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at what you tell me, such things being so common at college; but I am surprised Philip, and disappointed too. We all thought the sum set apart for your college life so liberal."

"I thought so, too, at first,-but it proved otherwise."

"Mind this, Philip-if illness or any

"So do I."

"You should have told me so before. other calamity had overtaken you, I would I hate debts." not have grudged you my last shilling, but in the circumstances of our family!— "Yours can't be much, at any rate. Are I had a little scheme of my own, too." they?" "What! a building scheme, I suppose?" "No, not building this time. But it is

"Oh dear no."

If these

"A few tradesmen's bills unpaid I better not to speak of it row. suppose." debts must be paid, they must."

"A few."

"And what do you propose to do?" "That is precisely the question I have come to ask you. I can do nothing." "Nor I much. I suppose you know that, Philip?"

"That is what my mother told me. But I don't think she meant quite what she said."

"I don't know what my mother said, but I do know this, that the expenses of the family are very great just now; and that money is a very scarce article with me, and very difficult to make sure of. Still, I hate the very thought of these debts, Philip, and if you will just sit down and write on that paper exactly what they are-perhaps you have some account by you?"

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"I mean what I said before, that I am in a horrid fix. But it is the last time, Robert, that you or any one else shall have to pay my debts." "I hope so."

"I am sure of it."


"Fifty would do something, certainly. If you could make it a hundred ?"

"That would satisfy you?"

"For the present; but I am afraid it will have to be doubled."

"Doubled? - What can you mean, Philip?"

Robert walked towards a private desk, took out the key, and was about to open it, but he stopped suddenly, and looking round towards his brother, said with some degree of sternness in his tone-" And the future, Philip? What about the


"Ah! the future is quite fixed, and certain. I am an altered man, nowbeginning life upon an entirely new plan, with new hopes, new motives, new everything."

"Be quite frank with me," said Robert. "Does that sweet girl, as they describe her-does she know of your attachment?" "Yes."

"And returns it?"

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"Of course; but what we have to talk about is living. For her you would practice self-denial, patience, perseverance- -?" "Everything."

"You run on too fast, Philip. I want to feel some certainty about the future." "You may feel the utmost. Nothing is more safe. I never can-I never will be again the fool I have been. As I stand here, Robert, in the sight of God and man, I tell you I am an altered being. I have no tastes now, no propensities that could lead me into bad company, extravagance, or debt."

"Well, then," said Robert, applying the key to his desk, and taking out a roll of papers, at which he looked attentively,


is one hundred at all events, and we must see about the other."

and with something like affection-"Here"Now then," said he, 'you must take this into the city. You know Preston's bank?"

"How rich

Philip held out his hand. and careful you are," he said. "Somebody must be careful," observed Robert. "Shall I tell you what this money was put away for ?""

"Yes, if you please."

"I said I had a little scheme. I thought that for the first time in my life I would this autumn make a short trip on the continent. I was saving, and hoarding, and adding little to little, because I meant to take my sisters with me--my father too, if he would prigo, and I thought the change might do him good."

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"I can't take the money," said Philip, throwing the papers down.



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'Why not?"

"You give it grudgingly, I think." No, Philip; much as I love travelling, I hate debt more."


"But what a horrid selfish villain I should be to take that money."

"Not to take the money, but to increase the debts which make the using of that money necessary."

"Come, Philip," said Robert, "be a man. You are very young yet. I don't think there is much harm done."

Philip held out his hand for the money. He could not speak, but with averted face he pressed his brother's hand, and in another moment was gone.

"I shall hate myself as long as I live." "Better hate your own ungoverned passions, Philip. I don't think it is in cool blood that you run into extravagance, or excess. When you think quietly on these subjects, you are right enough; and since, as you tell me, you have found an antidote for your wrong impulses, and have now a right and honourable motive to act upon, with a prospect before you which I could almost envy-since this is the case, Philip, I think I will trust you, though it costs me a pretty sharp pang, I must confess."


Robert, if you find me, after this, the base, unworthy dog I have been"-Philip | could say no more. A sudden choking stopped his voice, and he hid his face in his handkerchief, leaning for a moment over the mantelpiece, so as to conceal the working of his agitated features.

