THE awful result of the football game-Grandison's
death-cast a gloom over the whole college for many days; but that was
not all. The days of mourning passed, and things did not go on as they
had gone; there was a change. Men are often moved to make promises when
their friends die, because their mortality is impressed upon them, for
the time; but after the funeral, promises having been forgotten, they move
on at the same old pace. But Grandison had not lived unto himself, neither
did he die unto himself; hence it was not to be wondered at that, as a
result of the combined influence of his life and death, some began to live
a new life in Christ.
In the two years since the great revival a number of the men here
had been growing and letting their light shine till it was inspiring
to watch them. It seemed as if they were all luminous within; as if God
were sending great streams of incandescent light down from himself into
their hearts, and that they had simply pulled away the shades and let
it shine out. They were like light-houses whose powerful lanterns and
polished lenses are provided with shades for protection, but when the
time comes to send the light out over the sea, the shades are dropped,
and the radiance goes forth on its mission of salvation. It was evident
that the path of some of these men was indeed as the path of the just,
that shines brighter and brighter till the dawning of the perfect day.
The junior year was passing rapidly away. Since the
tragedy of the "'gridiron field" the "charmed circle" had gradually vanished
till little remained but happy recollections. Miss Holmes, who had been
the life and center of it, had lost heart, and her courage and strength
were not sufficient for the task; and Scott was always"sorry he couldn't
go," for he avoided Miss Holmes socially, whenever he could do so natur
ally and without causing remark, for his own sake. His was a constant
conflict, and he did not deem it manly to make it more difficult than
necessity demanded. Hence it was that the junior year was tame, socially,
to our especial group of friends. But there were compensations: the gymnasium
was more in demand; the long walks were more frequently indulged in; and
perhaps the college work was more perfectly accomplished. Another result
of the change in social relations is especially worthy of mention, and
that was a new appreciation of the college library. More books were taken
out and read; reference works were more frequently consulted; the regular
courses were supplemented more than ever by collateral reading. While
there was nothing but good in the "charmed circle," yet there can be no
doubt that actual good came from its dissipation, and these two last years
of freedom from social demands and restraints were needed in the completion
and amplification of the college course. The mere curriculum in any college
is comparatively a small thing; it is only great in what it suggests
and demands and inspires.
And now the junior year is closing uneventfully. Not
that these pages might not be dilated with occurrences and incidents that
would prove interesting, but that these things are not necessary to the
unity and aim of this recital. It is the middle of June; Commencement
is a thing of the past, and most of the students are homeward bound. It
was necessary for Scott to pass through the city where the memorable baseball
game had been played and won. Having several hours on his hands before
he could make the connection that was to bear him to his destination,
he settled down in the station with a book in his hands, but with a fit
of something so like the "blues" all over him that it was difficult for
him to fasten his mind on the page before him. He had made it a point for
many months to carry about his person some book or pamphlet to be read
in spare moments. Frequently this plan had saved him from hours of idleness
and resulting ennui, and he had read hundreds of pages of valuable matter
that were just that much added to his mental furnishings. To-day he did
not feel like reading; but as nothing else presented itself he did his
best, although for a large part of the time he was simply holding the
book before him while his restless mind ran wild. For once he was completely
without the power of attention. Perhaps this was caused by the relaxation
that had unconsciously followed the closing of the year's work, or relief
from the constant mental strain under which he had been laboring. It might
have been simply the atmosphere that was to blame. Perhaps Providence
had something to do with it.
Presently a look of determination passed over his
face, and he closed the book with an emphatic little bang and slipped
it into his grip. Then he arose and went over to the parcels-room, where
he disposed of his hand-luggage, after which he passed out of the station
and up the street at a rapid gait. If one had followed him, one would
have discovered that he was on his way to Blacksly Street, famous for
its filth, poverty, and crime.
It was the street of the fight in which Scott had
taken such an active and important part. Strange he had never come back!
He had always intended to do so, for he wanted to become acquainted with
the inhabitants; but hitherto, for some reason, he had not revisited the
renowned locality. As he hurried along he was thinking of Jim, the boy
whom he had defended, and the remarkable invitation that he had received
from the "gang" to visit them and to become an honorary member of their
club. Surely they would not accept his continued absence as complimentary.
The more he thought of these things, the more eager he became, and unconsciously
he quickened his pace till those passing could not help noticing his speed
and evident abstraction. He passed some of his fellow-students, who called
out to him, but he heard and heeded not. It was as if he had been far
away from home, and now that his footsteps were sounding upon the familiar
stones of the home region, he was impatient and could scarcely contain
himself for the few necessary paces that remained. To Blacksly Street
he finally came, and down into its horrid narrowness he firmly turned,
nor even thought of the policeman's injunction on the occasion of his
former visit. Dirty, barefooted children made way for him, or looked up
to him with signs of awe on their faces, or cried out at him in tones of
derision and mockery; for he represented to them, in their innocence, because
of his neat black suit and immaculate linen, the aristocracy of capital,
the great enemy of their happiness and the prime cause of their present
squalid condition-undisputed facts that they had learned from their elders.
There is little doubt that
Scott would soon have had a following of these street-urchins, and perhaps
of something worse, but for certain reasons. He walked rapidly, and paid
no attention to them; he appeared to be there on business. Then, he knew
that he had not far to go, so there was little time for anything of importance
to happen. But there was time enough for a little occurrence that in a
measure impressed his whole after life. Just as he was coming near No.
17, a little girl of about seven summers went running swiftly past him.
He caught a side glance of her, and in the snapshot picture that found
place on his retina, he discovered her to be a pretty, wild-looking thing,
with black hair and eyes; also that her face was cleaner and her attire
neater than was customary among the children with whom she was romping.
After the little one had gone a few steps she suddenly
turned and started back even faster than before. When she came directly
in front of Scott she paused for a second, raised her hand suddenly, and
with unerring aim let fly a ball of sticky, slimy mud, evidently made
for the purpose from the materials ready at hand in the gutter. The missile
struck the young man squarely upon the white shirt front, where it left
its mark, whence it fell to the ground without further impact with clean
linen. That might have ended the incident, for there was nothing to be
done. A man can not possibly give chase to a little girl; for, if he did,
what could he do when he caught her? But something happened not in the
plan of the little vixen: as she continued endeavoring to make good her
escape from the being she believed to be a horrible monster, she stubbed
her toe and fell into the gutter, striking her head upon the curbstone
and cutting a gash across her forehead up into the hair.
When Scott was in this part of the city before, a
street fight gave him the hearts of a large portion of the denizens of
the place; now the soiled shirt and accident to the little witch was
to open the hearts of many more. Providence was overrulling events.
Instantly Scott was beside the little thing. He placed
her head in his lap, sent for water by a ragged little urchin, and when
it came washed away the blood and dirt from the ugly wound with his own
soft linen handkerchief. He soon discovered that the wound was probably
not serious, though it was undoubtedly painful. He then dispatched a willing
youngster for the nearest physician, and another for the mother of the
wounded little one. A doctor lived around the corner at the end of the
narrow street, and he happened to be at home. The haste and excitement
of the messenger brought the man of medicine at once; the mother arrived
about the same time, wringing her hands. She had heard a version of the
story on her way, so that she was prepared for the worst, but the young
man's calmness reassured her at once. Then, still holding the little patient
in his arms, while the mother led the way to their humble home, he explained
to the physician the trouble. The latter, on beholding that there was
nothing alarming in the situation, and on explaining that the wound would
speedily heal of its own accord by the use of little clean water and court-plaster,
wanted to go at once; and Scott would have permitted, but for a remark
that the heartless man let slip. "A scar will make little difference one
way or another to any one living in this street!" Discovering that a
few stitches would in a degree save the beauty of the little thing, Scott
"Why don't you treat her as you would the children
in better neighborhoods where you say your practice lies? She is human,
if she is poor." As the man still hesitated, Scott, now entirely disgusted,
inquired, "How much will you charge to do the work properly so that the
wound will heal with as little scar as possible?"
"Two dollars!" was the laconic reply.
"All right; I will pay it; and I will pay it now,
if that is all that hinders. Here!" and he handed out a crisp two-dollar
"Can't work for nothing,"-but he now began to take
an interest in the situation, and was more deferential and cheerful than
he had been.
Just as Scott was about to place the little thing
on the poor but scrupulously neat bed, he was surprised to find a pair
of arms about his neck in a caress, followed by a kiss. The child had
not been unconscious at all. Her only thought had been that this man,
her natural enemy, had caught her, and, of course, he would kill her or
get even with her in some terrible way; so she had lain quiet in his arms,
like a little wounded animal, waiting for the worst; too sick to struggle.
But when at length she realized that his every touch was tenderness and
love, and when she discovered all he was doing for her, who had been so
mean to him, even to the paying of that fortune, as it seemed to her, to
the doctor, there came a sudden change of feeling, such as her kind of
nature is capable of, and she now loved the man with all the intensity
and devotion with which before she had hated him, and her love was all-controlling.
Hence the caress and the kiss. As she relaxed her hold on him, she said,
in a sweet, anxious voice:
"Say, Mister, be you Jesus Christ? I heard about him
at a mission Sunday-school, an' I allus thought he'd do like w'at you're
doin' to me!" Then she fainted away, and the doctor took her in his keeping.
Scott found that the mother had known better circumstances
in former years, and that, though she had been forced into this region,
she was not really a part of it. She had endeavored with all her power
to keep the home neat and the little ones clean; but she could not hold
them from the street, nor from the associations and contaminations of
that dreadful schoolhouse. She opened her heart to Scott, and found in
him a sympathetic listener.
The young adventurer with the soiled shirtfront did
not tarry long after the wound was dressed, but hastened out into the
street, with the injunction to the doctor to see to it that the patient
did not suffer. This event, the account of which has occupied so much
space, in reality had occupied but little time; hence it was not many
minutes after Scott's arrival in the street that he found himself in front
of No. 17.
THE house was one of the most
important in the block, of crumbling brick, though not the least prepossessing
in appearance. As he stood looking at the structure he was tempted to
pass on and not make his contemplated call at all. But just at that moment
three or four fellows, between the ages of nineteen and twenty-two, came
out of an alley near at hand, and were just on the point of entering the
open cellar-way in front of the old brick, when Scott accosted them.
"Pardon the interruption, but may I inquire if this
is the meeting-place of the Blacksly Street Club?" Scott's clothes were
against him; but as the gaze of the men passed up from his polished shoes
and rested at last upon the soiled shirtfront, there seemed to be a change;
it was an extenuating circumstance, and there came an affirmative answer
to his question, though in a gruff and inhospitable voice that was in
no way reassuring. In spite of the glaring eyes that had been fixed on
him, he carelessly and lightly informed them that he had come to pay them
a little visit, on the invitation of the members of the club.
The four looked at each other, and then at their interlocutor,with
evident suspicionin their eyes. Numerous thoughts must have passed through
their minds; they were not anxious to entertain detectives just at that
time; it was not a convenient season. The spokesman said; "See here, Mister,
we don't know you, an' we think you've made a mistake. We think you had
better move on, or there'll be some hus'lin, an' yer fine clo'es might
"Why, certainly, I'll move on if you request it, though
I do not think it is your purpose to treat a guest thus, whom your club
invited not only to call, but elected to honorary membership. I know I
have been neglectful of my privilege, but this is my first opportunity."
Then he told them briefly all the circumstances.
With a slang expletive that very much resembled an
oath, one of hte men cried out, "Why, Bill, if this ain't that dude fightin'
The attitude of the quartet changed instantly, and
Scott was most cordially though boisterously invited down into the club-room.
He was surprised to find a large chamber, with a good cement floor, covered
here and there with pieces of old carpet in lieu of rugs. The walls likewise
were cement, with the exception of hte end opposite the entrance, decorated
with a few coarse prints and chromos issued by Sunday newspapers, along
with boxing-gloves, masks and some old swords, etc. From the ceiling hung
a trapeze, and at the side were parallel bars, a punching-bag, and several
sets of Indian clubs and other athletic paraphernalia. There was one
long table, covered with literature after the order of the Police
Gazette and cheap story-paper. There were several smaller tables, probably
for cards, and up at the end of the room nearest the street, alongside
of the entrance steps, was a distracted pooltable. The other end of the
room was paneled in wood, with no visible sign of an opening. The room
was quite light, for there were high windows on three sides of it. Scott
took in all these things at a glance, and, in spite of some things he
saw, he could not help feeling glad.
Altogether there were about eleven men in the room
now. Some were reading, a couple were boxing with gloves, two were playing
pool, and a few were engaged in a whispered though evidently earnest conversation
in the corner farthest from the door.
