George Streynsham Master.

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was checked by an imperative order from
the authorities, from whose will there is no
appeal. As a book-reviewer he labored
under similar disadvantages; he stoutly
maintained that the reading of a volume
would necessarily and unduly bias the
critic's judgment, and that a man endowed
with a keen, literary nose could fonn an
intelligent opinion, after a careful perusal
of the title-page, and a glance at the preface.
A man who wrote a book naturally labored
under the delusion that he was wiser or
better than the majority of his fellow-
creatures, in which case you would do him
a moral service by convincing him of his
error. If humanity continued to encourage
authorship at the present rate, obscurity
would soon become a claim to immortality.
If a writer informed you that his work " filled
a literary void," his conceit was reprehensi-
ble, and on moral grounds he ought to
be chastised; if he told you that he had
only " yielded to the lurgent request of his
friends," it was only fair to insinuate that
his friends must have had very long ears.
Nevertheless, Dannevig's reviews were for
about a month a very successful feature
of our paper. They might be described
as racy litde essays, bristling with point
and epigram, on some subject suggested
by the title-pages of current volumes.
At the end of that time, however, books
began to grow scarce in our office, and
before another month was at an end, we
had no more need of a reviewer. My
friend was then to have his last trial as a
reporter.

One of his first experiences in this new
capacity was at a mass-meeting preceding
an important municipal election. Not daring
to send his "copy" to the printer without re-
vision, I determined to sacrifice two or
three hours* sleep, and await his return. But
the night wore on, the clock struck twelve,



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599



one, and two, and no Dannevig appeared.
I began to grow anxious; our last form
went to press at four o'clock, and I had left
a. column and a half open for his expected
report. Not wishing to resort to dead mat-
ter, I hastily made some selections from
a fresh magazine, and sent them to the fore-
man.

The next day, about noon, a policeman
brought me the following note, written in
pencil, on a leaf torn from a pocket-book.

Dear friend:

I made a speech last night (and a very g|ood one
too) in behalf of oppressed humanity, but its effect
upon my audience was, to say the least, singular. Its
results, as far as I am p>ersonallv concerned, were
sdso somewhat uni)leasant. Looking at myself in
my pocket-glass this mominc^, I find that my nose
has become disproportionately prominent, besides
showing an abnormal lateral development. If ^rou
"would have the goodness to accompzmy the obliging
gentleman, who is the bearer of this, to my tempo-
rary lodgings, I will further explain the situation to
you. By the way, it is absolutely necessary that you
should come.

Yours in haste,
Victor J. St.



D.



Dannevig,
R. D. 0.»

I found Dannevig, as I had expected, at
the so-called Armory (the city prison), in
pleasant converse with half-a-dozen police-
men, to whom he was describing, with inim-
itable grace and good-humor, his adventures
of the preceding night. He was too ab-
sorbed in his narrative to notice my arrival,
and I did not choose to interrupt him.

"You can imagine, gentlemen," he was
saying, accompanying his words with the
liveUest gesticulations, " how the rude con-
tact of a plebeian fist with my tender skin
must have impressed me. Really, gentle-
men, I was so surprised that I literally lost
my balance. I was, as you are no doubt
aware, merely asserting my rights as a free
citizen to protest against the presumptions
of the unprincipled oligarchy which is at
present ruling this fair city. My case is
exactly parallel to that of Caius Gracchus,
who, I admit, reaped a similar reward."

" But' you were drunk," replied a rude
voice from his audience. " Dead drunk."

" Drunk," ejaculated Dannevig, with a
gesture of dignified deprecation. " Now, I
submit it to you as gentlemen of taste and
experience : how would you define that state
of mind and body vulgarly styled * drunk ? '
I was merely pleasantly animated as far
as such a condition can be induced by those
vulgar liquids which you are in the habit of
imbibing in this benighted country. Now,

* Knight of the Order of Dannebrog.



if I had had the honor of your acquaintance
in the days of my prosperity, it would have
given me great pleasure to raise your stand-
ard of taste regarding wines and alcoholic
liquors. The mixed drinks, which are held
in such high esteem in this community, are,
in my opinion, utterly demoralizing."

Thinlung it was high time to interrupt
this discourse, I stepped up to the orator,
and laid my hand on his shoulder.

** Dannevig," I said, " I have no time to
waste. Let me settle this business for you at
once."

" In a moment I shall be at your service,"
he answered, gracefully waving his hand ;
and for some five minutes more he continued
his harangue on the corrupting effects of
mixed drinks.

