« AnkstesnisTęsti »
"Heavens! that will be a fearful moment. I tremble at the thought."
I'll help you and take all the
Amid a good deal of bantering, however, the list was com- | given your heart to another, and that I will not consent to pleted; though I took good care not to let them see my writing. take an unwilling bride." The next morning I sought the shrubbery, hoping to meet Helen, and I was not disappointed. How beautiful she looked as the morning sun beamed brightly on her fair brow, round which her luxuriant hair hung in spiral ringlets. She had on a simple white morning dress, a plain cottage bonnet and a shawl thrown loosely over her shoulders. If she had wished to captivate me, instead of the reverse, she could not have chosen a more becoming dress.
"Then run away with Harry. blame."
"No, no," she said, shaking her head; "I cannot do that; it would pain my mother more than anything I could do; and she has always been a kind, indulgent parent to me." "What is to be done, then?"
Harry will be here shortly," she said, her pale cheeks glowing with a faint blush; "had we not better consult him?" "Most wise and provident cousin," I said, laughing; "I think we had-perhaps he is not far off; had you not better go and see if you can find him?"
I had half determined in my mind to resign all pretensions to her hand. But then again I thought what right had I to do so? I had no right, certainly; but then I could not contemplate a girl of her delicate feeling being tied for life to such a coarse fellow, without seeing that it would cause her a life's unhappiness. I knew that I had acted throughout this adven- She tripped off, and soon returned with Fielding. From his ture in the most unwarrantable manner; but after due considera- excited manner it was evident Helen had told him all. He took tion I determined to run the risk, and do one good act and my hand, and shook it warmly, but joy seemed to have deprived make these two happy if I could not secure happiness for my-him of utterance. Joining their hands, I said, "Take her, Mr. Fielding; and may you prove worthy of such a treasure."
"My dear cousin," I said, as soon as I met her, "I have made up my mind what course I ought to pursue in this affair, and I will be frank with you-I trust you will do the same by me. My window was partially open the other night and I overheard some of your conversation. Who is the gentleman ?" "Harry Fielding."
I thought as much! You will pardon me if I ask you. Are you married to him?"
"No," she said, blushing.
"Forgive me if I cause you pain by these questions; but is he an honorable man?''
"Yes," ," she said, with dignity; "most unquestionably so." "Has your mamma any objection to him beyond that of your engagement with me?"
"Have you anything more you wish to confide in me?'' "Nothing-you know all."
"Then I shall release you from your engagement; and you may tell Mr. Fielding that he will find no enemy in me; but on the contrary, I will be your active and faithful ally." "Dear, good Charles! generous man, in thus releasing me, you have given me back my life. God has heard my prayers How I prayed that you might hate me." "Then your prayers have not been heard, for I love you very sincerely; but although perhaps you do not suspect it, I love your sister better."
Helen seized my hands, exclaiming, You have removed load from my heart. How shall I ever be able to show my gratitude?"
"By not divulging to any one the secret I have now confided to you."
"Never!" she said, emphatically.
I experienced an ineffable pleasure, greater, in fact, than I can describe, in thus making these two lovers happy, that more than 1ecompensed me for the risk I ran. The only thing that marred my joy was the thought that perhaps the real Simon Pure might come and topple down the whole fabric I had so ingeniously built. What a position I had placed this poor girl in ! Was I warranted in thus raising hopes that might be crushed in a day, and her position rendered more painful if the blow should fall? Alas! these reflections came, like all mine, too late; the wheel was now in motion, and I could not stop it.
When the first rush of feeling was over, Helen turned to me and said, "How shall I break this to my mother? She considers the fulfilment of this engagement as the last dying request of my father, and with her his wishes are sacred."
"Leave that to me; I will set off immediately and leave a letter cancelling our engagement."
"Oh, no! do not think of such a thing; you are already a great favorite with mamma; and if any one can persuade her to consent it is you."
"Then let us go to her at once and confess all. I will tell her that I have discovered "that you have
"Amen!" he said, emphatically; and Helen threw her arms round him and sobbed on his shoulder.
At this moment I was startled by the voice of Mrs. Rowcroft saying, "Charles! what is this I see?" and turning round I saw my aunt pale with anger and surprise.
