The Baldwin Library
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THE BROOK'S STORY;
AND OTHER NARRATIVES.
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C1i Il i 1 10
- BE INDUSTRIOUS LIKE TE SPIDER AND TE BEE.
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BEIDSRIU IE IH SI~lKADIEBE14
AND OTHER NARRATIVES.
BYMRS. C. E. BOWEN.
LONDON: S. W. PARTRIDGE & Co., 9, PATERNOSTER Row.
Printed by GEO. WATSON & Co., 28, Charles Street, Farringdon Road,
r O such of my 1
y as :posse.!-.s a
wa rm corner in
their hearts for
dunib a1) nima ls
and wlho art f!;,d1 :
of reading about
them and their
ways, I d dicate
the four follow-
ing little stories.
They have been
written at leisure
moments with a
vieW not only of
giving amusement, but in the hope that they may help to
arouse an increasing interest in the- little four-footed friends
and neighbours that live around or near to us, and from
whom may be learned many a useful lesson of humility,
patience, and perseverance. c. E. B.
V" ,2-" ""-
THE BROOK'S STORY.-Minnie Gordon-The Birthday Present-
The Brook desired-Minnie's Dislike to Lessons-Aunt Mary vexed
-The Birds and Insects envied-Minnie seeks her Brook-Papa comes
and consoles her-Tells the Brook's Story-Myra's Retreat-Talk with
the Thrush-Proposes to make a Nest-The Thrush's Nest admired
-Myra's Failure-The Thrush Indignant-Departure of Mr. and Mrs.
Thrush-The Spider's Broken Web-Myra offers to mend it-Makes
it worse than before-The Angry Spider-Myra's Talk with the Bee-
Never made Honey-Myra and fhe Ants-Their Homes disturbed-
The Ants' Punishment-Myra's Talk with the Rabbit-The Race with
Bunny-Myra and the Squirrel--Climbing Trees-Myra cannot
follow-The Talk with the Mole-Myra taught how to burrow-An
Underground Home declined-Myra and the Lark-The Talk with
Roger-Roger's Good Advice-Minnie finds out her Papa's Meaning-
The Teaching of the Story 9
GRANDFATHER ROGER.-The Pleasant Almshouses-An In-
teresting Couple-The Excursion Train-An Affecting "Good-
bye "-The Family Housekeeper and Treasure-Accumulated Mis-
fortunes-Roger Prynne's Decision-Lily at the Dressmaker's-Sad
News for Lily-The Request refused-Kind Miss Wellesley-Lily
goes to London-Arrival in Town-Martha Drewet-Lily sees her
Grandfather-Carries out a Bright Idea-Interview with Mr. Norman
-The Promise-Roger's Faith-The Visit and Help 53
HARRY AND HIS MONKEY.-Harry Lorton-Appeal for the
Heathen-Harry's Desire-Present of a Monkey-His Tricks-Jack
taught by Harry to make Lace-The Writing and Knitting Lessons
-Jack proficient-Performance at Colonel Lorrimer's-Jack liberally
rewarded-The Mission Store-Jack escapes-The Menagerie-Harry
becomes a Missionary 83
A FEW WORDS ABOUT CATS.-"Lolo," the Angola Cat-Her
Affection for her Mistress-Illness of the Countess-Lolo gets in the
Sick-room--The Comical Bell-ringers-The Performance described-
An Unnatural Training ir
THE BROOK'S STORY.
THINK very few of my readers could guess
-? 5 what little Miinie Gordon once chose for a
^ present on her birthday, when her papa gave
i Iher leave to tell him what she would most
like to have. She was an only child, and
her nursery was full of toys and pretty things,
Kso it was not very easy to find anything quite
new for her. Moreover, Minnie was. not a
little girl who cared very much for play-
things. Her chief delight was in running
about out .of doors, gathering wild flowers, listening, to the
songs of the birds, and watching the busy, merry little insects.
Bcok's Soraj. B
10 The Birthday Present.
Of course these were summer pleasures; but then Minnie's
birthday happened to be in the spring, just when the trees.were
growing green, and the flowers were peeping out, and the birds
tuning up their throats. So,. when her papa asked her what
she would like to have as a birthday present, her thoughts went
not to dolls, or workboxes, or toys, but to something very
Papa," she said, "the great wood behind our house is yours,
is it not? and everything that is in it ?"
"Yes, Minnie," he replied, it is all mine."
Then, papa, there is something in the wood I would rather
have for my own than anything else in the world."
What can that be, Minnie ? Is it a ,live thing you want to
bring home? "
"It always seems alive to me, papa, for it tells me all sorts
of pretty stories, and makes such nice singing noises; but I
could not bring it home. I only want you to make me a present
of it, because I like it so."
"Well, Minnie, tell me what it is."
The brook, papa; I should like to feel it was my own dear
brook." Mr. Gordon smiled, for he knew his little girl's habit
of going and sitting by the side of the pretty, babbling, spark-
ling little stream of water that ran through the wood on his
estate. He knew how .she used to fancy it talked to her, and
told her tales; for her little head was full of imagination and
invention, and thoughts that came into her own mind she liked
Minnie's Dislike to Lessons. I
to fancy as being spoken by the brook's voice," as she called
the murmuring sound it made when it ran gurgling and playing
amongst the stones beneath.
"Well, Minnie," said Mr. Gordon, "I will give you the'
brook, then, for your very own. It shall be my present to you
on this your birthday."
Minnie's delight was great. Some people may think she was
rather foolish not to have chosen something different; but she,
at all events, was quite satisfied with her choice, and impatient
to go out and hold a conversation with her new possession, and
-tell it that it belonged to herself now.
Minnie was, as we have before said, the only child of her
father. Her mother had died when she was a baby, but her
father's sister, kind Aunt Mary, had left her own pleasant home
in another part of England to come and live with.her brother,
and take -care of his motherless little girl. Minnie loved her
dearly, as well indeed she might, for her own mother could not
have been more tender, and loving, and careful of her than was
her good Aunt Mary.
But though Minnie was obedient and affectionate, she had
her faults, like all children; and one was her great dislike to
anything in the shape of lessons. She really quite hated the
sight of her reading, and spelling, and copy-books. No sooner
was she seated by the side of her aunt on a fine sunshiny morn-
ing than, instead of trying to fix her attention on what she
was doing, she constantly sent her thoughts off into the wood
12 Minnie envies the Birds ana Insects.
where she was so fond of playing, and only her tongue or her
fingers were employed about her lessons, not her mind or her
will; so, of course, she did them very badly, and got on extremely
slowly, and this vexed Aunt Mary, who tried to show her little
niece what a useless, ignorant person she would grow up if she
went on thus. All she said did not, however, have much effect
on Minnie, who, like many other ignorant folks, had a very good
opinion of herself. Because she could read a little, and write
a letter, and do easy sums, and hem a pocket-handkerchief, she
imagined she was. clever enough for anything she should ever
Want to do; but then Minnie thought she should like never to
do anything but play in the wood. Oh, how she envied the
birds and insects there, who had always such a delightful time
of it! Nothing to do all day long-no books, no work, no
sums-no sitting still on chairs on fine sunny days! Oh, if
only she had been born a bird, or a butterfly, or something of
that sort, she often thought.
But," said her aunt to her one day, you are quite mistaken
in thinking the animals in the wood lead an idle life, such asyou
would like to do; they are most of them very busy and very
clever, and I do not think if you went to live with them they
would be at all pleased at having you for a companion when
they round out how useless you were, and how little you could
do that would be of any real service."
Minnie did not like this remark of Aunt Mary at all. She
coloured very red, and tossed her head a little as she put away
-.I : =.,h P ,
Drawn 6y Birket rost,.
.. ._ :_ ..
Drw :yBre otr
14 Minnie seeks the Brook.
her books, for her lessons were just over, having been worse
done than usual. She felt very sure she was much more clever
than any of the pretty creatures in the wood, and she did not
like being told they would not care for her as a companion.
This conversation with her aunt took place about a week after
her birthday. She was allowed to go. alone in the wood as far
as the place where her brook ran. It crossed from one side of
the wood to the other, cutting it, as'it were, into two parts, and
there was a pretty little rustic bridge thrown over it; but
Minnie very seldom went over the bridge. She liked better to
jump from stone to stone as they lay in the bright, clear water,
with only just their tops dry. Sometimes after rain they would
be quite covered over with water; but even -then she seldom
used the bridge, but preferred taking off her shoes and stockings,
and letting the water run over her feet.
There was a beautiful bank of moss on the other side of the
brook. This was Minnie's boundary. She might go there but
no further alone, and this washer most favourite spot. Here
she would lie down on warm days under the shade of the forest
trees, and talk to her beloved brook, and imagine its answers.
Here she would invent stories out of her own head, and try to
fancy that the brook was telling them to her all the time.
To- this bank she wandered on'the day I have mentioned,
when she was offended with Aunt Mary for what she had said to
her. She did not feel quite happy, and it was a comfort to tell
her brook so, and to fancy that it would be sorry for her. It was
A Talk. with Papa. '15
running along more merrily than ever, and murmuring away
with all its might; but somehow it didn't seem inclined to tell
her stories to-day, not even when she lay down and curled
herself up on the green bank close beside it, which was her
favourite attitude when She made it talk to her. Things went
all wrong. Minnie at last fairly began to cry, she felt so
Suddenly she heard a step drawing near, and, looking up,
she saw her papa, who was returning from a long walk he had
been taking on the other side of the wood. He was not sur-
prised to see Minnie by the side of her favourite brook, but he
was very much astonished to see that she had been crying, for
tears on her cheeks was a rare sight.
He was a tender, loving father, and he sat down, and, taking
her on his knee, he asked her what was amiss. Minnie's heart
was very full, and she was glad to unburden it to her papa. She
told him how careless and tiresome she had been with her les-
sons that morning, and of all that Aunt Mary had said to her
about being more idle and useless than the birds and animals.
" And now, papa," she added, even the brook 4oes not seem
to talk to me as usual to-day, and I don't feel at all happy."
Because you have been a careless child, Minnie," replied
her papa, and you have vexed Aunt Mary, who was quite right
when she-said that the live things in the wood are so busy and
industrious. You must try and be busy too, and learn all such.
things as are thought right for you to know, and then you may
16 Papa begins the Brook's Story.
be as merry and happy as they are." Then Mr. Gordon bade
her run away, and get a large bunch of wild flowers for Aunt
Mary; and he told her where she would find a bed of white
harebells, a rarity he knew she would prize, and which he had
noticed at a little distance from where they were. Off flew
Minnie, all her troubles forgotten. Her papa promised to wait
for her return.
I will sit here on your bank," he said, by the side of your
brook; and who knows but what it may tell me a story to-day."
