It was natural that it should
be quiet for Mrs. Cairnes
in her empty house. Once there
had been such a family of
brothers and sisters there!
But one by one they had married,
or died, and at any rate had
drifted out of the house,
so that she was quite alone
with her work, and her memories,
and the echoes in her vacant
rooms. She hadn't a great
deal of work; her memories
were not pleasant; and the
echoes were no pleasanter.
Her house was as comfortable
otherwise as one could wish;
in the very centre of the
village it was, too, so that
no one could go to church,
or to shop, or to call, unless
Mrs. Cairnes was aware of
the fact, if she chose; and
the only thing that protected
the neighbors from this supervision
was Mrs. Cairnes's mortal
dread of the sun on her carpet;
for the sun lay in that bay-windowed
corner nearly all the day,
and even though she filled
the window full of geraniums
and vines and calla-lilies
she could not quite shut it
out, till she resorted to
sweeping inner curtains.
Mrs. Cairnes did her own
work, because, as she said,
then she knew it was done.
She had refused the company
of various individuals,
because, as she said again,
she wouldn't give them house-room.
Perhaps it was for the same
reason that she had refused
several offers of marriage;
although the only reason
that she gave was that one
was quite enough, and she
didn't want any boots bringing
in mud for her to wipe up.
But the fact was that Captain
Cairnes had been a mistake;
and his relict never allowed
herself to dwell upon the
fact of her loss, but she
felt herself obliged to
say with too much feeling
that all was for the best;
and she dared not risk the
Mrs. Cairnes, however,
might have been lonelier
if she had been very much
at home; but she was President
of the First Charitable,
and Secretary of the Second,
and belonged to a reading-club,
and a sewing-circle, and
a bible-class, and had every
case of illness in town
more or less to oversee,
and the circulation of the
news to attend to, and so
she was away from home a
good deal, and took many
teas out. Some people thought
that if she hadn't to feed
her cat she never would
go home. But the cat was
all she had, she used to
say, and nobody knew the
comfort it was to her. Yet,
for all this, there were
hours and seasons when,
obliged to stay in the house,
it was intolerably dreary
there, and she longed for
one with an interest,"
she said. "Some one
who loves the same things
that I do, who cares for
me, and for my pursuits.
Some one like Sophia Maybury.
Oh! how I should have liked
to spend my last days with
Sophia! What keeps Dr. Maybury
alive so, I can't imagine.
If he had only-gone to his
rest"-said the good
woman, "Sophia and
I could join our forces
and live together in clover.
And how we should enjoy
it! We could talk together,
read together, sew together.
No more long, dull evenings
and lonely nights listening
to the mice. But a friend,
a dear sister, constantly
at hand! Sophia was the
gentlest young woman, the
prettiest,-oh, how I loved
her in those days! She was
a part of my youth. I love
her just as much now. I
wish she could come and
live here. She might, if
there weren't any Dr. Maybury.
I can't stand this solitude.
Why did fate make me such
a social old body, and then
set me here all alone?"
If Sophia was the prettiest young
woman in those days, she was an
exceedingly pretty old woman in
these, with her fresh face and her
bright eyes, and if her hair was
not all her own, she had companions
in bangs. Dr. Maybury made a darling
of her all his lifetime, and when
he died he left her what he had;
not much,-the rent of the Webster
But there had always been a pea-hen
in Mrs. Maybury's lot. It was
all very well to have an adoring
husband,-but to have no home!
The Doctor had insisted for years
upon living in the tavern, which
he owned, and if there was one
thing that his wife detested more
than another, it was life in a
tavern. The strange faces, the
strange voices, the going and
coming, the dreary halls, the
soiled table-cloths, the thick
crockery, the damp napkins, the
flies, the tiresome menu-every
roast tasting of every other,
no gravy to any,-the all out-doors
feeling of the whole business,
your affairs in everybody's mouth,
the banging doors, the restless
feet, the stamping of horses in
the not distant stable, the pandemonium
of it all! She tried to make a
little home in the corner of it;
but it was useless. And when one
day Dr. Maybury suddenly died,
missing him and mourning him,
and half distracted as she was,
a thrill shot across the darkness
for half a thought,-now at any
rate she could have a home of
her own! But presently she saw
the folly of the thought,-a home
without a husband! She staid on
at the tavern, and took no pleasure
But with Dr. Maybury's departure,
the thought recurred again and
again to Mrs. Cairnes of her and
Sophia's old dream of living together.
