Chapter 2543820

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Chapter NumberThe Last Chapter
Chapter TitleTHE DESTROYER
Chapter Urlhttp://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article2543820
Full Date1838-02-17
Page Number4
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Word Count6340
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Last Corrected0000-00-00
Newspaper TitleThe Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (NSW : 1803 - 1842)
Trove TitlePassages from the Diary of a late Physician
article text

Passages from the Diary oj a late

Physician.- The last Chapter..

("From Blackwood'! Magazine, August, 1837.,)

THE DESTROYER.

(Continued from our last.)

" To tell you the truth, Doctor,'' she continued, " I am not much surprised at iier turning out in this way"

1 " Heavens, Countess ! you astonish

me"

. Her father you know," continued the 'frigid Countess, " was a very so-so kind of character ; and gave her no sort of education. I have had my daughters educated in the strictest possible way - quite under my own eye ! Mrs. St.

Helen I tried to train when she was'with us for a short time - but it was useless. I ^noon sa'.v it was in vain ; and she did my daughters no good while she was with 'them, I assure you."

" Why, uurely, Countess, you never saw any thing improper in her conduct while she was under your care ?"

""Oh, why, yes-I mean, not per- haps, exactly ; but, to be sure, the girl's 'head "was quite turned with the nonsense the men talked to her, as they do to every new girl-they thought her pretty'." She * paused, but 1 only bowed.

" 'Tis a sad thing for vs Doctor, is it not ?" resumed the Countess. " The

papers Mill take care to get hold of it, because of her relationship to vs - if is sxeally most unpleasant!" At this mo- ment a servant entered, and whispered to Miss Churchill-and she, followed by Mrs. Ogilvie, presently quitted the room. '" I dare say that is some message about the children," said the Countess, in the .same passionless tone and manner she had hitherto preserved-how 1 pity them, by the way ! Poor things it will always be ??flung in their teeth ; they'll feel the greatest difficulty in settling in life-1 *quite feel for them !"-sighing gently. " I suppose, by the way, the Colonel will find no difficulty, if he should live Mio return to England, in obtaining a «divorce? But then the exposure is so great ! How long the Countess would have gone on in this strain, I know not ; I was heartily tired of it-it seemed, so ?io, speak, utterly out of tune ;' so I rose and bowed, saying I wished to see Mrs. Ogilvie before I left, as she and Miss Churchill seemed extremely excited and . hysterical.

" You will not mention this affair more than you can help, Doctor!" said the Countess, with great dignity.

" Rély on my prudence," I replied carelessly, and quitted the room, perfectly "wearied out and disgusted with the tone and spirit in winch such a dreadful mat tor was discussed by one who ou^ht to 'have felt a most painful interest in it. I directed a servant to show me to the room whither Mrs. Ogilvie and Miss Churchill liad gone ; and was, within a few mo- ments, ushered into the boudior. How my heart ached, as I hastily cast my eye over the numerous little elegancies scat- tered tastefully about the room; and especially when it fell upon a beautiful full-length crayon sketch of Mrs. St. , Helen, which hung upon the wall !

" Oh, wretch !" exclaimed Mrs. Ogil ' _,,."¿yie» observing my eye fixed upon it; and

?? talking hastily up to it, she stood for a

»few moments with her arms stretched out

towards it ; and then, burying her face in her hands, -wept as if her heart would . brpak. I rose and turned the picture with

its faceto the wall.

" My brother ! my brave and noble vheartcd brother !" sobbed Mrs. Ogilvie, and sunk, overpowered with her feelings,

.into a seat.

" Where is my mamma?" kept con .tinually enquiring little Arthur St. Helen, whom Miss Churchill was clasping af- fectionately in her arms, while -her tears . fell like rain upon his little head. He "vas the image of his beautiful-fallen

mother.

" She's gone, gone, my love ! You will ?never «ee her a^ain !" she murmured.

