Walter Harland eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 148 pages of information about Walter Harland.
months past, and during this time I have never known him to deviate from the truth in the slightest degree.  I shall wait for a time before proceeding further, and see what light may be thrown upon this most painful affair.  If Walter did not place that bill in his pocket himself some one else did,” and as Mr. Oswald spoke, he cast a searching glance from one desk to the other; but not a shadow of guilt could be detected upon the countenance of any present.  “I would say in conclusion,” said Mr. Oswald, “any scholar who taunts Walter with stealing, or ridicules him in any way, will be immediately expelled from school.  For the present at least, let no allusion be made to the matter, unless it be in a way to throw light upon it, in that case let the communication be made to me alone.  You all hear my commands, and I advise you to respect them.”  This was a dreadful afternoon to me; it seemed that a weight had suddenly fallen upon me which was crushing me to the earth.  Although no one dared violate the commands of our teacher, I could not fail to notice the changed manner of nearly all my companions when school was dismissed.  Some hurried away without taking any notice of me whatever; others seemed disposed to patronize me by their notice, which was more humbling still to one of my sensitive nature.  The first ray of light which penetrated the darkness which had settled over my spirit was when Willie and Rose Oswald overtook me after a rapid walk, I having hurried away from every one.  “What made you run away Walter,” said Rose, panting for breath, “a nice race you have given us to overtake you.  You needn’t feel so bad,” she continued, “I know you never took Papa’s money, and I am certain he thinks just as I do, only he durst not speak too positively in the school-room; it is the work of some wicked bad boys, and you see if Papa don’t find out the truth before he’s done with it.”  I thought it unmanly to cry but it required a strong effort to keep back my tears, as I replied, “I am glad you believe me Rose, for I tell you again I did not take that money, never saw it till it was taken from my pocket.  I cannot tell whether I shall ever be proved innocent or not, if not what will become of me; it would break my mother’s heart to know I was even suspected of such a crime.”  “Never fear, Walter, trust Papa to find it out,” said the hopeful Rose.  They departed with a kind “good night” and I proceeded sorrowfully to my home.

CHAPTER XIV.

It was with a heavy-heart that I performed my usual tasks that evening; and, before I could summon courage to relate my trouble to uncle Nathan, Mr. Oswald called, and himself acquainted him with the matter.  Free from the presence of the other scholars, he said he had not the slightest belief in my guilt, but looked upon it as a mischievous plot formed among some other members of the school.  “I know not,” said he, “whether or no the mystery will over

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Walter Harland from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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