Chapter 196501684

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Chapter NumberXXIII
Chapter TitleSAD AUGURS MOCK THEIR OWN PRESAGE.
Chapter Urlhttp://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article196501684
Full Date1894-11-10
Page Number27
Corrections0
Word Count5774
IllustratedN
Last Corrected0000-00-00
Newspaper TitleLeader (Melbourne, Vic. : 1862 - 1918)
Trove TitleGathered Rue. An Australian Novel
article text

TALES AND SKETCHES.

GATHERED RUE.

AN AUSTRALIAN NOVEL.

By Ellerton Gat. Author or "Drifting Under the Southern Oboes," "Across the Gulp," icc.

Grafter XXIII.— "Sad Auguiis Mook Their Own Presage."

Eitberine followed TJodcrwood so olosely that she overtook bim as he was struggling to lighi.his pipe in tho wind. Reapect for Mora's room, not Katkerine's prownoe, had deprived him of this constant solnoo longer than he liiud.

"Look here, Gooff," sho said plaoidly; "I lay a Jot of things I don't mean; bat I mean ibis. Lotus bo friends. Come aud share my solitary meal, and tell me what you have been doiog and are going to do. You don't want mooey now? Basil has placed a goodsnm to my oredit, and will never ask mo how I havo spent It." ... Underwood shook his head silently and turnod sway..- , "Well, oome and have a drink, any way, " she added, seeing dissent in his attitude. " What have yon got to offer?" "There is whisky, I know, and brandy, I; think, and sodawater, too, if Biddy has filled the seltzogene." Underwood draw .at his ptpo stolidly, but turned and walked by her side in ailonoe. Xfttherino pluoked one of the long, straight lookers that grow up olosely around tho trunk of a hewn gum tree, and slashing it about like adding whip, Oiled the air with tho delicious aromatic fraganoe of its rose tinted, delicate young leaves. It gave her oonOdcnoe in herself to have what felt like a whip in her hands. She was sura that Underwood bad not given Bp the hope of seeing Morn, and that his in tention was to wait about on tire chance of hor coming out. Further, that he would pursue the lamo taotics on tho morrow, and would in all probability succeed unless she could pre vent it in any way. She did this, not to- spare Mors, nor to oblige Basil, but limply becauso sho hated that ho should l -another woman. Sho did not believe MoraV declaration that she did to see him again. She told herself tnit Mora only aald so to blind her, or because Blie was afraid of Basil. She would havo planned to detain Underwood by her side by some troa- ! . l%r b.min refusod to formulate any tr 1 i the' least ohanoe of sueceoding. asr nrst thought was to drug him, bht she gave mm up at onoe. She knew he would detect the tonBni in,hl8 brandy and refuse j 5Jny. other wild schemes she' also ctamused as thcy.aroie before her. ' Voiced up to the sky across the' sea - into' nft»M080 abor feet for inspiration, but- f «»' to her. -The clouds, In heavy fail- Pn5» white, shot with ' purpio, moved 2 ly f1'0 deep blue sky, and' the' Ptoold little waves amongst. ; illmv m®1?811 1 'm.' B'ew far out and sent up H.'W suckers to meet thorn. ' 1.11 ?" >U'ed .suds great cohorts and hat- S5 i,n3,.bln?,or red ob». as if mar- whil. I. ,P8r8do order,, moved rapidly; then, Z, T CJ8 roa oJ ul'on ' them, as if at 'the » nn.d wlth tlle simultaneity of lUtlf ®eij' af ett.ntion, thoy disappeared, :enoli havim, if.. 1 '0Ter sooop.,of tho oinw if In nJl. i t oomplctely out of sight, a. " wlnn 11' f0rn",?n,emJr' Soma men were walelit Jf 1 ' w'"0'1 glistened with its heavy wltS ili. i'l n mullet whioh had ooino in heeu feulinnt « 0,mo S?rS'<l polioans, who hod tcndsil .in ? S Wl,lj0. 'heir huge bnge dis- Alonewlv re '''"""y. Wi flow hoavily off. ft.l,orlSlnl" was calling to his ln"heH?3libbenVB 80undo thftt travelled far 'fine bam r atmesphoro— they were both hur- ..net tossMre p"tu iS tho drawing of the that tho a.i atingaroo or any other fish Imi Ik «n",n wl,'d east away as worth- Katlurlnn "".I"'6', and prosaio to her eyes, 'rests „f I ?, $jla' in tlio busy stir of tho Prolifle of Moss. would have been moro Meran' "stood I"1?!"3 ber now Ilmo Bridget BlI>roaeh mi A10 vorftBftoh watohlog thoir 'gb in froiife 2 5tt1nB was built 011 piles 2 feot slopo of tb« » lowor behind becauso of tho fame towered tlmt BrWG«t'» sturdy to hor. tt«» # , lcm as thoy walked up «lcome when af broadened into a smilo of Wood,. Uo „»,« 1, Qat sho recognised Undor- vrlth more wiiSft ber, saluting her towards iCathorinnm0r 0xblblted