A big fellow eyed Scott for a moment-as yet not a
word had been spoken; indeed, his presence was scarcely recognized-then
came up to him and gave him a hearty slap on the back. "Why, if here
ain't our dude baseball-player!" was his ejaculation. "Why in thunder
hain't yer been here before? Some of the fellers said yer was too tony,
but I said yer 'ud come around some o' these days." It proved to be the
very man who had followed Scott to the restaurant, and had carried the
invitation of "the gang," as he had expressed it, to visit No. 17, and
in fact to become an honorary member. No further introduction was necessary,
and he was given a genuine and hearty welcome. He soon discovered that
he had been quite a lion in the street for a time, and that the talk had
been divided about equally between his prowess as a fighter and his skill
as a baseball-player; for they had all been induced to go to see that memorable
game through the influence of the committee-man to whom Scott had given
a ticket. It was the greatest game they had ever seen, and "their man"
was the greatest man of all. They proved to be the best "rooters" the
Darnforth team had that day. Then there had been room for an almost infinite
number of discussions as to what he would have done to that bully if he
had only wanted to fight. There had never been a subject of debate before
the club, which was literary in its way, that had been more prolific of
argument than that.
He was now plied with all sorts of questions, coming
so quickly and from so many sources at once, that it was impossible for
him to answer any of them satisfactorily, and, of course, he was given
no opportunity to ask questions on his part. Finally he made them understand
that he could answer but one interrogation at a time. When order was established,
he was compelled to tell first the story of the soiled shirt-front, amid
the curses and cries of vengeance of the crowd for the disgrace that
had been brought upon the good name of the street; but before he was
through, there was silence and no sign of anger. When be quoted the little
girl using the name of Jesus Christ, there had come a hush. Baseball and
football were subjects broached one at a time, and at last boxing.
One of the men wanted him to give them points on sparring,
assuming that he was master of that art, at the same time calling up another
to put on the gloves with him. For some reason each man in turn seemed
willing that some one else should have the honor. At length he was able
to impress it upon them that he was only making them a friendly visit
while he was passing through town, and that he had not long to tarry. Then
for the first time he found opportunity to inquire for Jim.
He learned that his young friend had become a confirmed invalid, and
that for much of the time he was confined to the house, and was often
even bedfast. So far as they could tell he did not seem to be sick with
any disease they had ever heard of; he was simply wasting away, though
often he suffered with pains in his back and head. All these rough men
softened their voices when they spoke of Jim, for he was a favorite with
them. Said one: "He's kinder changed from w'at he use' ter be. He's allus
talkin' 'bout his mother an' that good feelin' insid'er 'im, an' often
'bout Jesus Christ; but most of all, specially of late, 'bout his baseball-player,
a-wonderin' if he'll ever see 'im ag'in." Said another: "A feller hardly
likes ter go inter his room 'cause he goes on so, an we feels a queer
feelin' insider ther throat likes we'd swallered an apple whole that'd
got stuck." They said that the little fellow was quite alone all day, for
his father was away at work, and his new mother (there had been a wedding
in the street since Scott had been there before), though not hard on him,
was busy all day long about other things, and had not time to tend to
him as if he had been her own. These stalwart men always spoke of Jim
as "little," because he seemed so puny beside their own athletic physiques.
Scott ventured to say, "I should like to see Jim,
if he does not live too far away." The whole crowd
offered to escort him, and away they went in a body.
They found Jim all alone, leaning back in an old arm-chair
and endeavoring to read from a little, shabby Testament, of which he had
somehow managed to obtain possession. When he saw Scott he recognized
him instantly, and his face lighted up, becoming almost beautiful.
"I knew you'd come," he said with the simplicity of
a little child. Then impulsively he threw his arms around him and wept.
As Scott felt Jim's arms about him, he said to himself: "I have made quite
a record in Blacksly Street to-day. This is the second time I have been
caressed in a short time; God bless them!"
There was a great deal of talk on minor matters, when
all of a sudden Jim turned to Scott and asked him, "Does yer 'member the
ticket yer guv me 'bout Jesus Christ, in ther rest'runt that time?" Scott
did remember right well, for he had often wondered whether the little
cards he had given out had ever brought forth fruit. So he said:
"Why, yes, Jim; and do you know that that Jesus is
my Friend?" There was a look of eagerness on the boy's face as he turned
the leaves of his Testament, and at last brought forth the little, old
card in a soiled and dilapidated condition.
"That's how I come ter git this book. Somebody said
thet it told 'bout Jesus Christ. I kind'er thought yer was 'quainted
wid 'im." Then, with a new light in his eyes, he suddenly took the book,
and, handing it to his friend and savior, said: "Read to me 'bout 'im.
It's so hard fer me ter spell it out, and often it don't seem ter mean
nothin' when I does, an' it kind'er seems as if I was hungry fer 'im
ever since thet day."
Scott took the book from his hands with a feeling
of wonder and awe in his heart at the marvelous workings of hte Holy
Spirit. He read several passages from the life of Jesus. Jim was charmed
with his words, especially with the Beatitudes, and begged him to continue;
and as the rest of the audience was not averse, he finished the Sermon
on the Mount. There were a good many head-shakings as he read, but when
he finished, one fellow seemed the express the sentiments of all when he
said laconically, "That's bully!" Scott then turned to the fourteenth chapter
of St. John's Gospel, and read those charming words of Jesus, "In my Father's
house are many mansions." After he had finished, he said very softly and
gently, "Shall I talk now to Jesus for you?"
"Yer don't mean ter say yer knows how, does yer? An'
will he hear yer? Can yer talk loud 'nough?" eagerly inquired the poor
"Why, he wants us all to talk to him, and he has promised
always to hear and never to cast us away," said Scott, most reverently.
Then he knelt down. He was just letting the Spirit lead him. He had made
no plans, and he did not want to go too far, but the way seemed to open
up to him all the time. There was a peculiar rustle in the crowd that
morning, as Scott kneeled down on the boards of that barren room. The audience
scarcely knew what to do or what to make of the situation. It was unique
to every one of them. After a pause that Scott purposely prolonged, one
of the men awkwardly kneeled down, and then another and another, till every
man was on his knees in the attitude of devotion, and for the first time
in his history. Scott began:
"Father, you see us. We are big, most of us, and strong,
but we are not so big and strong as you are. We know that we are bad inside
and out, but that you are altogether good. We want to be like you, not
like anybody we know, not matter how good he may seem to us to be. We
know that we are not able to be good without your help. Help us! Help
us to have that good feeling inside that Jimmy's mother told him about.
Bless Jimmy. Make him well and strong, if you want him to be; but if you
have something for him to do here in this room, help him to do it and
make him happy in it. Talk to him, and teach him how
to talk to you. Bless all these strong men. You put them into the world
because you wanted them here and because you needed their help. You are
their Friend; help them to know it. Bless everybody on this street, especially
the poor little girl that was hurt this morning. May she get well and
outgrow the scar! Help us all to know you, and to love you, and to try
to be like you. Help us to be brave and strong and good, and may we use
our strength, bravery, and goodness for you and your little ones. We thank
you for this world and all the fine things in it. Help us to know that
you have a better one for us, where no one is sick or bad or unhappy,
where everybody is treated square, and where we may see you. We thank
you for all you have done for us, but, most of all, we thank you for Jesus
There was silence for several seconds; then there
followed some vigorous noises from some of the noses in the room. Finally
one of the men said: "Blamed if it ain't ther first time I ever knew
a baseball-player an' a fighter who could pray too. Where did yer learn?"
"Well, I can't say that I ever did learn. I am not
sure that I know how now. But I do know how to talk, and I find I can
talk to anybody if I desire; and when I discovered that I wanted to talk
to God, it was just as easy. The only thing is the desire."
"I never saw a feller like yer," said another. "Here
yer are one of ther Church members, w'at is so fine an' proud an' stuck
up, w'at never comes near us widout preachin', an' the women holds their
dresses ter one side's if they's 'fraid some sin an' dirt would come off
onter 'em. But yer ain't preached ter us onc't, an' we knows yer has
s'uthin' insid'er yer that we hain't got, an' yer has made us feel's if
yer was a man clean through yer. Yer makes us feel good just ter look
at yer an' ter hear yer talk."
This last was almost too much for Scott; he wanted
to smile and cry at the same time. By an effort of the will he managed
to refrain from both. Suddenly, taking out his watch and holding it in
his hand, he said: "Fellows, it is after noon, and my time is growing
short. How hot it has grown!" He was formulating a plan, and, as it matured
in his mind, he had the pleasant consciousness of a "balance in his favor"
in his pocket. He had been able to save all his spending-money and all
his outside earnings besides, this year, and the latter had been considerable.
Turning to Jimmy he inquired: "Say, old fellow, how do you feel, anyhow?
Do you think, you could manage to get down into the club-room?"
"I kind'er t'ink I could. I'm feelin' better terday
'n I have fer weeks. Kind'er seems 's if yer comin' had been better'n
medicine fer me, an' it's gone straight ter the sick place."
Turning to the others, Scott said: "Men, will you
accompany Jim and me down to the room? I have a plan in my mind for the
short time that remains before the departure of my train, and I need
the help of all of you to carry it out."
"We'll go any place wid yer," said the spokesman for
the crowd. When they had passed out of the street down into the basement
room, they found four others of the club there, and more introductions
were necessary. All told, there were now sixteen present.
"In order to perfect my plan it will be necessary
for me to go out on an errand for a few minutes," he said. "Most of you
will oblige me by remaining here till my return. I would like to take
two of the strongest with me." Every man in the room, with the exception
of Jimmy, offered to go on that invitation. After making his own selection,
the trio went over to the business street near at hand. Close to the corner
he found the place he wanted-a large store with ice-cream tubs in front.
Here he purchased two gallons of vanilla ice-cream and six dozen large,
old-fashioned, escalloped cakes. He also borrowed a large basket of plates
and spoons, by payign a deposit as a guarantee for their safe return. Then
they hastened back; the two men carrying the tub, while he remained responsible
for the safe arrival of the cakes and crockery. When they entered the
club-room there went up a shout of welcome. After a whispered consultation
among the members, a committee was sent out who soon returned with several
boxes of luscious red raspberries, lemons, and sugar, and a large block
of ice. Soon there was feasting in No. 17, and food never tasted better.
It was an hour that a majority of that crowd never forgot. After they
had done their utmost best, a quart of cream and a few berries and some
ice-cold lemonade were left. It was unanimously voted to take these to
the little, injured girl. The messengers took good care to inform the
mother concerning the kind donor. They could not refrain from administering
a mild rebuke to the lassie, which so lacerated her feelings that it is
to feared that some of the relish for the goodies must have been spoiled
At last Scott was compelled to start for the station,
accompanied by the full club as an escort of honor. As they walked he
"Fellows, I haven't said anything about it, but I
am going to preach the gospel. I thought I would tell you before I left."
"Pshaw!" said one.
"Who'd 'a' thought it?" ejaculated another.
"You're a trump!" exclaimed a third. "If there was
preachers like yer, we'd go ter church." They left their dishes as they
passed. They also went into a furnishing goods store, where Scott purchased
a large white piqué cravat to cover up the mud-stain till he could
reach home. The men insisted on paying for it, "fer the honor of Blacksly
Street," they said.
They passed some of the college students, who were
amazed at the crowd Scott had in tow and at the good comradeship that
After adieus had been said at the station-gate, Scott
heard one of the men say, "I tell yer he's a brick!" One of the shortest
avenues to the heart of the average man is the ice-cream avenue.
THE senior year opened auspiciously.
Most of our acquaintances are back. One face that was missed for a whole
year, and had been in the background for another year, was seen more frequently
on the campus. Wilding was a year behind his class. That fact, and the
persistency with which his cough pursued him, kept him from participating
to any great extent in college events. He had been friendly to Scott,
and had frequently expressed to him his deep sense of obligation. It was
his pleasure everywhere to proclaim the manly conduct of his old, enemy,
as he put it. He had never written to Mrs. Holmes his change of mind, first
because he felt ashamed to; then because of his weakness. He persuaded
himself further that the matter was not serious enough for him to worry
about. He knew also that the Holmeses did their own thinking, and he felt
confident that he had not influenced them to any great extent. He had
fully determined to do the right thing when he returned to college; but
a few days experience made him laugh at himself. He could plainly see
that Scott and Miss Holmes were on the best of terms, but that was all.
On inquiry, he was informed that they had "just naturally drifted apart,"
and so the whole year had passed without a word. This meanest work that
he had ever done he had never breathed to Scott anyway. He confessed himself
a coward. He could not own up that he had not only warned the young lady
against him, but had gone so far as to speak to her mother on the matter.
No, Scott should never know that!
Scott put all his spare time this last year on Blacksly
Street. He bought an annual ticket on the railroad, and many a Sunday
he spent in the city with his friends, as he was pleased to call the residents
of that notorious section. He was welcome, too, and it was not long before
he began to notice changes in the externals of things, and his heart was
gratified, for he never directly had spoken on the subject. He made it
a point not to preach at them nor to criticise them. Of course, they could
not avoid seeing that there were some things that he ignored.
This last year at college went like the wind, to Scott.
He scarcely saw Miss Holmes outside of class or the campus. They always
had a pleasant smile and a kind word for each other, but never a conversation.
This was largely the young man's fault. He prevented anything more than
this by the use of all his skill. The matter with him was settled forever;
he saw no hope; it would be the harder for him, he well knew, if they
ever came closer together. He permitted no dreams. Then the year was very
busy. Between his regular work and his special reading and Blacksly Street,
his time was all divided, and there was none left for other things.
