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By W. CLARK RUSSELL.
AvXhor of the "Wreck of the Grosvenor,*
"A Sailor's Sweetheart^ Etc
It bad bee a a sudden sickness and a dread
ful giddiness that had caused Jenny to sink
on the floor, from which she recovered soon
after her father had quitted the house for his
visit to Greystone school. The wild distrac
tion in her eyes had repelled Mrs. Strang
fleld, and for mercy and dread the mother
asked no questions, but sat, silent and sighing,
watching her daughter with piteous concern.
Then her duties calling her, and thinking
besides that solitude would be precious to
suoh bitter grief as Jenny's, Mrs. Strangfleld
gently left the room.
No sooner was she gone than Jenny started
to her feet, and paced about as though
seized with madness, with a frown upon her
forehead, and her hands pressing tightly bo
low hor hipaC Full realization of what had
befallen her had come to her heart, and she
was driven by intolerable agony of spirit
That Cnthbert had left her of his own will
did not como into her mind. Belief in love
docs not fall dead in this way. And no one
had yet suggested to her, as kindly solution
of the mystery of his disappearance, that it
might be he had taken a sudden shame of her
as his wife and .had left her, acting a sweet
part up to the last hour?for men are shock
What, then, did she think? Why, that
some accident had befallen him; and the idea
that he might be lying dead in some hidden
place so frenzied her, that, without con
sideration of her purpose, she fled upstairs
for her hat and left the house to seek him.
She had wandered beyond the market
plarr when her mind took a grasp of her in
tentivu, and that brought her to a stand.
The midday sun beat fiercely upon the road,
and hel? the pavements tolerably empty.
But there were people in the shops, and they
stared at her as she stood; perceiving which,
she went down the street again, with her
heart beating furiously over a new-born
? resolution to call on Dr. Shaw, and begin
her inquiries after her husband at his own
But when she had got as far as the market
place, the fame of Mother Mead as a gossip
and teller of fortunes occurred to her, and
this because she saw the old woman's bent
figure going at a hobble on the other side of
the market place. So Jenny, passing quickly
through the stalls, intercepted the dame as
she was turning into the court in whijrh she
Mrs. Mead was talking to herself in a loud,
quavering voice, and so completely engrossed
? with witchlike thoughts?for what other
thoughts could possibly visit such an ugly
conformation??that she did not observe
Jenny until she found herself stopped by the
girl standing in front of her.
"Ah, Miss Jenny Strangfleld?if that be
your rale name, my dear! A hot marning,
isn't it? with a power of dust for an old nose'
that finds snuff cruel, dear. Why, your
father is jest beyont?I am now from him?
and Lard! his eyes are in such a blaze that
my old skin cracked when he looked at me."
"May I speak with you in your house, Mrs.
Mead? I am in great trouble."
At sight of the sad, sweet face Mrs. Mead's
ugly countenance underwent a kind of trans
formation. Her nose and chin did not, in
deed, moderate their intimacy; but the blood
shot old eye took a sudden light of compas
sion, and a strange grin of good nature over
spread her face.
"Come along, my dear," she exclaimed,
"if ye're not above being seen with sitch a
scarecrow as me. Stoop your head, for 'tis
an old-fashioned door, built afore palaces
was known. There's a strong chair that'll
hold thee; and If I can comfort thee, my
pretty, I'll mop out my old heart to do it, I'll
They hod arrived at a rickety old house,
with a sitting room very abruptly entered
from the street This room and a bed cham
ber adjacent composed Mrs. Mead's dwelling.
Taking a seat opposite the girl, she ran her
eyes over her from top to toe.
"Now, my child," said she, "what can I do?
Is it your fortune you want told? Kay, nay.
there's no physic in such stuff for rale trouble.
It's good for foolish wenches whoso brains
are made o' ribbon, but not for the like3 o'
"I am in bitter trouble, indeed, Mrs. Mead.
Mr. Shaw, the son of the doctor, is missing,
and I am mad to know where he is," said
Jenny, bending her pale face forward as she
"Likely enough, my dear?he had the most
noble face that iver I see on n man. What
was he to thee? Your answer shall be sacred
with me. Speak the worst, if harm hath
come to ye. You'll find Judith Mead dumb
as your heart"
"Ho was my husband," replied Jenny, in a
voice scarcely above a whisper, for the secret
was still so fre^h that the revelation of it
startled hor to hear, though spoken with her
Mrs. Mead screwed up her eyes to look at
the girl, until the upp-? part of her face was
a mask of wrinkles.
