Clara Louise Burnham
Part 6 out of 6
child's altered outlook.
On the morning following the painful interview with her mother, Eloise
presented herself in Jewel's room at the usual hour.
Smiling, she approached the child and exhibited three fresh new books.
India paper editions of the Bible and "Science and Health," and the
little brown pamphlet were in her hands.
"Yours?" exclaimed the child.
"Good, good!" Jewel hopped up and down, and forthwith brought Anna
Belle to have her share in the rejoicing.
"You were afraid you couldn't get them. Now see!" cried the child
triumphantly. "As if Divine Love couldn't send you those books!"
"He showed me a way," returned the girl. "See where I've written my
name. I want you to put 'Jewel' right under it in each one."
"Oh, in those lovely books?" said the child doubtfully. "I don't write
"Yes, I want it, dear, when we go downstairs and can get some ink. Did
anybody fix your hair yesterday?"
"I just brushed it down real smooth on the outside," returned the
"It looks so," said Eloise, laughing. "Let's fix it before we have the
lesson. By the way, what time is it, Jewel?"
The little girl smiled back at her cousin's reflection in the glass,
and took the open morocco case from the bureau. "Anna Belle and I put
him to bed last night," she said, looking fondly at the silver cherub
on its velvet couch. "We've named him Little Faithful. He'll come to
the lesson, too. I know he's going to be a lovely Scientist."
"I'm sure I hope he will, and neither be fast nor lazy," returned
Eloise, as she unbraided the short pigtails.
"I tell you it wasn't so nice getting the lesson alone yesterday,"
said Jewel. "You were away all day! Did you have a nice ride?"
"Yes," Eloise responded slowly. "The day was very nice--and so is Dr.
"Did he enjoy it?" asked the child hopefully. The doctor had been a
good deal on her mind.
"Some of the time," responded Eloise soberly.
"Why not all the time? Did error creep in?"
The older girl brushed away in silence for a minute.
"I didn't mean to talk about grown-up things," said the child,
somewhat abashed. "Mother says I must be careful not to."
"It is all right, Jewel. The new ideas I have been learning have made
me see some things so clearly. One is to perceive what it is that
really draws people together in a bond that cannot be broken. There is
only one thing that can do it and will do it, and that is loving the
same truth. Two people can have a very good time together for a while,
and like each other very much, but the time comes when their thoughts
fly apart unless that one bond of union is there--unless they love the
same spiritual truth."
The speaker caught, in the glass, the child's eyes fixed attentively
"Wouldn't Dr. Ballard look at our book?" asked Jewel softly.
The child reflected a minute, and her eyes filled. "I just love him,"
Her cousin stooped and kissed her cheek. "You well may," she returned
quietly. "He deserves it."
They studied the lesson and then went downstairs, where Jewel in her
very best hand slowly transcribed her name in the new books; then she
told Eloise that she was going out to the barn.
"I'm going to visit with Zeke," she said. "He has a claim of error,
and he is willing Science should help him."
"Is he ill?"
Jewel looked off. "It isn't that kind of error."
"There are plenty worse," rejoined Eloise. She looked doubtfully at
the little girl. "Wouldn't you better tell me, dear? Is it right for
you to go?"
"Yes, it's right. His mother knows it, and she's so kind to me. What
do you think! At breakfast she asked me if I wouldn't like to bring
Anna Belle down. She says I can bring her to the table whenever I want
to. Isn't it nice? The dear little creature has been so patient, never
having a thing to eat!"
Eloise could not help laughing, the manner in which Jewel finished was
so suddenly quaint; but she shook her head in silent wonder as she
watched the short skirted figure setting forth for the barn.
"Oh cousin Eloise." Jewel turned around. "Will you come to the ravine
after lunch, and see what Anna Belle and I have done?"
Jewel walked on a little further and turned again. "You won't wear
your watch, will you?" she called.
"No, I'll surely forget it," returned the girl, smiling.
The small figure went on, well content.
"Oh, if I could only be invisible in that barn!" soliloquized Eloise.
"How I would like to hear what she will say. How wonderful it is that
that little child has more chance of success, whatever trouble Zeke
has been getting into, than any full-grown, experienced sage,
philosopher, or reformer, who is a worker in mortal mind."
Anna Belle came to luncheon that day. Mrs. Forbes actually put a
cushion in one of the chairs to lift the honored guest to such a
height that her rosy smile was visible above the tablecloth. Not
content with this hospitality, the housekeeper brought a bread-and-
butter plate, upon which she placed such small proportions of food as
might be calculated to tempt a dainty appetite. Jewel felt almost
embarrassed by the eminence to which her child was suddenly raised.
"Oh, thank you, Mrs. Forbes," she said; "you needn't take so much
trouble. Anna Belle's just used to having a part of mine."
But nothing now was too good for Anna Belle. "She shall have a cup-
custard to-morrow," returned the housekeeper.
Mrs. Evringham looked on with lack-lustre eyes. As well make much of
Anna Belle as any other idol. Everything was stuffed with sawdust!
How the sunbeams glanced in the woods that day as Jewel, one hand
clasping her doll and the other in Eloise's, skipped along the road to
When they had stooped under the wire and gone down the bank, how the
brook sang, and how the violets bloomed in Jewel's garden!
"It's very pretty," said Eloise, regarding the paths and flower beds
which Jewel exhibited with pride. "It's very pretty, but it lacks one
"What?" asked the child eagerly.
"But it is by the side of a rushing river," returned Jewel.
"Yes, but all the more easy to have a pond."
"We'll set a shallow pan, and sink it in the ground, and plant ferns
about it to hang over. Anna Belle can have some little china dolls to
go in wading in it."
"Oh yes, yes!" cried Jewel delighted. "Hear that, dearie? Hear what
Love is planning for you?"
Anna Belle's nose was buried in the grass and her hat was awry. If she
had a fault, it was a tendency to being overdressed. At present her
plumed hat and large fluffy boa gave her an aspect unsympathetic with
the surroundings. Jewel pulled her upright and placed her on the mossy
"If I'd only brought the trowel I could get the hole ready," Jewel was
saying, when a whistle, soft and clear as a flute, sounded above the
She lifted a finger in caution. "Oh," she whispered, looking up into
her cousin's face, "the loveliest bird! Hush."
Clear, sweet, flexible, somewhere among those high branches sounded
again the same elaborate phrase.
Jewel was surprised to see her cousin's pleased, listening expression
alter to eager wonder, then the girl flushed rosy red and started up.
"Siegfried!" she murmured.
Again came the bird motif sifting down through the rustling leaves.
"Nat!" called Eloise gladly.
"Any nymphs down there?" questioned a man's voice.
"May Pan come down?"
Jewel, watching and wondering, saw a young man in light clothes swing
himself down from tree to tree, and at last saw both his hands close
on both her cousin's.
