There to be an air of calm and reserved opulence around the Weightman mansion that spoke no of money squandered, however of wealth prudently applied. Was standing on a corner of the way no much longer fashionable for residence, it looked ~ above the swelling tide of company with an expression of complacency and half-disdain.
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The residence was no beautiful. There was nothing in its straight front that chocolate-colored stone, its heavy cornices, that broad, staring windows of bowl glass, that carved and bronze-bedecked mahogany doors at the optimal of the vast stoop, to charm the eye or fascinate the imagination. However it to be eminently respectable, and in its method imposing. It appeared to say that the glittering shops of the jewelers, the milliners, the confectioners, the florists, the picture-dealers, the furriers, the machines of rare and also costly antiquities, retail traders in luxuries of life, to be beneath the an alert of a residence that had actually its structures in the high finance, and also was built literally and figuratively in the shadow of St. Petronius" Church.
At the exact same time there was something self-pleased and also congratulatory in the way in i m sorry the mansion organized its very own amid the an altering neighborhood. It practically seemed to it is in lifted increase a little, amongst the tall buildings near in ~ hand, as if the felt the climbing value of the soil on which that stood.
John Weightman was prefer the home into which he had constructed himself thirty years ago, and also in i beg your pardon his ideals and ambitions to be incrusted. He was a self-made man. However in making himself he had chosen a extremely esteemed pattern and also worked according to the approved rules. There was nothing irregular, questionable, flamboyant around him.
He to be solid, correct, and also justly successful.
His minor tastes, of course, had been carefully kept approximately date.
At the ideal time, photos of the Barbizon masters, old English plate and portraits, bronzes by Barye and also marbles by Rodin, Persian carpets and Chinese porcelains, had been introduced to the mansion. It had a luigi Quinze reception-room, realm drawing-room, a Jacobean dining-room, and also various apartments dimly memory of the layouts of furniture impacted by deceased monarchs. That the hallways were too short for the historical perspective did no make much difference. American decorative art is qualified de tout, that absorbs every periods. The each period Mr. Weightman wished to have actually something that the best. He taken its value, current as a certificate, and prospective as an investment.
It was only in the design of his town residence that he remained conservative, immovable, one might nearly say Early-Victorian-Christian. His country house in ~ Dulwich-on-the-Sound was a palace of the Italian Renaissance. Yet in city he adhered come an design which had actually moral associations, the Nineteenth-Century-Brownstone epoch. It to be a prize of his society position, his spiritual doctrine, and also even, in a way, of his organization creed.
"A male of solved principles," he would say, "should express castle in the watch of his house. Brand-new York transforms its domestic design too rapidly. That is prefer divorce. The is no dignified. Ns don"t choose it. Extravagance and fickleness space advertised in many of these brand-new houses. Ns wish come be recognized for various qualities. Dignity and prudence are the things that people trust. Every one knows the I can afford come live in the residence that suits me. The is a insurance to the public. It inspires confidence. It help my influence. There is a message in the Bible around "a residence that afoot foundations." that is the appropriate kind the a mansion because that a hard man."
Harold Weightman had regularly listened to his dad discoursing in this fashion on the basic principles of life, and always with a divided mind. The admired immensely his father"s talents and the single-minded power with i beg your pardon he boosted them. However in the paternal ideology there to be something that disquieted and also oppressed the young man, and also made the gasp inwardly for fresh wait and cost-free action.
At times, throughout his college course and his years at the law school, he had actually yielded come this impulse and broken away--now towards extravagance and dissipation, and also then, when the reaction came, towards a romantic devotion to work amongst the poor. He had felt his father"s disapproval because that both of these creates of imprudence; but is was never expressed in a harsh or violent way, constantly with a certain tolerant patience, such as one can show because that the mistakes and vagaries of the very young. Man Weightman was no hasty, impulsive, inconsiderate, also toward his own children. V them, similar to the remainder of the world, the felt that he had actually a reputation to maintain, a theory to vindicate. He could afford to provide them time to watch that he to be absolutely right.
One the his favourite Scripture quotations was, "Wait on the Lord."
He had used it to actual estate and to people, with financially rewarding results.
But to human being persons the sensation of gift waited for is not always agreeable. Sometimes, specifically with the young, the produces a pass out restlessness, a dumb resentment, i m sorry is enhanced by the reality that one can hardly define or justify it. That this man Weightman was no conscious. That lay past his horizon. That did not take it right into account in the plan of life i beg your pardon he made for himself and for his family as the sharers and inheritors that his success.
"Father dram us," said Harold, in a moment of irritation, to his mother, "like piece in a video game of chess.
