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do not like him is that any reason why you should attack him in the dark, and cast unfounded suspicions upon me?" she asked.

"Now you are ridiculous, Kate," he replied quickly. "I was attacked in the dark years ago by that man; but let that pass; what I want now is to do away with the opportunity you give him of exercising his cursed wiles on that

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"Girl over whom you have already exer

cised yours," she interrupted. "Pooh !

Harold, you ought to be wiser in your maturity than to fear such a kitten-face will win all sorts of love and evil for its possessor. I am tired of the girl and her silent non-committal adoration for you and Linley."

"She has no adoration for Linley as yet, thank God," he struck in eagerly.

"Has she not? well, all I can say is that she tries to blush him into the belief that she has. However she is going home in a few days; will that set your mind at rest?"

"About her-yeз."

"And about whom 'no?'-yourself?" she asked, softening her voice abruptly and placing her hand on his arm with the same quick warm pressure he remembered she had employed once, years ago, when she wanted to learn the story of the forging of the chains that bound him.

"I shall be as much at rest as I have been for more than twenty years," he answered sadly.

"Confide in me, Harold; now, though it's late; confide in me and I would even befriend you with her."

She glanced towards Theo as she spoke and he replied

three things excellently well at the same time and without apparent effort. She could be an excellent hostess to the mass contemporaneously with the discharge of her full battery on the one. Moreover while thus generally agreeable and specially fascinating she could plan, arrange, and decide upon some important course of action.

This evening, while causing the majority of her guests to hope that these re-unions would be of frequent recurrence, and weaving a conversational web from which he could not escape around Mr. Linley, she had to settle the form of words in which Theo's sentence of dismissal should be pronounced, together with the manner of its delivery. Kate abhorred the notion of going back to the old Grange, but she felt capable of calmly sacrificing herself even to that degree rather than of remaining a quiescent spectator of Theo Leigh's success in that field where the greatest glories of the day had always been gained by her alone. It was the one thing in life which Kate could not do gracefully-retire amiably into the background, namely, and from thence watch with kind eyes the fleshing of others' maiden swords.

Mrs. Galton had no very poignant pangs about getting rid of Theo abruptly after almost forcing her to remain. Mrs. John Galton in fact never had any poignant pangs about anyone but herself, and she would suffer nothing in the parting. So she resolved to say words to Theo on the morrow that should prove to the latter that it would be well for her not to stand upon the order of her going, but to go at once.

It happened, however, that Kate was not called upon to accelerate Theo's departure after "Befriend her by sending her away home all. The morrow's post brought a letter from from both of us, Kate."

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MRS. JOHN GALTON had promised her cousin that Theo should go back to Houghton and safety "soon, very soon." She thoroughly meant to keep her word. The sight of Theo was painful to the prettier woman whom Theo had eclipsed. This was one reason for the ardent nature of the suddenly developed desire of the prettier woman's to banish Theo. But added to this was another and better reason: she did not wish Theo's heart to be wrung or name to be sullied by even so much as the shadow of a suspicion while under her auspices. Kate had the special grace of doing two or

Mrs. Leigh telling her daughter that a longlooked-for appointment under government had fallen vacant, and been bestowed upon her father. Further that this would involve the necessity of Theo's returning at once "if Mrs. Galton could kindly spare her," in order that she might bear her part in the leave-takings and packing-up which were consequent on the change.


'Perhaps you had better start by the twoo'clock train to-day," Mrs. Galton suggested, when her young guest made her acquainted with the contents of the letter; "you'll have to see so many people before you leave, and you leave so soon that I think you had better start by the two o'clock train."

"Ought I to see-I mean, how can I see people if I start so early?" Theo asked.

"I meant that you would have so many people down there to take leave of, not up here at all. I am sure I am delighted to learn that

you have such intimate friends up here, I was not aware of it."

