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" This was
she began to pour out reproaches : “Oh, how soon as possible ; and he pointed out to her could you! Oh, I could not have believed it, that, in giving any further encouragement to Fraulein ! and to carry it all on so secretly, the young man, she would be instigating him without a word to me!”
to rebel against the known wishes and the Forgive me this, dear Madame ; I wished lawful authority of his father. to tell you, who have been to me as a mother ; “I cannot forget him, and I wish not to but ever he said to me : « Not now, not now ; forget him; but what matters it ? I am gotell no one till I shall have told my father.'” ing: no one need fear me longer.
66 And when in the world did he mean to her answer to Mr. Mowbray. To his wife tell his father ?”
she would sometimes say,
6. But tell me, “ When he shall get his commission ; then dear Madame, what have I done that you he will tell all in the adieu : and, he says, shake your head at me? I sought him not; then his father who loves him tenderly, will but when he came and said, "I love you, say, ' Let it all be as you will.",
be my wife,' where was my duty to say, Augustus is a goose, or else he is taking No?" you in : his father and mother will no more This unconsciousness of evil-doing which give their consent to his marrying you than Mrs. Mowbray repeated to Mrs. Bryant as an old Kitty Jones. I beg your pardon, Frau- extenuating circumstance, was but as fuel to lein ; but I mean that, of all people in the the fire of her anger. Great had been the world, those who have made their money by commotion at Woodbridge Hall, and stormy commerce, and are trying to take their place the scene between Augustus and his parents, among the old families of the county, will be when the fact of his actual engagement had most particular as to their son's marriage. I been unwillingly reported by Mrs. Mowbray. know they have their eye on Lady Harriet Mr. Bryant had positively assured his son Hardie."
that he would take away every shilling of his Augustus does not like Lady Harriet present allowance, if he went again near Hardie : he amuses himself at her grimaces, the Parsonage while Miss Berthal remained and he does not admire the yellow color of there; and that if he dared in any manner her hair."
to continue the intercourse after she had left, “Oh, don't talk to me about Lady Harriet he would leave all his money to a hospital. and her hair ! how can you sit there, answer Mrs. Bryant had at last, by harsh persisting me so coolly, when you have got me into ence, gained her point of an interview with such a sea of troubles ? and you suited me so Ottilia ; and had left her clutching the cushexactly, and the children were getting on so ions, and pressing her forehead on the arm well; and now I shall have to take some hor- of the sofa, in an agony of neuralgic headrid old fright, like my last one, of Mrs. Bry-ache. She had at first attacked her with ant's recommending.
bitter invective, but this the young girl met Now it was Ottilia’s turn to look dis- with a composure and dignity which baffled mayed : her deep-blue eyes widened, and her her, and forced her to change her tactics ; lips trembled, and then she spoke slowly. and it was by working on her conscience “ So I must leave you! you send me away rather than her fears, that she induced her from you ! and for what? because I have re- to make a promise—which, however, Mr. and ceived a true love from an honorable man!” Mrs. Mowbray's kinder remonstrances had
But this was inevitable ; Mr. Mowbray already half won from her—that she would himself saw and acknowledged it, even while not speak again to Augustus before she left. he inwardly resented the arrogant dictation A promise once made Ottilia Berthal would and selfishness of Mrs. Bryant. He had one keep, if it were to ruin her whole life. Many long and explicit conversation with Ottilia, were the little notes which, during the folin which, without blaming her at all severely, lowing week, Augustus caused to reach her, he pointed out to her the danger, and even imploring her to see him, if but for one mothe questionable propriety, of an engagement ment. She always wrote back the same anwith so young a man as Augustus Bryant : swer. “ I have promised not, and you must he endeavored to convince her of its utter obey your parents ; but I will never forget hopelessness, and the expediency of rooting you.” During this week she never stirred this “ boy and girl love ” from her mind as out; but on the last evening, when the loud
dinner-bell at the hall had rung, and she her, and in another instant an arm knew that Augustus was safely engaged in- thrown tightly round her, and Augustus was doors, she hurriedly put on her bonnet, stooping at her side. slipped out of the house, and sped up the s I have caught you at last, oh, you cruel parrow path into the beech clump on the girl! how could you treat me so, all this down. There it was that he had first called week? You have driven me nearly crazy.' her 66 Ottilia,” and asked her if she loved The first wild thrill of joy in Ottilia’s breast him. There had they often sat in a delicious was succeeded by a pang of conscience. “Oh, silence themselves, while the merry voices of I have promised,' she cried ; 66 August, the children made the air busy round them; dear one, leave me. I have said I would thence had they looked forth together on the speak to you no more. Oh, pray go from fair scene of wood and meadow, and he had me!” whispered to her of the time when all this
“I shall do no such thing; what business would be hers. He had never allowed a breath have you to make such a promise, I should of despondency or a hint at any great diffi- like to know, or who has dared to ask it?” culties in the way of their love. " You know “ It was your mother. Oh,you must not they have not a chick or a child but me, and disobey your parents, it would be sin; it there is nothing I have not been able to get was not sin till they spoke, but now you out of them, when I wished it, ever since I must think of me no more.” was born. Oh, I am quite sure it will all “ Think of you no more! I shall think of come as right as possible; perhaps a little you every moment of the day, and every hour grumble just at first, but I am used to that of my life, I can tell them that. I love you every time I have to ask for an extra five- a thousand times more, my darling, since pound note or so; I get it all the same, and they have set themselves against you in this 80 you shall see it will be now.”
