The Baldwin Librar)
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A BAND OF TRAVEI.LERS.
ebomas 'IRelson an) Sonis,
LONDON, EDI)NB URGH, AND NE'I YORK,
T3 he WT al) to TTin iSeries.
Rlobina -F. ,tarb,
Aluthorf of" Trust in God ani Do the Riglht" Series of Penny Books.
T. NELSON AND SONS, PATERNOSTER ROW.
EDINIURGII ; AND NEW YORK.
1. A MOUNTAIN HOME, .... ... 9
U. GATHERING STORMS, ... 24
III. CN PILGRIMAGE, .. 41
IV. PRIEDA REPEATS HER LESSON, 46
FRIEDA'S FIRST LESSON.
A STORY OF THE WALDENSES.
A MOUNTAIN HOME.
"THERE, Friedchen! that is all I've got
time to make you just now. Will they do?
You know I have to learn a yard of this
book before Barba*' comes this afternoon."
The speaker was a merry, bright-eyed
boy of twelve, seated on the low window
ledge of a comfortable kitchen, just then
occupied only by himself and a tiny little
creature about half his age.
A word meaning uncle; applied by the Waldenses to their
10 A MOUNTAIN HOME.
"That is all indeed !" said little Frieda
saucily. "Well, I suppose my poor king
and queen must do with only two ser-
vants; and the princess has one leg shorter
than the other! Did you ever see a
princess like that, Pierre ? "
Pierre admitted that he never had, but
added that he had seen so very few prin-
cesses altogether that he was not prepared
to say they were never lame.
"You are a lazy boy, Pierre," said his
exacting companion. That is only four
- -no, five---dolls you have made since--
Since yesterday said Pierre laugh-
ing; "but remember Barba and my
I don't care for Baroba, and I hate
lessons !" declared the little lady in a
very clear and decided voice. She was
S .1?, I, ,..
>. 'II II
I, [' - -' I
(!L y -:l: i:I i ''"
1- .4 r ;
S' ,, ,_ .,
AN EXACTING CO.MlANION,
P* r ;Lo.
AN lI\\G`IIG (ADMI \NIONU
12 A MOUNTAIN HOME.
startled, however, that very instant by a
man's step close to her chair, and a large
hand laid upon her sunny curly head.
Looking up she saw that it was Barba
(as Pastor Martino was called) himself,
and knew that he must have heard her
Frieda had been amusing herself ac-
cording to a favourite method of her own,
playing with the little wooden dolls that
her cousin Pierre so deftly whittled for
her with his big clasp-knife.
Her clever little fingers gaily decked
them in bits of coloured stuff and odds and
ends of ribbon that she had coaxed from
her aunt's stores. To Frieda's lively
imagination these tiny wooden dolls be-
came kings and queens, princes and prin-
cesses, and all sorts of fine people. At
present it was a mimic court that was
A MOUNTAIN HOME. 13
arrayed on the lid of the old box that
served her for a table, and the ceremony
of coronation was going on briskly, a strip
of tin-foil serving as the crown for the
new monarch. Frieda was a soldier's
child, and young as she was had been
about the world a good deal, and had
heard much talk of cities and their grand
doings which to the quiet inhabitants of
the Swiss valley where she was now quar-
tered sounded very strange indeed and not
Anna Lamarque, the mistress of the
house and mother of Pierre, had arrived
the very same moment as Pastor Mar-
tino, and entered the kitchen immediately
after him, making a low and courteous
obeisance to this revered pastor. She too
had heard little Frieda's inopportune
speech, and was filled with confusion
14 A MOUNTAIN HOME.
threat. She was a grave, sedate-look-
ing person of middle age; and though
exceedingly kind to the orphan niece who
had lately been intrusted to her care, was
by no means foolishly indulgent towards
Friedchen she said reprovingly,
lifting an admonitory finger, "remember
what I have often told you,-' they are
but fools who speak folly.'"
Nay, nay !" said the good pastor
laughingly, Friedchen but spake as a
child, not as a fool; and when she grows
older she will learn to love lessons as well
as play.-Is that not so, Pierre, my son ?
I need not ask of thee whether lessons be
good or not!"
Pierre blushed as he held his head
lower over his beloved book, but he tried
to put in a word for his little playfellow.
