Divers Women
by Pansy and Mrs. C.M. Livingston
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The room was well filled on the Thursday afternoon appointed for the meeting, which was opened by a few earnest words of prayer; then Mrs. Lewis remarked, "I want to say in the outset, that I do not set myself up as a teacher in these gatherings; we are all learners together. Let us conceive ourselves to be miners digging for gold or precious stones, in the Lord's mine, the Scriptures; then when he points out to one a precious gem that our eyes may not light on as we pass along, let that one hasten to show it to us also with something of the same eagerness that most of us would display if we found a jewel in our path. In thinking of this subject: 'How to use our Bibles,' I am reminded of my first sewing machine. Many years ago, when sewing machines were not as common as now, my husband sent to New York and purchased one for me. I read the instructions, and followed them as I thought, but I did not succeed, the thread knotted up in heaps and it skipped stitches. After repeated failures I set it aside, and plodded on in the old way, trying to do all the sewing of my large family by hand. At last a lady from a neighbouring town came to visit me. It so happened that she owned a machine of the same kind. She sat down before mine, turned the screws, oiled it, put the work in, and sewed a long seam as by magic. Then she patiently explained every little thing I needed to know. It was a happy day to me when I could sew on it too, I assure you, and you all know from experience just what a comfort and help that machine was to me for years afterwards. I am convinced that in like manner I groped and stumbled along a long time in my Christian life because I did not know how to use my Bible."

"I am not sure," said Miss McIntosh, "that I quite understand your illustration. The sewing machine was, of course, no use to you until you had learned all its mysteries, it was the same as locked up to you, you needed a key, but here are our Bibles in plain English; if we read them I cannot see why we will not be benefited."

"Yes, benefited in a certain way, just as any excellent book will lift one up, but I know people who are well versed in the historical parts of the Bible—can repeat large portions of the Gospels, and yet are blind; they have not apprehended Christ in it all. We need the Spirit's teachings, or, plain as it is, we may go from Genesis to Revelation and never once look into the eyes of our Saviour with trusting faith, yet there he is on every page. Food is nothing to us when hungry if we do not eat it, and truth will not save us if it be not realised. 'Then opened he their understanding that they should understand the Scriptures.' 'The things of God knoweth no man but by the Spirit of God.' Not until that light shines upon the book do our souls cry out in joyful recognition, 'Master' and 'My Lord and my God.' Not until that Divine touch opens our eyes can we say of his words, 'I love them exceedingly.'"

"But you do not suppose," said Mrs. Berkely, "that every one can have that wonderful insight into Scripture that some persons have, or that all are expected to really love to read it. I never think that I ought to let a day pass by without reading my chapter, but I confess that I do it because it is my duty. Everybody can't be like one woman that I used to know. She kept her Bible by her in her work-basket, every few minutes she would take it up and get a bit from it, then go on with her work. Everybody called her a fanatic, but she seemed to enjoy herself, and was the best person I ever knew; I always supposed she possessed a sort of gift that is only given to a very few."

"I believe that the promise, 'He shall teach you all things,' will be fulfilled to all who claim it," said Mrs. Lewis.

"You recollect," said Mrs. Parker, "how Luther loved the Bible after that wonderful light shone into his soul? I have read somewhere that the cxixth Psalm was his favourite, because in all its one hundred and seventy-six verses the Bible is mentioned in every one except two. I have also heard that it is a favourite with Ruskin because he has the same love for the Word that David and Luther possessed. 'How sweet are Thy words unto my taste,' was the burden of David's song."

"I have had just one thought following me the whole week," said Mrs. Mills. "It came to me with such power last Sabbath, when I took my Bible to look out some texts for the meeting to-day, that I almost felt as if I had never known it before. It is so wonderful that God and the Holy Spirit have written a Book and we have it! and, what is stranger still, that we dare to neglect it. One would suppose that a superstitious fear would make people read it, if nothing else. I believe that the Lord himself sent that solemn realisation to me; it has seemed a different Book to me ever since. If an angel should come down and bring me ever so short a letter from the Lord, with some expressions of favour, I should be consumed with joy; and here I have not only one, but so many, and never took it in before."

"My heart standeth in awe of thy word," repeated Mrs. Lewis; then, turning to one who sat near her, said, "We want a word from you, Mrs. Barnes." Mrs. Barnes had slipped into the most obscure seat in the room, almost behind Mrs. Lewis' chair. She was one of Mrs. Lewis' most intimate friends, and herein was another proof of "queerness" in the eyes of some of Mrs. Lewis' neighbours, "because she made so much of that Mrs. Barnes." No one had ever thought of calling such a dignified, intelligent-looking woman a "washer-woman," and yet she did take some of her neighbours' clothes to her home and wash and iron them—why not? since she was strong and they were not, and she wanted money and they wanted clean clothes. However it was, these two women saw eye to eye. It was no uncommon thing when Mrs. Barnes' snowy wash was flapping in the wind, and she had slipped on her clean gingham, and stepped over to Mrs. Lewis' a minute, to have the minute lengthen to an hour or more, they had so much in common to talk about. Their absent Lord—His work, and how to further it, were themes they did not weary of.

So Mrs. Barnes put on her glasses and opened her old Bible and read, "As new born babes, desire the sincere milk of the Word, that ye may grow thereby."

"I find here," she said, "that the Bible is to be our food, and that it is intended to make us grow. Now one can't grow without the right kind of food. The verse makes me think of my dear little grandson Neddie. His mother was taken away, and he was left a wee baby for us to bring up. We had such a hard time to find anything to agree with him. We tried milk and water, and arrowroot, and cracker-water, but he didn't thrive, he was nothing but skin and bone; finally he got sick and we called the doctor, and he said, 'Why this child is starving to death! What do you feed him? Don't give him any more such stuff,' he said. 'Try another cow, and give him pure milk.' So we got a new milch cow and fed him fresh milk, and I can't begin to tell you what a wonderful change it made in that child in less than three weeks' time; the dear little fellow got just as plump, his hands were like cushions, and he was well and happy as a robin. Maybe that's the reason there are so many weakly Christians. I shouldn't wonder if souls need the right sort of food as well as bodies in order to be healthy. I have some neighbours that my heart just aches for; all their reading is yellow-covered books, such as 'The Pirate's Bride,' and 'The Fatal Secret.' Such food is worse than cracker-water, and arrowroot, for they are starving souls instead of bodies, and the Word can't find any place to take root, much less to grow, when the mind is filled up with such trash."

"Joseph Cook thinks," said Mrs. Lewis, "that even Bunyan, Jeremy Taylor, Pascal, and Thomas a'Kempis himself, work mischief, if these books shut out the Bible from daily and almost hourly use.'

"Is it possible," said Mrs. Etheridge, "that anybody can make out what Joseph Cook thinks? I know everybody is running wild over him, so I just took one of his lectures the other day after dinner, and sat down by the fire. But dear me! I couldn't make anything out of it. Now, I can take one of Mrs. Henry Wood's lovely books and read from dinner to tea, without being tired or sleepy."

Mrs. Lewis smiled as she answered:

"I admit that, like Paul, Joseph Cook writes some things hard to be understood, and it often takes considerable thought to get at his meaning, but when you have studied it out it is something worth having. He speaks to Boston people mostly, you know, and perhaps they would not understand very plain English. Here is a sentence from him, though, that is clear enough: 'Do you know a book that you are willing to put under your head for a pillow when you lie dying? Very well, that is the book you want to study while you are living.'"

"But, Mrs. Lewis," continued Mrs. Etheridge, "you know some physicians think we ought to eat the sort of food that relishes most. Why does that not apply to our minds as well? Now I am naturally melancholy, and need something to raise my spirits. Don't you think that the Bible is almost too sober, dreary reading for such persons—at least until they begin to grow old?"

Mrs. Lewis turned a loving, pitying look on the pretty young wife, and whispered a prayer for her as she answered:

"Jeremiah and David did not find it a gloomy book, for they both said this: 'Thy word was unto me the joy and rejoicing of my heart.' My dear, I want to put my testimony with theirs, that in a long lifetime—part of it spent in every variety of worldly pleasure—that there is nothing, nothing that has or can give me the joy that the words of my dear Lord do. I claim no credit that it is so. I believe that the same sweet experience will be given to all who truly desire it."

"I can't agree with that idea, either," said Mrs. Brown, "that the best kind of food is what one relishes most. My children relish pie and cake and candies wonderfully, but I know it is not good for them to eat much of them. When they have no appetite for good bread and milk, and such nourishing food, I know there is something amiss with them—they are sick—and did you ever notice this? Children who are allowed to live mostly on these knicknacks do not relish plain food, and do not thrive. The text that was last read did not say that we were to read the Bible as a duty, but to desire it. If we have no appetite for the spiritual nourishment that is best for us to grow on, I do not know why we are not sick Christians?"

