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does He keep out of sight? Does He know what is going on? If He knows, why does He not come forward and prevent ? If a parent should Buffer some crafty and wicked man thus to assail his unsuspecting child, and should stand aloof till the child was ruined, what could we think of him ? Should we not lay the blame of the child's rain on the father's lood? How then shall we vindicate God? We can only be silent, holding fast the mosurance given in Christ Jesus of His good. ness, love, and righteousness, and awaiting His own disclosure of the mystery as soon as we are able to bear it. In the meanwhile this is His word to us, O man, thou hast destroyed thyself ; but in Me is thine help.
THE HERO OF KNOWLE MANOR-HOUSE.
- KNOWLE MANOR-HOUSE is in Kent. I accorded with the brightness and It stands amid its ancestral oaks, festivity of the day. There was with its old chimneys and its lofty unwonted gloom in the great halls. roof, a noble type of the departed The face of Lady. Tresham was age of feudal greatness, when mailed pale and sad. The servants spoke knights feasted in its great hall, and in low voices, and even the little fair ladies, dressed in cloth of gold boy and girl, usually so laughing and wearing reticulated headdresses, and boisterous, felt that something wrought gay embroidery in their was wrong, and whispered in the bower chambers. Round about it corners as if afraid to make a noise. sweep broad, pleasant fields, the The table, indeed, was loaded with fertile land of Kent, famous since bounteous cheer, and the children the raven banner of Hengist the had had their beef and mutton, had sea-king waved in the English tasted of the famous swine's head, breeze,
the fumerty puddings, and the good The manor-house is very ancient, old English wine; but wben little so old in fact that it scarcely looks Rafe toasted the king, as was his older to-day than it did in the time wont, he had seen tears in his of the ill-fated Charles Stuart. The mother's eyes, and the face of Joyce, blue Christmas smoke curled from the old butler, looked as gloomy as its chimneys last year just as they a funeral. did two hundred and thirty years Afterwards, when Rafe and his ago. The moat indeed is gone, and sister had crept away to the nursery, where its dark waters once circled the two fell into a long, whispering the wall there is now a rich border talk. of verdant turf. This is an improve-l “What do you suppose the ment rather than otherwise, and so matter is, Hexie ?” asked the boy. too are the beds of gay flowers “Did you see how mamma cried, around the playing fountain. But and how grim and solemn all the in most respects the manor-house servants looked ? Do you suppose preserves its old look, undaunted anything has happened to papa ?” and undisturbed by the flight of Hexie tossed her pretty little head time.
and looked solemn too. She was Brightly on the gray old towers two years younger than Rafe, and shone the Christmas sun of 1645, he was only nine. but the hearts of the inmates ill! “I can't seem to think much
about it,” she said after a time., December sun was sinking low “ Mamma's face has been very sad behind the western treetops, and ever since the news came of that its last expiring rays shot through big battle off somewhere in the the mullioned window. Full in summer-time. I wonder why papa the blaze stood the children, quaintdoesn't come home?".
looking, old-fashioned and foreal, " Why, he's with the king, you in their Cavalier dress. She in her know, that tall, handsome gentle-long ewcoping robes like a woman's, man who stopped here two summers with full sleeves and an elegant ago. Don't you reinember the falling collar edged with lace, and beautiful white horse he rode ? her hair sweeping low upon her And, Hexie, the king told me that forehead, fair as any of the fair some day I might ride such an maidens of her noble race. He horse, and that he would knight with his velvet doublet, with large me." And the boy straightened up loose sleeves slashed up in front, the as if he already felt the knightly collar covered by a falling band of accolade upon his shoulder. rich lace; the long breeches fringed
" That would be nice," said at the bottom, meeting the tops of Hexie, reflectively, “but 'twould be his 1 wide boots which were also nicer to have papa here, and then ruffled with lace. perhaps mamma wouldn't look so “I say, I should like to meet a sad. But it may be that it's the Bogie,"said Rafe, after a long pause. Bogies that trouble her so."
“Let's go to the gallery and see if Rafe laughed.
we can hear any strange noises “What are they, Hexie ?” he there." asked.