A MOUNTAIN IOME. 15
Frieda will learn far more quickly
than I can, Barba, when she begins ; and
I know she will like her lessons when you
Pierre had the greatest love and rever-
ence for his teacher; and as he now
glanced upwards to the kind, benignant
face of the old man, he at once detected a
cloud of sorrow or anxiety there which
was not familiar to him. Dame Lamarque
also had observed this. She was more
ready to speak of it than her son.
Barba," she said gently, "you have
been in trouble since last you visited us,
your children here. Is it not so ? May
we share in your grief, however helpless
we may be to bear it for you ? "
Pastor Martino sat down in the great
carved oak chair which the boy had set
for him, and for a few minutes he re-
16 A MOUNTAIN HOME.
mained silent-it might be in thought, or
more likely devotion. His fast whitening
hair fell over a high intellectual forehead
furrowed by many a care and many a
vigil; for the pastors of the valley of
Angrogna, of whom he was one, knew
well what trials and persecutions were,
and had long ago renounced all thought
of worldly ease and comfort, striving
only to be found faithful even unto death
in the cause of Christ, their Lord and
My children may-nay, must share
my sorrow, good dame," replied the pastor
at last. God knows how gladly we
would save our sheep and lambs from all
knowledge of evil; but when the wolf is
prowling round the fold it is time to warn
even the very youngest. And this little
creature," he added, taking Frieda on his
A MOUNTAIN HOME. 17
knee as lie spoke, will not be many
months older before the evil days come.
They are gathering quickly now. I am
suunoned to appear at Turin a fortnight
hence before the arch enemy of our
people. You know what that signifies "
Anna Lamarque fell upon her knees.
The Lord have mercy upon us all! she
cried; has it come to that ? "
Pierre stepped quickly forward to his
master's knee and said eagerly, If you
are going into danger, father, let me go
with you. I will carry your books and
your sword; I will wait upon you as
a son; I will help you with all my
Pastor Martino smiled.
Braver heart would I never seek to
follow me; but I must go alone, my boy.
You will stay with the feeble women and
18 A MOUNTAIN IOMiE.
children here to defend them. And by-
and-by, when you are grown, God grant
you may be a burning and a shining light
in the dark days so surely coming on our
beloved ( C!,. ."
Anna Larmarque now began to ply her
visitor with many eager questions, but he
seemed unwilling to say much.
"Go, good dame," he said, to your
ordinary household cares. Be not troubled.
Nothing can be done at present. Blessed
is the servant who, at the coming of his
Lord, shall be found faithfully engaged
even in the meanest task. And now leave
us to our studies. The time presses, and
I must give this brave boy of yours one
lesson more, even if it be the last."
Anna Lamarque bowed reverently and
departed, leading little Frieda by the
hand. Pastor MarLino and Pierre were
V:---:r- /t&- -i
-,* ''u UiI
i & -,-J
20 A MOUNTAIN HOME.
left in silence to pursue the course of
study which from week to week had been
the boy's greatest delight and privilege
since ever he could remember.
It was customary among the Walden-
sian pastors, when the times permitted of
it, to take such oversight of any promising
youths among their flocks, guiding them
in a course of study, and above all seeking
to enlist the early sympathies of such with
their own sacred calling, so that there should
be good promise of a succeeding race of
faithful ministers when their own day was
over. Pierre Lamarque was no common
pupil, and in him Martino readily dis-
cerned a soul strung to noblest harmony
and highest endeavour. It was long be-
fore that lesson was over. The teacher
seemed unwilling to say the last words to
one whom he truly loved as a son, and
A MOUNTAIN HOME. 21
whom he hardly hoped again to behold.
As the fading daylight glimmered on the
beautiful green valley and the white-
draped mountains towering far above it,
Pastor Martino, with Pierre walking
sorrowfully by his side, were met by
Anna Lamarque and little Frieda just
at the wicket-gate of the little cottage
And so here is my little scholar who
doesn't like lessons !" said the pastor, try-
ing to banish the air of sadness that had
hitherto overcast them, as he took Frieda
once more beside him, holding her hand in
his and smoothing back the bright hair
from her brow and eyes.
She is like your brother Gaston, good
dame," he said.
Anna Lamarque sighed. "Liker her
French folk, I doubt," she muttered to her-
22 A AOUNTA[N RHOME.
self; then added aloud, "My Gaston was
fond of his lessons, Frieda; thou art not
like thy father in that."
The child's bright blue eyes glanced
quickly up at Martino as if to see what
he thought on that point. He looked at
the snowy peal above them, glowing now
like opal in the rosy sunset, and said,
" Do you know what your name means,
little one ? It means peace. When you
see ine again will you tell me who said,
' My peace I give unto you' "
"Yes, Barba," said Frieda eagerly.