After a visit to the court-rooms, a brief
examination, and the payment of a fine,
we took our departure. Feeling in an ex-
ceptionally amiable mood, Dannevig offered
me his arm, and as we again passed the group
of poHcemen at the door, he politely raised
his dilapidated hat to them, and bade them
a pleasant good-morning. The cross of
Dannebrog, with its red ribbon, was dangling
fix)m the button-hole of his coat, the front
of which was literally glazed with the stains
of dried punch.

" My type of coimtenance, as you will
observe," he remarked, as we hailed a pass-
ing omnibus, " presents some striking devia-
tions from the classic ideal ; but it is a con-
soling reflection that it will probably soon
resume its normal form."

Of course, all the morning as well as the
evening papers, recounted, with flaming
headings, Dannevig's oration, and his igno-
minious expulsion fix)m the mass-meeting,
and the most unsparing ridicule was show-
ered both upon him and the journal which,
for the time, he represented. One more
experience of a similar nature terminated
his career as a journalist ; I dared no lon-
ger espouse his cause, and he was dismissed
in disgrace. For some weeks he vanished
from my horizon, and I began to hope that
he had again set his face toward the old
world, where talents of the order he pos-
sessed are at higher premium in the social
market But in this hope I was to be
grievously disappointed.



One day, just as I had ordered my lunch
at a restaurant much frequented by jour-
nalists, a German named Pfeifer, one of the



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largest stockholders in our paper, entered
and seated himself at the table opposite me.
He was a somewhat puflfy and voluminous
roan with a very round bald head, and an
air of defiant prosperity about him. He
had retired from the brewery business some
years ago, with a very handsome fortune.

" I have been hunting for you high and
low," he be^an in his native tongue. "You
know there is to be a ball in the Tumverein
to-morrow night, — a very grand aflfair, they
say. I suppose they have sent you tickets."

" Yes, two."

*• And are you going ? "

" I had hdf made up my mind to send
Fenner or some one else."

Mr. Pfeifer here grew superfluously con-
fidential and related to me in a mysterious
whisper his object in seeking me. The fact
was, he had a niece, really ein allerliebstes
Kind, who had come from Milwaukee to
visit him and was to spend the winter with
him. Now, to be honest, he knew very few
young gentlemen whom he would be willing
to have her associate with, and the poor
child had set her heart on going to the TUm-
ball to-morrow. Would I kindly overlook
the informality of his request, and with-
out telling the young lady of his share in
the proceeding, offer her my escort to the
ball ? Would I be responsible for her and
bring her home in good season ? And to
avert Fraulein Pfeifer's possible suspicions,
would I come and dine at his house to-
night and make her acquaintance ?

To refuse the acquaintance of a young lady
who even remotely answered to the descrip-
tion of " a very lovely child," was contrary to
my principles, and I need not add that I
proved faithful to them in the presentinstance.

A German, even if he be not what one
would call a cultivated man, has neverthe-
less a certain somber historic background to
his life which makes. him averse to those
garish effects of barbaric splendor that im-
press one so impleasandy m the houses of
Americans whose prosperity is unsupported
by a corresponding amount of culture. This
was my first reflection on entering Mr.
Pfeifer's drawing-room, while in my heart
I begged the proprietor's pardon for the
patronuing attitude I found myself assum-
ing toward him. The heavy solid furni-
ture, the grave and decorously mediocre
pictures, and the very tint of the walls wore
an air of substantial, though somewhat lugu-
brious, comfort. His niece, too, although
her form was by no means lacking in grace,
seemed somehow to partake of this all-



pervading air of Teutonic solidity and
homelike comfort. She was one of those
women who seemed bom to make some
wretched man undeservedly happy. (I
always feel a certain dim hostility to any
man, even though I may not know him,*
who marries a charming and lovable wom-
an; it is with me a foregone conclusion
that he has been blessed beyond his deserts.)
There was a sweet matronUness in the quiet
dignity of her manner, and beneath the
placid surface of her blue eyes I suspected
hidden depths of pure maidenly sentiment.
The cast of her countenance was distinctly
Germanic; not strikingly beautiful, perhaps,
but extremely pleasing; there was no dis-
cordant feature in it, no loud or harsh sug-
gestion to mar the subdued richness of the
whole picture. Her blonde hair was twisted
into a massive coil on the top of her
head, and the unobtrusive simplicity and
taste of her toilet were merely her character
(as I had conceived it) translated into
millinery. My feelings, as I stood gazing
at her, unconsciously formulated themselves
into the well-known benediction of Heine's,
which I could with difficulty keep from quot-
ing:

*<Mir ist als ob ich die HSnde

Auf s Haupt dir legen sollt*,

Betend dass Gott cuch erhalte

So rein und schdn and hold."

