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alized. How often I told you the future was not ours, but returned again to our dreams of future fame. Oh, what is fame when life is fleeting away,—what is wisdom? The child who dies knows more of hidden mysteries than the gray-bearded philosopher. Cunnington, I shall soon be no more. Let me hope my image will not be effaced from your heart. Let it not speak to your memory when you are treading gay lighted halls—not in the pomp of riches—not in the haunts of the gay ; but let my memory cheer you in moments of vexation ; let me come to you in those dreams when the sombre rather than the gay tints of life are hovering round your senses. Above all, Cunnington, be not ambitious. Soberly, gradually, conscientiously earn thou the bright laurels of fame; but should its too partial wreath never press thy brow, on, on, still in one
undeviating path—there is but one road to proper fame—the road of honour. Oh, often in the graver haunts of men think of your early friend, distrust the flattery of the mercenary herd, who follow great men to glory in their greatness, and to laugh at their fall.”
The words Cunnington wished to utter died upon his lips, his scalding tears fell upon the hand which gradually relinquished its grasp, and a sudden convulsive movement betokened that life was extinct.
At this solemn moment a slave noiselessly glided into the chamber of death, he whispered a few words to the baron, who left the apartment without uttering a syllable; a few more moments and he was on horseback and rapidly cantering away.
Anna and Cunnington were alone. Perhaps the latter felt the acutest grief ; for
THE IDLER REFORMED.
THE IDLER REFORMED.
he had known Alphonzo more intimately, had felt the restraining power of his virtues, but death was equally present to both the mourners, and the sigh of the one met with a response in the bosom of the other.
“ Arise, Lady di Lucia,” said Cunnington (for by that name was the heiress called); “ arise, this is a scene from which women are excluded.”
"I have often watched beside the dead,” said Anna, mournfully ; “ this has, indeed, been an angel's death-bed. It is you, rather, who ought to be away. Go, leave us, Mr. Cunnington ; go to your own happy land; go to those who have claims to your affection. Leave this strange island.”
“Speak not so,” said Cunnington ; “ let me prevail on you to take possession of your property in England ; tell me not
to leave you, I cannot obey you yet. I must win your ...."
“My friendship, my deep, deep esteem. Oh, Mr. Cunnington, you were my brother's friend, you received his last sigh, and I will never, never forget you.”
A host of recollections crowded to Cunnington's brain ; thus it was that Alice Lemington had offered him her friendship. A pang shot across his heart, he dared not speak of love in that chamber of death.
They gazed on each other; their lips tremulous with many conflicting feelingstheir hearts palpitating,—their eyes reflecting the language of their hearts; that language on both sides clad in despair, though the cause of each other's sorrow was not unknown ; but, at length, Anna tore herself away, and Cunnington was left alone.
Oh! how he longed to feel again as he was once, free-hearted and light; for Alice Lemington he had felt youthful love, but towards Anna it was a passion which had twined itself into his existence; but an indescribable fear prevented his speaking as he would to her—to love her in despairto bask in the sunshine of her gaze,—to hear her voice, that was, at least, some comfort ; he hardly dared to hope for more.
Alone with the dead—Cunnington felt the nothingness of life,—the transient existence of all earthly expectations. How altered were now the features which had been so admired for manly beauty ; how hollow now the praise seemed which once hovered round the wealthy heir's path. He had fluttered for a time in the world's gay vortex like a butterfly, whose aerial existence was to terminate on the nearest approach of changing weather ; but amidst