"And that will be your first lesson," he
said with a grave, sweet smile. When
and where it shall be said, God only
knoweth. I want you all to think of
these words," he said, turning to the
others, when I am not here to remind
you of them ; for that peace abideth even
A MOUNTAIN HOME. 23
in the midst of fiercest storm and tempest.
And now farewell! "
He was gone, leaving Anna Lamarque
and her boy gazing wistfully after him
down the valley as on one whom they
might welcome no more on earth; and
Frieda kept looking up at the tall sum-
mit whose colours were already fast van-
ishing away into darkness, saying over
to herself the words of her first lesson,
counting them the while on her own little
fingers, My pivce I (ive zuto you."
THESE were times of trouble in which
Frieda, the little heroine of our story,
lived, although she, playing with her
mimic kings and queens, or leading her
pet chamois along the rocky ravines and
grassy slopes where her new home lay, was
all unconscious of the alarm and anxiety
around her. Even the merry hearted
Pierre was daily growing graver and
more subdued as he learned to sympathize
in the bitter memories and dark fears for
the future so common to all the older
people. All that fierce and bloody tyrants
GATHERING STORMS. 25
could do to suppress the Church of the
Waldenses, to destroy its faithful shepherds
and to scatter its trembling sheep, had
been done for centuries. The history is
too well known to need repetition in these
few pages. There had been an interval
of calm, indeed, quite recently. For
years the old, simple, and long-hallowed
services had been revived without hin-
drance, and the peace-loving Valley people
had met Sunday after Sunday to worship
as their fathers had worshipped.
It was during this quiet time that poor
Gaston Lecroix had brought his mother-
less child to his sister's kindly care and
keeping. Gaston had left little Friedao at
Lenthal and gone on with his regiment,
only to find a soldier's grave in a foreign
clime; and Anna Lamarque had but little
Frieda to remind her of the brother she
26 GATHERING STORMS.
had loved so fondly and been so proud
of in the early days of youth in the old
home at Villar. One thing only vexed
her concerning the child. Gaston had
married a Parisian and a Catholic; a
bright, lively creature, very winning in
her own way, yet that way was not one
that Anna Lamarque, sedate and sober-
minded herself in the extreme, could well
approve of. She wished fervently that
Frieda had only the quiet blood of the
Lecroix family in her little veins, and that
she had less of that self-willed impetuos-
ity and love of excitement about her; for
what would she become, the good woman
often asked herself, if her life were to be
spent among those lonely valleys, and if
their simple pleasures and homely duties
failed to satisfy that lively, volatile nature?
Not long after Pastor Martino's visit
GATHERING STORMS. /7
clouds of evil began to darken over the
Valleys. News came from many quarters
of other pastors who had like him been
summoned to appear before the tribunal
at Turin. Nay, more: there came ru-
inours of severe imprisonment and pro-
tracted torture being meted out to them
there, and it was darkly surmised that
ere long the great central square of the
city would again be the scene of bloody
executions and flaming pyres. Of all
this the child Frieda knew nothing. She
saw, to be sure, that her aunt and the few
neighbours at Lenthal were often sad and
in tears ; but that concerned her but little.
It troubled her more that her only com-
panion, Pierre, was much more absent and
abstracted than formerly, and though al-
ways kind in his words and ways, had little
heart to bestow upon her many demands.
28 GATHERING STORMS.
That will do, Friedchen," he said one
evening as he finished a neat wooden
cottage for her, roughly cut indeed but
complete in every part from the tiny
veranda to the two chimneys. I am
afraid I won't be able to cut out any
more things for you till I come back in
Come back ?" asked Frieda, opening
her blue eyes very wide. "Where are
you going to? You are not going to
leave Lenthal ?"
Yes I am. Didn't you know, little
one ? Well, mother has at last consented
to let me go to the college in Turin.
Pastor Martino is there now, you know,
and I may see him. He will help me too
with my learning, if only-"
Pierre hesitated, and the tears started
to his eyes as he thought how prison walls
GATHERING STORMS. 29
and dungeon chains might interfere with
Pastor Martino's help.
Frieda was unsoftened by any such re-
flections. She broke at once into one of
her most violent fits of passion at the very
idea of being left in that lonely place to
play without Pierre.
"You are a bad, wicked boy!" she
cried, stamping her little foot on the floor,
while her eyes blazed with angry light.
