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kept kissing and holding me fast, as if she was afraid he would ride away with me directly. But, after a little while, she said she should dearly like to hear about Erbach, and if he would take great care of her Carl, and bring him safe back- As to bringing me back himself he said that he could not quite promise; but plenty of good Hamerstein people would be coming out in the spring, and would take charge of me—so mother did not object. The gentleman snatched me away out of her arms (not unkindly though), and threw the doctor's stuff and a leather bag—just like that one Meta there is dangling in her hand-on the bed, and whipped me up again on the tall horse before him."
“What a strange story,” said Mr. Walcot; “it is quite like a fairy tale! Well ! little knight-errant! what befel
“ When we got to Dusseldorf the big man was very busy, and had hardly time to kiss me and bid me goodbye; but he said he would write to grandfather all about my going back when it was settled, and put me into a carrier's wagon for Erbach. It was not the least like the wagon we went to the bush in,
but twice as large, and full of great bundles, very hard to sit upon.
“Mother had often said grandpapa's house was in the middle of the village, with two great Linden trees in front, so I knew it at once, and went up to the door singing for joy. I knocked, and knocked, and nobody answered : at last a very cross old woman put out her head at a window, and scolded me sadly, Oh! grandmother! cried I, don't be angry! Its little Carl come all the way from Virginny to see you.
“A likely story, truly ! cried the woman in a passion—such lying young vagabonds should be put in the stocks !' and she was just going to shut the window when I cried—Oh! granny, granny,
you won't let me in, tell me where Uncle Johann and Aunt Trudchen live.'
“Uncle Johann and Aunt Trudchen !' said she, not quite so angrily—'Sure it can't be Carl Wender's boy from America!
“Oh! yes, yes,' said I; “I am Carl Wender, and father's dead, and mother's sick, and I'm very tired and hungry, so do let me in.'
“ I will let you in, child,' said she; "though the granny you talk of is dead and gone this many a day, and your grandfather too; however, I'll give you a night's lodging for all that.'
“I'd rather go to Aunt Trudchen,' said I, ‘if you please,' for I was frightened at her first cross voice. •You may go back from whence you came, ungrateful imp, for me,' said she, crosser than ever, and slapping the window to; "and then you'll likely find Aunt Trudchen and Uncle Johann, and all your generation. Thank Heaven, Erbach's clear of them!'
“Oh! mother, mother!' thought I, “is this Fatherland ? and I sat down and cried under the big Linden trees till morning.
“ Poor, poor Carl !" said the children, some of them almost crying too_"no wonder you were glad to get back to America. But why did you come away alone ?”
“ Because I was tired of living with people that first stared at me like a wild beast, when they found I had come so far, and then cared no more about me; and when they told me Uncle Johann and Aunt Trudchen were gone to America, by another way, just
before I came, I wanted more than ever to be back in Virginny.
“I had a trifle in my pocket that I got from sister Guttchen's godmother, and I thought I should soon find my way to the seaside again. But I forgot I had come in a wagon, and my clothes were thin and old, and the snow came back, and I fell sick before I got half way to Dusseldorf. It was at Meta's door then luckily, and she took me in and gave me half her breakfast, and brought me here all the way in the ship, and she says she is gathering money to send me back to mother. Oh! sir, sir, is it far from England to Virginny ?"
“A long way, my child,” said good Mr. Walcot, “but we will do our best to shorten it. Two days hence I am going across the country to Liverpool, in a coach with four horses, that travels like the wind. You shall go with me in it, and if you are fortunate, you may see your mother yet before the summer is over.”
The leave-taking between Carl and the broom-girls was very affecting; and Mrs. Walcot contrived to shorten it by taking from her work-basket in the
arbor a strong dark silk purse, and emptying into it the contents of Meta's dirty leather bag, along with fully as much more of the children's eagerly proffered shillings and sixpences. Loaded with these and all the fragments of the feast, the grateful broom-girls departed for the nearest village, after singing over their whole stock of national ballads,—all of which by-the-bye, they had carefully taught Carl, to enliven his mother's lone fireside, and put her in mind of her “ Fatherland.”
Mr. Walcot was as good as his word. The next day but one saw Carl, decently equipped from the young gentlemen's discarded wardrobe, with a German Bible from the library for his mother in the one pocket, and a pruning-knife for Hans Wart, and a packet of needles for Guttchen, in the other, seated on the top of the coach for Liverpool. Two days more saw him deposited, with a plentiful wallet of clothes and a small store of dollars, in an American vessel, under the especial charge of an English gentleman going out to Illinois, who promised to drop him, in crossing the Alleghanies, at the very door of his mother's log-house.