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“Lydia, my girl, you'll”-holding the He never touched his tea, but sat musing glass Mrs. Heathcote had used upside down till he dozed off again.
- "get-red-in the--face-like your mo- When he woke, his fire was out, his legs ther was, if you don't take care.”
were cramped, and it was a quarter to nine At last, he got to Lawyer Battiscombe's by his watch. He pulled the bell. seat.
“ What a thing habit is! Because I don't "Ah!- I thought so. Trust a lawyer. happen to have twenty minutes' sleep in the Not a drop, if you squeezed the glass for a afternoon, I waste the whole of a precious week.”
evening." Then he sat down by the fire, took a lump “Shall I lay the cloth here, sir?” or two of coal off, and put his feet on the “No. Certainly not.
I shall take my fender. He sat in his easy chair, in thought. supper in the kitchen when you're gone to Wondering what they would have thought if bed. Tell Hester and the cook to come to they had seen him pouring the wine back me.” into the decanters; - thinking he should Dressed in black gowns, and with their not have cared a rush if they had. Wonder- aprons ready for their eyes, the servants ing whether Lydia Heathcote counted on waited his commands. They found him his death;—thinking she was not quite sure sitting with a little housekeeping book of his of his money yet. Wondering why his sister sister's in his hands. They thought Mr. Susan could not have left him all her money; Mortiboy was about to improve the occa-thinking he would do his best to defeat her sion. But they had misjudged him. He intentions, and secure the odd hundreds he was going to discharge them. had neither a legal nor moral right to. Won- “Habit is a curious thing," he began, dering why he felt so drowsy;--thinking- pouring out a cup of the cold tea, and sip
ping it appreciatively. “I missed my usual He was fast asleep.
little nap on the stairs to-day, and I have He slept an hour, and the candle burnt wasted a precious evening -a pr-e-ci-ous down two inches and a half before he was evening through it.” awakened.
The corners of the white aprons dropped. His sister's maid had brought in the tea The three domestics waited for him while tray at the usual hour, and her entrance he took another sip of his tea. roused her master.
“I ought to have done this earlier; but He woke with a start: counted the bis- thoughts of her who is gone"-he looked cuits on the dish, and questioned the girl in upwards—“ kept me from it.” a breath.
The aprons up again, ready for use. Hes“Was I asleep? Ah!-four-I didn't ter, a very old retainer, in real tears. take-six-my nap-eight-to-day: that's it. “ You've heard me called eccentric?" Never get into—I'm sure, I thought I made “Oh! no, sir !"-mumbled. nine of 'em before-bad habits, Mary.” “You've heard 'em call me old Ready“No, sir"--and exit.
money?” " The minx had had time to have one, “Oh! no, sir!"—very loud. I believe. They think they'll take advan- “Yes, you have. You were-Susan'stage of me; but they're mistaken. They servants, not mine. You've heard me called won't.”
rich, now?" He got up, fumbled for his keys, and put “Yes, sir.” away the wine and biscuits in the cupboard “Well, I should not have been called by the fireplace.
rich if I had spent all my money like my Then he walked to the window, and looked poor sister did. One servant will be quite out into the night. It was dark—the moon as many as I shall want." had not risen; but the street lamp opposite Aprons dropped again. his door threw a good deal of light into the "Hester, you can do all I shall require. room.
So, cook, and Mary, my girl, I really must He blew out his last candle.
give you notice, for I can't keep you. But "If I'm only thinking-and, goodness I can give you excellent characters, both of knows, I've plenty to think of-I can think you.” quite as well without a candle. Besides, "Thank you, Mr. Mortiboy," said the cook this room is always light."
-facing him, with arms a-kimbo--“thank
you, Mr. Mortiboy; but my mistress, as I The moon shone brightly on it and him;
“OLD REDDY-MUNNY IS A MIZER”
scrawled on it. “I have given you notice,” Mr. Mortiboy “Now, this is too bad-to-day,” he exinterposed. “I shall not keep you your claimed, producing from his inner coat month. I shall pay your wages instead." pocket the sad-coloured handkerchief, full He was getting angry.
of holes. “I must wipe it off. What is the “Thank you, sir. Which is the law, and good of a policeman? I'd give-I'd give-a rich and pore must both abide by it "--drop
--a shilling to know who does it, and hang
-a ping a most irritating curtsey.
the little devils for it too." “I'll pay you now!" cried Mr. Mortiboy. He rubbed the writing off his door, and
“If you please, sir; and I'll pack up my went on his way. His house opened on the boxes this very night, and go. For I couldn't street. Across the street was a paddock. abear-”
The field belonged to him. He had the key, Poor little Mary, frightened out of her and let himself in. wits, tugged at cook's gown.
