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on the beautiful house across the street they see me waiting upon any young -Paul's home and realized that she lady in town, they always declare I do was shut out.
it with some nefarious design. You “I wish it were all different, dar- are to be my wife. I love you, yet at ling," said Paul; and as he looked into present I cannot protect you; that is the beseeching eyes upturned to his reason enough why I should not bring face, that moment he did.
one shadow of reproach upon you, my August had come. Paul had only darling. If I walked with you here, reached Busyville that morning. It while iny mother refused to invite you was evening, and he and Eirene were to her house, you see how people would in Lover's Walk. He had just told talk-2" her of the expected visit of his friends, Eirene grew pale. She was trying to who were to arrive the next day. He accept it, to understand it—this hard went on to say :
fact, striking into the face of her dream. “I had nothing to do with it. It is All she had actually known of Paul's mother's work, She came to Boston society had been by the peaceful river and invited them. In one way and an- and in the sheltered room at home; other I am under obligations to the she had not realized before that she Prescotts, especially for their hospital- could not enjoy something of the same ity. I visited at Marlboro Hill before intercourse here. The demon of “peoI ever saw you. So, when mother gave ple's talk” had never risen before her her invitation, and they accepted it, I mind; but, now that Paul spoke of it, could do nothing but second it; and she remembered the gossip which she now I cannot do less than make their herself often heard in the shop, and visit agreeable in every way in my knew that what he said was true. It power. It is an actual debt that I owe was not to be; perhaps she could not them, Eirene.”
sec him at all ; but that he was com“Yes," said Eirene, “I see how it is. pelled to tell her that she was not recI would not have you do otherwise, if ognized by his own mother, was hard. I could. I am wrong, I know, to feel Then she remembered how he had at all disappointed. I mean, I think, thought that in one year it would all be I should be glad to have you go about different; that now was the time when with them a great deal, if we could he had promised to acknowledge her visit a little together-only a little-as before the world as his affianced wife. we did last September. Then I shouldn't Perhaps he read the thought on her get lonesome.”
white and silent face; for he said, “But that would be impossible, if I believed that by this time I could they were not coming at all, child;" have acknowledged our relation to and Paul's voice grew hard, and uncon- every body; but circumstances have sciously chilled her. “We were at been too strong for me. I am not yet Hilltop, then, I was trouting in Arca- independent. Until I am, we must dia when I told you those beautiful wait, my darling. It won't be long. stories. God knows, I wish they were When I am fairly established, then it all true to-day. But we are in Busy will all come true, the lovely life that I ville now.
I can't meet you here often, planned last summer.” without setting a hundred scandalous All the light came back into her eyes tongues wagging. You see
as he mentioned the life of the last Paul was going to say, they always did say such things if they “I could wait forcver,” she said, " for saw me with shop-people ;” and he ease and fortune. The luxury you told might have added, " with good cause;" about, Paul, don't seem to belong to but he said, “ You see, for some reason me. I was happy while you were away. of their own, the people here expect I did not expect to see you; but to see that I will marry elsewhere. Thus, if you every day, and yet to be scarcely
66 You see,
able to speak with you—to see you all lowance. I associated with rich young the time with others, while I long for men, who gave suppers, made bets, and your society so much, will make me so wasted their money; I did the same. lonely, Paul, I'm afraid I sha'n't know Now, darling, I'm reaping the consehow to bear it at first; but I will try. quences. I can't marry till I get out Maybe it will not be so hard by-and-by. of debt. The very day that I do, I can Only now I am so disappointed. I begin life anew, and with you. You thought we were going to be so happy. will wait for me, won't you, precious ? It's so different from what I expected.” No matter what you see, no matter how
“Yet it is not so different from any hard things may seem, you will believe thing that you might have expected, if in me and love me, won't you ? " you had taken all the circumstances into "I will." And never had the womanconsideration,” said Paul, in his most gaze been so tender and trusting and practical voice, which sounded all the entire, as it was while the girl uttered barder because he himself felt annoyed these words and looked into his face. by these very circumstances, and was The influence of her spirit on his was really distressed by the pain visible on to call forth every generous impulse the lovely face before him. Of course, latent in it. Paul Mallane never owned in his irritation he forgot altogether his shortcomings to any body else; but that in every letter that he had written it really was a delight to him to conher he had given her reason to expect fess his sins to her. It made him think every thing to be different in this visit better of himself while he was doing from the present reality. She had never it; and, while he looked into her eyes, before heard this tone in his voice, he felt capable of the noblest actions, when he had spoken to her. How full and actually meant and believed that of supplication and tenderness it had he would do every thing that he promalways been !
