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Crown we with flowers "the leafy month of View where the cricketers (fleet, agile, strong, June,"
Claim for their noble sport no second place. The roge and lily twine in garland rare; While, to crown all, behold the brave balloon Let woodland birds thrill out their votive tune, Soaring upon the vesper breeze of June.
And zephyrs waft it o'er the meadows fair.
Hark to the mower's song! The perfumed air Month! glorious month! Hail, laurelled June! Floats from the haysward to the slumbering Prince of the year! the glad sun's favorite stream,
child, Skimmed by the swallow, while the shep- Bring with thee, on thy balmy wings, the boon herd'a care,
Of Ceres ...... And never be exiled Well washed, their fleeces bright as silver seem. From us her fostering smiles; but pure and List to the lusty cheers that ring along
bright The river's margins, at the rower's race. Shed o'er
our suffering land their blessed light
SO AS BY FIRE.
BY MISS CAMILLA WILLLAN.
out, suddenly, after a pause. “I am nothing
only a babyish, weak, homely little woman. SLIPPING THE NOOSE.
But you have youth, health, beauty and COLONEL BURKMAR free and in Alexan- talent, and might do wonders." dria, likely to come to Washington any day! “I don't think my beauty has been very Mrs. Seymore trembled at the thought. It conspicuous of late," Cora said, wearily, passwas impossible to see visitors in such a frame ing a hand over her pale face. of mind,
so she shut her doors and was con- “ You mistake,” said her friend, eagerly. veniently ill, scarcely feigning, indeed. “ You are very remarkable looking, and even
"I cannot deny that I am anxious," she in black, which extinguishes most ladies, said, to Cora. “I have certainly befriended especially brunettes, people turn to look at my people more than would be safe to have you. Now you are in second mourning, and known. If Colonel Burkmar should have can make yourself as charming as you please. found out that I helped your cousin away the That purple mantle you wear is superb. You first time he escaped, he would be likely to look the royal lady in it. Believe me, you take bitter revenge. Your poor cousin!” she have but to will it, and you can be queen in repeated, wiping her eyes.
Washington society this winter. In such a Cora sat perfectly silent, looking into the position you would be as powerful as an army fire whose light flickered over the two pale for the South.” faces like light over marble. The curtains of “I have not the will," Cora replied," with the windows were closely drawn, though it quiet firmness. “I might like to lead in was day, and besides the hearth-flames, there society if I were happy, and could exercise was a single jet of gas lighted. Their chairs my power honestly; but the part of a Judith were brought to opposite corners of the never suited me. I always despised that hearth, and there the two ladies had sat all Jewess. I am no spy, and I cannot wear a day, the one trembling with the dread of de- mask. While I am under the protection of tection, the other frożen at the mental vision the Northern government I will not work of that scene which had been described all against it. When I strike, it shall not be in through Washington, of the escape of Colonel the dark, but in daylight, and after giving Barkmar from prison. Nelson, his compar- warning. Pardon me, Mrs. Seymore! I do ion, had come directly to Washington and not wish to offend one who has been so kind told the story, while the colonel had gone to to me as you have, and who befriended my a friend's house in Alexandria, being too poor cousin. Perhaps such things as you do weak and ill for immediate service. Cora are necessary in times of war, but I cannot do could think of and see but one thing-her them. I am too honest, too proud !" cousin lying upon the cold ground, strangling
A swift red flitted across Mrs. Seymore's in the grasp of this man whom she had tried cheek and faded, and a glimmer of anger to save from him. She forgot to wonder that sparkled for an instant in her eyes. But after Colonel Burkmar did not go North to be a moment she spoke gently: nursed by Helen, or that Helen did not come “Do not let us quarrel. If we cannot agree, to him; all was blank to her save that one let us ignore such discordant themes.” horrible picture which seemed to efface some “That is best, dear," said Cora, softly. sunnier view which unconsciously had opened This woman had been kind to her, and in her heart.
knew well how to be kind, and it is easy to “I wish, my dear, that you were heart and pardon the faults of suchi. soul with the South,” Mrs. Seymore broke The widow looked steadily into the downcast face opposite her. She did not quite un- day her curtains were up came in Major Wine derstand Cora. Such sweetness, such lon- field and his betrothed. esty, combined with so much spirit, were “We came the first minute we could, beyond her comprehension.
Leda said, embracing Cora with joyful eager“If Colonel Burkmar has found out ness. “I have good news for you. You nothing,” she said, “ he will be sure to call on cousin is not dead." me when he comes to Washington. Of course Cora cried out, blushing up with sudden your being here will be an excuse for my joy. declining to admit him.”
“So you can forgive the colonel,” said Mrs. Cora shivered as with cold.
