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Her Mother's Secret   By: (1819-1899)

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A Novel


Author Of "A Leap in the Dark," "A Beautiful Fiend," "Fair Play," "Em," "Em's Husband," "David Lindsay," Etc.

A. L. BURT COMPANY Publishers New York


By MRS. E. D. E. N. SOUTHWORTH In Handsome Cloth Binding Price 60 Cents per Volume

Beautiful Fiend, A. Ishmael. Brandon Coyle's Wife. Leap in the Dark, A. Bride's Fate, The. Lilith. Bride's Ordeal, The. Love's Bitterest Cup. Capitola's Peril. Lost Lady of Lone, The. Changed Brides, The. Mysterious Marriage, The. Cruel As the Grave. Nearest and Dearest. David Lindsay. Self raised. "Em." Skeleton in the Closet, A. Em's Husband. Struggle of a Soul, The. Fair Play. Test of Love, The. For Whose Sake. Tortured Heart, A. For Woman's Love. Trail of the Serpent, The. Gloria. Tried for Her Life. Her Love Or Her Life. Unloved Wife, The. Hidden Hand, The. Unrequitted Love, An. Her Mother's Secret. Victor's Triumph. How He Won Her. When Shadows Die.

For Sale by all Booksellers or will be sent postpaid on receipt of price

A. L. BURT COMPANY, PUBLISHERS 52 Duane Street New York

Copyright, 1882 and 1889 By ROBERT BONNER

Renewal granted to Mrs. Charlotte Southworth Lawrence 1910

Her Mother's Secret




"Mother! Oh, mother! it will break my heart!" wailed Odalite, sinking at the lady's feet, and dropping her head into her hands, face downward to the carpet.

The lady gently raised her child, took her in her arms and tenderly caressed her, murmuring, softly:

"No, my own! hearts never break, or one heart, I know, must have broken long ago. Besides," she added, in a firmer tone, "honor must be saved, though hearts be sacrificed."

"'Honor,' mother dear? I do not understand. I do not see what honor has to do with it. Or if it has, I should think that honor would be better saved by my keeping faith with Le than by breaking with him! Oh, mother! mother! it will kill me!" moaned Odalite.

"My child, my dear girl, hear me! Listen to reason! Leonidas Force has no claim to be remembered by you. You have never been engaged to him. You were but a little girl of thirteen when he went to sea on his first voyage, three years ago, and you have not seen him since. What possible claim can he have upon you, since no betrothal exists between you?" gently questioned the lady, tenderly running her fair fingers through the dark tresses of the young head that leaned upon her bosom.

"Oh, mother," replied the girl, with a heavy sigh, "I know that there was no formal betrothal between Le and myself but but we all knew, you and father and Le and I all knew and always knew that we two belonged to each other and would always belong to each other all our lives. Le and I never thought of any other fate."

"Idle, childish fancies, my poor little girl! too trivial to cause you these tears. Wipe them away, and look clearly at the higher destiny, more worthy of your birth and beauty," murmured the lady, pressing her ripe, red lips upon the pale brow of her darling.

"Oh, mother, I do not want a higher destiny! I do not want any destiny apart from Le. And these are not childish fancies, and not trivial to me! Oh, think, mother, Le and I were playmates as far back in my life as I can remember. We loved each other better than we loved any one else in the whole world. You and father used to laugh at us and pretend to be jealous; but we saw that you were pleased all the time; for you both intended us for each other, and we knew it, too, for father used to say when he saw how inseparable we two were: 'So much the better; I hope their hearts will not be estranged when they grow up!' And our hearts have never become estranged from each other!"

"Oh, yes, dearest, I know that there was some speculative talk when you were children of uniting you and Leonidas, so that the name of Force might not die out from Mondreer... Continue reading book >>

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