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Title: Miss Dividends - A Novel
Author: Gunter, Archibald Clavering, 1847-1907
Language: English
As this book started as an ASCII text book there are no pictures available.
Copyright Status: Not copyrighted in the United States. If you live elsewhere check the laws of your country before downloading this ebook. See comments about copyright issues at end of book.

*** Start of this Doctrine Publishing Corporation Digital Book "Miss Dividends - A Novel" ***

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                          MISS DIVIDENDS

                             A Novel

                  BY ARCHIBALD CLAVERING GUNTER

    AUTHOR OF "MR. BARNES OF NEW YORK," "MR. POTTER OF TEXAS," "THAT
    FRENCHMAN!" "MISS NOBODY OF NOWHERE," "SMALL BOYS IN BIG BOOTS," "A
    FLORIDA ENCHANTMENT," ETC., ETC.


    NEW YORK
    THE HOME PUBLISHING COMPANY
    3 EAST FOURTEENTH STREET
    1892

    COPYRIGHT, 1892,
    BY A. C. GUNTER.

    _All rights reserved._

    Press of J. J. Little & Co.
    Astor Place, New York



CONTENTS.


    BOOK I. THE GIRL FROM NEW YORK.

    I.--Mr. West                                                     7

    II.--Miss East                                                  17

    III.--Her Father's Friend                                       30

    IV.--Mr. Ferdie begins his Western Investigations               38

    V.--The Grand Island Eating-House                               54

    VI.--Mr. Ferdie Discovers a Vigilante                           66

    VII.--What Manner of Man is This?                               77


    BOOK II. A CURIOUS CLUB MAN.

    VIII.--The City of Saints                                      101

    IX.--The Ball in Salt Lake                                     115

    X.--"Papa!"                                                    135

    XI.--"For Business Purposes"                                   153

    XII.--A Daughter of the Church                                 166

    XIII.--The Love of a Bishop                                    179

    XIV.--A Rare Club Story                                        197


    BOOK III. OUT OF A STRANGE COUNTRY.

    XV.--The Snow-Bound Pullman                                    217

    XVI.--"To the Girl I Love!"                                    233

    XVII.--A Voice in the Night                                    240

    XVIII.--The Last of the Danites                                251

    XIX.--Orange Blossoms among the Snow                           264



MISS DIVIDENDS.



BOOK I.

THE GIRL FROM NEW YORK.



CHAPTER I.

MR. WEST.


"Five minutes behind your appointment," remarks Mr. Whitehouse Southmead
in kindly severity; then he laughs and continues: "You see, your oysters
are cold."

"As they should be, covered up with ice," returns Captain Harry Storey
Lawrence. A moment after, however, he adds more seriously, "I had a good
excuse."

"An excuse for keeping _this_ waiting?" And Whitehouse pours out
lovingly a glass of Château Yquem.

"Yes, and the best in the world, though probably not one that would be
considered good by a lawyer."

"Aha! a woman?" rejoins Mr. Southmead.

"The most beautiful I have ever seen!" cries Lawrence, the enthusiasm of
youth beaming in his handsome dark eyes.

"Pooh!" returns the other, "you have only been from the Far West for
three days."

"True," remarks Lawrence. "Three days ago I was incompetent, but am not
now. You see, I have been living in a mining camp in Southern Utah for
the last year, where all women are scarce and none beautiful. For my
first three days in New York, every woman I met on the streets seemed to
me a houri. Now, however, I am beginning to discriminate. My taste has
become normal, and I pronounce the young lady whose fan I picked up on
the stairs a few moments ago, just what I have called her. Wouldn't you,
if she had eyes----"

"Oh, leave the eyes and devote yourself to the oysters," interjects the
more practical Southmead. "You cannot have fallen in love with a girl
while picking up her fan; besides, I have business to talk to you about
this evening,--business upon which the success of your present
transaction may depend."

"You do not think the financial effort France is making to pay its war
indemnity to Germany will stop the sale of my mine?" says the young man
hurriedly, seating himself opposite his companion, and the two begin to
discuss the charming _petit souper_, such as one bachelor gave to
another in old Delmonico's on Fourteenth Street and Fifth Avenue before
canvas-back ducks had become quite as expensive as they now are, and
terrapin had become so scarce that mud-turtles frequently masquerade for
diamond-backs, even in our most expensive restaurants. For this
conversation and this supper took place in the autumn of 1871, before
fashionable New York had moved above Twenty-third Street, when Neilson
was about to enter into the glory of her first season at the Academy,
when Capoul was to be the idol of the ladies, and dear little Duval was
getting ready to charm the public by her polonaise in "Mignon."

This year, 1871, had marked several changes in the business of these
United States of America. During the War of the Confederacy,
speculators, under the guise of Government contractors, had stolen great
sums from Uncle Sam. In 1865 the Government changed its policy, and
began to make presents of fortunes to speculators, thus saving them the
trouble of robbing it.

In 1868 it had just finished presenting a syndicate of Boston
capitalists with the Union Pacific Railway, many millions of dollars in
solid cash, and every alternate section of Government land for twenty
miles on each side of their thousand miles of track. It had, also, been
equally generous to five small Sacramento capitalists, and had presented
them with the Central Pacific Railway, the same amount of Government
land, and some fifty-five millions of dollars, and had received in
return for all this--not even thanks.

The opening of these railroads, however, had brought the West and East
in much more intimate connection. Mines had been developed in Utah and
Colorado, and the Western speculator, with his indomitable energy, had
opened up a promising market for various silver properties in the West,
not only in New York and other Eastern cities, but in Europe itself.

One of the results of this is the appearance in New York of the young
man, Captain Harry Storey Lawrence, who has come to complete the
negotiations for the sale of a silver property in which he is
interested, to an English syndicate, the lawyer representing the same in
America being Mr. Whitehouse Southmead, who is now seated opposite to
him.

As the two men discuss their oysters, champagne, partridges and salad,
their appearances are strikingly dissimilar. Southmead, who is perhaps
fifty, is slightly gray and slightly bald, and has the characteristics
of an easy-going family lawyer,--one to whom family secrets, wealth and
investments, might be implicitly trusted, though he is distinctly not
that kind of advocate one would choose to fight a desperate criminal
case before a jury, where it was either emotional insanity or murder.

The man opposite to him, however, were he a lawyer, would have been just
the one for the latter case, for the most marked characteristic in Harry
Storey Lawrence's bearing, demeanor and appearance is that of
resolution, unflinching, indomitable,--not the resolution of a stubborn
man, but one whose fixed purpose is dominated by reason and directed by
wisdom.

He has a broad, intellectual forehead, a resolute chin and lower lip.
These would be perhaps too stern did not his dark, flashing eyes have in
them intelligence as well as passion, humanity as well as firmness. His
hair is of a dark brown, for this man is a brunette, not of the Spanish
type, but of the Anglo-Saxon. His mustache, which is long and drooping,
conceals a delicate upper lip, which together with the eyes give
softness and humanity to a countenance that but for them would look too
combative. His figure, considerably over the middle height, has that
peculiar activity which is produced only by training in open air,--not
the exercise of the athlete, but that of the soldier, the pioneer, the
adventurer; for Harry Lawrence has had a great deal of this kind of life
in his twenty-nine years of existence.

Leaving his engineering studies at college, he had entered the army as a
lieutenant at the opening of the rebellion, and in two years had found
himself the captain of an Iowa battery--the only command which gives to
a young officer that independence which makes him plan as well as act.
But, having fought for his country and not for a career, as soon as the
rebellion had finished, this citizen soldier had resigned, and until
1868 had been one of the division engineers of the Union Pacific
Railway. On the completion of that great road, he had found himself at
Ogden, and had devoted himself to mining in Utah.

Altogether, he looks like a man who could win a woman's heart and take
very good care of it; though, perhaps his appearance would hardly
please one of the strong-minded sisterhood, for there is an indication
of command and domination in his manner, doubtless arising from his
military experience.

As the two gentlemen discuss their supper, their conversation first
turns on business; though, from Lawrence's remarks it is apparent there
is a conflicting interest in his mind, that of the young lady whom he
has just seen down-stairs.

"You don't think that _milliard_ going to the Germans will affect the
sale of the Mineral Hill Mine," asks Harry, earnestly, opening the
conversation.

"Not at all," replies the lawyer. "No fluctuation in funds can affect
the capital the English company is about to invest, and has already
deposited in the bank for that purpose."

"Then what more do they want? The mine has already been reported upon
favorably by their experts and engineers."

"They insist, however, upon a title without contest," returns Southmead.

"Why, you yourself have stated that our title to the Mineral Hill was
without flaw," interjects the young man hastily.

"Certainly," answers the lawyer; "but not without _contest_. I have
to-day received a letter from Utah, stating that there is apt to be
litigation in regard to your property. If so, it must certainly delay
its sale."

"Oh, I know what you mean," cries Harry, a determined expression coming
into his eyes. "It is those infernal Mormons! When we made the locations
in Tintic, there was not a stake driven in the District, but now word
has been given out by Father Brigham to his followers that as it is
impossible to stop the entry of Gentiles into Utah for the purpose of
mining, the Latter-Day Saints had best claim all the mines they can
under prior locations and get these properties for themselves, as far
as possible. Consequently, a Mormon company has been started, who have
put in a claim of prior location to a portion of one of our mines,
without any more right to it than I have to this restaurant. And what do
you think the beggars call themselves? Why, Zion's Co-operative Mining
Company." Here he laughs a little bitterly and continues: "It was Zion's
Co-operative Commercial Institutions, and now it is Zion's Co-operative
Mining Companies. Those fellows drag in the Lord to help them in every
iniquitous scheme for despoiling the Gentile."

"All the same," replies the lawyer, "if you wish to make the sale of
your property to the English company that I represent, you had better
compromise the matter with them. I sharn't permit my clients to buy a
lawsuit."

"Compromise? Never!" answers the other impulsively. Then he goes on more
contemplatively: "And yet I wish to make the sale more than ever. You
see, the price we name for the property is an honest one. It is worth
every dollar of the five hundred thousand we ask for it."

"Then, why not work it yourself?" asks the lawyer.

"Simply because I have got tired of living the life of a
barbarian--surrounded by barbarians. It was well enough to spend four
years of early manhood in camps and battles, three others in building a
big railroad, and three more in the excitement of mining, away from the
_convenances_ and graces of life that only come with the presence of
refined women; but now I am tired of it, more so than ever since I have
seen that young lady down-stairs."

"Ah! still going back to Miss Travenion?" laughs the lawyer.

"You know her name then?" cries the captain, suddenly.

"Yes," says the other. "I happened to be impatient for your coming. The
evening was sultry. I walked out of the room, looked down the stairs and
saw your act of gallantry."

"Ah, since you know her name, you must know her!"

"Quite well; I am her trustee."

"Her trustee!" cries Harry Lawrence impulsively. "Her guardian? You will
introduce me to her? This is luck," and before the old gentleman can
interrupt him, the Westerner has seized his hand and given it a squeeze
which he remembers for some five minutes.

"I said her trustee; not her guardian," answers the lawyer cautiously.
"If, as your manner rather indicates, you have designs upon the young
lady's heart, you had better get a reply from her father."

"Her father is living then?"

"Certainly. Last January you could have seen him any afternoon in the
windows of the Unity Club looking at the ladies promenading on the
Avenue, just as he used to do when he lived here, and was a man about
town, and club _habitué_ and heavy swell. Ralph Travenion has gone West
again, however, but I have not heard of his death."

"Then for what reason does his daughter need a trustee?"

"Well, if you will listen to me and smoke your cigar in silence," says
Southmead, for they have arrived at that stage of the meal. "Erma
Lucille Travenion----"

"Erma--Lucille--Travenion!" mutters the young man, turning the words
over very tenderly as if they were sweet morsels on his tongue.
"Erma--Lucille--Travenion,--what a beautiful name."

"Hang it, don't interrupt me and don't look romantic," laughs the
lawyer.

But here a soft-treading waiter knocks upon the door and says: "Mr.
Ferdinand Rives Chauncey would like to see you half a minute, Mr.
Southmead."

And with the words, the young gentleman announced, a dapper boy of about
nineteen, faultlessly clad in the evening dress of that period, enters
hastily and says: "My dear Mr. Southmead, Mrs. Livingston has
commissioned me to ask you if you won't come down and join her for a few
moments. Oh, I beg pardon--" He pauses and gives a look expectant of
introduction towards Harry Lawrence. The lawyer, following his glance,
presents the two young men, and after acknowledging it, Chauncey
proceeds glibly, "Awful sorry to have interrupted you."

"Won't you sit down and have a glass of wine and a cigar?" says
Southmead hospitably.

"Yes, just one glass and one cigar--a baby cigar--they remind me of
cigarettes. I have not more than a moment to deliver my message. You
see, Mrs. Ogden Livingston has just come back from Newport, and to-night
gave a little theatre party: Daly's 'Divorce,' Clara Morris, Fanny
Davenport, Louis James and James Lewis, etc. Have you seen Lewis's
Templeton Jitt? It is immense. That muff, Oliver, actually giggled,"
babbles this youth, commonly called by his intimates Ferdie.

"So, Mr. Oliver Livingston laughed? It must have been very funny,"
remarks Whitehouse affably.

"Didn't he, when Jitt, the lawyer, got his ears boxed instead of the
husband he was suing for divorce. You want to see that play, Southmead;
it might give you points in your next application for alimony."

"I am not a divorce lawyer," cries the attorney rather savagely.

"Oh, no telling what might happen in your swell clientele, some day,"
giggles Ferdie. "But Ollie was scandalized at the placing of a minister
on the stage--an Episcopal minister, too."

"Does he expect to use an Episcopal minister soon?" asks the lawyer,
suggestively.

"Not very soon, judging by the young lady," grins Ferdie. "The only time
Miss Dividends----"

"What the dickens do you call Miss Travenion Miss Dividends for?"
interrupts Whitehouse testily.

"You ought to know best; you're her trustee," returns the youth.
"Besides, every one called her that at Newport this season, especially
the other girls, she is so stunning and they envied her so. Lots of
money, lots of beaux and more of beauty. If she didn't have a level
head, it would be turned."

"Yes, she has got a brain like her father. Besides, Mrs. Livingston
keeps a very sharp eye on her," remarks Southmead.

"Don't she though?" chimes in Mr. Chauncey. "Look at to-night. The widow
invited your humble servant to take care of the Amory girl, so that
Ollie could have full swing with Miss Dividends--I mean Erma. We are all
having supper in the Chinese-room. Mrs. Livingston wishes to see you for
a moment on business; Miss Travenion on more important business. They
chanced to mention it, and knowing your habits, I thought it very
probable you were at supper here. I told them I could find you if you
were in the building. I roamed through the _café_ and inquired of
Rimmer, and he suggested you were up-stairs. The head waiter in the
restaurant corroborated him. It won't keep you long. Miss Travenion and
Mrs. Livingston wish to see you particularly. They are very busy."

"Busy!" cries the lawyer. "What have those two birds of Paradise to do
with business?"

"They are packing. They wish to know if you can possibly call on them
to-morrow afternoon."

"To-morrow afternoon, Captain Lawrence's business compels my
attention."

"Ah, then, to-morrow evening."

"Unfortunately I have promised to deliver an address at the Bar
Association Dinner."

"Very well, to-morrow morning."

"Still this young gentleman's business," remarks Mr. Southmead. "It is
important and immediate."

"Oh, very well, then," returns Ferdie; "suppose you come down to our
supper party _now_! I know what Mrs. Livingston wants to say to you,
won't take over three minutes, and Miss Travenion won't occupy you five.
Come down and join us? We are pretty well finished."

"But this young gentleman," remarks Whitehouse, smiling at Lawrence.

"Oh, bring Captain Lawrence down with you," and before Southmead can
reply to this request, which is given in an off-hand, snappy kind of a
way, Ferdie finds his hand grasped warmly in a set of bronzed maniples
and Harry Storey Lawrence looking into his eyes with a face full of
gratitude, and saying to him, "Certainly! I will run down with you with
the greatest pleasure."

"But--" interjects Southmead.

"Oh, it will not inconvenience me in the slightest. It will be rather a
pleasure," cries the Westerner.

And before he can urge any further objection to Mr. Ferdinand Chauncey's
proposed move, the two younger men have left the room and are walking
down-stairs, and the lawyer has nothing to do but to follow after them
as rapidly as possible.

The door of the Chinese-room is opened for Mr. Chauncey. As he looks in
one thought strikes the mind of the mining man, and that is,--If you
would thoroughly appreciate the beauty of women, be without their
society for a few months. Then you will know why men rave about them,
why men die for them.

No prettier sight has ever come before the eyes of this young
Westerner,--who has still the fire of youth in his veins, but whose life
has kept him away from nearly all such scenes as this,--than this one he
gazes on with beaming eyes, flushed face, a slight trembling of his
stalwart limbs. This room, made bright by Chinese decorations and
Oriental color, illuminated by the soft wax lights of the supper table,
and made radiant by the presence of lovely women--one of whom--the one
his eyes seek--the like of which he has never seen before--Erma
Travenion.



CHAPTER II.

MISS EAST.


The girl stands in an easy, but vivacious, attitude. She has just been
telling some story, and growing excited, has got to acting it, to the
derangement but beauty of her toilet, as a little bonnet made all of
pansies has fallen, and hanging by two light blue ribbons, adorns her
white neck instead of her fair hair, which, disordered by her
enthusiasm, has become wavy, floating and gold in the light, and red
bronze in the shadow.

The party having left the supper table with its fruit, flowers, crystal,
silverware and decorated china, are grouped about, looking at her.

The chaperon, Mrs. Livingston, standing near the door, is a widow and
forty-five, though still comely to look upon, and the girl behind her is
interesting in her own peculiar style, being piquant and pretty. Though
it is late in September the weather is still quite warm, and dressed in
the light summer costumes of 1871, which gave as charming glimpses of
white necks and dazzling arms as those of to-day, either lady would
attract the eyes of men: but the glorious beauty of Erma Travenion still
holds the Westerner's gaze.

Eyes draw eyes, and the young lady returns his glance for a second.

Then Mrs. Livingston speaks: "Why, Chauncey," she says, "I thought you
were going to bring Mr. Southmead."

"And I have brought his client," laughs Ferdie. "Mr. Southmead will be
here in a minute. He was engaged with Captain Lawrence and could not
leave him. So I took the liberty and persuaded Captain Lawrence to join
us also. But permit me," and he presents his companion in due form to
the hostess of the evening.

While Harry is making his bow, Mr. Southmead enters.

"Ah, Chauncey," he says laughingly, "you have made the introduction, I
see. But still, Mrs. Livingston, I think I can give you some information
about Captain Lawrence which Ferdinand does not possess. He is a _rara
avis_. He has not opened his mouth to a beautiful woman for eight
months."

"Excuse me," interposes Lawrence gallantly. "That was before I had
spoken to Mrs. Livingston."

This happy shot makes the widow his friend at once. She says: "Not
spoken to a beautiful woman for eight months! Surely there could be no
beautiful women about," and her eyes emphasize her words as she looks
with admiration on the athletic symmetry the young Western man displays
under his broadcloth evening dress.

"Not spoken to a beautiful woman for eight months!" This is an
astonished echo from the two young ladies.

"Yes," replies Southmead laughing. "He has been in southern Utah. He
only stopped over night in Salt Lake City on his trip to New York; he
comes from the wilds of the Rocky Mountains."

"The Rocky Mountains?" cries Erma, whose eyes seem to take sudden
interest at the locality mentioned.

A moment after, Mrs. Livingston hastily presents the Western engineer.
"Miss Amory--Miss Travenion: Captain Lawrence."

"Not heard the voice of beauty for eight months? That is severe for a
military man, Captain Lawrence," laughs Miss Amory, her eyes growing
bright, for she is in the habit of going to West Point, to graduating
exercises, and loving cadets and brass buttons generally and awfully.

"I was once Captain of an Iowa battery," answers Harry; "for some years
after that I was a civil engineer on the Union Pacific Railway, and for
the last three I have been a mining engineer in Utah."

"On the Union Pacific Railway," says Miss Travenion, her eyes growing
more interested. "Then perhaps you know my father. Won't you sit beside
me? I should like to ask you a few questions. But let me present Mr.
Oliver Ogden Livingston, Captain Lawrence." She introduces in the easy
manner of one accustomed to society the Westerner to a gentleman who has
arisen from beside her.

This being remarks, "Awh! delighted," with a slight English affectation
of manner, which in 1871 was very uncommon in America, and reseats
himself beside Miss Travenion.

"There is another chair on my other hand," says the young lady,
indicating the article in question, and looking rather sneeringly at Mr.
Oliver for his by no means civil performance.

Consequently, a moment after the young man finds himself beside Miss
Travenion, though Mr. Livingston has destroyed a _tête-à-tête_ by
sitting upon the other hand of the beauty.

Ferdie has grouped himself with Miss Amory and is entering into some
society small talk or gossip that apparently interests her greatly, as
she gives out every now and then excited giggles and exclamations at
the young man's flippant sentences.

Mrs. Livingston is occupied with Mr. Southmead, who has just said: "You
brought Louise with you from Newport?"

"Of course," answers the widow. "We have left there for the season."
Then noticing that the gentleman's glance is wandering about the room,
she continues: "You need not hope to find Louise here. She is only
sixteen--too young for theatre parties. The child is in bed and asleep."
A moment after their voices are lowered, apparently discussing some
business matter.

During this, Erma Travenion appears to be considering some proposition
in her mind. This gives Lawrence a chance to contemplate her more
minutely than when he picked up her fan on the staircase or as he
entered the room. He repeats the inspection, with the same decision
intensified: she is the most beautiful woman he has ever seen; but,
dominating even her beauty, is that peculiar and radiant thing we call
the charm of manner.

Seated in a languid, careless, dreamy way, as if her thoughts were far
from this brilliant supper-room, the unstudied pose of her attitude,
gives additional femininity to her graceful figure; for, when
self-conscious, Miss Travenion has an appearance of coldness, even
_hauteur_; but there is none of this now.

Her well-proportioned head, supported by a neck of enchanting whiteness,
is lighted by two eyes which would be sapphires, were they not made
dazzling by the soul that shines through them, reflecting each emotion
of her vivacious yet brilliant mind. Her forehead has that peculiar
breadth, which denotes that intellect would always dominate passion,
were it not for her lips that indicate when she loves, she will love
with her whole heart. Her figure, betwixt girlhood and womanhood,
retains the graces of one and the contours of the other. The dress she
wears brings all this out with wonderful distinctness, for it is jet
black, even to its laces,--a color which segregates her from the more
brilliant decorations of the room, outlining her exquisite arms,
shoulders and bust, in a way that would make her seem a statue of ebony
and ivory, were it not for the delicate pink of her lips and nostrils as
she softly breathes, the slight compression of her brows, and the
nervous tapping of her little foot that just shows itself in dainty boot
beneath the laces of her robe. These indicate that youthful and
enthusiastic life will in a moment make this dreaming figure a vivacious
woman.

As Lawrence thinks this, action comes to her. She says impulsively: "You
must let me thank you again for the attention you showed me on the
stairway."

"What attention?" asks Mr. Oliver Livingston, waking up also.

"Something you were too occupied with yourself to notice," smiles the
young lady. "I dropped my fan as we entered this evening, and this
gentleman, though he did not know me, was kind enough to pick it up.
But," she continues suddenly, "Captain Lawrence, you can do me a much
greater favor."

"Indeed! How?" is Harry's eager answer.

"You say that you have been an engineer upon the Union Pacific Railway.
What portion of it?"

"From Green River to Ogden, though I was employed as assistant at one
time at Cheyenne."

"From Green River to Ogden! Then you must have met my father, Ralph
Harriman Travenion."

"No, I never had that pleasure," answers the young man, after a moment's
consideration.

"But you must have!" cries the girl impulsively. "He was one of the
largest contractors on that portion of the road."

"Your father--a railroad contractor?" answers Harry, opening his eyes,
which appear to the young lady very large, earnest, and flashing
compared to the rather effeminate ones of Mr. Livingston.

"Not in New York," laughs Ollie, waving his white hands. "When here, Mr.
Travenion is one of our leading fashionables. Did you see any one dance
more gracefully than your father did last winter, Miss Erma?--though I
believe he did have something to do with the building of the railway out
there."

"I don't see how that was possible," suggests Lawrence. "I and my
assistants figured all the cross-sectionings of that portion of the
work, and I know that none were accredited to Ralph Travenion. Our
largest contractors were Little & Co., Tranyon & Co., Amos Jennings,
George H. Smith, and Brigham Young--nearly all Mormons."

"You are sure?" says the young lady, knitting her brows as if in
thought.

"Certainly!"

"This is very curious. Why, I have even had letters from him on Union
Pacific paper."

"Perhaps he was a silent partner in one of the companies," suggests
Lawrence, who is very much astonished to find a girl in New York's most
exclusive set, as Miss Travenion evidently is, connected so intimately
with one of the builders of a railway in the Far West.

"Perhaps you are right," says the young lady contemplatively. "However,
I will know all about it myself in a few weeks."

"He is coming to visit you, I presume?"

"No, but I am going to take a trip to California with Mrs. Livingston
and her party," remarks Erma, "and _en route_ I expect to meet him--my
dear father, whom I haven't seen for half a year!" and the girl's eyes
light up with sudden tenderness and pleasure. "_Apropos_ of the
trip--excuse me." Here she rises suddenly and passes to the family
lawyer.

At his side she says: "Mr. Southmead, if you have finished your business
with Mrs. Livingston, I have some for you. I want to inform you that
Mrs. Livingston, her daughter Miss Louise, her son Mr. Chauncey, and
myself, intend to take a trip to California, and to ask you, as my
trustee, if you have any objection to the same. I presume that it is a
mere form, as you are not my guardian."

"You have written to your father?" asks Whitehouse hastily.

"No," laughs the girl. "I intend it to be a surprise to papa."

"Then, let me suggest," answers the lawyer, something of a shade passing
over his brow, "that you write to Mr. Travenion first."

"Impossible! We have not time! We leave in three days! Fancy--in a
little over a week I shall see my father. You wouldn't deprive me of
that pleasure, would you, Mr. Southmead?"

"No! but I would suggest that you telegraph him."

"I can't. I have not heard from papa for two weeks, and I do not know
his address. Besides, it will be such a surprise!" Miss Travenion has
thrown away contemplation from her, and is all brightness and gayety.

"Of course I can have no objections," says Whitehouse.

"Then you don't think it wise?" mutters the girl, with a pout.

"I don't say that. I have no doubt it is all right, and I know your
father will be pleased to see you."

"I should think so! The idea of anything else! You know I am the apple
of his eye!"

"Yes, I know that," remarks Southmead decidedly.

"Very well, then," returns Miss Travenion; "will you be kind enough to
get me a letter of credit on California and the West for--for twenty
thousand dollars."

This amount for a two or three months' pleasure trip makes Lawrence open
his eyes, and the lawyer gives a little deprecating shrug of the
shoulders.

"Oh, I don't mean to spend it _all_," cries Erma. "I am not so
extravagant as that. Still, it might be convenient. I might want to buy
something in the West. Please get it by to-morrow for me."

"Not later, any way, than the day after," interjects Mrs. Livingston.
"It is impossible to put off our trip."

"Oh, it had all been decided before you saw me?" laughs Southmead.

"Certainly. We didn't propose to have any objection made to our taking
Erma with us on our trip," says Mrs. Livingston, leaving Mr. Ferdie and
Miss Amory, and placing a plump arm round Miss Travenion's waist.

The party have all now risen, apparently ready to leave, and Lawrence
and Southmead are compelled to say "Good evening."

As he departs, however, Harry astonishes Miss Travenion. She is a little
in advance of her party, and offers him her hand cordially, saying,
"Were we not in disorder on account of our preparations for departure, I
should ask you to come and see me, Captain Lawrence."

"As it is," answers the young man, "I hope to see you in the West."

"Ah, you expect to be there?"

"Yes; my headquarters must be in Salt Lake for the next month or two."

"Why, _we_ shall be there also," cries Erma. "You shall show me over
your city."

"Excuse me, I am not a Mormon!" answers Lawrence grimly, biting the end
of his moustache.

"Oh, of course not! I--I beg your pardon. Yes; I remember now--that
awful sect live there--" stammers Miss Travenion. "You'll forgive my
ignorance, won't you?" Her eyes have a playful pleading in them that
makes her judge very mild.

"On one condition!" he answers eagerly: "that you surely come to Salt
Lake."

"Certainly," answers Miss Penitent; "it is there or in Ogden or
somewhere about the Rocky Mountains I hope to meet my father."

"I also hope to meet your father some day," replies Harry, in a tone
that astonishes the girl, for her beautiful eyes have made him forget he
has only met her ten minutes.

She raises these to his inquiringly, and what she sees makes her cheeks
grow red. A cordial grip upon her fingers is emphasizing this rapid
gentleman's speech.

Miss Travenion draws her hand hastily from his; then says with
thoroughbred coldness and _hauteur_, "Perhaps. Good evening!" turns her
pretty back upon him and begins to converse with Mrs. Livingston and her
party as if no such being as Harry Storey Lawrence existed upon this
earth.

A moment after the Westerner finds himself beside Southmead strolling up
Fifth Avenue, _en route_ for his hotel.

"I'll go with you as far as the Fifth Avenue," remarks the lawyer.
"There may be some telegrams awaiting you on your mining business."

"Delighted," says the young man. Then he breaks out hurriedly: "How the
dickens does Miss Travenion, who is apparently a butterfly of New York
fashion, have a father who, she says, was a contractor on the Union
Pacific Railway? You, as her trustee, ought to know."

"Yes--I know!" returns Southmead. Then after a second's pause of
contemplation he continues: "And I'll tell you--it may save you getting
a wild idea in your head, young man. Only don't look romantic, because
the young lady we are discussing is half-way engaged to another, Mr.
Oliver Ogden Livingston."

"Half-way engaged," ejaculates Harry with a sigh. Then he says suddenly,
a look of determination coming into his eyes: "Half-way is sometimes a
long distance from the winning post," and lapses into silence, smoking
his cigar in a nervous but savage manner, while the lawyer continues his
conversation.

"Miss Erma Travenion's history is rather a curious one. Her father is an
old friend of mine. Her mother was an old friend of mine." This last
with a slight sigh of recollection. "Both came of families who have from
colonial times occupied leading positions in Manhattan society. Nearly
twenty-five years ago, Ralph Harriman Travenion married Ella Travers
Schuyler, one of the prettiest girls in the Manhattan set of New York
society. Four years after, the young lady we are discussing came into
the world. When she was about ten, her mother died, and her father
concentrated his affection, apparently, on his only daughter. He was a
man of very large fortune, a member of the leading clubs, on the
governing committee of one or two of them, a man about town and a swell
among swells.--But perhaps to forget his wife, whom I know he loved;
during the sea of speculation that came with the Rebellion, he entered
largely into dealing in stocks and gold, in an easy-going sybaritic kind
of a way--and Wall Street made almost a wreck of what had once been a
very fine fortune. This blow to his pocket was a blow to his pride. He
could not endure to live in diminished style among the people who had
known him as millionnaire, aristocrat, and _bon vivant_. Shortly after
he sold his horses, yacht, villa in Newport, house in town, in short,
his whole extensive establishment, and placing his daughter, who was
about fourteen years of age at that time, at Miss Hines' Fashionable
Academy, in Gramercy Park, he went West.

"When he did so, I thought it was wholly from pride. Now I have become
satisfied that it was in the hope of making another fortune, so that
when she arrived at young ladyhood, Erma Travenion could assume the
position in New York society to which she had been born."

"What makes you think this?" asks Lawrence hurriedly.

"Her father's actions since that time. You see, the Travenions and
Livingstons had always been great friends, second cousins in fact, and
it had been a kind of family matter and understanding that when Erma
grew up, she should marry Mr. Oliver Ogden Livingston, who was then but
a boy."

"A--ah! He is the son of the lady we met this evening!"

"Of course!" says the lawyer sharply. "It had been mutually understood
between the fathers of the two children that each should settle what was
considered in those days a most enormous sum upon their children, that
is, one million dollars. The two fathers fondly hoped and expected in
those days of smaller fortunes that this would put the young couple on
the very top of New York society. When Travenion went West, Oliver's
father was still alive. What the interview between the two men was, I do
not know; but shortly afterwards, Livingston settled his one million
dollars upon his son, and during the succeeding year died. As Mrs.
Livingston was very ambitious for her son to make what is called a grand
match, it was generally supposed the compact would come to nothing,
when, some three years later, in 1868, Mr. Travenion returned from the
West and settled on his daughter three hundred thousand dollars, making
the Union Trust Company of New York and myself co-trustees. One year
after that he again made his appearance here and settled two hundred
thousand dollars more, and only eight months ago he once more returned
and deposited five hundred thousand in addition, completing the sum of
one million dollars, which the Union Trust Company and myself hold as
co-trustees for his daughter. One half of the income from this is to be
paid to Erma Travenion until she is twenty-five or her marriage. In case
of her marriage before that time or upon her arrival at the age of
twenty-five, we are to pay the full dividends of this one million dollar
investment to the young lady, and at the age of thirty, we are to make
the principal over to her, subject to her sole control, use and
bequest."

"I am sorry you told me this," says Harry, a trace of agitation in his
eyes, and a slight tremble on his moustachioed lip.

"Sorry? Why?" asks the lawyer, turning and looking at the young man.

The answer he gets astonishes him.

"Because I mean to marry her," says the Westerner determinedly, "and I
would sooner have a fortune equal to that of my bride; perhaps sooner
have her with nothing."

"You are a very extraordinary young man, then," comments Southmead. "But
I think her father would not care about her marrying any one except
Oliver Ogden Livingston."

"I don't imagine any father would care about seeing his daughter marry
that young man I saw at supper," remarks Lawrence, contemplatively,
between puffs of his cigar.

"And why not?"

"Because I do not think he is a man, anyway."

"Still, I think Ralph Travenion wishes his daughter to marry Oliver
Livingston, because he has settled his million on her."

Here Harry astonishes the lawyer again. He says shortly: "Might not
Ralph Travenion have some other reason for settling the million dollars
on his daughter?"

"By Jove!" ejaculates Southmead in astonishment. "What do you mean?"

"I don't mean anything except the suggestion," remarks the young man.
"But here we are in the Fifth Avenue," and the two stride into that
great hostelry together, and go to the office, where the clerk says,
"Captain Lawrence, a telegram for you." After a glance at its address
Harry tears it open, and with a suppressed exclamation passes the
despatch to his companion.

"Aha, as I thought," remarks Southmead, glancing over the message. "The
Zion's Co-operative Mining Institution has brought suit for part of your
Mineral Hill property. Unless you compromise, this will delay the
English sale."

"Yes, this takes me back to Utah at once," says the young man. Then he
adds with a laughing sigh: "I need that five hundred thousand dollars,
or rather my share of it, as soon as possible."

"Ah! But why this hurry?"

"Because I'm impatient to make Erma Travenion my wife," says the young
man determinedly; "but I must go up-stairs to pack my trunk, so as to
get off by the morning train." Then, after a few minutes' hurried
conversation on the details of the business, he bids Southmead good-bye,
adding: "Telegraph me any further information at the Sherman House,
Chicago."

"You are going to Utah to compromise this matter?" asks the lawyer,
shaking the young man's hand.

"Never!" says Lawrence. "But, for all that, I am going to have a try for
the girl."

With that he steps into the elevator of the Fifth Avenue Hotel, leaving
Whitehouse Southmead to saunter to the Unity Club and cards in rather a
contemplative, though by no means legal, mood, for he chuckles to
himself: "Jove! If that rapid Mr. West should capture rich and lovely
Miss East? wouldn't it make Mrs. Livingston wild?"



CHAPTER III.

HER FATHER'S FRIEND.


"Mr. Kruger, how do you do?" says Miss Erma Travenion, some three days
after; turning suddenly from the Cerberus who stands at the gate leading
to the out-going trains of the Hudson River Railroad, in the Grand
Central Depot, New York, waiting to punch her ticket. Then she calls
again with the bright, fresh voice of youth: "Mr. Kruger! Mr. Kruger!
Don't you recognize me?" and drawing up her dainty white skirts to give
her pretty feet room for rapid movement, pursues a gentleman who, in the
rush of the great station, apparently does not notice her.

The ticket puncher looks astonished for a moment, and then promptly and
savagely cries, "Next!"

But the "Next!" is Mr. Oliver Ogden Livingston, who has also turned from
the entrance, and is gazing after Miss Travenion, an occupation his eyes
have become quite used to in the last few months, since her father had
finished settling his million upon her.

Livingston, after a second's pause of consideration, says hurriedly to
the lady who comes immediately behind him, "Mother, you and Louise had
better go to our car. Ferdie will escort you. I will wait for Miss
Travenion and see her on board before the train starts."

To this, Mrs. Livingston, who, though fair, plump and forty-five, is of
a nervous tendency, cries out, "My Heaven! She's running out of the
depot--she is so impulsive--if anything happens to Erma, what shall I
say to her father?" And the chaperon casts anxious glances on her
charge, who is still moving in pursuit of the abstracted Mr. Kruger, who
is apparently looking for somebody himself.

"NEXT!" cries the ticket man savagely. "Don't block the way!"

"Ferdie, take us in," whispers Miss Livingston, who is immediately
behind her mother, and is sixteen, pretty and snippy. "That gateman
looks impatient."

"Quick, Louise, or the ticket puncher 'll mistake my head for a ticket,"
laughs the young man. Then he cries, "Come along, auntie. Don't be
frightened. You don't suppose Oliver will ever lose sight of Miss
Dividends?" And with a passing wink of inborn knowledge to Ollie, which
is returned by a stare prim and savage, Ferdie rushes his aunt and Miss
Louise past the portals, towards a private Pullman car, the last of an
express train standing ready to move out to Chicago, on a bright
September day, of the year of our Lord 1871.

Livingston, relieved of the care of the other ladies of his party,
watches his valet, assisted by two maid-servants in caps, carrying the
hand-satchels, shawls, and minor baggage of the party to the car, then
turns his glance towards Miss Travenion. The savageness leaves his eyes,
and a little soft passion takes its place. They follow the movements of
the girl with prim rapture, as well they may.

Miss Travenion is just overtaking the man she is pursuing; her eyes,
intent upon her chase, sparkle as blue diamonds. From her well-shaped
head float, after the fashion of that day, two long curls of hair that
would be golden, did not the sun seem to claim them as his own, and
permeating them with his fire, make each hair as brilliant as his own
bright rays. Above the curls, a summer hat, beneath this, waving locks
that crown a marble forehead, perhaps too broad for ancient sculptors'
taste, but ideal for modern artists, who love soul in woman; cheeks rosy
with health, lips red and moist as coral washed by sea-spray, the upper
one laughing, the under one eager; a chin that tells of resolution, a
figure light as a fairy's, but with the contours of a Venus; clothed in
a travelling gown that does not disguise the graces that it robes; one
eager hand outstretched towards the flitting Kruger, the other grasping
firmly, yet lightly, the skirt and draping it about her, plucking its
laces and broideries from out the dust, and showing as she trips along a
foot and ankle that a lover would rave about--a sculptor mould.

This is what makes Ollie Livingston's little heart beat one or two pats
to the second more rapidly than normal, showing how small his soul, how
puny his manhood, for no more charming girl has ever been looked upon
than Erma Travenion, as she lays her well-gloved patrician hand upon Lot
Kruger's big Western arm, even amid the crowds of this great railroad
station of New York, where beauties--American beauties at that--have
given forth to admiring humanity each glance and gesture, grace and
tone, that allure and conquer mankind.

Mr. Kruger, also in pursuit of some one, has just found his man, and
thus Erma is enabled to overtake him. As she comes up he is in such
earnest conversation with a small, weazened-face, ferret-like individual
that he does not note the approaching beauty.

Were Miss Travenion intent upon anything but speaking to the Westerner
she could hardly avoid appreciating the peculiarity of the interview she
is breaking in upon--Kruger all command, the other answering with a
docility unusual among Americans, and at times saluting in almost a
cringing manner the man addressing him. As Erma stands for a moment
behind Kruger, she hears him say tersely and sharply to his companion:
"Jenkins, there are four hundred more coming on the _Scotia_, due
to-morrow, and three hundred here now. We have contracted with the
Central for the U. P. to take them at forty dollars a head. The other
crowd I will wait for."

Mr. Jenkins's reply Miss Travenion does not catch, as she places her
hand on Lot Kruger's arm and he swings around suddenly and quickly to
see who interrupts him. His face for a moment has a startled and
annoyed, perhaps an angry, expression upon it, but as he turns and gazes
upon Erma, smiles chase sternness away from his features, even as they
did upon Livingston's flaccid face; the young lady's beauty seeming to
have a similar effect upon both men, though Kruger's virile passion is
ten times as strong as that of the prim New Yorker.

Miss Travenion says hurriedly: "Mr. Kruger, I saw you here. I couldn't
help following you. You have just come from the West--you have seen my
father lately? Tell me, is he well? I haven't had a letter from him for
a fortnight."

He cries, "Miss Ermie, I am mighty glad your daddy hain't written, for
if he had, I guess I shouldn't have heard your pretty voice, unless I
hunted you up at your boarding-school."

"Oh, you wouldn't have found me there. I have not been at Miss Hines'
for nearly ten months."

"Ah, I see: graduated in all the arts and sciences and music and
etceteras," remarks Kruger, his eyes, piercing, though gray, looking
over the exquisite girl before him, and growing red and inflamed with
some potent emotion, as he concludes rather huskily: "I might have seen
you have left school. You have developed as be-uti-fu-l-ly as one of the
lambs of Zion," though, even as he says this, Lot Kruger seems to
repress himself and from this time on to keep a tight rein upon some
peculiarity that is strong within him.

"But papa, papa; you haven't told me of him," exclaims the young lady,
who seems little interested in Mr. Kruger's remarks, and only intent
upon information as to her absent loved one, for as she speaks of her
father, the girl's voice grows soft, and tender tears come into her
eyes.

"Oh, your dad's all right, Sissy," goes on Kruger, in his easy Western
way. "You needn't water his grave yit. Reckon your pap has had too much
railroad and mine on his hands to be able to even eat for the last
month. I know, for I am interested in the mine a leetle." Then he tells
her quite shortly that her father has so many big enterprises beyond the
Rockies that he is an "uncommon busy man."

As he does so, Erma is gazing at him and thinking what an extraordinary
individual her father has found for a partner, beyond the Rocky
Mountains; for Lot Kruger, as he stands before her, would be a striking
figure, even in Western America, which produces curious types and more
curious individuals.

He stands six feet two in his stockings, and has proportionate shoulders
and limbs, which are covered with ample black broadcloth, after the
Sunday-best-clothes Southern and Western fashion of the year 1871; the
coat of Prince Albert style, open and unbuttoned and falling below the
knees of his trousers, that are cut in what was then called the
"peg-top" pattern; his shirt front as ample as his coat is large,
crumpled and protruding from out a low-cut vest and adorned by a splash
or two of tobacco juice; his hat a stove-pipe, its plush rumpled and
brushed against the grain,--all make him a man of mark. From off his
broad shoulders rises a neck strong as that of a buffalo, and supporting
a massive head covered with long red hair, and a face from the nose up
that of a good-natured Newfoundland, but below the jaws and teeth of a
bull-dog; the eyes gray as a grizzly's, and steely when in anger; while,
thrown over all this is a kind of indescribable, semi-Puritanical,
semi-theological air that makes one wonder, "Is this man a backwoods
preacher turned mining speculator, or a reformed cowboy made into a
missionary?"

At present, as he gazes at Miss Travenion, Lot Kruger's face is nearly
all that of the Newfoundland dog; and Erma, though she thinks him a
curious associate for her father, with his Eastern breeding and
education and New York manners, still considers Mr. Kruger, though
crude, very good-natured and rather meek.

Oh, these judgments of women, whose instinct _never_ mistakes
character,--where one out of ten women guesses the villain at sight and
brags of it forever, the other nine mistaken sisters are swindled and
perchance undone, and say nothing about woman's unfailing intuition, but
still keep on guessing wrong until the crack of doom.

As Erma gazes on Kruger he continues: "Bound for a summer jaunt, I
guess,--some watering place where the boys and gals will have a high
time--Nar-regani-set or Newport or Sarietogy, Miss Ermie. Your dad is
very liberal to you, I understand,--puts up the greenbacks in wads."

"My father is generosity itself to me," returns Miss Travenion rather
haughtily, for she is by no means pleased with the freedom of Mr.
Kruger's remarks. "But the Newport season is finished, and I have
accepted Mrs. Ogden Livingston's invitation to be one of her party.
Under her charge I am going to take a run across the continent, and _en
route_ for California I shall drop in upon papa, and astonish and
enrapture him."

"Wh--e--w!" This would be a prolonged whistle, did not Kruger check it
savagely, and cut it off in the middle. Then he goes on stammeringly,
but eagerly:--"Your dad doesn't know of--of your intention?" an amazed
expression lighting up his honest gray eyes, which is forced down by his
set, calm, repressive lower face.

"No, he doesn't guess that I'm coming. Won't it be a surprise to dear
papa when I step lightly into his office, and say: 'Behold your
daughter!'" laughs Erma.

"Yes,--I--reckon it will be a--sockdolager!" mutters her father's friend
contemplatively. Then says suddenly, "You haven't telegraphed him?"

"Certainly not; I wish to surprise him. Besides, I shall be with him
almost as soon as a telegram, now that this wonderful Pacific Railway is
finished," babbles the girl. "It will only take seven days to far-off
California, and Ogden is two days this side of San Francisco, I
understand."

"Yes, your time-table's all right," returns Mr. Kruger. Then he asks
quietly, "Who's in your party?"

"Oh, Mrs. Livingston, of course; her daughter, Louise; Mr. Ferdinand
Chauncey, her nephew, and her son, who is now just beside me. Mr.
Livingston, Mr. Lot Kruger, my father's friend."

The two men acknowledge this introduction; then Livingston says hastily,
"Miss Travenion, excuse me interrupting your conversation, but the train
leaves in five minutes, and I presume my mother is even now
anxious--perhaps already hysterical."

"Very well, then," returns Erma. "Good-bye, Mr. Kruger. I am so glad to
hear that papa is all right. Shall we see you in the West? We shall be
in California two months, and perhaps on our return--" And she extends a
gracious hand to the Westerner.

But Lot laughs: "You'll see me before then. I'm going on the same train.
You needn't have run after me, if you had known that I go out on the
Chicago express also." With this, he gives the little gloved hand that
is already in his a hearty squeeze, that makes the blood fly out of the
girl's fingers into her face, and turns hurriedly to the man he had
previously addressed, who has been waiting for him just out of
ear-shot.

A moment after, Miss Travenion is conducted by her escort through the
crowd of the great station, past the ticket man at the gate, and on
board the train, where Mrs. Livingston is already in a state of animated
nervous rhapsody, muttering, "The cars are moving! They _are_ left
behind! What'll I say to that girl's father?" and other exclamations
indicative of approaching spasms.

"Forgive me, dear Mrs. Livingston," says Erma, apologetically. "I
couldn't help asking about my father. I haven't seen him for so long,
and have had no letter for two weeks."

"He's a rather curious creature, that friend of papa," remarks Ollie
superciliously.

"Very," answers Erma. "But my father, in his railroad enterprises, must
be thrown among men of all ranks, grades and conditions."

"Oh, certainly," assents Oliver. "You remember that individual with the
free and easy manners who invited himself to mother's supper party the
other night."

"If you mean Captain Lawrence," remarks Ferdie, tossing himself into the
conversation, "I can tell you he didn't invite himself--I did that part
of the business myself. And as to his manners being free and easy, I
think, considering he hadn't spoken to a pretty woman for a year, he did
very well--under the circumstances. If I'd been in his place I'd have
probably kissed the ladies all round."

This assertion is greeted by a very horrified "Oh, Ferdinand!" from Mrs.
Livingston, and screams of laughter from Louise.

Miss Travenion, who remembers Captain Lawrence's last glance and hand
squeeze and words, grows slightly red about her cheeks and sinks upon a
seat and gazes out of an open car window.

As for Mr. Kruger, the moment he has left Erma Travenion, he has
dropped all the laziness of a Newfoundland dog, and assumes the activity
of a terrier. He has said hurriedly but determinedly to his satellite,
"Jenkins, you stay and wait for the four hundred coming on the Scotia.
Forward the other three hundred by Davis, who came from Wales with
them."

"But--" Jenkins is about to interrupt.

"No time to discuss this 'ere matter," says Kruger with a snap. "I must
go West on this train. It's somethin' you can't understand, but more
important than all the Welsh cows that we've brought over these ten
years--you do as I tell ye."

"Yes, Bishop," answers the man humbly and goes away, as Mr. Kruger,
whose plans the sudden meeting with Miss Travenion seems to have
changed, produces a pass from the New York Central Railway, hurries to
the sleeping-car office, buys a ticket to Chicago, and boards the train
almost as it begins to move out for the West, and placing himself in a
smoking compartment, goes to chewing tobacco in a meditative but
seemingly contented manner, as after a little time he remarks to
himself, "How things seem to be coming to Lot Kruger and Zion together."



CHAPTER IV.

MR. FERDIE BEGINS HIS WESTERN INVESTIGATIONS.


The train rattles out of New York, and crossing the Harlem, skirts that
pretty little salt water river; as Miss Travenion settles herself lazily
in her seat, with a graceful ease peculiar to her, for the girl has a
curious blending of both style and beauty, giving her a patrician
elegance of manner that makes gracious even the slight tendency to
_hauteur_ in her manner and voice.

