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to terminate this new solicitude, and know the worst at once. Yes ; the next noon should not pass away without an appeal to her fond, indulgent parent upon the subject.

Our poor heroine—if Emily Langley may venture to lay claim to such a character,—tired out with thinking, and wondering, and wishing, and hoping, and fearing, and doubting, and imagining, at length fell asleep; nor did she awake, until the clock had stricken eleven. Her faithful abigail had more than once ventured on tiptoe into the bedroom, but her young mistress heard her not, nor did the soubrette deem it prudent to disturb her after the fatigues of the preceding evening.

At length the well-known bell summoned Grindle to her lady's toilette, and Emily's first question was whether mamma was up, or had breakfasted; to which Grindle replied in the affirmative, and added to her answers a bit of information which not a little startled the young lady.

“Your 'ma has breakfasted,” said Grindle, “and had a visiter to breakfast with her."--"A visiter ?" said Emily.

“Yes, miss,” said Grindle, “and such a visiter as never did I see in this house. He was here by half-past nine-brought a letter which 'must be,' as he said, delivered instantly to Mrs. Langley.' I took him for a watchman, and Elkins fancied he was a bear. He was wrapped up in a huge thick coat, with fur all over it. I never saw such a man in my born days.” “ And did he breakfast with mamma?" asked Emily.

Yes, miss,” said Grindle, “the moment she had read the letter she desired to have breakfast prepared directly. Up she got, dressed in no time, and in less than half an hour after the arrival of the visiter there she was, walking up and down the terrace, talking to him like any thing. Then, however, he had taken off his great-coat, and looked a great deal less like a bear than he did before.”

“ But,” said Emily, "you had better bring me my breakfast here, Grindle. I do not want to intrude myself upon mamma's visiters. You can tell her, afterwards, that I am up, and have breakfasted in my room, so that if she desires my company I shall be ready to attend her, and if she do not, why I need not present myself.”

“ Very well, miss," said Grindle. " Who the stranger is, I, of course, don't know, and cannot guess; but since he has been here your 'ma has sent off two messengers, in different directions. I tried all I could to find out where they were gone to, because I thought, miss, you would like to hear, but I could not succeed.”

“Well,” said Emily, “I can do exceedingly well without you, so go and get the breakfast, and I shall be ready to go down, if I am summoned."

Grindle lost no time in obeying these commands, and Emily was left to fancy who the stranger could be, and what his business.

It was certainly not unnatural, as she was aware that her future destiny was clouded in mystery, that she should associate the new arrival with circumstances connected with herself.

While finishing her toilette, and thinking over every thing that she had ever heard her mother say, in order to account for the arrival of this “rugged Russian bear," she passed near one of the windows of her dressing-room, and happening accidentally, almost mechanically, to look through it, beheld, to her utter astonishment, Alfred Sherwood himself, pacing backwards and forwards upon the lawn immediately beneath.

This sight startled her infinitely more than the news Grindle had imparted with regard to the stranger. What on earth could Alfred be doing? Surely he had not taken the desperate resolution of avowing an affection for her, which she scarcely doubted that he felt. Nothat could not be. Why, if so, absent himself from the ball ? She drew back, so as to remain unseen, but still cominanding a view of the promenade which he had selected. She was not destined to observe him for any great length of time—he was almost immediately summoned into the house by one of the servants, and vanished from her sight.

Why, Grindle,” said Emily to her maid, as she entered the room with the breakfast, “ Mr. Sherwood is here!”

“Yes, miss,” said Grindle. “I found that out. He was sent for. One of the messengers went after him. Only think!"

Emily did think-a thousand thoughts filled her mind. It was impossible but that she must be somehow mixed up in this extraordinary movement. Breakfast was out of the question, her whole anxiety was to have her readiness to make her appearance down-stairs, whenever desired, announced as soon as possible. She could not doubt but that a crisis was at hand.

To the message thus transmitted, mamma's answer was, that she would see her directly, if she would come down into the breakfastparlour. She did not long pause before she obeyed the invitation.

When she entered the room she found Mrs. Langley alone, evidently labouring under considerable excitement. Emily ran to her and kissed her cheek as usual, and her kiss was returned warmly and affectionately.

“My love,” said Mrs. Langley,“ you must prepare for a journey immediately—at least for what would have been called a journey, even twenty years since, before those wonderful annihilators of time and space, railroads were invented.”—“ A journey ?" said Emily.

Yes," replied Mrs. Langley, “ you will require very little luggage, our stay where we are going will not exceed two days—give directions to Grindle, who will go with you, and then return to me; you will find me on the terrace."