" But I'll go and fetch her, if you will only tell me where she is." Miss Churchill wppt, but made no reply.

" Why do yon tern my mamma's picture round in that way ?" he enquired, looking at me with a haughty air-one that most strongly reminded me of his guilty mother. " I love my mamma very dearly, and you shall not do so !" Miss Churchill kissed him with passion -\afe fervour, but made him no reply. Mrs. Ogilvie rose, and beckoning me to < follow lier, quitted the boudoir, and ?'Stepped into the room adjoining. *' Oh, Doctor ! of all the dreadful scenes you have ever seen, can anything equal this ? I would rather-indeed I would-have »followed both my brother and his wife to 'the grave than lived to see this day ! My dear-brave- fond-generous-be- trayed brother-read it! read it if you can ! It has broken my heart !" and hastily snatching a letter fiom her bosom, she thurst it into my hands, telling me that Mrs. St. Helen had received it only late lastuipjit, and in her hurried flight .which it had perhaps occasioned, had left it upon the floor of her dressing room. The letter was from Colonel St. Helen to Mrs. St. Helen ; and was quite clamp-it might be with the tears of agony that had fallen from those who

had read it. It was as follow«:

« Malta, April 10th, l8-.

" My sweet Emma ! Still two thou- sand envious miles are between ua ! Oh that I had an angel's wing to fly lo you in a moment! But alas, that is what 1 have been wishing a thousand an I a thou- sand times since I left you-four long rears ago. My lovely Emma ! idol of my heart, and " shall we indeed be ere long re-united ? Shall I again clasp my

tlear beautiful Emma in my arms -never,

never again to bo separated? Dearest ! a thousand times-the wealth of the Indies shall not tempt me again to quit you **** I come home a little before my regiment, being a little-mind, love! only a little,

of an invalid. Don't be alarmed, my sweet Emma, for 1 assure j ou upon my honour, that 1 am quite recovered. The fact is, that I received, in the battle of \.-, an ugly wound in my left arm x.'oin a rnusket-ball, which confined me to a tent, and to my'bed, for nearly six weeks; and Lord"--in the kindest way, wrote to mc to insist upon my re- turning to England for a year, in order

to recruit. I came overland, and am rather fatigued with my journey. ' An important matter keeps me at Malta for a week ; but in the very next ship I start for merry old England ! * * And how have you been, my dearest Emma ? And how are Arthur and George? "Why do you say so little about them? and about yourself? But Isttppose you have got the common notion-that your letters are opened by others than those they are directed to !-How 1 have guessed what might be the features and expression of my little boys ! I have never seen George ! -is he really like me?-By the wa}', I have brought you some beautiful dia- monds ! 1 have almost beggered my- self (till I arrive in England) to obtain them for my Emma. How I shall de- light to seo them upon you !

Unless something extraordinary should happen, you will see me in about a week after you get this letter-it may be only a day or two after ; and, my own Em- ma, I most particularly wish that you will be alone during the week immedi- ately following your receipt of this letter -for I must have you all to myself, when we meet-as the Scripture has it, ' with our joy a stranger intermeddleth not.' God bless you, my dearest, dear- est Emma ! and kiss the dear boys heartily for me ! Your fond-doating husband, " AUTHUR ST HULEN."

I returned this letter to Mrs. Ogilvie in silence, who, w itli ti hearty sigh, re- placed it in her bogoin.

" She must have read it," said I, after a pauso.

" Yc," she replied, with a shudder of disgust and horror, " and if shç felt her- self guilty, I wonder she survived it!" * *

" What arrangements have you made with respect to the children?" I enquired

She replied, " that she had already given directions for their removal to her house, whore she should keep them till her brother's return ;" trembling as she

uttered the last word or tvvo.

" I suppose you have heard some of the many painful rumours as to the con- duct of Mrs. St. Helen latterly ?" said I, in a low tone.

