[Footnote 1: We presume the gentleman means gunpowder.—ED.]
Days, weeks, and months rolled away; yet every step that could be taken to find out the name of the vessel proved unavailing. Although the conjecture of Forster, that she was one of the many foreign West Indiamen which had met with a similar fate during that tempestuous winter, was probably correct; still no clue could be gathered by which the parentage of the little girl could be ascertained. The linen was, indeed, marked with initials; but this circumstance offered but a faint prospect of discovery. Either her relations, convinced of her loss, made no inquiries, or the name of the vessel in which she had been a passenger was not known to them. The child had been weaned, and removed to the cottage, where it occupied much of the attention of the old housekeeper and Forster, who, despairing of its ever being reclaimed, determined to bring it up as his own.
Mrs Beazely, the housekeeper, was a good-tempered woman, long past the grand climacteric, and strongly attached to Forster, with whom she had resided many years. But, like all women, whether married or single, who have the responsibility of a household, she would have her own way; and scolded her master with as little ceremony as if she had been united to him by matrimonial bonds.
To this Forster quietly submitted; he had lived long enough to be aware that people are not the happiest who are not under control, and was philosopher sufficient to submit to the penal code of matrimony without tasting its enjoyments. The arrival of the infant made him more than ever feel as if he were a married man; for he had all the delights of the nursery in addition to his previous discipline. But, although bound by no ties, he found himself happier. He soon played with the infant, and submitted to his housekeeper with all the docility of a well-trained married man.
The Newfoundland dog, who, although (like some of his betters) he did not change his name for a fortune, did, in all probability, change it with his fortune, soon answered to the deserved epithet of “Faithful,” and slept at the foot of the crib of his little mistress, who also was to be rechristened. “She is a treasure, which has been thrown up by the ocean,” said Forster, kissing the lovely infant. “Let her name be Amber.”
But we must leave her to bud forth in her innocence and purity, while we direct the attention of the reader to other scenes, which are contemporary with those we have described.
woman moved is like a fountain troubled,
Muddy, ill-seeming, thick, bereft of beauty;
And while ’tis so, none so dry or thirsty
Will deign to sip, or touch one drop of it.”