Imatges de pÓgina

herself to read Sir Harry's letter. It ran thundering knock at the door, announced as follows:

the return of the playgoers.

Rose caught up the letter, which had “ DEAR BROTHER,-I ain on my way to fallen at her feet, hurried into her bedyour hospitable abode. I hope to dine

room, locked and bolted her door, and with you on New Year's Day. Poor dear

tbrew herself on her little hard curtainless old Culpepper has left me his estate in bed. Presently the nursery-maid tapped Cornwall, and ten thousand pounds in the at the door. funds. The house and grounds are let at “ Please, niiss, missus says will you give three hundred per annum for the next fif- the children their suppers, and plait and teen years. I can now pay all my old tor

curl their bairs, as Sir Harry is coming tomenting debts, and as I am sick to death

morrow, and they must be done, though of my lonely grandeur here, I have made

they're ever so cross and sleepy ?! up my mind to marry. Now, there is no “ Tell your mistress,” said Rose Moss, one here at all to my fastidious taste, and “that I have a bad headache, and feel too my hopes centre in a certain lovely cousin, ill to get up.” the belle of Bloomsbury, who will not, I Ann grumbled as she went, saying to think, say 'No' to Cousin Harry. Not herself: that I ever spoke of love to her. I had no “Well, if ever, no, I never; such hairs, idea I could ever pay my debts, or make a and she's only a guv'ness.” settlement on my wife, and I only fancy She soun returned. she rather likes me. Perhaps your kind “Please, miss, missus says if you'll just. wife will prepare the dear girl for my arri- plait and curl the young ladies' hairs, you val and proposal, for I have but a week to

may go to bed again directly." stay in town.

“I am too ill and too tired to do it," “Don't forget that I can now 'inake my said Rose, nerved by despair to defy Mrs. Jean a lady,' as Falconbridge says. I was Pomfret's tyranny. half in love with my pretty cousin when I A few minutes later the belle of Bloomsleft England, but not only I thought it best bury rapped at poor Rose's door. to ascertain what the climate and mode “Do let me in, Rose," she cried; “I of life here were, but to be able to pay off want your help in undressing, and I have my old Oxford and London debts, and se- so much to tell you." cure scme little capital, before asking her Poor Rose could not refuse. She hoped to leave your happy home. I find no fault to hear more of Sir Harry's offer. with the climate, and I like the place, and, “Phil Flounder, that handsome barrisas I said before, dear old Culpepper has ter, proposed to me to-night,” she said, made me rich. I am compelled to give “tut I, of course, refused him. I like him grand dinners here; but what's a table best, but he cannot make me my lady, nor richly spread without a woman at its give me pearls and emeralds. I hope Pbil head ? I can bear my solitude no longer, wont shoot himself or me. He was in deso, if all goes well, you will see me to- spair. How long you are unlacing this

I am now at Southampton, after bodice! Don't pull my hair; I'm very six weeks at sea. Some months ago I sent cross. Phil says I've jilted him, and so I over some fine pearls and emeralds to be have." set by Garratt. They to be a wedding For rly an hour the belle tormented present for my bride-elect. Garratt is to poor Rose with her boasts and her remorse, set them, and to send them to your office and went off at last without saying goodon New Year's Eve. Take charge of them night. till I arrive. I have not time to say a word, Ann did not come again, but all the except love to all. Your very affectionate children, as they went to bed, led on by brother, HARRY POMFRET." Wellington and Nelson, thumped and

kicked at Rose Moss's door, and WellingThe cold weak tea remained untasted

ton shouted through the keyhole: so did the dry toast. The frugal fire went “Wont you catch it to-morrow, miss? I out, and still Rose Moss sat, cold and sick

rather ibink you will. Ma'll pitch into at heart, weeping silently. At half past

you, and no inistake." twelve the sound of carriage wheels, and a



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But, no; she would leave her white neck and arms unadorned, awaiting bis New Year's gift.

Rose had performed all her thankless THE morrow came. Rose had long been

wearisome tasks. Her tormentors were promised a holiday on the 1st of January.

full-dressed, and were in the drawingShe had engaged to spend it with an old

room. Rose, in ter white Indian muslin, schoolfellow living at Clapham, and newly married. It was a love match. The young

soft, ample and flowing, with a demi-train

with hanging sleeves, trimined with gold couple were very poor, but very kind to

fringe, a gold Circassian belt setting off Rose, and she had looked forward to the

her slender waist, and a gold comb in her "dinner of herbs where love was." Add

fine black hair, sat in the deserted schooled to this, she longed to get away. She

room, very sad, but yet her eyes were could not calmly meet the man sbe loved

bright and her cheeks flashed with the as the allianced of another.

fever of her spirit. She was lovely that Mrs. Pomfret sent for Miss Moss before

evening, in the dress Sir Harry had sent breakfast. Rose was already dressed for

her from India. her excursion.

