Miss Posie [´pqVsI] Carrington [´kxrINtqn] had begun life in the small village of Cranberry Corners [´krxnbqrI ´kLnqz]. Then her name had been Posie Boggs. At the age of eighteen she had left the place and become an actress at a small theatre in a large city, and here she took the name of Carrington. Now Miss Carrington was at the height of her fame, the critics praised her, and in the next season she was going to star in a new play about country life. Many young actors were eager to partner Miss Posie Carrington in the play, and among them was a clever young actor called Highsmith [´haIsmIT].
"My boy," said Mr Goldstein [´gqVldstaIn], the manager of the theatre, when the young man went to him for advice, "take the part if you can get it. The trouble is Miss Carrington won't listen to any of my suggestions. As a matter of fact she has turned down a lot of the best imitators of a country fellow already, and she says she won't set foot on the stage unless her partner is the best that can be found. She was brought up in a village, you know, she won't be deceived when a Broadway [´brLdweI] fellow goes on the stage with a straw in his hair and calls himself a village boy. So, young man, if you want to play the part, you'll have to convince Miss Carrington. Would you like to try?" "I would with your permission," answered the young man. "But I would prefer to keep my plans secret for a while."
Next day Highsmith took the train for Cranberry Corners. He stayed three days in that small and distant village. Having found out all he could about the Boggs and their neighbours, Highsmith returned to the city...