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Turner County herald. (Hurley, Dakota [S.D.]) 1883-19??, March 05, 1896, Image 6

Image and text provided by South Dakota State Historical Society – State Archives

Persistent link: https://chroniclingamerica.loc.gov/lccn/sn2001063133/1896-03-05/ed-1/seq-6/

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CHAJPTKR XVII—
(Con (InU'1)
'And uo arguments, entreaties or
prayers on the ijart of her lover
availed anything against the conscien
tious resolution of Alma. And even
when, at length, the leave of absence
expired, and he was ordered to join
his regiment, which was stationed in
Bcollanfl, he took advantage of this
fortuitous combination of circumstanc
es to urge to upon his beloved Alma
the consideration of the deeij pain of
separation .and the facilities for their
union offered by the locality of his ser
vice, she remained true to her convic
tions of duty, aiul had the firmness to
bid him adieu and see him depart.
To young creatures surrounded by
sisters, brothers and cousins, relatives,
friends and neighbors, the self-denial
of this Janely girl will scarcely be ap
predated.
From the time of her lover's depart
nro for Scotland she saw no more of
him nnt.ll the day of the double funeral
at Allworth Abbey.
Wo have already said that it was
only in tlio times of their affliction that
the Honorable Mrs. Elverton ever vis
ited her neighbors. Thus, recluse as
slie was. she had ordered her mourn
ing eoncli. and with Alma seated by
her side, had attended the funeral so
(enmities at Allworth Abbey.
Tn the course of that day Alma had
exchanged a glance and a bow with
Norham. And the next afternoon, In
st inert. rather than understanding, led
her to take a walk in the woods be
liliif] Edenlawu.
It was a lovely summer's afternoon,
find the low-descending sun was strik
ing his level, yellow rays through the
intcrbieimis of the forest: trees, edg
lug each leaf and twig with a golden
flame.
Aliua wandered on. and in that
mental struggle between duty and in
clination, or rather between conscience
and necessity, thai occupies one-half
of our inner lives.
She was happy in the thought of
•seeing Norham, and miserable, in the
fear of wrong-doing. This is a para
dox of daily occurrence.
While .she walked 011 in 'the dulce
marah. the bitter-sweet of this forbid
den hope .she heard the fallen leaves
and twigs break beneath a Arm foot
step behind her.
lier breath skipped, her heart flnt
"tered, lier cheek crimsoned. She
•paused for the coming up of the foot
steps. but she did not turn her head.
"I have the honor of speakiug to
Miss Elverton, I presume?"
The voice of the speaker was deep,
r^ch and inexpressibly mournful.
Alma started, turned around, and
Oroppfd her eyes, while a deep Hush
mantled her face.
The speaker was a tall,finely-formed,
fair-complexioned and very handsome
•man. about forty years of age.
Whilte addressing Alma he held his
•h:(J. entirely ^oflf lib head, and stood
wiln it fomfiy grace that the girl had
•never seen equalled.
She was naturally surprised and
tsvfcn terrified at the unexpected ap
parition of a stranger in that lonely
place and at that late hour, but aside
from these natural- emotions, there
was something in the aspect of the
uian that thrilled her with a feeling
that was neither surprise nor terror,
but something infinitely deeper than
either.
1
"I have the honor of ad
dressing Miss Elverton, I pre
sumo?" repeated the stranger, with the
same gracious courtesy of tone and
manner.
"Yes, sir," breathed the girl, with,
her heart throbbing quickly.
"Miss Elverton, does your mother
still live?" inquired the deep voice of
the stranger,
The throbbing of Alma's heart nearly
suffocated her. Her breath came
quickly and gaspingly. She threw her,
arm around a tree for support and
leaned her head against the rough
Wk while she stole another look at
Vo stranger.
Jg*s, there was the same noble hesl'd,
,£th its bright locks of golden brown
Aavlng round (.lie broad, white fore
head the same dark blue eyes with the
falcon glance the same Grecian nose,
short, proud upper lip. and rounded
chili the same face, only a little older,
that daily looked down upou lier from
the portrait in the study. As Almn
realized the truth, she felt as though
her last hour of life had come, and
thai.,she was dying in a dream.
"'Docs your mother still live?" re
peated the stranger.
