Kenyon had watched the development of the boy with mingled delight and apprehension and, with the memory of the failings of his ancestors fresh in his mind, had done what he could to avert impending evil. It was at his advice that young Gallatin had gone to the Canadian woods, and he had noted with interest and not a little curiosity his return to his desk two months ago sobered and invigorated .
Phil had plunged into the work which awaited him with quiet intention, and the way he had taken hold of his problems and solved them, had filled the senior partner with new hopes for his future. He loved the boy as he could have loved a son, as he must love the son of Evelyn Westervelt, and it had taken much to destroy John Kenyon’s belief in Phil’s ultimate success. But this last failure had broken that faith. Through the efforts of the suit for which Phil Gallatin had prepared it, but it was an empty victory to John Kenyon, who had seen during the preparation of the case Phil Gallatin’s chance, his palingenesis—the restitution of all his rights, physical and moral .
“Yes, and I’d be frightfully jealous if I had been somebody else.” She laughed. “Oh, Phil! What a conversation! I hope no one is listening.”
“I’m sure they’re not. They couldn’t understand anyway.”
“Not unless they’re quite mad—as we are. What are you doing? Working?”
“Yes, drawing a deed for an acre in Paradise.”
“Don’t be foolish. Who for?”
“Me. And there’s a deed of trust.”
“I’ll sign that.”
“We’ll both sign it. It’s well secured, Jane. Don’t you believe me?”
“Yes, I do,” slowly.
There was a pause and then he asked, “When can I see you?”
“I’ve a luncheon.”
“Tea at the——Oh, Phil, I’ll have to cut that. There’s a dance to-night, too, the Ledyards’.”
“This is getting serious.”
“What can I do? I’ve been frightfully rude already. Can’t you go?”
“Not sufficiently urged.”
“Then I shan’t either. I don’t want to go. I want—the acre of Paradise.”
“Where will I meet you, Jane?”
“I’ll be there.”
“Until then, good-by, and, Phil——”
“Please wear that flannel shirt, disreputable hat and——”
“And the beard?”
“No—not the beard. But I want to be convinced there’s no mistake.”
“I’d rather convince you without them.”
“Oh, I’ve no doubt you will,” she sighed. “There’s so much I’ve got to say to you, Phil. I won’t know where to begin——”
“Just where you stopped.”
“But I—I wasn’t saying anything—just then. I couldn’t. There—there were reasons.”
He laughed gayly.
“I’ve still other reasons.”
“Phil, I won’t listen. Good-by!”
“Hadn’t we better go for a walk?” she asked.
“Oh, very well,” with a tone of resignation. “There—you see, I’m submitting again. At four, then. Good-by.” She cut off and he hung up the receiver, sitting for a long while motionless, looking out of the window. He took out his watch and was examining it impatiently when the chief clerk came in International School Interview questions.
“Mr. Kenyon will see you now, Mr. Gallatin,” he said.
John Kenyon paused in the reading of his mail and looked up over the half-moons in his glasses when Gallatin appeared at the door.