Minnie laughed, and said she wished it would, and, turning to
it, she exclaimed merrily-
"Now, brook, tell papa one of your very best stories whilst I
It was some time before Minnie returned, with her hands filled
with flowers. Her father still sat in the same spot, awaiting her
"Well, papa, she asked, "has my brook told you a story?"
"Yes, Minnie, it has, and such a pretty-one that, if you like,
I will tell it to you."
Minnie's flowers were all on the ground in an instant, and she
flew to her father's side, and nestled close to him. A story
was her delight. Oh, papa, please begin directly; tell me
every word the brook said." And her papa commenced:-
THE BROOK'S STORY.
A little girl, whose name was Myra, once lived in a plea-
sant house, surrounded by beautiful grounds; and at a short
-"OH, PAPA, PLEAS- BEGIN DIRECTLY."
18 Myra's Resort.
distance lay a large wood, which in summer-time was filled with
flowers, and wild raspberries and strawberries, beds of soft moss,
and many other things of the kind; birds built their nests here,
and brought up their young ones in safety; and from morning
to night the wood was full of the music of their sweet songs.
"It was the place of all others that Myra loved to go to.
Here she would run directly she could get away from her
schoolroom, and she often thought how nice it would be to
give up her lessons and live in that wood amongst the flowers,
and birds, and animals, which she was so fond of watching, and
which she thought would be such merry, pleasant companions.
One day she had a whole holiday, and she resolved to spend it
in the wood, and try and find some playfellows.
'Oh, how delightful it would be to have whole holidays
every dayin the week all the year round!'she exclaimed,
as she went dancing and jumping along on her way to the
It was a lovely day. The sun shone bright, and made the
air very warm, but the thick branches of the tall trees threw a
charming shade over Myra's head. She had not gone far
before she heard a rustling noise in a bush near, and, standing
still to try and find out what it was, she saw a fine speckled
thrush with a bit of twig in his mouth. He was evidently be-
ginning to build a nest, for in a minute or two he came out
from a bush and .began to look about for a-fresh bit,of stick.
At first, when he saw Myra, he seemed disposed to fly away,
Myra and the Thrust. 19
but a second glance out of his bright black eye satisfied him
that he had nothing to fear from her, and so he hopped about,
hunting for what would suit his purpose. Indeed, so sociable
was he inclined to be that, seeing a bit of moss lying close to
her foot, he went and picked it up as saucily as possible, and
took it into the bush. When he came out again Myra thought
she would try and strike up an acquaintance with him.
Mr. Thrush,' said she, would you be so very kind as to
sing me a song? '
"'With the greatest pleasure,' he replied, looking boldly
into her face; and immediately he hopped upon a twig, opened
his beak, and sang a good loud song for her amusement.
"Myra was delighted. 'How beautifully you sing!' she
exclaimed; 'please go on-I like to listen.'
But the thrush hopped down again upon the ground-
Excuse me,' he said, I have no more time at present, I
have so much business to do, and I am rather behindhand with
it. The fact is, I have to build a house. My wife is: waiting
for me to fetch her home, so I must work hard to get it ready.'
I wish you would let me help you,' said Myra; I should
like to make a nest.'
I should be only too glad of your help,' said he, 'if you
are willing to give it.'
"' Oh, yes,' said hl'ra, I should like to make it all myself-
will you let me ? '
To be-sure I will, and thank you, too, for I've a great
20 Myra proposes to make a Nest.
deal to get through. I've to go and dine, and to practise a
song or two, with which I mean to welcome Mrs. Thrush to her
new home; and then I've got to fetch her from the other end
of the wood.'
"'Leave your nest to me, then,' said Myra, 'and you shall
see what a charming one I will make you. Go and eat your
dinner, and practise your songs, and then both of you come
here, and your house shall be quite ready for you.'
The thrush again thanked'her, and flew off. But he had
not gone far when he came back again..
'Excuse me,' said he, 'but I want just to ask. yol one
question. Are you quite sure you can build a nest ? '
"'Build a nest! Yes, of course I can,' exclaimed Myra,
indignantly; 'do you really suppose that I am so stupid I
cannot twist a few twigs together ?'
'But it must be lined-and made soft inside,' said he, anxiously.
"' Of course it must,' said Myra.; 'I shall put moss and all
sorts of nice soft things in. I know all about it. Do fly away
and leave it to me, and I'll have a perfect beauty of a nest
ready in an hour.'
Still the thrush looked a little uneasy, which was not to be
wondered at, seeing how much was at stake for him.
"'Hadn't I better just show you my way of building?' he,
asked; 'it might be rather different to yours.'
No, no,;' persisted Myra, 'I don't want any showing.'
She spoke rather impatiently, and as he was a very polite bird,
P- -: -
- ':~: '*~
MYRA'S COLLECTION Or TWIGS ORANS. 23.
22 Myra admires the Nest.
especially to ladies, he did not like to say any more, but
flew away again, comforting himself that, as she spoke so
positively, she must certainly know what she was about.
'I'm glad he's gone,' said Myra; I want to set to work.'
"She pushed her way into the bush, to find the bit of nest he
had begun. There was not very much of it, but quite enough
to show her how neatly and cleverly it was put together. The
twigs, and moss, and bits of stick and wool, were woven together
in and out in a wonderful way; and what puzzled her very
much, as she examined it, was how he had contrived to make it
begin and take a round shape, although so small a bit of it
I couldn't have done it better myself, I declare,' she said.
' He must be very clever to weave it like this without any
hands, and only his beak to work with.'
Then she lifted out the bit of nest from the branches where
it was so carefully and safely placed, for she could not very
well work at it there, because the bush was thick.
"She placed it gently on -the ground, and then began to
hunt about for twigs, and sticks, and moss. They were all to
be found near at hand. On a briar at a little distance she saw
some white sheep's wool hanging, which she fetched for the
"All this was easy and pleasant work. The next thing was
to sit down with her materials in a neat little heap by her side,
and, taking the thrush's work into her lap, to begin to copy it.
Myra's Failure. 23
"But Myra's face soon began to have a puzzled, uneasy
look. The more she examined what the thrush had done, the
more perplexed she'grew as to how he had accomplished it.
Now she began to regret that she had, rejected his offer of
showing her the way to build nests. 'I was very foolish, cer-
tainly,' she confessed to herself; 'for if I had thought a
moment, I might have known that nobody could do things
without being taught.'
"However, she set to work. She chose out some nice little
yielding twigs from the heap by her side, and tried to weave
them in and out, up and down, any way that she could coax
them to tie; but it was all of no use.. Do what she would,
they refused to stop in their right places an instant longer than
she held them there. The moment she let go of the ends they
all started out, and her work fell to bits ; and, what was worse,
the firm, well-made part the bird had done came to pieces also,
with her attempts to join her twigs into his. She became very
uncomfortable. The hour was passing on, and nothing was
done-worse than nothing, since she had destroyed what had
been entrusted to her care !
She tried again and again, but with no better success; and
at the end of the time when she had promised the thrush to
have a perfect beauty of a nest' ready for him, she had nothing
but a scattered collection of twigs, sticks, moss, and wood lying
in her lap.
And now she heard a lovely song burst forth from a tree
24 The Thrush's Song of Welcome.
not far off, and looking up, she saw her friend sitting on a
branch with a fine plump companion by his side, to whom he
was evidently singing one of his freshly-practised songs of
welcome to her newhome; she was sitting still, and looking
very happy and pleased, whilst he sang with all his might and
main, in the happiness of his heart at having secured such a
charming partner. He introduced all his best turns and flou-
rishes, going over the tune again and again, and she seemed
never tired of listening.
"Beautiful as it was, his song was no enjoyment to poor
Myra, who knew too well that when it ceased he was going to
bring his wife straight home, .as he supposed-the' beautiful
home she had so rashly promised! She felt almost inclined to
get up and run away altogether; but she knew that would be
cowardly, and rather mean; and that having made a mistake
she ought to acknowledge having done so.
"Just as she expected, when the song ceased the thrush came
flying triumphantly towards the bush, with Mrs. Thrush by his
side. He made straight for the exact spot where he had begun
to build, and seemed perplexed and troubled at finding nothing.
He flew here and there about the bush, whilst his wife 'sat
patiently waiting on a twig; then he came out, and saw Myra
sitting there with her lap full of bits.
'Where is my nest? he asked, his usually clear firm voice
shaking a little, from a sort of dread that things were going
wrong. Where is the beautiful nest you promised to make me ?
26 The Angry Thrush.
I am very, very sorry,' said Myra, her voice shaking too.,
'but I find I can't build nests; I have been trying to, but the
twigs won't go right somehow. Look here'-and she pointed
to the heap in her lap-' I went about and got all these together,
but I can't get on at all.'
The thrush looked at 'them with one eye, and his head a
little aside. Then he lifted his gaze to Myra, and then it went
back again to the heap. .He could not utter a sound for a
moment or two, so horrified was he to find that that little heap
of litter was all she had to show him.
And where is the bit that I had made ?' he inquired at
'Dear Mr. Thrush, I am very sorry, butit all came to pieces
when I tried to poke in my twigs to join them to yours; I couldn't
help it, indeed.'
Then the thrush's anger burst forth, and his voice might
be heard to quite a distance as he said-' Why did you declare
you knew how to: build nests when you didn't? Why did you
refuse to let me teach you how, and say you knew all about it,
when you saw I was half afraid you would make a bungle of the
affair with those clumsy things you call hands ? '
"He waited for her reply, looking most indignantly at her
with that searching black eye of his. Myra quite quaked under
his gaze, tiny fellow as he was, compared to her; but. then she
felt so very guilty. At length she said, 'I could have done it
well enough if I only had-known how.'
Mr. and Mrs. Thrush depart.. 27
"' More's the shame on you, then,' he said, that you didn't
know how! Why were you above being taught when you might.
have learnt? '
He probably would have uttered some more sharp rebukes
to her, but he remembered his wife was waiting all this time
to -go home, and that she must wonder what he was about;
so with one more parting glance of anger at Myra he flew away,
and began to talk to his bride in a low voice. No doubt he was
apologising, and explaining matters; for in a few minutes they
both began to be busy, flying about, and gathering up bits to
commence a nest-he choosing a place for it, this time, high up,
where Myra could neither see nor reach it, for he had learnt
a lesson. So, it is to be hoped, had Myra; who, getting up
from the ground, shook all the bits out of her lap,, resolving she
would not again boast she could do what she had never tried
to. Then she walked quickly away, feeling rather anxious to
get out of the neighbourhood of Mr. and Mrs. Thrush. Although
somewhat discouraged by her first failure in her effort at
sociability, her spirits soon rose again when she had run a little
way, and saw the sunbeams darting in and out amongst the
branches of the trees overhead, glancing on the bluebells and
moss, and on the many-coloured flowers at her feet. Every now
and then she stopped to gather some; then, remembering there
were thousands more she could pick any moment, she threw
them away, in order to have her hands free; but the 'next
instant some beautiful oak-apples caught her eye, and in a mo-
28 The Broken Web.
ment they were full again. Thus she went on till, feeling rather
tired, she sat down to rest, and to dress her straw hat with the
oak-apples. Then she leaned her head against' a tree, and,
looking upwards, amused herself by watching two wood-pigeons
who were sitting on a high branch-sometimes pluming their
feathers, sometimes cooing in soft gentle notes. After a time
they changed the branch, and then Myra had to put her head
quite on one side in order to enable her still to see them. Some-
thing touched her face and made her start rather, and in so
doing her nose went right through a beautiful-large web, which
a spider was busily spinning with the greatest care and skill.
