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again, “just as I got my wife and children McNeil's name had at first made no imon and was getting sort of fixed up,” he pression on me, but the mention of the added. Then he had resigned from the beds," the Argand Estate” and of Wringunion and had got another place, but man brought up an association. “Mca man he had had trouble with back East Neil?–McNeil ?” I said. “Did you have was “one of the big men up here now” five children, and did your wife bring them and he had had him turned out because he on here some months ago—when the train did not "belong to the union.” He was was late, one day?" willing to join the union now, but “Wring- “Yes, sorr; that's the way it was." man had had him turned down.” Then “Well, I will keep you in longer than he had gotten a place as a driver. But he to-morrow," I said. And I did. But Jushad been ill and had lost his place, and since tice is too expensive a luxury for the poor. then he had not been able to get work, "Law is law,” but it was made by land“though the preacher had tried to help lords and for landlords. I won his case him." He did not seem to complain of for him and got his furniture released; I this loss of his place.
scored the Argand agent, an icy-faced gen“The wagon had to run," he said, but he tleman, named Gillis, “ of high character," and his wife, too, had been ill, and the baby as the Argand counsel, Mr. McSheen, indighad died and the expenses of the burial had nantly declared, and incidentally “the been “something." He appeared to take Argand Estate,” in terms which made me it as a sort of ultimate decree not to be more reputation than I knew of at the time. complained of-only stated. He mentioned The case was a reasonably simple one, for it simply by way of explanation, and spoke my client was entitled to a poor debtor's as if it were a mere matter of Fate. And, exemption of a few household articles of indeed, to the poor, sickness often has the primary need, and he had not half of what finality of Fate. During their illness they he could have claimed under his exemption. had sold nearly all their furniture to live on It appeared, however, that in the lease, and pay rent. Now he was in arrears; his which was in the regular form used by the wife was in bed, his children sick, and his Argand Estate, all exemptions were waived, landlord had levied on his furniture that and also that it was the regular practice remained for the rent. At the last gasp of the estate to enforce the waiver, and it he had come to see a lawyer.
was alleged at the trial that this practice “I know I owe the rent,” he said, “but had always been sustained. It was the fact the beds won't pay it and the loan com- that this was the customary lease and that pany's got all the rest.”
a principle was involved which brought Mr. I advised him that the property levied McSheen into the case, as he stated, for a on was not subject to levy; but suggested client who was the largest landlord in the his going to his landlord and laying the whole city. case before him.
On the stand the Argand agent, Gillis, “If he has any bowels of compassion who, it appeared, had begun as an officewhatever," I began, but he interrupted me. boy in the office of Mr. Argand and had
“ That's what the preacher said.” But then become his private secretary, from his landlord was “the Argand Estate,” which he had risen to wealth and position, he added in a hopeless tone. He only was foolish enough to say that the case was knew the agent. He had been to him gotten up by an unknown young lawyer out and so had the preacher; but he said he of spite against the Argand Estate and that could do nothing—the rent must be paid, it was simply an instance of “the eternal “the Argand Estate had to be kept up, or attacks on wealth”; that, in fact, there it couldn't do all the good it did,"—so he were “only two sides, the man with the was going to turn them out next day dress-coat and the man without."
He had been to one or two lawyers, he “You began poor. When did you change said; but they wouldn't take the case your coat?" I asked. against the Argand Estate, and then the The laugh was raised on him and he got lady had sent him to me.
angry. After that I had the case. I was " What lady?"
unknown, but Gillis was better known than “The lady who comes with the preacher." I thought, and the hardship on my client was too plain. I got the jury and won the I indulged in this reflection when, a case. But, notwithstanding my success, morning or two later, as I was recalling my client was ruined. He was put out of my carelessness in not looking up John the house, of course, and though I had Marvel and Wolffert, there was a tap on saved for him his beds, every article he pos- the door and a spare, well-built, darksessed soon went for food. The laws es- bearded man, neatly but plainly dressed, tablished for the very protection of the poor walked in. His hat shaded his face and destroy their credit and injure them. He partly concealed his eyes; but as he smiled could not give security for rent, and at last and spoke, I recognized him. he had to go, and but for a fellow-workman “Wolffert! I was just thinking of you." named Simms taking him into his house, and He looked much older than I expected, the kindness of the man he had spoken of and than, I thought, I myself looked; his as “the preacher," his children would have face was lined and his hair had a few had to go to the workhouse or a worse place. strands of silver at the temples; his eyes
McNeil's case was the beginning of my were deeper than ever, and he appeared practice, and in a little while I found my- rather worn. But his manner was full self counsel for many of the drivers in our of energy. In fact, as he talked he almost section of the city.
