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est between the grey crag and the thorn-tree.

"Dear Fellow Hermit," said Darrell, almost gaily, yet with more than usual affection in his greeting and voice, "you find nie just when I want you. I am as one whose eyes have been strained by a violent conflict of colours, and your quiet presence is like the relief of a return to green. I have news for you, Fairthorn. You, who know more of my secrets than any other man, shall be the first to learn a decision that must bind you and me more together—but not in these scenes, Dick.

'Iblmus—ibtmns]
- Supremnm

C«rporc Iter, coinites, parati!'"

"What do you mean, sir?" asked Fairthorn. "My mind always misgives me when I hear you quoting Horace. Some reflection about the certainty of death, or other disagreeable subjects, is sure to follow!"

"Death I No, Dick—not now. Marriage-bells and joy, Dick! We shall have a wedding!"

"What! You will marry at last! And it must bo that beautiful Caroline Lyndsay 1 It must—it must I You can never love another! You know it, my dear, dear master? I shall see vou, then, happy before I die!"

"Tut, foolish old friend!" said Darrell, leaning his arm tenderly on Fairthorii's shoulder, and walking on slowly towards the house. "How often must I tell you that no marriage-bells can ring for me!"

"But you have told me, too, that you went to Twickenham to steal a sight of her again; and that it was the sight of her that made you resolve to wed no one else. And when I have railed against her for fickleness, have not you nearly frightened nie out of my wits, as if no one might rail against her but yourself? And now she is free—and did you not grant that she would not refuse your hand, and would be true and faithful henceforth? And yet you insist on being—granite!"

"No, Dick, not granite; I wish I were I"

"Granite and pride," persisted Dick, courageously. "If one chips

a bit off the granite, one only breaka one's spade against the pride."

"Pride!—you too!" muttered Darrell, mournfully; then aloud, "No, it is not prido now, whatever it might have been even yesterday. But I would rather be racked by all the tortures that pious inquisitors ever invented out of compassion for obstinate hereties, than condemn the woman I have) so fatally loved to a penance the) misery of which sho cannot foresee. She would accept me—certainly! Why? Because she thinks she owes me reparation—because sho pities) me. And my heart tells me that I might become cruel, and mean, and vindictive, if I were to live day by day with one who created in* me, while my life was at noon, a love never known in its morn, and to feel that that love's sole return was the pity vouchsafed to the nightfall of my age. No; if she pitied, but did not love me, when, eighteen \ oars ago, we parted under yonder beech tree, I should bo a dotard to dream that woman's pity mellows into love as our locks become grey, and Youth turns our vows into ridicule. It is not pride that speaks here; it is rather humility, Dick. But we must not now talk of old age and bygones. Youth and marriage-bells, Dick! Know that I havo been for hours pondering how to reconcile with my old-fashioned notions dear Lionel's happiness. We must think of the living as well as the dead, Dick. I have solved the problem. I am happy, and so shall the young folks be."

"You don't mean to say that you will consent to—"

"Yes, to Lionel's marriage with that beautiful girl, whose parentage wo never will ask. Great men are their own ancestors; why not sometimes fair women? Enough—I consent! I shall of course secure to my kinsman and his bride an ample fortune. Lionel will havo time for bis bonoymoon before he departs fur the wars. Ho will fight with good heart now, Dick. Young folks of the present day cannot bear up against sorrow, as they wore trained to do in mine. And that amiable lady who has so much pity for me, has, of course, still more pity for a charming young couple for whoso marriage she schemed, in order to give me a home, Dick. And rather than she should pine and full ill, and—no matter; all shall bo settled as it should be for the happiness of the living. But something else must be settled; we must think of the dead as well as the living; and this name of Darrell shall be buried with me in the grave beside my father's. Lionel llanghton will keep to his own name. Live the Uaughtons! Perish, but with no blot on their shield—perish the Darrells! Why, what is that? Tears, Dick? Pooh !—be a man! And I want all your strength; for you, too, must have a share in the sacrifice. What follows is not the dictate of pride, if I can read myself aright. Ko; it is the final completion and surrender of tho object on which so much of my life has been wasted— but a surrender that satisfies my crotchets of honour. At nil events, if it be pride in disguise, it will demand no victim in others; you and J may have a sharp pang—we must bear it, Dick."