Mrs. Holmes had never felt right in regard to the
Scott affair, and she often chided her daughter pleasantly, telling her
that she had been a little too sudden, or harsh, or something; "For poor
Mr. Scott has never shown his face here since our conversation. What
did you do to him? You surely did not hurt his feelings, for when we
meet him out he is kind and cordial." And Anna would always make some
gentle remark, and change the subject. Once or twice Mrs. Holmes had
invited Scott to come to the house to a meal or an evening party, but sincere
regrets had been the reply. She now determined to have several of the
students come to an evening dinner at the close of the senior vacation,
the week before Commencement. Having discovered the cordiality that existed
between Wilding and Scott since the former's return to college, she would
invite them both, and Miss Biddle should be invited too. Since the catastrophe
on Barnegat Bay and Wilding's year's absence, that young lady had changed
materially for the better. Her haughty bearing had softened into a dignified
womanliness. The year of suffering had made her mild and gentle, and her
gratitude to Scott was beautiful to behold. Her whole family appreciated
his manliness and strength, and a sincere attachment existed between them,
especially between Mr. Biddle and Scott. The latter was a welcome visitor
at the Biddle mansion, and his face was not strange in some of the gatherings
of the first circles of the town.
As might have been anticipated by those most interested,
Scott's regrets arrived most promptly, but the other invited guests were
present. After dinner, for some reason, the conversation turned to Scott
and his remarkable college career. Then one after another began to express
regret that his time was so short. "For." said one, "he has quietly and
unobtrusively impressed himself, not only in college, but in town, and
apparently on all classes, and I am told that he is a tremendous factor
in -------- city in slum work and in the problems of the tenement-house
and of the submerged classes. He is so self-depreciating that one wonders
how he has done so much. Mrs. Holmes noticed that her daughter had slipped
out of the room unexcused at the beginning of the conversation, and that
her face was ashy white.
From Scott it was easy to drift into the subject of
the Island Heights reunion and the Barnegat disaster. Wilding most naturally
was given the floor, for some had never heard his version of the story.
In a few simple words he told just how it had happened. When he came to
Scott's part in it he paused for a moment, his face flushed,and then assumed
a look of purpose, and some who saw him said he seemed inspired; there
was a flash in his eye and an attitude of self-command that was almost
startling. They said that he looked like the old Wilding who had come
on the campus four years before. Not till now had they noticed that he
had lost something. Whatever it was, it had come back, and there he sat with
all his old dignity and poise and unapproachableness. He told how Scott
had saved his life at the risk of his own, giving the minutest detail.
Then he said:
"But that is not all. I have been an enemy of Scott's
for just no reason at all. One day on the campus he prevented me from
fighting with a 'frat' man and everlastingly disgracing myself. Instead
of thanking him and falling down on my knees to him, I chose to hate him.
I tried to imagine he had injured me. It is painful for me to say all that
I did; but I am going to say it, because I owe it, not only to him, but
to myself. I have been a sneaking coward and a snake in the grass, and
I don't think that is according to my nature; but I must have it all out,
and though it may spoil the evening, yet I am convinced that this is the
time and place to do it." He paused a moment while all eyes were fixed
on him. "By mean half-truths to Miss Zane and a lot of ladies, one day,
I caused the door of society to be shut in his face. I was the cause of
his losing a grand opportunity to increase his income, when he needed money,
by lying; for I deliberately said what I did not know to be true, which
is as bad as saying what one knows not to be true. Then, besides hundreds
of little things that amounted to nothing in themselves, but that in the
aggregate must have hurt him beyond measure, I deliberately poisoned the
mind of my cousin Miss Holmes against him, and later I warned Mrs. Holmes
against him, telling her that he was not safe company for her daughter,
nor was it wise to admit him to the house. Now, though he knew that I
was his enemy without cause, and, though he knew that I was seeking to
injure him in every possible way, he never evinced any sign of retaliation
nor of resentment; and when the opportunity came he risked his life to
save mine. Nothing in the world could have saved me if he had not acted
as he did without a moment's hesitation. As a man, I want to make this
public reparation for what I have done, and, further, I want it to be
known that I believe Manly E. Scott to be not only a man, but a gentleman,
every inch of him, and that I know him to be one of the sweetest, tenderest,
strongest, noblest men in all the world!"
This manly speech was greeted with applause, and while
many did not understand how Wilding could have descended so low, yet they
gave him credit for the late atonement that he endeavored to make. Tears
were in Mrs. Holmes's eyes, for she felt that she had been too easily
influenced, and she realized that Mr. Scott's absence from her home could
all be traced to Wilding's malevolence.
That night, before retiring, Mrs. Holmes told the
whole of Wilding's story to her daughter Anna. Holding in, as best she
could till she reached the seclusion of her own room, that young lady
threw herself upon her couch and sobbed till it seemed to her that her
heart was breaking. Wilding's cruelty and the picture of Scott's manliness,
that every one saw and appreciated so fully now, was too much for her,
and thus she wept.
SCOTT's natural desire was
to get right down to his life's work, now that his foundation was well
laid; but his best friends advised differently, and his parents acquiesced.
It was agreed by all that he must study theology and travel abroad, first,
in order that he might have the grandest preparation. He yielded because
he was convinced. He knew some men who were struggling to do their work
because of inadequate preparation. He knew that, with the very best he
could get, he would not be sufficient for the business that was before
him. Hence he went to see the president of one of the leading seminaries
of his denomination. He discovered that he could make the course in two
years because of his special work in Hebrew and New Testament Greek at
college. He also found that the great metropolis near which the school
was situated would give him opportunity for study and work in his own
specialty that would be of inestimable value to him. He learned, further,
of an elective course in Scientific Sociology under a skilled professor,
which he knew would be of advantage to him-to say nothing of the opportunity
for collateral reading that the well-equipped library offered.
But, after all these arrangements had been made, he
began to develop some unpleasant physical symptoms. The strain of the
last two years was beginning to tell on him. He could not sleep at night,
and his appetite had quite deserted him. More than that, he discovered
that he had lost his power of concentration. Ordinary books were quite
beyond him now. His parents noticed the difficulty, but refrained from
speaking of it at first, for they believed it would soon wear off. But,
instead, matters grew worse. He became pale and thin, and black circles
developed under his eyes. At the earnest solicitation of his parents,
he consulted the family physician.
"That young man needs absolute change and rest," said
the man of medicine, as he looked into Manly's eyes, after having given
him a thorough scientific examination. "He does not need medicine, else
would I give it. Send him away! Where? Anywhere; far across the sea to
the ends of the world. That's the idea exactly! If you let him go to that
dusty old cemetery this fall, he'll die in spite of all I can
do, and you'll bury him in the seminary forever. Send him out
in God's free air. Take from him all responsibility. A year abroad now,
instead of after his course, will save his life as well as his usefulness."
That night there was a family consultation-father
and mother and older brother, who was at home on a visit, on the one
side, and Manly all alone on the other. The one side contended that Manly
would have to obey the doctor's commands and go. Money would not stand
in the way; for the father and brother together would send him, and it
would be a pleasure for them to do it. But the lone debater would not
yield his point.
"Why, father," said he, "you are getting old, and
it is your place to see to it that mother is provided for in the years
to come. I have been ashamed the last two years to accept your money.
My only thought was that I would soon be out of college and at work; then
I would pay you back every cent. Now this thing is prolonged, but I am
not going to be a burden to you. When I reach the Sem. I'm going to take
a student appointment and pay my way from the start, while at the same
time I gain a little experience, of which I stand very greatly in need.
And as for Ed there, I am not going to let him spend his hard-earned money
on me. He will be wanting to get married next. Then he will find that his
money is poorly invested."
Father and brother both wanted the floor at once,
but the latter yielded to the older-man.
"Why, bless you, my boy, every dollar that has been
spent on you has brought back interest a hundred per cent. Look at you,
what you are! Why, it is a great pleasure to spend money on you, and
when your health is in question I would sell everything I possess to
save you. But we can manage, can't we, mother?" and he turned an affectionate
glance to the worthy soul addressed.
"Yes, dear; it is a pleasure to save for Manly, he
is such a blessed boy; such a precious son!"
"I want a chance to speak," said Ed. "This talk about
getting married is all nonsense. I don't ever intend to get married; I
always was afraid of the girls, and if I did fall in love with one, I
would be afraid to ask her to marry me; and if I did ask her, she wouldn't
have me. Why, boy, I'm proud of you! In a sense you represent the family.
I haven't any education or any great gifts myself, but I want my share
in the investment the family affords. See here, boy, you are to go abroad,
as the doctor says, and it is to be a graduation present from me; do you
Nevertheless Manly remained firm, and went to bed
without yielding to the demands of the family. He did not want to be
stubborn; he was simply conscientious. He had been a financial burden
upon his father for many years. He wanted to relieve him. As far as his
brother Ed was concerned, it was not right that that worthy individual
should spend his hard-earned money on him when he would in all probability
need it himself. If he could make his own way abroad he would go gladly.
If he could go as a traveling tutor for some young fellow getting ready
for college, as a friend of his had done, that would be another matter.
He prayed for guidance, and he felt assured that, if it were richt for him
to travel, the way would be opened before him.
There was no return to the subject of conversation
of the evening before the next day, for all understood that the "boy's"
mind was made up.
Manly did yield on another point, and without much
persuading. The day following the conversation just reported, there came
a letter from his old college friend Pierson, inviting him to come and
spend a couple of weeks with him on the farm, or to spend the summer with
him if he were willing. Scott could not promise the latter; but he believed
a few weeks of out-of-door life, free from all responsibility and mental
strain, would put him on his feet again. So, telegraphing the hour of his
arrival, he packed up and answered the kind invitation in person. There
were good times before them in the woods and fields and on the streams,
and the very thought of the outing seemed to make him feel better.
While at home in the country, and when
free from pressing farm duties, Pierson had at his disposal a good horse
and brand-new buggy. It was a great pleasure to Scott to ride behind
this fine horse along the solid country roads, and this medicine did
not a little to help him get well. Often, in the evenings, they would
drive down to the nearby city to lectures and entertainments. One night
they went in purposely to hear the celebrated Dr. Blake, a great denominational
editor, known all over the country, not only as an editor, but as an
Scott was already feeling, as he expressed it, "as
well as ever," and, fearing that he would lose speed because of lack of
practice, he went prepared to take the lecture in full. Ordinarily this
was his custom; it increased his vocabulary, and hence his facility to
report all kinds of speakers. The Doctor was a rapid talker, and Scott
was busy enough during the whole hour.
At the close of the lecture the two young men went
forward and introduced themselves. They had both heard him before at college.
Scott was beside himself with pride to find that the great man remembered
him and was able to call him by name.
"I saw you taking the lecture, Mr. Scott. Did you
get it all?"
"Every word of it, Doctor, though you went like an
express-train at times."
"How soon could you make me a transcript of it?"
"I could do it immediately, if I had my typewriter
"For certain reasons I should like to have it as soon
as possible. You young men will not be able to reach home to-night anyway;
come to my hotel, and be my guests, while Scott does this work for me."
"Let me make a suggestion," said Pierson, speaking
for the first time. "We are expected home to-night; we drove over in a
buggy. If they do not hear the wheels drive up the roadway, they will
worry about us. I will drive home alone in order that the folks may not
be alarmed, and Scott can go with you and do your work."
After some debate, it was decided to do as Pierson had suggested.
Dr. Blake and Scott went immediately to the former's
hotel, where they settled down to business. Dr. Blake apologized: "Scott,
I do not like to keep you up late to-night, but it is my desire to send
that lecture away as I delivered it, and not as it was prepared. A large
part of it came as an inspiration while on my feet. I will send to the
office for a machine, if it will not be too hard on you."
"I can do it in short order, Doctor; my notes are
still warm. As for sleep, I would not have been in bed for a couple of
hours if I had returned with Pierson."
The machine arrived, and Scott went to work. It was one of the best
night's work he ever performed, as the sequel proved.
Dr. Blake took the transcript, and began to read it.
The further he went the more interested he seemed. At length, turning
to Scott, he said: "Remarkable! There is not a single important error in
this whole paper."
After the Doctor had prepared the manuscript for mailing,
he entered into a conversation with his companion, during which he gradually
drew the young man out. He had heard of his conversion and the unusual
record he had made at college, and was already interested in him; for,
quite unknown to Scott, his college story was widely commented on among
families interested in Darnforth. He was a hero all unconscious of his
heroism, little dreaming that mothers, in bidding hopeful sons farewell
for their college course, would say, "I hope you will be as good and manly
as that Mr. Scott!" During the course of this conversation it came out
most naturally that Scott had been ordered abroad by his physician, and
that he had refused to permit his old father and his hard-working brother
to send him.
"If I could find some rich young fellow to tutor through
Europe, I would go in a minute, for thus I could pay my own way; but I
will not take money from father longer than I can help it. He is not rich,
and he may be compelled to cease his labors any day." The conversation
gradually drifted into other channels, and finally they sought their respective
rooms. Scott refused to take remuneration for his evening's work, on
the ground that he had taken the lecture for his own purpose, and that
the transcript was such a small matter that the pleasure of being with
the Doctor and partaking of his hospitality was more than compensation.
