“I wouldn’t know, Mr. John. Nickie knows a lot of country.”

“That man with Evans is no good. He’s really bad.”

“He isn’t very smart.”

“He’s smarter than he acts. The booze has him down. But he’s smart and he’s bad. I used to know him.”

“What do you want me to do.”

“Nothing, Suzy. Let me know about anything.”

“I’ll add up my stuff, Mr. John, and you can check it.”

“How are you going home?”

“I can get the boat up to Henry’s Dock and then get a rowboat from the cottage and row down and get the stuff. Mr. John, what will they do with Nickie?”

“That’s what I’m worried about.”

“They were talking about getting him put in the re­form school.”

“I wish he hadn’t killed that buck.”

“So does he. He told me he was reading in a book about how you could crease something with a bullet and it wouldn’t do it any harm. It would just stun it and Nickie wanted to try it. He said it was a damn fool thing to do. But he wanted to try it. Then he hit the buck and broke his neck. He felt awful about it. He felt awful about trying to crease it in the first place.”

“I know.”

“Then it must have been Evans found the meat where he had it hung up in the old springhouse. Any­way somebody took it.”

“Who could have told Evans?”

“I think it was just that boy of his found it. He trails around after Nick all the time. You never see him. He could have seen Nickie kill the buck. That boy’s no good, Mr. John. But he sure can trail around after any­body. He’s liable to be in this room right now.”

“No,” said Mr. John. “But he could be listening out­side.”

“I think he’s after Nick by now,” the girl said.

“Did you hear them say anything about him at the house?”

“They never mentioned him,” Suzy said.

“Evans must have left him home to do the chores. I don’t think we have to worry about him till they get home to Evans’s.”

“I can row up the lake to home this afternoon and get one of our kids to let me know if Evans hires anyone to do the chores. That will mean he’s turned that boy loose.”

“Both the men are too old to trail anybody.”

“But that boy’s terrible, Mr. John, and he knows too much about Nickie and where he would go. He’d find them and then bring the men up to them.”

“Come in back of the post office,” Mr. John said.

Back of the filing slits and the lockboxes and the registry book and the flat stamp books in place along with the cancellation stamps and their pads, with the General Delivery window down, so that Suzy felt again the glory of office that had been hers when she had helped out in the store, Mr. John said, “Where do you think they went, Suzy?”

“I wouldn’t know, true. Somewhere not too far or he wouldn’t take Littless. Somewhere that’s really good or he wouldn’t take her. They know about the trout for trout dinners, too, Mr. John.”

“That boy?”


“Maybe we better do something about the Evans boy.”

“I’d kill him. I’m pretty sure that’s why Littless went along. So Nickie wouldn’t kill him.”

“You fix it up so we keep track of them.”

“I will. But you have to think out something, Mr. John. Mrs. Adams, she’s just broke down. She just gets a sick headache like always. Here. You better take this letter.”

“You drop it in the box,” Mr. John said. “That’s United States mail.”

“I wanted to kill them both last night when they were asleep.”

“No,” Mr. John told her. “Don’t talk that way and don’t think that way.”

“Didn’t you ever want to kill anybody, Mr. John?”

“Yes. But it’s wrong and it doesn’t work out.”

“My father killed a man.”

“It didn’t do him any good.”

“He couldn’t help it.”

“You have to learn to help it,” Mr. John said. “You get along now, Suzy.”

“I’ll see you tonight or in the morning,” Suzy said. “I wish I still worked here, Mr. John.”

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Categories: Hemingway, Ernest