Seymore, smilingly. “I can never touch the hand that took the “We had the news from the colonel himlife of my cousin, even though it was taken in self,” Miss Stanley continued. “We got a self-defence," she said, slowly. “But I have despatch from him requiesting us to go down no wish nor right to exclude your visitors. I to Alexandria to see him, as he was not able forgot to tell you that I am going away. I to come up. He told us, and requested us to made all the arrangements the last time let you know as soon as possible, and to say I was out and saw Leda Stanley. When I that for your sake he was glad General Grancame in you met me with such news that ger is alive. I told him that you are going to I have forgotten all till this inoment. I am Europe with us.” going with Leda and her mother to Europe, Cora bowed, but said nothing, wạiting with and shall, meet Cousin Frederick there, and concealed eagerness to hear inore. But they spend the winter with him and the Wilies in inistook her silence. Colonel Barkmar's name - Rome. The major is going to Paris with us. could not be a pleasant one for her to lear, The surgeon says that his wound will not be they thought. quite healed for three months, and he thinks “I want you to go home with me if Mrs. he will be better content to be inactive abroad Seymore will consent," Miss Stanley conthan here."
tinued. “Tire Forneys had engaged the suite "Then your arrangements are all made," of rooms next ours and expected to have Mrs. Seymore said, with a touch of bitterness. come yesterday, but Frances sprained her “I must congratulate you on the perfect ankle so badly that they will not be able to secrecy which you have maintained towards move her for a fortnight or more, and they me regarding them.”
wrote to us to use the rooms till they came. I Cora looked up with a deprecating glance. want you to be with me this week for a very
“O, don't think that, Mrs. Seymore! Why particular reason." should I keep it from you? I had no inten- Mrs. Seymore exclaimed, though secretly tion of going till that last day I went out. I willing to have Cora away for awhile: did not know that the Stanleys were going. “ Major, there is Leda taking away from me They had only just decided, and we settled it all the company I have, when you know that all at once. But you knew that Frederick she really needs only you. Do reprove her had been urging me to come, and thåt I had selfishness." said I would go if I had a chance."
The lovers exchanged a glance such as only The widow gazed into the fire with a lovers can give, and both faces brightened as thoughtful frown upon her brow. She hated their eyes met. The major was looking unto know that Leda Stanley was happy, but, usually handsome and interesting with his on the whole, was glad to have her out of the wounded arm supported in a crimson silk country. The little lady would have liked to scarf of his lady love's, and Miss Stanley was see that girl dead; but anything to have her overflowing with triumphant happiness. Her out of the way.
lover had fought bravely and distinguished “When do you go ?” she asked, presently. himself, he loved her, and they were to be
“We leave here on the 22d, and take the for some time together. What more could steamer from New York on the 28th."
she ask? The conversation dropped here, and both While lamenting her visitor's absence, and occupied themselves with thoughts of their reproaching her tenderly for being willing to
go, Mrs. Seymore contrived to give a decided A week passed without any explosion, and consent to her going. Mrs. Seymore began to draw freer breath, and "I will spare her for a week, or at most, ten ventured to open her house again. The first days," she said, with a very pretty injured air. “But I impose as a condition that every the darkened room, drew down the green day I caunot come to see her she shall come linen inner curtains, leaving the white ones to see me.”
next the windows half up, closed the shutters Mrs. Seymore resolved to make hay while tightly, and loosening the heavy purple the sun shone. So wary had she been that draperies, let them sweep the carpet. A pershe believed herself to have baffled suspicion, son watching from the outside could see no and that she was no longer watched, at least, change in the windows, but they were so not closely.
darkened that not a ray of light could escape "I have insisted on our meeting every day," from within. That being made sure, the gas the wily lady thought, and that will look as was lighted, showing Mrs Seymore dressed in though I am lonely and see no one else. Then sandals and wrapper, so that if any unexpectthose two simpletons are so much taken up ed visitor should come, she would have the with each other, and so full of preparations appearance of having just ' risen from bed to for their journey, that they have no time to receive him, the fire was replenished, the door think of me.”
leading into the entry was locked, those leadBut for four days yet, the widow waited, ing out gh the chainber being left open, carrying herself with circumspection, receiv- the gas was shaded, and a small table pushed ing no doubtful person, seeing Cora every day, up before the fire and four chairs placed and retiring early at night.
around it. These preparations made, she "I shut my house at seven o'clock," she seated herself and waited, listening to every said, to Miss Stanley. “I am giving myself a sound. thorough rest while Cora is here, for when As the hand of the clock approached twelve she comes back I have resolved to dissipate there was a faint noise that seemed to come during the short time I have her with me. from the story above, a slight rattling, as if a Every night when you sit down to dinner you lock or hasp were shaken. The watcher can fancy that I am sitting in wrapper and started up and went to the inner room, listensandals warming my feet preparatory to going ed there till the sound was repeated, then to bed. I wouldn't admit the president if he glided with noiseless steps up the stairs leadshould come after seven o'clock."
ing to the top of the house. Major Winfield turned abruptly away to The lady, it will be perceived, had adopted hide a slight involuntary contortion of his the unique fashion of receiving her visitors face.
through the top instead of the lower part of "I wonder if she would admit the provost- her house. A building at the end of the block, marshal,” he thought.
used as a boarding-house, communicated with “Now for action !” thought the lady, ex- the roof of the next house by means of a altingly, as she stepped into her carriage after ladder, and from there the way was easy. having taken an affectionate leave of her In a few minutes Mrs. Seymore reentered friends.
