134 Hobart Herald character. It was odd that he should so far unbend himself, at least to him. “ Did you have a pleasant trip, Doctor?” The man before the fire clasped and -unclasped his big, strong fingers, still gazing into the heart of the fire. “ Yes, I ’ve just returned after a long journey, but then, I travel so much it should not have tired me. Perhaps it was the circumstances surrounding it, b u t tonight I’m tired, tired.” His voice trailed off into the silence, while his eyes, leaving the fire searched restlessly about t h e room. A tantalizing search it was for the shaded lamp left deep shadows in the corners and the flickering lances of light from the fire touched objects for a moment only to leave them in deeper shadow th a n before. On sudden a picture on the side w a ll was illumined in this manner, and the man’s eye glimpsed it. “ Pardon me.” He was on his feet in a twinkling, and standing up, closely scrutinizing the picture which t h e firelight had n o w left. “ Where did you get this picture? D o you m ind if I take it down?” His motion followed his last words, “ Why, certainly not, Doctor. Bring it down here on the table where you can get a good light on it.” He rose and the two bent over the table, the one casually in terested, the other intensely so, in the picture -where it l a y in the strong light of the lamp. “ I got that two years ago in Buffalo. I happened to s tay over there a couple of days, and saw' this in a n art store. It appealed to me so strongly that I bought i t . ” It was a striking picture. A lone pine stood o n the crest of a hill. Growing in the open, branches covered its great bole well down to the ground. It towered upward a huge tree, its rugged branches clothed with plumy masses of needles, and its feathery top bent permanently b y the insistent t u g and strain of th e wind.