Chapter 60520754

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Chapter NumberIII
Chapter Title
Chapter Urlhttp://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article60520754
Full Date1862-12-26
Page Number2
Corrections0
Word Count4969
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Last Corrected0000-00-00
Newspaper TitleEmpire (Sydney, NSW : 1850 - 1875)
Trove TitleBought and Sold: An Australian Christmas Story
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. ' CHAPTER III. . .

I Now, dear reader, yon must not imagine that beoause I

have occupied a couple of chapters with the eTenU of two days, I am poing to continue in the same strain from July to D coomber No, my allotted space is nearly filled, and I must

gather in the threads of my 'yarn' in this single chapter j ' so, by a magical waVe'Cf tho" pen7~I'.'am going to "reduce Father Time to a Bttto of meimerio passiveness, and then*

grasping the old fellow by the fore-look, I shall tug him, along, until I bring you rather close" to that blissful season1,' Christmas !-a season whioh is (or whioh thou'.d be, if it isn't) heralded iu by uuolouded hearts " and sunshining faces 1 * : . .' . -;; ' : '": .

Four months have" passed slnoe Tom "Giddi wake stood on the door-steps of Mr«. Skidler's dwelling, and we again enter Mr. Creaton a parlour. ' It was not so cold as when we last, visited him-as a rule, days are not very noli in tho midst of au Australian November 1-but Mr, Creston's.heart" appeared as oold as eve-: : oren tho very houso eoemed obanged fdr the better, but there was'no change, In his nature ¡ and he leaned baok in his oh'air," while the summer, ' sunshine floated strangoly about the room, with the same, cold, dreary, anaklab. look iii his eye, thal it bad ewr wore. Ho was not nloneonthis occasion, for an opposing chair was , oocupicd by a short puffy gentleman, from whose head time, had remorselessly plnokod out every hair,1tavingit r-s bald nndshningOB a block ol polished mahogany, but giving him in i xchange, a pair of fiery whiikerd, wnîoi looked as if a remarkably red head Of hair had 'crept inside,' and come out again'through his cheeks I * Ho hod evidently propounded

something that didn't exactly meet*Mr. Creston s views- > for that individual remarked, " No, no, Cadger 1 that isn't ? tho agreement we made I-a bargain's a bargain, and shan't

he departed from In tho'pi-etuut instance; btsides, man, j 'what's your hurry f you wore willing enough to wait four

months ago, but now you're as eager to be married as a boy,

of eigbtoen 1 Then .there's the girl, hang lt 1 I know she . loves this young doctor." " j

" Ourse him !" histed Mr. Gadger, almost inaudibly. , ? I . "Ibegyoarpaidon ! What did you otaaivef remarked!

Mr.' Creaton. j

" I didn't speak, " untried Cadger, In the ton» of a bear

on abort allowance. .

" Ob I well ail wa« (eying, Minnie really love« thia young fellow, and I tell you, Gouger, (and yon know th:re JIB'T mach poetry or sentimentality abont me I) ttere are Urses* wben 1 feel sorry, to pirt them ; and if I didn't know that if Wa« to the girl's advantage and my own, too, I wouldn't do it! I know what it ia to be disappointed,'and when I look upon h«r «tient raoe, I-poer Minnie'!-I shall he a'coilty wretch, Gadger, if you don't make ber future life a happy

»one." T.~~

; fOf eouraa she'll be. happy, ,with_ plenty/of money 1" growled Gadger; " what's to prevent itt ? Why, if we wei e to give way ta all their whims and * tantrums', girls never wo ul be settled, unless they settled into regular old maids, wVoh isn't at all a pleasant thing to thiuk of, either for' thero'olves, or for those about them 1" ; .: -

I've noticed that she is getting dreadfully thin and weak, lat»h,', said Mr. Creston doubtfully-' and the doctor who n attending her, don't give me any satisfaction about her. Se ta ka about ! mental disarrangement,' sud even whispers something about falling into a quick decline,

'«nd -" * " .