"We used to say, when we
were girls, that we should keep
house together, for neither of
us would ever marry. And it's
a great, great pity we did! I
dare say, though, she's been very
happy. I know she has, in fact.
But then if she hadn't been so
happy with him, she wouldn't be
so unhappy without him. So it
evens up. Well, it's half a century
gone; but perhaps she'll remember
it. I should like to have her
come here. I never could bear
Dr. Maybury, it's true; but then
I could avoid the subject with
her. I mean to try. What a sweet,
comfortable, peaceful time we
should have of it!"
A sweet, comfortable, peaceful
time! Well; you shall see. For
Mrs. Maybury came; of course she
came. Her dear, old friend Julia!
Oh, if anything could make up
for Dr. Maybury's loss, it would
be living with Julia! What castles
they used to build about living
together and working with the
heathen around home. And Julia
always went to the old East Church,
too; and they had believed just
the same things, the same election,
and predestination and damnation
and all; at one time they had
thought of going out missionaries
together to the Polynesian Island,
but that had been before Julia
took Captain Cairnes for better
or worse, principally worse, and
before she herself undertook all
she could in converting Dr. Maybury,-a
perfect Penelope's web of a work;
for Dr. Maybury died as he had
lived, holding her fondest beliefs
to be old wives' fables, but not
quarreling with her fidelity to
them, any more than with her finger-rings
or her false bangs, her ribbons,
and what she considered her folderols
in general. And how kind, she
went on in her thoughts, it was
of Julia to want her now! what
comfort they would be to each
other! Go,-of course she would!
She took Allida with her; Allida
who had been her maid so long
that she was a part of herself;
and who, for the sake of still
being with her mistress, agreed
to do the cooking at Mrs. Cairnes's
and help in the house-work. The
house was warm and light on the
night she arrived; other friends
had dropped in to receive her,
too; there were flowers on the
table in the cosy red dining-room,
delicate slices of ham that had
been stuffed with olives and sweet
herbs, a cold queen's pudding
rich with frosting, a mold of
coffee jelly in a basin of whipped
cream, and little thin bread-and-butter
"Oh, how delightful, how
homelike!" cried Mrs. Maybury.
How unlike the great barn of a
dining-room at the Webster House!
What delicious bread and butter!
Julia had always been such a famous
cook! "Oh, this is home indeed,
Julia!" she cried.
Alas! The queen's pudding appeared
in one shape or another till it
lost all resemblance to itself,
and that ham after a fortnight
became too familiar for respect.
Mrs. Cairnes, when all was reлstablished
and at rights, Sophia in the best
bedroom, Allida in the kitchen,
Sophia's board paying Allida's
wages and all extra expense, Sophia's
bird singing like a little fountain
of melody in the distance, Mrs.
Cairnes then felt that after a
long life of nothingness, fate
was smiling on her; here was friendship,
interest, comfort, company, content.
No more lonesomeness now. Here
was a motive for coming home;
here was somebody to come home
to! And she straightway put the
thing to touch, by coming home
from her prayer-meeting, her bible-class,
her Ladies' Circle, her First
Charitable, and taking in a whole
world of pleasure in Sophia's
waiting presence, her welcoming
smile, her voice asking for the
news. And if Sophia were asking
for the news, news there must
be to give Sophia! And she went
about with fresh eagerness, and
dropped in here, there, and everywhere,
and picked up items at every corner
to retail to Sophia. She found
it a little difficult to please
Sophia about the table.
Used to all the variety of a
public-house, Mrs. Maybury did
not take very kindlyto the simple
fare, did not quite understand
why three people must be a whole
week getting through with a roast,-a
roast that, served underdone,
served overdone, served cold,
served warmed up with herbs, served
in a pie, made five dinners; she
didn't quite see why one must
have salt fish on every Saturday,
and baked beans on Sunday; she
hankered after the flesh-pots
that, when she had them, she had
found tiresome, and than which
she had frequently remarked she
would rather have the simplest
home-made bread and butter. Apples,
too. Mrs. Cairnes's three apple-trees
had been turned to great account
in her larder always; but now,-Mrs.
Maybury never touched apple-sauce,
disliked apple-jelly, thought
apple-pie unfit for human digestion,
apple-pudding worse; would have
nothing with apples in it, except
the very little in mince-pie which
she liked as rich as brandy and
sherry and costly spices could
"No profit in this sort
of boarder," thought the
thrifty Mrs. Cairnes. But then
she didn't have Sophia for profit,
only for friendliness and companionship;
and of course there must be some
little drawbacks. Sophia was not
at all slow in expressing her
likes and dislikes. Well, Mrs.