The two talked and laughed in unison for a minute, then Eloise freed
herself and turned to the serious-faced child. "You remember my
speaking of Nat the other day?" she asked. "This is he. Mr. Bonnell,
this is my cousin Jewel Evringham. She is landscape gardening just
now, and may not feel like giving you her hand."
"I can wash it," said Jewel, dipping the earthy member in the brook,
wiping it on the grass, and placing it in the large one that was
"How did you ever find us? I thought you'd gone back to New York. I
had no idea of seeing you," said Eloise in a breath.
"Didn't your mother tell you? I have a week off."
The girl's bright face sobered. "Poor mother! She had a--a shock after
you were here yesterday. I suppose it put everything out of her head.
Was it she who sent you to find us?"
"No; a massive lady met me at the door and informed me that your
mother wished to be excused from every one to-day, but that you had
fallen down a crack in the earth which could be reached up this road."
The speaker looked about. "As there doesn't seem any place to stand
here, hadn't we better sit down before we fall in the brook? I might
rescue you, but the current is swift."
Eloise at once sank upon the green incline, and he followed her
example. Jewel watched him with consideration, and he became aware of
"What are you making, little girl?" he asked, with his sunshiny smile.
"A garden; and I could dig the pond if I had brought the trowel."
"Perhaps my knife will do." He took it out and opened the largest
blade. "What do you think of that?"
"Do you suppose I should break it?" asked the child doubtfully.
"You're welcome to try," he replied.
She leaned forward and accepted it from his outstretched hand.
"I thought I knew Bel-Air Park," said Bonnell looking about him. "I
never suspected this."
"Jewel is the Columbus of this spot. She has named it the Ravine of
Nat looked at his speaker. "That's rather ambiguous. Does she mean
where happiness is buried or where it is found?"
Eloise smiled. "Jewel never buries any happiness. Well, how is
everybody, Nat? Your mother, first of all."
"Didn't Mrs. Evringham tell you?"
The girl's face clouded with apprehension at his surprised tone. "No.
You will think it very strange, but poor mamma was under such
excitement, you must pardon her. Everything went out of her head.
Don't tell me that dear Mrs. Bonnell"--she lowered her voice--"that
you have lost her!"
He shook his head. "No, I've gained her. She's well."
"Well!" repeated the girl amazed. "Why, what do you mean? How
glorious! How long since?"
"About three months."
"I am so glad! Tell me more good news. Tell me about your own
frivoling, and then I shall hear about the other people."
The young man shook his head. "I observed Lent this year scrupulously,
and I haven't changed my tactics since Easter. I've been keeping my
nose to the grindstone. Began to see things a little differently,
Eloise. I decided it was mother's innings--decided to drop the
butterfly and do the bee act."
"Is it possible!" The girl laughed. "Will wonders never cease! What
was the matter? Did the heiresses cut you?"
"I cut the whole thing, and I have my reward. I suppose your mother
didn't tell you that, either. I'm going into business with Mr. Reeves.
Do you know him? Jewel does." He smiled toward the child, who lifted
an interested face.
"Yes, I do," she said. "You remember about him, cousin Eloise."
"Certainly." The girl looked at her friend questioningly.
"I'm spending this week at his house."
"And you know about Jewel? He has told you?"
"Certainly. The one person of his acquaintance who hasn't to unlearn
"You mean he talked to you of Christian Science?"
Bonnell's hands were clasping his knees. His hat lay on the bank
beside him and the thick hair tossed away from his brow. He nodded
slowly, wondering at the sudden attentive interest of her look.
"Yes," he replied. "We talked on the tabooed subject."
"Tabooed with whom? You?" she asked disappointedly.
"No, with you I understand."
Color flew into Eloise's face. "Who told you that? Mother of course."
Bonnell nodded, giving a fleeting glance toward the child, who was
again busy at her excavation.
"Are congratulations in order, Eloise?" he asked quietly.
"Yes, congratulations." Her eyes grew full of light. "For I have come
to see the truth. That child has shown me."
The young man's lips remained apart for a second in his surprise at
this declaration, after Mrs. Evringham's detailed representations.
"Then I may tell you how my mother was healed," he said at last.
"Oh, was it really so?"
"And you, Nat?" Unconsciously Eloise leaned her whole body toward him,
supporting her hand on the ground. "You know about it yourself? You
"And you believe in it?"
"With all my heart."
Her face shone. "Oh, Jewel, do you hear? Mr. Bonnell is a Scientist."
The girl's breathing was hastened. Her eyes were like stars.
The child sank back from her work and regarded the visitor, smiling.
She was glad, but she was not astonished. In her world a great many
young men had found the key to life, but to Eloise it was something
wonderful. She looked at her old friend as if she had never seen him
before. She reviewed all she knew of his gay life with its background
"Do you study the lessons?" she asked incredulously. "/You/?"
"Every day. I am surprised beyond measure to find you interested, for
your mother told me-- And the doctor--?"
"Is a very fine man," returned Eloise gravely, as he paused.
Bonnell's mental questions were answered by her manner. He put his
hand in the pocket of his sack coat and drew out a small, thin, black
Eloise took it. " 'Unity of Good,' " she read on its cover. "I haven't
seen this one," she said eagerly.
"You will," he replied.
She looked up. "Do you know, I thought just now you were going to take
out your pipe?" she said naively. "That's where you used to keep it."
"My pipe doesn't like me any more," he rejoined quietly.
"Are you happy, Nat?" she asked, scrutinizing his face with childlike,
"I was never a very solemn codger, was I?" he returned.
"But are you happier? Does the world look different? Of course it
does, with your mother well."
"Oh yes," he answered in a changed tone, tossing his head back, and
making a gesture as of throwing away something. "There was nothing in
it before, nothing in it."
"Yes, yes, I know," she returned comprehendingly.
Jewel had watched them, and now, as they paused, her voice broke the
silence in which the two friends looked into each other's faces.
"Cousin Eloise is going to church with me on Sunday," she announced.
"Oh, certainly." Bonnell smiled. "Wednesday evening meetings and all
now, Eloise. Haven't you attended yet?"
"No, I've only just learned. I've only just seen. I'm only beginning
to see, Nat. Your mother was healed. Oh, it is /true/, isn't it! It's
so wonderful to find that you, /you/, know more about it than I do,
when I supposed you would scorn it. I can't help expecting to wake
"That is just what you will do," returned Bonnell. "You will waken--to
a thousand things. So your mother objects."
"Poor little mother," returned Eloise, looking down with sudden
"My mother wants you and yours to make us a long visit at View Point
The girl's lovely eyes raised hopefully. "The best thing that could
happen," she exclaimed.
"I think so," responded her companion.
When Mr. Evringham returned from golf that afternoon, only his
daughter-in-law was in sight. She inclined her head toward him with
the air of a Lady Macbeth.