Greatly frightened at the sudden shock, the little insect darted
off to the farthest part of her web, and there she hung, and
looked about her to see what had happened. Those ladies who
have spent a great deal of time and care over some beautiful
piece of lace-work, and have then happened to have it accident-
ally spoilt, will be able to sympathise with her feelings as she
saw the great hole made by Myra.
'Oh, I am so sorry, spider,' she exclaimed; 'I am afraid
I have done some mischief.'
'.'' That you have, indeed,' said the spider, sadly. I began
this web at sunrise this morning, and have worked at it ever
since without stopping to rest. It would have been finished
before sunset; but now you have come and spoilt all one side
by making that hole.'
"' I will soon mend it again,' said Myra; 'by drawing out
: ,t .__ ," -
,.. ,, I ...
`I _:~ i (. M, ,
"~% "- '-";'*....
30 Myra proposes to mend the Web.
all the broken threads on each side, and joining them together,
I can make the web just as good as it was before.'
"The spider seemed greatly comforted.
Oh, very well,' she said; if you can manage that, there
.', h *, "--V >---- \ --
J i /" i
"l, x' /S3^ 1 \ Y ^
will be no great harm done, after all. Perhaps you will work at.
that side whilst I go on at this. I want to get it finished, for
I have no chance of having any dinner till then. The fact is,
I'm rather hungry. I've had nothing to eat since yesterday,
,and then I had but a bit 'of stale fly. I expect to catch a lot of
game in my web as soon as it is ready, and to have quite a feast
for. supper this evening.'
Her Unsuccessful Attempt. 31
"As if the thoughts of this gave her fresh energy, she began
to work again as busily as ever. Up and down, in and out,
backwards and forwards, round and round she went. Quick as
lightning she drew the delicate thread in every possible direction,
never going wrong, never breaking or losing her hold, seeming
as if she went anywhere and anyhow, yet all the time keeping
true to one particular pattern, which was, even, regular, and
most beautiful to look at.
Myra was so taken up with watching her movements, that she
almost forgot the task she had herself undertaken. At length
the spider stopped for a moment to rest, and saw that Myra -
was standing still doing nothing.
"'I thought you were going to mend that hole,' she said,
rather reproachfully, as she swung herself gently backwards
and forwards at the end of her thread. 'Time is getting on,
and you'll find it rather a long job.'
Oh, I forgot,' said Myra; I was so taken up with watching
you spin; butI'll begin directly.'
She raised her hands to the web. Just then the sun's rays
darted in through an opening in the tree above, and came
slanting down, making the threads appear blue, red, green,
violet, and gold-coloured, and consequently it was very easy
for Myra to see them. But when she took hold of some of them
with the intention of drawing them down and tying them to-
gether, her touch, gentle as it was, pulled the entire web to
pieces in an instant, and the poor spider narrowly escaped a
32 The Angry Spider.
tremendous fall by cleverly swinging herself by her thread on
to a leaf at a little distance.
She was too much frightened to speak for a moment, and
Myra stood still, with her two hands behind her, perfectly
horrified at what she had done.
Is that the way you mend holes? gasped out the spider
at last. Is that the wayyou pretend to undo the mischief you
did me ? It was bad enough to come and tear a great hole in my
curtain, without finishing off by destroying it altogether.'
Indeed, indeed, Mrs. Spider,' said Myra, with tears in her
eyes, 'I did not do it on purpose. I could not help making the
hole, and I quite thought I could manage to put it all right
again; but the threads were so fine, and I have never learnt to
spin or mend.'
Never learnt to spin!' exclaimed the spider. How
very ignorant you must be! And why did you undertake to
mend what you couldn't make? How useless those hands of
yours are I am glad mine are not like them.'
Shall you begin another web ? asked Myra, timidly, half
hoping that, in spite of what she had done, she might be
allowed to watch her again.
"'I shall spin another, certainly,' replied the spider; 'but
not whilst you are so near me, so have the kindness to go away
So there was nothing to be done but for Myra to walk away
again, much mortified. Even this spider was more clever than
1Myra and Ihe Bee. 33
herself, and was glad to get rid of her because she was so
ignorant and clumsy. Instead of having made friends of her
and the thrush, she had only hindered and done them harm.
"' I wish I knew how to do all sorts of things,' said she, as
she wandered along slowly; 'it isn't pleasant to be thought
'Buzz, buzz, buzz-hum, hum, hum'--such was the sound
that broke on Myra's ear at that moment. The pleasant cheery
sound raised her spirits directly.
"' How do you do, Master Bee ?' she called out; how merry
you are to-day!'
Not a word did he hear, for he had just buried his head in
a honeysuckle. He kept it there so long that Myra began to
think he must be gone to sleep; but no, he was wide awake
enough, but he had to get all the honey he 'could, and he was
sipping away as long as he could find a drop. At last he drew
forth his head, and then Myra spoke again:
"'I suppose you have got some nice honey there, Master
'Very good indeed,' he replied; I always prefer what I
find in, honeysuckle to any other; but there's plenty in many of
the flowers now.'
I wish I could go about with you,' she said; may I come,
Master Bee ? '
"But again he had buried his head, and Myra was not sure
whether he had heard what she said.
34 I have never made any."
He had, however, and was perhaps thinking over her re-
quest whilst he was sipping; for he was of a very cautious dis-
position, and not at all disposed to take up with idle acquaintances,
being naturally industrious himself.
"'I think I heard you say you would like to go with me
amongst the flowers,' he remarked, when he came out again.
'May I ask whether you wish to make honey too ? If so, I shall
be very glad of your company and help. I suppose you know
all about it ? '
No,' said Myra, who resolved not to boast this time; I
never made any, but I have often eaten it, and thought how
good it is.'
A sudden change seemed to come over the bee. He stopped
his merry hum, and spoke in quite an angry voice.
Ho, ho !' he said, so you are a thief! '
I am not!' said Myra, indignantly; I never stole anything
in my life !'
Myra and the Ants. 35
"'But if you have eaten honey you have received a stolen
thing,' he said. I understand now who you are. You belong
to those lazy animals who come and take from us the food we
work so hard for. We get all the trouble, you all the honey;
I should prefer going about by myself to having you for a com-
panion, so I beg to wish you good morning.' Then off he flew,
and Myra heard his merry 'hum, hum, buzz,buzz,' till it gradually
died away in the distance, leaving her again with a rather
lonely feeling in her heart.
What a cross bee he is!' she thought; 'he might have let
me run by his side, even though I can't make honey; but I
suppose he would call that being useless and idle whilst he
worked. Well, I must go about by myself; but it's rather
"She sat down to rest again on the ground, and began
listlessly pulling up little tufts of moss from a small mound near.
'As she did so, she noticed several large ants run out of the mound,
and her curiosity made her dig a little way down into it with a
piece of stick she had in her hand.
Instantly up came several doz-
ens of ants, who angrily inquired
why she was breaking open their
dwelling, and spoiling their roof? ,. t
"I wanted to see what your .
house was like inside,' she re-
plied; 'I have heard that you have got larders and store-
36 The Azns' Punishment.
rooms for your food, and long passages and streets underground,
and I want to see them.' As she spoke, she poked in her stick
a great deal farther, and turned over the earth. She thought
it was a good opportunity to gratify her curiosity, and as the
ants were such little things, she did not feel. in the least afraid
of them. It was certainly rather cowardly, as well as mischievous,
to take advantage of them on that account; but idle people are
apt to do things which they would be ashamed of if they had
plenty to employ their time. Small- as were the ants, they had
the power of punishing her pretty severely for her conduct to
them. With one consent myriads of them climbed upon her
before she had time to notice what they were doing. They crept
up her sleeves and legs, and over her body, stinging her
severely. Although the sting of one ant does not hurt much,
yet when numbers all come at once it is extremely painful, and
so Myra found it. She danced about, and shook herself, and
cried out for mercy; but it was a long time before they would
give her any peace, for, as a big old ant said as he gave her a
sharp parting sting on the ear, she richly deserved it all, for
having done them so much damage. She could not deny the
truth of this, and crept away from the spot, secretly determining
to have nothing more to do with thrushes, or spiders, or bees,
or ants. But- she did wish she could find some one with whom
she could have a good game of play. She was tired of useful,
busy creatures, who were so much more clever than herself.
Now in a good run, or game of some sort, she felt she should
Myra and the Rabbit. 37
be more at home, and do as well as any one of her playmates.
Myra was not very long in finding just what she wanted,
for she suddenly perceived a little grey rabbit munching a sow-
thistle so busily that he did not hear her light step till she was
almost close to him. When at last he saw her, he dropped his
thistle, pricked up his long ears, and was about to run off, when
recognizing Myra, whom he knew well by sight, as she often
roamed in the wood, he thought there was no cause for alarm,
so he quietly put back his ears, took up his thistle, and munched
away just as before.
Myra stopped and called to him. 'Bunny, Bunny, I am so
glad to see you. When you have finished your dinner will you
come and have a race with me ? '
Willingly,' he replied, hastily crunching up the last few
mouthfuls in a way that Myra thought rather greedy. 'I'm
very fond of running; are you quick of foot ? '
Now Myra prided herself not a little on her running, and
she told Bunny so. She said she had beaten also everybody
she had ever tried to race with.
"' Indeed said he; 'then I must look sharp for the honour
of our race. I'm not a particularly fast runner myself, but I'll
do my best.'
I'll give you a yard or so in advance as a start, if you like,'
"' No, thank you,' he replied; 'we'll start fair, anyhow: I'd
rather lose the race than win it in that way.'
38 The Race with Bunny.
'Now then,' cried Myra, are you ready? One, two, three,
and away!' she shouted, and off they started, but before she
had gone ten yards Bunny was out of sight!
Myra soon pulled up: it was no use going on alone, and
she felt cross and out of humour with her rival for outstripping
her so instantly, after all she had asserted about her own powers
Bunny in the meantime ran on, but hearing no footsteps
behind him, he looked back, and Myra not being in sight he
waited awhile, and as still she did not appear, he thought she
must have tumbled down, and went back to look for her. He
was a simple little fellow, and had quite expected Myra would
have won, after what she had said.
He found her walking slowly along.
