Lash of Destiny (1916)

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This melodrama starring Gertrude McCoy begins with that old premise of the country girl in the big city -- tired even in 1917 -- but only uses it as a springboard for other plot complications. Myra Fielding (McCoy) is a village schoolteacher who goes to New York in an attempt to make enough money for her father's operation. She winds up borrowing the needed funds from Al Wayne (Arthur Housman), who does not reveal he is married, and that the money belongs to his wife. Myra's admirer from back home, Bert Temple (Duncan McRae), has followed her to the city, and when he finds her with Wayne, he denounces her. Wayne is supposedly killed during a train trip to Chicago, and his wife gets a job in the same office where Temple is now working. The two fall in love and marry. But five years later, when Temple has become a district attorney, Wayne shows up again to blackmail his wife. Myra, who is trying to make amends for her dealings with Wayne, begs him to leave his wife alone. Mrs. Temple becomes involved in the argument and Wayne is shot. Myra, believing that Mrs. Temple killed him, tries to take the blame, but it turns out that the fatal shot came from an upstairs window, and the real killer confesses.