The sun shines upon her face, and she turns it from the morning beams,
and gazing towards the West, thinks of her father. Her eyes grow gentle,
her mobile features expectant with hope, and tender with love; and
Oliver Livingston, who is reading a New York journal, glances up from
it, and noting Erma's face thinks, "She really does love me, dear girl,
though she is so cold, which is much better form till we are regularly
engaged," and decides to give her a chance to admit her affection to him
formally before the end of their summer tour, for this prim gentleman
actually adores the young lady he is looking at as much as his
diminutive soul can love anything, except himself.

At present he does not know how small his soul is, but rather thinks it
is large and noble and very magnanimous. He has had no occasion so far
to test its dimensions, his life up to this time having been quite
narrow; and though he has travelled, it has not brought much into his
brain, save some strong, high church notions he has imported from
Oxford, to which university this young gentleman had been sent to
complete his education after Harvard; his mother having an idea it might
get him into English society, and perhaps permit him to make a great
European match. This was before Erma's father had made his million
dollar settlement upon her; Mrs. Livingston having been one of the first
of those pioneers from New York who passed over to England and replaced
the social chains of the Mother Country upon her,--those her grandfather
and other American patriots had fought to throw off, together with the
political ones of George the Third, his Majesty of glorious memory.

Upon his return to New York, Mr. Ollie had signalized his advent by
dragging his mother and sister to Saint Agnes's from their old pew at
Grace Church, the ritual of that place not being sufficiently Puseyitic
for his views; his father, the elder Livingston, who had no religion to
mention save certain maxims of business and the rules of his club,
being, fortunately for his son's high church movement, dead.

This performance of the heir of the house had made his mother think him
a saint; as, indeed, to do the young man justice, he wished to be; and
had Ollie Livingston elected to follow any profession, he would
doubtless have turned to the ministry; but his million of dollars
perhaps dulled his incentive for work, and after his return from
England, the young man had done nothing; but as Ferdie had irreverently
expressed it, "had done that nothing GRANDLY."

And why should he work? He had money enough to command any ordinary
luxury of life. As for position, was he not a Livingston, and could he
add additional honor to that old Knickerbocker name? thought his mother.

There was only one trouble in all their family affairs, and that was
removed by the settlement Mr. Travenion had made upon Ollie's _fiancée_,
for as such Mrs. Livingston already regarded Erma. In order to make the
settlement upon his son, the elder Livingston had culled his best
securities and most gilded collaterals; those left for the support of
his widow and daughter, not being so stable, had depreciated in the last
few years, and Mrs. Livingston's income had dwindled until it was not
what she considered it should be for a lady of her station. Now, of
course, if Ollie married a very rich wife, he could be very liberal to
his mother and sister, and that point had been happily settled by the
million-dollar settlement upon Miss Travenion.

It is some thought of this that is in Erma's mind once or twice in her
first day's journey towards the West. The girl loves Mrs. Livingston,
who had been a companion of Erma's mother, and had been very kind to
the child even after her father's reverses, and had frequently visited
Miss Hines' Academy in Gramercy Park, and had the little Erma, now
wholly orphaned by her mother's death and father's absence, to her great
house on Madison Square, where she had been regaled _en princess_ and
sent back to the boarding school made happy with good things to eat and
presents that make children's hearts glad.

This, Miss Travenion does not forget, now that her father's settlements
upon her have made her probably as great an heiress in her own right as
any girl of her circle in Manhattan society.

This peculiar position of Mrs. Livingston had been pretty well known to
Erma, and it seemed to compel her to make no protest when the widow had
taken her from the seclusion of Miss Hines' Academy at the beginning of
the winter and brought her out, with much blowing of social trumpets and
flowers and fiddling at Mrs. Livingston's Madison Square mansion--and
also had chaperoned her at Newport.

Therefore, she has rather grown to consider herself set apart for
Oliver's wife, and as such has turned a deaf ear to the many men who, on
slight encouragement, would be more than happy and more than ready to
woo a young lady who has gorgeous beauty, a million of dollars of her
own and a father of indefinite Western wealth, which, magnified by
distance, has increased to such Monte Cristo proportions, that it has
gained for her the title, among her set, of "Miss Dividends."

Besides any notion of gratitude to Mrs. Livingston, Erma knows that this
match with Ollie is her father's wish. On one of his visits to New York,
she had once hinted her desire to visit and live with him in the West,
and had been promptly refused in terms as stern as Ralph Travenion could
bring himself to use to his daughter, for whom he seemed to have a very
tender love, and in doing so he had indicated that his wishes were that
she fulfil the arrangement he had made with his old-time friend, the
elder Livingston.

"Marry Oliver," he had said. "He is in your rank--the position to which
you were born, Erma. Live in the East. The West is, perhaps, the best
place to make money, but New York is _par excellence_ the place to enjoy
it. Some day--perhaps sooner than you expect, I shall join you here, and
settle down to my old life as club man again," and Ralph Travenion looks
towards the Unity Club, upon whose lists his name still stands, and of
whose smoking-room he is still an _habitué_ on his visits to Manhattan,
rather longingly from his parlor in the Brevoort House, at which hotel
he always stopped, in contradistinction to most of his comrades from the
Plains, who are more apt to register at the Fifth Avenue or the Hoffman.

It was on one of these visits at the Brevoort that Erma had chanced to
meet Mr. Lot Kruger, and circumstances compelling the same, had received
introduction to him.

"Ha! a new convert to Zion!" the Westerner had cried out, looking rather
curiously at the beautiful girl of nineteen, who had entered unannounced
into Ralph Travenion's apartments.

But her father had simply said: "My daughter, Miss Erma, let me present
Mr. Kruger, a business associate of mine," and had so dismissed the
affair, though several times afterward the Westerner had chanced to be
at Travenion's apartments when Erma called, and once or twice he had
appeared at Miss Hines' Academy, bearer, as he said, of news from her
father to Miss Travenion, to the amusement, astonishment and giggles of
her fellow-pupils and the dismay of the schoolmistress, who thought Mr.
Kruger a species of Western border ruffian or bandit.

However, as she sits and meditates, the thought that she is drawing
nearer and nearer to her loved father, drives all else out of Erma
Travenion's head, and she watches the wave-washed banks of the beautiful
Hudson, and as they pass by says, "One more tree nearer papa--one more
island nearer papa--one more town nearer papa," and later in the day,
they having got off the New York Central, she murmurs "_One more
railroad nearer papa_," and grows happier and happier as the cars bear
her on.

So the day passes. Her companions have settled down to their journey,
and are passing their time in cards or novel reading, and Miss Travenion
has plenty of opportunity for reflection, for Ollie notices that the
girl seems to wish to be left to herself, and only ventures occasional
remarks when passing objects demand them.

Mr. Kruger, awed perhaps by the private car, which was much more of a
rarity and luxury in 1871 than it is to-day, does not intrude upon the
young lady or her party, though Erma notices when she gets off at the
large stations for exercise that Lot's eyes seem to follow her about, as
if he were interested in her for her father's sake.

Thus the night comes and goes, and during the next day, the 1st of
October, the party pass through Chicago, just then waiting to be burned
in order that it may become great.

So, running over the prairies two days and a few hours after leaving New
York, they arrive at Council Bluffs, and take ferry across the Missouri
River, no bridge at this time crossing that great but uncertain and
shifting stream.

During this two days' journey from New York to the Missouri, a
considerable change has taken place in the minds of some of the members
of the party as to their proposed jaunt to the Rocky Mountains and
beyond. This has chiefly been brought about by Mr. Ferdie, who, having
purchased a book entitled "_Facts About the Far West_," has been
regaling himself with the same, and devoting a considerable portion of
his time explaining and elucidating the knowledge he thinks he has
gained from it to Mrs. Livingston, producing a very distressing effect
upon that plump lady's nervous system.

These "_Facts About the West_" consist chiefly of anecdotes of the
border ruffian kind, descriptions of various atrocities, Indian
massacres, Mormon outrages and vigilance committees, and are of such a
very highly colored and blood-curdling description that Mr. Chauncey
himself remarks, as he finishes the volume: "If these are _facts_ about
the West, I think the _fiction_ will be too rich for my blood!" Though
half-believing the same, this young gentleman imagines he has acquired
in his two days between New York and Council Bluffs, considerable
knowledge of the manners of the Western frontiersman, border-ruffians,
stage-drivers, Indians, Mormons, and buffaloes.

A number of the more blood-curdling anecdotes he has detailed to Mrs.
Livingston at odd times, enjoying her shudderings at such stories as
that of the waiter in the New Mexico hotel, who shot the Chicago drummer
to death because he declined to eat the eggs and said they were
incipient chickens; also, a few of the more cruel exploits of celebrated
Johnnie Slade, the murderous superintendent of a division of the Ben
Holliday's stage line, together with a full, true and accurate account
of the atrocious butchery of one hundred and thirty three men, women and
children by the notorious John D. Lee, of Utah, the Mormon bishop, and a
portion of the Mormon militia, disguised as Indians, that occurred in
1857, and now known under the head of the Mountain Meadow Massacre; "The
Last Shot of Joaquin, the California Bandit," etc., etc.

These revelations of Western atrocity Mr. Ferdinand is delighted to see
produce upon the nerves of Mrs. Livingston effects more demoralizing
than the morphine habit. And he would continue his narrations, with much
_gusto_, to the agitated Mrs. Livingston, did not Erma, who has been
listening indifferently to his tales of blood, suddenly, at her first
opportunity, lead the chuckling Ferdie aside, and, placing two flaming
eyes upon him, whisper: "Not another of your Western horrors to your
aunt!" Then her voice grows pathetic, and she mutters: "Would you
frighten her so that she retreats from her journey and takes me back to
New York, and deprives me of seeing my father--the joy I am looking
forward to minute by minute, and hour by hour."

This oration, emphasized by savage glances and made pathetic by flashing
eyes, has a great effect on Mr. Ferdinand, and he promises silence,
remarking to himself: "What a stunner that Erma is, and only out of
boarding school ten months."

As it is, when Ferdie first looks upon the Missouri River and utters,
"The West is now before me. I feel as if I knew it very well from my
guide-book," tapping his blood-curdling volume. "Now for a practical
experience of the same," adding to this one or two attempts at Indian
war-whoops, the effect of his narratives has been so great on Mrs.
Livingston that she puts her plump hands over her pale blue eyes and
shudderingly mutters: "The West--shall I ever live to come out of it?"
and would take train immediately for Eastern civilization, were it not
that she fears the laughter of her daughter, Louise, and the sneers of
Oliver, her son, who has several times pooh-poohed Ferdie's anecdotes of
Rocky Mountain life, and once or twice, during his more atrocious
recitals, has ejaculated "Bosh!"

As she descends from her car at Council Bluffs, she lays one trembling
hand on her son's arm, and makes one half-hearted expostulation, "Don't
you think, since we are compelled to leave our private car here, we had
better end the trip and return to New York immediately?"

This Mr. Oliver silences by a stern "What! Our tickets already bought
for San Francisco? Besides that, Van Wyke Stuyvesant has just come back
with his mother and sisters, and pronounces the trip delightful, and I
don't wish Van Wyke, who is something of a braggart, to be able to talk
of the Yosemite and Big-trees and I be unable to say I have been there
also. Besides, Erma is looking forward to meeting her father."

Thus compelled, Mrs. Livingston nervously accepts her son's escort to
the ferry boat, and the party cross the Missouri River to take cars at
Omaha on the Union Pacific Railway--Mr. Oliver, calmly indifferent to
his mother's feelings, and only intent upon using some of the chances of
the journey for making his romantic declaration to Miss Travenion.

It will give that young lady, he imagines, the opportunity she is
anxiously awaiting, to accept his distinguished name, large fortune and
small heart; though did he but guess it, Miss Travenion has but one
thought in her soul--fifteen hundred miles nearer papa!

Mr. Chauncey, however, is very anxious for the wonders of the border
land he has read about, crazy to see a herd of buffaloes, and determined
to investigate Western matters for himself generally, in order to have
some rare stories of frontier life with which to make his Eastern
college chums open their eyes over social spreads at the "D. K. E.," for
this young gentleman will enter Harvard as freshman next term. An Alma
Mater of which he is already very proud _in futuro_, and in which he is
very anxious to distinguish himself, not as a reading man, but as a
Harvard man--a being, who, this young gentleman fondly imagines, has the
beauty of an Adonis, the muscle of a Sullivan, the pluck of a
bull-terrier, the brain of a Macchiavelli, and the morals of a Don Juan,
disguised by the demeanor and bearing of a Lord Chesterfield.

So the young man springs eagerly ashore on the Nebraska side of the
Missouri, and cries out in a laughing voice: "Omaha! All aboard for the
Rockies and buffaloes and Indians and scalpings!" exclamations which
make the widow's nerves tingle and the widow's plump hands shake a
little, as her son assists her across the gang-plank.

Then, his mother being landed, Ollie turns to offer the same attention
to Erma, but to his astonishment he is anticipated in his act of
gallantry by the Western Mr. Kruger.

This gentleman, apparently, near his native heath, has grown bolder, and
as he expresses it to himself, "has been do'en the perlite" to Miss
Travenion, indicating to her the various points of interest in Omaha as
seen from the river, together with the Union Pacific Railway bridge,
which is at this time in process of construction.

"Your daddy and I once spent four hours in winter trying to get across
this river, Sissy, and were mighty nigh froze to death doing it, and if
it had not been for my U. S. blanket overcoat that I picked up when
Johnston was out thar invadin' us"--he checks himself shortly here and
mumbles: "I reckon your old man would have given in. But here we
air--Permit the hand of fellowship over the step-off!"

This allusion to her father is received by a grateful "thank you" from
the young lady, who, if she has read of Albert Sydney Johnston's
campaign in Utah has forgotten the same, and she accepts Mr. Kruger's
aid across the gang-plank in so easy and affable a manner that Lot
proffers his further escort to the omnibus waiting to bear this young
lady up the hill toward what is called the railroad depot in Omaha.
Having assisted her into the 'bus with rather effusive gallantry, and
noting during his attentions a ravishing ankle in silken hose that makes
his fatherly eyes grow red and watery, he remarks with a chuckle to
himself as he sees the New York beauty drive off: "If Miss
High-Fallutin' should come to Zion in the Far West, oh Saints of
Melchisedec!" and is so overcome by his emotions that he almost misses
the last transfer omnibus.

So, it comes to pass that in the course of a few minutes they all find
themselves at that ramshackle affair that was, and is now, for that
matter, termed the Western Union Depot in Omaha. Here the train is drawn
up, ready for its race towards the West. Attached to it are two Pullman
cars, in one of which Erma's party have engaged their accommodations,
which consist of a rear stateroom, occupied by Mrs. Livingston and her
daughter, a forward stateroom, which has been engaged for Miss Travenion
and her maid. The section next his mother's being occupied entirely by
Oliver, that young man always looking after his own comfort and luxury
very thoroughly; while a section in the forward end of the car, next
Miss Travenion's stateroom, has been set apart for Mr. Ferdinand
Chauncey in order that he may be situated so as to give Erma any
masculine assistance or protection she may require.

Of course, this is by no means so convenient for the New York party as
the private car, which had been placed at their service by a relative of
Mrs. Livingston, one of the magnates of the Pennsylvania Railway, but it
had been considered by Mr. Oliver best to submit to the more contracted
accommodations found upon a general sleeping car than to the exorbitant
charges of the Western railways.

Miss Travenion has already made herself comfortable in her stateroom by
the aid of her maid, a pretty French girl, who is about as useless a one
as could have been selected for this trip, save in the matter of
feminine toilet; when glancing into the open portion of the sleeping
car, Erma gets a little surprise. She sees Captain Harry Storey Lawrence
entering the same, and placing his _impedimenta_ in the section opposite
Ferdie's, which from its location is also next to her stateroom. She
gives the young man a slight bow, which he acknowledges with military
courtesy, a little red showing under the tan of the sun upon his hardy
cheeks; but thinks only passingly of the matter, judging it a mere
chance of travel, she having already heard the gentleman state that he
was returning to Utah.

She would probably pay more attention to the affair did she know that
what she considers a mere accident of travel, has been brought about on
the part of the young man by deliberate design.

Lawrence having finished his business in Chicago, and his telegrams from
Southmead received at the Sherman House indicating that there was no
immediate hurry for his presence in Salt Lake, that young gentleman had
said to himself, "Why not travel with _her_? Three days in a Pullman
sleeper are equal to a voyage at sea. Before my arrival at Salt Lake,
_she_ shall have better acquaintance with me than a few words in a
Delmonico supper room can produce." Actuated by this idea, the captain
had journeyed leisurely to Omaha, and discovering the location of Erma's
stateroom, had promptly selected the section next to it for the trip to
the West.

Very shortly after this, with much ringing of bell and much blowing of
whistle, the train gets into motion, and passing out of the Omaha depot,
in a few minutes is climbing a little ascent over which it will pass
into the valley of the Platte, to run along endless plains till the
snowy summits of the Rocky Mountains come into view on the Western
horizon.

To the south, a low range of hills is bordering the river; to the north
prairies, nothing but prairies; to the west nothing but prairies, save
two long lines of rails that run straight as an arrow towards the
setting sun till they seem to come together and be one.

Gazing at these, her eyes full of expectant happiness and hope, Miss
Travenion murmurs, "At the end of these, one thousand and odd miles
away, my father," and the green prairies of Nebraska grow very beautiful
to her, and the soft southern wind, as it enters the car windows, seems
very pleasant to her, and the rays of the setting sun make the green
grass lands and the long reaches of the Platte River flowing over its
yellow quicksands and dotted with its little cottonwood islands seem
like a landscape of Heaven to her.

Then Ferdie comes in, looking eagerly out of the car window, and
whispers: "Do you see any buffaloes yet? I have got a revolver and a
sporting rifle to kill them." A second after he ejaculates, "What's
that!"

And Erma starts and echoes "What's that?"

For it is a sound these two have never heard the like of before--the
shriek of the Western train book agent--not the pitiful note of the puny
Eastern vender, but the wild whoop of the genuine transcontinental
fiend, who in the earlier seventies went bellowing through a car like a
calliope on a Mississippi River boat.

"Bre-_own's_ prize candies! Twenty-five cents a box, warranted fresh and
something that'll make you feel pleased and slick in every one of
'em--Bre-own's prize candies."

Being of a speculative turn of mind, Ferdie invests in one or two of
these, and he and Erma open them together and laugh at their bad luck,
for Ferdie has won a Jew's harp, worth about a cent, and she is the
happy possessor of a brass thimble, and the candies, apparently, have
been manufactured before Noah's Ark put to sea. While joking about this,
a new idea seems to strike Ferdie.

The news-boy, who has gathered up his packages after making his trades
on the sharpest of business principles, is leaving the car. Mr. Chauncey
asks him if he has any Western literature.

"I always have everything," cries the young man. "Give you 'The Scout of
the Plains,' or 'Long Har, the Hermit of the Rockies,' for twenty-five
cents."

"I don't want fiction; facts are what I'm after," says Ferdie,
interrupting him.

"Then I'll accommodate also," remarks the youth, and going away, he
returns after a few minutes bearing four or five bound volumes,
entitled, "The Oatman Girls' Captivity among the Apaches," "The
Construction of the Union Pacific Railway," "The Life and Adventures of
Jim Beckworth, the Naturalized Crow Chief," "Kit Carson, the Pioneer,"
"Fremont's Explorations" and "Female Life among the Mormons, by the Wife
of an Elder of the Latter-Day Saints."

"Facts come higher," he says, "than lies. These are bound books, and
will cost you all the way from $1.50 up to $4. But you can turn 'em in
at the end of the trip, if you want, and I will let you have fifty per
cent. on them. I had sooner you did it that way, because then _I'll_ bag
the profit, not my boss."

Whereupon, Ferdie selects "Kit Carson," "The Building of the Union
Pacific Railway," and "Female Life among the Mormons," tendering a
ten-dollar bill, for which he receives very little change, but making
the agreement for the return of the books on arrival at Ogden, much to
the delight of the news-agent, who remarks oracularly, "Buck Powers is
never quite left."

"Oh, that is your name, is it?" says Mr. Chauncey. "Probably you know a
good deal about the West yourself?"

"I was born in Chicago," answers the boy proudly, "and railroaded ever
since I was corn high."

"Ah, a railroad man?"

"You bet! I've run on the C. B. & Q., I have," remarks Buck, his voice
growing proud, "and any man that has run on de boss road of the West out
of Chicago, can call himself a railroad man and nothin' else."

In this exaltation of the Chicago, Burlington & Quincy, Buck was by no
means alone in the early seventies, for somehow that was considered the
great road west of the Mississippi, and all who were connected with it
from a switchman up, seemed to be very proud of the C. B. & Q., and to
run upon it into Chicago, appeared to them to be the acme of railroad
bliss and happiness, which was the acme of all happiness. So they kicked
off tramps with a proud kick, and they coupled freight cars with a
self-satisfied air, and they received deaths with complaisance as
defective couplings broke and box cars crashed together, and they made
up passenger trains and ran locomotives with the haughty air of men
belonging to the most prominent road in that great country which centred
in Chicago, to which the rest of America, especially the East, was but
an attachment.

"Oh, you are a railroad man--a _Western_ railroad man. Perhaps you can
tell me about the Rocky Mountains?"

"What I can't tell you about the Rockies and the U. P. ain't worth
knowing," remarks Buck. "After I get through with this candy trip, and
give 'em a rattle or two on books, notions and fruit, I'll come back and
give you some eye-openers, because I can see you're going to be a good
trader." Thus tagging on business with pleasure and self-glorification,
Buck Powers proceeds on his way through the cars, shouting in a voice
that drowns the roll of the wheels and the tooting of the locomotive:

"Bre-_own's_ prize candies! Twenty-five cents a package! Warranted fresh
and _gen_uine, and each package guaran_teed_ to contain a donation! It
is your last chance to-night! Last chance to-night for _Bre_-OWN's prize
candy and Chicago chewing gum!"

During this interview, Miss Travenion has looked on with an amused
glance. She is astounded that one so small can make so great a noise,
for Mr. Buck Powers is but five feet and five inches high, and rather
slight, skinny, and wiry of frame, but his voice is like that of Goliath
of Gath, with occasional staccatos stolen from the midnight yelp of the
coyote of the plains.

As the boy's howls die away in the next car, she says suddenly to
Ferdie, "What are you going to do with those books?"

"Amuse auntie with them."

"That I forbid you to do. No more fibs about the West to Mrs.
Livingston. Do you want her to have a nervous fever?"

"Very well," remarks Ferdinand, contemplatively. "If you object to my
instructing auntie, I will keep them for my own amusement and
knowledge." Then he cries suddenly, "By George, wasn't that a buffalo?"
and throws up the car window, and looks out excitedly, to the serious
danger of his caput, for the train is running through a small town.

And Erma laughs and says, "No, it's a cow."

Just here the conductor comes in and makes everybody on the car alert
and happy, for he cries: "GRAND ISLAND! THIRTY MINUTES FOR SUPPER!"



CHAPTER V.

THE GRAND ISLAND EATING-HOUSE.


But with this announcement comes another sensation to Miss Travenion.

Ollie Livingston has been engaged most of the afternoon trying to make
the trip comfortable for his mother, for, whatever may be his other
failings, he certainly is a dutiful and attentive son.

As the train slackens its speed, he passes to Miss Travenion's
stateroom, and remarks: "You have heard the conductor announce supper.
Ferdie, take care of Louise and her mother. I will see to Erma." A
moment after he ejaculates nervously: "I'll just wash my hands, and be
with you in a moment," and moves hurriedly back to the gentlemen's
wash-room at the rear of the car, leaving Erma alone.

Miss Travenion makes her own preparations in the privacy of her
stateroom, and steps out to find herself cut off from the rest of her
party by her fellow-passengers, who have risen hurriedly, and are
crowding _en masse_ through the aisles, anxious to get to their evening
meal as rapidly as possible, most of them being old Western travellers
and knowing that if they wish to get a good supper, it is best for them
to be among the first rush upon the viands of a Pacific railroad
eating-house.

The train has stopped, and caught in the crowd, Miss Travenion finds
herself swept out upon the front platform of the car; a couple of stout
Western women crowd past her, shoving her nearly off the platform. The
Pullman porter shouts to her to look out. She has a hurried vision of
Mr. Lot Kruger rushing to her assistance in the next car, and blocked in
the aisle and struggling to squeeze past Buck Powers, who has been
caught in the supper rush and who is dashing about like a fiend to save
his wares from destruction.

She hears a voice that is half-way familiar say incisively: "This way,
Miss Travenion, at once!" and looking down, sees Harry Lawrence's
stalwart arm uplifted to assist her from the car. She puts out two
little gloved hands. These are eagerly seized upon, and in an instant
she is lifted lightly to the ground.

Here, blushing very slightly, she murmurs, "Thank you, Captain
Lawrence!"

"I am glad you remember my name," answers the young man in a very happy
voice.

Then he continues rapidly, "Excuse me a second. Your maid does not
appear to know what to do." And he assists the French abigail to alight
with as much care, if perhaps not as much ceremony, as he did the
mistress.

"Yes," replies Erma. "We travelled by a private car as far as Omaha,
and, of course, had our meals on board of it. Therefore, Marie was
rather disconcerted--as, to tell the truth, so was I."

"Ah, then, you _do_ need my assistance, if you want a meal," says Harry
quickly, for the gong is sounding very wildly outside the eating-house,
and the throng from the long train of cars is moving bodily upon it.

Noting this, the young man cries shortly: "Indecision means hunger--at
all events, the leavings. Come with me!"

Then, perceiving that Erma is hesitating and looking towards the car
from which Ferdie and Louise are just appearing, and which still
conceals Mrs. Livingston and her son, he says hurriedly: "Quick; I'll
reserve a table for your party and get them a first chance at the meal.
Come at once if you want your supper!"

"Of course I want my supper," cries Miss Travenion with a laugh; for the
brisk Nebraska air, which is quite often cool toward evening, in
October, has stimulated the young lady's appetite, which, like that of
most healthy girls of her age, is generally a good one.

So the young lady, placing her hand upon his arm and followed by her
maid, turns away from the crowd and is led to a side door, Lawrence
seeming to know the by-ways of the hotel pretty well.

In front of this are lounging the station master and two or three
railroad employees. These spring up with ejaculations of welcome and
delight! One cries, "God bless you, Cap!" and another, "Harry, you're
doing well." A third guffaws _sotto voce_, "You bet he is."

Returning their salutes, he says shortly, "Please let me in at the side
door--before the rush. This young lady is hungry." A moment after they
are in the dining-room of the railroad hotel before the crowd of
passengers have entered by the main portal.

This is a large apartment filled with tables, each of which will
accommodate six people, and each presided over and waited upon by a
brisk moving, calico-clothed Nebraska maiden.

A moment after, Erma's escort says to a bright-eyed prairie-girl who is
flourishing a feather duster to keep the flies off an as yet unoccupied
table: "Sally, reserve this table for myself and party."

Then to Miss Travenion's astonishment the maid answers, giving him a
look of open-eyed admiration, "Yes, Cap!"

The next instant she finds herself seated beside him, and her maid,
under his direction, taken to another table and made comfortable by
another brisk Nebraska girl, who also answers deferentially, "Yes, Cap!"
Then the one employed at their table calmly but uncompromisingly waves
off both flies and passengers from the tempting seats with her feather
duster, remarking, "This 'ere table's engaged! This 'ere table's
engaged," to applying drummers and hungry cattlemen who would make a
raid upon the precious vacant chairs; for all the other seats in the
room are by this time in use and the viands are flying off the tables in
a manner peculiar to Western appetites; while over all this comes in
continual chorus from the waiting-girls: "Steaks--chops--ham and
eggs--tea or coffee--pie or pudding," with an occasional variation of
"stewed prunes or fruit."

In this chorus their attendant maid has already joined, singing out in a
business way, "Steaks, chops or ham and eggs," when to Miss Travenion's
awful blushes, the girl suddenly stops her song and giggles, after the
free and easy manner of the prairies, "I know what's the matter with
you, Cap; you've been going and gitting married, and are bringing your
wife West!" casting a look of identification on Erma as the imported
bride.

To this Harry, choking down a rising curse, mutters in a very hoarse
voice, "Steaks for two, and ham and eggs _turned_!"

Then Ferdie inserts himself into this scene of embarrassment to the
young lady, and from which she has half risen to fly in a sudden bashful
spasm, and says: "Erma, what the deuce have you been doing? Mrs.
Livingston is almost hysterical, and thinks the Indians have got you,
when it is only Captain Lawrence and--supper."

"Yes," answers Harry, who blesses the boy for his interruption; "I know
more about Western eating-houses than you do. I have rescued Miss
Travenion from the crowd, and reserved a table for the rest of your
party. Just bring them along, will you--that's a good fellow?"

To this, Mr. Chauncey, who has already met Lawrence upon the train
during the afternoon, answers: "Won't I? I have been hunting everywhere
for a place for our ladies. It was these vacant chairs that attracted
me."

Then the young New Yorker, having gone in search of his party, Miss
Travenion once more finds herself subject to the attentions of the
gentleman beside her. But these are so very respectful that her
embarrassment gradually vanishes, and she devotes herself with
considerable comfort of mind to the supper which has just been placed
before her, for Captain Lawrence is particularly careful from now on
that his attentions to her, though effective as regards her wants, shall
have not the slightest affectation of familiarity in them.

So the girl, looking at him, thinks: "Some men who might consider
themselves of perhaps higher breeding than this one beside me, would
have made a joke out of that awful _contretemps_, but Captain Lawrence
is a gentleman, and gentlemen are very much the same all the world
over," and once or twice, when he does not notice it, she turns grateful
eyes upon him during pauses in the meal.

A moment after, Mr. Chauncey re-appears, followed by the Livingstons.

Mrs. Livingston mutters: "Good gracious, Erma, how you frightened me. My
heart is beating yet. If anything had happened to you, what would I have
said to your father?"

She would continue her emotion, did not Miss Travenion quietly say, "You
owe your supper this evening to Captain Lawrence, who was kind enough to
take charge of me in the crush, and also to look after your interests in
the matter of chairs and vacant table."

To which Miss Louise ejaculates: "Oh, how good of you. I'm dying of
hunger!" and the widow, who still remembers the fortunate compliment of
the young man, remarks: "Captain, as I owe my meal to you, I will sit
beside you," giving him a grateful glance and taking the chair on the
young man's left hand.

Then, being compelled to it, Mr. Oliver Livingston suddenly remembers
that he has met the Westerner before,--a thing he has forgotten, though
he has passed him several times upon the train, and suddenly says: "How
are yer?" in an absent-minded sort of way, and seating himself enjoys
the pleasures of gastronomy.

As the party's appetites become satisfied, their tongues begin to move
in conversation, and Harry, taking advantage of the situation, proceeds
to make himself very agreeable to Mrs. Livingston; for this young man
has been thinking the matter over during his three or four hours on the
train, and has concluded that to be a friend of the chaperon's will be
very useful to him in his intercourse with Miss Travenion.

"I was afraid," says the New York widow, "that Erma had been carried off
by Indians."

"Indians," remarks Lawrence, "were plentiful enough about here four or
five years ago, but the railroad, with its settlements, has swept them
back. In 1867 there were too many of them at times," and the young man's
brow grows dark and his lips compressed with some recollection of the
past. Throwing this off, he explains lightly to Mr. Ferdie, who begins
eagerly questioning him on the point, that any buffalo that may be seen
will be probably far to the West of where they are now; their best hope
of catching sight of them being during the next day's journey. "If you
had wanted to see buffalo in quantities," he continues, "you should have
journeyed on the K. P., one hundred and fifty to two hundred miles south
of here. There they graze, sometimes, even now, in droves of ten
thousand by the side of the railway track."

"By Jove!" cries Ferdie to this information, looking with longing eyes
to the South. "But we will return by the K. P., auntie, won't we?" Then
he questions suddenly: "You have killed buffalo, haven't you, Captain
Lawrence?"

"A few," remarks the Westerner quietly, and from that time on he is a
hero in Ferdie's eyes.

Mr. Ollie having by this time finished his meal,--a business that he has
interspersed with a few curt remarks about the badness and greasiness of
Western cooking and the general inefficiency of frontier waiter-girls,
he arises and suggests, "If you wish to miss this train, you had all
better linger a little longer over the table."

To this, Mrs. Livingston suddenly gasps, "Hurry! The passengers are all
leaving the room!"

"Oh, no hurry! They are only gentlemen anxious to get at their cigars,"
says Harry, to whom the meal has been a very pleasant one, Miss
Travenion having made it brilliant by one or two glances from her bright
eyes and a few vivacious remarks.

But the chaperon suddenly cries in a voice of terror, "If we miss the
train, we are here on the prairies, unprotected and ALONE!"

This pathetic remark, in a rising young frontier city of two thousand
inhabitants, produces a giggle from Miss Louise. She titters, "Pooh, ma!
This is a metropolis. I saw a dozen trainmen, half a hundred loafers and
one or two tramps on the platform as we drew up."

But Mrs. Livingston having risen, the party saunter towards the door,
that lady thanking Lawrence for some information he has given, tending
to dissipate her fears of wild Western adventure on the railroad. She
concludes this by saying, "You must give us a little of your aid and
protection, we have had so little frontier experience, Captain,"--a
request that gentleman is very glad to accede to, and he promises that
he will look after them all, especially the widow, very thoroughly and
very faithfully during their journey.

Harry in conversation with Mrs. Livingston has left the room, so have
Ferdie and Louise, and Ollie is employed settling the score; Erma finds
herself alone. Actuated, perchance, by a wish to learn more of the
gentleman who has been kind to her this afternoon, and perhaps prompted
by some curiosity to know why he is treated with so much respect under
the familiar appellation of "Cap" by the Western waiter-girls, she turns
back, and walking up to the bright-eyed abigail who has waited on them,
says, "You seem to know the gentleman who brought me into supper this
evening very well."

"Oh, Cap Lawrence?" answers the girl. "I should think so; we all have a
pretty powerful liking and respect for him about this portion of the
country."

"And why?"

"Why?" cries the Western girl. "Don't you know? Well, five years back,
when this 'ere hotel was nothin' but a log cabin and I worked giving
meals to our section men, the Indians made a raid up thar at Elm Creek,"
she points towards the west, "and if it hadn't been for the Cap taking a
hand-car and going up the track they would have wiped out every section
hand to the last man. As it was, they killed five of them, and it ain't
every man out here that wants to run into a lot of Sioux on the
war-path, in an open hand-car, but Cap Lawrence is the man to do it. You
are married to him, ain't you, Missus?"

"No," replies Erma, growing very red. "I am married to no man," and
striding away from the girl joins Ollie, though she catches a prophetic,
"Wa-al, perhaps some day you will be. I seed him look at you once or
twice, and you'll be mighty lucky if you catch him."

The subject of this colloquy is standing on the platform smoking his
cigar; he sees Miss Travenion pass him upon the arm of Mr. Oliver
Livingston, and wonders why the girl blushes so deeply, though she gives
him a pleasant nod. Then he suddenly thinks, "It is that accursed remark
of that red-headed Sally in the eating-house," and does not know that
Sally has done him one of the best turns that have as yet come to him.
She has set the mind of the girl he loves running upon a subject that
had not as yet occurred to her. As it is, Erma gives a glance at the
stalwart figure of the Westerner as he stands, in athletic ease, puffing
his cigar, then catching sight of Ollie's rather diminutive figure,
compares the two, perhaps not altogether to the advantage of Mr.
Livingston.

As Miss Travenion is assisted into the train by her escort, Lawrence
looking at her himself hears a low but resonant whisper at his side, "By
Jove, Cap, ain't she purty? Reckon she must come from Chicago." Looking
around he sees Buck Powers standing at his side, gazing in admiration at
the beauty who has caught and entranced the engineer's soul. This would
make Harry angry did he not notice that the news-agent is very young,
though his face has that peculiar precocity that comes from an early
struggle with the world and an early battle for life and bread, and
notes that the tone of the boy is as respectful and loving as his would
be did he happen to speak of his divinity.

A moment after, Mr. Livingston returning from the car, Captain Lawrence
accosts him and offers him a cigar.

"Awh! thanks," remarks Ollie, being compelled to the same, and accepting
it, he finds it to his astonishment to be a very good one,--much better
than the average weed he would get in a New York club: for this young
man does not know that the Western mining man and speculator uses the
very best of cigars, wines, and all creature comforts, even when his
luck is hard and his pocket almost empty.

A moment after Mr. Lot Kruger passes the two, and gives Harry a by no
means kindly glance, for he has noticed the attentions of this gentleman
to the daughter of his old friend, and does not like them.

This feeling is perhaps also felt, though at this time in a lesser
degree, by Mr. Oliver Livingston, who somehow or other has arrived at
the conclusion that Miss Travenion likes to listen to the conversation
of this gentleman from the West, and does not like it very much more
than Mr. Kruger.

Consequently, when the engineer rings the bell and the conductor cries,
"All aboard!" Harry Lawrence has made one active and one at present
passive enemy, though he is rapidly growing to be a hero in Mr. Ferdie's
imagination; and as for Buck Powers, he has loved and admired this young
engineer of the Pacific Railway for years, as nearly every other
employee of the same, especially those engaged in its early building,
have done ever since he ran the lines in Nebraska when that State was a
howling wilderness of Indians, wild animals, trappers and prairies.

Then the train, getting under headway, passes with illuminated Pullmans
and flashing headlight into the night of the plains. Miss Travenion,
with a new interest in her mind as to this Western gentleman chance
seems to have thrown into her way, looks out of her stateroom--the car
is half empty, most of its male passengers being in the smoking room
with their after-dinner cigars. Among them, Ferdie and Ollie.

Captain Lawrence is at the other end of the car, conversing with Mrs.
Livingston and Louise.

Erma carelessly picks up a book,--one of Ferdie's purchases, the volume
on the Union Pacific Railway; and glancing languidly over its pages,
sees a picture of Indians attacking a hand-car, and reads, "Elm Creek
Massacre" in large type. Beneath it is an account of the heroism of
Captain Harry Storey Lawrence.

Then the brakeman cries out "Elm Creek." The train pauses for a moment,
and gazing out, she can see the station house on the side track. A
moment after, the locomotive dashing on again, she finds herself
peering into the darkness that lies upon the low stretch of prairie, and
wondering exactly whereabouts the man sitting so quietly and conversing
with Mrs. Livingston, made his fight; and her imagination getting the
better of her, she seems to see the stalwart figure, which is commencing
to interest her, standing on a little hand-car on that lone prairie,
surrounded by Indians and fighting them off, and saving the section men
surprised at their work, as they drop their tools and run from their
labor; and she sees his dark eyes, that she has commenced to know very
well, flashing with determination as he encourages the fleeing laborers,
and getting them on the car, they make their running fight towards the
station, and hears the cracking of the deadly rifles and the whoops of
the pursuing savages.

She is interrupted in this fantasie by Mr. Livingston's placid voice,
saying, "What are you reading, Erma?" for she still has the volume in
her hand.

"Only an account of the construction of this railway," says the young
lady, and she passes him the volume.

Looking over the account of the "Elm Creek Massacre," Ollie's eyes open
rather widely; but, a moment after, he remarks sneeringly: "This fiction
of the Rocky Mountains seems to make quite a hero of your friend
Lawrence. I wonder if he wrote the book himself?" And the gentleman
chuckles to himself, imagining he has been rather witty.

Miss Travenion's reply rather disconcerts him.

"I am glad you call him my friend," answers the girl, a gleam of
admiration in her blue eyes. "Any man who could do what is written
there, is worthy to be any woman's friend."

"Oh, indeed," says Mr. Livingston, rather nettled at this; partly
because he thinks his joke is not appreciated, and partly because he
does not care about Erma Travenion showing an interest in any other man
save his own small self. "I suppose you will soon make a first-class
border ruffian out of your hero?" Then he utters oracularly: "I wonder
how it is that some girls seem to take such interest in 'men of blood.'"

"I don't take interest in 'men of blood,'" cries Miss Travenion, rather
warmly, for this remark about border ruffians is not pleasing to her;
"but I do take interest in the men of courage, determination and
manhood, who are risking their lives to make this country a greater
America."

But here she gets a surprise from Ollie, who, incited by the beauty of
the girl, which is made greater by her enthusiasm, replies suddenly: "If
I thought you would like it, Erma, I myself would become a pioneer."

The idea of Mr. Ollie's turning frontiersman, proves too much for Miss
Travenion's control; she bursts into a fit of laughter, which
disconcerts the young man, and makes him retreat from her, with a
plaintive, "I meant what I said. I didn't believe you would treat my
expression of regard for you with a jeer."

Left to herself, however, Erma goes into more thought about this man who
has risked his life for others, and even after she has gone to bed, as
she turns upon her pillow, visions of Captain Harry Storey Lawrence,
fighting Indians, come to her, and she wakes up with a suppressed
scream, for he is about to be scalped, and finds that it is only the
shriek of the locomotive, and the war-whoops of the Indians are only the
outcries of the porter, announcing that they are approaching Sydney,
where they have thirty minutes for an early breakfast.



CHAPTER VI.

MR. FERDIE DISCOVERS A VIGILANTE.


So, making a hasty toilet, Miss Travenion steps out of her stateroom to
find the car empty, it having already arrived at the eating-station, and
the passengers having departed from it.

On the platform, however, she is greeted by Ferdie, who cries out: "Come
along, Miss Lazy Bird. All the rest are in at breakfast. I have got some
news for you."

"News about whom?" says the girl lightly.

"About the Indians. There's some off there. You needn't be afraid! I've
got my revolver on, and if they act nasty, I'll fix 'em as Cap Lawrence
does," says the boy, and he leads her a few steps to one side, where
Erma sees a Sioux buck, two squaws and a pappoose--the warrior on a pony
and flourishing about in a red blanket and soldier hat, though his
leggings are of the scantiest proportions.

The squaws, as is their wont, extend their hands for stray coins, though
the Sioux are by no means such beggars as their more degraded cousins,
the Piutes on the Central Pacific in Nevada. Looking at these unedifying
redskins, Miss Travenion finds that Cooper's novels, which she had once
regarded as facts, have immediately become fictions.

"I was going to get my rifle," babbles Ferdie at her ear, "but Buck
Powers told me I'd be jugged if I shot at 'em. They're at peace now."
Then he goes on confidentially: "I have interviewed Buck about Cap
Lawrence, and it cost me about two dollars in indigestible candies and
peanuts, but I got the information. Buck says the Cap is a snorter on
Injuns."

"Don't use such language in my presence, Mr. Chauncey," cries Erma
sternly.

"Oh, I am only quoting Buck," answers Ferdinand. "Buck says the Cap has
killed hundreds of buffalo and rafts of Indians--heaps of them. Say!
What's the matter with you? I thought you'd like to listen to the
history of your Indian killer," continues Ferdie, surprised; for the
girl has turned suddenly away from him and is passing on towards the
eating-house.

Then he suddenly ejaculates, "Well, I'm blizzarded!" a queer wild notion
having got into his brain. And he has guessed very nearly the truth; for
Miss Travenion, for some reason, which is at present indefinite to
herself, is not altogether pleased at hearing this Western gentleman's
name always connected with deeds of blood.

In the dining-room she finds her party seated at a table, at which a
chair has been reserved for her, but Captain Lawrence is not with them,
and looking about, she sees him at another table.

Then Ferdie, bolting his food, finishes his breakfast in about five
minutes, and departs in search of Western adventure and information, not
on the main platform of the station, but in out-of-the-way saloons and
shanty barrooms; methods of frontier slumming that are productive during
his trip of one or two decided sensations to this young gentleman, as
well as the rest of his party.

Shortly after Mr. Chauncey's departure, the meal being finished, Miss
Travenion wanders with Mr. Ollie to the platform, and notices Harry
smoking his cigar, and surrounded by a lot of the train men and station
officials, who seem to crowd around him at every stop they make, as if
anxious to do him honor, Buck Powers among the number.

A moment after, Mr. Livingston having left her, the news-boy sidles up
to her and remarks, having an eye to both business and pleasure, "I've
got some prime California peaches saved up for you. You weren't out when
I come through the train before breakfast--two dandies at ten cents
apiece. The Cap chewed one this morning and said it was fine. Ain't he a
stem-winder, though?" goes on the boy. "He was the most popular man on
the line when it was built. You needn't pay for them peaches unless
they're good."

"Thank you, Mr. Powers," answers the girl, giving the boy a bright
smile, for somehow she is quite pleased to note that Captain Lawrence
seems so well liked by all who know him.

"Call me Buck! Side-track the Mr. Powers! You make me feel as if you
were offish," says the youthful news-agent, giving Erma a glance of
admiration.

"Very well, Buck," laughs the girl. "You may bring me the peaches," and
would perhaps say more to him, did not Mr. Lot Kruger, who seems somehow
to always have his eyes upon her, casting a quid of tobacco out of his
ample mouth, approach her and suggest affably, "Prairie air seems to
bloom you up this morning, Miss."

Then her party being about her, Erma finds herself compelled to
introduce the Western Lot to them all. These introductions are very
affably received by Mr. Kruger, who insists on shaking hands with the
whole party, an attention not very well received by Oliver, though Mrs.
Livingston, thinking from his peculiar toilet he is in some degree a
Western border ruffian, and it will be best for her personal safety to
be very polite to him, receives him with effusive but nervous
politeness, to the joy of Lot's soul. So he seats himself beside her,
and goes into a free and easy conversation with the widow, giving her
his views of things in general and the West in particular.

Turning from them towards her own stateroom, Erma chances to meet
Captain Lawrence, who is just entering the car. Allured by the bright
nod she gives him, this gentleman ignores the pleasure of an
after-breakfast cigar, and sits down to a long conversation with the
young lady, which is interrupted by occasional visits from Mr. Oliver
Livingston, who comes up at odd times to ask Miss Travenion if he can do
anything for her comfort, for he is getting annoyed at Erma's giving her
time to an outsider, as he terms the engineer, and were it not that
Oliver Ogden Livingston has such an appreciation of his own charms,
intellect and social position, he would be jealous, which would be a
fearful tax on his placid nerves, that are not accustomed to violent
emotions.

As the train passes along, the captain incidentally mentions a few
things of interest in sight from the cars, stating to Miss Travenion
that they will soon be in sight of the Rockies, and this leads to the
girl's asking him about the "Elm Creek" affair, which he puts away,
saying that it was not much, though there were a great many wild doings,
both by the Indians and the whites, during the construction of the road,
and some recollection coming upon him from the past, the young man's
face grows dark, and he suddenly changes the subject, saying that Indian
fights are not generally half so desperate as some affairs that took
place in the late war.

This produces questions from Erma, and she learns a good deal of
Lawrence's early life; how his father emigrated from Massachusetts,
being a nephew of that celebrated seaman Lawrence, whose words are still
remembered--"Don't give up the ship"--and of this relationship and
memory the young man seems very proud.

He tells her that his father is now a large farmer in Eastern Iowa, and
the girl drawing him out by deft suggestions, learns that he was
educated for a civil engineer, but at the breaking out of the war, left
college and went to soldiering, and became, after a year or two of
fighting, captain of an Iowa battery.

The conversation goes on very pleasantly until he suddenly cries out,
"The Rocky Mountains!" and shows her snow-clad peaks looming up amid the
blue sky to the west, just as the train is running into Cheyenne, where
something occurs that gives Miss Travenion a great shock, and makes her
change her opinion considerably about this young gentleman, to whom she
has devoted so much of her thoughts in the last twenty-four hours.

Like most of the sensations of this life, it comes unexpectedly.

She has just finished a comfortable sort of dinner in the Cheyenne
eating-house, and is sauntering about, watching the change of
locomotives, and trying to get a good look at Long's Peak, which is so
distant that she can hardly tell whether it is snow or cloud, when she
is joined by Mr. Ferdinand, who shocks her by whispering these
astonishing words: "Come around the corner and I'll show you a telegraph
pole where Captain Lawrence hung a man."

"Hung a man? You are crazy," returns the young lady indignantly; then
she sneers, "Buck Powers invents silly stories to incite you to buy more
candy."

"Not at all crazy, but rather up to the snuff," retorts Ferdie, who
apparently is strongly excited and profoundly impressed. "Besides, Buck
didn't tell me this. I have just met a gambler in that barroom over
there"--he points to a shanty drinking saloon, some hundred yards down
the track--"and he says Cap Lawrence hung his pard, Nebraska Bill, to a
telegraph pole."

"Impossible," remarks Erma in angry scorn.

"So I thought at first, but the man showed me the telegraph pole and
said that was where Lawrence had murdered his pard."

"And you believe this gambler's likely story," sneers Miss Travenion.

"Of course I do. I am prepared for anything out here. I have been
making inquiries since I got the information, and they tell me around
here that Captain Lawrence was at the head of the Vigilantes out here
four years ago, and used to hang up gamblers in rows, at the rate of
about half-a-dozen a night," asserts Mr. Ferdie confidently. "What do
you say to that?"

"What do I say to it?" cries Miss Travenion with indignant eyes. "I say
that I will never believe such a thing until I have proof of it."

"And have not I proved it?" says Ferdie. "How can you prove it any
better?"

"By asking Captain Lawrence," cries Erma. Then, not heeding Mr.
Chauncey's expostulations that he does not think any less of the
captain, and that every one around says the Vigilantes were a necessity,
Miss Travenion goes hurriedly into her car and shuts herself in her
stateroom, for she is very much shocked at this revelation, as any girl,
brought up far away from the scenes of blood and combat and swift
justice of the frontier, would be.

A few moments after this, the train, drawn by two giant locomotives,
gets under way, and leaving Cheyenne, begins to ascend the Black Hills
towards Sherman.

As it does so, Miss Erma's privacy is invaded by Mrs. Livingston and
Ollie.

"You have heard Ferdie's awful tale?" gasps the widow.

"About the murderer you picked up on the train," interjects Mr.
Livingston, waving his white cuffs, as if throwing off all
responsibility in the matter.

"Picked up on the train?" cries Erma, very sternly, rising from her
seat, her figure growing more erect, and her eyes becoming burnished
steel. "What do you mean to insinuate?"