"Your husband!" she exclaimed, in a tone
and with a manner that would have made it
impossible for a third person to know whether
she believed the girl or not, for, as to Jenny,
. it could not occur to her that her word would
bedoubted. "Why, then, no wonder his going
"Oh, Mrs. Mead, why do you say 'his go
ing?1 He has not left his home, do you think?
Is it not possible that ho has somewhere met
with an accident? Or has his father forced
him to leavo I On Wednesday ho promised
me to call last night on father and break the
news of our marriage, for all this while was
it our hidden secret What should prevent
him coming? Oh, Mrs. Mead, ho loves mo
truly, and would be with me if he could
come. Can he be dead.' Oh, kind God! if I
thought this I would kill myself, that I
might bo dead with him."
'?My dear,1' said Mrs. Mead, slowly, and
reflecting hard while she spoke, "he is not
dead. Folks do not die like this without it
being known. Where could he die? Com
ing to call on father.' Then his body would
ha' been found?for the Lord knows they've
been searching closely enough;an' unless he's
gone up to heaven, clothes an' all, HJj? the
Prophet Elijah, you may be sure he's walk
in' about on this world somewhoers, hale an'
hearty. Did they tell Ve there was a press
gang hero last night.' Butyc mustn't look
to that. They'd never take a slender man
like him. Billy Basings they forced away-,
but he's a strapping sailor. Mr. Shaw's
meat for their masters, and the wnpabone
plunderer *ud never burn their finders on
She shook her head emphatically.
"He's your hu?band, i< be, my dear: That's
l>eyoi)(l doubt, I hope?"
"Oh, yes, Mrs. Mead;*vc were married in
a church in London three weeks ago.''
"YeVo a soft little wench, and not larncd
in London ways. Are 'ee sure it was a
"Oh yes, indeed?a larg-- church:" ox
elohni a Jenny, gazing at the old woman
with r. new expression gathering in tier
"Why, then, if you knows the name, and
cot the bit o' pap"r they gi'os ye when folks
"I do not know the name of the church. I
do not think my husband ever mentioned it
If any bit of paper was given to us he will
have it I was ready to swoon, for fear,
and took no notice of anything, so scared
was L But this I have," she cried, drawing
out a purso with quivering fingers and show
ing a wedding ring.
The old woman put it aside with a move
ment of her hand.
"You know if it be right wi' thee," said
she; "but the ring's only worth what it 'ud
fetch as gold."
Something in these words, something in
tho irrepressible leer that weighted the old
woman's eyelids, took Jenny's breath away.
Anc. then instantaneously there flashed upon
her the eonse and knowledge of the false and
foarful portion she w.is placed in by ovr
She started to her feet
"Oh, Mrs. Mead!" she half shrieked through
hsr pale lips, "is it po-i?ibl< tht* ?;>>' words
will not be believedf ttrea* ?'' it be
thought that I am not Cnrfi ? . -'-haw's
"But the ring's only worth what it 'ud
fetch as gold."
And then recalling her father's iron na
ture, and his hard rejection of unsupported
words, and his evil, unsparing habit of think
ing the worst, her heart seemed to stand
still, and she remained motionless and frozen,
with her hands locked and her teeth clinched.
"Sit down, my dear, sit down, and do not
run clane daft, for there's nothing heavy the
matter yet," creaked the old woman, again
inspecting Jenny closely, motioning her tho
while to be seated by arching her hands out
j of her shoulders like a rabbit's paws. "Ii
he's your sweetheart, ye must have some
faith in him, and maj-be he'll be turning up
in a day or two, and thon the laugh'll be on
thy side. Do yo hear?''
"He is my husband," said Jenny, hi a sob
bing whisper, breathing quickly.
"Well, well, husband or sweetheart if ho
comes hell be welcome, won't he now,
"My husband!" shrie'eed the girl, with a
wild stamp of the foot "Will it not be be
"Why, to bo sure it will. But see. I'm an
old, lorn woman, who knows the world as
thy father knows the Bible?all the harm of
it, my dear; and if you was my child, this
woidd I say?hold thy peace about your mar
riage until you can show proof, that Satan
himself wouldn't doubt that young Mr. Shaw
is thy husband. What! will jrou make envi
ous wenches and their flabbergoon mothers
believe ye by saying, 'I do not know the
name of the church where I was married,
and I have no bit o' paper' (tho Lard knows
what them things are called) 'to prove that
Mr. Shaw is my husband, and 'tis tho truth
itself that ne'er a living cratur', my own
father not excepting, know that I was Shaw's
wife until this blessed day, when my husband
hath left me to give'tho news o' my marriage
She ceased, leering shrowdly, with a fore
finger against her nose.