"Have you seen anything of the girls?" she asked as he approached her.
"Nothing. Where are they?"
She slowly shrugged her shoulders. "I'm the last one to ask. They
wouldn't think of telling me," she returned.
"What's up now?" thought Mr. Evringham. "You don't look well, Madge,"
he said aloud.
Once she would have welcomed the evidence of solicitude. Now nothing
"I don't feel well," she replied, "and I can't even call the physician
Mr. Evringham stared down at her for a silent minute, and light broke
"Is it all off with Ballard?" he asked bluntly.
"Yes; and that's what you have done, father, by allowing that child
Jewel to come here."
Mr. Evringham bit his lip. This amused him.
"Eloise has mounted the new hobby, and is riding for dear life away
from common sense, away from everything that promised such happiness."
"Do you mean Christian Science?"
"Of course I do."
"It's a strange thing, Madge. Do you know, it captures people with
good heads." Mr. Evringham seated himself near his daughter's chair.
"I came out on the train with my friend Reeves. He was talking about
young Bonnell, of whom you spoke last night. Said his mother was cured
when the doctors couldn't do anything. You know her, eh?"
"As well as if she were my own flesh and blood."
"Is it a fact, what they say?"
"She was considered incurable. I know nothing about the rest of it.
Nat was telling me yesterday. Now he is probably infatuated also, and,
sooner or later, Eloise is sure to meet him."
"H'm, h'm. An old flame, you said," remarked Mr. Evringham. "Indeed!
In--deed! I trust for your sake, Madge, that his is not objectionable
"He is," snapped Mrs. Evringham. "A poor fellow, with his way to make
in the world. He's been out of college a couple of years and hasn't
done anything worth speaking of yet."
"Reeves is going to take him into the business," returned Mr.
Evringham. "I don't know why or wherefore, but the mere fact is
"Oh, who can tell if that will last!" returned the other with scornful
pessimism. "Nat has let too many cotillions to do anything else well.
I can only pray that he will get away without seeing Eloise. Mrs.
Bonnell has invited us to make her a visit this summer. I certainly
shall not go one step!"
A sudden sound of laughter was heard on the quiet air. Mrs. Evringham
leaned forward. "There are the children now," she said, as figures
turned in at the gateway; "and who is that? It is"--with desperation,
--"he's here! Nat Bonnell is with them!"
She sat upright with disapproval, clasping the arm of her chair, while
her father-in-law looked curiously at the approaching group. His gaze
fixed on the young man with the well-set head who, swinging his hat in
his hand, was talking fast to Eloise of something that amused them
both. Jewel apparently interrupted him and he stooped with a quick
motion, and in a second she was sitting on his shoulder, shrieking in
Thus they approached the piazza and came close before noting that it
"Grandpa, see me!" cried Jewel delightedly.
Bonnell met the unsmiling gaze of his host as Mr. Evringham rose, and
then caught sight of Mrs. Evringham stonily gazing from her chair.
"Ah, how do you do?" he called laughingly.
"Jove, he is a good looking chap!" thought the host, and Bonnell set
Jewel down at his feet with such velocity that Anna Belle was cast
heavily to earth.
"A thousand pardons!" exclaimed Nat, catching up the doll by the skirt
and restoring her.
Jewel gave him a bright look. "/She/ knows there is no sensation in
matter," she said scornfully.
Poor Anna Belle! The topography of the ravine was full of hazards for
her, and her seasons there were always so adventurous and full of
sudden and unlooked-for bumps that her philosophy was well tested, and
she might reasonably have complained of this gratuitous blow; but she
smiled on, as Jewel hugged her. Her mental poise was marvelous,
whatever might be said of the physical.
Eloise introduced her friend and went to her mother's side, while
Bonnell shook hands with Mr. Evringham and exchanged some words
concerning Mr. Reeves and business matters.
"Wide awake," was the older man's mental comment. "Doesn't seem at all
the sort of person to be fooled about that healing business. Good eye.
Good manner. Perhaps this was Ballard's handicap all the time. I guess
you're in for it, Madge."
Nat moved to greet Mrs. Evringham, who gave him no welcoming smile.
She leaned back listlessly, not caring what effect she produced. He
seemed to her a part of the combination entered into by the Fates to
thwart and annoy.
Bonnell knew her nearly as well as Eloise did. "I'm sorry you're under
the weather," he said sympathetically, when he had discovered that, in
his own phrase, there was "nothing doing." "I received a letter from
my mother to-day, in which she impressed upon me that she expected you
both by the middle of June."
"My plans have changed since yesterday, Nat," returned Mrs. Evringham
dismally. "Yes. We shall not be able to go to your mother's, as I had
hoped. Some time during the season I shall try to look in on her of
course. You tell her so, Nat, when you write."
"Nonsense, nonsense, Mrs. Evringham. You don't in the least mean it,"
he returned cheerfully, with the smile and manner which she could not
and would not endure.
"I do mean it, Nat. I tell you my plans are changed. Eloise and I may
go to Europe."
Naturally she had never thought of Europe until that moment, but that
laughing, caressing light in Nat Bonnell's eyes was insufferable.
"Ah, in that case, of course," he returned, "we couldn't say a word,"
and then he moved to go.
Mr. Evringham urged the visitor to stay to dinner, but he declined and
once more shook hands.
"Good-by, Jewel, he said to the child. "Sunday, you know."
"Yes indeed, I know," she returned, an irresistible tendency to hop
moving her feet. On nearer acquaintance she had found Mr. Bonnell
"Good-by, Nat," said Eloise.
He looked into the face on which rested a cloud. "I think you might be
a degree more attentive," he suggested.
"Oh--take me to the gate, for instance."
Eloise smiled and went with him. He turned with a slight bow that
included the group, and they strolled down the path.
"It's all up, Madge," remarked Mr. Evringham, half smiling. "No use
wriggling, no use staying away from the mother. Might as well yield
gracefully. I think Ballard might have been told, that's all."
"There was nothing to tell, father! How can you be so unkind? That's
just Nat's manner. He is used to everybody liking him, and always
having his own way; but Eloise never--she /never/"--the speaker saw
that if she continued, in a moment more she would be weeping, and she
certainly was not going to weep in this company. So she contented
herself by glaring toward the gate, where could be seen two figures in
"I had counted so much on Mrs. Bonnell's influence," Eloise was
saying. "What does mother mean? She knows my mind is made up as to
Christian Science. What is she afraid of?"
Bonnell caught his thumbs in his coat pockets and lifted himself
slightly on his toes. "She is afraid of me."
"Of you?" The girl lifted surprised eyes to his and let them fall
again, her grave face coloring.
"She has always been more or less afraid of me. I'm ineligible, you
"Yes, you are, awfully, Nat," returned Eloise earnestly. "That's what
makes you so nice. Didn't we always have a good time together?"
