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upland. Here she heard from behind though she could not have explained her the church clock, which she knew the cause. The excitement of her so well, striking midnight. The path mind did not fail after its first rise, but was no longer familiar to her, but she varied and prolonged itself during her knew the direction she had to take, minuter examination of all that lay and her task increased in seriousness before her. The moonbeams shifted and interest the more completely she slowly as the luminary journeyed on appeared engaged in it. The downs and stooped towards the horizon. arose grim and grey before her, and, Here and there the stars were faintly after exploring for a few minutes, she reflected in the gauze-veiled mirror. struck into the path that climbed their The ship passed on in silent ghostlisides, and felt that she had entered on ness, and disappeared, while the weak a new world. But she began to be a murmur of the waters on the shore belittle fatigued, and mounted the hills neath came to her as if whispering a with less quickness than she crossed secret which she vainly strained her the valley. Still she met no human ear to catch. She stood charmed to being. The moon was rising above the spot, until the first glimpses of the her head and displayed her road, and early dawn began to mingle with the she thought that she perceived the gleams of night. And now she drank fresh sea-breeze blowing down from in with a mighty insatiable thirst each the heights upon her face. As she moment of the great unfolding vision. drew nearer and nearer to this aërial The brightening clouds—the strengthsummit, which she had so often looked ening breeze—the cold sad sparkling at almost with tears, she could hardly of the sea under the eye of day—the believe the reality of her own happi. colouring of the landscape, and the ness. In spite of her weariness, her starting into clearness of many vessels heart was borne up with wings.. She -all these were memorable events to paused for a moment a few yards be- Jane. But the weariness of the body low the top of the ascent, and then ran and the exhaustion of the over-excited headlong on-and stopped.

mind compelled her to rest, and by There lay the sea beneath her, one the increasing light she saw, a few sheet of indistinct grey and moonshine, yards beneath her, a small hollow in with the dark land running off on either the hill, marked by an old thorn-tree side. In the obscurity an angelic vi. which shaded a few large stones. On sion moved along, with the moon one of them she sat and watched the glancing on its white face ; it must be scene before her, till, in spite of her -could it be?-a ship! She felt how efforts, her eyes closed against the deep were her own emotions at the light, and her head drooped sideways aspect of immense and unknown power, against the bank.

Chapter II.

Jane had lost all consciousness, and man; but I could not help calling out was recalled from sleep only by a when I found you here, where I exvoice, at which she started, and the pected only the old thorn-tree." first object that caught her eyes was “Oh, no," she answered, “it is my a young man, who stood before her fault_that is, I believe I have been with the broad sunshine streaming asleep, and it is very wrong." like a glory round his face, and with “ Well, I do not see much harm, a figure so graceful and an attitude of unless you had fallen asleep when it surprise so lively, that Jane, in the was your watch on deck, and you're midst of her fear, could not but think hardly a sailor yet. But, if I may him the most beautiful object she had make so bold, it must be something ever seen. It was a young sailor, out of the way that brings you here who had taken off his hat to enjoy the at this hour of the morning. The air while climbing up the steep cliffs, sun is not above half an hour up. I and whose exclamation on seeing the have been this way pretty well at all sleeping girl had disturbed the dreams hours, and I never found any one here of her native village and her cottage yet but an old shepherd, and perhaps hearth.

sometimes of an evening a pair of • “No offence, I hope, young wo. sweethearts; and you are none of the

neighbours--I know them, young and one on shore, younger and prettier old, for three miles round.'

than my poor mother, who may reThen came the explanation of Jane's member me when I am away, as I adventure; and in telling it slightly as should remember her." she did, there was to her own feelings If Jane had been a lady she would a strain of extravagance in it, which hardly have answered, "Well, when she had never perceived until now, I have nothing to do, I mostly think when she was compelled to speak of of the sea, and how men pass their it. The stranger was full of wonder, lives upon it, and what sights they but he thought, from her look and have to look at.” manner, she must be telling the truth. “And all this though you have no His determination to find out how this friend a sailor-no brother or cousin, was gained strength, perhaps, from or lad that you used to play with his sense of her personal charms; for when you were both children?" the rounded active figure and the soft S he blushed, and said, “ No-no face, with her bright eyes, and long one. My mother's father was a sailor, pale hair curling from under her bonand I have read of many more in net, were not lost on one who, in his books, but I never saw one to speak voyages, had seen many a pretty to before." maiden, but never a prettier than Jane “ And have you never thought if Martin. He immediately proposed, you would like to have a friend who as he had no business that could not had made many a voyage? Would it wait, to take care of her back to her not be pleasant to be able to fancy father's. She refused, with a deep that one you knew was on the wide blush and downcast look; and, wish. waves, and thinking of you while you ing him a good morning, had turned would be remembering him ?--some to go, but her steps faltered, partly, one whose return you would look for, doubtless, from fatigue. In a moment and who would bring you new stories the young sailor was at her side, and every trip of all he had fallen in with, insisted that she was too weak to re- and perhaps some pretty trifles, and turn without his help. The arrange- gowns and lace, from foreign parts?" ment was soon made; and at four It was with a low deep longing o'clock in the morning the pair set voice that she answered,-" Oh, that off on their walk, which, according to would be too much happiness!” Then Jane's design, ought to have ended she hung her head, and hid her face about the same hour.

