• TABLE OF CONTENTS
HIDE
 Front Cover
 Frontispiece
 Title Page
 Preface
 Table of Contents
 Chapter I: The old home and the...
 Chapter II: The new spirit at work...
 Chapter III: The training of the...
 Chapter IV: Arthur and his...
 Chapter V: "Mary-Ann's champio...
 Chapter VI: The effects of...
 Chapter VII: Mists clear away
 Chapter VIII: Some extracts from...
 Chapter IX: "He doeth all things...
 Chapter X: Rosenflue and its...
 Chapter XI: Another notability
 Chapter XII: Exciting events and...
 Back Cover
 Spine






Title: A pleasant life
CITATION PAGE TURNER PAGE IMAGE ZOOMABLE
Full Citation
STANDARD VIEW MARC VIEW
Permanent Link: http://ufdc.ufl.edu/UF00066173/00001
 Material Information
Title: A pleasant life
Physical Description: 192 p., 1 leaf of plates : col. ill. ; 17 cm.
Language: English
Creator: Howitt, Mary Botham, 1799-1888
Gall & Inglis ( Publisher )
Publisher: Gall & Inglis
Place of Publication: London ;
Edinburgh
Publication Date: [187-?]
 Subjects
Subject: Christian life -- Juvenile fiction   ( lcsh )
Grandparents -- Juvenile fiction   ( lcsh )
Cousins -- Juvenile fiction   ( lcsh )
Friendship -- Juvenile fiction   ( lcsh )
Courtship -- Juvenile fiction   ( lcsh )
Youth -- Conduct of life -- Juvenile fiction   ( lcsh )
Conduct of life -- Juvenile fiction   ( lcsh )
Family stories -- 1875   ( local )
Bldn -- 1875
Genre: Family stories.   ( local )
novel   ( marcgt )
Spatial Coverage: England -- London
Scotland -- Edinburgh
 Notes
Statement of Responsibility: by Mary Howitt.
General Note: Date of publication based on binding indicating publication in the 1870's.
General Note: Frontispiece printed in colors.
Funding: Preservation and Access for American and British Children's Literature, 1870-1889 (NEH PA-50860-00).
 Record Information
Bibliographic ID: UF00066173
Volume ID: VID00001
Source Institution: University of Florida
Holding Location: Baldwin Library of Historical Children's Literature in the Department of Special Collections and Area Studies, George A. Smathers Libraries, University of Florida
Rights Management: All rights reserved, Board of Trustees of the University of Florida.
Resource Identifier: aleph - 002227073
notis - ALG7369
oclc - 71279250

Table of Contents
    Front Cover
        Front Cover 1
        Front Cover 2
    Frontispiece
        Plate
    Title Page
        Page i
        Page ii
    Preface
        Page iii
        Page iv
    Table of Contents
        Page v
        Page vi
    Chapter I: The old home and the new spirit
        Page 7
        Page 8
        Page 9
        Page 10
    Chapter II: The new spirit at work in another old home
        Page 11
        Page 12
        Page 13
        Page 14
        Page 15
        Page 16
        Page 17
        Page 18
        Page 19
        Page 20
    Chapter III: The training of the cousins
        Page 21
        Page 22
        Page 23
        Page 24
        Page 25
        Page 26
        Page 27
        Page 28
        Page 29
        Page 30
        Page 31
        Page 32
        Page 33
        Page 34
        Page 35
        Page 36
        Page 37
        Page 38
        Page 39
    Chapter IV: Arthur and his tutor
        Page 40
        Page 41
        Page 42
        Page 43
        Page 44
        Page 45
        Page 46
        Page 47
        Page 48
        Page 49
        Page 50
        Page 51
        Page 52
        Page 53
        Page 54
        Page 55
    Chapter V: "Mary-Ann's champion"
        Page 56
        Page 57
        Page 58
        Page 59
        Page 60
        Page 61
        Page 62
        Page 63
        Page 64
        Page 65
        Page 66
        Page 67
        Page 68
    Chapter VI: The effects of championship
        Page 69
        Page 70
        Page 71
        Page 72
        Page 73
        Page 74
        Page 75
        Page 76
        Page 77
        Page 78
        Page 79
        Page 80
        Page 81
        Page 82
        Page 83
        Page 84
        Page 85
        Page 86
    Chapter VII: Mists clear away
        Page 87
        Page 88
        Page 89
        Page 90
        Page 91
        Page 92
        Page 93
        Page 94
        Page 95
        Page 96
        Page 97
        Page 98
        Page 99
        Page 100
        Page 101
        Page 102
        Page 103
        Page 104
        Page 105
        Page 106
        Page 107
    Chapter VIII: Some extracts from Mary's diary
        Page 108
        Page 109
        Page 110
        Page 111
        Page 112
        Page 113
        Page 114
        Page 115
        Page 116
        Page 117
    Chapter IX: "He doeth all things well"
        Page 118
        Page 119
        Page 120
        Page 121
        Page 122
        Page 123
        Page 124
        Page 125
        Page 126
        Page 127
        Page 128
        Page 129
        Page 130
        Page 131
        Page 132
        Page 133
        Page 134
        Page 135
        Page 136
        Page 137
    Chapter X: Rosenflue and its notabilities
        Page 138
        Page 139
        Page 140
        Page 141
        Page 142
        Page 143
        Page 144
        Page 145
        Page 146
        Page 147
        Page 148
        Page 149
        Page 150
        Page 151
        Page 152
        Page 153
        Page 154
    Chapter XI: Another notability
        Page 155
        Page 156
        Page 157
        Page 158
        Page 159
        Page 160
        Page 161
        Page 162
        Page 163
        Page 164
        Page 165
        Page 166
        Page 167
    Chapter XII: Exciting events and a happy ending
        Page 168
        Page 169
        Page 170
        Page 171
        Page 172
        Page 173
        Page 174
        Page 175
        Page 176
        Page 177
        Page 178
        Page 179
        Page 180
        Page 181
        Page 182
        Page 183
        Page 184
        Page 185
        Page 186
        Page 187
        Page 188
        Page 189
        Page 190
        Page 191
        Page 192
    Back Cover
        Back Cover 1
        Back Cover 2
    Spine
        Spine
Full Text









































































" Out 3teppe a little old woman in the usual indigo-blue dress and
white chemise sleeves."-p. 160.








A


PLEASANT LIFE.




BY

MARY HOWITT.


"All the paths of the Lord are mercy and truth unto such
keep His covenant and His testimonies."-PSALM xxv. 10.












GALL & INGLIS.
5 aARNOt : S 2 biRnhttrg :
25 PATERNOSTER SQUARE. 20 BERNARD TERRACE.













PREFACE.


THIS little sketch of A Pleasant Life" con-
cludes my history of Mary Leeson. If any
of my more critical readers object to her as
being too faultless, I must reply that she is
not an ideal character, but has been faith-
fully portrayed from the life;-a happily
constituted nature, which needed only the
guidance of prudent affection for its har-
monious development. In Arthur, Kate
and Harry, they will find, however, more
ordinary characters, in which the tendency
to evil is equal to that of good. Here I
have endeavoured to show that quiet influ-
ence of Mary's home and friends was not
only consoling and strengthening to the
depressing spirit of their childhood, but life-







iv PREFACE.

giving and elevating to their advancing
years, as all true Christianity, which is
LOVE, ever will be, both to young and old,
when once admitted as a controlling prin-
ciple into the heart.
MARY HOWITT.



















CONTENTS.




CHAP. PAGE
I. THE OLD HOME AND THE NEW SPIRIT, ... 7
II. THE NEW SPIRIT T WORK IN ANOTHER OLD
H OME, ... ... ... ... ... 11
Im. THE TRAINING OF THE COUSINS, ... ... 21
iv. ARTHUR AND HIS TUTOR, ... ... ... 40
v. MARY-ANN'S CHAMPION," ... ... ... 56
vi. THE EFFECTS OF CHAMPIONSHIP, ... ... 69
vII. MISTS CLEAR AWAY, ... ... ... ...87
viI. SOME EXTRACTS FROM MARY'S DIARY, ... 108
IX. HE DOETH ALL THINGS WELL," ... ... 118
x. ROSENFLUE AND ITS NOTABILITIES, ... ... 188
XI. ANOTHER NOTABILITY, ... ... ... 155
xn. ExoITING EVENTS AND A HAPPY ENDING, ... 168












A PLEASANT LIFE.




CHAPTER I.

^~ Ib f Hz.omk a ftlj JIo Jipifjif.

I MUST request such of my young readers as
have been interested in Mary Leeson as a
child to return with me to her home, now
that a few years have passed, and let us see
how it is with her and her friends, and what
life has unfolded of good and new for them all
during that time.
The anxiety of her family and friends on
account of her health is over. She is still
slender, and delicately formed, with the soft
tint of the wild rose on her cheek, but no
longer with a look of fragility about her. Her
step is now elastic, her frame well knit, and
her spirits have that equable flow which as
much belongs to health of body as to temper
of mind. She is a happily-organized being,







A PLEASANT LIFE.


and the precocious gifts of wisdom in her child-
hood, now matured and harmonized into the
fairest girlhood, have stamped upon her whole
being a sort of priestess-like character.
In her childhood she seemed to resemble
one of the little ones whom the Saviour took
into His arms and blessed, as being of the
kingdom of heaven. That Divine Blessing
must have stamped the whole being of those
girls and boys, who must have grown up into
saint-like men and women-martyrs, perhaps,
of the early Church. The Elect Lady and her
children might have been such. Such, too,
there have been ever since-Mary Leeson was
of that class-and such there will ever be; for
the Saviour, taking upon Himself humanity,
ennobled and sanctified it, and we see many
a little child from whose innocent eyes the
Love-Nature looks forth, and upon whose
tender spirits there is as yet but little of the
stain of earth. Children of this class are said
to die young, as being too pure and lovely for
this life. But all do not die. The Divine
Love does not leave itself unrepresented on
earth, and out of the eyes of mature men and
women, the Christ-like looks forth, to bless
and to guide.
Mary Leeson, bountiful as had been the pro-
mise of her childhood, did not die; and now


8







THE OLD HOME AND THE NEW SPIRIT. 9
in the bloom of her youth, without having lost
any of the earnestness of her character, is pos-
sessed of a more buoyant, joyous spirit, the
consequence of established health; and life is
now to her, as it ought to be to all the young,
a sense of perfect enjoyment.
Her parents still live in the old house in
the town, and the cherubs still look down upon
her sleeping form from the ceiling of her bed-
room, as in her childhood. Her passion for
drawing is not now as inordinate as it was in
her early years; and though she still possesses
great talent for art, and industriously culti-
vates it, yet other studies also occupy her. She
has great feeling for music, and plays extremely
well, speaks French and German, as we shall
see, and has enjoyed the advantage of some
foreign travel, together with those enlarged
opportunities for the acquisition of knowledge,
which have made the education of girls so
much more real than it was formerly.
But there is something peculiar in Mary
Leeson after all. I never knew a young girl
like her, so single-hearted and guileless, so
richly gifted by nature, and endowed with so
sound a judgment, yet at the same time no
way deficient in the pleasing and more usual
qualities of the young; so winning and attrac-
tive, both in person and manners; so full of







A PLEASANT LIFE.


the life and the merriment of youth. Truly, a
bright and happy human being.
Like every one of us, she was the centre of
a little circle of friends and relatives, and,
being of so sympathetic a nature, more than
ordinarily united to them. Indeed, she can-
not be taken apart; she and her family and
friends must go together.
Let us recall them. The grandparents
at Wilton; the grandmother at Ellingham;
sweet Aunt Emmeline and Uncle Edward;
her cousins Harry and Kate; her interesting
friend, Mr Sutherland; faithful old Mr Fel-
ton; her playfellow, Malvina Reedburn; the
Lancashire great-aunt, Mrs Willoughby; Mr
Willoughby, her son; and, lastly, Arthur Bryce,
the Arthur of her childhood;-all these must
again be introduced to us, for we cannot know
Mary Leeson without knowing them.


10







THE NEW SPIRIT AT WORK.


CHAPTER II.

te 'Id 3Spirift at brhk in andter


Mns WESTON, Mary's maternal grandmother,
the quiet old lady who lived at Ellingham, is
now no more. She lived to see her daughter
Emmeline happily settled near her, and the
birth of four lovely grandchildren, then passed
away peacefully to the joy of heaven, blessing
the Father of all mercies with her latest breath
for the happiness of her children and her chil-
dren's children.
The country round Ellingham is beautiful-
a pastoral Idyllian land-which, without the
grander features of nature, gives a sense of
peace and perfectness which is especially in
unison with a quiet, contemplative mind. It
was amid these scenes that Edward Leeson,
after his marriage with Emmeline Weston,
selecting one of the most beautiful on the
edges of the old forest, built himself a home,
lovely as poet's heart could desire; and here,
within a short distance of her mother, his wife


11







A PLEASANT LIFE.


had the comfort and happiness of watching
over her declining years.
Edward Leeson, like his friend Mr Suther-
land, had peculiar views of life. Great towns
were his aversion. Pure air, pure water, early
hours, and exercise were to him the natural
elements of a pure life. He lived for his chil-
dren. The ambition which he early felt to
attain for himself a great name in the world of
letters had now merged into the no less high
ambition of training the children whom God
had given him, young immortal beings, for the
noblest and purest life which is possible on
earth.

