The Store Boy
By Horatio Alger, Jr.

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Public Domain Books

Chapter XXXVI - A Letter From Rose Gardiner

Ben resumed his place as the secretary and confidential clerk of Mrs. Hamilton. He found his position more agreeable when Mrs. Hill and Conrad were fairly out of the house. In place of the first a pleasant-faced German woman was engaged, and there were no more sour looks and sneering words.

Of course Ben kept up a weekly correspondence with his mother. He did not tell her the extent of his good fortune–he wished that to be a surprise, when the time came. From his mother, too, he received weekly letters, telling him not unfrequently how she missed him, though she was glad he was doing so well.

One day beside his mother’s letter was another. He did not know the handwriting, but, looking eagerly to the end, he saw the name of Rose Gardiner.

“What would Rose say,” Ben asked himself, “if she knew that I am worth four thousand dollars?”

The money had been paid to Ben, and was deposited in four different savings banks, till he could decide on a better investment. So he was quite sure of having more than enough to pay off the mortgage and redeem the cottage.

“Since mother is worrying, I must write and set her mind at rest,” he decided.

He wrote accordingly, telling his mother not to feel anxious, for he had wealthy friends, and he felt sure, with their help, of paying off the mortgage. “But don’t tell anybody this,” he continued, “for I want to give the squire and Mr. Kirk a disagreeable surprise. I shall come to Pentonville two days before, and may stay a week.”

He had already spoken to Mrs. Hamilton about having this week as a vacation.


Chapter I - Ben Barclay Meets a Tramp  •  Chapter Ii - Ben and His Mother  •  Chapter III - Mrs. Barclay’s Callers  •  Chapter IV - Unpleasant Business  •  Chapter V - Professor Harrington’s Entertainment  •  Chapter VI - Two Young Rivals  •  Chapter VII - the Tramp Makes Another Call  •  Chapter VIII - Squire Davenport’s Financial Operation  •  Chapter IX - A Prospect of Trouble  •  Chapter X - Ben Goes to New York  •  Chapter XI - the Madison Avenue Stage  •  Chapter XII - Ben’s Luck  •  Chapter XIII - A Startling Event  •  Chapter XIV - Ben Shows Himself a Hero  •  Chapter XV - Ben Loses His Place  •  Chapter XVI - Ben Finds Temporary Employment  •  Chapter XVII - What the Letter Contained  •  Chapter XVIII - Farewell to Pentonville  •  Chapter XIX - a Cool Reception  •  Chapter XX - Entering Upon His Duties  •  Chapter XXI - At the Theater  •  Chapter XXII - a Mysterious Letter  •  Chapter XXIII - Ben’s Visit to Thirty-First Street  •  Chapter XXIV - Ben On Trial  •  Chapter XXV - Conrad Takes a Bold Step  •  Chapter XXVI - Mr. Lynx, the Detective  •  Chapter XXVII - The Telltale Ticket  •  Chapter XXVIII - Mrs. Hill’s Malice  •  Chapter XXIX - Some Unexpected Changes  •  Chapter XXX - Ben “Goes West”  •  Chapter XXXI - Mr. Jackson Receives a Call  •  Chapter XXXII - Ben Sells the Farm  •  Chapter XXXIII - Good News  •  Chapter XXXIV - Conrad Goes Into Wall Street  •  Chapter XXXV - Turning the Tables  •  Chapter XXXVI - A Letter From Rose Gardiner  •  Chapter XXXVII - Ben’s Visit to Pentonville  •