“Do not open it until to-morrow, if you please,” he added.
Sylvia promised and thanked him. She wondered if the envelope might not contain a picture of this kind friend. She knew that she must not ask a question; questions were never polite, she remembered, especially about a gift. But whatever it was she was very happy to think Mr. Robert Waite had remembered her.
They all went to the door with their friendly visitor, and stood there until he had reached the gate. Then Sylvia said, speaking very slowly:
“I think Mr. Robert Waite is just like the Knights in that book, ’The Age of Chivalry.’ They always did exactly what was right, and so does he; and they were polite and so is he.”
“Then, my dear, perhaps you will always remember that to do brave and gentle deeds with kindness is what ‘chivalry’ means,” responded Mrs. Fulton.
Grace came in that afternoon greatly excited that it was a holiday. The whole city was rejoicing over the fact that South Carolina had been the first of the southern states to secede from the Union. Palmetto flags floated everywhere; the streets were filled with marching men. Major Anderson in Fort Moultrie watched Fort Sumter with anxious eyes, hoping for a word from Washington which would give him authority to occupy it before the Charleston men could turn its guns against him. Already Mr. Doane had reached Washington; the message Sylvia had carried through the night had been delivered, and its answer, by a trusted messenger, was on its way south.
Sylvia carried the long envelope which Mr. Robert Waite had given her to her room, and put it in the drawer of her desk with the treasured gold pieces.
“It will be splendid to have a picture of Mr. Waite to show Grandma Fulton,” she thought happily, “and I can tell her all about him.”
Then her thoughts rested on Flora, in the “haunted house,” and she opened the silk-covered work-box and tried on the pretty gold thimble. She thought of her gold pieces, and a sudden resolve came into her mind:
“I will give Flora and Grace each a gold locket, with my picture in it.” And just then Mrs. Fulton entered the room, and Sylvia ran toward her:
“Mother! Mother! I have a beautiful plan. I want to give Flora and Grace each a present. I want to give them each a gold locket with my picture in it. On Grace’s locket I want ‘Grace from Sylvia,’ and on Flora’s, ‘Flora from Sylvia.’ I can pay for them with my gold money. I may, mayn’t I, Mother?” and Sylvia looked eagerly toward her mother.
“Of course you may; but it is too late to get the pictures and lockets in time for Christmas,” responded Mrs, Fulton.
“I don’t care when; only if we do go back to Boston I want them to have something to remember me by,” said Sylvia, remembering the unfailing loyalty of her two little southern friends.