Lawyers Can't Advertise
They can possess alluring secretaries, how ever-and sometimes that's no small asset
HARRY M. KLINGSBERG
YOUNG Norman Smith, LL.B, lifted spectacled eyes from a volume of COT/JUS furls and looked hopefully at the mail in the hands of his secretary. "From Cannon?" "From the landlord" She dropped the envelope, like something offensive, on the glass surface. `Ancl I he telephone company
“Hand in hand, as usual.” The young lawyer smiled a little lamely. “The er first of the month happens rather often, doesn’t it?”
Ann King’s pretty eyes took no notice of the smile. It was a nice enough smile, she would have conceded, lighting up the rather studious face, but two months of smiling at his clientless condition was enough. Now that the third month was here and he still did nothing, she was plain mad so mad that she meant to say something even if it cost her her job. That couldn't last much longer anyway, and she was tired of taking his money for reading magazines.
"The first of the month is all that ever happens around here !"
He squirmed. "They do say the road to success is a long one
“They also say it's a road !" she retorted. “Not a swivel chair.”
Norman reddened. “I’ve done all I could—”
“You’ve sent announcements! And waited, like—like Emerson with his mouse traps.”
“Emerson did not manufacture mouse traps, Miss King.”
“Well, whoever it was. Do you expect clients to come at you from the walls?”
Norman Smith rallied somewhat under the accusing eves. “There’s nothing else I can do. Lawyers can’t advertise, you know; neither can they solicit business. The tradition may be old-fashioned and unreasonable, but there it is. It's like”—-he attempted a comparison—“like a girl. She must sit and wait for her man.”
“Is that so !” Her answer was pure scorn. “A girl would get very far, doing that ! What about Cannon? Are you just going to sit and wait for him?”
“Henry Cannon,” said Norman, “has his own troubles these days.” Her blank look gave him an opening for counter-attack. “Don’t you read the papers? The news leaked out that he was assembling a site for an office building and now someone’s holding him up for a property. Somebody named Finney. Cannon started building anyway and now he can’t go ahead. You must remember he’s ' a big man, Miss King, in due course he’ll notice me.”
“In due course the constable will notice you,” she returned. “Why don’t you go and see him? if you can’t ask him for business, you can at least hand him your card.” “The fact is" —Norman was slightly embarrassed—“I don’t know Mr. Cannon.”
“You don’t know him!” She was amazed. “But you sent him three announcements—”
“My father knew him,” he explained hastily. “Before he moved from the city. 1 thought, he’d remember me, but-well, I guess he doesn’t.”
“What of it?” she insisted. “You can still go and see him, can’t you?”
NORMAN SMITH took, off his glasses, a characteristic gesture of concentration. His mind just now was less on his troubles than on his secretary. In the two months she had been with him he had learned a few things about her—that she was twenty-one, that she supported herself, that she had tact and intelligence. Now it occurred to him that she also had a temper—and very flashing brown eye-.
This might have startled Ann, for she had never met anyone more completely and irritatingly impersonal than her serious-minded, broad-shouldered young employer. The seriousness she explained by the fact that his father was dead and he had been compelled to earn part of his way through college and law school, but the shoulders had puzzled her until she happened to learn that he had been middleweight wrestling champion in college. And during those same two months she had come to certain judgments about him—that he was likable and good company, with a broad streak of humor; and that once he got started he would really be, despite evidence to the contrary, persistent and energetic.
“Of course, it’s none of my business, but if I wanted someone to notice me I’d do something, tradition or no tradition.”
The taunt brought him back to his problem. Suddenly
he wondered how he’d ever had the nerve to come back to this city and open a law office with nothing more than a few hundred dollars— money long kept for the purpose and faith in his father’s old friends. Not that they all forgot—a few had sent him some minor cases but the really important man, the man who, in the past few years, had shot up to become the province’s biggest real estate operator, completely ignored his announcements. Actually, I lenry Cannon had entered into Norman’s calculations more than he wo u1d have a d m i t ted, Henry Cannon would send him business, would recommend him . . . Norman realized now that his situation was desperate; unless something happened very soon he’d have to hunt a job with some other lawyer. The prospect of working again for others made him a little sick. His deep-lying worry burst forth in an irritated question:
“All right. Miss King, suppose you tell us. If you wanted someone to notice you, what would you do?” She looked at him oddly, wondering if lie could guess that she had been thinking of that very thing herself.
