I trust the reader will pardon this digression from my story.
In the course of the winter my uncle gave a party, to afford me an opportunity of becoming acquainted with the young people of the place. If the party lacked some of the forms and ceremonies practised in the city drawing-rooms upon like occasions, it certainly was not wanting in real enjoyment.
SCHOOL AT MILL TOWN.
I believe there is no season more favorable to sober reflection than when we find ourselves alone, after mingling for a time in a scene of mirth and gaiety. After the departure of our guests, and my uncle and aunt had retired to rest, I indulged in a long fit of musing, as I sat alone by the kitchen-fire. In the silence and loneliness of the hour, my thoughts turned to my former home, and to the circumstances which had caused me to leave it; and although I had resolved to think no more of Willie Leighton, somehow or other, on this occasion, I found my thoughts wandering to him and to the seeming fatality which had separated us. The only living relatives of whom I had any knowledge were my uncle and aunt, and the before-mentioned aunt of my mother.
But a circumstance which I had heard my father mention in my childhood had of late often recurred to my mind. I recollected often hearing my father speak of a twin-brother, and that they had been left orphans at the age of eight years; also, that he, my father, had been adopted by a gentleman residing about fifty miles from the city of Philadelphia, who had given him a very good business education, and had procured for him a situation in the city when he became of suitable age. But the case had been different with his brother Charles.