Part 2 out of 2
ticket, he asked, in order that he might bear his part in the
cause of reform, that the wedding be postponed. To the
postponement Miss Forbes made no objection. To one less
self-centred than Peabody, it might have appeared that she
almost too readily consented.
"I knew I could count upon your seeing my duty as I saw it,"
said Peabody much pleased, "it always will be a satisfaction
to both of us to remember you never stood between me and my
work for reform."
"What do you think my brother-in-law-to-be has done now?"
demanded Sam of Winthrop, as the Scarlet Car swept into Jerome
Avenue. "He's postponed his marriage with Trix just because he
has a chance to be Lieutenant-Governor. What is a
Lieutenant-Governor anyway, do you know? I don't like to ask
"It Is not his own election he's working for," said Winthrop.
He was conscious of an effort to assume a point of view both
noble and magnanimous.
"He probably feels the `cause' calls him. But, good Heavens!"
"Look out!" shrieked Sam, "where you going?"
Winthrop swung the car back into the avenue.
"To think," he cried, "that a man who could marry--a girl, and
then would ask her to wait two months. Or, two days! Two
months lost out of his life, and she might die; he might lose
her, she might change her mind. Any number of men can be
Lieutenant-Governors; only one man can be----"
He broke off suddenly, coughed and fixed his eyes miserably on
the road. After a brief pause, Brother Sam covertly looked at
him. Could it be that "Billie" Winthrop, the man liked of all
men, should love his sister, and--that she should prefer
Ernest Peabody? He was deeply, loyally indignant. He
determined to demand of his sister an immediate and abject
At eight o'clock on the morning of election day, Peabody, in
the Scarlet Car, was on his way to vote. He lived at
Riverside Drive, and the polling-booth was only a few blocks
distant. During the rest of the day he intended to use the
car to visit other election districts, and to keep him in
touch with the Reformers at the Gilsey House. Winthrop was
acting as his chauffeur, and in the rear seat was Miss Forbes.
Peabody had asked her to accompany him to the polling-booth,
because he thought women who believed in reform should show
their interest in it in public, before all men. Miss Forbes
disagreed with him, chiefly because whenever she sat in a box
at any of the public meetings the artists from the newspapers,
instead of immortalizing the candidate, made pictures of her
and her hat. After she had seen her future lord and master
cast his vote for reform and himself, she was to depart by
train to Tarrytown. The Forbes's country place was there, and
for election day her brother Sam had invited out some of his
friends to play tennis.
As the car darted and dodged up Eighth Avenue, a man who had
been hidden by the stairs to the Elevated, stepped in front of
it. It caught him, and hurled him, like a mail-bag tossed
from a train, against one of the pillars that support the
overhead tracks. Winthrop gave a cry and fell upon the
brakes. The cry was as full of pain as though he himself had
been mangled. Miss Forbes saw only the man appear, and then
disappear, but, Winthrop's shout of warning, and the wrench as
the brakes locked, told her what had happened. She shut her
eyes, and for an instant covered them with her hands. On the
front seat Peabody clutched helplessly at the cushions. In
horror his eyes were fastened on the motionless mass jammed
against the pillar. Winthrop scrambled over him, and ran to
where the man lay. So, apparently, did every other inhabitant
of Eighth Avenue; but Winthrop was the first to reach him and
kneeling in the car tracks, he tried to place the head and
shoulders of the body against the iron pillar. He had seen
very few dead men; and to him, this weight in his arms, this
bundle of limp flesh and muddy clothes, and the purple-bloated
face with blood trickling down it, looked like a dead man.
Once or twice when in his car, Death had reached for Winthrop,
and only by the scantiest grace had he escaped. Then the
nearness of it had only sobered him. Now that he believed he
had brought it to a fellow man, even though he knew he was in
no degree to blame, the thought sickened and shocked him. His
brain trembled with remorse and horror.
But voices assailing him on every side brought him to the
necessity of the moment. Men were pressing close upon him,
jostling, abusing him, shaking fists in his face. Another
crowd of men, as though fearing the car would escape of its
own volition, were clinging to the steps and running boards.
Winthrop saw Miss Forbes standing above them, talking eagerly
to Peabody, and pointing at him. He heard children's shrill
voices calling to new arrivals that an automobile had killed a
man; that it had killed him on purpose. On the outer edge of
the crowd men shouted: "Ah, soak him," "Kill him," "Lynch
A soiled giant without a collar stooped over the purple,
blood-stained face, and then leaped upright, and shouted:
"It's Jerry Gaylor, he's killed old man Gaylor."
The response was instant. Every one seemed to know Jerry
Winthrop took the soiled person by the arm.
"You help me lift him into my car," he ordered. "Take him by
the shoulders. We must get him to a hospital."
"To a hospital? To the Morgue!" roared the man. "And the
police station for yours. You don't do no get-away."
Winthrop answered him by turning to the crowd. "If this man
has any friends here, they'll please help me put him in my
car, and we'll take him to Roosevelt Hospital."
