As yet Dorothy had no plans, except to carry out those of her father, and, mainly for Juliet’s sake, to remove to the old house as soon as ever the work there was completed. But the repairs and alterations were of some extent, and took months. Nor was she desirous of shortening Juliet’s sojourn with the Polwarths: the longer that lasted with safety, the better for Juliet, and herself too, she thought.
On Christmas eve, the curate gave his wife a little poem. Helen showed it to Dorothy, and Dorothy to Juliet. By this time she had had some genuine teaching—far more than she recognized as such, and the spiritual song was not altogether without influence upon her. Here it is:
THAT HOLY THING.
They all were looking for a king
To slay their foes, and lift them high:
Thou cam’st a little baby thing
That made a woman cry.
O Son of Man, to right my lot
Naught but Thy presence can avail;
Yet on the road Thy wheels are not,
Nor on the sea Thy sail.
My how or when Thou wilt not heed,
But come down Thine own secret stair,
That Thou mayst answer all my need,
Yea, every by-gone prayer.
The spring was bursting in bud and leaf before the workmen were out of the Old House. The very next day, Dorothy commenced her removal. Every stick of the old furniture she carried with her; every book of her father’s she placed on the shelves of the library he had designed. But she took care not to seem neglectful of Juliet, never failing to carry her the report of her husband as often as she saw him. It was to Juliet like an odor from Paradise making her weep, when Dorothy said that he looked sad—“so different from his old self!”
One day Dorothy ventured, hardly to hint, but to approach a hint of mediation. Juliet rose indignant: no one, were he an angel from Heaven, should interfere between her husband and her! If they could not come together without that, there should be a mediator, but not such as Dorothy meant!
“No, Dorothy!” she resumed, after a rather prolonged silence; “the very word mediation would imply a gulf between us that could not be passed. But I have one petition to make to you, Dorothy. You will be with me in my trouble—won’t you?”