« הקודםהמשך »
יי! Go back
phere of green, shadowy twilight—though we “ I feel as if I can never be satisfied if I at once to the hotel and change your dress," left the sun shining on the outside world, don't have it,” says Miss Hollis, with the I say, anxiously; “Miss Hollis will exenise you, pervading every thing, we are enchanted by | prettiest air of appeal.
since you have suffered such a misadventure its loreliness.
" Then you shall have it,” says Charley, in her service." " It is like a miniature of Linville," says springing up the bank.
“I will go with him !" cries Miss Hollis, Eric. “Fancy these walls of rock two thou- “What on earth is he going to do?” I eagerly. “Since he suffered in my service, I sand feet high, and this stream a river, and say.
should be very upgrateful to send him back you have an idea of Linville Gorge."
What he is going to do is soon apparent. alone." “I wish I could go there,” says Sylvia. We hear him breaking through the bushes "You are exceedingly kind," says Char"Is it quite impossible for us to do so this i by the side of the stream, and presently he ley, “but I must deprive myself of the pleas. summer, Eric ?"
appears on the top of the fall. Lying down ure of your companionship, for once. You • Quite impossible-according to our pres- there, and holding by a laurel-shrub, he leans would not fancy the rate at which I must ent plan of travel. Don't you know that it far over the rock, and tries to gather the walk-not to speak of my excessive dampis an important part of sight-seeing to know flower. It is a most precarious position, and ness." what must be left unseen?”
one which it is not pleasant to contemplate. He rises as he speaks-a ludicrous figure, “ And this is Lovers' Retreat!” says Ru. “Go back!” Eric, Rupert, and I cry in certainly—and moves away. In reaching the pert, standing on a mossy, slippery rock in chorus. “ You can't reach it — you'll cer- bank he passes Sylvia, who has not uttered a the middle of the stream. “ If I were a lover, tainly fall over.
word since he fell. it seems to me I should select a retreat that “O Mr. Kenyon, pray don't!” ies Mis “I hope you were not very much startled," was not so damp-or so spaky."
Hollis. She turns away, and covers her face he says, pausing before her, with a laugh. “What do you know about the sentiments with her hands. “ I can't look !” she says, “Not at all,” she answers, looking at him of lovers?” asks Charley. “Let me tell you · I really can't.—Please tell me if he falls." with a cool, bright glance. “You know my that, when one is a victim of the tender pas- Sylvia looks on steadily—her color bright, nerves are very good. I bad no idea that sion, one does not consider snakes." her lips set.
you would be drowned." Unless you see them,” says Eric.
“And “I hope he will fall!” she says. “He “And would not have cared very much Rupert is right: this looks as if it might be deserves it for such folly."
if I had been, I dare say," he remarks, careone of their favorite retreats."
“ He'll go over head-foremost in a min- lessly. “Good nerves are capital things--in “I wish that the people who name places ute,” says Mr. Lanier, philosophically. their way.-Well, au revoir to you all !- Miss of this kind would consider some other class Meanwhile Cbarley, deaf to our warnings, Hollis, I shall have the pleasure of seeing you of the world's population besides lovers,” | leans farther and farther over the rock, reaches in the ballroom to-night.” suys Sylvia.
nearer and nearer the flower. At last his He disappears, shaking himself like a “They are the most interesting class, are hand touches it.
Newfoundland dog as he goes. When the they not ? ” asks Mr. Lanier.
“By George, he's got it!” cries Rupert, last glimpse of his figure has ranished, we “On the contrary, I think they are the triumphantly.
look at each other, and, yielding to an overmost uninteresting,” she answers, decidedly. The words are scarcely uttered before the mastering inclination, burst into a peal of
They are always selfish, absorbed in their laurel-bush, on which he has bent his whole laughter. own affairs—and silly!"
weight, breaks suddenly. He tries to recov- Miss Hollis appears in the ballroom with “Dear me! what a list of charges," says er his balance, but the wet rock is too slip- the lobelia in her hair that night, but Char. Miss Hollis, with an affected laugh.-—" Take pery. He catches desperately at another ley's devotion is by no means so excessive warning, gentlemen! Miss Norwood will have shrub-fails to reach it-and goes, all in an as it has been. Whether the plunge bath little sympathy for you if you fall in love." instant, down into the pool !
has cooled his ardor, or whether he is alarmed “ Then we can come to this retreat and The tremendous splash which he makes by the melting glances with which the young find some kindly rattlesnake to put an end informs Miss Hollis—even before our excla. lady favors him, it is impossible to say, but to our pain,” says Charley.--"Here's a pret- mations-what has occurred. She turns, the change in his manner is very evident. ty flower. Will you have it?"