The stunned look that hod settled upon
Jenny's face while thcold woman was speak
ing passed a moment or two after she ceased,
and a strange and striking character was
given to her beauty by an expression which
it seems absurd to describe as a mingling of
despair and determination, yet which as
suredly suggested both these qualities.
"I see that a groat trouble has come upon
me; but in the sight of God my heart is
puro," she said in a low but steady voice.
"Mrs. Mead speak to me honestly and tell
me what you think has become of my hus
"My honesty won't ease you, my dear, and
tho Lard knows I may be wrong, though folks
think that it's the devil as gives mo wisdom,"
said the old woman, showing her fangs with
a grin of ill-dissembled triumph; for in her
own mind 3he had no doubt Of the motive of
Cuthbcrt's disnpp'.'aranco, and was flattered
with tho facile mastery that put her far
ahead of tho town's surmises.
"Pray answer me. I have tho heart to lis
ten to anything now, Mrs. Mead"
"Well," exclaimed Mrs. Mead, speaking
slowly, intermitting her wonts for tho sake
of filling tho spaces between with dolibera*3
nods and shakes of tho head, "they'll bo
thinking this of thee?that you are not mar
ried, and that Mr. Shaw hath loft you to
bear your shame alone. They'll argey that
tho sou of th' old popinjay up at the school
houso 'ud never match with Mike Strnng
fleld's darter, and that ho hath ruined 'eo
with promises. And maybe they'll say that
th' old doctor's in the secret, and hath got
his son away slyly to savo him from the dea
con, unless you shall defeat tho liars by
sure proof of thy marriage, and that you
must get about quickly."
Jenny stood looking at h?r with a steady,
vacant gaze, as though she did not heed
what was being said, and, with tho same ab
sent manner, was moving toward tho door.
"How shall you get about it, dearie? You
do not ask?"
??How!" exclaimed tho girl, pausing. "If
my husband does not come to me, I am quite
"'Why, who should help Ve but thy father?
Lot him go to work. He hath money and
strength. It 1 was his wife he'd not sit idly
And at the notion of the deacon cursing,
she set up a creaking laugh. But such advice
was lead instead of lifo to the poor heart that
"Good-by, Mrs. Mead," said she, "if you
have news to comfort me, you will not keep
me waiting for it?"
"Trust me: 1 11 do my best. But I'll not
come aucar thy house, though I had young
Mr. Shaw in my arms. I'm none so dear to
th' deacon I>ut that he'd bile me in his pitch
caldron, could he find a reason for murderin'
mo f tho bible. A-> t<> thy mammy? But
there, dear heart' if I have good news you
shall have it quickly."
With pathetic effort to smil-j a farewell,
Jenny left the house.
liEi; K vrucn-iN r?vw.
Her face like marble, but with no lack of
determination in it, Jenny walked down the
grimy court and crossed the market place. She
halted a moment to deliberate which w ay sho
should take to Greystone school. She chose
the way of the sands, and down to the beach
she weht, with drooping head and frightened
peeps at the people who passed her; for on
her now was cruel sense of heavy shame,
and the despair that bares the nerves of the
heart for the sunshino and human eyes to tor
Crossing the space of shingle on which lay
the fishing boats roasting in the sun, she
toiled along the sand toward the ravlno
?which led to Greystone school. * When she
caught sight of the schoolhouse the pulse of
her heart grew smaller, and hor feot
dragged. To the nervous, modest girl,
whose shy spirit all the might and fire of
love had scarcely endowed with bravery
enough to keep her bold in secret meetings
with her own husband?whose coming to him
was always a sweet scamper to his heart and
breathless concealment there until blushes
waned under kisses, and courage roso to
whispers?thoughts of an intonriew with the
haughty little doctor, whose fiery prejudice
Lad earned him bato and fame among th)
sect she belonged to?who had hold her own
Cuthbert in awo and was always named by
him with fear?was terrifying, indeed.
But, then, what would become of her If she
had not spirit to push her quest into the pres
ence of the ono man who could, If he chose (ai
she believed), give her more information con
cerning her husband than all the rest of the
town put together? Bravely she stepped for
ward under a supporting impulse, and walked
firmly to the door of the house.
