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24 MOVIE PICTORIAL UNDER THE SKYLIGHT ( Continued from page 7) mistake this time. The ‘business’ is covertly . whisper in- structions to your man, then both exit, well pleased with the plan in mind. In a short cut-in scene, imme- diately following this one, you are both discovered riding along a dusty road, discussing plans for the abduc- tion of the girl who has spurned your love. Fernandez points toward an old castle in the distance indicating that is where she lives. Reining your horses to a nearby tree stump you dis- mount, resolved to lie in wait until darkness settles over the hillsides. “Now then Maria Rosa dominates the story. Maria like Levardo is poor but honest, the daughter of humble peasants. She has dared to gaze upon and give her love in keeping to the charming Fernandez. He alone has ever been the idol of her dreams. A babe nestles against her bosom, a child without a father, tribute to your perfidy. Like a broken toy you have done with and cast aside, scorning her protestations of undying love. Slowly she trudges down the road, heartbroken. She catches the mur- mer of low voices wafted on the still air. One in particular stabs her heart afresh. Closer and closer she presses, with no other thought than that of loneliness for the man who has deserted her. Dazed and horror- stricken she learns that you love another, the lady in the castle on the hilltop, whom Maria knows only by sight and respects in reverential awe as she does the Virgin Mary. “In that one sacred pause of time, reason departs and madness seizes her. She will be revenged. Revenge has ever been a despised woman’s surest weapon, as if by a miracle all the bitter longing, the agony and shame of years vanish. She is happy. She could shout for very joy. Her brain is alive with the crafty cunning of her race. Ah! what if the child should awake and its innocent prattle betray her nearness? Without stop- ping she moves swiftly across fields, and through valleys, succored by a new strength born of revenge, twi- light envelops the world with a haze of deep shadows. On and on she forges until at last she reaches the The above—Clem’s reflections were ab- ruptly broken, and the next moment he had thrown himself into the bushes and was worming his way deeper into the leafy underbrush. From the cliff above had come sud- denly the sound of voices, and as he glanced upward he saw that two fig- ures were descending the steps. While he, himself, was hidden for the time from their observation, the faces of both the new comers were thrown into sharp relief against the rugged background. One was the brown-haired girl whom he had glimpsed in the thicket opposite the oak tree of the tragedy, the girl whom Della Murray had suggested to him as Faith Mor- rison. Her companion was Rogers, the motorcycle salesman. With almost a shock, Clem realized that he had almost completely for- gotten the man’s existence. Now as journey’s end. Rushing past the old lodge keeper, she chances upon the lovers enjoying a tete-a-tete. Breath- lessly she apprises them of Fernan- dez’s schemes. She wishes to depart but they detain her in recognition of the services she has rendered them. “It is hastily decided that Maria and Levardo shall hide nearby, while the girl strolls unconcernedly about the grounds apparently unafraid. Their vigil is of short duration. Pres- ently the interlopers appear. As you are about to carry off the girl, Maria and Levardo enter, frustrating your well laid plans. Levardo overpowers you, allowing your man to make his escape. Frantically you plead with Maria for mercy in your behalf, think- ing that you can easily win her over; but, she has found you out and only laughs as they lead you away to yon Bastille, to end your days in exile, with the laughter of Maria ringing in your ears — fiendish and mocking that will remain with you to the end of time. To the end, Fernandez, re- member that, to the end.” “Now you understand? Is that clear, Fernandez,—to the end?” Wilson leaned over excited, thrilled, exultant, almost exhausted. He had been unconsciously acting Maria Rosa’s part, scene for scene, line for line. Prompted by ulterior motives which even the densest might fathom, Fernandez remained motionless star- ing at him like a guard on duty, his lip slightly curled with a supercilious smile. Wilson glanced about almost wistfully, and then asked very gently as though speaking more to himself: “How was that for an old stager, not so bad was it? I’d show you artist fellows something if I was young again. Well, let’s get busy. Posi- tions, please.” Over and over they rehearsed the lines and situations until it met with his approval. Fernandez with added vigor, and smarting under the subtle rebuke, never played better. Con- scious that he had committed an irre- trievable sin in crossing Wilson, he was eager to make good. He felt in- stinctively that whatever slight de- gree of comraderie had existed be- tween them in the past was now for- he forced his way deeper into his tangled concealment, he recalled his imaginative suspicions when he had discovered the fellow at the cross roads on their way out from Warren- town. The voices of the girl and the man were coming nearer now every mo- ment. Clem ceased his efforts to find a more secure hiding place, fearing that the rustle of the bushes would betray him. Trusting to luck, he forced apart the shrubbery, and peered out. With a light spring, Rogers fin- ished his descent, and reached out a hand to steady his companion. With his first close view of the girl’s face, Clem saw that she was, indeed, of a striking type of beauty. There was something oddly appealing in the deep, brown eyes