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promised prosperity, and Robin received a half-head, is another guess thing. I never saw the dozen newspapers by one post; and next time it wise man yet that marriage did not sober and was heard, from some chance source, that Charles steady." had again lost his employment, or had as usual abandoned it.
Wise Gilbert had married, in the mean while, and brought home his wife; which made Tibby prudently abdicate to avert a virtual dethronement. She retired to a small cottage, in a thriving village, some miles off, the recent creation of the wool of the adjoining hills. In a few months her "kind, gude, auld maister" surrendering his concerns into the hands of his elder son, on a very slender annuity, to terminate with his lease, made the ancient maiden happy, by becoming her lodger, or rather the master of her cottage.
Even to such slender consolation the old father would try to smile. Of the new ties and duties Charles had taken upon himself, in a distant land, he knew nothing but he hoped, and prayed; and his heart revived, and grew strong in its trust, when his son's next letter called upon him to send his congratulations to the gentle English girl who had preferred his Charles to wealthier suitors, and a grandsire's blessing to the new-born infant, named, in pride and fondness, by his venerated name. It had been then that Charles, ever the man of impulse, had written home, and then, under the influence of new-born feelings, he had The trusty Robin Steele, who still lived at the vowed, on the lips of his child, a future life of farm, often joined their family worship on the wisdom and firmness of purpose-a resolution kept evenings of Sundays; and so far as Tibby's means for three long months. At the end of that time and management would stretch, the SABBATH his wife requested to add a postscript to his letter NIGHT'S SUPPER, proscribed by the more refined home-for Fernylees was still called home-in manners of the modern lady of Fernylees, was which she declared herself, though cast off by her not yet wholly wanting to the venerable auld mais- friends, for what they considered her imprudent ter, nor was the health of Charles ever forgotten choice, to be, as the wife of Charles, the happiest by Robin. If ever the father spoke of him, whom woman in England. There was that in the his thoughts seldom left, it was to these two hum- phrase, which made the old father fear, that, short ble friends that his confidings were made; his as her term of married life had been, it had not all fears and hopes, and fears again. In a fit of gene-been thus happy. And he was right. The young rous, though somewhat misplaced indignation, pair-and the wife was very young-had not been Charles, usually a most irregular correspondent, many weeks married, when Charles, by his frewrote home when he learned the terms on which quently recurring inattentions and imprudencies, his father had surrendered his lease, enclosing all lost an advantageous employment. Then came of his year's salary that he could realize, fifty a season of great hardship and privation, in which pounds. everything failed but the affection which mutual With what exultation did Tibby carry this intel-suffering deepened between them into unutterable ligence to Robin, that same afternoon, as she saw tenderness. Oh, well may the strongest minded him wearing the hoggs down the braes overhang- of the human race dread the subduing force of ing the village. Scarcely could he prevail with evil habit, and guard against the very appearance her to keep from taunting the penurious brother of evil, when Charles Hepburn, now feeling to with the generosity of the prodigal son:-" Ye madness the folly and cruelty of his own unsteady wot not lass," Robin said, "the hard bargain and conduct, and, pardoned times without number, sore strife Gilbert has with a lady wife, down- could again fall into error! His final lapse was looking merkates, and the ransom rent of the more pardonable in the immediate cause, than Fernylees." many of his former misadventures, though it chanced to be attended by worse consequences; for, though the least, it was the last drop in the overflowing cup.