Scott's short vacation was
a thing of the past, and he was at home again, much refreshed as a result
of his sojourn in the country; and yet he was far from his normal condition.
He had enjoyed the best of health since his freshman year at college,
and the thought of entering the special service of the Lord broken in body
was not inspiring.
One morning he came into the breakfast-room, and as
he was taking his place at the table, he spied a letter on his plate.
It proved to be from Dr. Blake. It was brief and business-like. This is
"I am about to go abroad for literary purposes. I
will be absent about ten months. I need a stenographer-secretary of some
literary attainments as a helper. Five or six men have been recommended
to me. The claims and abilities of each I have carefully examined, but
before communicating with any one of them I offer you the position." Then
followed a word of praise for the excellence of his work, and a contract
in duplicate, defining terms, requirements, etc. Reply was to be made
at once, as they were to sail in about two weeks.
There was very little delay in getting off a letter
of acceptance. First of all, his expenses were to be met in full; then
there was to be a liberal compensation for work; and, third, the hours
of labor were to be such that he could have the benefit of his travels.
Mr. and Mrs. Scott felt that God was on their side, and had answered
their prayers. Ed, the good big brother, insisted on fitting him out
for the trip as only a tailor could, and would not take "no" for an answer.
This magnanimous fellow also provided a special camera for the traveler,
knowing his delight in things photographic. And so it happened that,
early in August, Dr. Blake and Manly Scott sailed away from New York for
the great world beyond the sea.
AFTER getting out of sight
of Sandy Hook Lighthouse, Scott went down into the saloon to see if there
were any mail; for several of his friends had promised to write to him
so that their letters might be delivered on the ship the day of its departure.
This was to keep him from being homesick while at sea. He found that his
friends had been in collusion, at least some of them, for one envelope
was marked in large letters, "First day," and another "Second day," and
so on. His parents and brother Ed, of course, were not in this scheme;
but Moon and Kenneth and Andrews and Chubb and Wilding and two or three
of the lady members of his class, in a joint-letter, had arranged it so
for his pleasure. There was a letter from Pierson also, that was not marked.
Finding his steamer-chair on the deck, and putting it in a secluded place,
he began to read the mail that had not been designated to a certain day.
He read the farewells and God-speeds of his parents and brother, and
then opened Pierson's epistle.
"My dear old fellow," it read, "I am not going to
bind my letter down to rules like some of them, because it is of too
much importance. I want you to know what I have recently learned from
Miss Bruce, and I want you to know it at once, because a part of your
pleasure on shipboard will depend upon it. The Holmes family are booked
for your steamer, and they will be your traveling companions across the
briny. I know that you and Miss Holmes have not been intimate, as you
once were; but I feel confident, from your actions when you are together,
that there is nothing unpleasant between you, and therefore I congratulate
you that you are to have such pleasant sailing companions." The rest
of the letter lost interest. The Holmeses were on the same ship! His
heart sank within him. That delightful period to which he had been looking
forward-the days at sea-was now to be a season of restraint, accompanied
each day by the renewal of pangs that would torment.
Finding Dr. Blake in his state-room surrounded by
his last mail, Scott broke the news to him. The Doctor was delighted,
for Mr. Holmes and himself had been friends for many years, and he had
frequently been a guest of that delightful family. Nothing would suit
him but an immediate search for his friends. They scanned the decks and
the saloons; at luncheon they surveyed the tables; they consulted the
passenger-list, but all in vain; there was no trace of the Holmeses. Their
first conclusion was that one of the party might be sick. But at length,
consulting the purser, they discovered that the Holmeses had changed their
plans a few days prior to sailing, and had traded their cabins for ones
in the ship that sailed just one week later. Scott breathed easier.
The voyage across the Atlantic was even more delightful
than Scott had anticipated. He did not lose a meal on account of sickness,
doing full justice, each day, to all that the company provided. The Doctor
and himself would walk miles on the hurricane deck, and play shuffle-board
by the hour for the sake of exercise, the lack of which is often the cause
of so much distress to inexperienced travelers. The sea-breeze, fresh
from the storehouse of nature, was a tonic that put the edge on his appetite,
while it brought the color to his cheeks. Before he left the ship at
Liverpool, he declared that he was as well as he had ever been in his
They met many pleasant people among the ship's company,
and the time afloat was all too brief, so that they regretted that theirs
was not a ten-day boat.
THE Holmeses were old travelers.
They had been abroad so many times that they thought as little of crossing
the ocean as some do of crossing the river ferry. It had not been in their
plans to go abroad this summer; they had made arrangements in another
direction. But because of some little circumstance they found themselves
in the middle of summer with their plans all wrecked. There was much concealed
disappointment. One day as mother and daughter were endeavoring to console
themselves by picturing anew the beauties of home, the father came into
their presence with a radiant smile on his face and a yellow paper in his
"Can you be ready to sail one week from today? I have
the message here that seals a contract for our passage on the 'Umbria,'
sailing next Saturday."
There was an exclamation of joy from the younger woman,
and a smile of satisfaction from the mother, in response.
"You have given us little time to prepare," were the
spoken words of the madame, but her tones and inflections were all of
acquiescence. "Have you made your plans? Where will we go?"
"No, we will go without plans for once. It is late,
and I thought that the main thing was the ocean voyage. This little girl,"
pinching the cheek of his daughter as he spoke, "has not seemed quite
herself for a long time. I have not spoken about it, for I have hoped it
would pass away. But she appears no better. I want to see the roses come
"Yes, I have been worrying about her myself."
"Well, the ocean trip will be the main t hing then.
We will not undertake much sight-seeing this year, since next year is
our regular season abroad, nor will it be necessary to stay long. My only
plan was to get up into Scotland, and roam about a little, and settle
wherever we found a pleasing spot. But we will not take with us the tourist's
spirit at all. Can you get ready on such short notice?"
"I can if Anna can," said the mother, and as the daughter
gave a reassuring shake of the head, she continued: "You know that I do
not believe in traveling as so many people do in these days. I do not
believe in many trunks and great outfits. It is much pleasanter and more
profitable to go light-handed, and buy the simple changes that are needed
as you go."
"I know that you are a sensible traveler, my dear,
and that is the reason it gives me so much pleasure to go often with you.
If you were like some women I have met, one voyage would have taught me
my lesson, and we would have gone never again."
Miss Holmes had already left the apartment to begin
her preparations, and incidentally to tell the good news to some of her
most intimate friends. Already her eyes were brighter and her step sprightlier,
for her mind had something delightful to anticipate. At the dressmaker's
she received discouraging news. On her way home she called at Miss Bruce's
for a moment to tell her of the delightful prospect and, at the same time,
of her perplexity.
"I rejoice with you, Anna dear. You need the trip,
and I know it will do you good. Never mind the old dressmaker. Get it
ready made in New York; our old traveling suit is good enough anyway."
There was some discussion on fine technical points in which many readers
would not be interested. "O, by the way," continued Miss Bruce, "on what
ship did I understand you were to sail? On the 'Umbria?' That is good!
I have the best of news to tell you. It will be so nice for you to have
a member of your class as a shipmate. You can help each other so much
to pass the time."
"What do you mean? You quite excite me."
"Nothing simpler. I know that you were not intimate
the last two years; but any one could see that there was nothing unpleasant
between you by the way you behaved when you were thrown together. Then,
he is such a gentleman that I know you will be good to him for six or
seven days. O, I forgot. A letter from Mr. Pierson this morning tells me
that Mr. Scott sails for Liverpool next Saturday on the 'Umbria.' So, there!"
Press of business would not permit Miss Holmes to
tarry longer. By the time she reached home her face was very long and
her dressmaker's trouble seemed fifty per cent greater than before. Her
mother, too, had been having unexpected difficulties of her own. As a
result of the feminine consultation that followed, and of the supplications
to the head of the family, more telegrams passed between Darnforth and
New York, and at last Mr. Holmes announced that they were to have passage
on the "Servia," leaving one week later, which meant seven precious days
more for preparation.
Miss Holmes was afraid to go on the ship with Scott,
for she knew it would mean only a renewal of the old struggle through
which she had so frequently passed, and she did not feel strong enough
physically to endure it. She had become accustomed to the daily meetings
on the campus and in the class; that was impersonal; but seven days in
the narrow confines of a steamer's decks was different: being friends,
there could be no excuse for keeping apart; nevertheless she did not realize
the true reason when she insisted on a postponement of their sailing date.
The difficulty of getting ready in time had so magnified itself after her
conversation with Miss Bruce that it now appeared impossible.
As soon as Miss Holmes had left her friend's home,
the latter sat down to her desk and answered Pierson's letter, informing
him that Miss Holmes was to sail on the same ship with Scott, and urging
him to acquaint that gentleman with the happy fact. Hence the false impression.
DR. BLAKE and his companion
visited all the places of renown between Liverpool and London, beginning
at Chester, with its ancient walls and storied minster. They ran over
to Hawarden, for the good Doctor had a letter of introduction to Mr. Gladstone.
They found the great man at home. It was worth the trip across the sea
to look into his eyes, to listen to his voice, to grasp him by the hand.
After Hawarden they dropped off at Kenilworth, and thence they journeyed
to Stratford-on-Avon, where they rested several days in the cleanest,
daintiest little hotel, directly opposite the George W. Childs Memorial
Fountain, the melodious chimes of whose clock, as they divided the hours
into quarters, wooed them to dreamland each night. At Stratford, Scott
was able to get a series of fine views, including Shakespeare's birthplace,
the fountain, Anne Hathaway's cottage, the Memorial Theater, and the church.
One view of the latter was of special interest; it was taken from a distance
through the arch in the Memorial Theater and framed thereby. Oxford was
their last stopping-place before reaching London.
In London, from a center upon Great Russell Street,
near the British Museum, at a delightful family hotel, they made radiations
in every direction. They were not pressed for time, and on that account
their enjoyment was the greater. The Doctor would usually dictate part
of the morning, the other part of which Scott would occupy in making his
transcripts, on the compact little writing-machine that formed a part
of their luggage. After an early luncheon they would start out on their
excursions, often not returning till late in the evening. After two weeks
spent thus, the following conversation took place one morning:
"I think I shall be compelled to dismiss you, Scott,"
was the startling declaration made.
"Any time, Doctor. You know I have my return certificate.
But what will you do without me? Who'll waken you in the morning, and
who'll remind you of the things you forget?"
"I know that it will be difficult; but I have nerved
myself up to it, and I think now that I shall be able to survive, especially
since it will be for a brief period. My purpose is not to dismiss you,
but to suspend you for two weeks. I have promised to spend a fortnight
with an old friend of mine, an English clergyman. It will be pleasant
for me, because I intend to take an absolute rest, and bury myself with
him in his delightful retreat. It will be my vacation. But I have been
worried about you. That is not the kind of rest you need. I think if you
scour around the kingdom you will have all the rest your nature demands
at this time. My plans do not take me through the north of England or Scotland
at all this trip. Why not run around the island, taking in a few of the
interesting things en route? You can meet me at the Midland Grand
two weeks from Saturday. Your salary will continue, but not your expenses.
Tell me honestly what you think."
"Since you will be so comfortable and happy resting
with your old friend, I will not mind trying my wings a little. Yes,
if you want to be rid of me, I am not the one to force my company."
Hence it was agreed that he should go north on the
The red-covered guide-book
was in demand that day, and Scott was not a little excited at the prospect
before him. His carryall was packed with the necessities, while the bulk
of his luggage was left at the hotel; his booking arrangements had all
been attended to, and consequently, on the morrow there was nothing to
do but catch the early train for Cambridge. After doing that city tourist's
fashion, he hastened to Ely, fifteen miles distant, where, according to
his omniscient book, the cathedral was "one of the very largest and most
imposing, one of the most individual, and distinctly the most varied in
England." It was his purpose to see some of the most famous cathedrals
and study them, so that, at least, he could talk intelligently upon them.
The next train to Peterborough carried him to the site of "one of the
most important Norman churches left in England."
But as it is not the design of these chapters to give
a history of the travels of Manly E. Scott, but rather to show by what
stages he reached a certain point, we will not follow his every step.
On Saturday night, late, we find him "tired to death" at York. Here, having
found the hostelry to which he had been directed, he sought his couch,
where slumber held him till nearly noon on the Sabbath, much to his chagrin.
But he was ready for the afternoon service at the great York minster,
where the singing of the choir put him into a heavenly frame of mind.
After an early evening meal he journeyed forth upon
the famous walls of the city. From this point of vantage he at length
looked down upon a young street-preacher with an accordion, vainly endeavoring
to attract a crowd. After haranguing the multitudes as they passed, in
a loud voice, he finally started across the street, inviting them all
to follow him to the mission hall, where Divine service was about to be
held. But when, on looking back, he saw only one poor little boy following
him, he was so indignant that he turned upon the rabble and in stentorian
tones cried out: "If you don't come with me to the -------- mission-rooms,
you will all be cast into hell!" But the throng of Sunday promenaders seemed
not to be fearful of the woes of the hereafter, and continued calmly on.