and screams, of course—the women who I remark this when he comes down and sits It is Miss Hollis to whom he offers the make mischief are the women who always by me. flower-a delicate wild azalia—and she ac
over it. Nobody heeds her. Eric “One can't keep a flirtation at high-water cepts it most graciously.
and Rupert spring forward just as Charley's mark all the time," he says, " There must “I am so fond of flowers," she says. “I head rises like a cork. A stroke or two be ebbs in all tides. To tell you the truth, see a scarlet lobelia growing yonder on the brings him to water where he can wade. Miss Hollis is pretty, but insipid to an ap. rocks by the cascade. I wish-oh, I do wish Then the others assist him out and deposit palling degree.” I could get that !” him, dripping, on the rocks.
“You must have made that discovery “But you can't!” says Rupert, looking “I've a great mind to say 'Serves you very recently.” at the indicated flower, which grows in an right!'” remarks Eric. “I hope you are “No, I have been aware of it for some inaccessible place on the face of the rock satisfied.”
time; but there are certain moods in which over which the cascade tumbles, with a deep “I believe I am," replies Charley, as soon one is more intolerant of insipidity than in pool below.
as he can speak. “But I have the Aower.- others." “Here is a lobelia,” says Mr. Lanier, who You'll excuse my coming near you in my “I am afraid you bear malice for your has been prying about among bushes and present moist condition, Miss Hollis—but plunge in the pool ; but you had your own “ Will it not do as well ?" here it is."
folly to blame for that, as well as hers. By“Oh, no,” says Miss Hollis, shaking her He gives it to Rupert, who presents it to the-by, do you think you will suffer from it!" It , the young lady.
“Not in the least.
can't you find any way to get it for me yon? *e. I can't texi you how much I shall prize How well sylvia is looking tonight !" I sup:
should be so delighted, and would wear it in it," she cries, “nor how much I am obliged pose it is not worth while for me to ask her my hair to-night."
to you for taking so much trouble to gratify to dance—she would certainly be 'engaged.' “ With such an inducement, I must cer- me; but I would give any thing if you had not Does she mean to marry that fellow Lanier?” tainly make an effort to get it,” says Char- fallen into the water, I was horribly fright- “You had better ask her if you are curiley, gallantly — but he looks doubtfully at ened, for I felt sure you would be drowned.” ous on the subject. I have no patience with the position of the flower.
“ Thanks," says Charley. “I might have men who try to obtain sucb information at “Charley, don't be a fool!” says Eric, been, perhaps, if I had struck my head second hand. A faint heart never yet won a aside. “ You can't possibly get it without against the rock. Luckily I had presence woman, and never deserved to win one!” risking a plunge-bath, and it will be no joke of mind enough to turn a somersault; so I “ Ah!" says Charley, calmly. to fall into that pool. It must be six or escaped a fractured skull."
pose the woman is not to be won by any eight seet deep.”
“You'll not escape a cold, if you don't go kind of a heart? If I asked Sylvia such a
" But supquestion, she would tell me that it was no af- “Sylvia can take care of herself,” says “ News, ma'am ? Why, yes,
indeed, fair of mine."
Eric, gathering up the reins—he is to drive ma'am, the most astonishing. Middleborough “And that is all you know about it!” I the phaeton—"and Charley is not likely to will wake up to a sensation to-morrow, or I'm think, as he saunters away.
Puck's words lead her into danger.—Now, are all ready?” much mistaken. And who, now, do you occur to me with great force—“Lord! what “ All ready," answers a chorus of voices think is going to astonish the natives this fools these mortals be!"-and never such from the “jersey," which is filled to-day with time?" fools as in a matter that would seem to de- other freight than trunks.
“Mrs. Stargold isn't dying, is she ?" mand, above all others, the exercise of the “No, no," cries Miss Hollis; “Mr. Ken. asked Mrs. Caruthers. “You say you came soundest sense. yon has not come back."
from her house." The next day is appointed for the excur- “We must wait for Miss Sylvia,” says "No; nor likely to die, bless you! I sion to Paint Rock-distant seven miles from Mr. Lanier.
knew all the time that it was only worry of the Springs, and consequently three miles “Not at all necessary,” says Eric. “We mind. It's that unaccountably queer cousin over the Tennessee border. Several addi. can follow them."
of old Judge Basil's, ma'am, that I've always tions to our party make it quite large. Aunt “But they, went a different road from associated in my mind with flannel and 'FarbMarkham declines to go-seeing no attrac- ours."