"What on earth is coming now?" said Dick, dolefully.

"The due to the dead, Richard Fairthorn. This nook of fair England, iu which I learned from tho dead to love honour—this poor domain of Fawley—shall go in bequest to the College at which 1 was reared."

"Sir!"

"It will servo for a fellowship or two to honest, brave-hearted young scholars. It will bo thus, while English Institutions may last, devoted to Learning and Honour. It may sustain for mankind some ambition more generous than mine, it appears, ever was—settled thus, not in mine, but my dear father's name, like the Darrell Museum. These are my dues

to the dead, Dick! And the old honso thus becomes useless. The new house was ever a folly. They must go down both, as soon as the young folks are married ;—not a stone stand on stone! The ploughshare shall pass over their sites! And this task I order you to see done. I have not strength. You will then hasten to join ine at Sorrento, that corner of earth on which Horace wished to breathe his last sigh. i

'llle to mocmn locus ot beatffi
Postulant arccs—lbi—tu'"

"Don't, sir, don't. Horace again! It is too much." Fairthorn was choking; but as if the idea presented to him was really too monstrous for belief, he clutched at Darrell with so uncertain and vehement a hand that he almost caught him by the throat, and sobbed out, "You must be joking."

"Seriously and solemnly, Richard Fairthorn," said Darrell, gently disentangling the fingers that threatened him with strangulation. "Seriously and solemnly I have uttered to you my deliberate purpose. I implore you, in the name of our lifelong friendship, to face this pain as I do —resolutely, cheerfully. I implore you to execute to the letter tlio instructions I shall leave with you on quitting England, which I shall do the day Lionel is married; and then, dear old friend, calm days, clear consciences :—In climes where whole races have passed away—proud cities themselves sunk in graves—where our petty grief for a squirearchy lost houso wo shall both grow ashamed to indulge—there we will moralise, rail against vain dreams and idle pride, cultivate vines and orangetrees, with Horace—nay, nay, Dick —with the Flute!"

CnAPTEB V.

More bounteous run rivers when tho iee that locked their flow melts into their waters. And when line natures relent, their kindness is swelled by tho tliaw.

Darrell escaped into tho house; started up; a thought came into his

Fairthorn sank upon the ground, and brain—a hope into his breast. He

resigned himself for some minutes to made a caper—launched himself into

unmanly lamentations. Suddenly he a precipitate zigzag—gained the hall

est between the grey crag and the thorn-tree.

"Dear Fellow Ilermit," said Darrell, almost gaily, yet with more than usual affection in his greeting and voice, "you find me just when I want you. I am as one whose eyes have been strained by a violent conflict of colours, and your quiet pre' seuce is like the relief of a return to green. I have news for yon, Fairthorn. You, who know more of my secrets than any other man, shall be the first to learn a decision that must bind you and me more together—but not in these scenes, Dick.

1 Ibimns—ibimus 1
- Supremnm

Carpere iter, comitea, parati I'r

"What do yon mean, sir?" asked Fairthorn. "My mind always misgives me when I hear you quoting Horace. Some reflection about the certainty of death, or other disagreeable subjects, is sure to follow!"

"Death I No, Dick—not now. Marriage-bells and joy, Dick! We shall have a wedding!"

"What 1 You will marry at last I And it must be that beautiful Caroline Lyndsayl It must—it must! You can never love another! You know it, my dear, dear master? I shall see you, then, happy before I die 1"

"Tut, foolish old friend!" said Darrell, leaning his arm tenderly on Fairthorn's shoulder, and walking on slowly towards the house. "How often must I tell you that no marriage-bells can ring for me!"

"But you have told me, too, that you went to Twickenham to steal a sight of her again; and that it was the sight of her that made you resolve to wod no one else. And when I have railed against her for fickleness, have not you nearly frightened me out of my wits, as if no one might rail against her but yourself? And now she is free—and did you not grant that she would not refuse yonr hand, and would be true and faithful henceforth? And yet you insist on being—granite!"

"No, Dick, not granite; I wish I were!"

"Granite and pride," persisted Dick, courageously. "If one chips

a bit off the granite, one only breaks one's spade against the pride."