"Yes, on those rare occasions when we had a chance, but Mrs. Evringham
always suspected me. She never felt certain that I wasn't waiting for
your skirts to be lengthened and your hair to go up in order to steal
Eloise tried to look at him, but found it more comfortable to examine
the inexpressive gravel path. "But now you have something to think of
besides girls," she said gently.
"Yes. Do you know, Eloise, if I had been promised the granting of one
wish as I took the cars for Bel-Air, it would have been that I might
find you convinced of the truth of Christian Science."
She looked at him now brightly, gladly. "It is such a help to me to
know that you are in it," she returned. Their hands simultaneously
went forth and clasped. "What shall we do about mother?"
He smiled. "That will all come right," he returned confidently.
"There are classes, Nat," she said. "Have you been through one?"
"Not yet. Perhaps we could enter together."
"Do you think so?" she returned eagerly.
He was looking down at her still--calm, strong.
She started. "I mustn't be late to dinner. Good-by. Sunday, Nat."
"Not to-morrow? I want some golf."
"Yes, go. It's a fine links. I'm sorry, but I'd better not go there
for the present. Good-by."
She was gone, so he strolled on and out through the park, and as he
went he put two and two together, and suspected the cause of the
girl's objection to golf.
ON WEDNESDAY EVENING
"This is my silk dress, grandpa," said Jewel, coming out on the piazza
Mr. Evringham was sitting there reading the paper. He looked up to
behold his granddaughter standing expectantly.
She had on the cherished frock. Her plump black legs ended in new
shoes, the brim of her large hat was wreathed with daisies, snowy
ribbons finished her well-brushed braids, while, happiest touch of
all, Little Faithful was ticking away on her breast.
"Well, who is this bonnie lassie?" asked Mr. Evringham, viewing her.
"It's my best one," said Jewel, smilingly, coming close to him.
"I should hope so. If you were anything grander I should have to put
on smoked glasses to look at you. Church, eh?" He took the brown
pamphlet she carried and examined it.
"Yes. I wish you were coming."
"Oh, I have an important engagement at the golf club this morning."
"Have you? Well, grandpa, I was thinking you can't play golf or ride
at night, and wouldn't you take me Wednesday evening?"
"Heavens, child! Wednesday evening prayer meeting?" asked the broker
"No. It's just lovely reading and singing and interesting stories,"
replied Jewel, endeavoring to paint the picture as attractively as
"H'm. H'm. Do you suppose Mr. Reeves goes?"
"Why, of course," replied the child. "Scientists never stay away."
"Then should I be considered a Scientist if I went? I still have some
regard for my reputation."
"A great many visitors go," replied the child earnestly. Then she
added, with unmistakably sincere naivete, "I don't mind leaving you in
the daytime, because we're used to it; but I was thinking it would
make me homesick, grandpa, to go away in the evening and leave you in
Mr. Evringham took her little hand in his. "Have you thought, Jewel,"
he asked, "how it will be when you leave me altogether?"
"I shall have mother and father then," returned the child.
"Yes; but whom shall I have?"
The question came curtly, and Jewel looked into the deep-set eyes in
surprise. "Shall you miss me, grandpa?" she asked wonderingly.
"Whom shall I have, I say?" he repeated.
The child thought a minute. "Just who you had before," she answered,
slipping her arm around his neck. "There's Essex Maid, you know."
The broker gave a short laugh. "Yes. It's lucky, isn't it?" he
returned, rather bitterly.
"Do you like to have me with you, grandpa?" pursued the child,
"Yes; confound it, Jewel, yes."
"Then Divine Love will fix it somehow, for I love to be with you,
"You do, eh? Then I'll tell you that I received a letter from your
father yesterday. It was a very pleasant letter, but it said they felt
obliged, if they could, to stay over a little longer--two or three
The child's face grew thoughtful.
"He said they had just received your letter, and were very pleased and
thankful to know that you were happy. He said it would be a business
advantage to them to stay, but that they could come home at the
appointed time if you wished it. I am to cable them to-morrow, if you
do." Silence for a minute while Jewel thought. "Do you think you can
be happy with me a little longer than you expected?"
"I do want to see mother and father very much," returned the child,
"but I'm just as happy as anything," she added heartily, after a
Mr. Evringham had listened with surprising anxiety for the verdict.
"Very well, very well," he returned, with extra brusqueness, picking
up his newspaper. "I guess there won't be anything to prevent my going
to that meeting with you Wednesday evening, Jewel. Just once, you
understand, once only."
At this moment the brougham drove around to the steps, and Eloise came
out upon the piazza. She was a vision of dainty purity in her white
gown, white hat, and gloves.
Mr. Evringham rose, lifted his hat, and going down the steps opened
the door of the carriage. "A man need not be ashamed to have these two
ladies represent him at church," he said, looking into Eloise's calm
She smiled back at him. There was no suspicion now of sarcasm or
stings. The air she breathed was wholesome and inviting. The lump had
Arrived at the hall where the services were held, the girls were
ushered into good seats before the room rapidly filled.
They saw Mr. Reeves and his family and Mr. Bonnell come in on the
other side, and the latter did not rest until he had found them and
sent over a bright, quick nod.
The platform was beautiful by a tall vase of roses at the side of the
white reading-desk, and Eloise listened eagerly to the voices of the
man and woman who alternately read the morning lesson. The peace,
simplicity, and quiet of the service enthralled her. She looked over
the crowd of listening, reverent faces with wistful wonder. Nat was
among them, /Nat/! Sometimes she glanced across at his attentive face.
Nat at church, in the morning; thoroughly interested ! She pinched her
arm to make quite certain.
Once when they rose to sing, it was the hymn she had heard. The voices
"O'er waiting harpstrings of the mind
There sweeps a strain,
Low, sad, and sweet, whose measures bind
The power of pain."
The girl in the white dress did not sing. She swallowed often. The
voice of the child at her side soared easily.
"And o'er earth's troubled, angry sea,
I see Christ walk;
And come to me, and tenderly,
What a haven of promise and peace seemed this sunny, simple place of
"From tired joy and grief afar,
And nearer Thee,
Father, where Thine own children are
I love to be."
Jewel, looking up at her companion, was surprised to see her lashes
wet and her lower lip caught between her teeth.
"What's the matter, cousin Eloise?" she whispered softly as they sat
The girl tried to smile. Words were not at her command. "Gladness,"
she returned briefly; which reply caused Jewel to meditate for some
They had a talk with Nat and were presented to the Reeves family after
church, and Eloise felt herself in an atmosphere of love.
Jewel left the group for a private word to Zeke before her cousin
should come to enter the brougham. 'Zekiel sat bolt upright in the
most approved style, and did not turn his face, even when the child
"I've been wondering this morning," she said, "how we can manage for
you to come to church, 'Zekiel."
