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“ I hope
for?" returned the wife, a sweet little woman, full careful little woman to make, for she was very of beauty and grace.
prudent in regard to her private expenses. “You know I like them very much," added the Certainly, Maria,” replied Edward. petulant husband.
you are going to buy a new silk." “But they taste so strongly of the money."
"I am.” “Come, come, Maria, no more of poor Richard's He handed her the money and hoped she wou. saws. I am heartily sick of them."
dress berself a great deal better than ever before “You would not have me pay sixty cents a box for he could afford it. for strawberries, would you ?"
“I am agoing to spezd as much money as “Why not?"
can," she replied. “It is too much.”
“ That is right, Maria, do," added the recklesá “No, it isn't.”
husband. “ You cannot afford it."
But Edward soon had reason to repent this ad. “Yes, I can. Isn't my salary fifteen hundredvice, for Maria now seemed to spend all her time dollars a year?”
asking him for money. He was too reckless, too “I do not think strawberries at sixty cents a magnanimous too deny her, or to suggest that she ! box, are very profitable," replied the pretty wife, was exceeding the bounds of reason. with a pleasant smile.
She was merciless in her drafts upon him, and to “ Pooh!”
supply her demands, for he had not the courage The brute! Edward Lester did not deserve such to refuse her modest requests, he was obliged to a beautiful, sweet-tempered wife as Maria. Wbat curtail his own private expenses. On several ocbusiness had he to fret at, and scold such a lovely casions, he had been obliged to borrow money to piece of womankind as she was! It was wicked, meet the requisitions upon his purse; and being an and I can hardly keep my temper while I record honest man, he had to cut off many luxuries in his wicked conduct.
order to pay these loans. But Edward Lester, in spite of his petulant man- What had got into Maria ? She was extravagant, ner, was really an excellent fellow, and loved the and yet did not seem to be dressed much better, or jittle woman with all his soul, though it is true be his house to be supplied with many additional ? had a very singular way of showing it. He de- luxuries. But he was too proud to complain. Her served a thrashing for bis basty words, yet as he did hint, but she would not take a hint.
a eventually learned better, it is not worth while to A year passed by, and there was no improve dwell too long upon the dark side of his character. ment in the reckless woman. Fortunately for him
He was a very smart salesman, and was em- bis salary was raised to two thousand, but it was ployed in a large establishment in the city, at a scarcely done, before Maria demanded a fifty dolsalary of fifteen hundred dollars. For the first lar bill. year after his marriage he had boarded, but desir- “You spend more money than you used to ing to have the comforts of home in all their puri- spend, Maria,” he suggested. ty, the young couple had decided to go to house- “What is the use for me to pinch myself, if you keeping.
spend all you get ?” smiled Maria, so sweetly, he Edward would have hired a large house at a could not say another word. “I want to be ve the rent of four hundred dollars a year, if his wife had good of the money while it is going, as well as not persisted that such a dwelling would wear her you.” life out. He then left the matter entirely to her, “All right, my dear,” he replied. and she found a nice little cottage seven miles from There was no improvement in the woman, an the city, at a rent of one hundred and fifty.
Edward had some doubts as to the consequences The husband liked it very well, and Maria fur- but what puzzled him most was to know what benished it in a very plain but neat style.
came of the money. They were at home now, and for a while the novelty of the thing kept Edward in excellent humor;
CHAPTER II. but he was a reckless fellow, and had no idea what- ANOTHER year passed by, and the danger of runever of the value of money. He always spent all ning in debt stared him in the face. his salary, and sometimes a little more.
SEE ENGRAVING. Edward was out of humor because he had no One morning, when about to depart for the city, strawberries, and when he sat down to the table, he paused for a moment in the little room that had the tea was too weak, the bread tasted of saleratus, been fitted up as a conservatory, where his wife and the butter was strong. He snarled and growl. was giving attention to some new plants. ed, first at Maria, and then at Bridget, till the wife “Maria, we are living too fast, I am afraid,” he was almost discouraged. But she did not yield to observed, in a melancholy mood. the impulse of the moment, and get out of temper. “I am afraid we are; for yesterday you brought She kept smiling, however cutting and severe came home a pair of chickens for which you paid twenthe criticisms of her husband.
ty cents a pound," replied Maria, with her usual After tea he was a little molified, for there smile. seemed to be nothing inore to grumble at, and even “ Pooh, Maria, I don't mean these little things. condescended to smile.