tea.' Why, bless you, her story is a perfect tion in rocks—but Eric fills both carriages "No - they took the right road. The romance !" with sight-seers, and two or three equestri- turnpike on the other side of the river is bad- “I've often heard she wasn't so reticent ang swell our number. Sylvia, as usual, is on ly washed by the late rains, so we keep on for nothing," said old Mrs. Paul Caruthers, horseback and looking her best-a best this side for two or three miles, then cross sagely. “But speak up, speak up, docter, which quite extinguishes Miss Hollis, who at a lower ferry.”
do, or I can't understand you." also rides, but whose steed is poor, and “They will wait for us, then ?” says Miss “Reticent for nothing !” shouted the docwhose horsemanship is very defective. Eric Hollis.
tor. “Well, vo, I should say not, most deplaces his handsome Cecil at her service, but "I presume so," answers Mr. Lanier. cidedly. Who, now, do you suppose she she is afraid to mount him, hence Charley These expectations are doomed to disap- turns out to be after burying herself all these has the satisfaction of riding him. A better
years at Basilwood ?" horse than Cecil on which to “ show off”
At the mention of Basilwood, Joanna, in graceful horsemanship it would be difficult to
spite of indignation, in spite of anxiety, was find. He has not a single vicious trait, but his
unable longer to fix her attention beyond spirit would turn the hair of a timid rider gray
dreamily speculating upon what Anita might with terror. He dances as if he had been
at that moment be doing; and, before she reared in a circus, and, if he is required to stand
knew it, was in a profound slumber. for a minute, will rear straight up on his hind
Anita was at that moment surprised by legs and paw the air with his front-feet. He
the entrance of Miss Caruthers, who had arrepeats this performance several times before
rived alone during the raging of the storm; we start-varying it by waltzing on the same
but exposure to the weather had not subdued hind-legs; all of which makes Charles (who
ber, by any means. She was in a state of is a capital rider) appear to great advantage
excitement that fitted her for any arduous to such advantage, indeed, that I wickedly sus
undertaking, so she said. pect him of inciting Cecil to some of the feats.
Anita, starting up, looked at her in con“O Mr. Kenyon, is that the horse you
sternation ; but, before she could give expreswanted me to ride ? " cries Miss Hollis, pale
sion to her thought, Miss Caruthers exclaimed, with consternation. * Good Heavens! what
gayly: should I have done !—He will break your
“ Henceforth name me the Indomitable! neck-I am sure he will ! Oh, pray don't
You may well look surprised to see me. Such ride him!”
a storm as we came through! But don't Charley only laughs at this appeal.
look so alarmed, my dear; it's all right, only “Soh, Cecil-steady, old boy!” he says,
we are under the necessity of changing the patting Cecil's beautiful arched neck. “He
programme slightly.” is gentle as a lamb,” he adds. “ You could
Where is Joanna?” cried ride him without danger. He is only spirited
Anita, nervously. and anxious to be off.”
“Preserve us!" ejaculated Miss Caruth. “I don't think I like so much spirit,” pointment. We drive around the hotel, leave “She isn't in hearing, is she?" says Miss Hollis, drawing her own steed the grounds, cross Spring Creek, and follow “ Then you haven't seen her ? ” said Ani. away and looking askance at Cecil's curveting the stage-road which leads along the river ta, falling back upon the pillows. bounds.
toward Wolf Creek, but the eyes which are “Seen her! No," answered Miss Caruth. Meanwhile, Sylvia's pretty mare has caught | strained eagerly ahead discover no sign of ers, rather bewildered. “Whiy, you are as the contagion, and is champing her bit and the runaways.
nervous-come, come, this will never do! I pawing the ground.
tell you, it is all right. Not a soul kuors of "Neither of them likes to stand," says THE LITTLE JOANNA. it, and the carriage will be here at eight Charley, looking at her. Suppose we give
o'clock. I do not know what new arrangethem a run to keep them from pulling our
ment Mr. Redmond will make, under the arms off!"
circumstances, but you may count upon his Sylvia—not perceiving all that lies behind
being punctual” (laughing); "be hurried me this suggestion - assents. The borses only
away in spite of the storm ; and it was well need permission to go. Side by side they
he did, or there would bave been an end start, and, keeping pace admirably, sweep
of every thing; for Middleborough bridge is
JOANNA? down the carriage-drive along the front of
gone!" the hotel, and vanish around the corner of Poor Joanna lay down upon Miss Caruth. “Gone!" cried Anita, starting up with a the building
ers's bed, and succumbed to the dose of chlo. scream and wringing lier bands. “What, “I suppose they will be back in a minute," ral, vaguely conscious, ere she fell asleep, then, has become of Joanna ?” says Mr. Lanier, looking after them uneasily, that Dr. Garnet, whose every word penetrated “For Heaven's sake, what has Joanna to “ but it is very wrong of Kenyon to encour- the crack of the door, was talking loudly to do with it!" said Miss Caruthers, rather image Miss Sylvia in riding so recklessly. There old Mrs. Paul Caruthers, and that he was patiently. is always danger of an aocident." talking about Miss Basil.