Mr Felton, the humblest though not the least
devoted of Mary's friends, had passed away.
He died on a Christmas-day, when Mary was
thirteen, leaving to her his greatest treasure, his
old piping bullfinch, and to her father a num-
ber of carefully-preserved botanical specimens,
all of rare plants, collected by himself from
their often remote habitats, and which, it was
evident from the dates on their labels, he had
been collecting through the whole time that
he was acquainted with Mr Leeson. It had,
as afterwards appeared, been the poor man's
intention to prepare an herbarium for that
gentleman, the only gift of value which it was


12







THE NEW SPIRIT AT WORK.


in his power to make him. From his want of
botanical knowledge, however, he had been
unable to complete it. To the greater num-
ber of specimens the dates when gathered, and
their habitats, were alone appended; to others,
also the class and order, in some cases incor-
rectly; but the beauty of the specimens and
their careful preservation were unequalled.
He was very poor-how poor his friends
had no conception till after his death, when
the widow with whom he lodged revealed some
of the carefully-kept secrets of his latter days.
Nevertheless, he had a small hoard of savings
for his funeral expenses, the dread of his old
age and his poverty, being a pauper funeral,
upon which grew the fear of being compelled
by his necessities to trench upon this sacred
fund. But he was spared this trouble. As
Christmas approached, Mr Leeson, who had
not heard of the old man for some time, sent
to inquire after him, and finding that he was
confined to his bed, soon ascertained that the
end was not distant.
A night or two afterwards the poor old man
dreamed that his wife, who had been dead up-
wards of twenty years, was with him, just as
on her wedding-day and in her wedding-dress,
and with her all the birds that he had ever
had, and they were very many. Mr Leeson


13







A PLEASANT LIFE.


saw him the next morning, which was Christ-
mas-day. He seemed very happy, and spoke
of his death with a sort of impatient, child-
like joy. He said that his wife had promised
to come for him that night, and that every one
of his birds had spoken to him in its own lan-
guage, all seeming to say, Be of good cheer."
He did not know till then, he said, that birds
lived in the other world.
He seemed calm and unspeakably happy-
too happy and too peaceful to need earthly
comfort or help. Christmas cheer was nothing
to him; and just as the midnight chimes be-
gan their sweet melody, his simple, affectionate
spirit passed away.
Mr Leeson saw his aged remains laid de-
cently in a sunny part of the churchyard, and
afterwards placed a- simple headstone on his
grave. Mary has the bullfinch still, and as it
was called the "old bird" when she had it
first, it is impossible to say what its age really
may be. But it is still in full song-a glo-
rious little creature, one of the delights of her
home.

The grandparents at Wilton are still hale
and cheerful; yet a change is passing over
them-a change, natural and beautiful, as of
the deepening tint coming upon the autumn


14







THE NEW SPIRIT AT WORK.


leaves before the frost of winter has loosened
them from their hold.
The grandmother is still the loving and
gentle spirit, the purpose of whose living is to
do good, but she is much less active than she
was when we saw her last.
The stern, almost granite immobility of the
grandfather has now softened so much as to
be a cause of frequent surprise and constant
thankfulness to his children. He was a strong
rather than an amiable man, and Mary as a
child respected him more than she loved him.
He was reticent, and never willingly spoke
of his feelings or experience; therefore, when
that softening change came over him which
served almost to make an era in the family, no
one excepting his wife knew either its origin
or its progress. It was, in truth, a power
stronger than himself wrestling with him in
the secret places of his soul, and gaining the
mastery over him. That the struggle was vio-
lent there was no doubt; for his wife, his sons,
and the young Mary, who had been admitted
into the inmost sanctuary of that family life,
were witnesses of his long silences, sometimes
for days, and the tears even that he had been
betrayed into shedding, but of which he gave
no explanation.
It was not loss of health nor aberration of


15







A PLEASANT LIFE.


mind, but the convictions of the Spirit of God
subduing a powerful but unregenerate mind
-light coming into darkness, and overcom-
ing it.
During this remarkable time, which occurred
when Mary was about fourteen, her grand-
mother, who was painfully anxious on his ac-
count, desired to have her young grand-daugh-
ter with her. To her she would open her
heart; and the two, the elder and the younger,
who both lived in the spirit of Christ, and
were as one in Him, though they could not
help the sufferer in their human relationship,
yet could bring him, as it were, in their arms
to the Saviour, and seek help from Him.
And help failed not. The strong man came
forth a victor from the conflict. His counte-
nance, his whole being, were changed; but he
did not willingly speak on the subject, even
with his wife.
Mary one day was surprised by a communi-
cation from him, which she never forgot.
It was early in the spring, and she, passing
by as he was proposing to take a walk, asked
permission to accompany him.
"Yes, child," said he; "we'll go and see
the lambs in the Hill Close."
The morning was beautiful-an ideal spring
morning, with not a cloud in the sky, the


16







THE NEW SPIRIT AT WORK.


larks carolling in the clear air, and the black-
birds and russet thrushes in the copses below;
whilst every little leaf and flower-bud seemed
impatient to burst forth into new being under
the life-giving influence of the sun.
The two walked on through the orchard,
along a copsy lane, and then up to the Hill
Close, where the snow-white, vigorous young
lambs were frisking about the little hillocks,
which in summer were fragrant with thyme,
but as yet not a word had been spoken; for
having been somewhat awed by her grand-
father's state through the winter, she did not
venture, even now that he was so much more
cheerful, to introduce conversation, quite will-
ing, if such were his mood, to walk by his side
.in silence.
They went round the field and amongst the
lambs, whose little hoofs pattered on the ground
as they frisked along, the grandfather smiling
at the pretty sight, but still saying nothing.
At length they came to a warm, sunny bank,
above which hung a willow studded with its
yellow, silken catkins, and below gemmed with
the lesser celandine in full bloom, every golden
little flower-fan looking cheerily up to the sun.
Here the old man stopped. He touched the
silky catkins and the shiny, golden flowers
with his stick, as if to caress them.
B


17







A PLEASANT LIFE.


Two months ago," he said, and there was
not a flower nor a leaf, nor a sign of vegetable
life on this bank; now it is a golden show.
Every little flower is looking up to God in
thankfulness. Their life is their thanksgiving.
Spring, which is a vitalizing energy, is won-
derful It clothes the dry clods of the field
with beauty. But, Mary, I'll tell you some-
thing. God's grace in the soul is more won-
derful still."
"Yes, dear grandfather," she said; and they
walked on.
Again he began to speak, walking slowly:
" Some souls are hard and barren as the dryest
clod-dryer and harder than yonder banks in
winter; but God's grace comes. It comes like
winter and frost; it comes like the plough
and the harrow; it breaks up, and turns over
and tears to pieces. There is no resisting it.
It will have its way. I know what ploughing
and harrowing are. I understand pulling up
twitch. It's hard to get up, and it must be
burned if you'd kill it. I know what good
farming is; and God is a good Farmer: He
ploughs up and harrows the land, and pulls
up the twitch and burns it." Then turning to
his grand-daughter, he said, Mary, I've gone
through it all. It's hard work; but no man
can fight against God."


18







THE NEW SPIRIT AT WORK.


"No, dear grandfather," responded she.
Presently he spoke again: "Lands are dif-
ferent. Your grandmother and you are good
land to begin with, like the Hill Close up yon-
der. There's not a thistle in all the fifteen
acres of that field, and never was in my father's
time. Very different is the moor bottoms.
What trouble I've had with that land! It
brings heavy crops, though, but the worst
weeds, and more of 'em than any other land
in the parish. There is not a weed that does
not grow there naturally mare's-tails, and
twitch, and bindweed, and no end o' charlock.
Well, there are souls just like the moor-bot-
toms. But they must be cleaned, come what
will, and let it cost what it may. That's my
experience, Mary; and you and your grand-
mother ought to thank God that He has made
you of the good-land sort."
Mary replied as before, "Yes, dear grand-
father." Then she took his hand, as she used
to do when she was a very little child, and her
heart was knit to him with a deeper, tenderer
affection than she had ever felt before. But
then," added she, "you know, dear grand-
father, that God does so love us, and He never
thinks anything a trouble which brings us to
Him."
Not another word was spoken, and they







20 A PLEASANT LIFE.

walked on through the budding spring woods,
and over the meadows, into which the cows
were not yet turned, and so back again into
the orchard, where a young foal was gambol-
ing round its mother. The grandfather stood
and looked at them with pleasure. It was his
favourite mare. She whinneyed as she saw
him, and advanced towards him; he patted
and stroked her fondly; then they slowly
went up the orchard, and so back for dinner.
Mary never felt so near to her grandfather
before.







THE TRAINING OF THE COUSINS.


CHAPTER III.

(f gailting;of 7 t^ uas.ins

HARRY AND KATE LEESON, Mary's orphan
cousins, were introduced to the reader on the
occasion of the merry Christmas which they
spent together at Wilton. Harry, who is four
years older than Mary, has now grown into a
fine, tall youth, and, though the son of an un-
fortunate father-to whom, however, no blame
attached-shows energy enough to make a
good career for himself in life.
He and his sister are deeply attached to
each other. The early years of their childhood
had not been altogether happy, and when left
orphans, they were old enough to be aware of
some circumstances which served still more to
unite them. They and Mary had never seen
each other till that Christmas. They had
many little differences, almost dissensions, in
those early times; for their robust health and
the riotous flow of their spirits were often be-
yond her strength; whilst their undertakings


21







A PLEASANT LIFE.


and achievements were no less frequently con-
trary to her taste. As they increased in years,
however, they assimilated more and more. She
experienced the beneficial influence of their
vigorous life, their interest in common things,
and their practical executiveness; whilst they
felt a sort of reverence for that higher tone
of mind and those peculiar gifts of spirit which
characterized her as a child.
Harry and Kate were kept very much at
school, and had not many holidays; but they
contrived to enjoy them to the utmost, whether
they were spent at either of their uncle's, or at
their grandfather's. The holidays, however,
which Harry enjoyed most were those spent at
his grandfather's, though the old man, I am
sorry to say, did not at that time show much
affection for him.
Healthy,well-grown, with a singularly happy
temperament, good humour, and without am-
bition, he desired nothing more from his ear-
liest boyhood than to be a farmer. Wilton
and the life there were his ideal. Mary became
very early his confidant. Yes; if he could
only be a farmer, and have, sometime or other,
a home like Wilton, he should be happy:
then Kate should live with him, and be his
housekeeper, instead of being a governess,
which, as was always understood, was to be


22







THE TRAINING OF THE COUSINS.


her fate in life. The great pleasure of his
holidays was working on the farm. Whatever
was the season, or whatever the work going
forward, he turned himself into it with such a
right good will, that he was the greatest pos-
sible favourite with all the men.
He left school at sixteen, and might easily
have sunk down into little better than a com-
mon farm-servant but for the kindness of his
uncles, who, knowing the bent of his mind, sent
him to a farming college for a year, and after-
wards for two years, first to a large sheep farm
on the Scottish borders, and, secondly, for the
same time to a grand model farm in Norfolk.
In all this Mary took no less interest than
his sister, and Harry's letters from these various
,parts of the country were treasured up by the
two girls with immense care, and read and re-
read with great interest and admiration; for
let them be what else they might, they were
always amusing.
In the meantime Kate had become even
more interesting to Mary. She had grown
out of her somewhat wild and unmanageable
childhood into a practical, hard-working, and
sturdy young school-girl, who brought home
innumerable prizes and commendations at the
end of every term. It was always understood
that she was being educated for a governess;


23







A PLEASANT LIFE.


and as she learned quickly, had an excellent
memory, and retained all she learned, no
money was spared on her education. At six-
teen she went to a first-rate French school at
Dinan; and now her letters to Mary made a
most interesting epoch in that young girl's
life. She, too, had learned French, but then
it was English-French--a something to be
despised; and they commenced a French cor-
respondence. Kate returned at the end of
twelve months, not much grown in height-
for she was always tall but wonderfully
changed in appearance. She was no longer
the girl-she was the young lady. Her crispy
yellow-brown hair was twisted round her head
in the most piquant style; she had acquired
nameless little French airs and graces which
had softened and given a certain naivetd to
the hard solidity and abruptness of her Eng-
lish manners. Mary thought her perfectly
bewitching. She had been allowed to wear
nothing in this French school except black
alpaca and light-blue prints; but nothing had
ever looked so becoming on her before. Mary
in her enthusiasm pronounced her charming.
"Is not she nice?" said she to her mother;
and how beautiful her French is. Are not
you pleased with her, dear mother?"
Everybody was pleased with her. Aunt


24







THE TRAINING OF THE COUSINS.