Emily did as she was bidden; but she could not help wondering whither they were going at so short a notice, and at the absence of any observation on the part of her mother, as to the arrival of the stranger or the proximity of Sherwood. Having given her orders, she proceeded to the terrace, as she had been desired, where, seated on a bench under the verandah which opened upon it, she beheld her mother and an elderly man; gentleman she could scarcely call him, although the relative position to her parent which he occupied gave him a claim, if not a right, to the distinction.

As she approached, the stranger started up, and, raising his eyes to heaven, exclaimed, “What a likeness, 'tis she herself!"

“ This, my dear,” said Mrs. Langley, presenting her daughter to the visiter, “is a very old friend of our fainily—Mr. Slangerman ; he remembers you an infant.”

Emily blushed and looked confused; the old gentleman took her hand and pressed it to his lips respectfully but fervently-he, too, was evidently overcome by his feelings.

I never saw any resemblance so strong," said he, after the lapse of a few minutes, “ never !" and the tears ran down his cheeks.

“ Emily,” said Mrs. Langley, seemingly anxious to remove her from a scene which she feared would be 100 exciting for her nerves,“go, dear, and hurry your maid; we must be punctual; I will come to you in a moment.”. Emily obeyed; but, as she passed along, her eyes in vain roved in search of Sherwood. Was he to be of the party? Who was she so like? Who was the old gentleman ? Where were they going, and why?

To some of these questions she was destined very soon to obtain replies. She had scarcely reached her room before Mrs. Langley was beside her. “Where in the name of wonder, mamma,"said Emily,“are wegoing to?"

“ Our present journey is to Liverpool,” said Mrs. Langley;“our stay there will be short. Oh! Emily, my beloved Emily, the moment has arrived—I knew it must-I ought to have been prepared—but I know, I am sure, quite sure, I shall not be loved the less.'

“Oh! mother, mother!" sobbed the agitated girl, terrified at the emotion of her affectionate companion. “What does this mean?"

“ Emily,” said Mrs. Langley, gazing steadily on her features and endeavouring to exert all her energies, “I am not your mother.”

These words uttered with firmness and solemnity struck deep into poor Emily's heart.

“ Not my mother ?" said she, almost unconscious of the repetition.

“ No," said Mrs. Langley ; “let me implore you, be firm, be we shall never be separated—you will know all this afternoon; come to my heart, my dearest girl, and be henceforth the kind, affectionate, dutiful child I have ever found you."

“ But tell me,” said Emily.

“ Nothing more here,” replied Mrs. Langley. “He that must tell you all, is sick and ill at Liverpool, just landed from America, where for thirteen years he has lived a life of pain and sorrow. You are destined to be happy, let that content you—I can tell no more.”

Emily stood like one bewildered—the necessity for action roused her from her amazement, and the hurrying and bustling of Grindle afforded her a sort of equivocal relief from the tumult of her brain.

Hurrying as she was directed to do, she saw the carriages driven round which were to take them to the station whence they were to embark on the railroad; she hastily locked her writing-desk, and jewel-case, and having cast a hasty look round her room, hastened down the stairs, at the foot of which, she encountered Alfred Sherwood, looking as pale as death, and absolutely trembling with agitation.

She held out her hand to him he took it, but in a manner so different from that which had before marked his feelings towards her, that she could not but enquire the cause of the alteration.

“What is the meaning of this ?" said she.

Before Alfred could reply, Emily found herself gently withdrawn from the spot where she was standing, and on turning round, found the old stranger holding her by the arm, saying in the mildest tone,

“ The carriages, Miss Emily, are waiting."

The surprise which this “manual exercise" caused her, seemed likely to produce something like a remonstrance; but Mrs. Langley, who was close behind her, put an end to all further parley, by observing that “indeed they should be too late.”

“Mr. Sherwood,” said the venerable stranger, “you can go on the box."

Alfred bowed obedience to the suggestion which sounded exceedingly like an order, and brought up the rear of the little procession, which moved across the hall to the door, a spectacle of amazement to the servants, both those who were to be of the travelling party, and those who were not.

" Remember," said Mrs. Langley to the butler, as she stepped into the barouche,“ we shall dine at seven precisely on Thursday, we shall beeight."

These were her parting injunctions; by her side in the barouche, sat Emily, opposite them the stranger, and although the fourth seat was vacant, Alfred mounted the box as he directed. The pony phaeton followed with two maids and one footman, and the luggage, which as the party were in “light marching order," was not exceedingly cumbersome.