“She has every thing to do with it!”
cried Anita, wringing her honds in an agony under those circumstances, until the last tle sister, she said she would risk her life of terror and grief. “I sent her to you to
for me; has Heaven, then, taken her at her tell you not to come. I have changed my “Well, well, we'll make a very pleasant word ?” mind. I will not go. Oh, how could I risk party without her. Miss Basil never con- Anita began walking the floor in uncouthe child's life in such a storm as this !" tributes much to conversation; and here we trollable agony of mind. In vain Miss Ca
“ Well,” said Miss Caruthers, coolly, bave Miss Caruthers to fill her place. Miss ruthers essayed to calm her. " Mr. Redmond said that was Joanna on the Caruthers always has plenty to say. She “My dear creature, you will exhaust bridge."
will give us an account of all the little spites yourself. Do lie down and rest. Anita caught at a chair, and saved herself and jealousies Mrs. Carl Tomkins bas been suaded that Joanna is perfectly safe. Refrom falling.
so busy soothing and conciliating this past member that Mr. Redmond will be at the “Why do you torture me?” she said, week-to my mind the most amusing feature lower gate with the carriage by eight o'clock. faintly. “Tell me at once that Joanna went of charades, tableaus, concerts, and all ama- It never would do to disappoint him.” down with the bridge.”
teur persormances. And so the storm puts “I will not see him! I will not go!” "Now, you dear creature,” cried Miss an end to it all ? Joanna-but where is Jo- cried Anita, passionately. “I wish I never, Caruthers, running toward her with the co- anna?"
never had consented!” logne-bottle, “ you torture yourself. Joanna Anita gave a gasp that had nearly be- “ Upon my word,” said Miss Caruthers, did not go down with the bridge, I'm sure. trayed her; but, fortunately, Mrs. Basil inter- beginning to lose her temper,
" these are We met her just half-way, in crossing, and posed in time.
great thanks to me! All because that flighty we saw her safe on the other side, after we “Oh, Joanna, in all probability, has be- Joanna must go posting off in the storm! were safe on this side. It was so dark, we come uneasy about Miss Basil, and started Come, now, my dear," added sbe, coaxingly, shouldn't have known our own grandmothers out to find her."
" think of Mr. Redmond.” had we run against them. The old bridge “In this storm ? " cried Miss Hawkesby, “If I have not Joanna safe again, I can rocked so, we thought we were gone, and we with a horrified expression.
never see him. I tell you I will not go with ran for dear life. And, sure enough, we “Do let me help you to some of this him," said Anita. “Don't you understand hadn't come as far as Chancellor Page's be pickle," said Miss Caruthers, hastily, to Ani- my misery? It was I that sent the child out fore little Harry Jordane overtook us and ta.- —“My dear Miss Hawkesby, the storm is in this pitiless storm, to tell you not to come told us that the bridge was blown away. not so severe as you think ; I came out in -to put a stop at once to this unseemly busiAunt made a great fuss about my coming out it." in the storm; but I was just wild about the “Then you did a very unbecoming thing,
“You don't mean to say that you've success of our scheme. Now, don't give allow me to tell you," said Miss Hawkesby, changed your mind ?” Miss Caruthers asked, way, just when
success is within your severely. She didn't like Miss Caruthers, staring in blank amazement. grasp."
and she would not hesitate to express her “I do mean to say just that," answered “But Joanna—" Apita urged, anxiously, mind, with or without permission. “I've Anita. “I will not go. I was in a rage pushing away Miss Caruthers's hands; “ what lived long enough in this world to learn that with my aunt, or I never should liave conif she should have attempted to come back only a very excellent woman like Miss Basil sented. I was mad ever to confide in you." over that bridge!"
can defy a storm like this with any propri- “Thank you—thank you!” said Miss “My dearest creature, calm yourself. Jo- ety."