Emmeline said, however, that she must go yet
a year to Paris, and, she thought, a year to
Germany. They must not spare a little money
on her education, for it was well laid out; and
she and her husband suggested that Mary
should accompany her to Paris. They knew
of a first-rate pension where the two girls
would be very comfortable, and it was just
what Mary wanted.
Mary's mother had been, perhaps, always
too unwilling to trust her young daughter out
of her care, and even now she was not easily
persuaded. Every one, however, who had an
interest in her, her uncle Edward, Mr Suther-
land, and, not the least, her own father ap-
proved of the idea; accordingly, in less than
three months, he had the pleasure of escorting
the two girls to Paris. This was Mary's first
visit abroad, and, like all first visits abroad,
especially to minds of a poetical character,
was full of the most pleasurable experiences.
The school, one of the most celebrated at that
time in Paris, was that of the Mademoiselles
de Brogie, ladies whose names have since be-
come classed with those of the Guizots, Pres-
senses, and Gasparins.
These ladies lived in a stately old, red-brick
mansion called Chateau de Brogie, at Ver-
sailles, the gardens of which were simply


25







A PLEASANT LIFE.


divided by iron railing from the park, and
their old moss-grown walks, stately trees,
Italian vases, and grand formal alleys, repre-
senting as it were a changed aristocracy cling-
ing to a neglected royalty, were like the
realization of some of Mary's childish fancies
under the elm-trees in the draper's garden.
The most interesting object, however, to her
in the whole establishment was, perhaps,
Madame de Brogie herself. A lady of high
birth, and great beauty, and warmly devoted
to the Orleans family, she had lived from the
time of her widowhood as dame d'honneur to
Queen Marie Amalie, and, after the fall of
Louis Philippe, in great seclusion. Other sor-
rows, too, she had had, not the least of which
was that her two daughters, women of the
highest character and accomplishments, born
to wealth and brought up in a court, had left
the old religious faith of their ancestors and
become Protestants; and, still more, had, in
their loss of rank and fortune, by the fall of
the Orleanist dynasty, sunk themselves so far in
the social scale as to open a select Pension.for
young ladies. In time, however, their mother,
if she did not become reconciled to these
changes, submitted to them, taking, in so
doing, example from the meek heroism of her
former royal mistress, who, from time to time,


26 -








THE TRAINING OF THE COUSINS.


wrote to her from her English seclusion at
Claremont, letters full of kindness and con-
sideration. She how lived with her daughters,
not certainly at the head of their establish-
ment, but as an honoured presence in it, the
courtly dignity of her manners, and her grand
aristocratic bearing, creating a romantic inter-
est for her in the minds of many of the girls.
Mary was one of these, and was soon dis-
tinguished from the other young ladies by
Madame herself, who always styled her ma
mignonne."
Mary wrote to her mother, "Madame is
charming, she often invites me into her room,
and, as I told you, made me one day tell her
about my home and my dear parents. I think
.she likes to hear me talk about you. She
praises my knowledge of French, but often
corrects my accent. I think she likes me. I
like her very much, she is so courteous, and
must have been beautiful, I think her so now,
though her eyes look as if they had wept very
much. They say Queen Marie Amalie's eyes
look the same. She says she has seen so many
sorrows and so many revolutions. Yesterday
she was telling me about that good Queen
Marie Amalie, and what an angel she was, and
she showed me a letter written to her, by
the Queen's own hand from Claremont, and


27







A PLEASANT LIFE.


said I might read it, which I thought very
kind. The letter said that both she and the
king grieved that their much-valued friend
should have had to enter the cloud with them,
that was the expression she used, and they
begged her to remember, if it could be any
consolation to her, that she was a fellow-
sufferer with them.
"In another letter which she also allowed me
so kindly to read, the Queen said that 'his
Majesty begged his best wishes to the fair
schoolmistresses who were so loyally treading
in his footsteps.' I did not understand what
this meant till she told me, that before Louis
Philippe came to the throne, and when he was
in exile, he taught in a school at Richenau in
Switzerland.
A third letter was written to her when she
was in such sorrow about Mademoiselle having
become Protestant, and the Queen, from her
Roman-Catholic stand-point, consoled her by
saying that she had learned, through her be-
loved daughter-in-law, the Duchess of Orleans,
how good the ,Protestants might be, and
how light even this affliction, and concluded
by saying, 'Remember, my dear Madame la
Comtesse, that we must all wear the crown of
thorns before we can put on the coronet of
glory,' and which is just like dear grand-


28







THE TRAINING OF THE COUSINS.


mother's favourite motto, No cross, no
crown.'
Madame told me that she had shed many
tears over these letters, and I am sure she has.
She is a grand old lady, worthy to be a Queen
herself; she has the sweetest manners, and
always a smile, and a courteous good wish for
us whenever she meets us."
Mary returned less altered, perhaps, than
Kate had been by her first twelve months in
France. Her character, to begin with, was in
itself more strongly individual, and she might
be said to return still the same Mary that she
went. Nevertheless the new scenes, the new
life, the new surroundings had produced their
impression. She had insensibly acquired more
ease of manner, and a style and elegance which
belongs to polished French society, but which,
being natural to her spirit, was less acquired
than called forth. She had also grown much,
and was now tall for her age-taller, indeed,
than her mother.
Another year-a year in Germany-and
then Kate's governess-education was to be
finished. In one respect only had she disap-
pointed her friends-she had no remarkable
capacity for music. She had proved herself a
sterling character both of head and heart; but
she was not brilliant, spite of all her piquant


29







A PLEASANT LIFE.


French ways, and the amazing rapidity with
which she seemed to catch an idea, or learn
common things.
"Poor Kate!" her aunts often said, with
affectionate solicitude, "she will never take a
good position as a governess, never gain her
hundred a-year. But she is a good girl, and
will do the best that is in her."
It troubled Mary to hear those disparaging
remarks, but she hoped, that in Germany,
where the people were so musical, she would do
wonders. She was going to Hanover, and was
to have very first-rate masters there. Some
great composer was to teach her music, the
King's chapel-master was to teach her har-
mony, and a third master, singing. Mary
heard her mother say, "that the money which
was going to be spent upon her was almost
ruinous. It might, however, be tried for half-
a-year; but then, if she did not make great
progress, it must be given up. True, it was
all the fortune the poor girl was ever likely to
have; still, she was not sure that they could
afford it."
Mary heard all this, and had many little
schemes in her mind how she could make a
little money to devote to Kate's musical educa-
tion, in case it must otherwise be discontinued.
Music came almost naturally to her, and her


30







THE TRAINING OF THE COUSINS.


mother believed that half the money which
had been expended on Kate would have made
her a distinguished pianist. In music, as in
drawing, she possessed, in truth, remarkable
talent. Nothing could persuade her but that
Kate, bright and clever as she was, would, in
time, become a magnificent musician; and now,
therefore, that she had the opportunity of
learning from these wonderful masters, money
ought to be found one way or other; and if
her father and mother could not afford it, and
her grandfather was not willing, could not she
do something? Could not she give lessons in
drawing, if in nothing else? and so earn the
money needful.
Her mother, of course, would not listen to
such an idea. It seemed to her almost absurd.
" Oh no," she said, how can you think of such
a thing? It is quite right that this costly
experiment should be tried with Kate. But if it
will not repay the cost, it must be given up."
Kate wrote to Mary how hard she was
working-six hours every day at her music,
and the rest of her time at the language. She
was getting on wonderfully with the language
-they were all astonished; even the puzzling
genders, and the idiom which every body found
so difficult, seemed to come natural to her;
,,but then," added she, "you know how we


31







A PLEASANT LIFE.


studied the grammar together in Paris-and I
am so fond of grammar."
Although neither her capel-meister, nor
either of her other musical teachers antici-
pated any brilliant success for their pupil, yet-
they praised her industry. She was sorely
distressed at the thought of disappointing
every one, and wished, if possible, to continue
the harmony lessons, at least for three months
longer.
"Mother, dear," said Mary-to whom Kate
had written all this-" I have been looking
over those wild flowers which I painted before
I went to Paris-I don't think they are bad at
all. Will you let me, if I can, by any possible
means, sell them, and send the money to Kate ?
She does so want to continue her harmony les-
sons, and ifI obtained only five pounds it would
be something, and I should be so delighted."
But how could you manage to sell them,
my darling?" said her mother, who was natu-
rally pleased with her young daughter's desire
to help her cousin.
I know," returned Mary-who had thought
of scarcely anything else for many days-
"that Mr Sutherland knows some of those
London publishers who buy drawings. I am
sure he would help me. He is, you know, so
very kind. He said that if I had gone with


32







THE TRAINING OF THE COUSINS.


Kate to Hanover, he and Arthur-if his uncle
would have allowed it-would have come there
to see us, because Mr Willoughby said, Arthur
might sometime go with him abroad. I don't
think they are gone; so please, mother dear,
I'll send the drawings at once."
Her mother had no objection. Mary had
already put in a touch here and there, as she
thought, with improved knowledge; and now,
therefore, packed them carefully between two
pieces of stiff card board, wrote her letter, and
posted both.
A very few days brought back the answer;
for if you, my young readers, have become ac-
quainted with Mr Sutherland in the history of
Mary's childhood, you know how ready he
always was to oblige her. The, answer was a
very agreeable one, indeed, and with it was a
ten-pound note. He had not communicated
with the publisher of any illustrated works,
because it was not necessary, as Mr Wil-
loughby himself wished to be their purchaser.
He had not forgotten Mary. He now sent his
love to her, and was extremely pleased, not
only to be the possessor of these drawings, but
to have an opportunity of obliging her.
Mary was overjoyed. The harmony lessons
were ten shillings each. Kate had two lessons
a-week. This money, then, would last nearly
C


33







A PLEASANT LIFE.


a quarter of a year. Never, surely, had Mary
been so happy in all her life before.
Kate returned from Hanover; she was then
eighteen, two years Mary's senior, tall and well
grown, like her brother, but not handsome.
There was that peculiar clear complexion
which freckles, and her crispy wavy hair had
that tinge of yellow-brown which belongs to
this complexion. Her eyes were brown, with
a clear, honest expression; the features small,
and pleasing, the whole countenance denoting
cheerfulness and good sense. She had lost
something of her sparkling French piquancy,
but she was, nevertheless, a very pleasing girl.
And, now, advertisements were to be writ-
ten and answered; and, in the meantime, she
visited her relations. Harry was on the
Norfolk farm, and she feared she should not
see him; but she sent him her photograph
done in Hanover, and he returned his, taken in
his rough working dress, and the ploughing
team in the distance, and every one said what
a good-looking fellow he was.
SKate was a never-ending source of interest
to her cousin Mary, and now her outfit had to
be prepared. Her aunts were very kind to
her, and her grandparents promised her each
a new dress. The important parcel came,
&nd was carried into the large spare chamber


34







THE TRAINING OF THE COUSINS. 0o
now occupied by Kate, where Mary spent most
of her time, there being so much needlework
to do, as well as so much to be said.
The parcel was opened; a fine brown French
merino from the grandmother, and a nice black
silk from her grandfather, the first present
which he had ever directly made her.
But a shadow passed over poor Kate's face
at the sight of them, and, bursting into tears,
she exclaimed with a petulance that astonished
Mary:
Am I never to be dressed in anything but
brown and black? And I do so love colour!
Think of all the brown frocks that grandmother
used to buy me, when I was a child, till I
hated brown; and now the everlasting black!
and I have not lost a relation."
"But they are so nice," said Mary, wishing
to comfort her, yet feeling at the same time
that there was some truth in what she said,
for Aunt Emmeline's last present had been a
black silk, and there were the everlasting black
alpacas in France. "And you can wear blue
ribbon with the brown dress," continued Mary;
"blue ribbon in your hair, and round your
neck. I will give you some."
"I don't know why you need be at the ex-
pense of setting off other people's presents,"
returned Kate. But never mind, Mary dear,







A PLEASANT LIFE.


