steps traversed the gravel, and the jarring sound of the iron gate on its hinges. "Good night," said the wellknown voice, so long beloved; and "good night, Mr. William, good night, sir," in Tom's gruff voice, and a little more time the gate clanged, and Tom's lonely step came back.

"He had no business to open the gate without my order," said Miss Perfect. She was thinking of blowing Tom up, but her pride prevented; and as Tom entered in reply to her bell, she asked as nearly as she could in her usual way


My nephew did not take away

his trunk?"

"No, mum." "He gave directions about things, of course ?"


"Yes, they're to follow, mum, by the mornin' coach to Cambridge." "H'm! very good-that's all-you had better get to your bed nowgood night."

And thus, with a dry and stately air, dismissed, he withdrew, and Aunt Dinah said, "I'm glad that's off my mind; I've done right; I know I have. Who'd have thought? But there's no help, and I'm glad its over."

Aunt Dinah sat for a long time in the drawing-room, uttering short sentences like these, from time to time. Then she read some verses in the Bible, and I don't think she could have told you, when she closed the book, what they were about. She had thoughts of a séance with old Winnie Dobbs, but somehow she was not exactly in the mood.

"Master William is not in his room yet," observed that ancient domestic.

"Master William has gone to Cambridge to-night," said Miss Perfect, drily and coldly; "and his luggage follows in the morning. I can't find my night-cap."

So old Winnie, though surprised, was nothing wiser that night respecting the real character of the move


And Aunt Dinah said her prayers stiffly; and bidding old Winnie a peremptory good-night, put out her candle, and restated to herself the fact she had already frequently mentioned, "I have acted rightly; I have nothing to regret. William will, I dare say, come to his senses, and recollect all he owes me.'

In the mean time William, with no very distinct ideas, and only his huge pain and humiliation at his heart, trudged along the solitary road to Saxton. He sat down on the style, under the great ash tree by the roadside to gather up his thoughts. Little more than half an hour before he had been so unusually happy; and now, here he sat shipwrecked, wounded,

and forlorn.

He looked at his watch again-a dreadful three-quarters of an hour must elapse before the Cambridge coach would draw up at the Golden Posts in High-street. Had he not better go on and await its arrival there? Yet what need he care? What was it to him whether he were late or not? In his outcast desperation he fancied he would rather like to wear out his shoes and his strength in a long march to Cambridge. He would have liked to lift his dusty hat grimly to Violet, as he strode footsore and cheerless on his way. But alas! he was leaving Violet there, among those dark-tufted outlines, and under the high steep roof whose edge he could just discern. There could be no chance meeting. Farewell! Back to Cambridge he was going — and through Cambridge,into space-where by those who once liked him he should be found no more-on that he was resolved.

So up he got again, without a plan, without a reason, as he had sat down; and he lifted his hat, and with extended arm, waved his farewell toward Gilroyd. And the old ash tree looked down sadly, murmuring, in the fickle night breeze, over his folly.



STARTING afresh at a pace wholly uncalled-for, by time or distance, William Maubray was soon in the silent street of Saxton, with the bright

moonlight on one side of it, and the houses and half the road black in shadow on the other.

There was a light in Doctor Drake's


front parlour, which he called his study. The doctor himself was in evidence, leaning upon the sash of the window, which he had lowered, and smoking dreamily from a churchwarden" toward the brilliant moon. It was plain that Miss Letty had retired, and in his desolation, human sympathy, some one to talk to, ever so little, on his sudden calamity-a friendly soul who knew Aunt Dinah long and well, and was even half as wise as Doctor Drake was reputed to be, would be a God-send. He yearned to shake the honest fellow's hand, and his haste was less, and subsided to a loitering pace, as he approached the window, from which he was hailed, but not in a way to make it quite clear what the learned physician exactly wanted.

"I shay, I shay-shizzy-shizhte

shizh-shizh-shizhte-V-V-Viator, I shay," said the Doctor-playfully meaning, I believe, Siste Viator.

And Doctor Drake's long pipe, like a shepherd's crook, was hospitably extended, so that the embers fell out on the highway, to arrest the wayfarer. So William stopped and said"What a sweet night-how beautiful, and I'm so glad to find you still up, Doctor Drake."

