The Foss Enterprise. (Foss, Okla.), Vol. 8, No. 18, Ed. 1 Friday, February 20, 1914 Page: 3 of 8
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THE FOSS ENTERPRISE
"Re Perl Button
BY Will Irwin
AUTHOR OF THE CITY THAT WAS, ETC.
illustrated by Harry R.Grissinger
COPYRIGHT 1912. BOBBS-MERRILLC9
Tommy North, returning to his room In
Mrs Mo>,re'n boarding house a* :&> a. m..
discovers the body of Capt. John Hanska,
another roomer, with a knif; wound on
hl breast. Suspicion rests upon a man
a v ...... ... .. VI' i . 1 . tir li A
what the spirits are sayln" to you.
Tliat'B your secret." She appeared to
hesitate over a decision. "Now. I'll
tell you what I'll do. I'vci probably
got just about one more slttin' In mo,
then I'll be through. I'll git in
Xiving the namo of Lawrence Wade, who touch wjth the spirit to-night, an* I'll
™ «" «■ <►««««• *, u«
" 1 ' * time this spell. Then I must quit."
"I'm very grateful," said MiBs Es-
trllla, "more grateful than you can
"I know you are. That's why I'm
doin' this, I suppose," said' Rosalie.
"There ain't any too much gratitude
In this world.
"Why, I feel as weak as water—an'
I must look after the ironin' too," she
added as she moved listlessly toward
. «, excitement a strang'
"who gives her name ah Rosalie LeGrdnne,
appear* an J takes into 'her own home |
acroHB the street all of Mrs. Moore s t
hoarders, including Miss Estrilla, an in-
valid, whose brother was h favorite
among the other boarders. Wade is ar- |
rested. Mrs. LeGrange, who, while plying
her trad** a trance medium, had aided I
J'olii e Inspector Martin M «• several
tim< p. calls at his oftio- to tell what she
knows of the crime. Whtle she is there,
<'oni<tan>'.j Hanska, widow of the murder-
ed man, whose exlsten 'e had been un-
known. appears. Mrs II inska. says she
l.ad left her husband axil disc loses the
fact that Wade represented her ami vis-
It 'U llanska on the night of the murder
in an effort to settle their affairs. She
jidmits Wade waa In love wltli her. ado
is held by the coroner's Jury for the death
of Hanska. Tommy North, who had been
held by the police, is released and re-
turns to Mi-s. I.eQran*"'s house. He be-
comes infatuated at once with Betsy Bar-
bara. and at her ur*inff pr-p:ir •« to es-
tablish the Thomas W. North Advertising
\gencv. Mr*. LeOrange. with Inspector
McGee, examines the house where Han-
ska wis killed and finds on the fire es-
cape outsl.1.- Hanska's window a red shoe
hutton. which she conceals. Mrs Le-
Orange secretly examines th- shoes or lier
hoarders :ii search of one the red hutton
will ft' She pretends to go Into a trance
In Miss Kstrllla's room an.1 communes
-with spirits. Rosalie secures from In-
spector McGee the services of an Italian
Selective, to work under her direction.
A Stroke of Luck.
We come now to the moBt crowded
day in all the crowded life of Rosalie
Le Grange. We begin, indeed, with
Rosalie Le Grange out of the stage
picture. We are In the office of the
Thomafi W. North Advertising Agency
In lower Fifth Avenue. Tommy North
sits at a cheap but neat desk, brand-
new like all the furnishings of that
little old office. He is laboring for
idence to show that Es- I an accurate and arresting headline to
SKrirW7n Port*1 of* Sp ad n. Ro s ah e proclaim the safety, and yet the dead-
socs Into another tran-•> In Miss Kstrllla's | ijnes8, of a new automatic revolver.
a i 4.* .. ..... rw mnma n'a r n l I
At the typewriter desk in the corner
room an<1 gains the young woman's con-
fl<Vnce Ir. succeeding seances Rosalie
1-nds Miss F.strtlla to believe she Is talk-
ing with the spirit of John Hanska.
"1 think that I felt you near me at
"Did you. John? Did you know I
was In your room once when you were
asleep? Do you remember how you
slept through the fire at home? That
was why I dared. There was light
on your face. I wanted to kiss it."
"If you had—and wakened me!"
*if I had—if 1 only had'." Misa
Estrilla wept bitterly; the voice of
John answered with reassuring words.
