A LOVE LEDGE.
The evening of the day on which the mining
enterprise or " deal," as Banatyne Avould call it,
had been so happily and briskly arranged, these
tAvo friends dined together in true Bohemian style
at " The Poodle Dog," a French restaurant noted
for its good cheer and easy company.
As v.-as his habit after a big transaction, Bana¬
tyne imbibed freely Avhether he had lost or Avon,
declaring that champagne Avas the only beverage
to properly celebrate the joys of victory or droAvn
the sorrows of defeat. It Avas on such occasions
that Banatyne s perpetual affaires du occur Avere
the subject of conversation ; for although he Avas
eternall}- in Ioa'C, each affair Avas of short duration.
" I am not a marrying man, you knoAV," he
Avould say, Avhen in this confidential mood. " I loA^e
the SAveetness of a kiss only Avhile it lasts. Why
should a man marry and burden himself with
unnecessary cares ? "
But as a matter of fact he had married at the
age of twenty-one, and Avas the father of as fine a
boy as any natiAC son of the golden West could
possibly be. The lad Avas then about thirteen
years of age, a handsome sturdy little fellow, an
exact reproduction in features of his good-looking
father. He attended Santa Clara College, and for