Puslapio vaizdai

the happy. Then came the last hour, the last word, the last trembling breath-and the darkness.

But the Light shineth in darkness.

The old house with all its tender associations passed into the hands of strangers. It passed from the face of the earth and the sight of men years ago; but the loving memory of the place rests in the heart of one woman to-day. Chloe sought and found a new home and Delphine claimed Katey for her own, bearing her away to the distant city where she had reigned a pretty, capricious, but warm-hearted and indulgent queen, in society as well as her own family, for a dozen years.

"Perhaps you will live with me some day," she had said once to assuage Katey's childish grief; little dreaming that the words would prove a prophecy, fulfilled through more bitter tears than those which had wet the little face at the prospect of Delphine's marriage.

It had been autumn and winter while the mother was passing away-the very season taking on something of the gloom and heaviness of the sad young heart that waited and watched so helplessly. The spring bloomed out in Delphine's city home like a promise of happier days. Hope and even joy will return though we think they are banished forever; and the late summer of that year brought, if not flowers to Katey, yet a certain freshness and something like bloom which showed that life was not meant to be so dreary and forlorn as she had believed it would be only a little time before.

Again the autumn and the winter passed by and she had become accustomed to the new life, which in its ease and luxury was so unlike the old, but which must always hold one place unfilled. They had come down to the sea, Mrs. Estemere, Katey and Launce, Delphine's boy, a long way from their city home to spend the summer months. The Durants had taken a house close by, just across the gravelly carriage way and strip of lawn dotted with flower plots which ran before the cottages, -in the last of which they were domiciled, -from the hotel to the cliff. It was a hot, breathless morning with the sun hanging like a globe of fire over the shining sea and glistening sands. Katey had descended. late, to find Delphine already gone for her bath. Calamity, the colored waiter from the hotel, had brought in the breakfast and was making the coffee now in the little

butler's pantry, out of the toy diningroom. She pulled up the blinds and seated herself before the table set out in the baywindow which framed a picture, shifting as the views of a magic lantern. A straggling honeysuckle branch crowded with blossoms barred her vision, while beyond, below the cliff, the yellow sand stretched out far as the eye could see, alive with bath


Some one ran hastily up the steps from the beach and passed the window. It was Delphine in a pink morning-dress, her hair twisted up loosely under her wide-rimmed hat, but falling in damp, crinkling waves down upon one cheek. Fresh and sweet to look at as a young girl she was, though she had been wife and mother for a dozen years or more now.

"Whom do you think I met this morning?" She stood before the table eating strawberries from the glass dish encircled with cool, green leaves, just before her, picking them up one by one with her pinktipped fingers. How did Katey know? The Russian minister,, perhaps, in his drosky, after whom in any other place but this, where common things only were strange and unlooked for, the boys would have run in the street; or Mrs. Col. Cuyler with her hideous black dwarf in the rumble of her phaeton; or―

"Dacre Home !”

"Ah?" but Katey's face showed only a passing interest. "Here is Calamity with the coffee. Was ever misfortune more welcome?"

"But you remember him?" persisted Mrs. Estemere, when she had unloosed the little silk scarf tying her hat under her chin and was seated opposite her sister.

"Oh, yes!" There flashed upon Katey's mind a recollection of the morning when she ran down Poplar street followed by poor quaking Ben, when Dacre stood upon the steps over the way and saw him enter the great gate after her. He told of it, she knew. It was he who informed the officers. That was a dozen and more years ago; but again she was thrilled with indignation at the thought.

"How childish!" she added, in a moment to herself. "It was probably accidental after all. I suppose I should hardly know him now," she said aloud

[ocr errors]

He went away to school when we were both quite young, and I never chanced to meet him afterwards."

"I am sure you would. I recognized him at once," Delphine rejoined hastily. She

was evidently pleased by this unexpected rencontre; "and I asked him to call." Katey laid down her fork. "How could you?"

66 How could I avoid it? Besides I was thoroughly glad to see him. We knew him when we were children. It was for you, dear. What do you mean? I thought you would be pleased." Then she drew a frightened breath, and stared at the innocent blossoms that had thrust their pink | faces in at the open window. "I fear I ought not to have asked him after all. What have we heard? What were the stories? Some affair at college-"

"He never finished his course, I believe," Katey replied. "He was expelled, or left under suspicion. I don't know the story, I could not ask Jeanie, but there was something."

"Then what did he appear to me for!" exclaimed Mrs. Estemere in real vexation. "Why do such people always come up when you least expect them and have had no time to decide upon how they ought to be received?"