The soiled person shoved a fist and a bad cigar under
"Has he got any friends?" he mocked. "Sure, he's got friends,
and they'll fix you, all right."
"Sure!" echoed the crowd.
The man was encouraged.
"Don't you go away thinking you can come up here with your
buzz wagon and murder better men nor you'll ever be and----"
"Oh, shut up!" said Winthrop.
He turned his back on the soiled man, and again appealed to
"Don't stand there doing nothing," he commanded. "Do you want
this man to die? Some of you ring for an ambulance and get a
policeman, or tell me where is the nearest drug store."
No one moved, but every one shouted to every one else to do as
Winthrop felt something pulling at his sleeve, and turning,
found Peabody at his shoulder peering fearfully at the figure
in the street. He had drawn his cap over his eyes and hidden
the lower part of his face in the high collar of his motor
coat. "I can't do anything, can I?" he asked.
"I'm afraid not," whispered Winthrop. "Go back to the car and
don't leave Beatrice. I'll attend to this."
"That's what I thought," whispered Peabody eagerly. "I
thought she and I had better keep out of it."
"Right!" exclaimed Winthrop. "Go back and get Beatrice away."
Peabody looked his relief, but still hesitated.
"I can't do anything, as you say," he stammered, "and it's sure
to get in the `extras,' and they'll be out in time to lose us
thousands of votes, and though no one is to blame, they're
sure to blame me. I don't care about myself," he added
eagerly, "but the very morning of election--half the city has
not voted yet--the Ticket----"
"Damn the Ticket!" exclaimed Winthrop. "The man's dead!
Peabody, burying his face still deeper in his collar, backed
into the crowd. In the present and past campaigns, from
carts and automobiles he had made many speeches in Harlem, and
on the West Side, lithographs of his stern, resolute features
hung in every delicatessen shop, and that he might be
recognized, was extremely likely.
He whispered to Miss Forbes what he had said, and what
Winthrop had said.
But you DON'T mean to leave him," remarked Miss Forbes.
"I must," returned Peabody. "I can do nothing for the man,
and you know how Tammany will use this--They'll have it on the
street by ten. They'll say I was driving recklessly; without
regard for human life. And, besides, they're waiting for me
at headquarters. Please hurry. I am late now."
Miss Forbes gave an exclamation of surprise.
"Why, I'm not going," she said.
"You must go! _I_ must go. You can't remain here alone."
Peabody spoke in the quick, assured tone that at the first had
convinced Miss Forbes his was a most masterful manner.
"Winthrop, too," he added, "wants you to go away."
Miss Forbes made no reply. But she looked at Peabody
inquiringly, steadily, as though she were puzzled as to his
identity, as though he had just been introduced to her. It
made him uncomfortable.
"Are you coming?" he asked.
Her answer was a question.
"Are you going?"
"I am!" returned Peabody. He added sharply: "I must."
"Good-by," said Miss Forbes.
As he ran up the steps to the station of the elevated, it
seemed to Peabody that the tone of her "good-by" had been most
unpleasant. It was severe, disapproving. It had a final,
fateful sound. He was conscious of a feeling of
self-dissatisfaction. In not seeing the political importance
of his not being mixed up with this accident, Winthrop had
been peculiarly obtuse, and Beatrice, unsympathetic.
Until he had cast his vote for Reform, he felt distinctly
For a moment Beatrice Forbes sat in the car motionless,
staring unseeingly at the iron steps by which Peabody had
disappeared. For a few moments her brows we're tightly drawn.
Then, having apparently quickly arrived at some conclusion,
she opened the door of the car and pushed into the crowd.
Winthrop received her most rudely.
"You mustn't come here!" he cried.
"I thought," she stammered, "you might want some one?"
"I told--" began Winthrop, and then stopped, and added--"to
take you away. Where is he?"
Miss Forbes flushed slightly.
"He's gone," she said.
In trying not to look at Winthrop, she saw the fallen figure,
motionless against the pillar, and with an exclamation, bent
fearfully toward it.
"Can I do anything?" she asked.
The crowd gave way for her, and with curious pleased faces,
closed in again eagerly. She afforded them a new interest.
A young man in the uniform of an ambulance surgeon was
kneeling beside the mud-stained figure, and a police officer
was standing over both. The ambulance surgeon touched lightly
the matted hair from which the blood escaped, stuck his finger
in the eye of the prostrate man, and then with his open hand
slapped him across the face.
"Oh!" gasped Miss Forbes.
The young doctor heard her, and looking up, scowled
reprovingly. Seeing she was a rarely beautiful young woman,
he scowled less severely; and then deliberately and expertly,
again slapped Mr. Jerry Gaylor on the cheek. He watched the
white mark made by his hand upon the purple skin, until the
blood struggled slowly back to it, and then rose.
He ignored every one but the police officer.
