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[2034] land of romance beneath the spice-breeze of her Eastern narrative. Sticklers for propriety might have found fault at the freedom with which she confided her friends' histories to one who was a comparative stranger to them; but I could not but note how conscientiousness reined in her sensibilities and curbed their career, as they reached the due bounds of privacy. She did but realize one's conception of the transparent truthfulness that will pervade advanced societies of the future, where the very atmosphere shall behonorable faith.

Nearer and nearer Margaret was approaching a secret throned in her heart that day; and the preceding transitions were but a prelude of her orchestra before the entrance of the festal group. Unconsciously she made these preparations for paying worthy honors to a high sentiment. She had lately heard of the betrothal of two of her best-loved friends; and she wished to communicate the graceful story in a way that should do justice to the facts and to her own feelings. It was by a spontaneous impulse of her genius, and with no voluntary foreshaping, that she had grouped the previous tales; but no drama could have been more artistically constructed than the steps whereby she led me onward to the denouement; and the look, tone, words, with which she told it, were fluent with melody as the song of an improvisatrice.

Scarcely had she finished, when, offering some light refreshment,—as it was now past noon,—she proposed a walk in the open air. She led the way to Bussey's wood, her favorite retreat during the past year, where she had thought and read, or talked with intimate friends. We climbed the rocky path, resting a moment or two at very pretty point, till, reaching a moss-cushioned ledge near the summit, she seated herself. For a time she was

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