“Well, first I’d meet him and show him my charming personality. That’s—well, like handing him your card. If that failed I’d do something. I mean, something dignified. For instance, I might give a party, or get stunning new clothes, or ”
—she grinned......“get myself
el ected M iss Canada. ”
“I see. And the third and last alternative?”
She was thoughtful. “The third and last alternative— no, 1 won’t tell you that. Anyway, you haven’t tried the first one yet.”
He smiled. “Trade secret?”
She now returned his smile. “Something like it.” She was a little astounded to see him replace his glasses and stride across the room for his hat. He stood before her.
“Miss King. I’m going out.”
“Where? I mean, in case someone calls you.”
“I’m going over to hand Mr. Cannon my card. If that fails . . . ”
“1 don’t know.” He grinned now. “Maybe I’ll give a party.”
The blonde guardian of the switchboard looked as if she had dug herself in against any possible invasion. Norman gave her his card.
She looked at it. “You have an appointment with Mr. Cannon?”
“No,” he admitted. “I haven’t.”
Miss Switchboard seemed to tighten her lines. “Have a seat, please.”
Norman retreated to a chair. He had a feeling he would not see Mr. Cannon so soon; meanwhile he would inspect the offices of the famous real estate financier.
There was a lot to inspect. The offices of Cannon, Incorporated, covered a full half-acre of vice-presidents, department heads and miscellaneous employees. Far at the other end of this vast complication, Norman supposed, was the office of the president. He was wrong about that—
it was on a balcony above—but not in guessing that this army existed to barricade Mr. Cannon from the public. Still. Norman thought that in an hour or two Mr. Cannon would see him; maybe even ask him to lunch. But he had hardly sat down when lie was faced by a little lieutenant with a mustache.
“You are Mr. Smith?” He held Norman’s card.
The lieutenant’s eyes raked him as though for explosives. “Come with me.’’
Obediently. Norman followed him through a gate to a small office marked “Mr. Greenburn, Liaison Secretary.’’ but before he could ponder on the meaning of that he was answering another question.
“Yes, I want to see him personally.”
“Personally? No one else will do?”
“Er—I don't think so,” said Norman.
“I see.” Mr. Greenburn tapped Norman’s card. "What is your business?”
Norman was slightly rattled. 'Tm a lawyer—a member of the bar.”
“I don’t mean your profession,” Greenburn said impatiently. “I see that from your card. What is your business with Mr. Cannon?”
“Well,” Norman floundered—he could hardly say he came to hand the president of the company his card—“I’d have to tell him that privately.”
"Does Mr. Cannon know you?”
“He I don’t think so.”
“I see.” There was no question that Mr. Greenburn, by now, considered Norman a nuisance and an interloper. “Mr. Smith, it is a rule of our company that all strangers wishing to see Mr. Cannon must write a letter stating tiroir business”
“But my father was an old friend of his."
The little secretary let it be seen that this was a gag he'd heard before. He returned Norman’s card. “That is our rule. Good morning."
Norman Smith picked himself up hastily and left. He had a conviction that ot herwise Mr. Greenburn would send for the police.
npiIE TROUBLE with you,” said Ann King witheringiy, “is that you let that peanut bully you, Eli bet I’d have got through that office.”
“So will I,” declared Norman. “They won’t stop me again.”
“Won’t they? 1 know those big offices. You couldn't get in to see Cannon now if you were shot out of a gun.”
“1 guess you’re right,” said Norman ruefully. “And 1 can’t write a letter stating my business ... 1 guess I’ll have to send him another announcement.”
Ann’s reply was heavy with sarcasm. “Why not send it on pink paper, perfumed with roses? Then he might answer it . . . Listen, Mr. Smith, you’re not quitting—” “Quitting? I’m thinking. I'll see that man if I have to use a gun !”
“That’s the spirit,” applauded Miss King. “The question is, how?”
“Let me see.” Norman stroked his chin. “How is this— I’ll go as somebody famous. I’ll tell the girl I'm a Hollywood star.”
She stopped him. “Don’t be silly. You look more like a librarian. Why don’t you find somebody who can introduce you to him?”
“Excellent.” said Norman. “Do you know somebody like that? I don’t.”
“Then that’s out ... I know, pretend you’re a messenger with a package you must deliver only to Mr. Cannon— no, that’s too undignified.”
Norman put down his glasses. “The trouble is, Miss King, we’re going at this the wrong way. Instead of fishing for inspiration we should be applying logic.”
“Logic?” She was sceptical. "All right, apply logic. Apply it out loud.”
“Look at it this way,” said Norman. “You can’t get an appointment with Cannon without a letter. Now, what kind of a letter would stand the best chance? Answer, a letter about the thing that’s on his mind most these days— his new building.”
