The Shawnee News. (Shawnee, Okla.), Vol. 15, No. 121, Ed. 1 Saturday, September 17, 1910 Page: 4 of 8
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C « r y t «. Q
it wes t>y bawi!qh:
US. BrSBY-GLAISIIEtt was largo and
M square and red, with the Jaw of a mastiff.
She always thought of herself as of a
majestic presence. She was wrong; it
was terrific. She was not only largo
corporeally but was a woman of largo,
generous Ideas on the subject of the in-
fallibility of Mrs. Bushy-Olalsher.
She was never troubled by a doubt
of the righteousness of any of her feel-
_ Ings, and in her eyes any desire she
cherished was sacrosanct. Anybody who
ran counter to them was an Infamous
person, outside the humun pale. The
•ishing of such a i>erson was apt to become a fixed
'en with her: she would stick at nothing to com-
•:* It; and the wea[K)ns she used against the trans-
• : or were for the most part continuous slander
led by anonymous letters.
'.<< (tad the habit of domination, and ruled both
household and Prlngle Hill, the suburb she
: 'orned, with rods of Iron. Her wealth. Inherited
' otn her father, a gentleman who had made a large
uue out of wholesale, not retail, tailoring, and
.1 boon a consistent prop of the chief sweating
I'ustry of Kait London, gave her great social prcs-
e among her less wealthy neighbors; ho# tenacity,
; u iilonoe, and malignity did the rest.
Strangers who did not know Mrs. Busby-Glaisher,
omlng to live at Prlngle Hill, would sometimes raise
• standard of revolt. They always repented It.
'.e had little else to do but. secure her domination;
t'e rebels had other occnpatious besides # rebel I Ion;
: :d in the end bIic crushed them. Curates, organists,
'.looliunsters, and private persons who would not
ive her her own sweet way, had in the end to
I jive Priugle Hill, for the most part with badly daiu-
She was above all distinguished by an inveterate
hostility to young married women, especially if they
• hawed to bo pretty and attractive. It was almost
lut|H>ssible for them avoid quarreling with her,
for she forced quarrels on them; and It was seldom
Indeed that she failed to cause them a good deal of
This Idiosyncrasy caused her to fall foul of the
Scarlets. This young couple established Itself at
Prlngle Hill in u small house, a fact which In itself
entitled Mr. and Mrs. Scarlet to* little consideration,
lint since they showed an agreeable disposition to
make the best of suburban life, they presently were
admitted to Pringio Hill society, to the Tennis Club,
the dances, the bazaars, aud other social advantages,
which Priugle Hill enjoys Mr Antony Scarlet, a®
young man of twenty-five, presented to the world an
eyeglass, a vacuous air, an open mouth, and a lisp.
People who chanced to see him with that eyeglass
« ut of his eye saw a young man with very keen.
Intelligent eyes and close-set, resolute lips. Also he
shed hi', lisp with h!s eyeglass. But that was
au api enrance he kept for the privacy of bin homo
and the society of his intimate friends. The shrewd
world of Priugle Hill saw only a patent Idiot
lie was believed to "something" iu the city,
though no one knew what, since the Scarlets showed
a quite uncommon reticcuee about themselves; and
the maid they had brought with them maintained an
equal reticence about the Scarlets. Their cook, re-
cently .engaged, know nothing about them. This re-
tloence, so balking to legitimate curiosity, was bad
enough, but Mrs. Scarlet's prettlness and charm were
even more annoying to the elderly ladles of Pringio
Hill, even though as they oftten suid, they could see
nothing In her.
Mrs. Busby-Glalsher found them Indeed detestable.
She even began to fear that by that mere charm
Mrs Scarlet would presently bo a rival power In
Priugle Hill. Nothing was further from Mrs. Scar-
let's desires or thoughts; but to Mrs. Busby-Glalsher
her domination of Pringio Hill was the central fact
of the universe; she was ready to suspect anyone
of striving to dispute It with her; and she set to
work to crush Mrs. Scarlet with her usual weapons.
Mrs. Scarlet was not long observing a change in
people's manner toward her, a disposition to look
askance at her, to avoid her, and an uneasiness in
her society. She sot about Inquiring into the matter,
and learned from Mrs. Crewe, another young married
woman, that Mrs. Busby-Glalsher had been saying
horrid things about her; that she dyed her hair,
painted her face, carried on with murried men In a
very brazen way, and was altogether a most unde-
sirable person, quite unfit to associate with the select
social circle which adorned Priugle Illll.