"It strikes me," said Mrs. Peterson, who had watched in vain for an opportunity to speak before, "that while you are talking about the Bible being food for us, making us grow, and all that, my text about meditation comes in; David says, 'I have more understanding than all my teachers, for thy testimonies are my meditation.' I can speak from experience about that; I know it makes a sight of difference how you read. I had quite a sick spell once, a sort of low fever, and when I began to get better I was so weak I couldn't eat hardly anything; I heard the woman that took care of me tell the doctor that if I didn't eat more I'd starve as sure as the world; and the doctor said, 'no I wouldn't, that the amount a body ate wasn't the main thing, it was what was digested, and that it did mischief to eat more than one could digest; so I kept on taking my little bit of beef-tea a good many times a day, but I was very weak for a long time: I couldn't even hold my Bible to read it, and I began to fret about it; I was used to reading my two or three chapters a day, and I felt sort o' lost without them. One day my next neighbour brought in what she called a 'Silent Comforter,' and hung it on the wall; it had only three or four texts on a page in large letters, so that I could read it without glasses. Well, what a comfort that was, to be sure. I had nothing to do all day but lie there and think of those verses; it seemed like a new Bible. Every morning they turned a leaf over, and I was more anxious to see what my new verses would be, than to eat my breakfast. When I got a little stronger I wrote down everything I got out of them. Well, I tell you it was just wonderful how much there was in them. I had more good of the Bible, it seemed to me, that three weeks than I ever did before. Then I remembered how I used to read my chapters, my mind half the time on something else, most always in a hurry, thinking it was time I was skimming my milk or at my baking, and wondering whether I should bake apple pies or pumpkin that day; think of it! how awful it was to mix up things like that; but then I thought I must read my three chapters anyhow. Well, I didn't do like that any more when I got around again. I called to mind what the doctor said about eating, and says I, that's exactly the way it is with the Bible, it has got to be digested; so I took what time I could and put all my mind on a small portion, and tried to keep it with me all day. Now I don't want to be boasting about myself, but I do say I love the Lord as I didn't used to, and it all comes of his blessed Book. There, I've talked too long! I always do."

"Can we not now have a number of texts that tell us from the Word itself how it is to be used?" said Mrs. Lewis. And these were promptly given, such as, "Search the Scriptures." "Teach me thy statutes." "Great peace have they that love thy law." "That we through patience and comfort of the Scriptures might have hope. And shalt talk of them when thou sittest in thine house, and when thou liest down, and when thou risest up." "I hope in thy Word." "To the law and to the testimony; if they speak not according to this Word there is no light in them." "Thou hast known the Holy Scriptures, which are able to make thee wise unto salvation." "I trust in thy Word." "Wherefore comfort one another with these words." "Thou hast commanded us to keep thy precepts diligently." "Thy word is a lamp unto my feet and a light unto my path." "All Scripture is given by inspiration of God and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness."

"Here is another bit from Joseph Cook that I think will help us," said Mrs. Parker. "'If every five years you can mark a Bible thoroughly, and memorise what is marked, it will be your best diary. You can do little better in reading than to fill the margins of a copy of the Scriptures once every five years full of the records of the deepest inmost in your souls, to be intelligible to yourself and to no one else. Shut the door on that record. Enter into your closet and keep your secrets with Almighty God.'"

"Why, I read a most delightful book lately called 'Daniel Quorm'" said Mrs. Lee, "that brought out the same idea. Daniel marked his Bible in that way—marked texts that expressed his state of mind or heart at the time and put the date in the margin. It occurred to me that it would be an excellent plan. One could judge in looking over a Bible so marked whether they were advancing or going back in their Christian experience."

"I heard Ralph Wells say, in a Sabbath-school convention last summer," said Miss Day, "'that it is he that doeth His will that is to know concerning the doctrine, and that no spectacles are so precious for right understanding of the Word as a conscience void of offence toward God and man.' He also said in reference to Bible study, 'Wonderful is the light one gains by simply looking out the references.' Another good thing that I remember from him, and that I have practised ever since is, that we 'ought to learn a verse of Scripture each day.'"

"There is one precious way in which the Scriptures are to be used that has not been mentioned yet," said one who had been silent thus far, but whose face expressed lively sympathy with all she heard, "we do not get the comfort from the promises that we might. The Lord says, 'Put me in remembrance, let us plead together.' I think we ought to take advantage of such a gracious permission, and bring a promise when we come before the Lord in prayer.

"I had an old neighbour once who owned bank stock to the amount of fifty thousand dollars, and yet he got it into his head that if he were not very saving, he should go to the poor-house. This grew upon him so, that he shut up all the rooms in his house, which was large and pleasant, and he and his wife lived in the kitchen, hovering in the coldest weather over a small fire because he thought he ought not to afford any more, when he had only to go to the bank and present his cheque to get all he needed. So we have only to put our names in the promises and plead them, and they are fulfilled to us. Instead of that, we go mourning about in the kitchen and down cellar, instead of sitting in the 'chamber of peace.'"

"I am sorry to say that our hour is more than up," Mrs. Lewis said. "Let us glance over what we have learned in the study of the Word: We need the teaching of the Holy Spirit. We are to pray for light on it. We are to love it, obey it, meditate on it, search it, desire it, talk of it, try all things by it, sound our experience by it, plead its promises, commit it to memory, trust in it. It is to be our food; no other food will feed an immortal soul. It is to be our joy, to give to us comfort, peace, faith, hope, patience, wisdom, and I will put the cap-stone on this beautiful arch by—'I commend you to God and to the Word of His grace, which is able to build you up, and to give you an inheritance among all them which are sanctified.'"


It was a little house, and a little new family; just two of them, and just six months since they were made into a family, and set up housekeeping. As a matter of course everything in the house was new also. One may prate of antiquities, and the associations clinging about them that render them beautiful, but after all, every couple will always look back with delight to the time all their surroundings were fresh and pretty, yes, even though they were not pretty; there is a charm in a new pine table, or a bright new tin pan. This house was a little gem, from the delicately appointed guest chamber to the cement-lined cellar.

Mr. and Mrs. Philip Thorne sat at their breakfast-table sparkling with new china and silver, in a dining-room so cheery with pretty carpet, plants, singing-bird, warmth and sunshine, that the beggar-girl who peeped in at the window might well wonder "if heaven were nicer than that." The coffee-urn sent up a fragrant little cloud as Mrs. Thorne turned it into delicate cups with just the right quantity of cream and sugar, so that it was just the right colour that coffee should be. The steak was tender and juicy, the baked potatoes done to a turn, and yet there was a slight cloud hanging over that table that did not come from the coffee-urn.

"Joanna does not understand making buckwheat cakes very well, I imagine," said Mr. Thorne, eyeing the doubtful looking pile she had just deposited on the table.

"Joanna did not make these, I made them with my own hands," responded Mrs. Thorne. Said hands were very white and small, but truth to tell, they were not much more skilled than were Joanna's.

"Then it must be the baking that spoils them," Mr. Thorne said.

"Why, Philip, how do you know that they are spoiled? I'm sure they look all right," said his wife.

"That is just where you and I do not agree, my dear. They are white-looking, they ought to be a rich brown."

"Whoever heard of brown buckwheat cakes; they are always very light coloured."

"I beg your pardon, but they are not, as far as my observation goes," said her husband; "then these are thick, they ought to be thin and delicate-looking."

"You are thinking of something else, Philip," said Mrs. Thorne, patronisingly. "Buckwheat cakes never look differently from these; I have noticed them at a great many places."

"You never ate them at my mother's or you could not say so, my dear."

Mrs. Thorne stirred her coffee vigorously. Was Philip going to turn out to be one of those detestable men who always go about telling how "their mother" used to do; "my mother," as if there was no other mother in the world that amounted to anything.

"I always have noticed," she said, "that a person imagines, after being from home a few years that there is nothing quite so good as he used to get at home; even the very same things never tasted quite as they used to. The reason is plain: taste changes as one grows older."

This very sage remark was just a little annoying to Mr. Thorne; he was ten years the senior of his wife, and did not like allusions to "growing older." "No one need try to convince me," he answered quite warmly, "that I shall ever cease to enjoy the dishes my mother used to get up if I live to be as old as Methuselah! She is the best cook I ever knew, and she never made cakes like these."

"My mother is a pattern housekeeper," said Mrs. Thorne, with a little flash of her blue eye, "and her cakes look precisely like these."

"The proof of the pudding is in the eating, you will admit, I suppose. Joanna need bring in no more cakes for me; they have a sour, bitter taste which is decidedly unpalatable."

And he arose from the table, passed into the hall and out of the front door without his usual leave-taking.

Satan once worked immense mischief by means of an apple; now he must needs come into that pretty dining-room and hide in a plate of buckwheat cakes. The first approach to a quarrel in this household, and the first buckwheat cakes of the season! The truth is, when Mr. Thorne had said the day before, "What if we have some buckwheat cakes?" that Ruey did not feel all the confidence in her ability that her answer implied; but then there was her receipt-book; "they could not be difficult," she reasoned. The receipt said: "Mix warm water, flour and yeast, and let rise until morning,"—these instructions she had faithfully followed, and here was the result.

Ruey Thorne, unlike some young wives, did not think it interesting to profess utter ignorance of domestic matters; on the contrary, she had an ambition to excel as a housekeeper. She had a general knowledge of many things, but every housekeeper knows that practice only brings perfection. It is one thing to watch Bridget making bread a few times, and another thing entirely to make it one's self. So much of Ruey's knowledge was theory, not yet reduced to practice, that she imagined herself much more skilful than she really was, consequently she did not claim her husband's forbearance on account of inexperience. Philip was not rich, and she had a desire to be an economical wife, so she did not employ an experienced cook and chambermaid, but tried to accomplish it all by the aid of a raw German girl.

"Of course I shall want to direct all my work," she had remarked with housewifely pride. If Philip had only understood it all a little better, he need not have brought out his mother's veteran cakes in such cruel comparison with these very young ones.

That day was not a very comfortable one for either of them. The blue eyes flashed out a tear occasionally, and she told herself, "Who would have thought that Philip cared so much for eating! His mother's cakes indeed! As if anybody could equal my dear precious mother in anything!" While he told himself that he "wouldn't have thought Ruey would have flashed up in that way for so slight a cause, and to him, too, humph! He would just like to have her taste his mother's cakes; it would open her eyes a little."

