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give you on Christmas?” asked Henry, “Confound it, man! I turned the queen of the Major, who was dealing, with quiet when I dealt,” said the Major. precision.
The queen? Oh, yes—to be sure. I “Colossal,” replied the Major. “Colos- fear I am very stupid.” Mr. Gately was sal, sir, and familiar."
the acme of devout contrition. The Major “Do you mean,” said I, “she gave you rumbled into silence, and the hand was the same old things, only more of them?” finished without further remark. I remem
Precisely, Madam. It is your lead ber that Mr. Gately led trumps a third time and hearts are trumps.' The Major had (he was drawing two for one, of course), turned the queen.
“ We had five kinds of but Henry took the next trick and kept pie,” he added.
on with trumps until all Mr. Gately's were I led—some small card of a plain suit gone. As it turned out, Henry had all -Mr. Gately took the trick, playing a the highest clubs; so we made four tricks. king second hand, and led the king of “I must confess," I remarked as I was hearts. I saw the Major looked puzzled, dealing, “I don't like Mrs. Buckingham's and frowned. “ Five kinds of pie !” Mr. Gately ex
"No," said Mr. Gately, assuming his claimed, mildly, as the hand went round. most Anglican accent and intonation. “Dear me ! What ill-judged benevo- "No. One can cherish for it a feeling of lence ! Then, his king having taken, he respect-of respect not unmixed with fear, led the ace and smiled.
I may say—but one cannot really like it” “What infernal carelessness !” burst (he pronounced it reelly); "it is so—er from the Major. His queen had fallen —uncompromising. I wonder what in
. upon his partner's ace.
gredients the good soul uses in its con“Oh, hardly that ! Surely the intent struction?' was manifest. Not that I defend the prac- “ Mostly asphalt,” said Henry; and at tice; but one could hardly—er—” Mr. that moment there came a knock at the Gately leaned forward as he spoke, still door. smiling, his cards clasped against his breast It was Mrs. Buckingham, and she enand his head slightly to one side.
tered with a pie in each hand. * Good
evening," she began, ponderously. "I and vestry. Mrs. Buckingham was among was sorry to have you miss my Christmas those who advocated Mr. Gately's apdinner ; but I understand, of course, that pointment, and she was by no means withfamily ties, or an invitation from the rector out influence in the congregation. of the parish—"
We played a few more hands after Mrs. Henry had risen and was offering her a Buckingham had gone, but the pies weighed seat. "You'll spoil him, Mrs. Bucking- upon our spirits and the game dragged. ham,” he said, breezily, as he took the pies Mrs. Buckingham's pies were really somefrom her. “ You
thing fearful. Bewill, indeed. Think
fore long the Major of it, Gately! Two
rose and bade us pies! Mince?"
"Good-night" and This last to Mrs.
Mr. Gately went upBuckingham. She
stairs to his room, bowed and started
to do some writing, to speak, but Hen
taking his pie with ry went right on,
him. Henry tried though he winked
to make him accept at me over his
ours, but he deshoulder. “ Two
clined. He couldn't whole pies! You're
think of it. Reelly! a lucky chap, Gate
Later, as I was ly, I must say. I see
getting ready for you understand,
bed, I heard Henry Mrs. Buckingham,
calling me softly what voracious ap
from the other petites these young
room. I came to curates
the door. He was “Only one is for
standing in the midMr. Gately, Mr.
dle of the floor, in Gray,” said Mrs.
his night-dress, Buckingham, sol.
holding the pie in emnly. “The other
both hands. “What is for you and Mrs.
are we to do with Gray. Major Haw
this?” he asked. ley was with us at
“Can't we give dinner, so I do not
it away?” I suginclude him.”
gested, in a whisper. “Yes, Madam,"
“For Heaven's said the Major, "I The Reverend Mr. Gately.
sake, dear,” he rethank you. I have
plied, in a whisper, had mine. I remember it.” And he too; “don't let's do anything criminal.” bowed with studied politeness.
Then we paused and listened. It was “ Though I do say it,” continued Mrs. really becoming uncomfortable. Buckingham, “my mince-pies are perfectly “Let's put it on the top shelf of the wholesome. They wouldn't hurt a baby.” closet,” he said, and started on tiptoe for Henry, who was leaning over the back of the closet-door. my chair, whispered, “Wouldn't know “No, no, no," I gasped, pulling him back. what struck him," and Mrs. Buckingham, "Don't! Please, don't! It would be horrid after a few inquiries of Mr. Gately about to have it there. And she might find it.” the rector's new plans and the children's “Of course," he said. “That won't festival, withdrew.
do. Aha! I have it ! I have it !” and The rector had recently accepted a call he crossed the room to the air-tight stove to another parish, and the advisability of and opened the stove-door. offering the rectorship to Mr. Gately was “Henry Gray!” I exclaimed, hoarsethen under discussion among the wardens ly. “Are you crazy? Don't do that."
“Why not?" he asked, blandly. me. For some time neither of us spoke.