"My dear," stated that lady, whose confidence in her husband was religious, "you ought not to speak so impatiently. At least he wins the game. He is among the many respected males in brand-new York. And also he is really generous, too."
"I great he would certainly be an ext generous in letting us be ourselves," claimed the young man. "He always has miscellaneous in see for us and also expects to move us approximately it."
"But isn"t it always for ours benefit?" replied his mother. "Look what a place we have. No one deserve to say over there is any type of taint on our money. There room no rumors about your father. He has actually kept the laws of God and also of man. He has never made any mistakes." Harold got up native his chair and also poked the fire. Then he came back to the ample, well-gowned, firm-looking lady, and sat beside her ~ above the sofa. The took she hand gently and also looked in ~ the 2 rings--a thin band of yellow gold, and also a little solitaire diamond--which preserved their ar on her third finger in modest dignity, together if no shamed, but rather justified, by the splendor that the emerald which glittered alongside them. "Mother," that said, "you have a exorbitant hand. And also father made no mistake when he winner you. Yet are you certain he has constantly been so inerrant?"
"Harold," she exclaimed, a little stiffly, "what carry out you mean? His life is an open book."
"Oh," the answered, "I don"t mean anything bad, mother dear. I know the governor"s life is an open book--a ledger, if you like, kept in the best accountancy hand, and constantly ready because that inspection--every page correct, and also showing a handsome balance. However isn"t it a mistake no to enable us to make our own mistakes, to learn for ourselves, to live our own lives? should we be always working for "the balance," in one point or another? I desire to it is in myself--to get external of this everlasting, rewarding "plan"--to permit myself go, and lose myself for a while in ~ least--to carry out the things that I want to do, just because I want to execute them."
"My boy," stated his mother, anxiously, "you space not walking to execute anything wrong or foolish? You recognize the falsehood of that old proverb about wild oats."
He threw ago his head and also laughed. "Yes, mother," he answered, "I understand it fine enough. Yet in California, girlfriend know, the wild oats are among the most an useful crops. Castle grow anywhere the hillsides and keep the cattle and also the horses alive. However that wasn"t what i meant--to sow wild oats. Speak to pick wild flowers, if girlfriend like, or even to follow wild geese--to carry out something the seems an excellent to me simply for its very own sake, not for the services of incomes of one sort or another. Ns feel like a rental man, in the organization of this splendid mansion--say in training for father"s location as majordomo. I"d prefer to get out some way, to feel free--perhaps to do something because that others."
The young man"s voice hesitated a little. "Yes, that sound like cant, i know, yet sometimes i feel together if I"d choose to carry out some great in the world, if father just wouldn"t firmly insist upon God"s putting it right into the ledger."
His mom moved uneasily, and a slim look that bewilderment came into her face.
"Isn"t that virtually irreverent?" she asked. "Surely the righteous must have their reward. And also your father is good. See just how much he provides to all the developed charities, how numerous things he has actually founded. He"s constantly thinking that others, and also planning because that them. And surely, for us, that does everything. Just how well he has actually planned this expedition to Europe because that me and also the girls--the court-presentation at Berlin, the season on the Riviera, the visits in England with the Plumptons and the Halverstones. He says Lord Halverstone has the best old house in Sussex, pure Elizabethan, and all the old customs are maintained up, too--family prayers every morning for all the domestics.
By-the-way, you understand his boy Bertie, i believe."
Harold smiled a tiny to himself together he answered: "Yes, i fished in ~ Catalina Island last June with the Honorable Ethelbert; he"s quite a decent chap, in spite of his ingrowing mind. But you?--mother, friend are just magnificent! You are father"s masterpiece." The young guy leaned over to kiss her, and also went as much as the Riding club for his afternoon canter in the Park.
So it came to pass, at an early stage in December, the Mrs. Weightman and also her two daughters cruised for Europe, ~ above their major pleasure trip, even as it had actually been written in the book of Providence; and also John Weightman, who had made the entry, was left to happen the remainder of the winter v his son and also heir in the brownstone mansion.
They to be comfortable enough. The machinery of the substantial establishment ran as smoothly as a an excellent electric dynamo. They were liven enough, too. John Weightman"s plans and enterprises to be complicated, despite his principle of activity was always simple--to get an excellent value because that every expenditure and effort. The banking-house of which he to be the chief, the brain, the will, the absolutely regulating hand, to be so admirably arranged that the details that its direction take it but small time.
