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shades to-morrow, beware of Sherwood Forest as they travel on; for Robin Hood yonder, and his friend Little John, who is not far off, haunts its shades, and if report says true, they do not always respect the purses or jewels of the fair."

A painful sensation passed through the mind of Rose, as the mask made this speech; for the tall, stately figure of the man pointed out as Robin Hood seemed strangely familiar to her-nay, she felt convinced that this masque was none other than Basil Methan, and the jests of the archer sent a pang of fear and horror to the very depths of her heart.

"Do let us go, dear madam," she exclaimed, drawing Mrs. Purcell's arm within her own.

"Nay, child, I am sure I shall not," answered Mrs. Purcell sharply; "the fun is only just beginning."

"Sun and stars all in one!" cried out a mask catching hold of a fold of the lady's spangled drapery; "let us bask awhile in thy radiance! Thou hast chosen a bad companion in this wretched blue domino, who should rather wear the habit of a nun, and follow in the wake of the dull-witted friar who escorted you here."

In the midst of this and similar conversation the hours wore on, hours of weariness and disgust to Rose, for she took no pleasure in the remarks or grotesque appearance of the swarm of masks who followed them-now one with a broad-brimmed, half-slouched hat, with a high flat crown, a short black cloak, and a dark lanthorn in his hand, which he held up to every one's mask, and who was saluted as Guy Fawkes-then two Lucifers-again, a harlequin, who hopped and skipped about the two ladies, and told Rose he knew her for the fair rustic from Winchester.

It was not till near three o'clock that Mrs. Purcell could consent to tear herself away from this, to her, enchanting scene of diversion.


"There is sorrow on the sea, it cannot be quiet."-Jeremiah xlix. 23. It was Sunday evening, and service was going on in a church by the sea-shore--a little weather-beaten old grey church, so near the waves that sometimes their spray dashed against the windowsas it did now, for there was a fitful storm about; sulkily muttering, then hawling over the sea, raising angry foam and hallowing many a weird grave.

The congregation in that church by the sea-shore was small and anxious, and had never known a sadder Sunday evening-it numbered the wives and children and aged of an uncouth fishing village; there were no strong brave men praying by their sides, and their hearts failed them for fear as they heard the sea and the waves roaring, for the fishing boats that had set out so gaily had been missing three long days.

The voice of the clergyman trembled as he paused on the words, "specially those for whom our prayers are desired;" there was a silence broken by one heartrending sob-it might have come from any of those poor weeping women. They had come to church to pray, for he had asked them to do so; but it was in very misery they knelt, and offered tears instead of words. At last their pastor rose to preach.

The scarce understanding child leant its head against its mother, hoping it might rest a little, for may be it was tired; but it didn't know why the accustomed shoulder was tenderer, or why no whispered "sit up and be good" rebuked it, why, rather, it was let to lean so drowsily-ah! how could its mother tell? Perhaps it was fatherless-poor little one, may be the days were coming when it would have to be the bread-winner, so the shoulder could not be too gentle.

The mother tried to raise her eyes to the pulpit where she was wont to look on Sundays, and seemed to hear the good words better for seeing the face of the preacher. It was a kind, true face, kind to sympathise with them in joy or sorrow, true to meet their troubles hand-in-hand with them.

"There is sorrow on the sea, it cannot be quiet," that was his text, and they listened meekly to it, though the spray was raining on the window. They had a clinging trust in him that prevented rebellion when he spoke; the words were bitter, but they knew he

would tune them to their need. They had seen his hair grow white in their service, they knew the lines on his brow were Time's hand recording his toil among them, and they loved him as a father, and heeded all he said; and he loved them more than anything in the world, except his wife's grave just outside that window; the waves sent up their tears to water it when there was sorrow on the sea. They could scarcely remember her, because she had been with them such a short time, but they often paused to read her headstone; and if they heard their pastor's steps coming up the gravel-walk behind them, they would hurry on half shame-faced; they could not have told you why. No shamefacedness was there, though, when the clergyman rose to preach, and in a voice with a sort of yearning in it gave out his text; he wanted so to comfort them, to help them, and to tell them some One was more yearning still than he to sympathise and love. He had often told them so before, but to-night he would do so again, asking God to bless His words, and help him to speak to them.

First he noticed that the marginal references rendered the text, "Sorrow as on the sea," and the context showed that the sorrow like unto the sorrow on the sea is the misery caused by sin. Passions are as engulfing as waves; maybe, the helmsman is washed overboard; may be, conscience dies, the ship drifts to destruction, the soul is lost; all this is very dark to think upon, but very true. Then there is another truth, and that is bright and beautiful. If we can say there is "sorrow on the sea," we can also say there is " 'peace as on the sea." The ocean is still and safe to sail on it, to watch the sun's rays lighting up the ripple in the wave of the boat is tranquil happiness; and there is a peace like that, the peace of the Christian, who sleeps with his sin's forgiven.

