A Mountain Woman by Elia Wilkinson Peattie

By Elia Wilkinson Peattie

Elia Wilkinson Peattie was once a prolific fiction author who distinctive her reports as a lady within the West in dozens of essays, brief tales, and novels. In "A Mountain Woman," Peattie supplies us the exciting story of a cosmopolitan manhattan urban architect who marries a country yet eminently sensible lady from the mountains of Colorado and brings her again to the East to mingle with excessive society. [C:\Users\Microsoft\Documents\Calibre Library]

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He had gone from beer to whiskey, and from whiskey to brandy, by this time, at the suggestion of the men, and was making awkward lunges with a billiard cue, spurred on by the mock- ing applause of the others. One young fellow was particularly hilarious at his expense. His jokes became insults, or so they seemed to David. A quarrel followed, half a jest on the part of the other, all serious as far as David was concerned. And then -Well, who could tell how it happened? The billiard cue was in David's hand, and the skull of the jester was split, a horrible gaping thing, revolt- ingly animal.

Catherine, who had no one to speak with excepting the children, continually devised amusements for them. They got to living in a world of fantasy, and were never themselves, but always wild Indians, or arctic explorers, or Robinson Crusoes. Kitty and Roderick, young as they were, found a never-ending source of amusement in these little grotesque dreams and dramas. The fund of money was get- ting so low that Catherine was obliged to economize even in the necessities. If it had not been for her two cows, she would hardly have known how to find food for her little ones.

Twenty years in the penitentiary! David looked up at the judge and smiled. Men have been known to smile that way when the car-wheel crashes over their legs, or a bullet lets the air through their lungs. All that followed would have seemed more terrible if it had not appeared to be so remote. David had to assure himself over and over that it was really he who was put in that disgraceful dress, and locked in that shameful walk from corridor to work- room, from work-room to chapel. The work was not much more monotonous than that to which he had been accustomed in the office.

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