תמונות בעמוד
PDF
ePub
[ocr errors]

BAMBOO HOUSE IN THE SUBURBS.

with a mechanical precision utterly lacking Nearly all the dwellings are built by the the most characteristic charms to the landthe spirit of intelligence. It is the body with- water's edge, for the river is a self-sustaining scape. The parallel position and toughness out the spark of life. They imitate every thing highway, on which loads are carried to the of the fibres render it easy to split, and when accurately in detail, but without any soul. foot of the mountains. The huts are built split its pieces are all of extraordinary pli

Their artistic productions, though the work on piles, like those of the ancient lake-dwell- ability and elasticity. To the gravelly soil of marvelous skill and patience oftentimes, ers of Switzerland, and the appropriateness on which it grows are probably owing its

durability, its firm, even, clean surface, and the brilliancy and color which always improve by use. It is a wonderful provision of Nature, too, that, amid a population with such limited means of conveyance, the bamboo is to be found in such numbers and of every possible size. Its floating power is unsurpassed, and it is preëminently fitted for a country poor in roads, but rich in watercourses.

The stranger traveling in the interior learns to appreciate the hospitality of Na. ture. The air is so equitably warm that one would gladly dispense with all clothing except a solar hat and a pair of light shoes. Should one desire to pass the night in the open air, the construction of a hut from the leaves of the palm and the fern is the work of a few moments, and it is always easy to obtain the necessaries of life at a reasonable

rate. He will everywhere meet with semané. are wearisome, unnatural, and devoid of char. of the position is evident, for the stream, of ros (performers of menial duties), ready to acter. In Java, Borneo, and the Malaccas, course, is the very centre of activity. The serve him as messengers or porters for a the utensils in daily use are ornamented with river-side is a pretty sight, when the men, trifling fee. On one occasion Mr. Jagor de. so refined and subtile a feeling for form and women, and children, are bathing and frolick- sired to send a man who was playing cards color that they are praised by artists as pat- ing in the shade of the palm-trees; when the and drinking palm-wine on an errand. The terns of decoration, affording proof that the young girls are filling their water - vessels, native said he could not go, for he was a labor is one of love and presided over by large bamboos, which they carry on their prisoner; but one of his guardians, leaving intelligence. The natives of the Philippines shoulders, or water-jars, which they bear on his charge lolling in the shade, proceeded to rarely display such sense of beauty. Even their heads; and when the boys are standing discharge the labor in the midst of the inthe celebrated Pina embroideries, fabricated upright on the backs of the buffaloes, and

tense heat. Prisoners have but little cause with such marvelous skill and patience, and riding triumphantly in and out of the water. to complain of the rigid severities of justice. displaying a peerless fineness of work, are, as a In these localities the cocoa-palm most | The only drawback to the comfort of the rule, spiritless imitations of Spanish patterns. Aourishes—a tree that not only supplies food petty criminal is the severe flogging to wbich

In most countries with so mild a climate and drink, but every material necessary for he is liberally treated by the authorities, even and fertile soil, the inbabitants would have the construction of huts and the manufacture for a triling offense. The natives, though, been ground down by native princes or ruth- of household utensils. Inland the tree bears seem from long experience to have become allessly plundered by foreigners. In these but little fruit, but close to the shore yields most callous to corporeal punishment. The richly-endowed and isolated islands, pressure most plentifully, even when growing on acquaintances of the victim on such occasions from above, impulse from within, and stimu- wretched soil. It is said that cocoa-trees stand around to enjoy the spectacle, and jeer lus from without, are all wanting, and the growing by the sea-side are wont to incline at him, asking how the whip-lash tastes. satisfaction of a few trifling wants suffices their stems over the ocean, the waters of After the whipping, all, spectators, criminal, for ample comfort. Here, under the shade which bear the fruit to desert islands and and executioner, walk away together, laughof the palm-trees, blossoms the full knowl-shores, thus playing an essential part in the ing and joking, the very best of friends. edge of the dolce far niente. A trip across ocean vagabondage of Polynesia and Malaysia. Thieving and robbery are very common the Pasig gives a foretaste of life in the inte- One of the most striking and characteris. crimes in the islands, and the wealthier classrior. Low, wooden cabins and bamboo-buts, tic trees of the Philippines is the bamboo, es suffer much from kleptomania on the part surmounted with green foliage, gorgeous flow- whose luxuriant, leafy top may be seen al. of the servants. In some districts the most ers, and trailers, are picturesquely grouped most everywhere. This gigantic plant is al- trifling articles are apt to disappear the inalong the river-bank, with groves of palm and most indispensable to the comforts and con- stant the owner takes his eyes off them. The feather-headed bamboos. The shore is fringed veniences of tropical life. Nature has en- Philippine Islander seems to have had omitwith canoes, nets, rafts, and fishing-appara- dowed it with so many useful qualities, cast- ted from his organism any clear notion of tus. Boats float down the stream, and canoes ing all others of her gifts in the shade, that the distinction between meum and tuum, and ply from bank to bank amid the groups of its splendid beauty ceases to be thought of in regards theft as the merest peccadillo, the bathers. The liveliest traffic is carried on in