" Is tho sodawater ready ? " Katherino asked. " It is thin ; I mado it meallf," Bridget responded. " Got glasses, thoro's a good eonl, and the whisky." Katherino followed hor old nurse out to tho ooverod way connooting tho oottago with its kitchen, with a vaguo idea of appealing to hor for help. " Haa ho come to marry ye,- darlin'?" Bridget asked, oagerly. Marriage in her Irish eyes would condone and sanotify everything. "Not a bit of it," Katherino said. "Ho'b after a married woman, and I'm euro I don't want him." " The baste ! I'll givo him a piooe of my mind I" ' " No, Biddy ; I forbid you to speak of it to him." .. ! BPako of it, Is it? I won't tpake thin." Sho gave a significant gesture and turned away to get tho glasses required; Katherino, with a fleeting smile on hor lips, rejoined Geoffrey on tho verandah. Ho would not enter the house, and Rtayod but a few minutes to drink his foaming beaker of whisky and sodawater, drawn from the seltzogene, with its wot flannel oovor to keep it pool ; then almost immediately took his leave with as llttlo ceromouy as though from n bar. Bridget wqb on tho watoh for his departure, and coming out of the verandah called him back when ho had gone a few stops. Her voice was ooaxing, and Underwood turned baoic urbus- pootingly, looking up at her with a smile of in quiry whioh displayed his white teetli under his moustaohc. "Gome close, it's a sayorot," she said. " A secret is it ;-whispor it then, but don't kiss me." He came close to bor, still smiling at tho quaint uglincsB of her faeo. Sho soized him by tbo-shouldor with a firm grip of hor left hand. There ! that's for not offering to do your duty now sho's a free woman 1" she snid, as she drew back hcr rlght arm and violently sont her bony fist full in his face. He threw up his hond only in-time to get full on tho mouth tho blow that was meant for his eyes ; the movement, slight as it wbb, had somewhat brokon tho force of the blow whioh should have boon heavier from tlio advantage ber height above him gave her. His lips wore cut, and with violent imprecations I10 ; spat out two teeth. Ho sprang on tho verandah and, taking hor by the shoulders, shook her until her teeth rattled, whilo she! made a frantlo snatoh at his cap, tearing it off, and with it a small toupct with whioh ho had jealously concealed hi s growing baldness. Then he flung her from him, heedless iu what manner she fell. He turnod to Kate— "Is this at your instigation, you devil," ho aid, mumbling through tho gaps in his teeth, and fixing on his toupet and cap. "You shall suffer for it if it is !" "On my word of honor it was not," Kato said ; " I had no idea what she was going to do. Hero, let mo wash tho outs and pluister them." Ho glared at hor for sole reply, and stalked away with bis face hidden in liie bandkerobiof. " He won't go courtin' for a good while aftor this," Bridget said with satisfaction, rdoking hersolf up and feeding all over for oroken bones. So it fell out that Mora Tremayno left Narong without encountering Gsoffroy Underwood again, very much to her Hatisfnction. Tho next clay she was installed at Riverviow again ; tbo fact of her mourning and her husbandii absenoo fully accounted for Mora's sadness and retire ment. Her friends rallied around her, and Honor Moore almost lived with hor, riding the horses, as Mora no longer cared to do, and, with Mrs. Wihnott, helping materially to enter tain tliOBO guests who could not bo excluded from Riverviow, with tho inmateB who wel comed hor bftok. Lady Mourilyan wae anxious for her to re appear at .the most intimate reunions at Government House, declaring that Sir Matthew was always saying that he missed the ohlef ornament of the rooms when 6ho was not there : but she did not persist In her entreaties when sho saw Mora was not fulfilling a perfunctory or conventional mourning, and was besides in in different health. A week. after Basil's departure Mora re ceived a note from him whioh said in a few words that it would porbaps bo remarked if they ex changed no letters, and thoreforo ho should send a letter by caoh post as usual. Ho desirod that she should do the same, though if she chose there need be nothing inside but a line to say she was well. Mora replied with a' formal letter thanking him for Ills consideration. Sho longed to tell him that his absenoo was trying bor cruelly, but she added no word of her owu feelings, nor even of her health, It struck hor as an odd oolnoldonoo that she rarely talked to ono of her husband's malo acquaintances or f Honda without hearing somo pnssing tribute to his high sense of honor, his straightforward