We must have something to eat, and while my “Edward, I want fifty dollars to-morrow,” said salary is two thousand dollars a year, I mean to Maria.
live well." This was rather a remarkable request for the “Great trees from little acorns grow," added she.
“Let us stop the bung bole first," continued Ed-doctor, pulling an account-book from his pocket,
" Not I."
for dress alone. You certainly cannot com- time protesting that he had not paid the money ain of six hundred.”
ransacked his papers for the note. ** O no; by no means. I don't mean to com- “ There it is !" exclaimed the doctor, pointing ain," replied Edward.
to a paper. “I knew you didn't. Whatever I spend, goes To Edward's astonishment, it was the note, with or a good cause."
the signature torn off. He was utterly.confounded “ I suppose so; but I don't care anything about at the discovery. He had no recollection of having , only that I am getting a little short. There is paid it; and Maria declared she had not seen him octor Smith's bill of sixty dollars; I don't see pay it. ow I can pay it."
He was mystified, but satisfied with the result, “Let it rest, then. He will never ask you for it.” though he could hardly believe it. 'If any one had " But I don't like that way of doing things. I paid it, it must have been his guardian angel, and on't want to get into debt."
he hoped he would not charge him the amount. And he did go and see him. The doctor was a ch man, and offered to take Edward's note paya
CHAPTER III. e any time he pleased, which offer the latter ea- Three years from the time of Edward's introerly accepted, promising to take it up in six duction to the reader had passed away, and his ionths.
finances were in no better condition. By a great No change for the better appeared in the affairs deal of retrenchment in his own expenses, he had the young couple. Maria kept asking for mon- contrived to keep out of debt. Instead of dining 1, and she was so pretty, so sweet-tempered, and at Parker's, at an expense of five or six dollars a gentle, that Edward could never refuse. If he week, he made a quarter of that suffice. His taimurred, she could always coax it out of him. lor's bill had been reduced one half, and all other At the end of six months, the doctor's note was bills in like proportion. Better than all,' he had ze, and Edward could not pay it. He bad bor- been cured of grumbling at Maria, for if he comywed money till he was ashamed to do it any plained of anything, she was sure to ask him for a ore. But he had a nice sense of honor, and in- fifty dollar bill on the same day. In fact, he was ead of letting his creditor whistle for bis pay, he afraid of her. ent to see him to procure a further extension. Maria, in her demands for money, had been even "Doctor, I am bard up,” said he.
more remorseless during the last year than ever be“Sorry to hear it."
fore; and had actually taken eight hundred dollars My family is getting to be very expensive.” of his two thousand. And there was not much " Be prudent, then.”
show for it in the house, or upon her person. If " I can't, my wife
he hinted at an explanation, she always turned He checked himself. He was impulsive, and did bim off so sweetly and so adroitly that, he could ot mean to say anything about Maria.
not resist. “What of her? Is she extravagant?"
“Maria, we must turn over a new leaf,” he re** Well, yes."
“Here I am, without a dollar in the world-and “ Don't like to do that."
never shall have, while things go on in this way. " Mustn't let her ruin you."
I have given you eight hundred this last year.” “I hope she will not."
“ Have you, indeed? What is eight hundred “ Be firm, Lester. There is only one way to do dollars ?" rith an extravagant woman; shut down upon her “There is Raymond's house opposite, for sale. before she ruins you.”
It is a beautiful place, and can be bought for four • I haven't the courage to deny her.”
thousand dollars, by paying fifteen hundred down. "I am sorry for you; what can I do for you?” I was thinking that if I had saved my money, I sked the doctor who seemed to be in the best of might bave been able to buy that place.” Tumor.
“No use to cry for spilt milk, Edward,” replied “ That little note of mine
Maria. " What note?”
" I know that; but we needn't spill any more “Why, the one I owe.”
milk. I have been very economical the last year," ' But you paid that.”
and he proceeded to detail the retrenchments, he " Come, doctor, you are quizzing me.”
· Yes, my dear, better than you have. Who “ No, surely not,” replied Edward, confounded would have thought I should ever preach economy jy the statement.
to you?" laughed he. “But I am sure you did. Here," continued the “What was the use for me to be prudent, while
you scattered your money like chaff?" asked the “ I see where the money went to, now.” wife, with infinite good humor.
“Do you, indeed ?" “No use, I confess.”