the comparison. Possessing an extraordinary whole objection to which consists in being the large sheds which open on the river, the strength in proportion to its lightness, the detected in the commissiou. great channel for trade. These are rare at result of its round shape and the regularity Every village has its casa real, or tribunal, tractions to the sailors, who resort there to of the joints, a few sharp cuts of a knife where the traveler can take up his quarters, enliven existence in the fascinating pursuits suffice to convert it into any form needed. and be supplied with food at the marketof gambling, smoking, and betel-chewing. The ingenious cottager, inheriting the simple price. Yet the European visitor, from the

Sometimes a native may be seen floating traditions of his hereditary craft, manufact-proclivities of the natives just alluded to, down the stream asleep on a heap of cocoa- ures with extraordinary rapidity nearly every finds himself easier in mind as a guest at the nuts. Should the raft of nuts collide with implement necessary to his life : chairs, tables, convento, or dwelling of the priest, who is althe shore, the drowsy voyager raises himself fishing - nets, baskets of every shape, ropes, ways right glad to dispense such hospitality. up, pushes adrift with a long bamboo, and, mats, troughs, roofing-tiles, gates, knives, and Oftentimes the priest is the only white man as his eccentric raft regains the current, again forks, are turned out as if by magic at the for miles around, and he is only too anxious yields to the luxuriant dreams induced by the hands of our rude artisan from the one slen- to house so rare a guest, giving up the best betel-nut.

der tree, whose graceful crown lends one of bedroom, and offering all that kitchen and cellar can yield. Every thing is placed be. wonder Pamela doesn't make an effort to ful things, and many others, she herself had fore the stranger in a spirit of such undis- rouse the old lady to a sense of her duty." faithfully taught her; and she knew, moreguised friendliness that he is bestowing in Some slight fear that Miss Basil might over, to her sorrow, that this “child of many stead of accepting a favor. Sometimes the endeavor to bring about a match between prayers" delighted in reading story - books, hospitable padres have been known to attack Arthur and the judge's granddaughter had and hated Dr. Johnson and Hannah More the tribunal with a force of followers when begun to trouble Mrs. Basil's mind, but there with a hatred that was not ashamed. And no travelers have been known to be present, and was no need for any such fear. A scheming more than this, aster seventeen years of incarry off their prizes in triumph to their dwell- woman, indeed, with an ordinary talent for timate companionship, no more than this did ings vi et armis.

[graphic]

match-making, would have seen in young Miss Basil know of Joanna; which, however, Most of the dwellings of the priests are Hendall's advent a rare chance for the little is hardly to be wondered at, seeing that, of dirty and squalid, but in the larger towns the Joanna; but Miss Basil, though a most nota- all God's creatures, the most incomprehen. conventos are often spacious and noble struct- ble manager, was no schemer. She had not sible, perhaps, is a girl.of seventeen. ures. Such especially our author found the that absolute control of her feelings and Miss Basil, finding Joanna so childishly church and convento at Majaijai, built by the prejudices so essential to a schemer. Hur employed, wished her to remain a child, and Jesuits, and splendidly situated. The lake man nature does not require strictly reason- began stealthily to retreat; but Joanna, of Bay was seen to extend to the far north- able grounds for its likes and dislikes, as looking up, with her thumb and forefinger east; in the distance the peninsula of Jala- those of us who know some Dr. Fell are arrested in the act of playfully pinching the jala ; the island of Talim, with its Soson- well aware; and Miss Basil, disliking Arthur kitten's ears, broke into a laugh, and said: Dalaga volcano; and the spires of Manila Hendall for no better reason than that he “Why do you go 'mousing' about so terminated the vista. From the convento to was Mrs. Basil's nephew, and the prospective like an old cat, 'Mela? I'm wide awake”the lake stretched an endless grove of cocoa- owner of Basilwood, was very far from de. so she was, indeed, Miss Basil sighed to seetrees, while toward the south the slope of the siring to see Joanna married to him; she “what a time you've been talking with the distant high ground grew suddenly steeper, hoped, indeed, that Joanna would be sensible grandmamma. Who is coming, now ? " forming an abruptly precipitous conical hill, and never marry. As for any prospect of “Never you mind, child; young people intersected by deep ravines. This was the her marrying young Hendall, Miss Basil berself should not be inquisitive. Play with your Banajao or Majaijai volcano, and beside it did not see more clearly than that, with all the kitten,” Miss Basil replied, with useless and San Christoval reared its bell-shaped sum- advantages he bad enjoyed, a simple coun- therefore unwise evasion. mit.

