Imatges de pàgina

work for her to do, and giving her a good

them for the ministry. Now do you supopportunity for good. He restored in some pose it is my duty. It is a very eloquent measure the glow of enthusiasm she had letter, but how do I know that they are at felt on first hearing the will, tempered, all suitable, or called to the work?" however, with a much greater appreciation “Of course you don't know," said Mrs. of the difficulties before her. By his advice Marlowe, decisively. “Give them the same Jean determined to wait two full years be- answer as the rest, and don't trouble over fore making a decided disposition of the it till the two years are up. Meanwhile, funds, and in that time 10 consider the get your bat, for I am going to take you subject carefully and prayerfully, hoping home with me to tea." to be guided to give help wbere it was most So Jean went away with her friend to needed.

spend one of those pleasant evenings at And now Jean became a “newspaper the rectory which always gave her “a fresh item," to her great dismay. Brief para- start,” she said. Dr. Rawley's face always graphs, detailing the singular bequest to wore a kindly look for her, like an unfailchurch uses, left to the caprice of a young ing benediction. He was growing feeble girl, floated from one paper to another. now, and a young deacon liad been called The story was caught at by agents, by mis- to assist him in some of his labors. And sionaries, by struggling ministers, and by if this young deacon looked favorably upon sisterhoods and benevolent enthusiasts. Jean's bright face, and if he sometimes Circulars began to pour in upon Jean, and wondered, as far as he conscientiously begging letters, some almost commanding, could, whether, in case she married a clerand others pitifully entreating her to give gyınan, the legacy might properly be deto this or that deserving object. Such a voted to a parzonage and a theological world of distressing need, in forms she bad library, Jean in her innocence vever susnever dreamed of, opened before her, and pected it. her ready sympathy tiowed out to each new “I heard from Orrin Drew to-day," said call, though they bewildered her terribly, Dr. Rawley, as he joined them in the parfor what were fifty thousand dollars among lor after tea. so many, and how was she ever to be wise “O, did you ?'' exclaimed Jean. “I enough to know where to give? It was a wish be were here to sing with us this great relief that she had promised Dr. evening. How he used to like this anthem Rawley to wait two years. And this was of 'The shield, the sword, and the battle.'” the reply she sent to each appeal, that she She was turning over some sheets of music could take no step in the matter for two as she spoke. years.

Yes," continued the doctor, “ Orrin is But though this might postpone the mo- doing well, I think. He shows great resomentous decision, it could not prevent a lution, and will soon be a master-mechanic. weight of thought and care falling upon That great establishinent at Lowbury for the giriisu shoulders, and it seenied as if a building engines, where he works, employs great wall were rising between her and the five hundred men." light-hearted past. Just as though there “I have been there," said Mrs. Marlowe; were not work and anxiety enough at home, “it is one of the queerest places you ever she could not help thinking sometimes, to The junior partner in that establishkeep her steady and discipline her.

ment is a connection of ours. He gets his “What are you thinking of now, child ?” finger very black drawing circles, though asked Mrs. Marlowe, as she came in oue wby he draws them and why he uses his afternoon and found Jean in a brown finger, is more than I can tell. Come and study by the window, with three or four try this new song with me, Jean; it has a letters in her lap.

very fine alto.” “Well," said Jean, putting the letters So they turned to music, and music endaway, “St. Barnabas, a thousand miles

ed the evening, and when the evening was away, wants a bell, and St. Mary, as far in over the young deacon walked home with another direction, requests an organ of me. Jean. I don't so much mind these, but here are two young inen, brothers, who write asking me to send them to college, and educate



CHAPTER V. TIME rolled on.

“Mamma," said Clementina Drew, as she sat one moruing at her late breakfast, languidly toying with the grotesque little china cup that held her chocolate, ma, it is nearly two years since Aunt Drew died, and in all that time I have never had Jean Argyle here to visit me. I am going to invite her to pass the rest of the winter with us. I wonder how she looks now-adays, she used to be pretty.”

“It is well enough to ask her to come,” replied Mrs. Drew. “I don't suppose the poor child has much pleasure. I wonder if she has disposed of that provoking legacy


“No; I've heard about that,” said Clementina. “Old Dr. Rawley ailvised her to wait as long as she could. I am glad he did, for I have a plan of my own about it.”

But what the plan was Clementina would not tell, though Mrs. Drew was mildly curious.

So the invitation went forth, and now Jean bad her chance at last to visit in the great city,

"She shall go," said both Mr. and Mrs. Argyle. “It is time she had a change.”