“ To tell the truth, I thought there was very it. “I will turn over a new leaf, if you will. You tle show for the money I gave you." used to find fault with me because I would not buy Sixteen hundred dollars, money in hand, was? strawberries at sixty cents a box.”
large sum to Edward, who had spent everything at “ I haven't, lately.”
fast as he got it. He felt like a new man-like a “No, you haven't."
rich man. What a treasure was Maria, who, be“And I will never again. Now, Maria, I was sides being pretty, sweet-tempered, and devoted, thinking if we could save up four or five hundred was a thorough financier. a year, for three or four years, we might buy a For my part, I should not like a financier on any house."
other terms. A prudent, but growling, ill-temper“Very true; and we will commence now if you ed shrew, would be my abomination; and before like."
her, I should prefer a pretty, sweet-tempered, de“ With all my heart.”
voted woman, who would spend all I could get. “You shall allow me a fixed sum for my per- The Raymond place, and a delightful place it sonal expenses."
was, immedia came into Edward's possession. “Say two hundred dollars."
It is paid for now, and our friends are as happy as “Half that will do."
during their honeymoon. “But you can't come down all at once, from eight hundred to one hundred !"
IN THE COUNTRY. “Yes, I can," replied the pretty little woman, the mischief gleaming in her radiant eyes.
RY GEORGE W. BUNGAY. “Then we can buy a house in three years." “Suppose you buy Raymond's now ?” “But I cannot. I haven't a dollar in the world,
I love to sit after my bills are paid."
Where gay birds flit, “Then I will let you have fifteen hundred to pay
Or soar in song above me; down."
Where insects hum, “ You! You are facetious, Maria. What are
And flowerets bloom, you laughing at?"
And friends are near that love me. Maria, for some reason or other, had burst into
Here nature speaks, a violent fit of laughter.
From buds and beaks, “ You shall have the money, Edward. But you
The lesson God has taught her; must promise not to tell any one what an extrav
Like silver stars agant wife you have, as you did Dr. Smith."
Beyond the bars, “What do you mean, Maria ? Forgive me for
Are lilies on the water. that.” “I will, my dear,” replied she; and going to her
Through seas of grass drawer, she produced two bank books, and placed
The mowers pass, them in her husband's hand.
And bend to tasks of duty; One of them indicated that she had a thousand
On every bush dollars in one Savings bank, and the other, six
The berries blush hundred in another bank. Of course, Edward was Red as the lips of beauty. astonished-it was his duty to be astonished.
In smoke and dust "Your extravagant wife has saved sixteen hun
Let misers rust, dred dollars of your money, in spite of your teeth,
And perish with their money; besides curing you of a few reckless habits." And she threw herself upon the sofa, and laughed till
The virgin land
On which I stand, she had nearly gone into a fit.
O'erflows with milk and honey. “Maria, you are a jewel! I am amazed.” “ You ought to be amazed.”
Here hope will be “You paid Dr. Smith ?”
Green as the tree "I did.”
Which nods upon the mountain; “He lied to me, then." "
And love will gush “No, he didn't; you and I are one, so of course
Like streams that rush you paid it. I had to tell him my secret, and in
Fresh from the sparkling fountain. return he informed me what an excellent character you had given me for prudence and economy.”
I love to sit “Forgive me, Maria. You have made me the
Where gay birds flit, happiest man in the world.”
Or soar in song above me; " And I am revenged."
Where insects hum, “Revenged ?"
And flowerets bloom, " You found fault with me every day when you
And friends are near that love me. came home, and I resolved to punish you. I knew you would not refuse me money, and I have a Going out with the tied—a wedding party leavlast brought you to your senses."
ing the church.
THE TWO LETTERS.
ther's house. I expected to see I'm face at the A COMEDY OF ERRORS. window, looking out for me, but it was not visible.
However, I reflected that like all women, she was BY PAUL CREYTON.
coquettish, and avoided showing her pretty eyes at
the window, jnst to tease me. Yet I felt certain 拥 Y stay in New York had been prolonged far she would be looking out for me, and I have a
beyond my original intention when I vis distinct recollection of offering to bet fifty dollars ited the city, and I was pining to return to my na
with myself that she was peering through the tive village, and to the arms of my dearest Julia, blinds at me, or from behind a curtain. whom I hoped soon to make my bride. I had
I ran up to the door, and entered without knockdrank deep of the cup of sorrow during my ab- ing. I opened my arms, expecting Julia to jump sence from her, and I looked forward with glowing into them, and supposed of course she would; but anticipations to the time when we should meet to
I shut them up again quick enough when I saw part no more.
the old lady approaching-not her daughter. At length my business took a favorable turn.
