The Prince tore the missive fiercely from its envelope, and scowled at the mocking glint of the royal crown so heavily embossed at the top of the paper. What a toy it was, he thought, to cost so much, and eventually to mean so little! Roughly translated, the letter ran asfollows:

      "Your Royal Highness will be gratified to learn that at last asatisfactory alliance has been arranged between the Princess Elodie ofAustria and your royal self. It is the desire of both courts andcouncils that the marriage shall be solemnized on the fifteenth of theMay following your twenty-first birthday, at which time the coronation ceremony takes place that is to place the crown of the kingdom upon the head of the son of our beloved and ever-to-be-regretted Imperatorskoye. The Court and Council extend greetings and congratulations upon the notfar distant approach of both auspicious events to your Royal Highness, which cannot fail to afford the utmost satisfaction in every detail to the ever-beautiful-and-never-to-be-sufficiently beloved Prince Paul. 

      "Imperator-to-be, we salute thee. We kiss thy feet. "

      The letter was sealed with the royal crest and signed by the Regent--theBoy's uncle--the Grand Duke Peter, his mother's brother, who had been his guardian and protector almost from his birth.
The young prince knew that his uncle loved him, knew that the Grand Duke desired nothing on earth so much as the happiness of his beloved sister's only son--and yet at this crisis of the Boy's life, even his uncle was as powerless to help as was Paul Verdayne, the Englishman. 
      "The Princess Elodie!" he grumbled. "Who the devil is this PrincessElodie, anyway? Austrian blood has no particular charm for me! Theymight at least have told me something a little more definite out the woman they have picked out to be the mother of my children. A manusually likes to look an animal over before he purchases!"

      Known to London society as Monsieur Zalenska, the Prince had come up to town with the Verdaynes, and was apparently enjoying to the utmost the frivolities of London life. 

      At a fashionable garden party he sat alone, in a seclusion he had longsought and had finally managed to secure, behind a hedge of hawthorn where none but lovers, and men and women troubled as he was troubled, cared to conceal themselves. 

      The letter, long-expected and dreaded, had finally crossed the continent to his hand. It was only the written confirmation of the sentence Fate had pronounced upon him, even as it had pronounced similar sentences upon princes and potentates since the beginning of thrones and kingdoms. 

      While the Prince--or Paul Zalenska, as I will now call him--sat in his brooding brown study, clutching the imperial letter tightly in his younghand, his attention was arrested by the sound of voices on the otherside of the hawthorn hedge. 

      He listened idly, at first, to what seemed to be a one-sided conversation, in a dull, emotionless feminine voice--a discourse on fashion, society chit-chat, and hopeless nonentities, interspersed with bits of gossip. Could women never talk about anything else? he thought impatiently. 
But his displeasure did not seem to affect the course of things at all. The voice, completely unconscious of the aversion it aroused in the invisible listener, continued its dreary, expressionless monotone. 

      "What makes you so silent, Opal? You haven't said a word to-day that youdidn't absolutely have to say. If all American girls are as dreamy asyou, I wonder why our English lords are so irresistibly attracted acrossthe water when in search of brides!"

      And then the Boy on the other side of the hedge felt his sluggish pulsequicken, and almost started to his feet, impelled by a sudden thrill ofdelight; for another voice had spoken--a voice of such infinite charmand sweetness and vitality, yet with languorous suggestion of emotionalheights and depths, that he felt a vague sense of disappointment whenthe magnetic notes finally died away. 

      "Brides?" the voice echoed, with a lilt of girlish laughter runningthrough the words. "You mean '_bribes_, ' don't you? For I assure you, dear cousin, it is the metallic clink of American gold, and nothingelse, that lures your great men over the sea. As for my silence, _mabelle_, I have been uncommunicative because there really seemed nothingat all worth saying. I can't accustom myself to small-talk--I can't evenlisten to it patiently. I always feel a wild impulse to fly far, faraway, where I can close my ears to it all and listen to my own thoughts. I'm sorry if I disappoint you, Alice--I seem to disappoint everybodythat I would like to please--but I assure you, laugh at my dreams as youmay, to me my dream-life is far more attractive and beautiful than whatyou term Life. Forgive me if I hurt you, cousin. I'm peculiarlyconstituted, perhaps, but I don't like this twaddle, and I can't helpit! Everything in England is so beautiful, and yet its society seemsso--so hopelessly unsatisfactory to one who longs to _live!_"

      "To live, Opal? We are not dead, surely! What do you mean by life?"

