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found means to let him escape. I was tried by a court-martial for negligence of my post, and ordered, in compassion of my age, and having got this wound in my arm, and that in my leg, in the service, only to suffer 300 lashes, and be turned out of the regiment; but my sentence was mitigated as to the lashes, and I had only 200. When I had suffered these, I was turned out of the camp, and had betwixt three and four hundred miles to travel before I could reach a seaport, without guide to conduct me, or money to buy me provisions by the way. I set out, however, resolved to walk as far as I could, and then to lay myself down and die. But I had scarce gone a mile, when I was met by the Indian whom I had delivered. He pressed me in his arms, and kissed the marks of the lashes on my back a thousand times; he led me to a little hut, where some friend of his dwelt; and after I was recovered of my wounds, conducted me so far on my journey himself, and sent another Indian to guide me through the rest. When we parted, he pulled out a purse with two hundred pieces of gold in it: • Take this,' said he, ‘my dear preserver, it is all I have been able to procure.' I begged him not to bring himself to poverty for my sake, who should probably have no need of it long; but he insisted on my accepting it. He embraced me:-You are an Englishman, ' said he, but the Great Spirit has given you an Indian heart; may he bear up the weight of your old age, and blunt the arrow
, that brings it rest!' We parted ; and not long after I made shift to get my passage to England. 'Tis but about a week since I landed, and I am going to end my days in the arms of
This sum may be of use to him and his children ; 'tis all the value I put upon it. I thank heaven I never was covetous of wealth ; I never had much, but was always so happy as to be content with my little."
When Edwards had ended his relation, Harley stood a while looking at him in silence; at last he pressed him in his arms,
and when he had given vent to the fullness of his heart by a shower of tears, " Edwards,” said he, “let me hold thee to my bosom; let me imprint the virtue of thy sufferings on my soul. Come, my honored veteran! let me endeavor to soften the last days of a life, worn out in the service of humanity: call me also thy son, and let me cherish thee as a father.” Edwards, from whom the recollection of his own sufferings had scarce forced a tear, now blubbered like a boy; he could not speak his gratitude, but by some short exclamations of blessings upon Harley.
When they had arrived within a little way of the village they journeyed to, Harley stopped short, and looked steadfastly on the moldering walls of a ruined house that stood on the roadside. “Oh heavens!” he cried, “what do I see: silent, unroofed, and desolate! Are all thy gay tenants gone? do I hear their hum no more? Edwards, look there, look there! the scene of my infant joys, my earliest friendships, laid waste and ruinous! That was the very school where I was boarded when you were at South-hill; 'tis but a twelvemonth since I saw it standing, and its benches filled with cherubs; that opposite side of the road was the green on which they sported; see it now plowed up! I would have given fifty times its value to have saved it from the sacrilege of that plow.”
“Dear sir," replied Edwards, "perhaps they have left it from choice, and may have got another spot as good.” “They cannot,” said Harley, “they cannot; I shall never see the sward covered with its daisies, nor pressed by the dance of the dear innocents: I shall never see that stump decked with the garlands which their little hands had gathered. These two long stones which now lie at the foot of it, were once the supports of a hut I myself assisted to rear: I have sat on the sods within it, when we had spread our banquet of apples before us, and been more blest — Oh! Edwards! infinitely more blest than ever I shall be again.”
Just then a woman passed them on the road, and discovered some signs of wonder at the attitude of Harley, who stood, with his hands folded together, looking with a moistened eye on the fallen pillars of the hut. He was too much entranced in thought to observe her at all; but Edwards civilly accosting her, desired to know, if that had not been the school-house, and how it came into the condition in which they now saw it? “Alack a day!” said she, “it was the school-house indeed; but to be sure, Sir, the squire has pulled it down, because it stood in the way of his prospects.” — “What! how! prospects! pulled down!” cried Harley. “Yes, to be sure, Sir; and the green where the children used to play he has plowed up, because, he said, they hurt his fence on the other side of it.”. “Curses on his narrow heart,” cried Harley, “that could violate a right so sacred! Heaven blast the wretch!
And from his derogate body never spring
But I need not, Edwards, I need not (recovering himself a little), he is cursed enough already: to him the noblest source of happiness is denied; and the cares of his sordid soul shall gnaw it, while thou sittest over a brown crust, smiling on those mangled limbs that have saved thy son and his children !” “If you want anything with the school-mistress, Sir," said the woman “I can show
to her house." He followed her without knowing whither he went.
They stopped at the door of a snug habitation, where sat an elderly woman with a boy and a girl before her, each of whom held a supper of bread and milk in their hands. “There, Sir, is the school-mistress.” — “Madam,” said Harley, “was not an
. old venerable man school-master here some time ago?” — “Yes, Sir, he was; poor man! the loss of his former school-house, I believe, broke his heart, for he died soon after it was taken down; and as another has not yet been found, I have that charge in the meantime.” — “And this boy and girl, I presume, are your pupils ?” -“Ay, Sir, they are poor orphans, put under my care by the parish; and more promising children I never saw.' “Orphans !” said Harley. “ Yes, Sir, of honest creditable parents as any in the parish; and it is a shame for some folks to forget their relations, at a time when they have most need to remember them.” — “Madam," said Harley, “let us
" never forget that we are all relations.” He kissed the chil. dren.
