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pleasantly to him, and patted him, and he held up his head, and looked proud again. My mother was greatly grieved that the poor fellow should have to die for defending her children; and when she turned from him and went into the house, I saw she was in tears; so I cried louder than ever. One after another we all went up and took leave of our dear and faithful friend. My youngest brother clung about him longest, crying and sobbing as though his heart would break. It seemed that we should never get the child away. My brother Rufus said that no one should shoot his dog but himself; and while we children were bidding farewell, he stood at a little distance loading his rifle. But finally, he also came to take leave. He laid his hand tenderly on Hector's head, but did not speak to him or look into his eyes—those sad eyes, which seemed to be asking what all this crying meant. He then stepped quickly back to his place, and raised the rifle to his shoulder. Then poor Hector appeared to understand it all, and to know that he must die, for he gave a loud, mournful cry, trembled all over, and crouched toward the ground. My brother dropped the gun, and leaned upon it, pale and distressed. Then came the strangest thing of all. Hector seemed to have strength given him to submit to his hard fate; he stood up bravely again, but turned away his head and closed his eyes. My brother raised the rifle. I covered my face with my hands. Then came a loud, sharp report. I looked round, and saw Hector stretched at full length, with a great stream of blood spouting from his white breast, and reddening all the grass about him. He was not quite dead, and, as we gathered around him, he looked
ир into our faces and moaned. The ball which pierced him had cut the cord in two that bound him to the stake, and he was free at the last. My brother, who had thrown down his rifle, drew near also, but dared not come close, because, he said, he feared the poor dog would look reproachfully at him. But Hector caught sight of his beloved master, and, rousing all his strength, dragged himself to his feet. Rufus bent over him, and called him by name. Hector looked up lovingly and forgivingly into his face, licked his hand, and died. Then my brother, who had kept a firm manly face all the while, burst into tears.
My brother William, who was always master of ceremonies on such occasions, made a neat coffin for Hector, and laid him in it, very gently and solemnly. I flung in all the wild-flowers which Albert and I had gathered on the afternoon of our last walk with our noble friend, and so we buried him. His grave was very near the spot where he had so bravely defended us from the mad dog, by the side of the way, in the long pleasant lane where the elm-trees grew.
With all its birds and flowers,
Its cool, refreshing showers.
I love to hear the little birds,
That carol on the trees;
I love the evening breeze.
I love the bright and glorious sun,
That gives us light and heat; I love the pearly drops of dew,
That sparkle 'neath my feet.
I love to hear the busy hum
Of honey-making bee,
Of patient industry.
I love to see the playful lambs,
So innocent and gay;
I love the faithful, watchful dog,
Who guards them night and day.
I love to think of Him who made
These pleasant things for me;
that I might see.
I love the holy Sabbath-day,
So peaceful, calm, and still ; And 0, I love to go to church,
And learn my Maker's will.
How lovely are the flowers,
That in the valley smile;
Pure, and free from guile.
But one thing mars their beauty
It does not always last;