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matter of discussion, the major had retired " I am exceedingly sorry to miss Mrs. from the service, and had settled at a Layard,” he said. (“So far, so good, pretty place called Uplands in the village thought Jack.) “I hope I shall have the of Staunton, and Jack preferred to be ar- pleasure of seeing her another day. But ticled to a solicitor in the neighboring my call was really upon you, Miss Layard. town and stay at home, than join the finest I heard you say you were fond of picotees, regiment in the world, and quit the man and I have brought you two or three, if who had been to him father, mother, and you will honor me by accepting them.” brother all in one.
Kate was charmed. She thanked the There had always been perfect harmony major in the prettiest way imaginable, between these two ; they had never had and looked at the scented blossoms as if what people call words ; no breath of dis- she loved them. Then she poured out the sensión had ever marred their happiness. tea, chatting brightly. Nothing, indeed, had ever occurred to It would have been impossible to say disturb their beautiful relations till one which gentleman Kate preferred, or if insummer day when they met on the thresh- deed she preferred either. She was used old of Mrs. Layard's house, each with to society, and she was seven or eightflowers in his hand. Jack was two-and-and-twenty, and she knew quite well how thirty now, handsome and popular; and to entertain a father and son without the major, who was twice his age, was showing her own hand. So she inserted handsome and popular too — tall, erect, the tiniest soupçon of deference into her with eyes that were still keen, and a manner towards the major, and just the moustache that was thick if it was iron- suggestion of pleasure-in-his-company into grey. The major's flowers had been tied her way with Jack, and she satisfied by the gardener into a stiff bouquet; Jack's neither, and filled both of them, for the roses had been thrust æsthetically into a first time, with ugly thoughts. little basket. They were both evidently The major took his leave first, and it offerings, and as evidently offerings to be would have been noticeable to any one made to Mrs. Layard — a recent arrival who had known them long that his exit in the village – or to her pretty daughter was unnatural. Usually when the father Kate, For the first time in his life Jack and son paid calls together, the ner glared at his father, and for the first time would arise and say, “ Well, my boy, I in his life the major frowned at his think we must be going,” and Jack would son. But they had no time to speak, respond cheerily and jump up willingly. for the servant came quickly to the door But to-day the major said hesitatingly, " ! and ushered them both into the drawing- don't know if you are coming, Jack;" and
Jack, who had been listening vaguely to Mrs. Layard's drawing-room was cool the chatter of Miss Kate's young brother, and pretty, and full of sweet scents, partly replied, “No, I'm just going to see this of Indian fans and cedar-wood boxes, and youngster's guinea-pigs, if Miss Lagard partly of mignonette and pinks; and Miss will allow me.” Kate, coming forward to receive the gen. So the major went home alone, heavy tlemen in a white gown with a rosebud at hearted, and that was a dismal evening at her waist, was a cool and pretty and sweet Uplands. Even the servant who waited object.
at table marked the constrained conversa. “How good of you to come! I am so tion, and told the other domestics that sorry my mother is out,” she said, with a "something was up." A great mountain smile for both. “Let me give you some of formality seemed suddenly to have tea."
sprung up between the two men. They Now, thought Jack, was his father's talked certainly, but they talked as if they opportunity. Would he express regret at had been acquaintances. They were poMrs. Layard's absence, and say that he lite, and, being good-tempered men, they had brought her some flowers ?
were not suriy; but all the frankness and “ I have brought you a few roses, Miss the fire had gone out of their intercourse. Layard,” said the young man in blunt After thirty-two years of the closest affechaste. “I don't know if you care for tion, Love the Beautiful had stepped in roses, but if you will accept
and struck a discordant note. “ Indeed, I love roses !” she inter- After dinner, Jack murmured a few rupted him. “How good of you to have words about business, and withdrew to his thought of me! And how pretty they own sitting-room. It was not a very comlook in that basket!”
fortable apartment because, as a matter of Then it was the major's turn.
fact, Jack never used it. His father's so.
called study had been the general living- When the servants came down the next room of the two ever since Uplands became morning, they found the front door untheir home, and there they had made them. bolted and the study window open, and a selves snug, and accumulated all their note on the study table directed to Jack in precious litter, and steeped the air with to the major's writing, and a note on the hall bacco smoke, and been inordinately happy. table directed to the major in Jack's writBut on this evening Jack felt that he must ing. And the bedrooms of both gentlemen be alone, and he therefore stalked across were empty, and some of their clothes and the hall to the room which was called his, other necessaries were gone. The butler shut the door after him with a decided hurried off to the station, and there learnt hand, and threw himself down in a leather that his old master had left Staunton by armchair in no enviable mood. The major the mail-train at I A.M., and that his did much the same in the room opposite. young master had departed by the 4 A.M. He, too, shut the door upon his sorrow, train, and that both had booked to London. and sat down sadly to ponder the situa. In despair, the man telegraphed to the tion.
hotel where Major Wodehouse and his At eleven o'clock, when the house was son generally slept in town, to their bankquiet and all the servants in bed, Jack ers, and to Jack's office. But no one could presented himself in the study.
throw any light upon the extraordinary “Father,” he said.
event. The gentlemen had not been seen “Yes, my boy,” replied the major, or heard of. Only an undated note reached without looking round.