"There's nothing the matter with HIM," he said. "He's dead
The words came to Winthrop with such abrupt relief, bearing so
tremendous a burden of gratitude, that his heart seemed to
fail him. In his suddenly regained happiness, he
"Are you sure?" he asked eagerly. "I thought I'd killed him."
The surgeon looked at Winthrop coldly.
"When they're like that," he explained with authority, "you
can't hurt 'em if you throw them off the Times Building."
He condescended to recognize the crowd. "You know where this
Voices answered that Mr. Gaylor lived at the corner, over the
saloon. The voices showed a lack of sympathy. Old man Gaylor
dead was a novelty; old man Gaylor drunk was not.
The doctor's prescription was simple and direct.
"Put him to bed till he sleeps it off," he ordered; he swung
himself to the step of the ambulance. "Let him out, Steve,"
he called. There was the clang of a gong and the rattle of
The police officer approached Winthrop. "They tell me Jerry
stepped in front of your car; that you wasn't to blame. I'll
get their names and where they live. Jerry might try to hold
you up for damages."
"Thank you very much," said Winthrop.
With several of Jerry's friends, and the soiled person, who
now seemed dissatisfied that Jerry was alive, Winthrop helped
to carry him up one flight of stairs and drop him upon a bed.
"In case he needs anything," said Winthrop, and gave several
bills to the soiled person, upon whom immediately Gaylor's
other friends closed in. "And I'll send my own doctor at once
to attend to him."
"You'd better," said the soiled person morosely, "or, he'll try
to shake you down.
The opinions as to what might be Mr. Gaylor's next move seemed
From the saloon below, Winthrop telephoned to the family
doctor, and then rejoined Miss Forbes and the Police officer.
The officer gave him the names of those citizens who had
witnessed the accident, and in return received Winthrop's
"Not that it will go any further," said the officer
reassuringly. "They're all saying you acted all right and
wanted to take him to Roosevelt. There's many," he added with
sententious indignation, "that knock a man down, and then run
away without waiting to find out if they've hurted 'em or
The speech for both Winthrop and Miss Forbes was equally
"You don't say?" exclaimed Winthrop nervously. He shook the
policeman's hand. The handclasp was apparently satisfactory
to that official, for he murmured "Thank you," and stuck
something in the lining of his helmet. "Now, then!" Winthrop
said briskly to Miss Forbes, "I think we have done all we can.
And we'll get away from this place a little faster than the
Miss Forbes had seated herself in the car, and Winthrop was
cranking up, when the same policeman, wearing an anxious
countenance, touched him on the arm. "There is a gentleman
here," he said, "wants to speak to you." He placed himself
between the gentleman and Winthrop and whispered: "He's
`Izzy' Schwab, he's a Harlem police-court lawyer and a Tammany
man. He's after something, look out for him."
Winthrop saw, smiling at him ingratiatingly, a slight, slim
youth, with beady, rat-like eyes, a low forehead, and a
Hebraic nose. He wondered how it had been possible for Jerry
Gaylor to so quickly secure counsel. But Mr. Schwab at once
"I'm from the Journal," he began, "not regular on the staff,
but I send 'em Harlem items, and the court reporter treats me
nice, see! Now about this accident; could you give me the
name of the Young lady?"
He smiled encouragingly at Miss Forbes.
"I could not!" growled Winthrop. "The man wasn't hurt, the
policeman will tell you so. It is not of the least public
With a deprecatory shrug, the young man smiled knowingly.
"Well, mebbe not the lady's name," he granted, "but the name
of the OTHER gentleman who was with you, when the accident
occurred." His black, rat-like eyes snapped. "I think HIS
name would be of public interest."
To gain time Winthrop stepped into the driver's seat. He
looked at Mr. Schwab steadily.
"There was no other gentleman," he said. "Do you mean my
chauffeur?" Mr. Schwab gave an appreciative chuckle.
"No, I don't mean your chauffeur," he mimicked. "I mean," he
declared theatrically in his best police-court manner, "the
man who to-day is hoping to beat Tammany, Ernest Peabody!"
Winthrop stared at the youth insolently.
"I don't understand you," he said.
"Oh, of course not!" jeered "Izzy" Schwab. He moved excitedly
from foot to foot. "Then who WAS the other man," he
demanded, "the man who ran away?"
Winthrop felt the blood rise to his face. That Miss Forbes
should hear this rat of a man, sneering at the one she was to
marry, made him hate Peabody. But he answered easily:
"No one ran away. I told my chauffeur to go and call up an
ambulance. That was the man you saw."
As when "leading on" a witness to commit himself, Mr. Schwab
"And he hasn't got back yet," he purred, "has he?"
"No, and I'm not going to wait for him," returned Winthrop.
He reached for the clutch, but Mr. Schwab jumped directly in
front of the car.
"Was he looking for a telephone when he ran up the elevated
steps?" he cried.
He shook his fists vehemently.
"Oh, no, Mr. Winthrop, it won't do--you make a good witness.
