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“I think I do," replied Mr. Stutzer. “ Yes ; and you may bring your
His young friend now stood rather books also. Perhaps I may be able awkwardly, with his basket in his to hear you read.” hand, not knowing how he had best “I hope you may, sir. Good mornbegin to speak of the presents it con- ing,” and he left the room. Lizette tained.
followed him. • My uncle--no, my aunt, sent you “Will you tell me something ?” a few things here, sir, which he--she she whispered. thought you might like," he said, “ Yes-if I can,” said Dillon, smilafter a long pause, looking confused, ing at her earnestness. and twirling the basket.
“Is papa thinking of going away “I am much obliged to them,” re- from this ?” plied Mr. Stutzer, thinking he had “I don't know-why do you ask ?” better thank in the plural.
“Because I think he is; he intends are they, Dillon ?”
to leave me behind and go to “Some marmalade and a chicken- mamma.' no, a partridge--and oysters, sir.” “How do you know ?” Again that faint shade of red on
He told me so.
Who is the mesthe sunken cheek. Was it summoned senger that is coming for him ?" there by pleasure or by pain ?
.“ What messenger ?" asked the boy, “Thank you, Dillon-thank your looking rather bewildered. aunt very much for me."
“The messenger that came for “Yes, sir,” said Dillon, very softly, mamma. Will you tell papa to send laying down the basket on a table him away when he comes ? I won't beside the bed, on which rested some stay here without him. phials—those sinister little adorn- not to leave me.” ments of the invalid's room.
“I am sure he won't, if he can help Two little feet were now heard it,” said Dillon, beginning to underpattering towards the chamber. The stand something of her meaning; child Lizette stood in the doorway, “but if the messenger comes, Lizette, looking through it, half smilingly, he will have to go with him. half timidly.
Can't he run away or hide ?” "Come in, missy," said her father. asked the child, her eyes burning -“Come," added Dillon, going to- darkly. wards her, “won't you say good “Good-bye, missy-have you my morning ?"
pictures safe ?” said the boy, changing “Yes ; but why are you here so the conversation; and then, without early ?" asked the little girl, raising witing for a reply, he opened the her large eyes inquiringly to the boy's hall-door and went out. face. • Did you bring that basket ?
What are you doing here ?" deWhat is in it ?"
manded old Margaret, grasping the “Show her," said Mr. Stutzer. child by the arm, as she found her
Dillon took up the cover and ex- standing close to the hall-door long plained the contents.
afterwards. “And you brought all these to “Don't let anybody in that comes papa ?” said the child, looking with but Doctor Ryderand Master Crosbie,” awe and admiration at the lad. said the chilă. " Where did you get the money to Get along there to your breakfast. pay for them ?!!
Drat the child-what a plague she is ! Oh, Lizette, do not ask questions,” Come, what are you watching for ? said Mr. Stutzer, colouring.
I'll give your bread and milk to the I did not pay for them, missy,” cat if you don't do as you are bid. said Dillon, good-humouredly. I How you drag the life out o' me ! haven't any money—they all belonged Ugh! I'd rather be breaking stones.” to my aunt.”
Meekly enough, Lizette went to the Then you are poor, like me ?" ob- kitchen, where she ate her morning served Lizette, looking as if she felt repast, looking very often out of the herself on an equality with Master barred window with the bull's-eyed Crosbie.