" No one will be left here to play with
me. I wish my poor papa had taken me
away with him to be killed in battle rather
than left me here to live in this miserable
place. There is nothing but snow to look
at, and no one but ugly stupid people to
speak to all day long. Oh, I hate to be
here; and I shall go away and be lost some
day if I haven't you to make things for
30 GATHERING STORMS.
Pierre laughed, though not unkindly,
at his little cousin's threat. When she
first came to the cottage the family had
been naturally rather afraid of so small a
child getting into the pine-woods or the
rocky caverns all round the place, and so
being lost sight of. Consequently, Frieda
began to think that if her being lost was
such a matter of dread and anxiety to the
household, the best way of revenging her-
self for any fancied wrong or insult was
either to be or pretend to be lost. Indeed,
she had tried it once or twice already,
though with indifferent success. Once the
distant howl of a wolf had sent her back
screaming for help, and another time the
pangs of hunger had proved equally
So Pierre only laughed, and Frieda
grew more angry than ever. She even
GATHERING STORMS. 31
began to throw her favourite wooden dolls
and toys about, as she sometimes did when
excited; and finally she threw herself down
on the cottage floor, her face hidden from
view among the long hair of the old goat-
skin that served for a rug. Pierre was
still trying to coax her into good-humour
when his mother entered the room. Dame
Anna was in no mood for humouring
Frieda's childish folly. She had enough
to think about just then, and enough to
vex her without that, so she seized her
pretty sharply by the shoulder, and giving
her a little shake, ordered her to rise to
her feet. Frieda did so, but kept the
stormy looks still on her flushed and tear-
"Come with me, Frieda," said her
aunt, in a voice Frieda did not dare to
disobey. I am going to milk the goats,
32 GATHERING STORMS.
and want you to carry one of the pitchers
Frieda followed, sulkily enough, but at
once. They went a long way in silence,
for the half-dozen goats had to be followed
far along the sheep-tracks, and they had
roamed further up the hill than their
mistress quite approved of. It was not
till they had been found and milked, and
all the necessary dairy work had been
thoroughly gone through, that Dame La-
marque thought proper to speak to her
erring little ward. They were wandering
slowly along the very path which they
had seen Pastor Martino descend so lately
on leaving Lenthal. Probably the recol-
lection of that farewell scene softened the
hearts of both, even of Frieda. Certainly
she remembered in that moment the words
he had taught her, and began counting
GATHERING STORMS. 33
them over once more on her little fingers.
And as she did so the rosy lustre was
again tinging the uppermost heights of
Monte Stefano, and the slowly dying day-
light shed a solemn yet sweet radiance
over all the scene.
"And now, Frieda," said her aunt,
"what was the matter with you a little
ago ? Have you given way again to one
of your naughty fits? You know how
often I have warned you against them."
Frieda's tears began to flow again, but
they were not such angry tears as before.
You are sending Pierre away from
here," she sobbed reproachfully, "and
you know I have no one else to play
Anna Lamarque sighed. No one knew
so well as herself what it had cost her to
make this sacrifice. The parting with her
34 GATHERING STORMS.
only son was sufficiently bitter in itself,
not to mention the struggle it would
entail on her to save enough of money for
his outfit and maintenance at college. But
she had resolved to make the great effort,
both on account of Pierre's ardent anxiety
for it, and because Pastor Vinet, who had
come to examine him sometimes in Pastor
Martino's place, had spoken so very
warmly of the boy's high talents and
evident qualifications for such a course of
study as could only be secured in one of
the large university towns. So with tears
and prayers and unwearying toil Pierre
was to be sent forth; and now, forsooth,
she was to be blamed by a little creature
like Frieda for sending him away It
was too much. Ridiculous enough, of
course, in its way, and yet Anna La-
marque could not quite laugh at it.
GATIHING STORMS. 35
"Frieda," she said, you are too ab-
surd. If I can bear to part with my only
child, cannot you part with the companion
of your play ? Besides, don't you think,
my little Frieda, that older people know
better than you what ought to be done ? "
"But you have all the old people to
talk to," retorted Frieda. And you never
weary knitting stockings and reading big
books; and I have nothing here that I
like -- nothing but my dolls, and no-
body at all but Pierre. It is very
There was a long silence. Anna La-
marque thought over the child's words,
honestly trying to understand her feeling's
and to sympathize in her troubles. It was
perhaps a little hard for her to find her own
claims to Frieda's affections so very little
regarded. She had done her best to be
36 GATHERING STORMS.
kind to her orphan niece, though her grave
and even severe manners had quite failed
to win the heart of the whimsical, way-
ward Frieda. But Anna Lamarque was
a good woman, quite above any petty
feelings of spite or jealousy, especially
towards so slight a creature as this.