truth, or punotilions honesty. Sho thought that eyoryone believed in him but tho woman who was burning and longing to do so, yet oould not. Wore they all In league jvlth .him against her ? No ; it was all true that thoy said; but tbero was ono dark snot whioh she know of .and whioh in her oyes uimmed all tho rest, .Basil's most intimato frlond, Ambrose Dnmar- enque, came frequently to see Mora ; bo had imitated Basil by taking up land in the samo vast diatriot. ao that they were neighbors within two or throo days' journey. Ho had sat in Porllamont for . a . gold mining constituency for many years, and had beon delighted to welcome Tremayno to a .seat beside him, for ho, too, belonged to tbe great squatting class of Oon« servntivoi' In years about 36,' he was slight in build and about the middle . height. Hie handsome faco was , dark and foreign looking, his hair was grizzled, but his mouBtaoho was still black. He wa9 cultured and well road, and was considered to have supreme tasto in matters of literature and art. In manners ho was polished aud Buave, a little too muoh inolincd to flattery in his language to tho gentler sox, with men ho was frank and straightforward. He was a baoholor and had many graceful, generouB ways that mado him to be muoh sought after. He was tho reverse of Basil for oxpausi veneas and unreserve, and spoko out bio thoughts aud opinions where Tromayno would havo contonted hlmsolf with an ambiguous smile. " Tremayno is obstinate," ho said to Mora one day when ho was driving her bohitid a now pair of greys that ho wanted her opinion of, "I must admit that. I think it is his only dofcot that ho is never open to eonviotion. Ono may argue and arguo and ho listens with unvarying attontion and a nod of acqnicBoenco, then in tho end ho does oxaotly what ho first intended. About going up to Yowarrce again so soon, I pointed out how necessary it was that ho should havo tho advantage of tho cool soason on tlio Downs or in Sydney, and that Yowarreo ought to wait. I told him that his health would break down, but ho would notliaton to anything in tho shape of romonHtranco. I hoped that you would havo suoocodcd where I felled." "Aud I was unsuccessful, too," Mora repltod; "ho thought it was his duty to go, and of course ho wont." " You will say 'of course 1' Whatever appeals to him as a duty ho is sure to do at whatever saorifico to himself." "I auppose his virtue will bo Its own reward,"

Mora tried to say lightly; "for my part lam ioolinod to think it would be liandior to have a ready money systom for virtuo. The present manner of payment by vaguo return does not give the incentive that a tangible and immediate settlement might. Do you really think," sho resumed timidly, "that my husband's health will snffor thoro out at Yowarrso ? You havo mado mo moro anxious than ever." " I am sorry for that, bconuso I really think I10 will bo ail right, be has suoh a splondid con stitution— bub all tho same, you must persuado him to como back as soon as possible ; he mustn't stay to como in for fever and ague in tho rainy soason." "Oh, I sincoroly hope not!" she exolaimsd fervently. Mora foil into silence, tortured with a fresh pain. It had never struck her that any thing would happen to Basil, and now the possi bility was brought homo to her ohe could think of nothing elao. Tho short bright winter was over and the weather waa getting unpleasantly hot Tho aftcrnoou was threatening and heavy with thunder, and the gardens whero the jaoarandas, the camellias, tho hibiscus, And the poinsettias had lost their first beauty, looked hot and thirsty. The time was sunBot, and as they drove along facing the west Mora looked abstractedly at tho sky whoro near the horizon a winding torturod cloud, purple, doep, heavy as a pall, romained stationery in a jaggod broken mass (where it had beon stranded by some upper air current) In a pale primrose and faiut green sky. On its con fines lay a larger but Iokb compaot mass of dazzling white and croous liued cloud, ovcry portion of which was instinot with glorious light. Mora gazed at it with an inexplicable sensa tion of suspenso, then she seomed to seize the soiutioD. -She -thought the bright cloud was Heaven, tho dark one Hell ; they had advanced to oacb othor that tho outcasts in Hell might get that one glimpse of Heaven whioh is vouch safed to them at long intervals to show them what they have missed, and to add a more poignant dopth to their punishment end suffer ing- She pictured the lost souls waiting breath- lossly at tho