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Ah! Rhoda,' he said, it seems so RHODA GRANT.
good to see you up and out of doors again. (Continued from p. 59.) You look twice the girl you did when I
went away.' BOUT this time they “Yes, Tom dear, I'm much better than
received their first I ever expected to be again. God has visit from Tom, who been very good to me. I am sure it bas came from the mines helped to make me better hearing such for a short holiday good news of you; and seeing you again, from the Saturday till and having you to go to church with the Monday. He had me, is doing me ever so much good.' washed all the coal- Mr. Monsell took the duty at the
dust off, and looked school chapel, and he was much pleased well and happy in a decent suit of clothes. to see the brother and sister sitting toGrant was quite ready to forgive and be gether, Tom looking so quiet and attenfriends with his son again, as he was off tive, and neat; so different from the wild, his hands and earning good wages, and the rude boy he used to be. The Rector rest of the family were overjoyed at seeing signed to them to wait behind after him. They found him very much improved, service, and then he spoke to them kindly, and he told them that he was going regularly and questioned Tom about his life at the to a night-school three times a-week, which mines. He was glad to notice Tom's grave the clergyman held, and was getting on well and respectful manner, and intelligent way with his reading and writing, and would soon of speaking. The good clergyman re- | be able, he hoped, to write letters home. He joiced much for Rhoda's sake at this spoke with the greatest gratitude of Mr. change for the better, for he knew that Randall, who, he said, had been most kind it must give her much happiness, and he to him. It was a great pleasure to Tom to felt how much it was most likely owing, find his sister Rhoda able to sit
under God, to her good example and out of doors again; for it had often sad
earnest prayers. dened his heart, while he was away from As they were going home, Rhoda told her, to think of her lying in bed weak and Tom all about her Confirmation. I should ill. To Rhoda's great joy she found Tom so like you to be confirmed too, Tom ready to go to church with her on Sunday, dear,' she said, ' when you are old enough. without even being asked. He looked so Let me see, how old are you?' respectable, and yet his clothes were by no • Fifteen next July, Rhoda.'
But he had made the most of Then next year, if there is a Confirmathem by brushing; and he had blacked tion, you will be old enough, and I do his boots, and stuck a flower in his button- hope you will not miss the chance; perhole; and his hair was smooth, and his face haps I shall be dead then, but if I am, and hands clean. Rhoda felt quite proud of you will remember that I wished it.' him as he walked by her side, and he took Oh, Rhoda ! don't talk about dying. the greatest care of her, giving her his You are going to get well and strong, and arm when she was tired, and walking slowly live to be an old woman.' when the road was at all up-hill.
'I don't feel as if I were, Tom dear.
God in His mercy has made me better, Grant seemed to be cowed by this rebuke, and allowed me to see another beautiful and for some time he left off going with his spring and summer, but I don't feel as companions and their dogs on Sunday if it would be for very long : there is no mornings. But by degrees he took to his cure for consumption, and the doctor said bad courses again : at first very cautiously; my lungs would never get well again.' but, as time went on without discovery, he And then she went on-'I think Confirma- became less careful. tion is a great help to leading a Christian To Rhoda's horror a hare was brought life, Tom dear. We declare ourselves in one Sunday, and she gathered from her openly to be on the Lord's side, and by father's conversation with Richard that it the help of God's Holy Spirit we feel that was no uncommon thing among their set we are really God's soldiers and servants. to kill game, which the other men conAnd then afterwards, the going to the trived to smuggle away and sell, handing Holy Communion gives such comfort and Grant part of the dishonest profits. The strength.'
hare was dressed and eaten, for Irs. Tom listened to all his sister said. He Grant, though she knew better, was too did not himself say anything, but her much afraid of her husband to refuse to words made an impression on him, and he cook it; but the whole affair was a bitter recollected them again and again. The sorrow to poor Rhoda. sister and brother went to church again Her father now began to take down his in the evening, and on that occasion per- gun to look at it, and one day, in spite of suaded their mother and Richard to go, her earnest entreaties and tears, he carried too; and thus ended one of the happiest it out with him. . He used it one Sunday Sundays that Rhoda had ever spent. without discovery; but the second time he
Early next morning Tom said good-bye, took it out the shots were heard, and he and went off cheerfully to his work, pro- and his two comrades were taken up and mising to come back again as soon as he sent to prison for poaching. Richard, who could, and, before long, to write them a had seen the whole thing from a distance, letter himself.
came back and told his poor mother and And so the summer wore on. Rhoda sister, on whom it fell like a blow, though seemed to grow a little stronger by de- they had expected and feared it. grees, and was able even to do a little And then followed a time of great trouble light work about the bouse.
to the family, as without the father's wages
they were left in a state of extreme poverty. But before the autumn came with its They had only Richard's wages to depend bright berries and faded leaves, trouble on; and, even with the kindness of the had come to the Grant's home. Farmer clergyman and other friends, they had a Lee had suspected for some time that hard struggle to live. Grant, with other men, had gone into his
(To be continued.) fields rabbit-shooting on Sundays, and had spoken his mind strongly on the subject, not only threatening to turn Grant off, but to have him up before the magistrate if he ever caught him doing it again.
THERE was a sort of tea-party in Mrs. had been made a little stronger than usual.
Maskery's cottage, Sunday evening For she was no less than Mrs. Prudencia though it was,– Mrs. Maskery and her Holmes, the maiden aunt of Mrs. Maskery, daughter, Mrs. Nokes from next door, and who had come to spend a couple of days
old lady, in whose honour the tea with her relatives. Wealthy for her station