“Oh, Rafe, don't let us go. I am “Haven't you heard of the afraid. Perhaps ” creatures ? Nurse Dorothy thinks “Pshaw! I will go first, and you there is one of them in the house, can come after. The Bogie won't and the other servants are afraid to touch us. Besides, I will put on go through the gallery after dark that old sword that papa said his for fear of meeting it. Dorothy great-grandfather wore in the Wars says that it has a hole in the wall, of the Roses. You won't be afraid and once when she was up there dust- then." ing the armour she heard the crea- | Hexie was not quite sure about ture stepping about. It's an awful that, but she helped Rafe to fasten eater. They can't keep any victuals the great sword - belt over his in the larder on account of the Bogie. shoulders, and crept tremblingly Yesterday it ate all the cold sheep's after him, as he walked with the head, and the day before all the tread of a conquering hero along big pastry. Nurse tells me that she the gloomy passage that led to the has never heard of one with so big gallery. The heavy weapon dragged an appetite as this one has." upon the oaken floor, making a
“ That sheep's head did go fearful clatter, and the sound made away mysteriously,” observed Rafe. a ghostly echo that did not serve to “Hardly any of it was eaten at materially lessen Hexie's fears. the first meal, and I expected we The gallery was reached at last. should have it cold. I like cold It was a long and lofty apartment, sheep's head, but Joyce said the dimly lighted by high windows at next day that it was all gone. So either end. A line of portraits the Bogie got it."
adorned the walls, likenesses of They were silent for a time, the boy's ancestors, the Treshams looking out of the window. The and the Knowleses back to the crusading chief who had figured own room and her own bed, where, with Richard of the lion-heart at with the pillows and the coverlet the siege of Acre. A tall cabinet, a drawn over her head, she lay few high-backed chairs, and beyond shivering and crying at the thought where the shadows were the darkest of her poor brother being left a large suit of armour taller than a behind to be devoured by the man, constituted the only furniture Bogie. of the room.
As for Rafe, he drew his sword Hexie started at the sight of the and stood wielding it like a soldier, iron image, for though she had Though his heart beat very fast he seen it a thousand times, the dark would not run away like a girl. figure looked terrible in the dim But when, a moment later, he lights. The empty eyeholes in the heard the sound of voices coming helmet glared out like real eyes, down the stairs, we must confess and Hexie could not help screaming. that he slipped behind the tapestry
“Oh, Rafe, let us go back!” she and hid. cried.
He trembled exceedingly as the "Don't be a baby, Hexie,” said footsteps drew near, and the muffled her brother, testily. “Come on, voices grew more distinct. There the armour won't harm us." must be two Bogies, and it was no
Hexie knew indeed it would not, wonder that the victuals in the for many a game of hide-and-seek larder went away so fast. But had they played around the strange would they eat him? Then he iron figure. Rafe had even con- thought how must a Bogie look. trived a way by which the armour Despite his fears he lifted a flap of could be taken to pieces and put the curtain and peeped out. In. together again, and more than stantly all thoughts of the Bogies once he had hidden inside, leaving vanished from Rafe's mind. Hexie to search for him vainly On the threshold of the door through the gallery.
stood the figures of a man and a The girl screwed up her courage woman, and in the latter he recogat her companion's bidding, and nised his mother. Her companion timidly went forward, hushing her wore the rich Cavalier dress of the footsteps and peering furtively time, but his back was toward into the shadows. It was darkening Rafe, and the lad could not recall fast in the vast room, and even him. When he spoke again, howRafe felt his bold heart shake in ever, all doubts vanished. The spite of the big sword by his side. voice was that of his father, Sir
They both paused suddenly, and Humphrey Tresham. Hexie clutched at Rafe's arm con- ' “ What sonnd was that, Winni. vulsively. The boy himself looked fred?” whispered the knight. startled. Beside them, just beyond “It must have been a rat," the iron figure, and half-hidden by replied the lady. “The domestics the floating tapestry, they saw an are all below. But I dare not stay open door where never one was longer, for I may be followed. Oh, known to be before. And through Humphrey, would that you were this passage there was dimly visible safe on board the French lugger, a narrow staircase winding upward. and over the sea; yet how can I
“ It is the Bogie's hole. Let us let you go ?” fy!” gasped Hexie with a face as "Anything is better than this white as death. And fly she did, hiding and trembling, though exile without stopping to look backward, means loneliness and poverty all flying like a stricken deer to her the rest of my life. Would I had
died at Naseby, in the last charge deceived,” said one of the Roundfor the king !"
heads, who seemed to be the leader. “Hush, Humphrey! I will not “ There should be a secret door or hear you. You are safe now, and panel here. 'Tis plainly evident if you escape to-night, we may yet there is empty space beyond.” have a happy home. These things “Rafe felt as though the floor will not last always, and the king was sinking under him. The will have his own again. You are Roundheads were searching for his sure you have all that you need for father, and he looked every moment your comfort ?"
