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cape she had.

And Rhoda never knew what an es- “A girl that used to live over at the

poor-house when I did.

She was

bound out to the Widow Whitmarsh, “I do wish there was something for the spring that I went to live with Mrs. me to do,” said Rhoda ; “I never was Amos Kemp. Jinny used to have sick used to lying abed doing nothing. It spells, and Mrs. Whitmarsh wanted to most tuckers me out."

send her back to the poor-house, but “Cannot you read, Rhoda ?” I asked. folks said she could n't, because she'd

“Yes, I can read some. I can't read had her bound. She and Mrs. Kemp words, but I can tell some of the let- was neighbors ; and after Jinny got so ters."

as to need somebody with her nights, “Have you never gone to school ?” Mrs. Kemp used to let me go and sleep

“No; I always had to work. Poor with her, and then she could wake me folks have got to work, you know." up if she wanted anything. I wanted

“Yes, but that need not prevent your to go, and Jinny wanted to have me learning to read. I can teach you my- come; she used to say it did her lots self; I will, if you like.”

of good. Sometimes we'd pretend we "I guess your aunt won't calculate to was rich, and was in a great big room get me to work for her, and then have with curtains to the windows. We me spend my time learning to read. did n't have any candle burning, - Mrs. First you know, she 'll send me off.” Whitmarsh said there wa’n't no need

“She will like it perfectly well. of one, and more there wa’n't. One Grandmother is in authority here now; night we said we'd take a ride toI will go and ask her.” This I knew morrow or next day. We pretended would seem to her decisive.

we'd got a father, and he was real rich, “What did she say?” said Rhoda, and had got a horse and wagon. Jinny rather eagerly, when I returned. said we'd go to the store and buy us a “She says yes, by all means; and

new white gown, she always wanted that if you learn to read before aunt a white gown. By and by she said comes home, you shall have a new she was real sleepy; she did n't have dress, and I may choose it for you." no bad coughing-spell that night, such

Now it was no sinecure, teaching as she most always did. She asked Rhoda, but she won the dress, –a lilac me if I did n't smell the clover-blows, print, delicate and pretty enough for how sweet they was ; and then she any one.

I undertook to make the talked about white lilies, and how she dress, but she accomplished a good liked 'em most of anything, without it part of it herself. She said Miss was sweetbriers. Then she asked me Reeny used to show her about sewing. if I knew what palms was; and she Whatever was to be done with hands said when she was dead she wanted she learned with surprising quickness. me to have her little pink chany box Grandmother suggested that the read- that Miss Maria Elliot give her once, ing lessons should be followed by a when she bought some blueberries of course in writing. Before the lame- her. So then she dozed a little while ; ness was well over, Rhoda could write, and I don't know why, but I could n't slowly indeed, yet legibly.

get asleep for a good while, for all I'd I carried her some roses one evening worked real hard that day. I guess While putting them in water, I asked 't was as much as an hour she laid what flowers she liked best.

kind of still; she never did sleep real “I like sweetbriers best,” said she. sound, so but what she moaned and “I think sweetbriers are handsome in talked broken now and then. So by the graveyard. I set out one over and by she give a start, and says she, Jinny Collins's grave. For what I “I'm all ready. Ready for what, know, it is growing now.”

Jinny,' says I. But she did n't seem “Who was Jinny Collins, Rhoda ?” to know as I was talking to her. Says

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she, 'I'm all ready. I've got on a She said she wanted to that night, so white gown and a palm in my hand.' she could put the room airing, but she So then I knew she was wandering supposed folks would talk, and, besides, like, as I'd heard say folks did when they did n't get the grave dug quick they was very sick; for she had n't enough neither. Mrs. Kemp let me any gown at all on, without you might go to the funeral. I thought they was call Mrs. Whitmarsh's old faded cal- going to carry her over to the poorico sack one, nor nothing in her hand house burying-ground, but they did n't, neither. So pretty soon she dropped 'cause 't would cost so much for a horse to sleep again, and I did too. And I and wagon. The right minister was slept later 'n common. The sun was

