“I am lucky in having such a friend,” said Herbert, “and will take the advice as it was given.”
Here the bookkeeper entered, and, soon after, Mr. Godfrey made his appearance.
“I hope you had a pleasant evening, Herbert,” he said, kindly.
“Very pleasant, sir; thank you,” said Herbert, in a very different tone from the one he had used in addressing Tom.
“I believe I saw you, also, at the concert, Thomas,” said Mr. Godfrey.
“Yes, sir,” said Tom. “I am very fond of music, and attend all the first-class musical entertainments”
“Indeed?” said Mr. Godfrey, but this was all the reply he made.
“My daughter insists that I shall invite you to the house again soon,” said Mr. Godfrey, again addressing Herbert.
“I am very much obliged to her, and to you, sir,” said Herbert, modestly. “I shall be very glad to come.”
Tom’s face darkened, as he heard this. He would have given considerable to receive such an invitation himself, but the prospect did not seem very promising.
“Mr. Godfrey must he infatuated,” he said to himself, impatiently, “to invite such a beggar to his house. Mason ought to have good sense enough to feel that he is out of place in such a house. I wouldn’t accept any invitation given out of pity.”
“I wonder why Tom dislikes me so much?” thought Herbert. “He certainly takes pains enough to show his feeling. Would it be different, I wonder, if he knew that I was his cousin?”
Herbert thought of mentioning to Mr. Godfrey that he had recovered three-quarters of the money of which he had been robbed. It would have been well if he had done so, but Mr. Godfrey seemed particularly engaged, and he thought it best not to interrupt him.
AN UNEXPECTED BLOW
Herbert felt happier than usual. He had recovered the greater part of his money, and thus was relieved from various inconveniences which had resulted from his straitened circumstances, He was the more elated at this, as it had seemed extremely improbable that the lost money would ever have found its way back to the pocket of its rightful owner. Then, he had a good place, and a salary sufficient to defray his modest expenses, and the prospect of promotion, if he should be faithful to the interests of his employer, as he firmly intended to be. It was agreeable, also, to reflect that he was in favor with Mr. Godfrey, who had thus far treated him with as much kindness as if he had been his own son.
There was, to be sure, the drawback of Tom’s enmity, but, as there was no good reason for this, he would not allow it to trouble him much, though, of course, it would have been more agreeable if all in the office had been his friends. He determined to take an early opportunity to write to his good friend, Dr. Kent, an account of his present position. He would have done so before, but had hesitated from the fear that in some way the intelligence would reach Abner Holden, whom he preferred to leave in ignorance of all that concerned him.