As dreams are made of, and our little life
Is rounded with a sleep.”
Tom Temple is married, and lives happily at Temple Hall. Tom attributes all his happiness to the ghost. He should never have had the pluck to ask Edith Gray to be his wife, he says, had not his lady-love been so fearful.
“But you found no difficulty in getting her consent, Tom?” I said one day at Temple Hall.
“Difficulty!” laughed Tom. “She said ‘Yes’ before I had stuttered out my little speech.”
“I couldn’t bear to see you in such an agony of pain,” blushingly replied his happy little wife.
Ah, well, Tom deserves his happiness, because he makes those around him happy.
Simon Slowden lives with Gertrude and me. He declared that he couldn’t bear the idea of leaving us, after he’d gone through so much to bring us together. We are not sorry for this, for he has been an incalculable help to me in many ways. But for him, perhaps, I should never have the treasure I now possess, the truest and noblest wife God ever gave to man; but for him, I might have dragged out my weary life, disappointed and almost broken-hearted. Of course this might not be so; but I know that Simon was one of my greatest helpers in making me the happiest man on earth.
I will close my story with a secret. Yesterday, Simon came to me, looking very grave.
“If I remember aright, yer honour,” he said, “I told you as ’ow I’d completely finished wi’ all belongin’ to the female persuasion.”
“You did, Simon.”
“Well, I’ve changed my mind. I used to think after that waccinatin’ business gived me small-pox, that I was done for; but that ’ere Emily the ’ousemaid ’ev bin waccinated, and she ’ev had small-pox too. Well, ’t seems to me as ’ow it must hev bin special Providence as hev brought us together, as we read in the Book of Job; and not likin’ to go ’gin Providence, I axed her to change her name to Slowden.”
“Well, Simon, what was her reply?”
“She seed the force o’ my reasonin’s in a minute, and so, as you may say, ‘there’ll be good brought out o’ evil,’ even the evil o’ waccinatin’; for it’s give us both small-pox, and we both live. Our faces be a bit pitty, but kisses ain’t none the less sweet for that.”
“And when is it to come off, Simon?”
“I’m goin’ to the registrar’s now, yer honour, so three weeks to-morrow I shall be took in and done for, and all threw waccination.”