"Very likely you'll never see him again," suggested Katey consolingly.


Oh, yes, I will; I shall meet him the first time I leave the house; and he will call, I know. I saw it in his face. He seemed quite overcome by the invitation. Poor fellow! I suppose nobody is glad to see him. Perhaps it is not so bad after all. Such stories are always exaggerated," she added, anxious to find some point of comfort in what appeared now an awkward dilemma. "But I cannot allow you to meet him; not at least until I learn something more. And, as you say, we may never see him again."

At night Calamity came down from the hotel with a steaming kettle in one hand and a plate of toast wrapped in a napkin in the other, running back for the butter and a dish of berries with which he marked his course the length of the carriage way, and again for the shrimps and cresses. The bustle was over at last, the tea served, the tea-things cleared away, and Katey had gone up to her room to write a note to Jack. She would run over to Josie Durant's and enclose it in her semi-weekly letter presently when it was finished. She was writing the last word when she heard a step outside upon the gravel, then a voice and a movement down below upon the veranda. She sprang up, urged by curiosity; the letter upon her knee fluttered

[ocr errors]

down to the floor. But she was too late, the roof of the veranda screened the visitor from her sight, whoever he might be. The voice had sounded strange in her ear, but Delphine would send for her if it were one of the many acquaintances whom the pretty mistress of the little buff cottage had gathered about her here.

It must be Dacre, Katey thought, when the hot, still twilight settled into a breathless darkness, and yet no summons came. She groped about in vain for a light. Where was Dobry?-Delphine's maid. She had forgotten to leave a candle. She found her way at last to the open window again. Something slipped under her foot. It was the note to Jack. Josie would mail her letter without it now, believing she had not written. It was a pretty little cottage, this which they had taken for the summerall gables and dormer-windows, and creamcolored peaks and points, glaringly bright and dazzling under a mid-day sun. to-night, with no breeze from the sea, the chambers were hot and stifling, and it was double torment to be shut up like a prisoner here throughout the whole long evening. Mrs. Estemere looked in on her way to

bed. "What, still in is quite too bad.


Then it was stepped out of the of light from the hand.


the dark, Katey? This Where is Dobry?" Dacre?" And Katey shadows into the circle candle in Delphine's

"Yes; and you might have come down after all. Still, I am not sorry," she added thoughtfully, seeming to drop out of the present moment into the past hour again, of which Katey had heard only the murmur of voices. "He has told me a great deal about himself; and I think he has been abused."

"Perhaps so." Katey spoke indifferently. She knew nothing of the story. Still her prejudices were against him. Something within her rose up and joined his accusers.

"He is coming again," Delphine said as she was leaving the room. "That is, if he does not go away at once." Then she set down her candle and kissed Katey good night. And a new chapter had begun already in Katey's life, though she knew nothing of it.

The summer twilight was like a storylike a beautiful old story read to the accompaniment of music, with the great farspreading, luminous sea before the eyes and the dull, hushed noise of the surf rol

"Some one of the gentlemen up at the hotel, I suppose. Which?"

"No, Missy: a strange gem'man. I nebber seen him 'fore, shore's I lib. A young, dark-like gem'man."

The flowers dropped out of her hand. Dacre had heard her remark then, the evening before. How impertinent! to come to the window. She rose and took hold of the tassel of the shutter-cord. The string

ling in upon the ear, as though some fearful dragon of ancient times lay bound and moaning upon the shore. Straggling carriages filled with gaily dressed people toiled home across the sands. Young men and maidens trooped by along the cliffan endless procession. Year after year the sea heard a story more beautiful than that of the twilight-whispered softly, or shouted aloud by happy voices, shrill and gay; the story of youth, and love, and summer-caught: it fell with a crash at last. "Don't time. The voices, the forms, the faces may change; but the story will go on while the world stands, and the sea crouches upon the shore to listen.

leave it so again, I am sure it is not safe,” she said, and passed on into the little drawing room to wait for Delphine.

"How nice it was of him!" Mrs. Estemere exclaimed when Katey had told the story, even to the chance encounter of the night before.