Helen," she said, very calmly; "go to your room and "No, my dear aunt," I said, interrupting her; "let Helen stay-I will explain."
"Mamma!" exclaimed Helen, beseechingly.
I commenced very calmly by saying, "My dear aunt, we cannot always command our affections-nature more often than not rebels against parental authority. Helen has placed her affections on another, and I am in a similar position. Would you make us both unhappy? No, I am sure your heart is too good for that. After due deliberation, I have resigned my pretensions to the hand of Helen; and, all that is wanting to cron the earthly joys of a daughter who truly loves you, is your blessing on their union."
I saw that she was much moved; and she covered her face with her hands. I therefore said, solemnly, "Ah! my dear aunt, if my dear uncle's spirit could now be present with us, I doubt not but he would give them his blessing."
"What will your father say?-he alone can release me from this engagement."
"Leave that to me. I am of age, and therefore can judge for myseif, and I refuse to carry out this engagement. Our afafections we cannot bestow at the will of parents. You, I am
sure, will not mar your daughter's happiness for life; and I am sure my father will consent."
Helen, who, with that quick instinct that women possess, saw that her mother was swayed by conflicting emotions, threw herself at her feet, and sobbed convulsively. Mrs. Rowcroft was a woman of tender feeling, and she, too, burst into tears, and, raising her daughter from the ground, clasped her to her
While mother and daughter were mingling their tears, I was somewhat infected with the same complaint; and when Mrs. Rowcroft took Helen's hands, and placed them in Fielding's, at the same time giving them her blessing, I don't expect his eyes were particularly dry. I had a strong inclination to clasp Mrs. Rowcroft to my heart, and hug her, too, but my modesty prevented me. The old lady looked so happy, that I confess I never was so sorely tempted to kiss a lady of fifty either before or since.
What a day of happiness was this! Frank threw up his cap in the exuberance of his joy, and wondered what on earth they could all see to cry about. Julia was much agitated when her mother told her of the éclaircissement; but a sweet smile struggled through her tears, as the sun through the showers of April, when her mother spoke of my conduct in the affair. Mrs. Rowcroft certainly did not throw a veil over my merits; on the contrary, I am afraid she was rather extravagant in her praise; and Helen called down blessings on my head till I was positively ashamed of myself. The consciousness that, however questionable my conduct really was, and however it might hereafter act on myself and my passionate love for Julia, I could not be charged with selfishness; and that two persons at least would have cause to bless my visit, made me feel that come what would, I should never repent my share in the transaction.
Helen was now altogether a different person. She seemed to have lost that weight of care which had hitherto held in check the flow of joyous mirth which was natural to her.
We were visited shortly after breakfast by the Barnes's-the Mr. and Mrs. Barnes and two daughters whom I had Grecianized over night to Julia's discomfort and annoyance.
"Then it was an act of incendiarism?" "Oh, no," said Mrs. Barnes; "it was a hoax." "A hoax!" exclaimed my aunt; "I thought you said it was a fire."
'Why, no," interrupted Mrs. Barnes; "I told you it was not the fire, but the water that did all the mischief. Poor Mrs. Stubbington was nearly suffocated by it, and the uproar frightened Mrs. Ashley so much, that she was confined this morning at three o'clock; and Goody Blackman sprained her ankle going to see it. But the magistrates meet to-morrow to investigate the affair, so we shall soon get to the bottom of the mystery."
All this did not argue well for a peaceful dénouement to our last night's frolic. I began to see that we had placed ourselves in an awkward position, and wished myself well out of it.
E are going over to see our old friend, Mr. Ransome, nephew," said Mrs. Rowcroft, as soon as breakfast was over; "will you go? I should be pleased for you to make his acquaintance; he's an excellent man, and truly amiable."
Judge of my embarrassment at this proposal. I did not know what to However, one thing was certain, I could not go with them to visit my uncle; - so I stammered out an excuse, saying I must decline the honor, as I had to write to my father.
"Oh, you can leave that till we come back," said Julia. "I must insist on your going, for we have to cross the river; and I may perhaps require your assistance again."
"Indeed, my dear cousin, I must refuse. Another time I shall be most happy."
Julia pouted, and the rest expressed their disappointment; but nevertheless I succeeded, and they all started, leaving me alone in my glory.
