Lurana Waterhouse Sheldon.

My Queen: A Weekly Journal for Young Women. Issue 2, October 6, 1900 online

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MY QUEEN: OCTOBER 6, 1900 ***

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PUBLISHED WEEKLY BY STREET & SMITH, 238 William Street, New York City.

_Copyright, 1900, by Street & Smith. All rights reserved. Entered at
New York Post-Office as Second-Class Matter._



_Issued Weekly. By Subscription $2.50 per year. Entered as Second Class
Matter at the N. Y. Post Office, by_ Street & Smith, _238 William St., N. Y.
Entered According to Act of Congress in the year 1900, in the Office of
the Librarian of Congress, Washington, D. C._

No. 2. NEW YORK, October 6, 1900. Price Five Cents.







“How much money have we left, Marion?”

“Nine dollars and seventy-five cents, but don’t worry, sister! We’ll
obtain more from somewhere, I’m sure. We cannot certainly be going to
starve in a great big city, full, as it is, of wealth and happiness!”

Dollie Marlowe sighed disconsolately. She was not so hopeful as her
sister Marion.

The two girls were seated in a top floor room of a cheap
boarding-house, where they had gone only a day or two after Dollie’s
rescue from the clutches of Professor Dabroski, the hypnotist, who had
abducted her from her home in the country.

Both girls were dressed in simple home-made frocks, the same that they
had worn when they first came to the city, but although their garments
were coarse and absolutely destitute of style they could not disguise
the natural beauty of the two maidens.

The girls were twins, but they did not look at all alike, except in
the general characteristics of their features.

Dollie’s golden curls were bewitching as a fairy’s, and her blue eyes
sparkled even through her tears, while Marion’s fair face was sweet and
charming in spite of the anxieties to which she had been subjected. For
Marion’s first visit to the city had been full of adventure. On her
arrival she had been sent to the wrong address by Emile Vorse, a fiend
in the attire of a gentleman, who had seen her at the station, and only
rescued from the insults of another fiend by a Miss Ray, who was kept
almost a prisoner in the apartments to which Vorse sent Marion.

Miss Ray had confided to her that she had been entrapped through a mock
marriage and only remained quiet for the sake of her family, but Marion
had induced her to run away, and the young woman was now safe in the
bosom of her family.

After this experience came the rescue of Dollie from her abductor, and
then, without funds or friends, the girls took up their brave struggle
for existence in a city which shows but little mercy to the poor or the

For two weeks they had occupied this shabby room, which they obtained,
with their board, for eight dollars per week, and during this time poor
Marion had been very busy, for it was chiefly her information that
secured the indictment against her sister’s abductor.

“Thank goodness there’s nothing more to be done in that direction,” she
said, wearily. “That dreadful Mr. Lawson, or ‘Dabroski,’ as he calls
himself, is safe in jail, and the Chief of Police tells me that it will
be some time before he is brought to trial. Justice is so slow,” she
added, plaintively, “but then, it is sure, so there’s no use in getting
impatient. I’ve been to seven places to-day in my search for work. Oh,
I am sure I will get something soon! I don’t see how I can help it!”

“You are just wearing yourself out, dearie,” said Dollie, remorsefully.
“You look a lot older than you did at home. Oh, dear, to think that I
should be the cause of all your worry!”

“Hush, Dollie!” cried Marion, “you are not to blame, sister, and, oh, I
am so glad that it isn’t any worse!”

Her beautiful face flushed scarlet as she made this admission.

Dollie’s blue eyes filled with tears and her lids drooped heavily.

“It’s bad enough, I am sure, but please don’t speak of it. You love me
just the same, don’t you, sister?” she cried, piteously.

Her loving sister rushed over to her and kissed her penitently.

“Forgive me, dear, but I can’t help thinking of it sometimes! It is
perfectly awful, and to think the papers are full of it!”

“They have been for two weeks,” said Dollie, sighing, “but they have
been so kind in their judgment of me, I can never be too grateful to
them. Still, I am glad we changed our names when we came to this house!
If our fellow-boarders knew who we were they would probably snub us!”

“Well,” cried her noble sister, scornfully, “I should not care for
that. We have done no wrong, why should we be scorned by them?”

“It is the way of the world, I guess,” said Dollie, sadly, “for even my
own father and mother condemned me before they knew I was guilty.”