"I will start by the two-o'clock train, certainly, or by an earlier one, if there is an earlier one," Theo replied hurriedly. Then she added more slowly, but quite steadily and distinctly," The only friend I have in London is Mr. Ffrench; I should like to have seen him before I go, but I suppose I shall not."

"No, dear, I don't suppose you will," Kate rejoined affably. It always made Kate affable to see another person baffled in this way. She herself would have obviated the difficulties attendant on seeing Harold Ffrench with a deft readiness by comparison with which Theo's discomfiture seemed a very ludicrous thing. But Theo had no such deft readiness at command, or at any rate would never have brought it to bear on such a matter.

Mrs. Galton's reply to Theo's supposition that she should not see Harold Ffrench before she left was therefore given in the most affable tone and spirit.

"No, dear, I don't suppose you will see him; he is sure though to call in by and by, and then I will tell him that you are gone."

"That's very kind of you; now I think I had better go and pack-up, Mrs. Galton."

"Why you seem annoyed! don't you wish me to tell him that you're gone? You funny child why, I really believe, Theo," she cried, starting up, taking Theo's cold hands in her own and laughing as though the idea were too eminently absurd to be discussed seriously, "I really believe, Theo, that you imagine yourself in love with my cousin Harold !"

She bent her head to a level with Theo's and looked with laughing earnestness into her eyes till Theo angrily averted them.

"I don't imagine myself anything, anything of the-no, I won't tell a story: I know that I love him! imagine, indeed!"

She was panting, crimson, trembling, but she did not look one bit ashamed of herself as she made her avowal.

"Poor child!" Kate said half pityingly, half mockingly. "Harold will never marry, you take my word for it; I would prophesy good things concerning your first romance if I didn't know him so well."

Then Kate threw herself down on the sofa again, and affected to look at a book and make notes on the same, and Theo went away broken and abashed now, to pack.

How she loathed her task and herself, and indeed everybody but him. She remembered how she had felt when the trunks were first unpacked in that room, and the dresses first unfolded. Now she wrapped up a hope in every article she folded, and she thought as she put

them away that they would never be taken out again. Her first romance Kate had called it! It was soon over-how entirely over!


She wearied over the task, as who would not under the happiest circumstances? ing-up is never nice unless some one is doing it for you, and you are sitting by and are consulted about the position of the things for which you care, and left unharassed about the things for which you do not care. Then the packing-up of the goods and chattels that are to accompany you upon a pleasant tour is an agreeable occupation to witness, though packing-up one's own things is invariably depressing.

Poor Theo wearily put the bonnet that had been on her head to the Academy with him into the well of her box with a sigh, and sickened at the sight of some roses he had given her.

Ah, those roses something held
Other roses seemed to lack-

as Mr. Francesco Berger has told us in melodious strains. They were no prize flowers with big broad deep leaves and the perfume of Paradise. They were just simple "roses red and roses white," but they held something for the girl that every other flower in life would lack.

So at least she felt as she put them carefully away, their poor old dwindled stalks wrapped in silver paper, and some of the faded leaves encased for their more complete security | in one corner of an embroidered pocket-handkerchief. So she felt then, but people get over things, "love and unlove and forget" in this wicked, weak, changeful world.

It would soon be time to go; happily she would not be compelled to see much more of Kate, whose manner had changed to her so completely and unkindly. She was telling herself this when Kate herself came to the door with a pale face and a constrained mien.

"Harold Ffrench wants to speak to you alone, Theo," she said; "he is down in the little drawing-room, I have agreed to it, go."

She needed no further bidding, she was down by his side almost before the echo of She Kate's words had died upon her ear. was down by his side and she was happy.

"Theo," he began hurriedly, "I heard what Linley said to you last night; do you believe that it was a horrible agony to me to hear it, and not to be able to save you from a repetition of it?"

She had not deemed it so before, but she believed it now as she watched his face.

"It was horrible, horrible, but I was powerless then." He paused and stood further from her, she watching him intently the while; then he went on,-"To-day I learn that

a chain that bound me to a silence so painful and ignominious is snapped, broken suddenly, awfully, but thoroughly: I am called away at once, but I must speak to you, though not to the world before I go. Theo, will you be my wife when I come back, as I shall soon, free?"