" Yes-oh yes-infamous woman ! But the General and I have been travel- ling on the Continent during the last six months, or he would have taken these poor children away from her contami- nating presence, even by force, if neces- sary. I did frequently expostulate with her in the most urgent manner, but lat- terly she grew very haughty, and replied to me with great rudeness, even"

" Alas, 1 tear her heart has been long corrupted." She shook her head and sobbed. I mentioned the slip of paper I had picked up in my carriage.

" Oh, many, many worse things than that have come to our knowledge since

we returned from the Continent ! Her

disgraceful conduct drove Mrs. Churchill from-street several months ago. Oh, the scenes even she has been compelled to witness ! Is there no punishment for this vile-this abominable Alverley !"

" Can it be true, Mrs. Ogilvie, that the villain has even had the miserable meanness to borrow considerable sums of money from Mrs. St. Helen ?"

" That also I have heard; that she has wasfed the property of my poor betraj ed brother, and their children, in order, to suppty his necessities at the gaming-table; but I cannot go ou 1 I shall go dis-

tracted !"

Iascerta-ncd that very late in the pre- ceding night, orratheratan early hour in tlic morning, Mrs. St. Helen had re- turned from Vauxhall, accompanied as usual by Captain Alverley : and imme- diately upon her entering the house, the above letter from Colonel St. Helen was placed in her hands. Her guilty soul was thunderstruck at the sight of her husband's handwriting. Captain Alver- ley, who entered with her, opened and read the letter ; and would have taken it away with him to destroy it, had she not insisted so vehemently upon reading it, that he was forced to comply. She

swooned before she had read half of the letter. All I could learn of what hap- pened subsequently was, that Captain Alverley left about three o'clock, and re- turned in little more than an hour's time ; that a travelling carriage and-four drew up at the door about five o'clock ; but such was her agitation and illness, that it was nearly half-past seven o'clock that Captain Alverley succeeded, after a vain attempt to induce her maid to accom- pany them, in carrying Mrs. St. Helen into the carriage, almost in a state of in- sensibility, lie gave the sullen incre-

dulous servants to understand that their mistress had been summoned off to meet Colonel St. Helen ! She had not ven- tured into the room where her children were asleep, in ble«sed unconsciousness of the fearful scenes that were goingforward.

In most of the Monday morning's newspapers appeared the ordinary kind of paragraph announcing the " E'ope ment in fashionable life !" some of thom mentioning the names of the parties by initials. One of them alluded to Mrs. St. Helen's connexion with the family of the Earl of Iletheringham, whom, it stated, the " afflicting event had thrown into the deepest dislress, &c.-an intima- tion so intolerably offensive to the pure, fastid ous feelings of the Countess, that the day after there appeared the following paragraph. I give verbatim the heart- less disclaimer, the tone and style of which may perhaps serve to indicate the distinguished quarter whence it enianated.

?" We have been requested, on the very highest authority, to take the earliest pos- sible opportunity of correcting an unin- tentional and most injurious misstatement that appeared in our yesterday's paper concerning tho truly unfortunate and most distressing affair in-street, and one that is calculated to wound the feeling» of a family of very high distinction. It is not true, but quite contrary to the fact, that the lady, Mrs. *»'**» *, was educated in the family of the Earl of Iletheringham. She is certainly a re- mote connexion of the Earl's, and when extremely young, was received on a visit into his lordshp's house till some family arrangements had been completed ; but we have been given to understand that the lady in question and the noble family alluded to have been long alien- ated, particularly the female branches." In another part of the same paper up

pt

peared the intelligence that " Mrs*. St. -wa9 a lady of great personal beauty and accomplihments, and had left u fa- mily of six children " Another news- paper informed its readers that " the gal- lant champion of a certain lovely fugitive was the heir presumptive of a peerage and a splen iid fortune." A third, " that the late elopement was likely to afford lucrative employment to the gentlemen of the long robe.'' A fourth, " that the husband of a lady, whose recent, &c, was an officer of distinction, hail long dis- carded her, owing to her light' conduct,