Alwayz all sh's, alwayzh up," said the doctor oracularly, smiling rather at one side of his cheek, and with his eyes pretty nearly closed; and his long pipe swaying gently, horizontally, over the trottoir, "you'll look insh'r pleashure acquaintensh."

By this time the doctor, with his disengaged hand had seized William's, and his pipe had dropped on the pavement and was smashed.

"Bloke-bl-boke !" murmured the doctor, smiling celestially, with a little vague wave of his fingers toward the fragments of his churchwarden, from the bowl of which the sparks were flitting lightly along High-street. "Blo-boke my p-p-phife!"

"I shay, oleboy, you come in," and he beckoned William grandly through the window.

William glanced at the door, and the doctor comprehending, said with awful solemnity

"All thingsh_deeshenly in an-in or-or-orrer, I shay. Come-olefellow-wone ye ?-toothe th'-th' door sh'r-an'-an' you'll norr regresh -no-never."

William, though not very sharp on such points, perceived that Doctor Drake had been making merry in his study, and the learned gentleman received him at the hall-door, laying his hand lovingly and grandly on his arm.

"Howzhe th'-th' ladle-th' admir'bl' womr, over there, Mish Perfek?"

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'My aunt is very well-perfectly well, thanks," answered William.

"No thangs-I thang you sh'r-I thang Prover'l!" and the doctor sank with a comfortable sigh, and his back against the wall, shaking William's hand slowly, and looking piously up at the cornice.

"She's quite well, but-but I've something to tell you," said William. “Comle—comle—ong !” said the doctor encouragingly, and led the way unsteadily into his study.

There was a jug of cold water—a "tumbler," and a large black bottle on the table, to which the doctor waved a gracious introduction.

"Ole Tom, ole Tom, an' w-wawr hizh dring the chryshle brook!"

The doctor was given to quotation in his cups, and this was his paraphrase of "The Hermit."

"Thanks, no," said William, "I have had my glass long ago. I-I'm going back to Cambridge, sir; I'm going to make a push in life. I've been too long a burden on my aunt.

"Admir'al wom'le shr'? Wurleworry-no wurrier, ladle !" exclaimed the doctor with growing enthusiasm.

Contented with these evidences of mental vigour, William, who must have spoken to the roadside trees, rather than refrain himself, proceeded to tell his woful story-to which Doctor Drake listened, clinging rather to the chimney-piece with his right hand, and in his left sustaining a large glass of his favourite " Old Tom" and water-a little of which occasionally poured upon the hearthrug:

And Doctor Drake, you won't mention what I'm going to say!"

The doctor intended to say, "silent as the sepulchre," but broke down, and merely nodded, funereally pointing his finger perpendicularly toward the hearthstone and having let go his hold on the chimney, he made an involuntary wheel backward, and sat down quite unintentionally, and rather violently, in an elbow-chair.

"You promise, really and truly, sir ?" pressed William.


'Reel-reel-reelan' tooral," repeated the doctor as nearly as he could.

And upon this assurance William Maubray proceeded to state his case, and feeling relieved as he poured forth his wrongs, waxed voluble; and the doctor sat and heard, looking like Solomon, and refreshing his lips now and again, as if William's oration parched him.

"And what sir, do you think I had best do?" said William, not very wisely it must be owned, applying to Philip, certainly not sober-for judg


"Return to my duty ?" repeated William, interpreting as well as he could the doctor's somewhat vague articulation. "Why, I am certain I never left it. I have done all I could to please her; but this you know is what no one on earth could be expected to do what no one ought to do."

"Sh' rong, sh'r!" exclaimed the doctor with decision. "Thersh-r —r—ry, and th'rsh wrong-r-ry an' wrong-moshe admiral ladle, Mish Perfeck!-moshe amiable; we all epresheay-sheniorib-bush pieri-pie-oribush-ole Latt'n, you know. I 'preshiay an' love Mish Perfey."

Senioribus prioribus! There was a want of clearness, William felt, in the doctor's views; still it weighed on him that such as they were they were against him.

"The principle on which I have acted, sir, can't be shaken. If I were, at my aunt's desire, now to enter the Church, I should do so entirely from worldly motives, which I know would be an impiety such as I could not endure to practise."