try girl like this poor little Joanna was no The little Joanna had asked this innocent Mr. Jagor was anxious to make an ascent, match for him, in any sense. But she did question season after season, and had always but the rainy weather which prevailed pre- not, like Mrs. Basil, believe so devoutly in

received a direct answer, With a quick, imsented too great an obstacle. The volcano is the saving dignity of the Hendall blood; she pulsive movement she slipped from her high about six thousand five hundred feet in height, did not believe that this young gentleman, seat, dropping the startled kitten upou the and the crater about seven hundred feet deep. rich in all the arts of worldlings, as Miss Ba- floor, and fixed her large, dark eyes upon At the last eruption in 1730 the mountain sil could not doubt he must be, would deny Miss Basil with a searching look; and Miss burst into flames on its southern side, threw himself for honor's sake, nor for dignity's

Basil never liked to meet those eyes, so unup streams of water, burning lava, and stones sake, the pleasure of an idle flirtation, by flinching, so unfathomable, so comprehensive of an immense size, ravaging and desolating way of pastime, if opportunity offered. And were they ; to feel them upon her now made the country for many miles in the fiery track. Joanna—Joanna was a little fool, and would her fidget uneasily. believe every word he uttered !

“Pamela,” said Joanna, deliberately, “

So poor Miss Basil went sorrowing about know; it is the-nephew." THE LITTLE JOANNA. her work, and turning over in her mind the “How should you know any thing about

means of giarding the inexperienced Joan- it ? ” said Miss Basil, in an injured tone, and A NOVEL

na against the fascinations of Mrs. Basil's tlusbing hotly.

nephew. Not knowing exactly what would “How should I know?”repeated Joanna. KAMBA THORPE.

be best to say on the subject, her great ob- “Why, old Thurston told me there were let

ject, just now, was to avoid Joanna ; she did ters for the grandmamma, and don't we all CHAPTER III.

not choose to have her assistance in making know that means visitors! And, if Miss

ready for Mr. Hendall. But passing through Archer, or Mrs. Carew, or that Miss Ruffner THE MASTER OF BASILWOOD.

the large, barn-like hall that led to the south were coming, you would say so at once." “My surmise was correct, then," said

wing, there was the girl, curled up in the Truly, her argument was conclusive. Jo. Mrs. Basil to herself, as she sat alone.

window-seat, and playing with her kitten. anra knew all about Mr. Arthur Hendall's * That letter was from Miss Hawkesby. I'm

At any other time Miss Basil would have re- title to Basilwood; Miss Basil had felt in glad she does not utterly forget the child; | proved her for trifling, but now she took com- duty bound to explain it as soon as the child for if Pamela should die—she's never sick,

fort in the sight; it seemed to prove Joanna was old enough to understand her position, it is true, but then some people do drop off

still a child, in spite of her ready knack at but she had deemed it advisable to have as so unexpectedly; the judge, her cousin, did

hair-dressing, and her aspirations after demi- little as possible to say about young Hendal] -and if she were to die, what would become trains.

himself; she did not wish Joanna to run any of Joanna ? What could she mean by say. The little Joanna was not, ordinarily, a risk of becoming interested in him in any ing that she would make provision for Joan

source of comfort to her precise, methodical way, and she invariably checked every atDa's future? If she thinks to marry her to kinswoman;

for though removed from world-tempt to make him the subject of conversaArthur, she has less sense than I gave herly influences, and growing up “like to a rose tion. But now the perplexed woman began credit for. It would be a fine thing for Jo

in a withering bower," under Miss Basil's to think she had made a mistake; she had anna, but—as if Arthur could be such a fool!

own watchful eyes, the girl had come now to lost so many opportunities of giving Joanna's No, no; there is not the least danger; Pa

be, much to Miss Basil's confusion, a care- mind the proper bias against him. It was pela may spare her pains, as I shall not scru

less, idling young dreamer of seventeen, the not yet too late, however, perhaps ; so she ple to tell her, if I see any symptoms. But, very opposite in every respect of what her said, grimly: then, it would be nice for Joanna if Miss

matter-of-fact cousin had striven to make “ You know he is the master of BasilHawkesby would take her away-for some her. She had received a desultory, hap- wood, Joanna ; let us not forget that.” It day she must cease to be a child—and give hazard sort of education ; how far it had ex- was not the wisest thing she could have said. her a fair chance in this life. She has no

teaded in regard to books, Miss Basil could Her words placed young Hendall before Joadvantage here, poor thing! and really I

never accurately tell; but she knew that Joanna's quick imagination in a sort of pictu

anna could knit, could sew, could darn, could | resque light. The master of Basilwood! Did * ESTERED, according to Act of Congress, in the year 1875, by D. APPLETON & Co., in the Office of tbe Librariau of Congress, at

keep accounts, could bake bread, could make not that imply that the grandmamma's neph. a custard and an omelet, for all these use. ew occupied a peculiar position in regard to