“Oh, just hear this!” cried Marion, who had picked up the evening
paper; “poor Mr. Ray’s father was buried to-day! The grief has killed
him! And what do you think, Miss Ada Ray’s lover has thrown her over,
and all on account of her sister’s misfortunes! Oh, I can hardly
believe it! It is too utterly abominable!”

She threw down the paper in a burst of anger. She could not tolerate
injustice, it made her furious to think of it.

“I expect that is why we have seen nothing of Mr. Ray this week,”
said Dollie. “The poor old father, he must have been over-sensitive,
for if his daughter was innocent he should not have grieved so. As
for that fellow who professed to be a lover, why, he must have been
a good-for-nothing to do a thing like that. She’s lucky to be rid of
him!” she added, with unusual spirit.

But Marion was walking the floor in a perfect frenzy of indignation.
She clenched her hands together as she thought over what she had just

“Mr. Ray, our dear, good friend. Oh, I am so sorry for him!” she cried.
“He is going to take his two sisters abroad immediately. He has to, I
can see that. It would be dreadful for them to stay here.”

“And we won’t see him again,” said Dollie, almost ready to cry.

Marion bit her lips and her gray eyes grew almost hard with agony.

“I’m afraid not,” she said, shortly: “the paper says he is to sail

There was a sharp rap on the door, and Marion composed herself quickly
and opened it.

The stout, coarse figure of the landlady completely blocked the doorway.

“Good-evening, Mrs. Garvin,” said the young girl, politely, then as she
observed the woman’s expression she stood still and stared at her.

“You are a nice pair, I must say!” began the boarding-house keeper
angrily. “To think of the likes of you comin’ into my house! You’ve
got nerve and to spare, Miss Marion Marlowe!”

She glanced at the sisters as she spoke, but as neither of them
answered she went on with her vituperations.

“Did you think because you gave your names as Miller that the truth
wouldn’t leak out? Well, that shows how much you know, you little
ninnies! Why, I’d have caught on myself if I ever read the papers! The
description of you would have given me the tip at once if I’d happened
to see it!”

“If you had read the papers you would have seen that we were not to
blame for our misfortunes,” said Marion, coldly; “but you cannot blame
us for not wishing to be known. We are only simple country girls, we do
not wish to be stared at as curiosities.”

“Oh, I guess you ain’t so simple as you look,” sneered the woman.
“Girls that run away from home with city chaps ain’t so very simple, or
innocent either.”

“Hush!” cried Marion, sternly, “not another word, madam! You are
talking about something which you do not understand! This is my room,
and I insist upon being treated with courtesy.”

Marion’s cheeks glowed like fire as she glared back at the woman. For
Dollie’s sake she would as readily have confronted the very demon of
evil himself.

“And this is my house, and I want you to leave it!” was the woman’s
prompt answer. “I’ll not harbor such creatures another night, if I know

Marion took a step forward, her face becoming covered with a death-like

“Another word if you dare!” she said in a vibrating whisper.

The woman glanced sharply at the set lips and gleaming eyes, and seeing
something in the young girl’s manner that thrilled her cowardly soul,
she shrank back with a movement that took her over the threshold.

As quick as a flash Marion shut the door in her face.

“You shall get out to-night!” screamed the woman through the door.

Marion opened the door again and faced her sternly.

“I paid you eight dollars to-day for a week’s board in advance. We
shall be ready to go when you have returned my money!”

“You’ll not get a cent!” roared the woman, furiously. “You shall go out
penniless, you brazen hussies!”

Marion’s lips curved in a disdainful smile as she closed the door.

“You heard what I said, madam,” was her only answer.



Five minutes later there was another tap on Marion’s door. She opened
it at once without the slightest hesitation.

“Oh, it is you, Miss Allyn. Come in,” she said pleasantly. “We are just
packing up, but, as you see, it will not take us long. Do sit down, and
Dollie and I will be through in a minute.”

The young lady who had entered was a woman of striking appearance. She
was about twenty-five, of medium height, but not at all handsome. The
attractive feature about her was the shrewdness in her eyes, which were
as keen as an eagle’s, and yet perfectly frank and fearless.