'"My mother still lives, if breathing
means lfving," answered Alma, in an
expiring voice, and trembling in every
limb
The eyes of the stranger were fixed
tpon her—were reading her very soul.
At length he spoke.
"Girl, your eyes never beheld me be
fore, and yet—does not your instinct
recognize ine?"
•'Oh, heaven, my heart!" gasped the
girl, leaning, pale as death, against
the tree.
"Yes, your heart acknowledges him
,T\'liorri your eyes l^ver before saw—"
'".My father—"
•Av"Hush—hush—no word of that sort—"
"Oh, my father—"
"Hush, hush, uo word like that, I
eay!" repeated Ilollis Elverton, in a
sepulchral voice.
But his daughter, pale as death,
trembled like a If-af. and nearly faint
ing with excessive agitation, had en
tirely lost her self-possession.
She cither did not hear or did not
understand his strange words.
Extending her arms towards him
•with a look of imploring affection, and
in a voice of thrilling passion, she
cried:
'"^nther! oh. father! .will you not
your chilil"
jll tbnue of the man shook as a
ii ii ii
HiikIi, IIunIi
lit
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f-#&.*4' r*
treo shaken by the wind, but he avert
ed his face and threw his hand toward
her with a repelling gesture.
She dropped her arms with a look of
shame, sorrow and wonder, murmur
ing:
"Never since I lived have I been
pressed to iny mother's bosom, or re
ceived a mother's kiss, or known a
mother's love. And the father for
whose presence my heart has longed
through all the years of my lonely
youth—the father whom my love has
followed through all the years of his
long exile—now, in the first moments
of our meeting, repulses his child and
turns away! Oh, father!" she exclaim
ed In passionate earnestness, "what
have I done that both my parents
should bate me!"
"You have done nothing wrong, nor
do we hate you, poor girl!" replied El
verton in an agitated voice.
"What am I, then, that those who
gave me life should turn shudderingly
away from me as from a monster ac
cursed?"
"Ohild, child, cease your wild ques
tionings! There are mysteries In this
world that may never be revealed un
til that last dread day of doom, when
all that is hidden shall be made clear."
After this there was silence betwen
them for a few minutes, during which
they gazed upon each other's faces
with mournful, questioning interest.
Then Ilollis Elverton, in a gentle voice,
inquired:
"What name have tliey given you,
child V"
"My mother called me by no name,
but the good doetyr gave me that oL'
Aliua."
"Then you did not receive the rites
of Christian baptism V"
"Not in infancy—not until I was old
enough to act for myself hi that re
spect then I presented myself at the
altar and received at the same time the
sacraments of baptism and confirma
tion."
"And your mother?"
"She made no objection, but gave me
uo encouragement. She was neutral in
the matter but, father, did I not do
right?"
I i.oliis Elverton groaned, but made no
reply. And again silence fell between
them, while tliey studied each other
with the same painful interest. At
length she broke the spell by asking in
a tearful voice:
"Father, will you iiot accompany me
to the house and see my mother?"
"Never!" exclaimed. Ilollis Elverton,
while a spasm of unutterable anguish
covered his fine face.
"Alas, sir, if not to sec her, what mo
tive has brought you back to England?"
"Two of the strongest that can gov
ern human action—the love of one I
love, the hate of one I hate! I come to
watch over and save an angel girl from
utter ruin, and to hunt a demon wom
an to her doom!"
"Your words are strange and alarm
ing, my father."
"And I can give you no explanation
of them now I am even here in secret.
I must see you only In secret, and you
must give me your word of honor never
to mention this meeting, or even men
tion the fact of my return to England."
"Not even to my mother?"
"Not even to her least of all to her!"
no Worl of that Sort
"Alas, alas, my father, do you hate
her so?"
"Hate her?—hate your mother—bate
Atlieuie—hate—0I1, heaven, Alma:—no.
1 do- not hate her 011 the contrary—"
time angrily upon his daughter, de
manded sternly:
"Why should you dare to ask if your
mother was in fault?"
"Alas, I know not. I beg your par
don and hers. My short life has been
made a desert by this mystery, father,
and yet. for myself I have never once
complained but when I know that her
life is one prolonged agony, and now
see the agony stamped upon your brow,
I become h'llf crazy, and think—I know
not. what."
ing was not caused by your mother's
fault A purer, sweeter, nobler woman
th in your mother never lived," said
Hollis Elverton, earnestly.