to see them light on the mysterious “More than enough, thanks to door. It was singular how they you, dear Winnifred, and to good missed it. A dozen times he was Joyce. So the domestics think I sure they touched the boss that held am a Bogie. Well, no wonder; Ithe secret spring. have never had better cheer. That “Throw aside that man of iron, sheep's head yesterday was prime. it is in the way. Doubtless it is a I wonder if all Bogies are as hungry malignant also”-and the soldier as I am ! "
struck the armour with his fist. The Cavalier laughed. Then he “Methinks it is too old for that, stooped and kissed Lady Winni. Zechariah," spoke the captain. fred, bidding her good-night. In a “The armour is of the time of that moment more he had vanished up son of Belial, Harry Tudor. It the stairs, and Rafe saw his tearful matters not, however; thrust it mother close the mysterious door into yonder corner.” and fasten it. He marked the So the Roundhead moved the particular boss that she touched in heavy figure out of the way, and the carved wainscot, and some the rest went on searching for the indefinite idea of slipping in him-panel that seemed just to escape self and paying his father a visit their touch. was in in his mind as Lady Tres- “ It will not do to leave here ham walked away.
until we find the ungodly reprobate. He did not dare to move for five Cromwell will like it not if he escape. or ten minutes, and when at last. But we must have tools to break he summoned courage to step out, down this partition, and we brought he became aware of an unusual them not with us. Praise-God stir and bustle in the great hall. Stanford, stay here, and see that There were rude voices and loud no man escapeth; and you, men, tramping, and presently the gleam follow me. We will soon find the of torches in the gallery. Rafe had nest of this scurvy malignant.” just time to rush across the apart. So while the man called Praisement to another door, when a God Stanford walked back and dozen Roundheads entered.
forth with his halberd on his Rafe was more frightened now shoulder, his companions rushed than he was when he thought he out of the gallery after their leader. heard the, Bogies. What could They were gone a long time. The those fierce men in brown uniforms guard yawned and ceased his and steel basnets want there! He pacing. was not long in doubt. With their “ This work has made me swords and daggers they at once thirsty. I'll warrant there's began to sound the walls, and to plenty of wine in the malignant's tap the floor-boards.
cellar. A draught will make me T The cursed malignant is in feel like a new man." hiding yonder, or wo have been. He cast a glance at the ceiling of
the gallery, then, throwing down They came down again presently, his halberd, hastened away, his muttering disappointedly. At the spurred boots and heavy Sword very door they came face to face making a loud noise.
with Lady Tresham. She was No sooner had the Roundhead deadly pale, but at sight of the disappeared than Rafe sprang for soldiers returning bootless she the secret door. He touched the seemed to gain courage. Her voice spring, and as the door flew open did not vibrate or tremble as she his father stepped forward, sword in addressed the intruders. band and his teeth clenched, stern "I trust that you are satisfied and threatening as he looked in that now, Jerubbaal Whitman. You last desperate charge at Naseby. have found no lurking spy, with all At the sight of his boy the Cavalier your searching. Disperse now and stopped suddenly.
hastily, or General Cromwell shall “Why, Rafe! My little Rafe!"know how you have spoiled my he cried, clasping him to his breast. beautiful wainscot.”
Rafe struggled as though an enemy The Roundhead leader looked had hold of him.
crestfallen, and he could only “Oh, father, fly! fly! Those mutter an apology about " wrong cruel men will slay you. Do not information," and then he very stop a moment."
sheepishly departed with his men. Outside there was the sound of They were scarcely gone when voices again. The Roundheads Rafe rushed out into his mother's were coming back. Not a moment arms. But the poor lady, strong was to be lost. The knight stepped and bold in danger, now that it was back, as if to pass the mysterious past experienced a reaction. White door again, but the boy caught him and faint, she sank down into a by the arm.
chair. “Not there! not there!” he “Your father! What have they cried. “ They will surely find and done with him ? Have they killed kill you.” Then, as if inspired, he him?" was all that she could murpulled him toward the iron image. mur. “Get inside quickly. They will For answer Rafe led her to the not look for you here. Oh, hasten, armour and bade her speak to the papa."
man within. With desperate speed the Cavalier Then the story was all out, and unscrewed the armour, and opening Lady Tresham with tears of joy it stepped inside. Rafe replaced clasped both child and husband in the pieces, and slipped the fasten- her arms. The Cavalier was not ings together. The last rivet was silent. Said he : set as he heard the men thronging “Rafe, you are a hero. None of in the great hall. He was scarcely the old Treshams who led armed safe in his hiding-place when Praise- hosts under Plantagenets and God Stanford and all the rest were Tudors were ever braver. My thronging about the gallery. . | little boy, I am proud of you. No
They had brought the requisite man could have done what you tools this time, and in a few mo- have done this day. You have ments the spendidly dadoed wall saved your father's lite." was split into fragments. Presently Rafe cried when he told his little a door flew open. They had touched sister his father's words, but she the 'secret spring. * At this there laughed. was a great shout. Every man “You are very brave indeed, sprang up the revealed stairway. Rafe, brave as any knight, and I am