Tibby was a woman, and, therefore, though almost always kind, not always perfectly reasonable. "Ye'll see Charlie Hepburn bigg us a braw selated house with a byre at the gait-end, and mak' Six months before, when sunk in the very the auld maister walk down the town with his depths of misery, shunned by his gay companions, gold-headed cane yet," was her frequent boast; and looking forward to the last extremity of povbut till the accomplishment of these prophecies, erty; and when, but for the sake of his wife, he which sometimes made the saint-like old man would have fled to the ends of the earth to avoid smile, he thoughtfully laid aside the greater part or amend his fortunes, he once more found emof the money sent him, fearing that Charles was ployment as an inferior clerk to an extensive comnot yet past all his expensive follies, and therefore pany, the senior partner of which was a native of not above want for himself. And he congratu- Scotland. Their business was chiefly with the lated himself on this forethought, when, after United States. For some weeks the punctuality another long silence, it was heard by accident, from and diligence of Charles were quite exemplary. a neighboring farmer, who had been at Liverpool Mr. Dennistoun began to hope that the bad busito sell his wool, that Charles Hepburn was mar-ness character which his young countryman uniried! Tibby's first impulse was indignation; but versally bore in Liverpool, was unfounded or she suppressed her own feelings to spare those of exaggerated. her master. "We'll be sure to get a letter next week," she would say, at the spare weekly Sabbath Night's Supper, to which some old friend or neighbor often came in, uninvited but welcome. "Postage, Mr. Charles knows to be no light charge; ye are aye complaining o' the parliamenters, Robin; will ye get them to take off that post-letter cess that brings sae meikle heart-break to poor wives, widow women, and lanely mothers? But I'se warrant me Mr. Charles, now that he is a married man, with the care of a family upon his
"New brooms sweep clean," said the cautious. Mr. William Smith, a junior partner, promoted from the quill and packing-cord, for industry and attention. He had, indeed, been very unwilling to receive the branded clerk, who, among other sins, was understood to have committed that of rhyme. Mr. Smith was right. The old leaven still fermented in the constitution of Hepburn ; and simultaneously with the discovery of his superior intelligence in some departments of business, came the painful experience that had been forced upon
Agnes did not now say how much later it had been, nor yet how long she had held her solitary vigil. She placed the boy in his father's arms, and hastened to procure a small quantity of tea with her almost last shilling. While she moved about the room, Charles, still under the excitement of his revel, talked wildly of the wit, the gaiety, the national feeling, the rapturous conviviality, with which his friends and himself, men of different nations, Scottish, English, Irish, and American, united by the bond of enthusiastic admiration, had celebrated the birth-day of Scotland's immortal bard :
all his employers. The temptations of society, | up, love? I hope you did not sit for me; I dare pleasure, and what he called friendship, returned say it was two o'clock before I got home." with unmitigated force upon their fascinated victim. Three times in the course of the twelve months he had been discharged, and restored upon promises of amendment. The last time to the tears and intercessions of his wife-whom, as a desperate expedient, Charles had humbled himself so far as to permit to plead for him. Mr. Dennistoun pronounced his conduct "ruinous," such as he could not overlook, save for Mrs. Hepburn's sake, just this once. And could Agnes, who loved so tenderly, and hoped so brightly, doubt that now her husband, restored to comfort and respectability, would be steady-be all that was wanting to make her, poor and unregarded as she was become, still "the happiest woman in Eng-And the bonds they grew tighter the more they land." Once again evil habit prevailed over the sincere but infirm resolution of Hepburn.
humor which had set the table in a roar. Either the fire and spirit of these sallies had totally evaporated, or Agnes was an unfit recipient. On this morning she, for the first time, could not feel with Charles, or her sympathy was feigned or fainther smile, for she attempted to smile, forced and languid. Charles, whose sensibility was quick as ethereal fire, felt damped, disconcerted, and became silent.
In the bitter cold morning of the 26th of Janu- He repeated the flashes of Scottish genius which ary, 18, the young wife of Charles Hepburn- had electrified the banqueters, the bursts of Irish and she was still under nineteen-sat in the single poor apartment they rented by the week, hushing her moaning child; and at the same time preparing coffee for her husband's breakfast, to be ready against the minute he would awake. She knew that he slept too long. Her eyes, heavier from a long night of watching than from tears, for of late she seldom wept, were mournfully fixed on her infant, and then a single tear stole down the cheek, thin and sunken from the "peachy bloom" once celebrated in Charles' sonnets. The snowdrift was spinning without, and the twilight was gray and dull enough that morning, in this narrow and mean street of a busy and crowded part of Liverpool.