"Pride!—you too!" mutterod Darrell, mournfully; then aloud, "No, it is not pride now, whatever it might have been even yesterday. But I would rather be racked by all the tortures that pious inquisitors ever invented out of compassion for obstinate heretics, than condemn the woman I have so fatally loved to a penance the misery of which she cannot foresee. She would accept me—certainly! AVhy? Because she thinks she owes me reparation—because she pities me. And my heart tells me that I might become cruel, and mean, and vindictive, if I were to live day by day with jone who created in* me, while my life was at noon, a love never known in its morn, and to feel that that love's sole return was the pity vouchsafed to the nightfall of my age. No; if she pitied, but did not love me, when, eighteen years ago, we parted under yonder beech tree, I should be a dotard to dream that woman's pity mellows into love as our locks become grey, and Youth turns our vows iuto ridicule. It is not pride that speaks here; it is rather humility, Dick. But wo must not now talk of old age and bygones. Youth and marriage-bells, Dick! Know that I have been for hours pondering how to reconcile with my old-fashioned notions dear Lionel's happiness. We must think of the living as well as the dead, Dick. I have solved the problem. I am happy, and so shall the young folks be."

"You don't mean to say that you will consent to—"

"Yes, to Lionel's marriage with that beautiful girl, whose parentage we never will ask. Great men are their own ancestors; why not sometimes lair women? Enough—I consent! I shall of course secure to my kinsman and his brido an ample fortune. Lionel will have time for his honeymoon before ho departs for the wars. He will fight with good heart now, Dick. Young folks of the present day cannot bear up against sorrow, as they were trained to do in mine. And that amiable lady who has so much pity for me, has, of course, still more pity for a charming

"Yon do! Ob, Mr. Darrell, how I honour you!"

"Nay, I no more deserve honour for consenting than I should have deserved contempt if I had continned to refuse. To do what I deemed right is not more my wish now than it was twelve hours ago. To what 6o sudden a change of resolve in one who changes resolves very rarely, may be due, whether to Lady Montfort, to Alban, or to that metaphysical skill with which you wound into my reason, and compelled me to review all its judgments, I do not

attempt to determine; yet I thought I had no option but the course I had taken. No; it is fair to yourself to give yon the chief credit; you made mo desire, you made me resolve, to find an option—I have found one. And now pay your visit where mine has been just paid. It will be three days, I suppose, before Lionel, having joined his new regiment at * * can be here. And then it will be weeks yet, I believe, before his regiment sails;—and I'm all for short courtships."

CHAPTER VI.

Fairthorn frightens Sophy. Sir Isaac is invited by Darrell, and forms one of A Family Circle.'

Such a sweet voice in singing breaks out from yon leafless beeches! Waife hears it at noon from his window. Hark 1 Sophy has found song once more.

She is seated on a garden bench, looking across the lake towards the gloomy old manor-house and the tall spectre palace beside it. Mrs. Morley is also on the bench, hard at work on her sketch; Fairthorn prowls through the thickets behind, wandering restless and wretched, and wrathful beyond all words to describe. He hears that voice singing; he stops short, perfectly rabid with indignation. "Singing," he muttered,— "singing in triumph, and glowering at the very house she dooms to destruction. "Worse than Nero striking his lyre amidst the conflagration of Rome!"

By-and-by Sophy, who somehow or other cannot sit long in any place, and tires that day of any compauion, wanders away from the lake, and comes right upon Fairthorn. Hailing, in her unutterable secret bliss, the musician who had so often joined her rambles in the days of unuttered secret sadness, she sprang towards him, with welcome and mirth in a face that would have lured Diogenes out of his tub. Fairthorn recoiled sidelong, growling forth, "Don't— you had better not!"—grinned the most savage grin, showing all his

teeth like a wolf; and as she stood, mute with wonder, perhaps with fright, he slunk edgeways off, as if aware of his own murderous inclinations, turning his head more than once, and shaking it at her; then, with the wonted mystery which enveloped his exits, he was gone!— vanished behind a crag, or amidst a bush, or into a hole—Heaven knows; but, like the lady in the Siege of Uorinth, who warned the renegade Alp of his approaching end, he was "gone."