and was now taking steps to procura a' divorce," ka. &c. &c. With suck mat- ters was-and generally is-titillated the prurient curiosity of fashionable society ibr a moment only-probably, after a brief interval, ils attention being again excited by intimations that " the lady whose elopement lately occasioned much stir in the fashionable circles," had des- troyed herself, or betaken herself to most reckless and dishonourable courses, &c. and that Captain A-" was, they un

derstood, about to lead to the hymeneal altar the lovely and accomplished Miss -," &c. &c. This, I say, is not an unfrequent case ; but not such was the course of events consequent upon the enormous wickedness of Mrs. St. Helen.

During Monday the deserted little St. Helens wore removed, accompanied by Miss Churchill, to the residence of Mrs. Ogilvie, the General continuing in

Strett to receive Colonel St. H len when he should arrive, and-in what way he best might-break to him the disastrous intelligence of his wife's infidelity and flight. As if was uncertain from Avhpnce and from what quarter Colonel Nt. Helen would reach the metropolis, it was of course impossible to anticipate or prevent his arrival at - Street, even had such a measure been desirable. Up to Thurs- day he had not made his dreaded appear- ance. On the evening ofthat day, how- ever, a post-chaise and-four, covered with dust, rattled rapidly round the cor- ner of-Square, and in a few mo- ments the reeking horses stood panting

at the door of Colonel St. Helen's. Be-

fore either of the postilions could dis- mount, or the servant open the hall-door, or General Ogilvie, who was sitting in the dining-room make his appearance, the chaise door was opened from within, the steps thrust down, anl forth sprung a gentleman in dusty travelling costume - his left arm in a sling-and rushed up to the door of the house. While his im- patient hand was thundering with the knocker the door was opened.

" Is Mrs. St. Helen" -he commenced

in eager and joyful accents, which, how- ever, suddenly ceased at sight of the ser- vant standing, pale as death, trembling

and. silent.

*. Why-what's the matter?" stam- mered Colonel St. Helen-for he of course it was. " Ah, Ogilvie!" rushing towards the General, who having paused for an instant before presenting himself, now quitted the dining-room and hurried up to the startled Colonel.

" My dear St. Helen !" commenced the General, his agitation apparent. A mighty si»li burst from the swelling bisom of Colonel St. Helen as he suffered himself to be dt awn into the dining-room

" What's all this ?" he enquired in a hoarse, hard whisper, as General Ogilvie

shut the door, ile was for a moment tongue-tied at sight of the long-dreaded apparition whicli now so suddenly stood before him. The Colonel's fare became overspread with a deadly hue as he made the enquiry, and his right hand still locked that of General Ogilvie in his ri- gid grasp.

" St. Helen, you must bear it like a man and a soldier," at length commenced the. General, recovering himself. " The

chances of war"

"Is she dead?" gasped the Colonel, without moving from where heètood, or, relaxinghisho'dof General Ogilvie's hand.

" No," replied the General, turning as pale as his companion.

" Then-what-in the name of God !

-tell me"-whispered Colonel St. Helen, his eyes almost starting out of their sockets, while the drops of perspi- ration stood upon his forehead. At a word spoken in a low tone by General Ogilvie the Colonel started as if he had baen stabbed, and then lay extended upon the floor. The General sprung to the bell, and shouted violently for assistance. The room was almost instantly filled with servants- One of them was despatched for me, and another for the nearest sur- geon. The latter arrived in a very few minutes, and I was in attendance within little less than a quarter of an hour, for the man, knowing my carriage, stopped it as I was entering the street in which I lived. I found Colonel St. Helen prop- ped up in bed in the arms of General Ogilvie-his coat and waistcoat and neck handkerchief only had been removed, and his shirt-collar thrown open. The heavy snorting sound that met my ears

prepared mc for the worst. Colonel M. | Helen was in a fit of apoplexy. Within a minute or two iifter mv entrance the

jugular vein was opened-that in the arm had given no relief. Oh, that his infamous wife could have been by my side us 1 gazed upon the lamentable object before me ! Here, woman,-behold your handi-

work ! :