The neighboring church-clock again sullenly swung forth another hour, with the peculiar heavy sound of bells in a snow-fall.
He paused in playing with and tossing the child, whom, in whatever humor it might be, he always succeeded in making laugh-paused to Agnes had opened but a small part of the shut- count the strokes. "Seven, eight, nine"-he ter, that her husband might obtain another half-started-"ten, eleven!" He threw down the hour's sleep after his prolonged revel. The clock boy, and seized his watch. It had run down amid of a neighboring church struck a late hour. Start- his jollity. "Good God! is that clock true! ing at the sound, she stole on tip-toe to the side Agnes, how thoughtless, how very thoughtless, to of the bed, and gazed, through now fast-gathering let me sleep so long!" Conscience checked the tears, on the sleeper, the dreamer whether awake unjust reproach. I could not, Charles; indeed or asleep!-gently pressed her cold lips to his I could not find heart to awake you while you flushed brow-and turned away. Soft as her looked so fevered and flushed-so much to need movements had been, they had awaked the rest-rest.
less slumberer; and she was but seated, with her "Foolish woman! For this your child may child in her lap, when he tossed aside the curtain. want bread!" He hastily dressed himself, or "You are up already, Agnes, love :—I'm afraid | rather huddled on his clothes, soiled and unI kept you up very late last night too; surely brushed from his revel; while, ready to faint amid you did not watch for me? But what a glorious the struggles of her various feelings, Agnes night, Agnes! how BURNS himself would have tremblingly held the cup of tea to his parched enjoyed it;-a glorious night! a Noctes Ambro- lips, which he but tasted, as with one look fixed
There was no immediate reply.
"Was Burns a married man?" at last whispered the Englishwoman, whose young silvery voice was already touched with sorrow; and she leant her head on the bosom of her child.
upon her, in which burned love, grief, and remorse, he started away. He flew to the warehouse, where he should have been, where he had most unconditionally and indeed voluntarily promised to be, by nine o'clock; to the dock, where the New York packet had lain, in which he was "Married! ay, to be sure; have you forgotten that morning to have shipped a valuable consign'Bonny Jean,' and the little charming song you ment of expensive British shawls, which were made me teach you- When first I went a wooing only to arrive in Liverpool through the night. It of you?" cried the Scotsman, with some impa- was a duty which Mr. Dennistoun, in a fit of contience of his wife's ignorance on points so familiar fidence and good-humor, had entrusted to Charles to himself. "You have then forgotten Of all had especially selected him to manage, as a the airts the wind can blaw,'" he went on, in half-reproachful, half-playful tone.
"Oh, no, no, I have not forgotten that." "Then, quick, Agnes dearest, get me some tea -not coffee to-day-my throat is parched, and my head aches like a hundred fiends. Fetch your son here, and I will nurse him till you get breakfast; I trust he is better to-day. But when did you get
mark of confidence. The vessel had left the dock -she was out at sea! In a state of feeling very far from "glorious," Charles bent his steps to his place of business with shame and apprehensionnot unmingled with self-condemnation-striving, in vain to fortify himself with the reflection of how weak it was in Agnes not to have roused him earlier. True, she knew not of his important
engagements; she had indeed scarce seen him for the last twenty-four hours.
was several miles beyond money-making, manymasted Liverpool, cursing his existence, and the The first object that met the eyes of Charles, on day that had given birth to a wretch whose life entering the dreaded counting-house, was Mr. was fraught with blighting to all that loved Dennistoun himself, writing at the desk usually him. An expression once wrung in anguish from called Mr. Hepburn's. Mr. Smith was similarly his aged father, now haunted him, as one idea will employed at his own desk; but the young gentle-cling to the brain in which reason is failing: man partner, the capitalist, lounged over a news- "Unstable as water, thou shalt not excel!" This paper. Every clerk was, in his own department, he muttered; shouted in his own ears; screamed quill-driving as if for life and death; and nought out in his despair.
