Page images

iron-gray inexorable aunt, looking full in his much on his mind ; and think of ourselves, eyes as she spoke. So significant and plain a and all that we have planned so often. Only statement took for an instant the color out of think what you have talked of over and the curate's cheeks—he pared his orange very over; how nice it would be when he was old carefully while he regained his composure, enough to take the rectory, and


Julia and it was at least half a minute before he Trenchfound himself at leisure to reply. Miss " Aunt Dora,” said the curate, rising from Dora of course seized upon the opportunity, the table, “ I shall have to go away if you make and, by way of softening matters, interposed such appeals on my behalf. And besides, it in her unlucky person to make peace. is only right to tell you that, whatever my

“ But, my dear boy, I said I was sure you circumstances were, I never could nor would did not mean it,” said Miss Dora ; " I told marry Julia Trench. It is cruel and unjust Mr. Morgan I felt convinced it could be ex- to bring in her name. Don't let us hear any plained. Nobody knows you so well as I do. more of this, if you have any regard for me." You were always so high-spirited from a child, 6 Quite so, Frank,” said Miss Wentworth; and never would give in; but I know very " that is exactly what I was thinking.” Miss well you never could mean it, Frank.” Cecilia was not in the habit of making dem

“ Mean it?" said the curate with sparkling onstrations, but she put out her delicate old eyes ; " what do you take me for Aunt Dora ? hand to point her nephew to his seat again, Do you know what it is we are talking of? and gave a soft pressure to his as she touched The question is, whether a whole lot of peo- it. Old Miss Wentworth was a kind of dumb ple, fathers and children, shall be left to live lovely idol to her nephews; she rarely said like beasts, without reverence for God or anything to them, but they worshipped her man, or shall be brought within the pale of all the same for her beauty and those sweet the Church, and taught their duty? And you languid tendernesses which she showed them think I don't mean it? I mean it as much once in ten years or so. The Perpetual Cuas my brother Charley meant it at the Redan,” rate was much touched by this manifestation. said young Wentworth, with a glow of sup- He kissed his old aunt's beautiful hand as pressed enthusiasm, and that natural pride in reverently as if it had been a saint's. “I Charley (who got the Cross for Valor) which knew you would understand me," he said, was common to all the Wentworths. But looking gratefully at her lovely old face ; when he saw his Aunt Leonora looking at which exclamation,

was a simple him, the Perpetual Curate stood to his arms utterance of gratitude, and would not have again. " I have still to learn that the rector borne investigation. When he had resumed has anything to do with it,” said the young his seat and orange, Miss Leonora cleared Evangelist of Wharfside.

her throat for a grand address. “ It is in his parish, and he thinks he “ Frank might as well tell us he would not has," said Miss Leonora. “ I wish you could have Skelmersdale,” she said. Julia Trench see your duty more clearly, Frank. You has quite other prospects, I am glad to say, seem to me, you know, to have a kind of though Dora does talk like a fool on this subzeal, but not according to knowledge. If ject as well as on many others. Mr. Shirley you were carrying the real Gospel to the poor is not dead yet, and I don't think he means people, I shouldn't be disposed to blame you; to die, for my part ; and Julia would never for the limits of a parish are but poor things leave her uncle. Besides, I don't think any to pause for when souls are perishing; but inducement in the world would make her to break the law for the sake of diffusing the disguise herself like a Sister of Mercy. I rubric and propagating Tractarianism _” hope she knows better. And it is a pity that

"O Leonora, how can you be so harsh and Frank should learn to think of Skelmersdale cruel ? ” cried Mass Dora; “ only think what as if it were a family living,' continued Miss you are doing. I don't say anything about Leonora. “ For my part, I think people disappointing Frank, and perhaps injuring detached from immediate ties as we are, are his prospects for life ; for to be sure he is a under all the greater responsibility. But as true Wentworth, and wont acknowledge that; you are likely to stay in Carlingford, Frank, but think of my poor dear brother, with so perhaps we could help you with the rector," many sons as he has to provide for, and so she concluded blandly, as she ate her biscuit.




