• TABLE OF CONTENTS
HIDE
 Front Cover
 Front Matter
 Frontispiece
 Title Page
 Chapter I
 Chapter II
 Chapter III
 Chapter IV
 Chapter V
 Back Cover
 Spine














Title: Harry Galbraith, or, The pierced eggs
CITATION THUMBNAILS PAGE TURNER PAGE IMAGE ZOOMABLE
Full Citation
STANDARD VIEW MARC VIEW
Permanent Link: http://ufdc.ufl.edu/UF00080703/00001
 Material Information
Title: Harry Galbraith, or, The pierced eggs
Alternate Title: Pierced eggs
Physical Description: 1 v. (unpaged) : ill. (some col.) ; 16 cm.
Language: English
Creator: Gunston, W ( Engraver )
Frederick Warne and Co ( Publisher )
Dalziel Brothers
Camden Press ( Printer )
Publisher: Frederick Warne & Co.
Place of Publication: London
Manufacturer: Dalziel Brothers ; Camden Press
Publication Date: 1891
 Subjects
Subject: Children -- Conduct of life -- Juvenile fiction   ( lcsh )
Conduct of life -- Juvenile fiction   ( lcsh )
Rabbits -- Juvenile fiction   ( lcsh )
Sportsmanship -- Juvenile fiction   ( lcsh )
Fathers and sons -- Juvenile fiction   ( lcsh )
Soccer -- Juvenile fiction   ( lcsh )
Students -- Juvenile fiction   ( lcsh )
Obedience -- Juvenile fiction   ( lcsh )
Friendship -- Juvenile fiction   ( lcsh )
Bldn -- 1891
Genre: novel   ( marcgt )
Spatial Coverage: England -- London
 Notes
Statement of Responsibility: by Mrs. Greene ; with coloured frontispiece.
General Note: Illustrations by Gunston; frontispiece printed in colors.
 Record Information
Bibliographic ID: UF00080703
Volume ID: VID00001
Source Institution: University of Florida
Rights Management: All rights reserved by the source institution and holding location.
Resource Identifier: aleph - 002230781
notis - ALH1146
oclc - 189849386

Table of Contents
    Front Cover
        Front Cover 1
        Front Cover 2
    Front Matter
        Front Matter
    Frontispiece
        Frontispiece
    Title Page
        Title Page
    Chapter I
        Page 1
        Page 2
        Page 3
        Page 4
        Page 5
        Page 6
        Page 7
        Page 8
        Page 9
        Page 10
        Page 11
        Page 12
        Page 13
    Chapter II
        Page 14
        Page 15
        Page 16
        Page 17
        Page 18
        Page 19
        Page 20
        Page 21
        Page 22
        Page 23
        Page 24
    Chapter III
        Page 25
        Page 26
        Page 27
        Page 28
        Page 29
        Page 30
        Page 31
        Page 32
        Page 33
    Chapter IV
        Page 34
        Page 35
        Page 36
        Page 37
        Page 38
        Page 39
        Page 40
        Page 41
        Page 42
        Page 43
        Page 44
        Page 45
        Page 46
        Page 47
        Page 48
        Page 49
    Chapter V
        Page 50
        Page 51
        Page 52
        Page 53
        Page 54
        Page 55
        Page 56
        Page 57
        Page 58
        Page 59
        Page 60
        Page 61
        Page 62
    Back Cover
        Back Cover 1
        Back Cover 2
    Spine
        Spine
Full Text







HARRY GALBRAITH;

OR,

THE PIERCED EGGS.




BY
THE HON. MRS. GREENE,
Author of Cushions and Corners," Star in the Dustheaf," etc.



WITH ILLUSTRATIONS.


LONDON AND NEW YORK:
FREDERICK WARNE AND CO.
1891.











HARRY GALBRAITH;
OR,
THE PIERCED EGGS.



CHAPTER I.

SELL, Harry, what
makes you so dis-
consolate this
morning? Has
Miller made a
longer score than
you again to-day?"
"No, mother, we
weren't at cricket at
all this -morning;
people don't play cricket in winter-time ;"
and Harry, preoccupied as he was with
some gloomy considerations, could scarce-








Harry Galbraitl ;

ly repress a smile at his mother's igno-
rance of games in general and of cricket
in particular.
Why, I thought you came home yes-
terday wild with Miller for making a
higher score than you. I 'm sure I heard
you telling your father about it at dinner-
time."
It was football I was talking of, not
cricket. I said Miller kicked two goals,
and that if he had played fairly he would
not have got either of them."
How's that, Harry? you always seem
to me to think that whenever you are
beaten, people must have played un-
fairly."
Nothing of the kind," replied Harry,
hotly; "but Miller's a fellow that is al-
ways bent on cutting other fellows out,
and he seems to make it a special point
to cut me out in particular. He has been
trying a new dodge this morning, and







or, the Pierced Eggs.


Piq~yihng at Footba!7.


thinks, no doubt, he has put a final extin-
guisher on me, but I 'll be even with him
yet; I'm determined I will at any cost."
How so, Harry ? what has he done ?
I really don't think Miller has such veno-
mous intentions as you give him credit
for."







