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was a blank. Her love for me was restored, as
if its thread had never been broken. Some such
instances of oblivion after bodily illness or
mental shock are familiar enough to the practice of
all medical men;* and I was therefore enabled to
appease the anxiety and wonder of Mrs.
Ashleigh by quoting various examples of loss, or
suspension, of memory. We agreed that it
would be necessary to break to Lilian, though
very cautiously, the story of Sir Philip Derval's
murder, and the charge to which I had been
subjected. She could not fail to hear of those
events from others. How shall I express her
womanly terror, her loving sympathising pity,
on hearing the tale, which I softened as well as
I could?

* Such instances of suspense of memory are
recorded in most physiological, and in some metaphysical,
works. Dr. Abercrombie notices some, more
or less similar to that related in the text: " A young
lady who was present at a catastrophe in Scotland,
in which many people lost their lives by the fall of
the gallery of a church, escaped without any injury,
but with the complete loss of the recollection of any
of the circumstances; and this extended not only to
the accident, but to everything that had occurred to
her for a certain time before going to church. A
lady whom I attended some years ago in a protracted
illness, in which her memory became much impaired,
lost the recollection of a period of about ten or twelve
years, but spoke with perfect consistency of things
as they stood before that time." Dr. Abercrombie
adds: "As far as I have been able to trace it, the
principle in such cases seems to be, that when the
memory is impaired to a certain degree, the loss of
it extends backward to some event or some period
by which a particularly deep impression had been
made upon the mind."—Abercrombie on the
Intellectual Powers, pages 118, 119 (15th edition).

"And to think that I knew nothing of this!"
she cried, clasping my hand; " to think that you
were in peril, and that I was not by your side!"

Her mother spoke of Margrave as a visitor
an agreeable, lively stranger; Lilian could not
even recollect his name, but she seemed shocked
to think that any visitor had been admitted
while I was in circumstances so awful! Need I
say that our engagement was renewed?
Renewed! To her knowledge and to her heart it
had never been interrupted for a moment. But
oh, the malignity of the wrong world! Oh,
that strange lust of mangling reputations, which
seizes on hearts the least wantonly cruel! Let
two idle tongues utter a tale against some third
person, who never offended the babblers, and
how the tale spreads, like fire, lighted none know
how, in the herbage of an American prairie!
Who shall put it out?

What right have we to pry into the secrets
of other men's hearths? True or false, the tale
that is gabbled to us, what concern of ours can
it be? I speak not of cases to which the law
has been summoned, which law has sifted, on
which law has pronounced. But how, when the
law is silent, can we assume its verdicts? How
be all judges, where there has been no witness-
box, no cross-examination, no jury? Yet, every
day we put on our ermine, and make ourselves
judgesjudges sure to condemn, and on what
evidence? That which no court of law will
receive. Somebody has said something to
somebody, which somebody repeats to everybody!

The gossip of L—— had set in full current
against Lilian's fair name. No ladies had called
or sent to congratulate Mrs. Ashleigh on her
return, or to inquire after Lilian herself during
her struggle between life and death.

How I missed the Queen of the Hill at this
critical moment! How I longed for aid to crush
the slander, with which I knew not how to
grappleaid, in her knowledge of the world, and
her ascendancy over its judgments. I had heard
from her once since her absence, briefly but
kindly expressing her amazement at the ineffable
stupidity which could for a moment have
subjected me to a suspicion of Sir Philip Derval's
strange murder, and congratulating me heartily
on my complete vindication from so monstrous a
charge. To this letter no address was given. I
supposed the omission to be accidental, but on
calling at her house to inquire her direction, I
found that her servants did not know it.

What, then, was my joy when, just at this
juncture, I received a note from Mrs. Poyntz,
stating that she had returned the night before,
and would be glad to see me.

I hastened to her house. "Ah," thought I, as
I sprang lightly up the ascent to the Hill, "how
the tattlers will be silenced by a word from her
imperial lips!" And only just as I approached
her door did it strike me how difficultnay, how
impossible to explain to herthe hard positive
woman, her who had, less ostensibly but more
ruthlessly than myself, destroyed Dr. Lloyd for
his belief in the comparatively rational pretensions
of clairvoyanceall the mystical excuses
for Lilian's flight from her home? How speak
to heror, indeed, to any oneabout an occult
fascination and a magic wand? No matter:
surely it would be enough to say that, at the
time, Lilian had been light-headed, under the
influence of the fever which had afterwards
nearly proved fatal. The early friend of Anne
Ashleigh would not be a severe critic on any
tale that might right the good name of Anne
Ashleigh's daughter. So assured, with light heart
and cheerful face, I followed the servant into the
great lady's pleasant but decorous presence-
chamber.

A COTTON EDEN.

Mr name is Caleb Bottersloot. I am of
Dutch origin, though born in  England, and my
father was Burgomaster of Biesbosh, some few
miles from Dort. I was sent to London for my
commercial training, and, as I became attached
to the place, I remained there, and subsequently
entered into business on my own account. I
throve well for a time, but a change came over
my dream, and I became ultimately a dweller in
Syria. In fact, I lost nearly all my money by
listening to the honest counsels of that smiling

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