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and surprised by the account, the gentleman instantly requested that the secretary would procure him an introduction to one to whom he was so much indebted; adding, that he would be most happy if his friend the secretary would dine with him on the following day, and bring Mr Drysdale along with him. To this the former readily agreed, and on the following day, accordingly, the desired meeting took place. Amongst other persons to whom Mr Drysdale was here introduced was a wealthy and beautiful young widow, in an exceedingly precarious state of health, sister-in-law of his host. Drysdale's upright character, his intrepidity in saving a sister and her family, and his amiable manners, made a deep impression on this fragile being; and on the occasion of her death, a few weeks afterwards, it was found that she had left him substantial marks of her esteem. When her repositories were examined, a paper was found, bearing her own signature, in which, after making some bequests to her friends, she directed the residue of her fortune to be given to the man who had preserved the lives of her beloved sister and her children, in token of her gratitude, and as a reward for his honourable and disinterested conduct. The sum thus left was found by the deceased's brother-in-law, who adjusted her affairs, to amount to £10,000 sterling ; but before communicating the intelligence to Drysdale, he resolved to avail himself of the opportunity which it presented, of adding to the bequest some token of his own gratitude to the man who had saved his wife and children from a premature death, and whom he could never prevail. upon to accept of any consideration for that important service. When, therefore, he called upon the secretary to inform him of what had occurred, he requested him to say to his friend that the sum left was fifteen thousand pounds, to be paid on demand.
The circumstances attending the bequest of this interesting woman were of so painful a nature, that they affected Drysdale's health as well as his feelings; and, depressed by a morbid sensibility, as well as by an enervating climate, he petitioned to be allowed to return home to England in one of the East India ships then lying in the roads. Unwilling as the commodore was to part with such a valuable officer, he, in reward for his services, granted his request.
The parting of the two friends who had been so long and intimately acquainted, and who were now to be separated, perhaps for ever, was such as may well be supposed. Setting sail with a fair wind, in company with three more East Indiamen, Drysdale bade adieu to the shores of Coromandel, where a succession of uncommon events had occurred in the space of two years, and with a heart agitated by a variety of emotions difficult to describe. He had, indeed, succeeded to a fortune-increased to the value of twenty thousand pounds by the presents of friends which enabled him to return to the place of his nativity with honour, and with credit to himself and his connections; and at the same time, should nothing untoward have intervened in his absence, to unite himself for life to the woman of his affections. Still, he did not feel at ease, considering the melancholy circumstance which had placed fortune in his possession. It was a considerable time before he could repel distressing reflections; nor did he altogether gain health and spirits till his arrival on the coast of England.
RETURN TO ENGLAND. No sooner had Drysdale set foot on shore at Portsmouth, than he hurried to the dockyard, and on calling at the porter's lodge, learned that the worthy old builder had died a few months before, and that his place had been supplied by his old friend and shipmate the carpenter. Unable to inquire after other particulars nearer his heart, he, with an agitated step and boding mind, proceeded straight to the house where he once enjoyed the sweetest moments of his life, and on approaching the door, discovered his two old friends, the carpenter and boatswain, by whom he was heartily cheered and welcomed.
After mutual congratulations were exhausted, Drysdale learned that the mother as well as the father of Susan was no more,
and that she now resided near Fareham with a female relation. The old builder,' observed the carpenter, 'left not nearly the money that was expected of him; and as Susan wished for retirement and quiet, she took a small neat cottage about a mile from the town, where she and her friend live comfortably and prudently on her little income ; which I hope, Tom, you are enabled to increase ?'
“We shall talk more of that hereafter,' said our hero hastily; 'in the meantime I must get a boat to convey me to Gosport.'
No entreaty of his two friends could prevail on Drysdale to delay his intention till the next morning : he instantly hurried to the shore, nor stopped till, with a heart glowing with affection, he clasped his faithful Susan to his beating breast.
'How happy should I now be,' said Drysdale, 'in having the goodfortune to return so much sooner from India than I had any reason to anticipate.
‘Happy it certainly is to me, Tom,' answered Susan, sighing ; but as to its being fortunate to you, I'm afraid it is otherwise. My poor father possessed not nearly the wealth he was thought to have. Five thousand is all he left behind him to her whom he loved while living, and whom he wished should be enabled to live comfortably and easily with the man of her choice after his death.'
And is it not perfectly sufficient to do so ?' rejoined Tom. “Nay, more than sufficient, Susan?'
'Indeed, I don't know,' answered Susan, hesitating ; 'but it gives me pleasure to perceive that, after having visited the rich shores of India, you are so easily contented. I have, however, the satisfaction to inform you that both my dear parents approved and wished for our union, and that with their last breath they left you
their blessing.' “That is worth at least five thousand more,' rejoined Tom ; 'and you, my dear Susan, an additional ten! Am not I, then, a fortunate fellow in the possession of twenty thousand pounds, and such a lass to the bargain?'
'Is it in this manner you adventurers calculate your fortunes in India ?' said Susan smiling. 'If you have brought nothing home with you but this, Tom, I fancy we must live upon love as our best income.
‘Do you call a good constitution and an unchanged heart nothing, Susan ?' asked the other jeeringly; for my part, I consider these well worth five thousand more! Set your mind, therefore, at rest about fortune, my dear Susan; depend upon it, I am worth good five-and-twenty thousand pounds, and if we can't contrive to live on that, we deserve to starve."
Tom was not perfectly correct in his calculation, for his fortune was really considerably more ; while Susan, conceiving that her five thousand was all they possessed in the world, turned affectionately round to him, and taking him by the hand, in the most earnest manner said : 'I could live with you, Tom, contented and happy in the humblest cottage in the kingdom ; it only gives me concern that I have so little to reward you for your fidelity, and that fortune has not smiled upon you as a reward for your merit and services.'