was heard but the rustle of sharp-nibbed pens on paper. The office clock struck the half-hour past
The long winter's day wore heavily on with mid-day; clocks, his enemies throughout all his the drooping and ill-boding Agnes; yet she exlife, were this day to be the ruin of Charles Hep-erted herself to amuse her child, and to prepare burn-living things with mocking voices, taunting such food against her husband's arrival, as her hia misery. He stood crushing his hat between his hands, by the side of his own desk; and, on his first attempt to speak, the eyes of all the persons present were involuntarily turned upon him, with expressions varying with the character of the spectators-all eyes, save those of Mr. Dennistoun, who never once raised his head. As there was, after five minutes' waiting, no symptom of that gentleman relaxing in his writing, Charles, his brow flushing, muttered, in deep confusion, "I am quite ashamed-quite unpardonable my conduct is this morning, sir." The old gentleman bowed coldly in assent, and continued his writing. "But the Washington has not sailed, though the John Adams has gone. I trust there is yet time."
slender means afforded, and such as she conceived best adapted to the state of inanition in which she knew he must return home after his revel and subsequent exhaustion. That he would not return, never once occurred to her, many as were the anxious thoughts over which she brooded. As the day wore later, Agnes became more and more uneasy. Occasionally Hepburn's impulsive zeal had detained him after the ordinary hours of business; and but too frequently he encountered, in the busy streets of Liverpool, "friends, countrymen, and lovers," all joyously met; whom he could not entertain in his own poor lodging, and accordingly adjourned with to a tavern.
and who felt kindly towards him, and was often helpful to him and his wife in many little matters.
In the evening, one or two of Charles' convivial Spare yourself all trouble on that account, companions, of the previous night, called at his Mr. Hepburn," said the old gentleman, who could lodging to fight their battles o'er again; but he be as stately, when he so pleased, as if bred in a was found to be abroad, and his wife, usually a court, instead of a Glasgow counting-house. very lively person, was "sullen,” one young "The goods are shipped-though tardily, yet in man said; and another, more candid, "in low good order. That, sir, became my duty, as I spirits and no wonder." Later in the night, a had been credulous enough to believe the Ethio- porter called, belonging to the Dennistoun and pian could change his skin; weak enough to as-Smith firm, who was from Charles' native parish, sume an improper responsibility." He was still writing; and now coolly handed a slip of paper to Hepburn, who, while his eyes flashed, and then When informed that Mr. Hepburn had not yet became dim, read an order to the cash-keeper to come home to dinner, the man looked so blank, pay instantly whatever arrears of salary were due that the imagination of Agnes, prone of late to to him. That was not much, but Dennistoun, gloomy apprehension, caught fresh alarm, and the Smith and Company had no further occasion for simple man was glad to escape from her anxious his services! Charles stood at first dumb and questionings. Leaving her sleeping child to the petrified; he then attempted to speak, to remon- care of her landlady, Agnes walked to the extenstrate, to supplicate. He thought of Agnes and sive ware-houses of Mr. Dennistoun. All was her boy, and bitter and wretched were his feel- shut up in darkness, and must have been so for ings. This dismissal was not merely loss of em- some hours. With difficulty she made her way ployment; it was the wreck of the last remains home, where Hepburn had not yet appeared; and of his professional character. Who would trust now exhausted from want of sleep and of food, any man dismissed in disgrace by the calm and and tortured by apprehension, she became so ill, liberal Dennistoun. In reply to his