"'Why did you give up running?' he asked, in some
Because there was no'use in going on,' she replied. 'I
can run as fast as anybody if I have fair play, as you must have
seen when we started.'
Did you call that fast running? he said; 'why, it seemed
to me nothing blA creeping. Surelyyou can go quicker. Come,
will you try again ?'
S" No,' said Myra, 'it isn't fair play.'
What do you mean? asked he; 'we started together.'
"' Yes; but how can you expect my two legs to go as fast as
your four ?--of course it's not fair.'
"H~, I >Ig
I If 4''
i -._.... ,. .- .
,. -",".oif- i.-i
,4 i,, ,
,Tfn' In ,,
,,A'i RAC WIT BUN
MYRA'S RACE WITH BUNNY.
40 I'Myra and the Squirrel.,
Well, at all events it was you who proposed the race,' ob-
served he. 'From what you said, I quite thought your two
legs were worth more than my four. Good day to you,' and he
skipped off, to go and look for another sow-thistle.
Myra felt somewhat humbled, and a good deal ashamed of
herself, for having been so cross to the merry, good-tempered
little fellow, who would have been willing enough to have re-
mained and played with her, had she not driven him, away by
her ill-humour at finding how much better he could run than
herself. She had not much time for regret, however, for she
heard a little noise overhead, and a bit of stick was thrown on
to her hat. Looking up, she saw a young rogue of a squirrel
perched on a branch of an oak-tree, his tail curled over his
back, and his saucy black eyes looking as full of fun as they
could be. He had tried to draw her attention by flinging the
bit of stick at her hat.
'I've been watching you from above,' he said; 'I saw you
begin a race with Bunny. I don'twonder you didn't go on, for
it must be stupid work running down there on the ground.
You should come up here with me, and have a scamper
from branch to branch amongst the trees; you'd find that easy
enough, and it's such fine fun.'
'I'm sure it must be,' exclaimed Myra, who was instantly
fired with a desire to go up and have a famous good game with
him. She had often climbed up ,low easy trees, and knew the
delights of sitting on their branches and making seesaws of them.
S.,. .~ .
i_ II2 '*
,; ;, s ir : A..
_-.: '!' ,, I
r'- 2 -' ,
... L' -----'"; I
-- ,,' : L
--- 'f~ -:-:!l ... "'.
L I '" r . '
_ = .~~... i
: ,, "1'
THE t', :-''-
42 Myra cannotfollow the S7uirrel.
Come along, then,' said the squirrel; 'this is a capital
tall tree I'm on. Make haste, and we'll go up to the very top
Delightful! said Myra, who thought there would be no
difficulty in making such nimble little legs as her own get from
one branch to another.
'Why don't you come, then ? cried the squirrel, who was
very quick in all his own movements, and couldn't think why
she lost so much time.
I don't know how to get up this long thick trunk,' said
Myra, who had just walked all round to examine it, and saw
that the lowest branches were very high up.
Not know how to get up ? repeated the squirrel, in a tone
of surprise; why, like this, to be sure! and the nimble fellow
flew down the trunk like lightning, and up again to the branch
on which he had been seated before.
Ah but Ican't do that,' said Myra. 'I've only two legs,
and they won't fly up and down trees.'
"' Only two legs !' exclaimed he; 'well, I do pity you No
wonder you couldn't keep up with Bunny. And how ever did
you think you could get up to the top of this tree with me ?
Must go, however, for I want some exercise-good-bye.' Off
he bounded, and Myra fancied she heard him saying again, to
himself, 'Only two legs-I do pity her!'
Myra looked at him skipping from one bough to another till
he was out of sight, and then she turned away, feeling quite a
Myra and the Mole. 43
contempt for herself for having so few legs, and wishing she had
been born a squirrel. -
"She felt hot and tired, and rather sleepy, and lay down on
a bank to take a nap. Just as she had settled herself, she saw
a little animal, whose coat was like dark velvet, creeping out of
a hole in the ground at the foot of a tree. It began to grope
about, as if searching for food. His sight was very weak, so he
did not notice Myra, though she was close to him.
He rather started when she spoke, and seemed inclined to
run back'to his hole, but her voice was so soft and gentle that
he took courage.
'You look very cool,and comfortable, Mr. Mole,' she said;
I am so hot.'
'No wonder,' he replied; 'why, the sun and the glaring
daylight up here are enough to make any one ill. You should
live in the cool ground, as I do-you would not complain then
Have you a nice house down there?' asked Myra.
A charming one! I've a parlour and bedroom and larder,
and everything I want. Now, if you find it so hot in the sun,
why don't you make yourself a house of your own ? There's room
for a good one close to mine.'
"'A house of my very own, with a parlour and bedroom and
larder in it Oh I should like that !' exclaimed Myra, spring-
ing up from her lying-down posture, with an eager face. 'But
how could I make it ? I don't know much about building,' she
44 Myra taught how to burrqw.
added, with a sudden keen recollection of her failure in the nest-
'You needn't build at all, only burrow,' he said, and. that
is the easiest work possible when you get used to it. I'll teach
you how to do it with the greatest pleasure.'
But I hope it does not require four legs- to burrow with,'
said she, 'for I've only got two.'
'Never mind; two are quite enough if you have a good
nose, rather sharp at the point-it's that which has most of the
work to do.'
"'My nose!' exclaimed Myra, in surprise; 'what do you
mean ? What can my nose have to do with making a house ?'
"'A great deal; my charming residence below was chiefly
made by my nose. I will give you a lesson, if you would wish to
learn the way.'
Myra remembered how she had refused the thrush's pro-
posal to teach her, and how she regretted it afterwards; so she
thought she would not fall into that mistake again, and accepted
the mole's offer.
Suppose,' he said, we make the entrance to your house
close to mine, just here, we'll say,' and he pointed with his
snout to a spot near his hole where the earth was crumbly and
soft. Now watch me attentively. First you must stick your
nose into the ground so,' and he showed her how with his own;
'then you are to work it backwards and forwards till a small
hole is made, and this you must keep burrowing into with your
She declines an Underground Residence. 45
nose and front paws (or hands, as I believe you call them) till-
you get-a good way underground ; you will be surprised to find
how fast you will get on. Now suppose you begin at once.'
"Poor Myra had. looked on with dismay. She felt that she
could never endure to thrust her nose into the earth in that way
and grub with it till it was sore; even the end, she thought,
might come off with such hard usage. Yet she did not like to
find fault with his way of making houses, lest she should hurt his
feelings. So she tried to find some other reason for declining
to follow his example.
S' I think,' she said, that I shall require too large a hole
and house; you see I am much bigger than you are.'
What does that signify ? he replied. 'If you do need a
larger house, you have got larger instruments to make it with;
why, your nose would make four of mine, I daresay.'
There was no denying this,-so Myra tried another argument.
"' I don't think it can be very wholesome under there,' she
said; 'there can be so little fresh air.'
"' It's a very wholesome place,' said the mole; do you think
I would live there if it wasn't ? Only come and try.'
"'But,' said Myra, feeling that she had better speak more
plainly, I don't like the dark; I'm very fond of being in the
sunshine; indeed, Mr. Mole, I should kale to live underground
as you do.'
You don't know what's good for you, or how pleasant it
is,' he said, rather gruffly, as he turned and went down into
46 Myra and the Lark.
his hole, where, fatigued with the exertion of talking so much,
he went into his room, and slept soundly for two or three days.
As for Myra, she quite shuddered at the thought of such
a life, and'ran off into the very sunniest place she could find, by
way of contrast.
How dreadful it would be to live at the bottom of a dark
hole, which one had made with one's own nose she exclaimed.
'I love, to see the sun, and the clouds, and the blue sky. I would
like to go up there, not down below the ground.'
Did I hear you say you would like to go up into the sky ?'
said a very, pleasant musical voice close to her; I shall be
very happy to show you the way, if you will come with me.'
Myra looked about, but could not see whence the voice came.
"' I am here on the grass at your feet,' it said, and, looking
down, she saw a lark sitting in the middle of a tuft of long
grass. 'I am going to mount almost immediately,' he said.
'I spend a great deal of my time up on high singing songs.
You would never be satisfied to live down here always, if once
you went there: such magnificent views as you never saw, and
the air is clear and pure, and raises one's spirits so much. Will
you come? '
'I only wish I could,' said Myra, sighing.'
"' Are you very weak in the wings ?' asked he.
Alas I have no wings at all, lark.'
"' Then you certainly can't come where I am going,' he said,
and began to prepare for his flight. He rose up gracefully, and
H E Y -- -
48 Myra talks with Roger.
went gradually higher, higher, higher, till at length he
became but as a dark speck in the sky; but from that speck
Same to Myra's ears a loud, clear, thrilling song, full of joy
and happiness.. She felt inclined' to cry rather than to sing as
she listened to him. Oh, how hard it seemed to her to have no
wings 'I'll go home,' she said; it's no use staying in the
wood trying to find playfellows. No one cares for me, and every
one seems so much happier than I am to-day.'
Her way home lay through a part of the wood where some
trees had been cut down, and on one of these sat an old man
whose cottage was close by. His name was Roger. He had
lived all his life in that wood, and now that he was weak and
trembling from age, and not able to do any work, he liked to
hobble with his.stick to a fallen tree, and sit and bask in the
sun. Myra loved the old man, and he loved her. Dim as his
sight had become, he soon saw that the little girl was not like
herself, and he asked her the cause.
Then she told him the morning's adventures, and of all her
disappointments, and ended by wishing she had either four legs
or a pair of wings.
Old Roger was thoughtful for a few minutes; then he
"'Methinks, my little maiden, you are better off as you
'How can that be, 'Roger ? If I had wings, for instance,
I could go up into the sky like the lark. Don't you think he
Roger's Good Advice. 49
must be very happy? Indeed, they are all happier than I am
I think I know why, little maiden,' said he. It is because
they are all contented, and glad to be what their Maker has ap-
pointed for them to be. He has given the thrush the power to
build her nest, the bee to make her honey, and the spider to
spin her cobweb; He has given the rabbit and the squirrel their
S--legs, and the lark her
'- wings; but to you He
has given different, but
far better, gifts.'
-O L. tm"' I am afraid you
,,- mean that God has
given me the power of
being able to learn to
-- read and do lessons,'
said Myra; 'but I don't like them at all.'