I wouldn't ask for no better, but, you don't fool `Izzy'
"You're mistaken, I tell you," cried Winthrop desperately.
"He may look like--like this man you speak of, but no Peabody
was in this car."
"Izzy" Schwab wrung his hands hysterically.
"No, he wasn't!" he cried, "because he run away! And left an
old man in the street--dead, for all he knowed--nor cared
neither. Yah!" shrieked the Tammany heeler. "HIM a
"Stand away from my car," shouted Winthrop, "or you'll get
"Yah, you'd like to, wouldn't you?" returned Mr. Schwab,
leaping, nimbly to one side. "What do you think the
Journal'll give me for that story, hey? `Ernest Peabody,
the Reformer, Kills an Old Man, AND RUNS AWAY.' And hiding
his face, too! I seen him. What do you think that story's
worth to Tammany, hey? It's worth twenty thousand votes!"
The young man danced in front of the car triumphantly,
mockingly, in a frenzy of malice. "Read the extras, that's
all," he taunted. "Read 'em in an hour from now!"
Winthrop glared at the shrieking figure with fierce, impotent
rage; then, with a look of disgust, he flung the robe off his
knees and rose. Mr. Schwab, fearing bodily injury, backed
precipitately behind the policeman.
"Come here," commanded Winthrop softly. Mr. Schwab warily
approached. "That story," said Winthrop, dropping his voice
to a low whisper, "is worth a damn sight more to you than
twenty thousand votes. You take a spin with me up Riverside
Drive where we can talk. Maybe you and I can `make a little
At the words, the face of Mr. Schwab first darkened angrily,
and then, lit with such exultation that it appeared as though
Winthrop's efforts had only placed Peabody deeper in Mr.
Schwab's power. But the rat-like eyes wavered, there was
doubt in them, and greed, and, when they turned to observe if
any one could have heard the offer, Winthrop felt the trick
was his. It was apparent that Mr. Schwab was willing to
He stepped gingerly into the front seat, and as Winthrop
leaned over him and tucked and buckled the fur robe around his
knees, he could not resist a glance at his friends on the
sidewalk. They were grinning with wonder and envy, and as the
great car shook itself, and ran easily forward, Mr. Schwab
leaned back and carelessly waved his hand. But his mind did
not waver from the purpose of his ride. He was not one to be
cajoled with fur rugs and glittering brass.
"Well, Mr. Winthrop," he began briskly. "You want to say
something? You must be quick--every minute's money."
"Wait till we're out of the traffic," begged Winthrop
anxiously "I don't want to run down any more old men, and I
wouldn't for the world have anything happen to you, Mr.--" He
"How did you know MY name?" asked Winthrop.
"The card you gave the police officer"
"I see," said Winthrop. They were silent while the car swept
swiftly west, and Mr. Schwab kept thinking that for a young
man who was afraid of the traffic, Winthrop was dodging the
motor cars, beer vans, and iron pillars, with a dexterity that
was criminally reckless.
At that hour Riverside Drive was empty, and after a gasp of
relief, Mr. Schwab resumed the attack.
"Now, then," he said sharply, "don't go any further. What is
this you want to talk about?"
"How much will the Journal give you for this story of
yours?" asked Winthrop.
Mr. Schwab smiled mysteriously.
"Why?" he asked.
"Because," said Winthrop, "I think I could offer you something
"You mean," said the police-court lawyer cautiously, "you will
make it worth my while not to tell the truth about what I
"Exactly," said Winthrop.
"That's all! Stop the car," cried Mr. Schwab. His manner was
commanding. It vibrated with triumph. His eyes glistened
with wicked satisfaction.
"Stop the car?" demanded Winthrop, "what do you mean?"
"I mean," said Mr. Schwab dramatically, "that I've got you
where I want you, thank you. You have killed Peabody dead as
a cigar butt! Now I can tell them how his friends tried to
bribe me. Why do you think I came in your car? For what
money YOU got? Do you think you can stack up your roll
against the New York Journal's, or against Tammany's ?" His
shrill voice rose exultantly. "Why, Tammany ought to make me
judge for this! Now, let me down here," he commanded, "and
next time, don't think you can take on `Izzy' Schwab and get
away with it."
They were passing Grant's Tomb, and the car was moving at a
speed that Mr. Schwab recognized was in excess of the speed
"Do you hear me?" he demanded, "let me down!"
To his dismay Winthrop's answer was in some fashion to so
juggle with the shining brass rods that the car flew into
greater speed. To "Izzy" Schwab it seemed to scorn the earth,
to proceed by leaps and jumps. But, what added even more to
his mental discomfiture was, that Winthrop should turn, and
slowly and familiarly wink at him.