Harry Galbraith;

"Hasn't he, though, just you wait till
you hear what he has down now. Last
Sunday, walking to church, I, like a gaoy,
began telling him about my Spanish fowl,
and how I intended going in for the prize
at the poultry show in the spring, and all
the rest of it; and he asked me how I
reared my chickens in the winter-time,
and I told him all about the rats running
off with my best chickens, and how diffi-
cult I found it to keep any of them alive,
and the fellow seemed so interested in
all I was saying, and I explained to him
how I intended, if I got first prize, to ad-
vertise in the paper, and sell eggs for
hatching, and .make enough money to
buy myself a watch; and now, mother,
what do you think he has done ?"
"What?" asked his mother, putting
down her work, and listening with evi-
dent interest for what would come next.
He has sent off to London for some







or, the Pierced Eggs.

first-prize Spanish eggs, and paid two
guineas for them, so as to cut me out at
the show, and prevent me from gaining
the prize."
"Well, I must say that was not very
nice of him," said Mrs. Galbraith, sym-
pathizingly-; "but are you quite sure
your information is correct ? Who told
you he had done so ?"
"Jenkins did, and he knows all about
it; for a cousin of his, Bill Symonds, has
lately gone to work in Miller's garden,
and he and young Miller are a sort of
chums, and he told Jenkins how he had
been sent all over the country to find a
sitting hen to put uponthese very eggs;
and that they thought they would never
find one, till at last some old woman, who
keeps an orange-stall at the foot of Brink-
ley's Hill, sold them one for five shillings;
and he must have been pretty well bent
on his plan, to pay such a price as that."






Harry Galbrail/ ;


"But has not Miller kept fowls for
several years past ? It is no new thing
for him to begin the fancy now, is it ?"
"No, of course not; but his have been
chiefly Brahma and Dorking, and it is
only just because I told him I wanted to
take the prize in Spanish, he has gone
and done this. It's the meanest and
shabbiest thing I ever heard of; for
Miller's father is as rich as Crcesus, and
can pay anything he likes for his son,
whereas I must pinch and scrape for
everything I want, and if I can't buy it
myself there is no one to buy it for me;"
and Harry's voice, as he ended this
selfish speech, was decidedly hoarse, and
his eyes too full of misty tears to notice
the look of disappointment and pain
which passed over his mother's face at
the reproachful words with which he had
concluded his sentence.
I think, Harry, it is scarcely fair to






or, the Pierced Eggs.




" ', 4 ;


Harry and his Mother.


condemn Miller unheard," she said, pre-
sently, as if anxious to ignore altogether
the last ill-considered speech of her son;







Harry Galbraith;


"if I were you I would not take Jenkins'
word as decisive in a matter of so much
importance."
Why not, mother ?" said Harry,
testily; "is not Jenkins' word as good
as Miller's any day ? "
It is quite possible it may be; but
at the same time you have only known
him for a very short period, and you
have known Miller for years, and during
all that time he has never done a deceit-
ful or underhand thing; and I must say,"
continued Mrs. Galbraith, warmly, as she
observed Harry's indifferent and some-
what contemptuous expression of face,
"that I am surprised, and so is your
father, to see that you should have made
so intimate a companion and friend of a
boy whom you scarcely know, and whose
language, from the very little I have
heard of it, is certainly most unfit for
any one to listen to."






or, the Pierced Eggs.

"Miller speaks to Bill Symonds, and
he is Jenkins' cousin," said Harry, hotly.
I dare say he does; but I quite dis-
agree with you that he makes a chum of
him. I always notice that Miller keeps
quite aloof, except when he has direc-
tions to give about the garden or some
other necessary work; but it will end,
Harry, I see, in your father being obliged
to dismiss Jenkins if he sees you persist
in making such an intimate friend and
companion of him."
Harry did not answer aloud, for he
saw his mother was becoming much
vexed with his uncourteous replies, so
he contented himself with muttering, half
beneath his breath, the words he was
afraid to utter.
"Jenkins is worth a dozen Millers,
that I '11 swear any day! It was plain
to see Harry was already taking a lesson
from Jenkins' language. After this there







Harry Galbi-aith;

followed a most unpleasant pause, which
presently became so painful and embar-
rassing that Harry rose from his chair
sulkily, and went out through the open
window of the inner room into the gar-
den at the back of the house.
The moment he stepped out on the
grass turf, the surface of which was cov-
ered at various distances with fowl-coops
and broken plates and hampers and dirty
straw, a hen, who had been sitting in a
sunny corner of the garden beside the
stable wall, with a brood of tiny black
chickens sheltering themselves under her
wings, arose with much clucking and
cackling, and rushed to meet him, fol-
lowed by the whole of her half-fledged
family, who, up to this morning, had
possessed such an intense interest for the
eyes of their owner, but who now circled
vainly round his legs, receiving no fur-
ther notice than an angry sidelong kick,







or, the Pierced Eggs.

which sent one little blackamoor spin-
ning over on its head, and dispersed the
group with considerable clamour.
Much good you will be to me now,
with all the money I 've spent on you,"
muttered Harry, angrily, as he took up
his position on the top of an inverted
hamper. I might have beaten the
county with you, but not the pick of all
London, brought down and reared here
under my very nose. Ugh, the shabby
sneak I hate him, with his smiling hum-
bugging face and his treacly manner! "
"Well, Master Harry, what's ailing
you this fine morning, that you're sitting
so glumpy like and stupid?" asked a
voice in Harry's ear, which made him
start'round, to find Jenkins close beside
him, leaning on a rake, with which he
had been trying to smooth over some
of the gravel on the pathway. "I was
just a-watching of you. a-sitting there







Harry Galbraith;

like a bird that was sick of the pip, and
I was larfin' at you in my sleeve, so I
was."
You have precious little to do if you
can find no better way of spending your
time than in laughing at me!" cried
Harry, hotly. Go on with your work,
and leave me alone, will you ?"
"Aye, that's just it," replied Jenkins,
with imperturbable blandness; I wants
to go on with my work, but I can't do it
unless one gives me a helping hand."
How do you mean?" asked Harry,
angrily.
It's summat I would not like to shout
out here in the garden, with all the
chickens and the hens a-listening to one
with their heads cocked all on one side,
and their eyes blinkin' at me so knowing
and clever like, but if you'll step inside
into the harness-room, I '11 show you
what it is I want you to do for me."






or, the Pierced Eggs.