Ile had been ever foremost in fight he had braved death in a thousand forms

- the flag of \ictory had often waved gloriously over him-he had quitted the field with honourable wounds-his grate- ful country welcomed her gallant dis- abled sou - his aftectionate wife, he thought, stretched forth her eager arms to receive him-after months of agony, on the wings of love he had flown s-even thousand long miles to be-blasted, as here he lay before me !

Sad sights have I seen in my time, but when one so sad as this ? My swell- ing heart overpowers me ! Poor Colonel, what can my art do for thee?

And thou, Alverley, come hither thou for a moment, slayer of the peace and honour of thy brave brother soldier ! Quit for a moment the cockatrice, thy companion, to look upon this victim of your united treachery ! Oh, out upon thee! thy presence corrupts the air! Down, down to hell! But no-I rave society -will presently welcome you again, gay Alveiley ! to her harlot bosom !

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I Though a large opening hud been made in the jugular vein, through which the blood was flowing copiously no im- pression whatever seemed made, or likely to be made, upon the violence of the attack. I therefore recommended open- ing the turgid temporal artery-which was done - and large blisters to be applied to the nape of the neck and to the extre-

mities - the usual means resorted to in

violent apoplelic seizures. I waited for upwards of an hour, and was then obliged to leave my unhappy, but perhaps hap- pily unconscious patient, in apparently the same state as that in which I had found him. I paid him another visit early in the morning-still he lay in extreme danger, having been bled during the night, but without any sensible effect. I willingly acceded to the General's de-

sire for an immediate consultation with Sir-, which accordingly took place about two o'clock. The result was that we expressed a strong opinion that, unless a decided change took place within an hour or two, the attack would prove fatal. Why should I wish it- I thought -otherwise? What hopeless anguish would be spared him were he never to

awake to a consciousness of the tremen-

dous calamity that had befallen him !

What could life henceforth be to him 1

How could his grievous wounds be healed, or even stanched ? How could his wrongs be repaired, mitigated, or concealed ? What bitter agony -wpuld the sight of Jii-? children even force into his heart ! I thought of all this, and for a momentdid not feel anxious thatsuccess should attend our strenuous efforts to save him. They succeeded, however, and in three or four days' time it seemed pro- bable that the unhappy sufferer would live to become acquainted with the full extent of his misery-to drain perhaps the cup of sorrow to the dregs. I was in the room when his eyes gave almost their first look of returning conscious- ness. Oh, dreadful contrast to the gay and happy man I last saw him before his departure for India ! His hair was now somewhat of an iron-grey hue-his com- plexion had become deeply bronzed by his constant exposure to the i ays of an Indian sun. Despite, however, his pre- sent extreme exhaustion, and the sunken sallowness of his countenance, it was impossible not to perceive its superior air -the lineaments of that bold and reso- lute character for which Colonel St. Helen had ever been distinguished. But where was the wontod fire of tho«e dark eyes that were now directed towards me drowsily and unconsciously? Was he then aware of the cau«e of his illness, or was the frightful truth breaking bitterly and slowly upon his reviving faculties? God grant that the latter might prove to be the case, or the consequences might be

disastrous indeed !

For nearly a fortnight he lay in a kind of lethargy, never once speaking, or ap parently taking any notice of what was passing about him. Innumerable calls were made at his house, and enquiries

concerning his health by a large circle of | attached and sympathizing friends. His Royal Highness the Commander-in-Cliief .*ent almost ¡daily to know how he was going on. As soon, as I thought it ad-, visabie, I intimated ni/ anxious wish that he should have the advantage of a change of scene ; and as soon as he was able to be removed, travel by easy stages to Cheltenham, lie simply shook his head, sorrowfully, at the same time raising his hand as if deprecating the mention of it.