“I don’t know. Some vice-president would get the letter— ”
“Of course,” said Norman. “I know that. But suppose —understand, I don’t say I’ll do this; I’m just applying logic—suppose the letter offered to take the building off their hands? With all the trouble this Finney is giving them they’d want to know my proposition, wouldn’t they? The vice-president would send for me, and all I’d have to do is convince him and he’ll let me see Cannon.”
“You wouldn’t convince him. He’d see right away you were faking.”
“I’m coming to that. The thing to do would be to get full information on the building. Show him I made a study of it. Then he’d see I meant business.”
“I still think an inspiration would be better,” said Ann, “but if you think it’s such a good idea, why don’t you do it?”
“There are difficulties,” said Norman. “He’d want me to make an offer—”
“Why should you make an offer? When 1 go to buy shoes I don’t make an offer. They tell me what price they want.”
“Buying shoes in a department store,” he pointed out, “is a little different from buying the foundations for an office building. Though, of course, that would be the line to take. And I’d have to have a client—well, I guess the scheme is out. I’m not going there and invent a client when I haven’t any.”
“But you don’t have to invent a client. I’ll be your client.”
He smiled. “You’ll buy their building?”
“Sure, I’ll buy their building. I’ll give them a hundred dollars for it, and it's a real offer, too, because I saved the money in the bank for a coat.”
Continued on page 69
Continued from page 13
Norman hesitated. But her challenging eyes, and the vital necessity of learning once and for all whether Cannon would help him, decided him. “I'll do it! The only thingI wonder if it’s really ethical, wasting their time like that
“Ethical !” Her contempt for his scruples was colossal. “Look at. all your time they are wasting.”
MY NAME is Norman Smith. I wish to see Mr. Minnick. I have an appointment.”
He stood ready to prove it with a letter received that morning, but the blonde fingered some plugs, put through a call, and five minutes later Norman stood in the office of the 3rd vice-president.
“Ah, right on time, Mr. Smith.”
“Yes, sir.” Norman laid his briefcase on the vice-presidential desk. “Er— wouldn’t it be possible for me to see Mr. Cannon at once?”
“Now, now,” chided the official. “You young men are so impatient. If your proposition is important you can be sure you will see him ... I understand your client wants to take over the new Cannon Building?”
Norman sat down. “I wouldn’t exactly say that. But she is interested.”
“Your client is a woman?” Mr. Minnick let it be seen that he knew better.
“A woman with money in the bank,” Norman assured him. “But very careful. She is not completely convinced of the value of the investment.”
It was a line adopted to create response, but that was not the effect. “That is up to her. We have not offered the building for sale. Has she a figure in mind?”
“Oh, yes. She knows exactly how high she wants to go.”
“In that case,” said the vice-president, “if you will submit a written offer, accompanied by a deposit—”
“That’s just it,” said Norman quickly. “I told her that was the usual procedure, but she insists that the seller must be the first to mention a figure. She says that’s the way she would buy a pair of shoes. Not that,” Norman added hastily, “I
mean to compare the Cannon Building to a pair of shoes, but—you know how
women are.....I suppose she’s afraid of
offering more money than you might be willing to take.”
“I see.” Mr. Minnick did not seem altogether satisfied. . "You wish Mr. Cannon to give you a figure? How do I know all this is bona fide?”
“I anticipated your saying that. As a matter of fact, I’m not so anxious for a figure as for a little talk with him. You see, the matter came up in this way: I was
speaking of your difficulties with the building” he saw that was having an effect—“and my client said she would make an offer for it.” Norman opened his briefcase and took out an array of data which had taken him three full days to gather. “I then made a study of the building. You can see I put quite some work on it.”
Mr. Minnick was impressed. “That must have taken a lot of your spare time.” “All my spare time. But, you see, it’s probably all the money my client has in the world . , . Am I correct in saying that the site carries a total assessment of one hundred thousand dollars?”
“Of course,” said Minnick, “the market value is more than that.”
“Of course. But I wanted to get an idea of the taxes . . . Well, I don’t want to take up more time than necessary—you’ll ask Mr. Cannon to see me?”
“I certainly will,” said Mr. Minnick. “You know, at first I had an idea that
you were.....well, insincere, but all that
work you did convinces me otherwise.” ‘Tm glad of that,” smiled Norman. “When do you think Mr. Cannon will see me?”
“You can expect a letter tomorrow . . . Between you and me, I think he ought to sell the building and I’m going to tell him to give you a good proposition . . . Glad you stopped in, Mr. Smith.”
