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:THE MISSING COIN; • • OR;■…

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THE MISSING COIN; • • OR; ■; 1 LOVER'S CONSCIENCE. — ♦ r ..■ — CHAPTER IV. When the strong-and weaker blend 1 We may hope a iappy.wd Whenever strebgtlt with softness joins, When with the rough the mild combines, Then all is union, sweet and strong. Consider ye who join your hands, It hearts be twined in mutual bands, 1: .C For passion's brief, repentance long." T.ro,nszationf)-oni Schillor. ■ 'ONE evening, not long after his conversation with Naomi, Harrison went is search of Doctor David. He found him alone in the little study, where pa- tients in;general were received; 1 When he saw that the .doctor was alone, Boss lost no..tiime in exhibiting on his broad palm the gem circled shekel. I- The doctor's face betrayed intense delight. With- out a word he took the coin, drew Ross's arm in his, and -led ;the way upstairs. They ascended step by step, like the famous twins of Siam. The doctor clasped the asdatantafc the curiosity shop as if he had been a long-lost son, whilst his eyes gloated upon the treasure in his other hand. But," said Boss, as they climbed the stairs, "Do you know that I am a thief." How is this ?" said the doctor, as he paused on the landing, and then looking with a clouded face at Boss, repeated, How is this? "Ten or a dozen years ago—it might be more," said the young man—"I found that shekel in the mud-in the stret;-onthepa,veIlleI).t." "Oh, well, if that's all, it's all right; come on." The doctor took Harrison's arm again, and they walked on to his sanctum. "I thought you were about as much a thief as that;" said the doctor, laughing—he could now afford to Jugh, Harrison did not join jn the merriment, 1: o wf>yc?r, .No—you suspected me! he said. Did I? "For that reason, because you believed you might suspect me, I have done what gives you the right to suspect me all my days." I understand you; I know all about it-you mean you've kept the shekel ever since you found it.. I don't oare how is is now that I have got it once again." "Hear me out, doctor," said Boss. I lost it as soon as I found it. This is the third time that shekel has been in my hands. Until to-night I have barely touched it even with the ends of my fingers. It only came and went. But, mind, I tell you I am a thief. You will be so good as to ask no more." I'm satisfied. I'll ask no more. I know well enough that you are an honest fellow. If anybody is wronged an atom's worth by this business, you'll tell me, I know, and, however great his loss, I will com- pensate him." No one is wronged." And your mind is easy about it ? "Perfectly." '"We'll see if the" shekel fits into its socket, and if the jewels are all right. I won't make the examina- tion alone. I want you to see and be convinced that the treasure is nrdne." The doctor brought the case from the safe with haste and with anxiety, in spite of his confidence. As he anticipated, and as Boss, too, expected, the coin fitted exactly into its place. The jewels had never been disturbed. Harrison's business with the doctor was ended when proof was given him that the precioua coin was in the possession of its rightful owner. He saw it, and. would have departed instantly. The doctor, in true English style, shook the young man by the hand so repeatedly that it was positively surprising the arm was not wrung off. Had he no- thing to tell? really nothing? Had there been no risk, no expense, no danger? The doctor was curious; but Harrison was dumb. There was the coin. There, too, was the ring. The shekel was the dootor's- nothing could be clearer. The secret was Harrison's— that also was clear. Plainly, nothing could be done with the yoang man from Braham's. The doctor was, therefore, con- strained to let him go; constrained to keep the ring, Service had been rendered that was not to be re- warded. When Boss departed the doctor paced up and down the room, exclaiming all the time— Wonderful, wonderful! That young fellow's a study; he's honest, but his master's a rogue. I must do something for him-I must take him out of that wretch's hands." When Boss reached his master's house, he went* into the small sitting-room occupied by Naomi. The young lady looked him wistfully in tte face, and gave him her hand. She saw that the ring was gone. She smiled, for now she knew that his promise had been fulfilled. Boss blessed her for that smile; and, as she asked no question, he blessed her for her silence. CHAPTEB V. "L,ove, that's the world's preservative, keeps all souls of things alive, i; Controls the mighty power of fate, And gives manktad a longer date- The life of Nature. That restores As fast as time and death devours • And to it the world doth bwe Not only earth, but Heaven,too; For love's the only trade that's driven An interest of state in Heaven." WHEN Braham walked about again, the first thing he did, of course, was to visit his collection, and this he teok good care to do at a time when he knew he should be undisturbed. To his horror he did not, in the very first moment @f his search, lay his hand on the shekel of Baroho- chebus. He had calculated, as he lay on his bed, how he could send his daughter on an