" And a good deal more ' hosh| 1 daresay !" interrupted Mr. Gadger, deoisivoly.' " Faot is¿ these medical fellows al-"" ways do 1 ifs thejr polioy, sir ; they mystify you in order to>¡ prevent the discovery of their own ignorance. The girl wdntfl. oliango of air, and cbonge^of scene, and the sooner yitgSt her out of this wretched -place the better. That waa the reason for my wishing tha marriage to take place earlier <£ course ; you must misconstrue a fellow's motives, and in- stead of hononring thom aa you ought todo, by:Jove, tirt you are, to say the least of jt, not at all complimentary .in yonr remar kB ; and make out that your daughter is going to be sacrificed to an Oore ! yes, sir, I repeat it, to an Ogre 1 rather than about tobe married to a geutlemsn !" and the < gentleman' took out a Bilk bandanna, and administered a fearful amount of friotion to bis polished head !

" We i," observed Mr. Creston, rather awed by his visi- tor's vehemence, " setting aside all mawkish sentimeutality, and looking at the thing in the light of a regular ' cut and driVil' nrrreement. every Dirt of it shall be strictly adhered

: to. We arranged that Minnie and von should be married on nert New Year's Day, so it shall be."

"And I soy it shall be within a week or not at all!" snarled Mr. Gadger, malignantly. " What-have we to wait for ? A hous.< shall be ready for the reception of your daughter and yourself ; she can have à cheque to-morrow for any amount she may require for. the ."purchase of her wedding out-fit,and ban have four days; more, for (jetting her dresses'tind millinery made. (I know g;rls delight in these things, and I suppose she'll consider tour days little enough I) What would you'have more !"

"I am a man of my word, Gadger; and will not alter the arrangement for' anyone,'* replied Mr. Creston, stub- bornly, " therefore be content with affairs as they arc."

"Yon willi eje it this obsticaoy," »ai J the! tile man rising

" I have very particular reasons for hastening this match. I will sive you another day for considération, bat if you don't fall into my . views then-mark my words ! -you will be soiry for it ! Good morning."

" Good' morning," returned Mr. O eaton, stiffly, as he leaned baok in his arm-chair;; and listened to the heavy footsteps of his retreating visitor until they terminated with the violent ' bang ' of the street door.

" Curse him !" he muttered, as he grasped the arms of his chair, and raised himself, peering vacantly at the empty

ohair, wherein the portly Mr. Gadger had been-so lately, seated, " curse him I-is this the generous treatment I have Îurohased with the sacrifies of my child ?-is this the life

am to lead beneath his roof J Has ho dared to dictate to -

mein my own house? Wretohed place that it is, I'll 111-" but his fury brid ove taxed his strength, and he sank baoV, weak as a child. ' V' .. Vi

He had commenced to learn a hard and bitter lesson,

that, lesson which teaches how'galling it is to wear the. fetters of Dependence. For the first time for many, many months, he fell into a train of deep and honest reflection ; he began to ponder on the dreary days, and weary nights, he had been the fretful, troublesome'charge of bis un aomplaininj; daughter,, and as he thought of lier unceasing, changeless] kindness, something wondrously like a couple of large tears stole from his pitiless. grey oyes - «nd yet, this was the nurse he had sold, and Gouger had. bought ! -

It would be doubtful, to say what oath Mr. Creston was going tb take," but certain it is, be WOB about to register a solemn vow of lome nature, when somebody tapped at the door ; and Mrs. Skidler, in her coal-collar voice, implored him to " come and louk at Miss Minnie, she was so dreadful.

bad!" ' ' . .