Mrs. Scarlet came to Mr. Scurlet In a very pretty
fury, told him what she had learned, and begged
him to deal with 2&rs. Busby-Glalsher. Antony shed
his eyeglass and listened to her with the keenest
Interest. He did not express any anger when she
had finished, but he looked uncommonly dangerous
as he sa d: ""I'll deal with the old beast—faithfully.
But there is only one way, and that will make things
a good deal more unpleasant for you in Prlngle Hill
before they are all right."
"I don't mind that at all as long as you punish
that horrid old woman!" cried Mrs. Scarlet.
"Ver/ good," ssld Antony; and then he added
with some irrelevance: "I have had an odd feeling
all the time that Prlngle Hill was really a gold mine,
If one could only hit on tho reef." With that ho
tock his hat nnd cane and caught a train to town.
The neit morning Mrs. Busby-Glnlshcr was beyond
measure charmed to receive a typewritt< ■ ! or,
signed only "A Well Wisher." ! u ' • ' * i
Mr. and Mrs. Scarlet had neglected to go through
the formality of getting married. At onoe she sum-
moned the more suitable ladles of Prlngle Hill and
the rector; and without mentioning that the Informa-
tion came from an anonymous letter, told them that
she had leurned that Mr. and Mrs. Scarlet were not
married. When they had exhausted their expressions
of horror at Mrs. Scarlet's brazen efTrontery In
thrusting herself Jnto their circle, on Mrs. Busby-
Glalsher'b suggestion they called on the rector to expel
this abomination from their midst.
Tre rector, a very womanly man of bad family and
large private moans, who loved a bit of scandal every
whit as much as the worst of them, expressed the
<1<h>P sympathy he really felt with them, nnd pro-
tested his earnest resolve to purge Prlngle Hill of
pollution. 116 was always a warm supporter of Mrs.
Busby-Glalsher, whom he respected for her wealth
and tlrmness of character, and of whom he cherished
a very honest dread.
Having obtained this assurance from him, the njore
unpleasant of the ladles, headed hf Mrs. Busby-
Glalsher, went forth to demonstrate their propriety
•uttlng" Mrs. Scarlet on
'riugle Grove. She came
and enjoy themselves by "
her morning'fi shopping in 1
When the rector came
early In the afternoon. An-
tony Scarlet received him
with his most open-mouthed
vacuous air. The rector.
who was used to hum and
to ha. in and out of tho
pulpit, rose to the great
occasion of his life and ex-
pressed his heartfelt indig-
nation at the enormity of
the conduct of his hearer
and bis reputed wife with
a fluency as agreeable as It
was surprising to himself.
Antony Scarlet was greatly
flustered, and lamely asked
whether the outraged birlics
were likely to have suffered
much harn/ from having
boon brought into contact
with Mrs. Scarlet. The In-
dignant rector did not spare
him: he told him almost
word for word what Mrs.
Busby-Glalsher had said,
what other ladies had said.
what he himself had said
about tho so-called Mrs.
Scarlet. Then he told Mr
Scarlet with amazing elo-
quence his opinion of him.
Autony let the rector talk
his till, without saying a
word more than was suffi-
cient to excite him to his
fuflest expression of tho
sentiment* of la cern t ed
Priugle Hill. But as he
left lie said, with his fool-
ish lisp: "Haven't you
largo private meanth, Mr.
"Yes, sir. 1 have, thank
goodness. And it enables
me to say what I think
without fear or favor," said
the rector; ami he swelled
with pleasure at Ills happy
way of putting it.
"To M it hi th But hby-
Glaither? How very uith,"
said Antony Scarlet, with
an idiotic simper."
Tho rector had not long
been gone when young Mrs.
Crowe came round in great
distress. Antony saw herj
since Mrs. Scarlet was ly-
ing down with a headache;
and she told him that Mrs.
Busby-Glalsher had called
on her with two other ladies
whom she described with
some felicity as old cats.
had told her that he ami
his wife were not married,
and assured her that if she
continued to associate with
Mrs. Scarlet no one would
associate with her. Antony
showed a good deal of In-
terest about their exact
words; but, since he did
not deny the charge, she
came away believing it to
1k true, and as much dis-
tress^! as when she came.
For a few days tho af-
fair developed slowly. La-
dles of more uncompromis-
ing propriety were balked
of their fervent desire to
<-ut Mrs. Scarlet since she
did not api>ear In the
streets of Prlngle Hill.