Fifteen minutes later Norman was reporting elatedly to his secretary. “Tomorrow I see Cannon! Oh, you don’t think so?”
“No, I don’t. I just feel it in my bones.” “That’s because it wasn’t your idea,” said Norman. “Now, let me see—how will I act? 1 think I’ll just say, 'Cannon, Cannon-—that sounds familiar. Did you know my father. Tom Smith?’ And he’ll say, ‘Are you Tom Smith’s boy! Think of that ! And a lawyer?’ Then he’ll call in a secretary—I hope it’s Greenburn—and say, ‘Put Mr. Smith on an annual retainer of five thousand dollars.’ ”
“And then he’ll say. ‘What’s this about buying a building?’ ”
“I didn’t commit myself to a thing. If he names a figure I ’ll tell him 1 have to go
back to my client........that’s you.”
“Well,” she said, “I’m still willing to give him a hundred dollars for it, though with winter coming on I’d much rather have the coat.”
In the morning Miss King brought in the mail. Norman grinned—there was the envelope from Cannon, Incorporated.
"Open it,” said Norman. “I want you to be the first to know.”
She opened it; she read it.
Dear Mr. Smith:
Mr. Cannon wishes me to state that notwithstanding present difficulties he will under no circumstances put the Cannon Building on the market. We have other buildings, however, which would make excellent investments for your client, and if you will call I shall be glad to put the details before you.
Yours very truly,
For Cannon, Incorporated.
She slammed down the letter. “There’s your logic and your interview with Cannon ! 1 had a feeling your idea wasn’t any good. It was too elaborate.”
“Darn it,” mourned Norman, “all I wanted was to get in the same room with the man . . . What’s the third and last alternative, Miss King?”
“The third and last alternative—no. I couldn’t trust: you with it. You haven’t got past the first one yet . . . Mr. Smith, I’m going out.”
“Where—to buy one of his other buildings?”
Ann King’s reply was positive and profane. “I wouldn’t have one of his buildings if he brought it to me on a plate !”
ANN KING pirouetted; she walked the •Yx. length of the office. “You really like it?”
Norman looked again at his secretary. He had almost not recognized her when she came in. The long, black coat hugged her slim figure; the same colored scarf tucked under her chin like a jewel. And the extra color on check and lips.
“It’s very effective,” he said.
“And the hat—isn’t it cute?”
“Very,” said Norman.
“I also bought shoes,” Ann told him. “Since I’m not buying any buildings—” “It seems to me,” reproved Norman, “that this is hardly the time to spend money recklessly.”
“You mean, because I might lose my job any day? Listen, Mr. Smith, that’s what this money was saved for and that’s where it’s going. The Lord will provide. Anyway, I’m not losing my job. I saw Mr. Cannon—”
Norman gasped. “You saw Mr. Cannon?”
“Of course. I told you I’d get through that office. Why do you think I hurried with these clothes? Mr. Cannon liked the coat. He looked at it. Excuse me, Mr. Smith. I’m always a little giddy when I get new clothes. I think I’ll sit down . . . Anyway, he’ll be here tomorrow. At eleven o’clock.”
“He’ll be here tomorrow—say, what did you teli Cannon?”
“Well—” she hesitated, as if doubtful of the effect. “I said, ‘Mr. Cannon, I work for a man who’s been trying to see you and your office won’t let him.’ He laughed. He said, ‘That’s too bad. What’s he want to see me about?’ Well, I couldn’t say you wanted his legal business, because you claim that’s unethical—”
“So I told him you represented Finney.”
“Finney?” Norman was puzzled. “You mean that chap who won’t sell him his property?”
“Yes, that one. You see, I had to tel! him something.”
“So you tell him I represent a man I don’t even know; a man he’d probably like to shoot on sight. Listen, young woman, you can’t fool me. You went there purposely—”
She turned on him. “You show a fine gratitude! You couldn’t even get anywhere near him. and 1 get him to come and see you—”
“But, Miss King! Do you realize what you’ve done? What will I tell him?” “That’s up to you,” said Ann. “You ’ said all you wanted was to get in the same room with him . . . Don’t you want to hear the rest?”
“I suppose so.” he said grimly. “Go on.” “I thought I’d better tell you. Well, he nearly hit the ceiling. He said, ‘So the robber finally got a lawyer! You tell the shyster to see me. No, I don’t want him here! I’ll see him!’ Then I got mad. I
said he had no right to call you that.......”
“Thanks,” said Norman drily.