Poor child !" she said thoughtfully-
"thou little knowest the sorrow that
rends the hearts of older folk around thee;
yet it may be thy own troubles are enough
for thy childish heart,-God knoweth.
Father and mother long gone, and now
companion and playmate to be taken.
Yes, little Frieda, it is hard, as thou
Frieda's tears fell more softly now, and
her cheek quickly lost the angry flush of
"Shall I tell you what we may do,
l-.r! 'II 1 v;^
33 GATHERING STORMS.
Frieda, you and 1, if you are very good
for a while to come ?" asked her aunt.
"What is it? What may we do? I
will be very good if it is nice," exclaimed
Should you like to go to Turin, Frieda,
to see the great city and all the fine
streets ? Well, if you are good till Pierre
goes to college, I promise you shall go
with us. I want to see my boy into safe
keeping. God defend him and all other
young untried souls in such dangerous
paths !" concluded the good dame, speak-
ing rather to herself than to the child.
Frieda's volatile nature at once rushed
to the opposite extreme from her previous
dejection, for the prospect held out to her
was one bright beyond comparison. She
had been a child of the city in her Parisian
mother's lifetime, and nothing had ever
CATH BEING STORMS. 39
seemed so beautiful to her as the recollec-
tion of busy streets gay with carriages and
processions, and shop-windows flaunting
their glittering wares. The journey to
Turin was a very arduous undertaking in
Anna Lamarque's eyes, and had none of
the pleasurable excitement which Frieda
saw in it. But she did not wish to quench
the child's innocent gaiety on that account.
Only, as they rose to go home, she sought
to lead the conversation gently towards
some quieter and more serious theme,
such as best suited her own devout and
And for once she really seemed to find
the right clue to little Frieda's heart of
"Do you remember what the good
Barba told you about your name, little
one ? she asked. What does it mean?"
40 GATHERING STORMS.
"Peace," said Frieda promptly. I
shall never forget that. And do you
know, auntie, when I am angry and cross
again I mean to think about that, and try
to be like my name."
"You are anxious to be good now,
Frieda," said her aunt smiling; "but re-
member you cannot hope to be so by your
own strength alone. Who is it that can
best help you, Friedchon ? "
I know," said the child in a low voice.
" He who said the good words that Pastor
Martino taught me. Auntie, let me say
them once more to you now; for if we go
to Turin, who knows but I may have to say
my lesson to him there."
"WHO knows but I may have to say my
lesson to him there ?" These words of
little Frieda's occurred many a time in
after years to Anna Lamnarque; but to
understand why they did so we must pass
on some months from the time of that
quiet sunset talk, and watch a band of
travellers who are slowly penetrating the
mountain passes which separate the quiet
valleys of the Canton de Vaud from the
ancient and picturesque city of Turin.
In a covered waggon, drawn by six
sturdy oxen, about a dozen women and
42 ON PILGRIMAGE.
children were packed as comfortably as
space would permit of; and alongside of
that and of some smaller carts marched as
many men and boys, who could only trust
to an occasional lift from one or other
conveyance, a supply of strong chests and
light bundles taking up most of the spare
Among these pedestrians walked Pierre
Lamarque, already a good many inches
taller than when we last heard of him.
He had more of the student air than ever,
though something of the old boyish merri-
ment still showed itself as he cheered his
comrades on with kindly word or snatch
of song. A wallet on his shoulder gave
evidence of the fact that Pierre had not
forgotten his favourite books whatever
else might be wanting in his luggage, for
the oblong forms and hard corners of those
ON PILGRIMAGE. 43
beloved companions of his were plainly
visible through their canvas covering.
The women in the waggon were not
less in need of Pierre's words of cheer.
