his foot, sort o' careless, an' strikes phosphorus. He ain't got, what ye might call, seein' qualities, but he strikes out light! That's the way it was with him tellin' Pa 'bout sellin' crullers. The old man made a small fortin. An' now this inn will pan out, you jest mark my words. It stands t' reason folks would rather go to a inn than to a boardin' house!" Davy grinned at Janet over a cup of tea green enough and strong enough to curl any ordinary tongue.

"Pa's goin' t' cook, an' Mark's goin' t' run the business," added Davy.

"Well, they'll have good cooking." Janet smiled as she thought of the scheme. "Maybe they'll let me wait upon table."

"Like as not they will if ye want t'. Well, 't ain't any more than fair, ye consarned little trap, but that ye should do yer turn at waitin' on Mark. Sho! just hear that gale, will ye! It's steered round an' is comin' straight off sea. By gum! If any craft drifts on t' the bar t'-night there's goin' t' be spry dancin' at the Station." Davy went to the window, and peered out. The early afternoon was bitterly cold, and darkened by wind-driven clouds, full of storm and fury.

"They've got an extra hand, such as it is." Janet came and stood close by Davy.

"Who?" he asked.

"James B. He went on with John Thomas."

"Did, did he? Well, by gum! Janet, I wish to thunder I could get Billy to give up the Life Crew an' take Mark's place here!"

"Why, Davy?" There was intensity and pathos in the question, and trouble in the gentle eyes.

"'Cause!" vouchsafed Davy, "jest 'cause. That's why. Fetch me a bite in the lamp, Janet, 'long 'bout sundown. I ain't comin' down, once I go up this afternoon. I ain't lookin' fur trouble. 'T ain't my way, but somehow, when such a night as this is like t' be settles down, it don't seem anythin' more'n friendly fur me t' bear the Light company."

So Janet cleared the dinner away; she found little tasks to fill the darkening hours, and with eagerness prepared the tray for Davy and took it aloft at sundown. By that time the wind was almost a hurricane; and before it were driven sharp sheets of snow that cut and sounded as they sped madly landward. The tower swayed perceptibly. Davy's face was grimly careworn, and his manner forbade sociability.

Janet waited a few moments; then, realizing Davy's mood, left the tray and went below. But now a trembling and inward terror possessed her. She tried to shake off the feeling with contempt for her folly. She sang, remembering Davy's philosophy, "When ye sing ye open the safety valve fur more to get out than words an' music." But this song gave relief only to sound and mental action.

Early night came with eagerness, as if, for the doing of what was to be done, the black pall was alone appropriate.

"Why, any one would think,"—Janet stood by the window and her teeth chattered as she spoke,—"any one would think I was that white girl at Bluff Head instead of Cap'n Billy's girl. I afraid of a storm! I, housed and safe at the Light! I, who, in many such a gale, trotted after Cap'n Billy just for pure fun. It's time I went on and got the dune tonic for my foolish nerves. Me with nerves!"

Then she ran to the door and opened it slowly, pushing against it to stay the wind.

"I thought!" she moaned, "I thought I heard a call!" The memory of the night that poor Maud Grace went down beyond the Point added keenness to her fancy. "It sounded like that call. Ah! as long as I live I shall remember it. I do believe it was Maud. I always shall, no matter what they say."

The howling of the wind drowned the girl's words, but her strained face pressed against the opening and her senses were alert. "I hear it!" she panted, "I hear that call! Suppose, oh! suppose that it is my Cap'n Billy calling? If he were on the patrol and in danger, he would call to me. He would know I could not hear, but he would call, just for comfort!"

Again the burdened wind shrieked outside. The face at the door grew ghastly and the eyes terror-filled.

"There are more ways of hearing than one!" she muttered. "Cap'n Daddy, I am coming!"

Who was there to stay her with word of caution? Who was there to control her as she made ready to answer the heart-call of her beloved Billy?

Now that doubt had fled, a calmness possessed her. She was indifferent. First she wrote a note to Davy and placed it, open and conspicuous, beside his plate; she had laid the breakfast table half an hour before.

"I've gone to Billy. Took my ice boat." That was all, but Davy would understand. Then she wrapped herself warmly, covering all with an oiler and pulling a sou'wester well down over her ears. Finally she extinguished the lamp, let herself out of the door, and ran, in the face of the gale, to the dock. There she paused.

"I'd have to tack miles off my course," she muttered, "I had forgotten the direction of the wind." There was nothing to do but take to the ice, and walk and run as she could! It was an awful undertaking, but the girl did not pause. The call for help came only when she hesitated; while she acted her nerves were calm. So, with head bent forward and low, Janet set out for the dunes.

Once she looked back at Davy's Light. Through the scurrying snow and sleet it shone steadily and hopefully, unaffected by the wind and fury that waged war outside.

"It is like a thought of God!" she whispered, and her courage rose.

Only a dune-bred girl could have withstood the force of the storm, but by pausing for breath now and again, by sliding and gaining strength walking backward, she made fair progress, and, guided by the Light, headed for the halfway house. In that she would wait and hide. If it were Billy's patrol, she would be there to see him! If not? Well, time enough for future plans! She knew Billy would disapprove her action, but she must know!

Once the dunes were gained, their landward side was sheltered. Janet sat down in the long grass to rest before ascending. The snow cut her face and the thunder of the waves deafened her. After a few minutes she started on. Davy's Light was straight behind her, so the halfway house lay directly before. On, on in the dark and noise! She felt her way with hands outstretched in front of her. At the dune top, the real magnitude of the storm was apparent. On the mainland it was comparatively mild. Here wind, tide, and heavy sea were let loose and were battling in ferocious freedom.

"Ah!" Janet caught her breath and staggered back, clutching the tall, dry, ice-covered grass to steady herself; but a few more steps brought her rudely against the shelter house. She pushed the door open. Neither man had as yet arrived, so there was no fire lighted in the little stove. Janet began to gather the wood and coal together in her stiff fingers; but something stayed her. She felt ill and weak. So instead, she crawled under the bench that ran across the side of the tiny hut and hid in the darkness. She began to fear Billy's displeasure. For a moment the faintness and nausea made cold and weariness sink into oblivion, and before they reasserted themselves the door was opened and some one came in.

The dense darkness hid him, and Janet waited. The man struck a match and hurriedly started the fire. By the sudden blaze she saw that it was Ai Trueman, one of the crew from the farther station. Once the fire was kindled and burning, the man sat down in the corner of the bench directly over Janet's hiding place and shook his sou'wester free of the ice and snow that had collected upon it. It was not long before the door opened again. The fire was ruddily lighting the shed by this time, and Janet, from her cramped position, saw Billy. Something in his appearance made her catch her breath in alarm. It was not his ice-covered garments that glistened in the red light nor his grim, rigid face, but the strange stare of his wide-opened eyes that caused her alarm.

"Bad night," said Ai, "but we've made good time." Billy had dropped upon the opposite bench, and the ice crackled upon his garments.

"Petered out some?" Ai now looked at Billy. "Ye look kind o' done fur."

"Take my check out o' my pocket, left-hand one,"—Billy's voice sounded far off and thin,—"an' put yours in. My hands is bit. The lids of my eyes got froze down on my cheeks an' I couldn't see, so I thawed 'em out by holdin' my hands up, an'—an' my hands caught it!"

Janet dared not move.

Ai exchanged checks, and then he bent over Billy.

"Ye all right?" he asked doubtfully.

"Sure." Billy tried to laugh, but his voice shook. "A frostbite don't count none. I'm thawed out enough now fur my own comfort. I dar n't take my eye off the bar. I tell you, Ai, if there's trouble t'-night, it's goin' t' be real trouble."

"'T is that!" said Ai, and the two men stood up.

"Good night, Ai."

"Good night, Billy, an' let's hope fur a safe walk back."

They were gone! Then Janet came from her hiding. Her sickness had passed; she was warmer and more comfortable, but she meant to keep close to Billy on that return patrol! If all went well, he would forgive her by and by. She was on the point of pushing the door open, when suddenly the full blast of the gale struck her in the face. Some one was coming back. It was Billy and he stood before her. Her face was away from the light, and her sou'wester, drawn close, misled Billy; but Janet saw his eyes wide and staring.

"Ai," he panted, and his voice was thick, "I—I can't do it! The—the works are runnin' down agin. It's better t' tell ye than t' drop out there on the sand, an' no one ever know. Hurry back, man, an' watch both ways as long as ye can."

