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

After I had consented to go to Uncle Nathan, and a letter had been written informing him of my decision, I began to feel many misgivings.  From the style of his letter I got the idea that I should find him like Farmer Judson; and the very thought caused me to shudder with a vague feeling of terror.  My mother told me again and again how kind my relative would be to me, and I tried hard to believe her; but with all this my mind was haunted with many fears regarding the future.  My mother strove to send me from home well supplied with clothing, that I might prove no immediate expense to my uncle, and the little money she had laid by, with which to replenish her own and little Flora’s wardrobe, was applied cheerfully to meet my more immediate wants.  Young as I was this circumstance fretted and annoyed me.  I remember saying one day to my mother, in a vexed impatient tone, “it seems too bad that we should be so poor.  Some of my companions who have rich parents, spend more money every year upon toys and candy than would buy me a whole new suit of clothes, and now to obtain a few new articles of clothing for me you and my little sister must do without what you really need; if the dispensing of money were left in my hands, I would make every one rich alike, and then no one should be ashamed of their poverty as I have often been, when among the rich boys of the village.”  “Be ashamed of nothing but doing wrong,” replied my mother, “and you had best leave the dispensation of wealth or poverty to the One whose right it is, for, be assured, He knows best what is for our good; I had much rather see you grow up a good man than a rich one.  If your life is spared, and you prove to be a useful and honorable man, people will never inquire whether your boyhood was passed amid wealth or poverty.”  I was then in too discontented a mood to profit by my mother’s words, but many times in after years were they recalled forcibly to my mind.  Time passed on till the last night arrived, which I was to spend at home for an indefinite period.  Charley Gray obtained permission to spend this last night with me, and we lay awake for hours talking over our numerous plans for the future in true school-boy fashion.  Many an air-castle did we rear that night which the lapse of years have laid in the dust.  In our boyish plans of future greatness, I was not exactly sure what I was to be, only I was to be a wonderfully great man of some kind, while Charley was, of course, to become a very eminent physician, such as should not be found upon any past record; and we talked, too, of the wonder we should excite among our old friends when we might chance to revisit the scenes of our early home.  We even spoke of driving past the farm of Mr. Judson in a fine carriage drawn by a pair of beautiful bay horses; but with all our lively talk poor Charley was sadly out of spirits.  His old bosom foe was at work; he feared that among new companions I might meet with some one who would supplant him in my affections. 

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