Some of them indeed looked very sad that
day; for they were wending their way to
Turin only to bid long or last farewell to
members of their families and others of
their kindred who had been cruelly expa-
triated, or who were in some cases even
doomed to death, on account of their
Anna Lamarque's errand was, as we
know, of a less depressing nature, being
only to see her son safely lodged with
some respectable and God-fearing family
during his first session at college. Little
Frieda, having been what she herself
termed very good" for the last half-year
at least, was, according to promise, seated
44 ON PILGRIMAGE.
by her aunt's side. And Frieda, be it re-
marked, was not in the least sad or down-
cast-very far from it! She was now near-
ing the very height of her ambition. She
was to see a city as like her dear old home,
Paris, as could be expected out of France,
and she was not quite to be parted for a
week at least from her favourite companion
Pierre. These things were enough for
Frieda in the meantime, and she was not
in the habit of troubling her mind about
Her aunt, however, naturally shared in
the graver thoughts of her neighbours,
and was indeed not without certain sad
cogitations of her own regarding the fate
of Pastor Martino in particular. No cer-
tain news about him or his condition had
reached Lenthal for months past. Ac-
cording to some vague reports he was
ON PILGRIMAGE. 45
wandering in disguise among the caverns
and rocky fastnesses of Puy de Donme, his
own native mountain home; according
to others he was still in prison and in
chains, awaiting trial at the pleasure of his
Anna Lamarque sought faithfully to
comfort those who were heavier laden
than herself on the sorrowful journey.
"Take heart, Mother Moinet," she
would say tenderly to an aged woman
about to take farewell of her two sons,
on whom sentence of banishment had
been passed; "'the Lord reigneth, and
in his hand are the hearts of princes.'
He may bring your sons again out of the
far country before you are taken home;
and if not, how sure is your meeting
FRIEDA REPEATS HER LESSON.
THE great city of Turin was in a state
of more than usual stir and excitement.
Cardinal Cagliano, the Pope's special
nuncio or legate, had arrived and taken
up his quarters in the archiepiscopal
palace. For what purpose his eminence
had come was only too easily guessed
by any one who knew the troubled state
of affairs in all the provinces around.
Many prisoners lay in the dungeons of
the old castle on the height above the
city; prisoners of blameless life and high
principle, but yet most of them doomed
FRIEDA REPEATS HER LESSON. 47
to cruel bondage, -ii'f.i i, and even
death, because they loved the truth and
would not part with it at the command of
an exacting bigot or a blinded fanatic.
The Church of Rome, always jealous of
her rights, had resolved on one more at-
tempt to suppress the ancient Church of
the Valleys, as the Waldensian Church
was called. Long, indeed, was the list of
its martyrs already, terrible the tale of its
sufferings. But its light had not been
quenched. That only burned the brighter,
though it gleamed through days of dark-
ness and scenes of bloodshed.
One more attempt, however, and Rome
fondly believed that the victory would be
gained. It was for this reason that the
cardinal came with all the splendour of his
retinue, and with a strong escort of troops
clad in the iron panoply of war. At last
48 FRIEDA REPEATS hIER LESSON.
a day of reckoning was to come for these
long pent-up prisoners. Their death or
exile would strike terror into the hearts
of the simple people who had learned of
late days to trust too entirely to the
wisdom and strength of their ba)rbas.
And so it was that all day long the revel
and riot of her idle and sometimes vicious
soldiery fermented in the streets and
squares of Turin, while crowds of anxious
peasantry gathered at the court -house
doors and in the castle-yard, eager to learn
some news of their friends and relatives,
or some hint as to their coming doom.
It was in a queer, old-fashioned hostelry,
in a dark court just off the central market-
place, that Anna Lamarque and some of
her companions of the waggon found
shelter and accommodation. So dark were
its rambling passages and its wainscotted
FRIEDA REPEATS HER LESSON. 49
walls that little Frieda felt quite fright-
ened at her first entrance; but the window
of their room proved to be one overhang-
ing the square, from which a clear view
might easily be obtained of all that passed
Frieda was originally, as has been said
before, a child of the city. Once more
the sight of busy streets, gay shop-win-
dows, and lively-coloured dresses met her
bright young eyes. She was not afraid
or bewildered as a simple child of the
Valleys might have been. She clapped
her little hands with glee and cried out
in ecstasy, 0 Aunt Anna-O Pierre, do
come and look out! How beautiful all
this is; how happy we shall be here! "
Anna Lamarque was very far from
sharing in the joy of her niece. To her
the tread of the soldiers and the tinkling
50 FRIEDA REPEATS HER LESSON.
bells of the priests as the frequent pro-
cessions of the M3.,-i went by boded no
good. Even Pierre could not feel gay,
though his young and inexperienced eyes
were to some extent dazzled by the brill-
iancy and apparent liveliness of the scene.
