Imatges de pÓgina

wid me.

was not an acquaintance she did not putting on the air natural to such circumdread to meet, in her present circum- stances, with the readiness of her race. stances, even worse than death itself, or, “ Och, I see, that's the maning o' the what is next door to it, a police-station. bag, thin. Poor thing! ye jist come along The streets had emptied themselves

I'll lift the bag for ye, me darof their rushing throngs, the patter of lint, an' I'll pit clane sheets on Bridget's feet and the murmur of voices had given bed, and ye’re welcome to slape there as place to measured individual marches long as ye like; for the Blessed Mother here and there, the dripping of eave- knows it's powerful tired ye're lookin', it spouts and the flapping of awnings could is. I'm cook for more nor twinty years be heard tattling of showers past and fu- for the Hopkinses in Bacon Street, and ture, and the last organ-grinder had left I can make ye jist as welcome in my the ungrateful city to its slumbers, when quarthers as if it was nobody but meself the poor girl first became conscious that that owned it at all at all.” she had been lugging hither and thither “ Oh, my dear woman, I thank you her entire outfit of wardrobe, valuables, kindly! That bag was beginning to grow and keepsakes. Aggravated by fatigue, heavy," replied the overjoyed outcast; her indecision as to how she should dis- and presently, with a ready eye to busipose of herself was gradually sinking into ness, she added, “And since Bridget is despair, and the official guardians of the gone, who knows but I can take her night, who had doubtless noticed her as place ? I came to the city on purpose she passed and repassed through their to find something to do, and I can do beats, were beginning to make up their anything that is not dishonest.” official minds, generally and severally, “Och! the likes o' ye take her place ? that the case might by-and-by require Niver a bit of it! Why! I see by the their benevolent interference, when she gas-light ye’re a leddy as iver was at all was startled by a female voice from be- at all; and ye could niver come in the hind.

shoes of sich a thafe as Bridget Maloney, “ Arrah, stop there, ye rinaway jade! as is gone, and the Divil catch her!” I know ye by yer big bag, ye big thafe, “ No, no, not in her shoes to steal anythat ye are !"

thing, I hope; but I can do housework, Glad at any voice addressed to her, sweep, make beds, sew, and make myand gladder at this than if it had been self useful,

,-as I will show, if I can have more familiar or more friendly, our for

a trial.” lorn maiden turned and said, in the sweet- “ An' ye may well say that's a hape est voice imaginable, –

more nor she iver could. But if it's a thri“ Oh, no, my friend, I am not a thief." al ye want, it's me that'll give't ye as soon

“ Och, I beg your pardon, honey! I as ye plase. I'll answer for ye's to Misthought sure it was Bridget, that's jist thress Millicent,- and that's what I niver rin away wid a bagful of her misthress's did for Bridget, and it's right glad I am clo'es and a hape o' mine, and it's me of that. Now niver fear, me darlint, it's that's bin all the way down to Pat Ma- a powerful good place, it is too, to thim honey's in North Street to git him to as kapes the right side o' Misthress Millihunt her up; and the Blessed Mother cent; for she's the only daughter, and the forgive me, whin I seen you in the dark, mother is dead and gone, poor soul !” stalin' along like, wi' that bag, I thought They were now approaching the opuit was herself it was, sure. Och, ye're lent mansion over the cuisine of which a swate lass, I see, now; but what makes our special police-woman had so long ye out this time o' night, dear ?”

had the honor of presiding. Almost de“ Well, I'm too late for the train, you lighted enough with her capture to forsee, and I really don't know what to do get, if not forgive, her fugitive fellowor where to go,” said the Yankee girl, servant Bridget, the florid and fat Aunt



Peggy Muldoony hurried along as if the The satisfaction of Miss Millicent at bag were a feather, her words flowing having found and attached to her service like a spring flood, and introduced her a young woman of such superlative domescharge at a postern-door into her own tic genius and taste, who seemed to be so house, as she called it. This was, in fact, thoroughly contented with her situation, a very comfortable and somewhat spa- was especially enhanced by the fact, that cious dwelling, which stood almost dis- her own marriage was approaching, an tinct in the rear of the mansion in which occasion which any bride of good sense the Hopkins family proper resided, so