She gave a low cry, and held her hands out towards him. He did not take them at first, but repeated,—

"Will you trust me? will you be my wife when I come back, my darling, to whom I dare not even yet show all the love I feel?"

“O, Harold, tell me," she began, but he stopped her by saying:

"What this chain was? no, not yet. Forgive me; I dared not risk leaving you with this untold, though all may not be told yet." Then he took her hand and just pressed his lips to it, whispered, "I have your heart's promise, my darling," and was gone.

There was no need to tell Kate what had transpired, she fathomed it all the instant she saw Theo.

"He did not stay long. What is this fresh mystery?" Kate asked, and Theo auswered :— "I don't know; he told me not to ask till he came back and made me his wife." Then the feminine desire for a confidant obtained possession, and she added,-"He seemed afraid to be with me, and kissed my hand as if I had been a duchess instead of what I am to be to him, you know."

(To be continued.)


FAIR EVA of Desmond

Hath crossed o'er the sea,

The Bride of the Strongbow,
Earl Richard, to be;

In Estrigoil towers

There's dancing and song, And the festival mouths

Have but thickened the throng;

Not alone with the high-born,

The brave, and the fair,
Not alone with the wealthy,
Their riches they share,

But the poor and the maimed,
And the halt and the blind,
In the halls of Earl Richard

In comfort you'll find. 'Twas a blessing to all

When, like Saint Charity,

* Up to the eleventh century the piratical visits of the Black Pagans (the Danes) to the Bristol Channel were not infrequent, though they do not appear ever to have made any permanent settlement amongst the inhabitants of the country.

Strongbow, Earl Pembroke, who led the way to the Conquest of Ireland, had large possessions contiguous to the Channel, and amongst them the Castle of Estrigoil or Striguil (hodie Chepstow), a fortress of great strength and importance.

He married the daughter of an Irish prince, and in her right assumed the title of King of Leinster after her father's death. The jealousy, however, of Henry II. reduced this to a mere honorary distinction. Strongbow died A.D. 1176.

Sweet Eva of Desmond

Crossed over the sea,
The Bride of the Strongbow,
Earl Pembroke, to be.

Men of old, men of old,
Kude and earnest, fierce and bold,
Ye had changed to tigers fell,
But for woman's gentle spell
Your passions back to hold.
Quoth Octar the Jarl,

As he strode in the roar
Of the North Sea, in thunder
Belab'ring the shore,

"Have ye heard of the maiden
Who cross'd oe'r the sea,
The Bride of the Strongbow,
Earl Pembroke, to be?
'Twas Eva of Desmond,

Whom I wooed of yore,
In the court of her father,

Mac Murrogh the More;
By the thunder of Odin !

'Twere better that she
The bride of the god-born

Jarl Octar should be.
Not an earl of them all

Such a lineage can show;
In my bark I've a spear

That's a match for his bow.
To Earl Pembroke's broad lands
Some bounds there must be,
But his realm hath no bounds

Who is King on the Sea;
His realm hath no bounds
Who is King on the Sea.
"Ho! ho ye shall come, friends,
And visit me there,

My wine ye shall drink

And my venison shall share ;
Ye shall dance down the length
Of proud Estrigoil Hall,
Where your footsteps with Eva's
In cadence shall fall.

I'll look for your sails

On the Hafren full soon,
And a beacon I'll light you
More bright than the moon;
It shall guide you to me
With a sky-raking glow,
It shall welcome you too,
Spite of tempest or foe;
And of all the proud heads
In that land ye shall see,
The loftiest the head
Of Jarl Octar shall be;
The loftiest the head

Of Jarl Octar shall be."

Men of old, men of old,
Strong and daring, fierce and bold,
Worse were ye than tigers fell,
When by woman's fervid spell
Quickened, not controlled.