Caruthers, angrily. “I
infinitely anna is safe, you may be sure. She must “Thurston saw Joanna go out, more than obliged!” have arrived at my aunt's before the bridge an hour ago," said Mrs. Basil, querulously. “Forgive me,” said Anita, with hysterical went down ; and, since she cannot get back, "I don't approve, but I am not responsible laughter. “Perhaps I am mad now.” of course she'll stay there all night."
for Joanna's conduct. She is my husband's “ You are overwrought,” said Miss CaWhat will my aunt say? What will granddaughter; I never forget that; but I've ruthers, relenting. She had her own little Miss Basil say? I deserve their deepest cou- no authority over her. If I had" and spite against Miss Hawkesby, and she was demnation,” said Anita, despairingly. Mrs. Basil's head and hands began shaking loath to give up so fine an opportunity of “ As for Miss Hawkesby, she needn't know strangely.
gratifying it, to say nothing of the distincit until tomorrow; and then what matter “Oh, we always believe in our own infal- tion of assisting in a runaway match. what she says ? And Miss Basil is away for libility,” said Miss Hawkesby, coolly, “ until “Why, I thought you had more nerve, you the night, with some sick person or other; we've had some experience. But as to au- poor dear; now you shall lie down and rest, Mr. Redmond himself told me so. There ! ) thority, I shall let Miss Joanna know that I and, when eight o'clock comes, all will be what bell is that?"
have some jurisdiction over her. No young right.” “It is for dinner,” said Anita, faintly. “I lady belonging to me shall go out in such “I will not go!” said Anita. “Do you ·cannot, cannot down."
weather without knowing my mind on the think I draw back because I ain afraid ? I “Oh, but you must, you must!” cried subject."
will not do it, because it is wrong-Joanna Miss Caruthiers, peremptorily. “We can't “No, aunt,” said Anita, with a firmness has made me feel that it is wrong.” have Miss Hawkesby coming up here making that surprised and encouraged Miss Caruth- “You surely never told that little fool? inquiries, you know. Bathe your face in co- ers, “ you will not scold Joanna ; she is not Then you were mad indeed!” cried Miss logne; drink some of it. Heavens, how pale to blame for—for doing what she thinks is Caruthers, furiously. So she was to be you are! Pinch some color into your cheeks, right.”
balked of her revenge for Miss Hawkesby's for pity's sake, and remember to eat with ap. “Don't dictate to me,” said Miss Hawkes- slighting speecbes, by that child Joanna. petite and talk with ease.”
by, sbortly. “You know, Miss Anita, that “She is my sister, please to remember," Anita, recognizing the wisdom of this ad. you yourself deserve my displeasure in some said Anita, in her cool, soft way. The prosvice, roused herself with an effort, and fol. | things."
pect of measuring swords with this girl, whom lowed Miss Caruthers's direction. She ap- Miss Caruthers changed color, but Anita she knew she could excel in the art of fence, peared to eat with appetite; and fortunately looked charmingly serene.
She knew very
had a tonic effect upon her excited nerves, there was little need for her to speak, as Miss well that her aunt alluded to a great battle “I suppose it was natural,” said Miss Hawkesby was in it talkative mood, and left they had fought the day before about the Caruthers, recovering herself, and unwilling few pauses that Mrs. Basil or Miss Caruthers gentleman Anita called “the venerable Mr. to resign the hope of ultimately carrying her could not fill.
Merwin." It was that battle that had de point. She felt encouraged by Anita's calmer "So Miss Basil is not come home yet?" cided Anita to run off with Basil Redmond, tone; and, remembering with satisfaction the said Miss Hawkesby. “I wonder what keeps But Anita's serenity forsook her the mo- serene firmness with which Anita biad opher?”
ment she was up-stairs again, alone with posed, at dinner, her aunt's determination to “Ol," said Mrs. Basil, in an injured tone, Miss Caruthers. “I must have my sister scold Joanna, she assured herself that there " they tell me that one of the Griswolds is at back again!" she cried, passionately. “I was a fund of strength, after all, behind this the point of death, and Pamela will stay, cannot endure this suspense. My poor lit- i intense excitement. “It was natural; you
wished, of course, to take leave of your sis- you and of me. If you knew how degraded you betray them; and perbaps I ought to ter; and happily she is now out of the way I felt as I crept down those stairs—”
tell you finally that you'd better not have of trouble--and safe, be sure of that-oh, be * But, Anita"
any thing further to do with me, as I am sure sure of that,” she reiterated, eagerly, for “I tell you I cannot, I will not go with to incur my aunt's displeasure." Anita was becoming excited again.
you while I am uncertain about my sister's It wasn't nice in Anita to say all this, Poor Anita !- the words “out of the fate. But bring her back to me-oh ! if, in considering the service Miss Caruthers bad way of trouble--and safe," had for her dis- deed, you love me, bring her back to me, been so willing to render her ; but Miss Ca. turbed mind a ghastly significance, mind and I promise you devoutly I will brave my ruthers received it with an amiable giggle. ing her of those prudent phrases by which aunt's displeasure openly for your sake."
