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to be my companion in his place. I was
pleased that the poor fellow was thus
provided for; but yet I had rather that he had
been given any other post than that; not
from any assignable cause, or of course this
could have been prevented; but from a vague,
uncomfortable feeling that I had always had
in connection with him, such as I should not
have dreamt of mentioning to his prejudice.
I did not mention it, I am perfectly certain,
even to my mother.

"When I found myself in the narrow
lighthouse, alone with this man upon the
waste of waters, this antipathy increased. I
could not meet him on the winding stairs,
without a shudder; I loathed his company
in that little sitting-room upon the lower
story, which when my old mate was with me
had seemed as comfortable a parlour as need
to be; and when I was at work in the lantern,
I was for ever thinking, what is he doing below
there, and whereabouts shall I find him when
I descend? I do not think that I was afraid
of him, then. Time was, when I had not
quailed from a death-struggle with a far more
powerful man than he, and had come off
victor; but still I did not fancy taking my
rest in the snug little bed-chamber as of old,
knowing that this man was awake, and
watching, watching, all the night long.

"Still, beyond being reserved and taciturn,
and having this something repellant about
him which I cannot explain, there was nothing
evil to be said against the poor Italian
foreigner, and I was ashamed of myself whenever
I reasoned about the matter, for feeling
as I did.

"On the night of this day, twelve years ago,
the sixteenth of August eighteen hundred
and forty-one, my father was off-duty at home,
and while he lay in his bed, combating with a
certain idea, which shadowed his mind like a
nightmare, my mother shook him in piteous

" Husband,' cried she. 'Husband, I have
had a fearsome dream, and it seems so like to
truth that I am miserable. Wake, wake! I
do believe our George is being murdered by
the Italian man!'

"'Great Heavens!' cried my father.
'Why I was awoke, just now, by that very
dream, and cannot shake it off my mind, do
what I will. But it must be only fancy;
consider how full the poor fellow has always
shown himself to be of gratitude to us all,
and what could he get by the murder of our

" 'George keeps all his savings in his room
at the lighthouse,' returned my mother,
sobbing. 'I cannot help——Hark! did you
hear that scream?'

"Two or three shrieks rang through the
house, as she spoke; and my sister Mary, with
her hair dishevelled, and in her night-dress,
rushed into the room.

" 'Oh, mother! father!' cried she. 'I cannot
stay any longer by myself; I have dreamed
a dream that haunts me whenever I shut my
eyes. When I left my room, just now, to come
to you, I thought the Italian was at my very
heels, who seemed before, in my sleep, to be
murdering Georgey. He has murdered
brother George, I do believe.'

"'You dreamt that?' exclaimed her

" 'Yes,' said she. 'I dreamt that he cut
my brother's throat in the lighthouse.'

"My father rose in haste, dressed himself,
and started at once, in the moonlight for
the fishing village over against the rock,
which was my lonely dwelling-place. It
was a good ten mile walk, and when he
had been about two hours upon his way,
and it was five o'clock, he met me coming
homeward, with a distressed and unwonted
look. Little did I understand why he wrung
my hand, and welcomed me so heartily,
without even asking how it was that I
came to be upon the chalk-downlands, there,
at such an hour, instead of at my post. I
had a tale to tell to him, which I was, by
that time, ashamed to relate; although. I
had started on the way expressly to do so.

" 'Father,' said I. 'I have done a foolish,
cruel, cowardly thing.'

" 'George,' replied he. 'I forgive you,,
before you tell it to me. I am too glad to
find you alive and well, for reproach; say on.'

" 'I have quarrelled, father, with the poor
Italian foreigner, although he has not
deserved it. I have given him fair warning
that I will not be his mate in the lighthouse
any longer.'

" 'Thank Heaven!' cried the old man.

" 'Nay,' said I, surprised enough, 'but it
was a hard thing to do, since I had nothing
whatever to justify it, except a dream.'

" 'A dream!' exclaimed my father, with a
look of terror. 'What! Another dream?
Did you dream he was going to murder
you, lad?'

" 'Yes, father. I dreamt that dream two
hours ago; and even now, in the broad
daylight, I feel that I could not venture to sleep
another night upon the rock, with that man
only as my companion.'

" 'Heaven forbid you should,' responded
my father, solemnly.

" 'I saw him,' continued I, 'as though
with my open eyes, as I lay in my bed,
with his hand kept back behind him, as
though it were holding some weapon out of
sight, and with Murder set upon his face, as
plainly as though the word had been written
there in blood. I was on my feet in a second,
but yet not soon enough to prove that my
dream was true. I thought I heard his agile
step upon the iron stair. I thought I saw a
shadow flit for an instant across the door of
the lantern; but when I got up there, he
was trimming the lamps so naturally, and
met all my angry suspicions with such
astonishment and coolness, that I am upon
reflection fairly staggered, and don't know

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