he was of great assistance to his schoolfellows in explaining to them the difficulties of their lessons.
Few evenings passed in which some strapping fellow did not come to the house with his grammar or his slate, and sit demurely by the side of Horace, while the distracting sum was explained, or the dark place in the parsing lesson illuminated.
The boy delighted to render suck assistance.
However deeply he might be absorbed in his own studies, as soon as he saw a puzzled countenance peering in at the door, he knew his man, knew what was wanted; and would jump up from his recumbent posture in the chimney-corner, and proceed, with a patience that is still gratefully remembered, with a perspicuity that is still mentioned with admiration, to impart the information required of him. Fancy it. It is a pretty picture.
The “little whiteheaded fellow” generally so abstracted, now all intelligence and animation, by the side of a great hulk of a young man, twice his age and three times his weight, with a countenance expressing perplexity and despair.
An apt question, a reminding word, a few figures hastily scratched on the slate, and light flushes on the puzzled mind.
He wonders he had not thought of that: he wishes Heaven had given him
such a “head-piece.”
To some of his teachers at Westhaven
, Horace was a cause of great annoyance.
He knew too much.
He asked awkward questions.
He was not to be put off with common-place solutions of serious difficulties.
He wanted things to hang together, and liked to know how, if this
was true, that
could be true also.
At length, one of his teachers, when Horace was thirteen years old, had the honesty and good sense to go to his father, and say to him, point blank, that Horace knew more than he did, and it was of no use for him to go to school any more.
So Horace remained at home, read hard all that winter in a little room by himself, and taught his youngest sister beside.
He had attended district school, altogether, about forty-five months.
, the pine-knots blazed on the hearth as brightly and as continuously as they had done at the old home in Amherst
There was a new reason wily they should; for a candle was a luxury now, too expensive to be indulged in. Horace
's home was a favorite evening resort for the children of the neighborhood—a fact which says much for the kindly spirit of its inmates.