ised her, “I don't deserve such devoIt was almost as if the beloved hand tion, you lovely one!” he exclaimed, had struck her a blow. The swift tears as all the mean thoughts and regrets of rose to her eyes; with silent force of the last month rushed into his mind. will she held them back, and a quiver “I wonder that you do, that you can, in her voice alone betrayed her emotion, love me, when I think of myself as I as she spoke :
really am. But I love you. No matter “I have expected too much-more what happens, believe this, that I love than it is in your power to grant me. you as I never loved before, as I shall It is because I love you.”
never love again ; that you are the only " You haven't expected more than I woman I ever saw whom I wished to want to give you, nor one tenth of be my wife. Promise me you will bewhat you deserve,” said Paul, passion- lieve this.” And, as he uttered these ately and penitently, feeling again the words, Paul snatched her into his arms, old impulse to snatch her in his arms and kissed her forehead, her eyes, her and carry her off, away from all the mouth, with something like the preworld; for it seemed to him that only science of despair running through away from the world could he be abso- each, that, as it was the first time, so it lutely true to her and worthy of her. would be the last; and as the thought “If it wasn't for my cursed life, my struck his heart, it seemed to him that cursed position, he was going to he could never unclose his arms and let say; but in an instant he felt ashamed her go. to mention it. "If I was not tangled They had come to the end of the on every side, darling, it would be so walk, where the river bent and ran on different. But I'll tell you every thing. both sides of the great willows, which I know you would forgive me, no mat- hung down to the water. It ran swift ter what I did. I am in debt. Before and dark and wide here towards the I knew you, I spent more than my al- dam, a little further on. Its rush, and the cry of the whippoorwill high over- But if he cannot come here, and I canhead, gave a weird quality to the mo- not go into his home, we cannot meet ment, the dim moment of a midsummer
When you are so near, how twilight. Paul held the face that he can I live without you, Paul ? Oh, loved up in the soft light. One linger- you thought we should be so happy in ing gaze, one kiss more, long and silent, August !” And her heart gave a sudthen, without a word, he took her hand den cry, and she lifted her hand involin his, and they walked back. When untarily, as if to hold the remembered they came out into the village the stars kisses upon her face. “I'm so lonely, were shining above the great elms, and Paul !” she said, in a broken voice. hundreds of couples were sauntering to Just then a span of magnificent bays and fro under their shadows. The tow- in white trappings pranced up to the ering form of Paul Mallane could not house opposite. The carriage which be mistaken. Many recognized him, they drew was so much more splendid and a fow the girl in white by his side. than any Eirene had ever seen before,
It was told in more than one shop, that for an instant she was too dazzled the next day, that “Paul Mallane had to distinguish Paul sitting on the back been out walking with that Vale girl seat with a lady, while in front was a again, and it was plain enough to see gentleman with Grace. This moment that it was for no good.”
Momo, in the further window, having The next evening, just as the last sun- just caught the name from Eirene's lips, rays were brightening the beautiful gar- began to cry, “Paul! pretty Paul !” den across the street, Eirene sat by her with undiminished vehemence. The window, alone. It seemed to her that lady in the carriage looked up, saw the she was dreaming, and she tried to parrot, saw Eirene. Isabella Prescott think back and make life seem to her immediately recognized “the shopas it did before Paul kissed her. She girl ;" and the shop-girl, looking down still felt those kisses upon her eyelids, upon that face turned full upon her, her lips, her brow. It seemed to her as knew instinctively, without knowing if they still rested there, the seal of his wherefore, that she looked into the eyes love.