“ Where's Julia ?” I cried. There was no longer anything to detain me in New
Oh, she's gone-" York, and I made basty preparations for a depart
“ Gone!" are to my native village. It was the evening be
" Yes." fore I designed to set out, that I wrote two hasty
“For heaven's sake,” I gasped, " tell me where!" letters to prepare my friends for my reception.
“I was going to, but you interrupted me," said The first of these epistles was to Julia. It ran
the old lady, crustily. “She has gone to spend a
few days with her cousins." *DEAREST GIRL:-I shall leave New York in
I was thunderstruck. I conscientiously believe three o'clock train to-morrow afternoon. In an
that at that moment I was white as a piece of parchcoar from that time I shall be with you. I never
ment. At any rate, I could swear before auy court knew how I loved you until my heart was tried by that I felt very faint and sick.
“ When did she go?" I faltered. the test of absence; now I feel how devotedly, how truly I am your own. Oh! what joy it will be to
“ About two hours ago." meet with you once more! That will be the bap
“ Two hours ago! What! didn't she receive my
letter ?” piest moment of my life, except when I can, for the first time, call you my bride.
I was terribly excited. I felt that my eternal Yours, till death, FREDERICK."
happiness depended upon the woman's answer. If The second letter was addressed to an old maid knew I was coming--that I would be there that
Julia had gone off to visit her cousins when she of my acquaintance, who had been like a sister to night-I felt that it would break my heart. me, and to whom I was indebted for many little
“Yes, I believe so," drawled the old lady. “I acts of kindness
heard her say something about getting a note “MY DEAR FRIEND :-I write this in haste, to from you—that she expected you to call here toinform you that I shall probably visit you some night.” time to-morrow evening. You see, I don't want to
It was enough. My heart was a beap of ruins ! 11.3 you unprepared. And I want you to treat me Oh, the faithlessness, the fickleness, the heartlessbeil, too, even if I don't call on you the first of
ness of woman! All that has been said of her has any. Don't think my affection for you has in the een but flattery; she is a serpent in an angel's least diminished, but you know that my affection form! Oh, deception !-oh, misery! Judge of my for another has increased; and, strong as your disappointment, my despair, my unutterable woe, ciaims are upon me, hers are somewhat stronger. when I learned that Julia was gone--gone when Now, don't be jealous; for, after I am married, I she knew I was coming; and blame me not for shall be as true a friend to you as ever.
giving vent to my feelings in such expressions as Sincerely yours, FREDERICK."
these. Having finished both of these letters, I sealed I think I should be very scrupulous about swearthem in the same baste in which they had been ing to anything that took place the next half-hour written, fearing they would be too late for the after my heart received that heavy blow. Only mail. Superscribing them in a hurried hand, I one thing I am sure of. I left the house, and got sent them to the post-office, where they arrived into the street; but whether I ran there, staggered just in time.
there, or was carried there by my friends, I could At three o'clock on the following day, I was at not conscientiously affirm. The first I heard from the depot, and in the cars. I was too impatient myself, I was approaching the door of my friend, for steam itself. I even believe the telegraph the old maid, and she was running out to meet couldn't have transported me to the arms of my me. This probably bronght me to my senses. Julia soon enough to satisfy my impatience. I I was past being surprised at anything that might thought the cars moved slower than a mule, and I happen, else I should have thought it a little thought at one time of getting out to run along strange that Lucy threw herself into my arms, and ahead of them!
offered me her lips to kiss. As it was, feeling the However, slow as I thought I was travelling, I need of sympathy, I embraced her warmly, ex. arrived in good time in my native village. I did claiming: not stop to shake hands with a single soul, but “Dear Lucy, you are the only true friend I've harried to meet my Julia. I arrived at her fa- | got!”
“Oh, I bope not !" she replied. “But I am would have chilled me through-made an icicle of glad you think I am a true friend to you, for I me, perhaps—if I hadn't been so bot with running.
I threw myself at her feet. She started back-it “And you will always be ?".
might have been in disgust, and it might have been Always, Frederick! Oh, and we shall be so because her band touched my face, which was happy !"
burning like a coal. “What does she mean?" thought I.
“Dear Julia," I sighed. “We shall be so happy, dear Frederick !" she I panted,
suppose, but sighed is the better repeated; “I know we shall. The truth is, my word. dear, I have loved you long-in secret-hopelessly; “Well, sir," said she, coldly, but after receiving such a dear, affectionate letter “Don't scorn me; I'll make it all right; it's only from you—"
a mistake." “What!" I cried, staring at her in wonder.
