‘Don’t fear,’ said Eliza hopefully. ’The good Lord would not have brought us so far if He didn’t mean to save us. I seem to feel him with us, George.’
So George kissed his wife and took heart again. Then the kind old lady brought Harry in dressed as a little girl. And a very pretty girl he made too. They called him ‘Harriet,’ as it was so like Harry it was easy to remember.
Harry did not know his mamma, dressed as she was, and clung to the kind lady, feeling rather afraid of the strange young man. That was just as well, as he was too young to understand what this dressing-up and pretending meant, and he might have spoiled it all by calling the nice-looking young man ‘Mamma.’ So the kind lady was going with them, pretending to be the little girl’s aunt.
When everything was ready they got into a cab, and drove to the wharf. The two young men, as they seemed to be, got out, Eliza helping the kind lady and little girl, while George saw to the luggage.
As he was standing at the office, taking the tickets, George overheard two men talking by his side.
‘I’ve watched every one that came on board,’ said one, ’and I know they are not on this boat.’
‘You would scarcely know the woman from a white one,’ said the other. ’The man is very fair too. He has an H burned into the palm of his hand.’
The hand with which George was taking the tickets and change trembled a little, but he turned calmly round, looked straight at the speaker, and then walked slowly away to where Eliza was waiting for him.
It was a terribly anxious time, but at last the bell rang, the boat began to move, and George and Eliza drew long sighs of relief as they saw the shore getting farther and farther away.
It was a lovely day. The blue waves of Lake Erie danced, rippling and sparkling, in the sunlight. Hour after hour the boat steamed on.
Night came; and in the morning, clear and beautiful before them, rose the shores of Canada.
George and his wife stood arm in arm as the boat came near the little town, where they were going to land. His breath came thick and short; a mist gathered before his eyes; he silently pressed the little hand that lay trembling on his arm.
The bell rang—the boat stopped.
Scarcely seeing what he did, George looked out his luggage, and gathered his little party.
They were landed on the shore, and stood still till the boat had started again.
Then with tears of joy, the husband and wife, with their wondering little boy in their arms, knelt down and lifted up their hearts to God. They were free.
UNCLE TOM FINDS FREEDOM