This close was a little gold mine to him. “Don't pull me, Mary. Mr. Mortiboy It was the arena on which all flower shows, never was my master-and never shall be.” agricultural and horse shows, wild beast
“ I'll take your black dress away from you shows, and riders' circuses were held.
A few sheep started as he crossed the
-over the paddock wall-into the graveBefore she could finish her sentence, the yard. ruler of the roast was dragged out of the The old man went on. room by Hester and Mary.
The moon gone
in? But I'm not super
stitious. I'd as soon sleep in a church as An hour and a half later, Mr. Mortiboy anywhere else,” he said to himself as be had recovered from his discomfiture, paid groped his way round the south wall of the the cook, and seen her and her baggage off church. “Ha! light again!" the premises, and sent Mary and Hester to The man behind him dropped three or bed.
four paces back. He sat before the kitchen fire, eating Not a sound was heard in the deep, wet a slice of cold boiled beef laid on a crust grass. of bread. He dispensed with a plate and “Now, we shall see what we are at. There fork, but had a very sharp knife in his hand. is a smaller window than this though, I know He cut his mouthfuls into equal paral
--and this is not a big one. I should have lelograms, with mathematical precision, and made a first-rate window-peeper in the old slowly got through his frugal supper. tax days.
He rose from his chair, unfastened the “Ha! this is the window I had in my eye. door, and looked out into his garden. Now, could it cost ten pounds to put in a
The moon was up, but heavy clouds ob- beau—u—tiful window there?" scured it every moment, drifting swiftly past. The moon was clouded again, and his at
An idea had for half an hour held posses- tendant gained on him. There was a corner sion of his mind. He was going out. between them. That was all. To pay a visit to the churchyard.
“Be whipped if I think it could cost ten To find out for himself which really was pounds. Eight ought to do it.” the smallest window. The will said nothing The man
His arm was about the size.
raised. He found his great-coat hanging in the “No mention of which window you passage, without a light.
meant to have, Susan, my poor dear sister. He fumbled at the latch and bolts of the Ha! ha! Ghrimes was taken into your confront door, and let himself out.
fidence, not your own flesh and blood.”
AN OLD-FASHIONED STORY.
THE MEETING IN HYDE PARK.
Nearer still the arm It almost was likely to look behind. I need not have touched him.
done this, for the figure moved on swiftly "Well, now, I've been all round the church, towards the west. I think. I'll go back, or I shall go and catch 'Twas a dark, gloomy twilight. The gray cold in this grass. It's like a little river. clouds were close packed over the heavens, D-n! What's this?"
obscuring the struggles of the rising sun to He had stumbled over some hard sub- show its light. 'Twas a chill morning, and stance in his path.
an April mist was falling, scarce to be called The moon shone out brightly, and showed rain, and yet that made one's garments dank him the footstone of his wife's grave. He and heavy. I moved quickly onward, for had not been near it for years.
my feet had wings, and scarce seemed to He read the inscription on the headstone touch the earth. I felt no fear for myself, in the bright moonlight.
for Jack was not far off, and I knew too “Wants doing up a bit,” he muttered. well that he had a trusty weapon with him.
The man who was dogging him was close On, on-two noiseless, stealthy figures, at his back.
with the city asleep behind them, making “There's room for Dick's name now, if we for the waste of ground where blood had had heard about him. But no, poor fellow been spilled, and where 'twas like soon to --no!—I think I'll go in again now.
14” be spilled again. A strange courage had As he spoke, a hand like a blacksmith's taken possession of me. I stole in and out fell on his shoulder, and held him in a vice! among the trees, ever keeping the object of
my pursuit in sight. GRACE SELWODE. At length, Jack paused anigh a stagnant
brook; and there he leaned against the trunk BY JULIA GODDARD.
of a tree, and looked sharply round to see
if any one was coming. 'Twas lighter now; CHAPTER LIV.
the sun would soon be up; the clouds were
beginning to disperse; the chill mist was disI LISTENED again. Sure it was Jack's appearing; there was a streak of red on the
door opening very softly. I had not horizon, prophetic -- so in my shuddering bolted mine, and now I had but to move soul I thought-of what was to come. And the latch, and ’t was unclosed; and I was
my brother watched and waited. And listening at the chink I had made to hear I, in my concealment, watched and waited what further would take place.
too. "I would be of no avail to appear There was no doubt on my mind as to until the combatants should be ready. what Jack was about to do; and in another A hasty step made me look out. moment his stealthy footstep-that none but 'Twas Harry Fanshawe. those listening as I had listened would hear “I came as quick as I could,” said he. -passed by my door.