from him, but leaned the more clingThe road, however, was now down ingly on his arm. In truth she was hill. She had succeeded in the great. almost overpowered by fatigue and est aim she had ever conceived, and want of sleep, and they were now at her companion's arm was of much last within a stone's throw of her father's assistance. Jane discovered, in the door. She turned from the lane they first half-hour of their acquaintance, were walking in, and passed over a that he was the son of a tisherman's stile into one of his fields; and when widow, living in a cottage at the foot they reached the orchard behind the of the cliff. He had early gone to sea, cottage she begged William to reand now, at the age of twenty-two, main at its little gate while she went had risen to be second mate of a merforward, for she did not know in what chantman, in which he had made a state she might find her father on acvoyage to the Mediterranean. He count of her absence. He remained had been, on returning to England, leaning on the gate for a few seconds, on a visit to his mother, and had set till startled by a woman's scream, out that morning to walk across the when he hurried in, and, pushing country to Southport, where he hoped through a passage which contained again to obtain employment, and per- three or four persons, all in confusion, haps in a better situation than his last. he found himself in the old man's bedAfter several otlıer questions and re- room. There were several neighbours plies, " How," she said, “ do you pass round the bed, on which he lay appathe hours when there is nothing to be rently insensible, and Jane stood supdone in the ship?"

porting herself by one of the bedposts, "I read or sing, or think of my and with her eyes fixed on his face. friends at home; and I fancy that, William went to her side, and saw the some day or other, there may be some closed eyes gradually open, and the father begin to see. The first objects have been ready to toil for her father's he beheld were his daughter, and the comfort, had he lived, his death was young man standing by her in his far from overpowering her. Nay sailor's dress. He looked at them though it is a severe truth-she felt long and sadly, and at last muttered, relieved from his silent forebodings, “I was sure it would be so."

and seemed to belong more entirely to Jane now begged that she might be William, now that all other claims on left alone with her father, who was her had ceased. used to her attendance, and specially Not long after this William's morequested William, as he was a stran. ther was taken ill, and he was sent for ger, to stay in the outer-room till she to see her. She died before his recould go and speak to him. Reluc. turn, and both were now deprived of tantly, and shaking their heads, the all they had much loved beyond each neighbours went away. The father other. In a few weeks it became newas still very feeble, and it was only cessary for William to go again to his after long delay, broken by floods of former home, in order to sell the furtears from her, that she could com- niture and let the cottage, and Jane municate to him the story of her own proposed to accompany him. She proceedings, and could learn what he rejoiced in the thought of again seeing had to tell. On getting up, and not the place where they had first met, finding her in the house, he had hur- and of knowing more familiarly that ried about his own premises; and still ocean which she had obtained so inmissing her, had alarmed the neigh. sufficient a glimpse of. They went bours nearest him, and sent in differ. thither, and took up their abode in the ent directions to look for her. But on sea-side cottage. All about it spoke two or three of the messengers re- of maritime occupation. The house turning without any tidings, he had was partly constructed of wreck. The fainted away, and a crowd had gan paling around the puny garden was of thered round him, as he lay on his the broken and pitchy boarding of bed, the moment before Jane arrived. boats, and the shingle lay driven in In an hour he felt suficiently strong barren heaps against it. Within a to rise; and he and his daughter went stone's-throw two or three fishingto rejoin the sailor, and offered him boats were drawn up on the beach, breakfast, of which they partook with and the children of the fishers' famihim. But his fresh and lively look lies played along the shore. Within was very different from the stern sad- the cottage there was great want of ness of the father, and from Jane's many of the inland comforts Jane had decp and confused dejection. He was been used to, but there were a few ar. not, however, discouraged from speaks ticles of transmarine curiosity, brought ing, nor she from listening. Even the home by William, such as uncut coral old man relaxed into civility before he and pinkhearted shells. took his leave.