"Yes, there is," muttered Philip.
"Not more than will soon be set right."
Philip shook his head.
Robert carefully folded up the money.

Many strange sensations pressed upon Robert's heart, as he stood looking after his brother-stood fixed as a statue in the very place which Philip had occupied. It was a cruel stroke to him to have to give up the scheme with which he intended to surprise his family. He had refrained from joining them of late, in order that he might do so with a clear conscience, when the proper time should arrive, and have then no occasion to reproach himself with idleness, or self-indulgence. Upon this pleasant thought he lived, and lived cheerfully; enduring the trial of separation, while they were united, without a murmur. In this thought he had felt rich, for what a glorious autumn they would all have of it together-their father gaining health and spirits; their mother happy in present things, and forgetful for a while of the future. But his sisters-it was of them chiefly that Robert thought; and in their anticipated delight he had found his own. Now all was gone-the pleasant vision shut out from sight; for what might not another year bring with it of privation and anxiety. Young people like to catch these stray sunbeams of enjoyment; and can bask in their warmth and light with as much satisfaction as if they were to shine for ever. And so it was, that although no one of his own years could know better than Robert what were the perplexities and cares surrounding him, yet was he ready at all times to live, even if only for a day, in an atmosphere of joy.

Thus the pleasure he had planned for himself and his family, was as great in idea as if prosperity had smiled upon them, and promised to welcome them back from their delightful travels. Perhaps it was even greater,-because it appeared to him who planned this pleasant future like a solid piece of real good, snatched out of the vicissitudes of a life, that did not look, on a general view, as if it would have much good to bestow.

It may easily be seen that Robert Clif

ton inherited his mother's tendency to to a nature like his, was so uncongenial look into, and live upon, the future. It that on the present occasion, especially, was, perhaps, well for the family that the he felt an uneasy restlessness scarcely to oldest son had this tendency; but as he be borne. was situated, it gave him an appearance of In this mood, Robert threw open the premature anxiety and care. So much so, window of his bed room, which looked that already there were white threads out upon a long range of little London amongst his glossy raven hair, and lines gardens, laid out in their miniature patchacross his forehead, indicating habits of work of beds and walks, and evergreens, concentrated and earnest thought. But for with a very respectable embellishment this anxious look, and a certain sharpness of weeping - willows, lilacs, and laburin his features, Robert Clifton would have nums, which, in the clear moonshine of an been scarcely less handsome than his brother autumn evening, looked almost as bowery, Philip; but it was in a very different way. thick, and rich in light and shadow, as if No artist would have taken him for his they had skirted the precincts of a noblemodel ; but the look of suffering and the man's pleasure-grounds. glance of hope would equally have rested The air was close and sultry, and the upon him, as possessing exactly the kind din of rolling wheels, and rushing feet, of directness of purpose, and energy of and multitudinous veices not yet hushed will, which the weak, require for their in sleep, made up a kind of atmosphere of protection, and the enterprising for their itself, which those must breathe who would support.

know exactly its effect upon the spirits

. So Robert Clifton stood leaning against But the moon shone placidly upon it all, the mantelpiece long after his brother as if she heard not-heeded not-or had a was gone.

His countenance bore no life within herself so calm and pure as not marks of energy then,—all the will seemed to be disturbed by any earthly discord, or to have died out of him, without leaving turbulence of man. a trace behind. His eye gazed into It was a beautiful sight, even there, to vacancy. He was thinking of all his own see the calm moon shining, and the soft life, and the lives of those with whom clouds floating past her face, which still his was bound up, until he came to think kept shining as sweetly and benignantly of human life in general-how it was as if her smile fell only upon mountainordered that some should toil and suffer, tops in their sublimity, or verdant valleys and others luxuriate and enjoy, His where the crystal brooks held intercourse thoughts, at last, became rebellious, for he in music, or worshipping assemblies prowas a stout advocate for justice ; and he strate before the might and majesty of could not see the fairness of God's dis- heaven, and pouring forth the adoration pensations in these matters. Oftener of the soul in anthems sweet of mingled than he liked, he was troubled with want- prayer and praise. ing to know why certain things were so, The moon looked down as placidly as if as they appeared to him; as if he would she beheld all this, and this alone, -as have understood had an angel told him. placidly upon the streets of that huge Did his mother understand when she was Babel, its steaming alleys, and its starving thus instructed ?