Twice again that day Sophy encountered the enraged musician ; each time the same menacing aspect and weird disappearance.

"Is Mr. Fairthorn ever a little— odd?" asked Sophy timidly of George Morley.

"Always," answered George dryly.

Sophy felt relieved at that reply. Whatever is habitual in a man's manner, however unpleasant, is seldom formidable. Still Sophy could not help saying,—

"I wish poor Sir Isaac were here!"

"Do you ?" said a soft voice behind her; "and, pray, who is Sir Isaac?"

The speaker was Darrell, who had come forth with the resolute intent to see more of Sophy, and make himself as amiably social as he could. Guy Darrell could never be kind by halves.

"Sir Isaac is the wonderful dog yon have heard me describe," replied George.

"Would ho hurt my doe, if he came here ?" asked Darrell.

"Oh, no," cried Sophy; "he never hurts anything. lie once found a wounded hare, and ho brought it in his mouth to us so tenderly, and seemed so anxious that we should cure it, which grandfather did, and the hare would sometimes hurt him, but he never hurt the hare."

Said Geurge sonorously,—

"Inscnuas dldlc!pce fldeliter artes
Euiollit mores, nee siuit esso feros."

Darrell drew Sophy's arm into his own. ""Will yon walk back to the lake with me," said he, "and help me to feed the swans? George, send your servant express for Sir Isaac. 1 am impatient to make his acquaintance."

Sophy's hand involuntarily pressed DarreH's arm. She looked up into his face with innocent, joyous gratitude; feeling at once, and as by magic, that her awe of him was gone.

Darrell and Sophy rambled thus together for more than an hour. Ho sought to draw out her mind, unaware to herself; he succeeded. Ho was struck with a certain simple poetry of thought which pervaded her ideas—not artificial sentimentality, but a natural tendency to detect in all life a something of delicate or beautiful which lies hid from the ordinary sense. He found, thanks to Lady Montfort, that, though far from learned, she was more acquainted with literature than he had supposed. And sometimes he changed colour, or breathed a short quick sigh when ho recognised her familiarity with passages in his favourite authors which ho himself had commended, or read aloud, to the Caroline of old.

The next day, "Waife, who seemed now recovered as by enchantment, walked forth with George, Darrell again with Sophy. Sir Isaac arrived —Immense joy; the doe butts Sir Isaac, who, retreating, stands on his hind-legs, and having possessed himself of Waife's crutch, presents fire; the doe in her turn retreats;—half

an hour afterwards doe and dog are friends.

Waifo is induced, without much persuasion, to join the rest of the party at dinner. In the evening, all (Fairtborn excepted) draw round the tiro. Waife is entreated by George to read a scene or two out of Shakespeare. Ho selects the latter portion of " King Lear." Darrell, who never was a playgoer, and who, to his shame be it said, had looked very little into Sliakespearo since he left college, was wonder-struck. He himself read beautifully—all great orators, I snppose, do; but bis talent was not mimetic—not imitative; be could never have been an actor— never thrown himself into existences wholly alien or repugnant to his own. Grave or gay, stern or kind, Guy Darrell, though often varying, was always Guy Darrell.

But when Waife was once in that magical world of art, Waife was gone —nothing left of him ;—tho part lived as if there were no actor to it; —it was tho Fool—it Was Lear.

For the first time Darrell felt what a grand creature a grand actor really is—what a luminous, unconscious critic, bringing out beauties of which no commentator ever dreamed! When the reading was over, talk still flowed; the gloomy old hearth knew the charm of a home circle. All started incredulous when the clock struck one. Just as Sophy was passing to the door, out from behind tho window-curtain glared a vindictive spiteful eye. Fairthorn made a mow at her, which 'tis a pity Waife did not see—it would have been a study for Caliban. She uttered a little scream.

"What's the matter?" cried the host.

"Nothing," said she quickly—far too generous to betray the hostile oddities of the musician. "Sir Isaac was in my way—that was all."

"Another evening wo must have Fairthorn's flute," said Darrell. "What a pity he was not here tonight !—he would have enjoyed such reading—no one more."

Said Mrs. Morley—" no was here once or twice during the evening; but he vanished!"

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