Billy swayed forward and Janet caught him. She laid him upon the floor and bent above him.

"My Cap'n!" she moaned, "oh! Cap'n Billy!" But Billy heeded her not. "He's dead!" The horror-filled words startled even the speaker. "Dead! my Billy!" But no, he breathed! "I must do his work, and get help!" the girl started up wildly. "He isn't dead! He shall not die!" She took his check from his pocket, and his Coston light. Then she gently moved him nearer the stove, put coal on the blaze, and loosened the heavy coat. "Now!" she muttered, and rushed out into the night and storm. The strength of ten seemed to possess her; and the calmness of desperation lent her power.

The noise of the wind deadened the sound of the surf. Sometimes she found herself knee deep in icy water,—for the tide was terribly high. Then she crawled up to the dunes and felt with mittened hands for the stiff grass. Presently she came to a rock, a rare thing on that coast, and she clung to it desperately. It was as true a landmark to the girl of the Station as a mountain peak would have been to an inland traveller.

"Only a mile more!" she panted, and then a memory of one of Davy's old hymns came to her:

"The shadow of a mighty rock within a weary land."

She recalled how she, as a little child, had often crouched beside this very rock when the summer's sun beat hot upon the sand. Summer! Was there ever such a thing as summer on this ice-bound shore? She dreaded to set forth again. A stupor was creeping over her, a stupor she had been trained to fear. She struggled to her feet, but the mad thought of summer would cling to her benumbed fancy. It fascinated and lured her dangerously. She saw the Hills rise, many colored, in the blackness. She saw Thornly's little hut with its door set open to the cool, refreshing breeze. It was a breeze then, this fierce, cruel wind. It was a gentle breeze when summer and love held part! She heard again the call of the golden whistle; and this fancy made her draw her breath in sharp gasps. She shut her stiff lids and saw Thornly coming over the sunlighted Hills with his joy-filled face, shining in the summer day!

Oh! if she could but hear that golden call just once again how happy she would be! Maybe, when death came, God would let Thornly call her in that way, just as God had let Susan Jane's lover come to her upon the shining, incoming wave!

But then Thornly was not her lover; she was his and that was different!

"Death!" Again the girl struggled forward. She must not die! Why, Billy was there alone, in the halfway house—and Billy's duty was still unperformed.

On, on once again! The wind was blowing in gusts now. It was reckoning with the near-coming day and was lessening in fury. But the sudden blasts were almost worse than the steady gale. Janet, weakened and numb, was hardly upon her way, before she was knocked from her feet by the cruel force and lay, face downward, upon the icy sand! Hurt and discouraged, she yet managed to rise. The pain roused her dulled senses and in the lull that followed a strange ghostly sound was borne seaward. She stopped and stood upright. Again it came, plaintively and persistently, rising and falling. As if the faint note had power over night and tempest, the blackness seemed to break; the snow ceased, and overhead, through a riven cloud, a pale, frightened moon peered curiously. Then the wind shrieked defiantly. But again it came, that tender, penetrating call, nearer, nearer, over the dunes, and down toward the thundering sea!

Still, as if frozen where she stood, Janet waited for—she knew not what! Some one, in the dim, grayish light, was coming toward her, some one tall and strong, but well-nigh spent! The man had seen her, too.

"How far am I from the Station?" he shouted.

It was Thornly's voice! It was the little whistle's call that had stilled the storm, and brought hope!

Janet could not answer. All power seemed gone from her. When he came close he would know her and then—why, why had he come?

The girl had forgotten her disfiguring garments. Thornly was within a foot of her before he understood. Then he reeled back. The moon, for another still moment, shone full upon the ice-covered figure and the upturned face framed by the old sou'wester.

"My God!" he cried and stretched out his arms, hardly knowing whether he were warding off an apparition or reaching out to the woman he was seeking so earnestly.

"You!" he whispered, "you! Alone out here in all the storm and darkness!" She tried to answer, but words failed her. She smiled pitifully and put her hands in his.

"I have wandered for hours!" Thornly was holding the girl closer. "Do you hear and understand, Janet? I went to the Light. I saw your note lying open on the table; I was afraid for you! I lost my way on the ice. I had only Davy's Light to guide me; I landed, heaven only knows where! But I wanted you! I've got you at last!" A fierceness shook the eager voice, that was raised above the noises of the night.

"Yes!" Janet spoke low and dreamily; again the cold stilled her pain. The moon was hidden and grim darkness held them. "You—you want—me—to—help you finish—your picture!"

It really was a small matter; but even in the strangeness and numbness the girl wished he had not come. He was greater and dearer when he had stayed away and sacrificed his picture for her honor, and his own.

"My picture? Good Lord! What do I care for my picture? Child, I want you. Oh! I want you to help me to finish my life!" Thornly shook the girl gently. She was in his arms. She was leaning against him heavily, her icy garment striking harshly against his. How he blessed his great strength that terrible night! He reasoned that Janet had crossed the bay as he had, bent upon some errand at the Station. He had overtaken her in time, thank God! for her strength was fast failing.

"I must carry you!" he cried, but his words were drowned in the wind's howling. "Here, I have my flask. Drink, Janet! Drink, dear, it will give you new life. We must make the Station together."

Janet swallowed painfully, but the liquor brought relief. Clinging to Thornly, she went silently on. Between the last two dune tops, Davy's Light again shone.

"Only a half mile more!" panted the girl. Thornly knew the value of making the most of what they had, and without speaking he pressed forward, holding her close. Suddenly Janet stopped and pointed stiffly seaward.

"The bar!" she groaned. "See! a rocket!"

Thornly strained his eyes.

"Another!" the girlish voice was tense and hoarse. "They are on the outer bar. God help them! Here, get the Coston out. Strike a light! My hands are stiff. Oh! it rises! They answer! They know we have seen them. Poor souls! Come, we must run!"

And she, who but a moment before was half dead from cold and exposure, now ran as if sand and heavy, icy clothing had no power to stay her.

Thornly, filled with terror at this new development and fearing that the girl beside him would not be able to reach the Station, seized her more firmly and rushed forward.

"Oh! the Station! Do not lift me; I can make it now!" Thornly did not relinquish his hold, and together they flung themselves against the heavy doors of the little house.

The light and warmth were in their faces. A ring of startled men stood before them.

"They're on the outer bar! Two rockets! I've answered!" The words came in hard, quick breaths, and Janet swayed forward. It was Thornly who bore her to a chair most distant from the red-hot stove. The men had vanished like spectres. There was a hurried noise in the further room, as the big cart, bearing the apparatus, was pushed into the night and storm.

"Opposite Davy's Light between the last two dunes!" called Janet.

"All right!" Some one replied from beyond, then a stillness followed. Thornly stood guard over the girl as she sat helplessly in the wooden chair. The ice was melting and dripping from her clothing; the sou'wester had fallen away from the sweet, worn face, and the pretty cheeks showed two ominous white spots that bespoke frozen flesh.

"I dare not take you nearer the fire!" Thornly's voice was unsteady. His own returning circulation and consequent pain made him cruelly conscious of what he knew she was suffering.

She looked up bravely and smiled. "It's pretty bad," she said with a quiver. "It hurts, doesn't it?" Then noticing for the first time that Thornly was less protected than she, for he wore only his heavy overcoat, which was crusted thick with ice, she forgot her own agony in genuine alarm.

"Take off those frozen things!" she commanded; "you must be drenched through and through without an oiler. Make yourself comfortable. I must go!"

"Go! In heaven's name, go where?" Thornly paused as he was taking off his cap, over which he had tied a silk muffler, and stared at the girl.

"Why, to Cap'n Billy. You do not understand. He is back in the halfway house. He may be dead!" A shiver ran over Janet, and she struggled to her feet. "It is awful for me to sit here! You know nothing. I must go!"

Thornly firmly held her back.

"His check," she faltered, "take it out of my pocket, please. No, the left-hand pocket. That's it. Hang it there on the rack by the door. I may not return, you know."

"There's no time for explanations, Janet." Thornly had followed the girl's directions mechanically, and now urged her back in the chair. "Of course I will not let you go, but I am going to Cap'n Billy. Whatever can be done, I will do. I will bring him on here, or I will stay with him there until help reaches us; but you must obey what I say and wait for us. You must trust me."

She looked up at him tear blinded and pitiful.