blazed at times. And I was conscious of Among those whom this case brought a strange kind of power in him that atme in touch with was a young lawyer, who, tracted and carried me along with him, a little later, became the attorney for the even to the dulling of my judgment. He government. My interest in him was quick- had been away, he said, and had only just ened by the discovery that he was related returned, and had heard of my success in to Mr. Leigh, a fact he mentioned some- “defeating the Argand Estate Combinawhat irrelevantly. He came up and con- tion”; and he had come to congratulate gratulated me on my success against what me. It was the first victory any one had he termed “the most powerful combination ever been able to win against them. for evil in the city. They bid fair," he “But I did not defeat any combination," said, “to control not only the city, but the I said. “I only defeated Collis McSheen in State, and are the more dangerous because his effort to take my client's bed and tum they are entrenched behind the support of him out in the street without a blanket." ignorant honesty.” As he stood near Coll “There is the Combination, all the McSheen, I caught the latter's eye fixed on same,” he asserted. “They have the Law him with thatcurious malevolent expression and the Gospel both in the combine. They which cast a sort of mask over his face. make and administer the one and then
preach the other to bind on men's shoulders I had not hunted up John Marvel after burdens, grievous to be borne, that they learning of his presence in the city, partly themselves do not touch with so much as a because I thought he would not be conge- finger.” nial and partly because, having left several “But I don't understand," I persisted; affectionate letters from him unanswered for I saw that he labored under much supduring my prosperity, I was ashamed to pressed feeling, and I wondered what had seek him now in my tribulation. But Fate embittered him. “Collis McSheen I know, decided for me. We think of our absent for I have had some experience of him; and friend and lo! a letter from him is handed Gillis, the agent, was a cool proposition; to us before we have forgotten the circum- but the Argand Estate? Why, McSheen stance. We fancy that a man in the street strung out a list of charities that the is an acquaintance; he comes nearer and Argand Estate supported, that staggered we discover our mistake, only to meet the me. I only could not understand why they person we thought of on the next corner. support a man like McSheen." We cross seas and run into our next-door “The Argand Estate support charities' neighbor in a crowded thoroughfare. In Yes, a score of them all listed and every fact, the instances of coincidence are so nu- dollar is blood, wrung from the hearts and merous and so strange that one can hardly souls of others- " repel the inference that there is some sort “How do you mean?” For he was of law governing them.
showing a sudden passion which I did not understand. He swept on without heed “He is a serpent,” said Wolffert. “You ing my question.
remember how he tried to make us kill “Why, their houses are the worst in the each other?” city; their tenements the poorest for the “Yes, and what a fool I made of myself.” rent charged; their manufactories the “No, no. He was at the bottom of it. greatest sweatshops; their corporate enter- He used to come and tell me all the things prizes all at the cost of the working-class, you said and didn't say. He made a and to crown it all, they sustain and support sore spot in my heart and kept it raw. He's the worst villains in this city, who live on still the same.” the bodies and souls of the ignorant and the “Have you seen him?” I asked. He wretched."
leaned back and rested his eyes on me. “Whom do you mean? I don't under- “Yes, he took the trouble to hunt me up stand.”
a day or two ago, and for some reason went “Why, do you suppose the Coll Mc- over the whole thing again.” Sheens and Gillises and their kind could “I shall break his neck some day, yet," subsist unless the Argands and Capons of I observed, quietly. the Time supported them? They have “You know I write,” he said explanatogrown so bold now that they threaten even rily. “He wanted me to write something their social superiors—they must rule alone! about you." They destroy all who do not surrender at "About me?” discretion.”
. “Yes” “Who? How?” I asked, as he paused “What a deep-dyed scoundrel he is!" evidently following a train of reflection, “Yes, he wanted to enlist me on the while his eyes glowed.
McSheen side, but-" his eyes twinkled. “Why, ah! even a man like-Mr. Leigh, “Where do you go to church?” he suddenwho though the product of an erroneously asked me. system is, at least, a broad man and a just I told him, and I thought he smiled one.”
possibly at what I feared was a little flush “Is he? I do not know him. Tell me in my face. about him.” For I was suddenly interested. “To ‘St. Mammon's'! Why don't you
Then he told me of Mr. Leigh and his go to hear John Marvel? He is the real work in trying to secure better service for thing.” the public, better tenements-better condi · "John Marvel? Where is he?". tions generally.