Jack's partner in the afternoon, in which Somehow the major looked older. He Jack stated that he had been imperatively was seated low down in his easy.chair, and called away by private affairs and hoped his spare form seemed shrunken; his voice that his sudden absence would not be even sounded thinner. Jack stood and inconvenient. The astonished servants looked at him pitifully.
stood aghast, and they were still more as“Father, which of us two is to go tonished when upon the following day, away?” he asked at last.
two letters were delivered at Uplands, one We will settle that tomorrow, my bearing a French postmark and addressed boy,” replied the major.
by the major to his son, the other bearing Then he rose and drew himself up to a German postmark and addressed by his full height. If anything, he was taller Jack to his father. than Jack, and he was very dignified. It was evident that something had driven
“ It is a misfortune, my boy,” he said the two men apart, but that each believed gently, “and, as you say, one of us must the other to be at home, and Jack's partgo away. We will settle which tomorrow. ner took upon himself to desire the butler Now good-night, and God bless you !" to go on as usual, saying that no doubt
He bent forward and kissed Jack as if Major Wodehouse and Mr. John would he had been still a little boy, and Jack re. soon return or communicate with their turned the embrace.
friends or servants. My dear, dear father!” he murmured. But this hope proved fallacious. Every "God bless you !” said the major day or so letters came from the major to again.
Jack, and from Jack to the major, always Then the two men lighted their candles with a fresh postmark as if they were and went up-stairs, parting at the major's travelling without halt, the major's letters door with a close hand-clasp.
always from France, Jack's always from An hour later the major softly opened Germany. It was certain that each be. his door and came down-stairs with a lieved the other to be at home, and was Gladstone bag in his hand. Entering his eluding pursuit by constant movement, study, he wrote a short note, and, leaving and by leaving no address at the tempoit on the table, he cautiously opened the rary resting-places. Jack's partner wrote window and went out into the warm sum- to both at various postes restantes, but got mer night.
no answer, and presently he gave it up. Three hours afterwards, Jack also “It is a mere misunderstanding, not a emerged noiselessly from his room and quarrel,” he told the butler. “ Any one of descended the stairs. He carried a small these letters would give us the key to the portmanteau, and in one hand he held a mystery; but we have no right to open sealed envelope, which he deposited on the them, so long as we are assured by their hall table. Then he let himself out into regular arrival that both gentlemen are the fragrant morning air and disappeared alive. Keep the place in order, and be rapidly down the drive.
sure one of them will turn up in time."
So a great pile of letters from France | met overhead and the blue sky and the and Germany accumulated; and people sunlight peeped merrily through here and talked a great deal about the disappear- there. But in autumn it was gloomy; the ance of the major and his son, and made path was wet with recent rain, the gaunt, many surmises, and suggested numbers of bare trees no longer protected from more or less plausible hypotheses; and the heat but shut out the fading day; it the summer grew to its height and waned was already night in this grove, and Kate into autumn, and autumn frosts and falling felt almost relieved when she reached a leaves began to herald the approach of gate leading into an open meadow. She winter; and still nothing was heard of the went and leant against it, and surveyed absentees; and as Uplands was situated the scene. There was Uplands, with its a little off the highroad, out of sight be- gables and chimneys rising above the came out of mind, and the affairs of the trees; the placid fields lay before her; a Wodehouses were canvassed less and less dog bayed in the distance; the moon, every day.
almost at the full, was just rising above It was at this time, when the nuts were the horizon. Everything was unspeakaripe and the Virginia creeper scarlet and bly peaceful except Kate's heart. She the chrysanthemums in bloom, that Kate glanced towards Uplands and sighed Layard' began to look pale and languid, deeply: She had never even owned to and to seem as if she were moped by life herself why she had been miserable since in the country, or as if, at all events, the the fair June day, when the major had air of Staunton did not suit her. Miss come to her with his picotees, and Jack Kate's beauty did not diminish, but it as- with his roses; but there are some things sumed a very delicate character, and her — facts of the heart mostly — that do not little hand grew smaller, and the color in require open acknowledgment. Kate had her cheeks came and went, like moonlight kept some of the flowers that had been peeping through clouds. She coughed a given to her on that day so long ago, and little, and people wondered if there were it seemed to her that their faint perfume consumption in the family, and what Mr. followed her wherever she went. Perhaps Layard had died of, and some even went it did, for she looked at the withered blos. so far as to commiserate Mrs. Layard soms and fingered them every day. on her daughter's failing health. But Mrs. She was still leaning against the gate Layard, whatever she guessed or knew, when she became aware of a footstep that revealed no secrets.