panes, for some being whom she fan“I'll come again to see you in the cied was coming to do her an injury. evening,” said Dillon, as he was going “Be quick! be quick !" shouted away
the old woman, impatiently, as the
child lingered over her breakfast. which were to be doled out, little by Lizette was indulging in the projec- little, for his child's food, as long as tion of a scheme for baffling her they would last. A doctor's fee was dreaded enemy. Could not doors and a heavy sum, and medicine too was windows be defended against all in- expensive. He feared the treasured vasion of intruders ? Couldn't Mar- five pounds must soon be changed. garet say her father was not at home As in many other ways, Paul Stutzer if any unwelcome visiter came to him? had been over-tasking his strength for
Her father, meanwhile, on his bed some weeks back, in the denial of upstairs, lay for a long while without proper nourishment, and now the stirring: Then he got up, and looked dread reality forced itself upon him, at the things in the basket near him, that human nature was sinking almost taking them out one by one, and put- beyond relief. What of his orphan ting each on the table. There was child, left to a pitiless world! Would the partridge lying on a little plate, the doors of a workhouse receive her, very brown and tempting, then the his precious darling, whose birth, little jar of oysters and the pot of long after his marriage, had been só marmalade. Ah, they were all very joyously welcomed in his home at good, but he could not try anything. Climsley? Would the delicate little Some draughts that Doctor Ryder sent form have to bear coarse hardships ? last night and that morning seemed Would she learn to speak the language to revive him more than anything of peasants, and earn her bread as a else; they were very bitter, but they menial? Had he not vexed her grandgave a pleasant, warm sensation – aunt, by proudly withdrawing his wife quite an exhilaration of spirits. The and child from her house, because she truth was, they were nearly altogether wished to tyrannize over them all composed of good port wine, drawn three, how different might matters now from the well-stocked cellar of the Yax- be. Would it not have been better ley physician, and disguised by various if he had humbly borne every slight, spices and a few drops of bitter essence, every rude speech, every taunt, rather to make them taste like medicine. than now feel that his child would
“How am I to pay for it?" was the soon have no friend in the world ? question that always rose to the sick Could he not still beg, crave, humbly man's mind, as he took the hourly crave for her? Yes, he might write draught prescribed. Yet he was not such a letter as it must move any utterly without money—there was a woman's heart to read. He would solitary five-pound note laid carefully write such a letter. Poor Paul! Ah! by, which he had hoped he might not the spirit might be willing, but the have been called upon to spend. flesh was very, very weak. No more, Months
it had been set aside to no more, would those thin fingers pay for his own burial; and besides guide pen and ink! The messenger that, he possessed a sovereign or two, was, indeed, coming swiftly.
THE WALK IN THE SNOW.THE MALEDICTION.
Dillon did not stay to play after equipped in bonnet and pelisse, folschool that day. The boys were mak- lowed by her mother, who was uttering snow-balls and snow figures of ing dreary lamentations, mingled with large dimensions in the play-ground, sharp bursts of scolding. but he contented himself by merely “Ïou headstrong girl, I won't allow pelting half a dozen balls at his com- it, indeed! Such a day-snow ankle rades, and receiving a considerable deep on the ground! It is the greatest payment in return. He did not feel folly I ever heard of! Put it out of disposed for fun that afternoon, and your head, miss.' rather earlier than usual he went Yes, mamma, I will put the snow home, intending to read quietly till quite out of my head," said Bessie, the hour would arrive for him to turning her laughing face towards her proceed once more to Mr. Stutzer's mother. "I will completely forget cottage. The moment he entered the there is such a thing. Dear
mamma, house Bessie ran down the stairs, go back, upstairs, and say I may go.
What is the use of looking so cross! approaching, and down she came, Can't you let me have my own way bearing along with the required arthis once. Dillon, put your cap on- ticles some extra pieces of muffling, you are coming out with me.
With her own hands she enveloped “What am I to do with such a her child's feet, the tiniest and pretchild !” exclaimed the exasperated tiest of feet, in the overshoes, warning mother. “I can assure you, I won't her in a tone of assumed asperity to nurse you when you come back to me, be sure to walk where the snow was coughingand sneezing--don't imagine shovelled off the pathways, and finally I will. You'are a disobeclient, un- tying a large comforter round her neck, grateful child.”
Bessie kissed her mother, and thanked “Are your shoes strong ?" asked her, saying she would be sure to give Dillon, looking somewhat doubtfully her love to Mrs. Meiklam; and then at Bessie's feet.
sallied forth, followed by Dillon, who “No, but they will do very well- was evidently a good deal disconcerted I don't mind the snow in the least.” at the idea of this unexpected excur
“It's very deep then,” murmured sion in the snow. Mrs. Pilmer held Dillon.
open the hall-door for a long time, “Well, perhaps, I may put on over watching the agile and beautiful figure shoes. Mamma, bring me down my of her daughter, who turned her head, over-shoes."
when advanced a little way, and kissed “No, I shall not. It is against my her hand to her. The mother thought consent that you go out."
her child very lovely, indeed. Bessie “Then, I must only go for them was charmed with the snow, and myself,” said the incorrigible Bessie, nothing but Dillon's superior sense of preparing for a rush to the upper re- propriety would have prevented her gions of the house.
