jack and the check book

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Purchase of this book includes free trial access to www.million-books.com where you can read more than a million books for free. This is an OCR edition with typos. Excerpt from book: II THE GREAT WISH SYNDICATE HE farm had gone to ruin. On every side the pastures were filled with a rank growth of thistles and other thorn - bearing flora. The farm buildings had fallen into a condition of hopeless disrepair, and the old house, the ancestral home of the Wilbrahams, had become a place of appalling desolation. The roof had been patched and repatched for decades, and now fulfilled none of the ideals of its roof- hood save that of antiquity. There was not, as far as the eye could see, a single whole pane of glass in any one of the many windows of the mansion, and there were not wanting those in the community who were willing to prophesy that in a stiff gale—such as used to be prevalent in that section of the world, and within the recollection of some of the old settlers too—the chimneys, once the pride of the county, would totter and fall, bringing the whole mansion down into chaos and ruin. In short, the one-time model farm of the Wilbrahams had become a byword and a jest and, as some said, of no earthly use save for the particular purposes of the eccentric artist in search of picturesque subject-matter for his studies in oil. It was a wild night, and within the ancient house sat the owner, Richard Wilbraham, his wife not far away, trying to find room upon her husband's last remaining pair of socks to dam them. Wilbraham gazed silently into the glowing embers on the hearth before them, the stillness of the evening broken only by the hissing of the logs on the andirons and an occasional sigh from one of the watchers. Finally the woman spoke. "When does the mortgage fall due, Richard?" she asked, moving uneasily in her chair. "To-morrow," gulped the man, the word seeming to catch in his throat and choke him. "And you—you are sure Colonel Digby wil...
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