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- Heaven grant
“I shall call my baby Fanny,” said Amy, as her friend pressed it to her heart.
be wiser than her for whom she is called," answered Fanny.
Selmar and Roberts were rejoiced to meet again, after so long an absence. It was a general holiday in the house. Even Mrs. Hawkins said a great many things that, on another occasion, and upon further consideration, she would have called superfluous. And as for Willy, he was like a canary-bird at a dinner party — singing, dancing, clapping his hands, and chattering without heeding that no one answered. The baby he called his little sister, and its mother his own aunt.
The friends had a deal of talk about every thing, beginning, as friends are apt to, who have much on their hearts, with what they cared the least for. Fanny was anxious to know if Amy had brought her letters ; and Amy was equally anxious to ascertain if Fanny was happier than when she last wrote to her; but neither spoke for some time. At last, Fanny began.
“I hope you have brought my foolish letters, Amy. I believe you must have thought I was crazed when I wrote them, or perhaps trying my hand at novel-writing.”
“I have brought all your letters, dear. And now tell me, all jesting apart, are you happy?”
“O, yes,” replied Fanny; “ happy as the day is long. But I must tell you all first.” And she went back, and, with much pain, told Amy all that had passed till the present time.
66 And now," she continued, “I want to burn all those letters, and forget all that has passed.” - But have
husband all that you felt, Fanny ?”
“O, no. Why should I? It would only give him pain."
“But do you not see that you are doing now the very thing that caused the estrangement between you and Roberts ?"
“How?” said Fanny.
“Do you think,” said Amy, " that if you had been perfectly open and confiding to your husband, he would have been cold and reserved to
“How could I be frank with him, when he was so silent to me? How could I tell him that his chilling, solemn reserve, when he was displeased, hurt me more than any censure, and that I would rather he would find fault with me every hour in the day? He would have thought me a fool.”
“ And yet,” answered Amy, "if you do not tell him all this, you will never be happy."
“Yes, I shall; for I shall be more careful not to do wrong, and then he will not be displeased; and he has promised that all shall be forgotten; and I am sure he does love me as well or better than ever.”
“ And yet, believe me, Fanny, the same thing will take place again, unless a perfect understanding is established between you. The flame of discontent is smothered, not extinguished.”
“O, I should die, he knows I should die, if he were to leave me, or if he ever were to appear towards me again as he has this last winter. But I shall never give him occasion to find fault with
66 Even now,
“ Impossible," answered Amy. I doubt not, he begins to wonder why you treated him as you say you
did. You must be the day with your husband, Fanny, or your peace is gone. You must tell him all that you thought and felt, said or did. You must not keep back your opinion of his faults ; you must not extenuate your own. You must be perfectly true with him.”
“But you see, Amy, it is all over now; and we are so happy!
6. There is a root of bitterness in all your
happiness," replied Amy, “while any thing remains between you unexplained, untold. There is a hidden wound in your love, if aught remains concealed; it cannot be healed, unless it first be laid bare. If there exist any thing between you too painful to be spoken of, think you that this tender spot will never be touched by accident, or by the same cause that first excited it?"
“ He will blame me, when he knows all I have felt and said to you, Amy.”
“ No matter, my dear friend. You have nearly made shipwreck of all your peace in this life, by the very system of concealment which you are now madly commencing again. Believe
love for each other cannot bear the test of a perfectly frank and fearless confession of all your faults, all your mistakes; if it does not rest on truth, perfect truth, its foundation is rotten, and this is but a transient respite from the misery that surely awaits you.” “Can I do this?” said Fanny.
66 Can I
go over the hateful past, and call up those terrible hours, that I am trying to forget?” Look, Fanny, at the cause of all your
will find it was not any very wrong thing that either of you did ; not a want of love, but it was a want of trust in each other
a want of truth. Each was playing a part, till each
me, that if
became convinced that the real character was lost in the assumed one. Your love for each other could not grow, thus smothered and warped; it has barely survived. Could you daily, and, as the Christian wife should, with every passing moment, give thanks, in your heart, to God, for the possession of a friend to whom you are perpetually false ?”
“O, not false, Amy; that is too hard.”
“Yes, false, Fanny. You must, in such a relation, be perfectly true in every thing, or you are false."
While Fanny and Amy were talking, Mr. Roberts came in. Fanny unconsciously put the letters, that were lying on the table, out of sight. Her husband observed it, and looked embarrassed and hurt. The ladies were silent at his entrance.
“I fear that I am an intruder," he said. “ You have, perhaps, some private affairs." This was said in a constrained tone; and he rather abruptly left the room.
“ He saw me hide these foolish letters, and supposed that there really was some important secret between us,” said Fanny, in a fretful tone, and half speaking to herself. “It's a pity he
“ And is there not some important secret hid