I

BY

Waebington.

herself? Joanna had read too many romances much ; but, with ready intelligence, she had she was debating with herself whether or not not to feel a certain charm in the situation soon perceived that there was something to it would be advisable to say any thing on the when she thought it over; and Miss Basil, be learned about this world and the people in subject of her fears, Mrs. Basil came in to who had hoped, as she would have said, “ to it that books alone could never teach. The inspect the room. She would gladly have set the child against the inheritor of her ladies that visited Basilwood, elderly, cold, assisted the work of preparation, but shegrandfather's old home," felt vexed and dis- and formal, for the most part, were not par- never did know what to do.

She always appointed to see her begin again, with infan. ticularly attractive to young persons; yet, awoke to new life when the season came that tine playfulness, to pinch the kitten's ears. though she kept aloof from them, Joanna ob- | brought the company she loved. In winter She did wish Joanna would show some hu. served them studiously, and soon learned she vegetated; what was there for her to do man feeling.

from them an idea of style and elegance but sit and wait for summer to bring back “However, she is but a child, I suppose ; which she greatly affected. She had thus ac- some semblance of the old, easy, joyous time and God forbid that 'I should teach her to quired a theoretical knowledge of the ways when three-eighths of a cent more or less in cherish 'envy, hatred, and malice,' against of the fashionable world that would have the price of cotton made no difference to her ? any one!” Miss Basil said to herself, and went amazed Miss Basil. The girl had very grave Easy as it seemed by comparison, her lot was away; but, returning half an hour later, she notions about fitting herself for life, for soci. | really a harder one than Miss Basil's, who was rather startled to find the volatile Joan. ety, and she hoped that young Hendall would had the absorbing work of the garden, the na still sitting in the window, her kitten for- be an advantage to her in this way. It was orchard, the dairy, and the poultry-yard, to gotten, her eyes bent on the floor, her whole no fault of his that he was master of Basil. occupy her thoughts, not to mention the disdemeanor expressive of deep thought. Miss wood; "and surely," thought she, in the sim. appointing little Joanna. Basil knew, by old experience, that these plicity of her heart, “being a man, he must be Except an object to live for, Mrs. Basil fits of meditation boded no good; and she wondrous wise."

had had every thing that life could givesaid, irritably :

But these innocent aspirations after“some- wealth, beauty, position, influence, all had “Get down, child, and find something to thing better than she had known " Joanna been hers, and what now remained but the do. How often must I remind you of the buried in the depths of her own heart, not dregs ? Youth had vanished, wealth had folly and the sin of wasting your time ?” from any sense of shame, but from a dawn. | vanished ; she said very little about her

Joanna rose quickly, saying, with un- ing consciousness that her excellent cousin's losses in either respect; but her head had wonted submission, “I am sure, 'Mela, I idea of confidence was limited to the rigid turned while contemplating the bopeless deam willing to be useful. If you are going to truth about indisputable realities, and that cadence of her condition, and often she was see about Mr. Hendall's room, I am ready to her notion of sympathy meant nothing more aweary of her life. But not to-day; for was help you. I have been thinking about my than ministering to bodily ailments. Any | not her nephew Arthur coming at last ? duty-"

thing that could not be classed as an actual, Mrs. Basil had never seen him since he Miss Basil trembled at the words. What tangible fact, Miss Basil denominated fanci. was a little fellow in bis father's house, when was not this unaccountable Joanna capable fulness; so Joanna, perforce, having no one she was living there, a passée belle, and fond. of, if she had begun to think about her duty ? else to reveal herself to, kept her own coun. er of his childish prattle than of all the hom. “I don't want you ; you will be in my way; sel, and became a dreamer of dreams. She age she had ever commanded in society. No go play with your kitten, child," she said, was dreaming now, as she sat in the window, one had ever come so near her heart as this shortly, and made haste to leave her.

an innocent dream of youth's fair possibili-only child of her only brother. But Fate had “Go-play-with-your-kitten, child,” | ties, that she would not have hesitated to been against her here. When his parents repeated the little Joanna, slowly, staring confide to Pamela, if ouly Pamela could un- died, Arthur went to his mother's relations, after her. “What can have come over Pa. derstand!