The servant who answered the summon'
happened to bo a Greystone woman, and
knew Jeuny well by sight Much surprised
she looked to behold the daughter following
the father so quickly, for the deacon had not
left the houso five minutes when Jenny ar
"Can I see Dr. Shaw?"
"Yes, miss, I think so," replied the servant,
taking it for granted that Jenny know hor
father had just called. "Will you walk in,
Now, Dr. Shaw was at this moment ve
hemently pacing the study, and revolving,
with mingled emotions of horror, doubt and
rage, the communication Strangfleld had
made to him Five minutes is no time for
such spirits as his to grow calm in; and, with
a desperate frown upon his forehead, ho was
muttering eagerly to himself, and in a quite
audible key, when Jenny was announced.
"Show her in!" ho exclaimed, astounded,
and rooted himself against the tablo, con
founded by this utterly unexpocted and en
tirely new condition of tho trouble that had
come upon him.
The strange, pale beauty of Jenny's faeo,
and tho hint of pride, and tho sorrowful
dignity in her manner which were there
through hor hard and violent effort after
courage, made tho old man stare at her with
unaffected surprise. Then, with an olaborato
old-fashioned bow, he saluted her, and com
ing round the table, placed a chair. She ad
dressed him at once in a sweet, plaintivo
voice, fixing her sad oyes on him.
"I havo to beg your pardon for calling on
you, but I am seeking my husband, whose
homo is hero. They tell me he is gone; but I
cannot believe that he would have left mo
without sending mo a' message; and, in my
sorrow, whom should I come to but my hus
band's father.'?though indeed, indeed, noth
ing but my misery would have made me in
trude upon you."
"No intrusion. Miss ? Miss Strangfleld?
at least, ahem! I am so much taken by sur
prise, madam, so little qualified at this mo
The old gentleman smothcrod his incoher
ence with another bow, and, pulling out h?
snuffbox, lookod shyly and frownlngly upon
"It should have been Cuthbort's duty to
tell you we are married. I knew ho had not
done so, for last night he was to have seen
father and broken the news to him; but he
did not come, and this morning the}' say ho
is gone. Oh, Dr. Shaw! can you tell me
where hois? Do you know? Have pity on
me, sir! Without him I am very, very
lonely; and if he doss not bear witness to
what I say I?I-"
Tho poor girl broke down, biting hor lip to
subdue her tears, lest tho sight 0f thorn shou'd
anger the old gentleman.
"I positively assure you that I am as igror
ant of his whereabouts as yourself," lie re
plied hastily, that she might not labor under
a wrong impression ono moment longer than
hb could help. "His ungrateful conduct has
wounded me to the heart All lost night 1
sat up waiting for him, not doubting that he
would return. But?may I ask 3*ou if you
are awaro that your father has just left me?"1
Sho shook her head.
"Ho and I havo been discussing tho subject,
and I can only trust," continued tho doc; or,
"that, to my son's unnatural conduct to his
father, ho has not added a deeper, a more
unpardonable, an inoxpiable offense."
"I am truly his wife, sir."
"Truly! Pray forgive me; I may lay
rough fingers on a wound my heart would
choose they should touch tenderly. But let
mo ask you, when wero you married to my
son?" said tho doctor, forcing his voico into a
tone of suave composure; for emotion could
not bo permitted to qualify his dear delight in
asserting his eleganco and brooding.
"Three weeks ago," replied Jenny anxious
ly, with her heart boating painfully, for she
feared tho next question.
"Ho was in London threo weeks ago. He
went for a littlo holiday, as at that time I
suspected his depression, or absent fits were
owing to tho monotony of our scholastic dis
cipline. Wero you in London thon?"
"No, sir; I was at Sydenham stopping with
my aunt Rachel. I met Cuthbert, by ap
pointment, on a Wednesday morning at the
bottom of the hill on the road to Dulwich,
and thcro we took tho coach that passed and
afterward, when wo reached London, ho put
mo into a hackney coaeli and wo drove to a
church, where wo were married.''
Tho doctor applied a pocket handkerchief
to his forehead.
"A strange rascal 1"' he muttered to himself.
"I had never given him credit for so much
duplicity." And then he sighed and looked
through the window and, recollecting him
Belf, forced his voico into suavity once mor 1
and said: ,
"I represented to your father that nothing
could be easier than to prove your marriage.
