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The Heiress' Lover

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" We're going to take somo city boardjrs," said Farmer Parsons, as ho put his packages of silgar and tea iuto the big basket ho had brought to " the store" in liis wagon. " Wife and I will be down to fetch 'om to-morrow. There's a lady wid sqme childrcn, and a young lady, a great heiress. She 's in mourning for tho uncle that left the property ; so she oan't go to a lively place. Quite a young gal and very protty. Tivn pounds óf raisins, Mr. Jones, and somo of thein currants ; reckon a pound '11 do." News is newa in the country. The farmer'B audience listoned intently. The doctor - young Doctor Purl - who had stepped m for letters - the store was also the postoffice - took note of every word, and Marcos Moreland, who had come to post a letter also, remembered whftt the old man had said. As he walked away, " Pretty young girl," he said to himself. "An heiress gets the reputation of being pretty] ; probably she is not half as mco looking as Faimer Parsons' own daughters, and heiresses aro apt to think too much of seives. ' "An heiress," said the doctor, as he i jumped into his gig. " Woll, I sball go i over to see Parsons pretty soon. No place like tlie country for a courtship, afflj a follow who married an heiressneed i not wait year in and yoar out to build wp his practice. I wonder how much she is rciilly worth ? A gi-eat heiress. That oughtn't to mean loss than a lmndred thousand dollars. I should liko a wife with a nioe little bank account of that size. Young and pretty, too ; it's a raro chance." The city boarders came next day. The loungers at the store saw thern get into the wagon- a fat young matron and three little girls, a nurse, a baby, and a young lady dressed in mourning. The storekeeper's wife noticed the elegant cut of the overskirt whieh the hitüT wore, and more than one saw the diamond ring flash on her finger ; but it j was just dark, and tk beauty was not a settleci point, for no one could see her face. Marcus Moreland, who was the poor clergyman's son, and had just fought his way through college with a peet of teaching tlio male department of the district school that winter as hin best one, whilo workiiig in his father's garden tho next morning, was placed in a position to judge on this matter. He hoard a little scream, and looking s up suw a very pretty young lady, und a vcry pretty little boy flying in terror from a perfoctly hacmless, broad-faeed, white milch cmv, who, in the excess of lier content, aa she ütood kaee-keep in the water of a pond chewiug the end, had elevated her nostrils, and tnrnirig her slow, brown eyes in the direotioa of the pedestrians, uttered a long, krw moo-o-o. "Oh!" Bcreamed the ymuig lady, faintly. " Can't you run fa iter, Tommy Í I think she's coming after us." " I heg jimr pardon, ma'am," cried Mardus, jumping the paling felice- . " but Mooly woa't toucli yon. tího . wouldn't luul any ono. She's perfectly harmless. Beo!" nud ho approaclied I tbo pond sido and patted tlio whito hetd. " Seo - ve' ve had hor ten yoavn, aud she's the genilAfet eroature. " " I'm quito ashamed of myself, but I'm not used to oows," Baid the young lady. "I thonght I'd made her iingry ; and when yon havo other people'a ohildren with yon it's such a respoDsibility. Toni, don't touch the genÜeman's llovéis. I'm ashaniod of you." For city Toro, with a general ideatliat " tlui country ' belonged to everybody, was helping himself to roses. Of conreo after that Marcus plucked llovera for Tom, and a bouquot for tho young lady ; and as sho walked bowitehingly up tho road, witli tho flowcrs agftinst bar protty chin, decided that thifi heiresa certoinly was tho loveliest thing that his eyes had ever rested upon. That aftornoon Doctor Purl rodo over to Mrs. Parsons' ; made a cali ; was introduced ; decided that tlie lieircss was a beauty ; converged with her in a manner calculated to prove that he at least vas no country bumpkin ; made a point of looking at his elegant watch before he left ; and had the satisfaefion of feeling thnt he. liad niado an improssion. May Dimple was very young, vory