"Is this any humbug of yours, Jenkins ?
for if it is, I'm in no humour for tom-
foolery!" cried Harry, rising at the same
time from the hamper on which he had
been seated.
You shall judge that for yourself by-
and-bye, and more especially as it's all
for you I'm working. You needn't be
in such a flame like of passion; come in
here, and I '11 put you up to a dodge or
two, and no mistake."
Harry followed Jenkins into the stable,
the door of which he closed carefully
behind him, and then turning aside into
the harness-room, he also shut this door
after him and placed a board across the
window, and then, having carried out all
these precautions, he ventured to un-
burden his mind to his young master.






Harry Galbrailt;


CHAPTER II.

OW, see here, Master
Hal," cried Jen-
kins, at what I've
got in this 'ere
barrel, and mind
,F you, though they
1 look very ordi-
nary articles, I'm
:=-.- going to make a
miracle come out
of 'em as will surprise you, and no mis-
take!" And Jenkins, raising the cover
of the barrel, put in his long freckled arm,
and drew out two very commonplace
white eggs, large and glossy, and held
them up to the light between the thumb
and first finger of each hand. Now, just
take a squint at these 'ere eggs, Master






or, the Pierced Eggs.


Hal, and see if you can't perceive real
beauties of birds a-walkin' about inside o'
them, wi' a blue ribbon round their necks
and a card hanging from them wi' First
Prize' printed on each in large letters !"
Humbug!" cried Harry; what rub-
bish are you talking ? I see nothing of
the kind."
"You don't? Now that's amazin!"
observed Jenkins, still gazing at the eggs
in a knowing manner, with one eye shut.
"Well, if you don't see them, I do; at
least, I see them in my mind's eye; but,
as I said before, some magic must be
practised on it first, and that's the part
of the play which you are to act, and a
very simple part it is, especially as I have
provided all the necessary materials."
"What are you driving at, Jenkins ?"
asked Harry, quite mystified. Can't
you talk in plain English, and say what
you really mean ?"






Harry Galbraith;

"Well then, what I really mean is this:
you be so good, Master Harry, as to
take this 'ere pen, which I have just
dipped in the ink-bottle, and print on
the side of this egg in my hand the words
which I will tell you, only you must print
'em clean and clever like, and just in the
centre of each."
"What a ridiculous idea! what good
will it do, writing on the eggs ?" said
Harry, holding the pen in his hand
awkwardly enough.
"Never you mind; only just you do
as I bids you, and write down, First
Prize, December 16, 1870.'"
Well, I will do as you tell me, but I
see no good to be gained by it."
"That's my look out, not yours,"
replied Jenkins, watching with a critical
eye while Harry printed the words on
the side of the first egg.
But ."hy am I to put the 16th when






or, the Pierced Eggs.

this is the i8th?" asked Harry, as, ac-
cording to Jenkins' directions, he printed
the words in clear black characters.
"Put the i6th, and ask no questions;
it's all a kind of magic, I tell you, and
magic don't go by no regular rule. There,
that's all correct," he added, when Harry
had finished printing the necessary words
on the second egg. Now, you just wait
and see when these 'ere eggs are hatched
what beauties will walk out of 'em, and
in order to be quite sure of their getting
out of their-shells, I intends to pierce a
little hole here in the top of each." And
Jenkins, as he spoke, deliberatley pressed
the point of a pin which he held in his
hand into the end of each egg, making
the smallest imaginable air-hole, but still
sufficiently large to prevent all possibility
of the eggs ever turning out profitably.
"What did you do that for?" asked
Harry, quite angrily, for somehow Jen-
2-a






Harry Galbraith;

kins' manner had up to now almost con-
vinced him that there was something out
of the common and curious about the
eggs in question, but Harry knew enough
about the rearing of chickens to know
that a pin-hole in the shell would ruin the
best egg in the world, and yet Jenkins
had, before his very eyes, deliberately
spoilt both eggs on which e apparently
set such store.
Now, listen to me, Master Harry,"
said Jenkins with a knowing wink, I 'm
going to ask your leave to take that old
yellow hen with the blind eye that's been
lying on the nest there these three days,
and to put her sitting on these 'ere eggs,
and a half-dozen or so of common ones
just for company, and if you have the
patience to wait until she brings out her
chicks, I tell you you '11 have a couple of
rare birds for the show in spring, and no
mistake; and Master Miller may put his






or, the Pierced Eggs.


Harry's Fowls.


head under his wing, for I '11 lay a trifle
of money it's not many a chick he '11 have
to make up for the two guineas he was so
quick to send up to London."
Harry listened wonderingly to Jenkins'
rambling discourse, and, of course con-





Harry Galbraith;

sented to the yellow hen being set upon
the magical eggs; but even while he
agreed, a disagreeable impression kept
forcing itself upon his mind, that Jenkins
had some underhand work in prospect,
and that he would be acting a wiser part
in keeping himself free from the whole
transaction, and taking no part in an
affair which, according to all the laws of
nature, could end in nothing but dis-
appointment.
When Jenkins had finished speaking,
he placed the eggs carefully in his pocket-
handkerchief, and then transferred them
as cautiously into his coat-pocket, then,
nodding knowingly to Harry, he went out
through the stable into the back yard,
locking the door behind him, and Harry,
in anything but a pleasant frame of mind,
sauntered back into the garden, his hands
thrust into his pockets, and a disconsolate
whistle rising to his lips, which expressed,






or, the Pierced Eggs.

even better than words, the unhappy key-
note of his thoughts.
Once more he was going to betake
himself to the rustic seat formed by the
overturned hamper, there to indulge in
a reverie over his many grievances, when
again he was interrupted by a voice close
at hand; and looking up, he beheld, to
his dismay, his would-be enemy, Miller,
leaning out of a window situated in a
return building of the next house, and
which overlooked the garden, and in-
deed, to some extent, the house itself.
Well, Galbraith, how are the chickens
getting on?" he asked with a pleasant
smile and a nod of recognition; I have
been trying to noose one hen out of the
window with a piece of cord, but I have
not succeeded as yet."
"You, had better look out, then, and
do nothing of the kind," replied Harry
in a decidedly cranky tone; if I catch