“Not far from you. He preaches out "But they have defeated him," he said there." bitterly. "They turned him out of his "In a chapel?” I inquired. directorship,-or, at least, he got out-and “Everywhere where he is,” said Wolfare fighting him at every turn. They will fert, quietly. destroy him, if possible. Well, it is noth- “What sort of a preacher is he?”. ing to me,” he added with a shrug of his “The best on earth. His life is his best shoulders and a sort of denial of the self- sermon." made suggestion. “He is but an individ- I told him frankly why I had not gone, ual victim of a rotten system that must go.” though I was ashamed, for we had grown
My mind had drifted to the conference confidential in our talk. But Wolffert aswhich I had witnessed in McSheen's office sured me that John Marvel would never not long before, when suddenly Wolffert think of anything but the happiness of said,
meeting me again. "Your old friend, Peck, appears to have “He is a friend whom God gives to a gotten up."
man once in his lifetime," he said, as he “Yes, it would seem so," I said dryly, took his leave. “Cherish such an one. with a sudden fleeting across my mind of a His love surpasseth the love of women.” scene from the past, in which not Peck “Has he improved ?" I asked. figured, but one who now bore his name; A little spark flashed in Wolffert's eyes. and a slightly acrid taste came in my mouth “He did not need to improve. He has at the recollection. “Well, up or down, only ripened. God endowed him with a he is the same," I added.
heart big enough to embrace all humanity
-except—" he added, with a twinkle in known to you. He is with you even until his eye, "the Jew."
the end-and often as much when you do "I do not believe that.”
not feel it as when you do. But Wolffert was gone, with a smile on God appeared very real to him, and also his face which belied his last exception. his hearers. I felt a seriousness which I
had long been a stranger to. He appeared XX
to be talking to me, and I set it down to
tenderness for old John Marvel himself, THE PREACHER
rather than to his subject.
When the service was over, he came down So,“ the preacher” whom my client, Mc- the aisle speaking to the congregation, many Neil, and my poor neighbors talked of was of whom he appeared to know by name, and no other than John Marvel! I felt that he whose concerns he also knew intimately. must have changed a good deal since I knew And as the children crowded around him him. But decency, as well as curiosity, re- with smiles of friendliness, I thought of the quired that I go to see him. Accordingly, village preacher with the children following, although I had of late gone to church only "with endearing wile." to see a certain worshipper, I one evening His words were always words of cheer. sauntered over toward the little rusty-look- "Ah! Mrs. Tams! Your boy got his ing chapel, where I understood he preached. place, didn't he? To my surprise, the chapel was quite full, “Mrs. Williams, your little girl is all and to my far greater surprise, old John right again? proved to be an inspiring preacher. I felt “Well, Mrs. McNeil” (to a woman who for a moment as though I were dreaming. sat with her back to me), "so your husband He was a little older, a little stouter, a little won his case, after all ? His lawyer was an more shy, if possible; but he was earnest, old friend of mine." forcible and impressive. When he came I had sat far back, as the church was full to preach, though the sermon was mainly when I entered, and was waiting for him hortatory and what I should have expected to get through with his congregation before of him, his earnestness and directness held making myself known to him; so, though his congregation, and I must say he was he was now quite close to me, he was so far more impressive than I should have near-sighted that he did not recognize me imagined he could be; while his sermon until I spoke to him. As I mentioned his was as far from the cut-and-dried discourse name, he turned. I was used to hear, as life is from death. “Why, Henry Glave!” Then he took
He spoke without notes and directly from me in his arms, bodily, and lifting me from his heart. His text, “Come unto me, all the ground hugged me there before the ye that labor and are heavy-laden." He entire remnant of his congregation who yet made it out to be a positive promise of rest remained in the church. I never had a for the weary in body, mind and soul, given warmer greeting. I felt as if I were the by One not only able to help, but longing to prodigal son, and although it was embardo so: a pitying Father, who saw His tired rassing, I was conscious that instant that children struggling under their burdens and he had lifted me out of my old life and yearned toward them. The great Physician taken me to his heart. It was as if he had was reaching out His hands to them, long- set me down on a higher level in a better and ing to heal them, if they but received Him; purer atmosphere. if they but followed Him. That meant to I went home with him that night to his turn from what they knew to be evil and little room in a house even smaller and try to live as they felt He lived. He had poorer than that in which I had my room; been poor-as poor as they. He knew their where he lived, as I found, because he sorrows and privations and weakness; and knew the pittance he paid was a boon to the their sins, however black they were. All poor family who sublet the room. But as He asked was that they trust Him, and try small and inconvenient as the room was, to follow Him, forgetting self and helping I felt that it was a haven for a tired and others. Do not be afraid to trust Him, storm-tossed spirit, and the few books it or despair if He does not make Himself contained gave it an air of being a home. Before I left it I was conscious that I was is sufficient for all,” he said. “The motherin a new phase of life. Something made love has some part in the advance made, me feel that John Marvel's room was not and that is not selfish. Thank God! There only a home but a sanctuary.