Later in the day they told the same parties, "I'm just ashamed of myself that I got spunky about such a little thing, I wish Philip would come. I'll have muffins for tea just to please him. I know I can make muffins;" and "Poor little Ruey, I went off like a bear this morning; I must hurry home; I'll just step in at Barnard's and get that little panel of lilies for her."

So the muffins and lilies were laid, peace offerings on the domestic altar, and the skies were clear again.

The next morning Ruey betook herself to her neat little kitchen to reconstruct those cakes. She would see if it were not possible to suit her husband in this. "Let me see, he said they were too thick; I will thin them then. He said they were sour and bitter; sugar is sweet and ought to remedy that." So in went the water to thin them, and the sugar to sweeten them. "He said," she further mused, "that they ought to be brown; brown they shall be, if fire will do it." So she proceeded to make a furious fire, in order to heat the griddle. "Now," she said to Joanna, "carry in the coffee and chops, then come and bake the cakes."

The husband and wife were engaged in cheerful chat when the first instalment of cakes arrived; a few crumpled, burnt scraps of something.

"Why, what is this?" said Mr. Thorne.

"Cakes!" said Joanna, triumphantly. "She fixed 'em;" pointing to Mrs. Thorne.

The two looked at the cakes, then at each other, and broke into peals of laughter.

"The griddle must be too hot," said Mrs. Thorne, and she vanished into the kitchen. She scraped the smoking griddle, and washed it and greased it, then she stirred the grey liquid and placed two or three spoonfuls on the griddle, then she essayed to turn them—sticking plaster never stuck tighter than those cakes adhered to that griddle; she worked carefully, she insinuated her knife under just the outer edge of the cake, then gradually approached the centre, but when the final flop came, they went into little sticky hopeless heaps. "They are too thin," she ejaculated. "Joanna, bring flour. Now we shall have it all right." Then another set took their places on the griddle; these held together, they turned—triumph at last! but they did not look inviting. Mrs. Thorne tasted one, she then made a wry face. "Joanna," she said, with forced calmness, "you can throw this batter away." Then she went back to the dining-room, looking very hot and red, and said meekly to Philip: "The cakes are a failure this morning, we will try it again tomorrow."

Philip, who had lost himself in the morning paper, roused up to say:

"Don't trouble about them any more; we have enough else that is nice."

"The cakes will be all right another time, Philip; there was a mistake made, they were too thin this morning; mother never makes them thin."

Philip looked as if he would like to say:

"I don't care what your mother does; my mother's cakes are nice and thin, and can't be beaten;" but he didn't.

Mrs. Thorne had no intention of abandoning buckwheat cakes as a failure, not she; it was not her way to give up easily and yield to discouragement; difficulties only strengthened her determination to conquer.

"I'll see if I am to be vanquished by a buckwheat cake," she said, studying her receipt-book that same evening. "I shouldn't wonder if there was not yeast enough in those others," she said, as she mixed some fresh butter and added an extra quantity of yeast. "Keep them warm while rising," the receipt read. She placed them near the register near the dining-room and retired with a complacent feeling that now all the conditions had been surely met.

"The total depravity of inanimate things." Mrs. Thorne had reason to believe in that doctrine next morning, when she entered her dining-room and found a small sea of batter on her carpet, surrounding the pail and widening in all directions, though this stuff could hardly be called "inanimate;" it oozed from under the pail cover in a most animated manner.

"It is light, at least; that is one consolation." said Mrs. Thorne, trying to be philosophical as she ruefully surveyed her carpet, then hastily calling Joanna to clean it up—"Philip should not see that." When the cakes were brought in this morning, Ruey cast a little triumphant look at Philip. By dint of a hot griddle and much grease they had a streak of brown here and there.

"Horrible!" exclaimed Mrs. Thorne, after her first mouthful; "these cakes are sourer than vinegar." Philip should not be the first to speak of any lack, as if she were not supposed to know more about such matters than he. "What does ail them? I'm sure I made them exactly right this time. I must tell Joanna to put some sugar in them."

"My dear wife, if you will allow me, I would suggest soda instead of sugar."

"Really!" responded Ruey, her pride touched in an instant—there it was, he actually thought he knew more about cooking than she did—"and pray how do you happen to be so wise? You must have assisted your mother in the kitchen," she said, with a slight curl of her pretty lip. "Up there in the country, boys do those things, I suppose."

Philip was nettled. Ruey had cast little slurs on his country home before, when she got her spirit up. He controlled himself, however, only saying:

"I don't profess to understand the science of cookery, but I do know a little chemistry, and understand that an acid requires an alkali to neutralize it."

Mrs. Thorne went straight to the kitchen—shutting the door after her with the least perceptible bang—and sprinkled a liberal allowance of soda into the batter, and then returned to the dining-room to await developments. These cakes were yellow and spotted, and savoured of hot lye. Mr. Thorne went bravely through a few mouthfuls until he encountered a lump of soda; the wry face that followed was wholly involuntary.

"I declare they are horrid!" exclaimed Ruey, bursting into tears. "I knew soda would spoil them, bitter stuff!"

Mr. Thorne did not then attempt to show why soda would not spoil them, if properly used; grieved at his wife's distress, and becoming hygienical, he said:

"Don't have anything more to do with these wretched things. They are unwholesome anyway, and we are better off without them. Give them up."

"Never!" said Ruey, resolutely. When Ruey spoke in that way, Philip knew she meant it, and he sighed at the prospect of discordant breakfasts through a series of experiments. A text about "A dinner of herbs" floated through his mind as he walked abstractedly toward his store.

After Mrs. Thorne had dried her tears she walked to the kitchen, and with her own hands scraped that acid, alkaline mess into the drain.

"Buckwheat cakes are very mysterious and trying things," she remarked to herself, "but I shall never give up till I can make them like Philip's mother's."

"I find," said Mr. Thorne that evening, "that I must start to-morrow morning for New York, and will need a very early breakfast. Let Joanna just make me a cup of coffee. No cakes, remember," he laughingly added. "You may have a whole week to experiment upon them in my absence."

Ruey watched him down the street in the gray dawn of the next morning as he hurried to the depot, and a bright idea came into her head.

Why not take a little trip on her own account? She might run up to father Thorne's; why not be visiting as well as moping here alone? She wished she had thought of it and mentioned it to Philip, but it was better not; he would probably have thought she could not go so far alone, but what was a day's journey when it could all be accomplished before dark; then it was going to be a bright day, she could see that by the rosy flush in the east; just the day for a journey. Besides, Philip could not go to visit them this winter, and how delighted they would be to have her come and break up the monotony of their lives. She glanced at the clock; only six o'clock; she would have ample time to get ready for the eight o'clock train, the dress she had on would do to travel in—just slip her black cashmere into her satchel, and she was ready. Yes, she would go.

Artful Ruey! Down in her heart she had a secret reason for this visit, that did not come up to the surface with the others. She wanted to know exactly how Philip's mother made those cakes. She could not be happy until she succeeded. Here appeared an old trait of the girl Ruey—almost a fault: settled persistency in accomplishing her ends, a determination to walk over all obstacles, however large.

It took much lively stirring about to accomplish it, but the house was put in order, and Mrs. Thorne reached the depot in time for the eight o'clock train; the happy Joanna being dismissed to her home for a week, after carrying her mistress's satchel to the depot. Mrs. Thorne had visited the old homestead with her husband at the time of their marriage, and looked forward with real pleasure at the prospect before her.

"Won't they be surprised, though, to see me coming without Philip," and then she smiled to think how she was whizzing along in one direction, and Philip in another, while he thought her snug at home. There was a spice of adventure about this going off by herself that she enjoyed exceedingly.

There is no more delightful place to step into, than the home of two old people, who are young, and who love you; they have their "hearts at leisure," can take time to pet you, and are interested in the smallest details of your lives. Philip's father and mother belonged to this type; the juices of their natures were not dried up. They received Ruey with open arms, and followed her about with their eyes, apparently fearing she would vanish as unexpectedly as she had appeared—"Philip's wife" caring enough about them to come so far to see them in the middle of winter, all alone, too—not many daughters-in-law like that. They hung upon her words, and brought out the choicest of everything and urged it upon her. At bed-time mother Thorne came up to "tuck her up," "just as I did Philip twenty years ago," she said; then the sweet old face bent over Ruey's for a moment and left a goodnight kiss, and "The Lord bless and keep you, dear child." Ruey's heart went out to her, and from that hour Philip's mother was her mother.

Breakfast was all ready the next morning when she came down, and she sat in Philip's old seat, and the sun looked in at the east window, and a stray ray fell upon her, and burnished the gold of her hair, so that she looked more like an angel than ever to those dear old eyes. How happy they were—Philip's other self in that vacant chair. Moreover, she ate those famous cakes. It was all true, they were brown; they were thin and delicate, and light and sweet, and tender, the most delicious morsels, with the amber maple syrup, that she had ever tasted. She must confess it to herself, they were better than her mother's; city people could not concoct such amazing cakes as these; then the fragrant golden butter, how she wished poor Philip were there to get some of all these good things.