"Oh, nothing, of course, as regards you," replies Ollie, who is somewhat
quick of speech and also hasty of retraction. "Of course you did not
know who he was any more than I did when that duffer, Southmead, brought
him into our supper party at Delmonico's."

"Ah, you are referring to Captain Lawrence, Mr. Livingston," says the
girl, haughtily.

"Certainly. Mr. Kruger, that friend of your father, who seems very
affable and pleasant, though not a highly cultured man, confirms
Ferdinand's information," answers Mrs. Livingston, taking this interview
out of her son's hands, as he does not seem to be succeeding very well.
"This Mr. Kruger, who is acquainted with the West, has informed us that
this Captain Lawrence is a very blood-thirsty individual; that he is, in
fact, amenable to the laws of this country for the crime of murder."

"Yes, cold-blooded, deliberate assassination," interjects Ollie, anxious
to impress the girl. "Captain Lawrence headed the Vigilance Committee,
and hung up a number of unoffending citizens."

To this Miss Travenion says shortly, "I don't believe you."

"Not even your father's friend?" cries Mrs. Livingston.

"No, neither he nor any man else who would say such awful things of
Captain Lawrence. Oh, I cannot believe it!" Then she mutters, "The tones
of his voice are as gentle as a child's," and turns away.

"So were Johnny Slade's," inserts Ferdie, who has just now joined the
party and conversation. "Besides, Buck Powers says the Cap was a terror
to gamblers and desperadoes out here,--though I like him all the better
for it."

But here Miss Travenion astonishes them all. She says calmly, though
there is a tremor in her voice:

"I refuse to give any opinion of Captain Lawrence's conduct until I have
spoken to him."

"What! You are going to--to speak to that awful man again?" gasps the
widow, turning pale. Then she suddenly whispers, "Don't tell him what I
said about him. He might murder us." And seemingly frightened at the
thought of the blood-thirsty captain's vengeance, she takes her
departure hurriedly for her own stateroom, and locks herself in.

She is very shortly followed by Ferdie and her son, to whom his half-way
sweetheart says as he departs: "Permit me to satisfy myself upon this
affair in my own way!"

Then, they having gone from her, she sinks down and shudders, though all
the time she does justice to the man of her thoughts, and defends him,
and says, "I don't believe it. He is too gentle," and finally, having
persuaded herself that it is all a tissue of falsehoods, unlocks her
door and steps out into the main car, to find herself face to face with
this so-called desperado, who is calmly reading one of _Harper's
Monthlies_, his "deeds of blood" not seeming to hang very heavily on his
conscience.

A moment after, Miss Travenion remarks suddenly: "Captain Lawrence, will
you pardon me if I ask you a question?" and her eyes grow bright, but
her cheeks are pale, and her lips tremble as she speaks.

"Certainly," says Harry.

As he turns to her, the girl hesitates and falters, for it has suddenly
come to her, if this man is innocent, he will not forgive; but forcing
herself to the ordeal, she falters out: "People tell me what I will not
believe, that--that--you, while occupied here in the arts of peace, have
hung up men by the dozens to telegraph poles? Is it true, Captain
Lawrence?"

And he, some strange fear in his eyes, rises to her question, and though
he stands apparently calm, the strong fingers of his hand tremble a
little as they grasp the arm of the seat, and his face grows also pale,
and there is a slight twitch on one corner of his moustache as he
murmurs sadly: "And they say that of me?"

"Yes!--Is it true?"

Then, after a moment's pause, the young man answers firmly and perhaps
proudly: "In the troublous times of 1867 and '68, surrounded by
gamblers, desperadoes and cut-throats, who daily sacrificed the lives of
innocent men and made a mockery of both law and justice, I did what I
considered my duty as a good citizen. Do you blame me for it?"

"You--you hung men without trial by law?"

"Yes--do you blame me?"

But her only answer is a frightened, "Oh! how could you?" and Erma has
swept past him into her stateroom, the door of which closes suddenly
after her.

He makes one step after her, as if to say words of vindication or
defence; then bows his head and moves slowly out of the car, steadying
himself with his hand. So, standing upon the front platform, Harry
Lawrence looks down on the Laramie Plains, to which the train is
descending, and there are tears in his eyes. For the strong man is
thinking of the last words of Curley Jack just before they strung him up
for the murder of an unfortunate creature of whom he was jealous. "Some
day, Cap, some woman will make you crazy with misery as I was when I
shot Kansas Kate," and he wonders if the prophecy of the dying desperado
is coming home to him.

His meditation must be potent, for two hours afterwards, when the train
stops at Laramie for supper, and his old-time railroad friends gather
around him, they wonder what has happened, and the station agent
remarks, "The Cap looks as busted up as if he had lost on four aces,"
for he goes about in a broken kind of a way, and once or twice, seeing
some neighboring telegraph poles, turns from them with a shudder.

As for Miss Travenion, she has perhaps a harder two hours of it than
Harry Lawrence, for some indefinite emotion is in her mind that makes
her wildly nervous and extraordinarily excitable. Three or four times
she says to herself, "Why should I care if this man has all the crimes
of the Decalogue on his soul? A week ago I did not know him. Twenty-four
hours back I had seen his face but once. He shall pass out of my life as
quickly as he entered it." Next she remarks, "He said he did his duty as
a citizen." Then she laughs: "Pshaw, I am growing nervous! I am
defending this man!" and grows very angry at, and perchance unjust to,
Lawrence on account of this idea.

Anxious to get away from the subject, she comes out and joins the
Livingston party, and laughs and jokes with them, apparently in high
spirits, though there is a feverish flush upon her cheeks; and once to
the widow's remark, "Did he admit his crimes?" and Ferdie's laughing
inquiry, "How many did the Cap acknowledge to swinging up?" she replies
shortly:

"Enough for me to drop his acquaintance as rapidly as I made it. From
this time on I shall CUT HIM!" emphasizing the last with a wave of her
hand and an excited laugh, in so vigorous a manner that Ollie is quite
delighted and happy, thinking that Erma will have no further thoughts of
the man whom he has grown to imagine his rival--a conclusion he would
not so hastily have come to had he studied Miss Travenion in particular,
or the sex in general.

So the party stroll out to supper, but Erma, apparently gay, has no
appetite further than a cup of tea, and hardly tastes her supper.

Declining attendance, she walks back to her car, and, seated by an open
window, looks out upon the beautiful scene, gazing toward the north,
where the Black Hills fade away in the distance, and wonders, as the
setting sun shines upon her face, how this land, which seems to her so
peaceful and which might be so happy, is the home of men who regard
human life so lightly.

But even as she does so, as luck will have it, additional evidence on
the subject that is racking her brain and making her head ache, though
she will not admit it, comes to her.

Two men beside the track are in conversation. The breeze wafts their
words into the car.

One remarks: "Cap Lawrence came in from the East to-night, and I reckon
every gambler in town is hunting his hole."

"Why, are they afraid of him yet?"

"You bet! He put his mark on 'em so heavy they don't forget him. Why, I
remember one morning, three years ago, seeing Little Jimmie, the
bartender, hanging up as graceful as life to that telegraph pole, with
his natty white handkerchief tucked in his hip-pocket, and his white
sleeves, with rubber bands on 'em which held them up while he was mixing
drinks. He looked so all-fired natural that I called out: 'Give me a
whiskey cocktail, Jim.' You see, they took James from behind his bar so
quick he had no time to let down his sleeves and prepare himself for the
future."

But the girl hears no more; she has hurried to the other end of the
empty car.

Had she remained to listen, she would have also heard that Little
Jimmie, the barkeeper, was as bad a man as had lived or died in the
West, and the night before his sudden demise he had murdered and robbed
two railroad men who had just been paid off.

But not knowing this, Erma has a very stern look on her face a few
minutes after, when she sees Harry enter the car. He makes a movement as
if to approach and address her, but the young lady turns her head away
with a sudden shudder.

Noting this, the Westerner leaves the car and commences to walk about
the platform, chewing nervously the end of a cigar he has forgotten to
light. Then, curiously enough, the girl peeps after him, and stands
aghast, for there is indignation in his look as he strides about, his
athletic figure well displayed by a loose shooting coat, and he tosses
his brown locks back from his forehead, as if he were facing an enemy,
and his dark eyes are gleaming so potently that Erma gasps, "Why, he
looks like a Vigilante _now_!"

Soon the train is crowded once more, and they begin to run over the
Laramie Plains, where Ferdie excites them all by seeing a buffalo, and
would get his gun to shoot at it, did not Mr. Kruger remark: "The
critter is nigh onto three miles off, and you will throw away your lead,
sonny."

As for Captain Lawrence, he has not entered their car, and is now in a
forward smoker, puffing away desperately, and thinking with some regrets
of the early days of the building of the Union Pacific Railway, those
times which tried men's souls; but after turning over the matter in his
mind he exclaims to himself: "By Heaven! I am glad I did my duty, even
if it loses me--" Here he clenches his teeth, and a little spot of blood
comes upon his lip, where he has bitten it.



CHAPTER VII.

WHAT MANNER OF MAN IS THIS?


In the rear car, Miss Travenion, anxious to throw from her mind a
subject that is distressing, wanders to the organ,--for this Pullman was
supplied with one, as were many Western sleepers in those days,--and
seating herself at the instrument, runs her hands over the keys and
begins to sing. Softly at first, but afterwards made enthusiastic by
melody, this young lady, who has been very well taught and has a
brilliant mezzo voice, forgets all else, and warbles the beauties of
Balfe, Bellini, and Donizetti in a way that draws the attention of her
fellow-passengers.

Among them is the Western Lot, who, getting near to her, watches the
lithe movements and graceful poses of the girl's charming figure, and
seeing her soul beaming from her glorious eyes, mutters to himself,
"What an addition to our tabernacle choir after I have made her one of
the elect." For this young lady's loveliness has, of late, been putting
some very wild ideas into the head of this friend of her father.

She leaves the organ, and noting that Miss Travenion is somewhat alone,
for the interview of the afternoon seems to have produced a slight
coolness between Mr. Livingston and Erma, and perchance also Mrs.
Livingston, this Western product thinks he will devote himself to the
young lady's edification during the remainder of the evening, opening
his remarks by, "You're comin' to a great country, Miss Ermie."

"Ah, what is that?" asks the girl nonchalantly but politely.

"Utah," replies the enthusiastic Lot, "whar the people of Zion have made
the wilderness to blossom as a rose of Sharon."

"Oh yes, where my father is!" cries Miss Travenion, her eyes growing
bright. "To-morrow we will be there."

"Yes, in the evening," assents Kruger, an indefinite something coming in
his eyes that makes the young lady restless.

A moment after she suddenly asks: "Where is my father now?"

"How can I tell? I ain't seen your dad for nigh onto a month," returns
Lot, apparently somewhat discomposed by this point-blank question.

"But you can surely make a guess," suggests Erma, "where a telegram will
most probably reach him? I have concluded to wire him. Then he will meet
me at the station. I wish I had done so before."

"Wall, Salt Lake is the most likely p'int, I reckon," mutters Kruger,
who does not seem over pleased at the girl's idea. A second after he
suddenly says: "You write the message and I'll make inquiries along the
line. I reckon I'll find where he is and send it for you."

"Thank you," says Erma warmly. "I'll go and prepare it at once."

Then leaving Lot still pondering, she steps lightly away, and in a few
minutes returns with the following:

     "U. P. TRAIN, _Oct. 3, 1871_.

     "Arrive at Ogden, to-morrow, at five P.M. Will come through to Salt
     Lake same night. Meet me at depot.

     "Your loving daughter,

     "ERMA TRAVENION."

"You'll add the right address to this when you find it, Mr. Kruger,"
says the girl, handing him the message.

"Yes, I'll make inquiries at Medicine Bow," returns Lot, taking the
message, "and your dad'll get it to-morrow morning."

"Oh, you are going to stay up to send it? We don't get to Medicine Bow
till late, I know by my time table. How kind you are! Papa shall thank
you for this, also, dear Mr. Kruger," and Erma holds out a soft
patrician hand, that is greedily seized in strong fingers made hard and
red by exposure and toil.

Retreating from the grip, however, this New York young lady says
earnestly, "Thank you once more, and _au revoir_ until to-morrow."

"Oh, thank me all you want, Sissy; gratitude becomes young maidens,"
mutters Lot, trying to get the beautiful white fingers once more in his.

"Indeed I am grateful," cries the girl, and giving him a look that
makes his eyes grow misty and watery, Miss Travenion closes the door of
her stateroom, and goes to bed thinking no more of Mr. Kruger's peculiar
expression and glances, for he is a friend of her father, and at the
least has fifty odd years to his credit on the book of time.

She would be perhaps more concerned about her father's friend did she
see Mr. Kruger, whose knowledge of French is very limited, after
pondering to himself, "What did that gal mean by O-ver?" finally answer
his query by "Guess ag'in, Lot," and betake himself to the smoking car,
where, after perusing the girl's telegram several times, he slyly
chuckles to himself, "What!--and spile my hopes for myself and my work
for the Church?" and with this curious but ambiguous remark places the
document coolly in his ample but well-worn pocketbook, between a list of
Welsh emigrants _en route_ for Salt Lake City and a despatch from
Brigham Young; and shortly after that turn in and sleep the sleep of the
just, making no attempt either to find her father's address nor to wire
her message, either at Medicine Bow or any other point on the line.

Notwithstanding this, the next morning at Green River, where the train
stops for breakfast, Mr. Kruger is on hand to help her from the car and
say with paternal voice, "Sissy, Dad's happy now. Dad's happy now!"

"Ah, you've sent the message," exclaims Erma with grateful eyes.

"Yes, it flewed away during the early morning," mutters Lot, which
happens to be the exact truth, as, thinking the thing over, he had
concluded it was best not to have the message on his person, and had
torn it and tossed it out of the car window to the winds of Heaven, as
the train had run down those alkaline, non-drinkable waters, cursed by
early emigrants and pioneers under the name of Bitter Creek.

But Erma Travenion hardly heeds him; her eyes are towards the West and
she is murmuring, "Papa--perhaps this afternoon,--certainly
to-night!--if not Ogden--surely Salt Lake!" and her face is so happy,
and she goes to thanking Mr. Kruger so heartily for his kindness in
sending the telegram, that he might have pangs of conscience as to what
he intends for this Eastern butterfly, who comes with brightness on her
wings into the West, had he not been used to dealing with all people
sternly, even himself, when acting for the glories of Zion, and the
smiting down of unbelievers.

Then being joined by the Livingstons and Mr. Chauncey, who have been
looking at the surprising scenery of this river, the first water they
have as yet met which flows into the blue Pacific, she goes in to
breakfast; Mr. Kruger, who seems to feel more at his ease as he nears
his native heath, walking alongside of Miss Beauty. Pointing to the
great elk heads with their branching antlers on the hotel walls, he
remarks, "Thar's any quantity of them critters up thar in the Wind River
Mountains, in which this 'ere stream heads."

"You've been up there?" asks Ferdie, always excited when big game is
mentioned.

"Wall rather," returns Lot. "I was up all about thar and the Rattlesnake
Hills and the Sweetwater Mountains and South Pass and Independence
Springs in 1857, when Johnston and the U.S. troops were comin' through,
and we rounded up and burnt--" But here he stops very suddenly.

"What did you burn?" queries Mr. Chauncey, anxiously.

"Oh, nothin' to speak of--brushwood and such truck," returns the
uncommunicative Lot. "But here's the dining-table, Sonny!"

Then the party being seated, notwithstanding Mr. Kruger's efforts at
conversation and the delights of gastronomy, Miss Travenion's eyes will
wander about, seeking an athletic figure that she sees not; for somehow
she misses the man of yesterday, and despises herself for it.

Towards the close of their meal there is a slight commotion outside, and
the man taking the money at the door as the wayfarers pass out, deserts
his post. Ferdie, who is so seated that he can look through the open
windows, suddenly says, "It's some accident;" next cries, "It's Buck
Powers!" and rushes from the room.

A moment after Erma finds herself outside among an excited crowd, gazing
at Captain Lawrence striding along the platform, bearing in his arms the
form of Buck, the news-agent.

"The boy was coupling the cars, and forgot till too late they had Miller
platforms that come together," says the captain, mentioning a kind of
accident very common on the first introduction of this life-saving
invention, which until railroad men got accustomed to it, was a source
of danger instead of safety, as it now is. Then he goes on quite
tenderly, "But I got there in time, didn't I, Buck?"

And the news-boy opens his red eyes and gasps, "You bet you did, pard,"
and there is a little cheer from the crowd, over which Lawrence's voice
is heard: "Get a doctor, quick!"

Then a looker-on says, "Take him to the hotel."

But Buck groans, "Keep me on the train, or they will steal all my stock
of goods and I'll be busted," and some one suggests the baggage car.

To this Lawrence quietly says, "No, I'll put him in my section," but on
arriving there with the boy in his arms, he finds Erma standing beside
him, and whispering, "My stateroom, please. It's quieter in there."

On hearing her voice, the young man looks at her a moment as if in
thought; then shortly says, "Yes, it is best as you say. Thank you, Miss
Travenion," and carries the boy in.

She can see him very tenderly brush the matted hair from off the
sufferer's face, and hears about her, from excited passengers, that
Captain Lawrence had risked his life to save that of a waif of the
railroad.

A moment after the doctor comes, and making a short examination, the man
of science says that the boy is only generally bruised and shaken up,
and will come around all right if he is made quiet and sent to sleep,
and would give him an opiate, did not Buck cry out piteously, "Don't
make me insensible, Doc. My box is open, and the train hands will eat
all my candies and peanuts and Californey fruit, and bust me up in
business."

"I'll attend to that, Buck," answers the captain quietly. "I'll lock up
your boxes," and getting the key from the boy, he bows slightly to Miss
Travenion and goes out of the car on his errand, pursued by the grateful
eyes of this Arab of the railroad. A moment after the doctor puts the
boy to sleep, and Erma steps out of her stateroom, to find that, Harry
having departed, the passengers on the car are discussing him very
generally, though in low tones of voice, as if fearing to disturb the
slumbering invalid.

Their conversation gives her a new idea of Captain Lawrence, for she
learns the opinion of those who have lived near him and are acquainted
with frontier habits and frontier methods; and they tell her that this
young man is respected and honored for the very deeds which she has
condemned in him and for which she has cut him off from the smiles of
her face and the words from her lips.

She hears expressions of admiration on all sides, and one man, a miner
from Colorado, and at present interested in the workings of a big coal
property near Evanston, says: "That fellow who risked his life to save
that foolish news-boy is 'clean-grit.' He and a few others like him,
made some of the towns on this railroad habitable. A man's life wasn't
safe in Cheyenne, but they wiped out every desperado, cut-throat and
bunco-steerer in that town, and now it is comfortable to live in."

A moment after expressing this opinion, this gentleman is rather
astonished to find the beautiful young lady from the East sitting beside
him and saying in anxious voice: "You think Vigilance Committees right?
You have had experience. Tell me all about them."

"They are right, if self-preservation is," he answers. Then, being a man
of wide Western experience, and noting the anxious look on the girl's
face, he tells her that the average frontier desperado is very careful
of his own life, though very careless of that of others, and if he is
certain of dying twenty-four hours afterwards, he will do no murder. And
he gives her a little history of Vigilance Committees in general, and
tells her how at White Pine, the first rush into that mining camp being
composed of old California and Nevada miners, they had said, "This will
be a red-hot place for cut-throats, bullies and blacklegs," and had
organized a Vigilance Committee _before_ they built the town of
Hamilton; and there had never been a murder in it, until long after the
Vigilance Committee and nearly all other inhabitants left it; and that
Pioche, one hundred and thirty miles away, with a population similar to
Hamilton, had averaged eighteen homicides a day, most of them wilful
murders, simply because the men who committed them knew that they would
not be avenged, there being no Vigilance Committee in that place; then,
warming to his subject, he goes on with the history of early Montana,
when it was impossible for any man to carry gold from Helena to Salt
Lake City and live through the trip; and people wondered why none of the
highwaymen who robbed, looted and murdered on that trail through
Southern Idaho to Utah were never brought to justice, and that a
Vigilance Committee was formed, and the first man they hung in the
Territory was the sheriff, and that after that they continued their work
with such success that for eight years thereafter no homicide was
committed in all Montana.

Next getting excited, he winds up by saying, "The best citizens of these
places were Vigilance men. There was no law, but they made peace; there
was no justice, but they made the land free from blood," and is
astonished at the end of this discourse to receive a grateful "Thank
you," from the young lady, whose eyes seem to have grown happier during
his lecture upon the morality of Lynch law.

Then, Miss Travenion, some load seeming to have been lifted from her
mind, turns to her stateroom, to watch over the sleeping news-boy. As
she sits gazing at the recumbent invalid, she wonders, "Why should I be
happy to hear that Harry Lawrence is not regarded as a murderer by those
who have seen him kill?" and while musing upon this, the boy opens his
eyes, for the effect of the opiate has passed off, Erma's conversation
with the Western man having been a long one.

A moment after, he says faintly, "If you please, Miss, I would like to
go back to business. This trip ain't goin' to pay me nothing."

"You lay quiet, Buck," whispers the girl. "I'll attend to your business
for you," for a sudden idea has come into Erma's head. She steps lightly
out into the car, and taking off her straw hat, throws a greenback into
it, and goes about among the passengers of the Pullmans, taking up a
collection for the injured waif, which nets him a great deal more than
the profits of his trip would have been, even were he in good health and
pursuing his business with his usual keenness.

Coming in from this, she shakes the money joyfully before the boy's eyes
and laughs, "What kind of a news-agent do you think I make? There are
the profits of the trip, Buck. Take some of this lemonade and go to
sleep again."

To which the boy murmurs, "You would make a corker. They'd buy
two-year-old peaches from you--they would," drinks down the beverage her
white hand places at his lips, and so goes to sleep again.

All this time the train, which seems to rattle along very merrily to the
girl, has been leaving the valley of the Green River--that stream which
flows between sandstones that, rising hundreds of feet above its banks,
have the appearance of domes and mediæval castles and cathedrals, making
it as picturesque as the Rhine, only much more grand; for far below, on
its course to the blue Gulf of California, its cliffs from hundreds of
feet grow into thousands, and its cathedrals and domes and palaces and
ruins are those of giants, not of men, for this river is really the
Colorado, and its Grand Cañon is the most sublime spectacle of the whole
American continent, not even excepting the tremendous mountains and
glaciers of the British Northwest.

So, after a few hours' running over plateaux nearly as barren as the
Sahara Desert, though they would blossom like the garden of Gethsemane
could irrigation ever be brought to them, they approach the high
tablelands at Piedmont, and climbing through long snow sheds to Aspen
Hill, run down the valley of the Bear River, by which stream the train
winds its way to Evanston, the last town in Wyoming Territory.

As they progress westward, Miss Travenion leaves the sleeping boy, and
coming to Mrs. Livingston's stateroom, finds that lady in conversation
with Mr. Kruger, who seems to be very happy at getting back to his Utah
home.

"You will soon find yourself in a beautiful land," he says. "You see
them great mountains down thar?" He points to the Uintah Range, whose
peaks go up into the blue sky at the south like a great snowy saw.
"Down in thar is a valley, one of the purtiest pieces of grazing land
and farming property in the whole Territory, Kammas Praharie, and I've
got as pretty a ranch down there as in Utah, and lots of cattle and
horses, and in my house four as nice-looking young--" He checks himself
as suddenly at the last of this speech as if he were struck with a club.

Which Ferdie noticing, asks, "Why are you always snapping your jaws
together before you finish your sentences? One would think you had
something to conceal."

"Not much!" replies the accused, his face getting very red, however.
"Any one can investigate the life of Lot Kruger, and find that he's as
upright and above board as the Lot of the Scriptures, and what he has
done has been did with the advice and sanction of his church, and that's
more, I reckon, than you can say, young man, though you're not much over
kid high yit!"

But any further discussion is stopped by the train running into
Evanston, where are the great coal mines. Here they take dinner, and
Miss Travenion has hopes of gaining conversation with Captain Lawrence,
but she only succeeds in seeing him at a distance, and thinks he looks
very stern, which is the truth, for he has just received some telegrams
from Salt Lake about his mining property that by no means please him. He
would doubtless brighten up, however, did he but know that the girl is
very anxious to say a few words to him and even offer a generous apology
to this Vigilante,--this "man of blood."

After a little, a couple of locomotives helping them over a slight
grade, they come into Echo Cañon, and begin to descend to the valley of
the Great Salt Lake; then going on, the Weber River comes in from the
south, where the melting streams of the Uintah Mountains give it birth.
So skirting the willow and cottonwood banks of this beautiful stream,
they run by the Thousand Mile Tree and the Devil's Slide and the old
Mormon bridge; and many little hamlets and orchards, which seem very
green and beautiful to the girl after the long, weary stretches of
desert she has just left, till they come to the Narrows, where two great
mountains of the Wahsatch appear to bar the passage. But the cliffs
open, and the train bursts through to where the valley of Salt Lake is
spread before them, and Erma sees the inland sea she has often read
about, as the cars run down towards it 'mid green pastures and lowing
cattle and thrifty orchards, for it is where the Mormons have set their
home in the wilderness, and by the arts of peace have made a land of
plenty, in order to uphold a form of government which, like that of the
ancient Druids, is founded on blood atonement and the sacrifice of its
unbelievers and its enemies.

But here the girl suddenly thinks of her invalid, and going back to her
stateroom, finds Buck sitting up, and again ready to battle with the
world.

"You and the Cap has done me a good turn," he says. "Some day I'll even
up on you," and his gray eyes speak more strongly than his words, that
some day the deeds of this Bedouin of the railroad will tell her more
than he mutters.

"You're beautiful enough to be a Chicago gal," he mutters. "The Cap
thinks so too!" This compliment drives her away from him, and she has
red cheeks, though she is laughing.

But the train is now running into Ogden, and murmuring, "My father!"
Miss Travenion darts to the platform of the car and searches with all
her eyes for his loved form and dear face. After a little,
disappointment comes upon the girl, and she mutters, "He is not here."
Next she says to herself, "Only three hours more to Salt Lake. There he
must be!"

Then Mrs. Livingston and Louise attempt consolation, and shortly after
the party make their way some three hundred yards north of the Union and
Central depots, to where at that time the station of the Utah Central
was located, and prepare to board the train that is standing ready to
run thirty odd miles to the south to the city over which the Mormon
Hierarchy is still dominant, though their power is beginning to wane
under the assaults of migrating Gentiles, who have come to this
Territory, brought by the Pacific railroads, to search for the silver
and gold in its mountains.

At this little station Captain Lawrence's cause gets another and most
happy advancement in the girl's mind. Some five minutes before the train
is ready, Mr. Ferdie wanders off from the party, and a few moments after
Miss Travenion notices him in earnest conversation with a gentleman
apparently of the cowboy order.

Exchanging a few words, the young man and his chance acquaintance walk
down a sidewalk to a saloon, standing about a hundred yards from the
railroad.

At this moment, Erma also notes Captain Lawrence walking rapidly over
from the Union Depot, apparently having made up his mind to catch this
train for Salt Lake also, and hopes to herself, "This will be my time
for explanation."

But even while she does so, the gentleman upon whom she is gazing casts
two quick, sharp glances at Ferdie and his companion, and instantly
changing his direction and quickening his pace, makes straight for the
saloon just as the two disappear behind its door.

"He will give me no opportunity for apology," says Erma to herself.
"Very well, the next advance shall come from him!" and her pretty foot
tapping the platform impatiently, she turns away and watches the
baggage-men loading their trunks upon the Utah Central train.

A moment after, she is aroused from her reverie by the sound of the bell
upon the station, which always heralds out-going trains, and Mrs.
Livingston, coming to her, gasps, "Where is Ferdie? The conductor tells
us we have only a minute more. He is not here. My Heaven, not here!"

"I know where he is, and I'll find him," answers Erma, and runs hastily
down the sidewalk to where she has last seen the errant youth. As she
approaches, however, she pauses a moment, for the thought suddenly
strikes her, "If Captain Lawrence is there, perhaps he'll think I want
to speak to him."

But remembering that haste is vital, she hastily opens the saloon door,
and stands appalled; for a sight meets her such as seldom comes to a New
York young lady. The signs of combat are about her--a table has been
thrown over, a broken spittoon and scattered cards are lying on the
floor--and Ferdie, his light suit in the sawdust of the barroom, is held
down upon his back, while over him, one knee upon his chest, is a man
with black sombrero and buckskin leggings and red shirt, and awful hand
with uplifted bowie, ready to strike the young heart that is panting
beneath his grasp, did not Harry Lawrence grasp it with his left, and
with his right hand press the cold muzzle of a Colt's revolver against
the desperado's forehead.

Then Lawrence's voice speaks clear as a bell: "Drop that knife! You know
me, Texas Jack. I hung up your pard in Laramie. Drop that knife or I
fire."

At his word the bowie-knife comes to the floor. Then Harry says coolly:
"Throw up your hands and walk out in front of me," and keeping the man
before his pistol, marches him out of the saloon. On the sidewalk he
remarks:

"Don't look back until you have gone a hundred yards, or you are a dead
man. _March!_" And Texas Jack, his spurs clinking in the dust, and a
deck of monte cards slipping from his clothes as he walks, proceeds on
his way, and does not turn back till he has got out of sight.

Then the bell of the locomotive is suddenly heard. Lawrence cries:
"Hurry. You'll miss the cars!" and waves Erma, who is too much agitated,
and Ferdie, who is too much out of breath, to speak, to follow him. And
they all run to the station of the Utah Central, where Miss Travenion
gives a gasp, for the train has already run out, and they can see it
making its way to the bridge across the Weber bound for the city of the
Saints.

"Anyway, God bless you!" cries Ferdie, who has gained his wind. "You
saved my life."

"Yes," says Harry shortly, "this time; but perhaps the next there will
be no one there to help you. And take my advice, young man: don't go
hunting adventures out here, not even if they tell you there is a
grizzly bear chained in the back-yard."

"Why!" says Mr. Chauncey with a little gasp, "that is just what he did
tell me."

"Ah, I guessed right," says Lawrence with a slight sneer, for Mr.
Ferdinand had been made a victim of the notorious bear game, as were
many others about that time in Ogden. Then he goes on: "Don't play three
card monte, and if they rob you, don't knock the villain down, for he is
sure to be armed, and your life is pleasant to you still, I guess, young
man."

With this he turns away, but Erma is after him, and puts her hand on his
arm, whispering, "How bravely you saved him! I have learned the truth
about you. Forgive me!"

But the man she addresses is apparently not easy to conciliate, and he
remarks curtly, "You did not give me the right even a Vigilance
Committee would give!"

"What right?"

"The right to defend myself!" And he heeds not Erma's pleading eyes.

Then she whispers, "Give me the justice I denied you. Let me explain
also. How was I, a girl brought up in a land of peace, to know that men
could exist like that one from whom you saved Ferdie just now; that to
protect the innocent it was necessary to slay the guilty, and _right_,
too?" and then bursts forth impetuously, "_Wretches like that murderer I
saw out there I would kill also!_"

But the young man does not seem to heed her; and muttering, "You don't
forgive me any more than you did the murderers," she falters away and
says piteously, "And I--alone here!" And there are tears in her
beautiful eyes; for at this moment Ferdie seems very little of a
protector.

This last affects Lawrence. He steps to her, ejaculating huskily, "Not
as long as I am here!"

"Oh, thank you," cries the girl. "You will take care of me. How nice!"
her smiles overcoming her tears.

"Certainly. That is my duty," answers Harry, still coldly, for he has
been very deeply wounded.

"I don't want your duty!" answers Erma hotly.

"What do you want?"

"Forgiveness! Don't punish me with kindness, and still be implacable.
Forgive me," pleads the young lady, her little hand held out towards her
judge.

Then Miss Travenion gives a startled little "Ough!" for her fingers
receive a grip that makes her wince, and as their hands meet, piquant
gaiety comes over the young lady, and the gentleman begins to smile, and
his eyes grow sunny.

A second after he says, "If I am responsible for you, I must look after
you. You must have dinner, and so must Ferdie," and he calls cheerily to
the youth, who has been brushing the sawdust of barroom floor and the
dirt of combat from his light travelling suit. "You are up to a bite,
young bantam, ain't you, after your scrimmage?"

"Yes, I'm dead hungry," answers Mr. Chauncey. "But Erma, your French
maid is in the waiting-room, crying her eyes out. She says my aunt left
her with your hand-baggage."

"Clothes!" screams Miss Travenion. "There's a new dress in my travelling
bag! Oh! to get rid of the dust of travel," and growing very happy at
this find--as what woman would not?--she and Lawrence walk across the
tracks to the railroad hotel, followed by the maid and Ferdie, who
brings up the rear, stopping at every other step to examine his summer
suit for rent of combat, and to give it another brush from barroom dirt,
and shortly arrive at the hostelry that lies between the tracks of the
Union and Central Pacific Railways.

Here Lawrence suggests that Erma send a telegram to Mrs. Livingston, and
dissipate any fears her chaperon may have for her safety. So, going into
the telegraph office, she hastily writes the following:

     "TO MRS. LIVINGSTON,

     "On train bound for Salt Lake City:

     "Detained by Ferdie. We are both well, and will follow on first
     train in the morning. Please tell papa,--who will meet you at the
     depot.

     "ERMA TRAVENION."

This being despatched, she comes out and stands by Lawrence, and watches
the Central Pacific train, with its yellow silver palace sleeping cars,
that is just about to run for the West and California, and laughs: "In
two weeks I will be once more on my way to the Golden Land."

"So soon!" says the young man, a sigh in his voice.

"Oh," says the girl, airily; "by that time I shall have seen papa, and
we have to do California and get back to New York for the first
Patriarch's Ball." Then she babbles, "Oh, the delights of New York
society. You must come on next winter and see how gay our city is,
Captain Lawrence, to a young lady who--who isn't _always_ a wall
flower."

"That I will," answers Harry, heartily. A moment after, he goes on more
considerately, "If I can arrange my mining business,"--this last by no
means so confidently spoken.

As he says this, the train dashes off on its way to the Pacific, and
Ferdie coming out of the hotel, where he has been generally put in
order, the three, accompanied by the maid, go in to dinner. The mentor
of the party registers their names, and tells the proprietor, who seems
to know him very well, to give Miss Travenion the best rooms in the
house.

At this, the young lady says, "Excuse me for a few minutes. I have
clothes with me now." And despite Lawrence's laughing protestations that
no change can be for the better, she runs up-stairs, and a few minutes
after returns, having got the dust of travel from her in some marvellous
way, and appearing in a new toilet--one of those half dress, half every
day affairs, something with lace on it and ribbons, which makes her
beauty fresh as that of a new-blown rosebud.

Their dinner is a merry meal; Miss Travenion coming out afterwards on
the platform, and watching out-going freight trains and switching
locomotives, as the two gentlemen smoke. Then the moon comes up over the
giant mountains that wall in this Ogden Valley, save where it opens on
the Great Salt Lake, and shadows fall on the distant gorges and cañons.
Illumined by the soft light, the girl looks radiantly lovely and
piquantly happy, for somehow this evening seems to her a pleasant one.

After a little, Mr. Chauncey wanders away, perhaps in search of further
frontier adventure, though Lawrence notes that he sticks very close to
the main hotel, and does not investigate outlying barrooms. Then Erma
and Harry being alone, the young man's talk grows confidential, and he
tells the girl a good deal of his mining business, which seems to be
upon his mind. How he had expected to sell his claim to an English
company, but now fears that he shall not, on account of the accursed
Mormons--this last under his breath, for nearly every one in the
community they are now in are members of that church.

On being questioned, he goes on to explain that a claim has been made to
a portion of his mine by a Mormon company, remarking that he has bad
news from Salt Lake City that day. He has learned that a Mormon of great
influence, called Tranyon, has purchased nearly all the other interests
in Zion's Co-operative Mining Institution, which has brought suit for a
portion of his property.

"How will that affect you?" queries Erma, who apparently has grown
anxious for her mentor's speculation.

"Why, this Tranyon is a man of wonderful sagacity,--more, I think, than
any other business Mormon in this country. He made nearly as much
grading the Union Pacific Railway as Brigham Young himself. He has
blocks of stock in the road upon which we will travel to-morrow morning
to Salt Lake City. I have now money, brains and a Mormon jury against
me!" says Lawrence, with a sigh.

He would perhaps continue this subject, did not Ferdie come excitedly to
them, his eyes big with wonder, and whisper: "Kruger is in the hotel.
Buck Powers and I have been investigating your father's friend, Erma,
and have discovered that he is a full-fledged Mormon bishop."

"A Mormon! Impossible," says the young lady, with a start.

"Your father's friend?" exclaims Lawrence.

"Certainly," replies Miss Travenion. "I met him with my father several
times in New York."

To this the Western man does not answer, but a shade passes over his
brow and he grows thoughtful.

Then Ferdie, who is very full of his news, says: "There's no doubt of
it. I talked with the man who keeps the bar, and he said Lot Kruger was
as good a Mormon as any man in Salt Lake Valley, and I asked him if he
didn't think we could arrest Kruger, and he cursed me and said he'll
blow my infernal Gentile head off."

Here Harry interrupts the boy sternly: "Don't you know that the man in
the hotel and nearly every one else about here are Mormons? If you make
many more remarks of that kind, you'll never see New York again."

This advice puts Mr. Chauncey in a brown study, and he wanders away
whistling, while Lawrence turns to Miss Travenion and asks her with a
serious tone in his voice: "You are sure this man Kruger is interested
with your father in business?"

"I am certain," falters the girl. "In some way. I don't know how much."

"I am very sorry for that!"

"Sorry for it? How can it affect my father?" returns Miss Travenion,
growing haughty.

"That I can't see myself," rejoins her escort, and the two both go into
contemplation.

A minute after the girl smiles and says, "Why, in another minute,
perhaps you will think I am Miss Mormon myself." This seeming to her a
great joke, she laughs very heartily.

But her laugh would be a yellow one, did she know that Lot Kruger,
bishop in the Mormon Church, high up in the Seventies, Councilor of the
Prophet, Brigham Young; and ex-Danite and Destroying Angel to boot, has
stayed in Ogden on her account, and has just sent a telegram to one who
holds the Latter-Day Saints in his hand, which reads:

     "OGDEN, _October 4, 1871_.

     "She is here. I am watching her. She will arrive in Salt Lake on
     the morning train. See my letter from Chicago, due to-night."

Not knowing this, the girl's laughter is light and happy, and seems to
be infectious, for Lawrence joins in it, and their conversation grows
low, as if they would keep it to themselves, and perhaps slightly
romantic, for there is a fire in the young man's dark eyes that seems to
be reflected in the beautiful blue ones of Miss Travenion, as she tells
him of life in New York society, and about Mrs. Livingston and her son.
This discantation on the absent Oliver Lawrence enjoys so little,
however, that he turns the conversation to his own prospects once more.

On which the girl asks him if his mine is so rich, why does he not work
it himself.

"Because I am tired of barbarism!" he cries. "I want a home and a wife,
and I wouldn't ask any woman to share a mining cabin with me."

"What matters," says Erma airily, "if she loved you?"

"Do you mean that?" remarks Harry, a peculiar ring coming into his
voice.

"Yes," says the girl, rising; "if I loved a man I believe I could give
up for him--even New York. But it is growing late. You tell me we have
an early breakfast to-morrow morning, Captain Lawrence?"

"Yes, six o'clock," he says shortly, and escorts his charge to the door
of the hotel, where her maid is waiting for her. Here she nonchalantly
says, "Good-night. Thank you so much!" Then, a sudden impulse impelling
her, she steps to the man who is just turning from her and whispers, her
eyes glowing gratefully, "God bless you for saving Ferdie's life! God
bless you for being kind to me!"

Next, seemingly frightened at herself, she runs lightly up the stairs to
her bedroom, where she goes to sleep; but once she is awakened by the
clanging of freight trains in the night, and this thought comes into her
head: "What manner of man is this who two days ago was a stranger to me,
but who has built railroads and slain desperadoes and Indians and whom I
think about waking and sleeping?" Then she utters a little affrighted
cry, "WHY, HE HAS EVEN MADE ME FORGET MY FATHER!"

The gentleman she has slighted has been under discussion on the railroad
platform below.

Mr. Chauncey and Lawrence, strolling out before going to bed to take a
preliminary smoke, the Captain suddenly asks, between puffs of his
cigar: "Miss Travenion's father was quite a swell in New York?"

"Was?--IS!" cries Ferdie. "I only know him by sight, but I inspected him
once or twice last year when he was in town, sitting in the Unity
windows, chewing a cane, and following with his eyes any likely ankle up
the Avenue. In fact, he's about as heavy a swell now as you'd want to
see, though they say when he lived in New York permanently he used to be
heavier."

"Ah," replies Harry, taking a long puff at his Havana, "a thorough club
man?"

"I should think so!" returns Mr. Chauncey. "He is an out and outer.
There are some curious stories extant that would make your hair stand on
end about Ralph Travenion in the old days. They say----"

But Ferdie stops here in sudden surprise, for Lawrence's hand is on his
arm, and he is whispering: "Don't tell me anything that would make me
think less of her father!"

"Oh, of course not, if you don't wish it," replies the boy. Then he
laughingly says: "You're not going to judge of Miss Beauty up there by
her paternal, are you, old man? That would be _rather_ a heavy
handicap." A moment later he goes on, the other not replying: "But she'd
stand it. She's a good girl; even a big fortune and the adoration of
Newport's smart set couldn't give her airs. She's liable to marry some
fellow just for love."

"You think so?" asks Lawrence with a hearty voice.

"Certainly. Did you notice her thanking you for saving my life?" returns
the boy. "Could she have shown more gratitude if you'd been an English
duke? And I thank you for it also. We Harvard men are not apt to gush,
my boy; but we feel just the same. If I was in love with Erma Travenion,
I'd sooner have what you did to-day to my credit than a million in
bonds."

"Would you!" cries the captain. "Would you!" and his clasp is so cordial
as he shakes Ferdie's hand on bidding him good-night that the boy goes
away and mutters, "He's got a grip like a prize-fighter--but hang it, I
sent him to bed happy for saving my life--and he did save it. Good Lord,
if it hadn't been for him, where would yours truly have been now? Oh
ginger!" And this idea making him serious, he goes to bed and sleeps, a
thing that Harry finds more difficult.

The next morning there is a very happy smile on Miss Travenion's face as
she trips down to her breakfast, where she is met by Captain Lawrence
and Ferdie, and the three shortly after go to the Utah Central and take
train there for Salt Lake, and after running through prosperous Mormon
villages and outlying farms for about an hour and a half, Erma suddenly
cries, "What is that great turtle rising out of the trees?"

To this Lawrence answers, "The Mormon Tabernacle!" and a few minutes
after they run into the "City of the Saints," where certain things shall
come to Erma Travenion such as this young lady of New York society wots
not are in the heavens above the earth, nor in the waters that are
beneath it.



BOOK II.

A CURIOUS CLUB MAN.



CHAPTER VIII.

THE CITY OF SAINTS.


Here they are met by Mr. Oliver Livingston, who has a carriage in
waiting. To his anxious questioning as to how they had missed the train,
and had fared during the night in Ogden, Miss Travenion says shortly,
"First my father; is he not here with you?" and looks about the depot
with scrutinizing eyes. A moment after she continues hurriedly, "Your
mother received my telegram?"

"Yes," remarks Ollie. "It arrived just in time to save mamma from a
fainting fit."

"And you did not communicate it to my father?"

"No," returns Mr. Livingston; "that was impossible. He was not at the
station here. At all events, I did not see him, as I would undoubtedly
have, if he had been waiting for you."

"Then he cannot have been in town," cries Erma, her pretty lips pouting
with disappointment, for Mr. Livingston is very well acquainted with Mr.
Travenion by sight, having seen that gentleman on some of his visits to
New York.

While this colloquy has been going on, Ferdie and Harry have been
conversing apart. Miss Travenion now turns to them, and seeing that
Ollie does not recognize her protector of the night before, says,
rapidly, but earnestly, "Mr. Livingston, you must remember Captain
Lawrence on the train. He was very kind to me last night and took good
care of me. You should thank him also."

The latter part of this speech has been made in some embarrassment, for
the young men are looking at each other with by no means kindly eyes.
Its last sentence makes them enemies, for Livingston, who had already
been slightly jealous of the attentions of the Westerner to the young
lady he regards even now as his _fiancée_, becomes very jealous, and
Lawrence, who has somehow formed the shrewd idea that there is some
connection between Miss Travenion and the son of her chaperon,
interprets the "You should thank him also," for indication of engagement
and future marriage between the pair, and from this moment takes that
kind of a liking to Mr. Livingston a man generally has for a rival who
is more blessed by circumstance and position in matters pertaining to
his suit--which generally means envious hate.

Being compelled to social truce, at least in the presence of the young
lady, the two men are obliged to recognize each other and acknowledge
the re-introduction. This Livingston does by a rather snarly "How are
yer?" and Lawrence by a nod of indifference.

Then Miss Travenion gives an additional pang to Mr. Livingston, for she
says: "Captain, another request. You know Salt Lake very well? You are
acquainted with some of the journals?"

"One only," remarks Harry. "The Salt Lake _Tribune_,--the Gentile
newspaper."

"Then you can do me a favor," returns Erma. "My father apparently has
not received my telegram. Would you take care that a notice of my
arrival is inserted prominently in that paper, so that if papa is in
town, he will see it; if in any of the mining camps or settlements
about here, it may reach his eye. The sooner I behold him, the happier I
shall be."

"Any request from you will be a command to me," says Lawrence, eagerly.
"The announcement shall be made in the _Tribune_, but it cannot be until
to-morrow morning. If I can aid you in any other way, please do not fail
to call upon me." To this he adds hurriedly: "I shall leave town early
this afternoon for Tintic Mining District, but shall return in three
days."

"Very well," answers the young lady. "Do not forget that we stop at the
Townsend House, where I shall always be most happy to see you." She
emphasizes her invitation by so cordial a grasp of the hand, and Harry
returns it so heartily, that Mr. Oliver Livingston pulls down his
immaculate shirt-cuffs in anguish and rage.

This is not decreased by Ferdie's admiring remark: "Ain't the Cap a high
stepper!" as the party step into the carriage and drive away.

They are soon at the corner of West Temple and South Second Streets, and
find themselves in front of a rather rambling two-story house with an
attic attachment, at this time the principal hotel in Salt Lake City,
for in 1871 the Walker House is not yet built. It has a generally yellow
appearance, though its windows are protected from the sun by green
Venetian blinds.

Alighting here, Miss Travenion is informed that Mrs. Livingston is not
yet up, and going to her room, lies down, it being still quite early in
the day, while her maid unpacks her trunks and arranges her dresses.
Though fatigued by her long railroad trip, sleep does not come to Erma,
for thoughts of her father are upon her; and after a little, growing
anxious on this subject, she springs up, and says: "I'll look for him!"

So, making a hasty but effective toilet, robed in a dainty summer dress,
the girl stepping to the window, looks out and cries: "How pretty!" for
she is gazing upon Salt Lake City on an October day, which is as
beautiful as any day can be, save a May day, when there is a little less
dust on the streets and a little more water in the rivulets that course
through them.

All round her are houses embowered in green foliage, and broad streets,
also planted with trees, and streams of living water, fresh from the
melting snows of the Wahsatch, coursing by their sidewalks where gutters
would be in ordinary towns.

In these streets there is a curious, heterogeneous life, the like of
which she has never seen before. Immediately below her, in front of the
hotel, men of many climes lounge about the unpaved sidewalk, most of
them seated, their feet against the trees that line its side, each man
smoking a cigar, the aromas of which, as they float up to her, seem to
be pleasant.

Most of these are mining speculators from California, the East, and
Europe; as their voices rise to her, she catches tones similar to those
she has heard in Delmonico's from travelling Englishmen. For the Emma
mine is in its glory; and much British capital has floated into this
Territory, to be invested in the silver leads of the great mountains
that cut off her view to the east, and the low ranges that she can see
to the south and west; a good deal of it never to return to London
again; for, of all the speculators of many nations who have invested in
American securities, stocks, bonds, mining properties and beer
interests, none have so rashly and so lavishly squandered their money as
the speculators of merry England. These have sometimes been allured to
financial discomfort by Yankee shrewdness, but more often have been
betrayed by the ignorance or carelessness or rascality of those whom
they have sent from their native isle to represent them, who have judged
America, Western mines and Yankee business methods by England, Cornish
lodes and the financial conditions that prevail in Thread-Needle Street.

Two or three hacks and carriages, such as are seen in the East, stand in
front of the hotel, while in the street before her move some big mule
teams, laden with bars of lead and silver, from some smelter on the
Jordan, and a little further on is a wagon of the prairies, covered with
the mud and dust of long travel, driven by some Mormon who has come up
from the far southern settlements of Manti, or Parowan, or the pretty
oasis towns of Payson or Spanish Fork or some other garden spot by the
side of the fresh waters of Utah Lake, to go through the rites of the
Endowment House, and take unto himself another wife; paying well for the
ceremonies in farm produce.

Looking over this scene, the girl murmurs, "How peaceful--how
beautiful!" and next, "How wonderful," and a moment after, gazing at the
great Mormon Tabernacle, she mutters, "How awful!" for in the two hours
passed upon the train coming from Ogden to Salt Lake, Harry Lawrence has
told her, as delicately as a young man can tell a maiden, of this
peculiar city into which she has just come, and she knows quite well the
peculiar creed of the Church of Latter-Day Saints.

She has learnt how this sect, founded upon the so-called revelation from
the Almighty, made to Joseph Smith, and Hyrum, his brother, in about
1847, driven out from Illinois and afterwards from Missouri, had left
civilization behind them, and passing over a thousand of miles of
prairie and mountain, inhabited only by savage Indians and trappers and
hunters, had come by ox-teams, on horseback, by hand carts and on foot,
enduring for long months all the privations and dangers of the
wilderness, to this far-off valley to build a Mormon empire. For that is
surely what their leaders had hoped.

