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FEAR AND LOVE.
Who does not know how oppressive is the heat of a sultry day in July, when the summer's sun is scarcely obscured by a passing cloud, and the stifling air is unrefreshed by the lightest breeze? It was on such a day, that a small party of young people were assembled in the library of a pleasant country-house. They seemed to have been engaged in sports of bodily activity, ill suited to the heat of the weather; and now, with flushed faces, they lay or lounged in different positions in all parts of the room.
Robert Seymour, who appeared the
eldest of the party, was about eleven years of age. He was sitting on a low stool in a corner of the room, and, with the string which he held in his hand, making a sort of noose, with which he presently attempted to entrap the leg of a younger boy who lay near him on the ground. The two lads were very different: so that you could easily see that they were not members of the same family. Robert Seymour's firm and robust frame, and bold and hearty countenance, told of a free and happy life, and wholesome air; while the slight and delicate frame, and pallid countenance of the younger boy, were accounted for by his residence in India.
Among the little girls who were reclining together on the sofa, another Indian complexion could be easily detected. William and Selina Maberly had not been long in the country. They had been sent from India to insure their better education and improved health, and had found a happy home with the affectionate cousins around them. William was to accompany Robert to school in a few days, and Selina had already commenced her studies in the school-room with her cousins, Adelaide and Maria Seymour.
The little girls were aroused from their quiet chat on the sofa by a call from William, as Robert's tightened loop drew the little fellow toward him on the floor. · Help!" he shouted with full voice, but in vain.
“ It is far too warm to help in any romp now,” said Adelaide Seymour.
Do, pray, be quiet, boys, now !” exclaimed Maria. " You have led us a long chase over the garden, and we shall not be cool again for the rest of the day. How I do wish it would not be so hot as this in holiday time !"
Selina. O! I do not know that you should say that.
We were very comfort
able in the morning; and, by-and-by, when it is cool again, we can have a good game in the garden.
Adelaide. Yes, but that is only a part of the day, and it is so disagreeable to have a good half of it wasted in this way. I am glad all the summer holidays are not like this.
William. What would you say to the heat of India ? This is nothing to it.
Selina. No; there we are obliged to stay in-doors and be perfectly quiet always throughout the day. Indeed, we are so hot, that we never care to run about as
you do here.
Maria. How glad you must be to leave India!
William. Yes, for some things. But then the houses there are better contrived for coolness than yours. The blinds are so shady and cool when they are wet with water; and at dinner-time we have such a delicious wind from the large
broad fan at the top of the room, which waves backward and forward all the time we are at table.
Selina. Just imagine that a square thing larger than that door, was fastened to the ceiling, and drawn backward and forward by ropes.
There is always a servant above, or in the next room, who pulls it.
Robert. Why do we not have such comfortable contrivances here? sure I should have liked such a fan waving over me at dinner-time to-day. Suppose we try to make one.
Adelaide. How could we do it? We have no hooks to fasten it to, and nothing to make it of.
Robert. Just look here! This screen seems meant on purpose.
Pull this leaf out of the case; it will be quite a good use to put it to in this summer weather, when we do not have fires. Bring me some string, and I will show you how to do it. Run, Maria, do!