Arriving opposite the Franklin house, Tom Foley took position in a near-by alley, where he could keep close watch on the front gate. After hours of nervous waiting, little Lillian Franklin came out, and ...
Arriving opposite the Franklin house, Tom Foley took position in a
near-by alley, where he could keep close watch on the front gate.
After hours of nervous waiting, little Lillian Franklin came out, and
Tom's heart gave a jump. She was alone, and began to roll a hoop,
which her friend Sandy had given her that morning. Down the street she
tripped, all smiles and happiness.
Tom watched her until she had turned a corner, then he rushed up the
alley to intercept her. When he emerged into the street, he saw her
resting on a rustic bench, and hastened to join her. As he came up, he
was greeted with:
"Why, Tom, I thought you went fishing with Gil, and papa, and Sandy,
and the rest."
"No, Lily. I felt so bad 'bout my dad being arrested yest'day I
couldn't git up no courage to go," answered the boy with simulated
contrition. What d'yer say? let's s'prise Gil, and go down to the
landin' an' meet him when he comes in from fishin'," suggested Foley,
knowing the intense love she had for her brother.
"That'll be lovely, won't it? And Gil will be so glad if I come."
Lillian whipped the hoop rapidly, and Tom kept pace with her.
"Gil will be surprised, sure enough, when he sees me coming, won't
"Yes, he'll be s'prised, you bet!" said the boy, taking a firmer hold
of her hand.
The night was fast approaching and Foley was leading the child through
unfrequented alleys and streets.
"But maybe Gil won't come back this way, and it's getting awful dark."
"Oh, he'll come back this way, all right."
They were now on the shore of the river, dark and desolate in its
winter dress. The restless splash of the water sent icy sprays over
the child, and, clinging still closer to her treacherous companion,
she stopped him for a second and begged him to return.