“It means, Squire Sheldon,” said Mr. Pettigrew, “that you won’t turn my uncle out of his farm this time. My young friend, Rodney Ropes, has advanced Uncle Cyrus money enough to pay off the mortgage.”
“I won’t take a check,” said the squire hastily.
“You would have to if we insisted upon it, but I have the money here in bills. Give me a release and surrender the mortgage, and you shall have your money.”
It was with a crestfallen look that Squire Sheldon left the farmhouse, though his pockets were full of money.
“It’s all up,” he said to his friend Caldwell in a hollow voice. “They have paid the mortgage.”
After all the railway did cross the farm, and Uncle Cyrus was paid two thousand dollars for the right of way, much to the disappointment of his disinterested friend Lemuel Sheldon, who felt that this sum ought to have gone into his own pocket.
A MINISTER’S GOOD FORTUNE.
“I have another call to make, Rodney,” said Mr. Pettigrew, as they were on their way back to the hotel, “and I want you to go with me.”
“I shall be glad to accompany you anywhere, Mr. Pettigrew.”
“You remember I told you of the old minister whose church I attended as a boy. He has never received but four hundred dollars a year, yet he has managed to rear a family, but has been obliged to use the strictest economy.”
“Yes, I remember.”
“I am going to call on him, and I shall take the opportunity to make him a handsome present. It will surprise him, and I think it will be the first present of any size that he has received in his pastorate of over forty years.
“There he lives!” continued Jefferson, pointing out a very modest cottage on the left hand side of the road.
It needed painting badly, but it looked quite as well as the minister who came to the door in a ragged dressing gown. He was venerable looking, for his hair was quite white, though he was only sixty five years old. But worldly cares which had come upon him from the difficulty of getting along on his scanty salary had whitened his hair and deepened the wrinkles on his kindly face.
“I am glad to see you, Jefferson,” he said, his face lighting up with pleasure. “I heard you were in town and I hoped you wouldn’t fail to call upon me.”
“I was sure to call, for you were always a good friend to me as well as many others.”
“I always looked upon you as one of my boys, Jefferson. I hear that you have been doing well.”
“Yes, Mr. Canfield. I have done better than I have let people know.”
“Have you been to see your uncle? Poor man, he is in trouble.”
“He is no longer in trouble. The mortgage is paid off, and as far as Squire Sheldon is concerned he is independent.”
“Indeed, that is good news,” said the old minister with beaming face. “You must surely have done well if you could furnish money enough to clear the farm. It was over a thousand dollars, wasn’t it?”