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A Poor Wise Man (Chapter 11)
Going home that night Mr. Hendricks met Edith Boyd, and accompanied her for a block or two. At his corner he stopped.
"How's your mother, Edith?"
It was Mr. Hendricks' business to know his ward thoroughly.
"About the same. She isn't really sick, Mr. Hendrick s. She's just low spirited, but that's enough. I hate to go home."
"Still, home's a pretty good place," he said. "Especially for a pretty girl." There was unmistakable meaning in his tone, and she threw up her head.
"I've got to get some pleasure out of life, Mr. Hendricks."
"Sure you have," he agreed affably. "But playing around with Louis Akers is like playing with a hand-grenade, Edith." She said nothing. "I'd cut him out, little girl. He's poor stuff. Mind, I'm not saying he's a fool, but he's a bad actor. Now if I was a pretty girl, and there was a nice fellow around like this Cameron, I'd be likely to think he was all right. He's got brains." Mr. Hendricks had a great admiration for brains.
"I'm sick of men."
He turned at her tone and eyed her sharply.
"Well, don't judge them all by Akers. This is my corner. Good-night. Not afraid to go on by yourself, are you?"
"If I ever was I've had a good many chances to get over it."