Scott said to himself, as he resumed his journey, "That is an excellent
illustration of the way not to do it."
Later he passed a little church where worship was
being conducted. Hearing the music, he turned and entered, and he listened
to a good sermon by a young man, in simple, straightforward style. At
the close of this service it was still beautifully light, and clear. While
he was debating what he should do next he caught the sound of distant
singing. Looking in the direction whence the music came, he saw, far down
the street, a throng of men, women, and children, filling the street from
curb to curb, led by one who had the appearance of a priest. This army
was singing hymns as it marched. Not being accustomed to such sights, he
asked a passer what it meant. "O, they are the Wesleyans," was the reply;
"they are going out to Saint John's Field for evening worship." As the
procession came abreast of him, he fell in, and ever as they advanced
they sang; the throng constantly increasing by accretion, till it seemed to
him that there must be thousands of them. His heart swelled within him
as they sang solemnly but melodiously and with tremendous volume:
"Like a mighty army
Moves the Church of God;
Brothers, we are treading
Where the saints have trod;
We are not divided,
All one body we,
One in faith and doctrine,
One in charity."
After the service in the open
air, which consisted of prayer and song and short talks by able men, many
of whom were laymen, he was willing to seek his abiding-place for the
night. He could not help comparing the two kinds of street efforts that
he had witnessed, to the disparagement of the first, and, of course, he
did not fail to catch his lesson for his own work.
Starting early Monday morning his itinerary lay through
Durham, Newcastle, and Melrose. He arrived at the last-named place on
Tuesday night, a few hours more than a week since he had begun his solitary
travels, but it seemed to him more like a month. He easily found his modest
but clean little hotel near the station, where he had been directed to
stop. This was much humbler than the great hotels marked with double stars
in the guide-book, but it was also more moderate in terms, and the bed
was soft and clean.
Early next morning, with his stick and a luncheon,
purchased at a store, of cheese and crackers and a cake of sweet chocolate,
he started for Abbotsford; for he had settled his hotel bill and had left
his luggage at the station. The book said the distance was two and three-quarter
miles, but he soon learned they were English miles, which appear about
twice the length of their cousins across the sea. The day was perfect;
the atmosphere was tinted in that impossible way that often startles
us in paintings of Scottish landscapes. Near at hand all was bright and
clear; off at a distance towards the hills there was an unmistakable bluish
At last he reached the imposing pile that had caused
the Great Unknown so much trouble. Here he was compelled to wait in a
little anteroom for the guide to return with a party which he was now conducting
through the building. Passing outside he made an "exposure" for future
use, and then returned to the anteroom, where he passed his time studying
the tourists who were entering in groups.
AT this time the "Umbria"
represented the very best type of ship that the Cunarders had yet produced.
For that reason, when Mr. Holmes decided to go abroad, he preferred to
go on the "Umbria," with only seven days to prepare, than on the "Servia,"
with two weeks, though he knew that it would test the ability of his ladies
to get ready on such short notice. That one week's delay meant a slower
passage, but in an old, safe, and comfortable boat. Eight days and a
half after embarking they were safely deposited on the landing-stage at
Liverpool in the hands of the custom officials.
Mr. Holmes had no intention of going to London, nor
of revisiting any of the places with which they were familiar. Consequently,
after a day's rest, they took train for Furness Abbey, by way of Preston,
Lancaster, and Carnforth. Furness Abbey is one of the most picturesque
ruins in England. In the first place, they are very extensive; then the
chapter-houses and the triplet of grand Norman arches at the entrance
to the cloisters are extremely fine. This place was visited for another
reason: it is practically the base from which a tour of the English lakes
should take its start. Mr. Holmes and his family had never been in the
lake regions of England or Scotland. This one thing they had agreed upon :
a tour of these lakes, with the attendant delights of English coaching,
amid the most luxuriant wealth of nature's own unaided scenery. So for
a week they reveled in the wildly beautiful region. They traversed Windermere,
Grasmere, and Ullswater, the locality made famous by the poet Wordsworth,
who loved it so well that he spent eight years of his life here, and his
clay will tarry in the churchyard at Grasmere till the resurrection morn.
Nearly every spot in the neighborhood of these lakes is celebrated in his
poetry. Matthew Arnold says:
"Keep fresh the grass upon his grave,
O Rotha, with thy living wave;
Sing him thy best, for few or none
Hear thy voice right, now he is gone."
Leaving this beautiful section
at Penrith, they journeyed by way of Carlisle to Glasgow, from which point
they were to start on their tour of the Scottish lakes. Before the close
of another week they crossed the Trosachs, and arrived at Stirling. At
Inversnaid, on Loch Lomond, they left the steamer and took a skiff to
Rob Roy's cave, where they picnicked together. Towards evening they crossed
the footbridge over the waterfall formed by the river Arklet, to the
scene of Wordsworth's "Highland Girl." On Loch Katrine they sailed by
"So close with copsewood bound,
Nor track nor pathway might declare
That human foot frequented there."
They were disappointed in the "Silver Strand,"
which has been nearly covered over by the water, which has changed its
level as a result of the new Glasgow waterworks. While crossing the Trosachs,
they recalled the Lady of the Lake, when the hotly pursued stag
"In the deep Trosachs' wildest nook
His solitary refuge took,"
and Fitz-James's gallant steed "stumbled exhausted
in the rugged dell."
Their plan was now to seek some restful place, and
settle down for the remainder of their stay abroad. They decided to go
straight to Lucerne, where they knew a pension kept by an old lady. The
building was of stone, with walls two feet thick, and it stood upon the
hillside and was always cool. Besides, there was no more restful spot
than Lucerne, by the side of the blue lake and in full view of the distant
Alps. So they started south, crossing the celebrated Forth bridge to Edinburgh.
Before going to the booking office to secure his transportation, Mr. Holmes
said to his little party:
"There is just one place I should like to visit en
route, and that is Melrose, including the Abbey, Abbotsford, and
Dryburgh Abbey. What
do you say?"
"We might just as well, since it is on our way south,"
said Mrs. Holmes. And so it was arranged.
The next day found them resting peacefully at the
Abbey Hotel, nor did they regret that they had come. In the twilight
they visited the famous ruins. After a sweet night of perfect slumber,
they were ready enough to take a carriage for Abbotsford, which was of
interest to them, not only because it had been the home of Sir Walter
Scott, but because Washington Irving had also whetted their appetites
for it by telling its stories and legends.
The Holmeses had been quite wrought up before their
departure that morning by meeting in the breakfast-room a party into
whose society they had been thrown on shipboard, and of whom they had
grown, in the short time, to be very fond. The meeting was entirely unexpected,
for the Holmeses supposed these friends to be far out on the Continent
by this time. After greetings and mutual explanations, it was agreed
to go to Abbotsford together; hence two carriages were filled instead
of one, and they started out in the merriest mood.
Scott was waiting in the anteroom
of what he told himself was the home of his illustrious ancestor. Presently
a party of ladies with a chaperone entered. They were unmistakably American,
they were so full of life and assurance. One of the younger ones carried
a camera, and almost before he knew it, by the freemasonry of photography,
Scott found himself conversing with her on things photographic; plates
and films; exposures and overexposures; successes and failures. Gradually
they were drawn into other subjects, and at last into that of ships.
"We came over on the 'Servia,' " said the maiden;
"it is slow, but then it happened to be the boat that was sailing when
we were ready; moreover, it is safe and comfortable."
"Why, some friends of mine were to have sailed by
that ship. They failed to make the 'Umbria,' on which I embarked. I wonder
if you met them."
"The name, if you please."
Then there arose a perfect American girl shout, for
gradually all had taken an interest in the dialogue. "Only think, girls,
he knows the Holmeses." Then turning to Scott, she said: "We are the
Folgers, from California. We met the Holmeses on shipboard and enjoyed
their society. Miss Holmes is a queen. We left them at Liverpool, for
they were traveling without definite plans except that they were northward
bound. On the other hand, we were going to London with the fixed purpose
of crossing the channel. But we changed our minds, and decided to do
old England first, and this morning whom should we see coming into the
breakfast-room but the Holmeses? They are at the Abbey Hotel, or rather
they were; for I think they must be here by this time, for we all started
out together. What remarkable coincidences!"
"Excuse me," said Scott rather huskily as he started
for the door, he scarcely knew why. He was simply following a vague suggestion
to run away. But at the door he ran into the Holmeses, who were just entering.
The surprise of the latter was so great that there was little room for
personal feelings, and the time was completely filled with mutual explanations.
Mr. Holmes was delighted; for, in spite of all circumstances, he had
grown to admire Scott as his character became known, and especially after
the Barnegat disaster and after Wilding's confession. He often spoke
of him as "one of those manly fellows on whom one can always depend to
do the right thing." In his heart he felt that somehow they had done some
kind of injustice to the young man. His daughter, perhaps, had been a
little too exact as a result of the Wilding warning, now so far back.
He felt as if, in some way, he himself must make amends for something.
This was a good opportunity. Hence he took the young man under his personal
charge. He himself was an ardent amateur photographer, and he desired
to learn of the results Scott had obtained. Scott was enthusiastic concerning
his plan of carrying developing-powders and developing at night in his
room, using glass plates instead of films, thus constantly knowing what
he had and what he had not. Two trays were all he carried and a tiny folding
Scott was duly presented to the Folgers before they
started through the house. It was a delightful party, quick and mirthful
and intelligent. Scott and Miss Holmes had little to say to each other
because of lack of opportunity, so rapid was the crossfire of conversation
on all sides.
Scott was about to say adieu to the party and begin
his lonely walk back, when Mr. Holmes said: "Come, come, Mr. Scott, pedestrianism
is all right when you are alone; but now that Providence has thrown old
friends together, you must not fly in the face of it. You are my guest.
There is ample room in the carriage. No; you simply must. Isn't that so,
girls?" he inquired, turning to his wife and daughter, whom he loved thus
to place together on the same level.
"Yes, Mr. Scott, you must come with us now. This coincidence
is too remarkable, and we are too old friends to separate in a moment."
Mrs. Holmes's conscience had troubled her too.
"Yes, Scott, you are my guest while you remain in
Melrose. I claim you by the right of discovery," was Mr. Holmes's ultimatum.
So, not without misgivings and yet not without a sense
of pleasure, Scott found himself in the midst of this family of friends.
The father was like a boy. On learning that his guest was to depart on
the morrow, he insisted that, for the sake of being together, they go
to Dryburgh Abbey that same afternoon after luncheon, and turning to the
driver, without giving opportunity for a negative vote, he engaged him
to take them to the other ruin. After luncheon at the hotel and a few minutes
of rest, they were again on the road. At Dryburgh they found the Folgers
ahead of them, though not by accident this time.
The party met again in the evening in the Melrose
Abbey ruins. They tarried till the moon came up and softened all the
harsh lines by her silvery light. Before leaving the ruin, Mr. Holmes
informed the party that they were all expected to be in a certain parlor
at nine o'clock, as his guests.
At the appointed hour they were all present in the
beautiful little room. Shortly afterward a door was opened at one end,
and they were invited into another room, where a collation was spread,
and thither they were ushered by the happy host, who was almost beside
himself with joy.
After the banquet the host acted as toastmaker, and
many witty speeches were delivered. Scott was called upon to respond
to the toast, "Coincidences." He was perfectly happy in his manner, which
was without self-consciousness.
"THOSE who travel abroad,"
said Scott, after an appropriate address to the toastmaster, "almost invariably
return with stories of remarkable coincidences. I have heard of enemies
who fell on each other's necks in reconciliation. I have heard of dwellers
in the same town, who were not acquainted at home, meeting in some foreign
city as if they were lifelong friends. I wondered, when I left my home,
if such a coincidence would be vouchsafed to me. I was skeptical. I see
now that I had little faith, for I can recount a coincidence that will
be unsurpassed by any, save that to this there were no unpleasant antecedents.
["I am not so sure of that," mused Miss Holmes.] If we had made an
appointment to meet at a certain day and hour at Abbotsford, we could not
have kept the engagement better. It was an appointment made in the unseen
world towards which we were all hurrying, each without thought of the
wonderful outcome. Verily, it is a little world in which we constantly
cross and recross each other's tracks.