      And so her name was Opal! How curiously the name suited the voice! TheBoy, as he listened, felt that no other name could possibly havematched that voice--the opal, that glorious gem in which all the firesof the sun, the iridescent glories of the rainbow, and the coldbrilliance of ice and frost and snow seemed to blend and crystallize. All this, and more, was in that mysteriously fascinating voice. 

      "To live, Alice?" echoed the voice again. "To live? Why, to live is to_feel!_--to feel every emotion of which the human soul is capable, torise to the heights of love, and knowledge, and power; to sink--if needbe--to the deepest depths of despair, but, at all costs, at all hazards, to _live!_--to experience in one's own nature all the reality andfullness of the deathless emotions of life!"

      The voice sank almost to the softness of a whisper, yet even then wasvibrant, alive, intense. 

      "Ah, Alice, from my childhood up, I have dreamed of life and longed forit. What life really is, each must decide for himself, must he not?Some, they say, sleep their way through a dreamless existence, andnever, never wake to realities. Alice, I have sometimes wondered if thatwas to be my fate, have wondered and wondered until I have cried out inreal terror at the hideous prospect! Surely Fate could not be so cruelas to implant such a desperate desire in a soul that never was to knowits fulfilment. Could it, Alice? Tell me, _could_ it?"

The Boy held his breath now. 

      Who was this girl, anyhow, who seemed to express his own thoughts asaccurately as he himself could have done? He was bored no longer. He wasroused, stirred, awakened--and intensely interested. It was as thoughthe voice of his own soul spoke to him in a dream. 

      The cold, lifeless voice now chimed in again. In his impatience the Boyclenched his fists and shut his teeth together hard. Why didn't she keepstill? He didn't want to miss a single note he might have caught of thevoice--that other! Why did this nonentity--for one didn't have to seeher to be sure that she was that--have to interrupt and rob him of hispleasure?

      "I don't understand you, Opal, " she was saying. (Of course she didn't, thought the Boy--how could she?) "I am sure that I live. And yet I havenever felt that way--thank goodness! It's vulgar to feel too deeply, Mamma used to say, and as I have grown older, I can see that she wasright. The best people never show any excess of emotion. That is fortragedy queens, operatic stars, and--the women we do not talk about!Ladies cultivate repose!"
("Repose!--_mon Dieu!_" thought Paul, behind the hedge. He wished thatshe would!)

      "And yet, Alice, you are--married!"

      "Married?--of course!--why not?" and the eavesdropper fancied he couldsee the wide-open gaze of well-bred English surprise that accompaniedthe words. "One has to marry, of course. That is what we are createdfor. But one doesn't make a fuss about it. It's only a custom--aceremony--and doesn't change existence much for most women, if theychoose sensibly.
Of course there is always the chance of a_m├ęsalliance_! A woman has to risk that. "

      "And you don't--love?"

      The Boy was struck by a note that was almost horror in the opaline voiceso near him. 

      "Love? Why, Opal, of course we do! It's easy to love, you know, when aman is decent and half-way good to one. I am sure I think a great dealof Algernon; but I dare say I should have thought as much of any otherman I had happened to marry. That is a wife's duty!"

"_Duty!_--and you call that love?" The horror in the tones had nowchanged to scorn. 

      "You have strange ideas of life, Opal. I should be afraid to indulgethem if I were you--really I should! You have lived so much in booksthat you seem to have a very garbled idea of the world. Fiction is aptto be much of a fairy tale, a crazy exaggeration of what living reallyconsists of!"

      "_Afraid?_ Why should I be afraid? I am an American girl, remember, andAmericans are afraid of nothing--nothing! Come, cousin, tell to me, ifyou can, why I should be afraid. "

      "Oh, I don't know! really I don't!" There was a troubled, perplexed notein the English voice now. "Such notions are apt to get girls intotrouble, and lead them to some unhappy fate. Too much 'life'--as youcall it--must mean suffering, and sorrow, and many tears--and maybe, _sin_!"