portals, thsn followed one blinding flaBh of unspeakable unimaginable happiness to be followed by egos of torture. The intensity of her thought deprived her of Bpoeeh, impeded her breath, and sont tho color from Uer lips and oheeke. Ambraso Dumaresquo broke the sllonoe. "By Jove, no artist would dare paint that sky, for every critio would cry 'how impossible,' 'imagination running riot with a well atooked palette.' Mrs. Tremayno, you are looking sad 1 I wish I had said nothing about any possiblo— though improbable— harm resulting from Tro mayno being out at Yowarrce. I only meant that he ought not to remain on into January and February, but of course be won't. Ho will be with you at Moondahurra at Christmas." Mora did not say that sho knew he would not. " I — I think wo shall have a storm soon," she faltered. "Looks liko it," said Dtimarcsquc, "what a help it will be for the Professor's groat experi ment to-morrow that there are clouds hanging about 1 He has been wise to lengthen out his preparations as bo has. The great 1 raedicino man' would have run a poor ohanoe of miracle pro ducing if he had beon ready last week when the sky was as cloudlessly blue as MiBS Moore's eyes." Honor Moore oooupicd the baok seat of the T-oart, and Dumareiquc brought hsr into tho conversation with his compliment. " I am so curious to see if his experiment will succeed," said Honor, "and if in future when we want a shower over our own particular plot of garden all we have to do is to send up a kite to turn the rain on t Mrs. Tremayno is not going to watch the great attempt to-morrow, so I shall hAve to wait until somo ono oomos baok to hear the results," "Not going, Mrs. Tremayno? Oh, you must, you know. It really is a most feasible scheme, and you ought to see it bo that you can write ahout it to Basil. He will be greatly interested in it. Lot me persuade you to come." " Do, Mora," pleaded Honor ; " I want to sec it tremendously." "There will bo n lot of peoplo," objected Mora, "almost liko a raoo meeting. I think I would rather not go." " I will come and drive you out in your own buggy, as this has no hood," persisted Dumar esquo, " wo will not take a refusal, will we, Miss Mooro? And you must come prepared to bo drenched !" Mora gave a reluctant promise, but would fain have retraoted it the next morning. Amongst her lettora was one that caused her somo annoy - anco ; it was from Mrs. Phillipps, who wrote to Mora about some trifio that Basil had forgotten, in which she spoke of Margaret by ber Chris tian namo, but added "or perhaps I should give her a more oeromonious title, as she is so nearly grown up, and write of her as Miss Tremayne, according to Mr. Tremayne's wish." Mora settled the Bmall matter alluded to in tho note, and tried to dismiss it from her mind, but persistently tbe words "Miss Tromoyne, according to .Mr. Tremayne's wish," started before her oyes. Margaret was to bear his name then? It seemed to her tho last straw— sho could bear no more ! Chapter XXIY.— "When Clouds are Seen Wise Men tut on Their Cloaks." The gathering at .which Mora Tremayne had reluotantly promised to bo present was for the purpose of looking on at a great scientific ex periment in whioh tho entire colony— nay, the whole of Australia — may bo said to have been so interested bb to be holdiug its brsatk in sus pense. It was nothing less than an attompt that was to have as its ultimate result produc ing of rain ail over the groat arid tracts where none fell of its own accord— for perhaps two or throe years at a stretch — though high up In the ompyrean, tantalising clouds hovered over, and then sailed away without sending so much as a drop towards the thirsty land. Droughts were to be made a thing of pro- scientlfio days. No longer the wheat was to bo allowed to turn yellow and droop and die under the burning sun for want of moisture. No more should the parohed herds, bogged in tho mud of tbe empty oreoks and waterholos, porisb in thousands for want of wotsr. Country that had nave? beon stocked for want of tho precious and indispensable water should hence forth carry its sheep to the aero in all seasons. Squatters would see thoir cares fall from thorn liko a mantle, and the faoos of farraors would beam with tho joy of fat orops aud full purses. No longer neod a man travel with a canvas bog of water at his saddle— a scanty supply for his nccdB — and one round his horso's nook, a poor drink for tho beast ; for the compelled rain would have filled tho holes aud orceks wherever he went. In foot thoro was no end to tho general and poraonal jubilation in anticipation of immediate and unquestioned success. Tho great aoheme of rain producing won to be fairly tried regard less of cost— a fat subscription list had pro vided for that. Tho professor's gigantic pre parations had beon long to hand, but woro finished at last. Wealth, beauty, and fashion assembled at tho raoccourie to look on and applaud, prepared toBholter themselves under urabrollaB and cloaks