You are so funny," she said ; but, inthe dread announcement of a death is evaded. It was vain to argue with her. To Miss deed, she hadn't the independence to quarShe began to moan and wring her hands. Caruthers she was coolly obstinate; but Red- rel with Anita.
Miss Caruthers, mentally anathematizing mond she resisted with such passionate plead- Then Miss Hawkesby came in, and turned Joanna, strove to turn Anita's thoughts into ing that at last he said:
the conversation. another channel by talking of Basil Redmond. · She will make herself ill; we must car- Anita,” she said, sharply, “what are But in vain she dwelt upon his devotion, in ry her back to the house."
you doing shut up here all the evening? You vain she painted his despair and disappoint- It was carrying her indeed; for, when might bring your company down-stairs and ment; Anita, when she said any thing at all, she found she had gained her point, she trem- entertain us. Mrs. Basil and I bave been said only: bled so she could not walk.
dull enough, and now she's gone to bed." “I will not see him ; I will not go with My poor Anita," said Redmond, “prom- “I am sick, aunt,” said Anita, and burst him."
ise me, promise me that you will cease to into tears, sobbing violenily. “Well, it is very nearly eight o'clock," distress yourself, that you will believe in Jo- “Why, bless my soul ! " cried Miss at last said Miss Caruthers, with a sigh in anna's safety.”
Hawkesby, in astonishment.
" Why, Anita, acknowledgment of ber defeat; “I may as “I promise, oh, I promise!” said Anita, this isn't your way.-What have you been well go down and tell him to give it up." hysterically; and then, as they had arrived saying to her? What have you been doing
Then, to her surprise and joy, Anita at the house, she signed to Miss Caruthers to to her ? ” she snid, turning fiercely to Miss started up
go in first. When she was alone with Red- Caruthers. “I will see him!” she cried. “I will mond, she turned to him and said, with some- “), ma'am ?” said Miss Caruthers, stiffgo down with you."
thing of that mocking air peculiar to her : ening. “ I'm the best friend she has; I defy “If once she sees Basil Redmond, she “Is it not a bitter ing to have confided her to deny it." must go with him,” Miss Caruthers thought; in that girl ! ”
"Where is Miss Basil ? She understands, but she did not know Anita ; she did not un. Nothing is bitter, Anita, that gives you physic, and all that,” said Miss Hawkesby, derstand the loathing of self that made the to me," said Redmond, sadly.
running around the room in a frightened war. girl shudder as they stole down the back- Ah, yes, any thing wrong would come to “ Hasn't Miss Basil come home yet?" stairs ; she thought she was a support, mor- be bitter to us in time," said Anita. “ The “No, she hasn't,” said Anita, between ally and physically, to this slight, trembling dear, the good little Joanna taught me this her sobs; and then, with a wail that terrified creature whose arm she held, and into whose when she made me see the folly of running her aunt almost into spasms, nor Joanna, ear she kept repeating words of good cheer away to be married. She thinks people either.” and encouragement, to which Anita deigned should be married respectably at home. “Anita, Anita, for mercy's sake," said no reply.
Poor little Joanna!” And then Anita burst Miss Hawkesby, tremulously, compose The fury of the storm had abated some- into bitter weeping.
yourself! She's with Miss Basil, you knor.what, but the rain was still falling heavily, "I see,” said Redmond, “ Joanna is dear- It's nerves, poor thing!” she added, turning and it was so dark that wben they arrived at er than I," and he sighed bitterly.
appealingly to Miss Caruthers. “Get me a the gate they would not have known the car- “ Ab, no! no!” said Anita, as she clung glass of water for her, my dear.–Now you riage was there had they not run against Basil to him. “Ah, you do not know what a go to bed and calm yourself, Anita.—M'e had Redmond in the walk.
struggle I bave been through. Bid me good. a quarrel yesterday, but I'm sorry for it. “ Anita !” he cried, joyfully. “You will night, but not farewell, or my heart must Never mind, we'll make it all up." not disappoint me?" break."
And so, coaxing and caressing, she unHe attempted to take her hands ; but Ani- Redmond's indignation melted at this. dressed Anita and put her to bed as if she ta drew back. He bade her good-night with many assur.
had been a baby. "I have come to tell you that I cannot go ances that Joanna must be safe, that he bim- “She's a good girl, Anita is," she whis. with you,” she said, gently.
self would bring her back, and that all would pered, apologetically, to Miss Caruthers, laç. “ Anita!” he cried, in consternation. yet be well; and Anita went up-stairs com- ing aside, for the nonce, all prejudice. “She « What does this mean?" forted somewhat.
doesn't often act in this way; if she did, she'd “She has been talking that way this en- “Well!” said Miss Caruthers, “what rule me with a rod of iron. But I wish that tire evening," said Miss Caruthers, volubly. kind of a girl are you? I've a great mind to Basil Redmond was hanged.” “Don't listen to her.” And she attempted quarrel with you."
