« НазадПродовжити »
larly tough and fibrous kind of our well-stocked dispensary, Then the dandy-bearers turned and she had, so to speak, the out not to be private retainers run of her teeth there. to the O'Haras at all, but servants of the establishment Thus it will be seen quite of which I was a temporary plainly that the O'Haras can fixture, appropriated by the make one hundred rupees O'Hara to his own proper uses. month go a great deal farther And the ponies grazed on our than you or I can. flower-beds and lawn, and the Meanwhile the three children poultry on our kitchen-garden, are being loaded up preparatory -so they cost nothing
to starting for school. This is As to Carlo, most pestilent a long business, giving ample of retrievers, and the other two time for reflection on the attimongrels, I know not how they tude of the half-caste employer were maintained; but I more towards his wholly black serthan suspect that it was by a vant. I can only suppose that nefarious composition with our the latter will stand more from, chef, and not at the O'Haras' and work better for, a person charges at all. And this was approaching his own colour the greater pity, because the than he will from the sahib dogs barked all night, to the pure and simple. For the grievous discomfort of many manner of these children tosick men besides the would-be wards their attendants, to put framer of the O'Hara budget; it mildly, grates. Masters while by day the parrot's con- Charlie and Johnnie address tinual screams vied with Mrs them as if they were dogs, not O'Hara's scoldings.
unfrequently giving them an Then the children were al- entirely wanton taste of the ways ailing. Still full of hope whip of which they themselves to accomplish some good, I pre are so inexpressibly in need ; scribed for them simple homely while the lady-like Miss Eileen, remedies as follows : more air, who affects genteel mincing more exercise, much more dis- airs, can spit out abuse as only cipline and less petting, and a native can-voluble, shrill, occasional-not too occasional and pauseless. And yet the -severe beatings to Charlee slaves work as I have never and Johnnee. I am not a seen natives work, knocking off mother myself, nor ever shall only on Mrs O'Hara's abrupt be, but I feel sure that my order, given at mid-day, “Now, remedies would have been far go and eat." more effectual than the gallons Johnnie having been torn of drugs that were ever finding from his parent's capacious their way down the throats of lap, and a handkerchief having the O'Hara young.
been tightly adjusted round But then again Mrs O'Hara, Charlie's throat-a sore throat who was a woman of some force being his present ailment- the of character, had made herself twain are assisted on to their a permanent honorary member ponies and start. I look down
on the tops of their enormous most troublesome patients he pith hats as they pass under has ever had. Yet I have my verandah, and note that never fathomed his patience. Master Charles cuts his attend. He acts as my private wire, and ant playfully across the face I tap him when I want to with his whip. Mrs O'Hara know, as nervous patients will, beams fondly on her darlings what is going to happen. And from the doorstep, and so they although his information is not pass away. Miss Eileen is always true, yet it is vastly next packed into her dandy. comforting, for it is all given In addition to her large hat with the kindly wish to allay she carries a very lady - like apprehensions. sunshade, calls of the “Now," say I, “I can tell bearers “son of an owl,” and you what he's going to do this wears gloves.
morning, Mr Phelps. He's Thus do I see the last of the going to use the lancet.
I young O'Haras, but not for the saw him open the case, the day,-dear me, no! For are pocket - case yesterday, and they not back by 11 A.M.? And after fiddling with it for a bit that is only on those occasions he said to himself, “No, we'll when they are well enough to go let it settle down a bit.' Now to school at all. This for one tell me if he isn't going to use or other of them is not more the lancet this morning ?” To than on three days out of six. which Mr Phelps reassuringly On the remainder, one or more replies, “Why, bless you! no, will complain to Momma of sir. He'll go on with the abdominal pains, high tem- fomentations. That's only a perature, or chest, and Momma habit Dr X has of fingering says, “No, darling, you shall the lancets.' not go to school to-day," and This is most reassuring. summons medical aid
very Familiarity with lancets never shrilly; and the children spend did breed contempt for them. a day in the garden agreeable Mr Phelps I shall always reto themselves, but tiresome to member with affection and everyone else.