They prowled about for
hours in the engaging ef-
fort, but In vain. The
grocer, a confirmed and
public-spirited P ly m o u t h
Brother, refused to supply
the Scarlets with groceries:
and tho other tradesmen
sent In their bills and de-
manded instant payment in an obscure but fervent
conviction that by this drastic action they were vin-
dicating outraged propriety. Antony Scarlet paid the
bills In person and In cash: the sight of gold, or pet-
haps its chink, luvarinhly loosed the tradesmen's
tongues, and he learned that Mrs Busby-Glalsher, or
the rector, or both, had lusptred the Bonding of each
Then Mrs. Busby-Glalsher took another step. She
sent a note to tho Scarlets' servants asking them to
come to so*' her. Their master bade them go by all
means. When they were shown into Mrs Bushy
Glaisher's drawing-room they found the rector with
her: and she at once asked tlieiu seriously If they
were lient on selling their chance of getting other
I laces bv renmlvln*! In a h u e where Pie nvser
£ D GAlt
J I P S O M
that Mrs. Busby-Glalsher was a scandal-monglng old
woman, that she had been with Miss Dorothy since
she was a little girl, and had been present at her
marriage with her master, who, If he was not well
off. was well known to be a very houorable yoQng
gentleman. She ended by expressing her wonder at
what Miss Dorothy's uncle, the baronet, would say
if ho hoard that these lying stories wore going about.
Mrs Busby-Glalsher was much taken aback. That
she had been spreading slander, oil grounds supplied
her by u kind but anonymous corresiKindent, seemed
The maid snut the door in her face.
to her of little Importance. She was used to im-
munity. But It was a serious matter indeed if she
had offended a member of the class she had so long
regarded from afar with impassioned esteem, and In
which she had always felt thot she was born to shine,
oould she but obtain an entrance Into It. What if
she had missed such au entrance?
However, she assured the girl, with diplomat if firm-
ness. that she believed her to be a shameless liar In
league with her shameless master, and bade her go.
The girl wont, saying that she would have the law
Mrs. Bushy-Glulabor turned to* the rector aud said:
"Chii we have mule n mistake?"
"It will- hn-huni lie very awl ward If we have."
said the rector. •
V "o '*** h-< i ,l ...
But the rector was uncomfortable; nnd he pressed
Mrs Busby-Glalsher for the sources of her informa-
tion till she showed him the anonymous letter. Tho
simple cleric road it and said that it was a very
proper letter, and, of course, her correspondent could
do no less than write it, if she had reasons for her
belief. Then ho added, fondly: "Of course it relieves
us from any legal responsibility for the action we
have taken. But I shall lose no time in going to
see Mr. Scarlet, and ha—hum—putting to him the
Impropriety of letting us labor under this misap-
"You'll do nothing of the kind!" cried Mrs. Busby
Glalsher, sharply. "Leave It all to me. "Why, I may
be months getting on proper terms with her after
this uncomfortable affair! I cannot risk any mud-
"Very well—ha—hum—your well-known tact,"
said the rector, and he took his leave. But after
awhile he grew uncomfortable. The thought that
there might be a legal side to the matter troubled
him; the thought also that he might incur some odium
for acting as firmly as he had on insufficient grounds,
worried him. Moreover, he began to resent Antony's
having let him in a false position, when a simple
denial would have cleared the matter up. He made
up his mind that by far the best course would be
to go and at once take a high hand with the young
Accordingly, after his high tea he went to the
Scarlets' house. The maid told him her master was
a dinner, showed him into the drawing-room, and
brought back word that Mr.
Scarlet would see him when
he had finished dinner. She
left him to kick his heels
for nearly an hour In that
drawing-room. He was not
long feeling that he was
not being treated with a
proper regard to his social
importance, and the fooling
grew in depth and intensity
till, when the door did
open, he was ready to treat
the matter with a very
high hand indeed.
Antony Scarlet came in,
wearing a dinner Jacket an
object in itself hardly au
assurance of genuine re-
spectability judged 'by the
standard of Pringle Hill,
smoking a large cigar, nnd
without one word of apol-
ogy. without removing ills
hands from his pockets,
said cheerfully: "Well. Mr.