gone away, and the one that was there shining right into my eyes when I was going off in the cars, so he had to opened 'em. I thought 't would trouble hurry. There wa’n't hardly anybody Jinny, and I was just going to pin her there, only some men to let the coffin skirt up to the window, and I see that down, and the sexton, and Mrs. Whitshe looked awful white. I put my marsh and Polly Wheelock and I. hand on her forehead, and it was just The minister prayed a little speck of as cold as a stone. So then I knew a prayer and went right away. I heard she was dead. I never see her look so Mrs. Whitmarsh telling Mrs. Kemp happy like. She had the pleasantest she thought she'd got out of it pretty smile on her lips ever you see. I well, seeing she did n't expect nothing did n't know as Mrs. Kemp 'd like to but what she'd got to buy the coffin, have me stay, but I just brushed her and get the grave dug, and be to all the hair,-'t was real pretty hair, just a little expense. She said she guessed nomite curly, — and then I run home and body 'd catch her having another girl told Mrs. Kemp. She said she'd just bound out to her. Mrs. Kemp said as lives I'd stay over to Mrs. Whit- she always knew 't was a great risk, marsh's as not that day, 'cause she was and that was why she did n't have me going over to Woodstock shopping. bound. So I went back again, and Mrs. Whit- “ That summer, when berries was marsh she sent me to one of the select- ripe, Mrs. Kemp let me go and pick men to see if she'd got to be to the 'em and carry 'em round to sell ; and expense of the funeral, 'cause she said she said I might have a cent for every it did n't seem right, seeing she never quart I sold. I got over three dollars got much work out of Jinny, she was that summer for myself.” always so weakly. And Mr. Robbins “What did you do with it?" he said the town would pay for the “I bought some shoes, and some eoffin and digging the grave. That yarn to knit me some stockings. I can made her real pleasant; and I don't knit real good." know what put me up to it, but I was “How came you to leave Mrs. real set on it that Jinny should have Kemp." on a white gown in the coffin. And I “Partly 't was 'cause she did n't like asked Mrs. Whitmarsh if I might n't my not buying her old green shawl with go over to Miss Bradford's; and she let my share of the money for the berme, and Miss Bradford give me an old ries; and partly 'cause I got cold, and white gown, if I'd iron it; and Polly it settled in my feet so 's I could n't Wheelock, she was Miss Bradford's hardly go round. So she told me girl, she helped me put it on to Jinny. she'd concluded to have me go back And then Polly got some white lilies, to the poor-house. If she kept a girl, and I got some sweetbrier sprigs, and she said, she wanted one to wait on laid round her in the coffin. I've seen her, and not to be waited on. She prettier coffins, but I never see no face waited two or three days to see if I look so pretty as Jinny's. Mrs. Whit- did n't get better, so as I could walk marsh had the funeral next morning over there; but I did n't.

And one

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day it had been raining, but it held up and they used to spat it. So Miss awhile, and she see a neighbor riding Holbrook come there one day to see by, and she run out and asked him if the place, and somebody told her about he could n’t carry me over to the poor- the cushioned chair, and, if you 'll behouse. He said he could if she wanted lieve it, the very next day there was him to; so I went. I had on my cape, one come over as good again, with and it wa'n't very warm. She asked arms to it, and a cushion, and all. Miss me when I come away, if I wa’n’t sorry Holbrook sent it over to Miss Reeny. I had n't a shawl. I expect I did catch None of 'em could n't take it away.cold. I could n't set up nor do noth- “ And is she there now ?” ing for more 'n three weeks. When I “ Yes, she can't go nowhere else. got so I could knit, my yarn was gone. One night Betty Crosfield said I I never knew what become of it; and need n't come there no more; she was one of the women used to borrow my going to take a boarder. Berry-time shoes for her little girl, and she wore was most over, so then I got a place to 'em out. So, come spring, I was just Miss Stoney's, the milliner. She agreed where I was the year before, only lone- to give me twenty-five cents a week, somer, cause Jinny was gone."

and I thought to be sure I should get Só And did you stay there?

back my shoes and yarn now. But To the poor-house ? No; Betty one morning the teapot was cracked, Crosfield wanted a girl to come and and she asked me, and I said I did n't help her. She took in washing for do it, - and I did n't; but she said she Mr. Furniss's hands. She said I wa'n't knew I did, because there was n't nostrong enough to earn much, but she body but her and me that touched it, would pay me in clothes. She give and she should keep my wages till they me a Shaker bonnet and an old gown come to a dollar and a half, because that the soap had took the color out of, that was what a new one would cost. and she made a tack in it, so 's it did. Before the teapot was paid for I did And I had my cape.