gratitude. He and his class "Good morning, sir,” says see all the seamy side of their the cheerful voice of Mr Phelps profession. No social status or who is making his morning military rank for the likes of round, collecting bulletins. “Ah, them. Theirs the small pay, sir, I expect it was more than hard work, and the humdrum that," he replies, when I routine of doctoring
doctoring uninsolemnly assure him that he teresting kinds of patients full had not made the morphia dose of wiles or unattractive disstrong enough, and that it had eases. What wonder, then, if only procured me three hours they become a little callous ! of sleep. He is very sceptical, Yet my Mr Phelps had lost is Mr Phelps, but otherwise the none of the milk of human best of good fellows, and in kindness. No one more down immediate charge of one of the than he on the malingerer or
more sharp in detecting him. are his silk-knitted ties ; so, No one more solicitous for the indeed, is his spick-and-span real cases, and withal as gentle turn-out generally. as a woman, and as tolerant Though I well know what and patient of a nervous in- his advent portends, yet it is valid's apprehensions. “What always welcome. He is tactwe want, sir,”—and this was ful, and does not at his only complaint of a service proceed to strip and roll up his which might supply a score or sleeves, but preludes his painmore-“What we want, sir, is ful operations with
a few a godfather: our service has no minutes' cheerful conversation, one to look after its interests. lightly touching
the Now, if we only had a god- topics of the hour, and on the father!” I sincerely trust, for social events of our little world. Mr Phelps' sake alone, that a When he has done this he has suitable sponsor may be found; finished his pipe, and when he better still, that his dream of has finished his pipe his coat happiness may
be fulfilled and comes off and he "starts in." that a fairy godmother may I may as well skip the next furnish him with the paltry half-hour and the record of all sum of money—I forget the that occurs therein, from the exact amount to enable him words “And now let's have a to realise his dearest wish, look at it” to “Well, I'm afraid that of qualifying as a dental I have hurt you a bit, but the surgeon and buying a large pain 'll soon go”; and his myrpractice in Calcutta. That midons disappear, together with
out when were basins, hot water, bandages, not amusing ourselves by stating forgetting the devilish little what we should do if we came black leather case containing into a fortune.
the lancets and probes. That Then breakfast. Item, the part of the day is well over. tea
is flavoured with soup, To-day is Wednesday, the because our establishment has weekly handicap-day for the no “feeders," and the teapot fleet of tiny raters that adorn has to be used for soup, and the lake, and the gun which vice versa.
We are short of has just been fired is the “get quite a number of things in ready.” The homeward-turning our establishment. But there buoy is quite close under my is plenty of Red Tape. At verandah; and presently, after soup - time the acting feeder the usual manoeuvrings, which will be flavoured with tea. will be amply described in
At 10 A.M. sharp the light marine language in our weekly step of the Tormentor is heard issue, The Lake Hurricane,' round the
corner, followed the second gun releases the instantly by the appearance of flotilla of white butterflies his cheerful waistcoat. I do which have been jostling one not mean that he is stout, another at the farther end of merely that his waistcoats—hé the lake.