" What's the mat'er, Mrs. Skidler?" cried Mr. Creston, jumping np with greater agility than he had displayed for, many a.month. ...-rtK'-il

"Oh, she's bin a faintin', and when I went upstairs I found her ly in' on-the floor; and since I lifted her on to the bed she's bin a talkin' all manner o' strange things ss if she was light-headed." Mrs.. Skidler managed to gasp, this out, as she followed him up stairs, but before she hod reaohed the end of her reoital her lodger had reached his daughter's room. He was rather frightened os he looked at her ; for there was a wild ' unnatural fire in her half closed eyes, and a crimson brightness on her cheek, that he. didn't' at all like to see -ber looks wandered dreamily front' her father's face to that of Mrs. Skidler, but she made no sign of recognition-the heart had failed ; the.spirit whioh had borne np so bravely had bowed at last, and Minnie; Creston was in a high fever I

This was a state of things Mr. Creston hod little locked for': wi h all bis darling pions for. his daughter's happiness and bis own comfortable settlement, be bad forgotten that

" There's a divinity that shapes our ends, Hough hew themas wo will. '

Bemonstranoe and resistance on the part of his dsughter he had anticipated, but ho had Lever dreamt of .Death 1

" What's to be done, Mrs. Skidler,, she looks os though she were dying !" shuddered Mr. Creston.

"Ono I don't you go for to.be frightened, for a day or two," Baid Mrs. Skidler, soothingly. -

*,' Hadn't we better send for the doctor?' suggested Mr. Creston nervously. '

" Well there's one down the lane, now ; attendin' to Mrs.

Brown's husband who fell off a roof and hurt his back-' because I saw bi? gig waitin' out in the road ; moreover it was minded by that yenng imp, Tom, who is dressed like a gentleman, and who made a fool of me four months-: ago about a friend of his who wanted lodgings. Shall. I

call him?" ' ?-- -

Now, Mrs. Skidler in this speeoh so thoroughly amalga- mated the doctor, Tom, and the mythical individual in search of lodgings, that it would be difficult to determine who the ' him' alluded to -aotnally WOB : but Mr. Creston' was so thoroughly, aroused to his daughter's danger, that be-: only heard-and only oared for, the electors proximity; .so' taking Minnie's hand, barning with feverish fire, in bis own, he bane Mrs. Skidler bring bim at once.- '...'- .'? ' ^ .''*=

Of course, asl dare say, you have already, guessed, the! dootor ' down the lane'was no other than Mr. Arthur Tage ! and yon may be sure it was not long before he stood by the bed-side of bis new patient. Mr. Creston stood anxiously by, and when the dootor. turned towardshim, asked hoarsely -" Is there much danger ?" ,

" If ' danger' expresses the release of a wearied spirit from' its mortal frame-then, in the present case, there is danger,", answered Mr. Page,Bternly.." But it is not thenature of our profession to despair-onr maxim is to guard against the worst, and hope for tbe.best." ' , ,

*' And Minnie?-my daughter! -you'kaow the nature

of ber malady and oan apply,. the remedies to arrest it ?"- ?' asked Mr. Creston,, eagerly. v. - .

" Mr. Creston/'.replied the young dootor, 11 a certain ; measure of knowledge, a certain amount of skill, is meted out to man that he may alleviate the bodily sufferings of htB fellow-creatures; but, to 'minister, to ,a mind : diseased,'

belongs.to. a higher, province than-ours I Miss Cres ten:-ha»'.' suffered mnoh, and, os yon have said,-I. do know., the cause

of ber illness ; long. months of anxiety for your < health, and- : frequent and tedious night-watchings, have ; tended, to

weaken her wholo physical system-against; this abe has > struggled long ; buts ome blighting news; smelly and« nddeDlv

imparted to her, hos entirely overthrown ? her bodi y and' - mental faculties, and reduced her to : her present state* of

nervous prostration ; Poor girl;!" v. " , The first part of this speeoh iras addressed in a stern and emphatiomanner to Mr. Creston-; but there was -a world-of - touching sympathy in tho, lost, two words I,-He i took hi«j patient by the band, "and oontiniied ina more /cheerful* manner, ""But, don't be cast down, Mr.- Creston ?i With the ri help' of One-without' whoso asBistanoe "all4 our-medical

science would avail little-and .with kind and ? careful nara-; í. , ing.'I trust' that your daughter will long be spared ta-r'^r- 1 " ?youl"...-. .. ; .. ' .