"Ah !" said mine host of the Golden
Fleece, as their inn was called, while he
stood talking to the Lamarques one
morning after they had been his guests
for a time, "you have two fine children,
good dame, with you. Stay yet another
week or two with us, and let them see the
grand procession of the Holy Cross. That
will be worth seeing. It is to take place
just before his holiness the cardinal leaves
Turin, and will be very splendid. Some say
that the heretics" (here he crossed him-
self) "are to be brought forth on that day
to grace his triumph; but for me I know
FRIEDA REPEATS HER LESSON. 51
not. Only, I will let you have your room
here for as small a sum as I would ask
from my own kindred, because you are
such a peaceable inmate, though you are
a heretic" (again he crossed himself), "and
because I have taken so great a fancy for
this little fairy here, ay, and for the boy
too-a fine sensible youth. Pray God
he may yet come to the true faith."
"Amen, friend," quoth Anna stoutly;
" but thou and I do not mean the same,
remember, by that word."
Indeed they were very friendly with
the innkeeper, and very comfortably and
cheaply housed, so that the good woman
was easily persuaded to remain a few
weeks longer where her boy must be left
all summer, and where many friends and
neighbours also yet remained awaiting
the doom of the "heretics." She had
52 FRIEDA REPEATS HER LESSON.
made many and repeated inquiries as to
Pastor Martino's fate, but all she could
learn was that he still undoubtedly lan-
guished in one of the castle dungeons.
None were admitted to his room, and
none ever saw him without its walls.
Pierre was at college, and very busily
occupied with his numerous studies. A
place was found for him in the house of a
Waldensian woman, the widow of one of
their own pastors; but while his mother
remained at the hostelry, Pierre remained
The day of the great fete came-the
procession of the Holy Cross. The streets
were gorgeously draped with cloth of
silver and gold, and plentifully strewn with
flowers. The music of fife and tabret and
drum made glad the air. A high altar
bearing the holy cross was erected in the
FRIEDA REPEATS HER LESSON. 53
principal square, and to it the people
thronged in great numbers to watch the
procession. Alas! there was a darker
erection on the opposite side of the very
same square. A huge pile of wood sur-
mounted by a tall stake proclaimed to the
citizens of Turin the not very unusual
tidings that a burning of "heretics" was
about to take place as an extra honour to
his eminence the cardinal, on this the eve
of his departure.
No fewer than ten had been thus
doomed to die. All were devout and
peaceable inhabitants of the Waldensian
valleys, defenders of the Waldensian faith.
Three of them were bcobas or pastors,
and among these the most striking figure
was that of Martino !
Who shall describe the feelings of one
little group watching with trembling hearts
54 FRIEDA REPEATS HER LESSON.
afar off as that noble band of martyrs was
led forth to the stake? Long lines of
soldiery with pike and bayonet kept the
populace back from their victims, or Anna
Lamarque and Pierre would have rushed
to their beloved pastor's feet to implore
his blessing, and even to pray that they
might die with him. It might not be.
Strangely enough it was left for little
Frieda to do then what older and stronger
people dared not do.
With no thought of terror in her heart
for any object around her, the child sud-
denly struck off from the family group,
and no one missed her in that moment of
agitation. Her quick eyes had caught
sight of Martino's tall stately form,-his
flowing beard much whiter than when she
saw him last; his calm, benignant face,
sorrowful, yet undismayed. In another
FRIEDA REPEATS HER LESSON. 55
moment Frieda's lithe little form had
threaded the soldiers' ranks unharmed,
even unnoticed. She had grasped Mar-
tino's gown, and stretching forth her child-
ish arms to him, she cried,-
Barba! Barba! I can say my lesson
Involuntarily the sad procession stopped.
All looked with interest at the pretty child
who, like an angel-messenger, had suddenly
arrested them. Martino slowly recognized
"Ah, my little Frieda Is it thozu
and here "
Let me say it, Barba," she persisted
as he raised her high in his arms.
Say on, my child," he said kindly;
"the angel of death will wait for us."
Frieda lifted her blue eyes to the good
old man's face, and said in clear silvery
56 FFRIEDA REPEATS HER LESSON.
accents that rang strangely out over the
"JESUs said, 'IJ/ peace I give unto
Martino kissed the little innocent child-
face upraised to his own.
"God bless thee," he said, "for that
word of the Master's. Verily he hath
sent thee in the hour of his servant's
sorest need. We will go on now to meet
Him, though it be through pain and trial
and sorrow. His peace is with us."