and he might have been utterly alienated mela to suppose that I can be playing with a But Miss Basil, all alone up-stairs, waging from his aunt but for his interest in Basil. kitten forever?" Then she turned again to war against the dust and cobwebs that had wood. Mrs. Basil, therefore, had no jealousy the window, and pursued the current of her accumulated during the winter, did not need of his claim upon the place, since it attached thoughts.

to be told that Joanna's idle reveries were him to her; and now that his mother's child. These summer visitors, so dreaded by | full of “the grandmamma's nephew ;" she less brothers had gone out of the world like Miss Basil, were hardly a source of greater knew it instinctively—"and Joanna was the so many other men of reputed wealth in these pleasure to Mrs. Basil herself than to Joanna. despair of her life!” she said, passionately. times, leaving no vestige of their fortune beTrue, she was always in the distant back. But she had striven bard to train up the child hind them, Arthur must settle down to plantground, for Miss Basil, by way of keeping in the way she should go, and no sense of ing. It would be a good thing for him, it her young charge unspotted from the world, discouragement could muke her relax her would be a good thing for her; he would had never permitted her to mingle freely with efforts-certainly she was not going to spare have all that stanch respectability attaching Mrs. Basil's guests; but their mere presence them now; she meant to do her duty by to a landed proprietor, and he would improve at Basilwood gave her a glimpse of that al- Joanna at all hazards—if only she knew what the finances of Basilwood; something of the luring outside world from which she had been to do! Could she have believed that the easy charm of old times would come back. all her life so carefully secluded ; and, better warning would be hecded, she might have Mrs. Basil had long desired this day, and still, these well-bred, well-dressed people af- been willing to relate to Joanna a page out for joy could hardly contain herself. Under forded her models upon which to form herself. of her own history; but nothing could have ordinary circumstances, she would not have For Joanna was ambitious; conscious of her persuaded Miss Basil that any good would cared for Miss Basil's sympathy; but now, deficiencies, she was laudably anxious to im- come of revealing her sad, romantic story. without knowing what it was she wanted, she prove, and eager to seize every opportunity She could, however, be more than ever watch- came restlessly into the room, passed her for improvement that offered. These were ful; Joanna must be kept more strictly with- hands over the pillows, peered into the bu. not many, for Basilwood was remote and iso- in bounds, for wasn't she a child still ? and reau-drawers, turned up the blinds and turned lated; and, partly on this account, partly be- children should be retiring-she had always them down again, and annoyed Miss Basil cause of Miss Basil's extremely retiring hab. | impressed that upon Joanna; it was no new not a little, its, poor little Joanna had grown up without doctrine she was about to preach. It had “O Pamela, are you sure that every thing companions or playmates, having never been been a great cross to her, in these hard is thoroughly attended to, the bedding well at school. Miss Basil had taught her a lit- times, that Mrs. Basil would not conform to aired, and all that? You should have had tle, and, for the rest, having a quick mind, her hours for meals—an obstinacy that en- Myra up to help you." she had picked up a fair stock of informa- tailed much trouble and extra work-but now “But Myra is busy with the ironing," tion, foraging among a lot of long-forgotten she saw a special providence in Mrs. Basil's said Miss Basil, and in her heart she wished books stowed away in the garret, where she luxurious babits; there would be the less Mrs. Basil had something to do to keep her could read unmolested.

occasion for Joanna to meet Mr. Hendall. busy. But Mrs. Basil could do nothing but “A solitary child, shutting herself up be- While she was meditating a suitable dis- sew a little, and she did not always bave the tween the leaves," books had taught her course to deliver to Joanna, or, rather, while material to sew upon.

" And you

[ocr errors]

“ Well, we must find an extra servant, I “Oh, do tell me what he is like, 'Mela!” “What are you going to make, 'Mela?” suppose,” said she, as complacently as if an Joanna asked, eagerly.

said Joanna, with great interest, planting her extra servant would cost nothing. “ It is al. Miss Basil, though she would have it that elbows on the table, and cradling her cheeks ways the way in summer. I hope the room Joanna must remain a child, demanded, none in her hands. “Let it be something very, is well aired, and the bedding; I am very the less, the discreet reticence of conscious very nice, do; for, oh, he is as bravemas particular, because Arthur is by no means so womanhood.

brave as a lion! Aud I do admire-prowess well as I could wish him to be."