“They're late," said Jack. I waited until I knew he must have turned And as he spoke two other persons came at the angle of the staircase, and then I in sight, their hats slouched over their faces, slipped after him. I kept behind a statue their cloaks muffled round them. that stood there, for fear he might turn back In agonized apprehension I watched their and discover me. I held my breath; but I approach. They came nearer and nearer; could hear the beating of my heart like the but even when there was no danger of being ticking of a great clock.
seen by any but those they had come to As I expected, Jack was at the hall door-- meet, they seemed unwilling to throw off which, to my astonishment, he opened with their disguise, and kept their faces well out drawing any of the bolts, which usually hidden. made so much noise. He must have slipped I felt my brain swimming, my heart sinkthem back overnight, in anticipation of his ing. Nearer and nearer they moved. The movements. In another instant he had time had come for me to make myself seen closed the door after him, and ere I knew and heard—for me to prevent the murder what I was doing I had followed, and found of one or both of them. So, gathering up myself in the street with a dark shadow in my ebbing courage, I sprang from my hidingfront of me, which I pursued noiselessly, place, and darting between them, I shriekedcreeping close to the wall when I feared he “Sir Everard! Jack !--oh, Jack!"
I know not which were most affrighted at
“ Mistress Selwode was a spectator the my sudden presence-Jack and Harry Fan- last time I saw her," said a good-natured shawe, or the new-comers. My mantle fell voice. “ She is an actor in a drama now. from me in the energy of the movement, and Ah,” said he, "nature is the highest art. I stood there, with outstretched arms, in a That ‘Jack, oh, Jack !' of yours would have supplicating attitude.
made the fortune of any actress.
But I do “Grace!" ejaculated Harry and Jack, in wrong to jest, Mistress Selwode; nor would one breath.
I do so, but that this tragic matter is like to “Grace!" said another voice, but not Sir have so happy an ending." Everard Tylney's. “This is tragedy indeed, I looked from him to Uncle Oliver for as good as “Hamlet.''
an explanation--for I could not speak to ask And throwing aside the cloak that had for one. And Mr. Steele, gathering up my enveloped him, Uncle Oliver stood before mantle, which the others had not heeded, me; and in another moment I was sobbing wrapped it carefully around me. in his arms.
"'Tis cold in the early morn," said he, The sun was coming up red and glorious "and you are shivering.” now, sending deep crimson lights over the So I was; and Uncle Oliver bade me take sky and into the woods, and quivering on his arm, and said hethe faces of the five so strangely met to- “Grace, child, here is thy father's letter. gether.
You may thank Mr. Steele for his help, for “Grace," said Jack, coldly,
- this is a
without it I should scarce have succeeded.” bad jest."
“No thanks to me,” said Mr. Steele. “I "What do you mean, sir?" says Uncle fought a duel once, and if ever I have had Oliver. “To put an end to murder is surely power to prevent one since, or to throw my a good one."
weight into the scale against duelling, I have “To put a stain on one's honour not held it to be my duty to do so. No thanks, easily to be wiped out is no light matter," young lady. 'is for my principles, not for answers Jack, loftily.
praise, that I have helped your uncle." “Tush, tush, boy !-hast not had fighting And then my uncle explained how that enough already, but must come home to try he and Mr. Steele had had more than a thy sword on her Majesty's peaceable sub- suspicion of Sir Everard's dealings with the jects against their inclination?”
foreign court; but that 'twas thought unwise “Good morning, sir,” says Jack, in a ma- to agitate in the affair, as so many were unjestic manner, moving away.
steady in their principles, and there was Stop, sir!” says Uncle Oliver, putting no knowing who might be implicated in a his hand upon his shoulder, "and don't matter that had more danger to its parmake a fool of yourself. How came you tizans themselves than to those intrigued here, Grace?"
against. "I followed Jack," I sobbed.
