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A KIND REMEMBRANCE

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there in L, Iiing Hkc a cold bauds. my heart as I used to think t;t.ii(isoiiit.I;id lying out an aps of dead, with his crii-j ir all matted with blood, a.i i, gone out of his eyes-nevel, ,u came back any more I did vei-y gi > hut. I suffered for it long and s and I've often wondered since how re up against it all. "'Twenty long yea is had passed, and in my bit of black tltai 1 wore then I was going back to Mavis across the fields. I had been out to do a day's work at. a farmhouse, and it was getting dusk, when ] caught sight of a man in a red coat, leaning against the stile, and my heart seemed to give one great jump and then to stand still-st.ill as I did for a piece. At last I went on, for I thought perhaps that there would be some news of my bonny lad, and where they bad laid him. I can't tell you; I don't know. It seemed all dream-like, when I was stand- ing by the stile, holding by the arms a brokendown, yellow-faced, grey-haired man, leaning upon a crutch and a stick. No one else would have known him but I did—I did, as I held him tightly, and cried out, Ah, Tom 1 come back ? And he knew me, too, as crutch and stick fell from his hands, and his arm* went round my neck, and his head down upon my shoulder, as he whispered, Yes, my lass I come back: an old man-to A "'Changed! yes, we were changed: all but the hearts, sir; and as I held him tome, it seemed lo me that all the joy and happiness that might-have been mine Jor twenty years gone, was now pressed altogether ill tlJOse few minutes, as I held him tomy poor healing heart. "'Yes, the country had had all the strength of my poor Tom but what did I care how people sneered, and said j that, he, wauled a nurse, and not. a wife? We married, and were happy in our i way and i did nurse him, long and faith- ful, till now—now—and now he's gone. I did the best I could, but it was hard towards the last, when 1 tost my customers, and money grew so scarce. But, there,' she said, shaking back the straggling hairs from her forehead,' every- thing is to he sold now, aud I must, go to work again. It won't he for long I shall want it,'she said, mournfully, as she ¡ rose and smiled, lifted her basket to go, after measuring out a few green goose- berries into a dish. We knew Mother Bond's story as well as she could tell us and for years past we had bought fruit, vegetables, and now and then rabbits, of the old lady, for there was somet) ting pleasan land welcome in her; and now, as she turned to go, I saw my wife's eyes looking wistfully at mine. "Perhaps old married folks have some electric or magnetic chain, which com- municates thought to thought—perhaps not-at all events, I saw somebody's face brighten, as I slipped a little, not. much, money, into the poor old lady's hand. 'It may help to tide you over the ■ i l. i am poor my- sei I, or 1 u hi !•; I¡, nit ire.' ,P< i'haps it was irom so unex- [iccic, I don't know—hut, the next ill lily i; i: 11. 'Iain able to pIty you a gem. sir,' «he sobbed. it back; but I here, In i i ig us a ra hi ii t some- times, or a. lew vegetables, and you will soon pay il. back.' HltL would you lake it like that?' she cried. 'Ta.k., it! ofcotusewe would,' I said, 'and be glad to do so,' '"The next recollection I have is of feeling a, hi!, of hard basket slicking into my ribs; a pair of vigorous arms round i my neck a, wet. face against mine; while there was the sharp smack as of a heart.y kiss; and then.Mother Bond's black bon- net and plaid shawl were disappearing through 1.1 it; door, which had scarcely closed before two of her arms were round my neck, and another tear-wet cheek lay against mine. "I will own there was a capital rabbit- pie now and then—contents furnished by Airs. Bond—while more than once I learned that the fruit of the green-gage tart came from the same source. Then six months passed, and we saw no more of the old widow, till one day my wife came with brightened eyes to fetch me into the kitchen, to undergo a horrible scene with Mother Bond, who would cry, and kiss me again, and press a little bag, containing forty-five shillings, into my hand, while somebody looked on, half laughing, and half crying, too. "And mother Bond was in decent mourning her cart was freshly painted; and the donkey looked frisky. She had a good stock of fruit, two baskets of which were upon the table and volubly the old lady told us of how she had got every customer back, and was doing a capital business. 'So good,' I said, 'that you would not come near usfor six months.' All I sir,' she began, and her lip was quivering; but she saw through it the next moment, and was content. .For yea ni p.ftpr, once a week, you ini^TirnaTe asked yohie little fat-fingered juvenile at our place where the fruit came from tha was being devoured with such gusto, to hear that it was a present from" MiLlel Bon." And so the years foiled on with the old dame prosperously, till with a feeling of true sorrow we heard of her death. Well to-day, and out with her fruit-cart: tired to-morrow, and obliged, as she sa.id, to sit hack in her easy chair lo rest, for she did not feel so strong as she used. She sat down that afternoon, but only to be carried by her neighbours to her bed, where her limbs could be decently composed. For the fruit was dead-ripe, and the hand had at last been stretched out to gather it into the great store." I lislened patiently till Mr. Ross had ended, and thell it struck me that, per- haps, after all, Mother Bond might have been in her right senses when she made her will; and that, in spite of all that has been said to the contrary, there is an abundant store of Urue gratitude in the world.

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