hordes, its Mammon worship, and its haste But Robert Clifton was more troubled to gather dust, and heap itself with ashes. than people generally are, whenever his still there were eyes that looked to her thoughts assumed this rebellious and as lovingly from out that mass of human questioning character.

more life as the child looks to its mother, or the troubled, because they ran counter then maiden to her lover,-as lovingly as if to the whole tenour of his habits, life, and they saw no other face so beautiful as modes of feeling; these being marked by hers. implicit confidence in the wisdom, power, Perhaps Robert Clifton was one of and goodness of the Divine disposer of these ; for he had never learned that love all human events. Thus a sort of revul- of human beauty which to his brothers, sion or confusion was occasioned when seemed to have grown up with them from ever he began to doubt or question, which infancy. To Robert, and especially to

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the moon


Seymour, the moon was perhaps more like a friend than to them, partly because he had no other lovely countenance to dwell upon, even in imagination, and partly because he saw the moon so seldom, and never under circumstances in which she looked lovelier or more at home and in her native element than now. Consequently Robert was quite satisfied with as she looked this night, and pleased to exchange glances with her, and to feel her soft pale smile upon his cheek. Neither was he much disposed to find fault with his prospect, as it appeared to him then, nor to quarrel with the smothered din of all around him; for he had no sickly sensibilities, nor morbid fancies about such matters. Human life was to him a great and grand bestowment, rich alike in means and capabilities. He wished that men would use it better; but except that now and then a fit of uneasy doubt assailed him, he looked pretty steadily onward, and thought there was

! great good, and great glory, in much that human life was engaged in working out.

So Robert sat at his open window, and grew calm. It never took him very long to school his mind so as to make the best of that which was inevitable. The case was not so bad he thought, in the present instance, as it had looked at first. Since no one had been acquainted with his pleasant plan, no one could be disappointed by its failure. In short, the cause of his vexation touched none but himself, and consequently would the more easily be got over. It was too bad of Philip, he still thought, to be so reckless of money, when others had to be so careful and self-denying; but if this attachment prospered with him, all would be well in the end no doubt. A disposition like Philip's required something to keep it steady. A good, manly, honest, openly-avowed attachment would supply him with a sufficient motive for the restraint of inclination, and the government of those strong natural propensities which were too ready at all times to plunge him into some momentary gratification, making him forget everything else in his own indulgence. But Philip was still young. His heart was good, Robert said more than once, as if to reassure himself that it was so, but at the same time with a certain amount of secret mis

giving as to the requisite ingredients of what is called a good heart." Others have speculated upon the application of this term besides Robert Clifton, and wondered what those essentials are which the world takes into account when bestowing this epithet, as it does sometimes, upon its favourites.

While Robert watched the moon at his open window, letting the soft balm of its sweet influence shine as it seemed into his heart,-while he thus thought and mused, neither unkindly nor despondingly, he recognised the dim sound of that music which had so often reached his ear before, and which now seemed as if it came down to him from some region overhead. By degrees the strain grew louder and deeper. There was a human voice now blending with it, so clear and yet so low. Whose could that voice be? He had often heard footsteps in the room above the chamber where he slept. He had heard them chiefly late at night and in the early morning, and so concluded they must be those of the servant, only that they trod so softly as no servant's feet, he thought, ever did. There was an occupant, then, in those chambers above. He had promised himself the range of the highest as a sort of workshop, and had already applied for the use of it to the lady of the house.

As these thoughts occupied the listener, the strain of music rose and fell, swelling at times into passages of a deep devotional anthem, well-known, and easily recognised. To this Robert listened for some time, when becoming more curious, he ventured to look upward from his open window, in order to ascertain, if he could, whether there were lights and moving figures in the room above. But all was dark within, only that the moon shone full upon the window which was closed.