The banners are waving

In Estrigoil Hall, And the warriors crowd inward, Knight, noble, and all; There's a stir through the land, For the Dane hath come down, And the brow of Earl Richard Is dark with a frown;

There are dents on his helm,
There is blood on his sword,
And his liegemen keep still

When they look on their lord. Black Octar is there,

The proud Jarl from the North, Who came to bear Eva

With victory forth; And Eva is there

For Jarl Octar to see, But Octar bears chains

Whilst Earl Pembroke is free, Jarl Octar bears chains Whilst Earl Pembroke is free.

"Now tell me, Earl Richard,

Oh what may this be,
On the headland that looketh
So far on the sea?

You have piled logs of fir-tree,
And trunks of the pine,
And deluged the fabric

With fierce turpentine."
"Oh! that is my Beacon
To guide from the west
The kinsmen and liegemen
Jarl Octar loves best;
He hath promised them dances
Down Estrigoil Hall,

Where their footsteps with Eva's
In cadence shall fall.
There is pine, there is fir,

And we'll kindle it soon, "Twill shine towards the west, love, More bright than the moon. The long track of light

To the pirates shall show
The road to Jarl Octar,

The road they should go.
"Twere not easy to miss bim,
As I'll mark the way,
Let them come in the night,
Let them come in the day,
For the sky-raking flames,

As they roar from below,
On the head of the pyre

All their splendour shall throw, And that head seen the loftiest

And farthest at sea,

By the cross of the Man-god!
Jarl Octar's shall be ;

By the cross of the Man-god!
Jarl Octar's shall be."

Men of old, men of old,

Strong and vengeful, fierce and bold, Whisper, little bird, and tell Should we grow as fierce and fell Led by Passion uncontrolled?

C. H. W.


It was my last evening at Oakleigh Cottage. I had been spending a month with my friend Frank Blundell. We had met, after an interval of some years, in his country home. He and I had been near neighbours at St. Margaret's, and constant companions during our last year there. Both of us were changed since then. We had experienced the realities of life which are so little known by the ma

jority of undergraduates. We had gained wisdom enough to look back with regret upon wasted time and ill-used opportunities. We were grateful for our preservation through that part of life's journey in which we took no heed, and that our eyes had been opened to the prospect before the sun was low upon our way. We had not ceased to like all the pur suits and pleasures of the old careless days; but we enjoyed the superadded satisfaction of evil habits discarded, sound principles cultivated, and duties recognised and, to some extent, fulfilled. My friend had married since I last saw him, and his wife was a stranger to me until this visit. I found her one of the few wives who practically recommend marriage to their husbands' unmarried friends. This she did, in a great measure, by the sense of reliableness as a wife-I don't know how I can better describe it-which she conveyed. Her husband evidently had faith in her, in small matters as in great. It was plain that he trusted to her doing a thing as he would like to have it done, and that they had become one in the details of every-day experience as they were one in heart.

Assuredly, hers was a very pleasant face, with its setting of beautiful hair and its rare eyes-eyes which stand the test of a heightened colour-becoming neither dull, nor uncertain, nor metallic, but only warmer toned, as Nature becomes in a summer sunset. hostess a position affording such opportuni ties of making or marring the comfort of a guest-Mrs. Frank Blundell was eminently 66 right woman in the right place."


As a

Oakleigh is in the heart of Kent, where hops, cherries, and filberts are at home, and orchard apples eatable. The cottage was delightfully placed, looking southward across a valley upon plantations of sweet chestnuts, then fast crimsoning; for it was the season, so enjoyable in the country, between the very outdoorishuess of summer and the permanent adoption of fires. There was plenty of amusement-walks and drives in the charming neighbourhood, and visits to the hop-gardens, where armies of hop-pickers, with their pioneers the pole-pullers, were advancing, leaving desolation in their track: a scene which no artist has fairly pictured, but which everybody ought to see. Then we had some good fishing in the Medway, far up above the coal barges.