She had not proposed that her mother-in-law should know that there was anything in the universe that she was ignorant of in the housekeeping line, but now she resolved to lay down all her pride and learn whatever she could, so she followed mother Thorne as she trotted in and out from pantry to kitchen, initiating herself into the mysteries of this and that dish, and storing up many a lesson of housewifely skill. It all came out after a little; the struggle she had been through with those "horrible cakes." Father Thorne laughed until the tears came, to hear his pretty daughter-in-law naively narrate her many grievous failures in that line, enlarging not a little on Philip's wry faces, when he tried to eat her cakes to save her feelings. She had confessed it all, now she felt free to watch the process of "setting the cakes" and to ask all the questions she pleased.

"What made mine so horribly bitter once?" she asked.

"Why, you put too much yeast in, I suppose."

"I only put in a teacupful," said Ruey.

Then mother Thorne shook her sides with laughter, as she said:

"Why, child, that ought to make cakes enough for two dozen people; you only need about two table-spoonfuls for the quantity you would make."

"What made them run all over creation when I left them by the fire to rise?"

"Why, maybe you didn't have room enough for them to rise, and they must go somewhere, you know."

"What made them sour?"

"They stood too long after they got light, before they were baked. Very likely they would have raised in time, if you had left them on the table, say."

"What do you do when they are sour?" asked Ruey.

"Put in a little soda."

"I did. I put soda in, and you never saw such looking things as they were, yellow and spotted, and ugh! how they tasted. Philip nearly choked himself on one of the lumps of soda in his cake."

"Don't you know," said mother Thorne, indulging in another laugh, "that you must not put in but a little, and you must dissolve that in a spoonful of warm water and then stir it in?"

Ruey studied those cakes as thoroughly as she ever had a problem, or a French verb. She insisted on setting them at night, and baking them every morning during her stay, and she was finally pronounced an adept in the work. This was not all she did. She put new life in the silent old house, sung all her songs, read the newspapers aloud, made a cap for mother Thorne, and a marvellous tidy for the best chair, besides telling them all about Philip, as if she could tell them anything new. But the pleasant visit must come to an end: it was almost time for Philip's return.

"Daughter, I am really afraid to have you set out this morning," Mr. Thorne said on the day that Ruey had fixed upon for her return. "It has been snowing hard all night, and if it keeps on at this rate the railroads will be blocked up."

"Oh, father! I must start; Philip will be home to-night, and what will he think if he does not find me there?" Ruey said eagerly.

"Better," said the wise old father, "better stay and telegraph to Ralph."

"Oh, no, indeed, that would spoil all the fun; you know I will get home at four and Philip at seven. I shall have tea all ready and sit there demurely waiting for him, and he never will imagine that I have been off on a frolic until I tell him." And so she started, with many misgivings, however, on the part of the old people.

"She's such a bright little thing," father Thorne said to his wife when they were toasting their feet at the fire that night before going to bed.

"It's like seeing the crocuses and daffodils coming up, or getting a sniff at the hyacinth, to have her light down here like a pretty bird, to sing and chatter to us. Philip always did know just the right thing to do; he couldn't have found a better wife if he had searched the whole land through."

The train that carried Ruey thundered on its way, as though it disdained the thought that the snowflakes that filled the air could have aught to do with its progress. When the first tiny white feather came and softly laid itself down on the iron rails, did it secretly exult that it was one of a myriad that should rear a gigantic barrier before which this puffing fiery monster should stand powerless, and acknowledge the soft bits of down master of the situation? The storm raged through the day, increasing each hour in strength and fury. The long train began to plod in a laboured, tired way, after the manner of mortals, stopping often, while snow-ploughs in advance cleared the track. Darkness came down and still the fearful mass of whiteness piled itself in huge billows about them. The snow-ploughs were unavailing; as fast as they cleared a space the wind surged down and filled it up in a trice. The mighty engine struggled in vain to press forward, but only crept at snail's pace and finally came to a dead halt. There they were fast shut out from the world. They could do nothing but wait for morning. Most of the passengers might not have resigned themselves to sleep so contentedly had they known that they were in the midst of the woods many miles from any town of much size, not near, even, to one of the straggling hamlets that dotted the country.

When the morning dawned they found themselves literally enclosed in snow—snow above, beneath, to right, to left, behind, before—a beleaguered host. Those who understood the situation looked appalled. The world was well represented there in that restless company that stared from their windows into snow. How strange that one particular class did not set out on this journey, but each class had its type, as if some one had gone about, and gathering up handfuls of people stowed them on this train. They were all there, the woman with five children and the one with a lap-dog, and all acted out their individual natures more fully than they might have done under other circumstances; many lost that reticence that is supposed to belong to well-bred people on a journey, and told out their private affairs. The man of business knit his brows and said that he "must reach C—— by a certain time or the consequences would be most disastrous." The fashionable lady wrapped herself in her furs and bestowed withering looks on the crying baby. The grumbler grumbled, and was sure somebody was to blame somewhere. The funny man bubbled and sparkled as usual, and sent rays akin to sunshine over lugubrious faces. The profane man opened his mouth and out came toads and scorpions, and the tobacco-chewers made dark pools on the floor to vex the souls of cleanly people. By the close of the day they were a very forlorn, hungry people.

There was one among them, though, who seemed to rise above it all; a plain-looking woman with an unfashionable bonnet, and a face like a benediction. She drew a little worn Bible from her satchel, and read it awhile by the dim light. Ruey wondered if she did not get something from that book that made her patient when others were not—that sent her to relieve the tired mother, by caring for the fretful baby a long time; and when another, a sad mother, unable longer to control her grief, moaned out, "My child will die before I can get to her," this woman was the one who went to her with words of comfort. Ruey's poor perturbed heart envied that calm face. She felt well-nigh distracted, not so much at the fact that she was cold and hungry, but what would Philip think when he returned and found her gone? No one knew where; not even a neighbour had the least intimation of her whereabouts. What a night of horrors he must have had! Oh, to be obliged to sit there and wait when she felt like flying! She heard the woman with the Bible whisper to the poor mother, "Pray; that will surely help you." "Perhaps it would help me," thought Ruey. She was not used to praying, but she needed help. So she put her tired head down, and whispered a request for deliverance.

What did Philip do? He essayed to walk into his house. The door was locked, and there was no response to his repeated rings. He tried other doors with no better success; then he visited his neighbours. They could give him no clue. He came back and stood in a dazed way on his own steps, looking up and down the street. He went down into the town and peered into the stores, but no Ruey. He called upon her most intimate friends—they didn't know she was absent. He racked his brain; was she out to tea? but she expected him home that very day. As the evening advanced he began to be thoroughly alarmed. Perhaps she had met with some horrible fate in her own home. He forced the door and entered. The pretty rooms were in exquisite order. He searched wildly about for some scrap of paper that might explain the mystery. Wherever she was, she had evidently been gone some time; the fires were dead and cold. He rushed down into the town again and consulted detectives, who suggested elopement as an explanation. Whereupon his anger rose to a white heat, and he left them.

Another idea struck him. Joanna must know something of this strange affair. She lived in the country. The polar wave had, by this time, reached that region. In the face of a blinding storm Mr. Thorne drove at a rapid pace to Joanna's home. The sleepy girl, when roused, could at first give but an exasperating "Nix" to his eager questions. Finally from her broken English he gathered that her mistress had gone away on the cars; had directed her to come back to her duties that very afternoon. She did so, only to find the house closed.

Here was a little light, but it did not relieve his perplexity. Ruey's father's home was in a distant State. She certainly would not go so far away in the dead of winter. He could recall no acquaintances living near. Had she become insane and wandered away? But she evidently meant to return that day. Why did she not come? Where was she? The cold sweat stood upon his face when he remembered stories of abductions. He went to the depot and remained the whole night, watching the trains that came from anywhere. Morning dawned; she had not come. As a last resort, he would telegraph to his own home. But why would she go there, and without him? It seemed a useless thing, but he did it. After an age of waiting he received answer—"Ruey left here for home yesterday morning on the seven o'clock train." He soon learned that said train was snow-bound a hundred miles away. His anxiety now assumed a new phase. Would she starve or freeze before he could reach her? There was no time to be lost. Supplying himself with provisions, blankets, etc., he took the first northerly train, travelled as far as he could by rail, then hired conveyances to carry him to where men and snow-ploughs were cutting a road to the imprisoned cars. Mr. Thorne joined them in their work. His strength seemed superhuman. Muscular men were amazed at his swift, dexterous movements. All day they toiled. The following night was a terrible one to the heart-sick passengers. The fires were out; not a morsel of food to eat. Ruey, chilled and weak, could not even find relief in sleep. Her fortitude nearly deserted her. The tears had their way. She lay curled in her seat, a wretched, disconsolate little heap, when a brown-bearded man, muffled in furs, entered, flashing the light of his lantern here and there, eagerly scrutinizing the faces. He paused at Ruey's seat, an indefinable something attracting him, though the face was covered by two hands. Suddenly she looked up, and there were Philip's dear eyes gazing into hers. No questions were asked or answered just then. She was gathered in his arms for an instant; then he wrapped her in blankets, brought food, and nursed the colour back to the white cheeks.

Then there were long stories told on both sides, and Ruey laughed and cried by turns, and all the passengers were in lively sympathy with the little lady who had found her husband, or rather whose husband had found her.

When Mr. and Mrs. Thorne next sat at their breakfast table it was graced by a plate of cakes that might have come straight from mother Thorne's kitchen; and some of the home butter was there, sweet as roses; some of the golden maple syrup, too, from the trees Philip had played under; and Ruey sat triumphant, with a little air that said—

"Didn't I tell you I'd do it?"

"Ruey," said Philip, "I do believe that 'elopement' of yours paid, notwithstanding the outlay of doubts and fears, money and tears, to say nothing of the muscle I put into that huge drift."