As through the window of an express train, Mr. Schwab saw the
white front of Claremont, and beyond it the broad sweep of the
Hudson. And, then, without decreasing its speed, the car like
a great bird, swept down a hill, shot under a bridge, and into
a partly paved street. Mr. Schwab already was two miles from
his own bailiwick. His surroundings were unfamiliar. On the
one hand were newly erected, untenanted flat houses with the
paint still on the window panes, and on the other side,
detached villas, a roadhouse, an orphan asylum, a glimpse of
"Let me out," yelled Mr. Schwab, "what you trying to do? Do
you think a few blocks'll make any difference to a telephone?
You think you're damned smart, don't you? But you won't feel
so fresh when I get on the long distance. You let me down,"
he threatened, "or, I'll----"
With a sickening skidding of wheels, Winthrop whirled the car
round a corner and into the Lafayette Boulevard, that for
miles runs along the cliff of the Hudson.
"Yes," asked Winthrop, "WHAT will you do?"
On one side was a high steep bank, on the other many trees,
and through them below, the river. But there were no houses,
and at half-past eight in the morning those who later drive
upon the boulevard were still in bed.
"WHAT will you do?" repeated Winthrop.
Miss Forbes, apparently as much interested in Mr. Schwab's
answer as Winthrop, leaned forward. Winthrop raised his voice
above the whir of flying wheels, the rushing wind and
"I asked you into this car," he shouted, "because I meant to
keep you in it until I had you where you couldn't do any
mischief. I told you I'd give you something better than the
Journal would give you, and I am going to give you a happy
day in the country. We're now on our way to this lady's
house. You are my guest, and you can play golf, and bridge,
and the piano, and eat and drink until the polls close, and
after that you can go to the devil. If you jump out at this
speed, you will break your neck. And, if I have to slow up
for anything, and you try to get away, I'll go after you--it
doesn't matter where it is--and break every bone in your
"Yah! you can't!" shrieked Mr. Schwab. "You can't do it!"
The madness of the flying engines had got upon his nerves.
Their poison was surging in his veins. He knew he had only to
touch his elbow against the elbow of Winthrop, and he could
throw the three of them into eternity. He was travelling on
air, uplifted, defiant, carried beyond himself.
"I can't do what?" asked Winthrop.
The words reached Schwab from an immeasurable distance, as
from another planet, a calm, humdrum planet on which events
moved in commonplace, orderly array. Without a jar, with no
transition stage, instead of hurtling through space, Mr.
Schwab found himself luxuriously seated in a cushioned chair,
motionless, at the side of a steep bank. For a mile before
him stretched an empty road. And, beside him in the car, with
arms folded calmly on the wheel there glared at him a grim,
alert young man.
"I can't do what?" growled the young man.
A feeling of great loneliness fell upon "Izzy" Schwab. Where
were now those officers, who in the police courts were at his
beck and call? Where the numbered houses, the passing surface
cars, the sweating multitudes of Eighth Avenue? In all the
world he was alone, alone on an empty country road, with a
grim, alert young man.
"When I asked you how you knew my name," said the young man, "I
thought you knew me as having won some races in Florida last
winter. This is the car that won. I thought maybe you might
have heard of me when I was captain of a football team at--a
university. If you have any idea that you can jump from this
car and not be killed, or, that I cannot pound you into a
pulp, let me prove to you you're wrong--now. We're quite
alone. Do you wish to get down?"
"No," shrieked Schwab, "I won't! He turned appealingly to the
young lady. "You're a witness," he cried. "If he assaults
me, he's liable. I haven't done nothing."
"We're near Yonkers," said the young man, "and if you try to
take advantage of my having to go slow through the town, you
know now what will happen to you."
Mr. Schwab having instantly planned on reaching Yonkers, to
leap from the car into the arms of the village constable, with
suspicious alacrity, assented. The young man regarded him
"I'm afraid I'll have to show you," said the young man. He
laid two fingers on Mr. Schwab's wrist; looking at him, as he
did so, steadily and thoughtfully, like a physician feeling a
pulse. Mr. Schwab screamed. When he had seen policemen twist
steel nippers on the wrists of prisoners, he had thought, when
the prisoners shrieked and writhed, they were acting.
He now knew they were not.
"Now, will you promise?" demanded the grim young man.
"Yes," gasped Mr. Schwab. "I'll sit still. I won't do
"Good," muttered Winthrop.
A troubled voice that carried to the heart of Schwab a promise
of protection, said: "Mr. Schwab, would you be more
comfortable back here with me?"
Mr. Schwab turned two terrified eyes in the direction of the
voice. He saw the beautiful young lady regarding him kindly,
compassionately; with just a suspicion of a smile. Mr. Schwab
instantly scrambled to safety over the front seat into the
body of the car. Miss Forbes made way for the prisoner beside
her and he sank back with a nervous, apologetic sigh. The
alert young man was quick to follow the lead of the lady.
"You'll find caps and goggles in the boot, Schwab," he said
hospitably. "You had better put them on. We are going rather
fast now." He extended a magnificent case of pigskin, that
bloomed with fat black cigars. "Try one of these," said the
hospitable young man. The emotions that swept Mr. Schwab he
found difficult to pursue, but he raised his hat to the lady.