The civilization of the East seemed to them so far off a hundred years
might not bring it to them, across those boundless rolling prairies and
that five hundred miles of mountain country. To the West were more
deserts, and beyond a land scarcely known at that time, and inhabited
only by Indians, save where some Mexican mission stood surrounded by its
little orchard and vineyard, in that land that is now called California.

In this hope of empire, the Mormon leaders had built up polygamy, which,
having been begun for lust, they now preached, continued, and fostered
to produce the power that numbers give. For this reason the order had
been given, "Increase and multiply, that you may cover the land," and it
was cried out from pulpit and tabernacle "that Utah's best crop was
children;" and missionaries and Mormon propagandists were sent out over
both Europe and America to make converts to the new religion. So, many
Scandinavians, Welsh and English, were taken into the faith and came to
live in the Utah valleys, and thought this religion of Joseph Smith a
very good one--for they were chiefly the scum of Europe--and now had
land to cultivate and plenty with which to fill their stomachs, while in
their native lands they had often hungered.

For the Mormon hierarchy hoped, in the distant future, when the
civilization from the Eastern States had reached them, to be increased
by immigration and multiplication from thousands into millions; and
peopling the whole land, from the Rocky Mountains to the Pacific, to be
strong enough to dominate Mexico if she dared complain of their
occupation of North California, and even to give battle to these United
States of America.

And to the eyes of Brigham and his satellites came the dream of a Mormon
empire, holding dominion over the Pacific, ruled over by the Priesthood
of the faith of Joseph Smith and the Council of Seventies, and above
them the President and Vice-President, descendants of Brigham Young and
Heber Kimball and others high in rank and power in the theocracy of the
so-called Latter-Day Saints.

All of these plans might have borne fruit and have been realized had it
not been that one day in 1848 gold was discovered near Sutter's Fort in
California, and the rush of adventurers to the western El Dorado peopled
its fertile valleys and mineral-bearing mountains and great
grain-raising plains with a population who worshipped Jehovah and not
Joe Smith. Then the Mexican war having given Arizona and Texas and the
Pacific States to the United States, Brigham Young and his emigrants
found themselves surrounded and cut off in and about the valley of Salt
Lake. But still they continued to increase and multiply and make the
desert about them fertile and populated, still hoping to be strong
enough to resist foreign domination, for they regarded the United States
as such, and treated its laws, if not as null and void, at least as
secondary to the commands of their prophet and priesthood, until one day
in 1862 Pat Conner and his California Volunteers marched in from the
Humboldt, and crossing the Jordan, despite the threats of the Mormon
leaders, set up the United States flag at Camp Douglas.

Then Mormon hopes, from that of independent empire, fell to the wish to
be simply left alone, to do as they pleased in their own country, as
they termed it, and to follow out the revelations of their prophets,
taking unto themselves as many wives as they chose, unhindered by the
United States laws.

But in 1869, when the Central and Union Pacific Railways were opened,
bringing in a horde of Gentiles from all the corners of the world to
delve in their mountains for gold, silver and lead, then the struggle of
the Mormon theocracy became one not for power, but even for existence.

It is just in this state as Erma gazes at its metropolis.

This last great fight of the Mormon Church is being made without the
sacrifice and the cutting off from the face of the earth of their
enemies, for though the prophets of Zion would preach "blood atonement"
to their followers with as much gusto in 1871 as they did twenty years
before, when they cut off the Morrisites, root and branch, or in 1857,
when, headed by John D. Lee, they massacred one hundred and thirty-three
emigrants, men, women and children, or in 1866, when they assassinated
Dr. Robinson, luring him from his own door on a professional errand of
mercy to a wounded man, as well as many other murders, "cuttings off
behind the ears" and "usings up," done in the name of the Lord and in
pursuit of mammon, lust and power, at such various times and places as
seemed good, safe and convenient to the Apostles; still, even before
1871 the rush of Gentile immigration and the United States troops at
Camp Douglas had taught them caution in their slaughterings.

Most of this has been explained to Miss Travenion by her escort and
mentor of the morning, but he has not descanted very minutely upon
Celestial Marriage, which permits a man to take wives not only for this
world, but also to have any number of others sealed to him for eternity;
the doctrine that woman takes her rank in Heaven according to the
station and glory of her husband. That under these theories, men have
often taken two sisters to wife, and sometimes even mother and daughter.
That a great part of the theory, as also the practice, of the Saints of
Latter Days, is founded upon the social degradation of woman. All these
things she does not know, though she will perchance some day learn more
fully concerning them.

But the day is too sunny and bright for meditation, and the soft breeze
from the Wahsatch incites Erma to action. Just then there is a light
feminine knock on her door, and Louise's voice cries merrily: "Hurry,
Erma; mamma is down-stairs at breakfast and wants to see you. She has so
many questions to ask. Ferdie has just told her about his being saved
from death by Captain Lawrence, and is singing his praises."

Being perhaps anxious to sing the young Western man's praises herself,
Miss Travenion, with a happy laugh, trips out and kisses Louise, and the
two girls run down to the dining-room, where they find Mrs. Livingston
still pale and palpitating over Ferdie's escape, though apparently with
a very good appetite, notwithstanding Mr. Chauncey has made his
narrative very highly colored, stating that he had knocked the desperado
down and would have done him up if it had not been for his bowie-knife.

"All the same," he adds, just as Erma seats herself at the table, "that
Lawrence is a regular thoroughbred--a Western hero, and saved my life in
that barroom."

"I should think you would be ashamed of yourself," says Mr. Livingston,
airily, during pauses in his breakfast, "to admit associating with
barroom loafers!"

"Barroom loafers?" cries Erma. "Whom do you mean?" and she looks at
Ollie in so resolute and defiant a manner that he hesitates to take up
the cudgels with her.

Therefore he mutters rather sulkily, "Oh, if you are going to make this
Lawrence your hero I have nothing more to say," and glumly pitches into
the beefsteak that is in front of him; but, all the same, hates Harry a
little more than he has ever done.

Anxious to put an end to a discussion which does her son no good in the
eyes of the young lady she regards as his _fiancée_, Mrs. Livingston
proposes a sight-seeing drive about the city.

"You will come with us, Erma?" she adds.

"With pleasure," answers the girl. "Perhaps on the main street I may see
papa."

"By Jove," laughs Ferdie. "You're always thinking of papa now. But you
forgot him a _little_--last night at Ogden, eh?"

To this insinuation Erma answers nothing, but rises from the table with
a heightened color on her cheeks.

Noticing this, Mrs. Livingston thinks it just as well that her
_protégée_ sees no more of the Western mining man, and is rather
relieved when Mr. Chauncey informs her Captain Lawrence has departed for
Tintic, and will not return for several days.

Then they take a long drive about the city, the hackman condescendingly
acting as _cicerone_ to the party, and pointing out the Tabernacle and
the proposed Temple, the foundations of which have just been laid, and
the Endowment House and the Tithing Office, and the Beehive and Lion
House, in which Brigham Young, the president of the Latter-Day Saints,
keeps the major portion of his harem; though he has houses and wives
almost all over the Territory.

Next, coming down from Eagle Gate, they pass the Mormon theatre with its
peculiar classic front made up of two different kinds of Greek
architecture, and so on to East Temple Street, by Godby's drug store,
and the great block of Zion's Mercantile Co-operative Institution, till
they come to Warden Bussey's Bank, upon which Erma and Mr. Livingston
have letters of credit.

So they enter here, draw some money, and are kindly received by Mr.
Bussey himself, their letters from the East bringing them favor in this
Gentile banker's eyes, who has just made a large fortune by speculating
in Emma stock. He shows them over the new banking-house he has just
erected, and tells them he is going to open it with a grand ball, and
hopes they will come to the same; remarking that Mrs. Bussey will call
upon them and do all she can for their entertainment during their stay
in this Western city.

Then they return to the Townsend House, but during all this drive,
though Erma Travenion's eyes, which are quite far-sighted, have searched
the passing crowd of speculators, Mormons and Western business men,
seeking for one form and one face--her father's--she has not seen it. As
the afternoon passes she becomes more impatient, and says, "I have lost
a day in which his dear face might have been beside me."

Then an idea coming to her, she mutters: "Why did I not think of it
before? I will go where I address my father's letters; there they will
know where he is." And calling a hack, says to the driver, "The Deseret
Co-operative Bank!"

Arriving there, shortly before the hour of closing, three o'clock, she
hurriedly asks the paying-teller if he can tell her the address of Mr.
Ralph Travenion.

To her astonishment, the man answers quite politely that he does not
know the individual.

"Why, I have directed a hundred letters to him here," she says
hurriedly, surprise in her voice, and a moment after asks: "Can I see
the cashier or the president?"

"Certainly. The president is in."

In an inner office, she meets the head of the bank, and to her question
as to whether he knows the address of Ralph Travenion, he hesitates a
moment--then answers that they frequently have letters addressed to
their care, though they do not always keep run of the parties who call
for them.

"Very well," replies the young lady. "Would you be kind enough to give
orders to this effect, that in case Mr. Travenion calls, or sends for
his letters, that he is to be informed that Mr. Travenion's daughter is
at present at the Townsend House waiting anxiously to see him?"

"Ah, you are Mr. Travenion's daughter," replies the official, as he
shows her politely to the door and puts her in her carriage, a rather
curious expression coming over his face as he gazes after the beautiful
girl as she is driven away; for this bank is a Mormon one, and its
president is well up in the Church of Zion, and knows a good deal of the
counsels and doings of its leaders and nearly every one else in Salt
Lake City.

Then the evening comes, and the whole party go to the old Salt Lake
Theatre, where Mr. Ollie's dress-coat makes a great sensation, such
costume not being usual in the Mormon temple of Thespis; this
gentleman's entrance being greeted by a very audible buzz from the
female portion of the audience.

Here they see the arm-chair that is placed conspicuously in the
orchestra, for the use of the President of the Mormon Church; likewise,
a third of the dress circle, which is his family's private box. This
portion of the auditorium is pretty well occupied by some of his wives
and his numerous progeny, as well as a number of the daughters and
plural help-mates of other leaders and prophets of Zion, who drop in
upon them and pass the compliments of the season and talk of the crops
and Bishop Jenkins's last wife.

The performance on the stage is composed of a couple of light comedies,
very passably given by a Mormon stock company, several of them being
members of President Young's family, one or two of whom have since
emigrated to the Gentile stage and secured recognition upon the boards
of New York and San Francisco.

But this visit to the theatre is not altogether an evening of delight to
Erma; to her astonishment, Mr. Livingston has suddenly changed from the
complacent, passive suitor of former times, to as impetuous a lover as
such a man can make, and his attentions embarrass her. This Romeo
business has partly been brought about by Mr. Ollie's jealousy and
partly by the remarks of his diplomatic mother.

This lady has had an interview with her son, caused chiefly by Miss
Travenion's adventures in Ogden, and has given her offspring the
following advice: "If you do not settle your marriage with Erma during
this trip, she will probably marry somebody else."

"Impossible! She is as good as engaged to me," cries out Ollie, hotly.

"Engaged! Why? Because her father and your father came to some
understanding when you were children?"

"Because Mr. Travenion has settled a million dollars on his daughter!
Why did he put that big sum apart for her sole use and benefit? He
wishes his daughter to take the position that I can give her in New
York."

"Because he has settled a million dollars on her," answers his mother,
"she is all the more difficult to win. It is a marvel to me that she,
the belle of New York last season and of Newport this summer, has kept
herself apart from entangling alliances with other men. Two months ago,
if she had loved that young Polo Blazer, you would have lost her then."

"You don't mean to say she loves that Vigilante--that mining fellow?"
says Oliver, turning pale at his mother's suggestion.

"If she doesn't love him she will love some man," returns his mother
grimly. "Don't you know that a girl with her beauty and her money is
bound to be sought after and will be won by somebody?"

"By me!" cries Ollie hotly. "Hang me if she shall marry any other man!"
Then he says plaintively, "I have considered her my own for a year."

"Very well," replies Mrs. Livingston; "you had better act as if you
did. Miss Travenion's attitude to you has been one of indifference. She
saw no one whom she liked better. Besides, girls enjoy being made love
to. Perhaps Captain Lawrence last night in Ogden in the moonlight was
more of a Romeo than you have been. He looks as if he might be."

"Does he?" cries Ollie. "I'll show him that I can play the romantic as
well as he," and going out, he, for the first time in his life--for he
is a good young man--says to himself, "Damn!" and then becomes
frightened and soliloquizes: "Oh gracious, that is the first time I ever
swore."

So going to the theatre and coming therefrom he assists Erma into the
carriage with squeezes of her hand that make her wince, and little
amatory ogles of the eyes that make her blush.

Coming from the theatre, they go to "Happy Jack's," the swell restaurant
of the city in 1871, where they have a very pretty little room prepared
for them, and trout caught fresh in a mountain stream that day, and
chickens done to a turn, and the freshest of lettuce and some lovely
pears and grapes from Payson gardens and vineyards, and a bottle of
champagne from sunny France, some of which gets into Mr. Ollie's head
and makes him so devoted in his attentions to the young lady who sits
beside him, that, getting a chance, he surreptitiously squeezes her hand
under the table, which makes Erma think him tipsy with wine, not love.

From this they return to the Townsend House, where the party separating,
Miss Travenion finds herself alone at the door of her own room; but just
before she enters, Mr. Oliver comes along the hallway, and walking up to
her, says, with eyes that have grown fiery: "Erma, how can you treat me
so coldly when I love you?"

"Why, when did that love idea come into your head?" returns the young
lady with a jeering laugh.

Next her voice grows haughty, and she says, coldly, "Stop!" for Ollie is
about to put his arm around her fairy waist. A second after, however,
she laughs again and says: "What nonsense! Good-night, Mr. Oliver," and
sweeps past him into her room, where, closing the door, Miss Changeable
suddenly cries: "If he had dared!" then mutters: "A few days ago I
looked upon his suit complacently and indifferently;" next pants: "Now
what is the matter with me? What kind of a railroad journey is it that
makes a girl--" and, checking herself here, cries: "Pshaw! what
nonsense!" and so goes to bed in the City of the Saints.



CHAPTER IX.

THE BALL IN SALT LAKE.


The next morning sleep leaves Erma, driven away by the singing of the
birds in the trees that front the hotel. A little time after, church
bells come to her ears, and she is astonished, and then remembers that
it is Sunday, and that there is a little Episcopal church on First South
Street that has come there with the railroad, and is permitted to exist
because United States troops are at Camp Douglas, just in the shadow of
the mountains, over which the sun is rising, and whose snowtops look
very cool and very pleasant here in the warmer valley, five thousand
feet below them.

Coming down stairs to a nine o'clock breakfast, she encounters Ferdie
and Louise at the table, for Mrs. Livingston and Oliver are later
risers. Over the meal, Mr. Chauncey, who has not been to the theatre
with them, but has been investigating the city, points out some of the
notables who are seated about the dining-room. Then he begins to run on
about what he has seen the evening before, telling them he has joined
the Salt Lake Billiard Club and paid twenty-five cents initiation fee to
register his name as a member of the club, in order to wield a cue,
which registry is kept by pasting a few sheets of paper each day upon a
roller, and has gradually rolled up until it has a diameter of five
feet, and contains the names of every man who has ever played a game of
billiards in Salt Lake City from the time Orson Pratt first spied out
the valley; for the Mormon authorities have refused to license billiard
tables, and a club was the only way in which they could be circumvented.
Next the boy excitedly tells them that he has been introduced to a
Mormon bishop in a barroom. At which Miss Livingston laughs: "He
couldn't have been much of a bishop to have been there."

"Wasn't he!" rejoins Ferdie indignantly. "He has four wives, two pairs
of sisters."

At which Louise gives an affrighted, "Oh!" and Miss Travenion says
sternly, "No more Mormon stories, please," for Mr. Chauncey is about to
run on about an apostle of the church who had married a mother and two
daughters.

But now the party are joined by Mrs. Livingston and Oliver, and shortly
after, the meal being finished, Mr. Livingston proposes church.

As it is a short distance, they go there on foot, the widow and Louise
and Ferdie walking ahead and Mr. Livingston attaching himself to Erma
and bringing up the rear.

As they walk up South Second Street and turn into East Temple, Miss
Travenion, who has been listening to Ollie's conversation in a musingly
indifferent way, suddenly brightens up and says, "Excuse me, please,"
and leaving him hastily, crosses the wide main street. A moment after,
Livingston, to his astonishment, sees her in earnest conversation with
Mr. Kruger.

This gentleman has turned from two or three square-jawed, full-lipped
Mormon friends of his, to meet her. A complacent smile is on his red and
sunburnt face, which lights up with a peculiar glance, half-triumph,
half something else, as the girl, radiant in her beauty, addresses him.

"Well, Sissy, I am right glad you take the trouble to run over and see
me this morning," he cries genially, trying to take her patricianly
gloved hand in his.

"Mr. Kruger," she says shortly, "I fear the telegram I gave you did not
reach my father. Have you heard anything of him? Do you know where he
is?"

"Yes," replies the complaisant Lot. "I reckon he is in one of the
outlying mining camps. If so, he won't be here for a day or two yit,
though he has been communicated with."

"Oh!" ejaculates the girl; "then I shall be disappointed again?"

"Indeed! How?" says the man rather curiously, noting that the lovely
blue eyes are teary as they look into his.

"I am going to the Episcopal Church. I had hoped to meet my father
there."

"You expect--to meet your dad--thar?" gasps Kruger, as if the girl's
information took away his breath.

"Yes, certainly! My father has been an Episcopalian all his life. I
naturally expect to meet him at the Episcopal Church."

"Oh--your--father--has--been--an Episcopal--all his life," echoes Lot,
apparently a little dazed. Then he goes on genially: "Wa-all, as you are
certain of not seeing your dad among the Episcopals, perhaps you'd
better go up this morning to our great Tabernacle, where President Young
will make an address that'll learn you somethin'." He apparently now has
no wish to conceal that he is a Latter-Day Saint.

"Thank you," replies the girl, with a little mocking smile. "I am an
Episcopalian as well as my father," and she rejoins the wondering Ollie,
who has by this time crossed the street; as she moves away with her
escort, she thinks she hears a low chuckle from the genial Kruger.

Horror and rage would enter her, however, did she catch the remark of
one of his companions: "Well, bishop, what do you think Mrs. Kruger
Number Six would say to that, if she saw it? A new favorite in the
household, eh?"

"Oh, no tellin'," rejoins Lot, his eyes following Miss Travenion's light
form, as do likewise those of his companions, for the girl, robed as she
is in the creation of some New York milliner, makes a picture of maiden
loveliness seldom seen in the streets of Salt Lake City in 1871; Mormon
women, as a rule, not being over fair to look upon, and the few Gentile
ladies in that town being mostly married to gentlemen whose business has
brought them to Utah.

"I am simply astonished, Erma," remarks Mr. Livingston, as they get out
of ear-shot, "that knowing, as you know now, that this man is a Mormon,
a polygamist, you even notice him, much less address him on the public
streets."

"I merely asked him where my father was," replies the girl rather
haughtily. "I would ask any man that--to get one minute nearer my dear
papa."

Then she walks silently by his side; Oliver sporadically attempting to
keep up the conversation, until they arrive at the pretty little
Episcopal church on First South Street, where they get such an edifying
sermon from Bishop Tuttle, who is assisted by the Rev. Mr. Kirby in the
service, that Mr. Livingston is quite delighted.

"Who would have thought it! They even have altar-boys out here. I shall
leave my card on the Bishop at once," he remarks, as the congregation is
dismissed.

"Why not see him immediately?" suggests Miss Travenion; which they do,
and she has an opportunity of asking the Right Reverend Mr. Tuttle if
her father, Mr. Ralph Travenion, is not one of his communicants, and is
much surprised and disappointed to learn that the Bishop has never heard
of the gentleman she names.

Returning from church, after dinner Ferdie, who is anxious, as he
expresses it, to see Mormonism in its glory, induces them to go to
afternoon services in the Tabernacle. Under its vast dome, many
thousands of the elect of Utah listen to a discourse from one high up in
the Mormon priesthood, who tells them that women who bear not children
are accursed, and goes so into the details of the "Breeding of the
Righteous," that Mrs. Livingston whispers to Louise and Erma to close
their ears, and goes out of the place to the pealing of its great organ
and the singing of its vast choir, feeling a loathing horror of these
Saints of Latter Days.

As for Ferdie, he remarks, "Isn't this a Tower of Babel crowd?" for it
is Conference time, and Northern Utah has sent its Swedes and
Scandinavians, and Southern Utah its Huns and Bohemians, and there are
Welsh from Spanish Fork, and Cornish men from Springville, and all are
jabbering in their native tongues, English being less heard than the
others; and the men have, generally, red faces, scaly from weather
exposure, and the women have often a hopeless look in their eyes, and
the children are mostly tow-headed in this Mormon Conference crowd of
1871.

After a time the Livingstons get to their carriage and drive up to Camp
Douglas, to the dress parade which takes place every Sunday, having been
invited there by Captain Ellison, of the Thirteenth Infantry, who has
been introduced to Louise the evening before, and has been very much
caught by her piquant graces. Then, the parade being dismissed, this
gentleman brings up several of his brother officers to the Livingstons'
carriage, and introduces Lamar, a dandy, dashing lieutenant fresh from
West Point, and Johnson, of the Fifth Cavalry, and several other of his
brother officers, and these, looking for the first time upon the New
York beauties as they sit in their carriage, offer them a hundred
pleasant excursions and courtesies; all insisting that the whole party
must come to Mr. Bussey's ball, as it will be a great affair in Salt
Lake society, both Mormon and Gentile; for the banker aims for
popularity, and has invited every one in the city who has a bank account
or has any chance of having one.

Then they drive away, and looking at the stars and stripes which float
from the flag-staff of this camp bristling with cannon and Gatling
guns--for Douglas, in those days, was held rather in the manner of a
beleaguered fortress than in the easy method of a local garrison--the
girl cannot help contrasting the columns of blue infantry she has just
seen, and the vast and motley assemblage of men in the Tabernacle, who,
at the word of their president, would turn upon and assault this camp
and make war upon these United States of America. For the danger of
Mormonism has been and will be, not in the feeling of animosity that its
masses hold to this government, for they have but little, but in their
blind, unthinking allegiance to a power they hold superior to it--that
of their priesthood and the officers of their Church.

Then they come down the hill into the city again for supper at the
Townsend House, which takes place in the evening, dinner in that
primitive country being the midday meal. Finishing this, they are called
upon by Mrs. Bussey, who insists upon their not omitting her ball.

During her visit she introduces to the Livingstons a number of Gentile
ladies in the hotel and a few of the gentlemen engaged in speculation in
the neighboring mines, who are quartered at the house, and they pass a
quiet evening in the parlor, in conversation with their new-made
acquaintances, whom Miss Travenion charms with a song or two.

These are mostly plaintive melodies, for thoughts of her father will run
in the girl's brain and somehow make her sad. Being full of the subject
now, she questions the mining operators that she meets if they know
Ralph Travenion, and receives the usual answer that they have never
heard of him; and her anxiety for tidings of him increases and would now
be desperate, did not a few words she catches from one mining operator
to another set her thinking of the man who has gone to Tintic.

"I am afraid Harry Lawrence has a hard row to hoe," remarks Jackson of
the Bully Boy to Thomas of the Neptune. "He has got Tranyon and the
Mormons against him. They will stop his sale to the English company if
they do not get a goodly portion of his Mineral Hill."

"He has got one chance, however," says the other.

"Indeed! What is that?"

"Why, don't you know," replies Thomas of the Neptune, "that the prophet
up there," he nods his head in the direction of Brigham Young's private
residence, "and some of the other leaders of the Church are beginning to
be afraid of Tranyon?"

"Afraid of his business talents?" asks the other. "He has got plenty of
them."

"No, afraid of his steadfastness in the faith of Joe Smith; afraid that
he will refuse to pay his tithing!" laughs Thomas. "They say he made a
million last year, and he hates to give up a hundred thousand to the
Church." Then he adds very seriously: "Godby has gone back on them, and
the Walkers are no more to be relied upon for Church dues, and this time
they feel they cannot stand another apostasy, and will take desperate
measures to stop it."

"Who knows but Tranyon some day may feel the fist of the Church upon him
as heavy as it fell on the Morrisites?" says Jackson, lowering his voice
to a whisper, and, in spite of herself, the girl, as she listens, cannot
help wishing that the hand of the Mormon Church may smite this Tranyon,
if it will be any aid to Harry Lawrence.

But the evening passes, and next day Erma getting to thinking of her
father again, it suddenly occurs to her to look in the directory, which
she does, but there is no Travenion in its list of names.

The latter part of this day, which is a long one to her, she kills by a
drive with Mrs. Livingston and Oliver to the Sulphur Springs, where they
enjoy the baths. Mr. Livingston, as they return home, remarking on the
softness the sulphur water has given to Erma's hands, would become very
attentive and amatory and lover-like, did the girl but let him; but this
serves to take her thoughts from that subject they will dwell on, though
she says, "To-morrow papa must come, and he shall take me in the evening
to Mr. Bussey's ball."

And the morrow does come, but with it no father, and the girl turns for
forgetfulness to making her preparations for the evening _fête_. Once or
twice, however, she grows disheartened and mutters, "I cannot go.
Dancing to-night would be a mockery," then suddenly cries to her maid,
"The finest ball dress in my trunk,--the light blue one that I have
never worn,--the one I was going to keep for San Francisco."

A second after she directs Marie to get out what jewels she is carrying
with her, and murmurs to herself, "I must look my best to-night," for
Miss Volatile has suddenly remembered that three days have elapsed and
Harry Lawrence may be at the _fête_ this evening.

So, when the soft October night settles down upon the city, Mrs.
Livingston is astonished to find her charge in excited mood.

"My, how you will delight Oliver," babbles the widow, gazing in
admiration at the light, graceful beauty of the young girl as she steps
forth ready for the Bussey _soirée dansante_; and she does delight
Oliver, who very attentively cloaks her from the evening air, which is
growing cool as the autumn progresses in this valley. Then Mrs.
Livingston and Erma and Louise, who is robed in some white, float-away
dress and already engaged for dances six deep, as she expresses it, to
some of the Gentile gentlemen in the hotel, accompanied by Mr. Oliver,
take carriage for the banker's ball.

Ferdie, the night being fine and the distance short, says he will walk,
which he does in company with Lamar of the Thirteenth Infantry, and
Jackson of the Bully Boy, the two latter smoking huge cigars, and Mr.
Chauncey affecting the more youthful cigarette.

At the portals of the banking-house a string of carriages is depositing
most of the Gentile magnates, and some of the Mormon, though the
Latter-Day Saints do not, as a rule, circulate very freely in outside
society, their elders fearing the influence of the Gentile youth upon
the maidens of Zion, as to marriage and giving in marriage.

The third story of the building has been arranged with a view of letting
it for public balls, and Mr. Bussey is utilizing it for his private one
this evening. Here, in the large dancing room, the Livingstons and Miss
Travenion are received by the hospitable banker and his wife, who are
shaking hands with the stream of guests now pouring into the ball-room,
and making it look quite bright, though very much diversified. Costumes
that would grace a Newport _fête_ or Parisian ball-room alternate with
the horrors of Mormon modiste invention, which is, like the country,
crude. These atrocities of toilet are mostly worn by some pretty Mormon
girls, who have persuaded their fathers, who are connected with the
Zion's Co-operative stores or other Deseret industries, to bring them to
this conglomerate ball; their escorts mostly being arrayed in the ample
black broadcloth long-tailed frock coats that are considered the proper
thing in mining camps and in extreme frontier society.

But as these latter dance with much athletic vigor and Western abandon,
they add greatly to the life of the scene. The room is decorated with
flags borrowed from Camp Douglas, its large rear windows opening onto a
broad balcony, which has been made conservatory-like by flowering
plants, and lighted by Chinese lanterns. Here Mr. Dames and his band
play the "Blue Danube," which has just become popular, and other modern
waltzes interspersed with old Mormon quadrille tunes, some of which were
composed, Ferdie remarks, "before the Ark," for this gentleman has just
come in, apparently very merry.

"Look and see if Kruger is not changed," he whispers into Erma's
delicate ear.

"Why? He does look different. What has he been doing?" answers Miss
Travenion.

"He has been getting his hair cut, _gratis_," giggles Ferdie; "likewise
his beard trimmed and his hair shampooed. You see, Bussey, with Western
hospitality, has furnished three barbers for the use of his guests, and
Kruger, as he remarks, has just been going 'the whole hog.' He would
have taken a bath if there had been conveniences in the gentlemen's
waiting-room," continues Mr. Chauncey, greatly amused.

"He looks very happy over it," laughs Erma; for Kruger's countenance
seems quite bland and genial this evening. His black broadcloth frock
coat has been very well brushed, and his shirt front is apparently more
ample and crumpled than ever, while his large boots have been very
brightly shined by the bootblack on the corner opposite, and his gray
eyes, as they roam over the ball-room, have an expression of triumph in
them, though they apparently seek only one object. Meeting that, Lot
Kruger gives a start, for they rest on Erma Travenion.

Then his orbs grow watery and his thick lips tremble, and his jaws
clench themselves, as he thinks, "If it should come to me,--all this;
for the glory of the Church of the Latter-Day Saints."

For, robed in some creation of Worth that has been imported to America
to make her seem a fairy, Erma's beauty is of the air not of the earth.
It is some light, gauzy, shimmering, gleaming thing, covered with tiny
pink rosebuds,--thousands of them,--and floats about the girl's dazzling
shoulders and gleaming neck and snowy maiden bosom, which is of such
exquisite proportions and contours that it would make a sculptor's dream
and an average man's ecstasy.

While over all this is a face beaming with some expectant joy, its blue
eyes looking for somebody,--somebody who has not yet come.

For a moment Kruger steps forward, as if he would speak to her, but just
then Mr. Oliver carries the young lady away to the dance, and sinking
upon a seat, the Mormon follows Miss Beauty with his eyes everywhere she
moves.

Unheeding the remark that Counsellor Smith, of the Seventies, makes to
him, that his last Mrs. Smith is anxious to hear of his trip to the
States, and that his (Smith's) daughters, by his first and second wives,
Birdie and Desie, are quite ready for a dance, Lot drinks in the girl's
loveliness as if it were new wine of such rare bouquet and wondrous
flavor that he cannot take the goblet from his lips--wine upon which he
will finally get drunk, perchance to his own undoing.

And the eyes of other men follow his also, for there is only one woman
who approaches Erma's charm or grace that evening, and that is a young
grass-widow from California, at present making a six months' sojourn in
Salt Lake for the purpose of obtaining a divorce--a thing easily found
in the United States courts in Utah at this time.

But all the time the girl seems languid; and Ollie, dancing with her,
notices that the lightness has left her step, and she seems to dream;
which, indeed, she does, thinking of a ball during the season in New
York, to which her father on his last visit had taken her, and
remembering how the old beau, _bon-vivant_ and club man had enjoyed
meeting his former friends, companions and chums of other days, also the
belles of the last decade of Manhattan society, whom he had greeted
again as matrons and dowagers, and she murmurs to herself: "How happy I
would be if papa were by me _now_ as he was _then_."

But at this moment Mr. Livingston starts, and wonders what change has
come into Erma Travenion, for suddenly new life and vigor seem to enter
the lithe waist his arm encircles; her cheek, before a little pale,
becomes blushing as he gazes on it; and her eyes, which were downcast,
grow bright and radiant, and her step, which was languid, becomes light
as a sylph's.

Then he follows Erma's eyes, and sees the stalwart form of Harry
Lawrence standing in the door, and looking just about the same as when
he first entered Mrs. Livingston's supper party at Delmonico's; and
Ollie says to himself, a second time in his life, the awful word,
"Damn!"

A moment after the music ceases, and Captain Lawrence is by the girl's
side, and their hands clasp; their eyes have already greeted.

"I have driven seventy-five miles to-day," he says eagerly. "Am I in
time to have a dance with you?"

"Seventy-five miles," replies Erma. "Then you must be very tired."

"Not tired till I have a dance with you. Can I look at your programme?"

"Certainly," and she hands it to him.

But glancing at it, the young man remarks gloomily: "There is no vacant
spot."

"No vacant spot but plenty of _crosses_. Take up your cross and follow
me!" laughs Miss Travenion. Then she explains, "I always reserve a few
dances by crosses for friends who come late," and something gets into
her eyes which makes Lawrence very ardent and very bold.

So bold that, being borne away to another dance by Ferdie, Erma looks at
her card and suddenly whispers, "Why, he has taken up _all_ my crosses,"
but though implored by a number of gentlemen who come up afterwards to
erase some one of the many H. L.'s marked upon her programme, she shakes
her head resolutely and says, "No, I stick to my written contracts,"
much to the disgust of Ellison of the Thirteenth Infantry, and Lamar,
the dashing lieutenant, and Jackson of the Bully Boy.

So, a few moments after, Lawrence coming up for his first dance, she
takes his arm more happily than she has ever done, to tread a measure;
though she has been the belle of many Delmonico balls and has floated
about on the arms of the best cotillion leaders of New York and Boston.

A moment after, Harry Lawrence, who has lived his life in camps or on
the frontier, puts his arm around this beauty of Manhattan society, and
for the first time feels her heart beat against his. Then perhaps
something more potent than the strains of the "Thousand and One Nights
of Strauss" getting into his head, he dances with all his soul. Not
perhaps in so deft a way as Ferdie, who is past master of the art, and
glides the graceful Louise through the room in poetic motion, nor in the
dashing manner of Lamar, fresh from cadet german and Mess Hall hops,
with the California widow, but still with so powerful an arm that his
partner feels confidence in him, and perhaps some emotion coming into
her heart other than the mere pleasure of the dance; a very bright blush
is on her cheek as they stop.

"Your step suits mine very well. You dance very nicely," she murmurs.

"Yes, for a man who has not tripped the light fantastic for years,"
replies the captain. Then he goes on, "But who couldn't dance with you?"

"Oh, many men, I imagine," laughs the girl. "That gentleman there, for
instance," and following her eyes, Lawrence sees Lot Kruger with a very
red face, damp from over-exertion, circling the room with a Mormon lady,
the speed of a locomotive in his limbs and the vigor of a buffalo of the
plains in his feet, bringing dismay and confusion to surrounding
flounces and feminine trains wherever he goes.

Then his face grows dark.

"Don't speak of him!" he replies gloomily. "Let me throw off business
for one night and be happy."

Which he does, dancing with Erma so often that Ollie becomes very
sulky, and Mrs. Livingston feels it necessary to play the chaperon,
which she does very deftly, mentioning to her charge that people are
talking about her dancing continually with one gentleman.

"Oh," answers the young lady. "What does it matter in this town, where
we shall remain but a day or two? Were it New York it might be
different." Then she continues rather maliciously, "Besides, I rather
like it. It makes Oliver so sulky."

Just here, however, a practical joke of Mr. Chauncey's drives all else
out of the widow's head. That gentleman approaches, bearing on either
arm two quite young and rather pretty women, one apparently American,
the other with the light hair and blond eyes of a Scandinavian, and
presents them with considerable impressment and form as the two _Misses_
Tranyon; very shortly after taking off one of the young ladies he has
introduced to tread a measure.

"Ah," remarks Mrs. Livingston to the one left behind, "I hope that you
and your sister are enjoying yourselves this evening."

"My _sister_?" giggles the lady, astonished.

"Of course! Mr. Chauncey introduced you and your sister as the two
Misses Tranyon."

"Oh, I see. The _Missus_ Tranyon fooled you!" replies the catechized one
with a grin. "I am _Mrs._ Tranyon Number One, and Christine's _Mrs._
Tranyon Number Two," and is astounded to see Mrs. Livingston grow pale
and fly from her, muttering faintly, "Help!"

But the explanation of the Mormon lady has so horrified the widow that
she forgets all about Oliver and his jealousy, and makes an immediate
attempt to take her charges home even before supper. But they will not
go; for Louise is enjoying herself very greatly, and Ferdie has struck
up a flirtation with the prettiest Mormon girl in the room, and is
asking her with pathos in his voice how she thinks she would enjoy
living in New York.

"Quite well," answers that young lady. Then she giggles with the
simplicity peculiar to the maidens of Deseret:

"Ain't you already married to that fair-haired blonde you are dancing
with so much? Have you explained to her I am to be her sister?"--a
proposition that so startles Mr. Chauncey that he dodges the Mormon
maiden for the rest of the evening.

As for Erma, to Mrs. Livingston's suggestion that they leave the ball at
once, she replies shortly, "What! and break _all_ my engagements?"
omitting, however, to state that most of them are to Captain Lawrence,
and continues dancing with this gentleman, to the rage of Mr. Oliver,
who goes to sulking and leaves her alone.

Mr. Kruger also noticing the same, thinks to himself, "Time for Lot to
put his oar in." He has already greeted Miss Travenion at odd times when
he has passed with affable nods and "How do's?" and "Having a good time,
Sissy?" and such expressions of interest.

He now comes to her and says, stroking his newly cut beard, "What do you
promise me, Miss Ermie, if I bring you and your daddy together
to-morrow?"

"Anything," replies the girl, excitedly.

"Very well; you shall see Pop to-morrow, for one dance this evening."

"Why, my programme is already full," demurs Miss Travenion.

"Well, steal one for me. Perhaps that Lawrence chap could spare one.
Reckon he's down on your card a few times more," he guffaws.

"Very well," says the girl hurriedly. "Take the Virginia reel," for she
is desperately afraid of dancing a waltz with the athletic Lot, whose
feet must go somewhere and have very little respect for the toes of his
partner. Then she adds: "But remember, if I keep my promise this
evening, you will keep yours to-morrow?"

"Oh, sure as boys like to kiss," cries Lot merrily. This compels an
explanation to Captain Lawrence, which is not received very well, that
gentleman growing Hector-like and muttering, "So you rob me for the
benefit of one of my enemies?"

"One of your enemies?"

"Yes, this man Kruger is part owner in the Mormon company that is
fighting for my mine,--he and that villain Tranyon," he explains, "and
you dance with _him_?"

"Why not," says the girl, growing haughty. "Have I not been generous to
you this evening?" Then she pouts, "You've had _all_ my dances. What
more do you want?"

"Supper!" cries Harry decidedly.

"Supper? Of course I want some also," laughs Miss Travenion merrily.
"It's going on now," and she places her fingers on Lawrence's arm,
though she is very well aware that the privilege of escorting her to
midnight refreshment will be considered by Ollie as his "very own." But
Erma is just tasting of the fruit called "first love," and will eat it,
though it cost her as much as the apple did Mother Eve.

So, seated in a shady nook made by two flowering shrubs on the balcony,
she watches and admires the athletic figure of the gentleman she has
made her hero ever since she saw him save Ferdie's life, as he forages
for her. This he does with as much vigor as one of Sherman's bummers on
the March to the Sea, and with such a curious knowledge of her tastes
that the girl wonders how he guesses all her pet dainties,--not knowing
that the gentleman now her escort had had his eyes upon her during
every meal she had taken between Omaha and Ogden.

"Why, this is marvellous--just what I wanted. How did you guess?" laughs
the young lady as he places his spoils before her, and the two sit down
together to make a very quiet but delightfully _tête-à-tête_ meal,
strains of music coming faintly to them, and the Chinese lanterns
throwing but little light upon them.

Then their conversation, which is becoming low and confidential, is
suddenly broken in upon by Mr. Livingston, who approaches, saying with a
savage tone in his usually placid voice, "Erma, I've been looking for
you everywhere. Mother has been waiting to take you to supper with us
for an hour!"

"Thanks to Captain Lawrence," replies Miss Travenion, who likes this
gentleman's tone little, but his interruption less, "I am already very
well provided for."

"Ah--with both supper and flirtation," laughs Oliver sneeringly.

"Not at all," cries the young lady. "A flirtation is where they say a
great deal more than they mean."

"But here," interjects Lawrence, whose heart is very full of the
loveliness upon which he gazes with all his might, "I mean a great deal
more than I have said." This remark, emphasized by a very telling glance
of his dark eyes, brings furious blushes upon Erma and consternation
upon Oliver, who loses his head and gasps, "Why, it is almost a
declaration!"

"Would you like me to make it stronger?" asks Harry quite pointedly, his
remark to the gentleman, but his eyes upon the lady.

But women in these social crises have generally more _savoir faire_ than
men. Miss Travenion says coolly, "I fear we must postpone this _jeu
d'esprit_. I see Mr. Kruger looking for me. The Virginia reel is
beginning. Mr. Livingston, will you take me to him?"

So, meeting the Mormon bishop, he demands his dance, and the music
playing its most lively jig, Erma sees such high kicks, such double
shuffles, and such gymnastic graces from Lot, who, being anxious to make
a display before his partner, dances with the vigor of a Mormon boy of
twenty, that she does her share of the lively contra-dance betwixt
spasms of laughter.

This display rather amuses Lawrence, who comes to her at the close and
says, "You were right in choosing your partner, Miss Travenion. I yield
the palm to him in cutting pigeon wings." Then he goes on sullenly,
"There are two of the wives of my enemy Tranyon," and laughs a little
unpleasantly, sneering, "I suppose he's got so large a family he has to
obtain other men's goods to keep them all."

"Oh, no doubt," whispers Ferdie. "I imagine from his possessions Tranyon
must have a dozen or so. He has only been a Mormon eight or nine years,
I hear. It must be awful curious to live a life of continual orange
blossoms."

Then he goes on. "The beauty of the Mormon part of this ball is that the
married men are all eligible for matrimony. The girls need fear no one
is not serious in his attentions. Every man goes!"

"Stop making such jokes," cries Erma, sternly. Then she continues, "It's
time to go home. Good-night, Captain Lawrence," and going into the
dressing-room, she gazes meditatively at the two Mormon ladies,
wondering what such a life as theirs can be.

The dark one--the American--she notes is a woman of more decided
character than the Swedish Christine, though neither seems to be
over-well educated or intelligent. Then she thinks, "What a wretch that
Tranyon must be! He is robbing Harry to put gewgaws upon these women!"
for both are dressed much more expensively and in better taste than is
usual with Mormon women, even the wives of their apostles and rulers.

From this musing she is suddenly awakened by voices outside the
dressing-room.

Ollie is remarking, "As Miss Travenion's guardian, I must insist upon
escorting her to her carriage."

"Her guardian?" This is in Harry's tones. "Who made you such?"

"Her father!"

"WHAT?"

"Certainly, her father," continues Oliver's soft voice. "He has
constituted me her guardian until she becomes my wife--next winter."

This easy falsehood makes Erma at first frightened, then angry, and a
minute after, coming forth cloaked and hooded, she meets Mr. Livingston,
Captain Lawrence having apparently gone away.

"Mother is waiting," he whispers, and takes her down.

But on the sidewalk outside she sees Harry standing despondently, and
striding up to him, gives him words that make him happy once more.

"To-morrow at two I wish to see you," she whispers, then laughs lightly,
"Fairy stories for girls; men don't believe them!"

With this she steps into her carriage, and whispers to Livingston:
"Don't dare to tell any more of your fibs about me!" for she is angry
with herself now, and cogitates: "What will that man think of me? I have
done an unmaidenly thing, and that immaculate gentleman opposite me,
gossiping so easily with his mother and Louise, made me do it."



CHAPTER X.

"PAPA!"


Miss Travenion rises quite late on the morning after the Bussey _fête_,
dresses hurriedly, and runs down-stairs into the dining-room of the
Townsend House, to find that she is at lunch, not at breakfast. There
she meets the rest of the Livingston party, who have arisen before her,
and are discussing, in semi-excited tones, a piece of news Mr. Ferdie,
who has been up and out, has just brought in to them.

"Do you know, Erma, that your gallant of last evening has come to
grief?" remarks Oliver in placid triumph after the usual salutations
have been exchanged.

"It is an infernal shame!" cries Mr. Chauncey. "They say Lawrence is
ruined."

"Ruined! How?" asks the girl, growing pale in spite of herself.

"Why," answers Ferdie, "as near as I can make out, not claiming to be a
mining expert, though I have seen enough ore specimens to make me a
geologist, since I have been here--this Tranyon, who is a wily old
Mormon speculator, and whose company only claims a _part_ of Lawrence's
mine, has just obtained an injunction to prevent him working _any_ of
it. Consequently, our friend will not be able to extract any more of his
ore, and, running short of money, will hardly have the sinews of war for
a prolonged legal fight, and Zion's Co-operative Mining Institution,
which has plenty of shekels to hire legal talent and pack juries, will
have a good deal the best chance. Anyway, that's the talk about town--I
give it you as it comes to me."

"But this injunction can be dissolved," says Miss Travenion excitedly.

"Yes, if he puts up a big bond," suggests Livingston, triumphantly.

"Oh, that will not be difficult. Everybody is Captain Lawrence's
friend," cries Erma, enthusiastically.

"Everybody is Captain Lawrence's friend until they have to put up their
money to aid him," answers Oliver, who seems to get angry at the girl's
interest in the matter. "Besides, everybody is not his friend; old
Tranyon and I, for instance," he sneers.

"And you link your name with that miserable Mormon?" cries Erma, a flush
of defiance coming upon her face. Then she goes on rapidly: "I should
think you would be ashamed of yourself. This struggle, as I understand
it, is that of Gentile against Mormon, and I stand up for my crowd."
Here Ferdie cries "Bravo!" and she covers her agitation by a little
laugh.

To this, Mrs. Livingston, whose business had been to pour oil upon the
troubled waters for the last day or two, says suddenly: "Oliver, I am
going shopping. Won't you accompany me?" and the young man, having some
little idea that perhaps he is not advancing his cause very much by this
battle, rises to go with her. As he goes, he cannot refrain from firing
a parting shot.

He says, "Ask Ferdie what mining men say about your friend's prospects."
And so goes away, while Miss Travenion turns a face that is anxious upon
Mr. Chauncey.

"Well," says the boy, "all agree that, though Lawrence owns the mine, he
will be ruined for lack of money to grease the wheels of justice."

"This shall not be!" cries the girl, in so strange a tone of voice that
Ferdie gasps, "What do you mean?"

"I mean that it shall not be!" answers Miss Travenion.

Then one of those ideas that are called Quixotic by the world, but
which make it nearer to heaven, coming into this young lady's bright
mind and generous heart, she looks at her watch and says, "I am going
for a walk."

"Take me for an escort?" suggests Ferdinand, who is always happy to
promenade the streets by the side of Miss Beauty, for he knows that it
makes others envy him.

"No," says the girl shortly, "I am going alone. I have a little business
errand," and so departs, straight for the business portion of the town,
her eyes big with purpose, though there are tears in them as she
mutters, "Alone in his trouble, but I'll help him defeat that villain
Tranyon."

Coming back from this journey, excited, dusty and tired, about half-past
one, she says to her maid, "Quick! A white gown--something
cool--something breezy; I'm excited and warm!" and, curiously enough,
trembles a little as she is assisted into a light summer toilet. Then
inspecting her watch she murmurs, "Two o'clock. He should be here;" next
thinks, "What shall I say to him? I must make this a business
interview," and racks her brain for some business to talk about.

A moment after blushes come to her, for she gets to thinking of her
remark about fairy tales of the night before, and mutters to herself,
"Good heavens! Will he think me unwomanly?" and once or twice hopes he
will not come, and looking at her watch finds it is after two, and is
very much disappointed that he has not called.

So, after a time, getting very much excited over this matter, Erma goes
down into the general parlor of the hotel, where she will be compelled
to receive Harry Lawrence, for at that time the Townsend House had very
few rooms _en suite_. But at the door, chancing to see a sparkling thing
on the third finger of her left hand, she gasps, "My!" and tears it
off. Then she laughs, "How lucky! He might have thought it an engagement
ring, and Oliver's horrid fib a truth," and so pockets the bauble, going
to the window of the room to look out upon the sidewalk and see if her
swain is in view.

She is interrupted in this by the gentleman himself, for Captain
Lawrence comes in, a flush of excitement upon his brown cheeks, dragging
with him by the arm Ferdie, who seems nervous also: as he well may be,
for Harry is laughing like a frontiersman, and every now and then giving
Mr. Chauncey little surreptitious pats and nudges that from his athletic
arm are agitating.

"I am glad you have come," says the girl, "for I have a little matter of
business to talk to you about. When we were in Ogden the other day, you
expended some money for me, which I did not have opportunity to return
you. How much was it?" and she is very glad she has thought of this
matter since Ferdie is here, and it seems to her to be a reason, if not
a very plausible one, for her having asked the captain to call.

To her question Lawrence, after looking for a moment astonished, says,
all the while keeping his grip on Mr. Chauncey, who manifests several
times a desire to edge out of the parlor:

"Yes, I believe I did spend some money for a telegram for you and a
newspaper. It was fifty-five cents."

Then the girl handing him the money, he mutters: "Thank you," and
suddenly bursts out, "I am in luck to-day. That is not the only sum I've
received. Friends are pouring gold upon me!" in a nervous way which is
peculiar in him, for up to this moment he has seemed to Miss Travenion
to have an organization capable of standing any shock.

A moment after he appears calmer, and says, "I have a little story to
tell you. It is in relation to that Ogden matter. You know that by an
accident I was there permitted to save the life of a very generous
little beggar"--here he pats Ferdie on the head, who mutters, "Don't,"
and blushes like a girl. "This little gentleman," continues Harry, "for
the slight service I did him in saving his noble little life, has seemed
to me unusually grateful. He has sent me presents--a gold-headed cane
and a silver-mounted revolver; but hearing that I was--in what you might
call hard luck, this generous boy, who has not yet learned that it is
not always best to squander your money upon friends, sent to me to-day
fifteen thousand dollars."

