Could I have a character sketch of the con man in "Dusk"?  

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lsumner eNotes educator| Certified Educator

In the short story "Dusk," the young man who sits down on the bench next to Gortsby is a con man. The younger man is a scam artist. He tricks Gortsby out of his money.

When the younger man sits down, he begins telling Gortsby that he cannot find his way back to his hotel. Being new in town, he left his hotel to get a bar of soap. Now, he cannot remember the name of his hotel. He is lost and cannot get back to his hotel. The younger man will have to sleep out doors tonight. 

Gortsby, who prides himself on being a good judge os character, does not believe his sad tale. Gortsby would have believed it if the young man could have provided a bar of soap to corroborate his story. Feeling defeated in his tall tale, lies, the young man gets up to leave. 

As the young man goes on about his way, Gortsby just happend to see a bar of soap under the park bench. Gortsby chases after the young man and gives him his bar of soap and loans him money to stay in another hotel for the night. 

No doubt, the young man is amazed that Gortsby found a bar of soap. It is the younger man's good fortune to have told Gortsby his sad story. 

Sadly enough, Gortsby learns the truth the hard way. As he is walking past the park bench that he and the younger man had been sitting on, Gortsby notices an older gentleman looking for something:

As Gortsby walks back, he passes the bench where he had been sitting. He notices the old man who had also been sitting there earlier. The old man is now searching for something. When Gortsby asks if the old man has lost anything, the man replies, “Yes, sir, a cake of soap.”

Now, Gortsby feels foolish for believing the young man. The young man will sleep in a fine hotel tonight, but Gortsby will never see his money again.