"May I, Miss?" he said.
"Certainly," said the lady.
There was a moment of delay while with fingers that slightly
trembled, Mr. Schwab selected an amazing green cap and lit his
cigar; and then the car swept forward, singing and humming
happily, and scattering the autumn leaves. The young lady
leaned toward him with a book in a leather cover. She placed
her finger on a twisting red line that trickled through a page
"We're just here," said the young lady, "and we ought to reach
home, which is just about there, in an hour."
"I see," said Schwab. But all he saw was a finger in a white
glove, and long eyelashes tangled in a gray veil.
For many minutes, or for all Schwab knew, for many miles, the
young lady pointed out to him the places along the Hudson, of
which he had read in the public school history, and quaint old
manor houses set in glorious lawns; and told him who lived in
them. Schwab knew the names as belonging to down-town
streets, and up-town clubs. He became nervously humble,
intensely polite, he felt he was being carried as an honored
guest into the very heart of the Four Hundred, and when the
car jogged slowly down the main street of Yonkers, although a
policeman stood idly within a yard of him, instead of
shrieking to him for help, "Izzy" Schwab looked at him
scornfully across the social gulf that separated them, with
all the intolerance he believed becoming in the upper classes.
"Those bicycle cops," he said confidentially to Miss Forbes,
"are too chesty."
The car turned in between stone pillars, and under an arch of
red and golden leaves, and swept up a long avenue to a house
of innumerable roofs. It was the grandest house Mr. Schwab
had ever entered, and when two young men in striped waistcoats
and many brass buttons ran down the stone steps and threw open
the door of the car, his heart fluttered between fear and
Lounging before an open fire in the hall were a number of
young men, who welcomed Winthrop delightedly and, to all of
whom Mr. Schwab was formally presented. As he was introduced
he held each by the hand and elbow and said impressively, and
much to the other's embarrassment, "WHAT name, please?"
Then one of the servants conducted him to a room opening on
the hall, from whence he heard stifled exclamations and
laughter, and some one saying "Hush." But "Izzy" Schwab did
not care. The slave in brass buttons was proffering him
ivory-backed hair-brushes, and obsequiously removing the dust
from his coat collar. Mr. Schwab explained to him that he was
not dressed for automobiling, as Mr. Winthrop had invited him
quite informally. The man was most charmingly sympathetic.
And when he returned to the hall every one received him with
the most genial, friendly interest. Would he play golf, or
tennis, or pool, or walk over the farm, or just look on? It
seemed the wish of each to be his escort. Never had he been
He said he would "just look on." And so, during the last and
decisive day of the "whirlwind" campaign, while in Eighth
Avenue voters were being challenged, beaten, and bribed,
bonfires were burning, and "extras" were appearing every half
hour, "Izzy" Schwab, the Tammany henchman, with a secret worth
twenty thousand votes, sat a prisoner, in a wicker chair, with
a drink and a cigar, guarded by four young men in flannels,
who played tennis violently at five dollars a corner.
It was always a great day in the life of "Izzy" Schwab. After
a luncheon, which, as he later informed his friends, could not
have cost less than "two dollars a plate and drink all you
like," Sam Forbes took him on at pool. Mr. Schwab had learned
the game in the cellars of Eighth Avenue at two and a half
cents a cue, and now, even in Columbus Circle he was a star.
So, before the sun had set Mr. Forbes, who at pool rather
fancied himself, was seventy-five dollars poorer, and Mr.
Schwab just that much to the good. Then there followed a
strange ceremony called tea, or, if you preferred it, whiskey
and soda; and the tall footman bent before him with huge
silver salvers laden down with flickering silver lamps, and
bubbling soda bottles, and cigars, and cigarettes.
"You could have filled your pockets with twenty-five cent
Havanas, and nobody would have said nothing!" declared Mr.
Schwab, and his friends who never had enjoyed his chance to
study at such close quarters the truly rich, nodded enviously.
At six o'clock Mr. Schwab led Winthrop into the big library
and asked for his ticket of leave.
"They'll be counting the votes soon, he begged. "I can't do
no harm now, and I don't mean to. I didn't see nothing, and I
won't say nothing. But it's election night, and--and I just
GOT to be on Broadway."
"Right," said Winthrop, "I'll have a car take you in, and if
you will accept this small check----"
"No!" roared "Izzy" Schwab. Afterward he wondered how he came
to do it. "You've give me a good time, Mr. Winthrop. You've
treated me fine, all the gentlemen have treated me nice. I'm
not a blackmailer, Mr. Winthrop." Mr. Schwab's voice shook
"Nonsense, Schwab, you didn't let me finish," said Winthrop,
"I'm likely to need a lawyer any time; this is a retaining
fee. Suppose I exceed the speed limit--I'm liable to do
"You bet you are!" exclaimed Mr. Schwab violently.