Harry Galbrait ;


any one meddling with my chickens, I'll
let them see they shan't do it again."
How do you mean, old fellow ? Do
you think I 'd really hurt one of them ?
Not I. But I '11 tell you what I've been
doing : there is an unfortunate lame chick
hiding here under one of the shrubs right
before the window, and I've been keep-
ing guard over it, for there's a huge rat
-een waiting for an opportunity to nobble
it, and every time it has put its nose out
of its hole I've shied a handful of peas
or gravel at it : one time the thief got so
cheeky, he made a dart at it and nearly
caught it by the leg, but I was too quick
for him, and I shot a whole pitcher of
water out on its back, and since then it
has not ventured to do more than peep
out of its diggings; and I advise you,"
added Miller, leaning out of the window
and pointing to the shrub beneath him,
"I advise you strongly to watch the






or, the Pzerced Eggs.


young beggar yourself, and put him out
of harm's way until he is able to fight
for himself, for I shall have to be leaving
the house presently."
Harry rose sulkily from the hamper
on which he had seated himself, and ad-
vanced towards the shrub indicated by
his friend. He had a shrewd suspicion
that he had himself lamed the unfortu-
nate chicken by the kick he had so wan-
tonly bestowed upon it in the morning,
and this guilty feeling did not tend to
make his temper sweeter or more respon-
sive, so he only searched among the
laurel-leaves till he came upon the un-
lucky victim of his anger, and, having
discovered it, he, with considerable diffi-
culty, and much squeaking and struggling,
secured it in his hand.
Is it much hurt ? asked Miller, from
the window overhead.
I'm sure I don't know, nor care much






Harry Galbraith;


either, whether it is or not!" replied
Harry, gruffly; "what good is it ?"
"Why," cried Miller, in much surprise,
" I thought that was one of the chickens
you prized so much !"
"Aye, I dare say; prizing is one thing,
and first-prizing is another." And Harry,
without looking up at Miller, walked
slowly off with the bird in his hand.
"Why, what's the row? Come back,
Harry, and tell me; what on earth has
so suddenly put you out of conceit with
your birds ?"
Harry did not vouchsafe any further
reply, but walked, with his head bent
forward on his breast, into the stable.






or, the Pierced Eggs.


CHAPTER III.


T was along three weeks to
wait until the chickens
placed under the yellow
hen could come out, and
during this time Harry
S1. Galbraith avoided his
friend Miller'scompany
in every way in his
power, and even relinquished
his much- prized afternoon
game of football rather than
come in contact with one
whose presence made him
feel nervous and ill at ease.
Harry had never questioned Jenkins
any further with respect to the two eggs
so mysteriously lettered, but, for all that,






Harry Galbraith;


the suspicion of unfair dealing gained
ground each day in strength.
It was not a very easy matter to keep
clear of Miller, and in order to do so,
Harry Galbraith had to deny himself
other pleasures as well as the dailygame
of football, and chief among these was the
impossibility of spending any time in the
garden at the back of the house, which
until now had been his favourite retreat,
for there he kept his tame tortoise and
hedgehog, and, in the stable beyond, his
lop-eared rabbits. It was only when
Miller had been seen going out by the
front door that Harry could venture out
amongst ,his favourites, for otherwise
Miller would be sure to be at the win-
dow, and if at the window, he might ask
uncomfortable questions, or say uncom-
fortable things; and it was with a feeling
of intense relief that Harry heard, early
on a Saturday morning, that Miller had







or, the Pierced Eggs.


gone out for the day, or at least he would
not be home till quite late in the evening;
and as it happened to be a holiday at the
school, it was doubly fortunate for Harry,
and he looked forward with relief to the
thoughts of a day to be spent in the com-
pany of his pets, far from the observing
eye of his evil-disposed neighbour.
Harry wanted also to build a new
rabbit-hutch for some of his numerous
favourites; so, with a tool-box under one
arm, and a couple of planks of wood under
the other, he sallied out into the garden,
where a bright sun was shining so pleas-
antly, as almost to make one forget it was
winter-time.
Jenkins was not in the garden when
Harry first entered it, and he felt quite
a relief at the absence of one whose cun-
ning face had latterly filled him with such
unpleasant forebodings; but this freedom
of thought and action was not to last long,


_I~






Harry Galbraith;

for scarcely had he placed his knee on
one of the planks, and begun to saw it
across, than the stable door opened, and
Jenkins, with an ugly grin on his face,
drew near to,speak to him.
I've grand news for you this morn-
ing, Master Harry, and no mistake," he
said, in a hoarse whisper, while he rubbed
his horny palms together, and leered
unpleasantly in the direction of Miller's
house.
"Well, what?" asked Harry, impa-
tiently. I want to get this hutch fin-
ished before night, and these winter days
are so short."
"It's long enough to hear my news, at
any rate," replied Jenkins, in the same
unpleasant whisper. Bill Symonds has
just told me the fine London clutch of
eggs has turned out a regular no go-
not a bird in one o' the shells; and the
young master next door was in such a






or, the Pierced Eggs.

taking, he actually cried, so he did, with
the disappointment; and his father has
taken him off to spend a day in the
country somewhere, just to baffle his
mind a bit, and put the thought of it all
out of his head."
"Not one chicken out of the whole
set?" gasped Harry, open-mouthed.
"Poor Miller! what awful cheats those
London fellows must be!"
"Poor Miller! poor Miller, indeed!"
repeated Jenkins, sneeringly; "he can't
be so badly off as all that, if he could
afford to send two guineas to London for
a dozen o' eggs, and not even the baker's
dozen in return, which is the right num-
ber to set, after all. No, no, it just serves
him right, trying to get the upper hand
o' us, and 'I 'm not a whit sorry for him
-not a whit; and well I knew not one
of them eggs would come out, for that
matter."