"But John, why can you not forgive?
Don't you know all?" continued Misa
Kstrllla when she had control of her
"Not all. We do not wake to the
spirit at once. I knew nothing until
1 was looking down on the people who
surrounded my body—a long time
after. Then there were mists and
dark spots. I saw one of the jewels
on the floor beside the door. I could
not see you—nor Juan. I must know
—this is hard—I am growing Weak—"
"Wait, John, wait!" cried Miss Ee-
trilla, for the first time losing control
of herself. John! Come back! You
must come backf I've something to
tell you that's killing me! John, John,
you must know that he didn't mean
to do it!"
With all the will-power that she had,
Rosalie kept herself from the slight
TOt movement when she heard that
•simple startling pronoun, "he." It was
time to close the seance. She sum-
moned Laughing-Eyes, who bade Miss
Kstrllla good-by in a weak failiug
tone; she settled into her concluding
sits Betsy-Barbara Lane, Inexpertly
tapping the keys with two fingers of
her right hand and one of her left.
And as Betsy-Barbara smiles trium-
phantly over this fair line, frowns at
that foul one, purses her lips over the
other hard combination, her radiance
fills and illuminates the Thomas W.
North Advertising Agency.
From inception to Interior furnish-
ings, it is all Betsy-Barbara. Hers
wa3 the choice and placing of the
green Mission furniture. Hers was
the selection of the pictures, their ar-
rangement in relation to the wall
spaces. That it might be a pleasant
place for work, she picked out prints
of her favorite pictures—the Countess
Potolka, the Baby Stuart and the
Duchess of Devonshire. To give it a
business air, she added a framed pho-
tograph of the Union Station in St.
Louis. Further, Betsy-Barbara found
the most spectacular specimens of ad-
vertising design executed by Thomas
W. North, set them in passe-partouts
with her own hands, and hung them
just where they would Invite the eye
and confidence of customers. She re-
membered also the bouI needs of Mr.
Thomas W. North Himself. In the
interstices of the decorations she
placed such mottoes as she deemed
best for him, as "Do It Now;" "Indus-
try Is Happiness;" and, most sig-
nificant of all to one who understood
the reason for the Thomas W. North
Agency, "It's What You Do After
Business Hours That Gives You Nerv-
ous Prostration." Finally, to all these
decorations she had added more and
more frequently of late her own illu-
For life, what time she was not
busy with the solace of Constance,
hung heavy nowadays on the capa-
hauds of Betsy-Barbara. Just
and fetching for establishments of
your claee. How's this for a line:
'Our eggs straight from the hen—our
cofTee grew on a vlue—-our boarders
Btay till they die.'"
"No, thank you." replied Rosalie,
dimpling upon him. And then, with
the air of one who has no time to
waste in airy persiflage, "I'm here on
business, though. Mr. North. 1 want
to borrow the services of your stenog-
rapher for a day."
"Me?" inquired Betsy-Barbara.
"You," replied Rosalie Le Grange.
She turned back to Tommy North
then; and the (lash of her dimples dis-
armed any possible resentment.
"Mr. North, haven't you got five or
ten minutes of business somewhere
else? Like buying your day's cigars
or something? When two ladies want
to talk something over alone, they
hate to talk in the hall."
"Oh. certainly." replied Tommy
North, rising and reaching for his
"It ain't every youug boarder," said
Rosalie Le Grange, "who is intelligent
enough to let his landlady boss liitn.
Now you be back in just ten minutes
by the clock, that's an obedient boy."
Tommy cast one look at Betsy-Bar-
bara as he went out of the door; and
Betsy-Barbara smiled as though to re-
Rosalie proceeded to the heart of
the matter without any of her cus-
"Betsy-Barbara Lane," she said, "1
believe you'd go for a friend to the
place we ain't supposed to mention,
except In church. Wouldn't you?"
"What has happened?" asked Betsy-
Rrffbara, her color departing with a
rush. "Has Constance—"
Constance Is perfectly all right,"
reassured Rosalie. "She was tryin' to
read—poor thing—when I left her fif-
teen minutes ago. But I've got my an-
swer, you would."
"I think I would give my life If It
would help now," said Betsy-Barbara.
"What I'm askln' then," continued
Rosalie Le Grange, "may seem only a
little thing. But it's important. 1
can't tell you how important. It may
save him—you know, Mr. Wade—If
you play your cards right."
