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is here a lottery, if anywhere, as it always on St. Demetrius' Day all the Demewill be; more especially when those triuses are called upon and congratulated. most concerned have had few or no op- And this is not always easy work, seeing portunities of cultivating each other's that some names are exceedingly popular acquaintance, and of forming some slight with the natives. estimate of the merits of their future Sunday and Thursday are the chief yoke-fellows.
days for outings with the great mass of Nor is duelling a dim shade of the the inhabitants. They visit, shop, give past. It has not died a natural death, evening parties, and see the play on these in this land at least. There are some days. Ordinary people stay 'much at times three or four duels a week during home on the other days and live in true the Carnival, when balls and dissipation Eastern style, making no toilette, but sitare at their climax. The pistol and the ting about in a loose robe from morning rapier are the usual weapons, for the till night, and smoking a multitude of sword seems to have been resigned to Turkish cigarettes. As they will never the ruder German by common consent. stir out on foot, and must always be The results are not always serious, though dressed most extravagantly, they probathere are some famous duels on record. bly discover that such expensive tastes The fair sex is naturally the root of this, cannot be satisfied every day in the week. as of other evils. An accidental step- It is in the summer, when the aristocping on a lady's train, a trifling error in racy are abroad, that they most distinthe dance, a casual glance, innocent and guish themselves. The suburb of Vacarunmeaning as a babe's, may sometimes esti contains certain mineral springs of lead to the gravest consequences.
which old and young, healthy and sickly, The Church festivals are scrupulously crowd alike to drink in the early dawn observed at Bucharest, the shops being during the summer months. There are closed on all those that are more import- such displays of equipages and attire as ant. The feasts of Christmas and Easter must be seen to be imagined. Some of are drawn out to three days, during the fair ones will rise at two o'clock in which period nothing, not excepting the morning, and begin the pleasant task bread and tobacco, can be bought. of adorning by candlelight, that they may
The lower classes fast most strictly in be ready to start at five and take their Lent. Indeed, the year seems to be part in the most pressing business of the made up entirely of holidays and peni- day. A comedy, entitled “The Waters tential days. Men are either feasting or of Vacaresti,' has been written by the fasting, a régime which does not con- great Wallachian actor, M. Milo, to satirduce very greatly to health, and which, ise all these proceedings. sooner or later, must tell on the consti- On a hot summer's evening the gartution. This is the case likewise with dens are crowded with fair women walkthe Russian peasantry, who are also ing up and down the paths in the ballmuch weakened thereby.
dresses they wore during the winter seaVisits are always paid on saints' days son.-Temple Bar. to all who bear the same name. Thus
BY MRS. OLIPHANT.
sure about "family arrangements," had
filled up the already almost overflowing BACK AGAIN AT THE CASTLE.
measure of secret pain. It had momentThe Squire went home after his game arily recalled, like a stimulant too sharp of ducks and drakes in the most curious, and strong, not only his usual power of bewildered state of mind. The shock resistance, but a force of excitement of all these recent events had affected strong enough to overwhelm the faculties him much more than any one was aware, which for the time it invigorated; and and Randolph's visit and desire to make while he walked about his woods after his first interview with his son, the Squire him, the atmosphere fell all into a soft was on the edge of a catastrophe, his confusion. A kind of happiness stole brain reeling, his strained powers on the over him. What had he to be happy verge of giving way. The encounter about? yet he was so. Sometimes in with little Nello on the lake side had ex- our English summers there is a mist of ercised a curious arresting power upon heat in the air, confusing all the lines of the old and worn edifice of the mind the landscape as much as a fog in winter which was just then tottering to its fall. -in which the hills and lakes and sky It stopped this fall for the moment. are nothing but one dazzle and faint The trembling old walls were not per- glory of suppressed light and warmthhaps in a less dangerous state, but the light confusing but penetrating: warmth wind that had threatened them dropped, perhaps stilling to the young and active, and the building stood, shaken to its but consolatory to those whose blood foundation, and at the mercy of the next runs chill. This was the mental condiblast, but yet so far safe-safe for the tion in which the Squire was. His moment, and with all the semblance of troubles seemed to die away, though he calm about it