"Speaking of coincidences reminds me of one familiar
to me. In a little town near my home lived 'Squire Bill.' This was not
his true cognomen; but it was sufficient, for it represented him. 'Squire'
signified nothing more than the austerity and the importance of the man,
while 'Bill' was the blunt and conventional corruption for William; for,
about fifty-five years back, when the gentleman was a little, scrawny
infant of wonderful lung power, but otherwise with apparently no more than
two days of life in him, he had been hurriedly christened, William Horatio
"The 'Squire' was not living alone; for, besides himself
and 'mother,' there were a lot of little Hills of all ages and sizes,
whom the 'Squire' himself familiarly called 'The Hillocks.' In many respects
the family was a happy one, and it often seemed to the country parson,
a personal friend of mine, that the little folk were endeavoring to obey
the psalmist's injunction to 'Let the little Hills rejoice!' But in this
regard the children must have taken after their mother, for there was
a twist in the 'Squire's' nature that appeared in his long, lean body,
and even in his face; for his very smile was knotty and crooked, and his
counte nance at repose was so distorted, as far as at least one feature
was concerned, that some of the ill-mannered boys, wisely behind his back,
called him'Jug Nose.' This twist in his nature must have been manifest
to himself; for it was evident that he did not wish it to appear in the
little ones, and there were certain methods of his own by mean's of which
he undertook to eliminate any such unfortunate tendency in them. If the
reports of the neighbors could be relied upon, and if sundry shrill sounds
that daily emanated from the parental roof tree signified anything, the
little Hills did not ever rejoice and clap their hands when papa Hill was
about and clapped his.
"The 'Squire' was a prominent member of the country
'meeting-house.' But he did not contribute much to the support of the
young preachers the Methodist Conference sent to that place from time
to time, 'To break them in,' as 'Squire' Bill himself grimly put it;
for when the apostle to that village said what he should not say, in the
'Squire's' opinion, or refrained from saying what that gentleman deemed
necessary, then there was no 'quarterage' forthcoming.
"In his early years 'Squire' Bill had been a farmer,
then he became a schoolteacher for a time. The little town in which he
was now living had recently commenced 'to look up.' It had been connected
with the adjacent city by an electric-car line; city people were moving
out, new houses were being built, and among other new things was a large,
modern, brick schoolhouse. One of the many ambitious ideas that came into
being under 'Squire' Bill's dilapidated hat was a scheme to be made principal
of the new school. Why not? Had he not all of the qualifications? He
was a citizen of the place, and besides, from a numerical standpoint at
least, his family had long helped to make the village school successful.
But for some unaccountable reason the School Board did not entertain his
generous proposition, but, instead, a bright young fellow by the name
of La Rose was called, and soon after duly installed. Then at once all
the pent-up lava of wrath burst forth from the 'Squire,' not upon the
school authorities, but upon the devoted head of the young 'sprig' with
his 'dudish, newfangled notions.' Unfortunately, when La Rose had been
little more than a boy, in another town, the 'Squire' had been quite friendly
with him, and had once proclaimed, in a fit of prophetic generosity,
that 'La Rose had a future, before him.'
"One day the irate 'Squire' met the young preacher
(my friend) on the street, and gave him the following startling information:
" 'I've taken all my children from the school; can't
permit them to be under a master with such a temper (La Rose was already
noted as a disciplinarian). Besides, I am afraid of his influence. Do
you know (confidingly) that this man's father was a low drunkard and notorious
gambler, and was killed over a game of cards?' All this was in a measure
true, but it was likewise true that the boy, disgusted with his father's
habits, and because of a promise given to his mother on her deathbed,
broke away from these horrid surroundings, and literally made himself,
working his way through school and college, and polishing himself as well
as he could by rubbing up against the best of people.
"But all this part of the truth the 'Squire' kept
to himself. At length he said: 'Well, I hope he'll not join our meetin'-house,
that's all I've got to say. I'll not stay if he does, that's certain.'
" 'Come now, "Squire," ' interrupted the minister,
'you do not mean that. I was just going to tell you that I have the professor's
letter in my pocket. He's a grand singer, and, besides, he's great on
giving, has got the Bible idea of tithing.'
" 'Umph! Tithing! Why, that's Old Testament. In the
New Testament you give as the Lord prospers you. Give me my letter and
all my family's.-No, I'll take that back. I ain't goin' to let that young
dancin'-master drive me out of my church home. I was here first, and here
I'll stay; but I'll tell you, dominie, I'll make it hot for him!'
"Then followed months of unpleasantness. Sides were
taken in the Church and town.
"But the 'Squire' overreached himself, and at last
was taken down with a fever that brought him near death's door. During
his long sickness no one was permitted to see him. No one actually wanted
him to die, but what sweet peace the community enjoyed during his illness!
And then, during his convalescence, when it was one day reported that
he had been ordered away from home not to return for a long period, what
actual joy was felt!
"The school year was drawing to a close, and it was
noticed that Professor La Rose was not well. He was pale and tired-looking.
The year had been a great strain on him. At the close of Commencement
he said farewell to his most intimate friends, announcing to them that
he was going abroad. His wife insisted on sending him from a little fund
of her own which she was unwilling to use for herself too. Besides, her
parents, were anxious to have her spend the summer with them in the country.
The doctor said that there would be nothing like a trip abroad for the
"After two months of travel, La Rose arrived one morning
at Heidelberg. He was sitting upon the edge of the top of the 'gunpowder
tower,' writing a note to his wife on a pad that he always car ried with
him, when he was suddenly attracted by a cry and then a shriek. He was
all alone; hence he rushed towards the place whence the shriek came. Looking
over the edge of the tower, he saw a man hanging by the foot, head downward.
Summoning all his skill and strength, by the use of his camera-strap
and overcoat he at length pulled the man to the top. He had suffered
no harm with the exception of a cut on the forehead and a sprained ankle.
"Two men stood upon the stones facing one another.
Over the countenance of one was passing that which was but the sign of
a terrific struggle within. It would have taken an expert in physiognomy
to interpret the different emotions, the shadows of which passed over
that face. Finally, with a mighty effort, the rescued said:
" 'La Rose, did you know it was I?'
" 'Yes, "Squire," I would have known your voice anywhere
in the world, and then my eyes confirmed the report of my ears immediately.'
" 'And you saved my life!' The 'Squire' spoke the
last with a sob, and in a moment his arms were about the professor's
neck and the floodgates were opened. It was as if the tears of a lifetime
had been dammed up, only to break loose all at once now. La Rose said
but little, and while he waited his heart was beating furiously with joy
"Finally the 'Squire' became calm enough to say: 'La
Rose, I saw you sitting there all unconscious of my presence, and I thought
how easy it would be to push you over and no one would ever know it. No,
I did not want to murder you, but I wanted a good chance to hate you
unseen, and it was while I was endeavoring to find a hiding-place behind
those rocks that I lost my balance. I was utterly helpless, and must
have soon fallen to death had you not come to my rescue. O, I had murder
in my heart! La Rose, can you ever forgive me for this and all the past?'
"Somewhere in the castle the professor found one of
those fancy post-cards that tourists often buy and mail as mementos to
the friends at home. On the one side was the place for a stamp, the word
'Postkarte,' and, following
this, blank lines for the address. Half of the other side was occupied
by a picture of the great 'tun' down in the cellar of the schloss, with
the inscription: 'Das grosse Fass.' Just below in a fancy scroll was
'Alt Heidelberg du Feine,
Du Stadt an Ehren reich,
Am Neckar und am Rheine,
Kein' andre kimmt dir gleich.'
And under this he wrote these simple words:
" ' DEAR WIFE,-Am well.
Having a glorious time. Read up about Heidelberg. "Squire" Bill and I
are now traveling together, and will return on same steamer, September
" ' MARTIN LA ROSE.'
"That postal-card is now in
my possession, and I have been instructed to make a magazine article around
it. I think I shall weave one now along with our coincidence."
"It would take wonderfully," said one of the Folgers, "if you could
only attach a romantic termination."
Poor Scott passed a restless
night. Only once had he been thrown with Miss Holmes, and then she started
to say something in such a low tone that he could not make it out, and
some one interrupted immediately. He had thrown himself into the spirit
of the occasion in order that he might forget himself, and he had succeeded
admirably. But now he suffered the consequences.
Miss Holmes tossed all night
likewise, and the next morning she appeared so worn out that her parents
agreed that they had been unwise the day before, and that now they must
rest the whole day. After the first shock of the unexpected meeting of
the day before, there came to Miss Holmes a very bold suggestion, so bold
that it almost took her breath away. She had read of instances somewhat
similar to her own where misunderstandings had kept lovers apart, in which,
by an adroit putting of a question or by some neat little ruse on the
part of the maiden, the man was given to see the true situation. Yes, she
would engage Mr. Scott in a conversation, and somehow she would let him
know her side of the case. It was only right and fair. But she was never
so completely at a loss for words in her life. When she did endeavor to
speak, her tongue refused to act. She was compelled to give up her plan.
Then she could not quite understand his behavior. He scarcely looked at
her at all. He had himself under such perfect control that he entered into
the light talk with the Folgers in a manner that made her wonder if he
had changed. Then his speech of the night before was delivered with such
perfect freedom and lack of self-consciousness, and his references to
"antecedents" and "romantic terminations" seemed to be entirely without
thought of her. He must have conquered himself rapidly! And thus they
We might now leave them for
a few years if it were not for the obligation a narrator feels not to
leave his readers in the dark as to the movernents of his characters. In
a measure, Scott, traced backward the steps of the Holmeses, only he made
no tarrying. At the appointed time he met Dr. Blake at the Midland Grand.
They spent the early fall in the Netherlands and Germany,
coming down to Paris, and then into Spain, as the winter approached. They
also visited Italy during the winter. Thence they departed on the most
important part of their journey, at least in the work of the Doctor and
also for the future of his companion-Egypt and Palestine. This journey
has no reason for a place in the narrative; but in his after life Scott
knew that it had a place in his character. A part of the time it seemed
to him that he was following in the footsteps of Jesus, as he walked the
sands of Galilee or trod the stones of the Holy City.
Scott found himself briskly walking from the station
to his father's house, a trifle over ten months from the day he had set
sail from his native country. He was now a brown, sturdy, healthy-looking
specimen of humanity. There could be no question as to the physical result
of the journey. In other directions he knew that he was broader and better
than he had ever been before, and more grandly fitted for his work. In
all the great cities he visited he had studied the slums and slum work.
Special privileges had been accorded him. In London he had been introduced
to Hugh Price Hughes, and had studied the Great West London Mission from
the enthusiastic standpoint of the leader. He had been the recipient of
similar privileges in Paris and throughout the Continent.
In addition to health he brought home with him, virtually,
his whole salary, for outside of his incidentals and a few presents his
trip had cost him nothing. This also had its effect upon his future.
The Holmeses tarried but a
few days for rest at Melrose, and then departed at once for Lucerne. Here
they remained till sailing time. Miss Holmes did not enjoy her trip abroad
as she had hoped. Her parents had not failed to notice that she was quiet
and self-centered, when, as a rule, she was full of life and self-forgetfulness.
She did not think it fair to worry her mother with her trouble, since
she considered it hopeless. She fought her feelings bravely; would not
yield to the temptation not to eat, insisted on going to see all there
was to be seen, and lived out of doors as much as possible. It was a womanly
struggle, and she conquered. Before they left Lucerne her parents had
the extreme joy of seeing the roses return to her cheeks and the light
into her eyes. They breathed a sigh of relief, and when at last they sailed
for home they both believed that that summer abroad had saved their daughter's
life. They believed she had been on the verge of a "decline," and that
they had gone away "in the nick of time." How little, did they dream that
the trouble was superinduced by the coincidence at the home of Sir Walter
THE years at theological seminary
are as full of interest in their way as were those at college, and yet
they are not a part of the story. We would not feel strange within the
campus gates, for, at the time Scott matriculated, there were eleven men
from Darnforth within those sacred confines.
Scott discovered two great advantages here that have
already been mentioned: his ability to graduate in two years, because
of his full course in Hebrew and New Testament Greek, as well as because
he was not compelled to take an appointment, as were many of the men; his
savings were amply sufficient to meet all his necessities; second, the
proximity of the great metropolis. It was not detrimental to his work for
him to go to the city on Saturday and tarry till Monday, for his was not
the same responsibility that fell to the lot of men who were pastors of
Churches. At the same time he was able to come in contact with city mission
work as it was conducted by some of the greatest specialists the world
has ever known. Among these men he toiled for two years, and not the least
part of his preparation was gained here among the lowliest of the lowly.
When he graduated from the seminary he might also have received a certificate
of fitness from the school of the slums.
Scott laid his foundations well. Moreover, he possessed
a Christian experience. "He had been baptized by the Spirit into life,
and had been filled with the Spirit for life." He had "the anointing for
service." He possessed a vast love for his fellows that amounted to a
yearning, a passion, the moving principle of his life. He was in love
and sympathy with the humblest of men as he was in love and fellowship
with Jesus Christ.
But before the pages are finally turned, and the record
closed, it will be but fair to take a farewell glance of some of the others
who have been a part of this story.
Ten years have passed since
many of these received their diploma at the hand of the begowned president
of the institution. The thoughtless college boys have in reality become
men. In almost every instance the promise of their college days has been
fulfilled. "Whatsoever a man sows, that shall he also reap!" In some few
instances it almost seemed that a merciful Providence had swept away the
great harvest of wild-oats that had been sown and which was all ready
for the reaping. But this was only seeming. "Be not deceived, God is not
mocked!" The harvest was garnered somehow, somewhere. God pardons the penitent
sinner, and brings joy to his heart and new affections and motives; these
are compensations; but never will the life be what it might have been
had it not been for the sowing of the sinful seed!
