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The Foolish Virgin   By: (1864-1946)

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First Page:

THE FOOLISH VIRGIN

By Thomas Dixon

TO GERTRUDE ATHERTON WITH GRATITUDE AND ADMIRATION

CONTENTS

CHAPTER

I. A FRIENDLY WARNING II. TEMPTATION III. FATE IV. DOUBTS AND FEARS V. WINGS OF STEEL VI. BESIDE THE SEA VII. A VAIN APPEAL VIII. JIM'S TRIAL IX. ELLA'S SECRET X. THE WEDDING XI. "UNTIL DEATH" XII. THE LOTOS EATERS XIII. THE REAL MAN XIV. UNWELCOME GUESTS XV. A LITTLE BLACK BAG XVI. THE AWAKENING XVII. THE SURRENDER XVIII. TO THE NEW GOD XIX. NANCE'S STOREHOUSE XX. TRAPPED XXI. THE DEVIL'S DISCIPLE XXII. DELIVERANCE XXIII. THE DOCTOR XXIV. THE CALL DIVINE XXV. THE MOTHER XXVI. A SOUL IS BORN XXVII. THE BABY XXVIII. WHAT IS LOVE? XXIX. THE NEW MAN

LEADING CHARACTERS OF THE STORY

MARY ADAMS, An Old Fashioned Girl. JIM ANTHONY, A Modern Youth. JANE ANDERSON, An Artist. ELLA, A Scrubwoman. NANCE OWENS, Jim Anthony's Mother. A DOCTOR, Whose Call was Divine. THE BABY, A Mascot.

THE FOOLISH VIRGIN

CHAPTER I. A FRIENDLY WARNING

"Mary Adams, you're a fool!"

The single dimple in a smooth red cheek smiled in answer.

"You're repeating yourself, Jane "

"You won't give him one hour's time for just three sittings?"

"Not a second for one sitting "

"Hopeless!"

Mary smiled provokingly, her white teeth gleaming in obstinate good humor.

"He's the most distinguished artist in America "

"I've heard so."

"It would be a liberal education for a girl of your training to know such a man "

"I'll omit that course of instruction."

The younger woman was silent a moment, and a flush of anger slowly mounted her temples. The blue eyes were fixed reproachfully on her friend.

"You really thought that I would pose?"

"I hoped so."

"Alone with a man in his studio for hours?"

Jane Anderson lifted her dark brows.

"Why, no, I hardly expected that! I'm sure he would take his easel and palette out into the square in front of the Plaza Hotel and let you sit on the base of the Sherman monument. The crowds would cheer and inspire him bah! Can't you have a little common sense? There are a few brutes among artists, as there are in all professions even among the superintendents of your schools. Gordon's a great creative genius. If you'd try to flirt with him, he'd stop his work and send you home. You'd be as safe in his studio as in your mother's nursery. I've known him for ten years. He's the gentlest, truest man I've ever met. He's doing a canvas on which he has set his whole heart."

"He can get professional models."

"For his usual work, yes but this is the head of the Madonna. He saw you walking with me in the Park last week and has been to my studio a half dozen times begging me to take you to see him. Please, Mary dear, do this for my sake. I owe Gordon a debt I can never pay. He gave me the cue to the work that set me on my feet. He was big and generous and helpful when I needed a friend. He asked nothing in return but the privilege of helping me again if I ever needed it. You can do me an enormous favor please."

Mary Adams rose with a gesture of impatience, walked to her window and gazed on the torrent of humanity pouring through Twenty third Street from the beehives of industry that have changed this quarter of New York so rapidly in the last five years. She turned suddenly and confronted her friend.

"How could you think that I would stoop to such a thing?"

"Stoop!"

"Yes," she snapped, " pose for an artist! I'd as soon think of rushing stark naked through Twenty third Street at noon!"

The older woman looked at her flushed face, suppressed a sharp answer, broke into a fit of laughter and threw her arms around Mary's neck.

"Honey, you're such a hopeless little fool, you're delicious! You know that I love you don't you?"

The pretty lips quivered... Continue reading book >>




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