broken solici- that when the landlady proposed to go to the pritation, this gentleman, now inexorable, however vate residence of Mr. Dennistoun, to obtain intellikind he had formerly been, without uttering a gence of Charles, no opposition was offered. word, wrote away, merely bowing and waving his The Liverpool merchant was in his splendid hand, in signal to the speaker to be gone. Chok-drawing-room, enjoying his well-earned evening ing with feelings of pride, of grief now chafed to leisure in the midst of his family, and with a small anger, Hepburn abruptly left the counting-house, circle of friends. Among the pleasures of the and the old gentleman picked up the order he had evening, his favorite grand-child, a girl of thirteen dropt, and desired the cash-keeper to pay over the or fourteen, had sung to the old Highland air to money to himself. As Charles passed through which they were appropriated, the unlucky Burns' the outer-room, the lounging gentleman partner verses of the more unfortunate Hepburn, which had called to him to pay him a compliment on his been so much admired in the newspapers of the verses, recited at the festival of the preceding morning. Mr. Dennistoun was luckily not aware night, which he, an amateur of the muses, had of the author of Letitia's song, or he might have just finished reading, though in business hours. listened, on this night, with impatience. The old It wanted but this, in the present mood of the un-melody, (Arrie nam badan,) tender at once and fortunate Hepburn, to madden him outright. He spirited, had been first heard by him among the ran out; he passed from street to street; his only hills of Argyle, more than half a century before. distinct thought being by which avenue he could Whether it were in the music, the voice of the soonest escape from the town. In an hour helsinger, or the braes and brackens, and heather
for Hepburn's exculpation and forgiveness. He lauded the genius of those men-Scotsmen-in whom warmth and exaltation of feeling palliated aberrations unpardonable in the dull, cold-blooded, money-making mortals, who lived by square and rule. "There was," he continued in illustration, 'your glorious Burns
"Be silent, sir!" cried the old man, in a tone of stern severity, which made Agnes start and shudder, and which at once imposed silence on the speaker. "If there be to young men of genius one warning example more impressive and solemn than another, it is that of the life and death of my noble and unfortunate countryman, ROBERT BURNS. And weak, and shallow, and false are they, who dare plead his magnified or imaginary errors in extenuation of their meaner follies. Have the weaklings any right to plead his faults, who are neither fired by his genius, elevated by his virtues, nor tortured by his passions and his pride? If Burns has left a few careless verses, which unthinking fools construe to their hurt, has he not given them hundreds of lessons of deep and purifying tenderness; of virtue in its loveliest, holiest simplicity? For one careless expression; for the record-perhaps fictitious-of one reckless carouse, may we not, from his writings, learn of thousands of times when, after a day of hard toil, he wandered away into solitude, feeling within him the first stirrings of the hidden strength, the gropings of the Cyclop round the walls of his cave'-his own splendid image. Do not the address to a Field-mouse and the Cotter's Saturday Night, alone, tell us of months and years of meditation on the loftiest and the tenderest themes that can exalt the thoughts of the true poet, musing on humanity-of the rapt spirit, rising to Him who walks upon the wings of the wind;' or, in another mood, welling up from its depths of tenderness, over the little wild flower lying crushed in his path? And what chilling years of barren toil and hopeless privation were those!-I declare, before Heaven, it were enough to make that mighty spirit burst its prison-house to hear a crowd of drivelling idiots charge their vices and follies upon the memory of Burns!"
