“Why did you look funny at me just now?” Katy continued, and the deacon replied: “I was thinking how hard it would be for such a highty-tighty thing as you to meet the crosses and disappointments which lie all along the road which you must travel. I should hate to see your young life crushed out of you, as young lives sometimes are.”
“Oh, never fear for me. I am going to be happy all my life long. Wilford Cameron said I ought to be,” and Katy tossed into the air a wisp of the new-made hay.
“I don’t know who Wilford Cameron is, but there’s no ought about it,” the deacon rejoined. “God marks out the path for us to walk in, and when he says it’s best, we know it is, though some are straight and pleasant and others crooked and hard.”
“I’ll choose the straight and pleasant, then—why shouldn’t I?” Kate asked, laughingly, as she seated herself upon a rock near which the hay cart had stopped.
“Can’t tell what path you’ll take,” the deacon answered. “God knows whether you’ll go easy through the world, or whether he’ll send you suffering to purify and make you better.”
“Purified by suffering,” Kate said aloud, while a shadow involuntarily crept for an instant over her gay spirits.
She could not believe she was to be purified by suffering. She had never done anything very bad, and humming a part of a song learned from Wilford Cameron, she followed after the loaded cart, returning slowly to the house, thinking to herself that there must be something great and good in the suffering which should purify at last, but hoping she was not the one to whom this great good should come.
It was supper time ere long, and after that was over Kate announced her intention of going now to Linwood, Morris’ home, whether he were there or not.
“I can see the housekeeper and the birds and flowers, and maybe he will come pretty soon,” she said, as she swung her straw hat by the string and started from the door.
“Ain’t Helen going with you?” Aunt Hannah asked, while Helen herself looked a little surprised.
But Katy would rather go alone. She had a heap to tell Cousin Morris, and Helen could go next time.
“Just as you like;” Helen answered, good-naturedly; but there was a half-dissatisfied, wistful look on her face as she watched her young sister tripping across the fields to call on Morris Grant.
Morris had returned from Spencer, and in his dressing-gown and slippers was sitting by the window of his cheerful library, looking out upon the purple sunshine flooding the western sky, and thinking of the little girl coming so rapidly up the grassy lane in the rear of the house. He was going over to see her by and by, he said, and he pictured to himself how she must look by this time, hoping that he should not find her greatly changed, for Morris Grant’s memories were very precious