"Oh, God, I thank thee—I thank thee
—I thank thee for that!" cried Aliua, in I
a thrilling voice that betrayed how
heavy had been the burden of doubt
U-fV-1 Ysfir
Ms""
Here his voice broke down, and rais
ing his cloak he veiled his agitated
face iu its folds.
"Alas, alas, my father! what horror
was it that so suddenly burst asundei
all ties of affection between you?
Father—father, answer me!—tell me
that it was not her fault, not my moth
er's fault!"
lie dropped (lie fold of the cloak! cannot stand," said Mr. Elverton,
from his face, and looking for the first pointing to the trunk of a felled tree
"I will answer your question, unhap
p.v girl and assure you, in the presence notliing, since it .0 a tissue ot false
of high heaven, that our violent part- deductions! What: opinion have you
tell me—this separation was not'your
fault cither?" she cried, clasping her
hands and gazing with imploring eyes
into his face.
"Xo, nor my fault either, Alma I
swear it to you, by all my hopes
of heaven! We loved each other
as man and woman seldom love
iu this world," replied Elverton,
in a hollow voice "we severed, and
until tho judgment day it may never
be known why."
"You loved each other so devotedly
you married publicly, with the bless
ings of nil your friends you came hith
er to your beautiful home, and iu one
month, in the very perfection of your
happiness, your union was shattered
as if by a thunderbolt from heaven.
You parted oh, my father, was that
well?"
"It was well!" he answered, solemn
ly.
She looked into tho stern sorrow of
his face, and read there that, in the
simple words of liis reply he had ut
tered some awful truth. Again her
heart yearned towards her father with
inextinguishable love. She extended
lier arms and advanced towards him
with imploring looks. But he waved
her off, saying, in pitying tones:
"Come no nearer, unhappy girl! Be
tween you and me there is a great gulf
fixed! Hark! Some one approaches!
I must leave you now! Good-night—
nay, stop one moment! I must see
you again at this hour to-morrow. In
the meantime, drop no hint of my
presence in England."
"None I will keep your secret, my
father," replied Alma, as Ilollis Elver
ton, waving adieu, disappeared in the
coverts of the wood.
CIlAFTER XVIII.
Pleased, paiued nud perplexed at
once, Alva stood transfixed where El
verton had left her.
She had seen her father! lier father,
whose sudden flight, mysterious wan
derings and unknown fate had been
the great subject of wonder, specula
tion and conjecture to her own self, to
the family and to the community.
She had seen her father, actually
seen him in the flesh, and spoken with
him, face to face! There in that spot
he had stood before lier, intercepting
the last rays of the setting sun as it
sank below the horizon. They had not
embraced or kissed, or even taken
eacli other's hands—they had met as
souls may meet 011 the confines of an
other world. And now he was gone,
like a vanished spirit.
She had met lier father, and though
the shock of that meeting, with its
conflicting emotions of great sur
prise, deep joy and bitter disappoint
ment, had Impressed lier senses as
forcibly as any actual event could pos
sibly impress any human being, yet
now the whole affair seemed to her so
like a dream that she almost doubted
its reality.
The meeting so sudden and unex
pected the interview so short and un
satisfactory the consequences so un
certain and alarming tlies esubjects
engrossed lier thoughts, absorbed her
senses, and riveted her to the spot, so
that she did not move until the brush
wood near her broke sharply beneath
the tread of tho intruder whose distant
appearance had driven away her
father.
Then she started as from sleep, look
ed up. and flushed with joy, for she
thought the new comer would be Nor
ham Montrose.
Alack! he was only Davy Denny,
the head gardener, returning from one
of his occasional inspections of the
woods.
The old man cast a curious, anxious,
sorrowful glance at his young lady as
lie touched his hat in passing lier.
Alma blushed at meeting that glance
which said as plainly as eyes could
speak:
"Please, Miss Elverton, it is too late
for you to be out walking alone in
the woods, and if I only dared to
speak I'd up and tell you so."
And tho old servant went slowly,
sadly and reluctantly up toward the
mansion house.
Alma felt no disposition to follow
his footsteps, but turned and wander
ed still farther down the slope of the
hill into the narrow valley below,
where the woods were thickest.