A carriage drove up to the door. Mr. "I cannot spare you to-day,” she said.

Pomfret rushed out to welcome his long"You must put off your holiday. Any day

absent brother. He led him into the librawill do quite as well for you.”

ry. After some talk on other matters, Sir “Not so, Mrs. Pomfret," said Rose;

Harry said: "my friends expect me.”

“ The darling girl is here, I hope ?” ** Then they will enjoy the pleasures of

“She is," was the reply. expectation-the greatest of all pleasures,

“She expects and accepts me ?" the moralists tell us. I require your ser

“She does. She refused a good offer vices to-day. I pay for them, and I must

last evening for your sake, Harry." bave them. Added to which, Sir Harry

“I have refused a dozen for hers,” said Pomfret, through whose kind intercession

Sir Harry, laughing. “In my part of the you are lodged, boarded and salaried in

world the ladies propose. Tom, I shall this elegant and happy home, is expected

settle a thousand a year on her.”' to dinner here to-day. Mr. Pomfret wish

“Not exclusive of her own fortune, I es you to dine at table, to meet him. Your

presume, Harry?” said Mr. Pomfret. absence would be ungrateful and disre- “ Her own fortune! What do you mean, spectful, particularly as he comes among

Tom ?! us in the new and interesting character of

Why, Delia Domvile has at least" Miss Domvile's bridegroom-elect.


“ Delia-or, rather, Dahlia Domvile! doff your mourning on this joyful occasion.

What has that gaudy artificial flirt to do You bave a white muslin dress, I know-I

with it?" mean that Indian muslin, with the gold

Why, Harry, she is the belle of Bloomsfringes and gold Circassian belt, Sir Harry bury.” sent you when he sent us all such lovely

Is she, indeed? She the belle! Not things; I request you to wear it at dinner.

in my eyes, nor in those of any man of The children have a holiday, but, as I have

laste or feeling. The only belle of Bloomstold

you before, my high-spirited darlings bury, and of the whole world, to my mind, require as much attention during their

is Rose-divine Rose-Rose Moss-or rathplayhours as during their studies.”

er Moss Rose! Who could ever compare that scentless, artificial, gaudy Dahlia with

the sweetest Moss Rose that ever charmed The ladies were dressing for dinner-at the eye and embalmed the air? No inleast, Mrs. Pomfret and Miss Domvile deed! Rose is the idol of iny heart. I were. The latter was under the hands of have long loved her in secret, and I have

fancied sometimes that she might love A golden mass—bows, plaits, coils, real and sham-was the re- me.” salt. She wore the emerald velvet and

Harry,” said Mr. Pomfrct, shaking wbite satic, the rich lace and the jewels.

hands with him, “I'm glad of this. I wish

her hairdresser.

you joy,, my boy! Rose is a good girl

CHAPTER ITI. she'll nake an excellent wife. Now listen;

AFTER LONG YEARS. she's in the schoolroom, second floor front. Do you take that candle, and go quietly up FIFTEEN years had passed away, and stairs to lier. I must serve myself, and go again it was New Year's Eve in Bloomsand break the news to my wife and poor bury Square. Sir Harry and Lady Pomfret Dahlia, who is getting ready to receive you

had kept up very little intercourse with as her intended.”

Mr. and Mrs. Pomfret, for Mrs. Pomfret Before Mr. Poinfret bad quite done, Sir had never forgiven her brother-in-law for Harry was off.

making poor Rose my lady, and, as she A timid knock at the schoolroom door said, “setting a dowdy pauper up above was followed by a gentle “ Come in.” A her betters." cry, a woman's cry, a cry of joy froin her Wellington and Nelson, from mischievinmost heart, followed. A word, a glance,

ous boys, had become fast young meni. a kiss of love explained the misunderstand. They did nothing but drink, smoke, and ing, that had all but broken poor Rose's

run into debt. heart. How rapidly hearts can mend with

The extravagance of his sons had serisuch rivets as Harry had to offer! While ously crippled their father's means.