“And I told him you’d be in your office tomorrow eleven o’clock, and went out before he could bite my head off.”
“That’s a pity,” growled Norman. “Miss King, what you did was terrible—” But Miss King was interested in going home. “It’s five o’clock. Instead of shouting at me, you should think over what you’ll say to Mr. Cannon tomorrow.” “I won’t wait until tomorrow! I’ll go over there now and tell him you had no right to speak for me—”
“Is that so?” She smiled at him tauntingly before completing her exit. “What makes you think you could get in to see him?”
rT'HE CANNON BUILDING was a splendid hole in the ground, full of steam shovels and building material; and at one edge of the crater, trying not to topple in, stood the two-story brick property which had put a stop to all operations.
Three weeks ago Cannon, despite his imperfect site, began to demolish. He excavated—and the price went up. The rumor was that Finney wanted $50,000.
That is, Norman supposed it was Finney. He didn’t care. His only interest was to find the man and ask him to make a written statement that he was not Finney’s lawyer. After his wrath against Ann had cooled, he had decided that this was the only effective way of proving to Cannon that he did not represent his enemy.
But when he stood before the property he was surprised. A month ago this had been a cigar store; he remembered that himself. Now it was a tap room.
He opened the door and walked in. The place was dingy and dark, with no pretense at doing business. Some men were playing cards. One of them came up.
“I’d like to speak to Mr. Finney,” said Norman.
“Finney? He ain’t here.”
“Can you tell me where to see him?” The man called back: “Hey, Ike, here’s a guy says he wants to see Finney.”
A squat, swarthy man pushed back his chair. “Who are you?”
“My name is Smith,” said Norman.
“Oh, Smith. It ain’t Jones? You can talk to me. This is my place.”
“I wanted to talk to Mr. Finney personally.”
“Oh, poisonally. Well, you can’t see him. He’s outa town.”
“Thank you.” Further questions were plainly a waste of time. Norman walked out. The man followed and stood on the pavement, staring after him.
Norman walked thoughtfully. One thing was certain; this Ike didn't want him—or anybodyto see Finney. Why not? And how could he find out where Finney lived?
No use searching in directories; he didn’t have Finney’s first name. Merchants across the street might know, but with Ike
watching he preferred not to ask. He recalled the article in the Journal. He hurried over and found the item in a back issue. From it he learned that Michael Finney was an Irish widower who lived at 519 Cinder Avenue. And a newly significant sentence: “Efforts to reach Mr.
Finney were unsuccessful.”
Norman took a trolley car to the address. It was a row dwelling in a shaded residential street. The house was dark. He could see furniture, but there was about it all, steps and windows, an air of inoccupancy. The man hadn’t moved, but he hadn’t been home for a while.
“Darn that girl!” muttered Norman. But lie grinned. This was interesting.
“Lookin’ for Finney?”
Norman turned. One thing was certain about this green-hatted, tricky-suited little fellow who seemed to have come out of a shadow—he was not of this neighborhood.
“Yes. Can you tell me where to find him?”
The other’s seeming friendliness was belied by cold, fiat eyes and a hand deep in his pocket. “Sure. I’ll take you there. That’s my car down the street.”
“I wouldn’t want to trouble you—”
The expression under the green liât hardened. “No trouble at all, mister. No charge, neither. I’m goin’ that way myself.”
Norman took off his glasses and pocketed them. “Thanks. I’d appreciate it.”
They walked down the street. From the car, as they neared it, came a low purr; the engine was on. It completed Norman’s suspicion. He got in; Green Hat came around to take the wheel. As he entered, Norman seized his arm and twisted it expertly.
“Hey, what’s the idea—ouch! Leggo my arm !”
“We can talk much better if you’ll tel! me your name,” said Norman. “No? Then I’ll call you Gus . . . Listen, Gus, I can break your arm if I want to; I know how. But if you’ll just tell me where Finney is —now, now, you’ll never reach your gun that way. Listen, Gus, here’s our little programme. Either you tell me where Finney is or I’ll knock you out with a blow to the chin. When you come to, if you’re still stubborn, I’ll hit you again, and so on and so forth until you tell me. Catch on?”
“Leggo!” With a frenzied tug, Gus freed his arm and reached in his pocket.
“You asked for it,” Norman muttered. The blow landed near the point of the jaw; Gus’s head tipped backward, then sagged. Norman removed the man’s weapon; he got out, came around, and made room for himself behind the steering wheel.
IN LESS than a minute Gus shook his head and came to. Norman smiled at him.