If, as I do not doubt," (with a bland wave
of the hand) "you are my son's wife, I?!
scarcely know whether there 1? cause to
offer you my congratulations. Sinco ho has
played his father a vile trick there is nothing
to binder him from deceiving you. But each
to Iiis kind; you to your father, to whom yon
arc accountable, and my son to me?when lie
chooses to return."
His whole manner had changed with th. -
words, and ho addressed her with an icy
hauteur of gaze.
Jenny looked at him fixedly for sonic :? i
ments, with a wonderful gaze of mi:.; I
consternation ami disdain, and rose.
"I did not come here in expectation uf ?
ing sympathy or Sadness," she excluiniv
with a bitterness that took a keener acidulji
tion from the very beauty that should hav
failed to warrant it. "You know *-.};..?
daughter I am: and what you think of : .
father Cuthbert has often told me. I h.v
called to know if you can give me liding
my husband. Doubt my honor as you !>!??:?
sir, but in God's name, answer me my iju
"I have answered that question," he i
"Many of the elder boys of tho school a:
several of the men were dispatched by i:
this morniug to search tho shore and tl.
neighborhood, and likewise- are inquiries stii
being made in places beyond Greyatone. If
I obtain information, bo sure that I shall
cause it speedily to be conveyed to you.
Should he evor return," he continued, in
slightly depressed tones, "this trouble ho lias
brought upon you is an account to be settled
between him and m^ with an adjusting he
will not relish."
She was standing near the door, and he
was raising his hand to pull the boll; but sbg
had not done with him yet. The change in
his manner from the blandness to hauteur,
from a kind of tenderness, at least, to a de
meanor of blank indifference to her sorrow,
deepened her doubt of his sincerity, and, fail
ing to find in this old man any such sorrow
big after his son as should prove him honest
to her own mourning haart, a feverish sus
picion thai he wlT ?oloffig fees the tnith
"You can tell mo, sir, that he baa not left
mo for good I 8ay somo little word to give
me hope I For his sake, Dr. Shaw?he loves
me truly!" she cried, with her hands olasped.
Tha doctor was affronted by her doubt
of him, for it was plain In her recurrent
"I have answered that I am as Ignorant as
you?perhaps more ignorant," he said, f rbwn
fng at her.
"Lsst night," she continued, too bitterly
yearning after hope to be abashed by his
mannor, or even to heed the cruel suggestive
neca of his words, "he was to have seen
jTathor. This be promised, and I was to
watch for him at my window. Oh, sir, he
would not have bid mo wait for him had be
meant to deceive mo; for, indeed, he loves
me fondly. A gentleman from this school,
who called on mother this morning, said that
ho had seen him leave your house in the
evening; and to father he was coming?oh,
be sure I Who stopped him, then? Was he
followed and sot upon? If he had died, or by
an accident been killed, his body would havo
been found. Do you know where ho is!
Tell me, sir! Tho Lord God, who hoars mo
doclare it, judges me; and before Him I swear
thy son was my husband 1"
Now, but for the continued and affronting
suspicion informing the girl's words, this
piteous appeal, taking tragic pathos from
wild dry eyes and outetrotched hands and
shrill intensity of tone, must havo roused
the doctor though his heart of flesh had been
as hard as a pet prejudice. But he was so
oxtremoly mortified to find his word?his
word, too!?doubted by this wench, that
anger camo down on all kindly stirrings with
a weight of lead, and false perceptions pricked
him. For who was this woman but pigheaded
Strongfiold's daughter? And might not all
this bother be a mere trick of tho enemy?n
plot speedily hatched out of Cuthbert's strange
disappearance, to moritfy the dignified cul
tured, well-bred foe of dissent, and champion
of orthodoxy and divine rights?
He rang the bed.
"A direct answer had been given you," he
said, "and you must excuse mo for declining
to continue this conversation. I trust,
madam, for your own sake, that you will be
able to establish tho fact of your honorable
connection with my son."
And, with dislike and contempt on his face,
ho made her a short bow. Without another
word sho passed through tho door, which the
servant held open, and left tho house.
. CHAPTER XVII.
She walked slowly down tho hot and dusty
road toward tho town. Now, far moro
keenly than before her visit to tho school
house, aid she feel" the bitterness of her
Along the dusty road sho went?the high
crops motionless on either hand, the land
around (in sheen of silver barley and yellow
whf-a*i 'and the lustrous green of meadow
grass/ trembling in the steam of the swelter
ing earth?and felt a homeless woman, un
loved, and sinful, too.