The he folded her in his arms, and called her four plain unamiable girls were plainer and liis love, his bride, his wife, she wept on

more unamiable women. Dahilia had marliis shoulder, and murmured:

ried Mr. Flounder, who was still far from “Dearest, how I do love you-how I will the woolsack, and as he was grown fat and try to make you happy!"

bald, his mother and wife thought him A very shrill and angry cry issued from

further from it than ever. Dahlia had ten Mrs. Pomfret's room, where Mr. Pomfret children, and though still a showy dresser, had undeceived her. She was furious. was now obliged to condescend to cotton

“ That pale, homeless, dowdy pauper to velvets, imitation laces and sham jewelry. be Lady Pomfret, and take precedence of

We have said it was again New Year's her? It couldu't-shouldn't be!"

Eve. On the breakfast-table was a letter Mr. Pomfret told her it must be. She from Sir Harry. He wrote so rarely now took refuge in lysterics—so did Miss Dom- that Mr. Poinfret felt auxious Mrs. Pomvile; but they both recovered in time for fret envious. dinner.

He read the letter aloud to his wife and It was getting late, and they were very daughters. His sons were still in bed at hungry. Savory odors saluted their nos- ten o'clock. trils. These odors diverted their thoughts “MY DEAR BROTHER,-I hope this letter from romance to reality.

will reach you early on the morning of Mr. Pomfret went up to the schoolroom

New Year's Eve. If it does, I beg you all to bring the lovers down to dinner. Mrs.

to set off at once to meet ine at Pencombe Pomfret and Miss Doinvile received Sir

Park, near Penzance, at a late dinner on Harry rather coldly and stiffly, but he was

New Year's Day. A very great change is thinking only of love and Rose, and did

about to take place in my mode of life. hot notice their frigidity and hauteur.

The cause is a very sad one, namely, the Wellington and Nelson bitterly repented.

very precarious state of health of my beFor," said the former to the latter,

loved wife. She has always been delicate, "she's safe to each, and then we shall

and, I think, fretted much in secret over get no tips from uncle."

my great disappointment in having no offAfter dinner Sir Harry asked for the red spring, I who so dote on children. At any morocco case, and insisted on Rose's wear

rate, about five months ago my darling ing the carrings, necklace, tiara, brooch

Rose became so very much worse in health and bracelets of costly pearls and emeralds.

than slie had ever been before, that her They are,” he said, “ at once a wedding doctor insisted on her leaving India and present and a New Year's Gift."

repairing to the German Spas. The last accounts are very distressing, and she is now at Pencombe Park, where I liave promised to be on New Year's Day, D. V. If she is spared 10 uc, 1 aw advised to take

her to Pau for the winter. If she is taken Pomfret and a consultation. She is in from me I feel I shall not survive her long, great danger, I presume.” and, at any rate, while we are at Pau, if “O Heaven," groaned Sir Harry, “lave we go there, I wish you to take charge of mercy upon her and upon me! Dr. Lidiny Cornwall estate.

dell, I am her husband. I am Sir Harry “I also wish to know your dear boys, to Pomfret." judge for myself which of them is most “While there's life there's hope,” said worthy to be my heir. Had government the doctor, kindly grasping Sir Harry's properly recognized any services, and made cold hand. ine a baronet, it must have been Welling- On the platform the anxious unhappy ton, as the eldest, but now I can choose husband met his brother, Mrs. Ponifret, between the two both, I doubt not, clever, and all the family. Wellington, who afsteady, and excellent young men. Alas! I fected the sporting style, went up to Sir write with a very heavy lieart, and a mind Harry, and dashing a cigar from his mouth, full of gloomy forebodings. Rose, my and slapping him on the back, cried: angel wife, las inade life with her so en- * Halloo, my old trump! Sir Harry chanting that I could never support it. Pomfret, baronet, you've no choice now, without her. We have had but one draw- old boy! I'm your heir, and no mistake. back to our supreme felicity-I mean our You're deuced shaky, I see, but Sir Welhaving no child. That one disappoint- lington Pomfret will sound very well, eh ?” ment, I fear, has killed my sensitive syin- Sir Harry shrank from him in disgust. pathizing darling. Still, bowever it may He could hardly speak. He was overcome be, it is high time the coldness of long by his anguish and alarm. Dr. Liddell exyears was swept away, and that a friendly plained the cause of his distress. Lady meeting should take place. Rose, I know, Pomfret's carriage was at the station. Sir wishes for such a meeting. Hoping, then, Harry, Dr. Liddell, and Mr. and Mrs. to see you all at Pencombe Park on New Pomfret drove off in it, leaving the young Year's Day, and with kind love to Mrs. people to follow in a fly. Pomfret, your sons and daughters, I am, As they approached the entrance, they dear brother, affectionately yours,

saw the quiet broughams of the local doc“ HARRY POMFRET."

