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The craftsman
Vol. XXIII, Number 2 (November 1912)

Goring-Thomas, A. R.
The links of love: a story,   pp. 166-173 PDF (2.4 MB)


Page 166


THE LINKS OF LOVE: A STORY: BY A. R.
GORING-THOMAS
ALMES STONAR, as the big clock outside the works
struck eleven, stopped his machine and looked round
for his coat. When he saw that it was not on its accus-
tomed hook he laughed. "Bill Jakes," he said good
humoredly, "has walked off with my coat again
thinking it is his own. That jew slop goods man sold
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taking mine for his." James Stonar, a handsome, stalwart man of
twenty-eight, stretched himself luxuriously and walked over to Bill
Jakes' machine on the other side of the big building. "You've got
my coat again," he said, cheerily.
   "Have I?" said the man he addressed. "You're knocking off
early,
aren't you?"
   "Boss wants to see me at eleven," said James Stonar.
   "Getting a rise, I hear?"
   "Something of that sort," said Stonar.
   "How long have you been here?"
   "Fourteen years.
   "You're still young, Jim, you don't look more'n twenty-four, or
so."
   "I came here as a boy of fourteen, and twice fourteen is twenty-
eight. Fourteen years is a big slice out of a workingman's life."
   "Aye," answered Bill Jakes, "it's nigh upon a generation!
Any-
how, you've got on. Nowadays you've got to start young to get
anywhere, and you started young. Well-good luck, Jim; don't
forget your poor friends when you get to the top of the tree."
   James Stonar laughed and put his coat on. Glancing down at his
feet he saw that one of his boot laces had come undone--if a man
stumbled near one of the fly-wheels-he knelt on one knee and fast-
ened the boot lace. There was a sudden hoarse shout a moment later,
and a dreadful sense of disaster seemed miraculously to still all the
activity in the huge workshop. Bill Jakes stopped his machine in
twenty seconds. The belting on the huge fly-wheel had caught the
back of Stonar's coat, had sucked it into the whirling vortex of the
wheel, and flung him to the roof of the workshop. Stonar's right arm
was torn from its socket, and the right side of his body shattered.
   James Stonar did not die. After months in the infirmary a day
came, a dull, gray day, when Stonar's wife took home the shattered,
permanently crippled remains of the man who had once been her
stalwart, handsome husband. Mrs. Stonar said little, she was a
silent person. The poor woman's mind dwelt on that first joyful
home-coming the day she married the man on the ambulance whom
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