"Conn'ry toop-toop-rinsh'p'lconn'ry-conn'ry," murmured the doctor, with an awful shake to his head.

The coach was now seen to pass the windows, with a couple of outside passengers, and a pile of luggage on top, and pulled up some sixty yards lower down the street, at the Golden Posts. With a hasty shake of the hand, William Maubray took his leave, and mounted to his elevated seat, as the horses, with their looped traces hanging by them, emerged from the inn-yard gate, like shadows, by the rapid slight-of-hand of groom and hostler-to replace the wayworn team, now snorting and shaking their flanks, with drooping necks, and emitting a white steam in the moonlight, as they waited to be led off to rest and comfort in the stables of the Golden Posts.



CHILL was the night. The slight motion of the air was against them, and made a cutting breeze as they drove on. The gentleman who sat beside him in a huge cloak and fur cap, with several yards of cashmere swathing his throat and chin and chops, was taciturn, except when he offered William a cigar. The cold, dark, and solitude helped his depression and longing to see Doctor Sprague, to whom, in his helplessness he looked for practical counsel. The way seemed more than usually long. There was one conclusion clearly fixed in the chaos of his thoughts. He had done with dependence. No matter to what level it might reduce him, he would earn his own bread. He was leaving Gilroyd Hall behind him, and all its dreams,

to be dreamed no more. Perhaps there was in the surrounding gloom that romantic vista, which youth in its irrepressible hopefulness will open for itself. And William Maubray in the filmly perspective saw a shadow of himself as he would be a few years hence-wealthy, famous, the outcast restored, with the lawn and the chestnuts about him, and pretty old Gilroyd spreading its faint crimson gables and glittering window-frames behind, and old Aunt Dinah, and another form in the foreground, all smiles and tears, and welcome.

Poor fellow! He knows not how few succeed-how long it takes to make a fortune-how the process transforms, and how seldom that kind of gilding touches any but white heads, and when the sun is near its

setting, and all the old things past or passing away.

In the morning William Maubray presented himself before Dr. Sprague, who asked him briskly-"How is Miss Perfect ?"

"Quite well sir, thank you; but -but something very serious has happened very serious sir, and I am very anxious to ask your advice."

"Eh!" said the doctor; "wait a moment," and he quaffed what remained of his cup of tea, for William had surprised him at breakfast. "Hey -Nothing very bad, I hope?" and the doctor put on his spectacles and looked in William's face, as a physician does into that of a patient, to read something of his case in his countenance.

So William reported the great debate, and alas! the division on the question of holy orders, to all which the good little man listened, leaning back in his chair, with his leg crossed and his chin raised.

"You're in the right, sir," he said, so soon as he had heard the young man out-"perfectly. What do you wish me to do? I'll write to Miss Perfect if you wish it."

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Very kind of you, sir; but I'd rather not, on that subject, at least till I'm quite out of the way. I should not wish her to suppose that I could seek to return to my old position of of obligation. I must never cost her a farthing more."

So William explained his feelings fully and very candidly, and Doctor Sprague listened, and looked pleased though grave; and said he

"You haven't been writing for any of the Magazines, or that sort of thing?"

No, he had no resource of that kind. He had a good deal of loose manuscript, he confessed with a blush, but he had no introduction.

"Well, no," said Doctor Sprague, "you'd probably have a long wait, too long for your purpose. You have, you know, a trifle of your own, about £23 a year, isn't it?" and he looked in the direction of his desk, where the memorandum was; "something thereabout, that I received for you. There's a money order for eleven pounds and something in my desk since yesterday."

Don't you think, sir, that I should apply that little annuity to

pay back all I can to my aunt, who has been so good to me."

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Tut-tut, your aunt would not accept a guinea, and would mistake your motive; don't talk of any such thing. Her past affection is a matter of kindly recollection. You could not reduce it to money-no, no; but on the whole I think you have resolved wisely. You must undertake, for a little, something in the way of tuition; I don't mean here. You're hardly well enough up in the business for that; but we'll find out something here," and he tapped the Times, which lay open on the table, beside him, "I dare say, to suit you-not a school, that would not do either-a tutor in a country house. You need not stay away more than six months, and you'll have something to go on with then; and in the meantime you can send your manuscripts round, and try if you can't get into some of the periodicals."