      There was a shocked note in the voice of the young English matron asshe added the last word, and her voice sank to a whisper. But PaulZalenska heard, and smiled.  "Suffering, and sorrow, and many tears, " repeated the American girl, musingly, "and maybe--sin!" Then she went on, firmly, "Very well, Alice, give me the suffering and sorrow, and many tears--and the sin, too, if it must be, for we are all sinners of greater or lessdegree--but at any rate, give me life! My life may still be far off inthe future, but when the time comes, I shall certainly know, and--Ishall _live_!"

      "You are a peculiar girl, Opal, and--we don't say those things inEngland. "

      "No, you don't say those things, you cold English women! You do not even_feel_ them! As for sin, Alice, to my mind there can be no worse sinunder heaven than you commit when you give yourself to a man whom you donot love better than you could possibly love any other. Oh, it is asin--it _must_ be--to sell yourself like that! It's no wonder, I think, that your husbands are so often driven to 'the women we do not talkabout' for--consolation!"

      "Opal! Opal! hush! What _are_ you saying? You really--but see! isn'tthat Algernon crossing the terrace? He is probably looking for us. "
"And like a dutiful English wife, you mustn't fail to obey, I suppose!Lead the way, cousin mine, and I'll promise to follow you with duedignity and decorum. "

      And the rustle of silken skirts heralded the departure of the ladiesaway from the hedge and beyond Paul's hearing. 

      Then he too started at an eager, restless pace for the centre of thecrowd. He had quite forgotten the future so carefully arranged for him, and was off in hot pursuit of--what? He did not know! He only knew thathe had heard a voice, and--he followed!

      As he rejoined the guests, he looked with awakened interest into everyface, listened with eager intensity to every voice. But  all in vain. Itdid not occur to him that he might easily learn from his hostess theidentity of her American guest; and even if the thought had presenteditself to him, he would never have acted upon it. The experience washis alone, and he would have been unwilling to share it with any one. 

      He was no longer bored as earlier in the afternoon, and he carried theassurance of enthusiasm and interest in his every glance and motion. People smiled at the solitary figure, and whispered that he must havelost Verdayne. But for once in his life, the Boy was not looking for hisfriend. 

      But neither did he find the voice!

      Usually among the first to depart on such occasions as these, this timehe remained until almost all the crowd had made their adieux. And it waswith a keen sense of disappointment that he at last entered his carriagefor the home of the Verdaynes. He was hearing again and again in thewords of the voice, as it echoed through his very soul, "When my timecomes, I shall certainly know, and I shall--_live!_"

      The letter in his pocket no longer scorched the flesh beneath. He hadforgotten its very existence, nor did he once think of the PrincessElodie of Austria. What had happened to him?

Had he fallen in love with a--voice?

      It was May at Verdayne Place, and May at Verdayne Place was altogetherdifferent from May in any other part of the world. The skies were of afar deeper and richer blue; the flowers reached a higher state offragrant and rainbow-hued perfection; the sun shining through the greenof the trees was tempered to just the right degree of shine and shadow. To an Englishman, home is the beginning and the end of the world, andPaul Verdayne was a typical Englishman. 

      To be sure, it had not always been so, but Paul had outlived hisvagabond days and had become thoroughly domesticated; yet there had beena time in his youth when the wandering spirit had filled his soul, whenthe love of adventure had lent wings to his feet, and the glory ofromance had lured him to the lights and shadows of other skies thanthese. But Verdayne was older now, very much older! He had lived hislife, he said, and settled down!

      In the shade of the tall trees of the park, two men were drinking in thebeauties of the season, in all the glory and splendor of itsever-changing, yet ever-enduring loveliness. One of them was past forty, the ripeness of middle age and the general air of a well-spent, well-directed, and fully-developed life lending to his face and form anunusual distinction--even in that land of distinguished men. Hiscompanion was a boy of twenty, straight and tall and proud, carryinghimself with the regal grace of a Greek god. He was a strong, handsome, healthy, well-built, and well-instructed boy, a boy at whom any one wholooked once would be sure to look the second time, even though he couldnot tell exactly wherein the peculiar charm lay. Both men were fair ofhair and blue-eyed, with clear, clean skins and well-bred English faces, and the critical observer could scarcely fail to notice how curiouslythey resembled each other. Indeed, the younger of the pair might easilyhave been the replica of the elder's youth. 