, : « Don't use that word ! ' Finish the sentenoo, »s¡joui in-

tended, and say.«, ns'.! Wretch, that I am-I don't desirve - her : I have flung away the treasure, without ,estimating«« *, value l: I have Bacrifi<ted"rhy'.child to my Idte.hf, indolent. » ease; I have 'sold' her to misery, ' or. death-and tiny»e» /.-, to->* ,, , ..;*T ',_u

' "Htih l» exMaimeü t*ho dootof, as tho sleeping gi"*

arodsed by her father** Vehemence; turned *'arif,Tnn*S"y» -<.'

Sorrow is oftentimes a salutary medicine; bot tne»°

Violent domoastrations of grief are.uhaTaiJing, as tn.0J ,W ; t foolish;'"'-'' ' ";J i ..?"" J .. .' ..",- < j ».. £

;« Ob,'tell me that her illness iBn'tdangerous 1" .or*ed1 tba.. " wretohed man, as Be grairjetí'-be doctors hand, and grovelled

on the'fljor in the very abjeotn-éa ófhis nlserv. -n¿¿?-~ " " Would Ufatl coíílddó aö, with truth.l". BaldMr. ,iage, bitterly'.^''"'1*'- '' .' -J . . J.

« Bay you can save her. promise mel that (and hare her for your feo I restore borlo health/and yon1 abell ha«1 nw

for your reward-only don* t tay she mnstídie, "yUuag o*»> jW that, anything but" that i';., ¡ ? < I.-rr-u .';lfc.»U»

Tho yeUow summersbine lcátwlli ménrilr about the roca, ^_ and glittered through the half-opened door, at "bleb stow "the doctor's attendant, ¡Tom'J WddIwaké,¿who.h>d heard from Mrs. Skidler of Minnies illness.' " Kw" ftllo" ' wKB

Iii onn"eU.ingRU''ut o ntrTOw-minded world, helad still tom námari U^V¿ Jfft ¡ I»8 now wandered np the . stairs ( , eaton al wt. gi'mp-e of che dring «Irl who liad been kin ; to him Ï 'As l'or MM. Kkidle'r, in the depth'pf horgrief al: . Jhad quite renounced the luui-boltl», aa being inefficient I ' core lt. ! - ' T9 do her jü¡,tioe, her eyes had an additional eau;

''for being"red/that rriurning, acd .when she rkfsed Torn o

the 'landing' and taw tho poor, fellow standing there, wit ; his hit in hu hand, and the tears trickling down his face, si ; eran forgave him his deceptive tale of the supposiUot

lodger ! . ?

. As the landlady again entered , the room, the noise mad

by the door aroused the sufferer from, her uneasy slumber tn*, glaring wildly at the inmates, she cowered fesrfull beneath.the bad-elothea. " Take bira away J" she soresraei. as she shuddered with .delirious ? horror, " Don't let hie touih me ! Ton don t own me ! Von can't bay human Hes and blood in thia Christian land, and if you could do yo thin''a father would sall hUohild? Oh, no, no, no! if h dil, I would hate fr m as I hate you ! Oh, it's a oruel wickei lia! There, there I take away your gold ! ' she screamed as the sunshine shimmered gailv on the bed, " It hurts m; -eyfs (o loo*-' at it I-it aazles ms-O th:a is horrible !"

. They leaned over her. JVaturehad again interposed, ant . the girl had fainted. 1

. . . . . . .

