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The Minister's Story

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♦Look lieve, Sally! There's euough, chicken left, withthe giblets - that I liever put in my own pie, because the deacon don't relish 'em - ter make a Thanksgivtag pie for the, ininister's folks. "l'won't iieed ter be very large,' she added, inreplyto Sally's doulitl'ul look. 'Only the minister and hiswife, - and yon can bake it in that .smallest yaller dish. 'iSTow, l'm going up st.iirs ter look over tliciii rags, an' yon make it an' bake it right olt so's I cari seiul it over I iy tlie deacon. He's got ter go out ter the corner this afternoon, nul can take i( along as well as nok She bustled out of the door, but the next moment, seied perhaps wlth a sudden pang of compunction, sbe put her head inagain, to say warniagly, 'Be sure you put in a good parcel of gravy; that'll keep it from Lein' dry, if 'lis half giblets.' 'Yes'm,' anawered Sally, briskly; and catching up the rolling-pin she brought it down with aii emphasis upon a lump of dough upon the mould board. Ab the stairway door closed behind lier mistress, Sally dropped the rollingpi ir, and a look of perplexity crept over lier dull face, making it teu times more stolid than usual, wbile she repeated, in ludierons bewilderment: 'Giblets! What.inall creation, ifanybody can teil me, does she mean by tliem ?' [nvoluntary slie took a step forward, bat checked herielf as quickly, while a cunningsmile replaced the look oí' perplexity, mul she nmttered triuniphantly: 'I guess I ain't agoin' ter confess my ignorance to the deacon'á wife and let her liave her say, as she always does. 'Two terms to the 'cademy, Sally, and not know tliat!' Jio, ina'am! not while there's a dictionary in the house!' So, softly creeping into tlie adjoiniug sitting-rooni, Sally hastily oponed a big diel Lonary on the deacon's writing desk, nul began her search for the niysterious word. 'G-i-b - here 'tis!' and she read aloud to herself, with an air of triumph, the following deflnition: ■Those parta of a fowl that are removed before cooking - the heart, gizzard, liver, &c. 'Tkat'a it! - heart, gizzard, liver, and so forth,' she repeated joyfully, as she retraced hor steps to the kitchen, and began with great alacrity, to flll, according to directtons, theminister'spie; keeping up, meanwhile, a running lire ui comment for her own special beneflt. 'Si.x gizzardsl Well, that is rather 'sleep,' as Dan Watsonwould say. Jïut I guess the deacon's wife knows; if she don't, 'tain't none of my business. Six hearts! Them's small, and tuckinto the corners handy. Six livers! Seeias ter me they don't fill up much, and Bheglanced, with a perplexed air, ai, ü_'])i]e of denuded chicken bones that formed her only resource. 'Now, I wonder,' with a suelden inspiration, 'what that 'and so forth' mean? Ilere's 'heartg, gizzard? and liver,' plenty of 'ein. but no 'and so forth,' and the pie ain't more than two fclürds iull yet. It must mean,' and she cast a bewildered look at the half filled pie, 'the ehicken's legs. I never knew nobody ter put 'em in p. pie, but that must be what it means, an' they'll just fill up.' Xo sooner thought than done. In went three pairs of stout yellew legs apon which their unfortunate owners had strutted so proudly only the day before; on went the well rolled dough, covering them from sight, and into the oven went the minister's pie, justas the mistress of the house re-entered her kitchen, and witli an approving glanee at the snowy pastry, reniarked encouragingly: 'That pie looks real neat, Sally. I shouldn't wonder if, in time, yon carne to be quite a cook.' It was a thanksgiving morning, and Miss Patience Pringle stood at the mintster'a back door. To be sure it was rather early for callers, but Miss Fringle was, as slie often boasted, 'one of the kind that never stood on cere'mony." Indeed, she didn't consider it necessary eveii to knock before he opened the door, altliough she was thoughtful enougli in opening it to do so Boftly. Tlie minister's wife was j nst taking froni tl ie oven i newly wüiiiicd chicleen pie, whicli slie nearly dropped f rom her hand, sostartled was slie by the sbarp shrill voice that spoke so close to her: 'Good mor nin', Miss Graham. Ilain't been to breakf ast yet, I see. We liad ours half an hour ago. I know rny mother nsed to say that if "anybody lost an hour in tlie mornin', tliey inight chase it all day, and not ketch up with it tuen. 'That's a good-lookin' pie - pretty í-ich pastry though, for a chicken pie! I don't never put much shortnin' inanythlng of that kind; it's fich enough iñsiile ter make up. J!ut you're young, an' liave got a good niaiiy things to learn yefc. I run in to see if yon could spare me a cup of yeast; mine soured, and the last batch of bread I made I had ter throw ter the liogs.' 'Certatnly,' and a roguish smile llittered over the fair face of theminister's wife, at this specimen of her nieddlo some neighbor's own economy. 15ut she had learned a rare lesson of judlcious silence, and taking the cup that Miss Patience prodaced froin beneath her shawl, she bade her visitar be seated vliile she left the room to get the desired article. As her steps diedaway, Miss Vatience noiselessly arose from her seat, and approaching tlie dresser upon which the pie stood, peered curiously toto the aperatures in the crust, lier sharp face expressing eager curiosity, TH bet a ninepence she didn't know enougk ter put crackers in. I wish't I could get one look, just to satisfy my ownnüad,' sheadded. And determined to accomplish her object at all hazards, she ran a knife def'tly around a smalí portion of the edge, and inserting four inquisitive iingers, lifted the lirown crust, and took a glimpse of the con tente. A look of unmitigated disgust passed over her face. Dropping into a convenient chair, she actually groaned aloud. 