from pelting himself with snow-balls “Stay there. You don't know along the way. Mrs. Meiklam lived where they are," returned Mrs. Pils about a mile off. She was an old lady,
“I must fetch them myself.” distantly related to Mr. Pilmer, who And the poor woman hastened to a had received many substantial marks remote closet for the requisite shoes, of favour from her in his father's lifewhile Bessie composedly sat down on time, when his paternal allowance ran a hall-chair, as if nothing remarkable short. A remarkable feature in this was going on-and, indeed, neither woman's character was her love of there was, as far as she was concerned. children. In the early years of her
Dillon stood shivering beside her. married life she had lost all her own “Where are you going to, Bessie?" little ones-bright, beautiful creatures,
“To Mrs. Meiklam's. She sent Bing- that only dwelt upon earth for a little ham with a book to mamma, and a while, and then passed away, leaving message, saying she would send the sad memories behind them. Whenpony phaeton for us, only the snow ever she looked upon young children, was so deep, as she would like us to she thought of the joyous band, who spend the day with her. Now, you had, in days long gone, made merry know, continued Bessie, putting out round her own hearth. They would her small hand, and looking uncom- have been old people now, past middle monly logical, “that meant that she age, had they lived, but the dead do wanted to see us; and though a pony not grow old. “My little Lucy was mightn't be able to trot in the snow, just like her," or "My sweet Mark I can walk very well in it, and you was about his age when he left me, can walk. So we'll have great fun were words often spoken by the good going to the Rest. How is Mr. lady, as she beheld girls and boys playStutzer ?—you know Mrs. Meiklam ing near her, who reminded her of will be asking for him.”
children lying for thirty years and up“I'm afraid he's very ill still.” wards, in their graves. Very sweet “ Poor old man !"
and very true are the lines of the He isn't an old man,” said Dillon, poeta little indignantly.
“ We have some little ones still ours, "Is he not? How long mamma
They have kept the baby smile we know does stay with those shoes! I shall
Which we kissed one day, and hid with be off without them."
flow rs But Mrs. Pilmer was now heard On their dead white faces, long ago.”
In many ways Mrs. Meiklam had lopping off branches, and she would proved herself the orphan's friend. plant rose trees and pretty shrubs in How many men and women, now ad- any vacant spaces round walks, greatly vancing in years, heads of comfortable to the dismay of younger friends, who households, could tell their children were inclined to follow the newer sysat Yaxley and in its neighbourhood, tem of giving fruit and vegetables all that the worthy lady at the Rest had the air possible, and banishing everyset them
in life-saved them from thing ornamental from the gardens a vagrant's life perhaps — by her devoted to use. Ah! the new system bounty and her kindness ? Many may be the right one-nay, we know there were indeed, and some farther it is the better one-but we have a away than Yaxley-away in distant hankering after the old bushy garclimes-hard-featured men, with wea- dens of our infancy-our good grandther-beaten faces, who, if they chose, mothers' gardens, where fruit, and could say--“She taught me the pray- vegetables, and flowers, all grew toers that I think of now in the hour gether, and leafy evergreen hedges of sickness or danger. The remem- were permitted to rise mysteriously brance of her comes into my mind high-wherethe robin and the thrush when I see a comrade lying on the built cosy nests, and the gooseberry battle-field, or flung into a grave in bushes branched out wildly-yet bearthe dark, wild sea.'
ing such quantities of fruit as one does Thank God, we have many such not see much surpassed in trim, newwomen in our land, whose works will fashioned gardens. Don't scold us, live long after them, whose influence reader, though we honestly confess wé will be felt from generation to gene- like the look of unpruned trees, and ration, when their own names are tall, heavily laden rose bushes, and clean forgotten-blotted from the jagged sweet-briar hedges. We know page of the world's record, but stand- it is a naughty, reprehensible taste, ing in golden letters in the Book of from the fact that we would rather Life. Such women and such men, they belonged to some one else than walking meekly in their several to ourselves. But, ah ! for a good rush spheres, are as living illustrations of through a leafy, untidy, overgrown, the New Testament, carrying convic- dear old garden, with the perfume of tion and faith to the hearts of the a hundred sweet shrubs and bloomy ignorant and the sceptical, whom flowers filling the air, and rose leaves words without actions seldom can im- dropping about, and the bees humming press. Dillon and Bessie had been
murmurously. But we must not forespecial favourites since infancy with get our young friends. Mrs. Meiklam ; they were often in- “How funny everything looks in the vited to her house, and were indeed snow,” said Bessie, as she and Dillon in the possession of a general and sin- arrived at the gate of Meiklam's Rest. cere invitation for any spare day or “The poor old eagles up there on the evening; the heartiness of the recep- pillars are quite buried. Don't you tion they met with proving that they like the snow, Dillon? It makes one were really welcome; and who are so feel how comfortable it is to have a keen-witted in this respect as chil- warm room, and screens, and heavy dren, who can so easily discover curtains." who loves their company and who is “But some people haven't any fires weary of it? There is no doubt that or curtains. the happiness of children much de- “Oh, no, the peasants haven't; but pends upon fruit, and Mrs. Meiklam I mean ladies and gentlemen. Oh, always had the rosiest apples, pre- look at that old Jenny Black gatherserved in some mysterious way, so as ing sticks and breaking the trees, and to taste and look quite fresh from the there's Luke Bagley running towards tree up to the most wonderful periods; her!" and then there were such peaches, Luke Bagley was Mrs. Meiklam's such plums, such nectarines, in the steward-a terrible enemy of faggotgreat fruit gardens, where little people seekers on the demesne. Jenny Black could well lose themselves among a wretched-looking creature, bushes and trees; for Mrs. Meiklam half-clad, half-crazed. was one of the old-fashioned people, “Come now, tramp off, and leave who rather objected to pruning and those sticks behind you !" shouted
the caretaker, hurrying towards the grounds," said the young lady, haughdelinquent.