inexperienced, and very willing to think the best of everybody. At eigliteen she was mistress of a lino fortune, and being an orphan, her own mistress altogether. Her lieart was yet a white, unwritten sheet, nud tho lirst that made love to her was likely to win it. Vague longings for that peculiar tenderness which only a lover can offer already possessed her oul, and sho was just the sort of little woman to forget her own advantages, and feel very grateful for love and admiration. Tho doctor was tall and line,looking, and she caught herself blushing as she looked into tho glass after lds parture, and thought what a soft look had come into lus oyes as he " Hoped they shoidd moet again."' Meanwhile Marcus Moreland liad beon thinking about her moro than slie j guessed, and that evening there was another introduction. Mrcus did not make big eyes at lie?, nor try to show his s-iperiority to his neighbors, neither liad lie any gold watch to consult. Ho was younger than the doctor by ten years, and very much of a boy still, and tho riaing moon found May, her little cousin Tom and Marcus all pitting together on the lower step of tho porch, falking of blackberrying, as three children ïpight. The hoiress wore a linón dress and a knot of blue ribbon in hor hair. Mar cus forgot she was an heiress. It was only a dear little girl, just the hioest creature he ever met, who looked at him frankly with her blue eyes- real blue eyes, not blue gray. Ho went home in Hk firat stii ■■ "i' love, aud sat at the window lookinf at the moon, and thuiKing of her nearly all night. May had novor had anything like, a beftu in her lito. Shut up with an invalid uuelo in a grent city home that was like a prison - seeing no one but the doctor and nurse, and now and then some old gentleman, whom lier uuelo wan persuaden to admit on the score of old friendship - she had no idea that she might be a bello. Life was all new to hor. Kven her couríii was a new-found relativo who had " taken a notion to her," when tho friends gathered at tho old man's funeval. People who had neyer rememliered little May until tho nevs of her heirawKhi] brought her to tluúr notieo, liad been so very kind sinee. The liberty nho enjoyed i:,ade the quiet counti-yhouse a vory happy place ; and now two admiréis dawned upon her horizon t once, and made hfe " perlectly splenid" to May, much as the situation ■ould havo borcd rnany an expcrienced olie. Matters natural ly assumod this form 3 tho time pnssed on. May had two jvers, and hardly knew which sho liked est. Marcns did not inake love- he did not are- but he looked it. The doctor ïade love scientifically ; he hadpanaped [ie farmer, who believed that the young idy's fortune was " something more lian common." He had even extracted rom the marricd cousin a statement that ' Uncle left everything to May. " Ho had threo months to work in beore tho heiress knew her own powers, ,nd had learnt from one gay winter that overa follow money thiok and f ast, and ie was a determined Bort of fellowwhere here was anything to gain. Marcus hadno plans. His boy's heart an away with him - that was all. He ;ould not keep away from May's side, ïor forgct her when they were apart ; md so snmmer passed and antumn apwiached, and tho city folks were going lome, and the district school was to be jpened, and Cousin Helen's husband, a nard-driven Wall-street man, carne dom to spcnd a weck beforo ho took his famly home ; and all this dolightf ui time was nearly at an end. Marcus was to be examined for his position as teacher of tho school - a mere form with his fine education. The, doctor, as a learned gentleman, was one of a committee to examine the coming schoolina'am for tho girl's department. "Apleasanter tank," as he said, ,i(stingly, "if he expected to seo any body there but old Miss Cynthia Aldcrny and olderMiss Baker." May heard a good deal of the school, cspecially as Farmer Parsons was another of the committee, and she flt an interest in it, too, as Marcus was to 1 Tl _1 .1,1 1. 