bells and long yellow broom that mingled in the | himself the very feelings on which he had relied song, that the spell lay, or, as was more likely, in the whole combination, we cannot tell, but the thoughts of Hepburn, which had hung upon the old Scotsman's spirits all day, returned to him more painfully than ever. Not that he repented what he had done, or of anything save his weak forbearance, and pernicious indulgence of errors of so bad example. Yet a man may be fully acquitted by his conscience, as to the justice of a particular action, and yet be very far from comfortable in his inward feelings. So at least it was with Mr. Dennistoun, even before a message was brought up stairs that a woman was below inquiring for Mr. Charles Hepburn, one of the clerks, whose wife was dying, while he could not be heard of anywhere! The old gentleman became greatly agitated. His first thought was indeed terrific. Those excitable hare-brained geniuses like Hepburn, there was no saying what mad act, when in a desperate mood, abandoned of reason and of God, they might perpetrate! He recalled the appearance of the young man, the wild excitement of hilarity and the fumes of wine scarcely out of his brain, when they must have been succeeded by the fierce extremes of despair and of stinging self-reproach. Late as it was, and in spite of the remonstrances of his family, Mr. Dennistoun resolved to accompany the woman to Hepburn's lodging, and his nephew, the mercantile amateur of the muses, attended him, to take care of him home again. The uncomfortable apartment, and its details, were of themselves full of reproach of the thoughtless and improvident habits of the owner. Agnes, recovered from the fainting fit which had so much alarmed the landlady, on the appearance of the two gentlemen, taxed her spirit to its utmost powers to learn the worst that fate had in store for her; but Dennistoun had neither heart nor nerve, nor could he think it wisdom to say more at this time, to the poor creature for whom he felt so strongly, than that he had seen Hepburn early in the day. And, in a tone of parental kindness, he added, "We are both aware, madam, that our friend Charles is not always the most punctual of men." Agnes sighed. The nephew, who, from delicacy, had not ventured farther than the door of the room, could The old gentleman struck his cane upon the from thence see that Hepburn's girlish-looking floor with an energy that recalled his own senses wife, sitting on a low stool by the side of the cra- to the obstreperousness of his tone, and the viodle, was the most meek, pale, Madonna-like, lence of his indignant rhapsody. An octave or mournful beauty he had ever beheld. Hepburn himself was, he knew, a man of great talents, absolutely a genius. He felt the strongest desire in the world to have him pardoned and reinstated. Certainly it was shameful, unkind, disgraceful, to leave so sweet and beautiful a creature pining in poverty in this miserable place, while her husband was revelling, spending a guinea, or perhaps two guineas, on a single dinner.
But even the light that led astray,
two lower, he apologized to Agnes for his violence, while he acknowledged that this was a subject which always provoked him. "There is," he said, "no doubt something wrong, and in false taste in a few of the bravading verses of Burns, and in later things of the same kind from other pens, in which fools read damnation to themselves; but still nothing whatever to excuse those who thus construe them to their own hurt. scenes of gaiety, merriment, and extravagant conviviality, or of downright degrading sensuality, certainly never had existence, save in the brains As much from pity for Agnes, however, as of the writers, or the pages of a book. Shall we from sympathy with her husband's poetical and blame the genius of Schiller, because a few hotsocial tastes, he ventured farther into the apart-headed, excitable, and weak-principled lads chose ment; and to his uncle spoke something between to band themselves as robbers, and take to the excuse and vindication of the absent culprit. forests in emulation of his hero?" Agnes then, first looking eagerly up, her eyes swimming in grateful tears, gave him encouragement to proceed; and he urged his suit till he had fairly exasperated the benevolent, but somewhat impatient temper of his senior, and turned against
"Yes," cried Agnes, impressively," the heartbroken mothers and sisters of those misled youths well might blame him whose writings proved so perniciously seductive. Why will not genius inlist itself in a nobler cause?""
"My dear madam, this I fear often resolves itself into a simple question of commerce," said Dennistoun, smiling, “which is another category." The conversation reverted to Hepburn; and, kindly enjoining Agnes to take care of herself and her child, and to send Charles to him early in the morning, Mr. Dennistoun took his leave.
This well-meant advice could not realize itself
to the extent of the benevolent man's desire. The forsaken Agnes could indeed undress herself and her child, and fold its little fevered frame to her bosom, and for its sake endeavor to take necessary sustenance; but she could not command her tortured spirit to be tranquil, nor her aching eyes to close.
The first tidings of Charles Hepburn were not obtained by Mr. Dennistoun until the fourth day, and then through a Lancaster newspaper; in which, for the humane purpose of giving information to friends, a gentleman answering the appearance of Hepburn, was described to be lying in a violent brain-fever, at a little wayside public-house. His hat and his linen bore the initials C. H., but no papers, or property of any kind, nor means of tracing him, had been found about his person, which had probably been rifled before he was discovered by a traveller passing in a gig. A man had been seen running from the spot across a field; but there was no visible injury on the person of the stranger. The condition of his clothes showed that he must have wandered far; and probably lain in the open air for one or more of those severe nights. It was added, that the incessant, incoherent, hoarse cry of the unfortunate man, was "Unstable as water, thou shalt not
It was a week later, and far up on the topmost heights of the Fernylees pasture range, that Robin Steele, at all times a much greater newsmonger than his master, read the same paragraph in a Carlisle paper, and instantly left his flock; and only four more days had elapsed before the grayheaded, heart-broken father stood by the bedside of his daughter-in-law and her apparently dying infant, poisoned by the fevered maternal nutriment which should have been its life.