Of course I desisted. The next time I called his female attendant met me on the

stairs, and gave me to understand that he had begged the proposal might not be renewed, as he was determined not to quit ? ? Street. Before leaving him that day, General Ogilvie followed me and told me that the Colonel, who had not once made any allusion to what had taken place, suddenly enquired, in the course of the morning, in a faint tone where his children were; and on being informed, expressed a wish to see them.

After some hesitation I consented to their

being brought the next day, for a few minutes only -the General having assured

me that I could not over-rate the forti-

tude of his suffering relative. " Depend upon it he will bear the sight of them," said the General, " better than you ima- gine, though certainly his nerves must have been much shaken. How shall we

arrange it? I Utould very much wish to be present, Doctor, if you could con-

trive it.' I promised not only to be j present, but that, as 1 could easily ar- range it, I would myself call and bring Mrs. Ogilvie and the children ; and so

it was decided. The next afternoon, therefore, about three o'clock^ on my return from visiting a patient in the neighbourhood of General Ogilvie's re- sidence, I called there, but found Mrs

Ogilvie on the point of going out, not having received any intimation of our arrangement. Sho instantly, however, agreed to accompany me. " And how arc your little nephew? ?" I enquired.

"Oh, they are very well," she replied, with a sigh; " a child's grief is not very deep or lasting ; Arthur was as merry the next morning after leaving - Street, as if nothing had happened! Now and then, however, he asks me where his mamma is, and when he shall go to see lier, or when she will come

here ? But when he sees me sometimes suddenly turn aside my head, to hide the tears that force themselves into my eyes,

the poor child thinks I am angry with him, and kisses mc, throwing his arms round my neck, and saying he will never ask to sec his mamma again. He soon, however, forgets his promise," added Mrs. Ogilvie with emotion. " Here they are at present, as merry as they can be," she continued, opening the folding doors, and walking into a room that looked upon a pleasant garden. " Alas that they should ever hear of what has

caused all our sorrow !"

The two little boys were romping about upon the grass plot in high glee, running after and rolling over one another. How like the elder one was to his wretched mother ! The same bright blue eye, the same beautifully formed chin and mouth! I dreaded the effect of his standing sud- denly before his father! The younger child, George, as lively as a cricket, and as brown as a berry, bore some little gc ! neral resemblance to his father. '

he

Oh, how could your mother look upon your little faces, and listen to your prattle, and feel your tiny arms embracing her, and forget that she had borne you ! That you were the fruit of her womb ! That your little lips had a thousand times

drawn nurture from her maternal bosom !

All the myriad of delicious agonies and ecstacies of a mother ! Her generous, confiding, absent husband !-How could she, knowing all this, recollecting all this, deliberately surrender herself to destruction, and prefer the blighting com- panionship of a fiend-an adulterer !

" Now, Arthur and George," said Mrs. Ogilvie, as we approached them in the garden-" you must be good children and go and get dressed, and I Avili take you both out"

" What ! a drive in the carriage ? I love the ponies'."replied George,eagerly.

" Yes, my love, we are going to take you to see papa."

" No, no, I shall not go there ! I don't like my papa ! He has taken my mamma away !''

" No, child, do not talk such nonsense ; papa has done no such thing. Poor papa is very ill," replied Mrs. Ogilvie, tre- mulously, " and wishes to see his little boys "

" I don't know my papa," said the child, pouting, and sidling away from us. " He's a very, very great way off but if you'll let mamma go with us, then 1 dont care,"

" Your papa," baid I, observing Mrs. Ogilvie's emotion, "does not know where your mamma Í3 !" The child seemed quite puzzled at all this. " Will you go with us, then ?" he enquired, turning to Mrs. Ogilvie.

