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Hayes scan his features, and tell him if he
knew him.

The man looked steadily at him, and Hayes
trembled violently, with a sudden suspicion
of the truth that awaited him.

"I have deceived my friend here," said the
foreigner impressively. "It was I myself
who was cruelly attacked and plundered on
the field of Val. See here!"

The stranger thrust open his shirt, and
revealed, near his left shoulder, a bullet-
wound now healed. "This is your act," he

Hayes uttered a cry of joy, and seizing the
stranger by the hand, fell on his face, and
implored his pardon for the terrible wrong
that he had done.

Some tears rolled down the weather-beaten
cheek of the old soldier as he took Hayes's
hand, and assured him of his forgiveness.
"This noble friend of yours has told me your
strange story," he added.

"It is happily ended so far," said the
preacher; "but with God's blessing it may
have a happier sequel. Would you see
Margaret Ranson once again?"

"The hope of such a happiness was gone
for ever," replied Hayes; "but this night and
its unexpected joy revives it. Would she, or
would her father, see me again?"

"She believes you dead," replied Bonnell:
"that she would be rejoiced to find you
living, how can I doubt? When I saw her
last, she still wore mourning for her loss, and
her father spoke of you with tenderness and
regret as one who might have been happy
with his daughter, and who might have
relieved him of the cares of his business now
in his old age."

On the morrow, Jacob Bonnell wrote to
Margaret and her father, that Richard Hayes
was known to be still living, and that he
would come to them that week, to bring
more important tidings; and in a day or two
Hayes and he started together. It was in
the winter time, with some snow on the
ground, and the old-fashioned Highflier coach
was four days upon the roadan endless and
a weary time; but Hayes's heart was lighter
than it had been for many years. In the old
inns; where he stayed on the road, when he
succeeded in falling into a doze at night, he
dreamed of being again and again an apprentice
in the old saddlemaker's shop, with all
the miseries of his future life still mercifully
hidden from his knowledge. A dream of
dreams it was; but, when they stood before
the old house again, and looked up at its
plastered front, and its worn wooden steps
leading into the shop, in which he had known
so much of sorrow and delight; and at the
small-paned lattice window, from which he
had dropped on to the porch on the night
when he fledand found all still unchanged,
a shade of doubt and fear passed over him,
soon happily to vanish. Jacob Bonnell
entered first, and stayed some time, preparing
the way for his companion. Then he came
out, and led his companion into the room
behind the shop, where the old man, though
now decrepit, was sitting in an arm-chair by
the fire, exactly as of old; and, oh! crowning
delight of all! his own good Margaret, who
had mourned for and loved his memory
through all, fell on his shoulder uttering no
word, but only sobbed for joy. Not dead!
Unless the miserable outcast, the poor soldier,
and the gloomy misanthrope were one
with him.

Jacob Bonnell stayed with them for some
days, doing many good offices to poor persons
in the town, though he visited them afterwards
once a-year, taking their town in the
circuit of his labours. He exhorted them
always to be mindful of the Providence which
had led them to so happy an issue: for
Hayes, before his next visit, was the husband
of Margaret, and the old saddlemaker, who
had retired, leaving all the conduct of his
trade to his old apprentice, had caused to be
written over his windows the words "Hanson
and Hayes, Saddlemakers."


Is my darling tired already,
  Tired of her long day of play?
Draw your little stool beside me,
  Smooth this tangled hair away.
Can she put the logs together,
  Till they make a cheerful blaze;
Shall her blind old Uncle tell her
  Something about long past days?

Hark! The wind among the cedars
  Waves their white arms to and fro ,
I remember how I watch'd them
  Sixty New Years' Days ago:
Then I dreamt a glorious vision
  Of great deeds to crown each year;
Sixty New Years' Days have found me
  Useless, helpless, blind,—and here!

As I feel my darling stealing
  Warm soft fingers into mine;
Shall I tell her what I fancied
  In that strange old dream of mine?
I was kneeling by the window,
  Reading how a noble band
With the red cross on their breast-plates,
  Went to gain the Holy Land.

While with eager eyes of wonder
  Over the dark page I bent;
Slowly twilight shadows gather'd
  Till the letters came and went;
Slowly, till the night was round me,
  Then my heart beat loud and fast:
For I felt before I saw it
  That a spirit near me pass'd.

So I raised my eyes, and shining
  Where the moon's first ray was bright,
Stood a wing├Ęd Angel-warrior
  Clothed and panoplied in light:
So, with Heaven's love upon him,
  Stern in calm and resolute will,
Look'd St. Michael, in the cloister;
  Does the picture hang there still?

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