Harry Galbraith;

"Why, how could you know anything
about it?" asked Harry, leaning on his
saw, and looking anxiously into Jenkins'
face.
How could I know? Why, didn't
Bill show them to me himself?" And
Jenkins turned away somewhat nervously
from his young master's earnest gaze.
"But how would looking at them tell
you ?" continued Harry, uneasily.
"Easy enough; besides, Bill took them
out one by one, and gived them into my
own hands, and I knew right well, by the
way they rattled inside o' the shell, so I
did, that they'd never come to anything.
I said so at the time," said Jenkins, boast-
ingly; "and I said so when I seed them
first of all in the little hamper of moss.
At the first glint o' my eye, I knew as
how they'd never come to good; and
Bill Symonds says as how young Master
Miller said you was on no account to






or, the Pierced Eggs.

know he had sent for 'em, and how he
was going to rear 'em.
"That sounds shabby; don't it, now ?"
observed Harry, thoughtfully.
"Aye, don't it? However, as I was
saying, yesterday morning, or, I believe,
the evening before, the grand town eggs
ought to have come out, as their full
three weeks was up, but the greenhorn
said he would give them a day's law
before he would touch one, as no doubt
they might be a trifle stale, but this
morning, when he came down and found
not a chick was out, he broke the eggs
one by one, and every single one o' them
was quite fusty and bad. And now I ask
you to guess what his first word was ? "
"What ?" said Harry, scarcely con-
scious that he spoke.
"'Why,' he says, 'I 'm so awful glad
I never told Harry Galbraith I had got
them;' and, looking straight up at Bill
3






Harry Galbraith;

Symonds, he says, 'You are sure you
never said a word to Jenkins or Master
Galbraith about 'em ?' and Bill, o' course,
answered up as how he never had, good,
bad, or indifferent, and so he just rubbed
his sleeve-arm across his eye a couple o'
times, and got up and walked away, and
told Bill to throw the shells outside some-
where, and take the hen off the nest; and
he went right into the house, and did not
come out again till he and the old chap
rattled off in the trap together."
Harry's face flushed crimson as he
listened to this long recital, and when
Jenkins had finished speaking, he threw
down the saw and turned away from the
unpleasant contemplation of the small
cunning eyes and freckled face. It
was a shame of Bill to tell such a lie!"
he murmured to himself; "but it was a
horrid shame of Miller, also, to try and
outdo me; and what proves he knew it







or, the Pierced Eggs.

was shabby, is the very fact of his being
so afraid of my hearing about it." '
And yet while Harry talked thus to
himself, and argued the case in his
favour, there was a cold misgiving lurk-
ing in his heart of hearts that all was
not so bad on Miller's part as he was
trying to make it out: the very fact of
Jenkins siding so strongly against him
could not but influence the better side
of Harry's nature, for day by day the
evil aspect of Jenkins' character was
showing itself more plainly, and Harry
was beginning to think his parents were
not so far wrong in warning him against
such companionship, though, as yet, they
nad not the slightest inkling of the
gardener's real disposition, for it is need-
less to say that if they had known it,' his
stay in their employment would not have
extended beyond the hour in which they
first discovered it.
3-2







Harry Galbraith;


CHAPTER IV.

ARRY present-
ly resumed
w his work at
the rabbit-
w l hutch, and
tried, bya
furious effort
of industry, to drive
away all the unpleasant thoughts which
would keep crowding on his mind; he
whistled and sang, and sawed till quite a
heap of fine yellow dust accumulated on
the ground beneath him, and it became
necessary to put down the saw and repair
to the back stable to measure the requi-
site length for the new hutch.
As he passed through the front stable,






or, the Pierced Eggs.


he heard the low chuckle or almost growl
of the hen who was seated on Jenkins'
magical eggs in one of the mangers, and
a feeling of curiosity tempted him to turn
aside and to look at the bird, and see
whether she had all the eggs still safe
and unbroken beneath her.
The hen growled still louder as Harry
approached, and ruffled up all her yellow
feathers till she looked almost like a hand-
ful of rough straw thrust into the manger,
while with her sharp beak she made
furious darts at the intruder. This was
all very promising, however, for from the
very anxiety and anger she manifested, it
was evident she was conscious of life
imprisoned in the white eggs beneath her,
and as Harry slipped his hand underneath
her wings, he almost fancied he heard the
faint chirp of young birds in the shell;
but his amazement was great indeed
when, removing one of the eggs from






Harry Galbraith;

under her breast, he found an undeniable
chip in its side, and immediately beneath
this chip the words printed in black ink,
" First Prize. December 16, 1870."
Then Jenkins must have been right
after all, as the eggs which he had marked
were actually coming out; but how about
the air-hole ? and Harry turned the egg
round in his hand to search for it. At
this moment, however, he heard steps in
the yard beyond, and, fearing the advent
of Jenkins, he hastily thrust the egg back
under the hen, and, quitting the stall,
walked on towards the inner stable, where
his rabbits had their home.
The hutch Harry wished to measure
was unfortunately the one nearest to the
door, and being more than ordinarily
excited, and his mind intently busy on
other subjects, he pushed back the button
of the hutch, and thoughtlessly left it
open. The huge lop-eared rabbit who







or, the Pierced Eggs.


had possession of this particular home
was extremely partial to freedom and
exercise, and no sooner did he become
aware of the escape offered to him than












Harry's Rabbit.

he immediately bounded out, and scam-
pered with fearful haste into the yard
beyond.
Harry, of course, dashed after him, and
driving him into the wash-house, made
sure of pinning him in one of the corners;