"Oh, I have it six times a week," returned the coachman.
"But it's so lovely just to listen to them read and not have to hunt
up the places or anything."
"I'm satisfied with my minister," returned Zeke, almost smiling.
Eloise and Mr. Bonnell came out to the carriage, so there was no
further time for talk.
The subject remained in Jewel's mind, however. On Wednesday morning,
just before Mr. Evringham went to the station, the child seized him in
"Grandpa, don't you think it would be nice to go in the trolley car to
"To--where?" asked the broker, frowning.
"This is the night we're going to church, you know."
"The dev-- Ah, to be sure. So we are. Well--a--what did you say?
Trolley car? Why?"
"Well, we could all go then, you know," returned Jewel. "Cousin Eloise
wants to go, but," the child's honesty compelled her, "she wouldn't
have to go with us because it is Mr. Bonnell's last night in Bel-Air,
and I heard him ask if he might come for her; but I do so want Zeke to
"Well, for the love of"--began the broker slowly.
"Yes, Zeke is getting to understand a good deal about Christian
Science. He has some claims of error that his mother knows about, and
they make her sorry, and I've been helping him and reading to him out
of my books, and I do want him to go to the testimonial meeting so
The child looked wistfully up into the dark eyes that rested upon her.
Mr. Evringham had remarked his housekeeper's change of spirit toward
the little girl, had wondered at the increasing and even reckless
indulgence of Anna Belle, who from being an exile in the stair closet
had now arrived at a degree of consideration and pampering which
threatened to turn her head.
"Jewel," he said impressively, "I wish you to understand one thing
distinctly. You are not now or at any future time to try to make a
Christian Scientist of Essex Maid."
From wondering sobriety Jewel's lips broke into a gleeful smile. "I
don't have to," she cried triumphantly. "She is one! Anyway, she has
demonstrated everything a horse ought to!"
Mr. Evringham flung his hands over his head despairingly. "Great
heavens!" he exclaimed tragically, rushing out to the brougham, Jewel
at his heels in peals of laughter.
But they went to church in the trolley car. Eloise reached the same
place with Mr. Bonnell, but whether she walked or drove or rode nobody
ever knew, and it didn't matter much, for a full moon illumined the
Early in the evening a young man entered the hall quietly and took a
back seat. It was Zeke.
Mr. Reeves saw Jewel and her grandfather come in, and softly he smote
his knee. "She's done it!" he ejaculated mentally. He noted the
broker's haughty carriage, the half challenging glances he threw to
right and left as he proceeded up the aisle to the position of Jewel's
Mr. Reeves composed his countenance with some difficulty, and catching
the wandering eye, gave his friend a grave bow.
Testimonial meetings differ in point of continued interest. This
proved to be a good one. The most interesting narrative of the evening
was Nat Bonnell's. His self possession, fine presence, and good voice
made more effective the marvelous story of his mother's resurrection
to strength. He told it with dignity and directness, and Mr. Evringham
"What's my rheumatism to that, eh, Jewel?" he whispered, as Nat sat
"Just nothing, grandpa," replied the child.
"You think the Creator'd consider me worth attending to, eh?"
"God doesn't know you have the rheumatism," exclaimed Jewel with soft
"Doesn't? Well! I've always supposed He thought I needed reminding on
account of a number of things, and so touched me up with that. I
didn't blame Him much.
"If He knew it, it would be real, and then it couldn't be changed,"
returned Jewel earnestly in the ear he bent to her.
The broker sat up and looked down on her large hat and short legs.
"Whew, but I'm a back number!" he mused.
The next testimonial made Jewel's eyes brighten. It was given by a man
who told a story of hopeless intemperance and his family's want. The
unaffected humility and gratitude that sounded in his voice as he
described the changed conditions which followed his cure caused the
roses to deepen in Jewel's cheeks. She wondered where Zeke was
Altogether she was happy over the meeting, and her grandfather's
attitude was as kindly as could have been expected.
Eloise came into her mother's room that night, beaming.
"I wish you had come with us," she said. "It was wonderful."
Mrs. Evringham turned to her with a lofty air. "I have too much
loyalty to friendship to be seen in such a place," she returned.
"Nat said he wouldn't ask you to come down to bid him good-by, because
he expects to come out to spend Sundays for a while."
Mrs. Evringham looked at her daughter. All the girl's face had lacked
of vivacity and happy expression it wore now, making her radiant.
"You could never guess the news I have for you, mother."
Mrs. Evringham's lips tightened. "Eloise, if you will not marry the
fine man who had my entire approval, it will be outrageous for you to
marry an ineligible, a young fellow whose goods are all in the show
window, who has not proved himself in any way. I refuse to hear your
news," she returned impetuously.
The girl laughed. "Do you mean Nat, dear?" she asked, her rosy face
coming close. "I'm afraid he's going to spoil himself by becoming
eligible. He has been telling me a lot about the business to-night."
"Ho! Nat Bonnell could always talk."
Eloise's arms closed around her. "There's only one source of supply,
mother. Nat has found Him. I am finding Him. We shall not want. What
do you think I have here for you? Grandfather gave it to me." Eloise
put into her mother's hands a draft for a thousand dollars.
Mr. Evringham appeared to lose sight of the dagger she had been seeing
before her for days. "What is this?" she ejaculated. "A present from
"Not at all. Some unknown man owed it to papa, and his conscience made
him pay the debt. It came in grandfather's evening mail, and he has
only just opened it."
Mrs. Evringham examined the paper eagerly.
"How wonderful!" she exclaimed.
"How natural," returned Eloise. "That is the wonderful part of it."
A REALIZED HOPE
One afternoon Mr. Evringham did not return from the city at the usual
time. Jewel, watching for him, was surprised after a while to see him
walking up from the gate.
"Why, what's happened?" she asked. "Zeke went for you."
"Yes; but he found he had to leave Dick to be shod."
"Then are you going to saddle Essex Maid yourself? Oh, can I see you
do it, grandpa?" She hopped with anticipation.
"I don't know that I'll ride just now. It's an excellent day for
walking. It seems rather strange to me, Jewel, that you've never shown
me the Ravine of Happiness. You talk a good deal about it."
"Oh, would you like to come?" cried the child, flushing. "Good! I have
the pond all fixed in Anna Belle's garden, and the ferns droop over it
just like a fairy story."
"Have you put up a sign for the fairies to keep out?"
"No--o," returned Jewel, drawing in her chin and smiling.
"Oh well, you may be sure they're at it, then, every moonlight night.
They haven't a particle of respect, you know, for anything. If I were
in Anna Belle's place, I should put up a sign, 'Private Grounds.' "
"Oh, she's so unselfish she wouldn't. If they only won't break the
flowers she won't care," returned the child, entering into the fancy
Mr. Evringham took the doll from her arms, and carrying it up the
steps deposited it in the piazza chair.