"It is very odd, sir, but some months since I spoke of such a plan when I was at Gilroyd, and my Aunt was positively horrified; she is full of fancies, you know, and she told me that none of my family had ever done anything of the kind."

"I don't know about that; but I've done it, I can tell you, and better men than I," said the doctor.

"I only mean that she made such a point of it; she would think I had done it expressly to vex her, or she might come wherever I was, and try to make me leave it."

"So she might, said the cleric," and laughed a little to himself, for he knew her, and fancied a scene," but what can you do? I think you must in fact, and the best way will be to tell her nothing about it. She has cut you, you know, for the present, and-and you need not, if you think it would vex her, go in your own name, do you see? We'll call you Mr. Herbert, you're descended maternally, you know, from Herberts; now-not for a moment, now-just hear me out; there shall be no deception, of course. I'll tell them that for certain family reasons I have advised you to take that measure. I'll take it all on myself, and say all I think of you, and know of you, and I saw, just now, in this very paper, something that I think would answer very nicely. Yes, yes, I'll make

it all quite straight and easy. But you must do as I say."

The kind little gentleman was thinking that eccentric and fierce Miss Perfect might never forgive his engaging himself as a tutor, without at least that disguise, and he looked forward, as he murmured varium et mutabile semper, to a much earlier redintigratio amoris than William dreamed of.

"It's unlucky her having made a point of it. But what is the poor fellow to do? She must not, however, be offended more than we can help, and that will show a wish as far as was practicable, to consult her feelings."

Doctor Sprague looked along a column in the Times, and said he, after his scrutiny

"I think there's just one of these you'll like-say which you prefer, and I'll tell you if it's the one I think."

So William conned over the advertisements, and, in Aunt Dinah's phrase, put on his considering cap, and having pondered a good while, "This one, I think?" he half decided and half inquired.

"The very thing!" said Doctor Sprague, cheerily. "One boy-country-house-just the thing; he'll be in his bed early, you know, and you can take your books and write away till twelve at night; and now you had better drop them a line-or stay, I'll do it; you can't sign your name, you know."

So, communications being opened, in a day or two it turned out that Doctor Sprague knew the gentleman who advertised. It was a very old and long interrupted acquaintance.

"He's a quiet, kind fellow, and Kincton Hall, they say, a pretty place and old. I'll write to Knox."

The Knoxes of Kincton Hall William had heard Trevor occasionally mention, but tried in vain to recollect what he used to say of them; six months, however, was no great venture, and the experiment could hardly break down very badly in that time.

"Maubray, your cousin, has quarrelled with his father, you heard?” "No."


"Oh, yes, just about the time when you left this a few days ago. Young Maubray has some little property from his mother, and chooses to take his own way; and Sir Richard was in here with me yesterday, very angry and violent, poor man, and vows (the doctor would not say swears," which would have described the procedure more accurately) he'll cut him off with a shilling; but that's all moonshine. The estates are under settlement, and the young fellow knows it, and that's at the bottom of his independence; and he's gone abroad, I believe, to amuse himself: and he has been no credit to his college, from all I hear.”



In the parlour of Kincton Hall the family were assembled at breakfast; Mrs. Kincton Knox dispensed tea and coffee in a queenlike way, hardly called for, seeing that her husband, daughter, and little son, formed the entire party.

Mrs. Kincton Knox was what some people call a clever woman—that is, she did nearly everything with an object, but somehow she had not succeeded. Mr. Kincton Knox was not Deputy Lieutenant or a Member for his county. Her daughter Clarawith blue eyes and golden hair-a handsome girl, now leaning back in her chair and looking listlessly through the window across the table-was admitted confidentially to be near five

and-twenty, and was in fact past eight-and-twenty, and unmarried


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There was not that intimacy between the Croydon family and the Kincton Knoxes for which she had laboured so cleverly and industriously. She was not among the patronesses, and only one of the committee, of the great county ball, at which the Prince figured, and which, on the plea of illness, she had with proper dignity declined attending. She blamed her daughter, she blamed her husband, she blamed the envy and combination of neighbours, for her failures. There was nothing that the wit and industry of woman could do she had not done. She was the best bred and most farseeing woman in the country round,

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