“ What?" “Why, after receiving such a dear good letter,” “Why, that letter-". said Lucy, “I am so happy that I must tell you “That letter, sir, was a very friendly one, I am all my heart. Wuen we are married, Frederick —” sure. Indeed,” added Julia, bitterly, “I feel quite “I'm dreaming!” thought I.
flattered by your confidence in me, in making “We will have this pleasant event to talk about, known your intentions to marry. I hope you will won't we? Why, you can't think how surprised get a good wife, sir; hope you will be happy—" and delighted I was to receive your letter. I laugh- “ Julia! Julia !” I cried in agony, “ I say it's all ed over it and cried over it; and if I have read it a mistake. That letter was not meant for you." once, I have read it fifty times.”
Julia's assumed coldness and indifference had Here she took my letter from her bosom.
vanished in a moment. Then she looked at me. “Then it seems," she continued, so happy that “It wasn't meant for you," I repeated. “I I was fairly provoked with her—"it seems that ab- wrote that to Lucy Matthews-put the wrong name sence taught you how much you love me.”
on the back. Here's the letter I wrote to you." “I was stupefied; thought I was insane; couldn't I gave her the one I bad snatched from Lucy. understand one word Lucy said. Meanwhile, she She read it eagerly. She saw the mistake, and unfolded the letter. Then—then I understood it burst into tears of joy. The next moment we were all! I uttered a scream which was scarcely hu- locked in each other's arms. I was intensely man, it was so wild; and eagerly snatched the let- bappy. But in an instant the bright heaven of my ter. It was the letter I rorote to Julia!
joy was clouded. I thought of Lucy. Yes; then I understood it all! I had made a “What shall I do?” I cried. “She thought the mistake in superscribing the letters, and Julia letter was addressed to her, and believed I loved had got Lucy's, while Lucy had got Julia's. And her. What a cruel mistake! What shall I—what Lucy had been flattered with the hope and belief ought I to do?" that I loved her, while Julia—poor girl!-believed “Go to her at once,” said Julia, “and make a I was about to marry another. This was tbe cause full explanation and a suitable apology." of Lucy's tenderness; this was the cause of Julia's I followed ber advice. I met Lucy on the threshvisiting ber cousins !
old. I laughed; I danced; I dare say I cut up every “Not a word,” said she, laughing. “I don't manner of silly capers which a man ought to be need any apology from you; you haven't done any ashamed of. And Lucy all the time was staring at particular damage to my old maid's heart. me as I before had stared at her. This brought see, I knew there was some mistake when I receivme to my senses.
ed your letter; I was not so foolish as to think you “A mistake," I stammered—“this letter-wrote meant all those pretty tender things for me. But in a hurry-put the wrong name on the back-sent I meant to punish you for your carelessness, by yours to Julia—sent Julia's—this one to you!" making you think you had done a world of mis
I shall never forget the old maid's consternation.chief. Ha! ha! ha! how silly you did act!” She understood what I wished to say; she saw the I was willing that Lucy should laugh at me. It error in its true light. I thought she would sink made me feel more easy, for I knew that I desery. through the foor; but she had hold of the door- ed it. I pouted a little, however, and strove to latch, and that probably sustained her. I was
look dismal, until she repeated what she had said glad that the door-latch was strong. At that mo
about our being “so happy when we were marment my conscience bit me a severe cut, and made ried,” which caused me to echo back her laugh me smart. How I cursed my carelessness, which with a hearty ba! ha! ha! had been the cause of so much miscbief. I made Reader, I didn't marry Lucy, but I did make a a burried apology, but I didn't stop to see if Lucy bride of Julia as soon as I could get her parents' fainted, or to have the pleasure of holding a smell- consent. ing-bottle to her nose in case she should sink into On the very evening of my marriage, the old that interesting state.
maid whispered in my car, with a saucy laugh, I thought of Julia. I flew to make an explana- and a mischievous twinkle of her eyes, “ How tion. It was three miles to her aunt's house, but happy we shall be when we are married, FrederI was there in a trifle over three minutes. Pusing ick!" like a steam engine, I asked to see her, and was shown into a room where she was alone. She re- We believe at once in evil; we only believe in garded me with so cold a 'look that I am sure it good upon reflection. Is not this sad ?