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Isabel Leicester A Romance by Maude Alma   By: (-1895)

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[Transcriber's Note: The form of this e text is predicated upon an assumption about the editorial practices that obtained in Canadian publishing around the year 1874. It is presumed that the authoress had the opportunity to review pre publication galley proofs and make any changes or corrections she deemed appropriate, and that the published book is therefore an accurate reflection of her wishes and intentions.]





"Twist ye, twine ye, even so, Mingled threads of joy and woe, Hope and fear, peace and strife, In the cord of human life."




In a spacious apartment superbly furnished, and surrounded by every luxury that could please the most fastidious taste, sat Isabel Leicester, attired in deep mourning, with her head resting upon her hand, her face almost as white as the handkerchief she held. Isabel's Father had failed in business, and the misfortune had so preyed upon his mind, that he sank under it and died. The funeral had taken place that day, and she was to leave the house on the day following the house where she was born and had always lived, except when at school. The servants had all been discharged but two, who were to leave next day. A friend had offered Isabel a home until she could procure a situation as a governess, which that friend Mrs. Arnold was endeavouring to obtain for her, in the family of a lady who had been one of Mrs. Arnold's school fellows. Mrs. Arnold was the widow of a clergyman, with a very limited income, and Isabel was unwilling to trespass upon the kindness of one whose means she knew to be so small. But she had no alternative at the time and trusted that it would not be long before she would be able to procure the situation she had in view, or some other. The tea remained untasted on the table, for Isabel was absorbed by the melancholy thoughts that filled her heart. She tried to feel resigned, but her pride was wounded at the idea of becoming a 'governess.' She had been the spoiled petted daughter of a wealthy merchant of the city of New York, whose chief delight had been to indulge her in every way. But still Mr. Leicester had been a truly good and christian man, and had taught his daughter not to set her affections on earthly things, and to remember that wealth was given to us for the benefit of others, as well as for our own enjoyment. And he was rewarded as she grew up to find that her chief aim was to do good to the many poor families whose necessities came to her knowledge. Great also was his satisfaction to find that after two seasons in New York, where she had been the Belle, she was still the same loving, unassuming, pure minded girl she had ever been, tho' the admiration and attention her beauty and accomplishments had excited, had she been less carefully trained, might have rendered her haughty and vain.

During her Father's illness, when her time and thoughts were occupied with attending upon him, and in anxiety for his recovery she had thought and felt that the loss of property was an evil of little moment, and tried to persuade her Father not to think so much about the reverse, urging that he could get some employment, and they would still live very happily together in a cottage.

But now that he was gone, and she had no one left to look too, her lonely and self dependant position was felt severely, and the tears she could not restrain, fell unheeded. The fire sank low, and finally went out, and still Isabel sat thinking of the miserable prospect the future presented. At last she rose with a shudder, and rang for the tea things to be removed, then retiring to her own room, she threw herself upon the bed in an agony of grief.

She had remained there some time, when she felt a kind hand laid upon her shoulder, and turning her head she saw the old housekeeper, Mrs... Continue reading book >>

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