1,,'nir lf teacii. il seeaiou o uuu w luiuu #■■ Cousin Helen's lmsband wentabout as men always do, and heard more in a day i than the Jadies could in a year. He i turued ono evening with a solemn face. and. informed bis wiïe, in confidoiice, j that the talk of the yrhole place waa May's fortune, and that the doctor, who ! had done nothing bat run alter rich , women since he carne to the place, was uaidtobe "afterit." " A regular fortune-lmnter, my deaï, said the husband. " You mustiise your influence with poor little May. " May meanwhile liad been in lier favorito grove, and there had Marbus More liiml betaken himself to say good-by. I'nor boy, hi' had had lome hitte hoUXS oflttte. The truüi. that May'ulovo was the oue thiug worth liiiving pon : itl i liad dawned upon him, and with it the knöwledge that ho had uo right to offqr liimself to an heiress. How hu hat.-d her inoney. It stood between them like F,,,,, iwfiil spel!. II' kIic hml been the pooresi gir) living, he could htsre raid all was in bis linul t. hT- Bot IIOW. So the poor boy uttercd a fewialtenng words i nd went his way. " It was foily for me to (hink ho liked mi! nincli," mid Muy, as ho. lcft hor. " How formal and cold he is after all mr social ulity," and a littlo pangnipped her haart, and she smiled moro brightly ju tho doctor when bö uIho cnteivd the jiove tban sho had eyer smued bofore. He mudo lov; to Her thatnf tcnicon aftea truo story book fasbion. On tho rtago at 's ho would havo cimsed teudor-heiirted ladies to say "how sweot. " It wa a prctty littlo scono, rehearsefl in private. Had May kut known it tho night bof ore ; aud 110 girl could havo failod to understand his parting words. ' ' To-morrow, bof oro yon Jonvo, I nmst seo yon. Yon will grant me a private interview, will yoxi not? I havo something of intenso importanco to mysolf, at least, to say to yon. Yon will let me seo you in tho garden ? I - I - " a f al tor, a look, a snatch at hor hand, tho tonch of li is lips npon it. Then the cnrtain shonld havo dropped, as he rode away in his gig and said to liimself : "I always was a lncky folio w - to think that Providonco should havo sent an heiross to snch a placo as this, a protty ono, too ! " u When May ontered the house, a surprise awaited her. Cousin Holen took lier nt oneo to her bedroom, and there, liehind closed doors, repeatod hor Lusband 's information. "Yon know yon are so young and inexpoiienced," said phe, " and a fortunehulitor is such a dreadful creature." May 's face ilushed crimson. "Do you really think nobody oould lovo me for myself ?" she asked, in a sudden fit of indignation. Tlien common-sense came to hor aid. Sho sat quiet for a white, and then drew near hor cousin and whispered something in her ear. It was a long whisper. " It will prove him," she said aloud ; "and yon will help me I" Cousin Helen promised, and May retired to hor own room, there to shed a few not unnatural tears. Niglit passed ; the morning came. Tho schooi-house doors were set opon for the first time for months. The committee was to moet at eleven, to examino tho candidatos for the teachers' positions. Old Parmer Parsons walked over, also Farmer Brown. The doctor was there, and the lawyer, Mr. Triphammer. Miss Cynthia Alderny was seen walking toward the door with a defiant face. Miss Baker followod with a scared one. Marcus Moreland took his way in, and just as all were settling into tlicir soats a littlo lignro in bufl linen, with a blue-ribboned hat on its head, slipped into one of tho doors and stood araong them. Everybody looked up. "Miss Dimple!" said the farmer. "Why, I declare?" " Miss Dimple 1" said tho doctor, advanciag with a gallaut air. ' ' Yes, sir, " paid May, quiotly. ' ' I undorstand that you examine candidates to-day. I am fond of teaching, aud when ono must do something, oue seizds evety oliunvo, vu kuu. n oxatnineK ' "I Buppose yon aro jesting, Miss Dimple," said the doctor. " Not I," said May. "Isupposeyou havo hoard that foollsh story about me. Two or three hundred dollars raay be a ! vory pleasant littlo suni to spend on a summers vacation, but it doesn't mako one a great heiress. " " Polks will talk, you know," said farmer Parsons, with a twinklo in his oye. ' ' A poor gal is as respeetable as a ridi one, long as she conducís proper. Bét down, Miss DüjMjle." Tho doctor retired to his Beat, his faco very palo and