Gudge, how are 3*011 V"
The rector rose, drew
himself to his full though
i#>r great height, and said,
with admirable dignity: "1
have come to ask. Mr. Scar-
let. for an explanation of
your extraordinary conduct
in allowing Mrs. Busby-
Glalsher and myself to la-
bor under a mistake, if in-
deed we are laboring under
a mistake, as to your mar-
riage with Mrs. Scarlet. A
word from you would have
set the matter right at
once. But you chose delib-
erately to put us in a false
position; and I must de-
mand an explanation."
"And why shouldn't you,
Mr. Gudge? Why shouldn't
you?" said Antony, heart-
ily. with a beaming smile.
Unappeased by his en-
gaging manner, the rector
said sternly: "Aud what is
your explanation of this—
"Oh. when you came to
me with the blackguardly
lie you and Mrs. Busby-
Glalsher invented aud
spread about my wife, it
did not occur to ine to say
anything until I could say
It in tho proper way
through her solicitor. I
thought he had served the
writ on you by now," said
"Blackguardly lie! Solic-
itor ! Writ! What do you
moan?'' gasped tho rector.
"Lies about a woman's
character are generally con-
sidered blackguardly; and
ray wife's solicitor has In-
structions to commence ac-
tions for slander against
you and Mrs. Busby-Gla-
shler," said Antony, with a
Suddenly the rector re-
alized that this Autony
Scarlet was a very differ-
ent young man from the
vacuous young fool I10 had
known, that for all his
easy and pleasant cheerl-
ness his eyes were danger-
ous! and he stuttered.
"B-but you never d-de-
nled It! A word from you
would have stopped the
matter at once! You had
only to speak, t-to show me
your marriage certificate!
it's entirely your own fault.
"I shouldn't dream of taking the trouble to con-
tradict a miserable He of that kind; and much less
should I dream of showing my marriage certificate
to auy foul-minded meddler who chooses to ask for
"Do yon allude to me as a foul-minded meddler,
sir?" roared the rector.
"Certainly, my dear rector, certainly.* said An-
tony. And ho added, with a genial laugh : "I think
that tho Jury will take an even strong>r view of
Tho rector's mouth was dry ami his face was pale
as he said: "Do I understand that you propose to
w"sb vonr dirty linen in public—--in a court of Jus-
1 i o ?"
sight of your marriage certificnte would have stopped
it at once! Any Jury will see It. , eur>t
"You spread the lie before you ^ ' i f
to ascertain the truth. But there, welMea*e lt ;
the jury. And now 1 won't keep you. Do" t. •
think me impatient; but Mrs. Scarlet w II want t •
room fumigated after you have been In It, before sii
can ubo It again. Good evening. '
"Fumigated? I was never so insulted in my Itfe.
roared the rector, as he went out, a limp and broUii
man. lie had no heart for a noisy talk with Mr.
Busby-Giashier after the quietude of Mr Anton.*
Scarlet. That good lady iherefore Bpent an imp*
tlent evening, devoured by her eagerness to Is- con
versing sympathetically with the niece of a baronet.
Next morning she could have dealt with tile Sl0wne«<
with which the boom were passing in really untailj
like language. At eleven o'clock n gentleman o* led
to see her who proved to be a lawyer's clerk. Willi .1
brisk heartiness he presented her with a legal docu-
ment which he explained was the writ in an action for
slander brought agolust her by Mrs. Scarlet, and that
the amount of damage claimed wan £5,000.
Mrs. Busby-Glalsher was at lirst exceedingly «•
uoyed, since she was doubtful whether it was quite
good form to call on a lady who was bringing an
action for slander against her. But presently it o<
curred to her that she might very well make the wnt
an excuse for calling earlier than the usual hour, to
talk such a serloiis matter over at once, amicably:
and she grew cheerful again. Then in came tb«
limp and broken rector, bearing In his hand a simil-ii
writ which the brisk aud hearty lawyer's elerfcj hurt
just served on him.
Mrs. Busby-Glalsher treated the matter of tne wr>
with a light, contemptuous cheerfulness. She assured
him that they were merely the formal way of treaii
the matter; that people of position like the S i:!< -
did not air their grievances in the law courts .s
ended by saying: "It's just a matter for a I
friendly chat. I shall call on Mrs. Scarlet this
noon and settle it. Wo shall be all the bettor- J:
for this little tiff: you'll see.''
The rector went away striving to share her a-
fidence; but Mr. Antony Scarlet's eyes, quiet suid
dangerous, kept rising before his mind. He foil .'i;t
he needed comfort—comfort from his lawyer
went to town.