When straw- break a glass dish. I did n't know berries come, the hands was most all’’t would hurt it to put it in hot water; gone, and she let me sleep there, and and everything else that was broke, go day-times after berries, and she to she thought I broke it, and she kept have half the pay. That 's how I got it out of my wages. I told her I did n't my red calico and my shawl.”

sec as she ought to ; and in the fall “Who made your dress, Rhoda ?” she said she could n't put up with my

“ Miss Reeny. I carried it over to sauce and my breaking no longer. see if she'd cut it out, and she said Mrs. Kittredge wanted a girl, and I she'd make it if they'd let her, and went there." they did. And I got her some green “And how did you find it there ?" tea. She used to say sometimes, she'd “I think it was about the hardest give anything for a cup of green tea, place of all. I'd as lives go back to such as her mother used to have.” the poor-house as to stay there. Sally “Who is Miss Reeny ?”

Kittredge used to tell things that wa’n't "A woman that lives over there. true about me. She told one day that Her father used to be a doctor ; but I pushed her down. I never touched he died, and she was sickly and did n't my hand to her. But Mrs. Kittredge know as she had any relations, and by got a raw hide up stairs and give it to and by she had to go there. They say me awful. I should n't wonder if it over there she ain't in her right mind, showed now; just look.” but I don't know. She was always She undid the fastening of her dress good to me. There was an old chair and slipped off the waist for me to see. with a cushion in it, and Miss Reeny The little back — she was very small — wanted it to sit in, 'cause her back was was all discolored with stripes, purple, lame; but old Mrs. Fitts wanted it too, green, and yellow. After showing me these bruises, she quietly fastened her It was now a year since Rhoda came dress again.

to us, and during this time her imNow there was that in Rhoda's provement had been steady and rapid. manner during this narration which And since she had come to dress like wrought in my mind entire conviction other girls, no one could say that she of its verity. By the time of Uncle and was* ill-looking ; but, as I claimed the Aunt Bradburn's return, she was grow- merit of effecting this change in her ing in favor with every one in the exterior, it may be that I observed it house. She was gentle, patient, and more than any one else. Still, I fancy grateful.

that some others were not blind. The deftness with which she used “Where did you get those swampthose small fingers suggested to me pinks, Rhoda ?" for I detected the fine the idea of teaching her some of the azalia odor before I saw them. more delicate kinds of fancy - work. A bright color suffused the childlike But it seemed that she required no face, quite to the roots of the hair. teaching An opportunity given of “Will Bright got them when he went looking on while one was embroidering, after the cows. You may have some crocheting, or making tatting, and the if you want them.” process was her own. Native tact “No, thank you; it is a pity to disimparted to her at once the skill which turb them, they look so pretty just as others attain only by long practice. As they are.” for her fine sewing, it was exquisite ; and in looking at it, one half regretted Troubles come to everybody. Even the advent of the sewing-machine. Will Bright, though no one had ever

The fall days grew short ; the winter known him to be without cheerfulness came and went; and in the course of it, enough for half a dozen, was not wholly besides doing everything that was re- exempt from ills. With all his good quired of her in the household, keeping sense, which was not a little, Will was up the reading and writing, and satis- severely incredulous of the reputed factory progress in arithmetic, Rhoda effects of poison-ivy; and one day, by had completed, at my suggestion, ten way of maintaining his position, gathof those little tatting collars, made of ered a spray of it and applied it to his fine thread, and rivalling in delicate face. He was not long in finding the beauty the loveliest fabrics of lace. vine in question an ugly customer.