was coming towards her under the trees. " It was only the autumn weather,” she She listened. It was a slow footstep, as declared. “ Kate had been bred in Lon- of some one weary and out of heart, and don, and perhaps it was damp in the coun- as it drew nearer, she found that it was try during the fall of the leaf. She thought accompanied by a laboring breath, which she would send her to Brighton for a week, came and went like a profound sigh. As or on a visit to some friends at Earl's the wayfarer came closer, she stepped out Court."
into the road to meet him. She was no But time went on, and Miss Kate went coward, and she thought that here was neither to Earl's Court nor Brighton. She some one, ill at ease like herself, whom looked fragile; but she was as discreet as she might assist. her mother, and though she was unhappy In the gloom of the trees she descried and troubled, she always said that she was the figure of an old man, walking at a lag. well, or at least that she only had a head. gard's pace and carrying a bag. In a few ache.
moments he had reached the open space by There came an afternoon in late Octo the gate where Kate stood, which was now ber when the white mists hung low above flooded with moonlight. It was the major. the earth, when the red and yellow leaves He was a good deal aged, but Kate recoglay rotting in heaps upon the ground, nized him instantly, and with a little cry when only a robin's voice disturbed the of joy she sprang to his side. melancholy silence, when all was still and • Óh, Major Wodehouse, is it you ?” damp, and the year seemed oppressed she exclaimed. with the burden of its days. Kate had “ Kate! Miss Layard !” he said, tremgone out, as she often did now — for the bling. pensive evening suited her mood after “Yes," cried she; “it is 1 – Kate the afternoon tea, and almost mechanically Layard !” her feet took her along the quiet road that “ Kate Layard !” he repeated. led to Uplands. In summer this road was “ Yes, Kaie Lavard. Oh, Major Wodea cool and bowery place, where the trees | house, don't you know me!” she cried.
“What is the matter with you? You look An hour later, Kate and the major bad so strange. What have you been doing? read Jack's first note and most of his suband where, oh, where is your son ? "
sequent letters. “ Where is Jack?”faltered the major. He staggered, and Kate, with a strength written on the morning of his departure,
"My dear Father," the young man had that she did not know she possessed, Kate Layard has come to be all the stretched out her hands and supported world to me, but I cannot forget that you him. “Dear Major Wodehouse, you look so before. So I am going. When I think
have been all the world to me all my days ill and so tired," she said soothingly. “I am so glad to see you ! Let me take your for news of you.
you are married, I will wait in some place
Till then, I shall write, arm and help you home.” “But you said, Where is Jack?" said
but push on, and leave no address, the major.
“ Believe me truly, dear Father,
“ Your loving Son, He seemed half dazed. He looked
“J. W." stupidly at her. In four months he had grown ten years older.
The succeeding letters were written in “Yes, dear Major Wodehouse," said the same strain, and at last came several Kate, trying to speak steadily through her from Bonn impatient for replies. tears. “ He went away the same night The major groaned. that you did, and he has been travelling "Why didn't he trust me?" said he, in Germany ever since. I believe there over and over again. are hundreds of letters awaiting you from “But you will write now?” suggested him. Oh, let us make haste and get 10 Kate; " or telegraph ?" the house!"
“I will telegraph,” said the major " Jack went away the same night!” eagerly, opening the drawer where he echoed the major. ' " My boy, my boy,” kept telegraphic forms. “ He will be he murmured, you might have trusted at home the day after to-morrow, and me! You said, 'Which of us must go ?' you and you might have known I should be the “I," said Kate, blushing," am going to
Brighton to-morrow.” “ But why had either of you to go
“What?" cried the major. away?” asked Kate, with irrepressible But he could say no more, for hurrying curiosity.
footsteps were heard in the hall and a The major drew himself up till once voice that cried, “Where is he? Where more he was a fine man. In the moonlight is my father?” he and Kate scanned each other.