"'But God has duties for all, and He has given these to
you, little maiden, just as He has made it the duty of the thrush
to build, and the bee to make honey. To every creature He
gives the power to do something, and He knows better than
you what is best to be your share. Then go home, little one,
and strive to be obedient to those whom you ought' to obey-
be industrious like the spider and the bee, and be merry as the
rabbit and the squirrel;' and then, placing his withered hand
on her bright hair, he added solemnly-
Brook's Story. G
50 Minnie finds out her Papa's Meaning.
"'And may your life on earth be so employed, that when it
ceases you may mount higher than the lark, and enjoy such
happiness as neither bird nor beast can ever know !' "
Is that all, papa ? said Minnie. "Well, I do really think
that is the very best story the brook ever told yet. But I
should like to have heard whether Myra grew more contented
and willing to do her lessons. I wonder what sort of looking
little girl she was. I should like to see a likeness of her,
such as they put of people at the beginning of books some-
"I rather think your story-maker, the brook, does make pic-
tures also," said Mr. Gordon, smiling. Suppose you go and
lean over it, and ask it to show you Myra's face."
Minnie ran laughing to the brook, and leant over the clear
Ah, papa," she called to him, I understand; I have found
you and the brook out! You meant me all the time when you
called the little girl Myra.- It is Iwho.have hated my lessons,
and who was idle, and who wanted to be in the woods all day
long, and play with the.pretty creatures there. I see now how
silly and idle I have been. Ah, papa, I understand, too, about
your pretending the brook told you the story. You made it all
up out of your own head."
I suppose I did, Minnie: but I think the murmuring of the
brook really helped me to make it up, as you call it, for it
The Brook aids the Story. 51
seemed to aid my thoughts with its pleasant soft noise-just as
it has so often helped you to imagine the tales you have
sometimes told me of in your merry chatter, on fine evenings
in summer. But, Minnie," he added, gravely, "I shall be
glad if this story shall have shown you how wrong it is to even
52 What the Story teaches.
wish to be idle whilst you are young. God gives children their
childhood that they may learn what may make them afterwards
become wise and useful as men and .women. Now gather
up your flowers for Aunt Mary, and let us hasten home, or she
will think we are lost in the wood, and be sending after us."
4 .. L .
-- ?, 7-- --~- --_ '--
_' r OME years ago I was on a visit to a clerical
friend near London, in whose parish was a set
of pleasant almshouses, standing in a well-kept
garden, with a sun-dial in the middle of the
smoothly-mown grass-plot. I asked to be
allowed to see the interior of the houses, and he
took me into several of them. The arrangements
were extremely comfortable and convenient,
and I was struck by the general order and cleanliness that
54 An Interesting Couple.
prevailed throughout. But there was one cottage which was
particularly neat and even tasteful inside. A canary hung in
the window, geraniums in full bloom stood beneath the little
yellow warbler, and various proofs of feminine industry might
be noticed in the room. The occupants greatly interested me.
They consisted of a fine venerable old man, with long silver
hair, who seemed in good health, though sadly crippled in his
knees by rheumatism; and his young granddaughter, a sweet-
looking intelligent girl of about fifteen. The old man was in
an easy-chair by the window, a table with an open Bible and
several other books by his side. His young companion was
sitting near him when we entered, busy with her needle. I
thought I had never seen a more beautiful picture of youth and
I asked my friend, when we left the almshouses, a few ques-
tions about the pair who had so attracted me. "I am not
surprised that you noticed them," said he; they are a most
interesting couple." And then he told me some particulars
about them, and the circumstances which led to their admission
into the almshouses. From the account he gave me of their
history I wrote the following little tale, which may be interest-
ing to some of my young friends who are fond of reading the
simple annals of the poor and lowly.
There was considerable bustle going on one morning about
ten o'clock at the usually rather quiet station of Stanmoor, a
small town in Leicestershire. The porters were hurrying to and
The Cheap Excursion Train. 55
fro with an air of haste and importance unlike their every-day,
somewhat lazy, indifferent manner, engendered by their having
generally little to do, and plenty of time to do that little in;
for although Stanmoor was a thriving town in its way, it had no
manufactures, and not many people of importance residing in
the neighbourhood. The railway managers had not, therefore,
arranged for more than a few trains to stop there in the course
of the day, and the station people had on the whole an easy life
But a cheap excursion train had been advertised to take
passengers to London at such low-priced tickets that the little
town was stirred up into a state of excitement and desire to see
the exhibition, which was the cause of the expedition being
planned. For a week past it had been the rage to want to go
to London. Wives coaxed their husbands to take them there;
young folks implored their parents to treat them; and the
result was that quite a crowd was collected on the platform
when the morning arrived, and bright eager faces were awaiting
the moment when the start was to be made for the metropolis
and its wonders. At a little distance from the crowd, yet suf-
ficiently near to be ready to enter a carriage when the proper
moment arrived, stood an old man of venerable and respectable
appearance, holding the hand of a little girl of perhaps eleven
years of age. There was a marked air of sadness about them
both, which very strongly contrasted with the high spirits and
gaiety of the others. The child clung to the side of her com-
56 A Painful Separation.
panion when the signal was given for the passengers to take
their seats, and her tears fell fast as he folded her in his arms.
God bless thee, my little Lily," he said, and no other words
were spoken. Even when the whistle sounded and the train
.started the old man only gazed at her with quivering lips, and
though the child smiled and nodded through her tears, she
could not articulate even the word Good-bye." Her heart was
full, and so was that of her grandfather, whom the train was
about to carry far away from her. That old man and the little
girl were all in all to each other, and this separation was a
The circumstances which had made them so dependent on
one another's love were as follows:-
The grandfather, Roger Prynne, had in early life lived in
London, where he was for some years a faithful and valued
clerk in a City firm. He and his wife lived near the house of
business. They had one son, George by name, who, having a
love for country pursuits, got a situation as under-bailiff with a
gentleman at Motfield, in Leicestershire. Here he married a
respectable young woman; but some years elapsed before they
had any family. Then their little Lily appeared, and was all
the more valued because so unexpected; but she was destined
to bring sorrow as well as joy into the family circle, which
consisted not only of her father and, mother, but of old Roger
Prynne. He had had an illness of so serious a nature some
years before, that he had been obliged to give up his situation
BIDDING GRANDFATHER ROGER "GOOD-BYE."
Biroak's StorY.' T
58 The Household Treasure.
in London, and at his son's earnest request he went to live with
them at Motfield; for he had been for some time a widower,
and they did not like his living alone now that his health was
not so good as formerly. He took with him a considerable
amount of savings-for his .salary had been a good one-'and
he soon recovered his strength in the country; but as he was
growing old his children, as we have said, would not hear of
his leaving them again. When Lily was born the happiness of
the little party seemed as complete as it could be; but it was
of short duration, for before she was many months old her
mother died, having never been well since the child's birth.
The little one, thus left to the care of its father and grand-
father, became the treasure and darling of their lives. A girl
was taken into the cottage to look after her, and. there was
always plenty of care and kindly feeling ready for the mother-
less little one amongst the neighbours.
Lily was a strong, healthy child. She grew and thrived under
the charge of her girl nurse, and at eight years old was a fair and
pleasing specimen of a little village maiden, and the delight of.
both father and grandfather, whose tenderness prevented her
from ever feeling the want of a mother's love. It was a pretty
sight to see her on Sunday morning tripping to church between
her father and old Roger. Her mother had been the possessor of a
bright scarlet cloak of soft material, and this had been made into
a small one for Lily by her young nurse, who prided herself upon
keeping her nicely dressed. Old Roger taught her to read and
Lily the Family Housekeeper. 59
write and cipher. He now taught her to say her prayers, and
at his knees they were repeated morning and night. Nor
would Lily have thought the day properly finished without her
grandfather's withered hand having been laid on her head at
night, whilst he solemnly blessed and commended her to God's
care whether sleeping or waking.
As she grew older she began to turn into the little family
housekeeper, and at an age when other children who had
mothers to look after the house were thinking only of play,
Lily felt a certain amount of responsibility upon her small
shoulders, which made her older than her years, and self-reliant
to a degree that would not have been the case had she not so
early found herself the moving female power in the humble
She's the cleverest, handiest little creature I ever did see,"
said Mrs. Ellis, of the village shop, to her customer, Rachel
Denny, who had'entered it one day just as Lily Prynne had quit-
ted it with a basket on her arm. She comes and buys all that's
wanted for the family as well as if she were nineteen instead of
nine years old ; and only think of her having the charge of the
cottage all to herself, and of cooking the meals. They say as
money runs short there now, and that they can't afford to keep
a servant any longer. Anyhow, Lily is as sharp and as clever
as if she were grown up, and delights in having the house clean
And what a pet her father and grandfather do make of the
60 Accumulated Aisfortunes.
child," remarked Rachel. "Why, old Roger can't abide to
have her out of his sight for ten minutes at a time; look at him
now, coming out of the house to meet her and welcome her
back, just because she's been over here," and Rachel pointed
to Prynne's cottage, which was within sight of Mrs. Ellis's
The two kind-hearted village matrons smiled as they watched
the little girl put down her basket on the bench outside the
cottage door, in order that she might more easily give old
Roger the loving embrace he was sure to look for when Lily
had been absent any time; and on this occasion she had been
all the way to the mill to fetch some flour, before going to the
shop to complete her purchases.
It was about a year from this time, that George Prynne fell
from a high ladder, and so injured his spine that he died in a
few weeks. Thus the chief means of support were cut off from
Lily and her grandfather; nor did their misfortunes end here,
for in a very short time the bank broke in which Roger had
deposited his savings, and they were left entirely without
A cousin of the Prynnes, a Miss Hunt, lived in Stanmoor,
which was about two miles off, and she offered to take Lily for
a few years, till she could gain her own livelihood. She was a
dressmaker, and knew that the child might soon be made useful;
but she was so harsh, unpleasing a person, that Roger shrank
from giving her his petted Lily. Yet she was respectable, and
62 Old Roger's Decision.
could teach her to become independent, so he felt the offer was
not one to be rejected in present circumstances.
Lily's consternation cannot be described when she found that
she' and her beloved grandfather must separate. The death of
her father had been already a sore blow, to her. Now her whole
life was to be changed, the cottage given up, and she was to
go and live with a distant relation whom she had always greatly
disliked whenever she had seen her. As for old Roger, he
resolved to'go back to London and see whether he could not
get something to do in the service of his former employers.
Like many active-minded old men, he could not bring himself
to believe that he was past work, and he had a sort of vague
hope that he might possibly be able to earn enough to enable
him one day to have his darling with him again.
The neighbours shook their heads. They were better aware
of how far the infirniities of age had gained on him than he was
himself. Roger's mind, however, was made up. The work-
house was before him if he remained at Motfield, and he knew
how good a character he had borne with his employers in the
City. Thither he would go and try his fortunes, even at this
late hour of the day.
The excursion train we have named enabled him to get to town
cheaper than he could otherwise have done, so he fixed the day
for his journey accordingly; and with almost -breaking hearts
he and Lily bade adieu to each other, as we have seen.
It was a great change to Lily to go from her pleasant cottage
Lily at the Dressmaker's. 63
home to the gloomy town-like house occupied by Miss Hunt,
who was a dressmaker of some importance in her way. The
child hated having to sit hour after hour, learning to run seams
and hem flounces. Miss Hunt had little consideration for her
tender years, but expected her to be occupied for as long a
time as the grown-up girls.. She was very strict, and scolded
without mercy if her work was not done well. But the greatest
trial of her life was the separation from her beloved grandfather.
