The Marionettes

The policeman was standing at the corner of Twenty-fourth Street and a prodigiously dark alley near where the elevated railroad crosses the street. The time was two o’clock in the morning; the outlook a stretch of cold, drizzling, unsociable blackness until the dawn. A man, wearing a long overcoat, with his hat tilted down in front, and carrying something in one hand, walked softly but rapidly out of the black alley. The policeman accosted him civilly, but with the assured air that is linked with conscious authority. The hour, the alley’s musty reputation, the pedestrian’s haste, the burden he carried—these … Continue reading The Marionettes

The Dream

By O.Henry This was the last piece that O. Henry ever produced. After his demise, the incomplete manuscript that he had been working on for  was discovered in his room, on the dusty desk where it had been left. The story of the dream takes place in a jail, where the protagonist, Murray, is awaiting his execution at eight o’clock that evening. The event is shown as taking place in the dream. When we first encounter Murray in the dream, he is interacting with an ant as a toy. The ant is moving about on a sheet of paper, and … Continue reading The Dream


By O. Henry Because of his links to the criminal underworld, Jimmy Valentine only had to serve a little over 10 months of a sentence that was supposed to last for four years. He goes to the flat he had previously lived in, packs up his equipment, and then departs. In the weeks that followed, more robberies involving cash were carried out, and the police officer, Ben Price, who was responsible for landing Valentine in prison in the first place, was assigned to work on the new case. He has come to the conclusion that Jimmy is responsible for the … Continue reading A RETRIEVED REFORMATION

The Gift of Magi

by O. Henry Story in a nutshell: Della Young realises on Christmas Eve that she only has $1.87 to buy a present for her husband Jim. Madame Sofronie, a neighbouring hairdresser, buys Della’s long hair for $20. Della then spends the money to buy Jim’s platinum pocket watch a beautiful chain. Della tells Jim when he gets home from work that she sold her hair to buy him the chain. Jim presents Della with a set of beautiful combs that she will be unable to use until her hair grows back. Della hands Jim the watch chain, and he explains … Continue reading The Gift of Magi


Short Story by O.Henry ‘Hearts and Hands’ features a surprising twist when readers finish the story. A lady named Miss Fairchild is sitting on a train from Denver to the east when two men take the seat facing her. The lady is obviously acquainted with one of the men, and they begin talking immediately. At Denver there was an influx of passengers into the coaches on the eastbound B. & M. express. In one coach there sat a very pretty young woman dressed in elegant taste and surrounded by all the luxurious comforts of an experienced traveler. Among the newcomers … Continue reading HEARTS AND HANDS