it will be all one in a hundred years. But I
did think, if anybody was kind enough to give
me a dress, they would let me have a choice in
the colour."
And you would have chosen blue, would
you not ?" asked Mary. "Blue really is your
colour," continued she; and kind, dear people,
who make presents, should consult a little with
one. But cannot we get the silk changed ?"
No, no !" said Kate, I would wear sack-
cloth rather than offend grandfather."
"One would not offend him certainly," re-
turned Mary, "but I think it could be man
aged."
"Without his knowledge?" asked Kate
Grandmother would be sure to find it out if
he did not."
I should go direct to him," said Mary. "I
think I dare do it."
"Well, as you like," said Kate; "I should
not dare to do it. But, then, I have always
been so afraid of him."
Mary wrote a playful letter to her grand-
father, telling him the dilemma in which they
were, that Kate had already an excellent black
silk dress, would he therefore enhance the value
of his present by allowing them to exchange
it for another colour.
He certainly loved Mary better than any


36








THE TRAINING OF THE COUSINS. 37
of his other grandchildren, and was no little
pleased to have a letter from her at any time.
He was in very good humour, made a little
mystery about it, and, turning to his wife, said
that he had not been consulted about a lady's
dress since he went with her to choose her wed-
ding gown until then.
"Is Mary going to be married ?" asked the
grandmother, bewildered.
He laughed; went to his desk without re-
plying, and putting on his spectacles, wrote an
answer, that they were quite welcome to get it
changed. They knew where it was bought.
It cost five pounds, and if what they chose
cost more he should not be angry.
Mary flew, with the letter in her hand, tri-
umphantly to Kate.
"I never saw anything like you, Mary !"
exclaimed Kate, her countenance beaming with
joy. "You are a real angel? But, after all,
I feel horribly ashamed of myself."
Almost before Kate was ready for a situa-
tion, one was offered to her which, though not
quite equal to what her friends desired, had
much to recommend it, and it was accepted for
her. She was to have forty pounds a-year to
instruct the four young daughters of a family
named Wilsted, residing in Norfolk. It was
not equal to what her friends had desired for







A PLEASANT LIFE.


her; but, then, she was young, and the require-
ments were not great. On inquiry, the Wilsteds
were found to be wealthy people, of good family
and excellent character, residing on their own
estate, but of simple tastes and very domestic
habits.
Kate went to them, and a short time proved
that she was happily circumstanced. Her
cheerful disposition, her thoroughness in all
she undertook to teach, soon won the esteem of
her employers, who, not perhaps highly edu-
cated themselves, regarded her almost as a
prodigy of knowledge. Mr Wilsted, who liked
to possess information on many subjects, but
who either did not know how to seek for it, or
was too indolent to do so, found Kate, with
her immense amount of facts, her clear head,
and her excellent memory, invaluable. Besides,
she never thought it any trouble to seek out the
knowledge he wanted, and would read pages
after pages of the dryest book to hunt out a
name for him, or the data for some calculation.
To Mrs Wilsted, on the other hand, she was
equally useful, from her skill in needlework,
and the general dexterity of her fingers.
She wrote the happiest letters to Mary
The four little girls, she said, loved her as an
elder sister. She was not treated at all as a
governess. She took her meals with the


38







THE TRAINING OF THE COUSINS.


family, was introduced to their friends, and
sat with them in the evening. As to her music,
she began to think herself not so deficient as
she had supposed, and she was sure that those
last months with the capel-meister had done
wonders for her. She was thankful that she
had been so well taught, and she wished Mary
could only be present at some of the little
concerts which they got up amongst themselves,
and which their friends, who were sometimes
invited, seemed to enjoy very much.
Kate's experience was, that the life of a
governess, under such circumstances as hers,
was a very happy one. She would not need a
month's holiday, either as a relief from hard
work, or as a refreshment to the affections,
after eleven months of heart-famishing, as is
the case with so many a poor governess.
Nevertheless she was promised a month's holi-
day to visit her friends whenever she chose in
the course of the next year.


39







A PLEASANT LIFE.


CHAPTER IV.

arf7ur aunb 4is ubte.

I MUST now recall to the memory of my young
reader, Arthur Bryce, or Arthur, as we simply
know him in Mary Leeson's childhood.
The peculiar circumstances of no two chil-
dren could well be more dissimilar than were
theirs.
She dwelt in the bosom of her own family;
from her earliest childhood she had been sur-
rounded by affectionate parents and loving
friends, who judged her faults leniently, and
called forth and nurtured every faculty and
impulse for good. The case of Arthur was
very different. He never knew his parents, and
was left an infant orphan to the care of an
aunt, in extremely delicate health, the wife of
a Mr Willoughby, a wealthy cotton-spinner in
one of the small towns of Lancashire. So
much of this poor lady's time was spent in her
chamber, or at watering-places, seeking for
health, that not only the care of the child, but


40







ARTHUR AND HIS TUTOR.


even that of her husband's household, devolved
upon his mother, the sister of Mrs Weston of
Ellingham, consequently she was Mary Leeson's
great-aunt.
The younger Mrs Willoughby died when
Arthur was about thirteen, therefore she does
not appear at all in our narrative. With Mrs
Willoughby the elder, a lady of a highly edu-
cational turn, we have unfortunately much to
do, as it was under her rule that the boy was
brought up.
It was a prevailing opinion amongst her
friends and admirers, that she was a second
Hannah More, and a number of otherwise well-
intentioned people endeavoured to induce her
to open a school on improved moral principles
for girls. She drew up the prospectus of such
an establishment, and had it printed, but, for-
tunately, it proceeded no further.
She was not particularly fond of her son's
invalid wife, and still less of the boy, whom,
however, she believed it her duty to train up
in the way in which he should go. But she
was harsh and narrow-minded, 'and perhaps
because she found nim intractable under her
system, believed him to be a born reprobate,
who could only be saved, if at all, by increased
severity. She was a rigid church-goer herself,
and required his attendance also, and invari-


41







A PLEASANT LIFE.


ably a summary of the sermon afterwards. By
.his means all religious observance was made
repulsive to him.
He was a handsome fad, of a good, healthy
constitution, but had a sullen, discontented look;
his growth almost was stunted, and his temper
wayward and unbroken, with so little real re-
gard to truth, and so great a dread of punish-
ment-which was dealt out to him in large
measure-that he would escape it, if possible,
by a lie. His impulses were strong, and he
had an immense love of enjoyment, but so little
experience of what real enjoyment was, that at
one period of his boy-life, and not a very
early period either, he longed to be a highway-
man, like Dick Turpin, and practised his despe-
rate deeds of "Stand and deliver!" pistol in
hand, as, mounted on an imaginary steed, he
galloped up and down the plantation which
bordered his uncle's grounds, the thick shrub-
bery of which represented a forest, whilst a few
scattered apple-trees were solitary travellers.
But there was a spring of good in him, nor
had the Saviour by any means cast him off.
An old woman who washed for the family, and
lived in a cottage beyond the plantation, had
great compassion for him, and not being able
to read herself, would often bribe him with
gingerbread and other sweetmeats to read the


42







ARTHUR AND HIS TUTOR.


Bible to her-sometimes the New Testament,
but quite as often the Old, for she loved the
simple patriarch-narratives, or those of Joseph,
or of Ruth, of David, or of Samson; and as
she read the Gospel-story she expounded to him,
in her simple child-like way, the divine doc-
trines of the loving Master. Thus he learned
that there was something in the words of Christ
beyond what Mrs Willoughby or the clergyman
had taught him.
The poor woman had a missionary-box into
which she dropped now and then her mite for
the good work, in which she took great interest;
occasionally, too, she bought a missionary tract,
which the boy read to her, and she, in her turn,
having a good memory and a persuasive, pic-
turesque way of describing anything, related
to him all the interesting and affecting facts
which she heard at the missionary meet-
ings. In this way his heart was won from his
Dick Turpin heroes, to men who led adven-
turous, Robinson Crusoe-like lives in the wil-
derness, amongst painted savages, or in beauti-
ful, solitary islands, where the simple, child-like
natives lived in palm-groves on the most deli-
cious of fruits.
Mr Willoughby, whom Arthur always called
uncle, had the greatest possible respect for his
mother, and though of a nature greatly superior


43







A PLEASANT LIFE.


to hers, not only looked up to her with affec-
tion and reverence, but asserted and really be-
lieved, that he owed to her training whatever
was good and of sound principle in himself.
For this reason he never interfered in the sys-
tem which she pursued towards Arthur, sup-
posing it to be right, and even aiding her in
carrying it out.
Such was the state of things when Mary paid
her visit in Lancashire, as recorded in her
childhood. It was a happy day for him when
she came. His was a nature of a strong bias
either for good or ill. The simple, pious
teachings of the old washerwoman saved his
early years from utter spoliation. Then came
Mary, with her simple gentle-heartedness, the
truly Christian child, loving and sympathetic,
and another and still higher phase of life was
developed in his soul.
At the same time, and by the same means,
a new sentiment of life began to dawn upon
the secret consciousness of Mr Willoughby
himself. Prejudiced as he had been in favour
of his mother's views of education, believing
that the discipline of the rod and the cane had
saved his soul, and would save many another,
from perdition, he was now awakened by the
simple pleadings of a child in favour of the
divine law of love. He was a kind-hearted


44







ARTHUR AND HIS TUTOR.


man, to.whom it was easier to be indulgent
than severe. Mary's appeal to him had been
irresistible; he wilingly gave way to the
kindly impulses of his nature, and took the
friendless, erring boy into his heart.
How long this better state would have re-
mained when Mary was gone, and whether it
could have stood against the severity of his
mother's law, which would have become only
the more rigorous as she felt it giving way
under her feet, I cannot say, but fortunately
there was another element equally strong to
sustain it.
Mr Willoughby, who was no little prepos-
sessed by the good sense and geniality of Mr
Sutherland, invited him to deliver a course of
lectures to his hands. This brought him a
good deal to the mill, and he and Arthur were
much together. They two built the little mud
church, as Arthur told Mary in his letter.
They formed missionary settlements in solitary
parts of the plantations, when often suspend-
ing their labours, the man would relate to the
boy wonderful and perilous adventures of his
own amongst the old temples of India, or in
the beautiful, tangled forests of South America,
where he had wandered for weeks without
seeing a human being.
This was like living in a new world, amongst


45







A PLEASANT LIFE.


a new order of beings, to Arthur. Well might
Mary Leeson say there never was any one like
Mr Sutherland, a man who would sit with him
by the hour, now telling stories that made him
cry, and now others so unspeakably comic that
he half killed himself with laughter. Perhaps
Mr Sutherland himself had never been more
interested in a boy than he was in Arthur, or
more sorry for one either. He saw what a
wild, weed-overgrown nature his was, yet how
capable of the finest cultivation, and he deter-
mined that as long as he stayed in the neigh-
bourhood he would do all for him that lay in
his power. Fortunately he remained there the
greater pait of the summer.
As the time approached for him to leave the
north, Mr Willoughby, who had seen the good
effect of his influence on the boy, offered him
a handsome salary as his permanent tutor.
He was well qualified for the post, being a fine
classical scholar, speaking the modern languages
fluently, and in every way fitted for tuition.
The proposal was that he should reside in the
family; but that would have been impossible
-the hard dogmatism of Mrs Willoughby
would have driven him away in a week.
He lived, therefore, on the outskirts of the
town, where a pleasant stretch of country ex-
tended westward, and where he could see the


46







ARTHUR AND HIS TUTOR.


sun set behind the far range of the Westmore-
land hills. The boy came to him daily, and
many were the pleasant excursions they made
together, sometimes pedestrian rambles which
would occupy several days or a week, which
Mr Willoughby greatly approved of, though
his mother thought them a waste of time and
a needless expense. She disapproved of many
of his views. He might be a clever man, she
said, and no doubt he was, but he was Quixotic
in his notions, and sooner or later her son
would see that she was right.
Time went on, and for two years Arthur
was educated in these Quixotic notions-two
happy years of mental and spiritual growth
and truly enjoyable busy life. Then, alas! a
change came.
The weakness of Mr Sutherland's character
was restlessness and impatience of restraint.
The friends who loved him accepted him with
his faults. His situation as Arthur's tutor
was far from agreeable to a man of his tem-
perament. But for love of the lad, and the
deep interest which he could not but take in his
moral and intellectual growth, he faithfully
stood to his post, though he had long felt the
fetters to be galling. At length, that restless-
ness which was native to him, came over him, or
perhaps that irritability which is the forerunner


47







A PLEASANT LIFE.


of serious illness, and he began to feel that he
must have a change or die. He asked for a
month's leave of absence, which was easily
granted him, and went to Manchester, where
he had many friends, to deliver a course of
lectures. There he fell, and lay, as was be-
lieved, at the point of death for many days,
tenderly nursed by poor people, for the poor
entertained for him an affection equal to that
of children.
His leave of absence had long expired, and
now, weak in body, and with the link some-
what loosened which had bound him so affec-
tionately to Arthur, he felt both unable and
disinclined to resume his duties, exaggerating,
perhaps, in his weakness, the antagonism of
that hard woman's nature, which was so re-
pugnant to his own. As soon, therefore, as
he was able to stand, he removed to the neigh-
bourhood of the Leesons, and took lodgings
in the cottage of the basket-maker, where
Mary and her mother spent the summer of
her illness, and of which place he still retained
an agreeable remembrance.
Mrs Willoughby considered that he had
shamefully deserted his post. He was, she
said, an unstable weathercock, and she had
always foreseen how it would be.
Poor Arthur had a double sorrow. He had


