“I reckon yu’ can’t stop me lendin’ Taylor a hawss. And you cert’nly’ll get sick schoolteachin’ if yu’ don’t keep outdoors some. Goodby--till that next time.” “Yes; there’s always a next time,” she answered, as lightly as she could.

“There always will be. Don’t yu’ know that?” She did not reply.

“I have discouraged spells,” he pursued, “but I down them. For I’ve told yu’ you were going to love me. You are goin’ to learn back the thing you have taught me. I’m riot askin’ anything now; I don’t want you to speak a word to me. But I’m never goin’ to quit till ‘next time’ is no more, and it’s ‘all the time’ for you and me.” With that he had ridden away, not even touching her hand. Long after he had gone she was still In her chair, her eyes lingering upon his flowers, those yellow cups of the prickly pear. At length she had risen impatiently, caught up the flowers, gone with them to the open window,-and then, after all, set them with pains in water.

But to-day Bear Creek was over. She was going home now. By the week’s end she would be started. By the time the mail brought him her good-by letter she would be gone. She had acted.

To Bear Creek, the neighborly, the friendly, the not comprehending, this move had come unlooked for, and had brought regret. Only one hard word had been spoken to Molly, and that by her next-door neighbor and kindest friend. In Mrs. Taylor’s house the girl had daily come and gone as a daughter, and that lady reached the subject thus:- “When I took Taylor,” said she, sitting by as Robert Browning and Jane Austen were going into their box, “I married for love.” “Do you wish it had been money?” said Molly, stooping to her industries.

“You know both of us better than that, child.” “I know I’ve seen people at home who couldn’t possibly have had any other reason. They seemed satisfied, too.” “Maybe the poor ignorant things were!” “And so I have never been sure how I might choose.” “Yes, you are sure, deary. Don’t you think I know you? And when it comes over Taylor once in a while, and he tells me I’m the best thing in his life, and I tell him he ain’t merely the best thing but the only thing in mine,--him and the children,--why, we just agree we’d do it all over the same way if we had the chance.” Molly continued to be industrious.

“And that’s why,” said Mrs. Taylor, “I want every girl that’s anything to me to know her luck when it comes. For I was that near telling Taylor I wouldn’t!” “If ever my luck comes,” said Molly, with her back to her friend, “I shall say ‘I will’ at once.” “Then you’ll say it at Bennington next week.” Molly wheeled round.

“Why, you surely will. Do you expect he’s going to stay here, and you in Bennington?” And the campaigner sat back in her chair.

“He? Goodness! Who is he?” “Child, child, you’re talking cross to-day because you’re at outs with yourself. You’ve been at outs ever since you took this idea of leaving the school and us and everything this needless way. You have not treated him right. And why, I can’t make out to save me. What have you found out all of a sudden? If he was not good enough for you, I--But, oh, it’s a prime one you’re losing, Molly. When a man like that stays faithful to a girl ’spite all the chances he gets, her luck is come.” “Oh, my luck! People have different notions of luck.” “Notions!” “He has been very kind.” “Kind!” And now without further simmering, Mrs. Taylor’s wrath boiled up and poured copiously over Molly Wood. “Kind! There’s a word you shouldn’t use, my dear. No doubt you can spell it. But more than its spelling I guess you don’t know. The children can learn what it means from some of the rest of us folks that don’t spell so correct, maybe.” “Mrs. Taylor, Mrs. Taylor--”

“I can’t wait, deary. Since the roughness looks bigger to you than the diamond, you had better go back to Vermont. I expect you’ll find better grammar there, deary.” The good dame stalked out, and across to her own cabin, and left the angry girl among her boxes. It was in vain she fell to work upon them. Presently something had to be done over again, and when it was the box held several chattels less than before the readjustment. She played a sort of desperate dominos to fit these objects in the space, but here were a paper-weight, a portfolio, with two wretched volumes that no chink would harbor; and letting

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