"Oh, what a whopper! My allowance is only three thousand a year, and I
am always in debt," cries Ferdie with sudden nervousness.

"You didn't send it?" says the captain. Then he mutters slowly, "Have I
made a mistake?"

"On my honor as a gentleman," answers the boy. "But, by Jove, I would
like to have had it to send you, and more too, for you did save my life,
though you don't seem to like to have it mentioned."

"This is very curious," gasps Harry. "I have made a mistake. There was
fifteen thousand put to my credit to-day, only an hour ago, at Walker
Brothers. I made inquiry, and they said it had come as a cashier's check
from Bussey's National Bank, on which I knew that your party had letters
of credit. I could think of no one else who would consider himself under
obligation to me,--at least, no one willing to do me such a good turn."

Then he goes on, "I must look elsewhere for the friend in need," and as
he says this, some movement of the girl seems to draw his eyes, and he
looks at her and notes that she is very red, and her eyes are feverish,
and her small foot in its little slipper and openwork stocking, is
patting the floor at the rate of about one hundred a minute.

Suddenly he gives a start, and a great red flush comes over his face,
for just at this moment Louise comes in, crying, "Erma, here is your
letter of credit returned from the bank!" and with a childish idea of
showing the general importance and wealth of the family to the Western
stranger, remarks: "I peeped in her envelope, and Miss Extravagance has
drawn fifteen thousand dollars to-day."

Then she pauses, astounded at the effect of her words, for Erma, who has
risen hurriedly to receive the paper, gives a sudden cry, and sinks into
a chair, covering her face with her hands, and Ferdie has suddenly
ejaculated, "By Ginger!" and would giggle did not the captain's manner
awe him.

The next second Harry Lawrence takes the paper from Louise, saying
gently, "I'll give this to Miss Travenion. My business with her will be
over in five minutes," and Miss Livingston, who, for a child, has quite
a quick perception of social affairs, taking the hint, gives him the
document and goes silently away.

Glancing at it, a debit of fifteen thousand dollars of this day's date
is indorsed on the back, and he grows very pale, FOR HE KNOWS. Then
coming toward the girl, who has half risen to meet him, he says:
"Ferdie, there is a good angel in the room, my boy,--one of the kind
that make men think earth is very near to heaven. Now, you just run down
and play billiards, and I will join you in a few minutes, and don't you
say a word of what I have told you to any one in this world."

"On my honor," whispers Chauncey, for there are two tears in Lawrence's
eyes that impress him very greatly. Then he suddenly cries, "Erma,
you're a brick!" and leaves the captain gazing at Miss Travenion, who is
pale as death also.

As he does so, Lawrence suddenly comes to the girl, and says very
tenderly: "God bless your noble, generous heart!"

But suddenly he seems to Erma to grow taller and tower over her, and he
shakes his head and brushes his hair back from his brow, as if he were a
fevered lion, and cries hoarsely: "This must not be! Men in the West do
not take money from women!"

"But you need it. What is it to me? A few gewgaws, and jewels, and
dresses, and I have more of them than I want. Take it to regain your
own--to smite down this wretch Tranyon--then repay it to me."

"No, that is impossible," he answers, slowly. "This money shall be
returned to you before bank hours this afternoon. But the good will that
prompted it--I'll keep that, if you please, until I die." And supreme
gratitude and undying love also are in his eyes, for he cannot keep them
from speaking, though he may, perchance, control his tongue.

"But you need it. You must take it. It is necessary for your success,"
gasps the girl.

"I cannot take it, but I will succeed without it," he cries. "I cannot
afford to lose. I must win! It is not money I am fighting for, but----"

"What?"

"What I will never tell you till I have money enough to prevent men
calling me an adventurer--a fortune hunter--if I win it." And his eyes
speaking to her again, she knows what he means.

A moment after, she turns to him, and says considerately:

"If I cannot aid you in this way I can in another, which I hope you will
accept. My father will be here this evening. He is a very rich man. He
will be more than happy to go upon your bond, to raise the injunction,
which, I understand, has crippled you."

"No," says Harry, curtly. "No favors from your father of such financial
magnitude."

"Why not?" queries Erma, who has made up her mind that Lawrence must be
aided in some way.

"Because your father, the first time he sees me, must think me a man who
can fight his own battle in this world--a man worthy to be--" He checks
himself, and drives the words that are on his tongue back into his
throat.

"At all events," mutters Erma, "you must see my father. He is a man of
great business sagacity. His advice will aid you. Promise that you will
come to-morrow and see him."

"I go to Tintic to-morrow."

"Promise!" and, being desperate, the young lady now forgets herself and
whispers, "for my sake."

Then she suddenly feels her soft hand crushed in a frontier grip as he
answers:

"For your sake I'd promise anything!" and, a moment after, he raises the
white patrician fingers and kisses them with that reverence and chivalry
that good men, who have long lived apart from good women, oft-times feel
for their sweethearts, likening them unto their mothers. Then he
murmurs, "Good-bye!"

But the girl cries, "Don't forget to-morrow. I will tell papa to be in
at eleven o'clock. He will advise you how to conquer that Tranyon. See!
a rosebud for good luck," and smiles on him. "I will pin it in your
button-hole."

"No," he stammers, "let me carry it in my hand. Good-bye!" almost
snatching the flower from her, for he is desperately afraid of himself,
for gratitude and love have made this young lady's beauty irresistible
to him.

Hurrying from this interview, Lawrence thinks, "God help me. It was hard
to keep my heart from her," then mutters morosely, "I'll not be called
an adventurer,--an heiress hunter. Her million stands up between us more
colossal than ever." Though a moment after, he says determinedly: "By
Heaven!--No one else shall ever have her--my angel!"

At this moment he hears behind him, "A word with you, sir!" and turning,
sees Mr. Oliver, who has just noticed the end of the parlor interview
with agony and rage.

"Certainly. Half a dozen," answers Lawrence. Then he laughs and says, "I
am so happy I could even give you five minutes."

"Very well,--come with me," whispers Ollie, and getting to a retired
part of the hallway he turns upon the captain and remarks oracularly and
severely, "I forbid you to call again upon the young lady who is under
my charge."

"Your authority?"

"Her father's."

"The young lady under your charge," remarks the Western man
sarcastically, "hinted to me last evening that you told fairy tales;
that you have no authority whatever in the matter; that she is her own
mistress."

"The young lady," returns Livingston, pulling down his cuffs in a
nervous manner, "knows that her father wishes me to control her life
till she marries me." Then getting excited, he bursts forth, "Good
Heavens! You don't suppose that Ralph Travenion, who was in his day the
greatest club man and swell in New York, would permit his child to marry
a frontier Vigilante like you,--almost a mur--" Here Mr. Livingston
suddenly checks himself and shrieks out desperately and wildly, "Don't
strike me! I was once to have studied for the ministry!"

"Oh, very well," says Harry, laughing. "As to the young lady's father,
he can say to me what he pleases. I am to see him to-morrow by
appointment," and he carelessly smells Erma's rosebud, and continues:
"But you had better keep a civil tongue. I am too happy to hit you, for
if I did, I might kill you; but I'll take you by your aquiline nose and
lead you twice around the nearest barroom, if you are not as polite and
as mild and as fragrant as this rosebud," and he walks out, leaving
Oliver pale with rage and perspiring with agitation--for Lawrence's
laughing mood and his remark that he sees Miss Travenion's father by
appointment to-morrow, have frightened Mr. Livingston almost to death.

So, coming out from this interview, Harry Lawrence draws his check at
Walker Brothers, has it certified, and walks over to Mr. Bussey's Bank,
to restore Miss Travenion's money to her letter of credit.

Chancing on his errand to meet Bishop Kruger, that gentleman looks at
him and chuckles to himself, remembering the ball of the evening before:
"You play a strong game, young man, but I rather think I hold the hand
on ye this deal," and being reminded of his promise to Miss Travenion,
proceeds to hunt up Mr. Ferdie upon Main Street, remarking, "That
cigarette boy will play my next chip for me right 'cute."

He does not tell him this, however, on meeting, but says affably, "How
de, Mr. Chauncey? I think I can furnish a leettle amusement for you and
your party."

"As you did last night, dancing the double shuffle?" laughs Ferdie, who
is not particularly in love with Lot.

"No, I kin do better than that. Your party are out here studying the
manners and customs of us natives, I take it. Now, if you will bring
your crowd up to the Twenty-fifth Ward meeting to-night, you'll see a
Mormon Sunday-school celebration. Please tell Miss Ermie that I will
see her thar; I ain't forgot my promise, and her dad's to be in town
to-night."

"I'm delighted to hear that! Miss Travenion has been looking anxiously
for her father," replies Ferdinand. "I will give her your message, and
if you will promise to cut a pigeon wing, I'll come up myself," and with
this leaves the genial Lot, who, cursing his impertinence under his
breath, mumbles, "Some day, my jumping-jack, your wit may cost you the
leettle brains you've got."

After Lawrence has left her, Miss Travenion goes back to her room
blushingly happy, and says complacently, "Papa will fix everything.
Lawrence will win his mine,--and then--" and her blue eyes seem to look
quite confidently into the future, for she has supreme faith in her
father.

Every time he had come to New York on his various visits, he had brought
happiness to her; she remembers the joy of his arrival, the little
_fêtes_ prepared for her as a school girl, and the magnificent presents
lavished upon her from Tiffany's and Kirkpatrick's when she was old
enough for such things, and thinking of her absent dear one, she grows
anxious as to Mr. Kruger's promise, sending to the office several times
to ask if any one has called upon her, or asked for her, but the answer
always comes back, "No!" Then she takes to reading Ralph Travenion's
last letter to her, a thing she has done a dozen times during the past
few days, and while occupied in this, there is a knock on the door, and
springing up and tripping lightly to it, she opens it, crying, "Papa! at
last!" but is disappointed, for it is only Ferdie's laughing face.

He says to her, "I have not brought your father, but Mr. Kruger wants to
see you."

"Indeed? Is he down-stairs?" asks Erma eagerly.

"No, but he gave me a message for you. He has invited us all to go up
and see a little Mormon Sunday-school festival."

"What has the Mormon Sunday-school performance to do with me?"

"Oh, nothing; but I thought it would be fun, and Mr. Kruger--Bishop
Kruger, I beg his pardon--told me to tell you that he would be there and
had not forgotten his promise. Your father will be in town to-night."

"God bless you for the news!" cries the girl, then laughs, "Do you know,
I was really becoming anxious. Bishop Kruger has something to tell to
me. Thanks for your invitation. I'll go. At what time?"

"About eight o'clock," answers Mr. Chauncey.

But, on arriving at the dinner-table, Miss Travenion finds that the
Livingstons have made other plans for the evening. Mr. Bandman, a
theatrical celebrity, at that time on his travelling tour, is to appear
as Narcisse, and Mrs. Livingston has tickets for the theatre, and is
anxious to go.

"I am sorry I cannot accompany you," answers Erma.

"No? Why not?"

"Because Ferdie and I are going to a Mormon Sunday-school festival. Mr.
Kruger wishes to see me there. He has received word from my father. My
father will be in Salt Lake, probably, to-night."

"Indeed?" says Mrs. Livingston complacently. "I am delighted to hear
that; then we can shorten our visit to Salt Lake," for she has grown
rather tired of the town, and is anxious to proceed on her journey.
"Please give your father my compliments, Erma, and tell Mr. Travenion he
must breakfast with me--at ten to-morrow morning." Then she says
diplomatically, "Ferdie, wouldn't you like to see Mr. Bandman?"

"Quite well," answers that gentleman; "they say he has a very pretty
leading lady."

"Then you had better come with us. I hardly dare trust Miss Travenion to
you in a Mormon assemblage. You make careless remarks that excite their
rage." She now comes to the point to which she has been working, and
suggests: "Oliver, you had better take Erma," and is pleased to hear her
son remark: "I will do so with pleasure."

"Thank you," says the girl in so grateful a tone that Mrs. Livingston,
who has heard of Captain Lawrence's call during the afternoon, and has
been fearful as to its effect in regard to Oliver's chances with the
heiress, goes very complacently away from her dinner, and taking Ferdie
and Louise, proceeds to the Salt Lake Theatre.

Then Miss Travenion, very much excited, takes carriage, and, escorted by
Mr. Oliver Livingston, drives to the Sunday-school festival in the
little Mormon meeting-house of the Twenty-fifth Ward.

"Papa will be in town to-night," she says in happy tones. "Fancy, I have
not seen him for eight months. And Mr. Kruger says he is well."

"I shall be very happy to see him, also," returns Livingston cordially.
"I have not met a man in this crude community yet to whom I cared to
talk. Your father's old Unity Club anecdotes will seem to me like an
echo of New York."

"I am glad to hear that papa's small talk pleases you," laughs the young
lady, and a moment after says: "We are here."

Assisting her from the carriage, Oliver cries to the hackman: "Be back
in an hour!" for a carriage at a Mormon ward meeting is so unusual that
it attracts the attention of the crowd of Latter-Day Saints who are
entering the building. Then he adds: "You need not stop in front of this
place. Just draw up about a quarter of a square from here!"

And the man driving away, they mingle with the crowd, and are scarcely
noticed again, as Miss Travenion, thoughtful of the place to which she
has come, has dressed herself in her most unpretentious gown, and has
covered her bonnet and face with a veil so as not to attract attention
by any contrast of toilet with the surrounding congregation. The hall is
already almost filled, and they only find seats in the back row
unoccupied. On these they sit down, and Miss Travenion's eyes go
wandering over the assemblage searching for Mr. Kruger.

But they only see a very plain meeting-room, filled with the average
hard-featured men and women of this Mormon city, dressed in their best,
which means for the women gowns that would be a horror to a French
dressmaker, and for the men, clothes that would be a nightmare to a
Broadway tailor--and children--lots of them--most of them white-headed,
but happy. The stage, moreover, is filled with them, dressed in the best
their mothers can put upon them, chiefly bright calicoes and ginghams;
some of them looking quite pretty in these, for youth is nearly always
beautiful, and Mormon tots are generally as happy as other children.
Over their heads hangs a piece of white calico in festoons, bearing this
peculiar motto: "UTAH'S BEST CROP IS CHILDREN."

Miss Travenion has just completed her survey, when the man she is
looking for comes from a side door on to the platform, and makes the
stereotyped Mormon address for such occasions, but says: "There is a
better talker coming after me. I refer to the bishop of this ward, the
Counsellor of our President, Bishop R. H. Tranyon, who, after the
children have sung a hymn, will hold forth on what is the duty of the
up-growing generation of this Sect and people, in order to become true
Mormons, in the faith of Joseph Smith and Hyrum, his brother."

But all the time Kruger is speaking his eyes rove around the assembly,
as if seeking some one, and finally, lighting upon the graceful form of
Erma, he appears satisfied, and triumph and joy coming into his voice,
his audience think it is the glory of Zion inspiring him, and applaud
him as he sits down; a Mormon girl, just in front of Miss Travenion,
remarking, "Bishop Kruger seems to have his talking-coat on this
evening!"

After that there is music from a melodeon, and the children sing the
Mormon song,

    "I want to be a Mormon,
      And with the Mormons stand,"

and give it with as much fervor, Erma cannot help noticing, as the
Sunday-schools in the East sing the beautiful hymn, "I want to be an
angel," on which this is an awful parody.

Then stillness falls upon the audience, for the big gun of the evening
is coming--the man who stands upon the right hand of the prophet and
obtains his inspiration from him; the man who has expounded to them
during a number of years the doctrines of their creed, revealed by the
Almighty to Joseph Smith, their founder.

A moment after Kruger announces, a peculiar thrill in his voice, "BISHOP
TRANYON!"

As he says this, Erma, bending forward to get a better view, clenches
her little hands together and thinks to herself, "This is the wretch who
is Lawrence's enemy, and would destroy his happiness and mine!"

Then onto the platform comes a figure, wearing his clothes with a grace
strange in a Mormon community, and whose broadcloth is finer than the
sect is wont to wear, and whose gray eyes are familiar, and whose soft
gestures are those she has been longing for--and whose grizzled
moustache, now joined to a mighty beard, has caressed her lips. Gazing
at him with all her might, something suddenly snaps in the girl's head,
for he is speaking, and the incisive, smooth, cynical voice now crying
the glory of the Mormon Church, the sanctity of plural, polygamous
marriage--the voice now crying out the glory of what she thinks
unutterable indignity and degradation to her sex, is that of--God help
her!--no, she will not believe it, but still does--HER FATHER!

In one awful flash comes to her the thought, "If he is what he is, then
what am I?" and merciful insensibility comes with it.

As for Mr. Livingston, he has listened to the preliminary proceedings in
a perfunctory, philosophical kind of way, sometimes scoffing inwardly.
Then his mind, as the children sing their hymn, running upon other
churches, finally comes to his own; he has got to carelessly looking
over the choristers, and trying to select from them youths who he thinks
would make good altar-boys in his Episcopal Church.

He is hardly awakened from this when Bishop Tranyon is announced, and
looking carelessly at him, thinks, "There's something curiously familiar
in the old Mormon--he has a little of the New York club style about him.
Good gracious! that gesture--where have I seen it?" and rubs his glasses
and inspects him more closely. And then, remembering Travenion, the old
New York swell, having known him as a boy, and seen him on his visits to
New York, Ollie gets excited, for the eyes seem familiar to him, and the
voice is the same that he has heard several times in the smoking-rooms
of the Unity and Stuyvesant Clubs, though for a moment he cannot
reconcile himself to believe what his memory tells him.

But just here, Erma's body falls a dead weight upon him and her head
droops on his shoulder.

Looking at her, he sees that she has fainted so quietly that he has not
noticed it, and an awful shock coming upon this conventional and
orthodox young man, he gasps to himself, "Good Gad, Erma's father!" and
is so paralyzed and petrified that he makes no effort to revive the
girl, but simply looks on in a horrified kind of wonder as the festival
proceeds.

In a daze, he hears the old New York club man play his _rôle_ of Mormon
exhorter and apostle, and do it very well, for he has just brought
forward five children of assorted sizes and sexes, and has proclaimed
with sanctimonious voice to the uncouth Saints assembled about him:
"These are my hostages to the State of Deseret; these are my pledges to
the Zion of our Lord!" And taking up the smallest of his family--a babe
with Erma's eyes--this evangelist continues: "This tot I have named
Brigham after our well-loved President, and Joseph for our first
Prophet, and Hyrum after his sainted brother, who was murdered with
him--unto the glory of our true religion and the damnation of our
unbelieving enemies." So, holding the little one on his arm he cries,
"LET US PRAY!"

And he does pray--so earnestly, so impressively, so tremendously that
Oliver, gazing at him with agitated eyes, begins to pray himself,
thinking affrightedly: "What shall I do? My God, I am here with a
Mormon's daughter!"

Then he would make an effort to arouse the girl to consciousness, and
perhaps cause a scene, but he suddenly thinks, "If I disturb the
meeting, they may treat me roughly. These infidels do not believe in
Gentile interruptions to their religious ceremonies;" and so sits
quietly by the side of the unconscious girl, till Bishop Tranyon, of
Salt Lake City, ex-Ralph Travenion, the New York exquisite, dandy and
club man, finishes his harangue, and the people crowd about the
platform and congratulate him on his great speech, to the glory of God
and Brigham Young, his prophet.

But looking at Bishop Tranyon now, Oliver thinks he sees the cynic scoff
of the Manhattan swell, as if, fight it how he will, he can't keep down
a sneer at the religion that he preaches.

Just then, heart-breaking consciousness and recollection coming to the
girl, she says in a low, faltering voice, placing a feeble though
pleading hand upon his arm, "Take me away!"

In the confusion and hilarity of the festival, the melodeon playing
loudly and the children singing that well-known Utah Sunday-school hymn,

    "Say, Daddy, I'm a Mormon!"

unnoticed by all save Kruger, who knows his arrow has struck its shining
mark, Oliver gets Erma out of the hall and to the carriage, which
fortunately has returned.

Lifting her in, he cries, in feeble agitation, "The Townsend House!
Quick!" for he fears his charge will faint again in the carriage. But
she is beyond fainting now.

She whispers hoarsely: "You recognized him also?" then wrings her hands,
and gasps, "My God! my father!" next bursts out: "That was the reason I
did not meet him. That is the reason he never wanted me to come West to
live with him--among his concubines he calls wives--he, my father, who
once called _my_ mother wife!"

Then to Oliver Livingston comes the opportunity of his life--his one
supreme moment to win this woman, who is more beautiful in her agony
even than in her joy; for the girl has fallen sobbing on his shoulder,
and had he but treated her as if he loved her--aye, even pitied her--she
would have given unto him gratitude so potent it might have grown to
love, and so made her his.

But his puny heart is too small for such magnanimity, and to her tears
and her mutterings, "What will the world think of me now?" he replies:
"This is awful. This is a terrible thing for you. It will take you a
long time to live this down. You had better retire from society for a
time. Prayer and repent--"

And so his opportunity forever leaves him. The girl cuts short his last
word with a shudder, then draws herself up, and says, a desperate gleam
in her eyes: "Don't dare to talk to me as if the sin of my father was my
sin. That kind of innuendo I will not permit!" next mutters: "I asked
for sympathy and you gave me a sermon!" A moment after, she says, in
measured tones, "We are at the hotel. You need not help me down. The
touch of the polygamist's daughter might sully you, Mr. Immaculate!"



CHAPTER XI.

"FOR BUSINESS PURPOSES."


Then, unheeding his proffered aid, Erma descends from the carriage, and
going into the house, he following her, she turns, and says haughtily:
"I wish to see your mother as soon as she comes from the theatre; but,
before that, I must see _him_," and mutters, "If it is not too much of a
service to me, in my extremity, go back to the meeting and tell my
father to come to me at once. It may be the last favor I shall _ever
ask_ of you," and strides to her room.

So, he leaves her to go on her errand; but chancing to pass a barroom,
he goes in, a thing which is unusual for him, and, calling for a glass
of brandy, gulps it down, his hands trembling a little.

Thinking the matter over as he drinks, he concludes his mother should be
told first, and going to the Salt Lake Theatre, purchases a ticket.

It is fortunately an _entr'acte_, and he very shortly finds Mrs.
Livingston's seat. Walking down the aisle to her, he whispers, "Bring
Louise and Ferdie at once. Something terrible has happened!"

Looking at the white face of her offspring, the widow suddenly gasps,
"Good Heavens! Erma has eloped with that awful Captain Lawrence, the
Vigilante," and grabs helplessly for her wraps.

"No," he says grimly, as he supports her to the door, Ferdie and Louise
following them; "but it is almost as bad."

"Tell me," whispers his mother, and seeing that he does not answer, goes
on hysterically: "Tell me or I shall faint right here." But he finally
gets her to the sidewalk, where the breezy air cools her nervous system,
and putting her into the carriage he has brought with him, where, if she
so elects, she can faint comfortably, he tells her in a few words what
has happened.

Then, unheeding her exclamations of surprise and horror, as likewise
those of Louise and Ferdie, he whispers, "Go back to the hotel. I am
going to find this Mormon and bring him there," and leaving the carriage
to drive back to the Townsend House, starts on foot for the meeting in
the Twenty-fifth Ward.

But Salt Lake City blocks are long, and Mr. Livingston's episode at the
theatre has taken some time. When he reaches the meeting-house, its
windows are dark, the festival has ended, and there is nothing left him
but to return to the hotel.

On his way back, however, his mind being on other things than his
footsteps, he wanders into one of the streams that flow in this peculiar
city where gutters would be in ordinary towns, and it being knee-deep,
comes out of it in a very bad humor. This is not decreased by the dust
which settles upon his immaculate inexpressibles, and gives him a very
sorry appearance.

As he enters the hotel, Louise comes to meet him with a frightened face,
and whispers, "Mamma is talking to her in her parlor," then suddenly
cries out, "Goodness! Have you been fighting with her father?"

At which he snaps at her, "Go to bed, you little idiot," and pushing
past her, enters his mother's sitting-room in by no means the frame of
mind to properly meet, even for his own interest, the situation before
him.

The room is but slightly illuminated,--the Townsend House gas,
manufactured on the premises, being only strong in odor.

By it he can see Miss Travenion standing near the centre of the
apartment, so white she would seem a statue, were it not for the
dazzling brilliancy of her eyes, that appear to have burnt up the tears
that were in them, and a slight nervous twitching of the hands, such as
comes to us when hope is no more.

Mrs. Livingston, seated on a sofa, is speaking in a tremulous sort of
way, for the girl's manner just at this time frightens her.

She is saying, "You had best leave this awful place to-morrow morning,
and come with us to California. I have ordered your maid to pack your
trunks. My maid is doing the same." Then she turns to her son,
remarking, "You think it will be best, also, Oliver?"

But Erma prevents his reply. She cries, taking a step towards him, "My
father!" and seeing no one behind him, gasps, "What have you done to
him, or what has he done to you?" for Mr. Livingston's pale face and
disfigured trousers suggest ideas of combat that would make her laugh at
other and happier times.

To this he replies curtly, "Nothing; I could not find him."

"Why not?"

"Their blasphemous meeting-house was closed." Then he says in a nasty,
sneering tone, for the young lady's manner has added to his anger, "Your
father and his Mormon brats had gone away."

"His Mormon brats?" This comes from both Mrs. Livingston and Erma,
though one gives it with a shriek and the other with a shudder.

"Yes, your five little brothers and sisters," he sneers at Erma. "Didn't
you see them? They got the Sunday-school prizes, I think. They look like
your father, and one of the girls has your eyes," and would go on with
some more such scoffing pleasantries, did not his mother spring to him
and whisper, "Idiot!" for the girl has sunk down sobbing upon a chair
and is wringing her hands at this last cruel revelation.

Not liking his mother's word, Oliver grows more angry, and says sternly,
"Remember, I am the head of the family, and shall take this matter into
my own hands." To this, Mrs. Livingston, who since his father's death
has grown to look upon him as the director of the family, saying
nothing, he continues: "Erma, I have been thinking this matter over as I
returned. Your father's crimes have placed him outside the laws of this
land. Under these circumstances, I feel it incumbent on me to take
charge of your life." This peculiar assumption of power he makes very
placidly, turning to the young lady, who answers him not, his last
revelation still overcoming her.

Noting this, Mr. Complaisant thinks: "My manner has subdued her. Crushed
by this blow, Miss Haughty, who has defied and jeered me for the last
few days, is now submissive to my authority," and the pangs of jealousy
and rage that had been administered by Harry Lawrence come into his
small mind to make him take a smaller revenge.

He says, "I think it is best, mother, that we postpone our visit to
California, and immediately return to the East, until I can make proper
arrangements for Erma. It will take her a long time to live this scandal
down."

"Ah, you are very kind to the friendless daughter of a Mormon,"
interjects the girl, sarcastically; but he being full of himself, does
not heed her, and continues: "A proper retirement from society is due to
it."

"Retirement!" she exclaims, "to expiate my father's crimes!" then says
sadly: "You seem to think that I am sullied by his sin;" next sneers,
"Perhaps you imagine a reform school or a convent would be the proper
place for me, Mr. Livingston."

"Not exactly that."

"No, but something like it," cries Erma, and rising, she towers above
him, and goes on in mighty scorn: "And you dare arrogate authority over
me? You are neither my guardian nor my trustee;" next jeers at him, for
her torture makes her cruel: "If every girl in New York society expiated
their father's social crimes, how many would escape? Little Louise, for
instance--eh?"

This awful shot brings tears to Mrs. Livingston's eyes, for her dead
spouse had been of such a peculiar social nature that he had been known
by his intimates as "Mormon Livingston."

"Hush! Your father's sins are open ones," says Oliver.

But she turns on him, crying: "It is not your place to criticise him. If
atonement is in order, atone for yourself, Mr. Immaculate!" and this is
another facer for Oliver, who has had his weak moments in which he has
listened to sirens' voices, as many men in New York society have.

Then, a second after, the girl says, slowly: "You go on with your trip,
Mrs. Livingston, as if nothing had happened."

"But you?" asks the widow, who, knowing that Miss Travenion's remarks
have been made in frenzy, forgives her and pities her.

"I go to my father."

"To do what?"

"To DRAG HIM FROM HIS INIQUITY! Good-night, and--_good-bye_," and saying
this, the young lady sweeps from the room, brushing past Louise, who is
standing outside the door in childish astonishment and dismay.

But Mrs. Livingston is whispering to Ollie. "Idiot! You have driven her
and her million away from us. Think of Louise and me."

To this he answers surlily, "I don't believe it wise to wed a girl
society will look down upon."

"Fool!" cries his mother. "How long do you think it will take in New
York society for a girl with sixty thousand dollars a year to live
anything down?" and leaving him to digest this truthful platitude, she
pursues Miss Travenion, overtaking her at the entrance of that young
lady's room.

Here, diplomat as she is, she makes a mistake. Louise has also followed,
and Erma impulsively seizes the girl, whom she loves very well, and
kisses her tenderly and whispers, "Good-bye!"

Coming upon this, Mrs. Livingston, anxious for uninterrupted interview,
thoughtlessly says: "Louise, go to bed at once! We leave on the early
train to-morrow morning!"

At this, Erma, whom humiliation makes sensitive, draws back and mutters,
"Do you fear my touch will contaminate her?"

"Not at all," says Mrs. Livingston. "You mistake me, dear Erma. I want
to beg you to come with us to California. You mustn't think of what
Ollie in his agitation said to you."

"I don't," answers Erma. "Thank God that wounded my pride, but not my
heart!" For in all this cruel humiliation she has been conscious of one
joy--that any chance of union with Oliver Livingston is now forever
ended.

"You must reconsider your rash determination," entreats the widow.

"Impossible!"

"In your present excited state you had better not see your father."

"Now it is necessary that I see my father--more so than ever."

"You cannot live with him with those awful women."

"Oh, don't fear for me," says the girl. "There are others who will
protect me here, if he will not."

"Who?" gasps the widow.

"_The man I love!_" And opening her door, Erma Travenion flies in and
locks it; then starts aghast! and cries in a hoarse and rasping voice,
"Tranyon!--Bishop Tranyon! the _wretch Tranyon_! who has ruined him! My
God! what will Harry Lawrence think of Tranyon the Mormon's daughter?"
And sinking down upon the bed, she writhes and moans, for at this
thought, which has been mercifully kept from her till the last, nothing
seems left her in this world.

During this time, Ferdie has been abstractedly sitting in a neighboring
barroom, every once in a while walking up to the barkeeper and
whispering "Brandy!" then muttering to himself over it, "Miss Mormon is
having a high old time with auntie and Ollie." The rest of his time he
whistles meditatively. Just about midnight, he thinks: "She is through
with Mrs. Livingston. I wonder if I could not do anything to help her?"

So, there comes a knock upon Miss Travenion's door, and she opening it
herself, for she has not undressed, finds Mr. Chauncey, who looks
sheepishly at her and says in confused tones: "Oliver has told me your
determination. We are going to San Francisco to-morrow morning. You
remain here to see your father."

"Yes, Ferdie," answers the young lady.

"Any way, you are better off away from that prig till he gets over the
shock," replies the boy. Then he laughs a little, and says suggestively,
"You can have him back whenever you want, I imagine," nodding towards
Mr. Livingston's apartment.

"I don't want him back."

"No, I presume not," returns Mr. Chauncey, trying to smooth matters,
"not since you have seen our hero, Captain Lawrence." So he unwittingly
gives the girl another stab, but tries to correct it by muttering:

"By Jove, I had forgotten! Your dad is the man who is busting him. Harry
isn't stuck after Tranyon, is he?" To this getting no reply, he goes on
hastily: "If you want me, I will stay here and look after you. I don't
care to go to California."

"Oh," says Erma, "don't fear for me. My father has taken care of me till
now. You don't suppose he would injure a hair of my head?" then sobs,
"And he was so good to me. I expected such joy at meeting him."

Here Ferdie desperately turns the subject, for girls' tears always
embarrass him.

He says, "Can't I do anything for you? Tell me--just anything."

"Yes," says the young lady, shortly. Then she considers a moment and
asks:

"You know where this Bishop Kruger lives?"

"No, but I can easily find out."

"Very well. Will you take a note to him for me?"

"With pleasure!" he cries, as if glad she has given him a chance to do
her service. So, sitting down, she writes a few lines hurriedly, and
gives the epistle to Mr. Chauncey.

Half an hour afterward he returns, and knocks on her door. She is
engaged with her maid, who has become frightened at being left behind
the Livingston party, and says she wishes to return to New York.

Answering his summons, Erma asks anxiously, "Did you deliver it?"

"Yes; he was in his shirt sleeves, but he read it, and said he would be
down in the morning. He seemed to chuckle over it. I don't think I would
trust your father's friend any too much," suggests the boy.

"Thank you," cries the girl, "for your advice and your kindness," and
being desperately grateful for this one act of consideration shown to
her this night, she says to him suddenly: "Good-bye. God bless you,
Ferdie!" and gives him an impetuous kiss--the sweetest he has ever had
in his life, though with it she leaves a tear upon his cheek.

Then she comes in and says with business-like directness to her
faltering abigail, "You wish to leave me, Marie, here alone?"

"Yes, I am afraid. Mademoiselle will pardon me."

"Certainly. Here are your wages! Here is money for your ticket to New
York. Now go."

"Mademoiselle will pardon me?"

"Yes, leave me," and Marie departing, Erma Travenion feels that she is
indeed alone in a strange country, for she hears the noise of the
Livingstons' trunks as they are packing them and getting ready to depart
in a hurry that does not seem altogether flattering to her.

Early the next morning, the widow, Louise, Mr. Livingston, and Ferdie
depart for Ogden, though the California train does not start from that
town until the evening; they are so desperately anxious to shake the
dust of Salt Lake City from their feet.

At the depot, Ferdie notices Bishop Kruger, who gazes at the party as
they board the train, and approaching Mr. Chauncey, remarks, "I'll see
Miss Ermie up at the hotel. She ain't going with ye, _sure_?" peering
about with curious eyes, as if to be certain of this fact. Then the
train runs out, bearing the Livingstons toward the Pacific Coast, and
Bishop Kruger, about eight o'clock on this day, finds Miss Travenion
waiting for him at the Townsend House.

The girl comes down into the parlor very simply dressed, but perhaps
more beautiful than ever, to his pastoral eyes, for he remarks to
himself, "Be Gosh! She looks homelike and domestic."

"My father!" she says shortly. Then gazing round, she goes on
impetuously: "He is not here--he feared to see me--he is ashamed!"

"What! that he's a Mormon?" yells Kruger, savagely. "A true man glories
in that; so does your daddy. Perhaps some day you'll jine him."

"Hush!" says Erma. "Don't speak of it," and she shudders. Then she asks,
"Where's my father now?"

"In town! But I ain't told him you was here yit. I thought he might
be----"

"Ashamed!" cries the girl, but suddenly pauses. Kruger's looks alarm
her.

"If I thought as how R. H. Travenion was ashamed of the holy Church of
our Latter-Day Saints, I'd cut him off root and branch in this world and
the next," he says, the wild gleam of fanaticism coming into his deep
eyes. "I swear it, by the Book of Mormon!" Erma knows this man means his
words, for Lot Kruger is a fanatic, and believes in his creed and in
Joseph Smith, as truly as the Dervish believes in Allah and Mahomet.
"Your daddy is in town," he goes on more calmly, "but I feared he might
be flustered if he knew you had come upon him, as it were, in the
night, and so I kept my mouth shut."

"Will you bring him to me now?"

"Yes, in an hour!"

So, Mr. Kruger departs on his errand, but shortly re-appears, and says,
"We have missed him agin. Your daddy's left for Tintic on the stage this
morning at eight o'clock."

"Very well," answers Miss Travenion shortly. "I'll go to Tintic also."

This suggestion pleases Bishop Kruger so much that he cries, "Right you
are! Ye're true grit, Sissy! You'd better go down by private conveyance.
It'll be much more pleasant for ladies."

"Oh, I am alone now; my maid has left me," answers Miss Travenion; and
this remark delights her auditor more than he would like her to guess.
He goes on happily, "It's only seventy-five or eighty or perhaps ninety
miles from here. You can drive down in a day with a good, tough
bronco-team, but still you had better take it slowly and stop over night
at Milo Johnson's."

"Alone in a Mormon house?" shudders the girl.

"Oh, you'll be as safe thar as if you were in your bed on Fifth Avenue.
You can travel all over here, provided you do not hurt our feelings, as
safe as if you was in Connecticut--more so--we don't have no burglars
around here!" says Lot, reassuringly.

Making inquiries at the hotel office, Miss Travenion finds that the
Mormon bishop's advice has been good. Then, being provided at the hotel
with a private team, she comes down at ten o'clock in the day, to depart
for Tintic, and is surprised to see the attentive Kruger ready to assist
her into the light wagon, which has a top to keep off dust and sun.

"You didn't expect any one to see you off!" he remarks. "But most every
one here would do a heap for Bishop Tranyon's darter." Then he chuckles:
"Ye're kind o' one o' us now!" and drives the iron into Erma's soul.

"Thank you. I suppose you mean it for a compliment," she says,
attempting lightness, though her lip twitches. "But I am a little
different still, to a Mormon girl!" and gets into the carriage before he
can aid her.

"So you are! Ye're a prize-book picture," he mutters, looking at her
till his eyes blink from some subtle passion, for Miss Travenion is
dressed in a cool, gray linen travelling costume, that fits her charming
figure with a "riding habit" fit, till it reaches white cuffs and snowy
collar, and a little foot, that in its French kid boot looks as if it
had come out of a fashion plate. Thus attired, she makes a very breezy,
attractive picture; though there is no one to enjoy it, save Kruger, for
the heat, even on this October day, has driven loungers from the
sidewalk.

Then turning from her, as she drives down the State road, this Mormon
fanatic remarks: "Gee hoss! Don't this give the Church a pull upon the
daddy, and Lot Kruger a hold upon the darter!" and so goes to a little
building on South Temple Street devoted to the business affairs of the
Latter-Day Saints.

Miss Travenion, raising a little sunshade over a face made beautiful by
conflicting emotions, journeys down the State road, which leads towards
the south--past the Utah Southern Railway, that is now being graded, and
after a dusty seven hours' ride comes to the Point-of-the-Mountain. Here
she is very hospitably entertained, and well treated, by one of the many
wives of Milo Johnson, who lives at this place.

Then the next morning, so as to travel in the cool portion of the day,
leaving almost at daylight, after a hot breakfast, and taking her lunch
with her, she crosses the ford of the Jordan--the river that runs from
the fresh lake of Utah to its salt inland sea. So coming to its western
shore, she journeys along the banks of beautiful Utah Lake--placid as a
mirror--leaving Ophir and Camp Floyd and Tooele far to her west.

To the east, across the limpid waters, she notes, buried in their
orchards, the Mormon towns of Provo, Springfield, Payson, and Spanish
Fork. Behind them the great Wahsatch range, and, further to the south,
the great mountain that they call "Nebo," which rises snow-capped,
dominating the scene.

About midway down the west side of the lake, she and the driver of the
carriage eat their lunch. Then proceeding onward till almost at the
upper end of this quiet water, she leaves its banks, and, after two or
three miles of sage brush, enters a little cañon, with a brawling stream
running down it. Very shortly to her comes the odor of garlic and
arsenic from the smelting works at Homansville, whose great furnaces she
soon sees, giving out clouds of smoke.

Passing these, three miles further up the valley she comes to Eureka.
Here, making inquiry at the store of Baxter & Butterfield, she is
directed to the Zion's Co-operative Mining Institution, whose works
stand a mile or more beyond, towards Silver City.

So, in another half an hour Miss Travenion, turning from the main road
and driving up a little spur of the mountain, past one or two dug-outs
and miner's cabins, gets out of the wagon at the door of a house built
of rough lumber, and says nervously to a man in high, muddy boots and
blue shirt, greasy with candle drippings: "Is Bishop Tranyon in?"

"Yes, he is in the back room," and, pointing to the door, the miner goes
off to his work.

She enters, and seated upon a wooden chair, looking over some accounts
at a deal table, is the man they call Bishop Tranyon, and she says to
him:--"FATHER!"

At her word, Ralph Travenion, once New York exquisite, now Mormon
bishop, staggers up, trembles, and, gazing on her, cries: "Erma! my God!
YOU here?"

Then, forcing back some awful emotion, his voice grows tender as he
says: "Why, this is a surprise, darling! You have travelled all the way
from New York to see your father. God bless you, child of my heart!" and
there are tears in his deep eyes, and he would approach her and put his
arms about her, giving her a father's kiss.

But she starts from him, shudders, and gasps: "Don't dare to kiss me!"

"Why not?"

"_Because I know what you are._"

"My God! You know--" and the strong man turns from her, and hides his
face in his quivering hands.

Then she goes on, faltering a little over the words, but still goes on:
"Why have you disgraced our name? Why have you become a Mormon--a
POLYGAMIST?"

Here he astonishes her by whispering, with white lips, these curious
words: "I did it that I might settle upon you a million! For your sake I
became Mormon--for your sake I became polygamist. I DID IT FOR BUSINESS
PURPOSES!"



CHAPTER XII.

A DAUGHTER OF THE CHURCH.


For a moment, Erma believes this extraordinary statement, and falters,
seeming almost to invite his caresses, at least not to repulse them.

Seeing this, Ralph Travenion mutters, "Thank God, you believe me!" and
flies to take her in his arms; but suddenly her dead mother's face seems
to the girl to rise between her father and herself. She shudders, turns
away from him, and says coldly: "You ask me to believe this monstrous
thing,--that for my sake you became a Mormon?"

"Yes, as God is above me!--to make you rich,--to place you above the
care of poverty,--to surround you with luxury,--the thing that has been
my one thought in life."

"Was that your thought?" cries the girl suddenly, with a face that to
him is beautiful as an angel's, but just as that of the angel's
God--"was that your thought when you entered into polygamous marriage
with those women down there? Oh, don't attempt to deny it!" for he is
about to open his lips. "I saw two of them. I was at the Sunday-school
meeting of the Twenty-fifth Ward, and beheld your hostages to your
faith--five little ones, I believe. One of them, a girl, Mr. Oliver
Livingston was kind enough to say, looked like me."

To this, for a moment, he does not reply. Then suddenly, forcing his
tongue to do his wish, he repeats: "For your sake I did that also!"

"For my sake?" gasps Erma, astounded, then cries out: "Absurd!
Impossible!" and having exhausted tears two days before, mocks him with
unbelieving laugh.

"As God is above me!"

"Prove it!"

"I will!" And so, being driven to his defence, and knowing that he is
pleading for his own happiness--for this child of his _other_ life is to
Ralph Travenion, once club man of New York City, but now Mormon bishop
of Salt Lake, the thing he loves best in this world--he begins to tell
his story, earnestly, as a man struggling to win the lost respect and
esteem of the one woman whose respect and esteem he must
have,--pathetically, as a father striving to keep his daughter's love.

His voice trembles slightly as he begins: "In New York, Wall Street
practically ruined me. The ample fortune that I had determined to devote
to your happiness and your life, Erma, my daughter, had passed from me.
I had, after leaving sufficient for your education, but a few thousand
dollars to take with me to this Western world. I had promised my old
friend to settle a million dollars on you, so that if he kept his
contract to make over a like amount to his son, you could wed Oliver
Livingston and take the place in New York society to which you had been
born. To keep this promise, I left the old life that was pleasant to me,
and came, God help me, to _this_!" He looks about the bare room, with
its rough furniture, its uncarpeted floor, its pioneer discomfort, and
out through the open window over the long waste that covers the West
Tintic Valley. And she looks also, and sees naught but sage brush,
unrelieved save by a few floating clouds of dust that, thick and heavy,
mark the course of ore-teams from the Scotia mine, making their hot and
alkaline way towards the furnaces in Homansville.

Then Ralph iterates, "I came to this life for your sake," a far-away
look getting into his eyes, for recollections of his old club life and
the friends and companions and chums of other days, and pretty yachting
excursions on the Sound, and gay opera and dinner parties and _fêtes_ at
fashionable Newport, come to this exile.

Noting this, some idea of what is in his mind comes also to his
daughter, and makes her tender to him, and this change in her face gives
him courage.

He goes on, "For your sake I did this!"

"For my sake it was not necessary to be a Mormon."

"To make a fortune it was!" he cries. "I wandered about the Mississippi
for a year. At the end of that time, I was poorer than when I left New
York. St. Louis and Chicago did not seem to me a quick enough
opportunity. I came further West. I had a wild hope of making money in
furs, in some stage line, as Indian trader, but found no chance, and so,
in pursuit of one will-o'-the-wisp and another, I journeyed on until I
found myself in Salt Lake City. Here I saw a fortune for a man of
ability. The Transcontinental Telegraph Company was building its line. A
contract to supply them with telegraph poles, properly handled, would
make me rich. But it could be so handled only by a Mormon, and I joined
the Church of Latter-Day Saints,--a stern sect, who will have no
wavering disciples, no half-way apostates in its ranks. By that contract
I made a considerable sum. Then the building of the Union Pacific
Railway came, and by it I made a fortune, because I was a Mormon."

"A Gentile might also have succeeded," suggests his daughter.

"Impossible! As a Mormon, and only as a Mormon, I could hire thousands
of Mormon laborers at one dollar and fifty cents per day,--and pay them
by store orders on Zion's Co-operative Mercantile Institution, who
liquidated them in goods at, practically, fifty cents on the dollar.
Mormon labor cost me seventy-five cents per day against Gentile labor at
three or four dollars; as a Latter-Day Saint I could command the cheap
article. That is why I joined the Mormon Church--for your fortune and
your happiness."

"Was it for my happiness that you accepted their infamous creed for the
degradation of my sex--that you entered into plural marriage--that you
are now surrounded by children of polygamy?" asks the girl, a bitter
sarcasm dominating her voice.

"THAT WAS TO SAVE MY LIFE!"

"To save your life? What nonsense!"

"Hush! Listen to me!" and Ralph Travenion speaks very low, as if he
almost feared the walls would hear him. "A year after I had joined it,
it was spoken unto me by the President that the Church doubted my
sincerity because I had not entered into polygamy. To be doubted in
those days,--in 1865 and '66,--meant the atonement of blood, such as was
carried out on Almon, Babbitt and the Parrishes--it meant being cut off
'below the ears.' Had I died here then, my fortune would have never been
accumulated for you. You would not now have a million to give you
prestige,--to give you power,--to make you reign beauty as you are. You
would not now be called Miss Dividends," and the old man would put his
arms about his daughter to caress her, and take her to his heart--for
her loveliness has made him, her father, very proud.

But Erma cries to him hoarsely, "What kind of a dividend have you given
me? _The dividend of shame!_ Society shudders and turns from me. The
Livingstons have already done so."

To this he answers, "My God, what do you mean?" sinking upon a
candle-box that does duty as a chair in this uncouth department.

"I mean this," cries Erma, "that when they discovered that I was the
daughter of a Mormon, that I had little illegitimate half-brothers and
sisters, they fled from me as if I were tainted and left me to the
kindness of Bishop Kruger."

"KRUGER KNOWS YOU ARE HERE?" This is a wail of anguish from Travenion
that makes his daughter start.

She answers him, though the old man's agitation frightens her.
"Certainly. He learnt of my coming in New York, and returned on the same
train with the Livingstons and myself to Salt Lake City. He----"

But Erma pauses, astonished and horrified, the effect of her simple
words upon her father is so tremendous.

He is wringing his hands and muttering, "They have me now. My heart is
in their hands!" Then he steps quickly to the door, and she hears him
speak to the man who has driven her from Salt Lake. "Take your horses to
the stable at Eureka. Feed and water them and be ready to return this
evening at seven o'clock."

"I don't see as I can, bishop," answers the driver. "The team won't
stand it. They are putty nigh tuckered out now."

"Then be ready to-morrow morning," he says hurriedly, and returns to the
room where Erma still sits, and sighs to himself, "I don't suppose it
would be much use. If they know you are here, they know that they have
my heart in their hands."

"Your heart in their hands? What do you mean by that?" whispers the
young lady.

"I mean _you_! You are my heart,--YOU. My darling! My pet! My treasure!
Who has put peril upon herself because she loved her old papa!" and
before she can prevent it, he has her in his arms and is pressing her to
his heart, and caressing her, and crying over her the tears of a strong
man in his extremity.

And now she struggles not, for his kisses bring remembrance of his other
kisses in happier days, in far-away New York, when she has looked for
his coming at her school, and afterwards as a young lady has flown to
this heart, that she knows has always beat for her.

After a moment, his agitation and words make her ask, "What latent
danger is there to me?"

"Nothing immediate," he answers. "Perhaps none at all--perhaps I am a
fool; for in 1871 there are many Gentiles in this Territory, and United
States troops at Camp Douglas. _But I remember!_ And the thought of
what once was, makes me fear what may now be." Then he says suddenly and
impressively, as if some new idea alarmed him, "Tell me about your trip
from New York. Omit no details. _Minutiæ_ may mean safety for us both.
But first--" And it now being the dusk of the evening, he illuminates
the room with the flicker of a coal-oil lamp and the yellow glow of a
tallow dip, and places her very tenderly on the only chair in the room.

Seated on this, she tells him her story, he interrupting her now and
then to ask pertinent questions, most of them in regard to the actions
of Kruger. And getting answers that he doesn't like, he seems to grow
more despondent the more her words indicate the Mormon bishop has taken
interest in her movements.

But as she tells about Harry Lawrence, and the trouble the injunction on
his mine has brought upon the young man, the old man's eyes gleam and he
chuckles: "Yes, I rather think I have put that bantam into a business
hole he won't get out of!"

He seems so happy and so triumphant over this affair, that Erma, his
daughter as she is, almost hates him.

This brings her to her contribution to Harry's bank account, to defeat
Bishop Tranyon of Salt Lake and Zion's Co-operative Mining Institution,
and telling this with some embarrassment and pauses and blushes, she
notes her father's face grow long and his features puzzled.