She felt very anxious about him; she knew ho went to seek a
living for himself, and Lily was much older than her age in
many ways. Often while running together the endless seams,
which fell to her lot because she had learned to do them neatly,
her little head was wondering what her grandfather was about,
and whether he would ever be able to send for her to live with
him. When some time had passed by and she heard, nothing
.of him, except from a few lines he wrote soon after he arrived
in town, she grew restless and unhappy, and longed to set off
to London to look after him,
At last a letter arrived, telling her he had not been successful
in getting any regular employment since he came to London,
and that he was not very well. He had applied at his old firm
in the City, but his former master was dead and his son away
on the Continent. The partner, who remembered him, had
given him a recommendation to a house which had employed
him with temporary work during the illness of one of the clerks;
but that was over now, and there was a hard struggle before
64 Sad Newsfor Lily.
him. He was lodging with a kind woman in the City, named
Martha Drewet, whom he had known in former days; but he
said he missed his little Lily sadly, and that sometimes he
feared he might never see her again. "Anyhow," he added,
"he prayed often that God would bless her, and bring them
together one day in heaven, if not on earth."
There was a tone of sadness in this letter so unlike her dear,
cheerful grandfather, that made Lily very unhappy as she read
it. A piece of .folded paper had fallen out of the envelope as
she opened it, as if pushed in after it was sealed. She ex-
amined it, and found a few lines written in a very scrawled sort
of hand :
Roger Prynne is not well. Things are going hard with
him. You had best come and see after him.
P.S.-He don't want you to know how bad he's been."
Poor Lily! she felt almost beside herself. Never till that
moment had she known how she loved the dear old man, whose
side she had scarcely left all her life till she came to Stanmoor.
She must go to him, for she felt sure he was ill and needed her,
and Martha Drewet, whoever she was, -said she ought to go.
Oh, how cruel, how almost wicked it seemed not to fly to him
But then came the remembrance of her entire helplessness.
London was many miles away; she had very little money of her
1Miss HiLnt's Unkind Reception. 65
own-only five shillings and a few pence. It had cost her
grandfather double that sum for his ticket. Yet go she must,
even if she walked all the way.
She knew that Miss Hunt could easily pay her journey if she
chose, and with a beating heart she went to her parlour, where
she was sitting making out bills for her customers.
She lived in great fear of Miss Hunt, but her anxiety for her
grandfather made her bold now, and'she showed her the letter,
and Martha Drewet's slip of paper. But they aroused no ap-
parent sympathy in a mind which was filled with thoughts of a
very different kind. She was only impatient at being interrupted
whilst adding up her accounts.
"Your grandfather is getting an old man," she said; "you
must expect him to grow feeble, and not be able to do as he
has done. It's a good thing he hasn't got you on his hands to
keep as well as himself."
"But he is not well," said Lily, with a quivering lip.
"If he isn't, you can't help it," was the unfeeling answer;
so there is no use in fretting."
But I want to go to him," said the little girl. "I know he
wants me. Oh, Miss Hunt, do please pay my journey, and let
me go and see him."
The dressmaker opened her eyes wide with astonishment.
"Are you mad, child ? she exclaimed; do you -think I've
nothing better to do with my money than to give it to you to
go off on such a silly errand as that? Go to your work, and
'Brook's Story. I
66 MVIiss Wellesley's Inquiries.
don't be idling any more time. Your grandfather will get well
soon, I daresay."
'And Miss Hunt turned to her bills with a look that, even
more than her words, told Lily she need not stay there any
The child went away, but the- burning tears fell as she
crossed the passage to go to the workroom.
A lady was there looking at a dress, about which she was
giving some orders to the forewoman. She noticed Lily's face
of distress, and kindly expressed a' hope that she was not idle.
Lily shook her head, and her tears came faster at the voice of
sympathy. At that moment Miss Hunt entered, and rather
harshly desired her to go upstairs until she had done crying.
The lady, Miss Wellesley by name, looked pityingly after
her, and when she had disappeared she asked what was the
"The child is fretting because she has had a letter to say
that her grandfather is not well," replied Miss Hunt. She
actually wants to go and see him, just as if London was only a
few miles off."
"Poor child would it be quite impossible for her to go? "
asked Miss Wellesley.
"-Quite," replied Miss' Hunt, decidedly, and no more was
The next day the dress had to be taken home to Miss
Wellesley's house, and Lily was desired to carry it thither.
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68 The Interview with Miss Wellesley.
Miss Wellesley saw her standing in the hall, and made her go
into her room. She was glad of the opportunity to ask her
about her grandfather.
Lily was easily drawn out on the subject, for her 'heart was
very full. She told Miss Wellesley how she had lived alone
with him and her father till the death of the latter, and how he
was now her only relative, and spoke of their love for each
other. And now he is ill in London," she said, and I know
how he wants me, but I may not go to him."
"Do you think Miss Hunt would not spare you to go if we
begged her to ? asked Miss Wellesley.
"No," said the child; "she says she will not spend her
money on such a fool's errand."
Miss Wellesley was silent for a few minutes; then she asked
Lily if she knew her grandfather's address.
Lily drew his letter from her bosom, and showed it to her
new friend. It was dated from 30, Little Greenway Street,
"And you think your grandfather would be glad if you went
to him? said Miss Wellesley.
"I know he would," said Lily; "and so would Mrs Drewet;"
and she showed the scrap of paper which had been enclosed in
:`, Miss Wellesley said no'more on the subject then, and Lily
went home, little dreaming of Miss Wellesley's benevolent in-
Stentions on 'her behalf. But in the afternoon that lady called
Lily to go to London. 69
on Miss Hunt, and asked her whether she would allow Lily to
go to London if her journey were paid.for her.
"It so happens," she said, that I have t maid who is going
to London to-morrow, and it would be such a good opportunity
for Lily to go with her. She would see her safe into her grand-
father's own hands. I will gladly pay the expense of the
Miss Hunt was less surprised at the offer than she would have
been had she not known that Miss Wellesley spent the greater
part of her income in deeds of kindness of one sort or another.
She was not altogether pleased, however, at what she con-
sidered interference with one of her young people's affairs;
but the lady was an old and profitable customer, and she did
not care to offend her. Neither were Lily's services at present
of very great value, so she consented to let her go more gra-
ciously than Miss Wellesley dared to hope would be the case.
Lily was called down, and her joy and gratitude on hearing
that she was to go to London with Miss Wellesley's maid was
more than sufficient payment to her kind friend for the interest
she was taking in her.
Things were easily arranged. Lily was to be ready the
next morning to go with Lawson, the maid, when she called for
heroin the fly which was to take them to the station.
Her clothes were soon packed, and by nine o'clock she was
watching for the fly, which drove up at the expected time.
Miss Hunt relaxed from her usual hard manner into something
70 Lily's Arrival in Town.
like cordiality at the last moment, and actually put half-a-crown
into Lily's hand as she bade her good-bye, and told her to be
sure and write to say how she found her grandfather, and when
she should return.
I will keep open the place for you for a little time,.' she
said; but a girl of your age is convenient in the house, and
if you stay long I must take another instead of you."
Lily cared not about the future. To get to her beloved
grandfather was all she thought of at present, and she arrived
at the station with a much lighter heart than when she parted
from him there some months before.
It was on a fine evening towards the end of. May, that Lily
and Miss Wellesley's servant drew near London. Lawson
called a cab when they arrived, and, according to her mis-
tress's orders, drove with her at once to the street near Ludgate
Hill where Roger was lodging. Lily's astonishment at the
crowd and bustle of the streets was very great, but her chief
thoughtjeven then was that she was once more near her grand-
father. The cab stopped at length at the door of a small house
in an obscure street, and Lawson ascertained that an old. man
of the name of Roger Prynne lodged there. Then she put a
little parcel into Lily's hand, which she said her lady had
desired her to' give her before they parted, and bidding her
good-bye kindly-for the child's gentle, grateful manner had
won her heart-she stepped into the cab and drove off, leaving
Lily standing on the step of the door.
Martha Drewelt 7
A motherly-looking woman, with a good-natured face, had
come out to speak to Lawson, and now she turned to Lily-
And so you are Roger Prynne's little granddaughter," she
said, of whom he talks so much. Well, well, you haven't lost
any time in coming, and won't he be glad to see you! But
he's been very ill, poor old gentleman, so we mustn't give him
too sudden a surprise. He doesn't expect you at all."
Then Martha Drewet (for it was she) took Lily into her little
parlour, where she was having tea, and taking off her hat and
tippet, she made her drink'a cup of tea and eat some bread-
and-butter before she would let her go upstairs. In the mean-
time she told her how Roger had been suffering from a
rheumatic attack, which had almost amounted to a severe fever,
but had begun to take a turn for the better, she hoped; and
she made the tears come into Lily's eyes as she related how
patient he had been, and how grateful to her for nursing him.
It would be a pleasure to do anything for him," she said,
even if he hadn't been an old friend like. I knew him when
he lived in London years ago, and he's more than once done
a good turn for me in those days, so I was glad when he found
me out again, and asked me about lodgings. I wouldn't let
him go anywhere else, whilst I had a tidy bedroom to spare."
Seeing how impatient Lily was to see him, she at last stopped
talking, and went up alone to tell him of her arrival, and almost
immediately she called to her from the top of the stairs to
72 Lily sees her Grandfather.
In a very humble but perfectly clean room lay old Roger in
bed. Lily sprang into his outstretched arms, and lay for a moment
or two pressed closely to his heart without a word being spoken
on either side.
Martha wiped her eyes, and with intuitive delicacy left them
God bless thee, little Lily! said old Roger, at length, the
last words he had uttered at parting being instinctively the first
that arose from his heart when he met her again; and God be
praised for bringing us together again; but how did you get
here ? I can scarcely believe my little one is really come "
Lily told him how it had all come about, and what a
-kind friend Miss Wellesley had been in the affair; and they
talked for so long a time that at last Martha came in, and said
Roger must take his gruel and be quiet for the night, or he
would be getting worse instead of better, now Lily was come.
From this time Lily became her grandfather's constant atten-
dant and nurse. The old man's funds, though greatly diminished,
were still sufficient to enable him to pay Martha for Lily's
board and lodging as well as his own. He got much better,
but did not recover the use of his limbs altogether, rheumatism
Shaving settled in some of his joints. This distressed him greatly,
as it interfered with his walking. He had still the use of his
hands, and could hold a pen and write easily, but he could no
longer go about to seek for employment, nor was he likely to
obtain it in so crippled a state.
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74 Lily's Idea.