Pierson graduated in medicine
at one of the greatest and most widely-recognized institutions in America,
and began his practice in one of the large cities of the Fast. He had
a struggle in the beginning, but he was well equipped, and had plenty of
fortitude, and was able to stand the strain. His college course had smoothed
and polished and fitted him for the conflict. He had grown spiritually;
his college experiences were a blessing that enabled him, indeed, to become
a "Doctor of the Gospel" and a sturdy pillar in one of the Churches
of his neighborhood. He entered into no alliances that might lead to matrimony,
because of his pecuniary uncertainty. But it is whispered that there is
and has been a first-class understanding between Miss Bruce and himself,
and that some day Miss Bruce will cease to be-but the ceremony pronounced
over her will not be obsequies.
William Winifred Wilding managed
to graduate, and that was about all that can be said of his college scholarship.
His failure was not due to lack of native ability. He was quick and bright
and capable, and apparently cut out to be a leader. But there were some
serious drawbacks in his case. He had too much money. He had too many
unprofitable friends in consequence. He was too much in love, or unwisely
so. Because of late hours and society life, coming in addition to his
college duties, his health had been gradually undermined. The sickness that
followed the catastrophe on Barnegat Bay found him in a bad condition to
fight; hence he was never able to throw off the cough that fastened itself
upon him at that time, and he never became the robust, vigorous man he
had once been. He graduated at the foot of the class (a year later than
his old classmates), and some we're unkind enough to add that it was at
the mercy of the Faculty. But it has never been proved that the Faculty
ever exhibits the quality of mercy hinted at. However, he married Miss
Biddle soon after Commencement. In the fall they settled down in an Eastern
City, where the young man was given an important charge in his father's
vast business. It is pleasant to record that he improved in habits of
study. It soon came out that his wife's influence over him was more potent
than his sweetheart's had been. They remained society people, however,
in the loftiest sense of that word, up to the time that it became necessary
for Wilding to give up. About five years after his graduation he went
into a rapid decline and died of consumption. His beautiful widow returned
to her father's house alone.
Kenneth, having felt the call
to the ministry, after his college and seminary days gave up the bar for
the pulpit, and began to preach the gospel. He made no pretensions and
took what came to him without self-seeking. He saw men, not so well equipped
as himself, pass him at the outset, but he had no jealousy. He married
a true help-meet, and settled down in the blessedness of the growing experience
that had received its first great impetus in his college days. His whole
life had been blessed and helped by the spiritual part of the college
curriculum. His was a Spirit-filled life: he lived it and preached it, but
so simply that no one took offense at it, or even thought of placing him
in a special class. His life attracted men to him, and from himself they
were drawn to Christ. He was a winsome man.
Moon married Daisy Woods soon
after the close of the former's college days. They claimed to believe that
seminaries did more harm than good; that they deprived men of originality
by recasting them all in the same mold. It is not certain whether their
mutual affection had an influence on this conclusion or not. However,
he began to preach so conscientiously that he is helping to advance the kingdom
of Christ gloriously. His wife is evidently called; she wins the hearts
of the people and strengthens the heart of her husband.
Chubb, of whom very little
has been said because of the simplicity and seclusion of his life, did
not live many years after leaving college. However, his farewell to life
is worthy of notice. Before leaving Darnforth he had caught the idea of
obedience as the basis of Scriptural power and love. Though he graduated
in medicine, he obeyed the call to preach, and became a shining light in
the pulpit of his Church. He was a light in the pulpit because his life
was luminous. No one who knew him could ever doubt the doctrine of perfect
love, though his professions were in no sense boastful. He knew that the
life is the grandest profession, and one that the world can not gainsay.
His life was a constant sermon on love and Christ, and his ministry was
a never-ceasing revival. But because of the sensitiveness of his make-up
and the fineness of his nervous organism, he speedily gave out, and fell
before the so-called enemy who is said to love a shining mark. He, too,
had married early, and, besides his wife, there were two little children.
His death-bed is perhaps one of the most remarkable in the annals of man.
He never lost consciousness for a moment, and talked calmly to the very
last. When the doctors agreed that he was dying, no one would have suspected
it, from a look into his face. The family and friends were called in
that he might say his last adieus. It did not seem like a death-scene. He
was bolstered up in bed; there was a sweet smile on his face; he conversed
naturally with every one present. His extreme weakness was the only visible
symptom of approaching dissolution.
Finally, turning to the dear ones of his little family,
"I am sorry my precious ones, to leave you to fight
life's battles alone: but I know that the One who calls me, and whose
summons I obey, will not forget the widow and the fatherless. I am also
sorry to go on my own account; I had hoped to accomplish more for God's
kingdom on earth. But he knows best." Then he paused and rested, his breath
coming fast. After that he talked business for a few moments, telling
them where certain documents might be found; giving directions in regard
to his funeral. Then he rested so quietly that the watchers believed that
he had spoken his last. But presently he opened his eyes, and continued,
"I have begun the journey." One at a time his senses left him. Then he
whispered, for his strength was gone: "Everything grows dim; I no longer
see your faces. But, O glory! instead of darkness, all grows brighter."
After another moment, in,which they thought that he had passed over, he
whispered again: "I no longer hear you, dear ones. It is almost the end
of the world for me. Good-bye!" With an ineffable smile: "And this is
death! I am more alive than ever. My soul is flooded.
'I am floating in light to the pearly gate near,
And, glory to God, no river is here!'
I shall not lose consciousness. I shall pass
from the dear sights and precious music of my loved ones into the presence
of my Savior." Then, almost inaudibly: "Yes, Jesus Christ hath abolished
death. There is no death! This is birth; this is life!" His lips continued
to move for a moment, and then he ceased to be among his friends on earth,
and he began to be with the Savior and with the loved ones who had gone
MISS HOLMES'S life had not
been all roses, for it is not a pleasure for a womanly woman to be compelled
to bring sorrow to the hearts of those she honors and respects. Mr. Boice
was the first man who offered her his all. She had always been kindly
courteous to him, but had never by word or look given him sign of encouragement.
He could not help seeing this; hence he precipitated the crisis.
During Miss Holmes's childhood a little neighbor boy had been her
playmate. In their childish play they had plighted their troth many times.
When they grew up, "they were going to be truly married;" but long before
they had passed from childhood's estate the boy's parents had moved away.
Time passed; in the place of the boy there was a young man; in the place
of the girl, a young lady. In the mind of the latter nothing remained
of the former times but a picture of two children playing together. But,
strange to say, the picture that haunted the man plainly represented the
children as grown up! He thought of it by day and dreamed of it by night,
till it began to be the most real thing in his life; all else might be
dreams! In the meantime he had studied and worked and established himself
in life, and then at last, went from the railroad station directly to her
house. Why should he not? It was for that purpose that he had come. He was
a little blunt, perhaps, but then it must be remembered, as an extenuating
circumstance, that he had so constantly thought of her that it almost seemed
to him that they had never been separated, but that they had gone on playing
together till they had grown up. Then, in addition, as he was ushered
into her presence, her loveliness was so far in advance of his mind's
picture that he was startled into bluntness. Then she spoke so sweetly
and simply, just as she did when she was a child:
"Why, Will, I am very glad to see you; it was good
of you, when you came to town, to remember your little playmate."
"Anna, dear, that is the only reason I am in town.
I came to see you and to ask if you remembered our childhood pledges."
"I am so sorry Mr. McFadden; it gives me great painto
hear you speak thus. I do not want to hurt those whom I esteem and who
happen to come in the inner circle of friendship. I know that you can
not think of claiming the child's pledge, and I am sorry to grieve you.
Besides, you do not know. You have not seen me not heard of me since we
were children. I have changed. I am not the little girl that once you loved.
Alas! She has gone away forever." She spoke rapidly, for she was anxious
to ward off any fuller declaration.
"You are the same little girl to me, and as the years
have passed and you have grown here at home, you have grown in my mind
in sweetness and purity and beauty of soul and feature; but I confess
that imagination was not equal to the task, for it was not able to keep
pace with yourself in any of these directions."
She well knew that he was not offering her an idle
compliment, for she could see that it was his very soul talking.
"You have honored me, Mr. McFadden, in the extreme.
I humbly bow before your heart's sincere devotion. It astonishes me and
humiliates me as well. But what is in your heart can never be. Yet I think
we can understand each other and still be sympathetic friends." Then
she honored him with a part of her story, simply and without affectation,
and for the first time, to a human being, though she had told it to another
many times over. "Do not misunderstand me," she continued; "I do not live
in hope nor in the hope of a hope. It is a thing of the past and forever.
But you see how impossible it would be for me to give my heart to another."
McFadden understood the situation, and could read
the lady well enough to know that it would be useless and insulting to
ask her to endeavor to change. He was touched with the great honor of
this sacred confidence; he was charmed by her simplicity, and his own
disappointment was softened a little by the knowledge that she, too,
must suffer hopelessly as well as he. It was easier for him to face the
future, in the circumstances, than it could otherwise have been. He never
There was another strange
event that place soon after the foregoing. We have already seen a little
of Scott's older brother, but not enough to feel well acquainted with
him. He was a big, generous-hearted fellow, unsophisticated, on good terms
with the world. He had been able to lay by a little for the proverbial
"rainy day," or for the sunny day, as the case might be, and since Scott
had spoken to him about the possibility of getting married he could not
get rid of the thought; hence he more and more looked forward to the sunny
day. He had been a satisfied bachelor, but now a strange foreboding seemed
to tell him that the hour of his slavery was at hand. Hence he quietly
began to look around in order to discover who his future master, or rather
mistress, might be. He was a great, tall fellow, almost the exact opposite
of his brother, totally without education except that which he had picked
up in the university of the world and his business. He lacked especially
that fineness and delicacy of touch, which if it is not born in a man,
is difficult, if not impossible, to cultivate. He was so innocent or ignorant
of hte ways of the world in matrimonial lines that now he did not know
what to do nor where to go. His plan, however, was to go away from home;
for there was no one there, he said, who would suit him. While endeavoring
to decide where he would go, he remembered how enthusiastically his brother
had written concerning the pretty girls of the town of Darnforth. That
was the place for him. He wanted to visit Manly's colleg anyway.
He went, bearing a letter of introduction to one of
the professors, and was fortunate enough, or otherwise, to arrive in
time for a reception given at the home of one of the Faculty, to which
he was invited on the strength of his relationship to Manly E., who was
held in high esteem by the members of the Faculty, and whose memory was
kept green in the institution by tales that were oft repeated concerning
his wonderful deeds both in the physical and moral realms,-stories that
perhaps had grown with the repeating, and will continue to grow till they
may develop into a folklore of the institution, and future generations
may look back upon him as a kind of Hiawatha of the tribe.
Mr. Scott, the elder, upon receiving his invitation,
immediately went out to see if he could hire an evening suit, a piece
of external furnishing that he had often made, but which, heretofore, he
had always considered himself above wearing. But circumstances alter cases,
and this was the first time he ever went forth in quest of a wife. He
was awkward, of course; as awkward as an awkward man can well be when he
finds himself in company for the first time in society's regimentals. He
did not know what to do with his hands; they looked too big, and his arms
were too long, and his feet appeared much bigger than he ever thought
they appeared before, and altogether he was miserable, though he did his best
to imagine that he was happy, aspecies of self-hypnotism often indulged
in by the votaries of society. As he stood backed up against he wall in
delight-some misery, Miss Holmes discovered him, and, as was her custom
with luckless and timid people, she engineered an introduction in order
that she might help to make the evening more enjoyable to him. She was
a little surprised and startled to find at length that this Mr. Scott
was a brother of her Mr. Scott. The gentleman, n his side, was charmed
and almost stunned by the sweetness and subtle beauty of the being into
whose company fate had dropped him. She did not seem to him to be corporeal,
but spiritual;there was such a suggestionof heaven about her. The resultwas
that the young man lost his head. He did not know what he was saying.
But as they walked up and down the broad veranda, Miss Holmes knew that
he was telling her all about his business, and the money he had made, and
his prospects for hte future, and she was as truly interested in the listening
as he was in the telling.
All of a sudden he straightened up, as if awaking
from a dream, and said: "Miss Holmes, I am single, but I am amply able
to support a wife, and I am here to find one. I have never seen any one
who suited me so well as you. Will you be mine?" The thing all came about
so suddenly that if he had turned and pointed a pistol at her he could
not have surprised her more; and it was all so ludicrous to her, after
their few minutes of acquaintance, that for some seconds it required all
her powers to stifle the merry laugh of mirth that insisted on coming out.
However, she was as kind to him in a fitting way as she had been to others,
though she knew that the only pain he could possibly feel would be that
of chagrin; for she had no faith in love at first sight. Hence she gave
him a brief but decided and most emphatic, "No, Mr. Scott," in such a
way that he would as soon have thought of reversing an express-train with
the strength of his fingers as of reversing her decision.
But instantly she changed the subject, and began to
talk to him so charmingly and entertainingly that he actually forgot
to be embarrassed. She told him of the wonderful coincidence in Scotland.