Cairnes meant she should have
no more dislikes to express than
need be. Nevertheless, it made
Mrs. Cairnes quite nervous with
apprehension concerning Mrs. Maybury's
face on coming to the dinner-table;
she left off having roasts, and
had a slice of steak; chops and
tomato-sauce; a young chicken.
But even that chicken had to make
its reappearance till it might
have been an old hen. "I
declare," said Mrs. Cairnes,
in the privacy of her own emotions,
"when I lived by myself I
had only one person to please!
If Sophia had ever been any sort
of a housekeeper herself-it's
easy to see why Dr. Maybury chose
to live at a hotel!" Still
the gentle face opposite her at
the table, the lively warmth of
a greeting when she opened the
door, the delight of some one
with whom to talk things over,
the source of life and movement
in the house; all this far outweighed
the necessity of having to plan
for variety in the little dinners.
"I really shall starve to
death if this thing does on,"
Mrs. Maybury had meanwhile said
to herself. "It isn't that
I care so much for what I have
to eat; but I really can't eat
enough here to keep me alive.
If I went out as Julia does, walking
and talking all over town, I daresay
I could get up the same sort of
appetite for sole-leather. But
I haven't the heart for it. I
can't do it. I have to sit at
home and haven't any relish for
anything. I really will see if
Allida can't start something different."
But Allida could not make bricks
without straw; she could only
prepare what Mrs. Cairnes provided,
and as Mrs. Cairnes had never
had a servant before, she looked
on the whole tribe of them as
marauders and natural enemies,
and doled out everything from
a locked store-room at so much
a head. "Well," sighed
Mrs. Maybury, "perhaps I
shall get used to it." From
which it will be seen that Julia's
efforts after all were not particularly
successful. But if Mrs. Cairnes
had been lonely before Mrs. Maybury
came, Mrs. Maybury was intolerably
lonely, having come; the greater
part of the time, Allida being
in the kitchen, or out herself,
and no one in the house but the
sunshine, the cat, and the bird;
and she detested cats, and had
a shudder if one touched her.
However, this was Julia's cat,
this great black and white evil
spirit, looking like an imp of darkness;
she would be kind to it if it didn't
touch her. But if it touched her-she
shivered at the thought-she couldn't
answer for the consequences. Julia
was so good in taking her into her
house, and listening to her woes,
and trying to make her comfortable,-only
if this monster tried to kill her
bird,-Mrs. Maybury, sitting by herself,
wept at the thought. How early it
was dark now, too! She didn't see
what kept Julia so,-really she was
doing too much at her age. She hinted
that gently to Julia when Mrs. Cairnes
did return. And Mrs. Cairnes could
not quite have told what it was
that was so unpleasant in the remark.
"My age," she said, laughing.
"Why, I am as young as ever
I was, and as full of life. I could
start on an exploring expedition
to Africa, to-morrow!" But
she began to experience a novel
sense of bondage,-she who had all
her life been responsible to no
one. And presently, whenever she
went out, she had a dim consciousness
in her mental background of Sophia's
eyes following her, of Sophia's
thoughts upon her trail, of Sophia's
face peering from the bay-window
as she went from one door to another.
She begged some slips, and put a
half dozen new flower-pots on a
bracket-shelf in the window, in
order to obscure the casual view,
and left the inner curtain drawn.
She came in one day, and there
was that inner curtain strung
wide open, and the sun pouring
through the plants in a broad
radiance. Before she took off
her bonnet she stepped to the
window and drew the curtain.
"Oh!" cried Mrs. Maybury,
"what made you do that? The
sunshine is so pleasant."
"I can't have the sun streaming
in here and taking all the color
out of my carpet, Sophia!"
said Julia, with some asperity.
"But the sun is so very
healthy," urged Mrs. Maybury.
"Oh, well! I can't be getting
a new carpet every day."
"You feel," said Mrs.
Maybury, turning away wrath, "as
you did when you were a little
girl, and the teacher told you
to lay your wet slate in your
lap: 'It'll take the fade out
of my gown,' said you. How long
ago is it! Does it seem as if
it were you and I?"
"I don't know," said
Julia tartly. "I don't bother
myself much with abstractions.