Lily was his partner in anxiety, and they had many talks
together as to what must be done. He wanted her to go back
to Miss Hunt, but whenever this was named she implored so
hard that she might stay with him that he had not courage to
refuse her. In the little parcel Miss Wellesley's maid had given
her from her mistress she had found two sovereigns, which that
most kind and generous lady had enclosed to pay her journey
back from London, and to help them in any way required.
Roger would not suffer this to be touched. If their funds failed
before he could get anything to do, and of this he began to
have little hope, he said she must return to Stanmoor, and he
must seek assistance from his parish. He said so to Lily one
evening, and the distress of his countenance told her what he
That night the bright, intelligent girl, child in years as she
was, made up her mind that she would make all effort possible
to help her grandfather. She knew that he had been formerly
valued by the firm in which he had been employed so long,
and she consulted Martha whether she- might not go and ask
the managers to give him some work to do at home-an idea
that had been first suggested by Martha herself to Roger in her
Bless you; it's not for a child like you to go to such a place,"
said Martha. Why, it's all business, business, business. The
men are full of it, and the very tables and stools seem as if they
were made of nothing but business. You would be hustled and
The Idea to be carried out. 75
jolted about, and ordered out again perhaps. No, no; you
mustn't go, Lily."
"But grandfather can't walk there, so I should like to try
what I could do," said Lily. He says that he thinks if Mr.
Norman knew he had been ill, he would be very sorry. Would
you mind going with me, Martha ? "
No, dearie; I'd do a great deal for your grandfather, but
I can't venture into these houses of business with the great
slam doors. Roger must write a letter to Mr. Norman; perhaps
that'll do something."
Lily said no more, but her mind was made up to try what she
could do by herself. She had learnt her way about the part of
the City that lay around them, and the house she wanted to
go to was at no great distance. She had often seen it, with
the names, "Bradbury, Norman, and Co." written over the
door. She went to bed with her head full of her scheme, and
when she awoke the next morning it was with a brave resolve
to go'through what seemed from Martha's account to be a most
formidable undertaking. For her dear grandfather she could
dare anything. He had taught her to go to God for help in
everything-even the simple occurrences of each day. Now,
therefore, that such a great event was going to happen as facing
a number of strangers all alone, she said her prayers with double
earnestness, and asked for success and help in her expedition.
She did not tell either Roger or Martha where she was going, but
slipped quietly out of the house whilst the latter was busy at
76 Lily goes lo e Office.
her work, and her grandfather was reading the psalms for the
day out of Martha's big Bible.
She soon found her way to the great house, and mounted the
flight of steps; but to push open the huge doors was beyond
her strength. She had not to wait long, however, for a tall
man ran up the steps, and after giving a stare at the unusual'
sight of a little girl standing at the top, he opened the door,
and Lily slipped in behind him. She found herself in a passage
with several doors in it. The tall man entered one of them,
and Lily ventured to follow, for this door opened easier than the
first did. But she was bewildered and perplexed what next to
do. She was in a great room, filled, as it seemed to her, with
men sitting behind desks, all looking busy; some with pens
behind their ears, some writing, one or two talking together.
Lily felt almost faint with terror, when every man there suspended
his writing or speaking for an instant to look at the small figure
of a little girl standing inside their great office.
What do you want here? asked a rather good-natured
looking gentleman, who was standing at a table, very busily
tying up some papers.
"Please, sir, I want Mr. Norman," said Lily.
"What is your business with him; who sent you here? "
"Nobody sent me, but please let me see Mr. Norman, please,"
she added so imploringly, that the good-natured looking
gentleman said to her-
"Follow me, and you shall speak to him."
"PLEASE, SIR, I WANT MR. NORMAN".
78 Interview with Mr. Norman.
She followed him through the great room, to a door at the
other end, which led into a smaller, but very comfortably fur-
nished office. No one was in it, but the gentleman shut the
door, and turning round, said-" Now, little girl, tell me what
Please, sir, I want to see Mr. Norman."
You do see him; I am Mr. Norman."
This announcement startled her, for she saw the moment for
action was come; but the same spirit that had brought Lily
through her perils so far, came to her aid now.
"Please, Mr. Norman, my grandfather has been ill."
And who may be your grandfather, child ? "
Roger Prynne, sir; he knows you."
"I remember-I know who he is quite well-my father
respected him highly in former days. I heard of his coming
here some weeks ago; I was away at the time. And so he has
been ill? "
"Very ill, sir, but now he is nearly well, only he cannot walk,
and he wants wdrk sadly; if he might have it at home to do,
he says he could copy papers."
"Did he send you here ? "
No, sir; he does not know I am come."
Mr. Norman grew interested. For a' child, who looked
scarcely twelve years old, to have come of her own accord to
such a busy place to seek employment for an aged grandfather
struck him as extraordinary; but there was no doubting the
Zr. N2orman's. Promise. 79
veracity of the child's statement, for simple truth was written
on every line of her face.
Busy man of the city as he was, he was most benevolent and
kind, both in heart and manner. He drew from Lily the whole
history of her separation from her grandfather, and of her
coming to town on hearing he was ill, and was touched by the
brave child's resolve to try and help him from going to be
supported by his parish, which was in some other part of London.
He could not, however, hold out any hope of giving him any
work to do at home. It was impossible, he said; but he would
think it over and see what could be done, and he would call
and see her grandfather in a day or two. Then he opened the
door, and Lily again followed him through the great, awful-
looking room, filled with clerks, and was thankful when she
found herself in the busy street, where no one was looking at
But she went home with a heavy heart, for she did not think
she had done any good by going. Mr. Norman had been very
kind, but he said he could not give him work to do at home.
However, he had taken down their address, and said he would
call; that was something to tell Roger.
Martha exclaimed in amazement when she heard that she had
actually braved the slam doors," and the business men,"
but said she didn't see that anything was likely to come of her
Roger, however, was more sanguine. He said that if he
80 Roger's Faith.
could but see Mr. Norman he should feel less friendless, and
stroking Lily's soft hair, he said-
We will trust God, my child, and then He will not suffer us
"And will He keep us together? whispered Lily, as her
head rested on the old man's arm.
He will do what is best for us," was the reply.
Two days passed, and then arrived a letter from Miss Hunt,
saying she had filled up Lily's place, so now she might stay
with her grandfather altogether. She wrote almost angrily,
and Lily felt glad she was not to go back; but Roger had many
anxious thoughts on the subject.
Grandfather," said Lily, the next day, you look so sad;
do you think God has forsaken us ? "
No," exclaimed he; "He will provide in some way we see
not, and we have still a little money left untouched."
"And when that is gone, grandfather? "
Then we must go from hence, my child; but God will find
us a home, and however humble we will be content."
If only we may keep together," said Lily.
Roger was silent, for he knew that if he had to go to the
Union they could not be together.
That afternoon a cab drove up to their door, and Mr. Norman
got out and asked for Roger Prynne.
He shook the old man by the hand and told him he remem-
bered him, though he himself was but a boy when he was in
Mr. Norman's Visit. 8
the office, and he said he had often heard his father speak of him.
I am glad," he said, that this little grandchild of "yours
summoned up courage to come and speak to me just when she
did, for it so happens that I am enabled just now to help you
.in a better way than by giving you writing to do in your present
feeble state of health."
He then told Roger that a vacancy had just occurred in some
Brook's Sto -y L
8: Westbury Green Almshouses.
very comfortable almshouses not far from London, and that he
had the power of presenting it to him, and he could take
possession at once if he liked to go there.
"A pleasant cottage, and some shillings a week will be yours,"
he said, and your granddaughter can live with you."
Lily's face beamed out with joy at these last words, and old
Roger thanked Mr. Norman with feelings of the -deepest
S"Well to be sure exclaimed Martha, when she heard the
news; and all this has come out of Lily being so brave as to
go through those great slam doors! "
Roger; when he kissed and blessed his grandchild that night,
said to her-" All your life long, Lily, when I am dead and
buried, remember your old grandfather's words--' that he who
puts his trust in God will never be.forsaken by Him in the hour
of need.' "
And so this was how old Roger Prynne and his grand-
daughter Lily came to be living in the pleasant almshouses at
THE MONKEY'S PARTY. BY SIR EDWIN LANDSEER.
HARRY AND HIS MONKEY.
SI T sounds strange to hear of a monkey earning
money for a foreign mission, but we are
going to give a history-of one who did
S so. Of course the funny, clever little
Animal did not know himself that he
-- -was helping on a useful work; but
fortunately he belonged to one who,
though but a young boy, was fired
with the desire to help in a good cause, and who never rested
84 Harry Lorton and his Mother. .
till he found the way to do so. He exemplified the old proverb,
" Where there's a will there's a way," as we shall see.
Harry Lorton was the son of a sailor. His father was mate
of a vessel that went long voyages to other lands, and he only
came home at distant intervals to his wife and boy, who lived
in a cottage at Portsmouth. Mrs. Lorton had been formerly a
domestic upper servant in a clergyman's family, and had whilst
there heard and read very much about foreign missions; and
it was in this way that her little boy Harry became interested
in them, almost from the time he could talk and understand
anything. Nothing ever delighted the child more than to have
a penny given him to put into his missionary box. His mother
could not often spare.him one, for times were hard, and money
not over plentiful, though her husband was a steady man and
brought home his wages regularly. She helped to their sup-
port by making lace on a pillow, as they do in Bedfordshire and
Buckinghamshire. She had been brought up in one of those
counties, and had learned the art when young. Harry used to
like to stand by his mother's lace pillow and'watch her nimble
fingers throw about the bobbins with the pretty coloured beads
at the end of them. It was at such times that she often told
-him stories about little heathen children which she had heard
when she lived in service, and how the children of that family
used to save their pocket-money to help to put some little black
child into a school, where it would learn to be good and useful,
instead of growing up in wickedness and heathenism.
Harry attentive at School. 85
Mrs. Lorton was very careful of Harry. She did not like him
to run about with the children around the house, so he had few
playfellows, and this made him a great companion to his
-Y N, l
;'- P il. l .
i' ,' '"
;, 1 I -'
mother. Perhaps this circumstance caused him to grow up
more thoughtful than most children, and fonder of reading. At
school the master looked on him as one of his best and most
86 The 1Missionary's Appeal.
When he was about twelve years of age an announcement
was made that a meeting would be held in the National school-
room, when a clergyman from Africa would relate many in-
teresting anecdotes respecting the missions there, and of the
poor little African children who were taken into the mission
schools and taught the great truths of Christianity, instead of
being left to live and die in heathen darkness. Harry and his
mother went, and listened with deep interest to the missionary,
who, at the conclusion of the meeting, made a strong appeal to
English children of all ranks to do what they could towards
helping their little African brothers and sisters. He said he was
speaking not only to the children of the ridh, but to those who,
though they were of the class called the lower orders, might
yet be able to collect their mite from time to time, to send
through their clergyman to the cause of the mission. "Now
suppose," he said, that the children of this place were each
one seriously to try and think what he or she could do to raise
a sum, however small, by this time next year. A little exer-
tion in some cases, a little self-denial in others, carried on for a
whole year, would perhaps enable every boy or girl who hears
me to do something for these poor heathen little ones. .Go
home," he added, and do not forget-what I have said, but
when you say your prayers to-night, ask God to put it into your
hearts to wish to do something, be it ever so little; and I am
very sure that if you have the will given you, a way will be
" COULD I HAVE A LACE PILLO'.V AND MAKE LACE, MOTHER?"