The firm which employed Mr. Argyle had recently been so fortunate as to treble their business, and had not forgotten at the same time to enlarge their bookkeeper's salary, 80 that he could really afford to let bis daughter have a little vacation. Thus the two girls were to be together again, to call each other Jean and Clen as of old, and to study in each other's faces the changes that two years bad wrought.

"Well, I'm sure, Jean, you look as fresh as a daisy,” said Clementina, the morning after Jean's arrival, as they sat together in a daiuty little boudoir, “modest, and crimson-tipped, and all that. I thought you would be completely fagged out by this time, staying at home tending babies and washing dishes."

“0, I don't mind those things as much as I used to,” said Jean, with a bright smile, "and I really enjoy being with the children. There have had my lessous and music, you know."

“Dear me, what a goodyish sound that has !' exclaimed Clem, in a tone of light mockery. “But there, dear, I wont make fun of you. Lessons and music! I took, perhaps, six lessons in Frencb after I came

here, but when it came to verbs I stopped short of, they were so much trouble. Aunt Drew didn't care; it was before she died. She had translations of all the French novels, and said there was no use in reading them in the original. She used to lie on a divan every day after dinner and make me sprinkle her with rose-water, and then read her to sleep with a novel.”

“ Did she ?” asked Jean, who was longing to know what Clem's life had been with city privileges. “Of course she wanted you part of the time, but I suppose you had your mornings to yourself?”.

“ Not an hour!” said Clem, with energy. “She scarcely ever let me be out of her sight, and at night I slept in a little room off hers where she could call me. She was afraid to be alone. O, you have no conception! Sometimes I have taken down her hair and put it up again a dozen times in one day. What I say now is, that I went through enough penance and selfsacrifice that winter to do for a lifetime, so I owe no more to the world, and now I propose to have a good time. Still, I make no complaint; she was very good to me, and took me wherever she went. Before I had been here two months I had six elegant silk party-dresses, and then she gave me all her jewelry. We went to a great many parties; the old people played cards, and the young people danced. Sometimes I used to think of you right in the midst of a waltz, and of how slight a chance had saved me from plodding along in the old way with you, singing in the choir, and going to sewing-bees and sociables."

“I would not exchange my two years for yours, Clem,” she said; and she said it sincerely.

* Nor exchange legacies, either?” asked Clem, with a shrewd glance and a shrug of her shoulders.

“No, nor legacies either," said Jean, with the thoughtful look which had become frequent with her settling down upon her face.

* Have you done anything with the fifty thousand dollars yet?”

“No. A great many suggestions have been made to me, but one by one I have dismissed most of them from my mind; a few remain to be decided upon at the last moment. If I do not feel satisfied with my own judgment, I shall place the funds in the hands of Dr. Rawley, which will be in


a manner giving them to the church to dis- us a solo from an oratorio! I sang in my pose of herself.”

best style an opera air or two, and some of “0, but that wont do at all !” exclaimed those pretty love-ballads that the prima Clem, with vivacity. “I have a much bet- donnas keep for their encores. Then on ter plan than that, by which you may give being urged to take my place at the piano, the money for church purposes, and at the she said very quietly that she knew none same time be benefited by it yourself. By but sacred music, and upon that she gave the way, Jean, I have invited a few friends us a wonderful solo from the Messiah,' of mine to drop in this evening, not at all and afterwards an anthem! That Mr. Siein a formal way, you know, but so that you bert and Mrs. Marlowe bave really done may begin to make acquaintances. Don't great things with her voice. Why, all my you think my parlors are lovely to receive gentlemen friends went into a perfect enguests in? Almost everything is as Aunt thusiasm about her! If she stays here the Drew left it; she had a great passion for season through, I don't know but she will frescoes and bronzes. But I have had the get an offer from every one of them, and it furniture upholstered over with light blue wasn't at all in my plan that she should get satin, which is much more cheerful than The Rev. Mr. Sterrett did look as if ber wine-colors.

he thought her almost an angel, that's a Parting the heavy damask curtains that fact!" shut off the little boudoir by itself, Clem- To Jean herself the evening had passed entina took Jean into the parlors to admire very enjoyably, the unwonted excitement their beauties and curiosities at her leisure, and the delicate compliments she received while she herself went up stairs to make exhilarated her. She did not feel the an elaborate neglige toilet, “for perhaps slightest awkwardness or consciousnesssome one might call.”

