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Bandit Love   By:

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[Transcriber's note: Extensive research found no evidence that the U.S. copyright on this publication was renewed.]

Bandit Love



"The City of Desire," "Passion Island," "Don Lorenzo's Bride," "The Spaniard," etc.



New York Chicago

Published by arrangement with The Dial Press

Printed in U. S. A.




Rotten Row on a brilliant June morning, and Hyde Park at its loveliest. The London "season" at its height, and throngs of fashionably dressed men and women "taking the air," strolling idly to and fro, lounging on little green painted chairs, or leaning on the rails watching the riders of all nationalities.

A sight well worth watching. It is the week of the International Horse Show, and there are many foreign officers in gaily coloured uniforms, mounted on sleek and beautiful thoroughbreds, cantering along amidst a throng of more soberly clad riders of both sexes.

The "liver brigade" is at full strength. These red faced, white moustached, elderly men, with "Retired Colonel, Indian Army," stamped all over them, as it were, are probably telling each other, as they try to urge their hacks to a gallop, that "the Row is becoming demnably overcrowded, sir, and the place is going to the dogs. Those confounded foreigner fellows look like circus performers, and that sort of young woman wouldn't have been tolerated in my young days.... Gad! just look at that girl!"

The girl in question is mounted on a high spirited bay which is resenting her mastery and is fighting to get the bit between his teeth. The horse rears, jerking his fine head from side to side, then bucks with a whinny of rage, and the "liver brigade" scatters. A mounted policeman, on the alert to render assistance and prevent accidents, brings along his well trained steed at a hand gallop, recognises the rider of the bucking thoroughbred, and reins up with a grin on his bronzed face.

He knows that Miss Myra Rostrevor, although she looks a mere slip of a girl, is quite capable of riding and handling almost any horse that ever was saddled, and is no more likely to be thrown than any of the Italian officers who have been competing for championships at the Olympia. He remembers, too, that when another woman's horse bolted with her a few weeks previously, Miss Rostrevor easily outdistanced him in pursuit of the runaway, brought the startled animal to a standstill, and rode off without waiting for a word of thanks from the scared rider.

Idlers lining the rails, however, ignorant of the identity and capabilities of Miss Myra Rostrevor, watch her struggle with her spirited steed apprehensively if they are ignorant of horsemanship, and with admiration if they are experienced.

"Ride him, missie, ride him!" ejaculates a lean, bronzed American involuntarily. "Gee! some girl! She's sure got you beat, horse, and you know it. Sits you as surely as an Arizona cowboy, and must have wrists like steel although she's got hands like a baby. Attaboy! ... Yep, she'll give you your head now, but I'll gamble she'll bring you back quiet as Mary's little lamb."

He was right. Myra Rostrevor gave her mount his head for a time and went the length of the Row, then reined him in, turned, and trotted him back at a pace that would scarce have shaken up the most liverish of the Indian Colonels. She eventually brought her horse to a standstill close to the rails, and patted his neck as she bent forward to chat smilingly to a tall, fair young man of aristocratic appearance and languid air.

"I said it! Some good looker, too," resumed the American, and turned to a well groomed stranger next to him, after eyeing the graceful horsewoman admiringly. "Say, sir, do you happen to know who that young lady is?" he inquired.

"Yes, I happen to know the young lady," responded the other, politely willing to satisfy the American's curiosity... Continue reading book >>

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