under their long lashes. Her movements suggested that she was far more at home in the ever hopelessly dead. Wilson’s words kept recurring to him unpleasantly like an ill omen: “Remember that, Fernandez, to the end;” and now for the first time he caught their full meaning. He, too, in an unguarded moment had been trapped, goaded on to self-destruction and the future looked very bleak. In the three short years spent within the confines of the walls of the studio, he had witnessed the rise and fall of many brilliant men and women, lorded over by this relent- less tyrant, whose word was law, de- nying one the right to think or act naturally unless he ' approved. Mo- mentarily lost in idle reverie, his gaze strayed over to Wilson rummaging through pages of manuscript, and for some unknown reason he pitied the man, as a person detached and alone. “Places, please,” shouted Wilson.— “Get ready. Start your action. GO! We’re going to take it this time with- out any more delay.” The steady even click of the camera grinding with automaticlike pre- cision, the pent up feeling of intensity surcharging the atmosphere, the short sharp orders given by Wilson watching the scene like a hawk, keyed the onlookers to a sense of fore- boding evil. “Thank you,” he said finally when the scene was photographed. At this moment Miss Eisendrath and the Marchioness advanced toward Wilson craving a moment’s interview which was pleasantly accorded. “May we go to luncheon?” they asked in chorus, “we’re in the next scene and it’s now 12:15.” “What’s that you say, 12:15? I thought it was around ten bells.— Sure! Run along! Don’t eat too much, Mrs. Ryan, you’re getting pretty stout even now for grand dame parts!” He laughed at his own sally, and excused the other members, ad- monishing them to be back sharply at one o’clock. The mob straggled in twos and threes. Fernandez alone lagged behind. Wilson calculated that he would, and eagerly awaited developments. By way of introduction, Fernandez strolled over to the operator’s sta- tion. smiling nonchalantly at Wilson. difficult descent than the man accom- panying her. It was apparent, too, that she and Rogers were far from strangers. Clem fancied that he caught a gleam of admiration in the man’s eyes as they rested on her face. For a moment the two were silent. And then, Rogers, drawing out a cigar, began a nervous pacing of the bank. It was he who spoke first. “I don’t like it,” he began abruptly. “There must be a way without ” “But there isn’t!” the girl inter- rupted impatiently. “If I am willing to take the risk, why should you object?” “Why?” Rogers took a step toward her, and then turned away. Clem could see that his face was working as though it was with difficulty that he mastered his emotions. He applied a fresh match to his cigar and shrugged. “Well, Governor, we’ve been a mer- ry little party this morning, haven't we? I know I acted rotten, and I’m sorry, awfully sorry, for what oc- curred. I want to apologize.” Wilson looked up hesitatingly, for a second taken completely off guard: “That’s all right, my boy, forget it! We both got rattled and lost our heads. I’m just as sorry as you are that it happened, because I had count- ed on you. I thought you were differ- ent from the rest.” Fernandez looked at him puzzled. Could it be that this rough old war- rior with the shaggy eyebrows, and bull-dog disposition really cared or was it merely another expression of his chameleonlike composition? Per- haps, after all, the old ties of friend- ship, frail as they had been, might be welded together again and made to weather another storm. Neither spoke of this hope, because they were men and void of sentiment. With a little friendly nod of his head, Fer- nandez passed quietly from the build- ing without turning to look back. Wil- son stared after him; gulped hard; wiped his nose-glasses and with a dry smile turned to Eddie: “He’s a great chap, that Fernandez, just like a big boy! Wish I had a son like him! What a matinee idol he’d make! Say, Eddie, what if we have a little smoke? The coast is clear.” Suiting the action to the word, Eddie bit the end from an oily black cigar, the Governor handed him while he applied a match to Wilson’s. “Well, Son,” the older man con- tinued settling himself back comfort- ably on the long bench against the wall, “I’m glad we at least got one scene through this morning. Hope we don’t draw a yellow-sheet on it after it’s run in the vault.” “Ish Ka Bibble,” he added, now thoroughly good humored, watching curling rings of thick blue smoke waft upward. Eddie squinted toward the door. “Say, Governor, it just struck me that we are sitting here like a couple of ‘simps’ smoking up the joint just like we owned it. If the Boss happened in — ‘Good Night, Nurse,” he’d tie a can to us. What do you say if we hike over to the corner and get a bite to eat? I’m thirsty as a hound.” "Of course, it shall be as you say. Tonight then at ten!” He broke off shortly, and whirled around. In finding a concealment Clem had been given no choice. It was not until he threw himself flat that he saw that he had chosen a ledge of loose gravel. The disastrous consequences were borne in upon him abruptly when one of his feet, seek- ing a rest from its cramped position, sent a miniature torrent of dirt and pebbles down into the water. He saw the startled glance which Rogers sent in his direction, fol- lowed by a deeper gleam as the man evidently discovered him. On the same instant Clem sprang boldly to his feet. There was a gasp from the girl below, and then Clem found himself effectually occupied with his own predicament. The stream of gravel he had dislodged was only a begin- Secret of Paint Creek (Continued from page 11)