, It wai Christmas Pay, and a bright, glorious, sunny-faced heart-warming day it was .' just auch an one as you mighl . imagine mode expressly for people to be merry and enjoy

themselves in. The sun for that ' one day only' seemed de- termined to outshine all previous efforts, and "redly looked ' such a jolly, good natured persona e, that you couldn't help experiencing a kinired .feeling, AS JFOU looked into his great .'glorious, face. , And a very inquisitive person he was that

'morning,. I can ..tell.you !. for after straying into.every .window, iii the city, as. if wishing all he inmates,'Merry Christmas' he commenosd peering Btraight down tho chim- neys to see that every one hada Christmas pudding for

.dinner 1 : L

. God bless the Christmas time ! it Boems os if the ' good- will' proclaimed te sinful man, on the morning of om Saviour's birth, still lingered among us ; and that the sma'l portion of love tho world, oontaini, had been cut up and divided so that all might for one day at least have an equal

.share I.- ..n- i. .,:. . t, ? ? . ,'.. Of course there wasn't any holly about, but there was any amount of green hushes, and eolden-ilower'd wattles, some struggling to get through the half-opened doors of butchers' .and grocers' shops,wliere business was still being transacted and some oondemued to brave the dust and heat of the Btreet tied up to awniag-posts and nublio-house lamps. '

, Then the bells rang out right merrily !-none of your so- lemn ' ding-dong'style, whi li reminds one more of a fune- ral, than a season of joy and festivity-but at it they went, .clashing and.olt.nginir, till their towers trembled again with tho merry clamour ! '

: Eleven o'clook-and people dressed in their very bast ¿Vat is, in their. beBt looks, as well as their beat olothes .thronged the streets ; some going to ohuroh ; and others bent on parties of pleasure to 'M-nly'- or Watson's Bay or elsewhere ¡. ttout ladies, tugging refractory urchins by the hand, while their husbands brought up the rear, toiling .under huge baskets of provisions containing enough to vio tuai the party fora weok !.. Steamers at tho-wharf, pading and groaning at the bare idea of having to work so hard on Chrlstmoe-day, when other folks-were' holiday-making etilors shouting-angines shrieking .. the roaring steam, whioh has been escaping Impatiently for the last half hour, is ' shut off,' and subiidoB into a hoarse murmur, and the boats move on? with their merry, pleasure-seeking freight ; while the few people remaining on the wharves stroll off in

search of amusement elsewhere.

One o'elook-and the people were coming out of oh uroli- ths old ones making much ado to reach one another through the crowd in. order to shake handa and wiah each other a Merry Christmas ! -a'thonxh the same parties have joined in that sarae_wish some half dosen times that miming ! - but never mind, we don't pray for eur neighbour's happiness too often 1 . Then the young ladies .were oxohanglng such affectionate kistes, as if there wasn't such a thing hs envy, hatred, and malice in tho world ! to the unspeakable torture of their, bachelor friends and cousins, who tried to look as if they wouldn't like to Join in the. eport-Ob, no .'-and yet if thoie young fellows only hod a good' opportunity bf get- ting a kiss, 1 wouldn't trust them as far as I con'd (iee them ! As to the children-they hurried along in pairs conversing on .subjects most oongeuial to their' tastes, namely :-what was . for dinner ? - and' who was going to the Pantomime, to-morrow ?-and animated discussions were inatituted os tollte jolly big pudding mother was making, aa early aa five o'clook that morning, toget her with allusions to the goose,'father bought," almost as big as me!'-as- serted by a chubby youngster'! 1

But now the streets aro, thinning; so, hailing a Glebe ' bas-whose.conductor ita model ot. civility (for this day only) we are bumped, and jo:tod, and shook-after the manner of bus travellers in general -until, in a combined state of-perspiration and good homour, we arrivant the Glebe, and Mr..Page's houee. Thsre is a clatter of knives and forka, and a rattle of platos, that proolaims us tobe rather late to dinner ; but, never mind-let us enter.

