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handsome American house had a home-feeling to her that the wide Parisian saloons never knew. She had become bound to her uncle and aunt by all but the ties of blood; nobody in the house ever remembered that she was not born their daughter; except indeed Fleda herself, who remembered everything, and with whom the forming of any new affections or relations somehow never blotted out or even faded the register of the old. It lived in all its brightness; the writing of past loves and friendships was as plain as ever in her heart; and often, often the eye and the kiss of memory fell upon it. In the secret of her heart's core; for still, as at the first, no one had a suspicion of the movings of thought that were beneath that childish brow. No one guessed how clear a judgment weighed and decided upon many things. No one dreamed, amid their busy, bustling, thoughtless life, how often, in the street, in her bed, in company and alone, her mother's last prayer was in Fleda's heart; well cherished; never forgotten.

Her education and Hugh's meanwhile went on after the old fashion. If Mr. Rossitur had more time he seemed to have no more thought for the matter; and Mrs. Rossitur, fine-natured as she was, had never been trained to selfexertion and of course was entirely out of the way of training others. Her children were pieces of perfection, and needed no oversight; her house was a piece of perfection too. If either had not been, Mrs. Rossitur would have been utterly at a loss how to mend matters,—except in the latter instance by getting a new housekeeper; and as Mrs. Renney, the good woman who held that station, was in everybody's opinion another treasure, Mrs. Rossitur's mind was uncrossed by the shadow of such a dilemma. With Mrs. Renny as with everyone else Fleda was held in highest regard; always welcome to her premises and to those mysteries of her trade which were sacred from other intrusion. Fleda's natural inquisitiveness carried her often to the housekeeper's room, and made her there the same curious and careful observer that she had been in the library or at the Louvre.

Come,” said Hugh one day when he had sought and found her in Mrs. Renney's precincts,-“come away, Fleda! What do you want to stand here and see Mrs. Renney roll butter and sugar for ?"

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6 My dear Mr. Rossitur!” said Fleda, “ 'you don't un derstand quelquechoses. How do you know but I may have to get my living by making them, some day."

“By making what?" said Hugh.

“Quelquechoses,--anglicé, kickshaws -alias, sweet trifles denominated merrings."

“Pshaw, Fleda!"

“Miss. Fleda is more likely to get her living by eating them, Mr. Hugh, isn't she ??? said the housekeeper.

“I hope to decline both lines of life," said Fleda laughingly as she followed Hugh out of the room. But her chance remark had grazed the truth sufficiently near.

Those- years in New York were a happy time for little Fleda, a time when mind and body flourished under the sun of prosperity. Luxury did not spoil her; and any one that saw her in the soft surs of her winter wrappings would have said that delicate cheek and frame were never made to know the unkindliness of harsher things.

i

CHAPTER XVI.

Whereunto is money good ?
Who has it not wants hardihood,
Who has it has much trouble and care,
Who once has had it has despair.

LONGFELLOW. From the Germani.

I

was the middle of winter. One day Hugh and Fleda

had come home from their walk. They dashed into the parlour, complaining that it was bitterly cold, and began unrobing before the glowing grate, which was a mass of living fire from end to end. Mrs. Rossitur was there in an easy chair, alone and doing nothing. That was not a thing absolutely unheard of, but Fleda had not pulled off her second glove before she bent down towards her and in a changed tone tenderly asked if she did not feel well ?

Mrs. Rossitur looked up in her fáce a minute, and then drawing her down kissed the blooming cheeks one and the other several times. But as she looked off to the fire again Fleda saw that it was through watering eyes. She dropped on her knees by the side of the easy chair that she might have a better sight of that face, and tried to read it as she asked again what was the matter; and Hugh coming to the other side repeated her question. His mother passed an arm round each, looking wistfully from one to the other and kissing them earnestly, but she said. only, with a very heart-felt emphasis, "Poor children !"

Fleda was now afraid to speak, but Hugh pressed his inquiry.

Why 'poor' mamma ? what makes you say so ?" " Because you are poor really, dear Hugh. We have lost everything we have in the world."

6 Mamma! What do you mean?"

6. Your father has failed.” “Failed !-But mamma I thought he wasn't in business ???

"So I thought," said Mrs. Rossitur ;-"I didn't know people could fail that were not in business; but it seems they can. He was a partner in some concern or other, and it's all broken to pieces, and your father with it, he says.

Mrs. Rossitur's face was distressful. They were all silent for a little; Hugh kissing his mother's wet cheeks. Fleda had softly nestled her head in her bosom. But Mrs. Rossitur soon recovered herself.

“How bad is it, mother ??? said Hugh.
“As bad as can possibly be.”
“ Is everything gone?"
"Everything!"
“ You don't mean the house, mamma ???
“ The house, and all that is in it.”

The children's hearts were struck, and they were silent again, only a treinbling touch of Fleda's lips spoke sympathy and patience if ever a kiss did.

“But mamma," said Hugh, after he had gathered breath for it,-“ do you mean to say that everything, literally everything, is gone? is there nothing left ?"

Nothing in the world—not a sou. “ Then what are we going to do !" Mrs. Rossitur shook her head, and had no words.

Fleda looked across to Hugh to ask no more, and putting her arms round her aunt's neck and laying cheek to cheek, she spoke what comfort she could.

“Don’t, dear aunt Lucy Othere will be some waythings always turn out better than at first-—I dare say we shall find out it isn't so bad by and by. it, and then we won't. We can be happy anywhere together."

If there was not much in the reasoning there was something in the tone of the words to bid Mrs. Rossitur bear herself well. Its tremulous sweetness, its anxious love, was without a taint of self-recollection; its sorrow was for her. Mrs. Rossitur felt that she must not shew herself

She again kissed and blessed and pressed closer in her arms her little comforter, while her other hand was given to Hugh.

overcome.

“ I have only heard about it this morning. Your unele was here telling me just now,--a little while before you came in. Don't say anything about it before him.”

Why not? The words struck Fleda disagreeably.

" What will be done with the house, mamma?” said Hugh. “Sold-sold, and everything in it.”

Papa's books, mamma! and all the things in the library!” exclaimed Hugh, looking terrified.

Mrs. Rossitur’s face gave the answer; do it in words she ould not.

The children were a long time silent, trying hard to swallow this bitter pill; and still Hugh's hand was in his mother's and Fleda's head lay on her bosom. Thought was busy, going up and down, and breaking the companionship they had so long held with the pleasant drawing-room and the tasteful arrangements among which Fleda was so much at home;—the easy chairs in whose comfortable arms she had had so many an hour of nice reading; the soft rug where in the very wantonness of frolic she had stretched herself to play with King; that very luxurious bright grateful of fire, which had given her so often the same warm welcome home, an apt introduction to the other stores of comfort which awaited her above and below stairs; the rich-coloured curtains and carpet, the beauty of which had been such a constant gratification to Fleda's eye; and the exquisite French table and lamps they had brought out with them, in which her uncle and aunt had so much pride and which could nowhere be matched for elegance ;-they must all be said "good-bye’to; and as yet fancy had nothing to furnish the future with; it looked very bare.

King had come in and wagged himself up close to his mistress, but even he could obtain nothing but the touch of most abstracted finger-ends. Yet, though keenly recognised, these thoughts were only passing compared with the anxious and sorrowful ones that went to her aunt and uncle; for Hugh and her, she judged, it was less matter. And Mrs. Rossitur's care was most for her husband; and Hugh's was for them all. His associations were less quick and his tastes less keen than Fleda's and less a part of himself. Hugh lived in his affections. with a

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