Because a project was on foot for His face assumed the aspect of a horRhoda. A friend of mine going to rible mask, and the dimensions of a Boston took charge of the little pack- good-sized water-pail, with nothing left age of collars, and the result was that of the eyes but two short, straight the proprietor of a fancy-store there marks. For once, Will had to succumb engaged to receive all of them that and be well cared for. might be manufactured, at the price In this state of things a letter came of three dollars each. When my friend to him with a foreign postmark. "I returned, she brought me, as the avails will lay it away in your desk, Will,” of her commission, the sum of thirty said uncle, “till you can read it yourdollars.

self; that will be in a day or two." But here arose an unexpected ob- “If you don't mind the trouble, sir, I stacle. It was difficult to convince should thank you to open and read it Rhoda that the amount, which seemed for me. I get no letters that I am unto her immense, was of right her own. willing you should see.” She comprehended it, however, at last; It was to the effect that a relative in and thenceforth her skill in this and England had left him a bequest of five other departments of faricy-work ob- hundred pounds, and that the amount tained for her constant and remunera- would be made payable to his order tive employment.

wherever he should direct.

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“ You will oblige me, sir, if you will I read to her from Ned's letter what say nothing about this for the present,” related to her brother. said Will, when uncle had congratulated “I 'm most afraid it's a dream,” said him.

Rhoda after a brief silence. “Over at “I hope we shall not lose sight of the poor-house I used to have such you, Will,” said uncle, who really felt a good dreams, and then I'd wake up strong liking for the young man, who out of them. After I came here I used had served him faithfully three years. to be afraid it was a dream ; but I

“I hope not, sir,” replied Will. “I did n't wake out of that. Perhaps I shall shall be glad to consult you before I see Joe again ; who knows ?decide what use to make of this windfall. At all events, I don't want to From this time a change came over change my quarters for the present.” Rhoda. She begged as a privilege to

learn to do everything that a woman About the same time, brother Ned, in can do about a house. Oregon, sent me a letter which con- “I do declare, Miss Kate," said Dortained this passage :

othy one day, after displaying a grand “ We are partly indebted for this array of freshly baked loaves, wearing splendid stroke of business to the help the golden-brown tint that hints at of a townsman of our own; his name is such savory sweetness, “that girl, for Joseph Breck. He says he ran away a white girl, is going to make a most from Deacon Handy's, at fifteen years a splendid cook. I never touched this old, because the Deacon would not send bread, and just you see! ain't it perfinhim to school as he had agreed. Ask diculur wonderful ?” uncle if he remembers Ira Breck, who Soon after, I found Rhoda, with her lived over at Ash Swamp, near the old dress tidily pinned out of harm's way, Ingersol place. He was drowned sav. standing at a barrel, and poking vigoring timber in a freshet. He left two ously with a stick longer than herself. children, and this Joseph is the elder. “ What now, Rhoda! what are you The other was a girl, her name Rboda, doing there?” six or eight years younger than Joseph; “Come here and look at the soap, she must be now, he says, not far from Miss Kate. I made it every bit myself; sixteen or seventeen. Joe has had a ain't it going to be beautiful ? " hard row to hoe, but now that he be- “Why do you care to do such things, gins to see daylight he wants to do, Rhoda ?” something for his sister.

He is a “I'll tell you,” in a low voice; “perthoroughly honest and competent fel- haps when Joe comes home, some time low, and we are glad enough to get he 'll buy himself a little place and let hold of him. He told me the other me keep house for him; then I shall night such a story as would make your want to know how to do everything." heart ache: at all events it would make “ Rhoda, I believe you can do everyyou try to ascertain something about thing already." his sister before you write next.”

“No, I can't wring," looking pite

ously from one little hand to the othI lost no time in seeking Rhoda. er. “I can iron cute, but I can't wring.

“ Yes,” said she, in reply to my in- Dorothy says that is one thing I shall quiries, “I did have a brother once. have to give up, unless I can make my He went off and was lost. I can just hands grow. Do you suppose I could ?" remember him. I don't suppose I shall “No; you must make Joe buy you a ever see him again. Folks said likely wringer. Can you make butter ? " he was drowned.”

“O yes, when the churning is n't “ Was his name Joseph ?”

large. Likely Joe won't keep more “ It was Joe ; father used to call him than one cow." Joe.”

I looked at the eager little things.

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