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take another situation, and his father sided with him and encouraged him. It must be confessed that Mr. Marvel continued to have his perplexities about Joshua's career, but to have openly admitted them would have been handing the victory to his wife. So he kept them to himself, and thus maintained his supremacy as master of the house. Many of his neighbours were henpecked, and he used to laugh at them. It would not have done to have given them the chance to laugh at him. Therefore, as time progressed, Mrs. Marvel's protests were less and less frequently made, and Joshua's determination not to be a wood-turner gathering strength month after month, it soon came to be recognised as quite a settled thing that he was to start in life for himself, and was not to do as his father had done before him. Pending his decision, Joshua continued to lead an idle life. But he was by no means viciously inclined ; and much of his time was spent in the cultivation of two innocent amusements, both of which served him in good stead in the singular future which was in store for him. One of these amusements was a passion for music. He knew nothing of musical notation, and played entirely by ear; yet he managed to extract sweet melody from a second-hand accordion, of which, after long and patient saving of halfpence and pence, he had become the happy purchaser. The other of his tastes grew out of a boyish love. How he acquired it will be recounted in the following chapters.

CHAPTER II.

SHOWING HOW A PASSION FOR PUNCH-AND-JUDY MAY

LEAD TO DISASTROUS CONSEQUENCES.

THERE are few boys in the world who are without their boy-friends whom they worship, or by whom they are worshipped, with a love far surpassing in its unselfishness the love of maturer years. The memory of times that are gone is too often blurred by waves of sorrowful circumstance. Our lives are like old pictures; the canvas grows wrinkled, and the accumulated dust of years lies heavy upon figures that once were bright and fair. But neither dust nor wrinkles can obliterate the memory of the love we bore to the boyfriend with whom we used to wander in fields that were greener, beneath skies that were bluer, than fields and skies are now.

Cannot you and I remember the time when we used to stroll into the country with our boyfriend, and, with arms thrown lovingly around each other's neck, indulge in day-dreams not the less sweet because they were never to be realised ? And how, when we had built our castles, and were looking at them in the clouds, with our hearts filled with joyful fancies, we wandered in silence down the shady lane, sweet with the scent of the flowering May that shut us out from view on either side; and across the field with its luxuriant grass up to our ankles, with everywhere the daisy peeping out to watch us as we passed; and over the heath where the golden gorse was blushing with joy; and down the narrow path to the well which shrunk from public observation at the bottom of a flight of cool stone steps, hewn out by the monks of a cloister which should have been hard by, but wasn't, having been destroyed in a bloody battle which took place once upon a time?

Not many such experiences as these did Joshua and his boy-friend enjoy; for our Damon's Pythias,, whose proper name was Daniel Taylor, was lame, with both his legs so badly broken that, had he lived unto the age of Methuselah and been fed upon the fat of the land, those props of his body would have been as useless to him all through his long life as if they had been blades of the ten

derest grass.

The Taylors had three children: Susan, Ellen, and Daniel. Ellen and Daniel were twins, and when they were born Susan was ten years old. The worldly circumstances of the Taylors were no better than those of their neighbours ; indeed, if any thing, they were a little worse than those of many around them. The parents, therefore, could not afford to keep a nurse-girl, and it was fortunate for them that they had provided one in the person of their elder daughter, and had allowed her to grow to a suitable age before they ventured to bring other children into the world. Fortunate as it was for the parents, it was most unfortunate for Daniel ; for before he and his other half were born, Susan Taylor had contracted a passion almost insane in its intensity, to which her only brother was doomed to be a victim. That passion was a love for the British drama, as represented in Punch and Judy. All Susan's ambitions and yearnings were centred in the show; and it was not to be supposed that she would allow so small a matter as twins to interfere with her absorbing passion. How the liking for Punch and Judy had grown with her years and strengthened with her strength, it is not necessary here to trace. The fact remains, and is sufficient for the tragedy of poor Daniel's life. Squeezed to their sister's breast,

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