“Have them take off their wraps first, and warm their hands at the radiator,” she wisely told him, thinking of the invalid who would soon be in their embrace.
It was a very brief time before he ushered them into the room. First the old lady was assisted across the floor, for she could hardly walk, even when so determined to come over, and greet her granddaughter. And when her arms were twined around the weak little figure on the bed, and she pressed her to her matronly bosom, Joey’s mother broke down in hysterical sobs, and, in turn, twined her arms about the neck of her newly found relative.
The old deacon looked radiant. He kissed her on the forehead, and tried to say something appropriate, but was compelled to turn his head aside and blow his nose vigorously, for his emotions overpowered him.
Presently, however, they were able to talk rationally, and then it was all settled how Joey and his mother were to live with the old couple, and be their very own always. Everything was explained, and Hugh finally found himself able to “break away,” being consumed by a desire to run across lots to Thad’s house, and tell him the wonderful story.
There is no need of accompanying Hugh on his errand, and seeing how Thad took the amazing news. Of course, he was simply thunder-struck, and delighted also beyond measure. He must have made Hugh tell the full particulars as many as several times, for they were all of an hour together. But then, Thad’s folks had been called in, and told how after all these years a descendant of Deacon Winslow had come back to the old roof-tree, to make the happiness of the aged couple complete.
Of course, the story was soon known all over Scranton, and everybody rejoiced with the beloved old blacksmith who had so long been the best friend of the boys of the neighborhood. But Hugh, who was really the hero of the occasion, was congratulated by everybody for being the means of re-uniting these lonely souls, and incidentally providing Little Joey with a good home.
MEETING BELLEVILLE’S STRONG TEAM
Another week rolled around, and once again school had closed for the Saturday and Sunday period of rest from studies.
It seemed as though luck favored the young people of Scranton this season, so far as fair weather went. There had been no snowfall of consequence during the entire week; and now Saturday opened with fair skies, as if inviting them to go forth and enjoy themselves to their full bent.
The great hockey game with Belleville High was to take place in the neighboring town, as Captain Kramer (known far and wide simply as “O. K.,” because those were his initials) had drawn the long straw in settling this matter with Hugh, and was, therefore, given the choice of territory, according to custom.