48







ARTHUR AND HIS TUTOR.


lost his dear friend and tutor, and could hear
no one speak out for him. Even his uncle,
who always said he had so high an esteem for
him, heard many hard things said against him,
and made no remark. Arthur was very in-
dignant, for he held Mr Sutherland in the
tenderest regard; nevertheless, he sometimes
felt as if his friend even had deserted him, and
was very unhappy.
The sorrows of a young heart are very sad,
because they are real, and have no shamming
in them. Sometimes, when he was alone in
the shrubbery, he could not help crying,
though he would have been very much
ashamed of himself if anybody had seen
him; and often at such times the bell would
ring for dinner, and he must start up, wipe
away the tears from his countenance, and with
a composed demeanour take his seat at table,
very likely to hear the harsh voice of Mrs
Willoughby lauding her prescience from the
head of the table, in having known from the
first what that man was," for scarcely ever did
they sit down to meals, especially if visitors
were there, but the subject was brought up
for discussion.
Sometimes the foodwhichArthurtookinto his
mouth almost choked him, from the suppressed
emotion and anger which he felt at accusations
D


49







A PLEASANT LIFE.


which he knew to be false. But he dared not
speak, for the child's silence at meals was the
rule of the house, though Mr Sutherland,
amongst his other delinquencies, had made an
effort to break this rule for Arthur. The meal,
however, which they partook of together six
days in the week, was perhaps the merriest
hour for them of the twenty-four. The good
woman with whom Mr Sutherland boarded
said one day very unwittingly to Mrs Wil-
loughby :-
"Eh, mum, of all the fun that ever I seed in
thisworld, I never seed anything equal to the fun
these two have when they're at dinner! But
I think they eat all the better for it. I'm sure
it does me good, for I often laugh the whole
afternoon thinking of it. But then, you see,
they're as still as mice over their books."
Mrs Willoughby never forgot this. But as
Arthur did not infringe the rule of silence
during meals at home, she said nothing. She
bore it, however, faithfully in her memory.
His uncle remained extremely kind to
Arthur, nor ever wounded him by unkind
remarks or reproaches against Mr Sutherland,
though he was evidently grieved that he had
left; on the contrary, he expressed a warm
regard for him.


50







ARTHUR AND HIS TUTOR.


Mr Sutherland, as he-recovered from the
serious illness which had prostrated him in
Manchester, felt an intense craving for home,
for the companionship of the few tried friends
whom he loved, and with whom, when he
needed it, he could have daily intercourse, but
otherwise could be still,
His first intention was to remain sufficiently
near the elder- branch of the Leeson family,
that he might freely enjoy their society, and
especially that of Mary, whose cheerfulness
and maidenly sympathy were a balm to his
spirit even more than when she was a child.
But her home was in a town, and the moral
atmosphere of towns was now oppressive to
him. The daily sight and obtruded knowledge
of all that suffering and sorrow which still
more belongs to humanity, massed in towns,
distressed his spirit. The sight of the gin
palace, the ever-recurring public-house, the
unhappy woman and the child, without the
child's life of innocence, were so painful to his
spirit, now that he had no longer physical
strength to combat against the evil which was
the origin of all this, that he avoided towns,
and fled to the quietness and repose of the
country, where, surrounded by the simple and
innocent objects of nature, he could worship
God in admiration of His works, as with his


51







A PLEASANT LIFE.


little pocket-microscope in his hand he exa-
mined the texture of a flower-petal or a
butterfly's wing.
It was, therefore, in the immediate neigh-
bourhood of Mr Edward Leeson's, in a honey-
suckle and rosemary-covered cottage, standing
in a large garden full of evergreen shrubs,
above which towered a number of tall poplars
and picturesque old Scotch firs, that Mr Suther-
land now resided with a worthy old couple, he
keeping the garden in order, and she acting as
his servant. Like everybody who knew Mr
Sutherland intimately, they had become deeply
attached to him, whilst their simple old-
fashioned characters, dialectical speech, and
country ways and notions, interested and
amused him greatly. The extensive garden,
with its bowery nooks and beds of anti-
quated flowers, its stand of bees, and the little
murmuring brook which formed one of its
margins, fringed with abundant water-plants,
were a never-failing source of delight to
him.
The elder of the little Leesons visited him,
walked hand in hand with him in the garden,
and listened with never-wearying interest to
the wonderful stories which he told of all crea-
tion round him. He possessed a great amount
of scientific knowledge, which in former years


52







ARTHUR AND HIS TUTOR.


he instilled with immense care and love into
the youthful mind of Mary Leeson; and later
still, but more systematically, which formed one
of his favourite pursuits with his pupil, Arthur
Bryce. Now, however, all his scientific know-
ledge was clothed in a more amusing, but
tenderly-religious spirit, adapted to the still
more youthful class of mind which coveted
his companionship.
Mary Leeson frequently visited her uncle
and aunt, and when with them, never passed a
day without seeing her old friend; and many
an hour was spent by them either sitting or
walking in the garden, or seated by the
parlour-fire in conversation, which always took
a religious turn, however playfully it might
begin.
"Mary is a bit of religion dropped down
from heaven," he said of her in her childhood,
and still found her to be nearly akin to the
angels, therefore their conversation had mostly
a heavenward tendency. The character of the
Saviour, with which, through her mother's
teaching, she had become ever more familiar,
which she loved with so intense a passion, and
endeavoured so faithfully to follow, was now
the daily study of the old man.
"Talk to me, Mary, about the Saviour," he
would say. "Take any incident in His life,


53







A PLEASANT LIFE.


and relate it tc me in your own way. I like
to hear it from you. There are often little
touches in your way of telling these incidents
which give me a new and sometimes a deeper
insight into the truth. Talk to me, Mary,
about our Lord; He has so long been your
friend, that you seem to know His very heart
and spirit."
And here I may remark that Mr Leeson's
intimacy with Mr Sutherland commenced when
the shipwreck of life had left him a heart-
broken man. The Divine Revelation was to
him a delusion, Christ a myth; faith and hope
were dead, nothing was left to him but love-
love and immense pity for the unfortunate. In
Mary Leeson's home it was that light first
dawned upon this midnight of his spirit;
father, mother, and child all ministered to him
of this light.
Mary was especially his favourite; there
was a great kinship between them, for his was
a childlike spirit. Now, therefore, in his de-
clining years, he still said to her, Tell me of
the Saviour."
She was very humble. I never knew any
one more so; nor could she possibly have
assumed so much. But as she loved the Sa-
viour so truly, and had such a deep, sympa-
thetic affection for her old friend, she willingly


54







ARTHUR AND HIS TUTOR. 55
acquiesced, and then it was often as though
the Saviour was present with them.
"And did not our hearts burn within us,
while He talked with us by the way, and while
He opened to us the Scriptures ?" Mr Suther-
land would sometimes say quietly to himself,
as he thought over these happy times of spiri-
tual communion.







A PLEASANT LIF.E.


CHAPTER V.

Lt ry-altl 's (9jamg i0on."

BUT to return to Arthur. When we saw him
first he was twelve years old, and small of his
age. In these last three years, and under
happier circumstances, he has grown so amaz-
ingly, that his every-day jacket and trousers
always show a considerable space of wrist and
ankle. His uncle smiles at this, and takes
great pleasure in it. He is not a tall man
himself, but he likes to see others tall, and
weighs Arthur, and marks his height every
few months on the wall of the counting-house
close by his own desk, and has promised him
a gold watch at Christmas. But laying his
hand affectionately on his shoulder, he said, at
the same time, in a somewhat subdued tone,
"You need not say anything to any one
about it. I shall not forget my promise, if you
are a good lad."
Arthur was not likely to disobey the injunc-
tion, which he knew referred to Mrs Wil-


56







" MARY-ANN'S CHAMPION."


loughby. It was a pleasant secret between
himself and his uncle. It united his ;ifi.:-
tionate heart to him in the tenderest bonds, and
he vowed with himself that his uncle hence-
forth should have no cause of complaint.
He was sent to a large school in the north
of England, which had a gr,-.it reputation. It
was conducted on principles similar to those
of Mrs Willoughby, nevertheless it was always
full.
The whole management of the school was
diametrically opposite to Mi .ui Ithi l.l., vi,,l ..
Caning was of frequent i.i'.i!.uI..,. for Dr
Durand, who was at its head, was a man of
a violent temper.
Many were the stories current in the school
of the most unjust and cruel punishment, which
made Arthur's blood boil with iudignatiu,
He had had his own L" iip i ii, and kaew
how that the unbridled passion of man or
woman calls forth, in the otherwise noble
nature of the child, the 'iphlit. almost of a
fiend.
His intention, un entering the aohoo was
not to deserve punishment. He dreaded, evwe
more than the pain, the Ii :t upon higs ow
mind. His happy experiences with Mrt iiltr-
land had made so .i.-p an im presio, that
he looked back upon his former salf both







A PLEASANT LIFE.


with compassion and abhorrence. His ambi-
tion now was to deserve the kindness of his
uncle, and to be worthy of the teachings of
Mr Sutherland.
He was a handsome youth, with a frank
and generous countenance; his clothes were
good and well made, he had a gold watch,-and
was reported to have plenty of pocket-money.
The public opinion was favourable to him, and
he had many friends-at least, many professed
themselves willing to be so. A very little ex-
perience, however, soon showed him that he
would have a difficult part to play amongst
them all. The school was divided into parties;
there were cabals, and bitternesses, and jeal-
ousies on all hands, and in some cases very
oppressive wrong practised by the strong
against the weak.
Arthur began by making himself a champion
of the oppressed, and soon found that he had
more on his hands than he could manage, and
even that in many cases the poor victims whom
he wished to defend, were only the worse off
for his interference. His many friends became
his many enemies, and he had now stand-up
fights to get through on his own account, out
of which, however, he mostly came off the
victor.
With the masters he gained great credit;


58







" MARY-ANN'S CHAMPION."


he had been so well-grounded and taught, that
he stood well in all his classes; the severest
master as yet had not given him even an im-
position; his comrades had never yet, through
the whole term, seen him either taken down
or punished. This was not agreeable to the
multitude; he had become the Aristides of
the school, whose good name was an offence
to all.
But things cannot go on in the same way
for ever; the next term began much less
smoothly for Arthur.
There were two very stringent rules of the
school : the one, that no boy should go out of
bounds; the other, that no letters should be
written or received without Dr Durand's know-
ledge. Boys, on occasion of extreme school
hardship or suffering, had sometimes written
home to tender mothers and sisters, without
waiting for the regular letter-writing day. By
this means a case of brutal flogging had got
into the newspapers; and though it was imme-
diately contradicted, and the school apparently
no way injured by it, yet ever after the strict-
est surveillance over all letters sent out was
kept, and any going out of bounds strictly
forbidden.
Amongst the weak and oppressed boys in
the school was one Lionel Brooks, the son of


59







A PLEASANT LIFE.


a widow, very small of his age, lame of one
foot, with weak eyes, and of very timid dis-
position. He was called Mary Ann, and was
the butt of the whole school. Naturally, also,
slow at learning, he was so continually being
punished, either by impositions or canings,
that his life was perfectly miserable. From
the first day of his being at school Arthur had
noticed this boy, and done him little kind-
nesses, whence he obtained the name of
" Mary Ann's champion."
One day poor Brooks stole up to Arthur,
and, drawing him to a remote part of the
playground, and trembling the while in his
very shoes, whispered to him with white lips
that he wanted to speak to him.
Well, what have you to say?" asked Ar-
thur. The poor thin lips grew whiter, and,
still whispering, he confessed that he had
smuggled a letter home to his mother, telling
her of all his troubles, and now he was afraid
of an answer coming which might fall into the
hands of Dr Durand, who would flog him to
death."
You had no business to write," said
Arthur.
The poor boy almost danced with distress
and terror. He had begged his mother to
write to X, at Dr Durand's, to wait till called


60







" MARY-ANN'S CHAMPION."


for." But it would be sure to be given up to
any of the masters, if they went for letters, as
they mostly did in the afternoon. None of
them were gone out yet; there was still a good
half-hour. He had never thought about the
trouble of getting it from the post. He could
not himself get out of the playground, and
with his lame foot he would not get back in
time if he could. He was in despair, and
began to cry.
Arthur, from his heart, was sorry for him.
He was the only one in the school to whom
he would have dared to confide his dilemma,
and he could do no other than help him out
of it.
It was nothing to him, after his gymnastic
exercises with Mr Sutherland, to leap over the
playground fence. Standing behind the old
elm-trees, where they then were, he was secure
from observation. The next moment he was
over the fence and on the road. In ten minutes
he was at the Post-Office. He found the ex-
pected letter waiting, and, with it safely in his
pocket, was returning to the elm-tree corner of
the playground, where he was met face to face
by the least-indulgent of the ushers, who,
fixing his eye keenly upon him, passed without
a word. At the Post-Office he would learn
what had occurred.