"Isn't she going?" asked Jewel soberly.
"No, not this time. She doesn't care, she's been there so much. Just
see how cheerful and comfortable she looks!"
There was, indeed, a smile of almost cloying sweetness on Anna Belle's
countenance, and she seemed to be seeing pleasing visions.
"I never saw such a good child!" said Jewel with an admiring sigh;
then she put her hand in her grandfather's and they strolled out into
the park and up the shady road. Just before reaching the bend around
which lay the gorge, Mr. Evringham surprised his companion by breaking
in upon her lively chatter with a tune which he whistled loudly.
It was such an unusual ebullition that Jewel looked up at him. "Why,
grandpa, I never heard you whistle before," she said.
"You didn't? That's because you never before saw me out on a lark. I
tell you, I'm a gay one when I get started," and forthwith there burst
again from his lips a gay refrain, that sounded shrilly up the leafy
path. They rounded the bend in the road, and the broker looked down
into the eyes that were bent upon him in admiration.
"You whistle almost as well as Mr. Bonnell," said the child.
"Give me time and I dare say I shall beat him out," was the swaggering
response. "Ah, here's your ravine, is it?"
"Yes, that's"--began Jewel, and went no further.
A couple of rods from where she suddenly came to a standstill was an
object which for a moment rooted her to the spot. A small horse, black
as jet, with a white star in his forehead and a flowing, wavy mane and
tail, stood by the roadside. His coat, gleaming like satin, set off
the pure white leather of his trappings. On his back was fastened a
side saddle, and he was tethered to the rail of the light fence.
Mr. Evringham appeared not to see him. He was looking down the rocks
and grass of the steep incline.
"Is there any sort of a path?" he asked, "or do you descend it as you
would a cellar door? I think you might have told me, so I could change
these light trousers."
"Grandpa!" exclaimed Jewel in a hushed tone, pointing before her. "See
that horse--just like the coal black steed the princess rides in a
"Why, that's so. He is a beauty. Where do you suppose the princess
"She's probably gone down the ravine," returned the child, her feet
drawn forward as if by a magnet. "Let's not go down yet."
The broker allowed himself to be led close to the pony, who turned his
full bright eyes upon the pair curiously.
"Do you think I might touch him, grandpa?" asked the child, still in
the hushed voice.
"If he's a fairy horse he might vanish," returned Mr. Evringham.
"Let's see how he stands it." So saying he gave the shining flank some
sturdy love pats. "Oh, he's all right. He's good substantial flesh and
"But the lady," said Jewel, looking about, the pupils of her eyes
dilated with excitement.
"Oh, I don't think a very big lady has been riding in that saddle. You
can do as you'd be done by, I fancy."
Upon this Jewel stroked the pony over and over lovingly, and he nosed
about her in a friendly way.
"Grandpa, see him, see him! And oh grandpa, see his beautiful star,
white as a snowflake!"
"Well, upon my word, if this isn't lucky," remarked Mr. Evringham.
"Here is some sugar in my pocket, now." He passed some lumps to the
"Would it be right?" she asked, glancing down the ravine. "Had I
better wait till the girl comes up?"
"She won't mind, I'll wager," returned Mr. Evringham; so the child,
thus encouraged, fed the coal black steed, who, for all his poetical
appearance, had evidently a strongly developed sweet tooth.
"Hello, what's this!" exclaimed the broker, stepping to the fence and
taking up something black and folded. When he shook it out, it proved
to be a child's riding skirt.
"She's left it there," said Jewel eagerly. "We ought not to touch it.
It's very hard on clothes going down the ravine, and she's left it
there. Don't you think, grandpa, you /ought/ to put it back?" for to
her great surprise her punctilious and particular relative was shaking
the fine skirt about recklessly and examining it.
"Here's a name," he said, bringing his prize to Jewel and showing her
an oblong bit of white cloth, much as tailors use inside dresses.
"What do you make of it?"
The child, disturbed by such daring, and dreading to see the owner of
these splendid possessions scramble up the bank, looked reluctantly.
The name was a long one, but so familiar that she recognized it at
She lifted her eyes to her grandfather. "It's the same as ours."
"There isn't another Evringham in Bel-Air," returned the broker. "The
fairies dropped this for you, I guess, Jewel. It certainly won't fit
me. Let's try it on."
He slipped it over the head of the dazed child and hooked it around
" 'It fitted her exactly,' " murmured Jewel. "They always say so in
"Look here," said her grandfather. He put his hand into the stirrup
and drew out a folded bit of paper. He handed it to the child, who
began to wonder if she was dreaming.
DEAR JEWEL (she read),--I believe you expected Divine Love to send
you a horse. I have come to belong to you, and my name is STAR.
It was astonishing what a large, round penmanship the pony possessed.
There was no possibility of mistaking a word.
Jewel read the note over twice as she stood there, the long, scant
skirt, making her look tall. Mr. Evringham stood watching her. His
part in the comedy was played. He waited.
She looked up at him with eyes that seemed trying to comprehend a fact
"Grandpa, have you given me this horse?" she asked solemnly, and he
could see her hands beginning to tremble.
"Oh, am /I/ to get some credit for this?" returned the broker, smiling
and twisting his mustache. "I didn't expect that."
He knew her lack of motion would not last long, and was bracing
himself for the attack when, to his surprise, she pulled up the
impeding skirt and made a rush, not for him, but for the pony. Hiding
her face on the creature's satin shoulder, she flung her arm around
his throat, and seizing his rippling mane, sobbed as if her heart
Mr. Evringham had not spent weeks in selecting and testing a horse for
his granddaughter without choosing one whose nervous system would be
proof against sudden assaults of affection; but this onslaught was so
energetic that the pony tossed his head and backed to the end of his
His new mistress stumbled after him, her face still hidden. She was
trying heroically to stifle the sobs that were shaking her from head
"Jewel, Jewel, child!" ejaculated her grandfather, much dismayed.
"Come, come, what's this?"
He drew her with a strong hand, and she deserted the pony, much to the
latter's relief, and clasping Mr. Evringham as high up as she could
reach, began bedewing his vest buttons with her tears.
"Oh, gra--grandpa, I c--can't have him!" she sobbed. "There isn't any
roo--room for him in our--our fla--fla--flat!"
"Well, did you expect to keep him in the flat?" inquired Mr.
Evringham, stooping tenderly, his own eyes shining suspiciously, as he
put his arms around the little shaking form.
"N--no; but we--we haven't any bar--barn."
The broker smiled above the voluminous, quivering bows.
"Well, hasn't some good livery man in your neighborhood a stable?"
