Time, with his noiseless step, glided on, till but a few weeks remained before the school would break up for the midsummer vacation. Happy as I was at Uncle Nathan’s, I looked eagerly forward to the holidays, for I was then to pay a visit of several weeks to my home at Elmwood, having been absent nearly a year, and, as this time drew nigh, every day seemed like a week till I could set out on the journey. Added to the joy of again meeting my mother and sister, I would also meet Charley Gray, who was also to spend his vacation at home. We had kept up a regular correspondence during the past year. I could always judge of Charley’s mood by the tone of his letters. Sometimes he would write a long and interesting letter, in such a glowing, playful style, that I would read it over half-a-dozen times at the least, and perhaps his very next letter would be just the reverse, short, cold and desponding. Any one who knew Charley as I did could easily tell the state of mind he was in when he wrote, but so well did I know the unhappy moods to which he was subject, that a desponding letter now and then gave me no surprise. In fact, had the style of his letters been uniformly gay and lively, I should have been more surprised, so well did I understand his variable temper. But we both looked forward to our anticipated meeting with all the eagerness and impatience of youthful expectation. For, as I said near the opening of my story, I loved Charley as a brother, and so agreeable and pleasant was his disposition when he was pleased, you quite forgot for the time being the unhappy tempers to which he was subject.