Betsy-Barbara was on her feet now.
"What is it? Quick!" she asked.
"Not beatin' about the bush," re-
plied Rosalie Le Grange, "I want you
to spend the day flirtin' perfectly out-
rageous with Mr. Estrilla."
In spite of herself, Betsy-Barbara let
her pink blond coloring suffuse her
cheeks. But the color flowed back as
In the last two sittings, Rosalie had
been awakening from trance of her j ble
own accord. Now, she slumbered on | when she realized that what she need-
for two or three minutes before she i ed was work, she found that the corre-
ct her eyes flutter open; her face (spondence of the Thomas W. North
resume expression. i Agency was getting greater than
Miss Estrilla had controlled her Tommy himself could handle. She
weeping. To Rosalie's cheerful, "Well, ' announced at once her Intention of
was I out long?" she returned no an- learning the typewriter and doing that
swer. Rosalie looked at her sharply, work herself—all for the good of the
"I'm afraid you shouldn't do this | enterprise. To this proposal, Tommy
any morn—in your state of nerves," , entered a protest of conscience; but
she said. "Only reason I've kept It I the thought that he would see Betsy-
up was because it seemed to be doln' , Barbara in office hours as well as out
you so much good. But to-day you | rendered it very feeble. So Iletsy-Bar-
iook all tuckered out. An' me—a wet \ bara fell to work on the second-hand
"Oh, a Customer!"
rag is cast-irou beside my feelin' this
minute. Tell me—was it long after I
stopped talking before I woke up?"
"No. It was shorter than ever be-
"M-hm! Well, those that know me
better than I know myself have
watched my trances. They say that
■ when 1 wait;? up soon after the spirits
go, it means just one thing—it seems
I'm runnin' down. It's been a strain
on me for three slttin's, an' now that
it's beginiiin' to tell on you, we'd both
belter stop it, I guess."
But Miss Estrilla raised the eye-
shade; and Rosalie saw that she was
weeping again. "Oh, just another!"
she pleaded "Couldn't you, Mrs. Le
(.range? There was something more
I wanted to ask. Something," she
went on, which would seem trivial to
you. But to me—1
typewriter; and Bhe had so far pro-
gressed that she could write a pass-
ably good business letter In four at-
tempts and a morning's time.
On the scene of brisk business ac-
tivity suddenly entered Rosalie Le
Orange. As she stepped into the door,
she was large-eyed, serious, a-quiver
with Inner Intensity. She broke Into
a smile, however, as she aurveyed the
Thomas W. North Advertising Agency
at work. Both Tommy and his ama-
teur stenographer had heard the
steps; but each, <ss people will do
when they are Intent, failed to look
up from his uncompleted lino until
startled by Rosalie's:
"My! Such a pair of little work-
"Ah, a customer!" he said; "busi-
ness bad al llie boarding-house? Any
u. 13 U L LU IUO . |
"Now my dear," Interrupted Rosalie, thing 1 can do to advertise you? I
I don't want to know anything about j recommend our A A Campaign—cheap
her mind leaped from circumstance to
circumstance and rested on a sus-
"What has he—" she said under her
breath, "what has he to do with the
"Nothin" much—himself," said Rosa-
lie, indifferently, but a great deal to
do with solvln' it. An' It's important
that he should be delivered at just the
right time—as a kind of witness."
A new idea widened Betsy-Barbara's
eyes and made soft and wondering the
little mouth of her.
"And what have you?" she whis-
pered. "Have you—all this time—and
I never suspected!"
"Now don't go cuttln' corners an"
guesein'," said Rosalie Le Grange.
"I've been doin' my part. Don't ask
me any more, please. I'm just bustln'
to tell. I'm an old fool with my tongue,
an' if I spring the littlest leak in a
secret it all comes tumblln' out. Re-
member what I've told you. First, you
can help save Mr. Wade as nobody
else can. Next, don't ask an> ques-
tions. An' Bets) Barbara Lane, now
I'm gettin' solemn. I want you to
hold up your right haud an* swear
somethin' on your honor—that you
won't tell anybody—anybody—about
this until I let you."
But now the shade of a suspicion
flashed across Betsy Barbara's face.