Then, as she describes her visit to the Twenty-fifth Ward meeting, and
Oliver Livingston's treatment of her after his discovery that she is the
daughter of a polygamist, he mutters sadly: "To see you married to
Livingston--a man of your own rank and place in New York society--has
been the hope of my old age!"

Here the girl astonishes him. She answers: "Had you been the greatest
saint this earth has ever seen, Oliver Livingston would never have had
me for his wife. Besides"--and she laughs airily--"I could have Mr.
Ollie back at my side in a week. He loves my million well enough to take
me for it."

"Then bring him back!"

"Never!"

"Never! Why not?" This last almost savagely.

"Because _I_ will not marry _him_!"

There is an enthusiasm and determination in the girl's manner that makes
this gentleman--who is well accustomed to reading men, and perhaps has
had some experience, in his plural marriages, of women--suddenly cry
out: "No, you will not wed Livingston because you love another!"

"Who is that?" says the girl, attempting a laugh, but her face becoming
very red in the dim light of flickering tallow and kerosene oil.

"Harry Lawrence, who hates Bishop Tranyon of Salt Lake so much that I
hardly think he will marry the daughter of Ralph Travenion of New York!"
returns her father easily.

But Erma does not answer this. She has turned away to the window, and is
looking down the hill and over the alkaline plains, and her blushes are
only seen by a jack-rabbit who peers at her from behind a sage bush.

Then she faces her father and cries: "No matter what comes, you shall do
justice to Harry Lawrence! You shall withdraw your claim to his
property!"

"Oh ho!" laughs the Mormon. "Give up what I am on the point of winning?
Bishop Tranyon of Salt Lake will never do that. That is not his style."

"No," cries the girl; "but my father, Ralph Travenion, of New York, who
was once worthy the love of all who knew him, will do justice to a
wronged man, because he still loves the daughter who has travelled over
two thousand miles to meet him here, and who he says has brought peril
upon herself, for love of him!" And looking on him, her eyes grow soft
and tender as they used to gaze at him when she was proud of him at
party and _fête_ in far-away New York, as she murmurs: "What will Ralph
Travenion do for his daughter?"

"For his daughter's sake, Ralph Travenion will do anything!" mutters the
old man; then says pathetically, almost brokenly: "For God's sake, give
me one kiss of your own will! You have spoken to me an hour, and as yet
no daughter's kiss!"

With that the girl comes to him, puts her arms about him, and kisses
him, as she used to when she was a child, and before she knew he was a
Mormon and a polygamist.

"Do with me what you will!" he continues. "What do you want for this
young man, who I can see is getting the first place in your heart?"

"Justice!" cries Erma. "I want you to telegraph your lawyer to stipulate
that the injunction on his mine be removed."

"And what more?"

"Resign your claim to his property."

"But Kruger also owns stock in the Zion Co-operative Mining
Institution."

"Buy his stock!"

"Very well, though you are robbing yourself!" mutters the man. "I'll do
it!--if--if you'll forgive me."

"I'll forgive you, if you'll let me lead you away from this awful
place--away from sin!" cries Erma.

But here he astonishes and horrifies her, for he whispers to her: "_Yes,
if we can get away alive!_"

"What is to stop us?" falters the young lady.

Before answering her, Ralph takes up the light, walks into the other
room, examines it; goes up the ladder, into the loft overhead, and
finally inspects the outside of the house; then he returns, saying: "No
one is within hearing!" comes up to her, and whispers:

"The Mormon Church!"

"What authority has the Mormon Church over me?" asks the young lady,
raising her voice a little.

"Hush! Not so loud!" he returns. "The Mormon Church claims authority
over the children, by virtue of their authority over the parent. In
ordinary cases they perhaps would not at this late date exercise it, but
in my case it is different. I am so prominent. They know to lose me
would be a blow to them. At present they have lost several rich members,
and they are desperate! And I"--here his lips approach her ear, and form
rather than say the words--his voice is so low, his lips so
trembling--"and I have been making arrangements to _apostatize_!"

"God bless you for that!" cries Erma.

To this he whispers: "You don't suppose that I ever swallowed the dogmas
of Joe Smith, which I preached as Mormon bishop? I joined them to desert
them the moment I had made what money I wanted out of these Latter-Day
Saints!" And, forgetting himself, he gives out two or three jeering
scoffs. But the next moment his face grows frightened, and he mutters:
"I have been"--his voice is very low again--"making arrangements to
withdraw all my property from this Territory. I have now in New York,
besides the million settled on you, a very large sum of money; but I
have also such a block of stock of the Utah Central Railway that, if I
sell it to the right parties, the Mormon Church will lose control of the
road; that I have not yet been able to remove. But they suspect me!" he
goes on dolefully. "I have been asked to immediately pay my tithing,
which they figure at one hundred thousand dollars for this year,
claiming that I have made a million. I have hidden the stock and I was
about to refuse, but your coming here has made that, I fear,
impossible."

Then he wrings his hands, and says: "When an apostate is cut off, he is
destroyed--root and branch. The family suffer as well as the man, and
you--and _you_, Erma--YOU!"

"Your stock! Is it near here?" asks the girl eagerly.

"Certainly." Here he whispers to her: "In case of anything happening to
me, it is hidden in the level running from Shaft No. 2 in the mine, on
this hillside. It is in a tin box under the fourth set of timbers to the
right of the incline. Remember it!"

"Why not take it? Leave to-night--fly on horseback."

"Where?"

"To the Pacific Railroad."

He laughs grimly, and taking her to the window, cries: "This is a fine
country to get out of!" Then he points over the sage brush and explains:
"To the west is the Tintic Valley--thirty miles of alkali; but, beyond
it, hills and one spring; then one hundred miles of desert, burning
sand, and no water that man or beast can drink. Could we travel over
that and live to reach the railroad? To the south,--Mormon settlements
on the Servier River--Beaver, Parowan, the very hot-bed of Mormonism.
Beyond them, Lee's Ferry on the Colorado!" And he shudders as he
mentions the name of John D. Lee, not as yet sacrificed by the Mormon
Church, for whom he murdered one hundred and thirty-three men, women,
and children, at Mountain Meadows. "After Lee's Ferry, deserts and the
Apache. To the east, Mormon settlements--Santaquin, Nephi, Juab,
Manti--and, back of them, the impassable desert-plateaus and mountain
ranges of the Rockies--mighty rivers that foam through gorges thousands
of feet deep--and Ute Indians!"

"But to the north, father--the way I came--hardly one hundred miles!"

"That is our only path," mutters the man. Then he says, doubtingly: "But
still all Mormon. We may never reach Salt Lake City."

"Who'll stop us?"

"That will never be known! But it is our one chance, and, once in Salt
Lake, I think they dare not touch me. I'll make arrangements to take you
up to-morrow. Come with me now to the hotel."

"Why cannot I stay with you?"

"Humph!" he laughs. "The hotel is better than this. There is only one
bed here. Besides, some one would say," he chuckles rather grimly,
"Bishop Tranyon has taken another wife! And I do not wish it to be
generally known you are my daughter. Then, too, I have a telegram to
send."

"Oh, yes!" cries the girl, "for Captain Lawrence!" And she accompanies
him down the trail that winds to the road coming from Silver City to
Eureka.

So, in about half an hour, Miss Travenion finds herself seated at a
comfortable supper in the hotel. And some time after--her father having
gone off to send the promised telegram--being very tired, she goes up to
her room, where she finds a clean cot bed, and goes to rest, thinking:
"If my life is ruined, his life has been, perhaps, made more happy by
this day's work--he will be rich."

So, pondering of the absent man, who is not yet her lover, yet whom she
now knows she loves, she murmurs: "He will come here to put men at work
once more upon his mine; he will learn that I am the daughter of
Tranyon, the Mormon bishop!" and shudders and writhes at the thought.
Next she says more hopefully: "Perhaps when he finds his property his
own once more he will not hate the Mormon bishop so much as he did
yesterday," and this seems to comfort her a little, for she goes to
sleep.

Early next morning, Erma is awakened by her father's sharp knock upon
the door. He whispers to her: "Quick! You must be ready to start soon!"

But, a few minutes after, coming into the hall, she hears: "Wall,
bishop, did Miss Ermie arrive all right? I saw her off in good style,
and I've come down here, first to look after the mine, and then to
consult ye on some church business. What a beautiful lamb of Zion your
darter is!"

It is the voice of Kruger, the Mormon! And Miss Travenion grows pale as
marble, for she knows that the Church of Latter-Day Saints has its eye
on Tranyon, its bishop, and Erma, his daughter, last season's
prize-beauty in New York society, and Newport's latest summer craze; but
now regarded by the Prophet Brigham and his Council of Seventy, as one
of the elect of Zion, whom God has given into their hands to save, or
lose--to elect, or to cut off, even unto the atonement of blood.



CHAPTER XIII.

THE LOVE OF A BISHOP.


The very telegram Erma thinks may bring Harry Lawrence to her side,
curiously enough keeps him from her.

It comes about in two little episodes--one of sorrow, one of joy.

On the day Miss Travenion left Salt Lake City, at eleven o'clock, the
young man calls at the Townsend House, to keep the appointment Erma has
made for him with her father. He comes up to the office of that hotel,
rather light-hearted, considering his desperate straits financially. He
is about to see the girl he loves--she who, in wild moments, since her
generosity of yesterday, he thinks may have some interest in him; for
otherwise why should she take such pains to have him see her father?

He asks lightly: "Is Miss Travenion in?"

"Miss Travenion has gone," says the clerk, a little curtly, for the
sudden departure of the Livingstons has not altogether pleased the hotel
office.

"And the Livingstons--" asks Lawrence, hurriedly.

"The whole party went to California this morning at five o'clock, on the
Ogden train," answers the youth behind the counter indifferently, for
Mormon hotel clerks are quite often as careless as Gentile hotel clerks.

After a moment of blank astonishment, Harry suggests: "Any letter for
Captain Lawrence?"

"Yes," replies the clerk, and hands him an envelope, the feminine
handwriting on which he knows, and it gives back to him hope,--for one
moment. Stepping aside a little, he opens it; and the sun, shining so
brilliantly this bright October day, goes out of the heavens--for him.
For he sees a lady's visiting card which looks like this:

[Illustration:

(handwritten at top of card: I have seen my father, Good bye)

_Miss Erma L. Travenion_

_18 Madison Square North_]

Crushing the fragile pasteboard in his hand, his moustache twitches with
pain, and he mutters bitterly: "Oliver Livingston was right! My darling
has seen her father; he wishes her to still wed that washed-out
aristocrat!"

A minute after he thinks: "She wished to bid me good-bye, also! Did she
do it easily?" and inspects the card he has almost thrown away, to see
if the handwriting shows emotion in its lines. Doing this, a little hope
comes to him, for he sees a splash such as a tear-drop might make upon
the delicate tint of the cardboard.

Putting the missive away reverently in his pocketbook, he meditates, and
reason tells him he has lost her. It says to him, She is not of your
class and people. Her father wishes her to wed in her station, among the
exclusives of Fifth Avenue and Murray Hill, and she obeys him. What are
you that you should hope for her? If your mine was sold and you had
nearly five hundred thousand dollars in your pocket, you might make an
effort to win this butterfly, who has come into your mannish frontier
life to make it brilliant for a day or two. You were happy before you
saw her; be so without her!

To this he cries, resolution fighting against conviction and common
sense: "No more joy for me without her! I'll win her yet!" and goes on
his way to see his lawyers about getting the injunction on his mine
removed.

But his attorneys, Messrs. Parshall & Garter, do not give him very much
hope of immediate success, and common sense is a very hard party to down
in argument; consequently Harry Lawrence makes a very sombre day of it,
and a more sombre night.

Two days after, however, cometh joy. He is in his lawyers' offices,
trying to think if any one in this wide world will go on his bond to
raise the injunction that paralyzes him financially, when Garter comes
excitedly in, and slapping him on the back, cries enthusiastically:
"Here's luck for Harry Lawrence. I've just received a stipulation from
Judge Smith, Zion's Co-operative Mining Co.'s attorney, agreeing to
raise your injunction!"

"Impossible!"

"Fact!"

"What reason did Smith give for this curious concession?"

"Nothing; only that Tranyon telegraphed instructions to that effect last
night, and he thought there must be a mistake and had wired asking
reasons; that Tranyon had replied, his only reason was that he wished
it, and was going to have it done. Smith thinks the Mormon bishop has
gone crazy. However, I've got the stipulation and you can go to work
to-morrow," answers Garter, showing to Harry Lawrence's wondering eyes
the document.

That day he begins arrangements for his return to Tintic, but he has a
great deal to do and many mining supplies to order and ship, and this
delays him. The Sunday intervenes. But Monday, hurrying his
preparations, he is ready to start so as to make half the drive that
day, and is even in his buckboard, ready to leave, when Garter himself
comes, out of breath, to stop him, crying: "I've got more good news for
you. My boy, you're rich!" and slaps Lawrence heartily on the back.

"Rich!" echoes Harry. Then he goes on more slowly, a lump coming
suddenly into his throat, "What do you mean?"

"What I say! You're rich. I have within the hour received from Tranyon a
quit-claim deed to you of the Mineral Hill locations from the Zion's
Co-operative Mining Co. of Tintic. Look!" cries Garter, and displays the
document.

"It can't be so!" gasps Lawrence.

"It is--and what's more, the deed's in proper form. It arrived by
special messenger from Eureka, with a note from Bishop Tranyon, saying
that on careful examination of the matter, he had concluded that the
location was properly yours."

"How do you explain it?" asks Harry, who can't believe.

"Well," replies Garter, "Tranyon writes that he is moved by love of Zion
to discontinue the suit--but I think it was fear of Parshall & Garter,"
goes on the modest Western lawyer. "The bishop heard you had engaged us.
Anyway, your title to your Mineral Hill Mine is without contest. It's as
clear as mine to my caput."

"Then the Mineral Hill's as good as sold to the English company. The
deed's in escrow in Wells, Fargo & Co.'s. Telegraph Southmead in New
York, and get the cash as soon as you can for me, Garter," answers
Lawrence. "I leave town this afternoon. I've other business to attend
to!" his face lighting up with something that it has not had in it since
he read Erma Travenion's card.

"You go to Tintic, I suppose," asks the lawyer, as he gives Lawrence a
farewell grip of congratulation.

"No! to San Francisco," is the answer, and leaving the astounded Garter
gazing at him, Harry drives straight to his bank, cashes a check, and
just catches the afternoon train for Ogden.

Arriving at this place, and walking over from the Utah Central to the
junction depot, Lawrence is greeted suddenly and heartily by, "How are
you, Cap?" and looking up, sees Buck Powers.

"How are you, Buck? Doing pretty well?" he remarks heartily to this
youth.

"First rate! The news company made a kick about dat collection Miss
Beauty took up for me. Dey wanted half of it, but I stood them off,"
returns Buck in explanation. Then he continues suddenly, "Say, boss, she
was here four days ago."

"Ah! you saw her?" asks Harry eagerly.

"No--I was on de road--but that cripple Mormon who sells newspapers told
me dat de whole swell Livingston outfit went West on the Central,
Thursday."

This information is what Lawrence has expected; he goes into the office
and gets his sleeping berth, Buck Powers greeting this transaction with
a sly wink and a _sotto voce_ remark: "I guessed you wouldn't be long
after her. You knows the purtiest girl as ever come over the road, you
do, Cap."

So at six in the evening, Harry Lawrence, his pulse bounding with
revivified hope, his eyes sparkling with eagerness, his heart filled
with a great love, is speeding towards the Pacific in pursuit of the
girl he has sworn shall be his and no other's: while every throb of the
locomotive that he fondly thinks brings him nearer to her, bears him
away from Erma Travenion.

       *       *       *       *       *

And she upon whom his thoughts are, is sitting by the side of the mine
cabin, looking over the sage brush plain of the West Tintic Valley, and
listening to the low murmur of her father's and Kruger's voices coming
to her through the open doorway, and thinking: "Harry has the news
now.--To-morrow he will be here to work his mine.--To-morrow he will
learn what I have done for him.--To-morrow he will know I am Tranyon's
daughter.--Will he be generous enough to forget my father's shame?" Then
she sighs: "These are curious thoughts for me, whom they called a belle
at Newport six weeks ago--'Miss Dividends,' whose bonds have made her
the bond-maiden of the Mormon Church!" And mocking herself with these
jeering words, Erma Travenion goes in to meet Bishop Kruger and treat
him with respect, if not cordiality--for now she fears him, not
altogether for her father's sake but for her own, for in the last four
days she has grown to feel that Kruger, Mormon fanatic and bishop, has
an interest in her that is not all for Mother Church.

This idea has entered the young lady's mind, not from one but from
several incidents.

Immediately after hearing Lot's voice on the morning of his arrival, her
father had come to her and hurriedly whispered, "Not a word to Kruger of
our leaving. Flight would now be useless if they mean to stop us."

"But where shall we go?" asks the girl anxiously.

"Nowhere! We are safest here for the present," replies Travenion. Then,
seeing astonishment in Erma's mobile face, he continues, "This and the
other mining camps are chiefly Gentile. Here we would be protected by
the hardy men who have come in from California, Nevada and Colorado. It
is in travelling through the farming settlements that our trouble will
come to us. I have told him," he indicates by a gesture Mr. Kruger, who
is looking to the comfort of his team outside, "that you will remain
with me here for some weeks. As you love me and yourself, do not arouse
his suspicions."

"You may trust me," whispers his daughter earnestly, for her father's
manner is very impressive.

A few minutes after they are all at breakfast together, Kruger greeting
Miss Travenion in a more familiar and off-hand manner than he has so far
assumed to her, saying, "Wall, Sissy, did your dad look natural as a
miner? Stoggie boots aren't quite as nice as patent-leathers, and
flannel shirts ain't quite so high-falutin' as b'iled ones, but he's
daddy all the same, ain't he?" Then, chuckling at his own remark, he
prevents reply by turning to Travenion and saying, "Bishop, she's too
likely a gal to let go out agin to the ranks of the unrighteous. You
ought to persuade her to take her endowments."

"Pooh!" answers Ralph lightly. "Erma is too devout an Episcopalian for
me to hope to convert her." But Miss Travenion notes her father suffers
at the mere suggestion that she, whom he loves and honors, should be
even mentioned in connection with this sect of which he is bishop and
apostle.

The next second Travenion has changed the subject, saying, "I'm glad
you've come down, Lot; otherwise I should have had to write to you about
our mine."

"Indeed! What's new since we fixed them Gentiles with an injunction?"
asks Kruger, easily.

"Come up to the shaft and see," replies Ralph. Then he says to his
daughter: "You won't mind a little walk?"

"No," answers the young lady. "In this Tintic air I feel as if I could
climb mountains."

"Wall, ye can find plenty of mountains round here to climb!" laughs Lot.

So they all come out of the hotel into the main and only street of this
mining camp--where many of the men look with by no means kindly eyes on
the two Mormon bishops, for Tranyon's injunction has closed Lawrence's
mine, which promised to develop into a great property which would
furnish lots of work for the "boys." But on seeing the young lady who
accompanies the two apostles, the hats and caps of the delvers after
gold and silver come off with that respect for all women, young or old,
beautiful or plain-faced, that the miners of the Pacific have since
"Forty-nine," when in California they learned to value sweethearts and
wives, because they had none. A chivalry they have not yet--thank
God--forgotten.

But aside from her womanhood, Erma's beauty is so overpowering to these
gentlemen of the pick and drill that they would follow her, were it
polite, and one Patsey Bolivar remarks: "Good Lord, if she's a Mormon,
she must be the angel that brings Brigham his revelations from Heaven."
To this another, Pioche George, answers: "She ain't no Mormon
girl--she's a lady and wears high-heeled boots and has a back-action
panier that comes from Par_ie_."

After a little they are out of the town, and leaving the road, make up
the hill for the mining shaft; and Kruger, walking behind, notices the
tender care with which Travenion assists his daughter over the rough
places in the trail, and is rather surprised at it, for Mormons, as a
rule, have but little consideration and less respect for their
womankind, the very doctrines of their polygamous church preventing
that--though he remembers Tranyon has been considered a light hand with
his wives, leaving them a good deal to themselves, and not exacting any
great account of their outgoings and incomings.

While pondering upon this, and noticing the light grace of the girl as
she steps from rock to rock in the trail, and the beauty of every
movement and poise of her figure, he suddenly thinks: "It's right lucky
Ermie ain't been seen up at the Lion House! The prophet would have been
having 'revealing from Heaven' that she was to be sealed to him."

A moment after, as Miss Travenion ethereally springs over a small tree
that has fallen across the path, this Mormon gentleman suddenly exclaims
to himself: "Great Enoch! They would have cost in our co-op. up in Heber
nigh onto five dollars a pair in farm produce. I'll see if Miss
Highfalutin' will wear silk stockings when----"

He doesn't complete this sentence, though it produces a very definite
idea--though a wild one--in his mind: for what was to him an "IF," as he
looked upon the rare loveliness of Miss Travenion, the Newport
butterfly, on the Union Pacific train, has become to this Mormon fanatic
a "WHEN," now she is in the valley of Tintic, the daughter of a Mormon
bishop--cut off from Gentile friends and surroundings.

This "WHEN" seems to please him so much that Lot Kruger quickens his
steps, and comes alongside of this attractive young lady, and for some
unknown reason begins to be "reel cute," and cavorts about, showing his
agility, skipping over boulders, remarking during his acrobatic
performances: "Yes, I feel reel boyish. I allus do when gals are about!
You ask Bishop Tranyon there, Miss Ermie."

On this frivolity, Ralph, for some occult reason, looks with an evil
eye. It seems to make him gloomy, but Erma rather laughs at the antics
of this Mormon ecclesiastic, who seems to wish to make her forget that
he is fifty years of age, and by no means lovely or engaging.

After a little, however, he chances, during some of his prattle, to call
her "Miss Tranyon," and this puts the girl into such a rage, that did he
but know it, she would like to annihilate him. She draws herself up very
haughtily, and says: "Excuse me! I am always addressed as Miss
_Travenion_, and have never been christened 'Sissy' or Miss _Tranyon_!"

"Oh, no offence, Sissy--I mean Miss Travenion!" answers Kruger. "But I
didn't suppose you would be ashamed of the name your daddy answers to,
and which is respected in this community."

To this, Ralph says in explanation, perhaps apology: "When I came here,
every one seemed to mistake my name, and call me Tranyon. I did not take
the trouble to alter their pronunciation."

But his daughter, in whom anger now overcomes prudence, says sneeringly:
"Pshaw! You were ashamed! You were afraid your Eastern friends would
learn you had become a Mormon!" Then quickening her steps, she reaches
the works and dump of the Co-operative Company ahead of her escorts, and
seating herself on a pile of timber, looks about upon the operations of
the miners, which being novel, create some interest even in her present
state of agitation.

This changes into almost a sneer of indifference as her father and
Kruger arrive on the dump pile, and she sees Ralph very shortly
thereafter euchre his brother apostle out of his share in the Zion
Co-operative Mining Company, which is quite small in comparison to
Tranyon's; all the rest of his fellow Saints having already fallen
victims to his imported Wall Street methods.

Kruger looking about the place, suddenly says: "Why, bishop! we've
hardly any one to work!"

"Of course not!" replies Travenion easily. "We'll be enjoined Monday.
This is Saturday--so I'm laying the men off, and putting things in shape
to stop operations."

"Enjined! How's that?"

"Well, I suppose if we can get an injunction on the Mineral Hill, they
can do the same to us."

"I reckon you're right," returns Lot, wiping his forehead, and looking
glum. "But I thought we claimed their mine--not that they claimed ourn."

"Besides," adds Ralph, "it is about as well for us. We have got no pay
ore. It is the Mineral Hill we want, I imagine." Here he gives Kruger a
significant wink, and continues: "You'd better walk down our incline,
and see how our prospects are, and then come up and tell me if you think
there is any chance of our finding anything where we're working now. I'd
like your opinion on that. It won't take you half an hour, bishop."

"Wall, there's nuthin' like seein'," replies Kruger, and descends the
shaft, which is not difficult, it being an inclined one, and can be
walked down if necessary, as it pitches into the hill at an angle of not
over forty-five degrees.

There are two ore-cars running on tracks in this shaft, to the lower
level of the mine, which is about one hundred feet from the surface.
These are hauled up and let down by a horse whim, that at present, in
contradiction to its name, is moved by a long-eared, strong-kicking
mule, that Erma notices is called Marcho.

Kruger, instead of using his feet, prefers mule locomotion, and goes
down on one of these cars; the other shortly thereafter making its
appearance at the surface, is unloaded of some waste rock and a few
dulled drills and other débris of the mine.

Another surface employee is engaged in turning a circular hand fan,
which through a large tin pipe forces fresh air to the miners working in
the lower level.

These facts are easily and accurately explained by Ralph to his
daughter, as they watch Mr. Kruger's descent.

A few moments after Lot has disappeared, he suggests: "Wouldn't you like
to see the interior of the mine, Erma?"

"Is it safe?" asks the young lady.

"Certainly. Do you suppose I would knowingly take you into danger?"

"Oh, I referred to my costume, not myself," says Miss Travenion lightly,
who is apparently determined to throw off care as much as possible this
day.

"Dust will not hurt linen," replies her father. "There is no seepage at
this season, and we are way above the water level. So you have only a
little dust to fear, and the descent is not long nor dangerous."

Some expression in his face makes his daughter say "Yes" to his
proposal.

A few moments after, the two are alone together in the car descending
the dark incline, and Ralph Travenion whispers: "Watch me! The stock is
below the set of timbers on which I shall place my hand."

To which Erma murmurs: "I understand!" knowing now that it is for this
reason her father wishes her to go down the Zion Co-operative mine.

At the foot of the incline they find a level running from it in two
directions: one towards the Mineral Hill, the other directly away from
it. This last has been only continued about forty feet, and is
apparently deserted. The first, which seems to be of much greater
extent, is in operation, sounds of sledge on drill being heard coming
from it, and the lights of the miners being seen as they work on its
face far away from the incline.

Assisted by her father, Erma is led into the working portion of the
mine, where she finds Mr. Kruger making his inspection of the same with
the aid of a tallow candle, and, apparently, not exceedingly pleased
with what he sees.

"You don't find very much mineral, do you, bishop?" remarks Travenion.
"No," replies Lot, surlily. "There ain't enough in this vein to silver a
tea-pot." Then he says suddenly: "But we have only got one hundred feet
more to run to the Mineral Hill----"

"Which we won't travel in a hurry, when we're enjoined," jeers Ralph.

With this, he explains to his daughter the methods of mining that are
employed, showing her the air as it rushes out of the tin air-pipe, to
give life and vitality to the miners employed below.

This inspection doesn't take long, and, a few minutes after, they return
to the station, followed by Lot.

Just here, however, Travenion says: "I haven't had a look at this other
drift for a good while. I think I'll make a little examination of it
now," and goes into the unused level.

When he reaches the fourth set of timbers from the shaft, by the light
of his candle, Erma sees him put his hands on them, and lean against
them, as he examines the face of the drift.

"Would you like to come in, Kruger?" he asks. "I find nothing."

"Seein's believin'!" cries Kruger, and makes an examination also. Then
the two men come back to the station.

Erma notices that Lot has left his genial spirits in the bottom of the
mine, for when they are hoisted to the surface he turns round and says:
"Tranyon, unless we get the Mineral Hill, we don't get anything."

"And for that we have got to fight them," answers Ralph. Then he
continues: "By the bye, you know Captain Lawrence has engaged Parshall &
Garter. We have got a big fight on our hands, and I suspect I'll have to
assess you."

"How much?" gasps Kruger.

"Well, I guess about twenty-five hundred dollars will do for your share,
as a starter."

"As a starter!" screams Lot, who, though comfortably off for a Mormon,
is not rich like Travenion.

"Yes, for just a little bit of a starter. It's going to cost me one
hundred thousand dollars, perhaps more, to fight this case, and you
don't suppose I'm going to spend _all_ the money, do you, bishop?"

"Great Zion! You talk of money as if it was water!" groans Kruger. Then
he mutters to himself: "I wish I could get out of this thing!"

Leaving him to digest this unpleasant communication, Travenion takes his
daughter's arm, and they walk to the end of the dump pile. Here he
points out to her various mining locations and things of interest on the
scene.

Up to the right, about a mile, is the big ledge of the Eureka Mining
Company, then in litigation also. Across the West Tintic Valley, over
thirty miles of sage brush, is the Scotia Mine. To the left, Silver City
and Diamond.

"But where is Captain Lawrence's mine, the Mineral Hill?" asks the young
lady eagerly.

"Just up a little and further to our right--about three hundred feet;"
and Travenion pointing out the spot, Erma places such anxious eyes upon
it that her father whispers: "No hope of seeing your young man now! He
doesn't know yet his injunction is discontinued. He'll be down in a day
or two!" and pats her cheek, and laughs as if he had hopes himself from
this enterprising young Gentile Philistine.

Just here they are interrupted by Kruger, who comes up suddenly and
mumbles: "Bishop, I'd like to sell out!"

"Who to?" jeers Ralph. "Law-suits are too plenty around here for most
people to want to buy them."

"To you!" says Lot. "You're the only man can handle this thing properly.
Then you'll have the whole of it."

"I think I have enough now, considering I've rather an expensive
family," returns Travenion, and his eyes regard his daughter laughingly
but lovingly.

"You won't buy my stock?" appeals Kruger again.

"Not unless you name a _very_ low figure, bishop."

"So I will," cries Lot. "I ain't no good at mining, nohow. If 'twas
cattle, or farmin', I'd stand any man off!"

Then he names so low a sum that Travenion says: "All right! We'll draw
up a deed this afternoon," and with that gives the foreman the necessary
orders for closing the mine.

They all start down the hill together, though before leaving, Ralph gets
a very grateful glance from his daughter, who, coming close to him,
whispers: "You bought Kruger's stock so as to make the deed to Captain
Lawrence. God bless you, father, for doing him justice!"

So they come down the trail, towards the main road, all apparently
happy--Erma because she thinks Travenion's justice may make Harry
Lawrence forget she is Tranyon's daughter; Kruger because he has got out
of what he thinks a bad speculation with some little money; Ralph
because his daughter's eyes are brighter and her step is lighter than at
any time since she has known he was a Mormon.

As they are passing a pile of rocks that borders the trail, a sudden
sound, like that of a dozen locusts, comes to them. Erma, with a little
cry, gathers her skirts about her, and springs upon a near-by boulder.
Travenion looks hurriedly about for a stick.

The next instant, Lot, who has lived all his life in wild places, has
guessed the matter, and coming up, cries: "Why, it's a pesky rattler!"
and with a handy rock smashes the head of a serpent that has coiled
itself upon the trail, a little ahead of them.

"A rattlesnake! Oh, mercy!" screams Miss Travenion, scrambling higher up
on her boulder of safety.

"You can come down, now, Erma," says her father. But she stands poised
on her eyrie, and discusses the matter, making a picture that causes
Lot's sturdy heart to beat harder than it did when climbing the
mountain.

"Not yet--I have read of them. They travel in pairs!" she gasps.

"Wall, this critter is dead, any way," suggests Kruger. "He has bitten
himself twice since I 'rocked' him. It's all-fired queer how these
varmints commit suicide when wounded."

"There's no danger," says Travenion.

"I'll toss him out of the path; then you'll come down, Sissy!" remarks
the gallant Lot. For somehow the beauty of this young lady--so different
from the other women this man has met--makes him wish to soothe fears he
would be indifferent to, perhaps condemn, even in one of the many wives
of his bosom.

"Oh, please do. I'll thank you so much, Mr. Kruger," answers Erma.

Then she ejaculates: "Do it _quick_! I don't like to look at it!" For
the Mormon bishop seems to be awkward over his work, perchance because
Miss Travenion, in her agitated pose, displays an ankle that might daze
any lover of the beautiful.

A moment after, he has flung the reptile away, and Erma descends, a
little nervous yet, as she falters: "Are there many of them about?" and
manifests a disposition to run down the hill.

"This is the first I have seen this year," says Ralph, reassuringly.

"Yes, these critters are scarce round here," adds Lot; "but over thar in
Provo Cañon, fifty miles away"--he points northeast--"ye can't go one
hundred yards without hearing 'em. And up at the head of it, there war
thousands of 'em, but we all turned out, couple o' years ago, and burnt
'em up in a cave they 'denned' in. It's a marvellous place, the top of
Provo Cañon," he continues. "There's springs of writing-ink up there,
and green and red colored water, and ice-cold fountains and b'iling hot
fountains, all coming out of pot-shaped domes."

"It must be very curious, Mr. Kruger," returns Erma, who thinks she must
appear grateful to him for killing the snake.

"Perhaps ye'll see it some time, yerself, Sissy," remarks Lot. "I have
got as pretty a ranch as is seen in Utah, up the Kammas Prairie on the
head-waters of Provo River. I have got as fine cattle and sheep, and
four as likely----"

He checks himself suddenly here, but Ralph sarcastically adds:
"Wives--why don't you say it at once, bishop? Four as likely _wives_ as
there is in Utah, as well as a fifth at Provo, and a sixth in Cache
Valley." Then he chuckles: "You're too bashful, Kruger!"

For that gentleman has suddenly grown red, and guffaws: "Git out! Bishop
Tranyon! Yer givin' me away to your darter!"

"Pish!" cries Ralph. "You were never diffident about it before. I have
heard you brag about your women folks and big family to a dozen girls,
at a dance in Provo."

"Stop, bishop!" interjects Kruger, interrupting him. "You have scared
Ermie plump off!"

Which is true, for Miss Travenion has suddenly displayed a desire for
rapid movement that has carried her well ahead of the gentlemen, down
the trail.

Her refined mind resents her father's laughing allusions to polygamy,
which make her shudder. Anxious to avoid the subject entirely, she walks
on so rapidly that her escorts do not overtake her till she has reached
the hotel.

As she walks, two ideas force themselves upon her. Her father wishes her
to know that Kruger is a married man. Kruger does not care that she
should learn the fact. Why is he confused and diffident over her
knowledge of what he has boasted to a dozen Mormon girls at a time?

She can't think of any answer to this for a little while, but just as
she reaches the door of the hotel, a great wave of color flies over her
face, followed by an unnatural pallor, and shivering as if struck by the
ague, she sinks on to an empty box that stands near the door.

A moment after her father is by her side, whispering: "You are faint!"

And Kruger coming up cries: "This high air up here is too much for ye!"

"I'll be better in a moment!" whispers the girl. "Could not you get me a
drink of water?"

Her father going on this errand, Lot laughingly suggests: "I reckon it
must have been the sight of the snake that weakened ye!"

"Yes--I think it was--the sight of the snake--" shudders Erma.

Then Ralph brings the water to her and she drinks it as if there were a
fever in her veins, and her eyes seem to follow Kruger, the Mormon
bishop, as if he were the rattlesnake--only they look on him with more
loathing than they did on the reptile.



CHAPTER XIV.

A RARE CLUB STORY.


Then, under the plea of illness, Miss Travenion seeks her little room in
the hotel, to get away from the sight of this man whom she has suddenly
grown to loathe--she hardly fears him--the idea that has come to her
about him seems so preposterous.

Some two hours afterwards, her father knocking on her door, asks if she
is well enough to see him. Being told to enter, he does so, whispering
to her: "Speak low! Sound passes easily from one room to another."

Then he informs her he has received his deed from Kruger, and has
forwarded the deed of Zion's Co-operative Mining Company to Captain
Lawrence, remarking: "This will bring your young springald down here
very suddenly, I imagine," playfully chuckling Erma under the chin with
a father's pride.

"Do not deceive yourself!" answers the girl. "Captain Lawrence is not
engaged to me. He has never said one word of love to me. He will now
probably never say one of love to me. YOU ARE MY FATHER!" This last with
a sigh is a fearful reproach to this Mormon bishop, who in the misery of
his child is repenting of his sins.

A moment after he whispers: "Be careful of what you say before Kruger.
Though we have travelled together for many a day and many a night, I
fear in case of apostasy that to Lot Kruger's hand is given my cutting
off."

With this caution he leaves her.

In this case, Travenion's subtle mind has guessed the truth. For the
heads of the Mormon Church have thought it wise to place this matter
entirely in Kruger's hands. They fear the apostasy of R. H. Tranyon.
They fear _more_, the loss of the vote of his stock in the Utah Central
Railway--that will lose them the control in that road. They have
determined to prevent it.

But with the Jesuitism that has always governed the policy of the Mormon
theocracy, they have told Kruger--whom they have had on such business
before, together with his old chum Danites, Porter Rockwell and Bill
Hickman--to take the affair in his hands, and if he finds beyond
peradventure and doubt that R. H. Tranyon, capitalist and bishop, is
going to apostatize, to do "_what the Lord tells him to do_," which they
know means Tranyon's destruction, because Kruger is an old-time Mormon
fanatic, and will do the work of the Lord, by the old methods of the
days of the so-called Reformation, when "blood atonement" was preached
openly from their pulpits, and death followed all who doubted or
apostatized. They have also made up their minds, if trouble comes to
them through what Kruger does, to sacrifice him to Gentile justice, and,
if necessary, secure Mormon witnesses that will bear evidence against
him, and a Mormon jury who will convict him, as they are making ready to
do with Kruger's old friend and associate, Bishop John D. Lee, of the
Mountain Meadow massacre.

This commission delights Lot very much. He doesn't think his friend
Tranyon an apostate, but he does think Tranyon's daughter, this Eastern
butterfly, as beautiful as the angels of paradise, and he has accepted
his mission gleefully.

All the way driving down to Tintic, he has been rubbing his hands and
muttering to himself: "It's lucky they didn't see her in the Tithing
Office or the Endowment House, or there would have been a rush of
apostles for this beauty, who shall become a lamb of Zion, and be sealed
by the Lord in plural marriage unto Lot Kruger."

It is with this idea that he has come to Tintic, and, still believing
Tranyon to be Mormon zealot like himself, thinks Ralph will regard it as
no more dishonor to give his daughter into polygamy to a brother bishop;
than he, Lot Kruger, would think, of turning over any of his numerous
progeny to make an additional help-mate to any of his co-apostles.

Being confident of this, Lot imagines he can wait patiently till "Ermie
sees the good that is in him."

Therefore, they all sit down to a waiting game; for Tranyon believes
himself safer in this mining camp than anywhere else in Utah, and dare
not leave so long as Kruger is by his side.

This delay is not utterly unbearable to Miss Travenion, because every
day she thinks the incoming stage, or some private buckboard, or light
wagon, will bear into town the man she is looking for--Captain Harry
Lawrence--who, at least, should come filled with gratitude to Ralph
Travenion, though he may despise Bishop Tranyon.

So she passes her time, driving to Silver City, Diamond and Homansville
with her father, who, under the pretence of settling various demands of
business, lingers in Tintic Mining District; now and then reading a
novel, for Ralph has thoughtfully sent to Salt Lake and provided her
with some books. Altogether, she is not uncomfortable, as she has
brought a sufficiency of clothing with her, though most of her trunks
have been left at the Townsend House. Her father, who has never
forgotten his old sybaritic life, sees that their table is supplied with
every luxury which can be obtained in the place, sending Mormon boys to
Utah Lake for trout, and to Payson for late fruits, and securing from
Salt Lake City wines of the best vintages of France.

The air is fresh, and growing colder, and the young lady's cheeks are
very rosy, though they have been browned by the sun. There is some
little excitement in the place, also. The litigation between the Big
Eureka and the King David has come to trial by battle, and these
companies have each imported armed fighters from Pioche, Nevada, the
most ferocious mining camp in the West.

Thus time runs into November, but the girl's heart is getting heavier
and heavier, for the man she is looking for, and who has occupied most
of her thoughts for the last six weeks, has not yet arrived.

Then one day, quite late in the month, she gets a shock, for she hears
he has left the Territory, having sold his mine to an English company
for a large sum of money, and that they have even now come to take
possession of it.

Travenion, having also got the same news, says to her, shortly:
"Generosity did not do much good with young Mr. Harry Ingrate--did it?"

And she, being stung with misery, jeers her father, and herself also,
for that matter, "Yes, the daughter of Tranyon, the Mormon bishop, has
no longer a hold upon the Gentile's heart! Perchance he thinks I should
wed in my own faith?"

Then she falters out of the house, and, alone by herself, among some
piñon-pines that grow on the hillside, tears come into her lovely eyes,
for she feels herself cut off forever from the bright world in which she
once lived, and mutters: "Is this rough mining camp a dream; or were
Newport yachting parties and Delmonico balls hallucinations?"

But this brings the matter first to climax and then to catastrophe. The
girl treats with great _hauteur_ and angry scorn Kruger, who would be
devoted to her, if she would but let him, for, curiously enough, this
old polygamist, for the first time in his life, is in love, as much as a
Mormon can be, with this elusive butterfly who dodges his net and mocks
his pursuit. Under the plea of business he suddenly goes away.

Then Ralph, coming to Erma, says: "Now is our time. We leave in a day or
two!"

But before they have completed their preparations, Kruger, who has
driven rapidly to Salt Lake City, and as rapidly returned, comes
suddenly into Travenion's mining office, where he and his daughter have
been discussing their preparations for departure.

Perhaps some evidences of their intentions are about the room, for Lot
jovially remarks: "Packing up, Ralph! That's right; they will be wanting
ye in Salt Lake soon. I've brought a communication from the head of the
Church."

"Oh!" says Travenion, feigning a lightness that he does not feel. "What
does the Lord say, through Brigham Young, his prophet? Erma, just wait
for me outside. I'll go down with you to the hotel in a moment."

Acting on the hint, Miss Travenion leaves the house, and stands waiting
for her father; and waits, and waits until darkness comes upon the
scene, and voices in excitement come out of the thinly boarded building.
Actuated by an anxious curiosity she cannot control, the young lady
draws nearer to the house, and through its thin walls come to her these
words: "It's no good discussin' the matter further, Bishop Tranyon. The
Church orders you two things. One is to pay the one hundred thousand
dollars tithing you owe to it----"

"Haven't I told you that I have no ready money?" cries Ralph. "Isn't
this lawsuit taking every cent I can spare?"

"Yer duty to yer Church is fust, my friend!" answers Lot. "Besides, what
yer tellin' me ain't true. Up at the city they know you've discontinued
the lawsuit, and have given that d--mned Captain Lawrence"--he grinds
the words out between his clenched teeth--"a quit-claim deed to his
mine. Perhaps you thought you'd give him yer darter also; but he's gone
away to Europe, I reckon, and busted that plan."

Ralph does not answer him, and he goes on: "The Church says it will take
yer one hundred thousand dollars tithing in stock of the Utah Central at
fifty."

"At fifty!" screams Travenion, forgetting himself in rage. "Why, it's
worth one hundred and fifty. I've been offered that for it by the--" But
he remembers, and says no more.

"By the Union Pacific Railway!" ejaculates Kruger sternly. "Ye've been
dickering with them for that stock! Ye want to sell the Church out of
control of that road!"

"As God is above me, that is not true!"

"Swear it, R. H. Tranyon! Swear it by Joseph Smith, the prophet of the
Lord!" cries Kruger, in his fanaticism prescribing an oath that is very
easy for Travenion to take.

"I do," he answers, "by Joseph Smith, the prophet of the Lord!"

"Then I believe ye. No one could take that affidavit and lie!" says Lot,
devoutly.

A second after, he goes on suddenly and suspiciously: "But it is
reported, among the Saints in the city, you're getting lukewarm in the
faith, R. H."

"And you, Lot--what did you say?" asks Travenion anxiously.

"I said it was a confounded lie! That there wa'n't a truer Mormon than
R. H. Tranyon on the 'arth! Tell me so yerself;" and the voice of the
man becomes pleading as he continues: "We have been pards so long I
wouldn't like to cut ye off."

"I swear it!" gasps Ralph. "I'm a true Mormon!" For now he is sure that
the man appointed to be his destroying angel stands before him.

"You can prove it!"

"How?"

"You've a little lamb down here----"

"My God!"

"Make a sacrifice of her to the Lord! Let Ermie take her endowments, and
the Church and I will believe ye're true to the faith of Joseph Smith,
the prophet, and Hyrum, his brother."

To this Tranyon makes no reply for one second. Then he mutters suddenly
and brokenly: "Tell them I'll pay my tithing with the Utah Central
stock."

"At fifty?"

"Yes, at any figure they like; only, for God's sake, leave my daughter
out of this business. I'll bring it with me!"

"Ah, that 'ere stock's down here!" says Kruger suddenly. "Now you're
coming round, bishop, to the demands of the Church, I'll tell you some
good news I have for you. They're goin' to make you a missionary to
England!"

"Aha! before the election in the Utah Central?"

"Yes; the Church will vote the rest of yer stock for ye."

"But my daughter!" falters Travenion. "I can't leave her!"

"Don't have no fear for her, bishop! I'll look after her as if she was
my own." And Kruger's orbs light with sudden passion. "I've been keepin'
my eyes on her. She's a----"

But he says no more, for Erma Travenion sweeps in between the men, with
such a look in her blazing eyes that they both fall back from her.

She cries, "Father, you pay _no_ tithing to the Mormon Church. Your
daughter takes _none_ of its vile mysteries of endowment!"

"Quit yer blasphemy of the Church of Zion!" yells Kruger to the girl.
Then he turns on Travenion and rebukes him sternly, "Bishop, your
darter's been brought up wrong! She's too high-spir'ted and wayward! I
never 'low no woman in my household--wife or darter--to lift up her
voice ag'in me and my doin's. If Miss Upity were my gal I'd take the
blaspheming out of her with a heavy hand."

But here astonishment comes on Erma. Her father says: "Kruger, you're
right! My daughter has been brought up wrong! I now see my error in not
bringing her into the true faith. She shall take her endowments!"

"First kill me!" cries the girl, who cannot believe what she hears.

"Kill ye!" answers Lot. "Why, it will be the making of ye. Saving yer
soul from perdition, is yer daddy's duty, my child."

"Saving my soul?" screams Erma. "Saving my soul?--by making me one of
your horrible sect that degrades both women and men also by its bestial
creed!" And indignation makes her beauty greater than it was before--so
great that fanatic Lot's eyes grow as bright as hers, though with a
different gleam.

But her father stops more, by saying hastily: "Kruger, go up to Salt
Lake. Tell them I'll pay my tithing in the Central stock at their
figure. Tell them I'll vote the balance as they please, and my daughter
_shall_ take her endowments!"

"Swear 't as you hope for Heaven!" cries Lot.

"As I hope for the Mormon paradise!" answers Travenion.

At this the girl gives two awful gasps; one--"Deserted by the man I once
thought loved me!"--the other--"Betrayed by my father."

And the two men leaving her, she sinks down, dumb with despair. After a
moment their footsteps pass down the trail.

In a few minutes, thought and movement coming to their victim, she
rises, and staggering to the door to make some wild effort to fly, is
met by her father, who whispers to her: "Forgive me!"

"Promising me to the degradation of the Mormon Church. How can I forgive
that?" Then she sighs, "How could my father do this?"

"For both our lives!" he whispers. "Kruger has gone to Salt Lake. I have
a certain plan for our escape;" and would put his arms about her and
soothe her.

But the girl bursts from him, sobbing wildly. And he bends over her,
trying to comfort her, and sobbing also: "It was for both our lives!
Erma, darling, could you not see it? Don't you know that I would die for
you!" Then he mutters, "It would have been a pity if, for a few words,
we had lost our opportunity to--defeat this Mormon rustic--we, whose
intellects have been sharpened in the outside world. What is pride
against success? Be a woman of sense as well as of emotions. Pardon me
using diplomacy in my extremity. Aid me to carry out my plan!"

And she remembering that this man is her father and has, up to the
present time, treated her as the daughter of his pride and love,
queries, "How? What plan?" then mutters despairingly: "What matter; you
have given him your oath."

"Pish! By my hope of the Mormon Heaven," he jeers; then whispers in a
voice whose earnestness compels attention: "Kruger has gone to Salt Lake
to tell them of my submission. To-morrow morning you leave, _without
me_, for Salt Lake City; with you shall go my stock in the Utah Central
Railroad. When there, express that stock to my order at San Francisco,
by Wells, Fargo & Co., taking their receipt for the same by certificate
numbers and valuing it at five hundred thousand dollars. I'll risk W.
F. & Co. standing the Mormon Church off for half a million, for I'll pay
no more tithing to Brigham Young." And he grinds his teeth, thinking of
what he has already paid.

"But I may be cut off on the road!" falters Erma.

"No, there is no chance of that," he answers; next cries: "Good God! you
don't think I would put peril on you! Listen how I have guarded you."
Then he hastily explains that she is to travel _via_ Tooele, which will
prevent any chance of Kruger's meeting her as he returns from his
errand--for Lot always comes to Tintic by the shorter Lake road; that
two Gentile miners, whom Ralph can trust, will guard her to Salt Lake
City; that Kruger, on his return to Eureka, will find them both gone,
and will try to follow his, Travenion's, track, for he will, of course,
imagine they have fled _together_; that he will be sure to follow him,
for Bishop R. H. Tranyon can be easily tracked, being well known all
over the Territory, having time and again preached at Conference to
Mormons who have come to the Tabernacle from the south and the north,
the east and the west. "In finding me he will think to find you--so you
at least will be safe," chuckles Ralph. Then he says earnestly: "As soon
as you are in Salt Lake, take the train to Ogden, and then the U. P.
Railroad, and get to New York as quickly as you can. There I will meet
you!"

"But you--what of you? While I seek safety, you sacrifice yourself?"
dissents the young lady, noting her father's idea tends to her escape,
not his.

"That is the craftiness of my plan!" grins Travenion. "When Lot returns
to Tintic I shall have also disappeared!"

"Where?"