shameful way. And what I have been wantYoung and trusting, ignorant alike of Eng- ing to get at you for all these days, is to ask lish habits and the character of those on whom you to go off with me." her fate depended, Ottilia had listened to " Go off! how?" these hopeful words from the beloved lips ; Why—to run away with me, to be sure; had believed them, and had lived on from to go somewhere where we can get married, day to day in a dream of uninquiring, un- and then snap our fingers at them all. I fearing, passive happiness, leaving all that have got all the plan settled, dearest, about concerned her ultimate destiny in the hands the money, and the carriage, and the place, of this boy, who was to her adoring eyes the and all; you just drop out and be on the ideal of all manly strength as well as grace. Netton side of the bridge to-night, at nine
And now she stood in the sun-dappled o'clock, and I'll have a fly waiting, and you clump, recalling every tone of his voice, every shall be my own wife before twenty-four look of his eye, every tender word which he hours are over.” had uttered in this very spot. She threw "Ah-no-no! What are you saying ? herself on the ground, and kissed the moss on what am I doing here? Listen, my Auwhich they had sat; there were twigs lying gust! Mr. Mowbray has shown to me that about which she remembered to have seen you are still as a child ; that is, you do de
him twist and break while they were talking ; pend for all on your father, and you must · she caught them up, and pressed them pas- submit to him and obey him; and I know
sionately to her lips, and hid them in her well that a curse rather than a blessing does breast.
fall on those who have made undutiful inar· August, mein Liebling, August, mein riages in rebellion to their parents. I will Liebling, nimmermehr, ach! nimmermehr! never, never be to you the cause of such a Leb' wohl, mein Geliebter!”
fate." So she exclaimed aloud amid her sobs ; for He would have tried further persuasion, the first check, the first breath of adversity to but she rose from the ground and hroke from young love brings despair, and absence seems his arms. « Lebe wohl, lebe wobl," she reto it as death. In this outpouring of her grief peated, in piteous, love-freighted tones, as she forgot how time was passing, and she was she turned away. suddenly roused by a quick footstep close to “ And you are going, actually going to
get me ? ;,
morrow," he cried, following her ; "and looks, excited her good mother's uneasiness. you will leave me in this way? What an But towards the end of her stay her eye grew abominable shame of my mother, and of those brighter, her manner livelier, and the color cowardly Mowbrays, to turn you out after in her cheek alternately cheered and alarmed this fashion! You will write to me, darling, her mother. every day, and let me see that you don't for The 28th drew on; it was a day which
despite her resolutions to expect nothing, had " Need I tell that? But I may not write, been set apart in Ottilias mind as the crisis and you must not write to me; unless, in- of her fate, for on that day Augustus would deed, God should have pity on us, and turn be one-and-twenty. It was true that the to me your parents' hearts."
birthday might make no real difference in his They will come round, dearest, never power of acting according to his wishes, fear,” said. Augustus, beginning to reconcile but he bad spoken of it so confidently that, himself to the unavoidable present, and to almost unconsciously, it had been fixed by the take refuge in the future. “We shall have trusting girl as the goal of her hopes. you back here in no time, and they will be The morning brought no letter ; but with asking your pardon for all their rudeness.” a pervading expectation of she scarce knew - Mr. Mowbray says never.”
what, with a flushed cheek, and hot hands, “ Does he? what makes him 80 wise, I she went through the little businesses of the wonder? But never mind if they don't. I day, looked over the household linen with her shan't be a child, as you call it, all my life; mother, made the coffee, and cut the tarin two years I shall be twenty-one, my own tines ready for her brother's return from master lawfully, according to the law of the school ; took the pipe to her father in the land, and then I'll come and claim you, Ot- alcove, and read to him from the Hildesheim tilia ; and if my father cuts me off with a Zeitung till he fell asleep. The night came, shilling, as he says he will, why then we'll and brought no sign ; but as she laid her head live on my pay. Good-by, my precious, my on the pillow, she remembered that the last angel, my own! I'll never forget you. I thing likely was that she should hear anyhave your father's address in Germany, you thing on the day itself, that she ought to alknow, and I shall turn up there some day, low time for a letter, written upon the 28th, you see if I don't; in two years' time, if not to reach her. That time, reckoned to its before."