I observed with quiet amusement, though
in a very sympathetic spirit, that she did
not manage her train well; and from the
furtive attention she was ever bestowing
upon it, I concluded, that her experience
with long dresses must have been of recent
date. I noticed, too, as she came forward
to salute me, that her hands were not un-
used to toil ; but for this I only honored her
the more.

The dinner was as serious and substantial
as every thing else in Mr. Pfeifer's house,
and passed off without any notable incident
The host persisted in talking business with
me, which the young lady, at whose side I
sat, accepted as a matter-of-course, making
apparendy no claim whatever upon the
smaDest share of my attention. When the
long and tedious meal was at an end, upon
her uncle's suggestion, she seated herself at
the piano, and sang in a deep, powerful
contralto, Schubert's magnificent arrange-
ment of Heine's song of unrequited love :

"Ich grolle nidiL uad wenn dass Herz auch bricht,
Ewig verlornet UMU^tti erolle nicfat



Wie du
Es m



tenpracbt,
"%W Henens Nacht'



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There was a pathos and passion m her
voice which feirly startled me, and when I
hastened to her side to thank her for the
pleasure she had given me, she accepted
my compliments with a beautiful, unaffected
enthusiasm, as if they were meant only for
the composer, and were in no respect due
to her.

" There is such a depth of suffering in
every word and note," she said with glow-
ing cheeks. " He bears her no ill wUl, he
says, and still you feel how the suppressed
bitterness is still rankling within him."

She then sang "Auf Fliigeln des Ge-
sanges," whereupon we sat down and talked
music and Heine for the rest of the even-
ing. Mr. Pfeifer, reclining in his capacious
easy-chair, smoked on with slow, brooding
contentment, and now and then threw in a
dbparaging remark regarding our favorite
poet.

''He blackguarded his country abomi-
nably," he said. " And I have no respect
for a man who can do that Besides, he
was a miserable, renegade Jew, and as I
never like to have any more to do with
Jews than I can possibly help, I have never
read any of his books."

" But, uncle," retorted his niece, warmly,
" he certainly could not help being a Jew.
And there was no one who loved Germany
more ardendy than he, even though he did
say severe thmgs about it"

"That is a thing about which you can have
no opinion, Hildegard," said Pfeifer, with
paternal decision, and he blew a dense cloud
of smoke toward the ceiling.

Miss Hildegard looked rebellious for an
instant, but accepted the verdict of superior
wisdom with submissive silence. The old
man gave me a little confidential wink as if
to say :

"There is a model girl for you. She
knows that women should not speak in
meeting."

" What a delightfully fresh and unspoiled
girl," I reflectwi, as I wended my way
homeward through the still moonlight;
" so true-hearted, and genuine, and unaf-
fected. And still beneath all that sweet,
womanly tranquillity there are strong slum-
bering forces, which some day will starde
some phlegmatic countryman of hers, who
takes her to be as submissive as she looks."



VI.



SOMI

hour I



after the appointed
■riage for Fr&ulein



Hildegard, whom, to my wonder, I found
standing in all the glory of her ball-toilet
(for she was evidendy afraid to sit down)
in the middle of the somber drawing-room.
I had been prepared to wait for a good
half hour, and accordingly felt a little pro-
voked at myself for my seeming negligence.

" I do not mind telling you," she said, as
I sat compressed in a comer of the carriage,
striving to reduce myself to the smallest
practicable dimensions, " that this is my
first ball. I don't know any of the genUe-
men who will be there to-night, but I know
two or three Milwaukee ladies who have
promised to come, so, even if I don't dance
much, I shall not feel lonely."

" Of couse you will give me the first chance
at your card," I answered. "How many
dances will you grant me ? "

"As many as you want Uncle was
very explicit in impressing upon me that I
am to obey you unquestioningly and have
no will of my own."