"Ye--yes." Jewel made greater efforts to stop crying. "But I--I talked
with mo--mother once about cou--could I ha--have a horse sometime
before I grew up, and she said she might buy the horse, but it would
cost so much--much money every week to board it, it would be error."
Mr. Evringham patted the heaving shoulder.
"Ah, but you don't know yet all about your horse. In some respects
I've never seen a pony like him."
"I--I never have," returned the child.
"Oh, but you'll be surprised at /this/. This pony has a bank account."
Jewel slowly grew quiet.
"Nobody has to pay for /his/ board and clothes. He is very
independent. He would have it that way."
"Grandpa!" came in muffled tones from the broker's vest.
"So don't you think you'd better cheer up and look at him once more,
and tell him you won't cry on his shoulder very often?"
In a minute Jewel looked up, revealing her swollen eyes. "I'm
ashamed," she said softly, "but he was--so--be--/autiful/--I forgot to
"Well, I guess you did forget to remember," returned Mr. Evringham,
shaking his head and leading the child to her pony's side.
He lifted her into the saddle and arranged her skirt, brushing away
"Grandpa!" she exclaimed softly, with a long, quivering sigh, "I'm so
"Have you ever ridden, Jewel?"
"Oh, yes, a thousand times," she answered quickly; "but not on a real
horse," she added as an afterthought.
"H'm. That might make a difference." Mr. Evringham loosed the pony and
put the white bridle in the child's hands; then he led the pretty
creature down the woodland road.
"I'm /so/ happy," repeated Jewel. "What will mother and father say!"
"You'll be a regular circus rider by the time they come home."
As the broker spoke these words Zeke appeared around the bend in the
road, riding Essex Maid. His face was alight with interest in the
sight that met him.
Jewel called to him radiantly. "Oh, Zeke, what do you think?"
"I think it's great," he responded. "Hello, little kid," he said, as
he came nearer and perceived the signs in the child's face. "Pony do
any harm, Mr. Evringham?" he asked with respectful concern.
"No; Jewel cried a little, but it was only because I told her she
could not sleep nights in Star's manger."
The child gave one look of astonishment at the speaker's grave
countenance, and then shouted with a laugh as spontaneous as though no
tear had ever fallen from her shining eyes.
"See Essex Maid look at my pony, grandpa!" she said joyously. "She
looks so proud and stuck /up/."
"Look away, my lady," said the broker. "You'll see a great deal more
of this young spring before you see less."
"Now then," Mr. Evringham looked up at the child. "I'm going to let go
"I want you to," she answered gayly.
Mr. Evringham mounted his horse. "We'll take a sedate walk through the
woods," he said. "Zeke, you might lead her a little way."
"No, no, /please/," begged the child. "I know how to ride. I /do/."
"Well, let her go then," smiled the broker, and Essex Maid trotted
slowly, noting with haughty bright eyes the little black companion,
who might have stepped out of a picture book, but whose easy canter
was tossing Jewel at every step.
"I haven't--any--whip!" The words were bounced out of the child's
lips, and Mr. Evringham's laugh resounded along the avenue.
"I believe she'd use it," he said to Zeke, who was running along
beside the black pony.
"I guess she would, sir," grinned the young fellow responsively.
It was not many days before Jewel had learned to stay in the saddle.
She had an efficient teacher who worked with her /con amore/, and the
sight of the erect, gray-haired man on his famous mare, always
accompanied by the rosy little girl on a black pony, came to be a
familiar sight in Bel-Air, and one which people always turned to
follow with their eyes.
Eloise had her talk with Mr. Evringham one evening when Jewel was
excluded from the library, and she emerged from the interview with a
more contented heart than she had known for a year.
She endeavored to convey the situation to her mother in detail, but
when that lady had learned that there were no happy surprises, she
declined to listen.
"Tastes differ, Eloise," she said. "I am one who believes that where
ignorance is bliss 'tis folly to be wise." Mrs. Evringham had regained
a quite light-hearted appearance in the interest of expending a
portion of her windfall on her own and Eloise's summer wardrobe.
"Well, you shan't be bothered then," returned her daughter. "You have
me to take care of our money matters."
"I prefer to let father do it," returned Mrs. Evringham decidedly. "He
is a changed being of late, and we are as well situated as we could
hope to be. I don't feel quite satisfied with the lining of the
brougham, but some day I mean to speak of it."
Eloise threw up both hands, but she laughed. She and her grandfather
had an excellent understanding, and she knew that the mills of the
gods were about to grind.
One evening the broker called his daughter-in-law into the library.
"I hope it isn't on business," she remarked flippantly as she entered.
"I tell you right at the start, father, I can't understand it." Her
eyes wandered about the room curiously. It was strange to her. She
took up a woman's picture from the desk. "Who is this?" she asked.
"How do you like the face?" he returned.
The dark eyes and sweet mouth looked back at her. She frowned
slightly. She did not like the situation in which she had found the
photograph. It was far too intimate for a stranger, and made her a
"If he is going to marry again, then good-by indeed!" she thought.
"I think it is rather sentimental," she returned, with an air of
engaging candor, "don't you? Just my first impression, you know; but
it's a face I shouldn't trust. Who is it?"
"It is Jewel's mother," returned the broker quietly, "my daughter
Julia. Jewel brought it down last night, also a lot of little letters
her mother had put in the pockets of the child's dresses when she
"Ah!" exclaimed Mrs. Evringham triumphantly. "Didn't I say she was
sentimental? About that sort of thing my perceptions are always so
"H'm. I read the letters, and I judged from them that one can trust
her. Will you be seated?" He placed a chair. "I should like to ask
your plans for the summer."
Mrs. Evringham looked up quickly, startled. "Oh, I haven't any. Have
"Yes. I always seek some cool spot. You have an invitation to View
Point, I understand. You could scarcely do better."
"I have reasons, father," impressively, "reasons for declining that."
"Then where are you going?"
"I would just as lief stay here and take care of your house as not,"
declared the lady magnanimously.
"Ha! Without any servants?"
"Why, what do you mean?"
"They are going away for a vacation. I am intending to have the house
wired, and Mrs. Forbes and Zeke will hold sway in the barn. She
doesn't wish to leave him."
Mrs. Evringham was silenced and dismayed. She felt herself being
firmly and inexorably pushed out of this well-lined nest.
Her eyes fell before the impenetrable ones regarding her.
"How did Jewel ever win him?" she thought. The picturesque pony, with
his arched neck and expensive trappings, had outraged her feelings for
"About the View Point plan," continued Mr. Evringham deliberately. "I
think there are influences waiting for you there that will be of
benefit. There is a new philosophy percolating in these days through
our worldly rubbish which you and I would be the better for grasping.