Then catching sight of the sorrow-
stricken countenances of Anna Lamarque
and her son Pierre, just visible at a narrow
opening between the ranks of bayonets
around him, he waved his hand to them
and sent back little Frieda, saying,-
Go now, my child, back to thy mother
and brother yonder,--for such they are to
Ij' 7 ;
'--- '- -'- --
. .... .. ...
FRIEDA S MESSAGE.
58 FRIEDA REPEATS HER LESSON.
thee in deed if not in name. Go, tell
them what I have said to thee now.
And do thou remember, dear child, my
last words as faithfully as thou hast re-
membered thy first lesson."
Frieda did the good man's bidding.
She quickly threaded her way among the
horses' feet and the soldiers' arms back to
where her friends stood, and word for
word repeated to them the last words of
the dying martyr. At that moment the
drums rolled out their fatal signal; the
quick flames leapt up around the devoted
band doomed to the cruel death of the
stake. The psalm they bravely raised in
that last awful hour died away or was
lost amid the louder strains of martial
music as the grand procession of the Holy
Cross came surging slowly through the
square. And while his eminence the
FRIEDA REPEATS HER LESSON. 59
cardinal, in purple robe, surplice of richest
lace, and tiara blazing with gold and gems,
marched under a silken canopy, joining in
the TE DEUM LAUDAMUS which priests
and choristers chanted before him as he
went,--then, even then, the souls of the
martyrs ascended from the cruelty and
shame of earth to the blessed rest of
What words can express the emotions of
the little band of Waldensian watchers in
that eager thronging crowd ? To them
the splendour of the procession, the mag-
nificence of the cardinal and his priestly
train, were only so many more bitter in-
gredients in their cup of sorrow. They
fell on their knees and hid their faces
from the cruel sight. This attracted no
attention fortunately, as many others in
the crowd-Romanists-also knelt to re-
60 FRIEDA REPEATS HER LESSON.
ceive the blessing of his eminence as he
As soon as possible they retraced their
steps to the old hostelry to weep there in
silence and retirement. Mine host of the
Golden Fleece had himself but newly
returned from the show. He half guessed
how it was with his Waldensian inmates,
but it did not suit him to take notice of
it. He did not wish to be thought a
harbourer of "heretics," though he had
no objection to catch their money when it
came in his way.
"Ah! you have seen a grand spectacle to-
day, you youngsters.-And you, madame,
you must be exhausted with the heat and
the crowd. I feel it myself, For, by my
faith, I am growing old already; I am no
longer able for such crowding and crushing
as one has to get through in Turin to-day."
FRIEDA REPEATS HER LESSON. 61
"I am wearied indeed," said poor
Anna,-"wearied in soul, I think. As for
your grand spectacle-well, we have seen
the heavens opened, and heard a voice
from heaven saying to us, 'Blessed are
the dead who die in the Lord.'"
Ah, no doubt, no doubt," assented
the landlord as he hurried off from this
dangerous guest, for his sharp eyes had
detected one of the Jesuit fathers in
search of some one of his household. He
crossed himself as he closed the door on
the heretics, saying, so as to be heard
by the priest, "Ah her mind is a little
touched to-day. But it may be the heat,
yes, undoubtedly it is the heat."
Little remains to be told. On the
morrow the little Waldensian band set
out for their valleys again, all save Pierre
Lamarque, who was of course bound to
62 FRIEDA REPEATS HER LESSON.
remain and prosecute his studies. His
mother Anna and even little Frieda had
lost all desire to remain in a city crowded
with so many cruel memories. Once
more it was Anna Lamarque's blessed
privilege to rouse herself from her own
griefs and comfort other mourners in the
little company; and she did so best by
telling them how Frieda had been des-
tined to speak comfort and encouragement
to their beloved Pastor M.Lrtino in his
"And that peace is with us too," she
would say, "as it was with him then.
The Lord Jesus will not recall his
They reached their home in safety, and
again little Frieda sat by the garden gate,
looking away up the wild lonely glen and
on the white-capped mountains, bright
FRIEDA REPEATS HER LESSON. 6a
with sunset glow, and again she thought
of the good barba and his last words.
Frieda grew up a sweet and gentle girl,
subdued, it may be, yet not unduly de-
pressed-certainly not broken-spirited-
by all the sorrow she had witnessed.
Pierre became a distinguished student,
and in due time a faithful and even
eminent pastor of the Church he had
loved from his earliest days so well. But
the further story of these two lives must
be told at another time; it is too long for
this little book, which only professes to
tell you about-FRIEDA'S FIRST LESSON.