“Go to bed, aunt,” said Anita, feebly. to urge the two forward.
Anita almost wished that she would; she “I would much rather have Miss Caruthers Anita resisted.
was beginning to find this ready friend de- with me; you know you snore." “I cannot go with you," she repeated. testable.
‘Yes, my darling, I know I do,” said old “ Don't reproach me; I am miserable and "I am this kind of a girl," she said, Miss Hawkesby, pathetically. “I'll just leare unhappy enough. I tried to send you word " that when I make up my mind to a thing I my door open, and Miss Caruthers shall call not to come; I have risked my sister's life cannot be moved."
me if you need any thing." in this storm, and I know not what is become “ By anybody except Joanna," amended But, long before Miss Hawkesby was of her." Miss Caruthers, with a sneer.
awake next morning, Anita was up and gone, Her voice rose in a wail of anguish.
“Not even by Joanna,” said Anita, cool. and Miss (aruthers with her. “I never heard the like !” exclaimed ly. “It wasn't my mind, but only my temMiss Caruthers, impatiently.
per, that was made up to this step, because I she is safe enough.”
was in a fury with my aunt. Now let me tell “Oh, yes, Anita," said Redmond; "you you something for your future guidance:
CHAPTER XXX. distress yourself for nothing. Joanna is safe never have any thing to do with a runaway
WHAT WILL MISS HAWKESBY SAY? enough."
match ; it's a very ridiculous position to oc. “I cannot go away with you,'' Anita per- cupy, that of defeated confidante; never re- WHEN Joinna awoke the next morning sisted. “I cannot do this underhand thing; ceive confidences, they are mortally trouble. her limbs felt stiir, her head confused; she I cannot let you do it. It is unworthy of some, whether you keep them or whether knew not where she was, she could not re
“I tell you
nearly capsized then. And Joanna never knew that in escaping from this peril the wretched little craft was very near being carried over the falls.
Those on shore knew, however, and looked upon her escape almost as a miracle. Little Mr. Leasom, the clergyman, who was among the crowd of excited spectators, offered up a silent prayer for the safety of these two unknown children; and the moment the boat touched the bank he lifted Joanna out with a devout ejaculation of thanksgiving.“ Were you mad,” he said, trembling violently, “ were you mad, to risk your life so recklessly? Do you know that you bave come back from the very gates of death?" He was a very nervous man, and it would have been a great relief to his feelings to shake this reckless Joanua well; but Joanna burst into tears, and his next action was to turn and collar the daring youth that had brought her safely
member what had happened; but gradually, | night, the bridge gave way. In a skiff, eh?
hastened away to
THE SCENE OF THE DISASherself could not appear entirely blameless Ter,” as the Middleborough Daily Messenger in Miss Hawkesby's eyes: might not her put it, in capitals. Here a dense crowd was aunt, therefore, be the more easily won to already assembled, which, after the manner forgive Anita ? This was rather an instinct of crowds, jostled and pushed the poor child than an argument with Joanna, but her faith about until her native courage was utterly therein was strong, and she was eager to act routed. She had no fear of the rushing curupon it without delay. Utterly regardless of rent; she was as ready as ever to brave the the claims of hospitality, she was about to dangerous passage of the river ; but receiving leive the house, when she encountered Miss for all reply, to every timid inquiry she made Caruthers coming in.
for a boat to ferry her over, only a rude The two looked at each other with no stare or a curt denial, she lost faith in man. friendly regard. Joanna, though she had kind. At last, finding herself disentangled lived apart from the Middleborough world, from the throng, she sat down upon a broken was not ignorant that the public voice pro- barrel, her heart full of sorrow and anxiety, nounced Miss Caruthers“ fast;" and she to ponder the situation. bitterly resented this enterprising young la- “I say ma’am, don't you b’long on t'other dy's influence over Anita.
side ?” asked a shock-headed young athlete, “You evil genius!” she cried, with fierce who espied her there. denunciation. “Away with you! Out of “Yes," answered Joanna, rising promptmy sight! I never wish to see you again!” ly—“yes; and I want a boat to take me
“So !” said Miss Caruthers, with a with. across." ering sneer. “ You are safe enough. Oh, I “ Got any money? ” made sure of it; naught's never in danger. Why, n-0," stammered poor Joanna, A pretty mess you've made, meddling in this who had not yet learned enough of the world business. Why couldn't you stay quietly at to appreciate the force of King Solomon's home, and hold your tongue, as becomes a admirable mot, “Money answereth all things” child? Then all would have been well; as -"no; I haven't any money." it is, you may thank yourself.”