Sho came at last to tho shadow of the way
side trees under which she had met Cuthbert;
and Jaore, with no eye to see her, and passion
ate memories crowding piteous misery into
her aching heart, sho stopped and flung her
self upon the grass, and tried to roliovo her
burning eyes with tears.
A long while she lingorod hero, dreading
to return home.
Tijno passed rapidly and unheeded, and
the shadows of the trees had grown woll into
the road when she roso to her feet, disturbed
by tho town clock striking tho half-hour
after three. The thought of mooting her
father was almost unbearable; yet homo sho
must go, for where was other shelter for herf
Beforo this time hor fear of the deacon was
in his anger, when ho should learn that she
had deceived him by her secret marriage.
Nothing moro had her innocence then to
dread; though rnough had been here
to furnish her with dismal contempla
tion and trembling apprehension, and an
insupportatto yearning for tho permanent
companionship of her husband, that discov
ery might never catch her without tho prop
of his lovo and presenco at hand for her
weakness. But now her husband was gone,
and, by going, had left hor exposed to dread
ful suspicion. Ho was gone, and she was loft
alono to justify her purity, to encounter tho
wrath of her father, stirred to his deepest
heart by infamous doubt
What, then, was she to do? for when she
fell to consider how sho should prove her
marriage, sho found another blank as mad
deningly porploxing as Cuthbert's disap
Sho well romcmbered tho marriage morn;
how, with a faint voice and pale face, sho
told aunt Rachel she was going for a walk,
and bado her not bo surprised if she delayed
hor return, for she loved tho protty scencry
around, and to liugor among tho trees.
She well remombered the boating of hor
heart when, at tho bottom of the deep and
shady lane, sho behold Cuthbert waiting for
her, and how she had nearly swooned when
ho hailed tho passing coach to Southwark,
I and handed her into it
Likewise she well remembered how they
I had emerged into a crowded street, along
which he had hurried her into another strset,
I where he called a hackney carriage, and they
I wero driven down interminable streets at
which sho never glanced, for her white faco
was hidden on Cuthbert's shoulder, and she
had needed all the cordial of his constant,
passionate, reassuring whispers to save her
And how at last tho carriage Stopperl be
fore a church?a gloomy, heavy, city edifice
?so that it seemed to her that they had .to
! grope their way along tho avenue of high
? pews to the altar railing, where speedily a
I thin voice read the service that made her the
; wife of the man at her side.
The acted portion of it all was a vague
memory; her love for the man who had in
duced her k> secretly wod him was only
Four o'clock was chiming when she reached
home. Ljii^ before this had Mrs. Strang
fiold grown weary of watching *ut the win
dow, and with deep anxiety had gone back
to so k the ^iii in the town. Polly was sing
in tho kitehen as sho scrubbed the flour,
so that Mr. Strangflcld in tho parlor did not
hem" Jenny enter, nor hor light footstep ns
she vv*ml upstairs.
; her bedroom door she halted, with such
i! il ? k of surprise and consternation as tho
sight of a dead mau might have produced on
her: forali abouttlip window the floor was lit
tered with her husband's sacred letters, heed
lessly tossed and lying open, with their rib
bon-bin iin^s among them.
Sho well knew whose hand had done this,
and. recovering herself, entered the room.
closed the door and removed her hat, moving
softly, and all tho while looking at the letters.
This done, she knelt down and gathered to
gether the precious missives, pressing them
often to her pale lips, and narrowly inspect
ing tho carpets for bits of the dry forget-me
nots and other fragments of flowers which
had fallen from the letters under Strangfleld's
angry handling of them
Scarcely had she replaced the papers In
her desk when she heard her father's steps on
the stairs. He entered his bedroom, but
speedily emerged, being struck, perhaps, to
And Jenny's door closed.
Ho turned the handle sharply and ex
"Ah, you bo bare, then* Your mothoRhas
gouo to look f? WtL rob a/o^aupfao
ticed In .treadihg softly. Whero have you
"I have been to the schoolhouso to seek my
husband," she a^werea, returhiiwW storn
gozo with a look 6f despairing resolution.
"And you have not found hlm?^
"No, father, no!" she replied, with a shriok
in her voice.
"If he be your husband, why has be left
you?" ho said, speaking as a judge might in
preface to condemning a man to death.
Sho shook her head and locked her twitch
ing fingers, no longer meeting his oyes, for
tho bitterness in them was insupportable.
