“Yes, sir, I will; but I don’t think anything is more cheerful than Christianity, and I love to talk about it. I know what you say about the difficulty of trusting wholly in God, is true; it is very hard. But oh! Mr. Rushton, believe me, that such trust will not be in vain; even in this world Our Father often shows us that he pities our sufferings, and His hand heals the wound, or turns aside the blow. Oh, yes, sir! even in this world the clouds are swept away, and the sun shines again; and the heart which has trusted in God finds that its trust was not in vain in the Lord. Oh! I’m sure of it, sir!—I feel it—I know that it is true!”
And Redbud, buried in thought, looked through the window—silent, after these words which we have recorded.
The lawyer only looked strangely at her—muttered his “humph,” and turned away. Verty alone saw the spasm which he had seen in the morning pass across the rugged brow.
While this colloquy had been going on, the Squire had gone into his apartment to wash his hands; and now issuing forth, requested an explanation of the argument he had heard going on. This explanation was refused with great bearishness by the lawyer, and Redbud said they had only been talking about Providence.
The Squire said that was a good subject; and then going to his escritoire took out some papers, placed them on the mantel-piece, and informed Mr. Rushton that those were the documents he desired.
The lawyer greeted this information with his customary growl, and taking them, thrust them into his pocket. He then made a movement to go; but the Squire persuaded him to stay and have a cup of tea. Verty acquiesced in his suggestion that he should spend the evening, with the utmost readiness—ma mere would not think it hard if he remained an hour, he said.
And so the cheerful meal was cheerfully spread, and the twigs in the fire-place crackled, and diffused their brief, mild warmth through the cool evening air, and Caesar yawned upon the rug, and all went merrily.
The old time-piece overhead ticked soberly, and the soft face of Redbud’s mother looked down from its frame upon them; and the room was full of cheerfulness and light.
And still the old clock ticked and ticked, and carried all the world toward eternity; the fire-light crackled, and the voices laughed;—the portrait looked serenely down, and smiled.
HOW MR. JINKS DETERMINED TO SPARE VERTY.
Ralph stretched himself.
Mr. Jinks sipped his rum, and ruminated.
Ralph was smiling; Mr. Jinks scowling, and evidently busy with great thoughts, which caused his brows to corrugate into hostile frowns.
It was the room of Mr. Jinks, in Bousch’s tavern, which saw the companions seated thus opposite to each other—the time, after breakfast; the aim of the parties, discussion upon any or every topic.