" Yes, love."

" Is'nt my papa avery great officer ?" he enquired abruptly. "Ile has killed -oh, such a number of people, I am told! Do you think he will like to see««?''

" Yes, indeed, Arthur-and he will love j ou very clearly!" leplied Mrs. Ogilvie, with a faltering voice, leading her little nephews into the house. They were not long in being dressed, and we were presently on our way to town. I be- gan to feel rather more apprehensive of the propriety of allowing the interview when I saw how his mother was running in Ar- thur's head. Suppose he were bluntly to

ask his father what had become of her. I whispered my apprehensions to Mrs. Ogilvie, and found them shared by her.

She had not seen her brother since his return from India, and declared herself perfectly incapable of bearing an inter- view with him at present, even were he able to receive her. As we returned into

Street the children became verv restless ; and when we reached the house Arthur looked up at it apprehensively, and refused at first to quit the carriage. We succeeded, however, in inducing him to do so, and in pacifying him, and both the children were conducted into the li- brary, where Mrs. Ogilvie undertook to occupy their attention while I repaired to the Colonel's bedside to ascertain how he

was. I found lum very little changed from what he was the preceding day, ex- cept that there was an evident restlessness about the eyer Probably he was aware that his ( hi dren had arrived. General Ogilvie, who rarely quitted the chamber of his suffering b.'other-iu-law, sat in his accustomed chiir beside bim. I sat down in the one usually placed forme ; while my finger was on his pulse, and my eye on my watch, the Colonel said, in a low tone, "They are come, are they not ?" I told him that they were below.

" Let them be brought up then, if you please-but only one at a time," said he, a faint flush appearing on his cheek. General Ogilvie immediately left the room, but not without first casting an anxious glance at me.

" You are both, I can see, apprehen- sive on my account," he whispered ; " but I am perfectly aware of my situa- tion. Ile must not be long in the room, however, I may not be so strong as I think myself." In a few moments Ge- neral Ogilvie returned, leading in his little companion, who entered with evi- dent reluctance, looking with some fear towards the bed where his father laj'.

" You are a very good child, Arthur," said I, in a soothing tone, holding out my hand to receive him, inwardly cursing at the moment his resemblance to Mrs. St. Helen, and which just then appeared to me stronger than ever. " Come and ask your papa how he is !" The child came and stood between my knees. Can I ever forget the looks with winch that father and son, on this their bitter meeting, re- garded one anorher ? Neither spoke. It would be in vain to attempt describing that of the former ; as for little Arthur,

his face showed a mingled expression of apprehension and wonder. " Speak to your papa," I whispered, observing him slowly moving away-" he is very poorly !" He looked at me for a mo- ment, and then faintly exclaimed, gazing at Colonel St. Helen-" Papa, I love you !" The poor Colonel turned his head away and closed his eyes. In vain he strove to compress his quivering lip ; nature would conquer, and the tears soon forced themselves through his closed eye- lids. I wish Mrs. St. Helen could have seen the unutterable anguish visible in his features when he turned again to look upun the little countenance so much resembling hers ! After gazing thus for some moments in silence upon the child, he whispered, " Kiss me, Arthur !" He

did so.

" Do 3rou love me ?" enquired his

father.

" Yes, papa !" The Colonel stretched out his arms to embrace his son, but his left arm instantly fell again powerless beside him. Ile shook liis head, and sighed.

" Do you recollect me, Arthur ?" he enquired. The child looked at me, and

made no answer.

" Do you love your little brother George ? " asked the' Colonel, languidly.