"Why just think !” I said. " It will At last he sighed, wearily, and said : "Let's make a horrid
finish dressing and see what we can do." “What are you afraid of? Clinkers? " When we were dressed, and I had put said Henry. And then we looked at each on my ulster and Henry his overcoat, we other and began to giggle. From gig- started in to remove the evidence of our gling we laughed. We continued to laugh crime. The window was open; Henry, in that senseless way people will, some- umbrella in hand, was leaning far out, times, until we were almost hysterical. At while I held on to his legs, and begged last Henry exclaimed, “Oh, pshaw ! Stand him to be careful. Someone knocked at over there, where
the door. I huryou won't catch
ried Henry in, and cold.”
soon he was peer- What are you
ing cautiously out going to do?' I
into the hall. asked, breath
“Gately! You're lessly.
just the man we "Never you
want. You're an mind. There has
angel. Come in, been cowardice
quick!" He enough already.
pulled Mr. Gately Now look out."
into the room and He dashed to the
walked him to the window, opened
window. “You. it, hurled the pie
see that pie ?” out into the night
Mr.Gately seemed and closed the
puzzled and startwindow again-all
ed to speak, but before I could re
Henry wouldn't monstrate. “So
give him time. much for Buck
"You're tall," he ingh a m !” he
went on. “ You whispered, and
have a long reach. then went on, in
Take this umbrelhis ridiculous way:
la. Lean out as far “Come, come,
as you can. Mrs. come, come; give
Gray and I'll hold me your hand.
your legs. Knock What's done cannot be undone. To bed, that thing down—there's a good fellow." to bed, to bed.”
Mr. Gately murmured something about beIn the morning I heard an ejaculation ing only too glad, and we soon had him in from Henry.
He was dressing in the position. Alas! even he could not reach it. other room. Now Henry seldom uses pro- Try as he might, the pie remained undisfane language, so when I distinctly caught turbed and stolid. While he poked and the words, “Well, I'll be d-d," I ran struck and prodded with the umbrella we to the door and asked what was the mat- could hear him saying, plaintively: "I fear ter.
—yes, I fear—it is—quite futile quite fu“ Fannie,” said Henry, without turning tile." It was useless, and we pulled him -he was looking out through the window in.
—" come here." I came to him, and he Then he and Henry began to throw pointed out of doors without another word. pieces of coal at the pie ; but Mr. Gately
Just opposite the window, and some ten threw like a girl, and, besides, there were feet away, grew a large syringa bush. so many branches surrounding the thing Firmly lodged in its branches was a pie, it was almost impossible to hit it. Henry unbroken and in clear view.
did, at last, knock out a small piece of the I looked at Henry, and he looked at edge, but by this time there was so much
As I ap
coal in the garden that it was becoming, have taken just such a time to dine at as Henry said, an even worse give-away the club and come home very late. than the pie itself. We had to desist and When I returned it was dark.
I went close the window.
upstairs in fear and trembling. I remember that Mr. Gately exclaimed proached our room I heard sounds of several times : “How droll ! How very, laughter, and of what I took to be jumpvery droll !” As we left the room to go ing. I opened the door, and there was down to breakfast he laughed outright, and Henry, all alone, dancing round the room immediately apologized, adding : “But and laughing like a lunatic. reelly I can't help it—it is so very droll !" “Look out of the window," he called Before Henry went to his office I told him to me. “No. It's too dark. Never that I was going in town to do some shop- mind. Fannie, I'll tell you. It's gone." ping, and that I should not come back
“ The pie?' until after he did. He looked at me a “ Sure." moment and said : “Well, I don't blame “But how?" you.
You will find I am here when you “Removed." come back.” I have always thought this But who did it?" rather fine in Henry. Many men would “ The Duchess and 1—with a broom
and a step-ladder.” Then he burst out laughing again.
"Oh, Henry!" I gasped. “How is she?”
“ Mad. Mad as a hornet,” Henry answered, and I was amazed at his manner. It struck me as being almost triumphant. But what=” I began.
Fannie,” he said, “she thinks it was Gately's.”
And you didn't tell her?” " Tell her nothing," said Henry, and I never saw a man more brazer in my life. “Of course I didn't tell her. I guess Gately can stand it. She said she knew it was Gately's pie. Said she should never mention the matter to him - beneath her dignity, you know—but she knew it was Gately's pie. Confound it, she ought to know her own pies. How do I know it was my pie? Threw
"I fear-yes, I fear-it is a pie, broad.
-quite futile-quite fucast, in the
tile."- Page 774 night. Pie found in tree
at the gathering, next day. Not
had unaccountably necessarily my
changed from suppie. Every
port of Mr. Gately body in the
to opposition to house been
him. I was told, throwing pie,
too, that she gave for all I know.
as her reason for this sudden Come Fannie !
change her fear that, after all, Brace up!"
Mr. Gately's character was hard" He en r y
ly sufficiently formed to warrant Gray," I said,
his assuming more responsibility. “I should think
I cannot tell you how shudyou would feel
dery and depraved this made me like a crimi
feel. When Henry came home nal.” Then I laughed. And the next 1 I begged him, with tears in my eyes, to knew I was waltzing round the room with go to Mrs. Buckingham and make a clean Henry as if we were a couple of children. breast of it. Oh, dear! that's what is to associate “My dear wife,” said,“ don't bother with a man who stifles his conscience. about Gately. He told me himself, this
That very night there was an informal afternoon, that he had received a call to parish-gathering to discuss the question of a much better parish in a growing city in the new rector; and the gathering was Minnesota. He is delighted, and will followed by a meeting of the wardens and start for the West as soon as they can fill vestry, at which it was decided to call the his place here. So let's say no more about Reverend Mr. Hurstwell, of Elmira, N. Y. it. Now I have some good news for you. I heard this the next day, and also heard I am going into partnership with Blackthat Mrs. Buckingham, who was present stone-he already has a good practice,