Mrs. Barnes, or, as she delighted to be called, the rector's lady, was one of those persons who, when they have anything to communicate, never rest till they have found some one into The day flew on. I was in such a dreamy state of happiness whose ear they can pour the secret which they are dying to rethat I forgot the abyss that yawned before me; I could not get veal.. On this particular occasion Mrs. Barnes's visit had a two- up my heart to tear myself away from the society of her I fold object. She had heard of my arrival, and was dying to see loved; I dare not think of what might, and probably would be what sort of a creature I was, so that she might communicate the end of this adventure. The bright star of hope beamed on the result of her examination, with a full account of my per-me, and notwithstanding the daily peril I must encounter if I sonal appearance, and sundry comments thereon, to all the stayed, something seemed to tell me that all would yet end families of her acquaintance; and also to give my aunt a full well. and particular account of the great hoax which had been played off on the united villages of Rodington and Hingham.
The first thing after the mutual salutations had been got through, Mrs. Barnes asked my aunt if she had heard of the great fire last night.
"No," said Mrs. Rowcroft; "where was it?"
"A most extraordinary thing!-a most scandalous affair!" said Mrs. Barnes.
Frank and I exchanged glances.
"How did it occur?" asked my aunt.
"It was occasioned by two gentlemen riding through the village. I suppose they called themselves gentlemen," she said, emphatically; "but I should call them blackguards." "Dear me, it's very singular," replied Mrs. Rowcroft; "did it do much damage?"
"Oh dear, yes! it resulted in the total destruction of Mrs. Stubbington's flower garden, and nearly killing the poor woman herself."
"I hope her life is not in danger," said Frank, with some alarm.
"Oh, no! She's quite recovered now; but Dr. Vial said it was a wonder she was not poisoned."
I was seated in the library in the afternoon, when a servant entered, and requested me to step down, as there was a gentleman jnst arrived, who was making a great disturbance in the hall; and he thought he was either deranged or intoxicated.
I cannot exactly describe my feelings when I entered the dining-room, to see the veritable cousin Charles seated before me. His face was flushed, his dress disordered, and he showed all the signs of being in an advanced state of inebriation. Any one could have knocked me down with a feather. I felt, however, that now the tug of war was come, and that I must either put on a bold front, or be driven ignominiously from the house. I therefore, assuming a severe and dignified countenance, said, "Well, my friend, what is your pleasure?"
"Halloo! old fellow," he exclaimed, in a somewhat inarticulate manner, "what are you doing here?"
you haven't the im
And what are you doing here in this state?" I said, evading his question; "you surely would not present yourself before Mrs. Rowc oft in your present condition?'' Present condition!" he exclaimed ; pudence to tell me I'm drunk, have you?" "You certainly are not far off from it; and my advice to you is, to make your exit from this house before your aunt returns." I felt that my only chance was to get him away while he was drunk, and then deal with him afterwards; but he did not seem inclined to move.
"I sha'n't do anything of the kind," he said, doggedly; 'I don't care a-"
"Come, come," I said, interrupting him; "you shall not swear in my presence."
"And pray who are you that you talk to me in that peremptory manner ?"
"I am a friend of the family. Mrs. Rowcroft is out, and as such I take upon myself to do that which I consider necessary to prevent her being disgraced in the eyes of her servants."
He was as obstinate as a donkey, and would not listen to reason. I was sinking with nervous excitement, expecting every minute that Mrs. Rowcroft would return. However, I determined to make one grand effort before I gave up, and therefore walking up to him, and looking at him sternly, I said:
"I don't want to have any disturbance in the house, and therefore I hope you will go quietly. If not," and I fixed my eyes on him, "I shall be under the disagreeable necessity of using force. Don't interrupt me," I said, "but listen." It was the effect of a strong will on a weak mind, for he quailed under my glance, and I proceeded. "Mrs. Rowcroft is unused to such scenes, and if you were to insist on remaining in your present state she would never forgive you; therefore the greatest kindness I can do you is to insist on your returning to the village, and remaining till the morning. The inn is a very good one-you will see the propriety of this, I'm sure."