would wish to have free from the annoythat there should be ample accominola- ance of slack and untrustworthy Bridgtions for servants, and the steam of cooking could not annoy the grand parlors. Here we might leave the beautiful waif, A few months after the period of which so strangely picked up in the dark street, we have been speaking, the long-expectto the working of her own genius. She ed event of the last paragraph was evihad fallen into a place which had control dently on the eve of accomplishment. of all the chamber-work of a modern pal- There was sitting in the distinguished ace, with ample assistance. Aunt Perry, parlor of Mr. Hopkins, himself, occupyher guardian angel, at once instructed ing an easy-chair of the most elaborate her in the routine of the duties, and she design and costly materials. It had all very soon had occasion to wonder how manner of extensibilities,-conveniences the care of so many beautiful flowers, for reclining the trunk or any given limb vases, statues, pictures, and objects of at any possible angle, -conveniences for splendor and taste, not to speak of beds sleeping, for writing, for reading, for takthat the Queen of Sheba might have en- ing snufl,—and was, withal, a marvel of vied, could have been committed to a upholstery-workmanship and substantial domestic who could be tempted to run strength. Another still more exquisite away with a few hundred dollars' worth combination of rosewood, velvet, spiral of silks and laces. The legal owner him- springs, and cunning floral carving, preself could hardly enjoy his well-appoint- senting a striking resemblance to that ed paradise better than she did, in keep- great ornament of the English alphabet, ing every leaf up to its highest beauty. the letter S, held Miss Millicent Hopkins, It must require a pretty strong dose of in one curve, face to face with Mr. Chiptyranny to drive her away, she thought. worth Dartmouth, already known to the

But tyranny, if it were there, did not reader, in the other. Near by the halfshow itself. After a number of serious, recumbent millionnaire, at a little gem of but vain attempts, on the part of Miss a lady's writing-desk, sat Mr. Frank SterMillicent, to gratify her curiosity by un- ling, the junior partner of the distinguishravelling the mystery of her new servant, ed law-firm of Trevor and Sterling, enwhose industry, skill, and taste produced gaged in reading to all the parties aforevisible and very satisfactory effects in ev- said a very ingenious and interesting ery part of the mansion, she settled down document, which he had drawn up, acto the conclusion, that, finally, a treasure cording to the general dictation of Mr. had fallen to her lot which it was best for Hopkins aforesaid. It was, in fact, a her to keep as carefully as possible and marriage-settlement, of which the three make the most of. She could now smile beautifully engrossed copies were to be and assume airs of great condescension signed and sealed by all the parties in when her worthy female friends com- interest, and each was to possess a copy. plained of careless, incompetent, and un- Frank Sterling read over the paragraphs faithful domestics, and have the pleasure which settled enormous masses of funds of being teased in vain to know what she around the sacred altar where Hymen did to be so well served.

was so soon to apply his torch, with great


ly do."


professional coolness, as well as com- Sterling never could make up his mind mendable rapidity; but when he came to to become a suitor for the hand of Miss the conclusion, and, looking at both fa- Millicent, nor get rid of the notion that ther and daughter, said, that all that re- he was to bless and be blessed by some mained, if the draught now met their ap- woman of positive character and a taste probation, was, to have witnesses called for working out her own salvation in her in and add the signatures, he betrayed a own way,— some woman who, not being little personal feeling, which it behooves made by her wealth, could not be unmade the reader to understand:

by the loss of it. It was, therefore, only Frank Sterling, though one of the best a momentary sense of choking he expefellows in the world, with a joyous face, a rienced, as he laid the manuscripts on the bright eye, a hearty laugh, and the keen- leaf of Mr. Hopkins's chair, and said, est possible relish for everything beautiful “ Shall I ring the bell, Sir ?” and good, was a bachelor, because a mate “ If you please, Mr. Sterling. Now, quite to his judgment and taste had nev- Millicent, dear, whose name shall have er fallen in his way. With Mr. Hopkins, the honor of standing as witness on this he had been, for a year or two, a favorite

document? There is Aunt Peggy,– is lawyer. Professional business had often good at using pothooks, but not so good brought him to the house, and at Miss at making them. ller mark won't exactMillicent's parties he had often been a specially licensed guest. There had been Why, father! I shall, of course, have a time, he felt quite sure, when, if he had my little favorite, Lucy Green ; her sigpushed a suit, he could have put his name nature will be perfectly beautiful. And where that of Dartmouth stood in the by the way, Mr. Dartmouth, here is a marriage-settlement, and, as he glanced thing I haven't thought of before. With at Miss Millicent, as she sat in the mellow this Lucy of mine for an attendant, I am light of the purplish plate-glass of that worth about twice as much as I should superb parlor, she seemed so beautiful have been without her, and yet no menand queenly that he almost wished he tion has been made of this in the barhad done it. Was it quite fit that such a gain.” woman should be thrown away upon one

“Ha! ha!” said Chip.