. To leave metaphor, the had so many of them. Randolph, his Squire's mind was hushed and lulled by middle-aged son, ceased to be an assailthat encounter with the soft peacefulness ant and invader, and dropped into the of childhood, in the most curious, and to dark like other troublesome things-not himself inexplicable way. Not, indeed, a son to be proud of, but one to put up that he tried to explain. He was as un- with easily enough. John ? he did not conscious of what was going on in him- remember much about John; but he reself as most of us are. He did not know membered very distinctly his old playfelthat the various events which had shaker low little Johnny, his little brother. him had anything more than pain in "Eighteen months — only
only eighteen them-he was unaware of the danger. months between them :" he almost could Even Randolph's appearance and the hear the tone in which his mother said thought of the discussions which must that long ago. If Johnny had lived he go on when his back was turned, as to would have been-how old would he the things that would happen after his have been now ? Johnny would have death-he was not aware that there was been seventy-five or so had he livedmore in them than an injury against but the Squire did not identify the numwhich his whole spirit revolted. He did ber of years. There was eighteen months not know that this new annoyance had between them, that was all he could struck at the very stronghold of vitality, remember, and of that he sat and mused, the little strength left to him. Which of often saying the words over to himself, us does know when the coup-de-grace is with a soft dreamy smile upon his face. given ? He only knew the hurt—the He was often not quite clear that it was wound—and the forlorn stand he had not Johnny himself, little Johnny, with made against it, and almost giddy light- whom he had been playing on the waterness with which he had tried to himself side. to smile it down, and feel himself supe- This change affected him in all things. rior. Neither did he know what Nello He had never been so entirely amiable. had done for him. His meeting with When Randolph returned to the asthe child was like the touch of something sault, the Squire would smile and make soft and healing upon a wound. The no reply. He was no longer either irricontact cooled and calmed his entire be- tated or saddened by anything his son ing. It seemed to put out of his mind might say-indeed he did not take much all sense of wounding and injury. It notice of him one way or another, but did more; it took all distinctness at would speak of the weather, or take up a once from the moral and the physical book, smiling, when his son began. This landmarks round him. The harsher was very bewildering to the family. outlines of life grew blurred and dim, Randolph, who was dull and self-importand instead of the bitter facts of the ant, was driven half-frantic by it, thinkpast, which he had so long determined ing that his father meant to insult him. to ignore, and the facts of the present But the Squire had no purpose of any which had so pushed themselves upon kind, and Mary, who knew him better, at last grew vaguely alarmed without The same event of Randolph's visit knowing what she feared. He kept up had produced other results almost as reall his old habits, took his walks as usual, markable. It had turned little Lilias all dressed with his ordinary care-but did at once into the slim semblance of a woeverything in a vague and hazy way, re- man, grown-up, and full of thoughts. It quiring to be recalled to himself, when is perhaps too much to say that she had anything important happened. When grown in outward appearance as sudhe was in his library, where he had read denly as she had done in mind; but it and written, and studied so much, the is no unusual thing in the calmest doSquire arranged all his tools as usual, mestic quiet, where no commotion is, opened his book, even began to write his nor fierce, sudden heat of excitement to letters, putting the date-but did no quicken a tardy growth, that the elder more. Having accomplished that begin- members of a family should wake up all ning, he would lean back in his chair in a moment to notice how a child has and muse for hours together. It was grown. She had perhaps been springing not thinking even, but only musing; no up gradually; but now in a moment subject abode with him in these long still every one perceived ; and the moment hours, and not even any consistent thread was coincident with that in which Lilias of recollections. Shadows of the past heard with unspeakable wrath, horror, came sailing-floating about him, that shame, pity, and indignation, her father's was all; very often only that soft, wan- story—that he would be put in prison if dering thought about little Johnny, he came back; that he dared not come occupied all his faculties— Eighteen back; that he might be - executed. . months between them, no more! He (Lilias would not permit even her thoughts rarely got beyond that fact, though he to say hanged-most ignominious of all never could quite tell whether it was the endings-though Miss Brown had not little brother's face or another-his son's, hesitated to employ the word.) This or his son's son's—which floated through suggestion had struck into her soul like this mist of recollections. He was quite a fiery arrow. The guilt suggested happy in the curious trance which had might have impressed her imagination taken possession of him. He had no also; but the horrible reality of the penactive personal feelings, except that of alty had gone through and through