The curate, who was also a Wentworth, bad | alarmed quaver. 66 Rebel! O Frank, dear, quite recovered himself ere this speech was do you think we could ? To be sure, we are over, and proved himself equal to the occasion. co-beiresses, and have just as good a right as

6. If the rector objects to what I am doing, she has ; and for your sake, my dear boy,”: I dare say he will tell me of it,” said Mr. said the troubled woman, “ O Frank, I wish Wentworth, with indescribable suavity. "I you would tell me what to do? I never had the consent of the two former rectors to should dare to contradict Leonora with no my mission in their parish, and I don't mean one to stand by me; and then, if anything to give up such a work without a cause. But happened, you would all think I had been to I am equally obliged to you, my dear aunt, blame,” said poor Aunt Dora, clinging to his and I hope Mr. Shirley will live forever. How arm. She made him walk back and back long are you going to stay in Carlingford ? again through the long passage, which was Some of the people would like to call on you, sacred to the chief suite of apartments at the if you remain longer. There are some great Blue Boar. 66 We have it all to ourselves, friends of mine here; and as I have every and nobody can see us here; and O my

dear prospect of being perpetually the curate, as dear boy, if you would only tell me what I you kindly

serve, perhaps it ight be good ought to do ? " she ed, with wistful for me if I was seen to have such unexcep- looks ci appeal. Mr. Wentworth was too tionable relationships,

good-hearted to show the impatience with “ Satire is lost upon me,” said Miss Leo- which he was struggling. He satisfied her

“and we are going to-morrow. Here as well as he could, and said good-night half comes the coffee. I did not think it had been a dozen times. When he made his escape at 80 late. We shall leave by an early train, last, and emerged into the clear blue air of and you can come and see us off, if you have the spring night, the Perpetual Curate had

no such sense of disappointment and fail6 I shall certainly find time,” said the ure in his mind as the three ladies supnephew, with equal politeness ; " and now posed. Miss Leonora's distinct intimation you will permit me to say good-night, for I that Skelmersdale had passed out of the rehave a-one of my sick people to visit. I gion of probabilities, had indeed tingled heard he was ill only as I came here, and had through him at the moment it was uttered ; not time to call,” added the curate, with un- but just now he was going to see Lucy, annecessary explanatoriness, and took leave of ticipating with impatience the moment of his Aunt Cecilia, who softly put something coming into her presence, and nothing in the into his hand as she bade him good-night. world could have dismayed him utterly. He Miss Dora, for her part, went with him to went down the road very rapidly, glad to find the door, and lingered leaning on his arm, that it was still so early, that the shopkeepdown the long passage, all unaware, poor ers in George Street were but just putting up lady, that his heart was beating with impa- their shutters, and that there was still time tience to get away, and that the disappoint- for an hour's talk in that bright drawingment for which she wanted to console him room. Little Rosa was standing at the door had at the present moment not the slightest of Elsworthy's shop, looking out into the dark real hold


“O my street, as he passed ; and he said, “ A lovely dear boy, I hope you don't think it's my night, Rosa,” as he went by. But the night fault,” said Miss Dora, with tears. “ It was nothing particular in itself, only lovely must have come to this, dear, sooner or later ; to Mr. Wentworth, as embellished with Lucy you see, poor Leonora has such a sense of re- shining over it, like a distant star. Perhaps sponsibility ; but it is very hard upon us, he had never in his life felt so glad that he Frank, who love you so much, that she was going to see her, so eager for her presshould always take her own way.”

ence, as that night which was the beginning 6. Then why don't you rebel?” said the of the time when it would be no longer lawcurate, who, in the thought of seeing Lucy, ful for him to indulge in her society. He was exhilarated, and dared to jest even upon heaved a big sigh as that thought occurred to the awful power of his aunt. 6. You are two him, but it did not diminish the flush of conagainst one; why don't you take it into your scious happiness ; and in this mood he went own hands and rebel?”

down Grange Lane, with light resounding Miss Dora repeated the words with an steps, to Mr. Wodehouse's door.

perverse heart.