61







A PLEASANT LIFE.


Again he was over the fence and within
bounds. Brooks was waiting for him behind
the trees, and, putting the letter into his hand,
he said hastily, Read it, and then tear it into
a thousand fragments, so that it may never be
seen! I met old Jefferies, but I'll never betray
you!" and, so saying, he walked to the cricket-
ground, where he is soon engaged in a game.
They received him with shouts of reproach for
his absence.
It was a Wednesday, and on Wednesday
afternoons, the whole school, excepting such
unlucky mortals as were kept in for imposition
or punishment, took a long walk into the coun-
try with two of the masters. It was a favourite
day in the week.
Now, however, to the surprise of all except-
ing Arthur, the school-bell rang, and all were
summoned into the larger school-room. Some-
thing unusual was on hand, some great and
signal punishment was about to be inflicted.
This was one of the signs of it, and many a
heart beat violently.
Somebody had offended. Who was it? And
every boy looked round on his assembled fel-
lows. Little Brooks, who had limped in among
the last, looked as white as a sheet, but then
so he did when any one was caned, that was
only poor Mary Ann's way, so no one suspected


62







" MARY-ANN'S CHAMPION."


him to be guilty. They laughed at him
more than they pitied him. Arthur stood
with the rest, half-a-head taller than any boy
in the second form, with his handsome features
firmly set, and an expression of such gravity
on his face as turned all eyes upon him. He
was the guilty one! What could he have
been doing? The whole thing had at once
become intensely interesting, and a death-like
silence prevailed.
Dr Durand sat on a raised platform called a
tribune, and the masters stood round him;
his countenance was almost black with anger,
his cane lay at his right hand on his desk,
whilst his fingers moved with a quick, con-
vulsive sort of motion, as if impatient to have
hold of the instrument of suffering.
The Doctor's custom was that, when a delin-
quent was summoned before him, the charge
was made by a series of questions, to which
the offender answered yes or no, so that he
became condemned, as it were, by his own
words.
Being summoned by Dr Durand by name,
Arthur stepped forward to the front of the tri-
bune. He was questioned, Had he not been
out of bounds?" "Yes," replied he. "To the
Post-Office, to fetch thence a letter." Again,
"Yes." The letter was addressed,"X, to be called


63







A PLEASANT LIFE.


for." "Yes." Was the letter for yourself ? "
Arthur hesitated for a few seconds, then re-
plied, No." Dare you, in the face of God,"
said Dr Durand, in a voice almost hoarse
with anger, "repeat that denial." "Yes," said
Arthur.
The eyes of Dr Durand and all the masters
slowly traversed the assembly. Little Brooks
was still white as a sheet, and his tongue clove
to the roof of his mouth. He must have con-
fessed it all if they had fixed their eyes upon
him only for a moment. But the last time a boy
was flogged it had turned him sick, so they
purposely took no notice of him; he was too
much despised to be worth attention.
Arthur stood immoveable, nevertheless, with
one rapid glance, he saw the whole, and felt
that he would rather bear anything than that
this poor, little craven spirit should betray
itself.
The anger of Dr Durand was now getting
beyond bounds ; and seeing, as he thought, no
guilty look in any other face, he concluded
that the letter was for Arthur himself, and
that he had simply denied it.
"You lie !" he almost screamed, looking
fiercely at Arthur. The letter was for your-
self. You have not only broken one of the
rules of the school, but you have lied. But


64







" MARY-ANN'S CHAMPION."


you shall not escape. I know you, sir I
have heard your character already !"
A crimson flush covered Arthur's face, for
he knew that this report had come from the
elder Mrs Willoughby. He felt almost choked
by one of those old tempests of passion which
used to overcome him. He clenched his hands
in his endeavour to subdue himself, till the
nails were almost pressed into the flesh ; then
a sense of misery, of desolation of spirit, a
living consciousness of physical agony, and a
total inability to endure it, came over him as
with a darkness of despair, and the very next
moment, quick as lightning, came the thought
of Mary Leeson and what she would like him
to do. He seemed to see her angel face look-
ing at him calmly, giving him strength like-
wise to be calm; then, in the same lightning-
like way, the thought of the American Indian
bearing the torture of his enemies unmoved,
and he felt that he could do the same. All
this, however, occupied but a moment, for the
mind is inconceivably rapid. The crimson of
shame was gone, and the beautiful features
were again set in their stony rigidness of en-
durance.
I have not lied," said he, calmly, in reply
to the fierce words of accusation.
The Doctor, believing the letter might still be


65







A PLEASANT LIFE.


in his possession, ordered his pockets to be
searched, his desk, and the box of clothes which
stood at his bed's foot. The innocent contents
of his pockets lay on the ground before the
Doctor, and the ushers returned, having found
nothing.
The charge against him was repeated. He
had wilfully broken bounds; he had clan-
destinely received a letter at the post-office
for himself, and had afterwards persisted in a
lie regarding it; for which the Doctor awarded
to him the severest measure of punish-
ment.
It was the creed of the school that Dr
Durand never was so happy as when he was
flogging a boy, and it came afterwards to be
a tradition that no boy ever was flogged so
savagely as Arthur Bryce.
The Doctor had pronounced his sentence,
rose, and, laying his hand on the cane, ordered
Arthur to strip. Every eye was upon him;
they saw his countenance grow almost pale in
its rigid firmness, as he snatched off jacket
and waistcoat, and, unbuttoning the wrists and
neck of his shirt, bared his white chest and
shoulders.
The next moment the sharp blows fell
upon him, the crimson wales stood up like
seams; then the blood began to follow the


66







" MARY-ANN'S CHAMPION."


blows, and with a low moan he sank to the
ground.
By this time every heart, even that of the
hardest usher, was in revolt against the tyrant
of the school, and Arthur was a hero. No
articulate word, however, was spoken, but a
low sound, almost a howl, went through the
school. The more generous and impulsive
boys could not restrain their indignation.
Little Brooks, like a few other sensitive, timid
lads, had stood pale as death, with his eyes
closed and his fingers in his ears, now sud-
denly, perceiving that the flogging was over,
and that Arthur lay on the ground, and think-
ing him dead, uttered a piercing shriek, which
seemed to ring through the room. But
nobody took any notice of him. All was in
confusion, for though the under masters were
more or less advocates of this flogging sys-
tem, yet there was not one of them who did
not think that in this instance it had gone
too far.
Dr Durand, still standing with his inflamed
countenance and the cane in his hand, becom-
ing suddenly anxious about the result, ordered
the school-room to be vacated, and the ushers
on duty to take the boys out for their walk.
The other ushers occupied themselves with
Arthur, whom they slowly raised, and then


67







68 A PLEASANT LIFE.
brought back out of the dead fainting fit into
which he had fallen.
It was a piteous sight to behold; that
slender, nobly-formed youth, the swollen, bleed-
ing shoulders, and the marble-like countenance,
which looked more dead than alive.







THE EFFECTS OF CHAMPIONSHIP.


CHAPTER VI.

94t dfift of zIkampnioinmip.

IT was not an unusual thing for a boy to go
to bed after a caning, but here was a case
beyond what had ever occurred before. At the
first sight of him Mrs Durand was terrified,
and instead of leaving him in the school sick-
room, or nursery as it was called, where he was
carried, she had him removed into a sitting-
room of her own adjoining her chamber, where
she could have him immediately under her
eye, and at the same time removed from the
household generally, of whose discretion, in a
case of this kind, she doubted. She was natu-
rally a tender-hearted woman, who, though she
had great respect for her husband, and did her
best to support his authority, was often cruelly
tortured by his severity to the boys. Her life
was a daily suppression of the kindness that
was native to her, and perhaps the greatest
pleasure she had was befriending any sick or
unhappy lad who came under her care.


69







A PLEASANT LIFE.


Though Arthur had returned to conscious-
ness, he was in a strangely bewildered state:
nevertheless, the kindness and gentleness of Mrs
Durand's manners, and the pitying tenderness
of her voice, comforted him, and he gratefully
thanked her. He gladly remembered that
afterwards. How it was with him, however,
he hardly knew, for his mind was in such an
agitated and outraged state, that his brain
seemed a chaos of anger and miserable distress,
to which mere outward suffering was as no-
thing. He was hurrying on into delirium.
Mrs Durand had healing medicaments at
hand with which to anoint and soothe the poor
wounded flesh, but to soothe and calm the
mind, and bring back its healthy balance, was
beyond her power. Her husband dreaded
nothing so much as publicity; yet when she re-
presented to him the sad condition into which
the youth was evidently hurrying, and besought
that a physician might be called in, he refused.
It was obstinacy; Arthur was the most obsti-
nate, hardened boy that had ever entered the
School, and now, by the violence of his temper,
he had thrown himself into a fever; that was
all; she must give him cooling medicine, and
he would be all right on the morrow. She
never left him through the night, and the next
day the Doctor, himself alarmed, consented


70







THE EFFECTS OF CHAMPIONSHIP.


that the physician should be called in. He
came, and looked very grave when he saw and
considered the case. It mattered not that Dr
Durand stated the case in the blackest terms:
he was rebellious, a liar, hardened and obsti-
nate to that degree, that though he must con-
fess to the discipline being severe, yet the
strength of his will was so great, that he evi-
dently defied any punishment to move him.
He would not even cry out.
After the good physician had carefully exa-
mined the patient and prescribed the most
urgent treatment-the darkened room, pro-
found stillness, and ice to the brain, he said,
in reply to the statement of the poor lad's
character and disposition as stated by Dr
Durand,
I should scarcely have suspected it, sir
The organization is that of a fine nature; the
brain is excellently developed; firmness large,
benevolence large, all the moral qualities in
good proportion: a fine character, sir, I should
say. As to his power of endurance, although
his firmness be large- "
Call it obstinacy, sir," interrupted Dr
Durand, and you are nearer the mark."
Well, sir, obstinacy if you will," returned
the physician; "but, at the same time, he is of
that finely-organized nervous temperament to


71







A PLEASANT LIFE.


which suffering is intense, and the suppressed
utterance of the pain he must have endured-
the not crying out, as you say-reacted on the
brain. The case is plain enough, and may be se-
rious. I think his parents ought to be informed.
"He has no parents," returned Dr Durand,
beginning to be uneasy.
God bless my soul," said the physician,
"has he not guardians, or somebody to care
for him?"
Certainly, sir; most estimable people, and
they shall be communicated with."
The physician was a prudent man, and
thought it best not to talk of his neighbours;
besides, though very benevolent, he respected
Dr Durand, and did not doubt but that the
boys often tried him sadly. There had been
one case of flogging already in the school which
had nearly brought him into trouble; he hoped
this might be less serious than it looked at
present; the lad was evidently in sound health,
and Mrs Durand was an excellent nurse.
Although all knowledge of the gravity of
the case was confined to Dr and Mrs Durand,
yet the ushers were ordered to keep the school
extremely still, and, instead of the usual games
in the cricket-field and play-ground, they were
indulged in a day's excursion to the hills.
But nobody was deceived; all knew that Bryce


72







THE EFFECTS OF CHAMPIONSHIP.


was ill with his flogging, and that the "old
Doctor was in a terrible fright about it."
Mrs Durand never left Arthur's bedside for
eight-and-forty hours. Every means which
the physician prescribed were used, and by that
time the worst was over, his consciousness was
fully restored, and he knew that he was ill and
suffering. He could see and feel plainly enough,
however, that he was not amongst enemies.
Dr Durand did not present himself. Arthur
saw only Mrs Durand and one of the elder
maid-servants, a kind, motherly woman, who
acted as nurse in case of illness; and their at-
tention and gentleness were very great. But,
though the Doctor kept out of sight, he was
terribly anxious. Nevertheless, he did not
write either to the elder Mrs Willoughby or
her son; He said, in the first instance, that
he would wait till the next day. Then Arthur
was so much better, he said that it was needless
to alarm them. He had no fear of their disap-
proving of punishment as a means of educa-
tion; but in this case there was no denying
that its excess had been beyond precedent.
Better by far, he thought,.that nothing should
be said about it; if it got into the papers it
would ruin the school; forpeople werebeginning
now to be so very lax in their notions. However,
in one thing he had satisfaction,-his wife bad


73







A PLEASANT LIFE.