errand that would cause her to be ton minutes absent—the exact time it would require for him to creep down the stairs, open the secret safe, and bring thence the .shekel. Naomi, according to her father's instructions, had departed on her errand. With stealthy step Mr. Braham ap- proached the secret cupboard. He reached down the box, and lo. t e p ace where the coin should be was vacant It was obvious however long he should stand there, that delay w-'tLId effect nothing. Still he did not stir till warned by a creaking door, and an advancing footstep; then he retired up the stairs again, and fell gasping on his bed. it took him all the interim of time until his daughter reached his bedside so to dispose of himself that this feat of his should not be suspected. He was cautious; but there Was another still more cautious. If any untoward result had attended the old man s performance, Ross Harrison was at hand to serve him as a son. Justice had seized upon that old villain who had rejoiced in deceiving othets Now his heart throbbed with pain at the very idea that he had himself, been deceived, cheated, asd robbed. w It was a horrible meditation to which Braham was now Qoomed. His daughter Naomi told him the day she brought the shekel that she had secured the coin in the plaoe. where she found it. The key of the safe was fastened to the cord about his neck. With her own hands ahe had secured it. He believed his daughter. He was firm in his attachment to her) and felt sure she would nt>t deceive him. All that day hiB subttq brain was working—all night he watched and thought. But he asked no qùestiobis. He only wanted to get upon his feet again, and go aoout his business-he should then not need assist- ance to search out this mystery.. He depended upon usual subtle tact to recover his ioat treasure. He arose from his bed the third day after he had i discovered his loss, and descended to his shop, and in sPite of nature went to work again. He laughed at expostulation, warning, and entreaty. lie wanted -to now what Boss and Mason were a out.- Nobody tell him. He must for himself discover. » He dared not breathe his loss to Harrison. He pre- eired to charge Mason with theft. It was not eredi- 3 e that Harrison was in any way implicated by that! ^appearance. iabou had been in Braham's employ thirty years dis>,Jaoie" Hever been detected yet 'ill any alw aeS'y' an<* hi* hard work and "little pay, had had^8 111 ^th his master's entire approbation.-• He ear managed merely to exist on the wagea he had 'With n by inches from disease, iig 'n j M economy, he would not leave enough in ■No TT*8*' kuy a headstone for his.grave, poor man. jn^anf .suspe,cte.d him, a»d now he wwacqjjhim. Watch him he did. In his going out and coming in. In his work and at his rest. In his speech and in his silence. Examine infinitesimals through a micro- scope--what will you discover ? Leviathans—monsters that rival the creatures of whom, in pur own behalf, we say, it is well they are extinct. Ancient chaos alone could endure them. And if you watch P. man what will you discover ? A vast variety of thing you did not anticipate. Habits, tastes, tendencies, weak- nesses, follies, slips; perhaps virtues. Mason, on inspection, .unconsciously on exhibition, was not the Mason he had been in his master's eyes formerly. » His case was not improved when the poor creature discovered that for some reason he had incurred Mr. Braham's displeasure. He endured a great deal of abuse with patience, because he saw, as nobodycould help seeing, that Braham's days were numbered. But one day, when even his meekness had been tried beyond endurance, and he was about to leave the shop, that words might be avoided which men speak only to repent of, Braham called to Boss, who sat in the window at work. _0 A time, had. come, Mason felt, when ali must De cleared up, when the soul of the Jew must leave its mortal coil. He had stopped short, turned around, and began to return, even before his ma-,ter shouted- "Come back J "Let down the blinds and get alight," said Braham to Boss. Imagine how he said it.. SBoss obeyed—he also knew a time had come. I Now, sir, wheel up the little safe, You, Mason, J come here and look on. I want you by, when I count | those coins again," Mason came up with quiet intrepidity, till he stood within reach of Braham's hand. That han<3 might J conceal dagger or pistol, by the aspect of the man; f but, no, the pulsation was visible through his whole I frame, he had no nerve for fire-arms. I Boss wheeled the safe to the chair on which his j master sat. I Braham had the keyfm his hand, He himself un- | locked the door. Take out the upper range first." j Boss Spread the priceless boxes on the table. How I awful was the glare that Braham fastened on them How fearfully swift the enumeration 6f _those aged eyes! Well for Naomi she was spared this spectacle. All the gold of California could not have recompensed her for what she must at that instant have felt. These were all Jewish coins. Mason, look here! said the Jew. Isn't this a pretty sight?" It's a, precious pile] you have there," answered Mason. All complete," said Braham, and over the words his thin lips closed with the exactness Cía vice. j All complete, sir; I suppose