A Magazine of Literature, Science, Art, and Politics.
VOL. XX.—DECEMBER, 1867.—NO. CXXII.
Entered according to Act of Congress, in the year 1867, by Ticknor and Fields, in the Clerk's Office of the District Court of the District of Massachusetts.
Transcriber's Note: Minor typos have been corrected and footnotes moved to the end of the article. Table of contents has been created for the HTML version.
THE GUARDIAN ANGEL.
A MYSTERIOUS PERSONAGE.
A TOUR IN THE DARK.
AN AUTUMN SONG.
BY-WAYS OF EUROPE.
MINOR ELIZABETHAN DRAMATISTS.
OUR PACIFIC RAILROADS.
GRANDMOTHER'S STORY: THE GREAT SNOW.
AMONG THE WORKERS IN SILVER.
WHAT WE FEEL.
LITERATURE AS AN ART.
A YOUNG DESPERADO.
REVIEWS AND LITERARY NOTICES.
THE GUARDIAN ANGEL.
MURRAY BRADSHAW PLAYS HIS LAST CARD.
"How can I see that man this evening, Mr. Lindsay?"
"May I not be Clement, dearest? I would not see him at all, Myrtle. I don't believe you will find much pleasure in listening to his fine speeches."
"I cannot endure it. Kitty, tell him I am engaged, and cannot see him this evening. No, no! don't say engaged, say very much occupied."
Kitty departed, communing with herself in this wise:—"Ockipied, is it? An' that's what ye cahl it when ye're kapin' company with one young gintleman an' don't want another young gintleman to come in an' help the two of ye? Ye won't get y'r pigs to market to-day, Mr. Bridshaw,—no, nor to-morrow, nayther, Mr. Bridshaw. It's Mrs. Lindsay that Miss Myrtle is goin' to be,—an' a big cake there'll be at the weddin', frosted all over,—won't ye be plased with a slice o' that, Mr. Bridshaw?"
With these reflections in her mind, Mistress Kitty delivered her message, not without a gleam of malicious intelligence in her look that stung Mr. Bradshaw sharply. He had noticed a hat in the entry, and a little stick by it which he remembered well as one he had seen carried by Clement Lindsay. But he was used to concealing his emotions, and he greeted the two older ladies, who presently came into the library, so pleasantly, that no one who had not studied his face long and carefully would have suspected the bitterness of heart that lay hidden far down beneath his deceptive smile. He told Miss Silence, with much apparent interest, the story of his journey. He gave her an account of the progress of the case in which the estate of which she inherited the principal portion was interested. He did not tell her that a final decision which would settle the right to the great claim might be expected at any moment, and he did not tell her that there was very little doubt that it would be in favor of the heirs of Malachi Withers. He was very sorry he could not see Miss Hazard that evening,—hoped he should be more fortunate to-morrow forenoon, when he intended to call again,—had a message for her from one of her former school friends, which he was anxious to give her. He exchanged certain looks and hints with Miss Cynthia, which led her to withdraw and bring down the papers he had intrusted to her. At the close of his visit, she followed him into the entry with a lamp, as was her common custom.
"What's the meaning of all this, Cynthia? Is that fellow making love to Myrtle?"
"I'm afraid so, Mr. Bradshaw. He's been here several times, and they seem to be getting intimate. I couldn't do anything to stop it."
"Give me the papers,—quick!"
Cynthia pulled the package from her pocket. Murray Bradshaw looked sharply at it. A little crumpled,—crowded into her pocket. Seal unbroken. All safe.
"I shall come again to-morrow forenoon. Another day and it will be all up. The decision of the court will be known. It won't be my fault if one visit is not enough.—You don't suppose Myrtle is in love with this fellow?"
"She acts as if she might be. You know he's broke with Susan Posey, and there's nothing to hinder. If you ask my opinion, I think it's your last chance: she isn't a girl to half do things, and if she has taken to this man it will be hard to make her change her mind. But she's young, and she has had a liking for you, and if you manage it well there's no telling."
Two notes passed between Myrtle Hazard and Master Byles Gridley that evening. Mistress Kitty Fagan, who had kept her ears pretty wide open, carried them.
Murray Bradshaw went home in a very desperate state of feeling. He had laid his plans, as he thought, with perfect skill, and the certainty of their securing their end. These papers were to have been taken from the envelope, and found in the garret just at the right moment, either by Cynthia herself or one of the other members of the family, who was to be led on, as it were accidentally, to the discovery. The right moment must be close at hand. He was to offer his hand—and heart, of course—to Myrtle, and it was to be accepted. As soon as the decision of the land case was made known, or not long afterwards, there was to be a search in the garret for papers, and these were to be discovered in a certain dusty recess, where, of course,