      When they spoke, however, the illusion of resemblance disappeared. Inthe voice of the Boy was a certain vibrant note that was entirelylacking in the deeper tones of the man--not an accent, nor yet aninflection, but still a quality that lent a subtle suggestion of foreignshores. It was an expressive voice, neither languorous nor undulyforceful, but strangely magnetic, and adorably rich and full, andmusical, thrilling its hearers with its suggestion of latent physicaland spiritual force. 

      On the afternoon of which I write, those two were facing a crisis thatmade them blind to everything of lesser import. Paul Verdayne--the man--realized this to the full. His companion--the Boy--was dimly but justas acutely conscious of it. The question  had come at last--the questionthat Paul Verdayne had been dreading for years. 

      "Uncle Paul, " the Boy was saying, "what relation are you to me? You arenot really my uncle, though I have been taught to call you so after thisquaint English fashion of yours. I know it is something of a secret, butI know no more! We are closer comrades, it seems to me--you and I--thanany others in all the world. We always understand each other, somehow, almost without words--is it not so? I even bear your name, and I amproud of it, because it is yours. But why must there be so much mysteryabout our real relationship? Won't you tell me just what I am to you?"

      The question, long-looked-for as it was, found the elder man allunprepared. Is any one ever ready for any dire calamity, howevercertainly expected? He paced up and down under the tall trees of thepark and for a time did not answer. Then he paused and laid his handupon the shoulder of the Boy with a tenderness of touch that provedbetter than any words how close was the bond between them. 

      "Tell you what you are to me! I could never, never do that! You areeverything to me, everything!"
The Boy made a motion as if to speak, but the man forestalled him. 

      "We're jolly good friends, aren't we--the very best of companions? Inall the world there is no man, woman or child that is half so near anddear to me as you. Men don't usually talk about these things to oneanother, you know, Boy; but, though I am a bachelor, you see, I feeltoward you as most men feel toward their sons. What does the meredefining of the relationship matter? Could we possibly be any more toeach other than we are?"

      Paul Verdayne seated himself on a little knoll beneath the shade of agiant oak. The Boy looked at him with the wistfulness of an infinitequestion in his gaze. 

      "No, no, Boy! Some time, perhaps--yes, certainly--you shall know all, all! But that time has not yet come, and for the present it is best thatthings should rest as they are. Trust us, Boy--trust me--and bepatient!"

      "Patient!" The Boy laughed a full, ringing laugh, as he threw himself onthe grass at his companion's feet. "I have never  learned the word! Couldyou be patient, Uncle Paul, when youth was all on fire in your heart, with your own life shrouded in mystery? Could you, I say, be patientthen?"

      Verdayne laughed indulgently as his strong fingers stroked the Boy'sbrown curls. 


  "Perhaps not, Boy, perhaps not! But it is for you, " he continued, "foryou, Boy, to make the best of that life of yours, which you are pleasedto think clouded in such tantalizing mystery. It is for you to developevery God-given faculty of your being that all of us that love you mayhave the happiness of seeing you perform wisely and well the missionupon which you have been sent to this kingdom of yours to accomplish. Boy! every true man is a king in the might of his manhood, but upon youis bestowed a double portion of that universal royalty. This is athrone-worshipping world we are living in, Paul, and it means even morethan you can realize to be a prince of the blood!"

      The Boy looked around the park apprehensively. What if someone heard?For this straight young sapling, who was only the "Boy" to PaulVerdayne, was to the world at large an heir to a throne, a king who hadbeen left in infancy the sole ruler of his kingdom. 
His visits to Verdayne Place were _incognito_. He did like to throwaside the purple now and then and be the real live boy he was at heart. He did enjoy to the full his occasional opportunities, unhampered bythe trappings and obligations of royalty. 

      "A prince of the blood!" he echoed scornfully. "Bah!--what is that?Merely an accident of birth!"

      "No, not an accident, Paul! Nothing in the world ever is that. Everyfragment of life has its completing part somewhere, given its place inthe scheme of the universe by intricate design--always by _design!_ Asfor the duties of your kingdom, my Prince, it is not like you to takethem so lightly. "

      "I know! I know! Yet everybody might have been born a prince. It is farmore to be a man!"

      "True enough, Boy! yet everybody might not have been born to yourposition. Only you could have been given the heritage that is yours! MyBoy, yours is a mission, a responsibility, from the Creator of LifeHimself. Everybody can follow--but only God's chosen few can lead! Andyou--oh, Boy! yours is a birthright above that of all other princes--ifyou only knew!"