Ruey knew why it "paid," though she didn't tell her husband just then; she should never forget that night, nor the plain woman with the old bonnet who carried the untroubled face and the worn book. Deep in her heart a new purpose had taken root; an ambition not only to make cakes like Philip's mother, but to attain to that blessed something which made this other woman so different from those about her.


Mrs. Faith Vincent was crying; there was no denying it, veritable tears were in her eyes and on her cheeks all the time she was bathing the plump limbs of her baby and robing her in dainty garments of flannel and embroidery. Then she struggled through the notes of a sad lullaby, and now the long lashes lay quietly on the pretty cheek, and the fair young mamma was free to lay her head on the side of the crib and indulge in a good cry.

The clue to all this trouble was condensed in a sentence that the young husband let fall just as he left for his business a few moments before—"I see no other way, my dear: you will be obliged to take baby and go to Uncle Joshua's for the summer. The extreme heat will come on now very soon, and then neither you nor Daisy will be able to endure it in this room."

Now that would not be a very appalling statement to make to most wives, that they must pack up and get out of the hot dusty city to a farmhouse in the country, even though they did leave their husbands sweltering behind, but there were several points to be taken into consideration in this case. In the first place, Mr. and Mrs. Vincent had not yet learned how to maintain a separate existence. Life apart from each other was a tame, spiritless thing, simply to be endured, not enjoyed; then, too, Uncle Joshua's home was not a Paradise, although he and Aunt Patty were kind and pleasant. Faith had vivid memories of a few weeks spent there soon after her marriage. They lived on their farm, two simple-minded old people, spending the evening of their lives in quiet happiness; but the place was dreary, remote from any town or neighbours. She had found it pleasant when her husband was with her and the two took long rambles, or spent the day under the trees, reading and talking, but how could she endure it alone? rising with the birds to an early breakfast, then an interminable day stretching before her, the long afternoon of silence broken only by the click of Aunt Patty's knitting-needles, the ticking of the old clock, and the hum of the bees; for these old people had lived too long in quiet on these silent hills to make much conversation. She could not see herself going through the same monotonous round as each long day dragged its slow length, while miles stretched between her and her beloved, toiling on in the distant city. The dreary separation—that was the hard part of it, after all.

It was just two years since Frank Vincent brought home his bride. He had succeeded in securing rooms in a pleasant boarding-house in one of the wide, airy streets of the city; he felt justified in going to the utmost of his means in providing an attractive home; for his Faith had been delicately reared by a wealthy uncle who had frowned upon the love-making of the young bookkeeper, handsome, intelligent, and with unblemished reputation though he was, and held a good position in one of the largest and oldest firms in the city. The uncle had more ambitious plans for his favourite niece. He did not forbid the marriage, but gave Faith to understand that if she persisted in marrying a poor man, when a good half million awaited her acceptance, she did it at her own peril, not a penny of his should go to eke out the scanty living of a poor clerk. The end of it all was a quiet wedding one morning in her uncle's parlour, and a hasty flitting away of the young couple—away from ominous looks and cold politeness, out into their own bright world, where no dark shadows in the shape of grim mercenary uncles should ever cross their path.

It was not without many misgivings that the young husband conducted his wife to her apartments, for neat and pretty though they were, they were in marked contrast with the roomy, elegant mansion where she had spent her life, and so was the noisy, dusty city with the beautiful, quiet old town where trees and flowers and birds and pure air and room to breathe in, made existence doubly delightful. The anxiety was needless; never was child more pleased with play-house than the young bride with her new home.

Life glided peacefully on for many months, then the clouds began to gather in the sky of the financial world. Business men were anxious, and retrenchment was the order of the day. Among others to draw in sail was the well-established firm whom Mr. Vincent had served for many years. The salaries of their employe's were cut down, in some instances to a mere pittance. Upon none did the blow fall more heavily than these two inexperienced ones who had made no provision for any such change in their affairs. They were dismayed; Mr. Vincent tried in vain to secure some more lucrative position, but he soon began to feel that he was most fortunate in such times to have any assured income. The outgo was greater than the income, and it was plain that they must seek a less expensive home. They made many trips to the suburbs in the hope of obtaining board at a price that would be within their means, in some pleasant rural home, but no such home opened its doors; evidently the dwellers in the suburbs, when they did take boarders, meant to make it "pay." Then they searched the papers and read all the advertisements under the head of "Boarding" within the city. They climbed long flights of stairs, and interviewed landladies, and looked at rooms with the customary faded carpets and shabby wall-paper and musty smell, in narrow streets withal, that seemed to Faith like prisons. In vain they tried to make their tastes and their purse agree. They had to come to it, a third-story room, faded carpet, shabby paper, and hard bed. It was a great change, especially when they descended three dark stairways into a comfortless basement dining-room, and were served with sour bread and strong butter, muddy coffee and tough, steak. It tried their fortitude sometimes severely, but they were young and brave; they had each other and dear little Daisy; that was almost enough for this world.

One can't have everything, so Faith stirred the fire and put a bright spread on the bare table, and another bit of bright colour on the wooden rocking-chair, so that if they had not been forced to live by eating, things would not have been so bad after all. Spring, though, brought troubles; the sun shining squarely upon them through the winter had served to brighten up things and save coal; but now he became an enemy, pouring his fierce rays nearly all the long day into the two windows, old paper shades filled with pin holes the only protection against him. Large companies of flies, too, arrived daily, and evidently came to stay; the butter turned to oil; eatables grew unpalatable; the whole house seemed stuffy and unendurable.

It was one of those warm spring mornings when vital energies flag, that Mr. and Mrs. Vincent toiled up the third flight of stairs; the halls filled with execrable odours of fried ham and cheap coffee; each busy with their own thoughts, possibly of green fields, apple-blossoms, spring violets, tables with damask and silver, cool, inviting rooms, and other equally tantalising suggestions. Faith, at the top, panting and pale as any lily, drew from her husband the exclamation:

"My dear, you cannot endure it any longer; something must be done."

That something seemed all the more imperative, since Daisy was beginning to droop and have feverish days over the advent of each little white tooth. Many perplexed conferences followed.

"You see," said Mr. Vincent, trying to speak cheerfully, "one of us orphans ought to have married some one who had a father and mother, and an old homestead to go to in an emergency like this. As it is, I do not see any other way but for you to take baby and go to my uncle Joshua's for the summer. You will be made welcome, at least, and have good food and good air."

"What if we go to housekeeping in a small way?" Faith suggested.

"It would have to be in a very small way indeed," laughed Frank. "Why, the birds of the air have more to set up housekeeping with than we; they have furnished rooms, rent free. Think of rent, furniture, and all the pots and kettles and pans that housekeeping requires, besides wages to a girl. Never do, wine, my salary wouldn't cover. I have often heard people say it was much cheaper to board than to keep house."

"But we might take a small house in the suburbs and furnish it by degrees, and I could do my own work," persisted Faith.

"My poor little white lily," said Frank, "you know not whereof you speak, Think of a little hot house, you broiling over a cook-stove, and baby crying for your care; besides, my dear, you are not accustomed to work. I shouldn't wonder, now, if I knew just about as, much as you do about cooking. I think I can see you with blistered fingers and aching head, studying cook-books. No, Faith, we shall be obliged to live in two places this summer, I fear. I know it will be lonely for you at uncle Joshua's, but for your own sake and the dear baby's, it must be done. Let us be of good cheer, and perhaps by fall business will revive and my salary be increased, or I can get a better position. Now good-bye, my blossoms, I must be gone," and he sprang away down the stairs hastily, lest Faith should see that his courage was more than half assumed, for the prospect before him was dismal in the extreme.

What Mrs. Vincent did when her husband left her we already know, yet she was not one to sit down in weeping despair before a difficulty until every energy had been put forth to remove it. She sat long and pondered the question; no light came, although she bent her white brows into a deep frown in perplexed thought.

"If I could only keep house," she mused. "Frank imagines I know nothing of cooking. I'd just like to have him eat some bread and puffy biscuits of my making. I am so glad I never told him that I took lessons of Dinah all one winter before we were married. I'll surprise that boy some day with my knowledge. If it were not for the horrid heat of the cook-stove, I know I could keep house nicely, and save money, too, I dare say; but, my head never would endure a hot kitchen, I suppose."

Just here the clock chimed out ten, reminding Faith of an engagement at the dressmaker's. Leaving Daisy with her young nurse, she was soon on her way, not to "Madame Aubrey's," but to plain Mrs. Macpherson's, who lived up two flights of stairs, and was nevertheless "a good fitter," and kept her rooms and herself as neat as wax.

While Faith waited, and the busy shears slipped and snipped her wrapper, she had time to look about her. The rooms wore such a pleasant, home-like air; they were cool and comfortable-looking, and not a fly to be seen. Faith, reared to the finest and best of everything, now looked with almost covetous eyes on this poor, plain home.

"What a cosy place you have here, Mrs. Macpherson," she said, and she wearily leaned her head back in the comfortable old rocking-chair, newly covered with chintz. "It is so nice, I would like to stay."

Mrs. Macpherson glanced up in surprise, the tones were such tired, sad ones. She noticed for the first time the dark rings under Faith's eyes, and the eyes themselves looked suspiciously red. Her motherly heart went out to the "poor young thing" straightway.

"Something troubles you, child," she said, "or you don't feel well. Can't I help you?"

The tender tones almost made the tears come anew; and Faith, contrary to her reticent nature, found herself telling kind-hearted Mrs. Macpherson just what did trouble her.