when the deluge began, Everyone scorned to havo readily ocized the occasion for a picnic, nnd around the carriages and under the scant shade of the trees little parties and groups were con gregated, making merry over tho coming ex periment — not laughing at it openly, but with a reservation to allow for success. Copious libation of champagne were indulged after tho Roman fashion, but imbibed by tho male and fomalc bipeds, not absorbed by the over thirsty and gaping soil, which, presumably, was soon to suck in with rapture the grateful fluid— nob champagne, but water from tho skies. Tbe great "oloml co-npeller" strutted about from group to group jieenpting the ready hoB- pitality of all, and, oxhihi:ing all the importanoe and attributes of groat Jupiter, ono imaginod him to be grasping a handful of thunderbolts in stead of the high and misshapen gamp with whioh he had supplied himself. The unwieldy kite, with all Its cumbrous ap pendages of wings and tail and platform, occu pied the lawn where the short couoh grata was growing sparse, slippery and yollow undor tho hot sun. Fortunotoly for the experiment tho sky exhibited clouds of promising pluvial depth, In fact a gentle shower of a few minutes dura tion had fallen in tho early morning Mora Tremayne's buggy was drawn up some what away from ovcry one dec, but sho bad soon been found out by a few friends, and had been dispensing daintily cut sandwiches and Icod drinks while waiting for the great event of the day. The moment was near and tho pooplc began to move towards the lawn. Tho hood of Mora's buggy was thrown back that she might see the bettor, and sho. stood up to look round on the gay, light hearted picnio making noople. Sho resumed her seat very quickly as she bad noticed Geoffrey Underwood -in conversation with Mrs. Sydney Bohun and Bome other men at a little distance. If she could have heard their ooavorsation It would have been as follows : — "Why, thoro's Mora Tremayne! I had no dca sho was coming," Mrs. Bohun said. "I BuppOBO Tremayno iu interested in the ex periment," Underwood said, carelessly. "It is a vicarious interest, then," somo ono said, " beoauso ho has gone ' whore the pelican builds her nost,' as Mrs. Tooth's little poem goes." " Gone ! " ejaculated Underwood, his faco lighting up. Before tho end of the session, and so soon after coming down ! I had no idea of it." "That io bocauso you havo boon ill, Mr. Underwood. Wo have all been lamenting the fACt of hie departure for weeks. Sydney would be quite jealouB if he know liow deep my admir ation for Basil Tremayno is. The worst of it is he is so devoted to his wife that he never thinks .of saying pretty things to other women 1 " "Ambroso Dumarcdque is making hay while tho sun shines," said another — au elderly fop, with a einglo eyoglass levelled at Mora's buggy. "Thonhowill have vory little time to make it. in if tbe Hcrr Professor saccesds!" said Underwood. "Now, my good pooplc, you neod nob try to stir up Mrs. Grundy's ire against those two," said Mrs. Bohun, "because you won't succeed. You had better turn your eyes in another direction." Sho hersolf sot tho example by looking pointedly at a smartly turned out phaeton whero a lady not innoocnt of paint aud powder and othor toilot accessories Bat in oloso conversation with an eminently respectable looking official personage, who had tilted his hat over bis oyes and was looking up at her from whero he stood beside the phaeton with extreme admiration iu his gnze. "Whero's Mrs. Grundy?" said the one with the eyeglass, delightedly. "Now is hor ohanoe." "The official duties of Mrs. Grundy aro per formed nowadays by private detectives," ob served Underwood ; "and the vonue is ohanged from the boudoir to the divoros court." " Sho ban been through that mill," said another ; "but, como, this is too old an affair to intorest us now. Shall we walk up to tho lawn ?" In the bustle that followed tho proposal Underwood took his leave and made his way rapidly to Mora' side. Sho saw him coming, and realised with a start that one by one her little circle had moved