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For I must tell you the truth: much more to

me is your friendship Than all the love he could give, were he twice

the hero you think him." Then she extended her hand, and Alden, who

eagerly grasped it, Felt all the wounds in his heart, that were

aching and bleeding so sorely, Healed by the touch of that hand, and he said,

with a voice full of feeling: "Yes, we must ever be friends; and of all who

offer you friendship Let me be ever the first, the truest, the nearest

and dearest!"

Casting a farewell look at the glimmering

sail of the May Flower, Distant, but still in sight, and sinking below

the horizon, Homeward together they walked, with a strange,

indefinite feeling,

That all the rest had departed and left them

alone in the desert. But, as they went through the fields in the

blessing and smile of the sunshine, Lighter grew their hearts, and Priscilla said

very archly: "Now that our terrible Captain has gone in

pursuit of the Indians, Where he is happier far than he would be

commanding a household, You may speak boldly, and tell me of all that

happened between you, Wheji you returned last night, and said how

ungrateful you found me." Thereupon answered John Alden, and told her

the whole of the story, — Told her his own despair, and the direful wrath

of Miles Standish. Whereat the maiden smiled, and said between

laughing and earnest,

"He is a little chimney, and heated hot in a

moment!" But as he gently rebuked her, and told her how

much he had suffered, — How he had even determined to sail that day

in the May Flower, And had remained for her sake, on hearing the

dangers that threatened, — All her manner was changed, and she said with

a faltering accent, "Truly I thank you for this: how good you

have been to me always!"

Thus, as a pilgrim devout, who toward Jeru~ salem journeys,

Taking three steps in advance, and one reluctantly backward,

Urged by importunate zeal, and withheld by pangs of contrition;

Slowly but steadily onward, receding yet ever advancing,

Journeyed this Puritan youth to the Holy Land

of his longings, Urged by the fervor of love, and withheld by

remorseful misgivings.

VII.

THE MARCH OF MILES STANDISH.

Meanwhile the stalwart Miles Standish was marching steadily northward.

Winding through forest and swamp, and along the trend of the sea-shore,

All day long, with hardly a halt, the fire of his anger

Burning and crackling within, and the sulphurous odor of powder

Seeming more sweet to his nostrils than-all the scents of the forest.

Silent and moody he went, and much he revolved his discomfort;

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