"Well, then, I'll send for YOU, and there isn't a police
magistrate, nor any of the traffic squad, you can't handle, is
Mr. Schwab flushed with pleasure.
"You can count on me," he vowed, "and your friends too, and
the ladies," he added gallantly. "If ever the ladies want to
get bail, tell 'em to telephone for `Izzy' Schwab. Of
course," he said reluctantly, "if it's a retaining fee----"
But when he read the face of the check he exclaimed in
protest. "But, Mr. Winthrop, this is more than the Journal
would have give me!"
They put him in a car belonging to one of the other men, and
all came out on the steps to wave him "good-by," and he drove
magnificently into his own district, where there were over a
dozen men who swore he tipped the French chauffeur a five
dollar bill "just like it was a cigarette."
All of election day since her arrival in Winthrop's car, Miss
Forbes had kept to herself. In the morning, when the other
young people were out of doors, she remained in her room, and
after luncheon when they gathered round the billiard table,
she sent for her cart and drove off alone. The others thought
she was concerned over the possible result of the election,
and did not want to disturb them by her anxiety. Winthrop,
thinking the presence of Schwab embarrassed her, recalling as
it did Peabody's unfortunate conduct of the morning, blamed
himself for bringing Schwab to the house. But he need not
have distressed himself. Miss Forbes was thinking neither of
Schwab nor Peabody, nor was she worried or embarrassed. On
the contrary, she was completely happy.
When that morning she had seen Peabody running up the steps of
the Elevated, all the doubts, the troubles, questions, and
misgivings that night and day for the last three months had
upset her, fell from her shoulders like the pilgrim's heavy
pack. For months she had been telling herself that the unrest
she felt when with Peabody was due to her not being able to
appreciate the importance of those big affairs in which he was
so interested; in which he was so admirable a figure. She
had, as she supposed, loved him, because he was earnest,
masterful, intent of purpose. His had seemed a fine
character. When she had compared him with the amusing boys of
her own age, the easy-going joking youths to whom the
betterment of New York was of no concern, she had been proud
in her choice. She was glad Peabody was ambitious. She was
ambitious for him. She was glad to have him consult her on
those questions of local government, to listen to his fierce,
contemptuous abuse of Tammany. And yet early in their
engagement she had missed something, something she had never
known, but which she felt sure should exist. Whether she had
seen it in the lives of others, or read of it in romances, or
whether it was there because it was nature to desire to be
loved, she did not know. But long before Winthrop returned
from his trip round the world, in her meetings with the man
she was to marry, she had begun to find that there was
something lacking. And Winthrop had shown her that this
something lacking was the one thing needful. When Winthrop
had gone abroad he was only one of her brother's several
charming friends. One of the amusing merry youths who came
and went in the house as freely as Sam himself. Now, after
two years' absence, he refused to be placed in that category.
He rebelled on the first night of his return. As she came
down to the dinner of welcome her brother was giving Winthrop,
he stared at her as though she were a ghost, and said, so
solemnly that every one in the room, even Peabody, smiled:
"Now I know why I came home." That he refused to recognize
her engagement to Peabody, that on every occasion he told her,
or by some act showed her, he loved her; that he swore she
should never marry any one but himself, and that he would
never marry any one but her, did not at first, except to
annoy, in any way impress her.
But he showed her what in her intercourse with Peabody was
lacking. At first she wished Peabody could find time to be as
fond of her, as foolishly fond of her, as was Winthrop. But
she realized that this was unreasonable. Winthrop was just a
hot-headed impressionable boy, Peabody was a man doing a man's
work. And then she found that week after week she became more
difficult to please. Other things in which she wished Peabody
might be more like Winthrop, obtruded themselves. Little
things which she was ashamed to notice, but which rankled; and
big things, such as consideration for others, and a sense of
humor, and not talking of himself. Since this campaign began,
at times she had felt that if Peabody said "I" once again, she
must scream. She assured herself she was as yet unworthy of
him, that her intelligence was weak, that as she grew older
and so better able to understand serious affairs, such as the
importance of having an honest man at Albany as
Lieutenant-Governor, they would become more in sympathy. And
now, at a stroke, the whole fabric of self-deception fell from
her. It was not that she saw Peabody so differently, but that
she saw herself and her own heart, and where it lay. And she
knew that "Billy" Winthrop, gentle, joking, selfish only in
his love for her, held it in his two strong hands.
For the moment, when as she sat in the car deserted by Peabody
this truth flashed upon her, she forgot the man lying injured
in the street, the unscrubbed mob crowding about her. She was
conscious only that a great weight had been lifted. That her
blood was flowing again, leaping, beating, dancing through her
body. It seemed as though she could not too quickly tell
Winthrop. For both of them she had lost out of their lives
many days. She had risked losing him for always. Her only
thought was to make up to him and to herself the wasted time.
But throughout the day the one-time welcome, but now
intruding, friends and the innumerable conventions of
hospitality required her to smile and show an interest, when
her heart and mind were crying out the one great fact.
