"If you want my opinion, sir," he answered, "it is that Mr. Rathbawne would fight such a point to a standstill. He's sole owner of the mills, and he's a rich man. He has always treated his employees as if they were his own children. If they turn on him now for something which, from their experience of his character, they must know was fair and justifiable"--
"But was it?" interrupted the Governor.
"I don't know the facts, sir, but I know Peter Rathbawne," said Barclay, throwing back his head, "and I can say, with clear conviction, that it must have been. If, as you suggest, the hands go out, I think he would close down the mills for a year, and go abroad. He's a man who doesn't argue; he simply acts. I fancy there wouldn't be much opposition left by the time he wanted to reopen."
"Provided always that t