"Let me go with you," she pleaded. "I am used to it, and after all—what matters now?"

Thornly seized an oilskin coat from a peg on the wall, and thrust his arms into it.

"What matters?" he stopped to ask, looking at Janet with a puzzled stare. "Why, don't you know, little girl, that this is the beginning of everything for us? Can't you understand?" Over his anxiety and excitement a sense of joy flooded. "Here!" he cried, trying to cheer her, "it's going to be all right with Cap'n Billy and every one else. Give me that rear decked boat you have on your head, Janet, and you'll promise to stay here until I return?"

He bent over her and drew the icy mittens from the stiff, little hands; then he raised the cold fingers to his lips, and looked into the depths of the upturned eyes. He had gone through his doubts and struggles since he had left her on the Hills; she, poor girl, had long ago relinquished her hope and love, but as she gazed now into the eyes bent above her she understood!

It was the climax of their young lives. Whatever lay beyond they could not know. Whatever forces had driven them into this sanctuary they neither of them sought to question. It might be their only moment.

"I will wait," Janet whispered, clinging to him, "I will wait for you—and Cap'n Daddy!"

After Thornly was gone the unreality passed. The howling of the gale, and the memories that flooded the present loneliness, drove the sudden dream before them. While she stood housed and protected all that was dear to her, all that meant life to her, was out there in the storm!

Cap'n Billy dying, perhaps dead, three miles beyond!

The crew manfully doing their duty by the men on the outer bar!

Thornly, struggling to perform a task that might be beyond his strength; while she, amid the danger and storm, stood idle!

"Why!" she cried, "this is as bad as that drowsiness out on the shore. I must do something! I had no right to promise!" She ran to the window and tore aside the little curtain. Her heavy coat fell from her, and with it seemed to drop the weight and burden that had oppressed her. The sluggishness of mind and body was gone. She was herself again! "No promise must hold me from my Cap'n Daddy!" she whispered in a soft defiance.

Just then the darting lanterns of the crew, far down the beach, attracted her. And through the grim, grayish light of the dying night shone Davy's Light, faithful and strong.

She stood surrounded by courageous duty. Her life lesson had been one long training for duty. Was she to fail now?

But what was her duty? Slowly a radiance spread from brow to chin. The livid spots on either cheek smarted into consciousness at the rush of blood that bore surrender with it. Above even Billy's claim to her faithfulness was her promise to Thornly! There was one greater, now, in her life than Cap'n Billy.

"And he has undertaken my task!" She pressed her burning cheek to the frosted glass. "I will trust him, and he shall trust me!"

So while Davy tended his Light, while the crew gave heart of hope to the wretched men upon the outer bar, while Thornly in the dark and storm struggled onward to the doing of a duty he had taken upon himself, Janet made ready for what might lie before.

She ran to the loft above and carried down cots and blankets. She heated kettles of water and fed the huge stove until it blazed and roared; then she brought from the Captain's room the medicine chest and the liquor that were kept for emergencies.

Still no one came! Janet gave herself no time for idle thought, nor did she permit her fevered fancy to run free. There was still something to do! She must provide for them who were risking their lives for others. She made strong coffee, and cut slices of bread from the massive loaves. Then suddenly, like a flash of humor in the tortured loneliness, she remembered Jared Brown's liking for tomatoes and set forth a large can. The homely tasks were steadying the strained nerves, but every time the wind rattled the doors the girl started.

The hours dragged on. The gale began to sob spasmodically as the day conquered it. The grayish light outside brightened—what was that?

The shed door was opening! The panting wind tore the kitchen door wide, and Janet saw three men advancing! She tried to run to them, but the body refused to respond to the eager will. She could not anticipate a knowledge that might mean so much!

Thornly and Ai Trueman came into the glow of the hot kitchen, and between them they dragged Cap'n Billy! Janet saw that he was alive, and when he realized that it was she who stood before him, the old, comforting smile struggled to the poor, worn face.

"Don't take on!" he panted as they placed him upon the nearest cot and began to strip his icy clothing from him; "this ain't what ye might call anythin' at all!"

Janet knelt beside him. "My Cap'n!" was all she could say; "my own, dear Cap'n Daddy!"

"Ye little—specimint!" Billy closed his eyes luxuriously. "They've told me what ye've done!"

"I found him in the halfway house," Ai explained while Thornly mixed a hot drink for Billy. "You see, I was nearly back t' the Station when I saw that signal frum the bar. My crew had seen it, too, an' they come racin' down as I was makin' fur them. On the way back I noticed the door o' the shelter open an' a tearin' fire lightin' up the place. I stopped t' see that all was safe, an' there on the floor, actin' like all possessed, was Billy! He was fur goin' with the men, but he couldn't stand on his legs. It was somethin' fierce the way he took on. I sort o' hauled him up an' swore I'd get him down t' the shore somehow, when this gentleman," Ai waved one of Billy's boots, which he had just managed to get off, toward Thornly, "come in an' he kind o' took command, as you might say, an' ordered us on t' this here port."

Janet was pressing her face against the weary one upon the pillow, and murmuring over and over in a gentle lullaby, "My Cap'n, my Cap'n!" Thornly came over to the cot and raised Billy to feed him the drink. Billy looked up and smiled feebly.

"If I ain't needed here," Ai said, "I'll take a haul o' coffee an' then fetch some down t' the men." Janet started.

"Oh! I forgot," she cried; "what about the wreck?"

"The tide's turnin'," Ai replied from the depths of a bowl of coffee. "Like as not the ship will lift by mornin'! More frightened than hurt anyway, I guess. They've signalled us t' stand by till daybreak, but I'm thinkin' they'll hist before then!"

When Ai had gone Thornly put the cup down, and placed Billy back on the pillows. The heavy eyes opened and fell upon the two faces near. Then a puzzled expression settled in the kindly gaze.

"Ye've got yer chart t' sail by, my gal," he whispered, going back in memory to that night when he had told Janet of her mother. "I ain't goin' t' worry any more!"

The words trailed off into unconsciousness, and Cap'n Billy swung at anchor between this port and that beyond.


A southwest wind howled around the little hut upon the Hills. The season was in one of its humorous moods, for the day was almost summer-like in spite of the wind's noisy insistence. Between the tops of the highest dunes the white crested heads of the waves could be seen at times; and the deep, solemn tones announced that there was "a heavy sea on."

The nearer water of the bay, in imitation of its mighty neighbor, echoed in mildest tones its restlessness, and tossed its feathery foam high upon the pebbly beach.

Thornly had found the first May pinks by the roadside that morning, and Mark Tapkins had mentioned, in passing, that Cap'n Billy was soon coming off. By these signs, and the singing in his heart, he knew the spring had come.

He was sitting before the easel upon which rested "The Pimpernel," finished at last!

The work had been his salvation through the long weeks of waiting since that night upon the beach. Alternately exulting and despairing, he had painted in a frenzy born of starved desire and memory-haunted love.

Only once had he seen Janet alone since that eventful night, for Billy's dangerous illness claimed her every thought and hour. But that once, while Davy sat beside his friend, she had walked with Thornly upon the sands and had told him her life story. Very simply she had spoken, watching, meanwhile, the effect upon her listener. He had been startled and shaken by the recital, and for a time Janet had misunderstood him.

"You must go away and think it over," she had said; "I am not the same girl, you see!"

"Great heavens, Janet!" Thornly had exclaimed when once he recovered from his surprise. "Do you think anything can make a difference now? Why, you are dearer a thousand times in ways you cannot realize, for I know Mr. Devant better than you do, and I am glad for him."

Janet shook her head. "Cap'n Billy must never know," she whispered. "There may never be a chance, but in any case he shall never have that hurt."

"It would be an added joy, little girl," Thornly insisted, but Janet would not consider it.

"So please go now," she had pleaded finally. "Go and think and think. Perhaps by and by—who can tell? Just now it must be only my Cap'n Daddy."

Thus with the courage and patience of her nature the girl had set aside her own love and yearning; and Thornly took to the Hills and the unfinished picture of "The Pimpernel."

The glorious face upon the canvas changed and assumed character according as the master's mood swayed him.

One day it would shine forth with the sweet questioning of joyous girlhood. Then Thornly, remembering how the question had been answered on a certain summer day when ignorance died and knowledge was born, wiped away the expression while his heart grew heavy within him.