Drysdale's impatience was such, that he could hardly permit a single fortnight to elapse ere he secured the prize he had long and anxiously wished to possess. During this short interval he lodged with his friend the carpenter in the dockyard, and every day passed the greatest part of his time with Susan at her cottage. One morning, as he was about departing for Fareham, the postman brought a letter directed for him at the old builder's, which upon opening, he found to his unspeakable surprise that it contained an intimation that the owners of the ship he had saved had awarded him a salvage of fifteen hundred pounds, as a small testimony of their gratitude, and which sum should be payable by his order on the agent in London. Already more than rewarded for this act of duty and humanity, Drysdale shrunk from accepting the proffered gift. His two friends entertained an opposite view on the subject. The boatswain was surprised at his hesitation, on the score of a fairly won recompense ; while the carpenter, whose opinion had more weight, observed that, after the handsome manner in which the shipowners had come forward to reward his merit, and shew their own gratitude, a rejection of their offer would hurt them, and be attributed to ostentatious pride rather than to magnanimity. This determined Tom to accept of the sum; and being extremely anxious to transmit part of his acquired fortune to his father as speedily as possible, he embraced the present occasion to enclose him an order for the £1500, as a testimony of his future assistance, should it be wanted. He likewise informed him of his approaching nuptials, and of the joy he should experience in once more embracing his affectionate parents on his return to the place of his nativity, which he hoped would be soon; begging his father to arrange matters so as to make himself perfectly easy and comfortable in everything during the remainder of life, as nothing on his part should be wanting to promote it. Previous to this, the old man had received from his son intimation of his success, and of his arrival in England.
When the long-wished-for day arrived that was to unite Drysdale to his beloved Susan, the carpenter and boatswain accompanied him to the cottage, where everything consistent with neatness and propriety was prepared for their reception. We pass over the detail of particulars, and shall shortly remark, that few events in this chequered scene of joys and disappointments could surpass the general happiness of this friendly and affectionate group, interested in each other's prosperity, and bound by the firmest ties of esteem.
One day spent at the carpenter's house, and another at the boatswain's, were all that Drysdale could allow to retard his departure to London on his way to Scotland, where he now ardently wished to be. A more affectionate and tender parting between friends can hardly be conceived. Susan naturally felt sensibly in bidding adieu, perhaps for ever, to the scenes of her youth, and to those who had been the friends and intimates of her good father; while the carpenter and boatswain, overcome with her tears, could only present their hands in silence, and turning aside their heads to conceal their sorrow, murmur out in a broken voice : ‘God bless you !' Although sensibly touched with the evident affliction of his two old friends and shipmates, who had been his instructors in nautical knowledge, and the partial promoters of his present happiness, Drysdale was, from very natural causes, the most tranquil of the four. He was in possession of all he held dear and valuable on earth; he was repairing to London, where matters of importance were to be settled for his future establishment and comfort during life; and he was on his way to a spot where he was to meet with the authors of his birth, and once more restore to their arms a son who had been suddenly snatched from them, and who now, after all his hardships and trials, returned crowned with respectability, favours, and emolument. Such were the soothing sensations of Thomas Drysdale; and such must always be the sweet consolations of every mind conscious of having acted with uniform rectitude, accompanied with the well-earned rewards of industry and genuine merit.
On his arrival in London, his first object was to find out the abode of the lady who had been the accidental instrument of his present fortune, and to whom he was bound in honour to pay his respects. He found her in deep affliction for the loss of her beloved Sophia, but highly gratified at seeing him. Letters from her friends in Madras had informed her of all that had passed there relative to her sister's death; and while she was overwhelmed with sorrow for the loss of one whom she tenderly loved, she felt a sincere pleasure in learning that, unfortunate as the circumstances were, they had contributed to reward the man who had rendered her and her children such essential service, and who could not have been otherwise recompensed by her friends in India. During the stay of Drysdale in London, he had the pleasure of seeing her repeatedly, and of introducing to her his wife, with whose amiable manners she was highly charmed. Having despatched the business that brought him to town, he now proceeded to Scotland, where we shall follow him.
ARRIVAL IN SCOTLAND-CONCLUSION. On the arrival of our hero in Edinburgh, he had the satisfaction of finding his father in perfect health, and in a commodious, good house, where everything was prepared for his reception. His mother had been dead nearly a twelvemonth before, and an only sister married to a respectable farmer about thirty miles distant, a few months before his arrival in England. His appearance at this time was therefore doubly gratifying to his affectionate parent, who, in addition to the pleasure he felt on the return of a favourite son, dignified with the fruits of honest industry, and the honourable rewards of merit, enjoyed the society of two persons the best qualified to cheer his hours of solitude, and render the remainder of his life placid and grateful.
The second day after his arrival, Drysdale made it his business to wait on the parents of his friend Cochran, and to gratify them with the accounts of their son, whom he had left in such prosperity in India. He found the old tailor, who had retired from business, very comfortably situated, and highly elated with the success of his son Andrew, which he attributed entirely to the education he had given him; and it was with no small pain that Drysdale was under the necessity of assuring him that the contrary was the casethat instruction in Latin, in due moderation, was by no means wrong in itself, but that by stopping short there, as in his son's case, and not preparing the mind, by a wider range of study, for the practical duties of life, a deplorable error in education was too frequently committed.
These views, however, as well as some others, were not relished either by old' Cochran' or by the society of Edinburgh generally. Classical education was at that time considered all in all; and young men supposed to be well educated were daily turned into the