      The young prince looked wistfully upward into the eyes of the elder man. 

      "Tell me, Uncle Paul! Dmitry always speaks of my birth with a reverenceand awe quite out of proportion to its possible consequence--poor oldman. And once even the Grand Duke Peter spoke of my 'divine origin'though he could not be coaxed or wheedled into committing his wise selfany further. Now you, yourself the most reserved and secretive ofindividuals when it pleases you to be so, have just been surprised intosomething of the same expression. Do you wonder that I long to unravelthe mystery that you are all so determined to keep from me? I can learnnothing at home--absolutely nothing! They glorify my mother--God blessher memory! Everyone worships her! But they never speak of you, and theyare silent, too, about my father. They simply won't tell me a thingabout him, so I don't imagine that he could have been a very good king!_Was_ he, Uncle Paul? Did you know him?"

      "I never knew the king, Boy!--never even saw him!"
"But you must have heard--"

      "Nothing, Boy, that I can tell you--absolutely nothing!"

      Verdayne had risen again and was once more pacing back and forth underthe trees, as was his wont when troubled with painful memories. 

      "But my mother--you knew _her_!"

      "Yes, yes--I knew your mother!"

      "Tell me about her!"

      A dull, hopeless agony came into the eyes of the older man. And so hisGethsemane had come to him again! Every life has this garden to passthrough--some, alas! again and yet again! And Paul Verdayne had thoughtthat he had long since drained his cup of misery to the dregs. He knewbetter now. 

      "Yes, I will tell you of your mother, Boy, " he said, and there was astrained, guarded note in his voice which his companion's quick ear didnot fail to catch. "But you must be patient if you wish to hear whatlittle there is, after all, that I can tell you. You must remember, myBoy, that it is a long time since your mother--died--and men of my agesometimes--forget!"

      "I will remember, " the Boy said, gently. 

      But as he looked up into the face of his friend, something in his hearttold him that Paul Verdayne did _not_ forget! And somehow the older manfelt confident that the Boy knew, and was strangely comforted by thesilent sympathy between them which both felt, but neither could express. 

      "Your mother, Boy, was the noblest and most beautiful woman that evergraced a throne. Everyone who knew her must have said that! You are verylike her, Paul--not in appearance, a mistake of Fate to be everlastinglydeplored, but in spirit you are her living counterpart. Ah! you have agreat example to live up to, Boy, in attempting to follow her footsteps!There was never a queen like her--never!"

      The young prince followed with the deepest absorption the words of theman who had known his mother, hanging upon the story with the breathlessinterest of a child in some fairy tale. 

      "She knew life as it is given few women to know it. She was not morethan thirty-five, I think, when you were born, but she had crowded intothose years more knowledge of the world, in all its myriad phases, thanothers seem to absorb during their allotted three score and ten. And herknowledge was not of the world alone, but of the heart. She was full ofideals of advancement, of growth, of doing and being something worthythe greatest endeavor, exerting every hope and ambition to the utmostfor the future splendor of her kingdom--your kingdom now. How she lovedyou!--what splendid achievements she expected of you! how she prayedthat you might be grand, and great, and true!"
      "Did you always know her?"
      "Always?--no. Only for three weeks, Boy!"
      "Three weeks!--three little weeks! How strange, then, that you shouldhave learned so much about her in that short space of time! She mustindeed have made a strong impression upon you!"
      "Impression, you say? Boy, all that I am or ever expect to become--allthat I know or ever expect to learn--all that I have done or ever expectto accomplish--I owe to your mother. She was the one inspiration of mylife. Until I knew her, I was a nonentity. It was she who awakenedme--who taught me how to live! Three weeks! Child! child!--"
      He caught himself sharply and bit his lip, forcing back the impetuouswords he had not meant to say. The silence of years still shrouded thosemysterious three weeks, and the time had not yet come when that silencecould be broken. What had he said? What possessed the Boy to-day tocling so persistently to this hitherto forbidden subject?
      "Where did you meet her, Uncle?"
      "At Lucerne!"
      "Lucerne!" echoed the Boy, his blue eyes growing dreamy with musing. "That says nothing to me--nothing! and yet--you will laugh at me, Iknow, but I sometimes get the most tantalizing impression that Iremember my mother. It is absurd, of course--I suppose I could notpossibly remember her--and yet there is such a haunting, vague sense ofclose-clinging arms, of an intensely  white and tender face bending overme--sometimes in the radiance of day and again in the soft shadows ofnight, but always, always alight with love--of kisses, soft and warm, and yet often tearful--and of black, lustrous hair, over which therealways seems to shine a halo--a very coronet of triumphant motherhood. "
      Verdayne's lips moved, but no sound came from them to voice thepassionate cry in his heart, "My Queen, my Queen!"
      "I suppose it is only a curious dream! It must be, of course! But it isa very real vision to me, and I would not part with it for the world. Uncle, do you know, I can never look upon the pictured face of a Madonnawithout being forcibly reminded of this vision of my mother--the motherI can see only in dreams!"
      Verdayne found it growing harder and harder for him to speak. 
      "I do not think that strange, Boy. Others would not understand it, but Ido. She was so intensely a mother that the spirit of the great HolyMother must have been at all times hovering closely about her! Herdeepest desires centred about her son. You were the embodiment of thegreatest, sweetest joys--if not the only real joys--of her strangelyunhappy life, and her whole thought, her one hope, was for you. In yoursoul must live all the unrealized hopes and crucified ideals of thewoman who, always every inch a queen, was never more truly regal than inthe supreme hour that crowned her your mother. "