88 Harry's Desire.
How many of the children went home and did what the good
missionary had told them, I cannot say, but I know that one of
them left the hall with his heart full of eager, earnest longing to
do anything in his power; but there seemed to be nothing-no
way that he could think of.. Nor could his mother help him
about it. She could only promise he should have a penny
every now and then, as she could spare it, to put 1y; but this
did not satisfy Harry, whose quick, clear ideas showed him
that these pennies would be his mother's contributions, not his,
and he wanted to do something himself When, he said his
prayers he asked God to help him, and he lay awake thinking
and thinking, but sound sleep came and found him as far as
ever from finding any -way of earning money for the little
"Could I have a lace pillow and make lace, mother?" he
asked her next day.
"No, Harry," she replied; lace making is very difficult to
learn, and you would not earn anything by it for a long long
time. I.get but little though I sit so much at it, and can do the
finest sorts of lace."
The following Sunday the clergyman told all the Sunday-
school scholars that he was going to enter into a book the
names of the children who would like to try during the follow-
ing year to get a little money in some way or other for the
mission whose meeting many of them had attended a few days
before. They could either carry the money from time to time
The Sailor and his Monkey. 89
to their respective teachers to take care of for them, or keep it
themselves; but at the end of a year from that time the sums
collected by each one would be received by the clergyman, and
forwarded in the name of the young collector to the mission.
After school the book was opened and the names were
entered. Harry hesitated for a moment. Then remembering
the missionary's words, that "Where there's a will there's a
way," and knowing that certainly he had the will, he marched
to the top of the room and said-
Please put my name down, sir."
From that time his thoughts ran more than ever on the
It was about a week from this time that a sailor came to their
house bringing a fine young monkey in his arms. He told
Mrs. Lorton he had brought her news of her husband, whom
he had met in Africa, and who on finding he was coming direct-
home had asked him to go and see his wife and son, and take a
monkey as a present to the latter.
He's as fine a young animal as ever took a voyage," said
the man, and you'may teach him anything you like. He's as
sensible as a human being, and mimics everything he sees done
till he half-kills one with laughing at him. Now, Jack," he
said, setting the monkey on the table, "make your bow to
your new master."
"Jack" did as he was bid. He made a low bow, but in-
stantly jumped back again into the arms of the sailor, to whom
Brook's Story. AM
90 The Monkey's Tricks.
he was evidently attached. It was with some difficulty the man
got away from him at last, leaving him the picture of despair
crouched in a corner.
Harry was delighted with his new possession, but rather
puzzled how to make friends with him, and rather afraid of
touching him lest he should bite. Jack was, however, the most
good-tempered and gentlest of monkeys, and quite disposed to
make the best of whatever circumstances he happened to find
himself in. It was not long before he crept out of his corner
and began to take a survey of the room. He walked from one
bit of furniture to the other, examining it with the greatest
The kitten was lying before the fire, and she attracted his
attention directly. He patted her gently, and seemed pleased
with her soft fur; then rather roughly pulled out her tail .as if
to see its length. This Puss resented by giving him a slap on
the face with her. paw, and spitting in his face, upon which he
passed on and stared at Mrs. Lorton's lace pillow, which
seemed to puzzle him greatly, being no doubt quite unlike
anything he had ever seen before.
He soon began to make friends with Harry, especially when
he found that his pockets were full of nuts which he had been.
out to buy for him. He was an affectionate little fellow, and
finding that his friend the sailor did not return, and that Harry
was to be his master now, he transferred his love to him pretty
quickly. They grew to be great companions, and it became a
"HI-E'S AS SENSIBLE AS A HUMAN BEING." .
92 7ack and the Lace Pillow.
common sight to see Harry walking about with Jack seated
on his shoulder.
His powers of mimicry were extraordinary, and sometimes
very inconvenient. One day, when Harry was at' school, and
Jack and Mrs. Lorton were left together, she went out for a
short time, leaving him chained to the leg of the table. The
chain was a long one, sufficiently so to enable him to mount
upon the table by the aid of a chair. Having done this, he saw
Mrs. Lorton's lace pillow on its light wooden stand within
reach of his paws, and he drew it towards him. When Mrs.
Lorton returned she happened to look through the cottage
window before unlocking the door. There sat Jack on the table
with the pillow in front of him, his paws busily engaged in
twirling about the bobbins, and every now and then moving a
pin, as he had watched her do whilst forming the lace pattern.
That he knew he was doing wrong was evident, for the moment
he heard the noise of the key being put in the door, he jumped
down, and when Mrs. Lorton entered he was sitting just where
she left him, and pretending to be asleep, though she saw him
keeping a corner of one eye open to watch her movements. She,
found her lace pillow in a sad state of confusion. Some bobbins
were broken off, some entangled, and several of the pins were
altered or pulled out. She scolded Jack, who immediately shut
up both eyes quite close and seemed sounder asleep than before,
and would not wake up till he thought all her displeasure was
over. And indeed it was impossible to be angry with Jack for
7 ack kides the Speclacles. 93
long together, he was-so amusing and so loving in the midst of
his mischievous pranks.
But he often tried Mrs. Lorton's patience sadly, and made
her now and then wish him back in his own country. For
instance, she lost her spectacles one morning-and everybody
who is dependent upon them knows how serious such a loss is.
High and low she hunted for them. She had taken them off
when she began her cooking operations, and she remembered
having put them on the window-sill. She recollected too, with
some dismay, that they were laid very near to Jack, who had
sat on the window-sill watching her make on apple-pudding.
That he was somehow connected with their disappearance she
felt convinced. The whole of the day passed, but though she
and Harry left, as they thought, not a spot unsearched, the
spectacles could not be found. The next morning, when pre-
paring to bake a batch of bread, she put her hand into the flour
tub: she felt a hard substance near the bottom of it, and drew
out the missing glasses Then she remembered having noticed
that Jack's paws were covered with flour the morning before,
when she returned to the table where the flour tub stood, after
putting the pudding in the pot to boil. She had thought no-
thing of the circumstance at the time, knowing that flour had
been blown about, and that Jack's paws were usually busy in
touching and handling ; but it had never occurred to her that
the cunning rogue had taken the opportunity of her back being
turned to snatch up the spectacles and bury them in the flour.
94 yack and the iltten.
B,ut the poor kitten was the victim of Jack's most unmerciful
tricks, which on one occasion nearly cost the animal her life.
Pussy was rather disposed to be fond of him, and he sometimes
enjoyed a good game of romps with her. They would run and
jump and scamper about together, till called to order by Mrs.
Lorton when their gambols got beyond bounds. But at other
times Jack was a very tyrant to his little companion, and de-
lighted in teasing her. From his seat in the window-sill he
would fling nut-shells at her as she lay asleep before the fire.
He would without hesitation go up and turn her out of her
warm place on the hearth, in order that he might enjoy it
himself. Mrs. Lorton kept a little switch, with which she used
to chastise Jack when he had been very naughty. But she
found it necessary to keep it on a high shelf out of his reach,
for till she did so he never lost an opportunity of using it on the
poor kitten whenever'she in the least displeased him, holding
her with one paw, and using the switch with the other in no
very gentle manner. One day she had seriously vexed him by
losing one of his nuts. She had been rolling it about and
playing with it for some time, and this Jack had permitted,
though, as it was the last one of his day's allowance, he kept a
watchful eye upon it all the time. Suddenly it rolled down into
a mouse-hole, from which Jack's cunning told him it could
never be recovered, for he had had the misfortune to lose one
or two nuts himself in the same way. He flew to Pussy, who
was busily engaged in thrusting first one paw then another into
7ack's Fine Attire. 95
the hole in fruitless search of the nut, and gave her a rap over
the head. Then he looked for the switch in its usual place-but
it was gone! Jack searched for it in vain. He was resolved,
however, to chastise Puss in some way. The oven door was
ajar. Quick as lightning he returned to the spot where she
was still seeking for the nut. He lifted her up in his arms, took
her to the fireplace, opened the oven door, and popped her in
upon the top of some potatoes that were roasting for supper.
Fortunately Mrs. Lorton had seen the whole transaction, and
was in time to snatch out the kitten before she had sustained
more damage than a slight burn and a severe fright, and Jack
himself caught the flogging he had designed for Puss.
Mrs. Lorton had a cousin, a dressmaker, who used sometimes
to call in of an evening to see them and have a cup of tea.
Jack was a great amusement at these times, and he became a
favourite with her. She made him a little scarlet jacket edged
with black velvet, and'a velvet cap with a drooping feather.
Nothing could exceed either Harry's or Jack's delight when
Miss Rainer brought them with her one evening. No sooner
was Jack arrayed in them than he strutted up and down the
room, grinning and chuckling, evidently thinking himself
somebody now! He resisted all Harry's efforts to take them
off for the night, and insisted on sleeping in them in his usual
place at the foot of Harry's bed. He had grown tired of his
finery, however, by the next morning, and was quite ready to
have it taken off.
96 Jack to be Exhibited.
Miss Rainer knew of Harry's anxiety to give money to the
African mission, and one evening she said to him, If I were
you, Harry, I would train that clever fellow Jack to do all sorts
of odd things, and when perfect in them I would exhibit him,
and- so make him earn a good deal of money. He is a little
African himself, and ought to be glad to do all he can to help
the natives there. I know one or two ladies that I work for,
who would give you a helping hand when you were ready to
show off his tricks. It's all the fashion now to hire different
sorts of amusements, for children's parties, and Jack would
fetch a good price if he were taught to do clever things, and
you might be his showman."
"And I could give the money he got to the mission," ex-
claimed Harry, jumping up and capering about in ecstasy.
"Oh, mother! won't it be a good plan? You would let me
give it all to the mission, would you not ?"
Yes, every penny of it, gladly," said Mrs. Lorton; "and
with your cousin's help, perhaps you might be allowed to take
Jack to amuse children at the Christmas parties. But you will
have to take great pains to teach him .well, in order that he
may be worth hiring."
What he should be taught was the next subject of discussion.
Miss Rainer proposed that since he had shown a predilection..
for lace making on the day when he so entangled the threads
on Mrs. Lorton's pillow, he should have a little pillow made
for himself with bobbins and thread complete. He will
HARRY TEACHING JACK TO MAKE PILLOW LACE 98,