Well, as I have said, it was my last evening at Oakleigh Cottage. We were sitting together, Blundell and I, after dinner, when he said, "There's a fire in my room; I vote we go there till Mary is ready for tea."

So we went, and talked from our easy-chairs through a perfumed cloud. It soon became

evident to me that my friend had "something on his mind."


He let his pipe out, and relighted it. sently he put it down, and, saying "Excuse me a minute,” went out.

He soon came back, and on my inquiring whether anything was the matter, replied, "Oh no; but I have something to say to you, and, as it can't be said in a few words, I thought I would tell Mary we should not want tea for an hour or so, and she need not wait for us; but she is up with baby, and says that she is in no hurry, so we will join her by-and-by."

I was rather perplexed by all this preparation; but only assured him of my readiness to listen. Then he began.


"In all our talks together about old times since you have been here," he said, "we have never touched upon a topic that was a frequent one at our sittings after Hall and Chapel. suppose some delicacy of feeling-for I verily believe you have a little of it—has prevented your beginning the subject."

I was going to protest against this modified form of compliment, and to ask a question, when I was stopped by—

"Don't bother, that's a good fellow, or I shall never get to my story. You remember well enough, I have no doubt, how I used to talk of Mary Percival."

"Yes," I said, "and I have often wondered what it all came to. The Christian name is a 'household word' here. Was it Mary?" I was checked again by Blundell's look.

"You promised to listen,” he growled, "and now you are cross-examining. Have a little patience, and forgive me too, if I repeat what I have already told you. Mary Percival and I were friends from infancy. Our mothers were friends before us, and my earliest recollections are associated with her and hers. When we came to be man and woman we read and argued and were happy together, as we had played and quarrelled and made up' again in our childhood. The old friendship had increased, but had not changed its character; at least I can speak for myself. You remember what Tennyson says in 'Dora'—

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bridge for a moment, and try to recall a Trinity man named Horner-Handsome Horner' they called him."

"I remember him perfectly," I said. "He was in the second Trinity, and rowed seven in their first boat when they bumped' us in the Long Reach.' A broad-shouldered man, with curly chestnut hair and white arms. "Regardless of grammar I cry, 'That's "He and I had a slight

him,'" was the reply. acquaintance at the University, in the last Term when we both read with Smith; and meeting in town after we took our degree, we became very good friends. Some time after this, he wrote to ask me to go and see them at his father's rectory in Surrey. I went and saw the dear old rector and Horner's mother, and, more than all, I saw his sister. Recalling her brother-fancy him a woman-refined, brightened, intensely beautified, and you can form some slight idea of Mary Horner. It is impossible for me to describe fitly the effect she produced upon me from the first. My acquaintance had included some very pretty women. I might have said of myself, if it were not conceited, Militavi non sine gloriâ ; not as a flirt though, mind; but Mary Horner was a new experience. She fascinated me, and I was a gone graduate. You may be sure that I did not get any better the longer I stayed within the charmed circle. I got on famously with all the people down there, and fancied that I was not disliked by her. You know what I mean. But I could never detect anything like symptoms of what shall I call it ?-reciprocity of affection. (Don't laugh, there's relief in such a way of putting it.) On the contrary, she treated me with cordial but thoroughly self-possessed friendliness. She was not the sort of woman to encourage any lover, however acceptable in ocular demonstration' and that kind of thing, and it never occurred to me to try it on; and then the exercise, and the general atmosphere of the place, were so conducive to health and spirits that the lady had no reason, on that first visit, to suspect from my appearance the condition of my heart. This was in the

summer; but the following winter found me again at Shallowford Rectory. I met some pleasant people there whom I had not seen before; among others, Mr. Horner's curate, Charles Oxenden. He was a really good fellow, heartily devoted to his work, as well as an accomplished man and an agreeable companion. All this I could but acknowledge, in spite of the shadow of a consciousness that there was something' in the confidential relationship subsisting between him and Mary Horner. But then I consoled myself with the

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