" That was very unkind of him. I shall
be unwilling to daim any privilege which
you do not of your own free will bestow
upon me." ^

" I didn't mean it so," she answered, im-
pulsively, and by the passing light of a ^as-
lamp I caught a glimpse of her beammg,
innocent face. " I shall not be apt to for-
get that I am indebted to your kindness for
all the pleastu-e I shall have to-night, and if
you wish to dance with me, of course it is
very kind of you."

" Well, that is not much better," I mur-
mured, ruefiilly, feeling very guilty at heart
" On that ground I should be still more
reluctant to assert my claim on you."

"Oh, what a bungler I ami" she ex-
claimed, with half-amused regret " The
truth is, I am so glad, and when I am very
happy I always make blimdering speeches."

As we entered the magnificendy lighted
and decorated hall, I noticed, to my dis-
may, that the company was a litUe more
mixed than I had anticipated. I had,
therefore, no scruples in putting down my
name for four waltzes and a quadrille. I
observed, too, that my fair partner attracted
much attention, partly, perhaps, on account
of her beauty, and partly on account of her
superb toilet Her dress was of satin of a
cool, lucid, sea-green tint, such as one sees
in the fjords of Norway on a bright sum-
mer's day ; the illusion was so perfect that
in dancing with her I expected every mo-
ment to see sea-weeds and pale-green things
sprouting up along its border, and the



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white bunches of lilies-of-the-vallev in her
hair, as they wafted their faint mtgrance
toward me, seemed almost an anomaly.
She danced, not with vehement abandon,
but with an airy, rhythmical grace, as if the
music had entered into her soul and her
limbs were but obeying their innate tuneful
impulse. When we had finished the first
waJtz, I left her in the company of one of
her Milwaukee fiiends and started out in
quest of some acceptable male partner
whose touch of her I should not feel to be a
positive desecration. I had reached about
the middle of the hall when an affectionate
slap on my shoulder caused me to turn
around.

" Dannevig 1 " I exclaimed, with frigid
amazement. "By Jove I Where do you
come from ? You are as unexpected as a
thunderclap from a cloudless sky."
^ "Which was a sign that Jupiter was
wroth," replied Dannevig, promptly, " and
required new sacrifices. Now the sacrifice
I demand of you is that you shall introduce
me to that charming little girl you have had
the undeserved luck of securing."

" You choose your metaphors well," I re-
marked, calmly. " But, as you know, even
the Romans with all their reputed hardness
of heart, were too conscientious to tolerate
human sacrifices. And I, being, in the
present instance, ih^pontifeXy would never
be a party to such an atrocity."

The transformation which Dannevig's
face underwent was almost terrible. A look
of perfectly animal savageness distorted for
a brief moment his han^ome features ; his
eyes flashed, and his brow was one mass of
wrinkles.

" Do you mean to say that you refuse
to introduce me?" he asked, in a hoarse
whisper.

" That is exactly what I mean to say,"
I answered, with well-feigned coolness.

"And do you really suppose," he con-
tinued, while his brow slowly relaxed, " that
you can prevent me from making that girPs
acquaintance if I made up my mind to
thwart you ? "

" I don't suppose anything of the kind,"
was my reply. "But you know me well
enough to be aware that you can not brow-
beat me. She shall, at all events, not owe
your acquaintance to me."

Dannevig stood for a while, pondering ;
then, with one of those sudden transitions
of feeling which were so characteristic of
him, he continued in a tone of good fellow-
ship :



" Come, now ; this is ridiculous I You
have been dining on S— 's leathery beef-
steak, which I have so frequently warned
you against, and, what is worse, you have
had mince pie for dessert Your digestion
is seriously deranged. For old friends like
you and me to quarrel over a little chit of a
girl, is as absurd as committing suicide be-
cause you have scratched your hand with a
pin. If your heart is really engaged in this
affair, then I wont interfere with you. I
wish you luck, although judging by what I
have seen, I should say you might have
made a better choice. Au revair.**

He skipped lightly down the floor, and
was lost in the crowd. Having selected
some journalistic friends as partners for
Fraulein Hildegard, and listened with great
patience to their rhapsodies over her beauty
and loveliness, I stationed myself at the
upper end of the hall, and in philosophic
discontent watched the dancers. Dannevig*s
parting words had filled me with vague
alarm ; I knew that they were insincere, and
I suspected that he was even now at work
to accomplish some disastrous intention.
At this moment a couple came whirling
straight toward me ; a pale-green satin train
swept over my feet, and the cross of the
order of Dannebrog sent a swift flash into
my very eyes. A fierce exclamation escaped
me ; my blood was in tumult I began to
feel dangerous. As the usual accelerated
rush of violins and drums announced that
the dance was near its end, I did not daie
to seek my fair partner, and I had no pleas-
iu*e to feign when I saw her advancing, with
a light and eager step, to where I was stand-
ing. She was evidentiy too pre-occupied to
notice the change I had undergone since our
last parting.

