THE FINANCIER 
was anxious to study. When Aileen entered he motioned 
her to it, which was also ominous to her, and said, "Sit 
down there." 
She took the seat, not knowing what to make of his 
procedure. On the instant her promise to Cowperwood 
to deny everything, whatever happened, came back to 
her. If her father was about to attack her on that score, 
he would get no satisfaction, she thought. He would not 
get any ! She owed it to Frank. Her pretty, nonplussed 
face strengthened and hardened on the instant. Her fine, 
white teeth set in two even rows; and her father saw quite 
plainly that she was consciously bracing herself for an 
attack of some kind. He feared by this that she was 
guilty, and he was all the more distressed, ashamed, out- 
raged, made wholly unhappy. He fumbled in the left- 
hand pocket of his coat, which never fitted him very well, 
and drew forth from among the various papers the fatal 
communication so cheap in its physical texture. His 
big fingers fumbled almost tremulously as he fished the 
letter-sheet out of the small envelope and unfolded it 
without saying a word. Aileen watched his face and his 
hands, wondering what it could be that he had here, 
uncertain whether to expect the worst or some foolish, 
friendly communication. She was steeling herself to meet 
his glance, while he was fixing himself to put into practice 
his usual tactic of watching her face as she read what he 
was going to show her. He handed the paper over, small 
in his big fist, and said, " Read that." 
Aileen took it, and for a second was relieved to be able 
to lower her eyes to the paper. Her relief vanished in a 
second, when she realized how in a moment she would 
have to raise them again and look him in the face. 
DEAR SIR,—This is to warn you that your daughter Aileen is 
running around with a man that she shouldn't—Frank A. Cowper- 
wood, the banker. If you don't believe it, watch the house at 931 
North Tenth Street. Then you can see for yourself. 
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