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The Sherrods   By: (1866-1928)

The Sherrods by George Barr McCutcheon

First Page:

[Illustration: Cover art]

[Frontispiece: JUSTINE SHERROD.]

[Illustration: Title page]

THE

SHERRODS

By

George Barr McCutcheon

Author of "Graustark", "Castle Craneycrow", Etc.

With Illustrations by

C. D. Williams

Grosset & Dunlap

New York

Copyright, 1903, by Dodd, Mead and Company

Entered at Stationers' Hall

Published September, 1903

HILL AND LEONARD NEW YORK CITY, U. S. A.

CONTENTS

CHAPTER

I. THE SOFT SUMMER NIGHT II. "LET NOT MAN PUT ASUNDER" III. JUD AND JUSTINE IV. MRS. HARDESTY'S CHARITY V. WHEN THE CLASH CAME VI. THE GIRL IN GRAY VII. LEAVING PARADISE VIII. THE FIRST WAS A CRIMINAL IX. THE ENCOUNTER WITH CRAWLEY X. THE CLOTHES AND THE MAN XI. WHEN THE WIND BLOWS XII. THE GOOD OF EVIL XIII. THE FINDING OF CELESTE XIV. "MY TRUEST COMRADE" XV. ONE HEART FOR TWO XVI. THE FALL OF THE WEAK XVII. AT SEA XVIII. 'GENE CRAWLEY'S SERMON XIX. THE PURE AND THE POOR XX. THE SOCIABLE XXI. THE COMING IN THE NIGHT XXII. THE FIRST BORN XXIII. THE TALE OF TEARS XXIV. THE NIGHT OUT XXV. THE LETTER TO CRAWLEY XXVI. TWO WOMEN AND A BABE XXVII. THE END OF IT ALL XXVIII. HEARTS XXIX. CRAWLEY'S LEGACY

LIST OF ILLUSTRATIONS

JUSTINE SHERROD . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Frontispiece

"IN A SECOND CRAWLEY WAS ROLLING UP HIS SLEEVES"

"YOU MUST LET ME PAY YOU FOR IT"

"HIS EYES TOOK IN THE PICTURE"

"'YOU'RE A LIAR YOU'RE ALL LIARS'"

"'IT IS NOT TRUE,' HALF SHRIEKED CELESTE"

THE SHERRODS

CHAPTER I.

THE SOFT SUMMER NIGHT.

Through the soft summer night came the sounds of the silence that is heard only when nature sleeps, imperceptible except as one feels it behind the breath he draws or perhaps realizes it in the touch of an unexpected branch or flower. The stillness of a silence that is not silent; a stillness so dead that the croaking of frogs, the chirping of crickets, the barking of dogs, the hooting of owls, the rustling of leaves are not heard, although the air is heavy with those voices of the night the stillness of a night in the country. All human activity apparently at an end, all sign of life lost in somber shadows. The ceaseless croaking, the chirping, the hooting, the rustling themselves make up this unspeakable silence this sweet, unconscious solitude.

A country lane, dark and gloomy, awaited the moon from the clouded east. Lighted only here and there by the twinkling windows in roadside homes, it lay asleep in its bed of dust. Far off it straggled into a village, but out there in the country it was lost to the world with the setting of the sun.

The faint glow from the window of a cottage poured its feeble but willing self into the night as if seeking to dispel the gloom, dimly conscious that its efforts were unappreciated and undesired. Down at the rickety front gate, cloaked in blackness, stood two persons. Darkness could not hide the world from them, for the whole world dwelt within the confines of a love lit garden gate. For them there was no sound of life except their tender voices, no evidence that a world existed beyond the posts between which they stood, his arm about her, her head upon his breast. They spoke softly in the silence about them.

"And to morrow night at this time you will be mine all mine," he murmured. She looked again into his face, indistinct in the night.

"To morrow night! Oh, Jud, it does not seem possible. We are both so young and so so "

"So foolish!" he smiled.

"So poor," she finished plaintively.

"But, Justine, you don't feel afraid to marry me because I am poor, do you?" he asked.

"Do you think I have been poor only to be afraid of it? We love each other, dear, and we are rich. To morrow night I shall be the richest girl in the world," she sighed tremulously... Continue reading book >>




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