off with tho oxcoption of Dumarosquc. Honor Moore had gone to tako a closer view of the great kite with Patrick Smyths, but was return ing, though Mora did not sco her. "Don't leaveme, Ambrose, "Morasaidquiokly, not even noticing that oho had called him by bis first name in ber hasty appeal. "I don't care about talking to thio Mr. Undorwood." "I had no intention of going," he said. "I look upon myself as your escort, and would not leavo my ohnrgo for anything. I' have taken gold escort duty in perilous times before now, so I know how to guard treasure." Ten days of retiromont and tho aaiistanoe of a dentist, Underwood was onoe more able to show himself in public and wear a smile which displayed no gaps in tho shining whitenoss.of his teoth. Tho bruLes and scars of Bridget's blow wero no longor apparent, and ho looked vary well in a white serge suit and black tie. He raised his straw hat and bowed ceremoniously, a little nervous and uncertain of the reception he might get. Ambroso Dumaresquo had made his acquaintance duriug his first stay in Queens land, and though bo knew nothing especially to his discredit ho had not. a very high opinion of him.' On-his side ho.aoknowledged Underwood's salutation with a cool nod. Mora . bowed : and murmured "good morning" without holding out her hand ; but she oould not command her color and a blush displayed itsolf, giving .to Underwood an assurance that she was moved to some way at hiB approaoh. . - ."'May lbog tho hospitality of a seat in your buggy. Mrs. Tremayne? I am tired out. I have boon ill." " I cannot offer you a front seat, as Miss Mooro will be back in. a few minutes," Mora said politely, "Pray make uso of the baok ono if vou like," ''But until she comes may I?" ho said, pre paring to got up besido hor. "She Is coming now," said Dumaresquo; " you had.bctter get up.bebind ;you will sco just as well." Underwood's objsot had not bsen to see pro- oisely, but that he might have an opportunity of talking to Mora without being ovorhoard. Tbo baok soat with tho folded hood between them would bo worse than useless for his purpose. Honor Moore paled a llttlo when she saw who had joinod them in hor absonoc. Sho liad hoard from Mora of tho annoyance ho had causod hor at Narong, and bad wondered what bad become of him sinoc. She was satisfied now that ho was not worthy of her love, and sho was fully porsuadod that sho had quito ourod hersolf of her budding fancy for bim, so It was a disagroo- ablo surprise to ber to find that his prosonco caused suoh a disturbanoo in her breast. "How d'yo do, Mr. Uudorwood? Oh, mo dear," sho said to Mora, "you should have been with uo to see tho Ilorr Professor 1 It's as good as a play. Ho simply treads on air, ho's so lull of pride." ebampagno 1" addod Pat Sniytho. "If thero is any suoh trifle," Honor con tinued, "vou rcquiro, as ono of Saturn's rings, a llttlo ruby light from Mars, or a pailful of tho Milky Wayt you havo only to mention it.

Hcrr Jove will oblige you. He only nska time." "And tho necessary filthy lucre," again put in Smythe. " ' Science has no limits,' he keeps on saying," continued Honor ; " ' to the oloot few it is per mitted that thsy may turn over a page and per form miracles in her namo ; to tho many tho great book is sealed. I shall bo famous, not for this achievement only, but for others to come, at well as for my record in the past.'" Honor strutted a few paces, waving her arras and strok ing an imaginary board until they all laughed . delightedly at hor mimicry. "If ho succeeds I suppose ho will have mounted several rungs of the ladder of fame," remarked Dumaresquo musingly, "I have often wondorod what tho ladder of fame rests on, and what assurance tho climber has on reaching the topmost rung it will not topplo over with the hapless aspirant." Mora said. "It should rest," said Dumarosquc, "on tho solid mound of the achievements of thoaspirant. If thoro Is not sufficient weight in those he will topple ovor when ha gets to tho top— and dosurvoto." " Don't let us talk of fame in tlio abstract when it. iier.oniBed imago ia now about to per form for our .dificotion," said Smy the. "There in the ohief ju.t arrived, so tho groat under taking will now be launched." "After u fow moro oongrntulalioria and libations," snid Dumarcsque, who had never moved from Mora', sido of tho boggy, where he stood witii his foot on tho stop. Undorwood tried to insinuate himself between them, but without success, as Dumaresquo turned a broad shoulder, ns if accidentally, and ocoupisd the wholo