I know it is you and I."
And she put her things on the
hall-rack, as she was going out
again in the afternoon to bible-class.
She had no sooner gone out than
Mrs. Maybury went and strung up
every curtain in the house where
the sun was shining, and sat down
triumphantly and rocked contentedly
for five minutes in the glow,
when her conscience overcame her,
and she put them all down again,
and went out into the kitchen
for a little comfort from Allida.
But Allida had gone out, too;
so she came back to the sitting-room,
and longed for the stir and bustle
and frequent faces of the tavern,
and welcomed a book-canvasser
presently as if she had been a
Perhaps Julia's conscience stirred
a little, too; for she came home
earlier than usual, put away her
wraps, lighted an extra lamp,
and said, "Now we'll have
a long, cosy evening to ourselves."
"We might have a little
game of cards," said Sophia,
timidly. "I know a capital
"Why, Julia, you can't possibly
mean that there's any harm,-that,-that
"I think we'd better drop
the subject, Sophia," said
"But I don't want to drop
the subject!" exclaimed Mrs.
Maybury. "I don't want you
to think that the Doctor would-"
"I can't help what the Doctor
did. I think cards are wicked!
And that's enough for me!"
"Well!" cried Mrs.
Maybury, then in great dudgeon.
"I'm not a member of the
old East Church in good and regular
standing for forty years to be
told what's right and what's wrong
by any one now!"
"If you're in good and regular
standing, then the church is very
lax in its discipline, Sophia;
that's all I've got to say."
"But, Julia, things have
been very much liberalized of
late years. The minister's own
daughter has been to dancing-school."
The toss of Julia's head, and
her snort of contempt only said,
"So much the worse for the
"Nobody believes in infant
damnation now," continued
"O Julia!" cried Mrs.
Maybury, for the moment quite
faint, "that is because,"
she said, as soon as she had rallied,
and breaking the dreadful silence,
"you never had any little
babies of your own, Julia."
This was adding insult to injury,
and still there was silence. "I
don't believe it of you, Julia,"
she continued, "your kind
"I don't know what a kind
heart has to do with the immutable
decrees of an offended deity!"
cried the exasperated Julia. "And
this only goes to show what forty
years' association with a free-thinking-"
"You were right in the beginning,
Julia; we had better drop the
subject," said Mrs. Maybury;
and she gathered up her Afghan
wools gently, and went to her
Mrs. Maybury came down, however,
when tea was ready, and all was
serene again, especially as Susan
Peyster came in to tell the news
about Dean Hampton's defalcation
at the village bank, and had a
seat at the table.
"But I don't understand what
on earth he has done with the money,"
said Mrs. Maybury.
"Gambled," said Susan.
"Cards," said Mrs.
Cairnes. "You see!"
"Not that sort of gambling!"
cried Susan. "But stocks
"It's the same thing,"
said Mrs. Cairnes.
"And that's the least part
of it! They do say"-said
Susan, balancing her teaspoon
as if in doubt about speaking.
"They say what?" cried
But for our part, as we don't
know Mr. Dean Hampton, and, therefore,
can not relish his misdoings with
the same zest as if we did, we
will not waste time on what was
said. Only when Susan had gone,
Mrs. Maybury rose, too, and said,
"I must say, Julia, that
I think this dreadful conversation
is infinitely worse and more wicked
than any game of cards could be!"
"What are you talking about?"
said Julia, jocosely, and quite
"And the amount of shocking
gossip of this description that
I've heard since I've been in
your house is already more than
I've heard in the whole course
of my life! Dr. Maybury would
never allow a word of gossip in
our rooms." And she went
"You shall never have another
word in mine!" said the thunderstricken
Julia to herself. And if she had
heard that the North Pole had
tipped all its ice off into space,
she wouldn't have told her a syllable
about it all that week.
But in the course of a fortnight,
a particularly choice bit of news
having turned up, and the edge
of her resentment having worn
away, Mrs. Cairnes could not keep
it to herself. And poor Mrs. Maybury,
famishing now for some object
of interest, received it so kindly
that things returned to their
former footing. Perhaps not quite
to their former footing, for Julia
had now a feeling of restraint
about her news, and didn't tell
the most piquant, and winked to
her visitors if the details trenched
too much on what had better be
unspoken. "Not that it was
really so very-so very-but then
Mrs. Maybury, you know,"
she said afterward. But she had
never been accustomed to this
restraint, and she didn't like
In fact Mrs. Cairnes found herself
under restraints that were amounting
to a mild bondage. She must be
at home for meals, of course;
she had been in the habit of being
at home or not as she chose, and
often of taking the bite and sup
at other houses, which precluded
the necessity of preparing anything
at home. She must have the meals
to suit another and very different
palate, which was irksome and
troublesome. She must exercise
a carefulness concerning her conversation,
and that of her gossips, too,
which destroyed both zest and
freedom. She strongly suspected
that in her absence the curtains
were up and the sun was allowed
to play havoc with her carpets.