She had nearly reached the foot of
the hill, when the figure of a man sud
denly crossed her path.
Looking up with a start she recog
nized Hollis Elverton.
"My father back!" she exclaimed.
xes, Alma, back I have not been
far from you since we parted. I left
you intending to return to my present
retreat. But from the covert of the
trees that concealed me I saw old
David Denny pass, and saw you, in
stead of going homo as I expected you
to do, and as you should have done,
child, turn and ramble down the hill.
I then took a shorter path to meet you
here to complete the interview that
was interrupted and under the shadow
of the coming night see you safe with
in the lawn of your own dwelling,"
said Ilollis Elverton gravely.
"Oh. my dear father! how glad 1 am
that I did not go home. Oh. if you
knew now happy it makes me to see
you again, even after this short inter
val. you would indeed love 111c a lit
tle." said his daughter fervently.
"Peace, girl, peace! No more of that
if you would ever look upon my face
again! I have sought you. Alma, with
a purpose. Sit down while 1 unfold
it to you. Sit down, I say, since you
that lay across their path, and upon
which Alma immediately sank.
Mr. Elverton stood at a short dis
tance, with his arms folded, leaning
against an oak.
"Y011 know something of this whole
sale poisoning at Allwortli Abbey?"
he began.
"Oh, yes. sir," answered Alma slnul-.
dering.
"IIow much (10 you know?"
"As much as hail been made public
through the coroi -r's inquest."
..nd Hint—is 1 )thing—worse than
formed from the Tacts elicited by the
coroner's inquest
".-Mi1, I cannot firm any."
"What do you think of the guilt or
innocence of the accused girl, Eudora
Leaton?"
'Oh. sir, I dare not think of that at
!l"'
that rested on her mind, and how in-j think her guilty, then?"
citable was the sense of relief now that
it.was lifted off." I Hove lier Innocent, for I loved lier.
"You are satisfied?" inquired Elver-
*-'ie subject is so painful to me—"
wou'd
rnJ'
ton kindly toward me, and in my loneli
"For her, oh,.yes but oh, my father,
»ss
I ken voice.
Sfc-t
heaven that I could be-
father, she always looked
1 loved
bcr" f",M
In a bro-
XtpStf W i.
"Believe her innocent, then, for she
is so," said Hollis Elverton, with sol
emn earnestness.
"Oil, my dear father! Is this really
true? Is my poor Eudora innocent?
Oil, prove that her soul is guiltless of
this great crime, and 1 shall not break
my heart—110—not even if she dies for
it!" cried Alma, starting up, seizing
his hand, and gazing eagerly into his
face.
It was the first time their hands had
met and Ilollis Elverton, shuddering
ly, shook off her grasp, as he an
swered:
"Yes It is true."
"Are you sure of it?"
"A8 sure of it as I can be of any
thing on earth."
"How do you know it? What do you
know of it?"
"I know Eudora is innocent, and I
know who is guilty."
"Oh, my father! can you prove this?
will you prove this?"
"All! Alma, moral certainty is not
legal evidence! I repeat, I know Eu
dora Leaton is innocent, and I know
who is guilty but I have no means as
3ret to prove the guilt of oue or the in
nocence of the other. But, Alma, yon
are the well-wisher of the accused
girl?"
"Oh. yes 0I1, yes."
"And you will take my word for her
innocence?"
"Oh, yes! It is easy to have faith in
wliat we wish to believe."
"Then you must become my agent in
doing all that may be done for this in
nocent. injured and unhappy girl."
"Willingly, my father."
"Listen, then: Although Eudora Lea
ton is heiress to one of the largest es
tates in this country, yet, being a
minor, and a ward in chancery, 1 doubt
she is without ready moucy to procure
proper counsel for her defense and
her only friend, her afliancecl husband,
Mr. Malcolm Montrose, is, I fear, as
poor as herself, having nothing but a
small income from his Highland place.
And it is highly desirable that she
should have the very best couusel to
be procured for money for it is said
that the attorney general himself will
come from Loudon to conduct this
very important case. Therefore, Al
ma, as I have a vital interest in the
acquittal of this innocent girl, and the
conviction, if possible, of the guilty
person, I must intrust you with this
money. Take it, and find means to
place it either in the hands of Malcolm
Montrose or in those of Eudora Lea
ton: and say to either with whom you
leave it:, that it is furnished by a
friend who believes in her innocence,
and that it is intended to be devoted
It 4*1C Cnrdncr.
to her defense," said Ilollis Elverton.
placing bank notes for a large amount
in Alma's hands.