"Into the bottom of my deserted mine!" chuckles her father. "No one will
think of looking for me there. I have already stored the place with all
the luxuries and comforts of life. While Kruger is seeking for me all
over the Territory, arousing his Mormon fanatics to inflict upon me 'the
vengeance of the Lord,' I shall be having a very comfortable time of
it," sneers Ralph. "After he has gone, perhaps to the far southern
settlements, to cut me off there, I shall come out and drive very
quietly to the railroad, and take train for California or Omaha,
whichever seems most safe."

"But they may recognize you in Salt Lake City!" suggests Erma.

"Hardly. I shall travel at night the entire way to Ogden, not even
entering Salt Lake. Besides, the Church has put this matter into
Kruger's hands, and will not interfere in his business, and Kruger will
be away. I know the peculiar methods my saintly associates have in these
affairs--they want to punish only at second hand. No suspicion must fall
upon apostles' heads; that might mean punishment from the government of
the United States. Now," he says shortly, "will you do what I have
explained to you for my sake--for your own safety?"

And the girl cries eagerly: "Yes! Anything to escape from this accursed
land."

That night Ralph makes his preparations, and before daylight next
morning he says to his daughter, who has already breakfasted, "Come with
me. The wagon is at the foot of the hill."

Getting into the street, which is dark and deserted at this early hour
and has quite a little fall of snow on it, November having far advanced,
and Thanksgiving day being already celebrated, they move along the road
towards Silver City; the only noise coming to them being occasional
firing from Eureka Hill, where the fighting men of that company are
exchanging playful shots with the guards of the King David, just to
remind their employers that a raise in their salaries will be
agreeable.

After fifteen minutes' walk they come to the hill on which the Zion's
Co-operative deserted mine is located. At the foot of this is
Travenion's light express wagon, drawn by a strange team of broncos, two
men standing by it. Then Ralph says easily: "This is Patsey Bolivar, and
this, Pioche George. Gentlemen, this is my daughter whom you have
promised to take care of."

"We'll see the young lady through," remarks Patsey, taking off his hat.

And noting Erma has started back, for she has recognized her selected
escorts as two of the most ferocious fighters in the camp, Pioche
George, as he doffs his sombrero, remarks: "We look a leetle rough,
miss, but you'll find us very tender of you, and very tough to your
enemies--eh, Patsey?"

To which Bolivar cries cheerily: "No coppers on us!"

"Oh, papa's selection proves that," says Miss Travenion, who has looked
into these gentlemen's eyes and feels confident of them as she gives
these two fighting men her hand, so affably and trustfully that she
binds them to her--even to life and death.

Then Ralph remarks: "I wish to take my daughter with me up to my mine;
would one of you come with us to take her down? I shall bid her
good-bye, there."

"With pleasure, bishop," replies one desperado.

But the other laughs, "Quit calling him bishop. He's repented and become
a Christian like us!"

For Travenion has been compelled to take these men partially into his
trust, which he has done quite confidently, knowing he has paid them
well, and after having taken his money they can be bought by no one
else, the code of morals of the Western mine fighter being very definite
on this point.

So, followed by Pioche George, Patsey Bolivar remaining to look after
the team, Ralph assists Erma up the hill.

In a few minutes father and daughter are standing in the ore house on
the dump pile of the now deserted Zion's Co-operative Mine, their
accompanying fighting man remaining outside, "to give 'em a chance to be
confidential."

Ralph whispers, "I'll go down and get the stock."

But Erma says suddenly, "Let me go with you. I must see that you are
comfortable during your retreat from the world."

"I rather think I've looked out for myself pretty thoroughly," laughs
Travenion, who seems in very good spirits, the strain of waiting having
passed from his mind. Then he goes on earnestly, "God bless you, Erma,
for thinking of me. Come down and see what I've done for myself. I can
give you the stock there just as well as here."

So, lighting a candle for her, and guiding her steps very carefully,
Ralph assists his daughter down the incline, and the two shortly come to
the station, and turning along the level that runs away from the Mineral
Hill Mine, Ralph pauses at the fourth set of timbers and laughs, "What
do you say to this for a bachelor's apartment?"

To this his daughter cries, "Oh, sybarite!--you've even got champagne
and dried buffalo tongues."

As he has, a dozen pints of Veuve Clicquot, likewise Château Margaux, as
well as a couple of boxes of rare Havanas, and canned provisions; a soft
mattress and warm blankets; a chair to sit upon, half a dozen novels and
some current literature to kill time with, lots of candles to illuminate
his retreat, and plenty of water in a small barrel.

"I'll be pretty comfortable here, I imagine," he says, contemplatively.

"No, you'll be cold," answers the young lady.

"Cold?--a hundred feet under the ground? This depth is the perfection of
climate. It is neither too warm in summer nor too frigid in winter. I
shall be very snug down here," he remarks; then chuckles, "while my
friend Kruger is hunting for me through snow-storms and blizzards on the
outer earth."

"Still it seems horrible," mutters the girl with a shudder, "for you to
be buried under the ground. The air----"

"Is excellent!" interrupts Ralph, tapping the tin air-pipe with his
hand. "This is a natural draught--not enough for twenty or thirty men
working down here unless the fan is in operation, but lots for two or
three. See how brightly my candles burn!" Then he says sharply, "We've
no time to lose. Pioche George will be getting impatient up-stairs. Hold
a candle for me, my darling!"

With a pick-axe he has brought down with him, he exhumes from underneath
the fourth set of timbers a small iron box, strongly secured by padlock,
and giving it with its key to Erma, says: "Do as I have directed with
this. It is the Utah Central stock."

Then, for the parting is coming, she falters: "Father, when will you
join me?"

"As soon as you are surely safe and out of this accursed Territory, and
Kruger has disappeared, pursuing me with his Mormon bloodhounds."

A second after, he bursts out, as if a great relief has come upon him,
from throwing off the bonds that have held him so long: "Oh, how I have
scoffed them in my heart, as I have preached their religious bosh at
Conference and ward meeting, all these years. Won't this be a great
story to tell in the Unity Club, New York, to my old chums, De Punster
and Van Beekman, Travis and Larry Jerry, and the rest of the boys? How
they will shriek at Ralph Travenion, the swell, having been a Mormon!
Won't the champagne flow to my plural marriages? Egad! it's worth while
to take these risks, to have such a royal story to tell!"

"Hush!" cries his daughter, sternly. "Remember the poor women you are
deserting." A moment after she says more slowly, "They must be provided
for as soon as you are safe."

"Oh, they will have plenty," answers Ralph. Then he bursts out again, "I
leave too much behind. When I think of what I have paid, year by year,
as tithing to the infernal Mormon Church, I curse it. But they are
tricked at the last. I'll sell the control of their pet railroad out of
their hands. Hang them, I could dance for joy!"

With these words, the old beau skips with a waltz step to the bottom of
the incline. Then they ascend, the rope aiding their steps, and the
pitch not being very steep, to the outer air, and the time has come to
say farewell.

Pointing to a white-topped wagon at the bottom of the hill, Travenion
says: "Quick! Give your father a kiss, and pray for his safety."

The girl answers: "One hundred!" and throws herself into his arms, and
murmuring: "You are the only man who ever loved me--the only one! Mormon
that you have been--polygamist that you are--you are the only one who's
left to me!"

For she has been looking at the shaft of the Mineral Hill Mine, upon
which the English company are now commencing to work, and her thoughts
are on the man who she feels has deserted her.

Then, as Ralph embraces her, a shudder runs through her; but it is not
of cold, though snow is falling, but it is the chill of her heart as she
thinks: "But for this man, whose lips are now pressed to mine, Harry
Lawrence would not despise me!"

But Travenion mutters in her ear: "It is late now--you must leave at
once, for the days are quite short!" and beckons Pioche George to
approach.

"You can trust us, bishop, to take her through," George remarks,
noticing the old man's agitation as he gives the daughter of his heart
his last kiss.

Then Erma hurries down the hill, and he, sitting on the deserted dump
pile of his mine, watches her until Pioche George lifts her into the
wagon and it drives away over the snow-white road, making across the
West Tintic Valley, and so towards Ophir and Tooele, for Travenion has
directed them to go by this somewhat roundabout road, to avoid any
chance of meeting Kruger, perhaps even now returning from his errand to
the heads of the Mormon theocracy in Salt Lake.

Looking on this he says: "She is safe!" and laughs: "I will be safe
myself, shortly! Now for my bachelor quarters!" and goes slowly again
into the mine.

About half way down the incline he starts, pauses, and listens,
muttering: "I thought I heard a noise." Then sneers at himself, "Some
stone touched by your foot--you're weak-kneed, Ralph."

Continuing his descent and holding his candle in front of him, he comes
to his quarters, where he says, looking about: "This is a pretty
comfortable spot to kill time by champagne, a weed, and a novel."

Which he does, lighting one or two more candles, to give him better
illumination, then gently sipping the Clicquot, between puffs of a
Bouquet Especial, as he turns over the leaves of a new French romance,
which seems to amuse him greatly.

And all the while, from the darkness of the level, beyond the incline,
two red eyes glare at this sybarite as he chuckles over the jokes of
Monsieur Paul de Kock.

Turning his back to the incline, in order to get a better light upon
his novel, Ralph sits chuckling over the queer conceits of the gifted
Frenchman--the red eyes all the while coming nearer to him.

As Travenion laughs again, a heavy step sounds behind him, and the great
red eyes are at his shoulder, looking over the volume with him, and he
springs up with a shriek, for Kruger's voice is in his ears crying,
"Doomed by the Church!"

Then this Mormon fanatic is upon him, seizing his arms, and bruising his
more tender flesh, chuckling: "What's champagne muscle to grass-fed
muscle, you dainty cur of New York!"

And though Travenion fights as men only fight who are fighting for their
lives, he pinions him and makes him helpless, and dashes him brutally
down.

Looking at him, the old club man, who was once a Mormon bishop, tries
his last diplomacy. He gasps between white lips and chattering teeth:
"This--to a man who has been your chum--your companion--who is your
brother in the Church."

"Who _was_ my brother in the Church!" cries Lot. "But we'll discuss the
affair a leetle. With ye're permission, I'll liquor."

Knocking the head off a bottle of Clicquot, he quaffs it greedily; the
one Ralph was drinking from having been thrown down in the struggle.

Throwing the bottle away; as it crashes to the other end of the level,
he remarks with a hideous leer: "Now we'll come to biz once more!"

But Ralph answers him nothing.

Then Lot laughs: "You walked into yer own trap. You thought I'd gone to
Salt Lake, but I reckoned from yer break-out of last night that yer Utah
Central stock, which the Mormon Church needs and will have, was here in
yer possession, an' made up my mind to locate it. I knew it wa'n't in
yer safe, 'cause I'd seen that open too often lately. I reckoned it was
right in this mine, and I'd been hunting over this place all night
without success. But in the mornin' I heard a noise on the trail, and I
seed ye and yer darter comin' up, an' I knowed what yer'd come for! An'
when yer come down in the mine, I come down a _leetle_ ahead of yer, and
spied on yer from that drift, an' seed yer give that stock to Ermie to
take away. But I'll 'tend to her afterwards."

To this Travenion sighs: "My daughter!"

But Kruger goes on savagely: "I would have shot yer while yer were
profanin', if it hadn't been I didn't want to shock her by her seein'
yer die. But now, I love yer so well, R. H. Tranyon, I'm goin' to fix
ye!"

With this, he takes the case of wine and hurls it to the other end of
the incline. There's a crash, and Margaux and Clicquot trickle over the
stones of the mine.

Then he cries: "Yer won't need this!" and throwing over the keg of
water, it runs to waste upon the earth.

"Neither will ye want pervisions!" and he tosses the old club man's
dainties into the sink of the mine at the bottom of the incline, keeping
a big buffalo tongue, which he bites and eats, talking after this, with
his mouth full, which makes him more hideous and awful, as he jeers: "I
ain't had no breakfast--I'm foragin' on the enemy of the Lord."

"My God! What do you mean to do?" gasps Travenion, who has looked on
with eyes that are growing bloodshot.

"Cut ye off behind the ears--make a blood atonement of ye! You've been
so crafty about this, no one will ever know you're down here to hunt ye
up."

Then running up the incline, Lot loads the two cars standing at the
surface, with great masses of rock and boulders, fanaticism giving him
increased strength. Letting them run down, he unloads them, and once
more does the same, unheeding the cries of the man helpless in the level
below.

When he has done enough of this, he cuts the cars loose at the surface,
and they come crashing down, and block up the incline. Then he comes
down again himself and piles the boulders he has already let down, on
top of the wrecked cars, blocking Travenion from the outer world.

Noting his purpose, Ralph staggers up, bound as he is, and prays: "Not
that! Shoot me--kill me another way! For God's sake, NOT THAT!"

But Kruger cries: "Powder and lead cost money! The Church is too poor to
give ye an easy atonement." And he piles the rocks up to the pleading
wretch's shoulders.

A moment after, he blows out every candle, save one, to light him in the
finishing touches of his awful work; when, desperately struggling,
Travenion drags himself to the barrier, and screams: "My God! You are
mad--you don't know what you do! I'm your old friend and chum!"

"I'm sacrificin' you here on the altar, where I heerd ye blaspheme your
religion an' your prophets! That's what I'm doin'!"

"Mercy! Not this death!" gasp the white lips, and bloodshot eyes beseech
the executioner, looking over the barrier rising steadily between them.

"Ye've been given into my hands by Jehovah and Brigham, both of whom
ye've blasphemed!" cries Kruger, piling the barrier up to the shuddering
man's neck.

Then he goes on in savage mockery. "Ye'll tell no funny anecdotes and
sacrilegious jokes about our president, Brigham Young, and our prophet,
Joseph Smith! Champagne won't flow over yer infamous apostasy, in the
Unity Club. It will be a rare tale to tell yer chums Von Punster and De
Beekman, and Travis, an' Larry Jerry, of how yer made a mockery of our
sainted religion, an' jeered us, even when ye preached from our altars!
But ye'll never tell it! 'DEAD MEN TELL NO TALES!'"

Then the barrier is up to Ralph Travenion's face, which is now pale as
the flickering candle that lights its agonies. Over this face comes one
pang more cruel than the others, and the white lips sigh, "My daughter!"

"Yer darter--that's the p'int! I'll look after her salvation. She shall
be a lamb of Zion. I'll take her right into my sheepfold."

"Powers of Heaven! What do you mean?" And the wall now rises above his
mouth.

"I sha'n't be hard on her," mocks Kruger. "I'll spare her herding and
cattle work. She shall do chores round the house. I'll be light on her,
I will, bishop, for I mean--" He whispers three words into the fainting
wretch's ear, who reels back from him and shrieks: "MY GOD! NOT THAT!"

To his scream, the crashing sounds of rocks and a big boulder make
answer, and the light of this outer world leaves Ralph Travenion, and
footsteps are heard passing away along the echoing level, and up the
incline, and the old club exquisite, bound and helpless, is left alone
in darkness--not to the torture of hunger, for of that he thinks
not--not to the torment of thirst, for of that he cares not--not to the
despair of certain death, though that has come upon him--but to the
agony of fearing that the daughter of his heart may by some art or trick
taste the awful degradation of plural marriage, such as he as Mormon
bishop has preached and sanctified and has meted out to the daughters of
other men.



BOOK III.

OUT OF A STRANGE COUNTRY.



CHAPTER XV.

THE SNOW-BOUND PULLMAN.


As this horror is taking place inside the earth, Miss Travenion and her
two escorts on its surface are speeding over the snow towards Tooele.

The consideration and respect with which she is treated by these two
rough-and-ready fighters of many a desperate mining battle is almost
oppressive: they are so exceedingly polite.

Every time he addresses her, Patsey Bolivar takes off his hat. Chancing
in one of his remarks to use the word "infernal" (which is a very mild
expression for this gentleman), Pioche George suavely suggests: "Don't
ye mind Patsey's high-flown remarks, miss. I've told him if he uses any
stronger expression than a plain 'damn' in yer presence, that I'll
perforate him."

"Would you rob me of one of my guards?" gasps the girl.

"No," replies George. "Patsey an' I have arranged that any discussion
between us shall take place after we've seen ye safe through--as we
will; though I reckon we've more to fear from snow than anything else on
this trip, for it seems as if a blizzard was a-blowin' up."

So Miss Travenion journeys on, Patsey sitting on the front seat and
driving, and Pioche George, who is beside him, turning round to her and
regaling Erma with anecdotes of his frontier experience, some of which
are amusing, and nearly all of them horrible.

About two hours after, Kruger also drives furiously out of Eureka, but
does not travel the same route as the young lady he is in pursuit
of--going up through Homansville towards Salt Lake City--the most direct
route--but, strange to say, leaving it, and taking the road to his
right, which leads on to Goshen, then Payson and Provo, for he intends
to go up the Provo Cañon to Heber City, having some curious affidavits
to make that he dare only indulge in before a Mormon judge. From this
place he will journey rapidly as horseflesh can take him to Park City,
and then to Echo Station on the Union Pacific Railway, which is also in
the Territory of Utah, and subject to the domination of its judges.

He expects to encounter Miss Travenion at that point, though the snow
that delays her on her trip will hinder him a great deal more, going up
Provo Cañon and over the divide to Heber City. But he is a sturdy old
Mormon, and though it means an all-night drive--part of the way,
perhaps, in a sleigh--he does not care much for the storm, for he has a
plot in his head that makes him rub his hands and chuckle, even when the
wind blows the fiercest and the snow drifts the strongest.

Shortly after he has turned from the main road to Salt Lake, a wagon
coming down from that city carries Harry Lawrence, who is very happy,
and Ferdinand Chauncey, who is very tired: for they have made an
all-night drive, and had they been five minutes earlier, would have
encountered Kruger, to his astonishment, and, perhaps, to theirs.

As they come up to the cañon leading to Homansville, Harry cries:
"Ferdie, in half an hour I'll see her!" then mutters: "My Heaven! what a
monster of ingratitude she must think me now!"

"Oh, I'll fix that for you, easy enough!" says Ferdie confidently. "I'll
tell her how you've been wandering all over California after us,
thinking she was in our party. I think my word will carry you through."

Curiously enough, this is the fact. Lawrence, full of hope, has reached
San Francisco, to find the Livingston party is not there. They have gone
to Belmont to spend a few days, the clerk at the Grand Hotel informs
him, at the house of Mr. Ralston, the banker; a gentleman who, at this
time, was pouring out hospitality with a lavish hand to prominent
visitors to California.

Not having an invitation, Harry is compelled to remain, and await their
return, but they come not. After a week or two, he discovers that they
have gone straight from Belmont to the Yosemite, which is a long trip,
as there are few railroads in the State at this time.

Notwithstanding this, he follows them, and after four days of staging
and rough riding, finds he has missed them entirely; for now he cannot
discover where they have gone, on leaving the valley of the cataracts.
As a matter of fact, they have journeyed to Southern California, and
have spent a couple of weeks at the great cattle ranch of Mr. Beale,
near the Tejon Pass.

So, after a fruitless visit to the Big Trees, Lawrence concludes to
return to San Francisco, knowing that the Livingston party must
ultimately find their way there, before they return to the East.

In this place, which was just beginning to get excited over the great
mining boom in the Belcher and Crown Point, which three years afterwards
gave way to the still greater one of the Consolidated Virginia and
California, in which many fortunes were won, and more fine ones were
lost, he passes two anxious weeks.

Being known to several mining men, and receiving telegram from Garter
that the first one hundred thousand dollars had been paid upon his mine
by the English company, and he can draw on him for fifty thousand
dollars at sight, he goes to driving away thoughts of his errant
sweetheart, by taking flyers in the securities of the San Francisco
Stock Board, and one afternoon, purchasing a couple of hundred shares of
"Belcher" at about fifty--its ruling price in the market at that
time--he pays for them, and puts them in his pocket, hoping to sell them
on the morrow at a few dollars a share advance, and strolls up to the
Grand Hotel, for that is where the Livingstons have stopped before, and
will probably stay on their return to San Francisco. Therefore he makes
it his headquarters.

Here he is delighted to find Mr. Ferdinand Chauncey playing billiards.

"By Jove, Harry! What are you doing here?" cries this young gentleman,
who has become very familiar with the man who has saved his life.

"Hunting for you," replies Lawrence, returning Ferdie's warm grip very
cordially.

"Ah, you've come to tell us the news, I suppose," laughs Mr. Chauncey.
Then he amazes Lawrence with the query: "How is she?"

"Who?"

"Erma Travenion, of course--how is she getting along with her many
step-mammas?"

"What do you mean?" ejaculates Harry, thinking Mr. Chauncey has gone
daft.

"I mean what I say. Innocence won't do. Has old Tranyon given you his
mine as well as his daughter? Ollie and his mother quarrel every day
over his desertion of the heiress. The widow says that she and Louise
won't be able to live on their income now, and Oliver has turned sullen,
and says if they can't, Louise can go into a Protestant nunnery. So that
young lady is in despair."

"What the dickens do you mean?" gasps Harry. Then he says: "Are you
crazy?" and looking into Ferdie's face, and seeing sanity there,
suddenly seizes him, leads him apart, and commands: "Tell me what you're
driving at!"

Then Mr. Chauncey, guessing from Lawrence's manner that he does not know
what has happened, tells him what took place in Salt Lake the evening
before their departure, to which Harry listens with staring eyes.

As Ferdie closes, he suddenly breaks out: "Now I understand!--Tranyon's
deed to me--it was that angel's doing!" Then mutters: "My God! She'll
think me a monster of ingratitude! A prig, like that scalliwag
up-stairs;" he turns up his thumb towards where Mr. Livingston is
supposed to be.

To this Mr. Chauncey says nothing, though his eyes have grown very
large.

After a second's thought, Lawrence continues very earnestly: "You say I
saved your life. May I ask you a favor in return?"

"Anything!" cries Ferdie.

"Very well! You can explain this matter to Erma Travenion, so that she
will know that I followed her for love, all over California, and did not
desert her for pride, because she was the daughter of a Mormon, in Utah.
Will you come with me, and make that explanation?"

"Yes--when?"

"Now! The train leaves in an hour."

"I will," cries Ferdie. "I only want fifteen minutes to pack my trunk
and explain my sudden departure to the Livingstons."

Which he does, and the two make their exit from San Francisco on the
afternoon train, and two days afterwards find themselves in Salt Lake
City, where Ferdinand would like to lay over for a night, but Lawrence
says, "No rest while she thinks me ungrateful!"

Despite some demur on the part of Mr. Chauncey, he puts him into a light
wagon, and the two drive all night so as to make Eureka in the morning,
which they do, some two hours after Mr. Kruger has left it.

At the hotel, seeing neither Tranyon nor his daughter, Lawrence drags
Ferdie, who is very tired, with him up the trail to the office of Zion's
Co-operative Mine, and says: "You go in, my young diplomat, and tell
her; I'll wait down here out of the way."

Which he does; but a few minutes after Chauncey comes back and reports:
"There's no one there!"

"Nobody?"

"Not a living soul!"

Lawrence investigating this and finding it true, they return to the
hotel again; but to Harry's anxious inquiries, no one can give him any
information of the whereabouts this day of Bishop Tranyon or his
daughter till, after two hours' search, some one suggests: "They may be
up at the mine."

"They're not working that now?" says Harry.

"No, but I saw the bishop and his daughter go that way very early this
morning."

This information is enough for the impetuous Lawrence, and he again
drags Mr. Chauncey up the trail with him, past the office; and one
hundred yards beyond they come to the dump of the Zion's Co-operative
Mine, but the place seems deserted.

"I expect, with your usual luck," suggests Ferdie, "the bishop and his
daughter have gone back to Salt Lake City, and we have missed them on
the way. Miss Erma seems a pretty hard butterfly for you to track."

But Lawrence suddenly interrupts him, whispering: "Listen! There's some
one in the mine. Perhaps they're down below."

"What makes you think that?"

"I hear them."

"I don't."

"But I do! Right through this air-pipe," cries Harry, and he springs to
it, and disconnecting the fan from it, puts his ear to it. A moment
afterwards he exclaims: "There's somebody in trouble down there!" and
the next moment, disregarding the danger of foul air, is well on his way
down the incline.

Three minutes after, he re-appears, and says: "There's been an accident
of some kind. Cars have broken loose and are smashed down there at the
bottom, and boulders and loose rock are piled up, cutting off somebody.
He's alive yet! I heard him moaning."

Then he suddenly whispers, growing very pale: "My God--if it is she!"
Lovers are always fearful. Next he cries: "Run, Ferdie, up to the
Mineral Hill--it's only three hundred feet from here--tell them to send
down half a dozen miners like lightning!"

And Chauncey flying on his errand, a sudden idea coming into Lawrence's
mind, he steps to the air-pipe, and using it as a speaking-tube, shouts
down: "Halloo there! Who are you? Are you too much injured to speak?"

And listening, there comes up to him from the depths faintly, through
the tube: "I'm uninjured, but am bound and helpless."

"Who are you?"

"R. H. Tranyon."

To this, Harry suddenly screams back: "Your daughter!--for God's sake,
tell me where she is!"

"Why should I tell you that?"

"Because I'm Harry Lawrence!"

And through the tube comes faintly up to him: "Thank God! You are here
to save her!"

"From what? My Heaven! From what?" shrieks Lawrence down the tube.

"From Lot Kruger, bishop in the Mormon Church, who has buried me
here--who is now pursuing her!"

"Good God! For what?"

"To marry her!"

"Don't fear for that!" cries Harry. Then he grinds out between his
clenched teeth: "The accursed polygamist'll be dead before that
happens!" A second after he shouts down: "Give me the particulars," and
gets them up the tube. Finally he says: "How long have you been there?"

"I can't tell. It seems days. I was buried here on December 1st, early
in the morning."

"Why," cries Harry, joyfully: "it's December 1st now. You haven't been
there five hours." Then he goes on: "Kruger's only four hours ahead of
me. You rest quietly. The miners will have you out in two or three
hours. You make up your mind your daughter's safe, if it's in human
power! She might die, but never marry Kruger."

Here Ferdie, coming back with some miners, is very much astonished to
hear Lawrence say hurriedly to him: "Get the men down that incline.
Remove the rocks and get Tranyon out!"

"And you," cries Chauncey, "where are you going?" for Harry has already
turned to leave the dump pile.

"To save his daughter!" And before the last word is out of his mouth,
Lawrence is speeding down the trail to Eureka, where in twenty minutes
he gets a fresh team, and driving through the storm, which has now
become blinding, and through the night, which comes on too soon, and
being compelled to go very slowly, for the snow is drifting heavily, he
makes Salt Lake City early in the morning.

Going straight to the Townsend House, Harry says to the clerk: "Don't
make any mistake this time, young man, in your information. Miss
Travenion is here?"

"No, not here!"

"Good Heavens!"

"She was here last night," says the clerk, with a grin, "but drove away,
five minutes ago, to catch the train for Ogden," and is astonished at
the hurried "Thank you" he gets, as Lawrence runs out to his wagon
again.

Clapping a ten dollar bill into the sleepy driver's hands, Harry cries:
"That'll wake you up! Utah Central depot like lightning!"

He gets there just in time to board the train as it runs out of the
station, to make connection with the Union Pacific that will leave Ogden
this morning.

She is not in his car, but Harry looks into the next one, and seeing the
young lady asleep, mutters: "She is tired also. I'll not wake her," then
suddenly thinks: "By George! How shall I begin the business? She must
despise me now!" and wishes he had brought Ferdie with him; though he
laughs to himself: "I suppose it would have killed that future Harvard
athlete--two nights' steady driving and no rest between!"

Sitting down to think over this matter, and being overcome with
weariness himself, sleep comes upon Harry also, and he doesn't wake even
after the train has arrived at Ogden, till he is roused by the brakeman.
Looking about him, he gives a start. Miss Travenion has disappeared.

Muttering to himself: "I'm a faithful guardian--I keep my word to her
father well! I have a very sharp eye out on my sweetheart!" he runs
across to the Union depot, and is relieved to see that the young lady
is in the office of Wells, Fargo & Co., expressing a package.

This has come about in this way: Erma Travenion had arrived safely in
Salt Lake City at ten o'clock on the night before. Wells, Fargo & Co.
being of course closed, she could not deposit the Utah Central stock
that night.

Knowing that speed is vital to her, and that she must have money for her
trip East, she drives to the house of Mr. Bussey, the banker, and he
very kindly rushes about town for her and gleans up from friends of his
sufficient for her trip East, charging her for same on her letter of
credit.

Asking his advice about an express package that she wishes to
send--though Erma doesn't state its contents--he says: "Take it with
you, my child, to Ogden. At that time, before the Union Pacific train
leaves, Wells, Fargo & Co. will be open. Express it from there. Their
receipt will be just as good in Ogden as in Salt Lake City."

This she is doing while Lawrence is looking at her. Her appearance makes
him sigh. Not that she isn't as beautiful as when he last saw her, for
she is more lovely, only so much more ethereal. Her eyes are too
brilliant, and there is a little apprehension in them, and a few lines
of pain on her face, some of which, Harry has a wild hope, are perhaps
caused by him; though he grieves over them just the same.

As she comes out of Wells, Fargo's, having finished her business with
the express company--which has taken some five minutes, the transaction
being a heavy one, and the receipt very formal--Lawrence, with rapture
in his heart, and love in his eye, approaches to speak to his divinity,
and to his intense chagrin, gets the very neatest kind of a cut. The
girl looks him straight in the face--with haughty eyes that never
flinch, though there is no recognition in them.

So passing on her way, she buys her tickets, and makes arrangements for
her sleeping-car.

This catastrophe has been brought about as follows: While standing
waiting for the receipt from Wells, Fargo & Co., Erma has caught the
conversation of two men who are standing just outside its door.

One of them says: "Who is she?" for Miss Travenion's beauty has
attracted his attention.

The other, a mining man who has seen her with the bishop in Eureka,
answers: "Tranyon the boss Mormon's daughter."

"Impossible!"

"Fact, I assure you," laughs the second man. "From the airs she puts on,
you'd think she was a New York or St. Louis belle. But I believe she's
booked for the seventh wife of old Kruger. These Mormon girls have no
brains! I guess readin', writin', an' 'rithmetic's about the extent of
her education."

This decidedly slurring description of the belle of Newport's last
season makes the girl think every one despises her; and seeing Lawrence,
and remembering his desertion, she sighs: "He despises me also--but he
shall never show it to me--NEVER!" And so passes him as if she had never
seen him.

Striving to eat, but finding she has no appetite, Erma goes almost
timidly to the train, where she has engaged a stateroom, for she thinks
the whole world is talking about her father and herself, in about the
same language she has heard, and shrinks from public gaze and public
scoff. She is happy to get to the privacy of her stateroom
unnoticed--which is not difficult, every one about the station being
excited and busy.

The snow is still falling heavily on the tracks, and the Central Pacific
is behind time. Finally, getting a telegram that the train on the more
western road has been detained by snow on the Sierra Nevada and Pequop
Mountains, and is ten hours late, the Union Pacific pulls out of the
station, one hour behind its time.

Just then the privacy of Miss Travenion's stateroom is invaded by Buck
Powers, on his business tour through the train.

He says in resonant voice: "How are you off for peanuts? They're the
only fruit that's in season now."

"I don't wish any," she replies, quietly.

"Won't you have some candy, or chewing gum? You look as if you needed
somethin'."

Seeing this is declined by a shake of the head, he suggests: "That fire
must have given you the blues, like it did me."

"What do you mean?" asks Erma, a little startled.

"Why," cries Buck, "don't you know it's been burnt down six weeks? There
ain't no Chicago, but it made the highest old fire the world has ever
seen."

"Oh, that's what you're referring to!" murmurs the young lady, who in
her own troubles has failed to remember the destruction of the great
Western city. Then she astounds the news-agent by adding, "I had
forgotten that it was burnt."

"You--had--forgotten--the Chicago fire! Great Scott! You'd do for a
museum!" he gasps. Then he says interrogatively: "You remember me, Buck
Powers, don't you?"

She answers: "Yes, very well,--you're the news-boy who was injured by
accident on the train. Captain Lawrence saved you."

"Well, I'm relieved that you ain't forgot everything!" he returns, and a
moment after leers at her and says: "The Cap's on the train. I reckoned
when I saw you he wouldn't be very far away," and goes off whistling
merrily, though he leaves a sad heart behind him.

As for Lawrence, for one moment he has savagely thought, "She is safe on
this Union Pacific train. Why should I follow her, to get more cuts?"
But the next second he remembers: "She does not know,--she thinks me
worse than Livingston, for he is only a prig to her, while I seem an
ingrate. She practically gave me fortune. Shall I desert her for a snub
that she thinks I deserve? Never!"

After a little, joy comes to him again; he remembers: "Her father said
'Thank God!' when he heard my name. She told him of me six weeks ago.
She shall think of me again!"

So he has bought tickets for the East, and boarded the train, which is
now running up Weber Cañon rather slowly, as the grade is quite heavy,
and the snow-drifts are multiplying and piling up on the road at a great
rate.

An hour afterwards, going into the smoking-car, to kill time by a cigar,
Harry looks out of the window, and they are at Echo.

As the train begins to move again he suddenly starts and mutters: "By
George! I did right to come! He _is_ on her track!"

For just as the train is pulling out of this station, he sees dashing
down the old stage road from Park City a sleigh drawn by two horses, in
which four men are gesticulating for the conductor to hold up. But that
official, who is standing near Lawrence, says grimly: "What! Pull the
check line for Mormon mossbacks who'll get off at the next station, when
the train is two hours late and snow-drifts ahead--not much!" And the
train rolls on, followed by some very savage curses from the men in the
sleigh.

One of these, Harry notes, is Kruger, and he chuckles to himself: "Left
behind! He won't overtake us this side of Chicago! However, it's just as
well I'm on board!"

An hour after they pass the Utah line, and come into Evanston two and a
half hours late. Here they take dinner, and meet the train from the East
that left Green River in the morning. This reports very heavy snows on
Aspen Hill.

Lawrence, however, makes no attempt at further communication with Miss
Travenion, reflecting savagely: "Perhaps before this trip is over, Miss
Haughty may need my aid, and call on me, and then I'll explain."

So they pass up the valley of the Bear, the storm getting wilder, and
the snow deeper, as they pull up the heavy grades, and it is night
before they reach Aspen, though they have two strong locomotives
dragging them.

Then they come to the Aspen Y, which is the top of the divide, and from
which there is a down grade running almost to Green River.

But this part of the road is a difficult one to get over. Two
locomotives are not considered too much for its grade when there is no
snow on the track; now they can just handle the train, the track being
slippery, and the snow-drifts heavy and increasing.

It is usual to make a flying switch at this point--one engine detaching
itself from the train and entering the Y; leaving one locomotive, which
is amply sufficient under ordinary circumstances, to take care of a
train on the steep down grade, which begins at this place.

To-night the two locomotives should both remain attached to the train,
and pull it entirely over the divide together--the helping engine being
compelled, of course, to go on as far as the next station, Piedmont.

But the conductor, being a man of routine, does it in his ordinary
summer way, by the flying switch, and sends the helping locomotive
away. This giving its warning toot, uncouples from the second engine,
runs ahead of it, and making a switch into the Y, is ready for its
return to Evanston.

But the single locomotive now attached to the train has not steam to
carry it over the divide; its wheels gradually revolve more slowly, the
efforts of the great iron beast become more and more labored, and
finally the train comes to a dead standstill, fifty yards from where the
grade commences to descend.

Then, when too late, the other locomotive comes back and goes to its
assistance; but the train has stopped--the drifts gradually closing in
round the wheels--and now both locomotives cannot move what they could
have together carried certainly over the mountain.

Though the attempt is made again and again, the train is stalled, and
the snow comes down faster and faster and drifts deeper and deeper.
Fortunately, the failure of the Central Pacific to connect, has produced
a very light passenger list. Harry notices there are only three in his
sleeper--a consumptive, going to Colorado, and a lady tourist and her
child, a boy of about ten, who have been seeing Salt Lake City.

On the Pullman occupied by Miss Travenion there is only one other
traveller--a young girl who is being forwarded to an Eastern school by
Gentile parents connected with the Union Pacific Railway, in Ogden.

These, however, after a little, set up a wail. It is for supper, which
the conductor grimly informs them is waiting for them at Green River,
ninety miles away.

Then comes the triumph of Chicago business methods, and Buck Powers,
issuing from the baggage car, cries dominantly: "PIES!! Beefsteak
pies!--Mutton pies!--Dried-apple pies! PIES!!"

Going to him, Lawrence says anxiously: "Have you looked after her?"

"Do you think I'd let Miss Beauty starve?" utters the boy in stern
reproach. "I have provisioned her stateroom for two days. She's got
three beefsteak pies, two mutton hash pasties, two pork turnovers, and
six assorted jam and fruit tarts, as well as a dozen apples. I have done
my duty to her, though you haven't. You've left her alone all
to-day--you ain't been near to jolly her up. She needs chinning, she
does. I have had to step into your shoes and comfort her!"

"Oh, you have, have you?" returns Harry. "Thank you!"

"Well, I'm right glad you're grateful!" remarks Buck. "More so, perhaps,
than she is, for when I asked her if she'd seen Brother Brigham at Salt
Lake, and how she thought she'd like to be a Mormon--I always ask these
questions of tourists coming from Salt Lake--she rose up, a kind of
mixture of the Statue of Liberty and my old schoolmarm in Indianie, and
said, 'Please continue your business tour at once!' So I got a move on,
quick. The next time I passed by, her eyes were red, as if she'd been
crying. I don't think you've been doing your duty, Cap!"

With this the boy goes on his way, leaving Lawrence rather elated at his
information, for he shrewdly guesses that if Miss Travenion is in any
very great trouble, she is more likely to call upon him than any one
else to help her out of it. Knowing that she is well provisioned and
taken care of, some hour or two after this, he having nothing else to
do, goes to bed, something the other passengers have already done.

Next morning, looking out of the car window, Harry finds the snow deeper
than ever, and still falling, and the train stalled more hopelessly than
ever at the Aspen Y, now known on railroad maps as Tapioca.



CHAPTER XVI.

"TO THE GIRL I LOVE!"


Getting dressed, Lawrence negotiates with Buck Powers for another pie
for breakfast.

That worthy informs him that "provisions has riz" during the night.
"There ain't enough for another round," he says. "If you weren't the Cap
I should charge you double."

"Then we shall all be hungry soon--unless relief comes?" asks Harry, as
he briskly attacks a pork turn-over, for the crisp, snowy air produces a
mountain appetite.

"All but her," remarks Buck. "She's fixed as I told you!"

Thinking he will see what chance there is of immediate relief from their
present predicament, Lawrence lights a cigar, and steps off the train
into a snow-drift. A hasty examination shows there is no chance of the
train being moved, until it is shovelled out by hand, though he is
pleased to note that the sun has come out, shining brightly, and the
snow has ceased falling for the present.

A moment after, he gives an exclamation of delight, for the view is a
very beautiful one.

To the south, standing out against the horizon, and looking much nearer
than they are, stand the Uintah Mountains, dark blue at their base line
with pine forests, and white with eternal snow on their peaks. From
them, right to his feet, an unbroken tableland of one solid mass of
white. Midway between these mountains and himself, runs the Utah line,
and somehow--though the idea hardly forms itself in his mind--he would
sooner, on account of the young lady he is protecting, it were further
away, especially when he remembers that it is but very little over
twenty miles by the railroad over which they have come, from the
boundaries of the Mormon Territory. He doesn't think long of this, as he
gets interested in watching the movements of the locomotives.

These are now both switched on the Y and are moving about slowly, with a
view of keeping themselves what is technically called "alive"--that is,
their steam up, sufficient to give them power of motion. Every now and
again one is run off the Y and down the main track towards Green River
and the east, keeping that portion of the road open, as far as the mouth
of a long snow shed, which begins a little way from where Harry stands,
and disappears in the distance towards Piedmont.

Towards the east and north he can see a long distance, as the descent is
quite rapid to the big plateaus that run to Green River, but there is
nothing given to his eye save snow--snow everywhere.

A moment after, the conductor comes tramping through the drifts, and
knowing Captain Lawrence by reputation, stops to speak to him.

"I presume," says Harry, "you wired our situation to Evanston last
night."

"Of course, and a nice tramp I had of it to the telegraph station. It's
over a mile back, and the drifts made it seem five. Every one from here
to Ogden, along the track, by this time knows our position."

"I suppose they'll be sending up a relief train soon."

"I hardly think so, before to-morrow," replies the conductor. "They have
got all they can take care of, down below at Evanston, just at present.
In fact, I imagine we've not seen the worst of it."

And this is a shrewd prediction, because, though he doesn't know it,
this is just the beginning of the great snow blockade of '71 and '72, on
the Union Pacific Railway, when some trains were delayed for thirty
days between Ogden and Omaha--the usual time being less than three.

"Fortunately, we've not got a heavy train to move," remarks Lawrence,
who is anxious to look on the best side of everything.

"And, thank God! no great amount of passengers," replies the conductor.
"Otherwise there would have been a howl for grub before now. We've only
got two outside those on the sleepers, and one is a woman, and the other
a little girl, the daughter of the engineer of the helping locomotive.
He's got her in his arms now, as he stands by his engine. Come over and
see what he thinks," adds the autocrat of the train, as he trudges off
through the snow towards one of the locomotives on the Y.

Harry has taken a step to follow him, when he suddenly pauses.

He is just outside Miss Travenion's Pullman car, and now, through a
window that is slightly open, comes the voice of his divinity, who is
seated at one of the organs those cars sometimes had in those days.

Curiously enough, the girl whom Buck had reported as having the blues
last night, is singing the brightest and merriest of ditties this
morning.

"By George! It must be because she has plenty to eat," cogitates
Lawrence, lighting another cigar on the question.

But a few minutes after, in his own car, Mr. Powers chancing to come
along, he gets some information which he thinks elucidates the matter.

"She's kind o' joyous in there, ain't she, Cap?" says Buck, with a grin.
"An' I reckon I did it!"

"How?"

"Well, this morning, even over her breakfast, which was a long way ahead
of any one else's on the train, she didn't have no appetite, and seemed
in the dumps; whereupon, I suggested that I had hinted to you that she'd
kind o' like company probably."

"You infernal--!" cries Lawrence, fire coming into his eye.

"If you take hold o' me, Cap, I won't tell you the rest!" remarks the
boy, retreating a little before Harry's anger. Then he goes on: "She
took it something like you--she got red in the face and said: 'Please
don't mention the matter!' quite haughty. Whereupon I thought I'd
guessed the p'int, and suggested: 'You an' the Cap must have been havin'
a smash-up in California!' And then she got real anxious and nervous,
and cried out at me: 'In California!--what do you mean?' So I told her
how I'd seen you at Ogden, four or five days after her party left for
California, and that I'd told you she'd gone West, and you took the
journey, I reckoned, to catch up to her."

"And she--" says Lawrence, eagerly.

"Oh, she kept on questioning, and the more I told her, the better
pleased she looked, and since then she has been quite chirpy, so I
reckon I produced her high spirits."

"God bless you, Buck!" cries Harry, slapping the boy on the shoulder,
and the astonished Arab of the railway moves off with a five-dollar
greenback in his hand, wondering what made the Cap so liberal.

As for Lawrence, it has suddenly occurred to him that Buck Powers has
given Miss Travenion the exact information he had taken Ferdie from
California to tell her.

A moment's cogitation and he says to himself: "She was wounded because I
hadn't come to Tintic after her. I'll chance a walk through the car, and
see if the darling'll cut me again."

Acting on this impulse, he gets off the train, and walks to the forward
end of her car, Miss Travenion's stateroom being at its rear.

"I'll give her the length of the car to meditate upon me," he thinks.

As he enters the main portion of the Pullman, her stateroom door is
open, and as he comes down the aisle, Erma rises. He knows she has seen
him--something in her face tells him that.

Then intense surprise falls upon him:--the young lady steps out with
extended hand, and says brightly: "So you have discovered I was on the
train _at last_? I had been expecting a visit from you all yesterday."

At this tremendous but most feminine prevarication, Lawrence fairly
gasps. A second after, he discovers the wonderful tact displayed in it,
which calls for an explanation from him, and does not require one from
her.

However, he is too awfully happy to stand on little points, and seizing
the taper fingers of the young lady, and giving her tact for tact, and
prevarication for prevarication, remarks: "You most certainly would
have, Miss Travenion, but I only discovered that you were on board this
morning, from Buck Powers."

"Why," cries Erma, "I saw you at--" She checks herself suddenly, biting
her lips a little, and then goes on: "We've been near each other a whole
day, and have not spoken."

"That's a great pity! But we'll make up for lost time, now!" answers
Lawrence, gallantly. Then he suggests: "What did you breakfast on?"

"Pies!"

"So did I--our tastes are similar," he laughs, for there is something in
the radiant face looking into his that makes him think this snow
blockade, privations and all, is the very nicest thing that has come
into his life.

A moment after, for he is too earnest for any more light comedy
fencing, he comes to the point with masculine abruptness, remarking:
"Mr. Powers told you--God bless him!--that I have been in California?"

"Yes."

"I got this little note"--he produces her card with the "I have seen my
father. Good-bye" sentence on it--"in Salt Lake City, and presumed you
had gone to California with the Livingstons. I was then poor. Four days
afterwards, I suddenly found myself astounded and rich. I did not ask
how it came--I was too anxious to make use of my money. I thought a tour
of 'the Golden State' would please me."

Then he goes on hurriedly and tells her of his wanderings in pursuit of
the Livingston party, and his unexpected interview with Ferdie at the
Grand Hotel, omitting, however, his journey to Tintic and his rescue of
her father, as he doesn't wish to alarm or make Erma think she is under
obligation to him.

"Ah!" falters the girl, very pale, and turning her face away from him.
"Then you know--I'm the daughter of Tranyon--the Mormon bishop?"

"Yes," he cries; "that is what brought me from California in such a
hurry; I wanted to thank you for giving me what I would probably have
never got without you--a fortune."

"Oh! it was gratitude," murmurs the young lady, "that brought you from
California?" A moment after she coldly says: "That sentiment need not
actuate you. I simply induced my father to do you justice," and from now
on is very icy; for Erma Travenion demands the love, not the gratitude,
of this young gentleman beside her.

This sudden change in his divinity astounds Lawrence, who has not been a
student of woman's ways. Inadvertently he puts himself right again, for
he suddenly says: "Did I know that I had anything to be grateful to you
for, when I wandered about California seeking you--six weeks?"

"Oh!" cries the young lady, "that was _before_ you knew my father was R.
H. Tranyon, the Mormon bishop?" This last quite haughtily, for she has
grown fearfully sensitive on this point since the conversation of the
two mining gentlemen in Ogden.

"But," remarks Lawrence, "I know that _now_." Then, growing desperate,
he blurts out: "Shall I tell you why I went to California?" and his
voice grows very tender.

But the girl, suddenly rising, says with a curious mixture of
haughtiness and humility, perhaps shame: "To whom do you wish to tell
your tale?--Erma Travenion, of New York, or to Miss Tranyon, who has
been called a Mormon 'gal,' and who is reported to be booked as the
seventh wife of Bishop Kruger of Kammas Prairie?" Then she cries
mockingly, almost savagely, "Which are you talking to?"

"To the girl I love!" cries Lawrence.

"O-oh!"

"To the girl I'd make my wife if she were the daughter of Beelzebub, and
booked for the seventh consort of Satan!"

"O-o-o-oh!" With this sigh Erma sinks on the seat again; a moment after
she suddenly smiles and murmurs: "Don't make my pedigree worse than it
is!"

"Would you like to hear the tale I took with me to California, and have
carried ever since in my heart?" says Harry, bending over this young
lady, whose face is hiding its blushes, turned towards the car window,
upon whose frosted panes her white finger is making figures.

"Y-e-s!"

Then he tells her how he has loved her since the night he first saw her
at Delmonico's, and mutters: "Give me your answer!"

"My answer;" murmurs Erma, turning a face to him that is half hope, half
uncertainty, all love, "if I were what I was that evening in New York,
would be----"

"Yes!" he cries, and has his hasty frontier arm half round the fairy
waist of last summer's Newport belle; for there is something in her
lovely eyes that many men have looked for, but no one has ever seen till
now.

But she rises and falters, "Wait!"

"How long?"

"Wait till I know you're sure you will never feel ashamed of the
Mormon's daughter! Oh!--oh! can't you wait one min--!" For Harry has not
waited, and the girl's last word as it issues from her rosy mouth is
smothered by an audacious black moustache that she can parry no longer.
And perchance those lovely coral lips return his betrothal kiss--a very
little:--at least Harry thinks so. A moment after he knows it; for Erma
Travenion, though very hard to win, having given her hand does not
hesitate to make her sweetheart very sure he has also her heart.



CHAPTER XVII.

A VOICE IN THE NIGHT.


Into this Elysium, Buck Powers, who has been one of its architects,
breaks with news-boy rapidity. The girl passenger is in the other car
gossiping with the lady tourist, and Harry and Erma have forgotten there
are other people in this world. Entering rapidly, the banging car door,
and an excited and astounded "Gee whiz!" calls the lady and gentleman
from heaven to earth.

"What do you want here?" cries Lawrence, and he pounces upon the flying
Buck and leads him to the forward compartment, while Erma suddenly
discovers that the outside landscape is a thing of most immediate
interest.

"I--I didn't mean to run in on you, Cap," gasps the fleeing Buck. Then
he smiles on Harry suddenly and grins: "Have you made a through
connection at last? Are you switched on the main track now?"

"Stop your infernal conundrums!" laughs Harry. "Take a five-dollar
greenback and go away, and don't you tell a living soul that Miss
Travenion is going to be Mrs. Lawrence!"

"I'll take a five-dollar greenback," answers the boy, "because you're
the luckiest man I ever seed, and it's business. But I've got somethin'
to tell your young lady!"