the pleasure in the recollection and thought child. All the wonderful enterprises she of little Johnny-a thought which pleased had planned on the moment are past our and amused, and touched his heart. All telling. She would go to the Queen and anger and harm went out of the old get his pardon. She would go to the old man, he spoke softly when he spoke at woman on the hills and find out everyall, and suffered himself to be disturbed thing. Ah! what would she not do? as he never would have done before. And then had come the weary pilgrimage Indeed he was far too gentle and good to which Geoff had intercepted ; and now be natural. The servants talked of his the ache of pity and terror had yielded condition with dismay, yet with that to that spell of suspense which, more agreeable anticipation of something new, than anything else, takes the soul out of which makes even a death in the house" itself. What had come to the child ? Miss more or less desirable. “ Th' owd Brown said ; and all the maids and MarSquire's not long for this world," the tuccia watched her without saying anycook and Tom Gardiner said to each thing. Miss Brown, who had been the other. As for Eastwood, he shook his teller of the 'story, did not identify its head with mournful importance. “I connection with this result. She said, give you my word, I might drop a tray- and all the female household said, that ful of things at his side, and he wouldn't if Miss Lily had been a little older, they take no notice," the man said, almost knew what they would have thought. tearfully, "it's clean again nature that And the only woman in the house who is.” And the other servants shook their took no notice was Mary-herself so full heads, and said in their turn that they of anxieties that her mind had little leis. didn't like the looks of him, and that ure for speculation. She said, yes, Lilias certainly the Squire was not long for had grown; yes, she was changing. But this world.
looks in detail? Randolph was Mary's of place, where he would be well taught special cross; he was always about, al- and well taken care of," he added. ways in her way, making her father un- “Why should not you get him ready at comfortable, talking at the children. once ? and I will place him there on my Mary felt herself hustled about from way home.” This was, to do him jusplace to place, wearied and worried and tice, a sudden thought, not premeditated kept in perpetual commotion. She -an idea which had flashed into his would not look into the causes of the mind since he began to speak, but which Squire's strange looks and ways; she immediately gained attractiveness to could not give her attention to the chil- him, when he saw the consternation in dren; she could scarcely even do her Mary's eyes. business, into which Randolph would "Oh, thank you, Randolph," she fain have found his way, while her all- said, faintly. Had not Mr. Pen advised investigating brother was close by. —had not she herself thought of asking Would he but go away and leave the her brother's advice, who was himself harassed household in peace !
the father of a boy, and no doubt knew But Randolph for his part was not de better about education than she did ? sirous of going away. He could not go “But," she added, faltering," he could away, he represented to himself, without not be got ready in a moment; it would coming to some understanding with his require a little time. I fear that it would father, though that understanding seemed not be possible, though it is so very as far oft as ever. So he remained from kind." day to day, acting as a special irritant to “Possible ? Oh, yes, easily possible, the whole household. He had nothing if you give your mind to it," cried Ranto do, and consequently he roamed about dolph ; and he pointed out to her at the garden, pointing out to the gardener great length the advantages of the plan, a great many imperfections in his work; while Mary sat trembling, in spite of herand about the stables, driving well-nigh self, feeling that her horror of the idea out of his wits the steady-going, respect was unjustifiable, and that she would able groom, who now-a-days had things probably have no excuse for rejecting so very much his own way. He found reasonable and apparently kind a profault with the wine, making himself ob- posal. Was it kind ? It seemed so on noxious to Eastwood, and with the made the outside ; and how could she venture dishes, exasperating Cook. Indeed there to impute bad motives to Randolph, was nothing disagreeable which this vis- when he offered to serve her? She did itor did not do to set his father's house not know what reply to make; but her by the ears. Finally, sauntering into the mind was thrown into sudden and most drawing-room, where Mary sat, driven unreasonable agitation. She got up at by him out of her favorite hall, where last, agitated and tremulous, and exhis comments offended her more than plained that she was compelled to go out she could bear, he reached the climax to visit some of her poor people." I of all previous exasperations by suddenly have not been in the village since you urging upon her the undeniable fact that came," she said, breathless in her explaNello ought to go to school. The nations; "and there are several who are boy,” Randolph called him; nothing ill; and I have something to say to Mr. would have induced him to employ any