“Gus, you have a very tender chin and I have your little gun in my pocket.” His voice was almost pleading. “Why don’t you tell me where Finney is, and then we can cut out this comic opera stuff?”
Gus rubbed his chin and glared. “I don’t know. He’s outa town.”
“Out of town? Where were you going to take me? You’d better tel! me.”
“Where? Ike Toner’s place. Listen, how about givin’ me back my gun?” “Sorry, Gus; not unless you show me a license to carry it . . . Besides, you haven’t told me yet where Finney is.”
“I told you. He’s outa town.”
“Gus,” said Norman plaintively, “will I have to hit you again?”
But the man really knew no more; that was plain from his fright. Norman felt bitterly disappointed. He questioned him, learning from reluctant answers that he was sent to pick him up if he tried to see Finney. Then Gus dropped a significant remark.
“It's no use you bein’ so anxious. Scarpo wouldn’t let you see him anyway.” “Scarpo—is Finney with him?”
The little chauffeur did not answer.
“We’ll take it that he is,’’ said Norman. “Where does this Scarpo live?”
‘‘1 don’t know. Listen” with quick terror “I’m not lyin’ to you - ”
“Take it easy,” said Norman. “I wasn’t going to hit you. That gleam in my eye was inspiration . . . Gus, I’m going to borrow the car. We’re going to Little Venice.”
Norman had suddenly remembered the little Italian settlement a mile out of the ity. “Out of town” it seemed an ideal place to put an Irishman out of circulation.
He put the car in gear. “You and 1 will play detective, Gus; object, find Scarpo. It. will keen you from being bored. I’ve never been a detective, and 1 don’t suppose you have we can start even and see who’s cleverer.”
Gus sank into the upholstery, and Norman, almost forgetting his first reason for wanting to find Finney, tried to make some meaning out of the puzzle. Of course, Ike Toner was back of the disappearance, and his reason for sending Gus to pick him up was to find out his business with Finney. 'Hie whole thing went back to the effort to hold up the Cannon Company for Finney’s property, but beyond that it was useless to conjecture. The important thing was to get the missing man where lie could talk to him.
“Gus,” Norman said later, “I’m losing my patience with you; you’re not holding up your end at all. Here I’ve been driving around this sleepy little village for nearly half an hour, and time is getting to be ol the essence and I’d rather not stop and ask, and all you keep telling me is that you don’t know Scarpo, or where he lives, or what his business is—the fact is, 1 think you’ve turned stubborn again. Come on, tell me something you know. How can I get anywhere without a due?”
“I did tell you all I know. Ike bought a rock off of him.”
“So you did, but a rock—wait; do you mean a diamond?”
“Sure, a diamond. What else would I mean?”
“Even that doesn’t get us very far— how long ago was this?”
“A couple o’ months ago—the time Ike’s father died.”
“That hardly seems an occasion for buying jewellery—wait a minute. Do you mean a stone?”
“Sure, a stone. That’s what 1 heard him say, he bought a stone off of Scarpo.”
“Gus, it’s a due! He said a stone, and you thought a diamond, but I think a monument. Therefore, we hunt for a monument maker, and that should be a cinch !”
And ten minutes later he came to a stop before a front-yard collection of marbles and a sign: A. Scarpolini, Monuments and Headstones.
“Gus,” said Norman, “this is it. Now, get this: You will tell Scarpolini that
Ike sent for Finney. He’ll recognize you or the car. If he refuses. I’ll decide by the looks of him whether to take Finney by force or report to the police. Got that? You lead and 1 follow; and remember, your little gun is right here in my pocket.”
But there was no trouble whatever with Scarpolini.
“Grazio i Dio!” exclaimed the little Italian. “Take heem ! I am seek of heem ! Mr. Feeney, please, he has sent for you at last !”
A thin, grinning old Celt came to the door. ‘T hurrd you say that, Tony, and I’m far from blamin’ ye, because I’m equally sick of you, though ye’re not such a bad feller, for an Eyetalian ... So Ike sent for me, did he? I’m ready no baggage.”
“This way,” said Norman. “Gus. I hate to do this, but I’ll have to leave you here. Here’s a dollar; it’s al! I can spare but it’ll get you back to town. Don’t worry about the car; I’ll park it near City Hall and you’ll easily find it. Your little gun I’ll turn over to the police. I know this will embarrass you with Ike, but let it be a lesson to you in the choice of employers . . . Gus, it’s been a pleasure.”
“Ain’t the other cornin’ with us?” Finney inhaled deeply. “Boy, I’m tellin’ ye it’s a pleasure to breathe the pure air again. The smells in that house—listen, young feller, you can’t kid me. You’re not from Ike Toner even if it is his car.”