      "And am I like her, Uncle Paul? Am I really like her?"

      "So much so, Boy, that she sometimes seems to live again in you. Likeher, you believe so thoroughly in the goodness and greatness of a God--in the beauty and glory of the world fraught with lessons of lifeand death--in the omnipotence of Fate--in the truth and power andgrandeur of overmastering love. You believe in the past, in all thedreams and legends of the Long Ago still relived in the Now, in thecapabilities of the human mind, the kingship of the soul. Your voice ishers, every tone and cadence is as her own voice repeating her ownwords. Be glad, Paul, that you are like your mother, and hope that withthe power to think her thoughts and dream lier dreams, you may also havethe power to love as she loved, and, if need be, die her death!"
     "But you think the same thoughts, Uncle Paul. You believe all Ibelieve!"
"Because she taught me, Paul--because she taught me! I slept the sleepof the blind and deaf and soulless until her touch woke my soul intobeing. You have always been alive to the joy of the world and the beautyof living. Your soul was born with your body and lived purposefully fromthe very beginning of things. You were born for a purpose and thatpurpose showed itself even in infancy. "
      A silence fell between the two men. A long time they sat in thatsympathetic communion, each busy with his own thoughts. The older Paulwas lost in memories of the past, for his life lay all behind him--theyounger Paul was indulging in many dreams of a roseate future, for hislife was all ahead of him. 
      It was a friendship that the world often wondered about--this strangeintimacy between Paul Verdayne, the famous Member of Parliament, and theyoung man from abroad who called himself Paul Zalenska. None knewexactly where Monsieur Zalenska came from, and as they had long agolearned the futility of questioning either of the men about personalaffairs, had at last reconciled themselves to never finding out. Everyone suspected that the Boy was a scion of rank--and some went sofar as to say of royalty, but beyond the fact that every May he camewith his faithful, foreign-looking attendant to Verdayne Place and spentthe summer months with the Verdayne family, nothing definite wasactually known. His elderly attendant certainly spoke some beastlyforeign jargon and went by the equally beastly foreign name of Vasili. He was known to worship his young master and to attend him with the most marked servility, but he was never questioned, and had he been, would certainly have told no tales. 
      The parents of Paul Verdayne--Sir Charles and Lady Henrietta--were very fond of their young guest, and made much of his annual visits. As for Paul himself, he never seemed to be perfectly happy anywhere if the young fellow were out of his sight. 
      He had made himself very much distinguished, had this Paul Verdayne. He had found out how to get the most out of his life and accomplish the utmost good for himself and his England with the natural endowments of his energetic and ambitious personality. He had become a famous orator, a noted statesman, a man of brain as well as brawn. People were glad to listen when he talked. He inspired them with the idea--so nearly extinctin this day and age of the world--that life after all was very much worth the living. He stirred languid pulses with a dormant enthusiasm. He roused torpid brains to thought. He had ideas and had also a way of making other people share those ideas. England was proud of Paul Verdayne, as she had good reason to be. And he was only forty-three years old even now. What might he not accomplish in the future for the land to which he devoted all his talents, his tireless, well-directed activities?