He listened stupidly to all I said, and then grunted out, "Well, as you like. I suppose it's best-I don't think I'm exactly right. I feel dreadfully bilious."
GEMS OF THOUGHT.
WHEN a cunning man seems the most humble and submissive, he is often the most dangerous. Look out for the crouching tiger.
"Fit words are better than fine ones."-Owen Fellham. "Whoso trusteth ere he know,
Doth hurt himself and please his foe."-Sir T. Wyatt. "Shame is a good step to amendment, and a blush the first color that virtue takes."-Bishop Hopkins.
"It is good discretion not to make too much of any man at the first; because one cannot hold out that proportion."-Lord Bacon.
Prosperity too often has the same effect on a Christian that a calm sea has on a Dutch mariner, who frequently, it is said, in those circumstances, ties up the rudder, gets drunk, and goes to sleep."-Bishop Horne.
"He that judges aright, and perseveres in it, enjoys a perpetual calm-he takes a true prospect of things; he observes an order, measure and decorum in all his actions. He has a benevolence in his nature-he squares his life according to reason, and draws to himself love and admiration."―Seneca. COMMON SENSE.-"To act with common sepse according to the moment is the best wisdom I know; and the best philoHe rose and walked to the door, saying, "I'm not exactly sophy, to do one's duties, take the world as it comes, submit right, I know; but I'm not drunk!" respectfully to one's lot, bless the goodness that has given us so much happiness with it, whatever it is, and despise affectation."-Horace Walpole.
'No one has said you were," I replied; "only I should not like your aunt to see you until you are better. You go down to the inn, and I will come to you in the evening."
Thus I managed to get rid of him quietly; but now what was to be done? I had only freed myself of him for a time, something must be done to get rid of him altogether. I had resolved, come what might, he should not return. I did not care so much for myself, I thought more of Helen, so I turned the the subject of much discussion in Germany; so much so, inIr appears that the principles of temperance have lately been matter over in my mind, and after half an hour's cogitation Ideed, that some of the States of the German Confederation deformed my plan. I had made up my mind that this fat cousin termined no longer to permit strong drinks to be dispensed to was a great coward, and I determined to act on Fielding's plan, the soldiers. Instead of this, they ordered that the money and if I could not get rid of him any other way, to challenge him. Not that I had any idea of going out, or shooting him. formerly spent in drink should in future be expended in an extra allowance of substantial food. It was very desirable to I was confident he would not stop for that. know what was the result, and it was ordered that the most exact statistical calculations should be made to prove what, since the change, had been the sanitary condition of the soldiers.
Never in my eyes did any one look more lovely than did Julia when she returned from her ride. The bright color which tinged her cheek, and the roguish twinkle of her eye, as she insisted on my telling her all I had been doing in her absence,
added to her loveliness, as well as to the interest she excited in
My position was peculiarly awkward; I could not answer her question truthfully, and I did not want to tell an untruth. Matters were assuming a very serious aspect, and in the event of their going wrong, I did not want to make them worse, and thus throw away my only chance of happiness. I therefore said, in an off-hand manner, that I had received a visit from a friend who was passing through the village, and that I had thus been prevented from writing to my father.
Why did you not ask him to stop? I should have been delighted to have welcomed your friend," said Mrs. Rowcroft. 'Many thanks, my dear aunt. I should have taken the liberty of inviting him, but the truth is, he's not quite right here," I said, touching my head, "and is not fit company for ladies-very eccentric indeed!"
"Poor fellow!" she said; "what was the cause of it?" "Oh, some sort of fever."
(To be continued
LITTLE TROUBLES.-What are styled the "little troubles of life," are the hardest to bear. One can nerve himself up with heroism for a great trial, but the mosquitoe-like annoyances of every hour, for which unfeeling natures have no word of sympathy, and which they cannot understand so long as the sufferer has something to eat, are what fill churchyards and make so many homes desolate. Happy are they whose little troubles find that sympathy out of which grows strength to endure, and whose hearts are not ground to powder by the rough heel of indifférence and insensibility.