Harry Galbraitk;


but old lop-ears was both cunning and
fleet, and having decoyed Harry in be-
hind a mangle which was standing in the
room, he suddenly doubled back, and
rushing under the wheels of an ancient
Bath chair which also had its habitation
in this locality, he made. out through one
of the open doorways away into the lane
beyond.
Harry felt rather shy at following his
favourite into so public a place, and for
a moment was almost tempted to give
up the chase and send Jenkins to cap-
ture him in his place; but looking through
the yard-gates, he saw that its flight had
only extended as far as the next dust-
heap, on which Mr. Bunny was quietly
seated eating some celery-stalks, and
apparently devouring his repast with
great gusto.
Harry approached stealthily from be-
hind, intending to seize upon the rabbit






or, the Pierced Eggs.

by its long drooping ears, and hold it
tightly until he could secure it more
effectually; but as he stooped cautiously
and slowly so as not to betray his pre-
sence, his eyes were caught by some
white objects lying scattered among the
refuse celery-leaves, and instead.of mak-
ing sure of his much-prized pet, he
stopped, and, with a deep flush spreading
over his face, he bent his head low down
on the dust-heap. The rabbit, finding
itself undisturbed, continued its meal
peaceably; but Harry's face betrayed
anything but peace ; on the contrary,
as-he gathered up the white objects into
his hands and examined them closely,
there was an expression of pain which
grew into absolute misery on his counte-
nance.
"Yes, they are all exactly alike! he
said, "and all have the same words
printed on them. 'First Prize. Decem-






Harry Galbraith:

ber 16, 1870.' I wonder why on earth
Jenkins made me copy- But here
Harry paused, as he lifted another broken
egg-shell from the heap. Good gra-
cious why, this is one of the very eggs
that I printed the words on myself! for
I remember my pen slipping just in the
last letter and making this identical zig-
zag line and blot; and-let me see-
yes, here is the identical pin-hole made
by Jenkins at the top of it. Now, I do
say it is a crying shame! I '11 go straight
and have the whole matter out with him,
the cheat!"
So excited was Harry, he forgot alto-
gether to secure the safety of his favourite
lop-eared rabbit, and, going into the
stable, he left it still happily browsing
on its favourite dish of celery-stalks.
Full of an eager desire to ascertain
the particulars of this underhand transac-
tion-for that it was underhand Harry






or, the Pierced Eggs.

was now thoroughly convinced-he hur-
ried into the inner stable, hoping also to
ascertain there whether the printed eggs
beneath the yellow hen in the manger
corresponded with the London oneswhich
he had just discovered outside in the
lane, for, if so, Jenkins' treachery would
be proved. At the door of the inner
stable he, however, paused for a moment,
hearing, as he thought, voices talking
low together in one of the far-off stables,
but which turned out, as he listened, to
be only the tones of Jenkins' unmelodious
voice addressing the yellow hen seated
in the manger.
"Well done, old lady, you've hatched
'em well!" he cried, with a low, coarse
laugh : "a chick in both eggs was even
more than I counted on. It's well I gave
the rest o' 'em such a good shaking, for
them Lunnon chaps is a trifle more honest
than I took 'em for. We'll take the first






Harry Galbrailh;


prize now ourselves, and no mistake,
won't we ? And then Jenkins, old chap,
you '11 be a rare fool if yer don't make a
pot o' money to your own hook. Eh,
who's there ?" and Jenkins, turning
suddenly round, blanched white as the
whitewashed wall behind him, for there
was his young master standing close
beside him, with his eyes full of honest
indignation, and his hands piled up with
the broken egg-shells, which he had just
found in the rubbish-heap in the lane,
mute but certain proofs of his guilt!
Jenkins was not long in recovering his
self-possession, and before Harry could
accuse him, he cried,
"So you found 'em, did yer? I'm
glad o' it, for I was jest goin' to bring
'em in and show 'em to yer."
"What for?" asked Harry, hoarsely;
"what for ?"
"Why, in course, I did not suppose







or, the Pierced Eggs.

you was that. innocent that yer did not
know what I was up to; and I was just
thinking' there was no use letting others
be as wise as ourselves."
I do not understand what you mean!"
cried Harry, colouring crimson as he
spoke, for though he had not fully
comprehended the depth of Jenkins'
treachery, he could not but feel that he
had in some degree encouraged him in
it.
And if yer don't understand, yer must
be right silly!" replied Jenkins, with a
sneering chuckle, that made Harry's
heart beat furiously fast. Why, laws !
and you yerself marked the eggs with
yer own hand, and saw me make a hole
in the shell; a small one, I grant yer,
but still large enough to ruin the finest
egg in creation, and now yer on for
pretending you knowed nought about it
at all, and making believe yer in a passion,






Harry Galbraith;


like, all that you may keep up your name
for honour and sichlike stuff afore me,
and yet keep yer two first-prize chicks
into the bargain."
"I'1l do nothing of the kind!" cried
Harry, now almost blind with indigna-
tion. I'11 return the chickens this very
hour to Miller. I guessed you were at
some cheating work, so I did: I allow
that much, but I didn't know half what
you were doing, and if I had I would
never have consented to it."
"And you expect me to believe that,
do you, now ?" asked Jenkins, with the
same unpleasant sneer.
I don't care what you believe, I know
myself it is true 1"
"And you thought a common white
egg, laid by a barn-door fowl, would turn
into a first-prize Spanish chick, all because
you wrote its name on the shell, and that,
too, after you saw me wi' your own eyes






or, the Pierced Eggs.

stick a pin in the top of it ? Come, now,
I ask yer, as yer an honest gentleman,
could yer imagine sich an impossibility
as that for a moment ?"
"Don't talk to me about honesty!"
cried Harry, his whole, face and manner
betraying the utter confusion of his
thoughts; "you know quite well I did
believe you, that's to say, I knew it was
impossible, but you told me yourself you
would do it-at least-you talked about
magic and humbug-and-and-I was
a fool to listen to you, that's all!"
"Indeed, then, you were little else than
a fool, Master Harry, if you thought sich
a silly chap as me had magic or any sich-
like rare humbug anywhere in my posses-
sion! But what's the use of all this
now ?" continued Jenkins, relinquishing
his sneering manner of speech for one
more specious and deferential. "What's
the use of all this flare-up and nonsense?