He approached tho bod and leaned heavily
upon the frame of it
"Woman! in my heart you are condemned
for treachery to mo and your mother. Yet
I have said to myBelf, in the words of the
Preacher, 'Bo not hasty in thy spirit to bo
angry!' and now, if you find mo so, you
shall rebuke mo. Jenny, for what you havo
this day told your mother, I hato my own
flesh that you should be a part of it Yet I
will be merciful You shall provo to mo that
you sin is not tho dishonor of your parent's
name, nor tho destruction of your soid in the
eyes of Almighty God Do you heed mo?
You shall prove this."
Sho mado no answer.
"Speak!" ho cried "Show me how this
may bo done."
She looked at him with terrified eyes, for
no courage that sho had could combat her
instinctive fear of him Ho waited for her
"Tell mo what I am to do, father?indeed, I
will obey you. I am truly his wife. God,
who hears mo, knows that I am not sneaking
falsely. With this ring ho wedded mo,
And with trembling hand pho sought in
her pocket for her purse.
"Nay, nay, I havo no wish to see it Such
a matter signifies nothing. Better tricks
than such tokens cannot fool old oyes. Tell
me where you wero married."
"In London, father."
"Ay, In London. At what church?"
"I do not know tho name; it has slipped
my memory. Or my husband novor men
tioned it" sho ropliod, with an expression on
her faco that should havo told hor father to
press her no further.
"By whom were you married?"
"I did not see?I was frightened Tho
church was d -k, and I did not lift my oyes,
and wo wero but a moment signing our
A look of savage Incredulity?tho skepti
cism of a man stirred to tho most hidden and
deadly forces of his nature?shot into hLs
face. He gazed at her for somo moments in
silence, and then, in a voice that, for the
hollowness of it, sounded as though it rose
from under his foot, said:
"It is as I before said?you remember noth
ing. Eut their wedding is a thing all womon
remember; and it is strange you should so
soon forget yours, when your mothor will
toll you everything that befell on her wed
ding day, twenty-threo years ago. Would
you know tho church if you saw it?"
"Yes, father, I?I think so?I do not know,
"To-morrow you and I will go to London,"
said ha "Mako up a little box of things, for
thL<? business may keep us. In tho morning,
at seven, we start Bo in readiness!"
"To-morrow you and I will go to London.*'
Without another word he left the room.
Sho leaned against tho wall near the win
dow, and her heavy eyelashes drooped over
the sorrowful beauty of her eyes. So stand
ing, and with her graceful profile taking a
delicate transparency from the light shining
through tho window, and tho soft fulness of
hor perfect form ripely figured on tho whito
ground of paper that supported her, never
more lovely had shu looked; and the shim
mer of her yellow hair was the trembling of
evening sunshine on tho water.
Deep grief is always quiescent, and the
deepest grief was shrined in this gontlo
woman. That she was not guiltless only
made her sorrow tho more moving. She had
erred in deceiving father and mother, in
privily, without homo's blessing, undertaking
I the sacred obligation of marriage. Yet how
hardly was she dealt with! how cruel the in
' terpretation of a deed of faithful love! And
why had Cuthbert left her.' How bitterly
hard that any act of hit should be beyond
tho skill of her heart to construe! Yet her
glorious fidelity could not hold him faith
In this wise thinking, with an impulsive
movement she drew forth her purse and
slipped her wedding ring on, kissed it wildly,
and, with a quick toss of her hands, foil with
face upon the bed, weeping bitterly.
This posture was she in when her mother
entered the room. The poor woman ran to
"You Lave come back, my darling: Where
hast thou been all this long time? Jenny, do
not cry so- my heart will break if you grieve
in this way. Has father been saying unkind
things to theu, inv pretty: Come, come, it is
net all hopsasa yet. Truly f Iwlieva that
Mr. Shaw i> thy husband; and be sure, bo
sure ho will return, for no man with his
lx auty is heartless, and ho would not havo
married thee, .Tenny, to leave thee in this
She raised the girl from the bed and lud
her to R chair, and, kneeling by her, pillowed
her iiead in her bo-<om.
"Oh* mother, is it not too cruel that I
should lose my husband and be doubted by
father: To-morrow ho means to take me to
Loudon to show him the church; for ho will
cot Bella vo ma wiffiout dragging" mo a weary
jouraay. And God knows what I shall do
when we reach London, for I do not remem
ber the name of the church, nor tho street
where It stands, and I have told him I was
too scared to tako notice. And would not a
young girl like me bo frightened, mother, In
that great place, and acting wrongly, al
though I was with my darling?"