'Well, 1 never! an' we payin' that man five hundred dollars a year, beside a donation party at Christmas. OugliV i 'nsuspicious Mrs. (iraham, as she raturned with the yeast, was somewhat puzzled by the sudden frostiness of her guest, who hurried out of the house as if sorne dreadfulcontagion liad liaunted it; but wl en the minister, in carving the pie that the deacon's wife had sent, made two curious discoveries almost aimultaneously,the reason for Patience's altered demeanor was made plain, and the youiig pair had i hearty laugh made, the old parsonage ring likeapeal of Thanksgiving bells, The Tuesday following was the regular day for the weekly sewing-circle, and seldom had thatinteresting gatherIng proved so lovely and animáted as on this occasion. .Miss Patience was in the field bright and early, and it was evident at igl; n e io those wlio knew lier best that she was well ïiigh bursting with some important secret that she was only waiting a fitting opportunity to divulge. That opportunity was not long in coming, for Mrs. Dea. Farrell, who was a constitntional eroaker, took occasion to ay, in reference to the hard linies - 'The deacon had been tryin' ter collect churcll tax, and he s;iys lic never foiind ïnoney so tight in all the years he's lived here. It's as hard to gel five dollars now as it used to be to get ten.' 'And no wonder,' spoke up Miss Patience, with the stony severity of a spliinx. 'Tou can't expect folks ter feel like payin' out their money wlien they see it fairly thrown away and wasted.' Kveiybody looked cunous, and some of the younger givls began lo bridle defiantly. The mislster's sweel young wife was evidently i favorite with them at least. 'What do you mean by that ?' asked Mrs. Farrell pointedly. 'Miss Graham is young and inexperienced, to be sure; but, as tlie deacon was sayin' only yesterday, she does very wel] indeed eonBidering.' Faüence tossed !ier liead knowingly. 'I don't want to say nothin' tohurt lier, bilt livin' next door as I do, I can't alwaya help seein' and hearin' things that otlier folks can't be expected to know about, and wlien I see tut' know tilines üke ' There was an ominóos pauso, and the deacon'a wife asked, excitedly, 'Like what?' 'Chicken pies, with lega an' feet of the chicken baked in!' liad a tlmnderbolt fallen among them it could not liave caused greater surprise to those tidy, thrifty ]Srew England housekeeper.s titán this dreadful revelation of the incapacity of the pastor's young wife. 'Are yon sure of it V' gasped one matron, breaking the ominous silence. 'I know it for a faet,' was solemnly returned. 'Chicken legs ín a pie.' 'She's a born fool!' ejaculated thedeacon's wife, Lndignantly, 'and I'm thankf ui for her poor husbsnd's sakj Ihat I sent her over oii'J of iny pies yesterday. They had to throw her's away, of coorse, and it's lueky tliat he didnt have to go without his Thanksgiving breakfast on account of her ignoranee an' shiftlessness.' 'IIow did you know abo ut the pie?' asked one of the girls. Miss Patienee brlstled deflantly. 'That's nobody's business but my ownl' she retorted, tartly. 'I don't go round ter flnd out things that don't concern rae, I'd have you know? but wlien they re thrown right into my face, as you mjght say, I don't sluit my eyes more'n other folks.' Just lieve the door opened, and in walked the subject of their conversation, witli lier pretty face glowing with the ha#e that she bad made, and amischievous twinkle to lier brown eyes qhat nobody noticed, so occupied were they in liiding the confusión tliat her sudden entránee had ereated. Walking up to the table where most of the ladies were sitting she eahlted tliem cordially; and then holding out upon the tip of one slender ñnger a well-woni Bilver tbimblo, Bhe said arehiy- 'AVhere do you think I found your thimble, Miss Patience?' So pleased was Miss Patience to regain lier lost treasure that she forgot f or a moment all her assumed dignity and exclaimed joyfully, - 'Well, I declare, I ain glad l seethat thimble once more! I told Mary .Jane that I feit su re I bad it on my flngêr when I run into your house Thanksgivin' mornin' arter that yeast. But when I got home, it wa'n't nowhere to be found. Xow where did you find it ?' Her shrill, high voice had attracted the attention of all in the room, and everybody looked up euriously as the minister's wife replied, with au innocent sniile - 'In the chicken-pie that our good friend hare' - and she noddéd brightly to Mts. Farrell 'sent reo. I left the pie on the dresser when I went down cellar after your yeast, nnd as aoon as I carne back, J piitit on the table, and when my husband cut it there was your thimble in i(. How could it have got there? It ia certainly very mysterious anyway.' Silence, dead, profound, vet, oh, how terribly Bignificant to the deacon's wife and her spinster nelghbor, f el] upon the group, This was apparently unnotioed by Mra. Giaham, who, with a playful admonition to Miss Patience to take better care of her tliimble in future, began an animated conversation with the ladii;s nearest her, that soon restored the oompany to their wonted ease and good humor. liut pooi Miss Eatiencel She never heard the last of that lost tfaimble. AV'liile the deacon's wii'e, to the day of lier death, never trusted any hands bul her awn to make Thaaksgiving pie for her minister, However Burpriaed and diacouraged, timiporarily, Ejlglishmen niay liave been by the foot oí snow wliicli reeent!y blftöketed the island, and however much fuss and flurry may have been caused thereby, the authorities did not consider it necessary to sit with their hands in theli pocketa and vvait for the snow to melt or to scrape it into unBightly nul dlaease-breeding windrows in the mlddje of the streets. The work of clearing it from the streeti of Brighton was completad on February 1, having occupied 4ü:i men twalve duys in it removal, at a cost of about $(i,ÖOO, the nuaiititv i-artcit to the beacli beine 22,i00 loada, L. Smith committed suicide, at Fond du Lar, on bis 99th birthday. He liad long declarad that b did not wislito besóme a centenarian,


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Ann Arbor Democrat