MANY a seeming farce played on the great stage of the world is in reality a tragedy, if we could but see into the heart of it.
been deprived of strong drinks were the inhabitants of towns, It is necessary to say, that the greater part of those who had
of a constitution less strong and inured to fatigue. The soldiers to whom they continued to distribute large quantities of strong drink were for the most part strong laborers or woodcutters from the country, and yet it was proved that the sanitary state
was as follows:
Corps to whom strong drinks were distributed: Holstein, out of 3,600 men, there were 82 sick, 1 out of 44; Mecklenburg, out of 3,580 men, there were 82 sick, 1 out of 44; Oldenburg, ont of 718 men, there were 24 sick, 1 out of 29; Hanover, out of 13,054 men, there were 284 sick, 1 out of 46.
wick, out of 2,096 men, there were 18 sick, 1 out of 116; OldenCorps to whom strong drinks were not distributed: Brunsburgh, out of 281 men, there were 47 sick, 1 out of 60; Hanse Towns, out of 2,190 men, there were 14 sick, 1 out of 156.
The writer who collected these facts ends with these words: "After examples so decisive, and the testimony of superior officers who have made analogous observations, there remains nothing to add."
JUGGERNAUT'S HOUSEHOLD.-The "establishment" connected with the great temple of Juggernaut, in India, is immense. It includes thirty-six different kinds of officers, some of whom are subdivided into several more. About 340 persons are required to fill the appointments, a few of which are the following: The one who puts Juggernaut to bed; the one who wakes him; the one who gives him water and a toothpick; the painter to paint his eyes; an officer to give him rice, and another to give him pan; one to wash his linen; one to count his robes: one to carry his umbrella; and one to tell him the hours of worship. Besides these, there are 4,000 cooks, 120 dancing girls, and 3,000 priests, many of whom are exceedingly rich.
MONSTER STEAM PLOUGH, FOR THE REMOVAL OF SNOW.
ONE of the greatest enemies of railroad travel in all northern countries is snow, which by drifting accumulates so as to bury the tracks beneath a mountain avalanche. The most successful -indeed, where it is in large quantities, the only means to "clear the track," is the machine called a steam plough. But even this is sometimes powerless against the silent resistance of the obstruction. In New Hampshire the railroads are frequently subjected to these stoppages, and on a recent occasion, when one of our special artists was on his way from the north, he was so much struck by the monstrous steam plough going
down the grade at Franklin, New Hampshire, that he made a sketch of the interesting incident.
In consequence of the heavy drift it became impossible where it was lined with high banks to make much progress; but after a time, where the grade is on a descent, the plough moved with an irresistible force, which sent the snow flying before it, first in straight lines and then upwards in a serpentine form, the snow rolling over like white billows of a storm-tossed ocean. Sometimes, however, the resistance was too much for it, and the steam plough stopped, the wheel spinning round with a hopeless impotency. The mountains in the background are the White mountains, so called whether they are covered with snow or verdure.
MONSTER STEAM PLOUGH, FOR THE REMOVAL OF SNOW.
THERE is a chord in every heart
Awaken'd by one word alone, A word we think of when we partA little word-we call it " Home."
Home is a spot we ne'er forget,
Though many years have passed away, Since on that spot we've stood, and yet It seems as 'twere but yesterday.
'Twas there our happiest hours were spent ;
The innocence we dreamt away,
"Tis guilt alone that now remains ; Ah! that we could but dream away, Like innocence, those guilty stains! Home is a port, from which to steer
Our barque, we long the world to roam; We love the false, though glittering sphere, Which breathes of all but truth and home!
Home is a place which we may treat
Will trace their steps in after years.
And when again we view the spot,
There's not a look, a word, a tone,
Our hearts will then remember not
Which speaks of youth, and breathes of home!
The sight of home will cause a tear
To dim the eye; and when we speak, The voice will falter; as we near
Our slighted home, the heart will break.
But if our home has ever been
A "hallow'd spot," then will the heart Be raptured as we view the scene ; "Twil faster beat, but never part!
That was all-she
heard of her father's death in Australia." scarcely looked at me, and left the room. Miss May said nothing; she seemed thinking of my French reading, which had been interrupted. She looked on to see how far we were from the end of a chapter, put a mark in and closed the book, and I sat with my one dream of hope all crushed. I should never have any one to love me- never! I did not cry. I only sat there quite stupified. I remember how cold my hands werehow cold I felt all over, and how hard and dry my tongue was ; the feeling of wretchedness is as fresh now as then. At last Miss May said, "How old was your father, Susan?" I did not know. "What part of Australia was he in ?" My aunt had never told me. 66 Strange," she said; "you are old enough to take an interest in everything relating to him, but you are such an odd child."