“I heard that old termagant talking to you just now,” she said,
bluntly, “and I came to pat you on the shoulder, Miss Miller. Don’t you
budge an inch until she gives you back your money.”

“I wouldn’t if it wasn’t for Dollie,” said Marion, sighing. “I can’t
permit Dollie to be insulted, and if you overheard the conversation you
know who we are, Miss Allyn.”

“I’ve known it ever since you came here,” said Miss Allyn, pleasantly,
“and I’ve been hoping that she wouldn’t get on to it.”

“You knew and yet you did not tell?” cried both Dollie and Marion

“What do you take me for?” was the answer, with a shrug of the
shoulders. “Don’t you think I know enough to mind my business, and,
besides, is there anything about me that looks like a snake?”

“No, indeed, there is not,” said Marion, promptly, “but most women
would have thought it fine to be able to tell such a secret.”

“Humph!” sneered Miss Allyn. “That’s why I despise women. They’d die if
they couldn’t talk, and talk always makes trouble.”

“I guess you are right,” said Marion, as she snapped the catch of
the little hair trunk which the police had rescued for her from the
apartment in “The Norwood.” It was all the girls had in the way of
baggage, but it held their scanty wardrobe nicely.

Another loud rap on the door clearly indicated that the landlady had

Miss Allyn winked at Marion and then opened the door herself,
confronting Mrs. Garvin in the most unconcerned manner.

“What, you in here, Miss Allyn!” said the landlady, sneeringly. “Well,
if I was you I’d be a little more choice in my associates.”

“Would you now?” said Miss Allyn, who was chewing gum vigorously.

“Yes, I would,” snapped the woman, “but perhaps you don’t know who
these two innocent-looking creatures are. They’re them Marlowe girls
that’s been made notorious of late in the papers.”

“You don’t say!” said Miss Allyn, still chewing vigorously. Her
extraordinary manner made her audience stare a little.

“I didn’t know it ’til to-day that I was harborin’ such critters,
but out they go to-night. I won’t keep ’em a day longer. My house is
respectable. I don’t want no——”

“Hold on Mrs. Garvin!” said Miss Allyn with a sudden ring in her voice,
“you are ‘barking up the wrong tree’ this time, old lady! I’m better
acquainted with your boarders than you think, perhaps. Do you want me
to tell you the class of people you are harboring?”

Mrs. Garvin’s red face grew paler as she listened, but she was too
thoroughly angry to think of being prudent.

“There’s no one in my house but honest people,” she began, but Miss
Allyn stopped her with an imperious gesture.

“There’s one detective, one rogue and one sneak thief,” she said
quietly, “besides an actor, two actresses and a red-headed grass widow.
Not that I blame her hair, Mrs. Garvin. I’d turn pale, too, if I was in
such close company to the widow.”

Mrs. Garvin’s eyes nearly popped out of her head. She had not dreamed
of any one having such “dead wood” on her boarders, for if there was
anything wrong about any of them she had been paid not to know it.

“Now if these poor girls could have given you an extra ten now and then
you wouldn’t have taken such a dislike to them,” went on Miss Allyn,
quietly, “but as they happen to be poor and you happen to know it you
are going to kick them out of your house this evening.”

“And with a week’s board in advance in her pocket, too!” broke in
Marion, “but is it really true, Miss Allyn, about the other boarders?”

“As true as gospel,” said Miss Allyn, calmly, “but don’t you wish to
know who the sneak thief is, Mrs. Garvin?”

The landlady reddened to the roots of her hair.

“What’s your business, anyhow?” she snapped, turning upon Miss Allyn,

“My business is minding other people’s,” said Miss Allyn, smiling; “or,
in other words I am a newspaper reporter.”

“Oh! oh!” gasped Mrs. Garvin, almost shaking in her shoes. “So you’ve
been spying on my boarders while you lived in my house! Oh, it’s a nice
business, that! A sneaking, prying occupation!”

“It pays,” said Miss Allyn, with a shrug of her shoulders, “but come
on, old lady, pony up that eight dollars. You don’t want me filling up
my paper with what I know about you, do you?”

“You don’t dare!”

Mrs. Garvin made her last effort to frighten her boarder, but a
contemptuous glance was Miss Allyn’s only answer.