"To-morrow does he take you to London 1
Oh, what a strango, hard man! Why, all
day you will bo traveling; and cannot he
see that you have no strength?" cried Mrs.
Strangfleld, rising from her knees; and, with
a hot, indignant look, she swept out of the
room, and wont to her husband, whom she
found- in tjho act of quitting tho house.
"Michael, 1 must speak to thee. What are
you going to do with Jenny? If you break
her heart you will kill us both, and that in
deed you are doing 1" she cried, shrilly.
With his hand on the latch of the house
door he stared at her with a contemptuous
sternness, then with a stride made for the
parlor, and closed the door upon them both.
"Jane, subdue your voice, and speak to me
respectfully. You are tho girl's mother, end
I will listen to you; but I am her father, and
mine is tho name she has blasted. Do you
heed that? It is Michael Strang field's daugh
ter whom the people ore talking about Re
member this, and now say your mind."
"For shame! for shame! to speak of her as
haviug blasted your name!" replied Mrs.
Strangfleld, quite unablo to control hor voice.
"Hath 9ho not told you that Mr. Shaw is her
husband.' Tho wedding ring is now on her
finger?as good a ring as this?and if she be
not on honorablo wife, then my name is my
father's. What! you would take tho poor
heart to London, when sho declares that in
her fright sho took no notice of tho street and
church! Would not a stout spirit be scared
by what sho did, with thee, as her father, to
terrify her conscience? Why, myself, when
you are hazing mo with your strong voice,
lose my head and know not what I am about
And shall our littlo wench have stronger
brains than her mother?at a time, too,
which makes tho best of women tremble and
koop their eyes down in modesty and awe,
though their parents are with them and kind
friends to give them heart for the journey!
For shamo! to doubt her! What think you
Is her sin?"
"Understand this!" ho shouted with fury,
and his eyes in a blazo; "if she says she
knows not tho church whoroin she was mar
ried, nor can show it me, nor tho book
wherein their naraes should bo written, nor
the man that married them, and hath no
more ovidence than a ring which a crown
piece would buy for any harlot, I'll know
hor for what she is?and no tears from her,
nor insolence from thee, shall change me!"
Sho held out her hands in tho attitude of
ono fending off aa attack.
"Never could 2 havo believed it of thee,
Michael!" she said, In a voice of indescribable
reproach, and turned to leavo him.
"Stay!" he commanded "Before you go,
give mo your reason for opposing mo."
Too insulted by his words about her child
to confront him, she replied:
"She has not tho strength to travel to Lon
don; and why would j'ou tako her there?
Sho tells theo plainly she will not know tho
church, though she see it, and its name was
never mentioned to hor by Mr. Shaw."
"You bolieve her?" he said, with deep
"As I believe In the Lord!" cried tho mother,
eagorly, turning her swimming eyes upon
"You shall credit her if you please, but
your faith in her innocence does not purify
her. Givo mo proof of her honosty, and,
though I scorn hor for her deceit, yet you
shall see mo uso her gontly. Am I to stand
still under this shamo that has come upon
mo and mine, and make no effort to clear it
away, "that our light may shino again before
men! Sho does not lack strength to seek her
husband, and slnco noon has she been wan
dering in the heat Though we had to travel
a thousand miles for proof of her honor,
would tho journey bo too long? Lot God for
give her for sonding mo in my old age from
my home, to clear hor name of foul suspicion
?If it can be done I Go now and repeat my
words to her, and lot her be In readiness to
start with mo at tho hour I named. No
more!" he cried, with a stamp of tho foot, .
holding up his band. "Too much have you
already said Bid her keop to her room, for
IH not meet her this day."
And passing his wifo, ho flung open the
door and left the house.
"The Lord have mercy upon him, and for
give him his sin?," moanod poor Mrs. Strong*
field to herself.
Not immediately could sho return to Jenny.
S'jo had bargained on controlling her hus
band, by her appeal, from taking the girl to
London, and, being defeated, wanted timo to
recover her heart to meet tho poor child.
Sho must have a good cry before sho went
to her; and cry sho did, heartily thinking all
tho whllo of the proud position sho might
hold as Cuthbert's mothor-in-law?tho envy
of all tattlers?if Michael would only toko
things quietly and leave her to manage a bit
(TO IJE CONTIXl'JilJ.)
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i V eight miles east of town on the Fivo
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W. s. IJaktox, M. I).
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i RARE ( Ii AM V. TO GET A
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n. H. moss. <". 0. DANTZLEB
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attorneys at law,
ORAKGEUUBG, s. C.