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Page:Stanwood Pier--The ancient grudge.djvu/343

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detail. To-morrow I'll be able to show some of the plans to your father."

"Do architects walk right up to people that way and ask for commissions, Stewart?"

"Why, I'm not doing that—just showing some plans as possibilities. Besides, to your father, Lydia—and to Floyd!" His tone was reproachful; he felt that Lydia had charged him with an indelicacy.

"Oh, I suppose in this case it would be all right," she conceded, though somewhat doubtfully. "So long as you don't seem to suggest anything too openly. Of course I don't know what the ethics of your profession are, and you do."

"Of course," he agreed, with a laugh. "Well, I'll tell you one thing anyway that there can't be any ethical question about, and that is the right of an architect's wife to use her influence with her father. You'll see him to-morrow before I will, Lydia; you might sort of prepare him for what I'm doing—and get him into a state of mind where he'll be ready to look at the plans."

This seemed an innocent enough intrigue, and the next morning when Stewart had gone to his office, Lydia telephoned to her father and asked him to lunch with her. His own house was closed, and he had been living at the club; a week before he had left his Chester house upon receiving Floyd's message and had hurried back to Avalon to serve as one of the pall-bearers at Colonel Halket's funeral. He had then been gratified to learn that Colonel Halket had named him co-executor with Floyd and Barstow; his duties in settling the estate were now detaining him in Avalon. The most important part of his work was still before him—the duties required of him by the Rebecca Halket Hospital bequest. Colonel Halket had been very definite and precise in his will in determining the names by which the buildings should be known; they were not to be called simply the Halket Hospitals; they were to be the Rebecca Halket Hospital for Children, the Rebecca