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Well, Jack," said she, "you are just come in time to help me. I was just a saying if Jack was to call now he'd be of some use, for I can't well reach so high as the shelf where I put the bottles on, and when I get on a stool my old head swims.”

“ Mother,” said I,“ suppose you put down the bottles for a little while, as I have that to say to you which must not be delayed."

“Why, what's the matter, boy ?-and how pale you look—what has happened? You don't want money, do you?"

“No, mother, I want no money I only want you to listen to matters important, which I must disclose to you.”

“Well-well-what is it?-about the fellow who tried to rob me, I suppose. I told you before, Jack, I won't hurt him, for my poor boy's sake.”

“It is about your poor boy I would speak, mother," replied I, hardly knowing how to begin. “Now, mother, did you not tell me that he was hanged at Port Royal ?"

Yes-yes—but why come and talk about it again ?" "Because, mother, you seem to feel the disgrace of his being hanged so much."

“Well, to be sure I do—then why do you remind me of it, you bad boy-it's cruel of you, Jack-I thought you kinder."

“Mother, it is because you do feel it so much that I have come to tell you that you have been deceived. Your son was not hanged.” “Not hanged! Why, Ja

are you sure?” “Yes, mother, quite sure."

“ Not hanged-quite sure

Here Old Nanny burst out into a wild laugh, which ended in sobbing and tears. I was obliged to wait some minutes before she was composed enough to listen to me : at last I said, “ Mother, I have more to say, and there is no time to be lost."

Why no time to be lost, my dear boy?” said she. “Oh! now that you have told me this, I could dwell for hours-ay, days—more-I shall dwell my whole life upon this kind news.” “ But listen to me, mother, for I must tell


how I discovered this."

Yes, yes, Jack-do, that's a good boy. I am quite calm now," said Nanny, wiping her eyes with her apron.

I then acquainted her with what Spicer had told me, relative to his inducing the man to take his name; and continued the history of Spicer's life, until I left him on board of a man-of-war.

“But where is he now? And who told you all this ?"

“He told me so himself,” replied I. “He has been in the Hospital some time; and living here close to you, without either of you being aware of it. But, mother, he is now ill—very ill in the Hospital: he would not have confessed all this if he had not felt how ill he was.”

“ Deary, deary mo,” replied Old Nanny, wringing her hands; “I must go see him!”

Nay, mother, 1 fear you cannot; the fact is, that he is dying, and he has sent me to ask your forgiveness for his conduct to you.”

“Deary, deary mo," continued Old Nanny, seemingly half out of her wits; "in the Hospital-so near to his poor mother-and dying—dear Jemmy!"

Then the old woman covered up her face with her apron,

and was silent. I waited a minute or two, and then I again spoke to her.

“Will you not answer my question, mother? Your son has but an hour, perhaps, to live, and he dios penitent, not only for his conduct to you, but for his lawless and wicked life; but he feels his treatment of you to be worse than all his other crimes; and he has sent me to beg that you will forgive him before he dies. Answer


mother." Jack," said Nanny, removing the apron from her face, "I feel as if it was I who ought to ask his pardon, and not he who should ask mine. Who made him bad ?—his foolish mother. Who made him unable to control his passions ?-his foolish mother. Who was the cause of his plunging into vice-of his intemperance, of his gaming, of his wild and desperate career—which might have ended, as I supposed it had done, on the gallows, but a foolish, wenk, selfish mother, who did not do her duty to him in his childhood. It is I who was his great enemy-I who assisted the devil to lead hiin to destruction—I who, had he been hanged, had been, and have felt for years, that I was his executioner. Can I forgive him! Can he forgive me?"

“Mother, his time is short-I will come to you again, and tell you much more. But if you knew how earnest he is to have your forgiveness before he dies, you would at once send me away to him."

Then go, my child-go, and may you often be sent on such kind missions! Go, and tell my poor James that his mother forgives him-begs to be forgivenstill dotes upon him—and God knows with how much pleasure would die for him! Go quick, child-the sands of the glass run fast-quick, child—the dying cannot wait-quick-quick!"

Nanny had risen from her stool and taken me by the arm: when we were clear of the threshold she loosed me, and sunk down to the earth, whether overcome by her feelings, or in a state of insensibility, I did not wait to ascertain-I fled to execute my mission before it was too late.

In a few minutes I was at the Hospital-breathless, , it was true. I went in, and found Spicer still alive, for his eyes turned to me. I went up to him ; the nurse, who was standing by him, told me he was speechless, and would soon be gone. I told her I would remain with him, and she went to the other patients. I gave him his mother's message, and he was satisfied : he squeezed my hand, and a smile, which appeared to illumine, like a rainbow, his usual dark and moody countenance, intimated hope and joy ; in a few seconds he was no more, but the smile continued on his features after death.

I then returned to Old Nanny, who, I found, had been put into bed by some neighbours, and at her bedside was Mrs. St. Felix, who had been passing by, and had observed her situation. She was now recovered, and quiet. As soon as they had left her, I entered into a more full detail of how I became acquainted with the circumstances which led to tho discovery. I did not conceal from her that it was

her own son who had attempted the robbery; and I wound up, by stating that he had died, I really believed, not only penitent, but happy from having received her forgiveness.

“Jack-Jack-you have been as good as an angel to me, indeed you have. It was you, also, who prevented

my poor James from killing his mother-it is you that have been the means of his making his peace with Heaven. Bless you, Jack; bless you!"




I LEFT Old Nanny as soon as she was more composed, for I was so anxious to have some conversation with Old Anderson. I did not call on my father, as it was not a case on which he was likely to offer any opinion, and I thought it better that the secret which I possessed should be known but to one other person. I refer to the knowledge which I had obtained relative to the husband of Mrs. St. Felix, who, it appeared, was not banged, as supposed by her. The information received from Spicer accounted for Mrs. St. Felix's conduct when any reference was made to her husband; and I was now aware how much pain she must have suffered when his name was mentioned. I found Anderson alone in his office, and I immediately made him acquainted with what I had learnt, and asked him his opinion as to the propriety of communicating it to

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