Then he would paint her as he recalled her on that black night upon the beach when, her uplifted face touched by the fleeting rays of the white moon, she had asked him if he needed her to help him finish his picture.

No! no! He could not paint her so. That was no face for a flower wreath—and the flowers he must have!

Again he painted her as he had last seen her. The love light shining in her eyes while courageously she put her joy from her until her duty to Billy was ended, and her lover had had time to think.

Thornly had thought! Never in his life had he thought so deeply and intensely, and from out the thought and love the soul of Janet had evolved and become fixed upon the canvas. "It is a masterpiece!" cried the artist in the man, as he gazed upon the glorious face.

"It is my woman!" responded the man in the artist. "My Spirit of the dunes with the strength of the Hills and the mystery of the sea."

A sudden knock shattered the ecstasy. "Come!" called Thornly and turned to meet his guest. Mark Tapkins awkwardly entered. Mark had been a great resource to Thornly lately. Unconsciously he had been a link between Janet and the Hills. In his slow, dull fashion he repeated all he saw and heard at the Station, and Thornly, trusting to Tapkins's uncomprehending manner, sent messages to the dunes that he knew Janet's keener wit would interpret and understand. But Thornly had still something to learn about Tapkins.

"Any news this morning?" he said cheerily, pushing a stool toward Mark.

"She's come off," said Tapkins with his eyes fixed upon "The Pimpernel."

"Is already off?" Thornly's color rose. "You know you said they were coming soon."

"They've come! Her an' Billy is down t' Davy's."

"And Billy, how is he?" asked Thornly.

"Middlin'. But he ain't complainin' none. Say, Mr. Thornly, I don't know as you understand why I've been runnin' here so much lately? You see I wanted, so t' speak, t' git the lay o' the land 'twixt you an'—her!"

Tapkins kept his eyes upon the vivid face, only by its inspiration could he hold to his purpose.

"Have you got it, Tapkins?" Thornly bent closer and gazed at his visitor keenly.

"I seem t' sense it," was the low reply. "Travel an' city ways, Mr. Thornly, make men understand each other." The old foolish conceit added dignity to the evident purpose with which Mark was struggling. "Now, over t' the Station the crew think you're a 'vestigator!"

So they had been talking him over, those quiet, apparently unobservant men!

"What do they think I'm investigating, Tapkins?" Thornly's gaze contracted, and he clasped his hands rigidly around his knees. He felt as if he were before a bar of justice and he must weigh the evidence against himself.

"The sand bar," Mark replied. "Every once so often some fellers come down here with a fool notion o' cuttin' down the sand bar, an' dredge deep enough to make a inlet int' the bay."

"Perhaps they may, some day, Tapkins." Thornly felt that along this line he might sooner reach his friend's purpose in calling for the second time that day. "It's not a bad idea, you know. It would sweeten the waters of the bay, carry off the stagnant growth and let in a lot of new life. But you do not think I'm an investigator, eh, Mark?"

Tapkins turned suddenly and faced his host.

"Not that kind, Mr. Thornly," he said, in a tone that brought, again, the color to Thornly's face. "An' what's more," Tapkins continued, "I don't think same as you do 'bout the inlet, nuther, Mr. Thornly. Nater is pretty much alike in sand bars, an' folks, an' what not! God Almighty knows what He's about when He piles up them dunes what divides ocean an' bay; an' folks an' folks!"

"Go on, Tapkins!" This was worthy of Cap'n Davy. The sojourn at the Light had had its influence upon the assistant keeper. Mark gulped and turned his gaze upon the picture.

"'T ain't no good tryin' t' mix things, Mr. Thornly. That's what the crew tells them fellers 'bout the bar. They don't listen none. They work like beavers, an' we hold off an' have our laugh. Then they go away real pleased after they've cut through, but nation! 't ain't any time 't all 'fore the sand's piled up agin. It's awful foolish workin' agin Nater."

"Just what kind of an investigator do you take me for, Tapkins?" Thornly felt he must know the worst, and at once. The look Mark cast upon him was full of trouble. He did not want to wrong this man he had grown to like, but a sense of duty lashed him on.

"The Lord knows, Mr. Thornly," he faltered, "I don't want t' make any mistakes. It's turrible confusin' when you try t' label folks. The same acts mean different 'cordin' t' the handlin', an' a good man an' a bad man bear a powerful likeness t' each other on the outside, sometimes. Once I didn't speak out t' a friend when I ought t', an'—an', well, there was, what you might say, a wreck! I ain't goin' t' hold back another time. Mr. Thornly, you're stayin' on down here, 'cause you have some sort o' idee o' openin' up a inlet 'twixt sich folks as you an' Mr. Devant an'—her!" Mark waved his cap toward the easel. "'T ain't no use, Mr. Thornly, s'pose you did cut through an' clean an' honest, too, don't you see a little craft like that one couldn't sail out int' deep waters? an' the Lord knows, big craft like you an' him would get stranded in no time down here. Folks is separated fur a good reason. 'T ain't a question o' one bein' better nor the other," Tapkins raised his head proudly, "it's jest a case o' difference. Cuttin' down barriers ain't goin' t' do nothin' but cause waste o' time in buildin' 'em up agin."

Never before in his life had Mark spoken so eloquently nor so lengthily.

A dimness rose in Thornly's eyes, and a respect for the awkward fellow grew in his heart. He arose and stood before Tapkins, his hand resting protectingly upon "The Pimpernel."

"You're one of the best fellows I've ever met, old man!" he said, "and you've lived pretty deep; but there is another point of view about those sand bars of yours. There is going to be an inlet all right, some day, over on the dunes! When that time comes, beside sweetening the waters of the bay and doing all the rest, something else is going to happen and don't you forget it! Craft from outside will come in and not get stranded, either; and what's more, some craft of yours that is stronger and better fitted than you know of is going to sail out into the open, test its strength and not get wrecked! Sand bars are for nothing in the world, Tapkins, but for conquering. Take my word for that. It all depends upon who tackles the job of the inlet, see?"

Mark got upon his feet and took the hand that was suddenly stretched out to meet his. Thornly held the poor fellow's tear-filled eyes by the radiance of his own.

"We understand each other, old man," he continued. "I am going, please God, to cut through a barrier that has no right to exist. I'm going to let as brave and trusty a little craft as ever sailed go out into the broad waters where she belongs. Do you catch on, Tapkins?"

"I do that!" murmured Mark, and he dropped Thornly's hand. "I'll watch out, Mr. Thornly. It's my way t' watch, an' I'm learnin' one thing over an' over. In this life there's plenty t' learn if you've got—power!"

Mark had done his duty and departed. Thornly watched him from the open door until he shambled from sight. Then a new doubt arose. While he had waited alone upon the Hills, working and loving without distrust of the future, they, these patient conservatives of Quinton, had discussed him from every point of view and were ready when he pressed his claim to judge him.

How different from his old world was this one of the dunes! What different standards existed from those which swayed Katharine Ogden and her kind! Unless he met their demands, he could mean nothing to them. How far had time and discussion influenced Janet? Might she not fear to try the larger life with him; she who had, without a quiver, discarded Devant with his claims and yearnings?

For a moment the day seemed chilly and the sky darker. But Thornly was not one to hold back when even the slightest hope beckoned. He would not wait for her to call him, he would go to her!

He closed the door and strode down the sandy road. He passed the new inn at the foot of the Hills, and returned the salute that Pa Tapkins waved to him with a kettle from the kitchen window. As he neared the bay the salt smell of the water seemed to give him strength. There was James B.'s little boat at his wharf and Eliza Jane in the doorway of the low, vine-covered house.

"You jest better be goin' on!" she called to James B., who was loitering on the village side of the garden.

"I ain't more'n jest come off!" James B. answered. "I ain't any more'n had time t' swaller my dinner."

"Well, what more do you want?" snapped his wife. "You go on now, an' do what I tell you. An' there ain't no use t' turn the P'int t' the village, nuther. I kin see your sail till you reach the Station, an' if you don't go straight on, I kin reach the village store 'fore you kin. So 't ain't no use, James B."

James B. evidently agreed with her, for he turned and went disconsolately toward the wharf.

Thornly smiled and his old cheerfulness returned. He was seeing these people, slowly, through Janet's eyes. They were so brave, patient, and humorous. They were so human and faulty and lovable. Among them she, poor little wayfarer, had got her life lesson—how would she apply it now?