spaoo betwoen tho baok wheel aud the- front ones, whioh wero 'drawn round out of tbe way. Then all eyes were concentrated on the gaily dooorated platform, where the engine of tho Jovian Professor lay snpine. Amidst various sounds of jubilation the machinery. for raising tho kite waa placed in motion. It was a moment of intense oxcitoment for ovcry one, except tho deputy Jupiter Pluvius, r whoso confidence in tho succeaa of his sohomo may bo deioribed as sublime. Tho machinery worked without a hitoh ; the kite rose alowly, v.ry slowly; the 'blaok wings flopped onco or twice. Thero was a general handshaking amongst the hopeful who had been ruined by prolonged droughts. A resounding ohoer went up to help witii its sonorous vibration the work of the immenso kite. Alas, the oheerlng and congratulations oame too soon. Instead of flying stoadily skyward to pierco the obdurate clouds, the mighty structure fell heavily to the ground in a crushed and shapeless moss. Tho cloud oompolior realised, too late, that his instrument had been mndo far too_ heavy aud unwieldy, and that it oould not bo induced to fly aloft, notwithstanding tho pro pulsion ho had given it. Tlio scheme had not failed, cortainly not! It would bo very easy to reotify nil tho trifiiDg errors anothor timo. But this meant that tho subscription list must go round again, nnd tho shaken confidence of the disappointod squatt.ra did not revive sufficiently for that. In vain did the Herr Professor demonstrate and deviso. Every ono tightly rolled up th. umbrellas thoy had brought, nnd with a laugh — which was as muoh against thomsoivos as ngainst tlio still hopeful professor— thoy mado their way homo, leaving a scientific quostion that hnd been apparently vory near solution to be eolved somo other timo, by somo other people, in somo othor phrco ; but for no people and no place would the succosb of the experiment prove a greater boon. Mora's horses wero brought baok, und to Underwood's intense chagrin ho found that sho did not intend to alight whilo thoy were being harnessed to the buggy, so ho oould seize no op portunity of a word with her, "Mny I have the pleasure of calling at River viow, Mrs. Tremayno!" " I am leaving town almost immediately, Mr. Undorwood," Mora replied tersely. "For?" "For Moondahurra," she said, unwillingly replying to his interrogatory tone. "Then I may soe yon sooner than yon think I I have almost oompioted the purchaso of 'a station not very far from your neighborhood." . Mora gasped a helpless " Indeed." Sho felt this was a dreadful development, and ons from whioh Bhe should deviso no outlook. As surely as Geoffrey Undorwood rodo - up to the Moondahurra homo station slip rails, as surely would he have the right, withheld from none, of turning his horse loose in tho paddoek or hobbled on the run, almost, if not quite, as oer- tain of hospitality as though it were an inn. In certain cases an unknown ohnnoo oonier may be passed on to tho manngsr, or tlio store keeper, if his eppenranoo is .above that of the men's hut, but boncath that of a gentleman.; bnt this would bo a most diffioult thing for Morn to do with a man who was so well known both to hersolf and to most on the station. It did not ocaur to hor to nsk what run ha was about to bo possessed of, and be volunteered no information. Ho wanted to say a word of intense meaning so olothod thnt it should sound a commonplaoo. Mom's whole thought was ocoupisd with tho embarrassment that sho. bow in thoir future relation. For a moment, as he appraaohsd.in the first instance, she bad thought ahe would look him in the whit, of th. ey. and out bim dead ; but Bhe oould not bring herself to do so, and it sertainly flashed aoroas her that if .sho annoyed him and he turnod on her he might (as be had threatened) spread scandalous reports about hor, whioh, through the substratum of truth, would bo most difficult to combat. " So it will not be good-by, but an ret'oi'r," he said; "I want yonr opinion about bo many things that I hope it may not. be long before we mset again." Dumaresquo bad got into his seat beside Morn, and was politoly waiting a signal from her before driving off. "Good-by, Mr. Underwood," was hor solo re- BponBO to tho hidden moaning boneath hiswordi and moaning. "You may drivo on, Mr. Duranr. osquo." Undorwood stood cap in band as thoy turned tho horscB nnd drove post him. Thero was an ambiguous smilo on his face and a gleam in his eyes whioh Mora oaugbt and shuddered at with a slight unconscious thrill of npprohonsion. (to be continued.)