“You are very improper, Joanna," said in a inan!" “An invalid ! ” queried Miss Basil, with she, sharply, as she walked resolutely to the “Joanna, child, I wish you wouldn't!” interest, adjusting in her mind the advantages store-room. “All sick men are alike-be (“Wouldn't " what? Miss Basil did not, un. and disadvantages likely to result from Mr. sure of that-never thinking of the everlast- der the circumstances, know how to be defiArthur Hendall's inability to leave his room. ing trouble they give."

nite.) “You always do contrive to get just in It would certainly keep him out of Joanna's “O 'Mela !” exclaimed Joanna, following my way!" said poor Miss Basil, lugubriously. way; but it would also entail much unprofit. in Miss Basil's wake, and speaking with en- Blanc-mange ! cried Joanna, clapping .able labor. The advantages and disadvan. thusiasm. “I should not mind the trouble, her bands softly, as she moved away to the tages seemed about evenly balanced, and Miss for it isn't mere common sickness in his case. other end of the table at the instigation of Basil sighed.

Haven't you heard ! Only think of his being Miss Basil's remorseless elbows. Yes," said Mrs. Basil, brightly, mistak- wounded with a pistol in ama contest "-Jo- do make such delicious blanc-mange, 'Mela! I ing the sigh for sympathy; “ a tertian ague, anna had an extravagant ambition to use hope you are going to put it in the roseattended by rheumatic symptoms, with some “superior” language, and, no matter what | mould.” gastric disturbance."

she talked about, would hesitate for a high- “No, I am not,” said Miss Basil, crossly. "Oh, that's nothing,” said Miss Basil, sounding word—“with those dreadful burg- “ Don't be silly, Joanna. It's only a milkwith an air of experience. “The remedy is lars that broke into Mrs. Stargold's house in punch I shall make.” quinine; and iodoform would benefit him." Westport the other day-the other night, you “I am sure he would like that,” said Jo.

“I beg your pardon,” said Mrs. Basil, in know I mean-Mrs. Elizabeth Stargold, the anna, not feeling the rebuff; for was not 'Mela an offended tone; “I consider it quite seri- grandmamma's cousin "-Joanna never said always cross when grandmamma's company ous; it is the result of exposure in the swamp “my grandmamma"-"an elderly lady, 'Mela, came? through which the New Central road is now she is, living all alone, and e-normously “And why should you mind what he being surveyed.”

wealthy, I do suppose. You see, I can tell likes ?" said Miss Basil, severely. “I dare “Oh!” said Miss Basil, meekly.

you all about it. The papers called it a thrill- say we may rue the day he came.” She always wilted when Mrs. Basil begged ing adventure, 'Mela, and”

“I'm sure he's much nicer to have here her pardon,

By this time they were in the store-room, and than the Archers or that Miss Ruffner." But Mrs. Basil turned away unappeased. Miss Basil was trying on a large calico apron. “Joanna," said Miss Basil, suspending There was yet more to tell about Arthur, and She had appeared not to be listening, but she the spoon over the yellow bowl of milk, “Mrs. in her then mood she might have told it if had heard, with the silence of exasperation, Basil's relations, remeinber." Miss Basil had not slighted his “symptoms every word that the little Joanna, following “She's just horrid, Miss Ruffner is, for all 80. As if she would be permitted to pre- at her heels, poured forth so eagerly; and that!” said Joanna, unabashed. “Don't I scribe in such a case! No, indeed ; Mrs. Ba- she had finally made up her mind that this know her? Forever and forever boasting sil intended to send for Dr. Garnet as soon as unwarrantable enthusiasm must be checked. about her-her pedigree, and always, always Arthur should arrive.

As if it were not enough that Arthur Hendall calling me child,' and asking whether I know must come to Basilwood at all, but he must my catechism, and I every bit of sixteen last come with the prestige of a hero! Yet, Miss summer when she was here! But, O Pame.

Basil was going to make something good for la!”—clasping her hands with fervor, in a CHAPTER IV.

him; oh, yes, she would repay him with sudden transition from intense indignation to kindness!

intense admiration, and sighing forth her MISS BASIL TAKES REFUGE IN A SONG.

“You talk too much, Joanna,” said she, words fervently — "she did wear love-ly

giving a vicious tug at the apron-strings. trains !” Young HENDALL arrived the next morn- But the grandmamma herself told me," And Joanna, with her hands still clasped, ing. He was a tall, handsome young man, persisted Joanna, simply. “You see, I wished bent her supple knees so as to make her short but evidently the worse for the tertian ague to know, and so I asked her."

skirts trail on the floor, looking down at them and attendant symptoms, and when Miss Ba- “ Youasked her ! ” repeated Miss Basil, over her shoulder with an absorbing interest, sil saw him her heart smote her. astonished. “Why, Joanna ! "

very distressing to poor Miss Basil, who " Heaven forgive me," she sighed, “tbat “Why, of course," answered Joanna, with thought the love of dress tbe root of all ever I should have rejoiced at his being simplicity. “Why should I not ask her ?” evil. obliged to keep his room!”