Before him rose Davy's Light, its glistening head ready for duty when the night should come. Some one was waving from the balcony up aloft! Some one had been watching the road from the Hills! Thornly's heart beat quicker. Was it Davy?

Just then the playful wind caught the loosened, ruddy hair of the watcher above, and Thornly hastened his steps.

The rooms of the lighthouse were empty, and silence brooded over all. Thornly mounted the winding stairs and, as if Davy's personality pervaded the way, his heart lightened perceptibly at each landing. In the little room below the lamp, Janet met him.

"We're freshening up," she said with the old half-shy laugh, "Davy, Cap'n Daddy, and I. Come!"

Thornly stretched out his hands toward her.

"Janet!" he whispered. "One moment, little girl!" She turned a full look upon him. A look of love, of question, of joy!

"Not yet. Come!" she repeated, and paused at the foot of the steps for him to join her.

On the sheltered side of the tower, in an easy-chair, sat Cap'n Billy. Davy was hovering over him, good-naturedly scolding him for the exertion he had made in getting to the balcony.

"The next time, Billy, that ye take it in t' yer head t' come up here, by gum! I'm goin' t' hist ye up from the outside, same as if ye war ile! How are ye, Mr. Thornly?" he cried, turning quickly. "Take a seat on the railin'. 'T ain't what ye might call soft an' yieldin', but there's plenty of it, there bein' no beginnin' or endin'." He laughed and sighed in quite the old way. Billy's sickness had brought back the sigh.

Thornly bent over Billy in greeting, and then seated himself where he could look into all three faces. Janet sank upon a stool at Cap'n Billy's feet.

"You know why I have waited, Cap'n Billy, for this day?" he said.

He could not resort to lesser means, when simple directness would be better understood. Davy plunged his hands into his pockets and clutched the courage that was supposed to lie there along with the pipe and tobacco.

Cap'n Billy with quaint dignity put his thin, brown hand upon Janet's bowed head, and answered in kind.

"I do that, Mr. Thornly. Out there on the beach arter I come in t' consciousness, I done a heap o' thinkin', an' t'-day I told Davy I knowed ye would come, an' I wanted t' freshen up on the balcony 'fore we talked over the present and—the past!"

"Can't we let the past go, Cap'n?" Thornly asked gently. "You know it can never matter to me. The future is all that I want." Billy shook his head.

"Them's good heartsome words!" Davy broke in, tugging energetically at his pockets. "An' spoke like a man, by gum! Let well enough alone, Billy. You an' Janet is goin' t' stay right on at the Light, an' we'll start in fresh from now!" When had Davy been a coward before? But Billy's "works" might take to running down again, and that fear quelled Davy's daring. But again Billy shook his head.

"'Course the government ain't goin' t' take on an old feller like me," he said, "'specially when he has t' be towed in himself when he's most needed t' lend a hand; an' I ain't above takin' a place in the Light, Davy, when I pull myself up sufficient, but I want once an' fur all t' clar the air 'bout Janet." His troubled eyes looked pleadingly across the sunny bay toward the Station that had been his resting place and home for so long.

"The old see mighty clar, Mr. Thornly," he said, turning his gaze to the present. "An' as ye git near port it's amazin' how the big things, the real things, hold yer thoughts an' longin's. I ain't done my whole duty by my little gal, an' the fact shadders my days."

"Don't say that, Cap'n Daddy!" Janet pressed closer to him. "You have done your own duty and the duty of the whole world by me!"

"That's like ye, Janet, t' say them words; but ye don't know all! That's whar I've wronged ye."

Davy saw that he must take a hand in what was going on. It would ease Billy and spare Janet.

"We've got, so t' speak," he commenced with grim determination, "t' open up the grave of the Past." He was always poetical when emotion swayed him. "Ye see, Mr. Thornly, t' put it plain an' square, me an' Billy knows that ye have some idee o' Janet, an' Billy ain't goin' t' let ye take her under no false pretences. As t' givin' our consent t' ye payin' yer respects, so t' speak, t' Janet, me an' Billy don't know, 'cordin t' law, as we have any right fur givin' or holdin' our consent. An' now ye have it straight an' fair!"

"Thank you, Cap'n Davy," Thornly replied, "but, I repeat, the past can never mean anything to me."

"But ye see, Mr. Thornly," Billy clung to his purpose, "this girl, properly speakin', don't b'long t' me. She drifted in t' port early, an' from, as ye may say, a wreck; I kept her, an' loved her, God knows, as if she war my own. But she ain't!"

This confession brought the beads of perspiration to Billy's brow, but Thornly's unmoved expression calmed him.

"My Cap'n Daddy!" Janet turned her face to the agitated one above her. "I've told Mr. Thornly this already, and he does not care!"

Billy drew a long, relieved sigh.

"I only want Janet," Thornly hastened to say. "Whether she belongs rightfully to you or not, Cap'n Billy, you have trained her into exactly the kind of woman I would have her!"

"That's the kind o' talk!" ejaculated Davy, and he drew out his pipe, lighted it and inwardly gave thanks that they had all passed the bar so successfully.

"But that ain't enough!" Billy insisted, shattering Davy's calm. "I knowed who Janet's mother was, but I never knowed her father. I never tried t' find out. I allus war afraid I would somehow, an' that's what's clutchin' me now. I ain't acted wise or square. It comes t' me lately when I look at Janet, an' see how much she favors some one what I don't know, that I ain't only cheated her, but I've cheated some man out o' his own, no matter how ye look at it. She might 'a' been the means, so t' speak, o' bringin' him t' grace; an' times is when I've wondered if Janet won't blame me some day."

"Never! never! my own Cap'n Daddy!" Janet reassured him, but her eyes were troubled. An old doubt rose to take sides with Billy against her own determination.

"That's what ye say, not knowin', my girl." Poor Billy's wrinkled face twitched. "If yer true father be among the livin', an' sufferin' has eaten int' his soul, then don't ye see, I've stood 'twixt him an' his chance of somewhat undoin' a bitter wrong? It ain't no light matter t' take the settlin' o' things out o' God Almighty's hand. I wish I'd hunted him up! 'T was my plain duty t' have done that, I see it now. I wish I'd given my gal the choice 'tween him an' me! It's a growin' trouble as time passes." The slow tears were rolling down Billy's suffering face. Janet had no comfort for him now. In her ignorance she had pushed aside her chance to give him what his honest soul had longed for. Recalling Mr. Devant's words, she bowed her head upon Billy's knee in contrition, and pressed her lips against his work-worn hand.

Thornly stepped beside the crouching girl and laid a firm hand upon Billy's shoulder. He must give no shock, but his time had come to take another duty of Janet's upon himself.

"Cap'n Billy," he said slowly, and Davy eyed him closely, "I know Janet's—other father!"

The sun crept around the tall tower. The wind fell into a lull after its day of play. A silence held the little group for a moment, and then Thornly went on:

"He has suffered a lifetime of remorse. He is a lonely, sad man."

"Ye hear that, Janet?" whispered Billy hoarsely, but his yearning eyes were fixed upon the little house across the bay.

"Yes, my Cap'n, I hear," came in muffled tones.

How much the dear voice sounded like that one which years ago had so named him!

"An', God willin', ye kin have a choice, my girl, even now! I ain't goin' t' stand 'twixt ye an' a open course. Ye've got his blood as well as hers! Ye must choose yerself, Janet, an' do it just an' honest like I've tried t' show ye how!"

"Cap'n Billy,"—Thornly pressed the thin shoulder firmer, the real test was coming now,—"our little girl has had her chance. She knows her father; he came and offered her a life of luxury and pleasure—and she chose you!"

"Gawd!" burst from Davy, and his pipe lay shattered upon the floor.

Billy breathed quicker, but the habit of a lifetime helped him bear this crowning bliss. To such as he it sometimes happens that an inner sense prepares the soul for its mounts of vision. In the silence that followed, Billy struggled in memory from that long-ago time when his love was young, to this hour when he was to know!

"An' he—is?" He spoke waveringly like a child feeling out into the darkness for an object he knows is there. Thornly waited for what his love trusted.

"Mr. Devant, my Cap'n Daddy!" The answer was in Janet's voice.

"I—I sort o' sensed it!" whispered Billy. "An' ye chose me when ye had sich a chance?" Wonder thrilled through the question. Was he to know more joy?

"Yes, my own Daddy. I chose you because I loved you! I never even wanted you to know. But Mr. Thornly knew you better than I. You are nobler than I thought."