· Thought of of the mere beasts of the stock-market ? in good time. Let Mr. Sterling add the The air with which Chip took his victory item at once. I am content.” was so exactly like that matter-of-course “ First, however, you shall see the good chuckle with which he would have tossed girl herself, Mr. Dartmouth, and then we over the proceeds of a shrewd bargain can have a postscript—or should I say a into his bank-account, that the young codicil ?-on her account. John, please lawyer's soul was shocked at it, and he say to Lucy, I wish her to come to me. almost wished he had prevented such a After all the stocks and bonds in the shame. However, his discretion came to world, Mr. Dartmouth, our lives are what the rescue, and told him he had done

our servants please to make them.” right in not linking his fortunes to a " True, indeed, my love; but the comwoman who, however beautiful, was too fort is, if we are well stocked with bonds passive in her character to make any of the right sort, servants that don't suit man positively happy. Had it been his can be changed for those that do.” ambition to spend his life in burning in- “ And the more changes, the worse, cense to an exquisitely chiselled goddess, commonly ;- an exception is so rare, I here was a chance, to be sure, where he dread nothing like change. The chance could have done it on a salary that would of improving a bad one is eren better, I have satisfied a pontifex maximus ; but, think.” with a fair share of the regard for money “ I don't believe there is anything good which characterizes his profession, Mr. in the flunkey line that money won't buy.





I have always found I could have any- great was the anxiety of the former that thing I wanted, it I saw fit to pay its their absence should not be prolonged. price. Money, no matter what simple- Suddenly he recollected a forgotten entons preach, money, my dear, is

gagement of great importance, pulled Why, Lucy, what is the matter ?” out his watch, fidgeted, suggested that exclaimed Miss Millicent, with some sur- the lawyer and Miss Millicent should be prise and anxiety, as she saw the girl, recalled, that the papers might be signed who had just entered, instead of advanc- before he went. Mr. Hopkins was of that ing, awkwardly shrink on one side into a opinion, and sent a servant to call them. chair behind the door, with a shudder, as Miss Millicent came, but could not think if she had trod on a reptile. The next of completing the contract without the moment she was at her side, earnestly signature of her favorite domestic. Arwhispering something in her ear, evi- gument enough was ready, but she was dently an explanation of the circum- fortified by a sentiment that was more stances of the case, to which Lucy had than a match for it. Mr. Hopkins was hitherto been an entire stranger. all ready, and would have the matter

“ Pray, excuse me, Ma'am,” was the closed as soon as the lawyer arrived, girl's scarce audible response to some re- affirming that his daughter would have quest.

too much sense, at last, to stand out on " It is only to write your name, Lucy." such a trifle. “ Not to such a paper, for the world !” In the mean time, the supposed Miss “ Not to oblige me?”

Lucy having had time to collect her scat“ I would do anything, Ma'am, to oblige tered senses, there occurred the following you, but that would not. Never! never !”

dialogue between her and Frank Stersaid the excited girl, catching another ling, whose curiosity, not to speak of any glimpse of Chip, who was now looking other interest, had been thoroughly rousobliquely at the whispering couple, and ed by the .strange patient for whom he drumming with his fingers on the rose- had just been acting in a medical, rather wood of that part of the letter S from than legal capacity. which his intended had just risen, as if Frank. “We are all right, now,

I he were hurriedly beating a reveille to think, Miss Lucy,--and they are waiting rally his faltering impudence. “No, for us in the parlor, you know.” Ma'am ;- it is too bad, it is too bad, it Lucy. " That paper must not be signis too” Here her utterance became ed, Sir. If Miss Millicent knew what I choked, her cheeks pallid as death, and do about that man, he would be the last her form wilted and tell like a flower be- man in the world she would think of for a fore the mower's scythe. Millicent pre- husband." vented the fall, while Sterling rang for Frank. “ But he is one of the mer. water, and Chip, peering about with more chant princes, -- respectable, of course. agitation than any one else, finally re- What harm can you know of him ?” marked,