But the scores of other interests the radiated indigenous it and were dependent ~ above it--or probably it would certainly be more accurate come say, that contributed to the solidity and success--the many investments, industrial, political, benevolent, reformatory, ecclesiastical, that had actually made the surname of Weightman well known and also potent in city, church, and also state, demanded lot attention and also careful steering, in order the each can produce the wanted result. Over there were board meetings that corporations and hospitals, conferences in wall Street and at Albany, consultations and also committee meetings in the brownstone mansion.
For a re-superstructure in every this business and its adjuncts john Weightman city; because that he hosted that banking chin is a an easy affair, the only real obstacles of finance are on its legal side. Meantime he wished the young male to meet and also know the guys with whom he would have to deal when he came to be a companion in the house. For this reason a pair of dinners were provided in the mansion throughout December, after which the father called the son"s attention to the reality that over a hundred million dollars had actually sat around the board.
But ~ above Christmas night father and son to be dining together without guests, and their talk across the wide table, glittering with silver and cut glass, and also softly lit by shaded candles, to be intimate, though a small slow in ~ times. The elder guy was in rather a rare mood, more expansive and confidential than usual; and, once the coffee was lugged in and also they were left alone, he talked an ext freely of his personal plans and hopes 보다 he had ever before done before.
"I feel an extremely grateful to-night," stated he, in ~ last; "it must be something in the air of Christmas that gives me this emotion of thankfulness because that the countless divine mercies that have been bestowed top top me. Every the principles whereby I have tried to overview my life have actually been justified. I have actually never make the value of this salted almond by anything that the courts would certainly not uphold, at the very least in the long run, and yet--or wouldn"t it it is in truer come say and also therefore?--my affairs have actually been wonderfully prospered. There"s a an excellent deal in that message "Honesty is the best"--but no, that"s not from the Bible, after ~ all, is it? Wait a moment; over there is something of that kind, ns know."
"May i light a cigar, father," claimed Harold, turning away come hide a smile, "while you are remembering the text?"
"Yes, certainly," answered the elder man, quite shortly; "you understand I don"t dislike the smell. But it is a wasteful, useless habit, and also therefore I have actually never practised it. Nothing useless is worth while, that"s my motto--nothing that does not bring the reward. Oh, currently I recall the text, "Verily ns say depend you they have actually their reward." i shall ask physician Snodgrass come preach a sermon on the verse some day."
"Using you together an illustration?"
"Well, not precisely that; but I could give that some great materials from my own experience to prove the truth of Scripture. I can honestly say the there is not among my charities that has actually not lugged me in a good return, one of two people in the boost of influence, the building up of credit, or the association with an extensive people. Of course you need to be careful how girlfriend give, in order to secure the finest results--no indiscriminate giving--no pennies in beggars" hats! it has been just one of my principles always to use the very same kind of referee in charities the I usage in my other affairs, and they have not disappointed me."
"Even the examine that you put in the plate as soon as you take it the offertory increase the aisle top top Sunday morning?"
"Certainly; though over there the affect is less direct; and also I must confess the I have my doubt in regard come the arsenal for foreign Missions. That always seems to me romantic and also wasteful. You never ever hear from that in any type of definite way. They to speak the missionaries have done a good deal to open the method for trade; perhaps--but they have likewise gotten us into commercial and political difficulties. However I provide to them--a little--it is a matter of conscience with me to determine myself v all the enterprise of the Church; that is the mainstay of society order and also a thriving civilization. But the ideal forms of benevolence space the well-established, arranged ones right here at home, where human being can see them and know what they space doing."
"You typical the people that have a neighborhood habitation and a name."
"Yes; they offer by far the most safe return, though of course there is something gained by contributing to general funds. A public guy can"t afford to be there is no public spirit. Yet on the entirety I prefer a building, or one endowment. There is a mutual advantage to a great name and a good institution in their link in the general public mind. It help them both. Mental that, my boy. Of course at the start you will need to practise the in a little way; later, you will have larger opportunities. But try to put your presents where they can be identified and also do good all around. You"ll check out the wisdom of the in the long run."
"I can see the already, sir, and also the means you define it look at amazingly wise and prudent. In other words, us must cast our bread top top the waters in huge loaves, brought by sound ships significant with the owner"s name, so the the return freight will be sure to come back to us."
The dad laughed, but his eye were frowning a little as if he suspected something irreverent under the respectful reply. "You put it humorously, but there"s feeling in what friend say. Why not? God rules the sea; yet He expects us to monitor the laws of navigation and also commerce. Why not take great care of your bread, also when you provide it away?"
