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herself had intended it, warned by the strange
feelings which had come over her as she
walked up the street: and it would gratify
Aunty's feelings that the corpse should not be
left. She intended to lie down and sleep
beside the still and unbreathing form of the
cousin whose last hours had been so beautiful
in her eyes. But Aunty's feelings were now
tried in another direction. Unable to move,
Aunty was sorely distressed by Jem's moanings
and restlessness; and Mary was the only
one who could keep him quiet in any degree.
So, without interval, she went to her work
of nursing again. Next, the funeral of Mrs.
Billiter, and two or three more, fixed for the
same day, were put off, because Mr. Finch
was ill. And when Mr. Finch was ill, he
sent to beg the Good Lady to come
immediately and nurse him. After writing to
his own family, to desire some of them to
come and take charge of him, she did go
to him: but not to remain day and night
as she did with the poor who had none to
help them. She saw that all was made
comfortable about him, gave him his
medicines at times, and always spoke cheerfully.
But it was as she saw from the beginning.
He was dying of fear, and of the
intemperate methods of precaution which he had
adopted, and of dissatisfaction with himself.
His nervous depression from the outset was
such as to predispose him to disease, and to
allow him no chance under it. He was
sinking when his mother and sister arrived,
pale and tearful, to nurse him: and it did
no good that they isolated the house, and
locked the doors, and took things in by the
window, after being fumigated by a sentinel
outside. The doctor laughed as he asked
them whether they would not be more glad
to see him, if he came down the chimney,
instead of their having to unlock the door
for him. He wondered they had not a
vinegar bath for him to go overhead in,
before entering their presence. The ladies
thought this shocking levity; and they did
not conceal their opinion. The doctor then
spoke gravely enough of the effects of fear
on the human frame. With its effects on
the conscience, and on the peace of the mind,
he said he had nothing to do. That was
the department of the physician of souls.
(His hearers were unconscious of the mournful
satire conveyed in these words.) His
business was with the effect of fear on the
nerves and brain, exhausting through them
the resources of life. He declared that Mr.
Finch would probably have been well at
that moment, if he had gone about as freely
as other persons among the sick, more
interested in getting them well than afraid
of being ill himself; and, for confirmation,
he pointed to the Good Lady and the
Warrenders, who had now for two months
run all sorts of risks, and showed no sign of
fever. They were fatigued, he said; too
much so; as he was himself; and something
must be done to relieve Miss Pickard es-
pecially; but

"Who is she?" inquired the ladies. "Why
is she so prominent here?"

"As for who she is," replied he, "I only
know that she is an angel."

"Come down out of the clouds, I suppose."

"Something very like it. She dropped into
our hollow one August eveningnobody
knows whence nor why. As for her taking
the lead here, I imagine it is because there
was nobody else to do it."

"But has she saved many lives, do you

"Yes, of some that are too young to be
aware what they owe her; and of some yet
unborn. She could not do much for those
who were down in the fever before she came:
except, indeed, that it is much to give them a
sense of relief and comfort of body (though
short of saving life) and peace of mind, and
cheerfulness of heart. But the great
consequences of her presence are to come. When
I see the change that is taking place in the
cottages here, and in the clothes of the people,
and their care of their skins, and their notions
about their food, I feel disposed to believe
that this is the last plague that will ever be
known in Bleaburn."

"Plague! O horrid! " exclaimed the
shuddering sister.

"Call it what you will," the doctor replied.
"The name matters little when the thing
makes itself so clear. Yes, by the way, it may
matter much with such a patient as we have
within there. Pray, whatever you do, don't
use the word ' plague ' within his hearing.
You must cheer him up; only that you sadly
want cheering yourselves. I think an hour a
day of the Good Lady's smile would be the
best prescription for you all.'

"Do you think she would come? We
should be so obliged to her if she would!"

"And she should have a change of dress
lying ready in the passage-room," declared the
young lady. " I think she is about my size.
Do ask her to come."

"When I see that she is not more wanted
elsewhere," replied the doctor. ' I need not
explain, however, that that smile of hers is
not an effect without a cause. If we could
find out whether we have anything of the
same cause in ourselves, we might have a
cheerfulness of our own, without troubling
her to come and give us some."

The ladies thought this odd, and did not
quite understand it, and agreed that they
should not like to be merry and unfeeling in
a time of affliction; so they cried a great deal
when they were not in the sick room. They
derived some general idea, however, from the
doctor's words, that cheerfulness was good for
the patient; and they kept assuring him, in
tones of forced vivacity, that there was no
danger, and that the doctor said he would
be well very soon. The patient groaned,
remembering the daily funerals of the last