Lucy. “ If he is not so great a villain “ The girl must be sick ;- better take as he might be, let him thank my escape her out.”

from Mrs. Farmthroy's the night I came The young lawyer, with the aid of a here. If he is to be at home here, I shall servant, did bear her to another apart- not be; but before I leave, I wish to rement, where, after the usual time and store him what belongs to him. Excuse restoratives, she recovered her conscious- me a moment, Sir, and I will fetch it." ness, and the maiden blood again reveal- “ A regular previous love-affair,” thought ed tints that the queen of Aowers might Frank, and expected her to return, bringenvy. Chip and the millionnaire remain- ing a small lot of erotic jewelry to be reed in the parlor, while the others were turned to Chipworth, as the false-hearted taking care of the proposed witness, and donor thereof. Great was his surprise,



are all

when, instead of that, she brought a small rise, and the famous lost dispatch found parcel or wad of yellowish paper, varie- on Dartmouth's track to Grant. Did you gated with certain scrawls of rapid writ- see him have these papers, Miss Lucy-I ing, of the manifold sort.

beg your pardon-Miss Laura ?” " Why, that,” said Frank, after un- Lucy. “ No, Sir; but I know he left folding the half-dozen sheets, all of the them, just as well as if I had seen them same tenor, " is set of news-dispatches, in his hands.” and of a pretty ancient date, too."

Frank. “ True, true enough in fact, Lucy. “ But it is his property, Sir; but not so good in law.” and though worthless itself, being worth Lucy. Is there anything by which as much as he is, it may be valuable to the law can reach him, Sir ? Oh, I should him."

be so glad, if the law could break off this Frank. Yes, yes. I begin to see. match, even if it cannot break his neck; Cotton-Market. This reminds me of the and he deserves that, I am afraid, if ever case of our client Grant.

Why, pray,

a villain did." how did you come by these ? ”

Frank. “ Yes,—there's enough in this Lucy. Perhaps I ought not to tell roll to banish such a fellow, if not to hang you all. But if I may rely on your hon- him. And it shall be done, too." or as a gentleman, I will.”

Lucy. “ And Miss Millicent be saved, Frank. “ As a gentleman, a man,

and too ? Delightful!" a lawyer, you may trust me that every Sterling, with the roll of yellow paper word shall be sacredly confidential.” in his fist, now returned to the parlor,

Lucy. “ Well, Sir, my name is not where Mr. Hopkins impatiently opened Lucy Green, but Laura Birch. My moth- upon him, before he could close the door. er keeps the Birch House in Waltham; Well, Mr. Counsellor, we and this man, whom you call a merchant waiting for you. Mr. Dartmouth has prince, came to my mother's the very day urgent business, and is in baste to go. after the date on them papers, and hired We shall be holden in heavy damages, my brother to carry him to Captain if we detain him.” Grant's. When he took out his pocket- “ He will be in more haste to go bybook to pay, which he did like a prince, and-by, Sir. I have some papers here, perhaps, he probably let these papers Sir, which make it necessary that this fall. At any rate, no one else could have marriage-contract should stand aside till dropped them; and I saved them, think- some other matters can be settled, or at ing to give them to him when he should least explained. I refer to these manifold call again. I have seen him but once dispatches, detailing the latest news of since, at a place where, through his inter- the Liverpool cotton-market, by the fraudest, I supposed I had obtained a situation · ulent possession of which on the part of to learn the milliner's trade. I needn't somebody, a client of mine, Captain Grant say why I did not return his property of Waltham, was cheated out of a small then. If, now, I had in my possession fortune. Perhaps Mr. Dartmouth knows even an old shoestring that had ever who went to Waltham one morning to been his, I would beg you to return it to close a bargain before the telegraph-news him, and find out for me where I can go should transpire. It is rather remarkanever to see him."

ble that certain lost dispatches should Frank. But I shall take care of have been found in that man's track.” these dispatches. There's a story about Whether Chip Dartmouth heard three these papers, I see. Here's a ray of day- words of this harangue may be doubted. light penetrating a dark spot. Two links The sight of that yellowish paper did the in the chain of circumstances, to say the business for him. His expression vibratleast. Captain Grant's unfortunate sale ed from that of a mad rattlesnake to that of cotton to Dartmouth just before the of a dog with the most downcast extremi

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