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And then tragedy - Andthentragedy,.'s...

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And then tragedy, resulting from unethical actions and ignorance. Misfortune results from Sparser's  fraudulence. Fearful of the owner's early return, he prudently obtains the car earlier than originally  planned, but the appointed day threatens snow. Bad luck slows Sparser's race with time: freight  trains, muddy roads, bridges, minor accidents, and heavy traffic. Panic drives him from one accident  to another-from the incident involving the little girl to that of the lumber pile. By chance (or poetic  justice), Hortense's beautiful face is scraped. Finally, Clyde hopes to escape — "if the fates were  only kind." Self-love and self-interest, it is evident, extinguish fidelity and decency. At the inn, Hortense and  Sparser forsake their partners and dance together; playing on the ice, she prefers Sparser to Clyde.  Later, Sparser fearfully speeds from the scene of his accident with the little girl. When the automobile 
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