"I will take it to Miss Leaton her
self, dear father I can do it very well,
as no one ever inquires how 1 spend
my days."
'Toor girl! so much greater the need
that you should learn to govern your
self. since there is none to govern you.
But do my errand to Eudora Leaton.
Tell lier to keep up her spirits, hope
for the best and trust in God! Tell
her that she has her own conscious
ness of innoceuce to support her, one
unknown friend working for her, and
a just Providence watching over her!"
"I will faithfully deliver your mes
sage, my father."
"But not as coming from me! Re
member, girl, you are never to breathe
my name, or hint my existence to any
one, whomsoever! All the world but
you believe me dead leave them in
that illusion."
"Dear father, pardon me, but the il
lusion is yours. The world does not
believe you dead. There was a report
of your death .and an anonymous let
ter reached us from St. Petersburg an
nouncing the supposed fact but after
the most careful investigation, my
mother came to the conclusion that it
was someone else of the same or
similar name, arid
"She was happier for the hope tha.t
it: might be true, however, as 1 intend
ed that she should be," said Hollis El
verton. gravely.
Alma did not reply to this strange
observation. She could not bear to
acknowledge that her mother had been
happier for this hope.
"But the ruse did not, fully
sueeewl. since it did not con
vince lier of my decease siuee the
death of II. Elverton, the American
stranger, who (lied at St. Petersburg,
did not pass quite current with her for
111 inc. Nevertheless, she is the better
for tlie hope that, after all, it may be
mine. Leave her to the enjoyment of
that saving hope, which must strength
en every year until it becomes a cer
tainty!"
"Oh, my father." said Alma, bowing
her burning face upon her hands, while
the tears stole through lier fingers,
"these cruel words pierce my heart like
daggers. You say that you loved each
other as man and woman seldom love,
and that you severed without a fault,
011 either side. Oh, why, then, even if
you must be parted, why should you
wish her to believe you dead—and why
should she bo happier in that belief?
Would you be happier if she were
dead?"
"I shou!d, for it would bo well.
Alma."
"And if I. also wore dead?"
"It would be better, still, Alma!"
"And if you were?"
"Best of all!"
"Oh, this is fearful! I remember, too,
overhearing it said that, when in child
hood, I was ill, and in great danger,
my mother's mournful face was lighted
up as by a wild hope but that when 1
recovered and got well, it sank hack to
its habitual look of despair! Oh, this
is dreadful! Why is it that the life of
eiich of us is a curse to tho others, or
that the death of either would be a
blessing to tlie rest?" cried Alma,
wildly.
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"Because a living sorrow is far hard
er to boar than a dead one! because we
are each of us a living sorrow to the
others!" said Ilollis Elverton, gloom
ily.
"Oh! this is terrible! But why is it
best that we all should die—1 in my
youth, and you and her iu your prime
of life, prematurely, as though we were
not fit to cumber the earth?"
"Because we are not lit to cumber the
earth—the dust should hide us!" cried
Hollis Elverton. with such a sudden
change of voice and manner, such a
savage energy of tone and gesture,
such a fierce gathering of the brows,
glare of the eyes and writhing of the
lips, that his daughter, looking upon
him, suddenly shrieked aloud, and cov
ered her face with her hands, for she
feared that she was in the presence of
a madman, if not even in tlie power of
a demoniac.
"Alma." he continued, sternly and
pitilessly, in spite of her condition,
"this horrifies you yet, though the
words should kill you. 1 repeat them—
it is better that we should die and re
turn to dust!"
"He wishes indeed to kill mo when
ha uses such awful words," thought
iui1 shuddering girl, as she shrank more
and more into herself, and cowered
nearer and nearer to the ground.
"Alina, there is a misfortune so un
natural that it has been forever name
less iu all languages so degrading that
it infects with a worse than moral lep
rosy all connected with it so fatal that
nothing but the death of tlie victim can
cure it nothing but the resolution of
the body into its original elements, and
its resurrection in another form of be
ing. and into another sphere of life, can
regenerate it! Alma, such a dire mis
fortune was mine, and hers, and
yours!"