always been so kind and attentive to the boys
when they were ill. "There is not one of
them," said he to himself, "to whom in sick-
ness or in trouble she has not been as a mother;
Bryce cannot deny that."
So reasoned he with himself, and many times
in the day inquired after Arthur.
The physician was right-his sound, good
health aided his recovery. But for a whole
week he never left his bed, nor saw any one
but the physician, Mrs Durand, and the nurse.
In the meantime, the school went on as usual,
cricket and other games were resumed, and
the Doctor was said to be wonderfully mild
and amiable.
Arthur began to sit up, and if he had been
the son of the nurse he could not have been
more indulgently treated. Fruit and flowers
always stood on the table before him. But,
independently of these, the nurse every morn-
ing brought him in a little nosegay in which
sweet briar, the bud of a monthly rose, sweet
pea, or mignonette always figured. For
some time Arthur was too ill to notice them;
in a while, however, the recurrence of the
same little nosegay reminded him of little
Brooks.
"Yes, it was little Brooks who sent it," said
the nurse; she never saw such an affectionate


74







THE EFFECTS OF CHAMPIONSHIP.


little chap; every morning there he was with
two or three flowers, and he sent his love every
time with them."'
Poor Brooks, the only thing he excelled in
at school was the cultivation of his garden.
Give my love to him," said Arthur in re-
turn, and tell him how I like his flowers."
As he got better-still remaining in the
little room adjoining Mrs Durand's chamber,
she enquired from him one day if he would
not like some of his companions to visit him.
She brought with her three beautiful, fresh-
gathered peaches--for Doctor Durand prided
himself on his fruit, and above all on ]ds
peaches-and nothing now was spared for
Arthur.
Would he not like some of his friends to
come and spend an hour or so with him ? he
could have some of them every day, if he
liked."
"Would you please to let little Brooks
come?" said Arthur, looking more pleased
than he had done through the whole of his
convalescence; poor little fellow r he has
sent me flowers every morning, and I should
so like to see him."
He came, and as soon as he saw Arthur he
burst into tears.
Arthur is better," said Mrs Durand, cheer-


75







A PLEASANT LIFE.


fully, "he's getting quite well. What is there
to cry for?"
Brooks wiped his eyes, and swallowed down
a whole torrent of tears. Arthur made room
for him on the sofa beside him, and they sate
hand in hand with apparently nothing to say to
each other. Mrs Durand stood by, looking on.
She was rather jealous of leaving them together,
thinking that they would begin to abuse her
husband; so she staved on.
May I give Brooks a peach ?" said Arthur,
addressing Mrs Durand, and putting forth his
hand to the fruit.
This had not been what she intended, but
she said, "Yes, surely, if you've one to spare."
Arthur selected the finest from the plate,
and gave it to his friend, and again they were
silent. She saw that they would be under
constraint as long as she remained; therefore
she went out.
No sooner was the door shut, than Brooks
threw his arms round Arthur's neck, and kissed
him vehemently.
"What can I do for you, Bryce?" he said.
"Oh! I've had such a time for I know what
flogging is! only nobody ever was flogged as
you were! and if it had not been for you he'd
have almost killed me! And they all say
you're the pluckiest fellow that ever lived.


76







THE EFFECTS OF CHAMPIONSHIP. 77
You'll see what they say when you come into
the playground again! But, Bryce, what made
me so miserable was thinking how you must
have hated and despised me-I did so hate and
despise myself. And if I had been plucky like
you I should have said it was my letter."
"It's all right," said Arthur, interrupting
him.
"They all thought it was your letter," con-
tinued Brooks, "and that you would not confess
to it. They all thought it was plucky of you
but Bradley, and he said you had told a lie-
they didn't think there was any harm in it-
but he said he thought better of you, and that
for his part he would die rather than tell a lie;
so I told him-- "
What have you done," said Arthur, sharply,
"it was my secret as well as yours, and you
had no right to blab it."
"Now don't be vexed with me !" pleaded
the poor lad, they all think so well of you!"
"There was no need to tell it to any of
them," said Arthur. There was a time when
I'd have told twenty lies to get out of a flogging,
and I've had flogging enough in my day, I
can tell you; but I promised a friend of mine
never to tell a lie, and I shall keep my promise,
but not for love or reverence of that old Doctor,
I can tell him. But that's nothing to the pur-







A PLEASANT LIFE.


pose. You should not have told Bradley or
any one."
"I am so sorry I've vexed you, for you're
the best friend I ever had," said Brooks, with
tears in his eyes.
"And you're a little goose," said Arthur,
with something of his old cheerfulness; "but
you made away with the letter?" he added.
"You've never kept it, surely ?"
Oh, Arthur," said he, quite in another
tone. "I did so want to tell you-mamma says
that she will speak to my guardian about me
leaving at Christmas-she does not think he
will object; and Jack's going to sea-he does
so like the thoughts of it-she thinks she could
have got a berth for me too, only I'm not strong
enough; and Lucy's very ill with gastric fever
-I could see how mamma had cried by the
big blots of tears in the letter. So I shall stand
it out- as well as I can till Christmas-and
you'll talk to me sometimes-it wants seven
weeks and three days till Christmas."
They talked in a whisper the whole time, for
however kind and motherly Mrs Durand might
be, she could not escape undeserved suspicion.
They said she listened at the doors, and now,
when they had been so deeply engrossed by
conversation, she seemed to enter abruptly.
Brooks had not tasted the peach, which still


78







THE EFFECTS OF CHAMPIONSHIP.


lay untouched on the table before him; nor did
he seem to remember it till she reminded him
of it, then he ate it. It must be confessed
that she was a little disconcerted by this evi-
dence of some deeply interesting subject of
conversation having engrossed them.
Arthur, in whose mind a deeply conscien-
tious sense had been called forth by the teach-
ings of Mr Sutherland, often argued with him-
self during this time of suffering and seclusion,
whether he could honourably write to that
dear friend. He knew that he had been ill in
consequence of Dr Durand's severe school dis-
cipline, and that a physician had been called
in. In all probability, therefore, his uncle had
been communicated with, and had taken such
steps as he considered right. But in this case
his uncle had only received Dr Durand's state-
ment, by which he would appear in so black a
light. His uncle's silence he interpreted as
the sign of his displeasure and the loss of his
favour-and this was a very distressing
thought.
In any case, however, he could write more
freely to Mr Sutherland than to his uncle; and
now the question deeply agitated his mind.
Could he honourably break the laws of the
school, and write privately to his friend of
matters which seriously implicated the cha-


79







A PLEASANT LIFE.


racter of Dr Durand ? He could not come to a
clear understanding of the question, and was
pondering deeply, and somewhat anxiously
upon it one day, when Mrs Durand came in,
looking cheerful, and bringing with her an
interesting book, which Arthur had expressed
a desire to read.
Does anything trouble you, my poor fel-
low ?" said she kindly, seeing the peculiar ex-
pression on his countenance.
Arthur told her that he wished to write to a
dear friend-to Mr Sutherland, a gentleman
who had formerly been his tutor, and who was
greatly esteemed by his uncle, added he,
thinking that this was a strong argument in
his favour.
"Write, certainly to him, by all means!"
said she, cheerfully, "the Doctor will not ob-
ject to your writing out of order, whilst you
are up-stairs."
"But," said Arthur, "if I write, my letter
must go unread."
"You know, my dear fellow," returned she,
"the rules of the school. I candidly confess
that I wish they were less severe. But Dr
Durand considers them necessary. There
must, you know, be obedience in a large school
like this, just as in the army. This, however,
I will do for you, Arthur, if you will give me


80







THE EFFECTS OF CHAMPIONSHIP. 81
your solemn promise, not to write anything
which I might not read. I will, then, give
you my word that the letter shall pass through
no hand but mine to the post. Be honour-
able with me, and I will give you this privi-
lege, which I would not venture to give to any
other young gentleman in the school."
"I wanted to write openly and unreservedly
to Mr Sutherland," returned Arthur. "He
was the first who taught me what a mean and
dastardly thing fear is. Indeed, Mrs Durand,
if you will believe me, I never dared to speak
the truth as long as I was afraid of punish-
ment; and yet, suffering of any kind-pain I
mean-is very horrible to me. He said, I must
never be afraid of anything except doing evil."
"But," said Mrs Durand, with a grave, and
somewhat reproachful look, "you broke the
law of the school by going out of bounds; you
were thus disobedient and rebellious; you re-
ceived a letter clandestinely, then denied it to
the Doctor's face, and in the face of the whole
school."
"I broke the laws of the school, I know,"
returned he, "both by going out of bounds
and receiving a letter, and I was punished. As
regards the letter itself, I can say nothing.
God, however, knows that I told no lie."
Better say nothing more," remarked Mr?







A PLEASANT LIFE.


Durand coldly, and looking greatly distressed.
" I am sorry, indeed, that we have had this con-
versation. However, I shall repeat it to no
one. You have been punished, as I thought,
more than sufficiently; and as I have promised
to post a letter for you to this gentleman, I
must enjoin upon you to behave honourably
with me. Write nothing but what I might
read. I will believe you honourable, and the
letter shall be posted."
He was deeply wounded by this conversa-
tion. Even Mrs Durand, whom he had be-
lieved his friend, had not faith in him. It
was impossible to clear himself; and even the
writing to Mr Sutherland, which otherwise
would have been so great a comfort to him,
was made difficult and painful. He wrote as
follows :-

"MY DEAR MR SUTHERLAND,-When I
wrote last, I told you I was coming to this
school. My uncle and old Mrs Willoughby
think very highly of it; and there are no less
than fifty-seven boarders.
"I came last year at the beginning of the
third term, and am now in the third of this.
There are public examinations and exhibitions
here, and all are striving to make a great figure
this time. All the friends and relations are


82







THE EFFECTS OF CHAMPIONSHIP.


invited. Last year there were lots of big-
wigs; a member of Parliament was expected,
but did not come; neither were uncle nor Mrs
Willoughby here. I recited the Funeral Ora.
tion from Thucydides, the first satire from
Horace, and Bartlett-he's a beautiful German
scholar-and I gave a scene from Schiller's
Wallenstein.
"I have been ill, and am only now getting
better. I cannot tell you about it, only I was
severely caned-the Doctor is a great hand at
that. I broke two of the rules of the school
wilfully, but I do not think you would blame
me. Then they said I told a lie, which I did
not, and never will. I remembered your tell-
ing me. I know where it was to an inch in
the long shrubbery, about the Red Indians,
and how bravely they bore their torture and
never flinched. I never was a good hand at
bearing pain; it makes me feel sick when I
think of it; but I told no lie, though I was
flogged as if I had; and the worst of it is, that
Mrs Durand, who has been very kind to me,
thinks I did. I am now better, but I have
been up-stairs nearly three weeks, and I am
getting tired of it now.
"There is a little boy in the school-he is
nearly fourteen, though-only so small of his
age, and lame. He has been very good to me,


83







A PLEASANT LIFE.


and has sent me nearly all the flowers out of
his garden. I believe I have many friends in
the school, and some of them are very good
fellows.
"Will you please to find an opportunity,
through Mrs Edward Leeson, of sending the
little box I enclose with this to Mary Leeson,
with my love. It is the gold pencil case
which I have had so long for her. I don't
think uncle would object to it; do you? I
want her to remember me. I thought of her
in my trouble. I remember your wish to
have a nice little dog. If I could get one that
I thought you would like, I would train it for
you.
"I hope we shall meet again, and, with my
love, I am your affectionate friend and pupil,
ARTHUR BRYCE.
"P.S.-All the school letters, either sent
out or received, are read; but Mrs Durand
allows me to send this. I should like to hear
from you, but, perhaps, you had better not
write."

This parting injunction arose from the fear
that, if Mr Sutherland connected the illness
of which Arthur had spoken with the fearful
caning, as he would be almost sure to do, and
should break forth into vehement indignation


84







THE EFFECTS OF CHAMPIONSHIP. 85
against the school and his system, which was
also very likely, then he would appear not to
have kept faith'with Mrs Durand.
The gold pencil-case, contained in a little
box, and enclosed in the letter, was one which
had caused him some perplexity. It will be
remembered that no sooner had Mary Leeson
left his uncle's than he began to save up his
pocket-money to purchase some nice little
present for her, as he mentioned in the letter
accompanying the polished pebble. In those
days, however, he was so sparingly supplied
with pocket-money that it was a considerable
time before he had saved sufficient to purchase
even a small silver pencil-case. His uncle
was then going to London, and, thinking that
handsome things could be bought there, asked
him to lay out his money for him, without
saying for what purpose the purchase was in-
tended. His uncle, however, desirous of giving
a pleasure, brought him back a handsome,
though small gold pencil-case, the cost of
which was at least four times his little hoard.
He was grealty delighted; but, at the same
time, sorely perplexed. Even Mr Sutherland
could not satisfy his mind on the subject. He
had never thought of the pencil-case as for
himself; he had saved his money only to pur-
chase one for Mary Leeson, and he would ten







A PLEASANT LIFE.


times rather give her gold than silver, and yet
here now was one worthy of her, with its
dainty little amethyst seal, cut with the device
of an anchor, and "Hope Ever" round it, just
what he should like her to have, and yet he
could neither give it to her, nor use it himself!
He looked at it again and again, but never
was tempted to appropriate it to -his own use,
and his uncle, supposing him to be satisfied,
thought no more about it. 'It remained still
in the pretty box in which it had left the gold-
smith's, and Arthur had it with him at school.
Now, therefore, when he had been ill, and his
thoughts had dwelt on that beloved companion
of his earlier days, the sweet and calm expres-
sion of whose countenance seemed to have
assured him in his moment of weakness and
temptation, he resolved to send her the pencil-
case which had seemed from the first to belong
to her. She was frequently at her uncle
Edward's; indeed, in any case, the families
were in such constant communication that she
would soon receive it.
The letter, with its bulky enclosure, was
given into Mrs Durand's hand, and by her
faithfully committed to the post.