Katey, tall and slight, and holding up her white gown caught here and there with black ribbons, stepped out from the veranda. The little strip of lawn was wet with "I think it was impertinent," Katey redew which might have blown in from the plied. She remembered him as a boy with sea, so salt it was; the cupid's bow set in his haughty, supercilious ways. How he the grass flamed with scarlet geraniums. had looked down upon and scorned them "Allow me, if it is a nosegay you want," all then! That time was as fresh and said a young man who had followed her, vivid to her mind as when they lived moving languidly down the steps. But it. Why had he come now to act a difKatey was already bending over the flow-ferent part? Circumstances had changed; ers. "Don't disturb yourself, Mr. Vose, I was looking for heliotropes; but there are none I see," and she rose again. Some one coming up from the cliff turned at the sound of her fresh, sweet voice-a young man whose eyes met hers. Dark eyes they were, set tolerably near each other in a dark, smooth face. For an instant she stood quite still, holding the white drapery about her, some recollection struggling in her mind, the darkening space behind her, the bright flowers at her feet; then he had raised his hat and passed on. Delphine was right, she knew him now, it was Dacre Home, though for a moment his face had been strange to her. where had he been all this time? A week had passed since he came to win Mrs. Estemere's good opinion. He was evidently in no haste to follow up his victory.


but they had not changed. Dobry came down with Launce and they passed out to the breakfast-table. It was Mrs. Estemere who gathered up the despised flowers at last, put them in water and set them out in the drawing-room. "Why should it not be?" she had said to herself, thinking of Katey and Dacre and looking far into the future with a woman's hasty catching at possibilities.


He had won upon her sympathies,-by no means a difficult matter of attainment, for Delphine was tender-hearted and unsuspicious; he was undeniably well-born, as we Americans reckon good birth, having had a grandfather of whom it was safe to speak even in polite society. His family had prospered and increased in wealth since the old days in Poplar street, where their name was remembered now to point more than one story of success; he had been wild and reckless in his life, though she said the words to herself the blessed innocence of the woman's mind clothed them with but vague meaning,— still he would turn, he would change, and he had only to repent to be received like the prodigal son with music and dancing, with feasting and gifts in his father's house. And when all these results were brought about, what could be more desirable for Katey, who was growing restless under her "No; for de young lady-for you, Missy." | idle, unaccustomed life, and was planning,

She was down before Delphine the next morning. What was this upon her plate? -a loose knot of wet, heavy-scented heliotropes. "Mr. Vose;" she said. And yet he was not accustomed to be abroad at such an early hour, she knew. Calamity came shambling in from the pantry at her call, ducking his head by way of obeisance. "A young gem'man passin' de winder when I's settin' out de table lay it jus' dar," he explained.

"For Mrs. Estemere?"

even so soon to go away and do for herself. Proud, foolish Katey! who could not take even from Delphine and Jack, dearly as she loved them, what they were only too happy to bestow upon her.


The wind changed towards night. The sky shut down upon the sea and the fog came driving in heavy and thick. Down upon the shore the dragon roared and chafed at his chains. The beach was deserted, the cliff bare of strollers as Katey sprang out of the low phaeton at the door of the cottage, her pretty violet gown drenched, her hair, heavy and damp, falling upon her neck, her arms filled with great creamy lilies. The drive across the country with the wet wind in her face had brought a new light to her eyes, a new deep red to her cheeks. Good night," called Josie Durant, gathering up the reins and turning the heads of her ponies. Josie's gown, gray and glistening, held its own. despite the fog-her hair, too, bound up tight and smooth, knew no change. Our very outward adorning takes on something of our inner nature, and Josie, calm, unruffled, self-contained, would have passed through a fiery furnace unscathed. So it seemed to poor, foolish, impulsive Katey, who from gown to heart reflected every beam of sunshine about her or was wrapped in every cloud.

Some one rose as she paused in the drawing-room door, her hat with its wreath of lilies sliding down to her feet. "Ah!" she gasped. She was not nice for company. That was her first thought. Her hat in its descent had caught the comb which held her hair. "Sabrina !" Dacre uttered under his breath.

You remember Dacre, I am sure," was Delphine's more common-place greeting, trying to put them upon familiar terms at once by this frank use of his name.

Katey answered coldly, bowing formally as she passed on, at which Delphine stared. It is hard when one has arranged a play

and begins to pull the strings to find that the puppets throw out an arm instead of a foot or, worse still, turn their backs upon each other. But to Katey it was a charade in which she was to improvise her own part, only unfortunately she and Delphine had not chosen the same word. There was an awkward moment, then Dacre excused himself and went away.


"Why did you do so?" said Mrs. Estemere when he had gone. "Why should you not be kind and pleasant to him?" Why should I?" Katey replied with a jarring chord in her voice, "he was anything but kind and pleasant to us when we were children."