Miss Basil couldn't explain why; so she “Ah, child, vanity of vanities !"" she Bodily suffering always moved her com. said, lifting a warning finger that Joanna al- murmured, warningly. passion, and, though she mistrusted all hand- ways associated with forbidden fruit:.

“Oh, yes, I know all about that !said some young men in general, and this one in “Take care, child; forwardness, you Joanna, with an impatient twitch at her particular, she went immediately to prepare know, is not becoming in the young."

skirts. “ I've heard it a thousand times. for him such delicacies as only she could “But,” said Joanna, argumentatively, “it It's all because you don't care for trains and concoct; for, except administering physic, was not unbecoming, for the grandmamma | the like." Miss Basil liked nothing so well as making was pleased, I assure you. She commended “Trains and the like are not exempt from dainty dishes for the sick.

my—my urbanity in asking about her neph. moth and rust; remember that, child," said But her compassionate feelings were ew."

. doomed to meet a sudden shock. Intent

! apon her benevolent design, she came near Miss Basil; but whether from perplexity at heart on the things of this world." stumbling over the little Joanna, who had | Mrs. Basil's want of judgment in thus en- “Oh, dear, 'Mela!” said Joanna, with a been peeping through the crack of the din-couraging idle curiosity, or from impatience shrug. “Were you never young, in all your ing-room door, at tbe imminent risk of pinch at Joanna's ambitious language, she herself life, that you can't understand my feelings ? ing her nose. could not have told.

Yes," replied Miss Basil, promptly ; Vercy upon us, Joanna !” she ex- “She did," said Joanna, quietly.

“ I've seen the folly and the vanity of youth claimed, in wrath. “What are you doing Miss Basil, having no words in which to in my time." there?"

express her conflicting sentiments, began with Then you might let me see the folly and She almost wished the child had pinched a great clatter to gather together an array of the vanity of it in my time, which is just bowls and spoons.

come,” said Joanna, coaxingly.

64

[ocr errors]

her nose.

[ocr errors]

MARION WALLING.

She The knowledge of the one crowning follo

me.

" Which is just come !" repeated Miss Basil, had assumed the rule in her old home. This “Joanna, Joanna !” said Miss Basil, rein dismay, thinking of young Hendall.

was a feature of the case she had not con- bukingly. It was very gratifying that Joananna, what do you mean by such an express templated when she so complacently acqui. na sbould take a dislike to young Hendall,. sion ? But it is no matter what you mean, esced in the title “master of Basilwood,” ! but she ought not to wish bim harm. you silly, thoughtless child; it is my duty to that Miss Basil had bestowed; and she stood “But I do, 'Mela,” persisted Joanna;, warn you, without fear or favor, that youth now with angry eyes fixed on the door “and when I feel wicked, you might as well is a snare and a delusion!” Miss Basil had through which Mrs. Basil had disappeared. let me enjoy it.” With which startling regreat faith in the power of pious song; when “He's the master here, cbild, as I told monstrance she walked out of the room. nothing else would subdue the recalcitrant you,” said Miss Basil, with a sort of grim “Joanna ought not to indulge such sentiJoauna, she sang to her; Joanna might pro- satisfaction, for once interpreting Joanna's ments," Miss Basil said to herself, regretful. test in the beginning, but, before the strain thoughts aright.

ly; “but it is some satisfaction to know was brought to a close, she was dumb and “ If you are not to sing, it cannot be that, after all, I did not sing that bymn in spiritless. So, now, by way of persuading helped, I suppose,” said Joanna, hoarsely; vain." her obdurate young auditor to a better frame “but you see if I don't find some way to of mind, she began immediately to sing, in a worry the life out of him!” fearfully high key :

“Joanna, Joanna !” said Miss Basil,

tremulously, “you show an unchristian spir" This world is all a fleeting show,

it. For man's delusion given."

All tribulation is for our good.” She

was glad to see Joanna in such a frame of Joanna clapped her hands over her ears mind, but, all the same, she thought it ought to be mine on a September night two years and frowned. to be rebuked.

since, and it was brought to me by the one " Pamela ! Pamela !” she cried, “your “I don't believe it !” cried Joanna, reck- man who could explain it best. hymns are doleful, and I hate them; and I lessly. “It doesn't do me good; and you

She had run a cruel, brilliant course love the world, the beautiful, beautiful world ; , don't like it any better than I do. Why through all the capitals of Europe, but in and I am glad that I am young! Everybody, should he be master here ? ”

obedience to a sentiment of love for homeyes, everybody, would rather be young than Child, I have explained it to you, time sentiment the presence of which in her breast old!"

