Professor De Graf was sorting the mail at the breakfast table. Here's a letter for you, Beth, said he, and tossed it across the cloth to where his daughter sat. The girl raised her eyebrows, expressing surprise. It was something unusual for her to receive a letter. She picked up the square envelope between a finger and thumb and carefully read the inscription, Miss Elizabeth De Graf, Cloverton, Ohio. Turning the envelope she found on the reverse flap a curious armorial emblem, with the word Elmhurst. Then she glanced at her father, her eyes big and somewhat startled in expression. The Professor was deeply engrossed in a letter from Benjamin Lowenstein which declared that a certain te must be paid at maturity. His weak, watery blue eyes stared rather blankly from behind the gold-rimmed spectacles. His flat strils extended and compressed like those of a frightened horse; and the indecisive mouth was tremulous. At the best the Professor was t an imposing personage. He wore a dressing-gown of soiled quilted silk and linen t too immaculate; but his little sandy moustache and the goatee that decorated his receding chin were both carefully waxed into sharp points-an indication that he possessed at least one vanity. Three days in the week he taught vocal and instrumental music to the ambitious young ladies of Cloverton. The other three days he rode to Pelham's Grove, ten miles away, and taught music to all who wished to acquire that desirable accomplishment. But the towns were small and the fees t large, so that Professor De Graf had much difficulty in securing an income sufficient for the needs of his family. The stout, sour-visaged lady who was half-hidden by her newspaper at the other end of the table was also a bread-winner, for she taught embroidery to the women of her acquaintance and made various articles of fancy-work that were sold at Biggar's Emporium, the largest store in Cloverton. So, between them, the Professor and Mrs. DeGraf managed to defray ordinary expenses and keep Elizabeth at school; but there were one or two dreadful tes that were constantly hanging over their heads like the sword of Damocles, threatening to ruin them at any moment their creditors proved obdurate.