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Published for the Proprietors by W. WELLS GARDNER, 2 Paternoster Buildings, London.
(Castle Street, Leicester Square
• What's to do, lass ?' asked a woman,
who was seated with her market-basket by (Continued from p. 35.)
the fire. W'D loike to
Matty answered truly that she couldn't agen,' she thought, and help it; that her side ached, and she was almost unconsciously she tired. Her explanations were interrupted turned into the street by a fit of coughing; and the woman looked that led towards the on compassionately. station : it was a long “Why, bless th' wench! hoo's bad : hoo time since she had vi- is that?' was the kindly comment. “What's sited it. During the
ta mother thinkin' on to let yo' coome out summer she had wanted sich weather as this?' nothing better than to wander in the Oh, hoo's at factory,' said Matty, with lanes and fields in the outskirts of the a feeling that it was right to defend her town; and now, though the weather was step-mother. An' aw olez coughs a deal; damp and cold, and she was glad of any leastways aw ha' done this winter. Mother warm place of shelter, somehow she never does no' know much about it, for it's mostly cared to walk all the way to Well’s Dale o' neets.' Station: it was so far off, and there was Thae's cold as death,' said the woman, such a long, steep hill, to mount coming an' yet thae cheeks is all burnin'. Come
6 home. So had come to prefer the to th' fire and warm the sel'.' Manchester Road Station, and one or two Matty obeyed, and sat on for some time nooks in the market-place and elsewhere. after the other had left. But the detection But this afternoon a strange desire seized she had so long dreaded and escaped was to her to go once again to the old quarters, come at last. And now it had come, Matty to the place where she had met 'the gentle- hardly felt to care. She took her dismissal man’ and received the bright new shilling quietly enough, only sighing to think of which had wrought such a happy change the long walk that lay before her. Very in her life—the particular spot, as it seemed wearily she walked along until she came to to her visionary little mind, from which all Long Hill, and then it seemed as though her joys on earth and hopes of heaven she never could drag herself to the top. had sprung. The distance appeared much Her limbs had suddenly lost all their greater to her than it had ever done be- strength; her breath came thick and painfore. “How iver shall I manage the Long fully; tears of exhaustion streamed down Hill back?' she thought, but she still kept her cheeks. on, and contrived to reach the platform of Hullo, little 'un,' cried out a familiar the station in time for the Valley Junction voice. "Thae looks welly done; wilt have a train. She knew it was very foolish, that ride?' and, with small ceremony but much it was a mere fancy that had taken posses- gentleness, Sam Cluckeo lifted the poor sion of her ; but when she looked in vain child into his cart, promising to set her for the kind face that had lived in her down at her father's door. memory so vividly through all the year she Matty brightened up to thank him, but burst into a passion of tears, and turned the ridedid not bring the pleasure all away sobbing into the waiting-room. former rides' had brought. She was too
tired to enjoy it; almost too tired to think pleased with himself for having rememabout it at all. She leaned up against the bered the name both of Gubbings and his great milk-can and closed her eyes, mur- employer. Huntleys' was a firm well known muring, as though in a feverish dream, throughout the northern counties; while whilst she clasped her treasured Bible Gubbings had impressed him as a surname close to her heart;-Come unto Me all suitable to one of Dickens' characters. ye that labour and are heavy laden, and Having got the address of Matty's honie I will give you rest.'
at Huntleys' office, he plunged into the CHAPTER V.
Stockbrook back-streets, and soon arrived “The next station's Stockbrook, I think. at Jim Gubbings' door. Some weeks beWe change there for Valley Junction; don't fore he would have found it looked and the we, Markham ? I hope we shall catch our family all out at work; but to-day there train.
were signs of life in the cottage, and soon * It's a chance ; do you know I was once a tall slatternly girl answered his knock. kept waiting here for two hours. By-the- * Does a child called Matty Gubbings by, I wonder what's become of a little ac- live here? Are you her sister?' he asked. quaintance I picked up on that occasion ? Ees,' said Jenny, 'hoo lives here, sure I dare say she's forgotten all about me long enoo; but the doctor he says as how hoo ago. Children's minds are not always very winnot be here long,' raising the corner of retentive. But here we are! Here, guard, her
apron to her eyes to wipe away some We're in time for the Valley express, I hope?'
very genuine tears. Yes, sir, it's just about starting; but • Dear! I'm grieved to hear that,' said there's no great hurry.'
the visitor. What is the matter with her ?' The gentlemen dismounted and stood • It's the consumption, doctor calls it. upon the platform. A sudden thought Hoo's ben goin' fast these six week.' Aashed through Mr. Markham's mind. I'm not surprised,' said Mr. Markham,
'I say, Rigby, I'll not go on with you. with some severity in his tone, 'if she's I'll follow later. I've a fancy to go and been allowed to live in the streets this winsee after my little friend.'
ter as she lived last, and I remember she "Nonsense! come along. What a crotchety
looked delicate then. Poor little thing ! fellow you
"Aye, poor little 'un!' sighed Jenny with But Mr. Markham was not to be per- real feeling. Aw'm afeared as it's ben suaded. He bore his friend's raillery with worse for her nor we thought. But hoo indifference as he lingered for a few minutes niver made no complaints till hoo were to see the express off.
brought whoam one dee by th' milk lad Oh! what would not Matty have given welly nigh for to drop. Hoo’s a patient six weeks before to have seen that tall little crayter, hoo is. Aw doubt aw've ben figure and pleasant face! to bave heard the a bad lass not to a' stood up for her a bit cheerful voice asking the station-master:- moor, an' looked arter her a little. But
Can you direct me to Huntleys' mill? aw'm niver goin' fur to lave her ony more I shall have to walk, I expect. I'm afraid while as hoo howds out;' and Jenny was I've let all the cabs go off.'
fairly sobbing by this time. But bless me! The necessary directions were given, and Aw'se niver axed yo’ for to coome in.' Mr. Markbam started away at a brisk pace,
(Concluded in our next.)