"THE Squire you should say, dear. But, 'Mr. Raby' is better still. As a rule, avoid all small titles: the doctor, the squire, the baronet, the mayor."
Jael seized this handle, and, by putting questions to her teacher, got her away from the dangerous topic.
Ever on the watch, and occupied in many ways with Mrs. Little, Jael began to recover resignation; but this could not be without an occasional paroxysm of grief.
These she managed to hide from Mrs. Little.
But one day that lady surprised her crying. She stood and looked at her a moment, then sat down quietly beside her and took her hand. Jael started, and feared discovery.
"My child," said Mrs. Little, "if you have lost a father, you have gained a mother; and then, as to your sister, why my Henry is gone to the very same country; yet, you see, I do not give way to sorrow. As soon as he writes, I will beg him to make inquiries for Patty, and send them home if they are not doing well." Then Mrs. Little kissed Jael, and coaxed her and rocked with her, and Jael's tears began to flow, no longer for her own great grief, but for this mother, who was innocently consoling her, unconscious of the blow that must one day fall upon herself.
So matters went on pretty smoothly; only one morning, speaking of Henry, Mrs. Little surprised a look of secret intelligence between her brother and Jael Dence. She made no remark at the time, but she puzzled in secret over it, and began at last to watch the pair.
She asked Raby at dinner, one day, when she might hope to hear from Henry.