of an enemy. “ This is love," she said. “ How “Why, how glad this parrot is to see wonderful! I read of it, but I knew you! And who is that pretty girl ?." nothing of it. How could any one asked Bell of Paul. ever write or tell what love is? I only “Her name is Vale,” said Paul, hurknow, when I think what it would be riedly. to me now to live without it. how Before this, the footman had opened did I live, and not unhappily, when the carriage-door, and Tabitha Mallane nobody cared for me-when nobody had appeared in the veranda of the would have missed me or have mourned tea-green mansion, arrayed in Aunt for me if I had died-nobody, I mean, Comfort's best silk. but those at home. I could not be so The air was full of gay words and peaceful now, if no one cared for me, laughter. A light, mocking laugh if nobody thought of me and missed came back to Eirene as the party disme, as I miss Paul. Oh, if I could only appeared in the house. Never in her see him every day—if I could go into life before had Eirene heard any thing the garden with him and look at those so mocking as this laugh. It struck flowers in the vases—if I could go into her heart, and she felt a new and utterthe house and look at all the pretty ly unknown sensation—the pang of things! I like to look at pretty things. love, jealousy. It is not true that perIf I could go and come, as Miss Pres- fect love, if human, casts out fear. All cott will! And we cannot walk any human experience proves otherwise. more by the river! I would not, if I Her love was complete, but the condicould not see him as a friend elsewhere. tions under which she loved were cruel.
Immediately and intuitively she real- Nothing," said Eirene, lifting a ized the immense advantage possessed white face from the pillow, “only I'm by the woman who had looked up at not feeling quite well. Momo was so her and mocked her with a laugh. She noisy in the window, I set him there. I even overrated them, so humble was shall keep him in the yard hereafter." she in her opinion of herself. To see a And with these words she arose, and highly-wrought, passionate woman jeal- quietly walked out of the room with ous, is often a grand picture; for there may be sublimity in a mental and emo- “Oh, no; nothing's the matter ! ” tional storm as well as in a material muttered Tilda, as she sat down by the
But to see a gentle nature struck open window, grimly planting her elto the heart by this demon, is a sorrow- bows on her knees and her chin in her ful sight; there is no thunder and hands; “nothing's the matter; only lightning and wrath to sustain the those cussed—(may the Lord forgive energy of such a one, but only tears, me !)—those cussed Boston folks have and silent, unutterable anguish. Such come. I saw 'em drive up this mornin' a woman struck by jealousy is like a in a circus-coach, it looked like to me; duinb animal that has received its and the snip had her hat full of feathdeath-wound. Eirene sat silent, as if ers, and the feller looked as if he ought paralyzed. In an instant all joy seemed to be spanked; and I thanked goodness to be struck out of her life, and she to the child was in the shop and couldn't be alone on earth. But Momo, who see 'em; but she has seen 'em and heard was thoroughly wide awake, and evi- 'em, and heard the peanner goin', and dently excited by the unwonted appear- the poor baby all alone in the dark ! ance of the new-comers across the Now, we'll see what we shall see. I'll street, continued to scream,
" Paul !
see if he'll keep the promise he made in pretty Paul ! " He brought Eirene that letter, and marry her. If he don't, back suddenly “to a realizing sense,”
may the Lord
If he does, he'll be as Tilda would have called it. “ You the death of her. I told her so. Why sing for spite-you sing for doom !” didn't she get religion! Then he'd 'a' she would undoubtedly have esclaimed had to have stayed with his own kind, had she been a theatrical young lady; for all of comin' to break her heart !" but as she was only a simple, suffering It was past midnight when the music girl, whom a new anguish had sudden- and mirth in the drawing-room across ly stung into a nervous irritation before the street ceased, and Isabella Prescott unknown to her nature, she only walked retired to the apartment assigned to her quickly to the window and took the for the night. It was Eirene's old cage from the ledge, with Momo still room, into which two others had been screaming to the most piercing limit of thrown. Bella was seated by the same his voice. “ Hush ! hush !" she ex- window where Eirene sat when Paul claimed. “Momo, you shall never mor- contemplated her from under the cherrytify me again ; you shall go and sit in tree. But her gaze was not turned outthe back yard for--ever!”