I suppose she thought I felt none; but I could not speak and tell her all I felt. She wrote some letters, and I put away my lesson books, and shut the pianoforte, and looked out of the window, and arranged the books in the bookcase. I remember how the third volume of Rollin's Ancient History had a bit torn off the top, and the sixth volume had lost the label where the name was. I put them in order as the volumes came, and then I looked out of the window again, and listened to Miss May's pen as it scratched on the paper.
The clock struck eleven. I could not go on in this way till two. Miss May thought it would not be right for me to go out, but she would ask my aunt. Just as she was preparing to leave the room, my aunt entered. The question was asked, and received a negative. I thought if I had something to do that I disliked very much it would be a relief-something that I must give my attention to; and I ventured to say, "Might I do some of my lessons, aunt-only my grammar and sums?"
I had just got to prepositions in Murray, and Miss May told me I was to learn the list that is in his grammar. She said it would be useful to me all my life-I should always know a preposition when I came to it. I know that list by heart now. I never hear the sound of a preposition, or think of grammar, without remembering :
THE MISSING SHIPS.
"He casteth forth His ice-like morsels. Who is able to abide His frost ?"
PLAIN-Very plain-I knew I was-I was always told so. From the time I can remember anything, I remember hearing my aunt's maid say, "It doesn't matter what Miss Susan wears, nor how I do her hair; she'll never do me no credit, nor no one else, never." I don't know if she intended me to hear it, or cared much whether I did or not: but I remember the mortified feeling it gave me, even in childhood: the feeling I had no one to love me, no one to look at me, no one to say a kind word to me. I could remember no one but my aunt; I remember asking her if I had a father and mother, like James and Nelly, the gardener's children; and she answered, "Your mother was dead, child, when your father brought you to me, and your father is in Australia."
I was so glad to think I had a father still; and often in the long evenings, when I had done my lessons, and was sitting at my work, I used to hope and long he would some day come home and claim me. He would love me I was sure. I never doubted that; he would put his hand on my head, and call me his little Susan. I comforted myself with that hope when I was lying awake with the toothache-oh, so many dark nights! was about ten then.
I remember nothing particular for two years after that. It seems like a great gulf between the time I learnt I had a father and the day when my aunt came into my schoolroom. She looked more grave and cold than ever, I thought, and she held a black-edged letter in her hand.
"Susan must stop her lessons, if you please, Miss May, this morning," she said; "I have bad news for her. I have just
And my sums.
Over Under Through
I was in Practice, and hated it; but at the moment I thought anything but the lump of lead that seemed en my heart would be a relief. My aunt said, "Susan, I wish you could show a little feeling, even if you actually have none. How could you think of going on as usual to-day with your ordinary lessons?''
On the Saturday my black frock was finished, and on the Sunday I went to church with my aunt. My aunt was in black too. When I was dressed ready to go to church, I heard Wilson say to the housemaid, "I never saw Miss Susan look worse --did you, Jane?-and to think it's the best bombazine and the best crêpe. Miss Danvers needn't have been so handsome to her for all the good it does."
Another long gap in my memory, and then a bright gleam to cheer me. My aunt told me my cousin, Harry Danvers, was coming to stay at the Heath; he had just lost his mother. I could remember Harry, and his tall gentle-looking mother, who had smiled and spoken softly to me, and how slowly she went up-stairs with her hand on her side, and how she coughed when she reached her room. And so she was dead-like my father-and Harry was coming to us.
He came one very wet evening in November. How gloomy it was! the rain falling heavily on the dead leaves. It had rained steadily all day, and almost the last of the leaves had fallen under the incessant dropping, and everything was black and dismal.
Harry arrived in a car from Horeham, quite wet. He had taken off his great coat and hat in the hall, but his hands were wet and cold, and the drops clinging to his light hair. My aunt advanced kindly, very kindly for her, and kissed him. "Susan, take him to the school-room and give him a cup of hot tea, and then let him go to his room and change his we