By the prompt care of the humane Dennistoun, Charles Hepburn had, meanwhile, received every attention needful to his condition. He was now in the house of a medical man, in Lancaster, and the strength of his constitution had already overmastered the fever. Of the more enduring and less medicable ailments of his patient, the surgeon knew, and could say nothing, save that it had done Mr. Hepburn immense good to hear that his father was in Liverpool with his wife, and that he might probably join them in a few days. But long years elapsed before that meeting took place.
It was with prospects dark enough that Charles Hepburn, commending, in the most passionate terms, his forsaken wife and his infant to the care and love of his father, and to the tenderness of Agnes the gray hairs he was, indeed, bringing to the grave with sorrow, took a pathetic leave of them both when about to enter, as a private seaman, a merchant vessel preparing for the voyage to India. His letter was dated at Bristol, where the ship was lying. "Since I cannot live by reason," he said, "I must live by rule; since I cannot be my own master, I must be the slave of
another man's will. Need I say, my own Agnes, dearest! best beloved! most injured! that I go, carrying with me but one feeble hope-the hope of once again appearing before you, if conscience shall, after my long, self-prescribed period of exile and probation, say, that there is still peace on earth for the veriest wretch its surface now bears."
The rule which the unhappy man had prescribed for himself was as rigid as that of the most self-mortified anchorite. It was more severe, from being practised in the midst of society and business. His rule was not temperance, for he had never been intemperate, but total abstinence from wine. Solitude was not in his power, for he wished to be continually engaged in business; but he resolved never to employ English speech farther than was absolutely needful, nor one superfluous word in any human language. Charles Hepburn left the ship at Bombay. By his conduct he had secured the esteem and goodwill of the captain; and from this circumstance, and the proofs of his superior education and capacity, he obtained an appointment on an indigo plantation, in the Upper Provinces, where he esteemed himself fortunate in having no European associatesno society whatever, save that of the simple natives. After remaining here for two years he had money to transmit, and he ventured to write home; but these letters never reached his wife and his father. The money was never claimed. He now imagined himself strong enough to endure better the temptations of society; and he longed to be rich! Who had motives like his for gaining what an Indian would smile at as but a very paltry competence! The speechless, melancholy man became the supercargo of a private ship trading between Bengal and China. His associates-or those human beings about him-were now chiefly Lascars, for still he shunned European society. Again he had written home, but this time he sent no order for money. All he was worth was embarked in trade on his own account; and his intelligence and energy were agreeably manifested in the success of his speculations. At the end of his third voyage Hepburn hoped he was reformed! He was at least rich enough in his own estimation, for he had in his possession bills on London for £8000; and letters from Agnes and his father had waited him at Madras, beseeching him to come to them-only to come home !— to love-to happiness-to a share of the bread which, by God's blessing on frugal industry, had never yet failed them-which his exertions must increase-his presence sweeten! They had complied with all his proud wishes; never had his name been mentioned by them. It was enough that in their own hearts they knew that he lived and loved them.
About noon on an October Sunday, the Carlisle mail, rolling over the same moor, but at a vastly augmented rate of speed, set down a traveller, on the exact spot, where, ten years before, Charles Hepburn had left his Greysteel. The traveller was a handsome, grave-looking man, between thirty and forty, embrowned by the burning suns of a hot climate, and of the appearance, which, for want of a more accurate definition, is usually called military. He carried a very small portmanteau ; and, as the coach drove off, proceeded on foot up the stony path, merely a bridle-way, which led winding into the hills from the wide open moor. Frequently he paused-looked round the country,