• are many noble men and women who are We sat late that night and talked of many not selfish and who do God's service on things, and though old John had not im- earth out of sheer loving kindness, spend proved in quickness, I was surprised, when their money and themselves in His work." I came to think over our evening, how “No doubt, but here in this city? " much he knew of people—poor people. It “Yes, in this city—thousands of them. seemed to me that he lived nearer to them Why, where do we get the money from to than possibly any one I had known. He run our place with ?” had organized a sort of settlement among “From the Argand Estate?” I hazarded. them, and his chief helpers were Wolffert “Yes, even from the Argand Estate we and a Catholic priest, a dear devoted old get some. But men like Mr. Leigh are those fellow, Father Tapp, whom I afterward met, who support us and women like--ah-. But who always spoke of John Marvel as his beyond all those who give money are those “Heritick brother," and never without a who give themselves. They bring the spiritsmile in his eye. Here he helped the poor, ual blessing of their presence, and teach the the sick and the outcast; got places for true lesson of divine sympathy.” those out of work, and encouraged those “Who, for instance?” who were despairing. I discovered that he “Why—ah-Miss Leigh-for example.” was really trying to put into practical ex- I could scarcely believe my senses. Miss ecution the lessons he taught out of the Leigh! “Do you know Miss Leigh? What Bible, and though I told him he would soon Miss Leigh are you speaking of?” I hurcome to grief doing that, he said he thought riedly asked to cover my own confusion, the command was too plain to be disobeyed. for John had grown red and I knew instincDid I suppose that the Master would have tively that it was she—there could be but commanded, “Love your enemies," and, one. “ Turn the other cheek,” if He had not “Miss Eleanor Leigh-yes, I know hermeant it? “Well," I said, "the church goes she-ah-teaches in my Sunday-school." for teaching that theoretically, I admit; but Teaching in his Sunday-school! And I it does not do it in practice-I know of no not know her! That instant John secured body of men more ready to assert their a new teacher. But he went on quickly, not rights, and which strikes back with more knowing the joy in my heart, or the shrewd vehemence when assailed.”
resolve I was forming. “She is one of the "Ah! but that is the weakness of poor, good people who holds her wealth as a trust fallible, weak man," he sighed. "We for the Master's poor-she comes over know the good, but oft the ill pursue;' if every Sunday afternoon all the way from we could but live up to our ideals, then, her home and teaches a class.” indeed, we might have Christ's kingdom to Next Sunday at three P.M. a hypocrite of come. Suppose we could get all to obey the my name sat on a bench in John's little injunction, 'Sell all thou hast and give to church, pretending to teach nine little rufthe poor,' what a world we should have!” fians whose only concern was their shoes
“It would be filled with paupers and which they continually measured with each dead beats,” I declared, scouting the idea. other, while out of the corner of my eye I " Enterprise would cease, a dead stagna- watched a slender figure bending, with what tion would result, and the industrious and I thought wonderful grace, over a pew full thrifty would be the prey of the worthless of little girls on the other side of the church. and the idle.”
The lesson brought in that bald-headed “Not if all men could attain the ideal.” and somewhat unfeeling prophet, who called
"No, but there is just the rub; they forth from the wood the savage and voracicannot-you leave out human nature. Self- ous she-bears, to devour the crowd of chilishness is ingrained in man-it has been dren who ran after him and made rude obthe mainspring which has driven the race servations on his personal appearance, and to advance."
before I was through, my sympathies had He shook his head. “The grace of God largely shifted from the unfortunate young