"Very well," answers Harry, and leads Buck back to Erma's side. Here the
youth remarks with a snicker that brings blushes upon Miss Travenion, "I
hear as how the Cap has just been elected president of the road!" A
moment after he continues: "I come to tell you the grub's all out.
Somehow, since they got an idea that they might run short, our
passengers has eaten so as to make 'em run short. I haven't had a pie to
sell for four hours, and there's a little gal, the daughter of the
engineer of the helper, has got hungry and is screaming for food----"

"Screaming for food?" cries Erma. "Thank you, Buck, for telling me," and
the next minute she is in her stateroom.

"Gracious! you'll be short yourself," expostulates Buck as she returns.
"You ain't carrying grub to a giantess!" for she has a beef pie, three
fruit tarts, and a couple of apples.

"Perhaps the child's father is hungry also," replies Miss Travenion, who
seems very benevolent this afternoon.

"Very well!" says Mr. Powers, "I'll bring the engineer, only don't stint
yourself!" and goes on his errand.

A minute after, Erma and Harry are on the platform and the man of the
throttle-valve comes to them, carrying his little daughter, who looks
pale, and has hungry eyes. Seeing her bounty, the engineer cries, "God
bless you, miss." Then he mutters, "You'll rob yourself."

"Oh, I've more left," answers Miss Travenion; "besides, she needs it,"
for the child has already gone to work ravenously on the fruit tarts.

"God bless you, just the same," cries the engineer. "Thank the lady,
Susie."

But Susie, looking at her benefactress, forgets gratitude in admiration,
and babbles, "Beau'ful, beau'ful," extending a fruity hand and putting
up two lips embellished with jam.

"Don't, she'll spoil your dress," says the father. But Erma has her
already in her arms, giving the little one a kiss, and playing with her
and doing some small things to make her happy.

And doing small things for the baby does great things for herself,
though she does not know it, for it gains the engineer's heart.

The man wipes a grimy eye with a more grimy sleeve, and mutters, "I was
afraid my little one would get sick from starving, and she's all that's
left me of her mother, who's buried in Green River--God bless your kind
heart and beautiful face, miss!" and so going away, spreads the news of
the beautiful girl's bounty through the train.

But this brings requests from other hungry ones to Miss Travenion, who
has a little that they will eat--if she will give it them.

Consequently, about five in the afternoon Lawrence, who does not know
of this raid on his beloved's commissariat, and is in the smoking-car
pondering over the problem whether the knowledge of the awful death to
which Kruger had doomed and from which he had rescued her father, will
not make Erma too anxious and too nervous about Ralph Travenion's
further fate, finds himself disturbed by Mr. Powers.

The boy comes hurriedly to him and says: "She ain't got nothin' to eat,
and she's hungry."

"What do you mean?" cries Harry. "Didn't you say that you had
provisioned her for two days?"

"Yes! but she's given it all away to the women in the way-cars."

"No relief train yet?"

"No, an' I don't see any chance of one."

"Very well," remarks Lawrence, putting on his overcoat, "I'll see what I
can do."

He steps out of the car, and the best he can think of is to tramp to the
telegraph station, and see if there is anything left there. It is over a
mile and a half, but a beaten track has been pretty well made in the
snow by the brakemen and conductor on some of their visits to that
point, so he gets there in a little over half an hour.

Here, the conductor is talking to the telegraph operator, and they seem
to be excited over something.

"What's the matter?" asks Harry.

"Nothing, only the line's down between here and Evanston!" says the
operator. "It was working twenty minutes ago, but I can't get the
Evanston or any other Western office now."

"What was the last news from there?"

"Bad!" replies the man. "They can't get a locomotive or relief train to
us till to-morrow. They'll have to pick and shovel their way through a
lot of drifts."

"Meantime we have nothing to eat!" grumbles the captain.

"Oh," remarks the conductor, "they telegraphed me this morning that they
would send up provisions in sleighs. Some teamsters will bring them up.
They ought to be due here to-night. They can make the eighteen miles, I
reckon, in nine hours."

"There is no danger of a train coming from the other way to bring more
hungry people?" asks Lawrence earnestly.

"Oh, no!" answers the operator. "That's all fixed. I heard Evanston
telegraph Green River this morning, for all passenger trains bound west
to be held at that point--they can feed them there--and all freight to
be stopped at Bridger."

"You are sure?"

"Certain!--the order was from Hilliard, the train dispatcher of this
division. There's only one passenger train side-tracked at Granger, and
a freight switched off at Carter and another at Bridger, between us and
Green River."

"Very well!" says Lawrence. "Have you got anything to eat?"

"You're welcome to the best I can do, Cap," replies the man of the wire,
who knows Harry by sight, as most of the employees of the road do. But
the best that Lawrence can obtain for his sweetheart is some pork and
beans, and some bread made of middlings. These he wraps up in an old
newspaper--nothing else being handy--and turns to go, but pauses a
moment, and says: "Haven't you got any tea, or coffee, or something of
that kind?"

"Tea," cries the operator. "I can accommodate you!"

So, laden with a small package of this ladies' delight, the Captain
leaves the log cabin, which is the only house at Aspen, and does duty as
a telegraph office, and trudging back through the snow, brings comfort
and happiness to Erma, who has grown so hungry in the chill night air
that she has almost repented of her generosity.

Buck Powers accommodates her with boiling water, and the Captain would
leave her to her meal, but she suddenly stops him and cries: "What have
you had to eat?"

"Oh, don't mind me," says Harry.

"But I do--you have tramped through the snow for my comfort; Besides, I
must take care of you--because----"

"Why?"

"Oh, well, you know "--a big blush--"what I told you to-day! If you
remember--take tea with me!"

"With pleasure, if you put it on that ground!" laughs Harry, who is
desperately hungry, and when he has fallen to, forgets himself, and eats
a good deal more than his share, though they both enjoy the meal.

But just at this moment there is a cry outside, and a faint hurrah from
the negro porter inside.

It is the arrival of the teamsters, who have come, bringing with them
comfort and provisions, and everybody is now in the land of plenty,
though it is a very rough plenty.

Looking at them, Lawrence wonders why so many men have come with the
relief sleighs; but is told they brought them along to help the teams
through the drifts.

So they pass a very happy evening--the young lady singing a song or two
for her swain, more beautifully, he thinks, than any prima donna, and
saying good-night to him afterwards so tenderly that Lawrence, coming to
his own car, astonishes the negro porter by giving him five dollars for
making up his bed in the stateroom which is unoccupied, and more roomy
than a section.

A moment after he murmurs to himself: "Can it be? Is it possible?"--and
then cries, "Good gracious! the engagement ring--and no jeweller in
sight!"

And so he goes to bed, to be awakened by a voice in the night that
changes confidence into doubt, and makes joy into sorrow.

Harry has hardly been in bed an hour when there is a rap on the door of
his stateroom.

"Hang you!" he cries, thinking it is the negro porter. "I've left my
boots outside. What are you waking me up for at this time of night?"

"'Ssh! don't talk so loud, Cap! Let me in!"

And opening the door, Mr. Powers makes his appearance, his eyes, in the
moonlight that is streaming in, large, luminous, and excited.

He gasps: "Cap--come--an' save your girl!"

As Buck speaks, Lawrence is out of bed. "Quick!" he says.

"You know in my baggage car I hear most of what's goin' on. Them
teamsters that came here with the grub are camping in there to-night. I
heard them talking. They're Mormons!"

"Ah!"

"Buck Mormons from Echo and Heber, and that way. One of them said to the
other, 'The bishop will be along soon. The orders is, we're none of us
to make a move, but to have the sleighs ready to start out quick, and
one fixed with furs in it and blankets, to keep the girl warm.'"

"What makes you think they meant Miss Travenion?"

"They described her."

"Did you hear the name of the bishop?"

"Yes," answers Buck. "It was the cuss who came West with you and her!"

"Kruger!--Hush! Speak lower! Whisper to me!"

"I am a-whisperin'!" says the boy. "It's the lowest I've got. I've
spoilt my voice hollerin' as news-agent, an' I can't bring it down!"

"Are the Mormon teamsters armed?"

"They ain't Mormon teamers. Some of them is disguised. I heard one of
them call another 'Constable,' and the other chinned him as 'Sheriff.'
Hadn't we better tell the conductor?"

"No," says Lawrence, shortly, for he remembers the conductor is a
routine man--and, of course, of no use in such an emergency.

A moment after, he says quietly to the boy: "Miss Travenion was very
good to you, Buck. Will you help me save her?"

"That's what I come for.".

"It may be a life and death matter."

"That's what I come for."

"Very well," replies Harry. "You go quietly about the train--they won't
notice you--and find out what you can, and come and report to me, in
Miss Travenion's car. I am going there."

"All right."

As Buck turns to obey his orders, Lawrence suddenly whispers: "No matter
what happens, don't let any one of that gang learn I am on the train."

"I understand!"

Then the captain asks suddenly, "How many of them?"

"Twelve!"

"Good God!"

As Buck goes on his errand, Lawrence, looking carefully about to see he
is not observed, slips from his car into that of Miss Travenion, which
is quiet, save for a loud snoring from the gentlemen's smoking
compartment, which indicates that the Ethiopian porter is making a very
comfortable night of it.

A lamp, partially turned up, illuminates faintly the rear of the car.
He taps lightly on Miss Travenion's door. No answer! His heart sinks;
she may be already carried away from him.

Then he raps more loudly, and her voice tells him she is as yet safe.

"Who is it?" asks the girl.

"I--Harry Lawrence!"

"Is anything the matter?"

"Yes! I must see you in two minutes!"

"Impossible--I am not dressed."

"You must dress in two minutes. Throw on a wrapper or shawl."

"Oh, mercy! What is it?"

"Dress!"

"Very well!--Good gracious! where's my slippers?" This last a nervous
aside.

Then the noise from inside Miss Travenion's stateroom indicates she is
obeying him with a vigor that shows he has impressed her.

Within the time specified she has opened her door, and stepped out to
him, draped in some warm woollen wrapper, which clings about her lithe,
graceful figure; and the moonlight shining through the car window gets
into her unbound hair, and makes it very soft and golden.

She says hastily, but pathetically, "Now, tell me!"

"Can you be very brave?"

"Yes! Try me!"

Looking in her eyes, he knows she can be.

"Very well," he whispers, "sit down. To-day, fearing to alarm you, I did
not tell you all I knew in regard to your father; but it is necessary
now that you understand everything about Kruger, the Mormon bishop."

"Why, he's two hundred miles away."

"In a few minutes he will be here."

"Oh, mercy!" The girl leans against her lover, and he can feel her heart
throb and pulse with apprehension. His arm goes round her waist, and
seems to give her confidence, as he tells her the whole story of her
father's blood atonement, from which he saved him. And she gasps: "You
are not deceiving me--my father is not dead?"

"He's as safe as you are!"

"Thank God!"

"Perhaps safer!" Then he tells her of the revelation Buck Powers has
made him this night.

"Ah!" Erma cries; "Kruger is coming to force me to give up that Utah
Central stock."

"For more!"

"What more?"

"To force you to be his seventh wife."

But she says very quietly: "There is no fear of that. I can always die
at the last."

"I know you can _die_; but for my sake you must _live_!" cries Lawrence.
Then he says grimly: "If there's any dying to-night, Kruger does it!"

"Ah! that may mean your life. For my sake you must live! I've--I've only
been happy for a day." And her tender arms go around him, as she sobs
over him, calling him her darling, her betrothed, her future husband,
and many other wild terms of endearment she might not use, did she not
feel this night might take him from her.

A moment after she cries: "He is not here yet--let us fly!"

"Fly, where?" asks Lawrence. "Through those snow-drifts, over those
uninhabited plains? In half an hour we should be overtaken. If not, by
morning we should be dead."

"Then, how will you save me?"

"All I know is that I will save you! But to do it, you must follow my
instructions. Twelve men I shall not resist openly--except at the last.
Give me your receipt from Wells, Fargo, for that stock."

She steps into the stateroom, and a moment after hands it to him.

"Now," he says, "listen to me! Each word I utter is important. When
Kruger comes, you must be in your stateroom, asleep. Nothing must betray
to him that you expect or fear his coming! Nothing must inform him that
you know of his crime against your father; and, above all, nothing must
suggest to him that I am on your train. Our one great hope is, that he
does not know I'm here, and may be--just a little careless! Remember,
you have nothing to fear as long as I live!"

But Buck Powers breaks in on them at this moment, and mutters: "Cap,
Kruger's here! He's talkin' with the men over there!"

"On which side of the cars? Can he see me if I leave them this way?"

"No!"

"You're going?" says the girl. And putting her arms round his neck,
nestles to him, and murmurs: "Remember, your life is my life!"

And so he leaves her, and steps cautiously out, and crouching in shadow
of the cars, and looking over the white plateaus of drifted snow, he
thinks:

"Fly, where? Fight--how? Impossible!" Then of a sudden the snow
disappears, and he remembers a hot spring day in '64, in Arkansas, when
he and his Iowa boys did what was deemed impossible in war--artillery
holding woodland and brush copse against infantry. He sees his
cannoneers--boys with fresh young faces and fair hair, just from Western
prairies and green fields--fall and die, as the musketry flashes all
about them, and singing bullets bring death to them, but still stand
and scourge that undergrowth and timber shelter with grape and case
shot, till the gray infantry slowly draws back; until the Yankee
lumberman has built up a dam like those that float timber down Maine
rivers, and so saved the Federal fleet, and thus saved the Federal army.

He mutters: "I did the impossible then for my country; I can do the
impossible now FOR MY LOVE."

And from that moment Harry Lawrence has the one great quality that makes
success possible in all desperate undertakings--confidence!



CHAPTER XVIII.

THE LAST OF THE DANITES.


Even as he looks, hope comes, for he sees the glow of one of the
locomotives on the Y, and knows that its fires are still banked--it has
a little steam; and he remembers, the line is clear of trains to Green
River.

Then he whispers suddenly to Buck, who says: "I understand!" and goes
cautiously away, while Lawrence struggles through the snow-drifts to the
helping locomotive, the one nearest the switch that leads to the main
track running to the East.

The engineer, who is a careful man, and has a pride in his machine, is
still with his engine, and Harry is delighted to see he is the one whose
heart Erma has won by kindness to his child.

"I was rubbing her up a little, Cap," he says. "I want to be sure she's
all ready for to-morrow's work."

"Is she ready for _to-night's_ work?"

"What do you mean?"

"I mean," answers Lawrence, who has looked the man over, and concludes
it is better to lie to him than to argue with him, "that there are road
agents on the train."

For a moment the man looks at him in unbelief, then there is a little
noise and commotion about the sleepers, and he cries: "My God! my
child!"

"Your child is safe. Buck is bringing her over!" says Harry, pointing at
the figure of the boy, half leading, half carrying the little girl
through the snow. "Any way," he goes on, "they would have done nothing
to her; it's the other one they want, the heiress!"

"What! that beautiful girl that kept my little one from starving? We
must save her!" cries the engineer, getting hold of his own darling from
Buck, who has come up.

"We will!" whispers Lawrence. "Those road agents will only trouble her
and Wells, Fargo & Co.'s express. The express must take care of
itself--we'll take care of the girl!"

"But how?"

"By running her down to safety on your locomotive!"

"Great goodness! I never thought of that!" replies the man of the
throttle-valve.

A moment after, he says: "I haven't got coal to reach further than
Granger."

"That'll do! Get up steam as fast as you can, but don't let anybody see
you're at work on your locomotive."

With these words, Lawrence goes into consultation with the engineer and
Mr. Powers as to the details of the transaction.

It is arranged that Harry is to do the work of the fireman, who is on
the train, and whom they dare not take the risk of arousing; Buck is to
turn the switch to put the locomotive on the main track, and to board
them as they pass him, which they will do very quietly.

Leaving the engineer quietly making his preparations, Lawrence walks
cautiously across, not towards Miss Travenion's car, but towards the
sleeper behind it--the one he occupies.

From that he cautiously approaches the other, looks in, and finds it
empty of all save Miss Travenion, who has apparently hurriedly dressed,
and is seated, confronted by two men, who evidently have her in their
keeping, as one says: "Don't be scared; we'll take good care of you,
even if you have been tryin' to rob the Mormon Church!"

Catching these words in the outer darkness of the rear compartment,
Lawrence knows that Kruger has already had his say, and for some reason
left the girl. Harry is glad of this, for feeling the revolver in his
belt, he fears he might have killed the Mormon, which would probably not
have saved either himself or his sweetheart.

In this he is doubtless right. For while he has been holding conference
with the engineer, Kruger, followed by four or five of his satellites,
and accompanied by the conductor, who is expostulating with him, has
entered the car.

"Now, ye keep quiet!" he says to that official. "We've got a warrant for
this young lady, for assistin' her daddy to run away with half a million
dollars' worth of Utah Central stock. There's the documents, sworn to by
the sheriff of Heber City, Utah, before a Probate Judge."

"A Utah judge has got no jurisdiction in Wyoming," answers the
conductor.

"No! But this is made returnable," says Lot, "before the United States
District Judge, and Wyoming's part of his district, and that gives us
authority. Don't step in the way of the law, young man. Besides"--here
he looks round at his following, and remarks: "We're goin' to execute
this warrant any way, an' ye ain't got the power to stop us! I've sized
ye up, an' ye've got two nigger porters, two brakesmen, an' yerself.
We've twelve men armed with Winchesters, an' we've got the drop on yer
train-hands, mail agent, an' Wells, Fargo's messenger, for they're
surrounded and cut off from ye. Now the sheriff's goin' to serve his
papers."

At this moment, the negro porter, who has just awakened, flies out of
the car shrieking: "For de Lord! Road agents!"

"Ye see how much good he'd do ye!" guffaws Kruger to the conductor.
"Now," he continues, "ye step back an' let me do my business polite!"

"Not unless you agree to report with the young lady at Evanston, before
you take her into Utah," says the dethroned autocrat of the train.

"That we will do, certain!" replies Lot, with a wink to the sheriff.
"Now ye wake her up."

Thus commanded, the conductor raps upon Miss Travenion's stateroom door,
and to her inquiries, asks her to dress herself, stating there are some
gentlemen on business, who must see her at once.

"Very well! Let them wait!" answers the young lady quietly, though there
is a tremor in her voice.

She keeps them waiting so long that one of the men mutters: "The gal
must be rigging herself out for a dance," and Lot himself knocks on her
stateroom door, saying, "Miss Ermie, come out quick! It's Kruger, yer
daddy's friend, who's talkin' to ye."

"You here?" she cries through the door. "What has happened to my father,
that you come to me?"

And he says: "The sheriff here has got a little business with ye. Yer
daddy has disappeared."

"A--ah!" And it's all she can do to keep from bursting out and
upbraiding him, telling him what she knows, and so ruining the chance
Lawrence is preparing for her.

"Yes, yer daddy has gone, and the Utah Central stock that belonged to
the Mormon Church has gone with him, an' the sheriff here thinks it's in
yer possession, and has sworn out a warrant agin ye, an' is here to
execute it. An' I come along with him to make it as light for ye, as
possible. He thought ye'd got clean away from him, but heerd the train
was stopped here by snow, an' so he come on to get ye. But before he
takes ye, I want to tell ye a few little things. Come out!"

Then hearing the noise of the moving bolt in Erma's door, Kruger says to
the men with him: "Just step back a leetle into the smoking-room, while
I talk to the girl."

"All right, bishop!" answers the sheriff, who seems entirely under Lot's
domination.

The men withdraw as Erma comes out and stands before Bishop Kruger, her
beauty perhaps at this moment appealing to him more than it ever
did--for excitement has added a lustre to her eye, and she seems so
helpless, and so much in his power.

He mutters, his eyes blinking a little at the radiance that is before
him: "Now, Ermie, ye can make everything quite easy for yerself!"

"Indeed--how?" She tries very hard to conceal it, but some scorn will
get into her voice.

"By givin' up the stock quiet!"

"Ah! then you will let me go?"

"Oh, no! The sheriff wouldn't do that; but when he takes ye back to
Utah, I'll go bail for ye, an' I'll take ye down to my home in Kammas
Prairie, where ye'll be nice an' comfortable, an' I'll look after ye."

"You are always very good to me," says the girl with a sneer, though he
doesn't detect it, and replies: "Yes, I'll be better to ye than ye
know!"

And she, trying to act her part, to prevent any suspicion in his mind,
thanks him with so much apparent heartiness that the old satyr loses
his head, and chuckles: "Now, that's the right kind o' talk. Now yer
lookin' beautiful as one o' the angels of Zion. I've been havin' my eye
on ye, an' I'm goin' to exalt ye, an' take ye into my family."

"Take me into your family--as a _daughter_?"

"No, as a _wife_, for I love ye!"

And looking to her like an ogre, he would advance to her, whispering:
"By this kiss of peace, I take ye into my family!"

But she has forgotten to act now, and scorn is in her eye, hatred in her
voice, and loathing in her shudder. She says hoarsely: "BACK! don't dare
to sully me by the touch of your finger! I loathe you as I do your
iniquitous church!"

"Ye blasphemer!" he cries. "This is the second time. I'll be hard on ye
now, an' bring ye down from yer high horse. Where's that stock of the
Utah Central?"

"Find it!" jeers Erma.

"I will!" he answers, "and then I'll make ye sorry ye turned yer nose up
at Lot Kruger!"

Raising his voice, he shouts: "Sheriff, come in an' take yer prisoner,
an' make a search of her baggage! She's got the stolen goods with her, I
reckon!"

A second later the girl is placed under arrest.

But a quick though thorough search of the baggage she has with her,
shows that the Utah Central stock, that Kruger knows the Mormon Church
must have, is not in her possession.

He says: "Sheriff, step off a leetle; I'll reason with this child, to
see if I can't get from her the locality of the stolen goods."

So, coming to her again, he mutters: "Ye'd better take things
reasonable, an' tell me where that ar' stock is! I WILL KNOW!"

But she laughs in his face, and cries: "Find it!"

"Now," he says, "I ain't 'customed to bein' sassed by women. I'll have
it out o' ye! Tell me, or I'll treat ye as I do my own darters, when
they disobey me!"

His brutal hand is upraised, and in another second this exotic from
far-away Murray Hill will receive what she had never felt before--a box
on her dainty ear. But she, forgetting prudence, forgetting Harry's
counsel, pants, "I dare you! Do you think I have no one here to avenge
me?"

"Who?" asks Kruger, suspiciously, his hand still lifted.

"Who?" echoes Erma--"who?" Then, remembering in time, she turns her
speech and laughs. "That stock is safe in the hands of Wells, Fargo &
Co., where you dare not touch it!" and unwittingly paves the way for her
own escape.

"Oh ho!" guffaws Lot. "It's on the train. We'll see if we dare not touch
it!"

He calls to his men, who are in the smoking-room: "Two of ye look after
her here, though there ain't any great danger of Miss Dainty's running
very far in this snow. That stock is in Wells, Fargo & Co.'s safe, an'
we'll have it now. It's right here on the train, boys. We've got a
warrant that will hold us up in this business!"

For some of the men have turned pale at the thought of making a raid on
Wells, Fargo & Co., an institution that has gained a reputation for
being implacable in its pursuit of train robbers, highwaymen, and others
that raid the precious things the business community intrust to it.

Then whispering to her: "I'll come back for ye! We'll take ye an' the
stock together, back to Utah!" he leaves the girl, followed by all but
the two men, whom Lawrence sees watching her, as he peers into the
gloom.

Harry is thinking of how to get these two guardians of Miss Travenion
away, and has half made up his mind to kill them, when Buck Powers comes
sneaking to him, and whispers: "Cap, the engine's ready!"

"Where are Kruger and the rest of his gang?"

"They're making a raid on Wells, Fargo. They're demandin' some stock, or
somethin' or other, an' the agent is standin' them off. He thinks
they're road agents."

With these words comes an idea to Harry Lawrence.

He whispers quickly to Buck, then says: "You understand?"

"All right, Cap, I'm on to you!" and Mr. Powers disappears.

Thirty seconds after Buck bangs at the door of the sleeper with great
noise, though he is careful not to enter, and from its end nearest to
the express car, yells: "Come on! you're needed. Wells, Fargo's agent is
standin' the bishop off. The bishop says the gal's safe and he wants
you!"

"All right!" answers one of the men, and handling their guns, the two
disappear to take part in the trouble with the express agent, which is
now creating a great commotion on the train, the passengers in
Lawrence's Pullman crying out: "Road agents!" and the young lady in Miss
Travenion's car, who has been awakened by the noise, screaming for help.

This excitement aids Lawrence. He steps into the car, and touching his
sweetheart on the shoulder, whispers: "Come!"

And she following him to the platform, he springs into the snow-drift,
and says: "I must carry you!"

"Certainly!" Her arms clasp themselves trustingly round his neck, as he
trudges through the snow, bearing his happiness with him.

The locomotive on the Y is just moving as he reaches it, for he crosses
directly to it, not daring to carry her past Kruger and his men, who are
still about Wells, Fargo & Co.'s car.

"Ah, you're going to carry me away on the locomotive!" whispers Erma, as
Lawrence puts her on board.

"Yes, we'll take care of you!" mutters the engineer, giving Harry a
helping hand.

In another moment they are in the cab of the locomotive, which is slowly
running over the Y towards the main track, which leads to the East, and
safety.

This has been kept open as far as the snow-shed, and they will probably
not meet a great deal of drift until they get beyond it, but the steam
is light in the engine, and it cannot move very fast.

The other locomotive stands behind them, on the Y. Lawrence notices, as
they leave it, that its fires are banked, and some one is on board it,
though apparently asleep.

A second after, they pass Mr. Buck Powers, who switches them to the main
track, they running so slowly that he easily follows them, and jumps on
board.

All this time Harry has both ears and eyes fixed on the forward end of
the train, to see if their absence is discovered.

But the Wells, Fargo & Co.'s man is still standing the Mormons and their
bishop off, and threatening to shoot; and his movements interest them so
much they do not notice the great mass of iron that has come on to the
main track, and is now plunging away from them down the incline towards
the long snow-shed.

"Now," Harry says to the engineer, giving a sigh of relief, "you can
light your headlight."

Just then a cry comes out from behind them. It is that of the conductor
of the train, who is screaming: "Great Scott! who's run away with the
locomotive?" and some of Kruger's men run shouting through the snow.

Then Lawrence cries, "Give her steam!"

The locomotive dashes through little drifts, and drowns sound, but he
knows that in a very few moments Lot Kruger will have discovered that
what he values more than the stock of the Utah Central Railway is
passing away from him.

The engine is already flying through the snow-shed--one of the two long
ones that line the steep decline leading towards Piedmont and the East.

In it they find little snow to impede them, but at the end of the shed
their trouble begins, for on this track, which has not been passed by
trains for twenty-four hours, they encounter deep drifts, and once or
twice the locomotive nearly stops, and the engineer tells Lawrence that
if it were not for the steep down grade, they would never be able to
make it.

Several times they have to back, and push on again, though the
sheet-iron covered cow-catcher, which acts as a snow-plow, helps them
tremendously. Still it is a long time before they reach the second big
snow-shed, and looking at his watch, Lawrence finds that they have been
half an hour doing what ought only to have taken them ten minutes.

But just as they are entering the second snow-shed, where the track
makes an enormous bend, almost running back upon itself, in the form of
a U, something comes out of the snow-shed--not much over a mile
away--that they have left behind them. Something that makes Lawrence's
heart jump, and then grow cold, as with hoarse voice he cries, pointing
back: "My God! what is that?"

And the engineer sets his teeth, and says: "They're after us! It's the
headlight of the other locomotive! They have got up steam, and they have
the advantage of us, because we have to bore the way through drifts and
clear the track for them. They're bound to catch us!"

"Not if steam'll beat them," mutters Harry, and assisted by Buck, he
piles the engine fire with coal, and helped by the rapid descent, they
forge through drift after drift, none of these being very deep in the
second long snow-shed.

Then they come out of it, into the open country once more, and meet
deeper drifts, into which the engine plunges with a slow thud, throwing
the snow higher than its smoke-stack, as it struggles through. Here the
other engine must have the best of it, for they clear its track for it,
and they haven't left the second snow-shed half a mile behind when, like
the eye of a demon, the glow of the yellow headlight of their pursuer
comes gliding after them.

The engineer mutters: "They're goin' to catch us!"

"Never!" cries Lawrence, and piles on more coal--though his heart is
cold as the snow-drifts through which the engine plunges.

"We'll be up to the Piedmont switch in a minute. I might as well stop
there!" mutters the engineer. "We can't clear the track for 'em and beat
'em too!"

"Put your hand on the reversing lever and you're dead!" cries Lawrence,
his pistol at the man's ear.

"Not for my sake!" screams Erma, for she has the man's child in her
arms.

"For all our sakes!" answers Harry. "Keep her going--till we can move no
more! Then----"

"What?" asks his sweetheart.

"Then Kruger'll trouble you no more; of that be certain!"

"But YOU?"

"Oh, that doesn't matter."

They are moving quite slowly now, and the girl suddenly cries, "Buck,
where are you going?" for the boy has just said, "Good-bye! God bless
you, Miss Beauty!"

"What are you going to do?"

"_Show you how a Chicago railroad man treats chumps!_"

And though Erma cries: "Don't! You risk your life!" and Lawrence puts
out a detaining hand, even as they come to the Piedmont side-track, the
boy jumps from the cab, unlocks the switch, and hides himself in the
snow-drift.

"My God! He's going to run 'em off the track! My pard's the boss of that
locomotive!" screams the engineer. "He'll be smashed to pieces!"

"Go on!" answers Lawrence, and his pistol again threatens.

The locomotive dashes forward, for there is a roar two hundred yards
behind them, and over the noise they hear Kruger's yell of triumph,
which, even as he utters it, is turned into a howl of rage.

There is a shriek of terror from the engineer of the pursuing
locomotive, for Buck Powers, in the moonlight, has risen up beside the
switch, and turned it, just as the engine dashes to it, not so as to
side-track it, but only half way, to dash it over ties and snow-drifts
to destruction.

As the locomotive passes, Kruger, who has his pistol in his hand, turns
it from the direction of Lawrence and the flying locomotive straight at
the breast of the boy at the switch, and fires upon him! And Buck
Powers, giving a shriek, staggers and falls into a snow-bank, reddening
it with his blood.

But even as Buck does so, he is avenged. The locomotive, plunging
forward off the track into the drifting snow, topples over, and though
the engineer and fireman jump free, Kruger, with his eye in grim triumph
on the dying boy, is thrown beneath the ponderous mass of iron, that
topples over him, crushing his body, and sending his soul to where the
souls of the Danites go.

The engineer and fireman clamber out of the snow-drift unharmed, though
shaken up. Three of the Mormon _posse_ who have been with Kruger come
out of the snow unarmed, for their Winchesters are buried deep in a
white bank; and Lawrence, knowing they are helpless, makes the engineer
run his locomotive back to the switch. Springing out, he has the boy in
his arms in a minute, and getting into the cab, he holds Buck Powers to
his breast, while his locomotive goes on its way unhindered now, though
followed by the curses of its Mormon pursuers.

Then Erma whispers to Harry, "What chance?" But he shakes his head, for
he knows what those gray-blue lips mean--he has seen them too often on
battlefields.

As he does so, the boy, whose face has already grown pallid, and upon
whose forehead the dew of death is standing, gasps: "I saved ye, Miss
Beauty!--Didn't I do the trick like--like a Chicago railroad man?"

"Yes," sobs the girl, bending over him. "What can I do for you?"

"The Cap won't be jealous--just give me one kiss--that's all. I've never
been kissed--by--a--beautiful--young lady."

And two sweet lips come to his, that are already cold, and he gasps:
"You're pretty as a Chicago girl--that's where I'm goin'!"

And delirium coming on him, he laughs; for his old life is coming back
to him! And the railroad, and the city that he loves so well and is so
proud of, getting into his mind, he cries: "I'm braking on the
Burlington again, an' we're bound for Chicago. Hoop! we're at the Rock
Island crossin'--we've whistled first an' got the right o' way. C. B. &
Q.'s always ahead!--Two long toots and two short toots! Town whistle!
We're goin' into Aurorie an' out of it again. Now we whiz through
Hinsdale an' Riverside!--I can see the lights of the city.--Engine has
whistled for the Fort Wayne crossin'! Sixteenth Street! Slow down! The
bell's beginning to ring--the lights are dancin'--Michigan Avenue! We're
runnin' for the old Lake Street Station! I'm a-folding up the flags and
takin' in the red lights--the bell's ringin' fainter--the whistle's
blowin' for brakes--the wheels are goin' slower--slower--slower--the
lights is dancin' about me--the wheels are stopped. The train is
dead--the lights is goin' out! CHICAGO!!"

And with this cry, Buck Powers goes to Heaven.

Then Erma, bending over him, and wringing her hands, and tears dropping
on his dead face, whispers: "Let us take him to Chicago, Harry, and bury
him in the city he loved so well!"

And so they do, some months afterward; and there he lies, entombed in
that silent city of the dead, beside the waters of the blue lake, and
that great city of the living. And no truer heart, nor nobler soul, will
ever tread the streets of that grand metropolis of the West, than that
of this boy, who loved it so well, and who gave his life for
gratitude--now nor to come, even if it grows to have ten millions.



CHAPTER XIX.

ORANGE BLOSSOMS AMONG THE SNOW.


So holding the dead boy in his arms, the engineer contriving to do the
firing, they journey slowly along the road to Bridger.

Here, finding telegraphic communication is still cut off with Evanston,
they know it is safe to run on to Carter.

From the freight train at this point they fortunately get a man to do
the firing of the locomotive, Lawrence paying him for the same.

The sun is rising as they pass the Carter tank, and the engineer tells
them he thinks they have got coal enough, as they are on a down grade,
to take them to Granger, for the snow is not so deep here as it was up
the mountain.

Finding no orders have been received at this point, they keep on, and
finally, about seven o'clock in the morning, they can see the passenger
train from the East, side-tracked half a mile ahead of them at Granger.

"I can't take you any further--I have got no coal--and I don't know what
the company will say to my doing what I have done!" mutters the
engineer, who is now apparently anxious as to what the Union Pacific
will think of his night's performance.

"Here's one hundred dollars!" remarks Lawrence.

"No, I did it because the young lady had been kind to my child!" and the
man shakes his head.

"You must take it!" cries Harry. "You will probably be laid off for last
night's work!"

"What? For running away from road agents?"

"Running away from sheriff's officers!"

"From officers of the law?" gasps the man of the throttle. Then he cries
out suddenly: "They'll discharge me! You've ruined me and my child with
your infernal lies!" and he looks at Lawrence with angry eyes.

But Harry says cheerfully: "If they discharge you, this young lady will
give you enough money to buy a farm in Kansas. If she doesn't, I will!
Besides," he continues, hoping to soothe the man's fears, "though those
fellows we escaped from were Mormon officers, they were acting as
bandits, and had no more legal right to do what they were doing in
Wyoming, than road agents! I'll give you a bond for the money, if
necessary, when we get to the station."

This promise, and the one hundred dollars in hand, makes the engineer
feel more comfortable, as they run alongside the passenger train at
Granger. Here many questions are asked them, and in return they discover
the wires are still down towards Evanston, and there are, of course, no
orders from division headquarters.

At this place Lawrence arranges for the transportation of the boy's body
to the East, for he is very anxious to get it out of Miss Travenion's
sight, who sits in the locomotive cab, half dazed, though when she looks
upon what was once Buck Powers, she sometimes mutters with a shudder:
"This time yesterday he was alive and happy--and now he's dead--for me,"
and fondles the boy's cold hand.

Lawrence is thus compelled to tell the story of the night's happenings,
which he does to the station agent, who acts as constable at this place.
This official looks serious, and rubs his head, and says: "Hanged if I
know what I'd better do! Buck got his death killing the infernal Mormon
in Uintah County, and this is Sweetwater! I guess you'd better take the
young lady on to Green River, and then if they want you back for a
coroner's inquest, or to try you for murder, you can go to Evanston, if
you can get there--which looks almighty dubious just about now," for
another snow-storm seems to be blowing up.

Thinking it best to follow the man's advice, and a locomotive being
compelled to go to Green River, though the wires are still down to
division headquarters, and consequently no orders, Lawrence takes the
opportunity, and succeeds, about one o'clock in the day, in getting his
sweetheart to the comforts of the Green River station, where there is
quite a town, a pleasant hotel, and plenty to eat. For all the stations
he has run by this day, at that time were but little more than telegraph
offices and water tanks, with freight-house attachments at some of them,
and have not much increased in size or importance, even to this day.

At Green River, snow comes upon them again, and the yard gets full of
trains, though none leave for the East; for the Union Pacific is
beginning to appreciate what the great blockade of 1871 means.

Telegraphic communication having been restored between Evanston and
Green River, Lawrence wires the superintendent of the division a
statement of what happened at Aspen and Piedmont, and receives the
following characteristic reply:

     "Shall hold you for damage to locomotive. The homicide part of the
     matter is not our business."

A day or so after this, a passenger train gets through from the West to
Green River, and walking out to meet it, Harry is astonished but
delighted to see Mr. Ferdinand Chauncey step out of one of its sleepers.

This gentleman, being brought in to see Miss Travenion, informs her of
her father's safety.

"I got him out of the mine within two hours," he says, "of Lawrence's
leaving. Together we sneaked down through Mormondom to Ogden, where your
papa concealed himself on a Central Pacific train, and is now in
California, I imagine, unless the snow-drifts on the C. P. are as bad as
on this!"

Relieved from anxiety about her father, Erma begins to pick up spirits
again, for this young lady, in her life that has been so easy up to this
time, has not been accustomed to seeing men die for her, and has not
recovered from the death of the boy at the Piedmont switch.

A little while after, Mr. Chauncey, who has an Evanston "_Age_" in his
pocket, pulls it out, and says: "Perhaps you may be interested in that!"
pointing to an article in the newspaper which is an account of the
inquest by coroner's jury held upon the body of Kruger at Evanston.

They had taken the evidence of some of the train-hands, and the verdict
had been:

"That the boy Buck Powers killed Kruger, and Kruger killed Buck Powers!
Consequently there is an all-round _nolle prosequi_ in the matter."

This rather unique finding pleases Harry immensely, for now, he
imagines, he will not be delayed in getting his sweetheart to
civilization.

Some two or three hours after, telegraphic orders being received, they
board the same train that Mr. Ferdie has come into Green River on, and
depart for the East.

Passing through Rawlings in the night, early the next day they find
themselves halted by the snow blockade at Medicine Bow, about one
hundred miles west of Laramie; and this time it seems to be a permanent
stoppage.

Train after train comes in from the West, and none from the East, they
being held there by snow, at Cooper's Lake, and tremendous drifts in the
deep cuts from Laramie towards Sherman.

Fortunately they have plenty to eat. There is a grocery store, and they
are the first of this snow blockade, and so they live on "the fat of the
land," which means canned goods of every style, and ham and bacon _ad
libitum_.

Though Ferdie rages at the delay, Lawrence, being near his sweetheart,
would be content but for one thing: Erma's position, without a chaperon,
and accompanied by two men, neither of them relatives, is
"embarrassing."

Lawrence probably appreciates this even more than she does, as now and
then remarks come to his ears, from some of the passengers on the other
trains, that he would resent, if common sense did not tell him that he
must in no way bring his sweetheart's name to any scandal.

It is partly this, and partly the natural impatience to call his own
this being he loves so much, that he is desperately afraid some accident
or chance will even now take her from him, that causes him to come to
Erma one day, and explain the matter to her.

He urges: "Why should we wait for a grand wedding in New York, dear one?
As your husband, I can show you much greater attentions, and can do
things for you that I could not as your betrothed, in the privations and
hardships of this blockade. Why not make me happy--why not marry me
here?"

But the young lady, affecting a little laugh, murmurs: "What? Before you
have given me the engagement ring you wish to use the wedding one?"

And he replies: "I wish to marry you!"

"Not by a justice of the peace!" cries the girl in horror.

"No, by a minister."

"Where will you find one?"

"On the next train behind us--the Reverend Mr. Millroy, of St. Paul.
He's anxious to do some work; he has had no pastoral duties to perform
for a month or two. Let us give him a chance--you know your father
wished it!"

This mention of her father's views perhaps actuates Erma more than she
imagines--but it also reminds her of him! She falters, "You are sure you
will never repent? Remember, I am a Mormon's daughter!"

"So you are, and the belle of Newport and the sweetest--the
dearest--the----"

But she cries, placing her patrician fingers on his moustache,
"Stop!--no more compliments!"

"You consent?"

"P-e-r-haps! When do you wish it?"

"This evening!"

"Oh!" And blushes fly over her face and neck as Lawrence goes away to
consult with Mr. Ferdie.

This young gentleman makes arrangements with the minister, and consents
to act as best man on the occasion, crying: "Thank God, Harry, you've
given me some excitement at last! I had finished my last novel and my
last cigar, and thought I should die of _ennui_ in this everlasting,
unending, eternal snow."

But even as Mr. Ferdinand makes his preparations for the nuptial _fête_,
another train from the West comes in upon the crowded railroad tracks at
Medicine Bow. On it, Oliver, Mrs. Livingston, and Louise. They do not
see Lawrence and Miss Travenion, as their cars are some little distance
apart. But Mr. Chauncey, who has a habit of visiting from one train to
another, finds them out, and after a little chuckles to himself: "This
will be the ceremony of the season! I'll--I'll have some Grace Church
effects for Mr. Ollie's benefit and discomfiture."

So after exchanging greeting with his aunt and her family, he gets Miss
Louise to one side, and explaining something to her that makes the
child's eyes grow large, bright, and excited, she suddenly gives a
scream of laughter and whispers: "I'll do it--if mother puts me on bread
and water for a week. It will make Ollie crazy."

"That's right! You always were a lovely child!" returns Mr. Chauncey.

After this, throughout the day, Louise acts as if under intense but
concealed excitement, for she says nothing to her mother and Oliver, but
every now and then gives little giggles of laughter, which so
astonishes Ollie that he remarks to Mrs. Livingston: "The privations of
this snow blockade have made the child deranged." Then he says severely:
"If I hear another insane giggle, Louise, I'll shut you up in the
stateroom;" for this young gentleman is always happy to play the
domestic tyrant.

These remarks so frighten Louise that she disappears.

About seven o'clock in the evening, Mr. Livingston remarks to Ferdie,
who has dropped into his car: "It's dreadfully tiresome! Don't you think
you could join us in a game of whist?"

"I would be delighted," replies Mr. Chauncey, "but there is going to be
an entertainment in the train next to ours. Can't you come in and enjoy
it? Eight o'clock is the hour."

"What are they going to do?"

"I don't know exactly, but I expect it's exciting."

"Well, anything is better than doing nothing," laughs Oliver, in which
his mother agrees.

So it comes to pass that the two leave their Pullman and wade through
the snow to another side track, where a palace car is brilliantly
lighted, and apparently crowded with the _élite_ of the blockaded
passengers, all in their blockade best.

At the door Oliver asks the porter: "What's going on?"

"A weddin', sah!" replies the negro. "An' they're havin' a very hard
time inside; thar wasn't no weddin' ring--but I'se just cut off one of
de curtain rings to give to de groom."

"Ah, some cowboy affair," remarks Ollie, who leads his mother into the
car, and then gives a gasp, and sinks down on an unoccupied seat, while
Mrs. Livingston, too much overcome for words, drops beside him.

For beneath a centre cluster of red and green coal-oil railroad lamps
hung up as a decoration they see Erma Travenion and Harry Lawrence being
joined in holy matrimony, and Ferdie and Louise acting as best man and
bridesmaid.

A moment after the ceremony is finished.

Then Mr. Chauncey announces that a wedding breakfast, or, rather,
wedding supper, is served in the grocery at the side of the track.

"It is not exactly a wedding breakfast," he says, "because it's evening,
but there'll be plenty of champagne, and every one is cordially invited
to attend!"

Just here, social diplomat as she is, Mrs. Livingston, gathering herself
together, gets on her feet, and coming to Erma, gives her a kiss of
congratulation, saying, "My dear, I hear you have no proper
wedding-ring--let this be your first bridal present;" and places a
magnificent ruby of her own on Mrs. Lawrence's finger.

Then they all go through the snow to the grocery, which has a back room
that is fitted up as a dining-room, where the champagne flows like water
in Western style, and a Nevada congressman with a silver tongue makes a
little address to the bride, remarking on orange blossoms in the snow.
"The snow we'll keep in the West--the orange blossoms go to the East
with the bride, God bless her! But a _Western man goes with her_!"

This sentiment appealing to Western hearts, and the champagne appealing
to Western palates, the gentlemen of the party make a great night of it.

Three days after, the snow blockade at Sherman being broken for a little
time, the trains all get under headway, and, with cheering passengers,
leave Medicine Bow, run down to Laramie, and the next morning are out of
the great snow blockade, and flying across Nebraska towards Omaha.

So, one evening just before Christmas, Harry Lawrence and his wife come
into the Grand Central Depot, New York, Erma whispering, "Did ever girl
have railroad trip like mine?--I went to find a father and found a
husband!" and her eyes beam upon Harry, who is pressing her arm to his
side.

From the station they drive to the Everett, where a telegram comes to
them from California, announcing the safety of Ralph Travenion, and that
he has shipped his Utah Central stock east by Wells, Fargo & Co., and is
returning to New York via Panama, for he does not dare to trust himself
in Utah.

Thirty days after this, Travenion strolls into their parlor at the
Everett, and looking at him, no one would ever have thought that he was
once a Mormon bishop, for he is now the same debonair exquisite of the
Unity Club that he was years ago, and gives Lawrence his father's
blessing, as one.

"My boy, we must make you an Eastern club man," he remarks. "I shall put
you up at the Unity and Stuyvesant. We're rich enough to live in the
East, and in order to make us richer, let's go over to Boston, and see
the heads of the Union Pacific!"

Which they do, and sell the control of the Utah Central, out of which
Brigham Young and his fellows go, with wailing and gnashing of teeth,
for they know that the hand of the Union Pacific is upon them in
railroad matters, and it is a grasping Gentile corporation; in proof of
which the Mormon Church does not control one railroad in Utah--though it
built nearly all of them.

Some time afterwards, over their dinner-table in New York, Travenion,
whose instincts are those of a business man yet, says: "I should have
stayed in California. There's a fortune there! Even while in San
Francisco, I made some money in mining stocks. Belcher, for instance,
had gone up very much."

"Belcher!" cries Lawrence. "Good Heavens! I've got two hundred shares of
that stock in my pocketbook, and have forgotten all about it!"

"Oh!" says Erma, "that was the stock you had when you first heard that I
was Bishop Tranyon's daughter--and you forgot your investment for me!"

"Well, Providence has rewarded him for it, for I think Belcher must be
up to a thousand dollars a share, by this time!" laughs Ralph.

And telegraphing San Francisco, Lawrence finds this is the fact, and
sells out his Belcher stock for something over eleven hundred dollars a
share, making nearly two hundred thousand dollars by the transaction.

"Luck is upon you, young man!" says the ex-bishop. "Your election comes
up at the Unity Club to-morrow. I've no doubt you'll go in--but that
Oliver Livingston may give you trouble."

"Oh, I think not!" cries Erma, "his mother has been so very kind to me,
as, in fact, have all my old friends."

For some rumors of the peculiar adventures that have made Miss Travenion
Mrs. Lawrence have got into circulation, and in them Harry has been made
a Western hero and a frontier demi-god. Besides, society is generally
very nice to a young and beautiful woman who has sixty thousand a year
of her own, a rich husband, and richer father, and who is going to have
a fine mansion on Fifth Avenue, and give many dinner parties and a
german or two each season.

"I differ with you, my dear," returns Ralph. "Oliver Livingston is an
infamous cad."

"Why, what has he done now?" asks Lawrence, noting the excitement in his
father-in-law's manner.

"What has he done?" cries Travenion. "The miserable sneak has told in
the Unity the story of the Mormon club man--the story I risked my life
to originate. I told it to-day with graphic elaboration, and Larry Jerry
and the rest only half smiled, and said they believed Mr. Livingston had
told them that yarn about a month ago. I shall never tell it again!"

"Don't!" cries his daughter. "Don't make me ashamed of you." Then she
says more calmly: "What have you done about your families out there?"

"Oh, they're provided for _well_!" remarks Ralph. "I believe one of
them, the genuine Mrs. Travenion"--he winces a little at the
title--"would have made me trouble, but I think the Church instructed
her to let me alone; I know a few secrets of theirs that make them quite
amiable to me, now I'm out of their clutches. Their delegate to
congress, the one who has four wives in Utah, and declares he is not a
polygamist in Washington, might not like me to explain what I know of
his large family," chuckles the old gentleman.

But for all this, he does not tell the story of Bishop Tranyon, the New
York dandy, very often.

His guess about Oliver Livingston, however, was a shrewd one. For
chancing to be on the Governing Committee of the Unity when Lawrence's
name comes up for membership, he sneaks in a black-ball, as many another
prig and coward, from envy and malice and uncharitableness, has done
before, and will do to come.

But this doesn't count much, for Ferdie, who chances to be its youngest
member, has gone about with his winning manner and boyish frankness, and
has button-holed everybody, saying, "Hang it! You must put Harry
Lawrence through. He's the man who saved my life. He's from the wild and
woolly West, but some day he's going to make New York howl!"

So Lawrence goes in.

Though he doesn't do quite as much as Ferdie has promised for him--for
he is too happy to be inordinately ambitious--and is contented to be a
successful railroad director, and have a yacht on the water and a villa
in Newport, and a town-house on the avenue, and to be the husband of
Miss Dividends.


FINIS.

       *       *       *       *       *

ARCHIBALD CLAVERING GUNTER'S

Celebrated Novels.


    MR. BARNES OF NEW YORK.
    MR. POTTER OF TEXAS.
    THAT FRENCHMAN!
    MISS NOBODY OF NOWHERE.
    A FLORIDA ENCHANTMENT.


_Story for Children of All Ages._

    SMALL BOYS IN BIG BOOTS.





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