furthest margin, passed by, and so did her These were his last words, uttered as she horiday. On leaving, she repeated so many sped from him between the stems of the beech times. If a letter should come for me, dear trees; she turned for an instant as she heard mother, you will send it directly to me at them, while a beam from the setting sun Mr. Johnstone's," that her mother began to played around her, and a fairer light than suspect some heart trouble connected with that of the sun, a smile of love, and faith, this expected letter, which caused her child's and hope, illumined for an instant her tear- loss of bloom. ful face.
And four more years went by: making six Two years
is but a little time when our lot in all since she had parted from Augustus in life is settled, when our prospects have be- under the beech trees. The vicissitudes of a come facts, and we have nothing more par- governess's life had by this time brought her ticularly to desire or expect on this side of into the family of a Scotch laird who owned our life. But it is an arena all too large for a fine place in Perthshire. Ottilia was now the battle-ground of hope and despondency, six-and-twenty; the positive beauty of her the action of suspense and yearning on a early youth had yielded to the united effects young and sensitive heart. Ottilia’s consti- of suspense, final disappointment, and contution was naturally fragile, and ill calculated start work; but her expressive eyes and to bear any pressure, either from within or sweet countenance still made her attractive. without; and when in the second July after She was much valued by her employers ; the her parting with Augustus, she appeared only drawback to Mrs. Arbuthnot's perfect at home for her midsummer holiday, her contentment being her delicate health and frethinness, and some vague alteration in her quent cough, but this she always maintained
herself to be a chronic tendency of no serious / room full of company, to whose bosom she consequence. Her manner was soft and quiet, had been held when last they met and parted, and an even, gentle cheerfulness beamed over in the little beech clump of Woodbridge? all she said and did, the sure token of a well- Or should they not meet at all? Would he trained spirit, at peace with itself and all the come and go, ignorant that one who, once at world. This was its usual characteristic; but least, had been so much beloved - his own in the evening on which my tale is resumed, Ottilia, as he had delighted to call her—was her demeanor was strangely altered. under the same roof, breathing the same air,
“ Fraulein, have you a headache ?” said and treading the same floor as himself ? Perone of her young pupils to her in the course haps it would be better so; yet she felt this of the walk; and on her answering hastily would leave a bitter regret, a long and deeply in the negative, she fell back and whispered rankling pain. Revolving these things, she to her sister, “What can be the matter with paced up and down that part of the bank which Fraulein ? she has seemed so out of spirits to- was clear from both bushes and rocks, when day, and has spoken quite sharply now and a cry or shout which she had heard once or then; and in the drawing lesson her hand twice without noticing it, made itself presshook so when she took my pencil that she ent to her attention. It struck her that was obliged to leave off.”
there was something urgent in it, something “Oh, sbe is unwell, no doubt, though she different from the shout of a shepherd or will not own it; she never does allow that keeper, and she moved along the river side in she is ill. She was not well last night, for its direction. The ground became soft and after she had dressed, she changed her mind spongy as she proceeded, so much so that her and would not go to the drawing room. We foot sunk to the ankle. She suddenly remust make mamma look to her."
membered having heard that a piece of the On returning from the walk, Ottilia told river bank was rendered dangerous from its her pupils to go in, saying that, as the air boggy nature, and that a post had been set was still so pleasant, she would remain out a up to mark where this unsafe ground began. little while longer. As soon as she was alone, Looking around, she saw, lying just behind she hurried with a step that kept pace with her, and partly hidden in the rushes, an old, the feverish disquiet of her mind, through much decayed log. With a breath of thanksthe most secluded paths of the grounds, and giving for her escape, she drew back, and then down the steep wooded bank of the moved by a newly awakened idea, she ran up river, till.she came to the water's edge. It the bank, which here receded a good deal, seemed as if she wished for the rush and leaving a considerable area between itself and whirl of the turbid stream to sympathize the stream, so as to skirt the bog, and yet with her excited feelings. Poor Ottilia! she keep its surface in view. As she went the had flattered herself that her old wound was cry was repeated, now close at hand; and on healed forever ; she thought she had bid good- passing a bend of the river, she saw before by to earthly love, and its feverish pain, but her the figure of a man, from a little above a name which she had heard, and a voice the waist, rising awfully distinct against the which had met her ear the evening before, pale yellow of the evening sky, out of the seemed to have undone the work of years, green-tufted expanse below her. She flew on and to have carried her back into the midst through the straggling hushes, judging alof that region of struggle and yearning which most by instinct of the place where she might appeared to have been left so far behind. turn down again to the river side. The man. Augustus Bryant had come a guest to the was within a few yards of the edge of the house in which she lived : as yet they had bog, with his face turned in that direction ;not encountered each other, but he had passed he had evidently observed his danger after the
open door of the room in which she was, going a little distance, and had vainly enand though she had been prepared, by hear- deavored to return. Occasionally he made ing his name mentioned as one of the party a forward struggling movement, when the just arrived for the autumn shooting, the ef- whole face of what seemed solid sward,,quiv-.