She was remonstrated with on her
goings and comings, she who had
had the largest liberty for two
score years. And then, when the
minister came to see her, she
never had the least good of the
call, so much of it was absorbed
by Mrs. Maybury. And Mrs. Maybury's
health was delicate, she fussed
and complained and whined; she
cared for the things that Mrs.
Cairnes didn't care for, and didn't
care for the things that Mrs.
Cairnes did care for; Mrs. Cairnes
was conscious of her unspoken
surprise at much that she said
and did, and resented the somewhat
superior gentleness and refinement
of her old friend as much as the
old friend resented her superior
strength and liveliness.
"What has changed Sophia
so? It isn't Sophia at all! And
I thought so much of her, and I
looked forward to spending my old
age with her so happily!" murmured
Julia. "But perhaps it will
come right," she reasoned cheerily.
"I may get used to it. I didn't
suppose there'd be any rubbing of
corners. But as there is, the sooner
they're rubbed off the better, and
we shall settle down into comfort
again, at last instead of at first,
as I had hoped in the beginning."
Alas! "I really can't stand
these plants of yours, Julia,
dear," said Mrs. Maybury,
soon afterward. "I've tried
to. I've said nothing. I've waited,
to be very sure. But I never have
been able to have plants about
me. They act like poison to me.
They always make me sneeze so.
And you see I'm all stuffed up-"
Her plants! Almost as dear to
her as children might have been!
The chief ornament of her parlors!
And just ready to bloom! This
was really asking too much. "I
don't believe it's the plants
at all," said Julia. "That's
sheer nonsense. Anybody living
on this green and vegetating earth
to be poisoned by plants in a
window! I don't suppose they trouble
you any more than your lamp all
night does me; but I've never
said anything about that. I can't
bear lamplight at night; I want
it perfectly dark, and the light
streams out of your room-"
"Why don't you shut the
"Because I never shut my
door. I want to hear if anything
disturbs the house. Why don't
you shut yours?"
"I never do, either. I've
always had several rooms, and
kept the doors open between. It
isn't healthy to sleep with closed
"Healthy! Healthy! I don't
hear anything else from morning
till night when I'm in the house."
"You can't hear very much
of it, then."
"I should think, Sophia
Maybury, you wanted to live forever!"
"Goodness knows I don't!"
cried Mrs. Maybury, bursting into
tears. And that night she shut
her bedroom door and opened the
window, and sneezed worse than
ever all day afterward, in spite
of the fact that Mrs. Cairnes
had put all her cherished plants
into the dining-room alcove.
"I can't imagine what has
changed Julia so," sighed
Mrs. Maybury. "She used to
be so bright and sweet and good-tempered.
And now I really don't know what
sort of an answer I'm to have
to anything I say. It keeps my
nerves stretched on the qui vive
all day. I am so disappointed.
I am sure the Doctor would be
very unhappy if he knew how I
But Mrs. Maybury had need to
pity herself; Julia didn't pity
her. "She's been made a baby
of so long," said Julia,
"that now she really can't
go alone." And perhaps she
was a little bitterer about it
than she would have been had Captain
Cairnes ever made a baby of her
in the least, at any time.
They were sitting together one
afternoon, a thunderstorm of unusual
severity having detained Mrs.
Cairnes at home, and the conversation
had been more or less acrimonious,
as often of late. Just before
dusk there came a great burst
of sun, and the whole heavens
were suffused with splendor.
"O Julia! Come here, come
quick, and see this sunset!"
cried Mrs. Maybury. But Julia did
not come. "Oh! I can't bear
to have you lose it," urged
the philanthropic lover of nature
again. "There! It's streaming
up the very zenith. I never saw
such color-do come."
"Mercy, Sophia! You're always
wanting people to leave what they're
about and see something! My lap's
full of worsteds."
"Well," said Sophia.
"It's for your own sake.