" Yes, very much-I'll go and fetch him, papa-he will love you too-he is down stairs." Every fibre of Colonel St Helen's face quivered with emotion nis eyes overflowed with tears, and he whispered

" I feel I cannot bear it! he had better

B°"

" General," said I, " will you take him dow n stairs ? We fatigue Colonel

St. nclcn !" But he made me no answer. Ho was looking away, and the tears fell. I therefore rose, and after lifting up the child again to kiss his parent, led him down stairs, thankful that he had not tortured his father by any allusion to his wretched and degraded mother. On my return, I found Colonel St. Helen much exhausted, and evidently suffering acutely from'the distracting feelings excited by his son's presence.''

He recovered, but ver}' slowly, du- ring the ensuing month, from as severe an attack of apoplexy as 1 had ever witnessed. The grief that was preying upon his heart soon showed itself in the settled gloom with which his ema- ciated features were laden, and which, coupled with his dangerous illness, and the very violent remedies we were com- pelled to adopt in order to subdue it, re-

duced him almost to a skeleton. He

had, indeed, fallen away, most surpris- ingly. A fine muscular man when in health, he looked now as if he had re- turned from India in a deep decline. Ile would sit alone, and speechless, for hours: and took even his ordinary nourishment, with visible reluctance. When his chil- dren entered into his presence-they were brought to him daily-he received them with affection, but his manner oppressed

them. Alas ! he had now no smiles with

which to welcome and return any of their little overtures towards cheerfulness ; in the midst of any faint attempt at merri- ment on their part, lie would rise, and suddenly clasp them to his widowedheart in silent agony.

The manner in which, at a former pe

riod of his illness, he had rejected the proposal made to him of a change of scene, prevented its being renewed. One morning, however, he suddenly asked General Ogilvie if lie could give him a home for a few months ; and on being assured of the affectionate welcome with which he would be received, he expressed a desire to quit-Streeton the ensuing morning, lie forthwith gave directions for his house, with all its furniture, of every description to he sold ; and the clothes, trinkets, and such personal orna- ments of Mrs. St. Helen as were in the house, he ordered to be destroyed. He exacted a pledge to this effect from Ge- neral Ogilvie. On its being given, he took his arm, and-shadow of his former self!-stepped languidly into the Gene- ral's carriage, drew down the blinds, and quitted-Street for ever. The day after in passing the house, I saw great staring bills in the window, and a board

on the walls - " This House to be Sold."

To this day I never glance at such ob- jects without being suddenly and pain- fully reminded of the events which are detailed in this chapter.

I could gain no intelligence whatever

of the destination or movements o1' Mrs.

St. Helen ; it was generally supposed that she had gone, and still remained abroad, in company with Captain Alverley. I expected in each clay's paper to hear of her having committed suicide ; and for that teason, never omitted to cast my eye over a paragraph headed with "Coroner's Inquest," or Distressing Suicide." Not so how ever ; she was reserved for severer suil'erings, a more sigiial punishment, a more lamentable end ! Captain Alverley made his appearance in London about six weeks after the elopement; and in pass- ing along St. James' Park he caine upon his Royal Highness the Commander-in Chief, who was returning on horseback from the Horse Guards. Ile drew up, and motioning Captain Alverley, his Aide-de-Camp, to approach, rebuked him sternly and indignantly for the cruel and infamous outrage he had committed, commanding him never again to enter his presence. The Duke rode off with a haughty scowl, leaving Captain Alverley apparently thunderstruck. This incident found its way into the next day's papers ; and Captain Alverley, perceiving himself in general bad odour, threwiup his com- mission, and withdrew, it is supposed, to

the Continent. The excellent Duke of York, indeed, evinced from the first the greatest sympathy with Colonel St. Helen ; and as soon as he thought he might with safely do so, senthim a letter, by a distinguished general officer, also a friend of the Colonel's, full of thekindest and most condescending expressions, and intimating his wish to see him at the Horse-Guards at the earliest possible opportunity. He added that he was authorised to state that his Majesty had expressed a sincere sympathy for his sufferings, and the highest approbation of his gallant conduct abroad. The Colonel sighed on reading these flattering com

municatiois.

(To be Continued.)