Still, it was a little hard to have a young lady, whom he had known since before she began to walk, remark to him,—
“Excuse me, sir, but can you tell me if Mr. Dabney Kinzer is here?”
“No, Jenny Walters,” sharply responded Dab, “he isn’t here.”
“Why, Dabney!” exclaimed the pretty Jenny. “Is that you? I declare, you have scared me out of a year’s growth!”
“I wish you’d scare me, then,” said Dab. “Then my clothes would stay fitted.”
Every thing had been so well arranged beforehand, thanks to Mrs. Kinzer, that the wedding had no chance at all except to go off well. Ham Morris was rejoiced to find how entirely he was relieved of every responsibility.
“Don’t worry about your house,” the widow said to him, the night before the wedding. “We’ll go over there, as soon as you and Miranda get away, and it’ll be all ready for you by the time you get back.”
“All right,” said Ham. “I’ll be glad to have you take the old place in hand. I’ve only tried to live in a corner of it. You don’t know how much room there is. I don’t, I must say.”
Dabney had longed to ask her if she meant to have it moved over to the Kinzer side of the north fence, but he had doubts as to the propriety of it; and just then the boy came in from the tailor’s with his bundle of new clothes.
DAB’S OLD CLOTHES GET A NEW BOY TO FIT.
Hamilton Morris was a very promising young man, of some thirty summers. He had been an “orphan” for a dozen years; and the wonder was that he should so long have lived alone in the big, square-built house his father left him. At all events, Miranda Kinzer was just the wife for him.
Miranda’s mother had seen that at a glance, the moment her mind was settled about the house. As to that and his great, spreading, half-cultivated farm, all either of them needed was ready money and management.
These were blessings Ham was now made reasonably sure of, on his return from his wedding-trip, and he was likely to appreciate them.
As for Dabney Kinzer, he was in no respect overcome by the novelty and excitement of the wedding-day. All the rest of it, after the departure of Ham Morris and the bride, he devoted himself to such duties as were assigned him, with a new and grand idea steadily taking shape in his mind. He felt as if his brains too, like his body, were growing. Some of his mother’s older and more intimate friends remained with her all day, probably to comfort her for the loss of Miranda; and two or three of them, Dab knew, would stay to tea, so that his services would be in demand to see them safely home.
All day long, moreover, Samantha and Keziah and Pamela seemed to find themselves wonderfully busy, one way and another, so that they paid even less attention than usual to any of the ins and outs of their brother.