"Besides," said Uncle Oliver, "my hands “ After putting you on the scent, sir,” were tied when I found that Sir Everard was added Jack.
my nephew-presumptive." “ That she didn't,” said Uncle Oliver, And then he went on to say that when he quickly. “How did she know where you discovered the true state of things he at once were going? No; 't was a better authority went to Mr. Steele, and they consulted tothat let me know where I should find you, gether; and that my fears of a duel had 'twas Sir Everard Tylney himself.”
been taken up warmly by Mr. Steele“Sir Everard Tylney!” cried Jack, aghast. “And I believe," continued Uncle Oliver, “I said he was a coward. He shall answer “they moved him more than any qualms at for this.”
a Jacobite plot. Well, as we had good proof "You'll have to go to France for satis- against the man, I went to him, and prifaction, then,” said Uncle Oliver, coolly; vately warned him of his danger, making "for he's on his way to St. Germains at the the condition of my keeping silence until he present moment. May his patent of no- was in safety dependent upon his giving up bility be ready for him.”
Ralph's letter. He hesitated a little, but I 'Twas my turn to be astonished now. Was was firm; and, feeling his danger, he finally Uncle Oliver sane, and who was the man yielded. with him? And I looked round quickly. "Twenty-four hours clear?' said he.
"Forty-eight,' said I—for when it came
CHAPTER LV. to the last, I was sorry for him. of Perhaps you will acquaint Colonel Sel
; FOR many days I was too weak to do wode with , more than lie in said he. "I was to meet him to-morrow both of mind and body. I had—as well as morning.'
I can remember—no wishes for the future, "Your note, Jack, was lying on the table. being perfectly content that matters should “Give it me,' said I, and I will answer be just as they were, without any further adit.'
yance; indeed, any change or effort would "So I formed my own plan of communi- have been irksome to me. I did not even cating with you, and brought Mr. Steele with inquire for Mr. Lydgate. I knew that all me to preach you a sermon against duelling; was peace between us, and that when I was and here we are. But Grace, child ! _"
stronger I should see him again, and tell I heard no more. A great flash of light him of all that had happened—not but that seemed to dart across my brain, and then a he knew it all well enough now, without any peal of thunder, crashing, crashing, till I was explanation on my part. beaten down, and could neither hear nor 'Twas a curious state that I was in, and see; and when I awoke after it, I was very one that might have been mistaken for inweak, and at first I did not know where I difference; though 'twas not, but was rather was. It was a soft spring morning, and the that I had come to one of the halting-places sun was shining into my room, and my of my life, and had made a pause. Faith mother was sitting at my bedside, gazing and Hope had met me, and were holding anxiously upon me, whilst Clarinda-look-converse with me that could not be intering as if she had not slept for weeks-was rupted by the world in general. And as they standing at the foot of the bed; and when I pointed to the chart which showed how my recognized her and spoke to her, she burst course had been steered past this mountain into tears, and left the room.
and that rock, through these treacherous I had had a brain fever, and had been ill shoals or nigh that eddying whirlpool, they for many days, hovering betwixt life and told me of a wind from Heaven that had
swelled my sails, and had carried me on my Every one knew about everything now. way in safety. “But 'tis so gentle a breeze, Perhaps Uncle Oliver knew the most; for and so hushed by earth-tempests,” quoth Mr. Lydgate had inquired all about me, and Faith, "that 't is unperceived; and few know Uncle Oliver had learned something, and its force until the ending of the voyage is at had guessed more. But he kept it to him- hand.” “Ah," said I—for Hope was smiling self, only whispering to me, the first time he full upon me, and whispering something too was able to see me-
low for me to hear, and yet which had an “Philip Lydgate is mending apace. He inspiring sound—“'tis well to have met it will be right glad to see thee.”
half-way; so can I depend upon it for the "Then he has forgiven?” I said, involun- rest of the journey." But Faith answered
somewhat sadly—"The best meet with many "Pooh!” said Uncle Oliver, somewhat falls: 't will be lost sight of again in trouble.” contemptuously
"Never," said I, with energy–"never." The golden time was coming again; and And I spoke with such vehemence that I yet, in the midst of it, I felt a sort of pity for awoke from my dream. Sir Everard.
- Never !” "And Sir Everard?" I asked.
And as I opened my eyes, I started, for "Is safe in France, and will deem it wise with my mother, who ever watched be. to stay there."
side me, there stood another, who looked I laid my head back upon my pillow, and anxiously and tenderly upon me, sayingfell into a dream that had scarce any sha- “Grace, sweetheart, what does thy 'never' dows in it, and the light was very fair. The web was being spun in a golden sunshine But it had no meaning; for all the words now: its warp and woof were silken and sil- that Hope had been whispering into
deaf vern, and it sparkled with shining jewels. ears sounded out clear, though they had It was almost too glittering to look at; and at last reached my heart, and I stretched so I closed my eyes.
out my hands, saying