"An' ye loved me like that?" A shining joy broke over Billy's face, a joy that drove pain and remorse before it. "Do ye hear that, Davy? An' ye once said God couldn't pay me fur what I done! Why, man, God paid me all along the way, an' now He's added more'n I ever earned!" The weak voice rose rapturously. "Mr. Thornly, I want that ye should send fur Mr. Devant. I ain't goin' t' prove unworthy o' the Lord's trust in me!"

"Daddy! Daddy!" broke from Janet. Billy stayed her with a look.

"No, my gal. This ain't no matter fur ye! This be man's work!"

"Right you are, Cap'n!" Thornly grasped the old hand. Davy drew near and looked upon his friend as if he were seeing him for the first time in years.

"By gum!" he said. "An' that's what has been draggin' on ye all these years! Why, Billy, you an' me is goin' t' take a new lease o' life!"

"We are that!" nodded Billy. Then he turned to Thornly.

"I ain't never goin' t' doubt a man like you, Mr. Thornly," he said, "but ye see I could only train Janet one way, havin', as ye know, no other 'sperience. I ain't use t' sich waters as ye sail, an' Janet ain't much wiser. I'm thinkin'," he paused and tried to see his way, "I'm thinkin', Mr. Devant might help ye on this tack. Sort o' steer this little craft, so t' speak, till it's able to keep upright."

Quietly the girl by Billy's knee arose. She stood just where the westering sun touched her with a golden glow. Thornly drew his lips in sharply as he looked at her, and even Billy and Davy were awed by what they in no wise comprehended.

"Daddy dear," said the sweet voice, "I am going to be very fond of Mr. De—of my father, by and by. We are going to be great friends, I know, and that will make you glad. But I must always be your girl! I am not afraid to sail out upon the broad middle ocean. I used to tell Davy that I longed to go; but I want no other help than your chart, my Cap'n, and my Davy's Light!" Her lifted eyes were tear-filled as they rested in turn upon the two rugged faces. Then she looked at Thornly and her tears were dried as desire grew to trust and perfect understanding; he opened his arms to her and she came to him gladly.

"And my love, my Pimpernel!" he whispered as his lips pressed the soft, ruddy hair.

The birds twittered among the nooks and corners of Davy's Light. The bay sparkled, and across the dunes the ocean's voice spoke in the deep cadences of a mighty organ's tone.

"An' there was glory over all the land," Davy chanted as he turned to his evening duty. "A flood o' glory."

* * * * * *

JOHN FOX, JR'S. STORIES OF THE KENTUCKY MOUNTAINS May be had wherever books are sold. Ask for Grosset and Dunlap's list.


Illustrated by F. C. Yohn.

The "lonesome pine" from which the story takes its name was a tall tree that stood in solitary splendor on a mountain top. The fame of the pine lured a young engineer through Kentucky to catch the trail, and when he finally climbed to its shelter he found not only the pine but the foot-prints of a girl. And the girl proved to be lovely, piquant, and the trail of these girlish foot-prints led the young engineer a madder chase than "the trail of the lonesome pine."


Illustrated by F. C. Yohn.

This is a story of Kentucky, in a settlement known as "Kingdom Come." It is a life rude, semi-barbarous; but natural and honest, from which often springs the flower of civilization.

"Chad" the "little shepherd" did not know who he was nor whence he came—he had just wandered from door to door since early childhood, seeking shelter with kindly mountaineers who gladly fathered and mothered this waif about whom there was such a mystery—a charming waif, by the way, who could play the banjo better than anyone else in the mountains.


Illustrated by F. C. Yohn.

The scenes are laid along the waters of the Cumberland, the lair of moonshiner and feudsman. The knight is a moonshiner's son, and the heroine a beautiful girl perversely christened "The Blight." Two impetuous young Southerners fall under the spell of "The Blight's" charms and she learns what a large part jealousy and pistols have in the love making of the mountaineers.

Included in this volume is "Hell fer-Sartain" and other stories, some of Mr. Fox's most entertaining Cumberland valley narratives.

Ask for complete free list of G. & D. Popular Copyrighted Fiction GROSSET & DUNLAP, 526 WEST 26TH ST., NEW YORK

* * * * * *

STORIES OF RARE CHARM BY GENE STRATTON-PORTER May be had wherever books are sold. Ask for Grosset and Dunlap's list.


Illustrated by W. L. Jacobs

"The Harvester," David Langston, is a man of the woods and fields, who draws his living from the prodigal hand of Mother Nature herself. If the book had nothing in it but the splendid figure of this man, with his sure grip on life, his superb optimism, and his almost miraculous knowledge of nature secrets, it would be notable. But when the Girl comes to his "Medicine Woods," and the Harvester's whole sound, healthy, large outdoor being realizes that this is the highest point of life which has come to him—there begins a romance, troubled and interrupted, yet of the rarest idyllic quality.

FRECKLES. Decorations by E. Stetson Crawford

Freckles is a nameless waif when the tale opens, but the way in which he takes hold of life; the nature friendships he forms in the great Limberlost Swamp; the manner in which everyone who meets him succumbs to the charm of his engaging personality; and his love-story with "The Angel" are full of real sentiment.


Illustrated by Wladyslaw T. Brenda.

The story of a girl of the Michigan woods; a buoyant, lovable type of the self-reliant American. Her philosophy is one of love and kindness towards all things; her hope is never dimmed. And by the sheer beauty of her soul, and the purity of her vision, she wins from barren and unpromising surroundings those rewards of high courage.

It is an inspiring story of a life worth while and the rich beauties of the out-of-doors are strewn through all its pages.


Illustrations in colors by Oliver Kemp. Design and decorations by Ralph Fletcher Seymour.

The scene of this charming, idyllic love story is laid in Central Indiana. The story is one of devoted friendship, and tender self-sacrificing love; the friendship that gives freely without return, and the love that seeks first the happiness of the object. The novel is brimful of the most beautiful word painting of nature, and its pathos and tender sentiment will endear it to all.

Ask for complete free list of G. & D. Popular Copyrighted Fiction GROSSET & DUNLAP, 526 WEST 26TH ST., NEW YORK

* * * * * *

MYRTLE REED'S NOVELS May be had wherever books are sold. Ask for Grosset & Dunlap's list.


A charming story of a quaint corner of New England where bygone romance finds a modern parallel. The story centers round the coming of love to the young people on the staff of a newspaper—and it is one of the prettiest, sweetest and quaintest of old fashioned love stories, * * * a rare book, exquisite in spirit and conception, full of delicate fancy, of tenderness, of delightful humor and spontaneity.


Miss Myrtle Reed may always be depended upon to write a story in which poetry, charm, tenderness and humor are combined into a clever and entertaining book. Her characters are delightful and she always displays a quaint humor of expression and a quiet feeling of pathos which give a touch of active realism to all her writings. In "A Spinner in the Sun" she tells an old-fashioned love story, of a veiled lady who lives in solitude and whose features her neighbors have never seen. There is a mystery at the heart of the book that throws over it the glamour of romance.


A love story in a musical atmosphere. A picturesque, old German virtuoso is the reverent possessor of a genuine "Cremona." He consents to take for his pupil a handsome youth who proves to have an aptitude for technique, but not the soul of an artist. The youth has led the happy, careless life of a modern, well-to-do young American and he cannot, with his meagre past, express the love, the passion and the tragedies of life and all its happy phases as can the master who has lived life in all its fulness. But a girl comes into his life—a beautiful bit of human driftwood that his aunt had taken into her heart and home, and through his passionate love for her, he learns the lessons that life has to give—and his soul awakes.

Founded on a fact that all artists realize.

Ask for a complete free list of G. & D. Popular Copyrighted Fiction GROSSET & DUNLAP, 526 WEST 26TH ST., NEW YORK

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STORIES OF WESTERN LIFE May be had wherever books are sold. Ask for Grosset & Dunlap's list.


Illustrated by Douglas Duer.

In this picturesque romance of Utah of some forty years ago, we are permitted to see the unscrupulous methods employed by the invisible hand of the Mormon Church to break the will of those refusing to conform to its rule.

FRIAR TUCK, By Robert Alexander Wason.

Illustrated by Stanley L. Wood.

Happy Hawkins tells us, in his humorous way, how Friar Tuck lived among the Cowboys, how he adjusted their quarrels and love affairs and how he fought with them and for them when occasion required.