"Oh, this is horrible—most horrible!
But what is it, then? Give tlie fatality
some name," cried Alma, distractedly.
"I told you It was nameless, but not
cureless for death is the certain rem
edy. Therefore die, Alma, die!"
"Father, I am called a Christian,
though most unworthy of the name
and nothing on earth woukl induce me
to cast away my Maker's gift of life."
"Nor do I mean that, either! For
though hoping, longing and praying for
our deaths, I would not lay sacrilegious
hands 011 my life, hers or yours": for
murder and suicide are crimes of the
deepest dye. and I would not burden
my soul with even a venial sin yet.
Alma, die if you can!"
"Oil, heaven! 1 do not know what you
mean, my father!"
"Why. this. If ever you are ill
again, do not call in a physician, (I.
not take medicine, do not: take any
means to keep off the death tliar r.iay
coine to you. naturally, easily, kindly,
as an angel of mercy. Promise in.'
this."
"Xo, my father. I cannot. For not
only docs my conscience forbid me to
destroy my own life, but it commands
mo to do all I can to preserve it and 1
would 110 more be guilty of negative
than of positive suicide." said Alma,
firmly, though mournfully.
"Then life, worse than death, must
be on your head! You are warned!
But remember, you who prize t.his
earthly life so highly, do not deprive
your mother of the comfort she limls
in the supposition of my death, by the
remotest hint of my existence," reit
erated Hollis Elverton. earnestly.
"Father, you have my promise, and
you may rely upon it. But. sir. there
is one of whom neither you nor I have
yet spoken, one whom we should both
consider—one, indeed, who is much to
be pitied in his widowed, childless
and desolate old age. 1 mean your
aged parent, my grandfather. Lord
Elverton. Surely he. at least, would
rejoice to hear that his ouly son still
lives! aiuL if necessary, lie would
keep your counsel as faithfully as I
shall. Will you not communicate with
him and comfort his aged heart with
the news of your continued life?"
"Never!" broke forth Ilollis Elver
ton, in a fury, that again frightened
his gentle daughter almost into a
swoon. "I have no father: I know
nothing of your grandfather! and nev
er, in this world, iti Hades or in
Heaven, will I see, speak to or ac
knowledge T/ord Elverton agaiu! Nev
er! so save me, Heaven, iu my utmost
strait!"
"Oh, sir! he is your father! do not
speak of him so bitterly!" faltered
Almn.
"Girl. I told yon a few moments
since that there were misfortunes so
monstrous as to be nameless: so
shameful as to bo contagious so fatal
an to bo cureless except by death! and
now add to that, that there are sins so
great as to burst asunder all ties of
kindred, destroy all the sympathies
of humanity, and invalidate all obli
gations of duty! Ask me no more
questions, for I find that you are will
ing tjie. very spirit from n^y bosom! but
answer me this: Since the fatal night
that drove me from my home forever,
has that old man ever dared to cross
the threshold of Edonlawn?"
"But once, my father but once, as I
truly believe. I have never s^en h''u
there, but I heard that, within a few
weeks after your flight and my hi 1-1 n,
he ciimc to Edenlawu late one after
noon, and was closeted -with my
"Would you In- linpny
it She
irf*T wyf-sBpK'M'.
i"
"3^-c£-
Vr^
were
dead
mother in the library for an hour, at
the end of which he came out, and
without taking any refreshment—"
"Ha! a morsel swallowed in that
house must have choked him!" inter
rupted Elverton.
"Or even looking at his poor little
granddaughter—"
"The sight of her must have blasted
him, as that of tho Medusa's head was
said to blast those who dared to look
upon it.' 'again burst forth Elverton.
"He hastened from the house, which
he has never entered since."
$
"For he had better walk on red-hot
plowshares than tread the paving
stones of those halls'." exclaimed El
verton. fiercely.
Then, after a few minute's sileuce,
he inquired:
"What have lyou heard of -liim
since?"
"Nothing, my fattier, except: this sig
nificant fact, that, within one fort
night after his fatal visit, his nut
brown hair turned as white its snow!"
"Xo doubt, 110 doubt, but will his
scarlet sin ever be so white?—can
time, or sorrow, or repentance bleach,
that?" muttered Elverton, speaking
rather to himself than to his daughter.