tors there before them. They entered the

hall. Pale frightened servants were rushIt was getting dark when the down train ing about. Sir Harry sank in a chair. from London arrived at Penzance. Iu this “Jlow is she?” he asked of a maidtrain Sir Harry Pomfret travelled, without servant passing. knowing it, with his brother, Mrs. Poufret, “Very bad indeed, sir,” said the girl; and all their family. In a paper he had 'can't be worse." bought at a station, he saw he had, at “Walk up, Dr. Liddell,” said a gentlelength, been created a baronet. He was man from the stairs. “Quick, doctor, if gazetted as such.

you please." “How proud and pleased she will be !" “I must see her!" gasped Sir Harry. he thought. “Alas! I fear we shall not “Not yet, sir," said the doctor; “not on bear our blushing honors long. She will any account at present." die, then what will worldly honors be to “Come into this room, brother," said me?"

Mr. Pomfret. At a station some thirty miles from Pen- "Smell my salts,” said Mrs. Pomfret, zance an elderly gentleman got into the as they entered a large dining-room with a carriage in which Sir Harry sat, muffled up good fire in it. and full of anxiety. Sir Harry had never There was the noise of wheels outside, a been at Pencombe Park, and as they ap- bustle in the hall, and presently the young proached Penzance, he asked his fellow- people came trooping in. Wellingtou and traveller if he knew how far Pencombe Nelson stood with lheir backs to the fire, Park was from the station.

their coattails over their arms. Sir Harry “I think about a mile," said the gentle- had sunk into an armchair, more dead thau man; “but I shall soon know, for I am go- alive. ing there. I am Dr. Liddell, and I have A quarter of an hour passed in this susjust been telegraphed for to attend Lady pense, then the door was thrown open, and

Dr. Liddell, followed by his three confreres, came in.

“How is she-how is my wife, doctor ?” cried Sir Harry.

“Doing very well indeed as well as can be expected, Sir Harry. I wish you joy of the finest boy I ever brought into the world. Mother and child are doing well."

Mrs. Pomfret and her daughters began to cry; Mr. Pomfret warmly congratulated his delighted brother.

“What a sell!" whispered Wellington to Nelson. “I declare I could strangle the little sbaver, and the old bird, too. Why, it's a regular do!”

An hour later Sir Harry was allowed to see his wife and child.

"Why did you not tell me the good news, and let ine share in your delightful expectations, my darling ?” he said.

I only knew the truth myself three months ago, Harry,” she said, “and I wrote to you directly. My German doctors mistook my case just as those in India had done."

“I had started before your letter arrived there," said Sir Harry. “But O, my Rose, are we not too richly blest ?” he added, as he bent over the berceaunette and softly kissed his newborn son. This is, indeed, my love, a precious New Year's Gift.”

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We were poor. Not the bitter grinding and sitting-room combined. The door was poverty, but poor enough to freshen up old of dark stained wood, the windows wide dresses and retrim last year's bonnets, and deep, opening onto the rose-twined without the most remote hope of a summer veranda. In one corner stood the old cotat Saratoga or a winter at Washington. tage piano, quaintly-carved and yellow

For years mamma, sister Ett and your keyed, but sweet-toned for all of that; ophumble servant had lived at the Elms. The posite was the antique bookcase, well filled house was a quaint old-fashioned one, with with the choice volumes that had been plenty of cool spacious rooms, shaded by dear papa's delight. long rows of stately elins. I think one For ten years we had lived at the Elms might go far and then fail to find as pretty happy and contented; now I was going to a parlor as ours. The carpet was deep be married. I gazed at the circle of dead mossy-green, delicately shaded with clus- gold set with three flashing diamonds half ters of white wood-violets and tufts of in wonder, half in delight. Diamonds! feathery ferns peeping daintily out. The Even so. Six months ago my prospect of walls were white, with a faint pink flush, a becoming queen of England was about few engravings and crayon sketches, and equal to the prospect of my wearing diaoue glowing painting that cast its own bril- monds. It had all come about-my cnliant dash of brightness over the whole gagement, I mean-by attending a party at

Back of the parlor was the library the Hon. Mrs. Mordont's. The Hon. Mrs.


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