Jb to Bbe wearied for him all the winter, watched and waited, too. Hut If he ever chanced to no by. the happy chance of acrliig 111 in waa not hers. During the pn'Vioua npilliK and mm-mcr, mm-mcr, and even late Into i lie aiiluinn. It had been dlfteronl once or twice In ovory blennvd week ht had come to gladden the ilaya. ti aet them In Jeweled Jew-eled frame In hor memory' gnllery. Or If ho had not, etrlclly ipenklng, come to hor, ho had yet aeen hlni; happened to nee him; been permuted by kind fnto to apeak whh til in. Not that he failed entirely to aeek her out. Tlioro waa denying the han-dlneHa han-dlneHa of Ihn amnll rlvemldn lioune. where he lived with her widowed mother, aa a place to "drop Into'' for tea or a rent fill "chat." Tho fir! time ho had entered that gate, a hiiinnnuialy ilrlppinR object of compulsion out of an overturn'-d tail-Ing tail-Ing boat, Ihu almond treo aKiiliiMt It waa pink with blofvom. and he al ike frnullo pink flowern, weaving ninny a dainty compliment for her J out of tho sweet reaeiuhhince which a poetic fancy helicd him to keep i vividly beforo him nt lenst. when ahe waa bodily beloro him nlan. Ily the time the almond tree wa thick with lenf, ho had grown -n Intimacy In-timacy at the little riverxldo houn lo tho privileged point of Inviting her Into hla bout whenever, aa aomeilmea happened, he waa bound to no special dtailnatlon. Bhe waa en young, euch a child, auch an embodiment of April tears aad tinnhlno and all the Intangible, mocking mock-ing galty or aprlng. to act agaluat hla allium t world-wide experience and hli ripening years. Bo her Influence on him waa u ephemeral aa the flower of the almond tree, dulluately iwiwt whilw it laLl, but to be overpowered oy the next succeeding Intercut, Juxt as the almond al-mond blossoms are cverimwnred and cattored by every wind that blowi. A delight of a day, too unaubHtantlal to weather the night. Hut, It all hor charm was InauftV clent to help hor, It aorvod, working myalerlnunly agnlnat ltnelf, to help blm and alHO to belp one near to her. Through her very Immaturity of mind, her youthful perfection of body. In aomo atrntige way he aoemed, after a time, to reach appreciation of the woman who had brought tier Into the world a woman who. In spite of her undoubted conversational powers, guarded her personality with a Jealous Jeal-ous armament of alienee and reserve: who seemed to shrink from any friendship which gavo a hint of curiosity, curi-osity, or even of Interest pressed over ao slightly home. Yet, for all hor care, put hor successfully suc-cessfully on her guard, Jliore would loap at rara momenta Into hor cultured cul-tured manner, a manner that ho know, tho light-hearted gaiety her daughter had Inherited, completed, made satisfying, satis-fying, mado real, by all that life had taught her. He grew to longing for those depthe eagerly, passionately, that he might gain rost In thorn, aunned thero by her lighter mnniier. sustained by hor truth and ateailfastncss. One whom ho looked on a a child had led 111 in. with a chilli a sure-nesa sure-nesa nf touch within tight of the "-orld's Greatest flood. Ho knew now what hla life had always lacked: h' faced bis remedy. He waa In love al As An mbodlmcnt of April Mart and tunihlne. last and for tho firm time but not irltb tlio child. Yot ho must have boon Mini Indeed If tho long summer had not uervod to let htm Into the child's pitiful ferret ; had not taught him how tho mother' love aet the welfare of her child before be-fore her aa a shrine decked for pur pptual sacrifice, Bo, for hla pari, ho ant the dreary wlntrr montha hi'twtM-n them and him If It waa hia aarrlllro. Yet he i a trowed hla flnwora, although he renl- I lated even In tho act that It would hot tor havo horoiue him to hive the stonoa ataiidlnK hare. "Look out f'r me," he auid, "when the almond la in bloKwim. He wna not able to decide what the future held for him, or. If he dootdod one thing one hour, ho awept It away In favor of Ita opposition the next: but the moment he aaw them acnln ho know hla fate read It In tho Klrt'a quirk pTladnrs of welcome. In the' I mother's Rluttco of nlartn, Juat touch-tng touch-tng him hut artllliiK on hor. The Klrl'a Itenuty wax not quits ao radlnnt; wnltltiR ami wntrhlnix had dlminod It a lit t lu. nlthouu'h the havoc Iwna no morn than a fiw ilaya' hnptd nrna would nw'nd. The mother looked 111 and worn, hut no Ioab beautiful to , him for that. ' Ho had come not only becauae the slrnor.d tree waa In hloitaon. and he Iintl promlt'd, t j tit uIro hectiuae he bad reached that point when ha could no Ioni;nr keep awny. i "I love you," he aald, and, since her J Ml love you," he said. eyes hurt hlni. added quickly, "I most tell you. althoiiith I know what you will have to any to me." - "Not all, perhups." sho aald. "You cannot know how I love you until I tell you, but it niiint bo only this once." "Khe Is ao young." bo pleaded, presently; pres-ently; "alio will bo soon forget." I "title Is too like me." sho said, "soil i I novor forget. "I married thouuLt-lessly," thouuLt-lessly," she went on, "without retl lovo. This is my punishment and I I' must boarlt." Ho nerved himself to a supreme effort, ef-fort, trying lo catch her spirit of lie-I lie-I rlllco while It brushed round him. "Would It help you If I took her." bo said, "as a gift from you, and tried to make bor happy, doing the heat I could t" For a momunt ahe atood stunoed. her eyes kindled with the admlrutlm that was hla reward. "No," alio said at last; "sho would And out enough to spoil tho happiuuM. Hut how good of you!" "You would give up all for horT" lie quoHtluncd. "That la what this moans." sho said. "and Isn't It her turn The right of youthf" "So I must give up hope of you to please you?" bo asked. "Yos," she said, "and my love for you has taught mo so much about yog that I know that you can do It." "Oh, It la hard." he cried. Hut Is anawor, ahe only turned hopeless eye to him and robbed him In sllenrs of the power to say more. Yet, before they partod, he claimed una thins from her while abandoclnt ao much. "If ahe calls on you one day for your appreciation of a more suitable lover, will you send for me then?" be urged. And ber promise to this she yielded to bis Importunity. Hut sho shook ber head wearily; the girl seemed so M-tlroly M-tlroly her second self to her. Hut his last eight or tho girl was llttlo figure In pink under the plnk-blosBomod plnk-blosBomod almond trite. And, seeinf hor there, turning to wave a hand, another an-other privilege of youth tlmn the or.e her mother had nii'iitloneil il.i'M acroBB blm the rllit to eliniiM bn mind, to love again und lovo better, lo renew Its fancy with tho und ol time, as tho swoet almond blnswirci are ruiiewod euch spring; com In i: ever as a surprise, yet ever the same. 8o she flung hope, llko a perfume, After blm all Bhe could give him thtl ha cared to have. Sketch.