tily; for, though not unkind, she “Let me keep them, sir," said the could be occasionally thoughtless and woman, shaking back her long, tan- overbearing. "Luke Bagley is only gled hair; “the day's cold, and the doing his duty. Mrs. Meiklam wishes night ’ill be worse. I haven't a spark her trees preserved. o' fire to boil kettle or pot.”
Dillon." “Lay them down !" shouted Bag- But Dillon would not stir; and, ley, now catching her arm, and shak- awed by his sturdy defence of the ing it.
old woman, Luke felt inclined to give Oh, mercy, mercy! You haven't up the contention. The boy gave the heart of a stone--it's iron it is!" her a sixpence, and she was departing screamed the wretched creature, still with her sticks, when suddenly a clutching her bundle of sticks with crazed light illuminated her face, both hands.
wrath distorting every feature, as she “Let her alone, Luke,” said young stopped and confronted Bessie. Crosbie, coming up to the rescue-- “Ay, you're a haughty piece, Miss “let her have her faggots ; Mrs. Pilmer. It's fine bringing up you've Meiklam wouldn't mind.
got ! A curse upon such pride! I “You old thief !” continued Bag- curse you here this winter day! I ley, not heeding the boy, “ I'll have pray that you may feel more grief you sent to gaol, that I will! Come, and hardship than ever I have felt now, we'll see if you'll not let the in all my life of woe and sorrow! I sticks go,” and he was about to strike pray that your heart may feel many her withered hands with his walking- a smart that ’ill blight it! Whether
you are rich or poor may you wither Luke, you mustn't,” said Dillon, under this curse !-at home or abroad, colouring with indignation, I'll not may you live to be sorry that you allow it.
ever were born !” “What is it to you, sir?" demanded Transfixed by surprise and fear, Bagley, impertinently. “Young folks Bessie dared not stir. She clung to haven't no so o'right to be putting Dillon's arm, pale and horrified, in their tongne about what they don't while the wretched creature poured know nothing of.”
forth more wrathful sentences. “God bless you, young gentleman “Ay, I'll live, maybe, to see you -God bless you, Master Crosbie !” humbled, young miss; and the time exclaimed the woman, courtseying. 'ill come when you'll recollect the “You're a true-born gentleman, you words of Jenny Black in the woods
of Meiklam's Rest !" Luke Bagley raised his cane once She turned away at last. Luke more to strike Jenny's hands, when had already disappeared from the Dillon snatched it out of his grasp, scene; and now the gray shade of and broke it in two, so unexpectedly, evening was stealing over the landthat Bagley was bewildered; but, scape. The short winter day neared soon again furious, he would have its close. Dillon and Bessie gained struck the lad had he dared.
the avenue quickly, and hurried their “Oh, come away, Dillon,” said pace in silence. Blackbirds were Bessie, in terror, “let Jenny and Luke hopping gravely here and there, fight it out themselves; they are al- searching for what they could not ways fighting this way.”
find; now and then the shrill cry of What's that you say, young the bittern, or the falling of a rotten miss ?” asked Jenny, fiercely. “Is branch, weighed down by snow, broke that all you care to see an old woman the general stillness. Bessie's heart tyrannized over by an ill-conditioned was beating fast, and the hand that servant?"
still rested on Dillon's arm trembled “You should not trespass on the nervously.