When, outshining the rainbow in her magnificent
apparel, Mrs. Busby-Glalsher knocked at the Scarlets
door. It was opened by the maid with whom she had
boon so diplomatically firm the night before.
The maid said: "My mistress saWl that if you 'i d
the brazen impudence to call. I wasn't to let you into
the house. And the master has gone to town ti
see his lawyer about my bringing an action against
you for calling me a shameless liar."
"I don't want any Impudence from von, you Im-
pertinent slavey! Show me into the drawing-room
nt once, and toll your mistress I insist wi seeing
her!" roared Mrs. Busby-Glalsher.
Tho maid shut the >loor in her face, and left her
planted on tho steps. With her splendid firmness
and in the very nick of time. Mrs. Bushv-G'niahc
curbed a fit of apoplexy and wont home. She dnnl;
a strong brandy and soda, and sat down to >•>, ]. r
other means of getting in touch with Mrs. Scarl I ind
becoming reconciled with her. Suddenly It Hashed
upon her that Mrs. Scarlet' might be jlerloiw hi her
action for slander. She took the writ and th - nionv
moos letter and went to town to her husband's
Mr. Florshaui. an old friend of her husband's, re-
ceived her with the air of gloomy distaste she wrong!;;
believed habitual to him. But as she told her story
and answered his searching questions, he gradually
grew cheerful; and at the end he said: A donat-
ing business: a very disgusting business Indo I !
suppose you want me to try to get this lady to tsk«
loss than £5,000. She will be a fool If she does; an.I
Blckersteth & Crumpton are not the fools to let her."
i!" cried Mrs Busby-
said Mr. Horsham, almost
chance of your doing any-
that well-wisher's address, w!ii<
"Certainly, you'll pay,'
with glee. "There isn't
"Never! I'll tight the case through every court in
"Then It will cost you ten thousand," said Mr. Hor-
sham, scarcely able to restrain his Joy it the de-
tested lady's predicament.
Nonsense! 1 don't believe It! Engage tlio best,
legal talent In England! At once!" cried his client.
"Pardon me. Thlsjs not the kind of business my
Hrm would dream of touching. It would utterly
destroy pur standing in the profession." said Mr.
He was firm in this refusal; aud the face of the
Mrs. Busby-Glalsher who loft tho otTlce, screaming
vituperation, was a rich purple. She came home,
raging, to find a large gathering of the ladles of Prin-
gle' Hill In her drawing-room, and In the middle of
them the pale and perspiring rector. The lawyer's
clerk had been improving the shining hours by visit-
ing them, frightening them, and bullying evidence
out of them with his brisk heartiness. Tho rector
had come iu to tell her that his lawyer, too, had
bidden him settle tW? case, and refused to defend if.
The Indies, terrified by the lawyer's clerk, infuriated
most of them by the thought that they had been
misled into Insulting an Innocent lady, and the niece
of a baronet at that, had boon mercilessly berating
him for a disgraceful scandal-monger. Tho raging
Mrs. Busby-Glalsher turned the excited drawing-rooo#
into the scene of a battle royal; and when, after a
storm of recriminations, she roared her revolting sul>
jects out of the house, she sat down on the sofa t
realize that her domination of Pringle Hill was shat-
tered for years, maybe beyond recovery.
A fortnight later, as Mr. Antony Scarlet took np
the two checks for £0,000 which his wife had juet
indorsed, he said: "I'm going to pay them into my
account, Dolly. Your uncle said that if ever I could
show him £10,000 of my own he'd raise your allow-
ance from £500 to £1,500. Since, with the intorasi
from this, we shall have a couple of thousand a year,
we will leave those pleasant Prlngle shades and tnk«
a flat Iu MooM Street among the people we know."
"Oh, how ok**!" cried Mrs. Scarlet. Then she
added, tlmugbftfrlly: "But I've been wondering whs
sent that horrH1 anonymous letter which enabled us
to punish these detestable people."
"Mi. I wonder." said Mr. Scarlet; aad be imMti
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The Shawnee News. (Shawnee, Okla.), Vol. 15, No. 121, Ed. 1 Saturday, September 17, 1910, newspaper, September 17, 1910; Shawnee, Oklahoma. (gateway.okhistory.org/ark:/67531/metadc90103/m1/4/: accessed September 23, 2017), The Gateway to Oklahoma History, gateway.okhistory.org; crediting Oklahoma Historical Society.