yle Endicott is a smooth manipulator, but he's not smooth enough to save his job at a Manhattan art museum. And his talent doesn't seem to have gotten him anywhere in life. "Why not just once can something go right for me?" he wonders. Luck finally seems to shine on him when he overhears his boss, Mr. Koether, talking to one of the museum's patrons, Martha Cheney, an invalid who uses a wheelchair. She and Koether call each other by their first names, but their friendship isn't enough to persuade Miss Cheney to sell him the famous Cheney vase. Lyle realizes the heirloom is worth a lot of money -- money that can be his if he manages to insinuate himself into the old woman's life.

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