He told it to them very simply, very tenderly, and his grave voice soothed them; and they thought of the beautiful calm he talked about, and did not think of the storm outside. They were very still and listening, and fit to need the great simile he was leading them to.

"There is sorrow on the sea, it cannot be quiet,' and we fear to lose those dearest to us-there is sin raging around, and we fear to lose our souls. But God can save both if we only ask Him; He can hush the winds, and keep the sin out of our breasts."

He did not cease there; he spoke of faith and love. He reminded them God was with them-he taught a great and comforting lesson. The mother held her child the closer, and her face bent to it if sad-was learning resignation. The parting hymn was very quavering and low, but the cry "for those in peril on the sea reached the Great Father, a prayer for man's body and soul-it was

with that meaning their pastor asked them to sing it. And then he gave the blessing, and the congregation went away, more trustful for their brethren, more awakened for themselves; the grief was still there, but comfort had been brought. The clergyman took the keys, about to close the church, himself ministering in every detail that evening, for he whose place it was was one of those remembered in their prayers.

In a dim corner he saw one stray figure, her head bowed and her whole frame quivering with convulsive sobs. Surely it was from that corner had come the bitter wail that broke on the stillness after

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the words, specially those for whom our prayers are desired !" He went up to her.

"Madge," he said, "will you not be comforted?"

The poor girl raised her eyes and showed a fair, young face, fit to beguile any trusting lad, now tear-stained and pallid. Madge, dear Madge! God is with them." "But oh, not with me," she sobbed.

"There's no peace can

ever come to me now-God can never comfort me!"

He was grave and troubled; these were not words to hear in a church; he held the keys. Should they go out into the storm, where such rebellious utterings were more in keeping? But he remembered souls engrained in sin had entered there, been won there, purified there. He had known Madge all her short life of eighteen years, and had known her always as high-spirited, proud, and passionate.

Madge, tell me all about it," and he sat down at her side and tried to soothe her like a father his child. It showed his influence that she gradually grew calmer and trusted her story to him.

She had not kept faith with one of those fishermen, a young, brave fellow who loved her as his life. He, maddened, had taxed her with it, and in her angry pride she had cast him off. His last word were, he would join the next deep-sea fishing, and if he never came back it was her doing. Again she sobbed wildly, for spray showered mockingly on the window, and, frightened, she seized the clergyman's arm.

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"Oh! he's drowned-he's drowned !-and it's my doing !" Madge, pray to God; He will forgive and comfort you.' He took her hand from his arm, as if to fold it in the other; but she flung them apart.

Pray ?-oh, I can't, I can't! God won't hear me. My heart is as wicked as that wicked sea that drowned Will !"

It was no use speaking to her. She was quivering with wretchedness for her passions were strong and deep. In her pride she had sinned, and now remorse prevented penitence. clergyman knelt where he sat, and in silence asked God to make



her yield to the better nature that he knew was in her. Her restless eyes grew fixed to his bowed head, and slowly they drooped in the stillness and darkness and in the presence of prayer. She dare not cry nor break the spell that seemed there. He got up and said not a word for a moment; then he knelt again, and with sudden impulse she knelt too. His voice rose, low and earnest; it seemed strange to have another praying for one like that. It was different to the church prayers, for this was for her and her only, and it was in church too, solemn and quiet. Madge grew stiller and stiller; at first in wonderment, then slowly she found herself not listening only, praying also. He asked God to spare Will Henderson; there was nothing about submission to His will, that must come later; she was only fit to give vent to her cravings; he asked God to comfort her, he said nought about her sins; she was only fit for soothing, and penitence is born of mercy.

Her head fell on her hands, and the tears trickled through her fingers—when he got up she did too. She took his hand in both hers, but could not speak. He knew she could not, he did not want her to try—he did not say a word, and they left their place

and went out the good clergyman locked the door and stood by his wife's grave a moment. His hand leant on the head-stone, and

the other held his hat, while the wind blew in his white hair.

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Thy will be done," he said, reading the text beneath the name, as he had done times out of number. May be it was that reading had kept his heart so true, that in the beauty of real submission he could submit not only for himself but for others. He knew it was almost impossible for the missing boats to live the storm, and he said, "Thy will be done" for poor Madge and for all the other sorrowing women-with his hand on his wife's tomb. stone he said it, and then went away.

Sunday night grew on, and the storm got fiercer and fiercer, and the night blacker and blacker. It wrung one's soul, thinking of the missing boats; the mother wept, and, sleepless, shuddered at each blast; the little children woke up and would not be quieted, and the quaint old fishing village was one great breaking heart.

The pastor knelt in his solitary room, and cried "Thy will be done." At last the dawn broke, and the light spread over the sky, the candle waned in the coming day, and the clergyman, pacing the floor, paused to put it out. The window-panes were not rattling so much, the wind did not whistle so shrilly round the corners of the house.

“O God! is it a calm?" and he covered his face as he thought of the people he loved, what tumultuous hope might not now be growing, only to be wrenched from their very hearts! It was long before he raised his eyes, for he prayed for strength to comfort

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