And the major rushed out, and Kate “ Kate!” he said solemnly and with sank half fainting into a chair. old-fashioned courtesy," I am not ashamed to say that my boy and I both aspired to I do not know exactly what Jack and the band of the same dear and sweet lady. the major said to each other, nor would it When I found it out, I resolved to go be fair - even if I knew — to relate the away, hoping that you and he would precise terms in which Jack spoke his marry and be happy, and I wrote and hopes to Kate nor how Kate made answer. wroté begging him to try and win you. But I will say that Kate walked home in But at last, my dear” — the major's voice the moonlight on Jack's arm, and that the faltered "at last I could bear it no major looked after them without envy, and longer, for I have never been separated thought that, at past sixty, a daughter is from my boy since he was born, and I better than a second wife. hoped I might have the honor of calling The major appeared the next day, spruce you my daughter, and instead you tell me and tall as ever, and nobody but Kate knew that my boy has filed.”
how nearly sorrow and separation had Kate burst into a passion of weeping. made an old man of him. As for Jack, “Oh, Major Wodehouse," she sobbed, when he read his father's first note and “I don't know what your son feels about successive letters, he felt more inclined to me, but, whatever happens, let me be a cry than he had done since he was a little daughter to you!”
lad and lost a favorite marble. “I love Then the major kissed her tenderly. Miss Layard,” the major had written,
“My dear," he said, “whatever happens“ but I love you even more, my boy, and I I will be a father to you."
retire. Win her, Jack, and God be with And she took his arın and guided his you both.” wearied footsteps to his own door.
"A father's love is beyond words," he
said to Kate. “I ought not to have eighteenth century Britain was constantly thwarted him."
visited by foreigners, and of these up" But you see, Jack, I loved you,” re. wards of sixty published elaborate acturned Kate conclusively.
counts of their sojourns among us, thus So the bridal was celebrated, and Jack's providing the student of the social condipartner, who was the only other person tion of England during that eventful who knew why the major and Jack had period with an inexhaustible storehouse vanished, made a speech, in which he said of facts. It is to be wished that the same words of such oracular significance that could be said of the second half of the the bride blushed, and the bridegroom seventeenth century. But it cannot. and his father exchanged glances of deep There was no lack of foreign visitors to affection.
our shores during that time, but they " In every incident of life,” said this either did not see fit to record their expegentleman, my partner Wodehouse and riences in print, or if they did, they have my friend the major have acted similarly. not survived to us. The number of those Even in their love affair — if it becomes who actually published accounts of their me to tread on ground so sacred – it has perambulations through the land we live been with them a case of · Like father, in between the accession of Charles II. in like son.'”
FAYR MADOC. 1660 until the close of the seventeenth
century, so far as we have been able to ascertain, does not amount to more than a dozen all told, and all their performances,
without exception, are meagre and unsat. From The Gentleman's Magazine,
isfactory to the last degree. Hence the TOWN LIFE UNDER THE RESTORATION. student who desires to view the social
The representation of places and peo- condition of "this happy breed of men, ple, whether we chance to be well ac. this earth, this England,” during that quainted with them, or whether we chance period, is deprived of those aids which lie to be strangers to them, is almost certain so plentiful to his hand when he sits down to prove attractive. For one reason, the to study the social condition of England renewal of our own impressions, or the during the succeeding century. He must comparison of them with those of others, either abandon the idea altogether, or set is well calculated to afford us considerable himself diligently to peruse the dramatic gratification. For another, we gladly em- literature and other forms of light literabrace all the opportunities which present ture which the age produced, the journals, themselves of increasing the stock of and other recondite sources of informaknowledge which we possess respecting tion, in order to familiarize himself with man and nature. In the case of foreign national manners and morals. He must impressions, the invigorating air of youth become a veritable Autolycus — a snapperbreathes over us again from the new up of unconsidered trifies, if he desires points of view, and in the freshness of to behold "the very age and body of the emotion under which we regard objects times, his form and pressure.". which have long been as familiar to us as Life in the English capital under the the clothes that we wear. Nor is it nov- sway of Charles II. was a curious comelty alone, seeing that curiosity co-operates pound, and ranged from the grave to the with reason. Great communities, as well gay, from the lively to the severe.
It was as private individuals, are often equally by no means easy work. Seldom was the inquisitive to know what their neighbors pursuit of pleasure attended by so much think and say respecting them. To men, labor, seldom was the business of enjoy. individually, one of the greatest benefits to ment found to be so exhausting. Daily be derived from foreign travel is the ten- life commenced very early and ended very dency that it has to remove the film of late, and was perpetually renewed with vulgar and local prejudice by which their unceasing regularity. The people of rank, vision so often becomes obscured. The from whom, indeed, the rest of society migration of an entire community is im. were content to take their ideas of what possible, but the visits of educated and was fashion and what was not, rose very impartial strangers may, so far as this is late in the day, although, probably, not concerned, prove equally effectual, pre- much more so than their successors do in mising that the people will be disposed to this latter quarter of the nineteenth cengive careful consideration to what they tury. Attire presented a most formidable may have to say upon its manners, its cus. obstacle. Moderns can have no conceptoms, and its institutions. During the tion, or at the best a very imperfect one,