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who was always a quiet, careful lad, and had
persuaded the Squire to let him go into the
Blexborough bank, where they were glad
enough to have him. So he used to be there
all the week, and come up on Sundays, walking
the ten miles, unless he could get a cast
in a gig, and going back the Monday with
me in the market cart. He was the very
same sort as the Squire, but not such a spirit.
You might see the old man and the young
one, with a very old look and stooping shoulders,
walking up and down the terrace, deep
in talk, every Sunday. Sometimes they
stopped and looked over printed papers Mr.
Charles would bring out of his pocket. If
the weather was too rough, they would take
their walk in the long gallery, and so save
fire. Then they would sit down to dine off a
bit of bacon, or perhaps a rabbit caught in
the park, or any cheap mess, and all the time
their tongues went slowly, steady on,—but
never about anything that I could hear but
just money, money, money.

After a while, Mr. Charles left the bank,
and set up in business for himself, and,
according to what we heard, grew
wonderfully rich. Then there came a time of
plans of American mines, where the orchids
came from, and canals, railroads, and all
sorts of schemings. The old Squire's eyes
used to glisten again when he heard what
a sight of money Mr. Charles was likely to
make. He used to say, when Mr. Charles
was getting ready on the hall-steps to go
home on Sunday nights, " Good boy, good
boy; if all your speculations come off right,
you'll have all I have."

"How much may that be, father? " Mr.
Charles asked him one night.

The old man's eyes glistened, and he rubbed
his hands together gleefully. "Thousands,
boy, thousands! " he said, and then went
back into the parlour, rubbing his hands
faster than ever.

After a while, however, things changed
very much. Mr. Charles lost his cheerful
looks on Sundays, and I noticed that, whenever
he came, the old Squire grew black and
pinched about the nose and mouth, as he
always did when any one asked him for
money. It seemed to me that Mr. Charles's
speculations had not come off right.

Well, one Sundayit was in November
for the first time I heard Mr. Charles
and the Squire at something like high
words; anyhow, Mr. Charles's voice was
raised. So I stood in the shade of the
long gallery door, and heard the Squire say,
"Give my hard-earned money to a pack of
scoundrels, thieves! No, Charles, no; not a
penny. It will be better for you to"——
I could not catch the last word ; but Mr.
Charles screamed, " Never ! " in such a voice
as I did not forget, and heard in my dreams
often after. They ceased then, but began
again after supper, with the doors closed.

The next morning, I went to call Mr. Charles,
as usual, to go with me in the market-cart to
town. His door was fast. I knocked. No answer.
Something misgave me, so I got one of the
boys to climb up to the window with a
ladder, and get in by breaking a pane. As
soon as the boy got in, he began to holloa
and shriek, so I put my shoulder to the
door, and burst it in. Sure enough poor
Mr. Charles had hung himself and was dead
and cold. He'd never been a-bed, but sat
up, writing and tearing up papers. I could
just read a half a dozen times written over
"BankruptBeggarMy poor wife." I
never knew he was married before.

It seemed that the poor lad had been
unfortunate in business; had lost more than he
could pay, and been driven to desperation by
the Squire refusing to let him have the money
he wanted to go on with out of the million
he said he was worth. I went straight to the
old man, and said that I could not stay in
such a house any longer. He never said a
word good or bad, but just stiffened himself
up, and waved me out of the room.

What he felt no one knows; but, after this
last son's suicide, he seemed to grow harder
and harder. The very next day he ordered
a distress to be put in on two poor tenants
that had lost all their stacks by fire, and
turned them out into the snow.

Of course there was an inquest and a great
noise about the Squire killing his son for want
of a thousand pounds, or so, and he rolling
in riches. But, before much could be said or
done, having cold at the funeral, he died
without saying a word, and before a doctor
or a lawyer or a parson could be brought to
him. He left four wills, but none of them
signed.

They put me in charge of the property,
and I had it for years, until they took the
railroad through the Hall. As soon as his
death was known there were claimants in all
directions. It seems Mr. Charles was
privately married, and had a family by one of
the dairy-maids. She married Jesuit Johns,
the lawyer's son, for her second husband, and
Mr. Norman had a wife; but there were some
doubts whether she had not another husband
living when she married Mr. Norman. And
the two sons-in-law, Langston and Woods,
made their claims; and a Mr. Blang, a
wonderful Indian lawyer, set up for some yellow
children of Mr. Rupert's, and showed a camp-
marriage; so there was plenty of law-work.
At it they all went, hammer and tongs,
before all the courts, and were at me every
week to swear one paper or another.

How they settled it I don't know, but the
place all tumbled down, except the walls,
before the railway came through it, and now
I see by this bill, that it is to be sold in lots
by order of the Court of Chancery.

I gave up the charge two years ago, to go
and live with my married daughter, down
south, and as I'm travelling back to spend
Christmas with my son, the first thing I see

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