"Alma did not at once reply a feel
ing of deep humiliation kept her silent
for a while, and then a sense of relig
ious duty urged her at last to say:
"I know not of what sin you speak,
my lather but this I have Scripture
Dark Fijrurc of Cnplnln .ontrono
SCaiulIny: Dol'ore Her,
warrant for believing thai, though the
sin be 'as scarlet.' it may be made, by
repentance, as •white as snow.'
"Let Iiini set tle it with Heaven then,
as lie must ere very long! but as for
me—let me never see his face again!
Come, child, our interview is over.
Arise and walk on I will follow you
until I see you in sight of the north
gate, and then leave yon," said Hollis
Elverton. stepping aside to give her
the path, and then going after her.
Thev v.cut. up the narrow wooded
path in silence. When they reached
tho t'ij) of the hill, and came in sight
of the north gate. Mr. Elverton paused
and s-aid:
,-0 uo further hurry home
me here an hour earlier
to-morrow evening. Good-
"I need
bur. meet
than this
night."
"Good-night,
extending her
ward him.
niy father." said Alma,
hands imploringly to-
Hut he shook his head, waved his
hand, plunged into the wood, and was
soon lost to her view.
She then looked wistfully after him
for a little while, and then turnot.
slowly, and with downcast eyes, to
walk towards tho house.
The full moon was shining Voadly
on her path, when suddenly its light
was intercepted.
Alma raised her eyes to see the tall
figure of Captain Montrose standing
lief ore her. with folded arms, frown
ing eyes and scornful lips.
Wo have observed before this that
Xorham Montrose, in mould of form
and cast of features, was the very
counterpart of his elder brother, but
in every other respect lie was as dif
ferent from him as the night from tho
day. Malcolm, it. may be remem
bered, was as fair as a Dane, with
light hair, blue eyes and a sanguino
complexion he was also frank, gener
ous and confiding. Norham. 011 the
contrary, was as dark as a Spaniard,
with raven-black hair and burning
black eyes he was, besides, reserved,
jealous and suspicious.
Alma, conscious of these darker
traits in his character,, fearing their
effects upon himself and her, ami yett
loving him despite of danger, shivered
with the presentiment of coming evil
when she saw him standing before her
so silent, still and stern.
"Norham," she faltered, faintly.
"I beg your pardon. Miss Elverton,
I hope I have not prematurely inter
rupted a pleasant tete-a-tete." he re
plied, sarcastically, his black eyes
flashing and his proud lip curling.
Alma understood all now. He had
seen lier father walking we'th lier In
the wood, and had mistaken Hollis
Elverton for a favored suitor. And
Alma. lound by her promise, dared
not explain the circumstance, and un
der such conditions, could not hope to
reassure her jealous lover. A con
sciousness of her false position bowed
her fair head upon her bosom, dyed
her delicate cheek with blushes, and
invested her whole manner with the
appearance of conscious guilt. 111 1*
heart sank within her bosom, and shu
could not reply.
lie looked at lier a moment in scorn)
and anger—the tierce scorn and anger]
of wounded love and jealousy, and
then saying—"I will uo longer intrude
upon your privacy, Miss Elverton
good evening," lie lifted his
turned upon his heel and strod
away.
"Stay, stay. Norham: do not leav
me in a fatal error!" cried Alina,]
breaking the spell that had bound he:
faculties and springing forward.
"1 beg your pardon, Miss Elverton
if I have wronged you, even -n m,
thoughts, but our mutual relations as
suredly warrant me iu feeling som
surprise and displeasure at finding^
you in these woods, walking with
strange man, as you have so ofter
walked with me, and certainly justify
me in demanding some explanation
so strange a proceeding 011 your part."
"Because I have been so imliser
as to wander here with you, do yo
really suppose that I could be so faith
less as to walk here with another?'
said Alma, in a mournful voice.
"I have assuredly very good reaso
to think so," replied Norham, sar
tic-ally.
"Yes. it is true by coming hero
meet you I have given ybu good
son to think me capable of any dogre
of indiscretion," said Alma, with sor
rowful humiliation.'
(To be Continued.)
Almost 200 families are stated to !e 0?
tlio vor?e of strnvatlon In Helfnsjt aa a COU
stiiuincc of a aliliip'pff dWpiU*.
itfff S-Jfgef stii.

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