The first day of Mary’s illness, Fritz bore up manfully. On the second, he joined his father and brothers in their field labors; but, whilst driving some nails into a fence, he had so effectually fixed himself to a stake that it was only with some difficulty that he could be detached. The third day, at sunrise, he called Mary’s dog, shouldered his rifle, and was about to quit the house.
“Where are you going?” inquired Jack.
“I don’t know—anywhere.”
“Anywhere! Well, I am rather partial to that sort of place; I will go with you.”
“But I must do something that will divert my thoughts. There may be danger.”
“Well I can help you to look up a difficulty.”
Every day the two brothers departed at sunrise, and returned together again in the evening. Mrs. Becker felt acutely their sufferings. She watched anxiously for the return of the two wanderers, and generally went a little way to meet them when they appeared in the distance.
“She does not run to meet us,” said Fritz, one day; “that is a bad sign.”
“Not a bit of it,” replied Jack. “If she had any bad news to give us, she would not come at all.”
[C] The constellation known in astronomy as the Great Bear is in, some parts of England termed the Plough, and in others Charles’s Wain or Waggon. It may be added, that the same constellation is popularly known in France as the Chariot of David.
GOD’S GOVERNMENT—KING STANISLAUS—THE DAUPHIN SON OF LOUIS XV.—THE SHORTEST ROAD—NEW YEAR’S DAY—A MIRACLE—CLEVER ANIMALS—THE CALENDAR—MR. JULIUS CAESAR AND POPE GREGORY XIII.—HOW THE DAY AFTER THE 4TH OF OCTOBER WAS THE 15TH—OLYMPIAD—LUSTRES—THE HEGIRA—A HORSE MADE CONSUL—JACK’S DREAM.
Some men, when they regard the sinister side of events, are apt to call in question the axiom, Nothing is accomplished without the will of God. Why, they ask, do the wicked triumph? Why are the just oppressed? Why this evil? What is the use of that disaster? Was it necessary that Mary Wolston should be thrown into the sea, and that she should afterwards die in consequence of the accident?