"Poor dear!" Mrs. Macpherson said, "that is hard; if I can't help you, I know one who can. Why don't you go straight to the dear Lord and tell him all about it? You see everything is at his disposal. You know the way to him, don't you?"

Faith nodded assent, and then said despairingly, "It never seemed to me that God would condescend to think about the small affairs of our everyday life."

"But, Mrs. Vincent, you surely read in the Word how he numbers the hairs of our heads, and he says himself if he gives thought to such little things as lilies and grass, he'll surely look after us. Doesn't the Good Shepherd care when the sheep are worried? Indeed he does. Would you stay up-stairs when you heard your dear baby crying? Oh! but you'd run fast to her. He says himself that he is our Father, and we are his children, and is he going to stay away off up in heaven and not care about our everyday troubles. No, just you tell him, and believe that he'll help you in some way, and he surely will. You see I can tell all about this because I've proved it. I know it is so, and it's not every minister that knows that. We had a real young minister to preach for us last Sunday; he preached about God's care for his people, and I just thought to myself, 'If you had ever been in a real tight place, my lad, and the Lord had come and helped you out, you wouldn't be standing there reading off pretty sounding words to us; you'd just tell it to us, hearty like, as if you meant it.' But here I am, going on just like a clock; I beg your pardon, Mrs. Vincent."

"Go on, Mrs. Macpherson," said Faith, "I love to hear you talk. Tell me how you came to feel so sure about things. I need to know. I am wrongly called 'Faith,' for I have scarcely any."

"Oh, I couldn't but feel sure. He hears and helps me so quick when I call to him. He has been so kind to me. When I was left alone in the world with no home and not a penny that I could call my own, I didn't know which way to turn; I had no trade, and I was not strong enough to do housework. I fretted and worried over it a spell, then it came to me all of a sudden one day that the Lord could help me if he would. I called to mind all the verses that tell how kind he is, and I just went and told him all about it, feeling as sure that he'd help me in some way as if I'd heard him say it. Sure enough he did! the very next day a lady advertised for an apprentice to learn the dressmaker's trade. I went, and she took me, and I got just in my right place. I learned fast, and in a year from that time I could fit as well as she could herself. She offered me good wages to stay and sew with her, but I was tired of shop life and wanted a bit of a home of my own, so I rented these rooms, and I have all I can do and more too. It is a nice pleasant place, I think to myself. It's cool and comfortable, even if it is two flights. You see I have a north and south window, and if there isn't a good breeze from one way there is from the other; here's my bedroom" (opening the door into a good-sized room with a large window), "blinds too. I can make it as dark as a pocket; and here's my dining-room, and kitchen all in one; here the lake water comes in; oh I tell you, I lack for nothing."

"But don't your rooms get all heated up when you cook?" Faith asked.

"Not a bit of it! See here"—calling Faith's attention to what appeared to be a small light table made of iron. "This is a gasoline stove, and the man that invented it ought to have every woman that owns one blessing him as long as he lives, for it's a jewel," and Mrs. Macpherson turned a screw and the flame flickered and glowed in one of the burners like a bright star. "Here's my fire all made, pretty soon I shall cook my dinner; over this burner I'll put my oven, and bake a potato or two nice and brown in twenty minutes or so; over the other burner I'll boil my tea-kettle and make my tea, then I'll clap on the gridiron and cook a bit of steak; nicest way in the world to cook steak, it is so quick, you know that makes steak juicy; the quicker you can cook it the better it is."

"Will it bake bread nicely?" Faith asked, growing deeply interested.

"To be sure," and Mrs. Macpherson produced a plump brown loaf. "You can see it is beautifully done; the least bit over half an hour bakes my loaves. Oh, there isn't a thing the creature won't do. I can tuck a chicken in the oven and it comes out done to a turn, or put in a joint of meat to boil and go on with my sewing, it cooks itself, you know. I can roast a turkey; last Christmas I roasted one (invited in a neighbour or two, you know), and you would have thought it came out of my mother's old-fashioned brick oven, it was done so beautifully. I can wash and iron on it too, heats the irons as fast as you can use them. It's my opinion that women wouldn't get so used up at their work if they would have these stoves; it is the heat that takes all the life and soul out of one. It is pleasant to work if you know how, and can keep cool; it is a real saving of tempers—this stove is—for if you ever noticed it, folks begin to get cross just as soon as they get well heated up over a cook-stove. No, it doesn't give out any heat, and there are no ashes, or smoke, or soot, or dirt of any kind about it, and it is cheaper to burn than coal."

"But have I not heard that gasoline is explosive?" Faith asked.

"It isn't. It will take fire if you bring it near a flame, just as alcohol will, but it can't explode. There might be a little danger of its taking fire if you filled it when burning, but nobody would be foolish enough to do that. I meant to tell you that this little stove is another proof to me that our Father pities us in our little troubles, and helps us. I used to have an iron cook-stove, and even with my little work it would heat up everything so. Just as I got all tuckered out with it, I heard of the gasoline stove, but I couldn't afford to get one, for work was rather scarce just then. I expected, though, he would send me one before long, and sure enough he did. It wasn't many days, don't you believe, till a lady came and asked me if I wanted to sew for her, and take a gasoline stove for pay; her husband was a dealer in them. You may be sure I said 'Yes' pretty quick; so I got it, and a great comfort it's been to me these three years. No, we don't plod along here with nobody to care how we get along. He cares. I believe he thought about me and sent me the stove, and I always shall."

"Well, good-bye, Mrs. Macpherson," said Faith. "I am truly obliged to you. You have cheered and helped me. I think I shall have more trust hereafter, and who knows hut I shall set up housekeeping with a gasoline stove," she added, laughingly.

"Dear heart, I wish you might."

Mrs. Vincent walked home with an idea in her head and a light in her eye that were not there when she started. Trust a woman for doing what she wants to. It did not take Faith long to lay a plan, and by the time she reached home a plan lay fair and clear before her. Once in her room she sat down and mentally inventoried her possessions. She went to her trunk and brought out her jewellery; they made a goodly array, all the birthday and holiday gifts of many years, several of them quite costly. She hesitated a little over a beautiful watch and chain, but finally laid them with the others—a fair offering at the shrine of love, retaining only a plain gold pin and the rings her husband gave her. When baby took her afternoon nap, Faith gathered up her rings, and pins, and ear-rings, and bracelets, and chains, and all the other "tinkling ornaments," made them into a package, and went with a resolute look in her eyes to Mr. Seymour's—one of the largest jewellery stores in the city. Mr. Seymour was a member of the same church, and took a fatherly interest in the young couple. Faith, with much inward trepidation, unfolded her plans to him. After careful examination he named a price for each article that made her heart bound with joy.

"As a matter of course," he explained, "we never give full value for goods bought in this way; but when a woman sacrifices her ornaments for such an object I want to bid her God-speed, and I shall give you what I think I can dispose of them for."

He counted out the fresh bills to Faith; she could have hugged him, but she only said, in low excited tones:

"Mr. Seymour, I cannot tell you how much I thank you."

She almost flew home, and then dismissing the nurse, acted in a most extraordinary manner. She danced about the room with baby, nearly squeezing the breath out of her, and laughed and cried by turns; then she did some tender serious thinking How had the clouds of the morning turned into sunshine! She recognized the hand of the dear Lord in it all; these suggestions and plans were given by him. His loving kindness was over her; she would never doubt it more. When her husband returned at evening she tried to banish from her tell-tale face all traces of exultation. This was her secret; he could not know it yet. So poorly did she succeed that he was happily surprised by finding her cheerful, instead of sad; and yet, inconsistent mortal, he began to feel slightly annoyed that she seemed to be taking the prospective separation so coolly.

"How soon can you be ready to go?" he asked in the course of the evening.

That roll of bills in Faith's pocket made her eyes dance with glee, as she answered:

"Oh, in about a fortnight; but let us not talk about that to-night, let me read you this exquisite little bit I found to-day."

"Women are queer," soliloquized Frank. "I don't believe Faith is going to feel our first separation as much as I shall myself."

Faith studied the daily newspapers diligently for a few days. "To Rent" was always the subject.

"I do believe I have found the right thing at last," she announced to baby one day, and she read aloud: "To rent at Maplewood, a cottage of four rooms, convenient to street and steam cars, pleasantly located, rent low." Another hurried consultation with the paper disclosed the fact that a train for Maplewood left in an hour. Baby was put to sleep to a hurried tune, and Faith had just time enough to reach the train. Maplewood proved to be a pretty little suburb four miles out; it was rather new, so that it seemed quite like being in the country. Green fields and hills stretched away on either side, and the one broad, quiet avenue was shaded with maples, grand old forest trees. It looked like Paradise to Faith. She soon found the cottage, a lovely nest of white and green glimmering through the trees, the smooth lawn gay with daffodils and crocuses. Vines clambered over the porch, and the sweet breath of lilies and violets distilled subtle perfume on the spring air. She stood on the porch almost afraid to ring, lest she should hear that the house was rented yesterday; but no, it was to be had, and the nice old lady who owned it wanted to rent it, and take up her abode with her daughter, was just as much delighted as Faith. So eager and enthusiastic a tenant was not found every day. The four pretty rooms—parlours, bedroom, dining-room, and kitchen—exactly suited; a bargain was soon concluded, and Faith on a homeward train, congratulating herself on the success of a part of her plan.

Many visits were made during the next few days to furniture, carpet, and china stores. One would have supposed, at the least, that Mrs. Vincent was furnishing a hotel; but it is no easy matter to take fine tastes and a small purse, and make both ends meet.