Norman grinned. “Right, pop. I’m a purely intermeddling party, and right now I want to know what you’re doing away from home.”
Finney scratched his head ruefully.
“Now that’s somethin’ I’d like to know for mcself. A month ago it was the night after I leased him the tap room Ike Toner comes by the house and says how’d 1 like to play some peenochle with him at a friend’s house. Me, bein’ a shark at the game, if l do say it as shouldn’t, agrees to it. He takes me to this Eyetalian’s house, and at ten-thirty and I’d won four dollars from him, which he never even paid me he walks out and says he’ll be. right back, and that’s the last Î ever seen of him. Eleven o’clock comes and I says 1 better be goin’, when what does this Scarpo do but get in front of memind ye, this is all very friendly; 1 could see he was forced into it. and says I can’t go till Ike sends for me. Well, me not bein’ as dumb as I look, and my fightin’ days bein’ over, I goes back and sits down again.” He sighed heavily. “Tm tellin’ ye, I got nawthin’ against him except for the smells and the food. Why, tonight I told him it my salvation was in it I’d touch no more of his spaghetti, and I didn’t eat any of it, either.”
Norman was laughing heartily. “Pop, you and I have a lot to say to each other, but first I’ll put you before the biggest dish of ham and cabbage money can buy.” “Young feller,” said Finney, “I don’t doubt you’ve some foul and durty purpose with me, but right now I’d follow ye straight to the penitentiary.”
ANN KING transferred a harried glance from the empty inner office to the watch on her wrist. It was probably for the fiftieth time in ten minutes. She thought, “If I don’t hear from him pretty soon I’ll go crazy.”
Last night, notwithstanding Norman’s ire, she had felt complacent satisfaction, but this morning her triumph was tinged with a good deal of doubt. And as the appointed time came with her employer still unheard from, she was dose to hysterics.
Promptly at one minute after eleven the door opened to a figure short and Napoleonic; with Henry Cannon was another man, a lawyer.
He recognized her. “Good morning. Where’s Mr. Smith?”
Instantly efficiency cloaked Ann King. “Will you be seated? I expect him any minute.”
“What, he’s not here? Didn’t you tell him I’d be here.......”
“Of course. He was unavoidably detained . . . Just a minute. This may be Mr. Smith.” She picked up the ringing telephone. “Oh, it’s you . . . Yes, he’s here waiting.”
“Tell him,” said Norman, “that I waited for him. Tell him I’ll be there in five minutes with Finney.”
Ann gasped slightly. “With who?” “With Finney,” said Norman. “F-idouble n-e-y. Finney.” He hung up.
“Mr. Smith.” reported Ann, “is on his way here with Mr. Finney. May 1 take you into his office?” With secretarial foresight she brought in two extra chairs.
“Now Jennings,” growled Cannon, “I want this thing settled today. Understand, I want it settled today.”
“Yes, Mr. Cannon.”
“I don’t see why in the devil you could not find this Finney; you might think he was in China. This thing is costing thousands every day ... Are you Smith?” he said to a newcomer.
Norman took his chair. “I’m Smith. You’re Mr. Cannon? This is Mr. Finney.” “I’m Mr. Jennings, a member of the bar,” said Cannon’s companion.
“Let’s get down to business,” rumbled Cannon. “Listen, Finney, where’ve you deen? Who’s this Toner that’s been trying to hold me up? Who owns this property, anyway—you or he?”
Finney shrugged genially. “I don't know nawthin’ about it. That’s me lawyer over there.”
“The situation is this.” said Norman. “A month ago Ike Toner, who knew you were assembling this site—-Finney didn’t -procured a lease from Finney containing an agreement to buy for five thousand hollars. The agreement was a fraud; Finney did not know it was there. Toner then secreted Finney to avoid interference, intending meanwhile, with his agreement, to make a deal with you. Last night I found Finney and this morning we called on Toner and got all the papers back. We had to threaten an arrest for kidnapping, but I think you will find that my client is the unqualified owner of the property.” Jennings was looking over the papers. “That is right.”
Henry Cannon showed his amazement. “Kidnapped him, did he? I thought there was something funny about this Toner, though I might have made a deal with him if he hadn’t been so unreasonable . . . Well, are you ready to sell?”
“That’s up to my client,” said Norman. “He may want to continue the tap room—” Finney’s eyes twinkled. “1 might open a fish store.”