and again,” said matter-of-fact Miss Basil, was an inconsistency that I cannot pretend to But this remonstrance only moved Miss “Your grandfather,"

account for — she returned to this country Basil to sing the louder, in a voice of nasal “I know,” interrupted Joanna ; "I know with the avowed intention of helping it in its melancholy, while Joanna, with her eyes fixed all about my grandfather. He wasn't a man many infirmities, and of teaching others how upon the orchard where the sun was shining, to wear out his soul making money, like old to become true Americans. and the bees were coming and going among Mr. John Hendall; more's the pity for us !" She was twenty-five years of age, and the apple-blooms, thought, impatiently:

“It's all the same in the end, child; for she possessed a wealth that was practically “Such dolefulness may do for people that all Mr. John Hendall's money, the Hendalls, boundless. She was a descendant of a famhave had the rheumatism, but it doesn't suit now, are little better off than ourselves," ily that had been noted for the beauty of its

How can she, in a world of apple-blos- said Miss Basil, not without a sort of latent women, and upon her face and form there soms?' satisfaction.

had fallen by selection, one might say, the But a change was about to come over the “Basilwood belongs to them,” said Joan- finest and purest graces of half a score of spirit of her dream. Just as Miss Basil sang na, gloomily; "and we can't help it." generations. But she had used these charms the last line of the last verse, Mrs. Basil “ Joanna we could go away!” said in the work of Satan. Her society-life, exlooked in at the open door, with disapproval Miss Basil, suddenly. It might be desirable, tending over a period of seven years, was written on every line of her calm, handsome she thought, to familiarize Joanna with that marked here and there with those fearful of. face. idea.

fenses that no one knows how to punish, and “Pamela," said she, in a voice which, " Leave Basilwood ? My Basilwood, yet the criminality of which po one dares to though cold, was soft and silvery, contrasting where I have lived all my life!" cried Joan. palliate. strangely with the discordant tones that had na, turning white at the mere suggestion. “O To generate love in the most guarded just ceased—“ Pamela, excuse me, but really 'Mela, do you think it must come to that ? " breast, and to set on fire the most tranquil you cannot be aware bow very loud your sing. “I suppose it must, in time,” said Miss nature, was her special prerogative, and most ing is, nor how trying to a person out of Basil, with studied resignation. “You see wickedly did she exercise it. health. My nephew cannot bear it; he begs already that there is an end to my singing. To her captives, to be forewarned was not that you will spare him."

But you should not say 'my Basilwood,' Jo- to be forearmed. It availed little to prince Now, Miss Basil was not vain of her anna, for Basilwood is not, and never will be, or poet to be advised of her nature, for each voice; indeed, she had no reason to be; but yours.” It was desirable, Miss Basil thought, fell at her will, and without the trace of a neither was she ashamed of her singing. She to foster the promising enmity that Joanda struggle. In casting them aside she showed sang as she did every thing else, from a sense was beginning to entertain toward Mrs. Ba

no mercy.

She snapped the threads with of duty, and she could not see how any right- sil's nephew; she did not take into consider- both hands, and then tumed away without a minded person could object to a purely reli- ation the dangerous nature of a rebound from word of pity or regret. gious exercise. However, as she was not dis- such a sentiment.

But she found on her return to America posed to consider young Hendall a right- Joanna burst into tears. " It shall be that this more independent society looked minded person, she only said: mine!” she sobbed, childishly.

askance upon ber in spite of her wealth and “I didn't suppose I could be heard up- “Joanna," said Miss Basil, who could see position, and that, for once, disapprobation stairs."

but one way by which Joanna could obtain could be rendered disquieting. She retired She was busying herself with the young possession of Basilwood, “if you ever say to her country-seat, and, surrounded by a man's breakfast all the while, and Mrs. Ba- that again, I shall be seriously displeased gallant company of friends, she caused the sil, seeing these preparations going on, was with you."

belief to go abroad that she had at last pleased to show, by a nod and a smile, as she “Yes," sobbed Joanna, “it's envy, and taken the true views of her place and use in withdrew, closing the door behind her, that hatred, and malice, and all uncharitableness, the world, and that she was ready to assume she was appeased.

Mela, I know, to say so; but I can't help it. her share of its burdens. If there was any discipline to which Miss Never, never, any more, will it be the same The law-firm with which I was connected Basil resorted, more irksome than another place to us. And you took such comfort in had charge of her own and ber father's esto Joanna, it was this doleful singing, and your singing, too!

I wish he had never tates, and I therefore had frequent occasiorr ordinarily she rejoiced at any interruption ; come! His old breakfast is getting cold, to visit the household, and I became conrer: but now she began to feel, with a bitterness and I am glad of it; I hope it will disagree i sant, to a certain extent, with what took she had never known before, that a stranger with him, I do!”

place beneath the roof.

« הקודםהמשך »