Much trustful talk passed between father and daughter as they walked home: they were now nearer to each other than ever in their lives before.
“You don’t mind my coming out here alone, papa?” said Dorothy, as, after a little chat with the gate-keeper, they left the park. “I have of late found it so good to be alone! I think I am beginning to learn to think.”
“Do in every thing just as you please, my child,” said her father. “I can have no objection to what you see good. Only don’t be so late as to make me anxious.”
“I like coming early,” said Dorothy. “These lovely mornings make me feel as if the struggles of life were over, and only a quiet old age were left.”
The father looked anxiously at his daughter. Was she going to leave him? It smote him to the heart that he had done so little to make her life a blessed one. How hard no small portion of it had been! How worn and pale she looked! Why did she not show fresh and bright like other young women—Mrs. Faber for instance? He had not guided her steps into the way of peace! At all events he had not led her home to the house of wisdom and rest! Too good reason why—he had not himself yet found that home! Henceforth, for her sake as well as his own, he would besiege the heavenly grace with prayer.
The opening of his heart in confessional response to his daughter, proved one of those fresh starts in the spiritual life, of which a man needs so many as he climbs to the heavenly gates.
PAUL FABER’S DRESSING-ROOM.
Faber did not reach home till a few minutes before the dinner hour. He rode into the stable-yard, entered the house by the surgery, and went straight to his dressing-room; for the roads were villianous, and Ruber’s large feet had made a wonderful sight of his master, who respected his wife’s carpet. At the same time he hoped, as it was so near dinner-time, to find her in her chamber. She had, however, already made her toilet, and was waiting his return in the drawing-room. Her heart made a false motion and stung her when she heard his steps pass the door and go up stairs, for generally he came to greet her the moment he entered the house.—Had he seen any body!—Had he heard any thing? It was ten dreadful minutes before he came down, but he entered cheerily, with the gathered warmth of two