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But of a thundering “No 1 ° point-blank from

the mouth of a woman, . That I confess I’m afraid of, nor am I ashamed to confess it ! So you must grant my request, for you are an elegant scholar, Having the graces of speech, and skill in the turning of phrases.” . Taking the hand of his friend, who still was reluctant and doubtful, Holding it long in his own, and pressing it - . kindly, he added: “Though I have spoken thus lightly, yet deep is the feeling that prompts me ; Surely you cannot refuse what I ask in the - name of our friendship!” Then made answer John Alden : “The name . . of friendship is sacred; What you demand in that name, I have not the

power to deny you!”

So the strong will prevailed, subduing and moulding the gentler, Friendship prevailed over love, and Alden went

on his errand.

III.
THE LOVER's ERRAND.

So the strong will prevailed, and Alden went on his errand, Out of the street of the village, and into the paths of the forest, Into the tranquil woods, where blue-birds and robins were building Towns in the populous trees, with hanging . .* gardens of verdure, Peaceful, aerial cities of joy and affection and freedom. All around him was calm, but within him com

motion and conflict,

Love contending with friendship, and self with each generous impulse. To and fro in his breast his thoughts were heaving and dashing, As in a foundering ship, with every roll of the * vessel, Washes the bitter sea, the merciless surge of the ocean | “Must I relinquish it all,” he cried with a wild - lamentation, “Must I relinquish it all, the joy, the hope, the illusion ? was it for this I have loved, and waited, and worshipped in silence 2 Was it for this I have followed the flying feet and the shadow Over the wintry sea, to the desolate shores of New England 7 Truly the heart is deceitful, and out of its

depths of corruption

Rise, like an exhalation, the misty phantoms Of passion ; . Angels of light they seem, but are only delusions of Satan. All is clear to me now ; I feel it, I see it distinctly : This is the hand of the Lord; it is laid upon me in anger, For I have followed too much the heart's de. sires and devices, Worshipping Astaroth blindly, and impious idols of Baal. This is the cross I must bear; the sin and the

Swift retribution.”

So through the Plymouth woods John Alden went on his errand ; Crossing the brook at the ford, where it brawled over pebble and shallow, Gathering still, as he went, the May-flowers

blooming around him,
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