people with a definite object in life seldom That evening the “few friends" dropped domand Aunt Drew's legacy bad been a in as Clementina had announced. Their real benefit to Jean in giving her thoughts hostess met them, attired in a light silk of a broad channel and a most unselfish aim. one of the most fashionable shades, "mig- She was interested in meeting a young nonette green,” and wearing Auut Drew's clergyman among Clem's guests, who, antique set of gold and emeralds. She though rather boyish-faced and of limited looked very graceful, very stylish, and experience, seemed to be well educated and quite the “ bloude belle," as some of her a zealous worker. Jean's mind at this friends called her. Jean, who had but two time turned so much to church matters, silk dresses in the world, on being informed that she was glad to talk with any ong by Clementina that this evening would be who could make her better acquainted as nothing compared to others that awaited with her subject. Just now she was speher, thought it best to wear her black one, cially intent on church architecture, and as many a heroine has done before her. on making estimates as to how good a Thus, in black, with a pearl pin, and not building could be erected for fifty thousand a crimp in her hair, she was quite a con- dollars, in case she should so decide to use trast to Clementina, who regarded her with the money, in behalf of some poor parish. some misgivings at first, not knowing Here the Rev. Mr. Sterrett could help her, whether she would seem to ber guests like and even in this very first evening they ara siinple little rustic, or whether she had rived at a friendly understanding, with a that “ inexpressible something" beyond all promise on his part to call the next day mere style, and superior to it.

with a book of architectural designs for “ But I found out pretty quick," she her to examine. said, in speaking of it afterwards.

When Clementina heard of this she was as and cool as a bit of starlight, clapped her hands. Jean told her that and when one gentleman after another same night as they were taking down their praised her manuers to me, I began to hair. think that the other young ladies and I “ Just what I wanted !" she exclaimed, myself were nothing bui fluttering bunches gayly; “I knew you would like Arthur of ribbons and curls, after all. But her Sterrett, and I knew he would like you. It singing was the triumph of the evening. is all happening just right. Why, don't Who would ever have thought of her givivg you see yourself with your two gray eyes

* Jean

that he is the very man you ought to inar- sively. "What is Charlie Thrale doing ry, and then you can keep Aunt Drew's now-a-days ?” legacy, after all!"

And in the midst of a talk about old “What in the world do you mean, Clem- times, the girls fell asleep. entina ?” said Jean, confounded by this hurried march of thought.

CHAPTER VI. “Well, I will tell you,” said Clem, sit

AFTER Clem's suggestions, it was not ting down and becoming explanatory; “I

easy for Jean to meet the young clergyman have always felt worried about Aunt Drew

the next day without a slight feeling of treating you so in her will, and always

consciousness, so she infused a little stiffwished you could have the money just as I

ness into her manner, which, lowever, he had inine. Well, it occurred to ine a long

did not seem to notice, but sat a long time time ago that if you married a clergyman, patiently explaining to ler architectural it might be managed yet. So, when our

designs and various technical terms. After Dr. Devine had to go South this winter for

a confidential discussion over cornices and his health, and Arthur Sterrett came to

gargoyles, there was hardly any use in resupply his place, I thought at once, here is

suming formality; so it ended, after all, in just the husband for Jean. So well suited,

Jean and Arthur Sterrett becoming real yon know, I am sure you would be per

friends. fectly happy; only, instead of bringing you

Clem nodded her head at this, and auchurch-plans, he must bring you rectory

gured well for her plans, in spite of Jean's plans. For this is the rest of my idea: Dr.

unpromising reception of them. But ArDevine will come back by the last of Feb

thur was not by any means the only person ruary, and Arthur will of course before

to be considered; there was all Clementithat tiine bave a call to some other place.

na's gay world of friends coustantly coming Some lovely little town somewhere, I am

and going, and not unfrequently one or sure it will be, with a pretty church al

another of them seemed inclined to lay ready built. Then you can donate ten

siege to Jean's heart; but Clem, with the thousand dollars to the parish to build a

utmost care, piloted her safely past all handsome rectory, ten thousand to the

these shoals, "for Arthur's sake," as she Rer. Mr. Sterrett, to take him on a tour to

justified it to herself. Jean did not notice Europe when he needs rest, put twenty

this; she was pleased with the parties she thuisand in the bank for a fund, the inter

went to, and the attentions sbe received, est being used to increase the Rev. Mr.

but her mind was not intent upon them, Sterrett's salary, and with the rest you can

for she was really becoming quite too anxbuy a splendid organ and a library for the

ious about the disposal of Auni Drew's legchurch, and put in a great memorial win

acy, now that the time of decision was so dow, and then settle down, and live in

close at land, to think much of other things clover all the rest of your days! There,

until that was over. haven't I planned it well ?”

One evening they were expecting a large "O Clem! Clem !” cried Jean, laughing

number of guests, and the girls were dressmerrily; "what an imagination you have !"

ing together up stairs. “But don't laugh! I'm in dead earnest!