86







MISTS CLEAR AWAY.


CHAPTER VII.



BUT Mary was not at her uncle Edward's. She
was spending the autumn with her parents in
Cornwall, and Mr Sutherland was with them.
The letter, therefore, was forwarded on, and, as
may be supposed, produced a great excitement,
and no less vehement a burst of indignation
than Aithur had imagined. At that distance,
and in. failing health as he then was, Mr
Sutherland could not instantly set off to in-
quire what this caning and his illness meant.
He had no fear of Arthur lapsing into the
old sin of his childhood, but, knowing that
even a fine nature may be demoralized by a
bad system, he could think of nothing but that
he should be removed. It was very difficult
for his friends to satisfy him that writing to
Mr Willoughby would be sufficient.
Both Mary and he wrote to Arthur, and
were careful to write only that which even Dr
Durand might read, and not by any means to


87







A PLEASANT LIFE.


compromise him with his kind friend, Mrs
Durand.
Mary wrote, and, sympathetically as she was
sure to do, thanked him for the pencil-case
which she said was just what she wanted, and
which she should always wear for his sake,
with a little gold heart and cross, given her
by Aunt Emmeline, and a bunch of oriental
charms, the gift of Mr Sutherland. She told
him of the delightful time they were having
on that wild Cornish coast, and how she wished
his uncle would sometime let him go with
them on their pleasant autumn holidays, more
especially as Mr Sutherland had promised to
accompany them whenever he could do so,
though her father feared his health was de-
clining. She described the aquarium they were
making, though as yet only in a large wash-
hand basin, and enclosed for him the most
beautiful specimen of sea-weed which she had
yet dried.
Boy-and-girl letters had passed between
them frequently during the time of Mr Suther-
land's tutorship. Latterly they had ceased.
Mr Sutherland wrote him a very kind and
somewhat amusing letter. Told him how he
had been mistaken by these good Cornish people
for a quack-doctor, because he had prescribed
for a sick man, and now had such plenty of


88







MISTS CLEAR AWAY.


patients that he thought of setting up in the
village, he had also been taken for the preacher
of some unknown sect of Methodists, and
asked to preach. One day also he had been
enticed into telling some of his old comic
stories at a school tea-drinking, and since then
crowds of children gathered near him wher-
ever he went, smiling and prompting the
boldest amongst them to tell them his stories
over again. He said he hoped Arthur would
be his companion on some of their autumn
rambles, and that he should like to have a dog
of his training. He grieved extremely to hear
that he had been ill, but he supposed that his
uncle knew of his illness; as to the caning, that
was very sad, but he could not write about it.
Then commending him to the tender care
of his best friend, the loving Saviour, and
begging not to forget their Sunday-evening
readings and talk together, he bade him
affectionately farewell.
The indignation which he did not venture
to express to Arthur le poured out in full
force to Mr Willoughby, who, surprised and
no little displeased not to have been informed
of his nephew's illness, whatever the cause
might be, set off immediately to ascertain the
truth. He was sincerely attached to him, and
had wholly blotted out of his remembrance


89







A PLEASANT LIFE.


the poor lad's early delinquencies. Not so his
mother; she had kept them in her mind, if
by no other way, by making Dr Durand ac-
quainted with them. She had an excellent
memory for the faults and shortcomings of
others, and, as her son sometimes told her, for
those of Arthur specially.
The next day he was at the school, and Dr
Durand, who was an extremely urbane man,
received him with much show of cordiality.
Mr Willoughby had been strictly warned by
Mr Sutherland not to betray either Arthur or
Mrs Durand with respect to the letter which
Arthur had written, consequently to guard
against suspicion in the first inquiries he made
regarding his health,
And how is my nephew ?" asked he, with ap-
parent ease, when the first salutations were over.
He is in excellent health, thank God," said
the Doctor; then, perceiving a peculiar expres-
sion on the countenance of his visitor which
made him think that candour was the wiser
plan to pursue, he added-" There has been
some little trouble, but it is all past, all past,
my dear sir. He is a lad of fine abilities, and
is a universal favourite."
"Be so good as to explain yourself," said
Mr Willoughby. "What is the little trouble
you speak of?"


90







MISTS CLEAR AWAY.


The Doctor looked grave; spoke affection-
ately as such men can do of their young friends,
and the pain it costs them to inflict punish-
ment. But discipline must be maintained.
He had great experience, and knew that there
was a time in the life of every youth when the
rebellious spirit was strong, and must be
broken. He punished, he said, no faults
severely but disobedience and falsehood.
Mr Willoughby made no remark, and was
almost afraid of hearing more; he would have
given almost any amount of money to know
that Arthur had not deserved punishment;
and, the Doctor continued, his conduct was
praiseworthy in the main, but in these respects
he had been guilty.
Mr Willoughby thought of his mother's
words, and his compassion for the erring boy
made him groan in spirit.
I am more grieved than I can express," he
said, "but let me know the worst."
Dr Durand, relieved by seeing the effect
which he had already produced, and feeling
his conduct justified, proceeded to' say that
Arthur had knowingly broken the laws of the
school by going out of bounds and by receiving
at the post-office an anonymous letter for him-
self. It was proved by one of the gentlemen
engaged in the school who met him on the


91







A PLEASANT LIFE.


road, and by the post-master who had given up
the letter to him. He denied that the letter
was for himself, in the most hardened manner
-yet not a boy in the school knew of it. He
begged to remind Mr Willoughby, whilst pro-
fessing the utmost pain in so doing, that this
hardened denial of his faults had been an early
habit of his, as, he regretted to say, his estim-
able friend Mrs Willoughby had thought it
necessary to state to him.
Again Mr Willoughby felt compassion for the
poor lad, who having, as he believed, honestly
striven to overcome this great fault, had been,
as it were, betrayed by his mother. He made
no remark, however, and Dr Durand continued.
It was painful to him, but he felt compelled
to make an example of him before the whole
school, in the very face of which, so to speak,
the whole thing was done. Discipline must
be kept up-chastisement was necessary, was
wholesome. "Punishment, my dear sir," said
he, must be severe if it is to effect its pur-
pose, which is reformation-our young friend
will not require it again. God punishes the
sinner whom He cannot save-we, the humble
servants of His justice, punish only for refor-
mation-our young friend is reformed-it will
not again be needed."
Mr Willoughby heard this, which was in fact


92







MISTS CLEAR AWAY.


the reasoning of his mother. Four years pre-
viously he had held the same opinions. He was
scarcely aware till this moment how much his
views had changed. But if Arthur had re-
lapsed into the old errors, what could he say?
He felt like the sorrowing father of the pro-
digal son whilst he believed that he was lost.
The expression of his countenance would have
touched any but the hardest heart.
"But he has been ill," he said, forgetting
that this information came from Arthur him-
self. "Why was I not informed? My poor
boy he might have died !"
"Had it been necessary, my dear sir," re-
turned Dr Durand, "you would have been
informed. It was not necessary. He was, I
am sorry to say, in a very hardened and defiant
state of mind, and he bore his punishment in
the most stoical manner-which, putting an
unnatural and undue restraint upon the feel-
ings, reacts on the brain. He is of a nervous
temperament and very excitable. A physician
was called, because I am in a responsible posi-
tion-but he was soon all right again-a little
while in the nursery, and Mrs Durand's care was
all-sufficient-she is like a mother to the boys
-indeed she is almost too indulgent," said he,
smiling! "she has no children of her own, my
dear sir, and she has always had a great liking


93







A PLEASANT LIFE.


for Arthur-indeed, as I said, he is a universal
favourite, and I must add, a youth of extra-
ordinary abilities, very extraordinary!"
After this Mr Willoughby desired to see his
nephew. He said that the communication had
been very painful to him-that he would see
Mrs Durand later, and thank her for her kind-
ness-but for the present he must be alone
with the lad, and would therefore take him out
for the day.
Arthur was sent for. He had no idea of
finding his uncle there, and the sight of him
called forth the most undisguised joy. There
was no fear in that joy-his uncle thought so
at once, and hailed it as a refutation of Dr
Durand's accusation. The next moment, the
somewhat attenuated face, usually so radiant
with health, went direct to his heart, and,
regardless of the presence of Dr Durand, he
literally, in the words of Scripture, fell on the
lad's neck and kissed him.
Arthur had written to Mr Sutherland in his
trouble, because he had always felt more at
home with him, than with his uncle. The two,
however, had been coming nearer and nearer
to each other, but Arthur knew not how near
he was to his uncle's heart till now, when com-
passionating love removed every barLier be-
tween them.


94







MISTS CLEAR AWAY.


As soon as they were out of ear-shot of the
school his uncle began-
"Arthur, my poor lad, I need not tell you
how grieved I am about this-may God for-
give you, as I do; but you must tell me all
about it-don't deceive me." He spoke in a
low, broken voice, for he was deeply affected.
"Uncle," said Arthur, his pale face flushing
crimson, "the Doctor has been telling you
some of his lies."
Don't let me hear you talk so," inter-
rupted his uncle, with somewhat of the old
severity.
"No, uncle, you shall not," said Arthur,
corrected; and after all, Dr Durand does not
know the truth-I could not tell him; but,
uuncle, I can tell you," said he, with such a
cheerful straightforwardness of manner that
his uncle could not doubt him. If voice and
manner indicated anything, then the boy spoke
truth.
Arthur told the whole story, beginning with
poor lame Brooks and all his troubles, and
ending with his having written the' letter, to
Mr Sutherland, through the kind connivance
of Mrs Durand, which bound him not to enter
into such particulars as would implicate her
husband in the management of the school, for
though he did not believe that she would read


95







A PLEASANT LIFE.


the letter, yet he was bound in honour only to
write that which she might have read. He
begged his uncle to see little Brooks, which
was no more than reasonable, for Mrs Durand
knew, if the Doctor did not, how the poor fel-
low had sent him flowers, and would have
waited upon him like a little slave, if they
would have let him-he could not forgive him-
self for having allowed another to suffer for
him.
But, uncle," said Arthur, seeing the indig-
nant anger which was about to burst forth,
"all the fellows think the Doctor has had
enough of flogging for the present-and I do
not so much mind for myself, now it is over,
if they did not all believe that I had told a lie;
but Bradley knows that I did not-he is the
first fellow in the school, everybody looks up
to him-little Brooks told him, for he was not
afraid of his blabbing, because he is so honour-
able-see him, uncle, and he'll tell you just
what I say."
I tell you what, Arthur," said his uncle,
stopping and looking very angry, "you shall
not stay here. Bless my soul! is a lad to be
flogged to death, and we never open our
mouths? I'll see the medical man, and know
the truth. You've been very ill, I can see -
Why, I'll be bound to say you've lost a stone


96







MISTS CLEAR AWAY.


in these few weeks. How long were you ill?
I'll know the truth, Arthur-and all England
shall know it, too. How long, I say, were you
ill?"
Arthur told him, making, however, as light
of his own sufferings as possible. He shrunk
from the idea of newspaper publicity almost as
much as Dr Durand could do.
Uncle," he said, I'm all right now. Mrs
Durand was as kind to me as if I had been her
own son-only she still thinks I told a lie
about the letter-but I must bear that for little
Brooks's sake-we must never betray him-
you would be sorry for him if you only knew
what a poor little frightened chap he is, and
yet as faithful as a dog. So, let all that pass,
uncle, and I'll tell you what-only they don't
want anything said about it-all the best fel-
lows-twenty of them, with Bradley at their
head-will send in this very day a protest to
the Doctor against such savage flogging-they
won't stand it, they say, and if there's any
more of it they'll write to the Times-only it's
very respectfully done. He cannot flog twenty
of them, and all big fellows-three of them
nineteen, into the bargain. So, uncle, I think
there'll be an end of it; and if I have been the
means of such a good reformation as this in
the school, I don't mind."
G


97




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