"Did I STEAL?" I felt myself redden to the roots of my hair as well as wonder if it were more strange to put to a gentleman such a question or to see him take it with allowances that gave the very distance of his fall in the world. It is the uncrossed desert and the unclimbed ridge. Since freedom impelled, and independence inspired, and nationality exalted, a world supergovernment is contrary to everything we cherish and can have no sanction by our Republic. What if I should go straight in and march to HIS window?--what if, by risking to his boyish bewilderment a revelation of my motive, I should throw across the rest of the mystery the long halter of my boldness? This thought held me sufficiently to make me cross to his threshold and pause again.