THE SKY PILOT, By Ralph Connor.

Illustrated by Louis Rhead.

There is no novel, dealing with the rough existence of cowboys, so charming in the telling, abounding as it does with the freshest and the truest pathos.

THE EMIGRANT TRAIL, By Geraldine Bonner.

Colored frontispiece by John Rae.

The book relates the adventures of a party on its overland pilgrimage, and the birth and growth of the absorbing love of two strong men for a charming heroine.


Illustrated by Frank Tenney Johnson.

This is a strong, virile novel with the lumber industry for its central theme and a love story full of interest as a sort of subplot.

A PRAIRIE COURTSHIP, By Harold Bindloss.

A story of Canadian prairies in which the hero is stirred, through the influence of his love for a woman, to settle down to the heroic business of pioneer farming.

JOYCE OF THE NORTH WOODS, By Harriet T. Comstock.

Illustrated by John Cassel.

A story of the deep woods that shows the power of love at work among its primitive dwellers. It is a tensely moving study of the human heart and its aspirations that unfolds itself through thrilling situations and dramatic developments.

Ask for a complete free list of G. & D. Popular Copyrighted Fiction GROSSET & DUNLAP, 526 WEST 26TH ST., NEW YORK

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CHARMING BOOKS FOR GIRLS May be had wherever books are sold. Ask for Grosset & Dunlap's list.


Illustrated by C. D. Williams.

One of the best stories of life in a girl's college that has ever been written. It is bright, whimsical and entertaining, lifelike, laughable and thoroughly human.

JUST PATTY, By Jean Webster.

Illustrated by C. M. Relyea.

Patty is full of the joy of living, fun-loving, given to ingenious mischief for its own sake, with a disregard for pretty convention which is an unfailing source of joy to her fellows.


With four full page illustrations.

This story relates the experience of one of those unfortunate children whose early days are passed in the companionship of a governess, seldom seeing either parent, and famishing for natural love and tenderness. A charming play as dramatized by the author.


One of the most beautiful studies of childhood—Rebecca's artistic, unusual and quaintly charming qualities stand out midst a circle of austere New Englanders. The stage version is making a phenomenal dramatic record.


Illustrated by F. C. Yohn.

Additional episodes in the girlhood of this delightful heroine that carry Rebecca through various stages to her eighteenth birthday.

REBECCA MARY, By Annie Hamilton Donnell.

Illustrated by Elizabeth Shippen Green.

This author possesses the rare gift of portraying all the grotesque little joys and sorrows and scruples of this very small girl with a pathos that is peculiarly genuine and appealing.

EMMY LOU: Her Book and Heart, By George Madden Martin.

Illustrated by Charles Louis Hinton.

Emmy Lou is irresistibly lovable, because she is so absolutely real. She is just a bewitchingly innocent, hugable little maid. The book is wonderfully human.

Ask for complete free list of G. & D. Popular Copyrighted Fiction GROSSET & DUNLAP, 526 WEST 26TH ST., NEW YORK

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GROSSET & DUNLAP'S DRAMATIZED NOVELS THE KIND THAT ARE MAKING THEATRICAL HISTORY May be had wherever books are sold. Ask for Grosset & Dunlap's list.

WITHIN THE LAW. By Bayard Veiller & Marvin Dana.

Illustrated by Wm. Charles Cooke.

This is a novelization of the immensely successful play which ran for two years in New York and Chicago.

The plot of this powerful novel is of a young woman's revenge directed against her employer who allowed her to be sent to prison for three years on a charge of theft, of which she was innocent.

WHAT HAPPENED TO MARY. By Robert Carlton Brown.

Illustrated with scenes from the play.

This is a narrative of a young and innocent country girl who is suddenly thrown into the very heart of New York, "the land of her dreams," where she is exposed to all sorts of temptations and dangers.

The story of Mary is being told in moving pictures and played in theatres all over the world.


Illustrated by John Rae.

This is a novelization of the popular play in which David Warfield, as Old Peter Grimm, scored such a remarkable success.

The story is spectacular and extremely pathetic but withal, powerful, both as a book and as a play.

THE GARDEN OF ALLAH. By Robert Hichens.

This novel is an intense, glowing epic of the great desert, sunlit, barbaric, with its marvelous atmosphere of vastness and loneliness.

It is a book of rapturous beauty, vivid in word painting. The play has been staged with magnificent cast and gorgeous properties.

BEN HUR. A Tale of the Christ. By General Lew Wallace.

The whole world has placed this famous Religious-Historical Romance on a height of pre-eminence which no other novel of its time has reached. The clashing of rivalry and the deepest human passions, the perfect reproduction of brilliant Roman life, and the tense, fierce atmosphere of the arena have kept their deep fascination. A tremendous dramatic success.

BOUGHT AND PAID FOR. By George Broadhurst and Arthur Hornblow. Illustrated with scenes from the play.

A stupendous arraignment of modern marriage which has created an interest on the stage that is almost unparalleled. The scenes are laid in New York, and deal with conditions among both the rich and poor.

The interest of the story turns on the day-by-day developments which show the young wife the price she has paid.

Ask for complete free list of G. & D. Popular Copyrighted Fiction GROSSET & DUNLAP, 526 WEST 26TH ST., NEW YORK

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GROSSET & DUNLAP'S DRAMATIZED NOVELS Original, sincere and courageous—often amusing—the kind that are making theatrical history.

MADAME X. By Alexandre Bisson and J. W. McConaughy. Illustrated with scenes from the play.

A beautiful Parisienne became an outcast because her husband would not forgive an error of her youth. Her love for her son is the great final influence in her career. A tremendous dramatic success.

THE GARDEN OF ALLAH. By Robert Hichens.

An unconventional English woman and an inscrutable stranger meet and love in an oasis of the Sahara. Staged this season with magnificent cast and gorgeous properties.


A glowing romance of the Byzantine Empire, presenting with extraordinary power the siege of Constantinople, and lighting its tragedy with the warm underglow of an Oriental romance. As a play it is a great dramatic spectacle.

TESS OF THE STORM COUNTRY. By Grace Miller White. Illust. by Howard Chandler Christy.

A girl from the dregs of society, loves a young Cornell University student, and it works startling changes in her life and the lives of those about her. The dramatic version is one of the sensations of the season.

YOUNG WALLINGFORD. By George Randolph Chester. Illust. by F. R. Gruger and Henry Raleigh.

A series of clever swindles conducted by a cheerful young man, each of which is just on the safe side of a State's prison offence. As "Get-Rich-Quick Wallingford," it is probably the most amusing expose of money manipulation ever seen on the stage.

THE INTRUSION OF JIMMY. By P. G. Wodehouse. Illustrations by Will Grefe.

Social and club life in London and New York, an amateur burglary adventure and a love story. Dramatized under the title of "A Gentleman of Leisure," it furnishes hours of laughter to the play-goers.


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B. M. Bower's Novels Thrilling Western Romances Large 12 mos. Handsomely bound in cloth. Illustrated


A breezy wholesome tale, wherein the love affairs of Chip and Della Whitman are charmingly and humorously told. Chip's jealousy of Dr. Cecil Grantham, who turns out to be a big, blue eyed young woman is very amusing. A clever, realistic story of the American Cow-puncher.


A lively and amusing story, dealing with the adventures of eighteen jovial, big hearted Montana cowboys. Foremost amongst them, we find Ananias Green, known as Andy, whose imaginative powers cause many lively and exciting adventures.


A realistic story of the plains, describing a gay party of Easterners who exchange a cottage at Newport for the rough homeliness of a Montana ranch-house. The merry-hearted cowboys, the fascinating Beatrice, and the effusive Sir Redmond, become living, breathing personalities.


Here are everyday, genuine cowboys, just as they really exist. Spirited action, a range feud between two families, and a Romeo and Juliet courtship make this a bright, jolly, entertaining story, without a dull page.


A vivid portrayal of the experience of an Eastern author, among the cowboys of the West, in search of "local color" for a new novel. "Bud" Thurston learns many a lesson while following "the lure of the dim trails" but the hardest, and probably the most welcome, is that of love.


"Weary" Davidson leaves the ranch for Portland, where conventional city life palls on him. A little branch of sage brush, pungent with the atmosphere of the prairie, and the recollection of a pair of large brown eyes soon compel his return. A wholesome love story.