ward; she was busy scanning the furHere came a long, deep sob, and she niture by the searching gas-light, which sauk vanquished by the first blow of had taken the place of Eirene's tallow her new enemy.
candle. " What on earth is the matter ?" said “Every thing smells as if it had just Tilda, an hour or two later, when, as come out of a varnish-shop,” she said, she returned from prayer-meeting, she as she sniffed her nose contemptuously. stumbled over the cage in the middle · New, stark, staring new, every article of the floor, and, lighting the candle, in the room. I see they have taken found Momo in deep disgrace, with his some lessons from Marlboro-bought head muffled in his feathers, and Eirene every thing as dark and rich as possiwith her head buried in the bed.
ble; but veneering, varnish, and new
oils, are not to be repressed. Ugh! I reaped an abundant harvest. For six shall smother. If I don't, how I shall months after, Busyville boasted that it look in the morning, after breathing had more dashing teams than any other such air all night! And it is quite ne- town in the county. cessary that I should look my best- More than a week had passed, and languid, slightly pale, but still my Paul and Eirene had not spoken since best,” she said, proceeding to the glass the evening when they met in Lover's and commencing to practise her usual Walk. Yet she saw him every dayfaces. “The shop-girl has more of a sometimes in the grand barouche, seatface than I was quite prepared to see,” ed beside Miss Prescott; sometimes on she soliloquized, as she went on putting Fleetfoot, with Miss Prescott, in an eleher hair into crimps. “Not a common gant habit, with a jaunty hat full of face, certainly—a face that I would shining plumes, on another curvetting make havoc with myself, if I were a horse by his side, going or returning young man, I like to do it justice from their daily ride; sometimes in absolute justice; then I can take so the veranda, reading to Miss Prescott; much the more credit to myself as an sometimes in the rustic seat under the artist, when I triumph over it and old cherry-tree, chatting with Miss crush it; for I intend to crush it. I'll Prescott by the hour; but whenever or pay you, Miss Shop, for interfering wherever she saw him, always with with a Prescott !"
Miss Prescott. Outside of workingMiss Prescott was perfectly well aware hours there was little refuge from this what she was doing when she brought sight of him; for there was neither her carriage and horses, coachman and light nor air in Seth Goodlove's front footman, to Busyville, Dick remon- chamber away from the window. strated—said it was parvenuish, and " Well," said Tilda, one evening, unworthy of their high estate; but looking across the stand to Eirene, sitMiss Isabella declared that “she didn't ting in her old seat with her eyes fixed care; ” and she didn't. What she did upon a piece of sewing, through which care for, was to impress upon the mind the needle seemed to pass faltering and of a vulgar town her own magnificence, slowly, “I will declare that you are for the establishment was her own. sick, and shall go home. John Mal" It is useless to object, Dick,” she lane gave you a vacation last year; said; “I'm not going to be jolted why don't he do so this? You need about in their old country arks. I'm it now enough sight more, goodness so delicate !” Thus the Prescott bays knows. I shall ask him myself to-morand barouche issued from the village row, and tell him, if you don't go, livery-stable every evening, and passed you'll be right sick; and you will. through the village-street, the wonder No, I won't tell him any such thing: and the envy of the natives. A Euro- I'll tell him you need rest, and must pean war, or the "abolition of slavery," have it. I will say to you, Eirene Vale, could not have plunged the villagers that I never saw such a change in any into such a state of personal excite- person in one week in my life. I can't ment.
bear it, and ain't a-goin' to try. I hate “It is plain enough to see why such him so, I do. Oh, I'm losing my repeople visit the Mallanes. They have ligion. I've lost my enjoyment. I a son!” said the Brahmins, with up- ha’n't had the evidence for a week. lifted noses.
That's the harm it's doin' me, Eirene “ What does Brother and Sister Mal- Vale; and it's killing you. I told you lane expect is goin' to become of their I told you so.
Heed me you souls, encouragin' such pomps
wouldn't." ities, and a-settin' such an example ! ” The face had, indeed, changed, which said the Bustlers. But in both classes looked back to Tilda without a word. the seed of Isabella Prescott's vanity The roundness, the peachy bloom of