“A fish store! Another hold-up! He’s as bad as Toner ! All right—how much?” Norman smiled. “We have not offered the property for sale. Have you a figure in mind?”
“All right,” growled Cannon. “Fifteen thousand dollars—that’s three times what it’s worth. Well I suppose that figure don’t suit you?”
“On the contrary, it seems very fair ... I will ask my client.”
“You’re my lawyer,” said Finney. “I’m leavin’ it entirely up to you.”
“Then we accept, provided the money goes to my client net and you pay my fee,” said the young lawyer.
Cannon was plainly delighted by the acceptance of his offer. Lie had evidently expected to pay a good deal more. “Sure. How much?”
“Have you a figure in mind?” asked Norman.
Cannon grinned broadly. “One thousand dollars and not a penny less, young man. 1 like the way you handled this thing . . . Satisfactory?”
“Perfectly,” murmured Norman. “Miss King, will you bring in your book?”
While she was typing an agreement, Henry Cannon looked closely at Norman. “What was your father’s name, young man?”
“Tom Smith’s boy ! I thought there was something familiar about you. the way you talked and acted. Why. I thought the world of Tom Smith. You know. I happened to think of your father the other day. There was a lawyer named Smith
wrote in about buying this building......say,
that wasn’t you, was it?”
“Er—yes,” said Norman. “Of course. 1 wasn’t Mr. Finney’s lawyer at the time. I didn’t learn that I represented him until yesterday.”
“You understand why I couldn't think of selling,” said Cannon. “Why, people would say I got yellow. Minnick said you’d made a considerable study of the building. You know what I’m going to do? I’m going to appoint you counsel for the building corporation. Jennings here won’t mind; he’s been wanting someone to take some of my work off his shoulders ... Is your client still interested in buying an office building?”
“My client has--ah—decided to invest in a department store.”
“Department store stock? I hear the retail business is picking up.” Cannon was still looking at Norman. “Tom Smith’s boy ! How long have you been practising?” “Two months.”
“Two months! Why the devil,” demanded Henry Cannon, “didn’t you send me an announcement?”
A /TISS KING,” said Norman sternly, 1V1 “the fact that things ended as they did is no excuse at all. I still say you had no right to do what you did.”
“And I still say it was a wonderful inspiration.”
“I’m not going to argue with you. Please get your hat and coat.”
Ann King looked slightly frightened. “Are you firing me?”
“No,” said Norman Smith. “I’m taking you out to lunch.”
During the coffee, he took off his glasses especially to look at her pretty, poised head and her slim lovely fingers. He said :
“Miss King, you never did tell me-.....
what is this third and last alternative when you want someone to notice you?”
Ann King put down her cup. Her eyes sparkled.
“The third and last alternative,” she told Norman, “is to make him good and mad !”
In the World of Science
New Motive Power
LIQUID AIR serves as fuel for one of the i strangest motors ever built, which now is operating in a Japanese laboratory. Should it fulfill the hopes of its inventor, it may bring about a revolution in motive power for vehicles of the land, sea and air. In contrast with the fiery temperatures of a conventional internal-combustion engine, which it somewhat resembles, the new motor operates at temperatures from 250 to 350 degrees below zero. Its small fuel tank holds ordinary air that has been chilled until it is transformed from a gas into a liquid like water. The difference in temperature between this extraordinary fuel and the surrounding atmosphere provides the energy to run the motor. From the fuel tank, the liquid air passes to a chamber where it is allowed to absort heat from the exterior air. In doing so. it turns to vapor, much as water turns to steam when heated in a boiler. The pressure of the expanding air drives pistons in a pair of cylinders. Through an elaborate system of auxiliary apparatus, virtually all the energy contained in the liquid air is re-
ported to be recovered. Because of its efficiency and small bulk of fuel required the inventor foresees eventual application of his motor in automobiles, trains, ships, and especially in airplanes. The small hulk of fuel required would also be an important advantage in aircraft.—Popular Science.
How to Read Gas Meter
II' IS easy to read the gas meter in your home and check on your gas bill. The ordinary gas meter has four dials whose hands begin moving slowly as soon as you turn on the gas. The needle of the dial marked “Two Feet” revolves perceptibly and is used only for test purposes. The other three dials, which move more slowly and register gas consumption, show the number of cubic feet used in ten thousands, thousands and hundreds. If the hand is between two figures, always take the lower number. Thus, if the hand at the left registers 70.000, the middle one 6,000, the right, 400, the total is 76,400 cubic feet. Subtract your previous reading from this to determine the amount of gas used in the period.—Popula r Mechan ics.