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The Return of the Mucker
     

The Return of the Mucker

by Edgar Rice Burroughs
 

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BILLY BYRNE squared his broad shoulders and filled his deep
lungs with the familiar medium which is known as air in
Chicago. He was standing upon the platform of a New York
Central train that was pulling into the La Salle Street Station,
and though the young man was far from happy something in
the nature of content pervaded his being, for he was

Overview

BILLY BYRNE squared his broad shoulders and filled his deep
lungs with the familiar medium which is known as air in
Chicago. He was standing upon the platform of a New York
Central train that was pulling into the La Salle Street Station,
and though the young man was far from happy something in
the nature of content pervaded his being, for he was coming
home.

After something more than a year of world wandering and
strange adventure Billy Byrne was coming back to the great
West Side and Grand Avenue.

Now there is not much upon either side or down the center
of long and tortuous Grand Avenue to arouse enthusiasm,
nor was Billy particularly enthusiastic about that more or less
squalid thoroughfare.

The thing that exalted Billy was the idea that he was
coming back to SHOW THEM. He had left under a cloud and
with a reputation for genuine toughness and rowdyism that
has seen few parallels even in the ungentle district of his birth
and upbringing.

A girl had changed him. She was as far removed from
Billy's sphere as the stars themselves; but Billy had loved her
and learned from her, and in trying to become more as he
knew the men of her class were he had sloughed off much of
the uncouthness that had always been a part of him, and all
of the rowdyism. Billy Byrne was no longer the mucker.

He had given her up because he imagined the gulf between
Grand Avenue and Riverside Drive to be unbridgeable; but he
still clung to the ideals she had awakened in him. He still
sought to be all that she might wish him to be, even though
he realized that he never should see her again.

Grand Avenue would be the easiest place to forget his
sorrow--her he could never forget. And then, his newly
awakened pride urged him back to the haunts of his former
life that he might, as he would put it himself, show them. He
wanted the gang to see that he, Billy Byrne, wasn't afraid to
be decent. He wanted some of the neighbors to realize that he
could work steadily and earn an honest living, and he looked
forward with delight to the pleasure and satisfaction of rubbing
it in to some of the saloon keepers and bartenders who
had helped keep him drunk some five days out of seven, for
Billy didn't drink any more.

Product Details

BN ID:
2940013668355
Publisher:
WDS Publishing
Publication date:
01/20/2012
Sold by:
Barnes & Noble
Format:
NOOK Book
File size:
168 KB

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