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Walter Harland eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 148 pages of information about Walter Harland.

Together we visited all our favorite haunts, we angled for fish, we roamed over the fields and through the woods in the vicinity of Elmwood, and no day seemed long enough for our varied amusements.  I often wished to invite other of our companions to join our sports, but somehow or other, if this was the case, Charley’s enjoyment at once fled.  When (as was often the case) I would mention some of our schoolmates, with a view to inviting them to accompany us on some excursion of pleasure, a cloud would instantly come over Charley’s countenance, and he would say in a petulant tone:  “What do you want with them, we can surely enjoy ourselves without their company,” and this reply would at once remind me of his exclusive and peculiar temperament, (which for the moment I had forgotten) and to please him I would say no more about it.  But for this one fault of my companion’s, and a fault it certainly was, I believe had I had a brother, I could have loved him no better than I loved Charley Gray.  Previous to my mother’s marriage her home had been in Western Canada; her father died while she was quite a young girl, but her mother, now far advanced in years, still lived in the old home, some fifty miles from the city of Hamilton.  The affairs of the farm and household were managed by a son and daughter who had never married, and still resided in their paternal home.  My mother was the youngest in the family, and had been the pet of the household during her childhood and early youth; she was many years younger than either her brother or sister, and they had exercised a watchful and loving care over their pet sister till the period of her marriage and removal to Eastern Canada.  Her brother and sister seldom left their own home, owing to their care of their aged mother, and for some years past my mother’s circumstances had not allowed her to visit her early home; and, amid the cares of life, letters passed less and less frequently between them, till they came to be like “Angels’ visits,” few and far between.  My mother was equally pleased and surprised, a few weeks after I returned home, by receiving a kind letter from her brother Nathan.  Like all his letters it contained but few words, but they were dictated by a kind heart.  The most important words (to me) which the letter contained were these:  “Your boy Walter needs more schooling before he goes out into the world, send him to me and he shall have it.  If his disposition is anything like his mother’s at his age I know we shall get along famously together.  I will board and clothe him for two years; he shall attend the best schools in the place, I promise nothing further, only then, when the boy leaves me, he shall have all he deserves, if it should be only a cuff on the ear.  In case you should find any difficulty in defraying his expenses, I enclose money sufficient for that purpose.  I know not the reason, but I feel a strong desire to see your boy, and find out what he is made of.”

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