"So the fair musician sits in the dark," said he, drawing in his head. I wonder who it is. It seems there is somebody, after all, besides the good lady and her child. A little deception has been practised upon me, I suspect. Perhaps there is a maniac enclosed within those mysterious apartments, and that was the foundation of the seeming mystery. No wonder it was so difficult to come at the whole truth."

As Robert brought himself to this most

sagacious conclusion, the window imme- she takes almost any form and character diately over his own was thrown open. which is appropriate to that of the watcher, No wonder that on such an evening any with the exception only of levity, or vulgar one should wish to look without interrup- mirth. The moon is not sad to the happy, tion at that glorious moon.

Robert had a nor in their sorrow does she ever seem to great inclination to stretch his head out mock their grief. The sun does this—the again ; and perhaps he might have done glaring, cloudless, noonday sun, when he so, but that the low voice began again to shines upon the earth in the full splendour sing, this time in a manner more subdued, of exulting joy, and calls upon the merry as if the singer was afraid of being over- birds to ring out a welcome to him from E heard.

every bower and tree. The mourner cannot Robert remained perfectly still. There look upon the sun, nor bask within his smile, was something monotonous and sad in the but seeks the shade, the darkness, the dim melody which caught his ear, and which twilight of overhanging woods. Happywas so near to him that he could now dis- thrice happy those who find the “ shadow tinguish almost every word.

of a mighty Rock in a weary land !” With The strain to which he listened, went all sweet, sad, or solemn influences, the on much in the following manner :

silent moon is called upon to sympathise,

and to this call she responds ; not, as is Over fields of thymy blossom, Over beds of dewy flowers,

sometimes imagined, to sorrow more than Now upon the streamlet's bosom,

to joy; for there is a deep and intense Now within the whispering bowers, happiness which is in all respects as still, Soft and slow,

and often as silent as sorrow: in fact we The moonbeams go, Wandering on through midnight hours.

commit a grievous wrong when we

speak of happiness as necessarily loud, Lightly o'er the crested billow Where the heaving waters flow,

boisterous, and exulting; such is mirthWhere the sea-bird finds her pillow,

but those who are capable of the deepest There the glistening moonbeams go: Soft and slow,

feeling know that there are lower depths, Soft and slow,

and richer stores of enjoyment than ever Ever wandering, soft, and slow.

yet found utterance in words, still less Queen of Beauty, robed in splendour, in laughter. Finds thy silent foot no rest?

All deep feeling is still—happiness as Looks thy smile, so soft and tender, well as grief. Hence there are appeals Ne'er upon a kindred breast? Soft and slow,

upraised to the ever sympathising moon Thy footsteps go,

from hearts so richly laden, that they In their silver sandals dress'd.

sail like gold - freighted vessels silently Queen of Beauty ! canst thou ever

along the bosom of life's ocean, and no Thus thy lonely task fulfil?

one hears their shout of exultation, even Sister voices, -never, never,

when they near some long wished for Answering thee from bower or hill? Soft and slow,

haven ; for all great happiness is fearful, as As winter's snow,

well as still. The heart does not trumpet Fall thy footsteps cold and still.

forth its greatest wealth, any more than its Silent moon! thy smile of beauty,

heaviest loss, or bitterest destitution. It Fainting hope will oft renew,

knows that shipwrecks happen to the Teach me, then, thy holy duty, Waste and wild to wander through.

barque returning home, and already touchSoft and slow,

ing on the happy shore ; and then it has Still to go,

so much to lose, so much to tremble for. Patient, meek, but lonely, to


the heart, brimful of happiness, “Soft and slow-soft and slow.” The grows very fearful, as well it may, lest even monotonous cadence of these few words a drop should be scattered, and so losi. was prolonged, and repeated. It seemed To realise this fear is almost to feel that especially to harmonise with the hour and the precious drops are scattered ; but it the scene, with the hush of approaching is also to learn at the same time, how night, and with the silent majesty of the blessed will be that harbour of safety from moon, now rising high in the heavens; whence the storm-tossed vessel shall go for there is that beauty in the moon, that no more out forever.

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