Harry Galbrait ;


There is not one soul in creation, not even
Bill, knows a syllable as how I changed
the eggs, I managed it so clever and quick
like, and the only witness against us is
the shells, which you have in your own
hands this minute: pitch 'em in the
kitchen fire, and there's an end of the
whole business."
"And keep the two chickens that be-
long to Miller, and rear them up for my-
self ?" asked Harry, in a voice so quiet,
Jenkins believed him for the moment in
earnest.
"Aye, just so."
And win first prize with them at the
show in spring ?"
"Exactly."
"And then you can make a pot of
money with them afterwards, to your
own hook, eh ?"
Jenkins had actually formed the words
of acquiescent response on his lips before






Harry Galbrait ;

and crunched them up in his great coarse
palm. "As sure as you stand there,
Master Harry, and you stir in this matter,
you'll repent it." And even while he
spoke, Jenkins placed his large uncouth
form between the stable door, leading out
into the garden, and his young master.
Harry cowered with fear as he looked
up at the ugly passionate face and defiant
attitude of the garden boy, who, after all,
was a giant compared to him in point of
strength and size.
As sure as I'm a living being," con-
tinued Jenkins, raising his voice still
louder, as he saw Harry's face paling
under his threat, as sure as I 'm a liv-
ing being, I'll not let you leave this stable
till you give me your word of honour
you '11 not say one word of this matter to
Master Miller, nor your father,.nor one
soul about the place."
I cannot promise," cried Harry, now






or, tl1 Pierced Eggs.

he understood the drift of Harry's ques-
tion, and was only just becoming con-
scious of its meaning, when Harry con-
tinued: "I '11 tell you what it is, Jenkins,
I think you are the biggest cheat in the
whole world, and you want to make me
as bad as yourself. I guessed you were
at some kind of underhand work-that
much, as I said before, I do confess to-
but I could not make out what it was;
indeed, I am not sure that I tried as hard
as I ought to have done to make it out,
but now that I do know it all, I 'm deter-
mined to have nothing to say to it, and
I '11 give these birds back to Miller this
very day!"
"I tell you you '11 do nothing of the
kind !" cried Jenkins, in a loud resound-
ing voice, that made Harry start, and
then tremble all over. Here, give me
these eggs." He snatched some of the
shells from Harry's hand as he spoke.







or, the Pierced Eggs.

almost reduced to tears; "it's most un-
fair to Miller, and you oughtn't to make
me."
"And you think it's nought to me
whether I lose my place or not; that
appears quite a trifle to you, but it's a
deal o' something to me; and if you are
bent on it, I '11 take right good care you
never reach Miller's house to tell him,
that I will," growled Jenkins, savagely,
while he glanced meaningly at the sharp
garden tool which he had laid out of his
hand when he entered the stable.






Harry Galbraih ;


CHAPTER V.

ARRY was not a
cowardly lad, but
still he was
9' scarcely a
match in
.i strengthfor Jenkins,
nor within many de-
grees a match for his
cunning; and the
noisy threats which
the garden boy knew
in his heart he could never
carry out sounded real and terrible in
Harry's more youthful ears.
At this moment, as Harry hesitated,
weighing in his mind whether he might
not effect a sudden retreat from the stall
where he stood into the yard behind, the






or, the Pierced Eggs.


door of which he remembered to have
left open when he entered, there was a
sound of wheels rolling over the cobbles
in the lane beyond, which sound became
even more distinct as the vehicle ap-
proached nearer and nearer, and at length
stopped, as it seemed to Harry, at the gate
of the yard outside.
Harry derived sudden courage from
these sounds, and from the reassuring
knowledge that there were people close
at hand who could come to his aid if he
called for assistance; but Jenkins also
heard the noise outside, and determined
to bring the matter to a final issue.
"See here now, young master," he
cried, in a hoarse whisper, as he drew
sufficiently near Harry to prevent his
egress from the stall, "you '11 give me
your word this moment that you'll say
nought on this matter, or if you don't, as
sure as I stand here you 'll suffer for it 1"






Harry Galbraith;

"What is it you want me to promise?"
asked Harry, quailing as he saw the un-
pleasant light in Jenkins' small ill-set
eyes.
"Simply this : that you '11 not tell that
young beggar next door called Miller that
I meddled with his Lunnon eggs, or had
aught to say to 'em as was not fair and
honest."
But it was most unfair and dishonest!"
cried Harry, the tears now running down
his cheeks; "you ought not to force me
into such a deceit!"
I don't care what I ought to do, but
I know what I will do !" and Jenkins laid
his hand on the sharp gardening-hoe,
which leaned against the side of the wall.
As he did so Harry uttered a loud
piercing scream, thinking, in his inno-
cence and fear, that his last moments
had come; while Jenkins, in equal ex-
citement and rage, thrust his coarse hand






or, the Pierced Eggs.

over his young master's mouth, and cried
out, "Be quiet, you great jackanapes !"
But at this moment the door of the stable
leading into the back yard was pushed
open, and Miller himself walked in, hold-
ing in one hand a very lively and remon-
strative lop-eared rabbit, which struggled
violently to be free, and in the other the
tall whip with which he had been driv-
ing his father's bay mare home from the
country.
Here was a joyful reprieve for Harry,
and a direful defeat for Jenkins, who,
instantly opening the door behind him
into the garden, made good his escape,
leaving his hoe and the broken egg-shells
on the ground behind him.
Miller looked in speechless amazement
at Harry's white terror-stricken face, and
at the tears which still fell plentifully from
his eyes, and having placed the refractory
rabbit on the floor of the stall, he went