It was the first opportunity he had gained of learning that his brother
was acquainted, and on evident good terms, with this queen.
"A college education is worth something, after all," he muttered
to himself as he sought his hotel that night while the events of the evening
were passing, panorama-like, before him. Miss Holmes let the young man
take her to the supper-room, while she continued her lively conversation.
He became so exalted that when at last he reached his couch it required
a large portion of the sleepless night to convince himself that he had
actually proposed and been rejected.
It ought to be said, in passing, that he remained
two weeks in Darnforth, visiting the college and other places of interest,
and one night at a Church social he actually did meet a pretty little
woman, on his own plane educationally, with whom, perhaps, after a few
meetings, he did enter into love, which love continued to grow all the
rest of his natural life up to the present time, if his own story is to
be believed. She was mild-mannered and sweet-tempered, and when, after
waiting four whole days, she received his proposal, she was perfectly happy,
for her heart had already gone out to him, and she felt that she was going
to marry a prince; and, indeed, she was not far wrong. The fact that he
was "that noble Mr. Scott's brother" had exercised no little influence
over her at first, for every one in the church knew and respected him. Hence
the big fellow was assisted, in a measure, by his little brother, after
all. In a month's time, a month that seemed a year, Ed Scott came back
for his bride. They went to Niagara Falls on their wedding-trip, one of
the ideals of the little woman's life, then settled down in bliss.
Scott, the elder, must not be misjudged. He was a
sturdy man of business and of common sense in most things. But this was
his first journey to seek a wife, and he is not the only man who has
acted hastily while on that quest. But Providence was on the side of
this innocent seeker after happiness, and he was saved from the snares
that some have discovered too late. It was several years before Manly
heard the first part of his brother's courtship.
SCOTT had never forgotten
Blacksly Street; in fact, he had kept in touch with it wherever he had
wandered. He corresponded regularly with some in that locality. After
graduation from the seminary, he most naturally came back to the old city.
The celebrated Mr. Banks, millionaire and philanthropist, had given
his attention to this region. Scott's story of the street had reached
the right place in the grand old man's heart. Many visits were made by
the two men, during which the very children would be good and put on what
company manners they had been able to pick up or invent; for they understood
that Mr. Banks, as well as their Mr. Scott, was a good friend. In the
meantime Scott had been making No. 17 his headquarters, at the urgent invitation
of the members of the club.
In this room meetings were held, and here children
came. It did not take long to confirm an original suspicion that this
room had been a gambling-place and fence for stolen goods. The secret
of the panels at one end of the room was revealed to him. But he had good
reason also to believe that these things had ceased of their own accord.
In a sense the gospel had dedicated the place to sacred things, and the
other things were compelled to give way. The inhabitants of that benighted
region flocked to hear the simple story of the gospel that they had often
jeered at before. Most of the people had no use for a Church, and many
had never heard a sermon. Fruit began to appear at once. They loved the
young leader whom God had sent to them; they owned him; they almost worshiped
A few weeks after his coming to the city, Scott had
preached in the great "First Church." His college fame, as well as his
mission fame in their own town, had preceded him, and the room was crowded.
It was whispered all about that he was the great baseball and football
player, that he won his way into the worst part of town by his "loving,
fighting ability." He had the sympathy of the fashionable people before
him, and the Spirit was with him in power. The congregation was melted.
Ministers had stood in that pulpit who had unconsciously felt that they
must give what the people wanted and they had taken it forgranted that
they wanted science, philosophy, ethics, and almost anything of that sort,
when, in fact, it was the simple gospel. They were hungry, like their
humbler brothers and sisters. Not long afterward he received the unanimous
call of the Church. It was urgent. He had become the fad of the people.
He was talked about. They "raved" over him at their five-o'clock teas.
He was human enough to be tempted. If he accepted,
he would have an immense salary and the weight of an influential Church
back of him. With such an arrangement, what could he not do in mission
work! Then it must be acknowledged that for a moment there came a thought
of his own improved social position. Would not the very best of people
be compelled to recognize him then? For a very short period he saw a picture
of a woman with a spiritual face. He saw her sitting in the fashionable
parsonage; he saw her presiding with grace over the ladies of the parish.
It would not be difficult to conjecture whose was the
face he saw. His heart throbbed with joy, and his ambition was having
its own way with him, when suddenly the dream vanished with the single
thought, "She does not love me!" Then he remembered that his people had
been taught to shun Churches and Church people, and that the Church-mission
idea would not be a success. Then there came a feeling of humility. He
was positive that those fashionable people would not be content with his
preaching. He did not feel that his was the ability to prepare and "refine"
the old story for such as he believed these to be. Then Blacksly Street
came up before him with its needs. He saw the different faces: there was
Jimmy, and Bill, and Hank, and "Skeeter," who would die for him already,
he believed. The tears came to his eyes. "O, the beautiful people! I love
them!" Thus he fought the night out. There came one final struggle. "Lord,
how do I know that I will have success down there even?" and then, as if
in answer, "I have nothing to do with that; it is mine to go where he
wants me to go, and to do what he wants me to do, and leave the results
with him. What I especially need is a refilling; I want fresh power!" And
his whole being became a prayer that spread itself out before beneficent
Ominotence. Then, as if in a dream, these words came: "And we are his witnesses
of these things, and so is also the Holy Gohost, whom God hath given to
them that obey him." "I'll go, dear Lord," he cried, "and live in
the slums, and die there!" Then there came sweeping down upon him blessing
after blessing. First it was a holy calm that melted into a sweet unconsciousness,
which at last lightened up into vision after vision inexpressible, but
full of the exstasy of the power of God. It was wave on wave; billow on
billow; surge on surge. The matter was settled forever.
The very next day he, received a communication from
Mr. Banks, expressing the determination to assist him in all plans for
the betterment of Blacksly Street, physically and spiritually; physically
first. In a sense salvation must come to our cities to the masses. There
must be salvation in the surroundings before a perfect heart-salvation
of hte individual can be anticipated. The little street was to be bought
ukp, the old buildings torn down; new and modern tenements were to be
built, large and clean and airy, with plenty of breathing-room, the whole
to be connected with a kind of parish house or social settlement, which
was to contain school-rooms, day and Sunday, reading-rooms, bathrooms, gymnasium,
mission-rooms (with a different name). Many happy days were spent in
planning and many months in blissful execution.
But before the grand new plan was launched, soon after
the coming of Scott into the street as a part of it, it was discovered
that Jimmy was slowly passing away. His symptoms had been distressing
for several days. Scott had visited him frequently and had sat with him,
but the last few times the little fellow had been unconscious. Because
of growing physical infirmity he had come to be known as "Little Jimmy"
altogether, for he had been growing weaker, and was evidently fading away.
But he had become very wise in holy things, and he was full of new and
beautiful thoughts that must have been suggested by the very angel's themselves.
Scott liked no better privilege than to be permitted to sit and talk with
the little invalid, and he never failed to receive inspiration of the
sweetest and loftiest kind. He found himself pitying himself as he looked
into the future and saw little Jimmy absent; for he had, in a manner, almost
unconsciously come to depend on him, and his grief was deep when he realized
that his friend was about to leave him.
One day Scott entered the room, and, to his joy, discovered
that his patient appeared better; he gave evidence of awaking from the
stupor in which he had been so long lying. At length his lips began to
move, and Scott leaned forward to catch his words. At first he heard the
single word "Mother!" Then a little louder: "Yes, mother, it's all right;
it's all right inside 'r me; that strange good feelin's there; yes, mother,
I'm comin'." Then he opened his eyes and saw his dear friend sitting
there. A smile like that of an angel's passed over his face: "I had the
best dream I ever had. I thought I saw mother, an' she looked so bright
an' happy, no sign of bein' sick, an' she asked 'bout that good feelin'
inside'r me that she talked 'bout so long ago when she died. An' I tol'
her it was there. An' it is there, Mr. Scott, an' it feels so good. I
wish ev'rybody knew 'bout it. Tell all the peoples how good it is, won't
you, Mr. Scott?"
For a moment a spasm of pain drove away the smile;
but it soon returned in greater radiance, forcing its way through, as
th sun forces his way through the cloud. Suddenly Scott noticed that his
breath was coming very fast. He appeared to be sleeping again. But he
opened his eyes once more, while his face seemed to be transfigured with
glory; he whispered, "Mother! Jesus!"
"Asleep in Jesus! blessed sleep,
From which none ever wakes to weep!
A calm and undisturbed repose,
Unbroken by the last of foes.
Asleep in Jesus! peaceful rest,
Whose waking is supremely blest!
No fear, no woe,shall dim that hour
That manifests the Savior's power."
FOR reasons that can be appreciated,
Scott had never revisited the old college since the day he graduated.
Now he received a note of invitation to attend his class reunion on its
tenth anniversary. The desire to see the dear place became so strong that
he telegraphed the committee he was coming.
He stood on the campus. Everything appeared the same,
and yet there was an unaccountable difference in all that he saw. It was
difficult to realize that he had changed, that he was no longer the boy.
He attended all the gatherings of the class, but took
no active part in any of the exercises. Miss Holmes was not present at
any of them. He was rather oppressed with the thought that perhaps his
presence had been the cause of her absence.
The great man announced to preach the annual sermon
before the Christian Associations of the college was taken suddenly ill,
and a telegram Saturday night canceled his engagement. It was then too
late to fill his place with a man from a distance. Then the members of
the class of 188-, feeling that they had not profited by Scott's presence
as they should, petitioned the Faculty to invite him to occupy the pulpit
on that great occasion. The invitation came, and though he trembled at
the thought and felt his unworthiness, yet, for the sake of the dear old
class, he was willing, if the Spirit so indicated. He had learned to say
"yes" to Jesus.
His sermon was on "The Anointing fo Service," the
text being taken from the first chapter of Acts, the eighth verse: "But
ye shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you: ye
shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judea, and in
Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth." His lesson was taken
from the second chapter of Acts: the Day of Pentecost.
As he preached he was completely lifted out of himself,
and the Spirit through him impressed the vast audience for eternity, and
more than one of the young lives before him owed to that hour the change
which meant heaven in the heart.
Just before closing he saw away back in the audience a glorified face,
suffused with tears. He had not seen her before-Miss Holmes.
Somehow, by accident or Providence, not by prearrangement
on the part of either-for each was endeavoring to make impossible that
which occured-somehow, as Scott started down the campus alone in order
to reach his room without delay, as he turned under the electric light
the throng pressed him against a lady in such a manner that he jostled
her quite roughly; looking around to crave pardon for wahat might have
seemed rudeness, but in reality was the unavoidable result of the press,
he looked full into the face ofMiss Holmes, also alone. Not a moment before,
her father, with whom she had been walking, had been called back a few
steps by some one who desired a word with him. He had told his daughter
to continue, and that he would rejoin her in a moment. As busy men are
frequently absent-minded, so Mr. Holmes forgot all about his daughter
in the new thought that had been interjected in his mind. She did continue,
but he did not overtake her.
The moment of recognition was a little embarrassing;
but both of them were enough accustomed to the ways of the world to be
able to dissemble, without too great a display of self?consciousness.
After a pause that seemed long to both, there were cordial greetings, and
then a fervent expression on the part of the lady in regard to the sermon,
and thus they walked most naturally, discussing the theme as if it had
been but yesterday when they had conversed last together on religious topics,
until they reached the campus gate, and there a strange thing happened.
Instead of turning to the left, a direction that would have brought them
to the Holmes mansion in a few minutes-for it was little more than a block
away-they turned sharply to the right (the campus gate was at the corner
of the square), and began to walk the old roundabout way home, the way
that took them around three sides of the campus, over which they had so
often traveled together. It all came about so naturally that neither one
at the time thought of the strangeness of it. When they came to the back
street and crossed over, in the rear of the great building dedicated to
science, in the dark shadow which it cast from the electric lights on
the campus, the past all came up to Scott in a great wave, and in a measure,
history repeated itself. Suddenly the man was shaken by a great dry sob,
as before, and the woman, unable to hold out longer, burst into tears.
They were never able to give any better explanation than this. How thankful
they were for the back street and the shadow! What would their friends
have thought had they seen them then sobbing like little children!
The sobs had broken the spell of years, and the tears
had obliterated the past. Through all those years each had been true to
the memory of the other, though without hope. They had suffered, but it
was the suffering that refines. God had thus brought them together.
"Dear one, can it be true? Do you love me, and is
"Yes, I loved you, darling, that night so many years
ago, and I have loved you ever since. And O, it has been so hard!" And
she renewed her tears, but this time with her head upon his shoulder and
his arm to comfort.
So it happened that there
were two missionary workers on Blacksly Street, instead of one. Only eternity
will disclose the results of the work of those consecrated lives. They
are God's and each other's. Their lives are Spirit-filled, and their
love for men is pure and unselfish. Mrs. Manly E. Scott was the queen of
Blacksly Street, and she ruled with love, and many were her worshipers.
The new Blacksly Street, with its beautiful hygienic houses and its broadened
way, became henceforth most appropriately "Holmes Avenue." The old reputation
passed with the old order. But the story of the transformation will be
told in full another time.