rigid. Marcus Moreland, on the contrary, had flushed scarlot. May's two lovers were a strange contraat at that moment. Forker own part, she was quietcr and Badder and more womanly thau usual. She went tbrough tho (ixamination brarely, under the fire of Miss Cynthia'n indignant eyos, and wnidst Miss Baker s despondent sighs. Then sho walked homo and waitod, as ihe had proinised, in the garden. Would Hio doctor koop his engagement ? Ho did. " My dear, Miss DïïSplé' ho said, as ho advanced gayly, but not quite naturally. "Ifeared 1 should searcoly get here in time to bid you good-by. I'm sorry tho conimitteo think you too young for the place. Thoy'vo given it to Miss Cynthia. Really, it would be vory duU for you, very. I told you I had something very particular to say to - didu't I 't You remember, I see. I ditln't think you would. I wantod to say that l've really enjoyod littlo -sdsitto tb is place; so muoh. Ladtes' society is a trcat to a poor old bachilor doctor, who expccts to be a bachelor all his life, by tno way. You know what tho society he,re ík, Miss Dimple, and you've quite brightened the suramer for me. l've had a treat. Bo tliat's what I wantod to teil you, and to bid yon a last good-by." " Good-by, Dr. Purl," said May, with a smile. The man why had made such desperate love to her tho other day, who had deflned his intentions toward hor in a ínanner no girl could misuuderstand, had slippod calmly and smoothly out of tho affair, and she could match him in coolnoss, girl as she was. They shook hands. "Adieu," said the doctor, with the true Parisian accent, and jumped into his gig, thanking hoavon that lio had escupí .1 making aii affer te .1 poor girl. The heiress stood by the. gato wliciv ba had leit lu-r, thanking heaveu mueh moro devoutly for her escupo. Yet I shall not say sho was happy. It. was not in nature ; for slio had bolievcd this man her truo and earnest lov(.r. The lirst bitter thoughts that had over troubled her young heart filled it now ; her lirst glimpso of real lil'e was teken. As she stood there she began to doubt that thore was sucli a tliing as true love. A tear or two feil ; sho wiped them away ; and through the mist that veiled her eyos, she saw a bright, ordent young face, 'strangely in contrast with tlie cool, firmal, uniÉoyod countiiiianee, with it.s handsome features and practiced smiie, that had just passed frena before her visión. It was the. face of Marcus Morehi 1 1 . 1 ; and before she was aware of hia intention he had passed bis arm about her waistand kissed her. j} 'Iflnevor may again, T must now," he s.iid. "I have never dared to teil yon wliile F tboughtyousorieh, but l've loved voii since the lirst day we met. We are lioih mor ; let me figïit tiie 1 attle ii lil'e for yon. I eau dn ü - [ will do it. God ulwayw priTspers lovélike mine." The. tvi)i:'ht. shadows wen; creeping , over the seene. The distant móün taina wen' losing the faint rose-tips that they had worn. All was stil) save for the distïmïtiuklc of a ców'-bell. A soft, sw'èèt brce.e sv,-i - il ui ttoA the meadows, l'ull of the fragrance of gras and cltrrér. 1 il these thinga briug the sudden ealni and sweetness to May's.wounded heart? 8Íé stood still niiiking Marrus m answor, but sho did not repulso hini. " Teil nlo tíiat you liko mw a HUle," ! pN'aded the hoy. "I do liko you, Mareus," said Mny ; " but dou't. ask rrití iíny moro jiiat iww, T cah't teil you why, but tliiH is iitit tlio j timo. I - I - just Hiiy gooil-l)ynnv, "Marcus. I must go away to-morrow, but I will -vrite to you." "Eomcimber, my lovo is life or ileath to me," Hak! Mareus, nud so they partcil. I Ono day vrhcn ]fay feit that Hhe bad 110 longor anythius but scorn for her ' tuno-lmntiiig doctor, slio did writo to : Marcus M(irland, and what he füiid may be inforrod from the f iet that they are to bo married when tlitï next Hprine; comes ; niid that the peo]ile at the store, ! and doubtless the doctor also, already knowthnt Farmer Pm-sons' pretty young : boarder was really and antually au heiress, and that Farmer Farsons, a shrnvd old man -th plenty of Rood Bensej knew luid npproved of the ruse that tested the ln'iress's lovers all along.


Old News
Michigan Argus