But Mr. Wentworth started with a very out, and round the garden, as if he had heard strange sensation when the door was stealth- something to excite his curiosity or surprise. ily, noiselessly opened to him before he could Miss Wodehouse grasped the arm of the Perring. He could not see who it was that petual Curate, and held him with an energy called him in in the darkness; but he felt that which was almost violence. “ Hush, hush, he had been watched for, and that the door hush,” she said, with her voice almost at was thrown open very hurriedly to prevent his ear. The excitement of this mild woman, him from making his usual summons at the the perfectly inexplicable mystery of the bell. Such an incident was incomprehensi- meeting, overwhelmed young Wentworth. ble. He went into the dark garden like a He could think of nothing less than that she man in a dream, with a horrible vision of had lost her senses, and in his turn took her Archimage and the false Una somehow steal- hands and held her fast. ing upon his mind, he could not tell how. It 6. What is the matter? I cannot tell you was quite dark inside, for the moon was late how anxious, how distressed I am. What of rising that night, and the faint stars threw has happened ?” said the young man, under no effectual lustre down upon the trees. He his breath. had to grope before him to know where he “My father has some suspicion,” she anwas going, asking in a troubled voice,“ Who swered, after a pause—" he came home early is there? What is the matter ?” and fall- to-day looking ill. You heard of it Mr. ing into more and more profound bewilder- Wentworth — it was your note that decided ment and uneasiness.

Oh, heaven help us ! it is so hard to “ Hush, hush, oh, hush !-O Mr. Went know what to do. I have never been used worth, it is I-I want to speak to you,” said to act for myself, and I feel as helpless as a an agitated voice beside him. “ Come this baby. The only comfort I have was that it

way; I don't want any one to hear happened on Easter Sunday,” said the poor us.” It was Miss Wodehouse who thus pit- gentlewoman, incoherently; "and oh! if it ifully addressed the amazed curate. She laid should prove a rising from the dead! If you a tremulous hand on his arm, and drew him saw me, Mr. Wentworth, you would see I deeper into the shadows - into that walk look ten years older ; and I can't tell how it where the limes and tall lilac-bushes grew so is, but I think my father has suspicions :-he thickly. Here she came to a pause, and the looked so ill-oh, so ill—when he came home sound of the terrified panting breath in the to-night. Hush ! hark! did you


anysilence alarmed him more and more. thing? I daren't tell Lucy; not that I

" Is Mr. Wodehouse ill? What has hap- couldn't trust her, but it is cruel, when a pened ? ” said the astonished young man. The young creature is happy, to let her know such windows of the house were gleaming hospita- miseries. O Mr. Wentworth, I dare say I hly over the dark garden, without any appear- am not telling you what it is, after all." I ance of gloom the drawing-room windows don't know what I am saying-wait till I can especially, which he knew so well, brightly think. It was on Easter Sunday, after we lighted, one of them open, and the sound of the came home from Wharfside ; you remember piano and Lucy's voice stealing out like a ce- we all came home together, and both Lucy and lestial reality into the darkness. By the time you were so quiet. I could not understand he had become fully sensible of all these par- how it was you were so quiet, but I was not ticulars his agitated companion had found her thinking of any trouble—and then all at once breath.

there he was. 66 Mr. Wentworth, don't think me mad,” “ Who?" said the curate, forgetting causaid Miss Wodehouse; “ I have come out to tion in his bewilderment. speak to you, for I am in great distress. I Once more the door opened, and John apdon't know what to do unless you will help peared on the steps, this time with a lantern me. Oh, no, don't look at the house--no- and the watchdog, a great brown mastiff, by body knows in the house ; I would die rather his side, evidently with the intention of searchthan have them know. Hush, hush! don't ing the garden for the owners of those furtive · make any noise. Is that some one looking voices. Mr. Wentworth drew the arm of his out at the door ? "

trembling companion within his own. "I And just then the door was opened, and don't know what you want of me, but whatMr. Wodehouse's sole male servant looked ever it is, truat to me like-like a brother,"

[ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors]

he said, with a sigh. “ But now compose invalid, almost turning his back upon Lucy yourself; we must go into the house : it will in his bewilderment. It was indeed with a not do for you to be found here." He led great effort that Mr. Wentworth mastered her up the gravel-walk into the light of the himself and was able to listen to what his lantern, which the vigilant guardian of the companion said.