her parlor attended by three gentlemen. At seven o'clock punctually the windows of One was a handsome, young man of twentyMrs. Seymore's parlors became dark. One eight, perhaps, whose countenance expressed Tho watched outside saw the light turned off. only a reckless amusement at the singularity The curtains had not been put down for the of their mode of meeting. This one the others' evening, and everything in the room was per- called Lester. A bold, desperate fellow, one fectly visible. The lady's sleeping-room was could see at a glance, and a spendthrift, if the on the same floor and directly behind the richness of his dress could be taken as any inparlor, and through the open door of this dication of character. He entered first and back room the light shone, and showed faint- seated himself at the table with the air of one ly the slender form of Mrs. Seymore, seated about to amuse himself with a game of cards, for a while before the fire, or walking slowly instead of playing for lives and the fate of a about in the parlor. When the last flicker of nation. After him followed Mr. Sanford, a the fire had subsided to the glow of coals, she gentleman of about forty-five, who had one of rose as if weary, approached the front win- those broad, colorless faces which suggest the dows and stood there a minute looking out idea of something clammy and cold. His hair into the evening, then retired to her chamber was light and straight, his eyes an uncertain, and closed the door after her, leaving the bluish gray,
dull and sullen in expression, and parlor in darkness.
his thin, hard mouth showed a dogged resoluHalf an hour afterwards a soft step entered tion and firmness. One would not expect this man to relent after having entered on any reward which he expects, and it is promised." path, or taken a resolve. Mr. Canby, the “And you, madam ?” asked Mr. Canby, third, was of different make and character, with an insinuating smile. and a few years older. He was evidently a “O, I shall have an approving conscience, man of polished manners, and if not more and the thanks of the empire,” she laughed. merciful, had certainly a gentler way of being “Meantime,” remarked the gentleman,“ our cruel. His sharp, black eyes flashed search- chickens are not hatched.” ingly about the room as he entered, and he The lady's merriment passed as instantly immediately saluted his hostess with a grace- as it came. ful bow as soon as the light enabled him to " True, but the time has come. Our friends see her, placed a chair at the table for her, whom I have mentioned agree with me fully and waited for her to be seated before seating that certain men whom they name must die, himself. This man had talked with the and while the North is paralyzed by the blow president that very day, had shaken hands our army will overpower and bind it. There with senators and members of the cabinet, and is no need to change the plan relative to the was a person of high standing, and unques- senators and Seward. No better could be tioned loyalty.
formed. Lester must see to that, for of course “I am out of patience with such weak his assistants must not come here, and I canarguments," Mrs. Seymore said, after they not see them elsewhere. I am impatient and had talked a while. “I despise those incon- angry when I think how well it might have sistent persons who can spill torrents of the been done last summer. A sharp-shooter, blood of hireling foes, but who shrink from like Lester here, could have been concealed the sight of one tiny rivulet flowing from the out on Fourteenth street, and could have shot heart to which the hireling looks for courage the patriarch as he was being driven into the and command, and without which the weapon city. I was to have been driving past at the would fall from his hand. I despise those time, and the man could have concealed himwho would gladly blow up a regiment or an self in the seat of my carriage. I had the box army, but who shiver at the idea of shooting changed on purpose, and an air-hole cut unone man."
der the cushion valance. The carriage with There was a momentary silence, the two him in it could have been driven to the stable, elder men sitting with downçast eyes, a little and ordered round again towards evening on disconcerted by the lady's impatient inter- some pretext. When I got out at home again he ruption; the younger regarding her with could have gone in with me, concealed by the smile of admiration on his bold face.
darkness, and the rest would have been easy. She was beautiful in her way, but not with If the whole plan had been well carried out a beauty calculated to inspire affection. Her there would have been but little search. whole appearance suggested the idea of a There should have been a raid up the valley frost image. Her face was pale to the lips, at the same time, with Mosby or Jackson and her light blue eyes had a clear, cold ready to rush into Washington. In the consparkle. Even her anger was chilly rather fusion caused by that first blow everything than impassioned, and her glance pierced but else could have been accomplished. But it is did not warm.
useless to lament what is past. We are here “What do you propose ?” asked Mr. Canby, with full authority to arrange for the future. after a minute.
As I said, the plan regarding the others is to She answered in a whisper more distinct stand. With regard to the head, a new one than if the words had been spoken aloud. must be formed. All we need do is to watch.
“I propose to make the presidential chair He is careless beyond belief. He goes about vacant."
the city at night with only one person with “Willingly! But how?"
him, and sometimes alone. One evening last "A., M., and C. propose it,” she continued, week he was out at ten o'clock entirely alone. without noticing the question. “And they G. saw him, and had the other parts of the will restore your estate to you, and sevenfold affair been arranged, could have stricken him more, Mr. Canby. Our young friend here" down on the instant and escaped. One plan with a faint smile toward Mr. Lester" will now is this; Mrs. M. gives a dinner next week have twenty thousand dollars down, a colonel's before her friends leave for England. It is to commission, and fifty thousand at the end of be very private, only a dozen or so going, and the war. Mr. Sanford has already named the the president is one. He must never enter