The purchases were all made at last, first and foremost the gasoline stove; then the pretty light carpets, the matting, the neat furniture, some cheap white muslin curtains for the windows, and a small store of china. The young housekeeper bought carefully; there was nothing for mere show, but when it was all arranged in the little house, and Faith's pictures hung on the white walls, there was nothing to be desired in the way of beauty or comfort—that is, in the estimation of those most nearly concerned. Meanwhile Faith had kept her secret well, going to and fro to the cottage, busy and happy as any other robin in spring-time preparing her nest.

The nest was all finished now, and Faith stood one afternoon in her kitchen door, taking a critical and comprehensive view of the whole, then turning with great satisfaction to survey the kitchen. It was a mite of a room, but Faith was very proud of it; this was to be her workshop; here cooking was to be carried on as a fine art. No ruthless Biddy should soil the purity of her new pine table, or tread out the gray matting of the floor. She took a last peep into the china closet, looked lovingly at a row of tin dishes new and shining, bestowed admiring glances at the gasoline stove, the presiding genius of the whole, then she opened the outside door into an old-fashioned garden, filled with lilacs and roses, and pinks and southernwood, and all spicy plants and fragrant herbs. She sat down to rest a few minutes, she had accomplished such wonders to-day. Daisy had been left for the day in the care of a kind old lady, and Faith, hiring a woman to help her a few hours, had been hard at work. There was a stone jar filled with golden brown loaves of delicious bread, another jar with cake light as down, a tempting bit of roast lamb sat in the refrigerator; all was in readiness for tomorrow, when the grand secret would be revealed. Faith felt so happy and satisfied; she had tried and proved the stove, it was all that it was represented to be; there was assuredly nothing, now, in the way of a home together in the country.

"Will you not come home early, and let us take a little trip on the street car out into the country?" Faith asked her husband next morning.

"Yes, indeed!" he answered, sighing. "I must make the most of my family now; only three days more left, I believe."

The unsuspecting man little though that all his worldly possessions were not long after on the way to Maplewood, and that his wife waited impatiently to take him there too.

"Now you are out on my invitation, you and baby," Faith said, as they alighted from the car at Maplewood. "You are to ask no questions, but do as you are told."

She led the way up the pleasant street, her husband following in silent wonder as she passed up the walk, turned the key of the cottage door, invited him to come in and be seated, while she passed on into the next room. A few moments, and then the door swung open, revealing that cool darkened dining-room, and Faith, with ill-concealed triumph in the tones, said:—

"Please walk out to tea, my dear; I'm sure you must be hungry by this time." He saw as through a mist the white table arranged with exquisite neatness and care, decked with flowers and spread with angel's fare, he almost thought, for he turned to Faith a bewildered look, as he said:—

"Where are we? Is this heaven? Tell me quick!"

What a merry tea-table it was; how they talked and laughed, and almost cried by turns! and even baby seemed to realise that some great event had happened, and laughed and crowed appropriately.

After tea, when they talked it all over, Frank said:—

"Who but you would have thought of all this? How happy we shall be here, and I owe it all to you!"

"You forget Mrs. Macpherson," Faith said.

"Yes, and the gasoline stove; but for that it seems this could not have been accomplished," said her husband.

"We both forget the dear Father in heaven," Faith said, in reverent tones, "that we owe everything to him alone."

By a mutual impulse they knelt down, and the husband, in a few words of prayer, consecrated this new home to the Lord, and themselves anew to his service, thereby feeling added dignity and joy in his manhood, now that "he was a priest in his own house" indeed.

So the months go on in peace and joy. Faith sings at her work, and baby plays in the garden, and Frank Vincent thinks there is but just one woman in the whole world that knows how to cook. The plan failed in no particular; the magical stove has proved itself a most efficient servant, and moreover, Faith manages to lay aside a snug sum every week.


A busy, toilsome life she had led—this mother. She had reared a family; had laid some of them down to sleep in the old cemetery; had struggled through poverty, sickness, and sorrow—she and Ephraim together—always together. He brought her to no stately home that day so long ago, that she put her hand in his, and he had no stocks or bonds or broad acres, yet Mrs. Kensett had for forty years counted herself a rich woman. She possessed the true, tender, undivided heart of a good man—a love that nothing dimmed, that trials only made stronger, that hedged her life about with thoughtful care; even when grey hairs crowned the heads of both, this husband and wife rejoiced in the love of their youth. Nay, that love purified, tried, as gold is tried in the fire. In the last few years this good old couple seemed to have reached a Beulah land. They had enough laid by to support them comfortably now that their children had all flown from the home nest, and their quiet happy life flowed on without a ripple.

"Mother," Mr. Kensett had said, "I'm going to stop work now and lay by. I'm getting old and we've got enough to do us I guess as long as we stay. You can tend your flower-beds and darn my stockings, and I'll make the garden and take care of the chickens, we'll just take comfort a spell; if any body has earned the right to we have."

As often as once a week he remarked, "There's one thing I must see to, right away; I must make my will, so that if I go first you'll be sure to have the old place all to yourself. I want you to have every cent of it to do as you please with."

And "Mother" always answered, "Now, father, don't! It won't make much difference how it's fixed; it isn't anyways likely that I'll stay long behind you, we've been together so long."

There came a morning when the hale, cheery old man did not rise with the sun and step briskly about his work. The messenger came for him in the night; and when the first streak of light in the early dawn stole through his chamber window, and fell upon his face to waken him, he did not awake, he had gone—in the darkness alone with the messenger. Strange journey! Mysterious messenger! His grey coat hung over the chair where he laid it off, the garden tools stood against the fence, the house had a strange silence, the sunshine a cold glare. He who passed in and out yesterday, and worked and smiled and talked and read the news, to-day lay in the darkened parlour white, cold, and still. No, not that! To-day walked the golden streets—joined in the everlasting song, and looked upon the face of his Lord. The old Bible lay open on the stand, the psalm-book beside it, his glasses shut into the place where he sung at family worship a few hours before, and the psalm he sung—his favourite—was in the words of the quaint old version:

"I will both lay me down in peace, And quiet sleep will take; Because then only me to dwell In safety, Lord, dost make."

Had he known how quiet the sleep was to be, the calm triumphant faith of the singer would not have wavered, nor would the peace with which he laid down have been less.

The will had never been made, so the old homestead must be sold and divided among them all. They met at an early day to arrange affairs. Mr. John Kensett, the eldest son, and Mrs. Maria Sinclair, the eldest daughter, were the self-appointed managers. They were both wealthy, but were just as eager to secure the small sum that would fall to them as was Hannah, another daughter, who married a poor man and had many mouths to feed. Whatever of sentiment or tender feeling these two might originally have possessed had been well rubbed out by the world. In their catechism, the answer to "What is the chief end of man?" read: To make money, to be fashionable, to please ourselves, now and here, always and everywhere.

In Benjamin, the youngest of the family, were condensed all the noble qualities and tender, poetical nature of both father and mother, while the other children brought out the unlovely characters of some distant ancestors.

"Why not give it all up to mother?" said Benjamin. "It will only be enough to keep her in comfort."

"No doubt you think that would be a most excellent arrangement," John answered, "inasmuch as you being the youngest would naturally live with her, and share the benefits, and in the end hope to fall heir to the whole, by skilful management. Pretty sharp, Benny! I see you have an eye to business."

"I am willing to go to the end of the earth and never set foot in the house again, nor get a cent," Ben exclaimed indignantly, "if mother can have a place of her own to live in comfort while she does live."

"Hold on, my dear boy! Who said she was not going to live in comfort? I believe we all have comfortable homes, and it will be much more sensible for her to live amongst us than try to keep house, and take care of this place. Women always let property run down; it will only be a trouble."

After much talk and some bickerings, it was arranged that mother had better not try to keep house, but would spend a year or two at a time around among them all.

"A year or two in a place," burst out Benjamin again. "The idea of mother running about like that, begging to be taken in, no place that she can call home; it's too bad! This place is hers, she helped to earn it, and father meant she should have it all; I heard him say so."

"Really, Benjie!" Mrs. Sinclair said, "you are getting excited. Mother does not care for the property; it would only be a trouble to her; she will live much more easily with us. You ought to see that we propose to be quite generous with mother. Of course the interest of her share will not pay her board anywhere else, but we shall take turns in keeping her, for that, besides making her presents of clothing."

"Keep her!" Ben groaned.

"Perhaps Benny proposes to set up housekeeping on his own account, soon," said John, "then mother will have a royal place to go to, and stay, no doubt."

"By the way, my dear young brother, do you think it quite the thing for you to come around finding fault with us who propose to bear all the burdens ourselves, knowing that you haven't a cent to give toward it?"

The young man restrained the bitter answer that was rising to his lips, for father's mild eye looked into his from the photograph on the wall. He made a firm resolve, though, as he walked sadly away, that the one purpose of his life should be to make a home for mother, and he would never say "burden," either.

Dear old Mrs. Kensett was so smitten, so amazed to find that her other self had gone—where she could not follow, that for days it seemed as if she sat waiting, expecting the summons to go herself.