“ Their father, Sir," continued she, “was a farmer here in the neighborhood, and a sober industrious man he was; but nobody can help misfortunes: what with bad crops, and bad debts, which are worse, his affairs went to wreck, and both he and his wife died of broken hearts. And a sweet couple they were, Sir; there was not a properer man to look on in the county than John Edwards, and so indeed were all the Edwardses.' “What Edwardses ?” cried the old soldier hastily. “The Edwardses of South-hill; and a worthy family they were.” – “ South-hill!” said he, in languid voice, and fell back into the arms of the astonished Harley. The school-mistress ran for some water, and a smelling-bottle, with the assistance of which they soon recovered the unfortunate Edwards. He stared wildly for some time, then folding his orphan grandchildren in his arms, “Oh! my children, my children!” he cried, “have I found you thus? My poor Jack! art thou gone? I thought thou shouldst have carried thy father's gray hairs to
the gravel and these little ones" — his tears choked his utter
ance, and he fell again on the necks of the children.
My dear old man!” said Harley, “Providence has sent you to relieve them; it will bless me, if I can be the means of assisting you.”—“Yes, indeed, Sir,” answered the boy; “father, when he was a-dying, bade God bless us; and prayed, that if grandfather lived, he might send him to support us.” – “Wheru
did they lay my boy ?” said Edwards. — “ In the Old Church
yard,” replied the woman, “hard by his mother.”—“I will show it you," answered the boy, “ for I have wept over it many a time, when first I came ainongst strange folks.” He took the old man's hand, Harley laid hold of his sister's, and they walked in silence to the churchyard.
There was an old stone, with the corner broken off, and some letters, half covered with moss, to denote the names of the dead: there was a ciphered R. E. plainer than the rest: it was the tomb they sought. “ Here it is, grandfather,” said the boy. Edwards gazed upon it without uttering a word: the girl, who had only sighed before, now wept outright: her brother sobbed, but he stifled his sobbing. “I have told sister,” said he, “ that she should not take it so to heart; she can knit already, and I shall soon be able to dig: we shall not starve, sister, indeed we shall not, nor shall grandfather neither.” — The girl cried afresh; Harley kissed off her tears as they flowed, and wept between every kiss.
HE RETURNS HOME.
It was with some difficulty that Harley prevailed on the old man to leave the spot where the remains of his son were laid. At last, with the assistance of the school-mistress, he prevailed; and she accommodated Edwards and him with beds in her house, there being nothing like an inn nearer than the distance of some miles.
In the morning, Harley persuaded Edwards to come with the children to his house, which was distant but a short day's journey. The boy walked in his grandfather's hand; and the name of Edwards procured him a neighboring farmer's horse, on which a servant mounted, with the girl on a pillow before him.
With this train Harley returned to the abode of his fathers : and we cannot but think, that his enjoyment was as great as if he had arrived from the tour of Europe, with a Swiss valet for his companion, and half a dozen snuff-boxes, with invisible hinges, in his pocket. But we take our ideas from sounds which folly has invented; Fashion, Bon ton, and Vertà, are the names of certain idols, to which we sacrifice the genuine pleasures of the soul; in this world of semblance, we are contented with personating happiness; to feel it, is an art beyond
It was otherwise with Harley; he ran upstairs to his aunt, with the history of his fellow-travelers glowing on his lips. His aunt was an economist; but she knew the pleasure of doing charitable things, and withal was fond of her nephew, and solicitous to oblige him. She received old Edwards therefore with a look of more complacency than is perhaps natural to maiden ladies of threescore, and was remarkably attentive to his grandchildren: she roasted apples with her own hands for their supper, and made up a little bed beside her own for the girl. Edwards made some attempts towards an acknowledg. ment for these favors; but his young friend stopped them in their beginnings. “Whosoever receiveth any of these children” — said his aunt; for her acquaintance with her Bible was habitual.
Early next morning, Harley stole into the room where Edwards lay: he expected to have found him a-bed; but in this he was mistaken: the old man had risen, and was leaning over his sleeping grandson, with the tears flowing down his cheeks. At first he did not perceive Harley; when he did, he endeavored to hide his grief, and crossing his eyes with his hand, expressed his surprise at seeing him so early astir. “I was thinking of you,” said Harley, “and your children; I learned last night that a small farm of mine in the neighborhood is now vacant; if you will occupy it, I shall gain a good neighbor, and
I be able in some measure to repay the notice you took of me when a boy; and as the furniture of the house is mine, it will be so much trouble saved.” Edwards's tears gushed afresh, and Harley led him to see the place he intended for him.
The house upon this farm was indeed little better than a hut; its situation, however, was pleasant, and Edwards, assisted by the beneficence of Harley, set about improving its neatness and convenience. He staked out a piece of the green before for a garden, and Peter, who acted in Harley's family as valet, butler, and gardener, had orders to furnish him with parcels of the dif