“We will not go one step until we get it,” said Marion, calmly. “So you
can take your choice, Mrs. Garvin, it is a week’s board or our money

“Well, take it and get out!” cried the woman furiously, as she drew
some bills from her pocket and flung them at Marion.

Miss Allyn picked them up and counted them carefully.

“We will go together,” she said a minute later, when Mrs. Garvin had
slammed the door and gone off fuming with anger.

“What, you will leave this house because of her ill treatment of us!
Oh, Miss Allyn, don’t think of it! It will give you too much trouble!”

“Nonsense,” said Miss Allyn, “I intended to go to-morrow. It won’t take
me an hour to pack my things.”

“But where will we go? It is nearly nine o’clock,” said Dollie,

“The lame and the lazy are always provided for,” quoted Miss Allyn,
merrily. “We’ll take furnished rooms, I guess, for the present. To
Bedlam with boarding-houses! I always did hate them!”

The girls dragged their little hair trunk into Miss Allyn’s room to be
sure of its safety, taking only what they would need for the night in a
paper bundle.

“She can’t touch our trunks, that’s one good thing,” said Miss Allyn.
“My board is paid for two days longer and I’ll send an expressman for
the trunks in the morning.”

“You are a wonderful woman,” said Marion, as they started out.

“Well, I’m not a howling success in all lines of business,” said Miss
Allyn, dryly, “but if I am given half a show I’m a dandy ‘bluffer.’ Now
I wonder who the sneak thief was at Mrs. Garvin’s anyway!”

“What!” cried Marion, with a ludicrous expression of dismay, “Do you
mean to say that you made that sneak thief up, that there was no such
person in the house, Miss Allyn?”

“Sure,” was Miss Allyn’s brief but expressive answer! “But I guess I
hit it pretty pat, all right. If I had described the fellow in detail.
Mrs. Garvin would not have recognized him any quicker.”



There was no difficulty whatever in finding a couple of furnished
rooms, and Marion and Dollie were soon located with Miss Allyn for a

“It’s lots more fun than boarding,” said Dollie, enthusiastically, as
she made coffee and toast for their breakfast the first morning.

“If we only had work we would be perfectly happy here,” answered
Marion, “and who knows what a day may bring forth, little sister? I
may come home to-night with a good position in my pocket.”

“It wouldn’t be a very big one if you could get it in your pocket,”
laughed Dollie, and then a sudden thought made her stare silently at
her sister.

“Well, what’s wrong with me, Dollie? Isn’t my hat on straight?” asked

“I was thinking,” was Dollie’s answer in a very low tone. “Wouldn’t it
be better if you were to wear the dress that Miss Ray gave you, Marion?
You wouldn’t look so—so green, and perhaps some one would employ you.”

Marion burst out laughing at Dollie’s frank description, but she shook
her head at the wise proposition.

“No, Dollie, they must employ me just as I am,” she said decidedly,
“and, besides, dear, I should hate to wear the dress again. It would
remind me of the first night I spent in New York when that villain
Emile Vorse sent me to the wrong address and I was only saved from a
monster by that dear, dear woman.”

“What became of Vorse?” asked Dollie, absently.

“He eluded the police and made his escape,” said Marion, sadly. “It’s a
pity, for he was an awful creature. But the other, Miss Ray’s deceiver,
is safely in jail. He was intoxicated and unconscious in his apartments
when the detectives found him.”

“Poor Miss Ray,” sighed Dollie, “her lot is worse, by far, than mine.
That man must have been a fiend, just like Mr. Lawson.”

“Hush! Don’t speak that name. You know we promised, Dollie. Neither the
name Carlos Lawson, nor his alias, Professor Dabroski, must rest on our
lips any oftener than is necessary. But Dollie, now I remember it, Bert
Jackson is coming to see us. I met him yesterday on Broadway, and told
him where we were. You must write him at once, dear, and tell him our
new address.”

“Poor Bert, he has had a hard row, too,” sighed Dollie, “but I guess
he’s safe now, for he’s secured a fairly good position in that office.
Oh, I wish every boy at the Poor Farm could be as lucky.”

“So do I,” said Marion, her eyes filling with tears. “Those poor boys!
I am almost home-sick, Dollie, whenever I think of them.”

“I would like to go home, too,” said Dollie, sadly. “I’d like to see
mother, and Samantha, and the chickens, but, oh, I would dread to see
father or Silas Johnson.”