are of the most Colonel X-the sound of the cheerful varieties. So, indeed, gun draws him from his stool
(in the office hard by)-dashes and his complexion - loving into the verandah. “Field- affinity, and in this breeze, she glasses ?” “Yes, here's a would have saved by fifteen, pair!” and the old salt has not two, minutes!” them in an instant glued to Ah! These salts ! his lee and weather peepers. In fact, Wednesday was al“ No, no longer owner," he ways a red - letter day with ejaculates. “No time; too me. With luck and frequent much dashed office work; had calms the race would last most to sell her, the little jewel; last of the forenoon, while with year's 'crack' she was—and more luck and squalls there would be this year if that duffer was always more than a knew how to Ah! you chance of one of the boats lubber, you! keep her full! joining the great company of keep her full, man, for craft that already paved the goodness sake!” The lubber, bottom of the lake, and of best part of a mile away, watching the salvage operais in blissful ignorance of tions that followed. Charlie these exhortations. From this and Johnnie had returned from distance only his large hat can school an hour since, and havbe discerned above the gunwale ing rested a little were now at of the little jewel, while his play. Charlie, reclining in a complement of two hands is chair, was lobbing stones (and represented by a scarlet sun- would continue to do so till shade amidships and a black called in to eat and sleep) on bullet head farther forward to the corrugated iron roof of
The former owner, holding his dwelling, for the pure dethe glasses still to his eyes, light of hearing them roll continues—“And if he hasn't clanging down the slope. This got a woman aboard ! a woman pastime is immensely annoying with a damnation parasol to everyone but Charlie, and blanketing half his canvas! his attendant-one is always on Oh man! man! you're not duty-supplies him constantly worthy the Billow !”—and dash- with stones. Johnnie, dear ining the glasses from his har- nocent, has a little rook-rifle. rowed countenance, he bounds Recumbent he will discharge away once more to his office it at intervals of sixty seconds stool.
for quite long periods, at birds I, however, have more leisure, for choice, his own retainers and can follow the race to the and poultry only from necesbitter end. The Billow, despite sity. The pellet makes a nasty her lubberly owner and the “phut” as it hurtles through woman with the blankety the trees, and my walnut, with parasol, not only comes in all its thick foliage, affords only first but saves her time. This cover from view; and Johnnie, intelligence I communicate in a should the fancy take him, pencilled bulletin to Colonel X, might use me as a nice fixed wondering in what manner he target. I must therefore keep will take it. His answer runs on the right side of Johnnie. -“Thanks; without that fool To Mrs O'Hara I dare not piety, with a fine presence, and Take him for all in all, we it must have been from her shall ne'er look upon his like that he inherited”—all his again. Times have changed, good qualities in short,—for in and never again will a factor spite of his insight into Mr have such power for good or Gladstone's defects as a prac- evil. Thirty years ago Mr tical statesman, he considers Maciver was practically an that if he had not become a Eastern governor, under the Home Ruler he would have restraint only of the common gone down to posterity “as a law of Scotland. His sultan good, pious, God-fearing man, was a wise and benevolent —the most remarkable man Duke, who each year spent of this century.” He adds to more on his Highland dothe appreciation of the mother mains than he got from them. of the statesman a criticism of In times of dearth and his father :
famine, road-making, emigra“I had occasion to know a good
tion schemes, the purveying deal about him. He was a strong.
of food, seed, and cattle and minded, clever man of business, self horses for the improvement of reliant and imperious, wholly absorbed stock and for replenishing in making a fortune. I considered holdings—all such things were him a rough, outspoken man.”
devised and carried out by Mr W. B. Blaikie, who knows proprietor or factor without more about the 'Forty-Five than the aid of public money or of anybody else, was asked by Crofters Commissions or ConMr J. M. Barrie : “If I were gested Districts Boards. Mr to write a book or a play Maciver was no friend to the about the 'Forty-Five, how Crofters Commission : he reshould I make the Highland garded it somewhat as a chiefs in hiding spend their personal insult, and when we time?” “In reading Virgil learn that since its creation in and Horace, or in making 1889 it has consumed about Latin verses of their own if £100,000 in salaries and exthey had no books,” was the penses, — enough to buy up instant reply, and he promptly nearly the whole of the Highproved it by documentary evi- land crofts and present them dence. Evander Maciver never to the people free of all rent, forgot his Latin. Catullus and sympathy must remain with Martial, we are told, remained the practical administrator his friends and companions, rather than with the Radical and the writer remembers that reformer. an apt quotation from time to The notorious “Sutherland time was used by the gracious Clearances” took place before host of Scourie — not pedan- Mr Maciver's day. He, how. tically, but haply to recall the ever, had some part in helping fact that life and letters were to build up a Scottish Canada not confined to killing salmon but his emigrants were on the Laxford and a perusal voluntary, their passages were of the daily paper.
paid, money was advanced to