"It"s not for me come say why not--and yet I have the right to think of cases--"
The young guy hesitated for a moment. His half-finished cigar had gone out. That rose and tossed it right into the fire, in former of i beg your pardon he remained standing--a slender, eager, restless young figure, with a touch the hunger in the well face, weird like and unlike the father, at whom he looked with half-wistful curiosity.
"The fact is, sir," he continued, "there is together a case in my mind now, and also it is a great deal on mine heart, too. For this reason I assumed of speak to you about it to-night. Friend remember Tom Rollins, the Junior that was so great to me when I gotten in college?"
The dad nodded. That remembered really well indeed the annoying events of his son"s first escapade, and how Rollins had stood by him and helped to protect against a public disgrace, and also how a nearby friendship had grown in between the 2 boys, so different in their fortunes.
"Yes," the said, "I remember him. He was a promising young man. Has actually he succeeded?"
"Not exactly--that is no yet. His company has been going fairly badly. He has a mam and little baby, you know. And also now the has damaged down,-- something wrong through his lungs. The physician says his just chance is a year or eighteen month in Colorado. I wish us could help him."
"How much would the cost?"
"Three or 4 thousand, perhaps, as a loan."
"Does the doctor say the will acquire well?"
"A fighting chance--the doctor says."
The challenge of the older man readjusted subtly. Not a line to be altered, however it seemed to have actually a different substance, together if it were carved out of some firm, imperishable stuff.
"A fighting chance," the said, "may perform for a speculation, yet it is not a great investment. You fan something to young Rollins. Your grateful emotion does you credit. However don"t overwork it. Send him 3 or 4 hundred, if friend like. You"ll never hear from it again, except in the letter that thanks. However for Heaven"s benefits don"t it is in sentimental. Faith is not a matter of sentiment; it"s a issue of principle."
The confront of the younger man adjusted now. However instead of becoming fixed and graven, it appeared to melt right into life by the warm of an inward fire. His nostrils quivered with rapid breath, his lips to be curled. "Principle!" the said. "You average principal--and interest too. Well, sir, girlfriend know ideal whether that is religious beliefs or not. Yet if the is, counting me out, please. Tom conserved me native going to the devil, 6 years ago; and also I"ll be damned if ns don"t aid him to the best of my ability now."
John Weightman looked at his son steadily. "Harold," he stated at last, "you understand I dislike violent language, and also it never has any type of influence with me. If I could honestly provide of this proposition that yours, I"d allow you have the money; however I can"t; it"s extravagant and useless. But you have your Christmas examine for a thousand dollars comes to girlfriend to-morrow. You deserve to use it as you please. I never ever interfere v your personal affairs."
"Thank you," stated Harold. "Thank you very much! yet there"s an additional private affair. I desire to get away indigenous this life, this town, this house. It stifles me. Friend refused critical summer as soon as I request you to let me go up to Grenfell"s Mission top top the Labrador. I can go now, at least as much as the Newfoundland Station. Have you adjusted your mind?"
"Not at all. Ns think the is one exceedingly foolish enterprise. It would interrupt the career that ns have significant out for you."
"Well, then, here"s a cheaper proposition. Algy Vanderhoof wants me to sign up with him ~ above his yacht with--well, with a little party--to cruise in the West Indies. Would you prefer that?"
"Certainly not! The Vanderhoof collection is wild and godless--I do not great to check out you keeping firm with fools that walk in the large and easy means that leads to perdition."
"It is fairly a hard choice," claimed the young man, with a short laugh, transforming toward the door. "According come you there"s very little difference--a fool"s sky or a fool"s hell! Well, it"s one or the other for me, and I"ll toss up because that it to-night: heads, i lose; tails, the evil one wins. Anyway, I"m sick of this, and I"m out of it."
"Harold," said the older male (and there was a slight nervous in his voice), "don"t let us quarrel on Christmas Eve. All I want is to sway you come think serious of the duties and also responsibilities come which God has dubbed you--don"t speak lightly of heaven and also hell--remember, there is an additional life."
The young man came earlier and to adjust his hand ~ above his father"s shoulder.
"Father," that said, "I want to remember it. I shot to think in it. However somehow or other, in this house, it all seems unreal come me. No doubt every you speak is perfectly right and also wise. Ns don"t endeavor to argue versus it, but I can"t feel it--that"s all. If I"m to have a soul, either to shed or come save, I need to really live. Simply now no the present nor the future way anything to me. But surely us won"t quarrel. I"m an extremely grateful come you, and also we"ll part friends. Good-night, sir."
The father organized out his hand in silence. The heavy portiere to reduce noiselessly behind the son, and also he went increase the wide, curving stairway come his very own room.