Rosalie caught It and formed her an-
swer mentally before her pretty juror
"Suppose," said Betsy-Barbara—"I
beg your pardon, Mrs. Le Grauge. but
one must watch everything in a time
like this—suppose you were working
for the other side?"
"In case you ever found that out,"
said Rosalie, "your oath Is all off
Goodness me!"—and now her emotion
was real—''do I look like a traitor or
anything of that sort? Haven't 1 helped
Mrs. Hanska every way I could?
You're a woman, Betsy-Barbara, an
you know me by this time. Am I that
"No," replied BetBy-Barbara. "You
are not." And with an air of pretty
solemnity, she swore It.
"If I was a man." said Rosalie Le
Grange, "I could just eat you up when
you look that way Now we're goln'
straight to business. It is a quarter
of ten. Has Mrs. Hanska any date to-
"She was going to her lawyer's at
"Let her do that; but first you're to
see her and tell her that she musn't
come home afterwards. Let her go any-
where except home. An' after you've
done what I want you to do, you'll
meet her somewhere an' take her to
dinner at—at the Hotel Hamblen.
That's a respectable out-of-the-way
place. Got that?"
"Then after you've seen Mrs. Han-
ska, you'll rest a while. And at two-
thirty, sharp, you're to be waiting by
the Carlisle Trust building. It's got
only one entrance, which is lucky. And
you can hardly miss."
"For Mr. Estrilla. This Is no time
to make any bones of anythln'. He's
crazy over you. He has an engage-
ment there for two-thirty. Let him
go in. He probably won't stay more
than fifteen minutes. You're to meet
him at the front of the elevator. You're
to—encourage him—you know. If he
asks you to take a walk, which he
probably will, you accept, and start
him toward the park. This is the
point. At five o'clock sharp, you're to
have him takin' tea with you In the
I'ark Casino—you know where that is,
don't you? An' you're not to leave un-
til half past five. Then you're to meet
Constance—Mrs. Hanska—as I told
you. Wait a minute—" Rosalie
paused, froeen Immobile on the birth
of a new thought "have her pack a
suit case and take It with her. You
two register at the Hotel Hamblen an'
stay there tonight—stay right there
until you hear from me. Got all that?
Well, repeat it after me."
Betsy-Barbara repeated it slowly.
The door rattled; Tommy North was
"Mr. North," said Rosalie, "I'm bor-
row In' your office help for the day. We
want you to do somethin" for us. You
don't understand now, but you will.
Don't you go near my house until to-
morrow—you sleep out tonight an
breakfast out tomorrow. I can give
you a rebate If you demand It," Bhe
pursued, dimpling on him.
"All right, take It out of that first
week's board you stung me so hard
for," laughed Tommy North. Then his
eyes sought Betsy-Barbara's with a
troubled look. "What's the answer?"
"There's no answer." said Rosalie Le
Grange; "not just at present. Except
you'll be glad you did it—an' I'll ex-
plain some day myself. Go where you
want tonight. Only don't get drunk."
"Oh, he won't do that, of course!"
put in Betsy-Barbara.
Which defensive assurance quite re-
stored the spirits of Tommy North,
and the smile came back to his face.
"But promise us one thing—you will
never say a word to anybody about
this." put In Rosalie.
"I promise," said Tommy, as sol-
emnly ae he could, considering that
his heart danced. She had taken up
the cudgels for him!
The two women parted at the cor-
ner. No sooner had Betsy-Barbara ta
ken a Fifth avenue stage and started
on her puzzling Journey of intrigue,
than Rosalie called a tajcicab and Bet
her course for the East side docks of
Here we must introduce a new char-
acter in this story, a person who flash-
es In and out as people are ever flash-
ing in and out of our lives, bearing
service in their hands At this poiat
also appears--though ever so slightly
the element of coincidence.
The new character is Sktpper Matt
Baldwin of the schooner Maud, en-
gaged in the coastwise lumber trade.
The Maud is lying at the dock, prepar-
ing to sail for Halifax on the morrow
with a return cargo. A battered and
pleasant old man. the Skipper Bald-
win, with an eagle profile which de-
notes his courage and a soft eye which
indicates his gullibility He was a
widower of long and affectionate mem-
ory; because of that and, because of
his searchings of the spirit on loneljr
voyages, he became a believer in spir-
itualism of the kind which Rosalie Le
Grange used to practice. Rosalie waa
hie favorite medium—and his friend.
