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قراءة كتاب A Christmas Accident and Other Stories

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‏اللغة: English
A Christmas Accident and Other Stories

A Christmas Accident and Other Stories

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دار النشر: Project Gutenberg
الصفحة رقم: 1


A Christmas Accident

A Christmas Accident and Other Stories. 16mo. Cloth     $1.00
Rod's Salvation and Other Stories. 16mo. Cloth 1.00
A Cape Cod Week. 16mo. Cloth 1.00
Mistress Content Cradock. Cloth. 16mo. 1.00
A. S. BARNES & CO., Publishers,
New York.

A Christmas Accident

And Other Stories


Annie Eliot Trumbull

Author of "White Birches," "A Masque
of Culture," etc.


New York
A. S. Barnes and Company

Of the stories included in this volume, the first originally appeared in the Hartford Courant; "After—the Deluge," in the Atlantic Monthly; "Mary A. Twining," in the Home Maker; "A Postlude" and "Her Neighbor's Landmark," in the Outlook; "The 'Daily Morning Chronicle,'" in The New England Magazine; and "Hearts Unfortified," in McClure's Magazine. To the courtesy of the editors of these periodicals I am indebted for permission to reprint them.

A. E. T.


A Christmas Accident 1
After—the Deluge 32
Memoir of Mary Twining 67
A Postlude 99
The "Daily Morning Chronicle" 139
Hearts Unfortified 177
Her Neighbor's Landmark 210

A Christmas Accident

AT first the two yards were as much alike as the two houses, each house being the exact copy of the other. They were just two of those little red brick dwellings that one is always seeing side by side in the outskirts of a city, and looking as if the occupants must be alike too. But these two families were quite different. Mr. Gilton, who lived in one, was a pretty cross sort of man, and was quite well-to-do, as cross people sometimes are. He and his wife lived alone, and they did not have much going out and coming in, either. Mrs. Gilton would have liked more of it, but she had given up thinking about it, for her husband had said so many times that it was women's tomfoolery to want to have people, whom you weren't anything to and who weren't anything to you, ringing your doorbell all the time and bothering around in your dining-room,—which of course it was; and she would have believed it if a woman ever did believe anything a man says a great many times.

In the other house there were five children, and, as Mr. Gilton said, they made too large a family, and they ought to have gone somewhere else. Possibly they would have gone had it not been for the fence; but when Mr. Gilton put it up and Mr. Bilton told him it was three inches too far on his land, and Mr. Gilton said he could go to law about it, expressing the idea forcibly, Mr. Bilton was foolish enough to take his advice. The decision went against him, and a good deal of his money went with it, for it was a long, teasing lawsuit, and instead of being three inches of made ground it might have been three degrees of the Arctic Circle for the trouble there was in getting at it. So Mr. Bilton had to stay where he was.

It was then that the yards began to take on those little differences that soon grew to be very marked. Neither family would plant any vines because they would have been certain to heedlessly beautify the other side, and consequently the fence, in all its primitive boldness, stood out uncompromisingly, and the one or two little bits of trees grew carefully on the farther side of the enclosure so as not to be mixed up in the trouble at all. But Mr. Gilton's grass was cut smoothly by the man who made the fires, while Mr. Bilton only found a chance to cut his himself once in two weeks. Then, by and by, Mr. Gilton bought a red garden bench and put it under the tree that was nearest to the fence. No one ever went out and sat on it, to be sure, but to the Bilton children it represented the visible flush of prosperity. Particularly was Cora Cordelia wont to peer through the fence and gaze upon that red bench, thinking it a charming place in which to play house, ignorant of the fact that much of the red paint would have come off on her back. Cora Cordelia was the youngest of the five. All the rest had very simple names,—John, Walter, Fanny, and