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A Child of the Glens by Edward Newenham Hoare

Hendrick and I have been considering


"Don't

you think you are somewhat precipitate, Jim?" said the rector, smiling. "This is just one of the points Mr. Hendrick and I have been considering. Of course it is just possible that some day the poor drowned woman may be identified, and turn out to have no connection with you at all. But I am inclined to think she was your mother, and that that accounts for her coming to Tor Bay. We have thought it only right, therefore, that you and Elsie should have the locket and watch, for the present at least. As for the division, you must arrange that between you."

"I think I ought to have the watch, as I said, sir, and Elsie the locket."

"Well, perhaps that is the most suitable division," said the rector, coldly; "but I don't think you are quite consistent in claiming the watch so eagerly, and at the same time scorning the miniature, since, in all probability, if the watch belonged to your mother, the likeness is that of your father."

"As such I at least shall be glad to keep it," said Elsie.

Jim was somewhat crestfallen at the rector's rebuke, but merely added, with some pomposity--

"Now that I have been informed of the circumstances, I shall probably, by the aid of this watch, be able to unravel the mystery of my parentage."

He meant it merely as a piece of brag to cover his

retreat, and as such the rector and Hendrick took it, receiving his words with a quiet smile.

"I consider that Mr. Smith has acted very wrongly in keeping these things from us so long," commenced the young man, as he and Elsie walked home together after ac early dinner at the rectory.

"O Jim! how can you say so? Mr. Smith could have had no motive but consideration for our feelings."

"I say nothing against his motives, only that I think he acted wrongly. Valuable time has been lost; but clergymen are never good men of business, and Scripture-readers are like them, I suppose."

"Jim, I don't like to hear you speak like that; it's ungrateful. And what you mean by valuable time I can't conceive."

"I dare say you don't understand the value of time, leading the sort of life you do in a place where nobody ever knows the hour," said the youth, superciliously, as he glanced at his newly-acquired treasure; "but of course I mean time has been lost in investigating our family history."

"I'm quite content to be as I am," said Elsie. "If the history was known, it would probably be neither important nor interesting. I don't see how the watch will help you, Jim; and you know you won't have the likeness."

And she looked into the lad's face with her merry brown eyes. But Jim was on his high horse, and merely replied--

"I cannot say what I shall do all at once, but the matter shall be looked into at an early date."

Elsie smiled, as the rector and Scripture-reader had done--not visibly, indeed, as they had, yet Jim somehow felt he was being laughed at, which made him angry.

"He is a smart lad that, but I don't like him," said the rector, as he and Hendrick watched Elsie and Jim going down the avenue. "He wants to be a fine gentleman, and is ashamed of his father's portrait--an ill-looking fellow enough, it must be admitted."


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