Toward the schooner Maud Bhe wa
now driving her taxlcab.
The piece of luck was this: At the
very moment when the taxlcab round-
ed the corner from Wall street and the
driver began to iuquire for pier 16V4.
Captain Baldwin was as near to pro-
fanity as Ills convictions allowed. As
for the mate, he had no convictions
which prevented him from expressing
himself to the limits of his vocabulary,
over that unlucky accident, that tum-
ble into the hatches, which had sent a
newly-signed Italian member of the
crew to Bellevue hospital nursing a
broken arm. With all the heaven-
condemned things they had to do be
fore the Improper old scow could be
cleared In the morning, how the sin
and sulphur (the mate inquired of the
bright air) were they going to dig up
another sailor to satisfy the port regu
The Last Seance.
Fortunately for her plans, only three
of Rosalie Le Grange s regular board-
ers ever came home to luncheon—Con-
stance, BetBy-Barbara and Professor
Noll. Of these, two were disposed of
for the day. Professor Noll found
three strangers already placed and eat-
ing. Two young men, powerful and
Blow-moving, sat at either side of the
hostess. At the other end of the table,
in Miss Harding's accuatomed seat,
was a matronly woman, gray-haired
but alert of motion and eye.
"Mr. Kennedy—Mr. Hunter—Mrs.
Leary—1 want to Introduce Professor
Noll. The professor Is one of my regu-
lar boarders. This lady and these gen-
tlemen are transients; they'll be with
us Just a few days," said Rosalie Le
Grange. The two men nodded and felt
to their luncheon, of which they con-
sumed vast quantities. Mrs. Leary,
however, smiled upon him an experi-
"Mrs. Leary," pursued Rosalie L«
Grange, "has got some foreign views
I'm sure you'd like to see. You wont
be droppln' In this afternoon, will
"No," said Professor Noll, "sorry.
I'm making up the paper today. I
won't get home until just before my
dinner. My habit," he added, address-
ing Mrs. Leary, "always to dine just
at seven. The human intestinal sys-
tem is a machine, admirable, well-baA-
anced, nicely calculated to its usee.
Now the minute study of scientific
management has proved that a ma-
chine—" And so Professor Noll, hav-
ing mounted his hobby, rode blithely
away upon it; and Mrs. Leary, with
all the ready tact of the experienced
police matron that she was, vaulted
to the pommel and rode with him. Ro-
salie had learned all she wanted to
know. Professor Noll would not trou-
ble her again that afternoon.
The chimes of the Metropolitan
tower rang the hour of two. At the
first stroke, Rosalie, as one who finds
relief In action, ran down the base-
ment steps and opened the back door.
Inspector Martin McGee, dressed in
plain clothes and carrying a small bag.
was waiting outside.
"All set?" he asked under his breath.
"Everything's ready." replied Rosa-
lie as she led the way across the base-
But Inspector McGee stopped her at
Say. it's all right to let you have
your bead and do .things your own
way Grlmaldl reported back for
other duty at one o'clock, Just as you
told him. But I'm running risks when
I take your word that you'll deliver
thiB Estrilla when we want him—or I
would be. if It was anybody but you.
Why can't you tell me?"
See here, Marty McGee," said Ros-
alie, "I've got ready to put one of the
biggest feathers in your cap you ever
wore. An' I've done it by goin' my
own woman's way. If It hadn't been
for me. you'd been barkln' up the
wrong tree yet. I've acted this way
because I do things woman fashion,
an' there ain't a single mutt man alive
that would ever say 1 was on the right
track—until I delivered the goods. The
hardest thing I know Is to tell what
I know—that's a habit. Are you goin'
to believe me when I say that I can
put my hands on this Estrilla when-
ever I please? Are you goln' to Jeave
that to. me. Just like you've left the
whole thing so far?"
(TO BK CONTINUED.)
Avoid extremes, and chun the fault
of such who still are pleased too little
or too much. -Pope.
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Martin, C. P. The Foss Enterprise. (Foss, Okla.), Vol. 8, No. 18, Ed. 1 Friday, February 20, 1914, newspaper, February 20, 1914; Foss, Oklahoma. (https://gateway.okhistory.org/ark:/67531/metapth350222/m1/3/: accessed June 25, 2019), The Gateway to Oklahoma History, https://gateway.okhistory.org; crediting Oklahoma Historical Society.