Through the greater part of the day It was not many days till he came the husband and wife were busy in again, and Jane soon learned that he their household affairs, examining and had put off his journey to Southport. arranging their new possessions. But Thenceforth they met frequently, and in the evening they felt themselves in the summer evenings he was seen more at liberty, and they strolled to. walking about the quiet country lanes gether along the shore. Jane knew with Jane leaning on his arm. It was, not what it was that attracted her, but therefore, no surprise to the village, she had an obscure notion of a won. when the banns were read in the derful and friendly power in the sea, church for the marriage of Jane Mar- as if its movements had been the beattin and William Laurence. With ings of a mighty paternal breast on slow gestures and thoughtful eyes her which she could lay her head. She father gave her to her husband. They walked along the outermost line of returned to live with bim; and, in the foam, and every wave that broke defirst glad flush of their love, the old lighted her, while at intervals she man died. His death was a shock to turned and stood, and looked over the Jane, but not a lasting grief. She waters with vague but deep emotion. loved William too fully and entirely A child who has been gazing at a to feel any gap in her life while she lovely star till he almost fancies it his possessed him; and though she would own, would not be more gratified by neighbours--I know them, young and one on shore, younger and prettier old, for three miles round."

than my poor mother, who may reThen came the explanation of Jane's member me when I am away, as I adventure ; and in telling it slightly as should remember her." she did, there was to her own feelings If Jane had been a lady she would a strain of extravagance in it, which hardly have answered," Well, when she had never perceived until now, I have nothing to do, I mostly think when she was compelled to speak of of the sea, and how men pass their it. The stranger was full of wonder, lives upon it, and what sights they but he thought, from her look and have to look at.” manner, she must be telling the truth. “And all this though you have no His determination to find out how this friend a sailor-no brother or cousin, was gained strength, perhaps, from or lad that you used to play with his sense of her personal charms; for when you were both children ? the rounded active figure and the soft S he blushed, and said, “No-no face, with her bright eyes, and long one. My mother's father was a sailor, pale hair curling from under her bon- and I have read of many more in net, were not lost on one who, in his books, but I never saw one to speak voyages, had seen many a pretty to before." maiden, but never a prettier than Jane « And have you never thought if Martin. He immediately proposed, you would like to have a friend who as he had no business that could not had made many a voyage? Would it wait, to take care of her back to her not be pleasant to be able to fancy father's. She refused, with a deep that one you knew was on the wide blush and downcast look; and, wish waves, and thinking of you while you ing him a good morning, had turned would be remembering him ?-some to go, but her steps faltered, partly, one whose return you would look for, doubtless, from fatigue. In a moment and who would bring you new stories the young sailor was at her side, and every trip of all he had fallen in with, insisted that she was too weak to re- and perhaps some pretty trifles, and turn without his help. The arrange- gowns and lace, from foreign parts?" ment was soon made; and at four It was with a low deep longing o'clock in the morning the pair set voice that she answered,- Oh, that off on their walk, which, according to would be too much happiness !" Then Jane's design, ought to have ended she hung her head, and hid her face about the same hour.

from him, but leaned the more clingThe road, however, was now down ingly on his arm. In truth she was hill. She had succeeded in the great- almost overpowered by fatigue and est aim she had ever conceived, and want of sleep, and they were now at her companion's arm was of much last within a stone's throw of her father's assistance. Jane discovered, in the door. She turned from the lane they first half-hour of their acquaintance, were walking in, and passed over a that he was the son of a fisherman's stile into one of his fields; and when widow, living in a cottage at the foot they reached the orchard behind the of the cliff. He had early gone to sea, cottage she begged William to reand now, at the age of twenty-two, main at its little gate while she went had risen to be second mate of a mer- forward, for she did not know in what chantman, in which he had made a state she might find her father on acyoyage to the Mediterranean. He count of her absence. He remained had been, on returning to England, leaning on the gate for a few seconds, on a visit to his mother, and had set till startled by a woman's Beam, out that morning to walk across the when he hurried in, and, country to Southport, where he hoped through a passage which again to obtain employment, and per- three or four persons, all haps in a better situation than his last. he found himself in After several other questions and re- room. T plies, " How," she said, “ do you pass round tl the hours when there is nothing to be rent! done in the ship?"

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