It was after dinner, and the members of the house party were
scattered between the billiard-room and the piano. Sam Forbes
returned from the telephone.
"Tammany," he announced, " concedes the election of Jerome by
forty thousand votes, and that he carries his ticket with him.
Ernest Peabody is elected his Lieutenant-Governor by a
thousand votes. Ernest," he added, "seems to have had a close
call." There was a tremendous chorus of congratulations in
the cause of Reform. They drank the health of Peabody.
Peabody himself, on the telephone, informed Sam Forbes that a
conference of the leaders would prevent his being present with
them that evening. The enthusiasm for Reform perceptibly
An hour later Winthrop came over to Beatrice and held out his
hand. I'm going to slip away," he said. "Good-night."
"Going away!" exclaimed Beatrice. Her voice showed such
apparently acute concern that Winthrop wondered how the best
of women could be so deceitful, even to be polite.
"I promised some men," he stammered, "to drive them down-town
to see the crowds."
Beatrice shook her head.
"It's far too late for that," she said. "Tell me the real
Winthrop turned away his eyes.
"Oh! the real reason," he said gravely, "is the same old
reason, the one I'm not allowed to talk about. It's cruelly
hard when I don't see you," he went on, slowly dragging out
the words, "but it's harder when I do; so I'm going to say
`good-night' and run into town."
He stood for a moment staring moodily at the floor, and then
dropped into a chair beside her.
"And, I believe, I've not told you," he went on, "that on
Wednesday I'm running away for good, that is, for a year or
two. I've made all the fight I can and I lose, and there is
no use in my staying on here to--well--to suffer, that is the
plain English of it. So," he continued briskly, "I won't be
here for the ceremony, and this is `good-by' as well as
"Where are you going for a year?" asked Miss Forbes.
Her voice now showed no concern. It even sounded as though
she did not take his news seriously, as though as to his
movements she was possessed of a knowledge superior to his
own. He tried to speak in matter-of-fact tones.
"To Uganda!" he said.
"To Uganda?" repeated Miss Forbes. "Where is Uganda?"
"It is in East Africa; I had bad luck there last trip, but now
I know the country better, and I ought to get some good
Miss Forbes appeared indifferently incredulous. In her eyes
there was a look of radiant happiness. It rendered them
"On Wednesday," she said. "Won't you come and see us again
before you sail for Uganda?"
"I'll stop in and say `good-by' to your mother if she's in
town, and to thank her. She's been awfully good to me. But
you--I really would rather not see you again. You understand,
or rather, you don't understand, and," he added vehemently,
"you never will understand." He stood looking down at her
On the driveway outside there was a crunching on the gravel of
heavy wheels and an aurora-borealis of lights.
"There's your car," said Miss Forbes. "I'll go out and see
"You're very good," muttered Winthrop. He could not
understand. This parting from her was the great moment in his
life, and although she must know that, she seemed to be making
it unnecessarily hard for him. He had told her he was going
to a place very far away, to be gone a long time, and she
spoke of saying "good-by" to him as pleasantly as though it
was his intention to return from Uganda for breakfast.
Instead of walking through the hall where the others were
gathered, she led him out through one of the French windows
upon the terrace, and along it to the steps. When she saw the
chauffeur standing by the car, she stopped.
"I thought you were going alone," she said.
"I am," answered Winthrop. "It's not Fred; that's Sam's
chauffeur; he only brought the car around."
The man handed Winthrop his coat and cap, and left them, and
Winthrop seated himself at the wheel. She stood above him on
the top step. In the evening gown of lace and silver she
looked a part of the moonlight night. For each of them the
moment had arrived. Like a swimmer standing on the bank
gathering courage for the plunge, Miss Forbes gave a
trembling, shivering sigh.
"You're cold," said Winthrop, gently. "You must go in.
"It isn't that," said the girl. "Have you an extra coat?"
"It isn't cold enough for----"
"I meant for me," stammered the girl in a frightened voice.
"I thought perhaps you would take me a little way, and bring
At first the young man did not answer, but sat staring in
front of him, then, he said simply:
"It's awfully good of you, Beatrice. I won't forget it."
It was a wonderful autumn night, moonlight, cold, clear and
brilliant. She stepped in beside him and wrapped herself in
one of his great-coats. They started swiftly down the avenue
"No, not fast," begged the girl, "I want to talk to you."
The car checked and rolled forward smoothly, sometimes in deep
shadow, sometimes in the soft silver glamour of the moon;
beneath them the fallen leaves crackled and rustled under the
slow moving wheels. At the highway Winthrop hesitated. It
lay before them arched with great and ancient elms; below, the
Hudson glittered and rippled in the moonlight.
"Which way do you want to go?" said Winthrop.
His voice was very grateful, very humble.
The girl did not answer.
There was a long, long pause.
Then he turned and looked at her and saw her smiling at him
with that light in her eyes that never was on land or sea.
"To Uganda," said the girl.