“Well we won’t go back to the country at present,” said Marion, firmly,
“not until we are convinced that there is no place for us in the city.”

“I shall go out this afternoon,” called Dollie, as Marion tripped down
the stairs. “I saw an advertisement in the paper that I am going to

“Be careful, Dollie,” was her sister’s reply, “and don’t forget to wear
a veil, dear. That pretty face of yours is a great temptation to wicked

Dollie went back into their room just as Miss Allyn came through the

“There’ll be a typewriter here for you to-day,” she said glibly. “I
ordered it sent. I want you to learn to operate it.”

“Oh, thank you,” said Dollie, clapping her hands. “I’ve heard of them
so often. I shall be delighted to see one.”

“Well, I’ll teach you to use it in off hours,” said Miss Allyn, kindly.
“There’s no harm in learning, and it may come in handy.”

She was in a hurry to go out to fill an engagement for her paper, so
Dollie did not detain her, but busied herself in tidying up the room,
and then wrote the letter to Bert Jackson.

When the letter was ready, she put on her hat and gloves and started
out to look for work, carrying the advertisement that she had clipped
from the paper in order not to forget the address given.

She read it over as she walked along. It sounded very alluring to her
unsuspicious ears, and she smiled a little at her cleverness in not
showing it to Marion.

“What a surprise it will be to her if I get it,” she whispered. Then
once more she took out the clipping and read it over.

“Wanted—Twenty young ladies with musical ability. Must be over sixteen
and have graceful figures. Room 1019, Dusenbury Building.”

“I am sure my figure is graceful enough,” she said. “Of course, I never
did wear corsets, but I suppose I could. I expect they would make my
waist a little smaller.”

She put her hands on her hips as she walked along. She was a trifle
more plump than the girls she had seen about the city. After
considerable trouble she found the Dusenbury Building. It was a
grim-looking structure, and a regular sky-scraper.

Dollie was rushed up to the top floor at such speed that it made her
head swim a little. She had not begun to get used to the velocity
exhibited by an ambitious elevator.

She wandered around the halls for some little time before she finally
discovered a door with the number 1019 on it.

She tapped on the door gently, but there was no response except a
giggle or two from some one within, so summoning her courage she pushed
it open. There were a dozen young ladies in the room, apparently
waiting for some one.

“Come right in, don’t be bashful,” cried one frowsy-headed girl. “His
job-lots is passing on a strawberry blonde. He’ll be out in a minute.
They are in the private office.”

The other girls all tittered as Dollie smiled pleasantly. She sat down
on the edge of a chair, with her heart beating wildly.

“What do you suppose his game is, anyway?” asked one of the girls in a
low voice.

“Is it straight, do you think, or just another case of flim-flam?”

“Give it up,” was the answer from the girl addressed. “Wait ’til
blondie comes out. I hope it’s straight, tho’.”

She sighed as she spoke and Dollie glanced at her quickly. She was pale
and thin, and there was a hectic flush on her hollow cheeks. There was
no shadow of doubt that she was a victim of consumption.

Just then one of the girls who was sitting near the door to the private
office, gave a little scream.

“What do you think of that, girls! He’s got another door. We won’t so
much as get a squint at blondie.”

“That settles it, we’ve got to go in and face the music,” said the
consumptive, “and if he insults us, we must smile and put up with it,
of course. If we yell, he’ll call in an officer and have us arrested
for blackmail.”

The words were hardly out of her mouth before the private door opened,
and a flashily-dressed man of about fifty years came out, twirling the
ends of an enormous mustache.

There was not a sound from the girls as he looked them over, although
they each posed involuntarily and tried to look attractive.

Suddenly his eye fell on Dollie, and he stared in amazement. The girl’s
fresh beauty astonished him, it was so entirely unexpected.

“Ahem! You will please step this way,” he said to her at once, at the
same time indicating by a wave of his hand that she was to enter his
private office.

“I was here first,” said one of the girls, shrilly.

“I’ve been here an hour,” said another, wearily.

“I will attend to you all in a few moments,” said the man, pompously,
as he stepped into the office behind Dollie and closed the door after



Ten minutes later, when Dollie Marlowe emerged from the private door,
her face was flushed and her eyes were blazing.

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