“ We are all right,” said Mr. Wodehouse house was flashing among the bushes as he "a trifle of a headache or so—nothing to set out upon his rounds. John fell back make a talk about; but Molly has forsaken amazed but respectful when he saw his mis- us, and we were just about getting bored tress and the familiar visitor.

• Beg your

with each other, Lucy and I; a third person pardon, ma'am, but I knew there was voices, was all we wanted to make us happy-eh? and I didn't know as any of the family was

Well, I thought you looked at the door very in the garden,” said the man, discomfited. have sworn you were listening and looking

often—perhaps I was mistaken-but I could It was all Mr. Wentworth could do to hold for somebody: No wonder either-I don't up the trembling figure by his side.

As John think so. I should have done just the same retreated, she gathered a little fortitude. at your age.” Perhaps it was easier for her to tell her hur - Indeed, papa, you are quite mistaken,” ried tremulous story, as he guided her back said Lucy. "I suppose that means that I to the house, than it would have been in un- been trying all the evening. Perhaps Mr.

cannot amuse you by myself, though I have interrupted leisure and quiet. The family Wentworth will be more fortunate.". And, tragedy fell in broken sentences from her lips, either for shame of being supposed to look as the curate bent down his astonished ear to for him, or in a little innocent pique, she listen. He was totally unprepared for the moved away from where she was sitting, and secret which only her helplessness and weak- rang for tea, and left the two gentlemen to ness and anxiety to serve her father could talk to each other. That is to say, Mr. have drawn from Miss Wodehouse's lips ; Wodehouse talked, and the Perpetual Curate and it had to be told so hurriedly that Mr. sat looking vaguely at the fair figure which Wentworth scarcely knew what it was, ex- flitted about the room, and wondering if he cept a terrible unsuspected shadow overhang- were awake, or the world still in its usual ing the powerful house, until he had time to place. After a while Miss Wodehouse came think it all over. There was no such time at in, very tremulous and pale, and dropped this moment. His trembling companion left into the first chair she could find, and prehim as soon as they reached the house, to tended to occupy herself over her knitting.

compose herself, as she said. When he She had a headache, Lucy said ; and Mr. saw her face in the light of the hall lamp it Wentworth sat watching while the younger was ghastly, and quivering with agitation, sister tended the elder, bringing her tea, looking not ten years, as she said, but a hun- kissing her, persuading her to go and lie dred years older than when, in the sweet pre- down, taking all kinds of affectionate trouble cision of her Sunday dress and looks, old Miss to cheer the pale woman, who looked over Wodehouse had bidden him good-by at the Lucy's fair head with eyes full of meaning to green door. He went up to the drawing- the bewildered visitor, who was the only one room, notwithstanding, with as calm a coun- there who understood what her trouble meant. tenance as he himself" could collect, to pay When he got up to go away, she wrung his the visit which, in this few minutes, had so hand with a pitiful gaze which went to his entirely changed its character. Mr. Went- heart. " Let me know!” she said in a whisworth felt as if he were in a dream when he per; and, not satisfied still, went to the door walked into the familiar room, and saw every- with him, and lingered upon the stair, folthing as he had pictured it to himself half an lowing slowly. “O Mr. Wentworth ! be hour ago. Lucy, who had left the piano, sure you let me know,” she repeated, again was seated in her low chair again, not work- looking wistfully, after him as he disappeared ing, but talking to Mr. Wodehouse, who lay into the dark garden, going out. The stars on the sofa, looking a trifle less rosy than were still shining, the spring dews lying usual, like a man who had had a fright, or sweet upon the plants and turf. It was a been startled by some possible shadow of a lovelier night now than when Mr. Wentworth ghost. To walk into the room, into the had said so to little Rosa Elsworthy an hour bright household glow, and smile and shake ago; but mists were rising from the earth, hands with them, feeling all the time that he and clouds creeping over the sky, to the knew more about them than they themselves startled imagination of the Perpetual Curate. did, was the strangest sensation to the young He had found out by practical experiment,

He asked how Mr. Wodehouse did, almost for the first time, that there were with a voice which, to himself, sounded hol- more things in earth and heaven than are low and unnatural, and sat down beside the 'dreamt of in the philosophy of youth.

