Page:Dick Hamilton's Fortune.djvu/29

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"Where is the check book ?" asked Dick. "I've always wanted to have one."

"Not so fast," continued his father, with a smile. "You must first go to the bank and be identified by the proper officials, and also leave your signature there. Then you shall have the check book, Dick. But there is another matter," and Mr. Hamilton turned to the second page of the document in his hand.

Dick's heart sank. Perhaps, after all, he was not to have the wealth with which his imagination was already building fairy castles in the air.

"In case you fail to make this paying investment," went on Mr. Hamilton, "not only do you lose control of the money for a long time, but you have to undergo a sort of penance. It is this. You will have to go and live with your Uncle Ezra Larabee at Dankville—"

"Uncle Ezra!" exclaimed Dick, and his face fell.

"Yes, your Uncle Ezra and Aunt Samanthy. You will have to remain in their charge for a certain period and attend any boarding school they may select for you. That is done to teach you the value of money, and I think, from what I know of your Uncle Ezra, it will be a good place to learn," and Mr. Hamilton smiled rather grimly.

"In order that you may fully appreciate the situation, your mother has provided," proceeded Dick's father, "that you are to spend a week with