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ing leaves of the many-coloured flags, until the summer night closed in. He then went back into the house, lighted a lamp which stood upon a table covered with books, and read, with unbroken silence around him, till midnight,

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CHAPTER V.

THOUGH Laura Derwent had fully intended to inform her uncle, on the first favourable opportunity, of the assistance she had accidentally received, on the evening of her arrival, from one of the inmates of Languard Farm, she get felt excessively confused, when, leaning back in his driving-seat, Sir Frederick suddenly exclaimed to her, in a tone of extreme astonishment,

“My dear Laura, what in the world made you bow to young Pemberton ? Where could you possibly have become acquainted with each other?"

“Clarice and I found ourselves trespassing upon the domain round the old house on the hill,” answered Laura, blushing still more deeply than she had done, when her eye met

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that of the young clergyman. “There proved to be no road, or at least, only one leading to the farm, in the direction where we had fancied that we could cut off an angle in the lane, by following the foot-path. These hills are so steep for the horses. That gentleman —I did not know his name-showed us the way."

It was now Clarice's turn to colour. Her nature was very straightforward. She wished that her friend had told the whole extent of their obligation to the stranger; but Miss Derwent said no more. It was evidently not her intention to inform Sir Frederick for what length of time, or how near to Maydwell, Lewis Pemberton had been their guide and protector.

“Well, I am sorry this has occurred :'' said Sir Frederick, with an expression of annoyance. "I do not know much of Lewis Pemberton, but the fellow in the gig is a shocking brute. I advise you to keep out of his way. The less you see of any of these people the better."

He touched his horses with the whip, to make

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them ascend the hill more quickly, as if anxious to lose sight of the dark gables that crowned its summit. Laura looked earnestly at the old house with the fir-wood behind it. A small chapel, almost close to the farm-yard, and overhung with yew-trees, particularly attracted her attention, but she made no further remark. Clarice, however, was less timid, and the question she asked was probably one which her friend wished, but wanted courage to utter.

“Mr. Pemberton," she observed, “is apparently a clergyman. Does he perform the duty at that small chapel on the hill ?”

“I believe he has taken the curacy, which is in the gift of his brother :” replied Sir Frederick. “ They are mortally offended at my giving the living of Maydwell to my friend Holcombe, but the old lady, their aunt, kept me out of my rights long enough; and the Pembertons will, in all probability, have what they look upon as their own again in less time than she survived my uncle ; so that they need not grudge me my turn of the presentation. Holcombe, it is most likely, will get a better living in a few years. His wife's father has just been made a Bishop, and they have both strong interest in the church ; but I know, by experience, that expectations are bitter and unsatisfactory things to live upon. None of the Pembertons would have suited me in the parish. We quarrel, as it is, whenever we cross each other's path, as you saw to-day. What should we do if we were next-door neighbours, in the same village ?

“ There seemed to be a great difference in the two brothers :" remarked Clarice. "The gentleman who showed us the path across the fields was very mild and refined : quite a contrast to the rough-coated individual in the gig.”

“Depend upon it, they are all alike !" said Sir Frederick, with inveterate aversion. “Because a young gentleman opens a gate politely to two pretty girls in distress, it does not follow that he is the pleasantest person in the

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