“Pity," said the boy ; “its worth money This was a bitter reproach to poor Joan. to row across this river.” And he turned away na, who had persuaded herself that had she indifferent. remained at home she might have prevailed Just then Joanna recognized Aleck Griswith Anita against Miss Caruthers and Basil wold emerging from the crowd, and hailed Redmond combined ; and, inasmuch as she him with joy. had disobeyed Pamela's injunction, it was “Aleck! Aleck! what are you doing here? an added bitterness to feel that the reproach Are you going back?" was deserved ; but this feeling did not soften “Laws! Miss Jo-an-na!” said Aleck, every her heart toward Miss Caruthers,
feature expressive of astonishment. “ What “ If you had staid at home, where you be- on airth—" Then, with sober gravity: “Luke, long, you might justly censure me," she he died 'bout daybreak, and I come across said, hoarsely. “Where is my sister ! " with his measure. Do you want to git back?"
“You go find her,” said Miss Caruthers, “Oh, I'm very sorry,” said Joanna, striving contemptuously, drawing her skirts around to look properly sympathizing, and failing her as if to avoid contamination. “May utterly, in her eagerness about her own conHaven preserve me from such a termagant cerns. “Oh, yes, indeed! I do want to get spirit!”
back, Aleck. If you will take me acrossBut to this Joanna made no reply. She I've no money—but I'll give you something had resolved that she would never speak to or other." Miss Caruthers again, and the moment her “All right,” said Aleck. “I don't need passage was clear she rushed like a whirl- no pay after all Miss Basil has done for us." wind out of the door.
He then led the way down the bank to “What on earth is all this fuss about?” a rickety little bateau, into which Joanna cried old Mrs. Paul Caruthers, peering over stepped eagerly, and without a shadow of the baluster in her nightcap and flowered misgiving. They that know nothing, fear dressing - gown. “ Upon my word, it is nothing,” says the proverb; and Joanna, enough to raise the dead!”
though she had lived upon the bank of this “Only that child Joanna, ma'am," replied rushing river all her life, had never been upon Miss Caruthers. “She won't stay to break- the water before, and little knew the grave fast."
danger she incurred. The current was swift “Let her go! A good riddance !” said and strong, the boat was leaky, and the pilot old Mrs. Paul Caruthers. “She scorned the unskillful; but Joanna sat serenely in her house that gave her shelter last niglit; she'd place, though a piece of timber from the only scorn our humble board this morning. broken bridge, becoming disengaged, bore How did you get back? They told me, last | down upon the adventurous navigators and
'My resk was as great as hern,” said the lad, coolly, which raised a laugh among the by-standers, and won him his release.
“How came you to be on the other side !" said Mr. Leasom, leading Joanna away from the crowd. But Joanna could not answer for sobbing. “Dear, dear, dear,” said he, nervously;
now I wish you wouldn't. It's all right, now, you see; but you mustn't do so again."
“I wish I had died !” sobbed Joanna. “ It would have been all over now, and an end of trouble."
“Oh, oh! don't say that, my child, that's wicked. When the good God spares a young life out of such imminent risk, be sure he has work for you to do in this world. Go home and prepare to live for something."
These words sank deep in Joanna's heart; and, pondering on them as she hastened bomeward, she said to herself that she would live for forgiveness and reconciliation. Her immediate care must be to see her aunt, and plead Anita's cause; but she sought her own room first; for Joanna remembered that she bad not said ber prayers that morning.
She was still on her knees when Miss Hawkesby entered the room, her head tied up in the silk bandkerchief Anita called her battle-flag. The old lady had overslept her. self, and, awaking with the mortifying con. sciousness that she had rather given in to Anita the night before, she determined to redeem her character for inflexibility of purpose.
Her first care had been to ring for the ser. vant, and send to inquire about Anita, who, she had no doubt, was still sleeping soundly; for, of all things in the world, Anita hated early rising.
Candace, the airy, officious maid, was gone long; and, when at last she returned, she brought no tidings of Miss Anita.
“I've looked for her high and low, and not a trace can I find, ma'am. But there's a great tramping of horses and carriage-cracks down to the futher gate ; and here's what I found in the walk.” And Candace held up by the corners a soiled handkerchief, which she bad picked out of the mud, and in the corner of which Miss Hawkesby read the pame Basil Redmond.