" Now," she said, with as near an approach
to archness as a woman of her type is capa-
ble of, " you must not think me odd if I do
something that may seem to you a little bit
unconventional. It is only your own kind-
ness to me which encourages me to ask you
a favor, which I shouldn't wonder if you
would rather grant than not. The fact is,
there is a gendeman who wishes very much
to dance with me, and my card is already
fiill. Now, would you mind giving up one
of yours ? I know, in the first place, that
it was from a sense of duty that — that — that
you took so many," she finished desperately,
as I refused to come to her aid.

" We will not discuss my motives, FrSlu-
lein," I said, with as much firiendhness as I
had at my command. " But, before grant-



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603



ing your not unreasonable request, you must
be good enough to tell me who tlie gentle-
man is who is to profit by my sacrifice."

" His name is Mr. Dannevig. He is a
knight of Dannebrog, and moreover, as he
tells me, an intimate firiend of yours."

" Tell him, then, Fraulein, that he might
have presumed sufficiently upon our friend-
ship to prefer his request in person, instead
of sending you as his messenger."

The color sprang to her cheeks; she
swept abruptly around, and with an air of
outraged majesty, marched defiandy down
the hall.

The night wore on. The hour for supper
came, and politeness forced me to go and
find Miss Pfeifer. Then we sat down in a
comer, and ate and chatted in a heedless,
dispirited fashion, dwelling with feigned in-
terest on trifling themes, and as by a tacit
agreement avoiding each other's glances.
Then some gentleman came to claim her,
and I was almost glad that she was gone.
And yet, in the very next moment a pas-
sionate regret came over me, as for a per-
sonal loss, and I would fain have called her
back and told her, with friendly directness,
my reasons for interfering so rudely with her
pleasure.

I do not know how long I sat thus idly
nursing my discontent, and now and then, as
my anger blazed up, muttering some fierce
execration against Dannevig. What was this
girl to me, after all ? I was certainly not in
love with her. And if she chose to ruin
herself, what business had I to prevent her ?
But then, she was a woman, and a sweet
and pure and true-hearted woman ; it was,
at all events, my duty to open her eyes, and
I vowed that, even though she should hate
me for it, I would tell her the truth. I
looked at my watch ; it was a few minutes
past two. With a sting of self-reproach, I
remembered my promise to Mr. Pfeifer, and
resolved not to shirk the responsibility I had
voluntarily assumed. I hastened up the
hall, then down again, surveyed the dancers,
sent a girl into the dressing-room with a
message; but Fraulein Hildegard was no-
where to be seen. A horrible thought flashed
through me. I seized my hat, and rushed
down into the restaurant. There, in an inner
apartment, divided firom the public room by
drooping curtains, I found her, laughing and
chatting gayly with Dannevig over a glass
of Rhine wine and a dish of ice-cream.

" Fraulein," I said, approaching her with
grave politeness, " I am sorry to be obliged
to interrupt this agreeable titc-h-tiU. But



the carriage has arrived, and I must claim
the pleasure of your company."

" Now, really," she exclaimed, with impul-
sive regret, while her eyes still hung with a
fascinated gaze on Dannevig's face, " is it,
then, so necessary that we should go just
now ? Do you really insist upon it ? Mr.
Dannevig was just telling me some charming
adventures of his Hfe in Denmark."

" I am happy to say," I answered, " that
I am so well familiar with Mr. Dannevig's
adventures as to be quite competent to sup-
plement his firagmentary statements. I
shall be very happy to continue the enter-
tainment "

" Sacr-r-r-^ nam d€ Dieu I " Dannevig
burst forth, leaping up firom his seat. " This
is more than I can bear I " and he pulled a
card fix)m his portmonnaie and flung it down
on tl^e table before me. " May I request
the honor of a meeting ? " he continued, in
a calmer voice. " It is high time that we
two should settle our difficulties in the only
way in which they are capable of adjust-
ment."

" Mr. Dannevig," I replied, with a cool
irony which I was far from feeling. " The



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