Good graolouB ! what a company .'-all so merry, too I - why, who would have imagined that Mr. Pago had " entered on his list of friends" such a beautiful assortment of pretty girls and nice yoong men ?-ay, and nice old people, too, tor the mattT of that I-for many a person-like wiua-im- proves, the older he gets ; and we musn't always associate old ago with Bkrivelled hearts os well as wrinkled faces

no, no !

? But who Ia that obliging old 'gentleman, so attentive to the ladles, and who, if his face be the index of his heart, i J a happy man,'indeed I -why that is Mr.Tage's future fattier in-law, and' no other than Mr. Creston ! aad it is hard to say whether he ia tho most proud of the merry, young doctor, or of the happy Minnie, who is seated in a cushioned chair by lils Bide.

."Minniel" you exclaim, ''why,'I thought she was dying f , ,

Bo sho was, dear reader, when we Raw he- last-but it is mercifully ordained for us, miserable mortals, that Provi- dence doesn't always work to make us moro miserable than we arc ; but oftentimes steps in to reader us moro com- fortable. So, iu thia case, Providence, having taught Mr. Creston that there is a higher Disposer of events than man, assisted Mr. Page in hts ' untiring task, until the roses began to bloom ? again'in Minnie's cheeks, and health to sparkle in her oj es. . : .<

' Of ooursB'Minhie had no objection to being made ovor to Arthur Page,-' in payment' of the doctor's billi-and Mr. Creston began to think that he hadn't effected auch a very ' bad'bargain after nil-particularly aa the , young surgeon'B wealth andmodloal reputation began to increase wonderfully-and, moro particularly, as the reputed ' rich ' Mr. Cadger had unaccountably failed a month or two ago, and now wandered tho streets, a dishonoured beggar !

There is another individual in the room, who deserves our espeolal attention ; and that is a oomical-looking young gentleman, with a ahlrf-oollar of, mast marvellous pro- portions-BO large, in foot, that it entirely hides the rear of his head and gives bim tho appearance (when his baok is towards j ou) of a mau walking about without that essential portion of lils body I ' ? ) . '

Ue Is ' walting ' behind tho doctor's chair, and OB he turns' to get' a hot plato'we recognise' our old friend, Tom Liddlwake. . . .

O I it wa« indeed a jovial party, and one whioh it wasn't at all pleasant to leave; but Mr. Page got up, after dinner was finished, and said he must go and visita poor patient of. Ma, .who was living-or rather dying 1-down one of our miserable city baok-lanes. " Poor creature I" he ob- served,'" sho oan't hold ont much longer; in foot, I om, afraid my, present visit will be useless; but,' while there's life,,' there's hope,' and it won't do to neglect her." So Tom ls ."ordered to br hg oiit the gig. and Mr. Page drives off by himself.

They were merry,enough in his absenoe, I oan tell you, and amused themselves so thoroughly, that the hour whioh olapsoi before tho doctor's return, appeared a very short sixty minutes indocd ! ile wasn't long before he entered the room -in foot, the closing of the front door by . the servant, and Mr. Page's re-appearonoo- among the party,

were almost simultaneous.

There, dear Minnie, ia a Ohristmas Present for you 1" be cried, as be threw on tho table a bundle of dirty papers tied np with a piece of as dirty red tape.

"What can lt bet" exclaimed Minnie, ai she and tho roit of the ladio»(and the'gentlemen, too) orowded round the table to look at tho strango parceL

' .Blessed if it ain't the bundle of papers, as the old 'ooman' took from Mr. Creston's, about a year ago I" ex- claimed Ur. Liddiwake, whe was apparently as interested as anybody.