A vigorous Western story, sparkling with the free, outdoor, life of a mountain ranch. Its scenes shift rapidly and its actors play the game of life fearlessly and like men. It is a fine love story from start to finish.

Ask for a complete free list of G. & D. Popular Copyrighted Fiction GROSSET & DUNLAP, 526 WEST 26TH ST., NEW YORK

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THE RULES OF THE GAME. Illustrated by Lajaren A. Hiller

The romance of the son of "The Riverman." The young college hero goes into the lumber camp, is antagonized by "graft" and comes into the romance of his life.

ARIZONA NIGHTS. Illus. and cover inlay by N. C. Wyeth.

A series of spirited tales emphasizing some phases of the life of the ranch, plains and desert. A masterpiece.

THE BLAZED TRAIL. With illustrations by Thomas Fogarty.

A wholesome story with gleams of humor, telling of a young man who blazed his way to fortune through the heart of the Michigan pines.


The tenderfoot manager of a mine in a lonesome gulch of the Black Hills has a hard time of it, but "wins out" in more ways than one.

CONJUROR'S HOUSE. Illustrated Theatrical Edition.

Dramatized under the title of "The Call of the North."

"Conjuror's House" is a Hudson Bay trading post where the head factor is the absolute lord. A young fellow risked his life and won a bride on this forbidden land.

THE MAGIC FOREST. A Modern Fairy Tale. Illustrated.

The sympathetic way in which the children of the wild and their life is treated could only belong to one who is in love with the forest and open air. Based on fact.

THE RIVERMAN. Illus. by N. C. Wyeth and C. Underwood.

The story of a man's fight against a river and of a struggle between honesty and grit on the one side, and dishonesty and shrewdness on the other.

THE SILENT PLACES. Illustrations by Philip R. Goodwin.

The wonders of the northern forests, the heights of feminine devotion, and masculine power, the intelligence of the Caucasian and the instinct of the Indian, are all finely drawn in this story.


A story of the Black Hills that is justly placed among the best American novels. It portrays the life of the new West as no other book has done in recent years.

THE MYSTERY. In collaboration with Samuel Hopkins Adams

With illustrations by Will Crawford.

The disappearance of three successive crews from the stout ship "Laughing Lass" in mid-Pacific, is a mystery weird and inscrutable. In the solution, there is a story of the most exciting voyage that man ever undertook.


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BEN HUR. A Tale of the Christ. By General Lew Wallace.

This famous Religious-Historical Romance with its mighty story, brilliant pageantry, thrilling action and deep religious reverence, hardly requires an outline. The whole world has placed "Ben-Hur" on a height of pre-eminence which no other novel of its time has reached. The clashing of rivalry and the deepest human passions, the perfect reproduction of brilliant Roman life, and the tense, fierce atmosphere of the arena have kept their deep fascination.

THE PRINCE OF INDIA. By General Lew Wallace.

A glowing romance of the Byzantine Empire, showing, with vivid imagination, the possible forces behind the internal decay of the Empire that hastened the fall of Constantinople.

The foreground figure is the person known to all as the Wandering Jew, at this time appearing as the Prince of India, with vast stores of wealth, and is supposed to have instigated many wars and fomented the Crusades.

Mohammed's love for the Princess Irene is beautifully wrought into the story, and the book as a whole is a marvelous work both historically and romantically.

THE FAIR GOD. By General Lew Wallace. A Tale of the Conquest of Mexico. With Eight Illustrations by Eric Pape.

All the annals of conquest have nothing more brilliantly daring and dramatic than the drama played in Mexico by Cortes. As a dazzling picture of Mexico and the Montezumas it leaves nothing to be desired.

The artist has caught with rare enthusiasm the spirit of the Spanish conquerors of Mexico, its beauty and glory and romance.

TARRY THOU TILL I COME or, Salathiel, the Wandering Jew. By George Croly. With twenty illustrations by T. de Thulstrup.

A historical novel, dealing with the momentous events that occurred, chiefly in Palestine, from the time of the Crucifixion to the destruction of Jerusalem.

The book, as a story, is replete with Oriental charm and richness, and the character drawing is marvelous. No other novel ever written has portrayed with such vividness the events that convulsed Rome and destroyed Jerusalem in the early days of Christianity.

Ask for complete free list of G. & D. Popular Copyrighted Fiction GROSSET & DUNLAP, 526 WEST 26TH ST., NEW YORK

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AMELIA E. BARR'S STORIES DELIGHTFUL TALES OF OLD NEW YORK May be had wherever books are sold. Ask for Grosset and Dunlap's list.

THE BOW OF ORANGE RIBBON. With Frontispiece.

This exquisite little romance opens in New York City in "the tender grace" of a May day long past, when the old Dutch families clustered around Bowling Green. It is the beginning of the romance of Katherine, a young Dutch girl who has sent, as a love token, to a young English officer, the bow of orange ribbon which she has worn for years as a sacred emblem on the day of St. Nicholas. After the bow of ribbon Katherine's heart soon flies. Unlike her sister, whose heart has found a safe resting place among her own people, Katherine's heart must rove from home—must know to the utmost all that life holds of both joy and sorrow. And so she goes beyond the seas, leaving her parents as desolate as were Isaac and Rebecca of old.

THE MAID OF MAIDEN LANE; A Love Story. With Illustrations by S. M. Arthur.

A sequel to "The Bow of Orange Ribbon." The time is the gracious days of Seventeen-hundred and ninety-one, when "The Marseillaise" was sung with the American national airs, and the spirit affected commerce, politics and conversation. In the midst of this period the romance of "The Sweetest Maid in Maiden Lane" unfolds. Its chief charm lies in its historic and local color.

SHEILA VEDDER. Frontispiece in colors by Harrison Fisher.

A love story set in the Shetland Islands.

Among the simple, homely folk who dwelt there Jan Vedder was raised; and to this island came lovely Sheila Jarrow. Jan knew, when first he beheld her, that she was the one woman in all the world for him, and to the winning of her love he set himself. The long days of summer by the sea, the nights under the marvelously soft radiance of Shetland moonlight passed in love-making, while with wonderment the man and woman, alien in traditions, adjusted themselves to each other. And the day came when Jan and Sheila wed, and then a sweeter love story is told.

TRINITY BELLS. With eight Illustrations by C. M. Relyea.

The story centers around the life of little Katryntje Van Clyffe, who, on her return home from a fashionable boarding school, faces poverty and heartache. Stout of heart, she does not permit herself to become discouraged even at the news of the loss of her father and his ship "The Golden Victory." The story of Katryntje's life was interwoven with the music of the Trinity Bells which eventually heralded her wedding day.

Ask for complete free list of G. & D. Popular Copyrighted Fiction GROSSET & DUNLAP, 526 WEST 26TH ST., NEW YORK

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LOUIS TRACY'S CAPTIVATING AND EXHILARATING ROMANCES May be had wherever books are sold. Ask for Grosset & Dunlap's list.

CYNTHIA'S CHAUFFEUR. Illustrated by Howard Chandler Christy.

A pretty American girl in London is touring in a car with a chauffeur whose identity puzzles her. An amusing mystery.

THE STOWAWAY GIRL. Illustrated by Nesbitt Benson.

A shipwreck, a lovely girl stowaway, a rascally captain, a fascinating officer, and thrilling adventures in South Seas.


Love and the salt sea, a helpless ship whirled into the hands of cannibals, desperate fighting and a tender romance.

THE MESSAGE. Illustrated by Joseph Cummings Chase.

A bit of parchment found in the figurehead of an old vessel tells of a buried treasure. A thrilling mystery develops.


The pillar thus designated was a lighthouse, and the author tells with exciting detail the terrible dilemma of its cut-off inhabitants.

THE WHEEL O'FORTUNE. With illustrations by James Montgomery Flagg.

The story deals with the finding of a papyrus containing the particulars of some of the treasures of the Queen of Sheba.

A SON OF THE IMMORTALS. Illustrated by Howard Chandler Christy.

A young American is proclaimed king of a little Balkan Kingdom, and a pretty Parisian art student is the power behind the throne.


A sort of Robinson Crusoe redivivus with modern setting, and a very pretty love story added. The hero and heroine are the only survivors of a wreck, and have many thrilling adventures on their desert island.

Ask for complete free list of G. & D. Popular Copyrighted Fiction GROSSET & DUNLAP, 526 WEST 26TH ST., NEW YORK


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