so," echoed Mason, gently. He was afraid. He looked now for the first time, and uneasily, at Boss. He thought his master's reason was forsaking him. Brat Boss stood motionless, like a man without perceptible fear or hope. He was merely waiting. Braham laughed. Well, give me bask what's missing and it will be all complete." Is anything really missing, sir ? Braham looked at Mason with an awful threat, whitet the glare of de-ith was visible in his eyes. And Ross surveyed the two. How long was he going to watch this struggle? Unto its very end? Why not? These men were standing both of them on the very verge of death—why not let them go on in their own way ? But what if the curse of Naomi's father should fall on his head? Braham was still struggling to utter the word's he had ready for Mason when Boss said, with a sort of quiet authority— fE Yes,, there's one coin missing, Mason. A shekel. It had a setting of,precious stones. It was a shekel of the time of Barchqchebus, the impostor. I've seen it lately in the collection of a Jew. Braham sprang to his feet—his hand fell on Mason's shoulder like a thunderbolt. How did it get there, thief-mon ster-wretch you whom I have kept from starving, whose very life was in my keeping—tell, tell me where is my coin ? Mason shrank at that question, as it appeared, to a mere atom of manhood. The words seemed to blast him. Biit a voice now spoke thata,ppeared to poor paralysed Mason to alone preserve the universe from instant annihilation. If there's a thief in the-business, Mr. Braham, you must look farther than Mason—you must look as far as me. I restored the shekel to its owner. Braham's lips could not give utterance to the,gigan- tic curse that-sprang from his heart. His lips moved, "biit no sound reached the ears of his listeners. Speechless and inanimate, BOPS Harrison and Mason carried their old master to his bed. Boss Harrison, seeing the dangerous condition his master was in, set aside all scruples and went im- mediately to Dr. David and implored him to visit Mr. Braham. They arrived at the sick man's bedside he had not stirred, and scarcely breathed. Naomi had by this time arrived, and, sobbing loudly, she said- Oh, doctor, what can we do for him ? Nothing at,present; he will retire just now, and I will then give him some restoratives; but let me tell you that he is Seriously ill." "You'll do all you can for him, doctor?" said Naomi. "Of that you may rest assured," and away went the doctor to his surgery to prepare fiuch remedies as he thought advisable. On his return, the patient gave a low moan, and Dr. David suggested- that his daughter had better speak to him. Father," shesaid, are you ill ? I'm better than I have been, my child. How long ,have I been asleep ? he said, in a weak voice. Only half an hour." Only half an haur! What wonders can the Almighty reveal in that short time! In those few minutes I have gone through my whole life, and found little to applaud. The only cheery spot in it is my r love for you, and the protection I have afforded to ftioss. Gold gives me no pleasure now. I feel that I must be called away." The doctor quietly handed some restoratives, and Naomi said— "Father, dear, drink a little of this, I'm sure tit will do you good." i He swallowed a few drops, and appealed to revive. The doctor whispered," Give him a little, more," and the sound caught the invalid's ears. Instead of frowning he smiled and said— "Come here, doctor, I have eause to thank you. You are returning good for evil. I dreamt you had recovered your Barchochebus. Is it so P It is, I am glad tosay. v, "So am I, now. The lad is more honourable than his master." "Where is he?" "I am here, sir," replied Uoss. Sit down beside me—there; and you, Naomi, take another chair beside Rim. I have much to say, but must Be brief," Ross H &me is Braham; yon. are the! arrison,- your n of my first cousin he and I were brought up as bfotheis, I succeeded in the woild, he failed, a«n^. left you!" poor orphan: I did not know your where- about till I picked you up that eventful evening when you had found that coin of which I robbed you. bmce then I have taken to you as I would to a son. An, an. J. am getting weaker. Where is your hand, and yours, Naorai P, You are one-the only earthly treasures I now care for." His voice got weaker, and for a few moments he could say no more. On reviving a little he beckoned Dr. David, and with trembling voice said, "Forgive me From my very heart," said the doctor. That boy, pointing to Ross, has saved me much pain in my last moments m acting honestly. A good conscience is the noblest thing a naan can possess. I would I—I— Here the poor Jew fell exhausted, and though he rallied a little once after this, in forty-eight hours he was a corpse. i Dr. David became the confidential adviser of the young pair, who, as our readers may anticipate, were no,. long in getting married after they found it was Mr. Braham's expressed wish they should do so, he having left them all ,hia fortune on this condition; and the doctor then discovered the mystery of his lost coin. and that a lover's conscience had been sorely tried, but had come out of the ordeal pure and. un- sullied. ->

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