I don't know that it will do me
any good. Only if one enjoys beautiful
"Dear me! Well, there! Is
that all? I don't see anything
remarkable. The idea of making
one get up to see that!"
And as she took her seat, up jumped
the great black and white cat
to look out in his turn. Mrs.
Maybury would have been more than
human if she had not said "Scat!
scat! scat!" and she did
say it, shaking herself in horror.
It was the last straw. Mrs. Cairnes
took her cat in her arms and moved
majestically out of the room,
put on her rubbers, and went out
to tea, and did not come home
till the light up stairs told
her that Mrs. Maybury had gone
to her room.
Where was it all going to end?
Mrs. Cairnes could not send Sophia
away after all the protestations
she had made. Mrs. Maybury could
never put such a slight on Julia
as to go away without more overt
cause for displeasure. It seemed
as though they would have to fight
it out in the union.
But that night a glare lit the
sky which quite outdid the sunset;
the fire-bells and clattering
engines called attention to it
much more loudly than Sophia had
announced the larger conflagration.
And in the morning it was found
that the Webster House was in
ashes. All of Mrs. Maybury's property
was in the building. The insurance
had run out the week before, and
meaning to attend to it every
day she had let it go, and here
she was penniless.
But no one need commiserate with
her. Instead of any terror at
her situation a wild joy sprang
up within her. Relief and freedom
clapped their wings above her.
It was Mrs. Cairnes who felt
that she herself needed pity.
A lamp at nights, oceans of fresh
air careering round the house,
the everlasting canary-bird's
singing to bear, her plants exiled,
her table revolutionized, her
movements watched, her conversation
restrained, her cat abused, the
board of two people and the wages
of one to come out of her narrow
hoard. But she rose to the emergency.
Sophia was penniless. Sophia was
homeless. The things which it
was the ashes of bitterness to
allow her as a right, she could
well give her as a benefactress.
Sophia was welcome to all she
had. She went into the room, meaning
to overwhelm the weeping, helpless
Sophia with her benevolence. Sophia
was not there.
Mrs. Maybury came in some hours
later, a carriage and a job-wagon
presently following her to the
door. "You are very good,
Julia," said she, when Julia
received her with the rapid sentences
of welcome and assurance that
she had been accumulating. "And
you mustn't think I'm not sensible
of all your kindness. I am. But
my husband gave the institution
advice for nothing for forty years,
and I think I have rights there
now without feeling under obligations
to any. I've visited the directors,
and I've had a meeting called
and attended,-I've had all your
energy, Julia, and have hurried
things along in quite your own
fashion. And as I had just one
hundred dollars in my purse after
I sold my watch this morning,
I've paid it over for the entrance-fee,
and I've been admitted and am
going to spend the rest of my
days in the Old Ladies' Home.
I've the upper corner front room,
and I hope you will come and see
"Don't speak! Don't say
one word! My mind was made up
irrevocably when I went out. Nothing
you, nothing any one, can say,
will change it. I'm one of the
old ladies now."
Mrs. Cairnes brought all her
plants back into the parlor, pulled
down the shades, drew the inside
curtain, had the cat's cushion
again in its familiar corner,
and gave Allida warning, within
half an hour. She looked about
a little while and luxuriated
in her freedom,-no one to supervise
her conversation, her movements,
her opinions, her food. Never
mind the empty rooms, or the echoes
there! She read an angry psalm
or two, looked over some texts
denouncing pharisees and hypocrites,
thought indignantly of the ingratitude
there was in the world, felt that
any way, and on the whole, she
was where she was before Sophia
came, and went out to spend the
evening, and came in at the nine-o'clock
bell-ringing with such a sense
of freedom, that she sat up till
midnight to enjoy it.
And Sophia spent the day putting
her multitudinous belongings into
place, hanging up her bird-cage,
arranging her books and her bureau-drawers,
setting up a stocking, and making
the acquaintance of the old ladies
next her. She taught one of them
to play double solitaire that
very evening. And then she talked
a little while concerning Dr.
Maybury, about whom Julia had
never seemed willing to hear a
word; and then she read, "Come
unto me, all ye that labor and
are heavy laden, and I will give
you rest," and went to bed
Julia came to see her the next
day, and Sophia received her with
open arms. Every one knew that
Julia had begged her to stay and
live with her always, and share
what she had. Julia goes now to
see her every day of her life,
rain or snow, storm or shine;
and the whole village says that
the friendship between those two
old women is something ideal.