|Newspaper Title||Launceston Examiner (Tas. : 1842 - 1899)|
|Trove Title||Light after Darkness|
CHAPTER III. "Of .all the affections and passions which lodge -themselves w-ithin the breast of man, envy is the most trou blesome, the most restless, hath the most malignity, the most poison in it." -Lord Clarendon. "Bob!" The call came from Mr. Roberts, and when Bob looked up he saw his master impatiently shaking his riding whip at him. He had just reached home, on horseback, and ii was evident that he was not in a very good temper. Bob knew the symptoms very well, and pre pared a ddfence. It was usual for Mr. Roberts to visit upon him the failings ,of others. He made one charge against the boy, and -that was his laziness, and if he had been occasionally harsh be yond reason -he comforted himself with the knowledge that Bolb would s-oon deserve a further scolding, and would probably escape. This principle was a very unjust one, and could not .tend to improve Bob. "Come along, lazy bones." Bob left his work, and movedk slowly towards his master'. He knew he was required to attend to the horse-a duty that he detested. Mr. Roberts stamped his foot impa tiently as he watched Bob's slow move melts. "You lazy fellow," lhae shouted. "You movel like a snail. What have you been doing all day. Idling away your time, I suppose?" "Did you see me idling?" asked Bob, sullenly, as he -approached. "If you did, you are right in saying that. If not, you are wrong. 'The last time you spoke to me you were wrong. Now you are thinking that two wrongs make a right." "'Do you dare to reason with me-, you rascal?" cried Roberts, "I'll lay my whip over your shoulders if you say another word!" "The last time you threatened that," said Bob, "I told you I would not stand it; you shall not strike me. If you at tcmpt to raise yolur whip against ime you will regrct it, as sure as the sun shines above us. So, beware, proud man. I have spoken!" Mr. Roberts looked at Bob in amase n.cni. Then lie burst into hearty laughter. "'Why, the boy is mad stark staring mad. Oh, we'll have ydu in a straight-jacket by-and-by, my fine fellow, believe me. NWlhat have you, been doing all day?" "I havabeetn digging a lit'tle." ".Yes, and.. p.recious little,. I kn'ony.
Hlaore, attend to Hamlet, and mind what R you tre about." . '"I work hard enough sometimes," h said Bob; "but I don't want Ito be I driven; I am not kindly treated. Re- re member, sir, I am not a slave." "You are s'saucy jackanapr's;" said S Mr. Roberts, I've been watching you f for some time, and if it were not for your father, I'd pack you off. Look 'to it that you change your ways, o·r I'll get rid of you. Off you go." Bob led the horse towards the stable. He did not dare to say another word. On his way to 'the house Mr. Roberts was met by Miriam Grahame, a slight r pale young lady, who was two years older than Elsie.. Miriam carried a letter in heri hand. "Goad afternoon, :Uncle!" she ex claimed. We did not expect you to re turn from Launceston 'till to-mornow. How pleased Aunt will be!" "Where are you going, Miriam?" "To the Post Office. Can. I do any thing for you?" "No;'thanks. But you are not going to walk, are you?" "Yes, Uncle; I think a long walk will t do me good." "Oth, very well. But if your letter is not important, why not wait until to morrow. I'll send Botb over then." "No, Uncle, thank you. It is a very 3 important latter. It is for my brcther, n and the Eoiglish. mail closes in Laun ceston to-morrowv." "You must find it difficult, I should think to get news to fill your letters. Why, that is a bulky one; quite a parcel.. Nothing happens here worth writing about." "But my letter is not iall news, uncle; I aan sending something else." "Indeed; is it a secret?" "Yes, uncle," said Miriam, blushing. "It is a secret." "Well. I hope you will enjoy your walk, though I think it. is too long for you. Good-bye, Miriam." "Good-bye, uncle." Miriam was glad to, get away, for she did not wish to prolong the 'on versation with her -uncle. Her meeting with Mr. Roberts was an unfortunate one, for the letter and the hesitating manner in which she had spoken of it served as evidence against her 'in a suspicion which caus'ed her many hours o'f sorrow and shame. Miriam was the daughter of Mrs. Roberts's sister, and her parents were both dead. The lonely girl had found a pleasant home at "The Acacias," where she had been living since the death. o.f her mother, two years preo viously. Her brother Charles, who wo: several years her senior, was battling Shis way to promotion and honour .n the establishmunent of Messrs. Grahame, Coutts, and Co., merchan:ts, L:m'lon; the hea.d of the firm being a, d:,mtant 3 relation, who .had insisted on providing for his future in a practical way. Mrs. Roberts had been very kind to her niece, and was satisfied that her sympathy had not been misplaced. Although only two years older than Elsie, she already showed signs of the development of genius. She was assiduous in her studies, and made rapid progress in all the subjects which she had undertaken, overcoming diffi culties that would have daunted many less ardent students. She was passion ately fond of music, and visitors to "The Acacias" had frequently 'spoken in terms of the highest praise of her play ing and singing. (To be continued.)