"Surely, Ephraim would send for me," she thought in her sorrow and bewilderment. It mattered little to her, then, how or where she lived; all places were alike, since he was not in any of them, and she mechanically assented to any proposal that was made her, though she did cry out as one hurt, when John proposed an auction for the sale of household effects. "Oh, I can't," she moaned. "Your father made some of that furniture with his own hands," but the worldly-wise son, who had outgrown "foolish sentimentality," over-ruled her. It all went, the cradle in which they rocked, the old clock, the table they surrounded so many years. The rage for the antique had not yet shown itself, or John's wife and Maria, would have secured some of the old-fashioned furniture. As it was, they could not think of having their houses lumbered by it. The other two daughters were not well-to-do, and prized money more than mementos. Benjamin protested most earnestly at this sacrilegious disposal of the dear home things. He could do but little himself, as he was still pursuing his law studies, though he did bid in his father's armchair and a few other cherished articles. John touched him on the shoulder, and said, "Ben, are you crazy? What in the world will you do with a lot of old furniture?"

"You'll see," said Ben quickly.

If John could have seen his brother's next proceeding he would certainly have pronounced him a hopeless lunatic. He took the sum that fell to him and placed it in the bank to his mother's credit. "The interest money won't amount to much, mother," he said, as he handed her the certificate of deposit, "but I shall enjoy thinking that if you want some little thing you can get it without asking anybody."

Mrs. Sinclair was a woman who lived for society; she had long ago cast aside as Puritanical the wholesome restraints that had governed her girlhood. What with parties, operas and theatres, she was a very busy woman. Her young family was much neglected and she was only too glad to transfer to her old mother what little care she did give them. The restful days were gone, one would have supposed that Mrs. Sinclair had engaged, in her mother, a maid and seamstress. "It's so nice," she told her friends. "Mother takes the entire charge of them, and relieves me; children are such a responsibility." It was news to her friends, the fact that she was an anxious burdened mother.

It was hard for Mrs. Kensett to take up her life at the beginning again, to be confined day after day in a close room with noisy, fretful children, to go through the round of story-telling, tying shoes, mending tops and dolls, and minister to the thousand small wants and worries of undisciplined childhood. She had gone through all that, those chapters of her life she had considered finished and sealed up.

There is no occupation in this world more soul and body trying than the care of young children. What patience and wisdom, skill, and unlimited love it calls for. God gave the work to mothers and has furnished them for it, and they cannot shirk it and be guiltless.

It was not unusual when there was a heavy press of work in the house, calling for all the forces, for baby too to be bundled into grandma's room and left for hours. This worked very well while all were in good humour, for grandma loved children, but when baby writhed and fretted with aching teeth and would not be comforted, and Master Freddy resented the least correction by vigorous kicks from his stout little boots, and Miss Maude lisped, "I shan't! You ain't my mamma!"—what wonder that grandma, absorbed as she was by sad memories, should lose her patience too, and speak the sharp word that did not mend matters, while she sighed in spirit for the days that would not come back again.

The daughter remembered, too, that mother was cunning with her needle; how very convenient it became to send the mending basket to her room, "just for some work to pass the time away," and in time numberless little garments were sent there too, aprons and dresses, and she sat and stitched from morning till night when she was not tending baby. Nobody suggested a ride or a walk for her, or invited her down stairs to while away an evening when there was company.

"Mother isn't used to it," Maria said; "besides, she can't hear half that is said. She enjoys herself better alone; I suppose all old people do." This course of reasoning seemed to soothe Mrs. Sinclair's conscience when it proved troublesome, but in truth she would not have enjoyed introducing her plain-looking mother to her fashionable friends. "So old style." The old ladies she was accustomed to meet wore trail and puffs and dress caps; she might have searched long, though, to find another old face of such sweet placid dignity as her mother's.

This life in the crowded city was so new and strange and dismal. How the mother longed amid its dust and smoke for the sweet air of Hawthorn, for a sprig of lilac, or a June rose from the garden. Once in a rare while she succeeded in getting to church. It was a difficult thing to bring about, though; when nothing happened to prevent, the carriage was driven there, but apparently in that family there were more hindrances to church-going than to any other sort of going.

Now that spring had come again, Mrs. Kensett looked forward to a change of her home with pleasure; she wanted to get into the country once more, and Martha, the second daughter, had married a farmer and lived in the country; it was a long distance from Hawthorn, and she had not visited her daughter since her marriage. The pleasant home among trees and flowers and greenness that she had pictured was not there; instead, a bare frame house on a side hill without a tree or vine; there was no time to enjoy them had they been there; the long hot days were filled up with work; endless milking and baking and churning, and the unselfish mother put in her waning strength, early and late, did what she could to lighten the burden that was making her daughter prematurely old. Then the dismal winter settled down upon them, monotonous days of sleet and snow and darkness, when nothing happened from week to week to break the dreary routine, when even the Sabbaths brought no relief.

Mrs. Kensett had ever been an untiring church goer; rain or shine, she was in her place. Her son-in-law was not a Christian, and always had an excellent excuse for remaining at home, in the summer the horses were tired, or it was too hot; in the winter it was too cold, or too something. Many a dreary Sabbath the sad mother sat at her chamber window and watched the rain come down in slow, straight drizzle, repeating to herself rather than singing, as she rocked too and fro,

"How lovely is thy dwelling-place, O Lord of hosts to me! The tabernacles of thy grace, How pleasant, Lord, they be!

"My thirsty soul longs vehemently, Yea, faints thy courts to see; My very heart and flesh cry out, O living God for thee."

Longing meanwhile with intense desire to sit once again in the old pew, and hear the familiar tones of her pastor's voice in that far-away, pleasant village that used to be her home; now she had no home, a wanderer from house to house, and yet she was not a murmurer, her faith and love did not falter.

In due course of time she went on her pilgrim way and tarried for a time at her daughter Hannah's; a good-natured soul, who loved her mother and gave her welcome to such as she had, but she lived in a small house, with a large flock of children, undisciplined, rough, and noisy. It seemed that in the full little house there was no quiet corner for retreat, and grandma often moaned in the words of one of her dear psalms

"O that I like a dove had wings, Said I, then would I flee, Far hence that I might find a place Where I in rest might be."

"After all I need all this," the old saint would say to herself. "It's a part of my dear Lord's schooling. I was having too nice a time, Ephraim and I all alone. I dare say I got out of the way and he had to bring me back. He sent me all that peaceful, comfortable time; I was very glad to have his will done when it was according to my notion; this is his will all the same, and shall not I be willing to take what he sends? He is only getting me ready.

"Soon the delightful day will come When my dear Lord will call me home, And I shall see his face."

Albeit the house was small, and the children noisy, this persecuted grandmother of many homes found herself dreading to leave it and find a new home with her eldest son. John's wife had always been to her a most uncomfortable sort of person; she had dreaded her not frequent visits to their home. Both were glad when they were over. Twenty years had passed since his marriage; she never seemed to get any nearer to his wife. Now the time had come to go and live with them, she shrank from it, and postponed it for weeks, but John was inflexible, he was an upright man, and bound to do his part in sharing the burden of his mother's maintenance.

Mrs. John Kensett was one of those icy women with thin lips and cold grey eyes, made up from the first without a heart—women who make a cool atmosphere about them even in the heat of summer. She was tall and stylish and handsomely dressed, and when she mounted her gold eyeglasses and through them severely looked one over, she was formidable indeed to so meek a woman as her mother-in-law. She must have married John Kensett because an establishment is more complete with a man at the head of it, for that was the chief end of her life to keep all things in perfect running order in that elegantly appointed home, and to keep abreast of the times in all new adornings and furnishings under the sun. One Scripture admonition at least she gave heed to: she looked well to the ways of her household. One might explore from garret to cellar in that house and find nothing out of place, nothing soiled, nothing left undone that should have been done. She was withal, a rigid economist in small things. Everything was kept under lock and key, and doled out in very small quantities to the servants. Her table could never merit the charge of being vulgarly loaded; the furnace heat was never allowed to run above a certain mark on the thermometer, no matter who shivered, and she had doubtless walked miles in turning gas jets to just the right point.

In this most elegant, precise, immaculate house, where everything and everybody was controlled by certain unvarying and inflexible rules, the old mother felt almost as straitened as she ever had in the small topsy-turvy one.

Her room was scarcely above shivering point, and the back windows overlooked no cheerful prospect. Here day after day she sat alone; she had food and shelter and clothes, what more could old people possibly want? At meal times her son was silent and abstracted or absorbed in his newspaper. If anybody had told him that his old mother's heart was nearly breaking for lack of loving sympathy, he would have been astonished. The faded eyes often grew dim with tears as she looked at him—the frigid, unbending man—and remembered him as he was in those first years of her married life, darling little Johnnie in white dresses and long curls, running after butterflies and picking flowers; if he only would kiss her once more, or do something to make her sure that he was Johnnie, she was hungry for a tender word from him. Ah! if mothers could see down the years that stretch ahead, it would not always be so hard to lay the little lisping ones under the ground. Was it decreed that most mothers shall be in sympathy with that other one, of whom it is written, "A sword shall pierce thine, own heart also"?

We shall never know about the wounds from those dear, self-sacrificing mothers, but they are there, even though they may strive to hide them and find excuses for the cold neglect, indifference to their comfort, impatience, and the putting them one side as if to say: "What is all this to you? It is time you were dead."

"John is busy," she would say, as she mounted the stairs to her lonely room, and he buttoned his coat and hastened away to business, without a 'good-bye' or a 'good night,' then she would draw out her knitting and knit on, often through tear-blinded eyes. Sometimes she did not hear a remark the first time and would ask to have it repeated, but the manifest impatience with which it was done always sent a pang well-likened to a sword-thrust, but the dear mother would cover the wound and think within herself, "I know it is a great trouble to talk to deaf people, I ought to keep still."

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