"When , I visited . that poor creature just now, abo , had but a few minutes - in this world; troubles, and, the means BIIO had employed te alleviate them-drink-had nearly completed their work, and I saw at . glance I was too late. There were some old women at- tending to ber wants, : but she motioned them eut of tho room ; and then making a great effort, dragged this paper, enveloped in a oovering of rags, from under her miserable bed. Here, take these, doctor, she whispered, yoa deserve them for your trouble. Yon lock at it t . O it's something valuable, I can loll yon ; I took it from under a dying man's ' pillow-and-and you can make something out of it-it

isn't any use to me now then she began to ramble in her speech ; I bad .barely time to «all in her wretched nnrsos before she was seized with a violent fit and died."

There was a dull pause as the doctor ended his recital such a strange powerovor the human mind hos the thought of Death!

It was broken by Mr. Creston I who, taking the parcel ia Ms hand, observed«'Then this is--"

"Tour brother Andrew Oreaton's will," said the doctor,

" and Uie instrument which mattel Minnie heiress to« for tone of eight thoit?anrl pounds," '*. -

Andaoitdid! I nee In't nsf how Minnie's friends son gratu'nted her, end how glad they expressed themselves a

Br good fortune, because you. eau imagine that muol easier than I can tell von of it ; and beifaes, my time ii nearly up; but I may tell you that when the party hat separated with the exception of Minnie, her father, and th< doctor, Minnie placed the pa-ket in Mr. Page's hand, and falling, on his breast, said : -"Dear Arthur, I am thankful, very thankful for this gift of fortune ; bnt I am more thank- ful still that it did not oome before Yon did not purchase ne as if I were a mere piece of household furniture, you did not degrade our love into a * business transaction.' bnt you have bought my heart* as a woman's affection only thoald be purchased, with an equal share of noble, hon st love 1"

And Mr. Creston raid he was glad that.it hadn't oome sooner, too-but the will was very good, for all that !-tnd for the future he would never argue that there wat no re- ward for visiting the poor people down tte dark lanes and bye-ways of our city ! As for Mr. Tom Liddiwake, who (I am willing to take my affidavit) was as plcved as anybody, said it was " a Jolly good stroke of luck, bnt nñthiñk more nor the doctor and Miss Minnie deserved I"

A captain generally feels some regret at parting with the passengers whom he has safely pi'ottd to their destination, eves so, 1 feel dis'nolined to shake hands and say'good bye' to you, dear reader, who have accompanied me through the different ' light and shadow scenes" of my story ; and although as a Christmas one it necessarily ends here, I would say a few more words before we part.

? Missie Creston and Arthur Page were married on New Year B Day ; and if she hod experienced sorrows and vicis- situdes during her former years, she oould all the more fully appreciate the halo, of happinesa that encircled her wedded life : and, whatever people who preach against riohes may say-I fearlessly assert that the ei¿ht thousand pounds did not render Mr. and Mrs Pago a bit more misreablethan they wonld have been without it, for the simple reason that they knew how to use it ; and wealth, properly applied, can

never be a ourse 1 [

As to Mr. Creston-auoh a radioal ohange bama over bis opinions, respecting poor people and physio, that nothing delighted him so much as to accompany his son-in-law in his professional visits and compound doses for all OB whom he'cauld prevail to take them. This latter was silvery well, until tba doctor found him innocently 'making up' some arsenic, into 'magnesia powders' for a feverish urchin, when it was thought high time to bring his medical studies to a close ! Then he practised dentistry, and volun- teered to extraot a refractory tooth whioh had given Mr. Liddiwake a good deal of pain, aud actually succeeded in getting it out after palling out Uve that didn't ache at all ! but then, aa Tom remarked philosophically, after the opera- tion, '. Whát'sthe odds BO long as you're happy T"

And happy indeed they wera ! not only for those few months, but for the years after ; (and a few have passed since the time in whioh my story commences) bnt, though I have been a frequent visitor at their house and enjoyed many a Christmas dinner with them, I baye never once heard tbedootor, or his pretty young wife, regret the faot of Minnie Creston a being Bought and Sold I