"It is probable that my secretary has one," said Mr. Crewe, "but he hasn't called it to my attention."
"You must get in that book, Mr. Crewe," said the senator, with an intense earnestness which gave the impression of alarm; "after what you've told me to-night I'll see to it myself that you get in. It may be that I've got some of the sample pages here, if I haven't left them at home," said Mr. Grady, fumbling in an ample inside pocket, and drawing forth a bundle. "Sure, here they are. Ain't that luck for you? Listen! 'Asa P. Gray was born on the third of August, eighteen forty-seven, the seventh son of a farmer. See, there's a space in the end they left to fill up when he's elicted governor! Here's another. The Honourable Hilary Vane comes from one of the oldest Puritan families in the State, the Vanes of Camden Street--' Here's another. 'The Honourable Brush Bascom of Putnam County is the son of poor but honourable parents--' Look at the picture of him. Ain't that a handsome steel-engravin' of the gentleman?"
Mr. Crewe gazed contemplatively at the proof, but was too busy with his own thoughts to reflect that there was evidently not much poor or honourable about Mr. Bascom now.
"Who's publishing this?" he asked.
"Fogarty and Company; sure they're the best publishers in the State, as you know, Mr. Crewe. They have the State printing. Wasn't it fortunate I had the proofs with me? Tim Fogarty slipped them into me pocket when I was leavin' Newcastle. 'The book is goin' to press the day after eliction,' says he, 'John,' says he, 'you know I always rely on your judgment, and if you happen to think of anybody between now and then who ought to go in, you'll notify me,' says he. When I read the bills to- night, and saw the scope of your work, it came over me in a flash that Humphrey Crewe was the man they left out. You'll get a good man to write your life, and what you done for the town and State, and all them societies and bills, won't you? 'Twould be a thousand pities not to have it right."
"How much does it cost?" Mr. Crewe inquired.
"Sure I forgot to ask Tim Fogarty. Mebbe he has it here. I signed one myself, but I couldn't afford the steelengravin'. Yes, he slipped one in. Two hundred dollars for a two-page biography, and, three hundred for the steelengravin'. Five hundred dollars. I didn't know it was so cheap as that," exclaimed the senator, "and everybody in the State havin' to own one in self-protection. You don't happen to have a pen about you?"
Mr. Crewe waved the senator towards his own desk, and Mr. Grady filled out the blank.