The Path of Duty, and Other Stories eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 310 pages of information about The Path of Duty, and Other Stories.
some two years previous.  It was more difficult, however, for him to persuade his father and mother that his decision was a wise one.  “If ye maun leave us,” said his mother, “can ye no seek anither hame nearer han’, an’ no gang awa across the water to yon’ wild place they ca’ Canada?” “We maun try to be reasonable, woman,” said his father, “but I canna deny that the thought o’ our first born son gaun sae far awa gie’s me a sair heart.”  It was equally hard for the son to bid farewell to the land of his birth, and of a thousand endearing ties; but prudence whispered that now was his time to go, while he had youth and health, to meet the hardships that often fall to the lot of the emigrant.  When his parents saw how much his mind was set upon it they ceased to oppose his wishes, and with his wife and children, he soon joined the large numbers who, at that period, were leaving the British, for the Canadian shores.

As may be readily supposed, the parting between the two families was a very sad one; but the last adieus were finally exchanged, and the poor emigrants were borne away on the billows of the Atlantic.  During the first few days of their voyage they all, with the exception of their youngest child, suffered much from sea-sickness.  This child was a little girl about three years old; and it seemed singular to them, that she should escape the sickness from which nearly all the passengers suffered, more or less.  They soon recovered; the weather was fine, and many of their fellow passengers were very agreeable companions, and they began really to enjoy the voyage.  But this happy state of things was but of short duration.  Their little girl, wee Susie, as they called her, was seized with illness.  They felt but little anxiety at the first, thinking it but a slight indisposition from which she would soon recover; but when day after day passed away with no visible change for the better they became alarmed, and summoned the physician, who pronounced her disease a slow kind of fever, which he said often attacked those who escaped the sea-sickness.  He told the anxious parents not to be alarmed, as he hoped soon to succeed in checking the disease.  But with all the physician’s skill, aided by the unceasing attention of her fond parents, the sad truth that wee Susie was to die soon became evident.  When the sorrowing parents became sensible that their child must die, they prayed earnestly that her life might be prolonged till they should reach the land.  But for some wise reason their prayer was not granted; and when their voyage was but little more than half accomplished she died, and they were forced to consign her loved form to a watery grave.  The lovely prattling child had been a general favourite with all on board, and her sudden death cast a gloom over the minds of all.  Words would fail me to describe the grief of the parents and the two affectionate little brothers when they realized that “wee Susie” was indeed gone, and that they could never enjoy even

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The Path of Duty, and Other Stories from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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