“I declare, I feel haggard !” said Clem, What do you think?”

suddenly, as she stood touching her cheeks But Jean persisted in regarding the with a violet-scented puff. “This sort of whole matter as an excellent joke; indeed, life don't pay, after all. Jean, I wish she felt she could not treat it in any other

some one was in love with me! I ally light without an indignation which Clem

thought Captain Trevor was, until he went would not understand.

away so strangely last week, leaving only a “O very well!” said Clem, at last, with card for a farewell.” an offended air. “If you don't want to, Maybe he will soon come back," sugyou needn'l."

gested Jean, syin pathizingly. "I had a great deal rather talk about “O, I dou't depend much on that. Abyour love affairs,” said Jean, pleasantly. solutely, Jean, I have had three or four se"Who is it to be, Clem-that Captain Tre- rionis disappointments since I came here. vor who was here this evening ?"

I sometimes wish Aunt Drew had never "O, I don't know," replied Clem, eva- brought me here, but that I had staid

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quietly at home, like you, and by this into notice and rapid promotion. He grew time, maybe, have married Charlie Thrale !" enthusiastic in talking about his work and

“Go back with me, then, when I go, prospects to Jean, as they sat a little apart Clementina!" urged Jean, with earnest- from the rest on one of Clem's tete-a-tetes, ness, touched by this lifting of the veil. and that he was as kind-hearted as ever

“And be patronized by Mrs. Marlowe, was proved by his remarks about the workand drilled by old Siebert again? No, men employed in the different buildings. thank you, it's too late. My voice is spoilt “Nearly five hundred in all," he said, for the church choir, and that is but a gravely. “Just think of that, Jean! sample. Everything else is to match. I never There are sometimes two or three from could fit into the old place again. Come, one family, but even then, consider how Jean, do hurry those rosebuds into your many families must be represented !" hair, and come down stairs. I expect to “Do they all live in Lowbury?” asked hear the bell every instant."

Jean. Later in the evening, when Jean had “Only a few, those who have worked been implored again and again to sing, longest. Our buildings are not in the turning, as she always did to the pieces of town, but out north of it a little, and of sacred music, she took up the chant “Come late years, since the firm have einployed so unto me, all ye who labor," and sang that. many men coming from a distance, they

In the momentary hush that fell over bave put up a number of houses for them, the gay throng, she raised her eyes and so that really now we are a suburb of Lowsaw a gentleman standing near, who was bury, almost a little town of ourselves. regarding her intently, with pleasant fa- Men, woinen and children. I am frightmiliar eyes, that set her wondering.

ened sometimes when I think of the reAlmost the next instant Clem exclaimed: sponsibility.

“Why, Orrin Drew! Where on carth No, thank you, Mr. Murray, I will not did you come from ?!!

dance this evening,” said Jean to a gentleSo it was Orrin! Jean heard him ex- man who came up at this moment and inplaining that he had taken a little holiday terrupted them. from business, and having first revisited · Orrin, I think we shall be in the way his old home, had now come to spend a when the sets form; suppose we retreat to few days with his mother and sister. a corner of Clem's boudoir. I am really

“You are as much of a stranger to me anxious to hear inore about your workas to the rest,” said Clem, as she introduced him to the company. “I did not So, in the quietest corner that could be know that I possessed a mustached and found, Orrin enlarged upon his theme to bearded brother like this! O, here is Jean an attentive listener. And thus Jean Argyle! Did you know she was here? Of found out all about the evening school, course, though, you did, if you have jast which one of the firm had started, and in come from the village.

which Orrin taught; also about the special I knew it,” said Orrin, joining Jean at efforts which the northern school district once.

of Lowbury had been induced to make, to “I don't think I should have known you draw in the children of the workmen, with anywhere, Orrin,” said Jean, after the quite promising success. And lastly, she first pleased welcome.

heard with much interest an account of “ Because I didn't knock over a chair, the Sunday school, Orrin's own pet scheme, or step on somebody's dress before I for which he had labored almost singlereached you ?” he asked, with the same handed, until now it was fairly established, off-hand manner of old.

with a good attendance of men and women, He was changed, certainly. The awk- as well as of children. She had not known ward, impulsive, ingenious boy had be- that Orrin cared so much for such things. come the self-possessed, self-reliant and But here also Dr. Rawley's teachings had successful inan. Already he occupied a been seed sown in good ground, and Orresponsible position in the great manufac- rin's life was becoming daily more and turing firm at Lowbury. Some improve- more enriched with pure purposes and noments and practical suggestions of his in ble aims. the matter of machinery had brought him “I suppose you hold the Sunday school


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