Away they went—there was not much conversation in the barouche - the stranger was not aware that Mrs. Langley had broken one part of the great secret to Emily, upon whom, his eyes continued riveted during the drive. Emily informed of one fact connected with herselfthe most important and astonishing, without preparation, explanation, or qualification, could think of nothing else ; except, indeed, the equally inexplicable appearance of Alfred, and the treatment which he seemed to endure.

Thus wrapped in meditation, the party reached the station : they were in excellent time, they debarked from the carriages, which were ordered to be there to receive them at six o'clock on the Thursday, and such is the admirable punctuality of the railroad arrangements, that within one minute or less of the appointed time the almost vital breath of the impetuous engine was heard snorting through the air, and in less than a quarter of an hour from their arrival at the station, the whole of the party, agitated as they were by a thousand contending feelings, were Aying through the air at the rate of 23 miles an hour.

During this rapid progress, Mrs. Langley resolutely refused to enter into any conversation on the subject of their journey, well assured that it would he productive of the worst effects upon Emily; in a place and under circumstances, where she would be without the means of soothing or reviving her. The stranger still gazed on the beautiful girl, and Alfred, who was seated next Mrs. Langley, appeared in some degree to have recovered his spirits, although his eyes remained downcast and his brow contracted.

The speed at which they proceeded seemed to excite in the stranger an anxiety to address the fair girl who evidently absorbed all his attention; and at length after an apparent struggle with his feelings, he laid his hand upon hers, and in a subdued tone of voice said,

“ Dearest, best-beloved of human beings, few short hours will restore you to him, who_"

At this moment, a noise louder than the crashing of thunder, burst over their devoted heads—a shout of horror, the screams of agony and fear filled the air, and in an instant a concussion, irresistibly violent, shivered the carriage in which the anxious travellers were seated, into atoms, and whirled the passengers down the precipitous embankment on which they were travelling, into the depths of the valley below. Fourteen of the vehicles shared a similar fate, and the green sward was covered with the mutilated bodies and scattered limbs of the unfortunate victims-nor was this the extent of the mischief. He to whom the unhappy creatures were hurrying to relieve his mind, too anxious to reap the harvest of happiness which was ripe and ready for his hand, and finding himself better in health, had quitted Liverpool in the hopes of anticipating their departure from Beaulieu. By some unaccountable circumstance, connected with the switches, or the rails, or the sleepers, or something else, the up train had come in contact with the train tra

velling downwards—each set of carriages suffered nearly in an equal degree, and by this “ unexpected meeting,” the reader, in common with the inhabitants of the village in which Beaulieu stands, and of the town which it overlooks, and the rest of the world universally, are left in total ignorance of the history of Mrs. Langley, and of all the circumstances connected with it.

This is to be deeply lamented—but still as far as the accident itself goes, there is every reason for consolation—no “ blame whatever could be attached to any person connected with the railroad ;” and moreover, the mutilated remains of the respective ladies and gentlemen who suffered were carefully collected, and interred the following day in the catacombs of one of the popular joint-stock company cemeteries, which “commands a beautiful view of the surrounding country, and to and from which, there are omnibuses going and returning every half-hour in the day-fare sixpence, inside.



The male moiety of the community is composed of two sets of intolerable bores—those who can't make speeches after dinner, and those who can. The first of the two classes is a vastly miscellaneous one.

It comprises the cleverest fellows that ever starved, and the dullest dunces that ever fared sumptuously every day. Wisdom and stupidity, originality and commonplace, here meet on a level. Every thing, as they say, is in position, and truly position is every thing in this matter. Let but commonplace and originality, incapacity and genius, keep their seats at table and give their legs a holiday, and you shall see a difference between them as broad as the distinction between the finest turtle, and what the cookery-books call “ mock-mutton broth.” They have no more resemblance to each other while so seated—they have no more in common-than Shakspeare and his critics, or the Opera and the English Opera. But only let the Dunce and the Genius be called upon to rise-to propose a toast, or to return thanks—let them both get upon their legs. See them once fairly brought to a standstill, in a small, sober, silenced, listening, assembly, with the eyes of that little Europe upon them, and all its long ears open—and then say, “ Handy, dandy, which is the justice, and which is the thief.” Decide between the genius and the dunce. Choose your Dromio--they are both alike.

of the two, perhaps your particularly stupid fellow cuts the best figure. He's a confirmed blockhead, he half suspects it himself, and every body else knows it. He has nothing to say, and he says it as sheepishly as he can. He has dined gloriously, as he fancies, but that's a mistake-he has merely got rid of his appetite, which is a very different thing from dining. He can eat, for he is an animal; but how should such a soul as his ever know how to dine. He drank, too, in his way, at dinner-drinking (divine art !) being a matter in which the idiot

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