[ocr errors][merged small]



immortal paper.

HORACE BINNEY AND THE UNION LEAGUE. | party satisfaction with party measures of Gov

ernment. PHILADELPHIA, June 25, 1863.

The doctrines of Washington were not To the General Committee of Invitation and party doctrines. Washington no

Correspondence of the Union_League of party, wrote for no party, and acted for no Philadelphia, James Milliken, Esq., Chair- party. He feared the evils of party more

than all other evils which could assail the

Union. He has described, and almost deGENTLEMEN : I acknowledge the honor of nounced, the designs of a party disloyal to your invitation to participate, as a guest, in the Union, and which he thought was in the ceremony and banquet of a national cele- sight in his own day. This was the parent bration of our national independence, in this thought of his Farewell Address. He discity, on the Fourth of July next, and although countenanced parties altogether, and at all my health and strength do not permit me to times, as intrinsically dangerous to the Union avail myself of the invitation, they do not and to republican government. confine

me, at present, to this formal reply. Let us be thankful that God spared the I have unbounded confidence in the princi- eyes of this pure and incorruptible patriot ples of the Union League of Philadelphia, from beholding, and perhaps his spirit from and of the loyal National Leagues throughout conceiving, the terrible depth to which this the United States. They are distinctly rec- nation would fall when an immense and rulommended and enforced in the Farewell Ad- ing mass of its people would regard party dress of Washington, and are the breath of as a political virtue, and the passionate exlife to the Union. It has never been so nec- aggerations of party as the only efficient inessary to embody them for universal action strument of government. He was especially as at this day, and to recall them partly in blessed in escaping the sight of flagrant and the letter, and wholly in the spirit, of that wide-spreading rebellion, raised up by and

through the spirit of party, to blast the best The maintenance of the Union against all fruits of the great labor of his life, to destroy enemies, without or within ; a cordial, habit- the Union, to falsify the Declaration of Indeual, and immovable attachment to it; a sa- pendence, and to lay foundations in governcred regard for the Constitution, as the voice ment which all our fathers abhorred. That of the Union for its government; confidence sight has been reserved for us perhaps for our in, and support of the Government ordained unfilial disregard of his advice, which seems by the Constitution ; obedience to the law- to have been an inspiration from Heaven, fully-elected and appointed Administration of We have seen, and we now see, this awful the Government, respect to its authority, treason, after deluging, the country with compliance with its laws, acquiescence in its blood, marching to invade this State, and obmeasures ; and, withal, that concert of the taining, or seeking to obtain, from the same heart with the demands of political and civil exaggerations of party, either open or secret duty which obtains the name of loyalty, and assistance within the State and city in which in times like the present manifests the cor, the Declaration of Independence was first diality of allegiance to the nation; these, I ushered to the world, and where the formathink, are in part the very letter, and in the tion of the Union was first celebrated by an whole the spirit, of Washington's Farewell anniversary procession, and ceremonies of Address. Washington makes no distinction homage, in the same way in which you now between the lawfully elected and appointed purpose again to celebrate it. administration of government and the Gov As a league of patriots, rejecting all disernment itself. He speaks of both in the criminations of party, and building up the same paragraph as the Government. By the strongest and purest combination of the peomeasures of government he means the meas- ple in irrepressible support of the Union and ures of administration. The Administration the Government of the nation, upon the prinis the Government in action. When the peo- ciples of the Father of his Country, I venple constitutionally change the actors in ad- erate the Union Leagues of the United States, ministration the Government is not changed, and I devoutly pray God to consummate their and the action of the Government is entitled noble design, to the effectual suppression of to the same regard, respect, and support. If rebellion and treason, and of treasonable practhere be any practical distinction between the tices and confederacies, to the perpetuity of government and the administration, party has the Union, the maintenance of the Constitumade it, and not. Washington ; and it is a dis- tion, and the restoration of peace and unity tinction disloyal to the Union, the Constitu- to our entire nation of people and States. tion, and the Government. It reduces loy I remain, gentlemen, most respectfully your alty to the degraded rank of personal favor obedient servant, to personal actors in the Government, and to


« EelmineJätka »