"Good gracious! Katey. You don't mean that you have laid anything by to bring up against him after all these years?" Delphine looked at her as though Katey had developed the spirit of a Lucretia Borgia. "No-o," Katey replied slowly. "But I wish he would go away.'

"I am afraid that is a very wicked spirit," said Mrs. Estemere severely. Her quickly devised scheme seemed toppling to the ground already.

"I don't know; I don't wish him any harm, I am sure," Katey replied in a softer voice. "I should be glad to know he was doing well. But I should prefer it to be a great way off." Then she laughed, bending over Delphine and giving her a kiss. "It is silly and childish, I know,' she added, "and I'll do differently another time, since you wish it."

"Perhaps there will not be another time," replied Delphine rather coldly; "His stay is extremely uncertain. He said to-night that he ought to go."

"Then why don't he?" Katey rejoined quickly. "I'm sure we are not keeping him."

"He has other friends here, I presume." "Very likely;" and then Katey went on arranging her lilies, and nothing more was said of their visitor.

(To be continued.)


THE education of women is, no doubt, a hackneyed theme. It may be quite impossible to say anything that is absolutely new about it, and very difficult to say what is certainly true. But the public mind is now deeply interested in this and kindred topics. The atmosphere is alive and vocal with them. The age is instinct with them. The world is full of them. It is, therefore, a good time to discuss the subject. And one who holds a relation of trust and responsibility to one "Woman's College," one Female Seminary," and one Young Ladies' Institute," while he has devoted his life to the work of an educator, may be pardoned for having some opinions on the Higher Education of Woman, and wishing to give them utterance.



We are confronted at the outset by the question of the co-education of the sexes; for if the sexes are to be educated in all respects alike, and educated together, the question is not only greatly simplifiedit is substantially settled. The course is already marked out. The curriculum is determined. The colleges and professional schools are at hand, sufficiently numerous, with large endowments, and prescribed studies, combining the science of the present with the wisdom of past ages; and all that is necessary is to open the doors to women and let them come in.


were willing the experiment should be tried, not only in the West, where, as at Athens, ti kainoteron, something newer, is always the motto, but (where it is quite another question) in conservative New England, in old Massachusetts, and tried here under the most favorable circumstances, in one of the youngest colleges, where Christian principle has perhaps the fullest sway over the students, and where the faculty are not afraid of new things, simply because they are new, but have always endeavored to act on the apostolic precept: Prove all things, hold fast that which is good." But we expected the experiment to fail, even under these circumstances. Do you ask why? Not because we do not believe there are many young women who are fully capable of competing with young men in the studies of the existing college curriculum. Facts prove the contrary. Not chiefly because we fear the effect on the morals of the young men. On the contrary, I am inclined to believe their morals and manners would be improved by association with the other sex. If the experiment were really and permanently successful, it would be one of the most hopeful methods of exorcising from our colleges some barbarous customs that have come down from the dark ages, and introducing the courtesies and refinements of Christian civilization. I am not, however, without some misgivings on this point, when I observe how blindly young women, in some of our so-called woman's colleges, ape the follies of young men in theirs. And when I see how bad women have sometimes corrupted the morals of schools and of courts, the manners of society, and the taste in literature and art, I must confess that the experiment would be attended with great hazards, and I am far from looking for the millennium in our colleges as a probable result of the admission of young women. Not, however, chiefly for these reasons did we expect the experiment to fail, but for the same reason that we expect the woman suffrage movement to be à failure, viz.: Because women-women generally-the truest, purest, and best of the sex-do not wish for the right of suffrage, and that because their unerring instincts and intuitions tell them they would lose more than * A discourse delivered at the late anniversary of they would gain by the change, because Mount Holyoke Seminary. their good sense and right-feeling teach

For myself, I have no prejudice against co-education. On the contrary, I am free to say that, when the question of opening Amherst College for the reception of women was under discussion, I was in favor of trying the experiment. And it is not telling tales out of school (for it is not a matter which any of us wish to conceal), when I add, that my colleagues in the faculty were generally of the same sentiment. We were willing to try the experiment. But we were overruled by the trustees and the students, who, being either more conservative or less gallant than the faculty, combined against us, and, of course, outnumbered us. Truth requires me to add that we did not expect the experiment to succeed. We believe in fair play. We believe in giving everybody a fair chance, and everything that holds out any promise or prospect of good, a fair trial.

So we

« AnkstesnisTęsti »