“What do you think, Sophia?” said Louisa when she came in—she did not wait to take off her hat before she began—“the Jamesons are going to leave the Liscoms, and they have rented the old Wray place, and are going to run the farm and raise vegetables and eggs. Mr. Jameson is coming on Saturday night, and they are going to move in next Monday.”
I was very much astonished; I had never dreamed that the Jamesons had any taste for farming, and then, too, it was so late in the season.
“Old Jonas Martin is planting the garden now,” said Louisa. “I saw him as I came past.”
“The garden,” said I; “why, it is the first of August!”
“Mrs. Jameson thinks that she can raise late peas and corn, and set hens so as to have spring chickens very early in the season,” replied Louisa, laughing; “at least, that is what Mrs. Gregg says. The Jamesons are going to stay here until the last of October, and then Jonas Martin is going to take care of the hens through the winter.”
I remembered with a bewildered feeling what Mrs. Jameson had said about not wanting to board with people who kept hens, and here she was going to keep them herself.
Louisa and I wondered what kind of a man Mr. H. Boardman Jameson might be; he had never been to Linnville, being kept in the city by his duties at the custom-house.
“I don’t believe that he will have much to say about the farm while Mrs. Jameson has a tongue in her head,” said Louisa; and I agreed with her.
When we saw Mr. H. Boardman Jameson at church the next Sunday we were confirmed in our opinion.
He was a small man, much smaller than his wife, with a certain air of defunct style about him. He had quite a fierce bristle of moustache, and a nervous briskness of carriage, yet there was something that was unmistakably conciliatory and subservient in his bearing toward Mrs. Jameson. He stood aside for her to enter the pew, with the attitude of vassalage; he seemed to respond with an echo of deference to every rustle of her silken skirts and every heave of her wide shoulders. Mrs. Jameson was an Episcopalian, and our church is Congregational. Mrs. Jameson did not attempt to kneel when she entered, but bent her head forward upon the back of the pew in front of her. Mr. Jameson waited until she was fairly in position, with observant and anxious eyes upon her, before he did likewise.
This was really the first Sunday on which Mrs. Jameson herself had appeared at church. Ever since she had been in our village the Sundays had been exceptionally warm, or else rainy and disagreeable, and of course Mrs. Jameson was in delicate health. The girls and Cobb had attended faithfully, and always sat in the pew with the Liscoms. To-day Harry and his father sat in the Jones pew to make room for the two elder Jamesons.