her of this glimpse and of this voice ered, rose, and sank like a pond in a breeze;. had been overwhelming. How should she be and the figure looked a little less high than. able to meet him, as a stranger, and in a before.
“Do not muve! Oh, keep stil!” cried | tual clasp of their hands. She tried to supOttilia, as she saw this; and sinking down port herself by clutching with her other hand panting on a congue of firm turf, from which at the stem of the tree. an old willow stem leaned over the bog, she “ Is there nothing more than this that I stretched her hand, as far as she could reach, can do?” she said. 60 August! can you towards the sinking man; he caught it in think of no way?” his with the gripe of utmost need. At the “ There is none,” he replied ; “ it must same moment their eyes met, and Ottilia ut- come. Leave go of my hand, Ottilia, and let tered a low cry; for the face before her was me be put out of my misery at once." that of Augustus.
« Oh, talk not so! Pray, pray, August, For the first moment or two he only looked that God may save you, if he will, and if at her with the grave, earnest look of a man not, take you to himself — that he may take in great peril; then there came a flush over us both! And lifting up her eyes from the his face ;
face of Augustus to the darkening sky above " Ottilia !” he said, in a low, husky voice; them, she wrestled aloud in prayer, less now “yes, I have deserved this, and I see now it for the earthly life of her beloved than for is a judgment.”
the pardon and acceptance of the deathless 6. Oh, thank God I was at hand to hear soul.
she cried, disregarding all but his “ God reward you !” he said, faintly, danger. “Now, with the help of my hand when she paused. I have been a villain to -now you can get out, can you not? All- you ; there is many a sin that lies heavily gnädiger Gott erbarme uns !” she continued, enough upon me now,
but this is the worst to as, at the strong movement which he made think of.” towards her, he sank several inches, almost - Think not of that, nor of me-think but drawing her at the samne tiine from her foot- of your Redeemer, and lay tight, tight hold ing.
of his cross !” " It is of no use,” he said ; “
There was silence for many minutes. Then ment only hastens the end. Oh, what a hor- there came a rustling in the trees on the rible death for a man to die!"
bank : hope sprang up in both their hearts. “ You are not going to die, August; 1 Alas! it was but the flap of some large bird's
As long as you are still, wing, quarrelling with its fellows for a roostI can keep you from sinking, and we must ing-place. call for help. Is there no one near?” Suddenly a more rapid fall of Augustus'
No; they are a mile off by this time; body almost separated their hands; one arm, they took the other branch of the river, his head and shoulders were now alone visiand, like a fool, I chose to come up here ble. Ottilia rose on her knees, and lifted alone."
her arm as high as her reaching posture would “But shout, shout! they may be return- allow; and with every fibre of her body knit ing, or some one else may be pear.' in this hand to hand struggle with the grave,
He shouted ; many a time did he shout; she strove to hold back from it its prey, while and many a time did Ottilia take up that
very soul seemed to pour itself out in sucin tones made sharper and clearer by anguish. cessive shrieks, which made the still air shiver Both voices died away alike in the lonely dis- and ring in tortured vibrations along the tance ; nothing was heard but the sullen rocky bank. mutter of the water, and the sound of the And hark—there is something besides their wind in the trees high above.
echoes: the sound of a man's halloo. AnAfter awhile, even when motionless him- other! nearer! and now the noise of feet runself, the figure of Augustus no longer re- ping on the high road above ; and now the mained stationary ; slowly, almost impercep crashing of branches, and a round, glimmertibly, yet always was it sinking. Ottilia's ing light coming down the bank. arm was strained till the tendons seemed to “ Where are you !” cried voices. crack, and the cold drops stood on her face ; “ Here!” shouted Augustus, restored to sometimes it became numb, and a horror the vigor of life and hope in an instant; came upon her lest she should faint, or at “ here, to the right; but be quick, or it's of least lose the power of maintaining the mu- no use!”
will hold you up.