Your chances are better than mine, for you are young still. Your
daughter is expanding like a flower already, in the first rays of her
understanding of it. This young man whom you fancy you can avoid is a
help to her. Mr. Reeves was talking to me about him last night. He
says that so far as his business is concerned, young Bonnell is
proving the square peg in the square hole. I don't know what Eloise's
sentiments are toward him, but I do know that she shall be independent
of any one's financial help but mine."
Mrs. Evringham lifted her eyes hopefully.
"I shall eke out the little income which is left to you with
sufficient for you to live--not as you have done--but comfortably."
The eager light faded from his listener's eyes.
"Eloise and I have arranged that," he continued, "and she is
satisfied. Take my advice, Madge. Go to View Point."
"I suppose Eloise doesn't need horses so long as Jewel has them," said
Mrs. Evringham rising.
Her host followed her example. "She thinks not," he returned
concisely; then he opened the library door, and his daughter-in-law
swept from his presence with all the dignity she could muster.
It was Sunday, and Mr. Bonnell was dining at Bel-Air Park. Had Jewel
thought of it, she might have contrasted the expression of Mrs.
Forbes's face as she waited at table this evening with the look it
wore on the day she first arrived; might have noted the cheerful flow
of talk which enlivened the board, in distinction from the stiff
silence or bitter repartee which once chilled her. As she responded to
the smiles hovering now about Eloise's lovely lips, she might have
remembered the once sombre sadness of those eyes. Even Mrs. Evringham
had buried the Macbethian dagger, and wore the meek and patient air of
one misunderstood; but nothing would have amazed the child so much as
to be told that she had had anything to do with this metamorphosis.
Anna Belle,--deserted often now, perforce, on account of the pony,
whose life was a strenuous one, owing to the variety of Jewel's
attentions,--Anna Belle was petted with extra fondness when her turn
came; and she sat at table now in a pleasing trance, her smile an
impartial benediction upon all.
It had been a glorious June day, the park was at its best. After
dinner the family strolled out toward the piazza.
Mrs. Forbes had attended her own Baptist church that morning, and the
familiar Sunday-school tune that the children sang floated through her
mind as she looked after the group.
"When He cometh, when He cometh,
To make up His jewels,
All His pure ones, all His bright ones,
His loved and His own.
"Little children, little children,
Who love their Redeemer,
Are the jewels, precious jewels,
His loved and His own."
"What is Mr. Evringham going to do without that child?" she thought.
The broker was invaded with the same problem as Jewel lingered with
him on the piazza, while the others walked on toward a seat beneath a
He ensconced himself in his favorite chair. The thrushes were singing
vespers. The pure air was faintly and deliciously scented.
"Grandpa, is it too late to bring Star out for a nibble?" asked the
little girl wistfully.
"No, I guess not," returned the broker as he opened his cigar case.
"Star may have a short life, but he's certainly experiencing a merry
one. There's no moss gathering on that pony.
Jewel had not waited for more than the permission. She was fleeing
toward the barn.
Mr. Evringham lighted his cigar, and then his eye fell upon the doll,
too hastily set down, and fallen at a distressing angle. Her eyes were
closed as if her sensibilities had been shocked overmuch.
"Anna Belle, Anna Belle, has it come to this!" he murmured, picking up
the neglected one, who, with her usual elasticity and exuberance of
spirit, at once opened her eyes and beamed optimistically on her
rescuer. He set her, facing him, on his knee. "Such is youth!" he
sighed. "When she throws you down, I feel that I'm not going to be so
recuperative as you, Anna Belle. I have a plan, however, a plan of
self-defense; but if it weren't for your discretion, I shouldn't tell
it to you, for I'm an old bird, young lady, and can't be caught with
chaff. There are many worthy persons who may rise to lofty heights in
eternity, who nevertheless, meanwhile are not desirable to sit
opposite a man at his breakfast table. A visit, Anna Belle, a short
visit from my daughter Julia is all I shall ask for at first, and I
shall test her, test her, my dear. I'll look at her through a
magnifying glass. Of course, if they'd give me Jewel, it would be all
I'd ask for; but they won't. That is self-evident."
Here the child came around the corner of the house, leading her pet by
a halter, but with her hand in his mane as she pressed close to his
side, caressing and talking to him. In fact it was the harassing
problem of the pony's life to manage to avoid stepping on her. Zeke
lounged in the background on account equally of his orders and his
Star began cropping the grass, and Mr. Evringham continued his
disquisition to the bright-eyed young person on his knee:--
"My son Harry is turning out a pretty good sort, I fancy. I'm not
particularly shy of giving him a trial, provided he'll do the same by
me; but I suppose he will have to go West at first, anyway. Julia is a
different thing. I can't whistle her on and off with the same
frankness; and I must be careful, Anna Belle. Do you understand?
Careful! And I'm going to be, by Jove, in spite of the way it makes me
cringe to think of this big house, empty as a drum. It wasn't empty
before, that's the mischief of it. What has happened to me? I thought
things were well enough in those days. Nobody whom I knew was
particularly happy. Why should I be?"
The thrushes stopped, for Jewel's childish voice floated out on the
Mr. Evringham knew what had happened. He knew that Zeke had asked her
to sing. They two were sitting on the ground, while the pony cropped
away at the sweet grass.
"From tired joy and grief afar,
And nearer Thee,
Father, where Thine own children are
I love to be!"
The broker listened for a minute.
"I'll take Jewel and her mother to the seashore somewhere; for I must
leave the house, if only to let Madge down easily, and too, I wish to
study Julia outside her atmosphere. Poor Madge, she's a light weight,
but I think there are better times coming for her. At View Point
she'll find friends."
Time passed, and at last Mr. Evringham called, "That will do, Jewel."
"Do you want Star to go in?" she returned.
The broker nodded, and the child sprang up and began patting and
smoothing the little horse with energetic affection.
"It's your bedtime, Star," she said, "but morning's coming." She
kissed his sleek shoulder. "We'll have such a good time in the
morning. I don't bounce a bit now, do I, Zeke?" she asked, turning to
"Well, I guess not," returned Zeke scornfully. "You ain't the kind
that gets bounced after a fellow knows you," he added, smiling. He
took the pony's halter. "Good-night, Jewel."
"Good-night, Zeke." She ran across the lawn and up the piazza steps.
"How kind of you, grandpa, to amuse Anna Belle!" she exclaimed
gratefully, observing the doll on his knee. At the same time she most
abruptly whisked that patient person into a neighboring chair and
usurped her place. Cuddling down in her grandfather's arms, she
nestled her head against his shoulder and sighed happily.
The light began to fade, the last smoke from the broker's cigar curled
out into the summer air. He tossed it away and pressed the child more
closely to him.
"Sing once again the song you sang for Zeke." he said.
And she began softly in her true, clear voice:--
"From tired joy and grief afar,
And nearer Thee,
Father, where Thine own children are
I love to be!"
"Amen," breathed Mr. Evringham.
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