Pen.” pet name to a child, especially a foreign “Oh, yes, consult old Pen, of course,” name like Nello-his virtue was of too Randolph had said. “I would not desevere an order to permit any such tri- prive a lady of her usual spiritual adviser fling. He burst out with this advice all because she happens to be my sister. Of at once. “You should send the boy to course you must talk it over with Pen.” school; he ought to be at school. Old This assumption of her dependence Pen's lessons are rubbish. The boy upon poor Mr. Pen's advice galled Mary, should be at school, Mary," he said. who had by no means elected Mr. Pen This sudden fulmination disturbed Mary to be her spiritual adviser. However, beyond anything that had gone before, she would not stay to argue the question, for it was quite just and true. And I but hurried away anxiously with a sense know a place-a nice, homely, good sort of escape. She had escaped for the mo
ment; yet she had a painful sense in her -a little nothing-a creature that might mind that she could not always escape be crushed by a strong hand-a thing from Randolph. The proposal was unprotected, unacknowledged, without sudden, but it was reasonable and kind either power or influence, or any one to -quite kind. It was the thing a 'good care for him! how he stood in Ranuncle ought to do; no one would but dolph's way! But he did not at this think better of Randolph that he was moment mean him any harm; that is, no willing to take so much trouble. Ran- particular harm. The school he had suddolph for his part felt that it was very denly thought of had nothing wrong in it; kind; he had no other meaning in the it was a school for the sons of poor original suggestion; but when he had clergymen, and people in “reduced cirthus once put it forth, a curious expan- cumstances.” It would do Nello a great sion of the idea came into his mind. deal of good. It would clear his mind Little Nello was a terrible bugbear to from any foolish notion of being the Randolph. He had long dwelt upon the heir. And he would be out of the way, thought that it was he who would suc- and once at school, there is no telling ceed to Penninghame on his father's what may happen between the years of death-at first, perhaps, nominally on ten and twenty. But of one thing, RanJohn's account. But there was very lit- dolph was quite sure-that he meant no tle chance that John would dare the harm, no particular harm, to the boy. dangers of a trial, and reappear again, to When Mary left him in this hurried be arraigned for murder, of which crime way, he strolled out in search of someRandolph had always simply and stolid- thing to amuse or employ the lingering ly believed him guilty; and the younger afternoon. Tom Gardiner now gave brother had entertained no doubt that, him nothing but sullen answers, and the sooner or later, the unquestioned inheri- groom began to dash about pails of watance would fall into his hands. But ter, and make hideous noises as soon as this child baffled all his plans. What he appeared, so that it did not consist could be done while he was there? with his dignity to have anything more though there was no proof who he was, to say to these functionaries; so that and none that he was legitimate, or any- sheer absence of occupation, mingled thing but a little impostor: certainly, he with a sudden interest in the boy, on was as far from being a lawful and proper whose behalf he had thus been suddenly English heir—such as an old family like "led" to interfere, induced Randolph to the Musgraves ought to have—such as look for the children. They were not in his own boy would be, as could be sup- their favorite place at the door of the posed. But of course, the best that old hall, and he turned his steps instinctcould be done for him was to send him ively to the side of the water, the natural to school. It was only of Nello that attraction to everybody at Penninghame. Randolph thought in this way. The lit- When he came within sight of the little tle girl, though a more distinct individ- cove where the boats lay, he saw that it ual, did not trouble him. She might be was occupied by the little group he legitimate enough-another Mary, to sought. He went towards them with whom, of course, Mary would leave her some eagerness, though not with any money-and there would be an end of sense of interest or natural beauty such it. Randolph did not believe, even if as would have moved most people. there had been no girl of John's, that Nello was seated on the edge of the Mary's money would ever come his way. rocky step relieved against the blue waShe would alienate it rather, he felt sure ter ; Lilias placed higher up with the -found a hospital for cats, or something wind ruffling her brown curls, and the of that description (for Mary was noth- slant sunshine grazing her cheek. The ing but a typical old maid to Randolph, boy had a book open on his knees, but who regarded her as an unmarried wo- was trying furtive ducks and drakes unman, with much masculine and married der cover of the lesson, except when Lilias contemptuousness), rather than let it recalled him to it, when he resumed his come to his side of the family. So let learning with much demonstration, say, that pass—let the girl pass; but for the ing it over under his breath with visibly boy! That little, small, baby-faced Nello moving lips. Lilias had got through her