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generous than he. The brothers parted, and Charles hastened with his painful confidence to his mother. The mother, always ready to bear her part in the hope and fears, success and disappointments, of her children, received his communication with tears of sympathy. But over every other feeling, - regret that the catastrophe had not been foreseen and avoided, anxiety for the future, and perplexity with the present,-the holy joy of the Christian mother triumphed; and from the depths of her heart arose a silent, fervent thanksgiving, that the religious principle of her sons had swayed their affections and been victorious over the temptations of the most subtile of the human passions.
The application of the southern lady was the theme on which Mrs. Barclay began her soundings of Emily; but how she discharged her delicate office, need not be told. A woman's management on such occasions is so marked by the addroitness and sagacity manifested by the lower orders of creation, that we might call it by the name we give to the inspiration of the bee and the bird, and say that one woman instinctively finds the clue that leads through the labyrinth of another's heart.
When Charles again met his mother, he read his fate in her face. "It is as I expected," she said; "Emily herself asks how it could be otherwise.'
"Mother! you did not tell her that I"
No, no, my son, she does not suspect the nature of your feelings; but, as I was going to tell
you, she said, amid the blushes and tears of her confession, that she feared it was very wrong, received as she had been into the family, to indulge such an affection for Wallace; but she could not help it. If he had gone away, as you did, she should have loved him as she does you and her brother Harry; but to be with him every day, and every day find him more and more
"You need not check yourself, mother; I can bear to hear why she loves Wallace."
Mrs. Barclay was proceeding; - Charles again interrupted her. "Never mind, dear mother; some other time I will hear the rest;" and he left her, to still in solitude the throbbings of his heart. Something must be allowed to human infirmity. Charles had fortunately a pretext of business, and in a few hours, without again seeing his brother or Emily, he was on his way to a distant part of the state.
Those hours which should have been the happiest of Wallace's life were clouded; but the clouds which are fraught with generous consideration for another are better than sunshine. It is good to have the joy of success tempered, the expectations of youth abated; and above all it is good, by personal and even bitter experience, to have our convictions strengthened, that the highest and only stable happiness results from an obedience to the sense of duty. Even in the first intoxicating moments of assured affection, the certainty of possessing Emily's love was less to Wallace than the certainty of having preserved his brother's unimpaired.
Charles's trial was the severest. His fondesthopes were suddenly annihilated. Emily, who unconsciously had shaped the plan of his life, and lit up his futurity, was lost to him for ever; but even the possession of her pure and tender heart, lovely and beloved as she was, could not have inspired the holy emotions he felt, from the assurance that his love for Wallace was not abated one jot, that he could contemplate his happiness, not only without a pang of envy, but with gratitude to Heaven, that what was denied to him had fallen to his brother's lot.
Whence came this self-conquest? whence this power over the most selfish and exorbitant of the passions? and at that period of life when passion is strongest and reason weakest? It came from a home cultivation of the affections that spring from the natural and unchanging relations. It came from what the Apostle calls á mystery," the knitting of hearts together in love; and alas! to a great portion of the world, the power of domestic love is still a mystery. The vital principle of the religion of Christ, the pervading element of the divine nature, love, was the informing spirit of the Barclays' home. This inspired their exertions, and their self-restraints, and that generous sympathy which enabled each to transfuse, as it were, his existence into a brother's, to weep when he wept, and to rejoice when he rejoiced.
Yes! let the rich deride, the proud disdain,
To the younger members of the Greenbrook family, the announcement of Wallace's and Emily's engagement was unmixed joy. "They had always," they said, "loved her like a sister, and now she was going to be their own sister. Horrid it would have been, to have had Emily go and live on a plantation among slaves. Mother had always said that Emily would make one of the best little housewives in the world, if she did not make a wonderful teacher, and they guessed mother knew all the while what was going to happen; but that was nothing strange, mother knew every thing! And how nicely father fixed it to have Wallace and Harry Norton partners. "They wondered "if father meant that all should come out so like the end of a story-book when he took Harry and Emily home! And what would Mr. Anthon say now? O, he would say it was all father's luck! Poor Mr. Anthon! To be sure he had bad luck enough, as he called it. John such a drunkard, and Dick acting so shockingly, and Anne quarrelling with her mother-inlaw." Thus the children dwelt on results; older heads may speculate on causes.
Charles, in due time, returned to Greenbrook. His gentle and still affectionate manner (perhaps even more than usually so) betrayed no secret to Emily; but his increased thoughtfulness and occasional embarrassment did not escape his mother's vigilant eye. He was himself conscious of a weight on his spirits that he could not throw an accustomed and delightful stimulus was withdrawn. It was the change from a day of sunshine and ethereal atmosphere to leaden skies and east winds. He fully realized that it was easy for a mind formed upon right principles to resolve upon a right course, but very hard to cure the same mind of long indulged habits. There was not a walk, a view, a tree, or plant at Greenbrook, that did not tend by its associations to keep alive feelings which it was now his duty and most earnest endeavor to extinguish. Human virtues partake of the human constitution, they are weak, and need external aid and support; the true wisdom is to find this out and apply the remedy in time. After a conflict of weeks and months, Charles came to the conclusion that a change of climate is sometimes as essential to the mind, as the body; and having frankly disclosed his reasons to his parents, he announced to them his determination, with their approbation, to remove to Ohio. The Greenbrook farm, he said, was no more than his father could manage without him at present, and the younger boys were coming on to take his place; for himself, he should find the excitement he wanted, in the activity and novelty