Harry Gal6rait ;

over to him and asked him in the kindest
and most affectionate manner the cause
of his grief.
Then Harry, between his sobs and
his tears, told him the whole story; he
showed Miller the broken egg-shells
which, bruised and crushed as they were
on the ground, still bore witness of the
truth of his narrative; nor did he try to
hide his own share in the transaction,
but confessed to the full his envy and
jealousy of Miller's London purchase,
and his anger with him for having tried
to outdo him in the prize.
Miller listened to him quietly and
attentively to the very end, though the
expression of surprise and pain grew
stronger and stronger every moment on
his face as he heard Harry detail all the
bitterness and angry feeling which he
had experienced at the thought of his
(Miller's) treachery; and at length when






or, the Pierced Eggs.


Harry and Miller.


Harry, turning round towards the manger
where the old yellow hen still sat, wink-
ing at them with her solitary but watch-
ful eye, entreated of him to take posses-






Harry Galbraith;


sion of her then and there, and of the
two precious chickens beneath her, which
were at that moment only emerging from
their shells, he could not listen to him
any longer without interruption, and
putting his hand on Harry's shoulder,
and looking him full in the face, he said,
"And you, Harry, thought I had sent to
London and bought eggs to outbid you
at the show and take the first prize from
you ? You really did ? "
I did !" replied Harry. "What else
could I think ?"
And that's why you would not chum
with me at football, or church, or any-
where else, eh ?"
"Yes."
"And you trusted that sneak Jenkins
in preference to me ? and that still more
miserable sneak, his cousin ?"
Harry hung his head and made no
answer.






or, the Pierced Eggs.

"Well!" he continued, bitterly, "I
should have been a long time guessing
the cause of your anger; so it is as well
you should have told me it yourself, or
else I should never have believed it!"
"But why did you do it, then?"
asked Harry, looking up at his friend's
half-averted face, which he could scarcely
avoid seeing was working with some
keen pain.
Miller did not reply at once; on the
contrary, he walked over to where the
lop-eared rabbit was seated on its hind
legs in the corner and was wiping his
grey moustache with his paws ; and
catching him unceremoniously by the
ears, he raised him from the ground and
carried him into the inner stable, where
he replaced him in his hutch.
Nor did he even then return imme-
diately to the stall, but waited, looking
out through the triangular cobweb-


I






Harry Galbraith;

covered panes of glass which admitted
the only light the place boasted. Here
he leaned on his elbow, and looked
thoughtfully up at the low roof above him,
as if searching for the spiders which had
woven so close a window-blind. When,
however, he did return to the stall where
Harry still stood awaiting him in mute
sorrow, there was not a trace of vexation
or even reproach visible in his face.
Harry," he said, going up to him and
taking him by the arm, I want you to
show me those two first-prize chickens
which you say have succeeded in thrust-
ing themselves into the world; where are
they ? "
"There, in the manger," said Harry,
pointing to the yellow heap in the corner.
Oh, they are there, are they ? That's
all right; because, as you tell, me they
are mine, I am going to take possession
of them."






or, the Pierced Eggs.


Harry's Prize Shanish.


"Oh, I am so glad !" cried Harry, in
real joy at what he looked on as a token
of forgiveness.
Yes, old fellow, I am going to take
possession of them, but only to do for
them what I had hoped to do for the
others had they turned out well, namely,
to rear them for you, out of reach of rats
and cats and suchlike gear, and return






Harry Galbraith;

them to you when they were able to take
care of themselves. You see, I had
meant it for a little surprise," he said,
kindly, while he turned aside and stroked
the feathers of the yellow hen with his
hand; "but Jenkins and Bill were before-
hand with me, and took that shot out of
my locker; but, however, we may have
some good out of the bargain yet, for by
the strong chirp they give they must be
healthy little niggers;" and Miller lifted
out a fluffy black ball from under the
infuriated hen. There now, Harry, not
a word. I '11 run in for a hamper, and
carry them inside into my own diggings."
Harry did not say a word, for the
simple reason that he could not have
done so; but what he felt, as he remained
there alone in the stall awaiting Miller's
return, no one knew but himself.
It is enough to know that some good
did come out of the bargain, as Miller






or, the Pierced Eggs.

had hoped, but a very different good from
what he had thought of at the time.
The birds did live, and grew up under
more tender auspices than those of Bill
or the evil-eyed Jenkins, both of whom
were dismissed from their places sum-
marily; and in the following spring, Harry
Galbraith was the proud winner of the
"First Prize for Spanish;" yet the "good"
which he had reaped from Miller's gift
was of far greater value than the mere
glory of an earthly success, for during
the months that intervened before the
show, he won the confidence and esteem
of his parents, and the genuine affection
of his friend Miller, both of them in
themselves prizes of far greater value
than the one he so ardently desired to
gain; for the half-hour of terror and sus-
pense which he had endured at the hands
of his would-be friend Jenkins, and the
noble and generous forgiveness extended
^ -- _






Harry Galbrailt.

to him by his supposed enemy Miller,
produced a stronger effect on Harry's
mind than any one almost could have
anticipated, and forced him to acknow-
ledge the worthlessness of his own judg-
ment and foresight. Miller's friendship
became henceforth as valuable to him as
Jenkins' had hitherto been injurious and
bad; and in the life of obedience and
humility which followed on this discovery,
Harry not only relinquished the faults
and follies of his old life, but chose for
himself instead, that "good part which
could not be taken away from him."




THE END.


DALZIEL BROTHERS, CAMDEN PRESS, N.W.







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