Meantime man Weightman sat in his carved chair in the Jacobean dining-room. The felt weird old and dull. The portraits of beautiful ladies by Lawrence and Reynolds and also Raeburn, i beg your pardon had regularly seemed favor real agency to him, looked remote and uninteresting.
He fancied something cold and virtually unfriendly in your expression, together if they were staring with him or beyond him. They cared nothing because that his principles, his hopes, his disappointments, his successes; castle belonged to another world, in i m sorry he had actually no place. At this he felt a faint resentment, a feeling of discomfort the he might not have identified or explained. The was supplied to gift considered, respected, appreciated at his complete value in every region, also in the of his own dreams.
Presently he rang because that the butler, telling him to close the house and not to sit up, and walked with lagging steps into the lengthy library, whereby the shaded lamps were burning. His eye fell upon the short shelves full of i have lot of money books, but he had actually no desire to open them. Even the closely chosen images that hung over them seemed to have actually lost your attraction. That paused for a moment prior to an idyll the Corot--a run of nymphs about some forget altar in a vaporous glade--and looked in ~ it curiously. There to be something rapturous and also serene around the picture, a breath the spring-time in the misty trees, a harmony of delight in the dancing figures, that wakened in that a feeling of half-pleasure and also half-envy. It stood for something the he had actually never recognized in his calculated, orderly life. He to be dimly mistrustful that it.
"It is certainly very beautiful," that thought, "but it is distinctly pagan; the altar is built to part heathen god. The does no fit right into the system of a Christian life. I doubt whether it is continual with the tone of my house. Ns will sell it this winter. The will carry three or 4 times what i paid for it. That was a good purchase, a very good bargain."
He dropped right into the revolving chair prior to his huge library table.
It was extended with pamphlets and also reports that the assorted enterprises in which he to be interested. There to be a heap of newspaper clippings in i m sorry his surname was pointed out with praise for his sustaining strength as a tower of finance, because that his sensible benevolence, because that his support of wise and also prudent revolutionary movements, for his discretion in making long-term public gifts--"the Weightman Charities," one very complaisant editor dubbed them, together if castle deserved category as a distinct species. He turned he documents over listlessly. There to be a description and also a photo of the "Weightman soup of the Hospital for Cripples," of which he was president; and an post on the new professor in the "Weightman Chair of politics Jurisprudence" in Jackson University, of i beg your pardon he to be a trustee; and also an depicted account the the opening of the "Weightman Grammar-School" in ~ Dulwich-on-the-Sound, whereby he had actually his legitimate residence for objectives of taxation.
This last was perhaps the most very closely planned of every the Weightman Charities. He preferred to win the confidence and also support of his landscape neighbors. It had pleased him much when the neighborhood newspaper had spoken of the as suitable citizen and the reasonable candidate for the Governorship that the State; but upon the totality it appeared to him wiser to store out of active politics. It would be easier and far better to put Harold right into the running, to have him sent to the Legislature from the Dulwich district, climate to the nationwide House, then to the Senate. Why not? The Weightman understand were large enough to need a direct representative and guardian in ~ Washington.
But to-night every these plan came back to him through dust ~ above them. They were dry and crumbling favor forsaken habitations. The boy upon who his complacent ambition had rested had turned his back upon the mansion that his father"s hopes. The break could not be final; and also in any type of event there would be much to live for; the fortunes of the family members would it is in secure. But the fervor of it all would certainly be unable to do if man Weightman had to offer up the assurance that perpetuating his name and also his ethics in his son. It was a bitterness disappointment, and he felt the he had actually not deserved it.
He increased from the chair and also paced the room through leaden feet. For the an initial time in his life his period was visibly top top him. His head was heavy and also hot, and the thoughts that rolled in it to be confused and depressing. Might it be the he had made a mistake in the ethics of his existence? There to be no dispute in what Harold had actually said--it was virtually childish--and however it had shaken the elder man more deeply 보다 he cared come show. It organized a silent attack which touched him much more than open up criticism.
Suppose the finish of his life were nearer 보다 he thought--the end must come some time--what if it were now? had he not established his house upon a rock? had he not retained the Commandments?
Was he not, "touching the law, blameless"? and also beyond this, even if over there were some faults in his character--and all males are sinners-- however he surely thought in the saving doctrines that religion--the forgiveness the sins, the resurrection that the body, the life everlasting. Yes, that was the true resource of comfort, after ~ all. The would review a bit in the Bible, as he walk every night, and go to bed and to sleep.
He went back to his chair in ~ the library table. A strange weight of weariness rested upon him, yet he opened the book at a acquainted place, and also his eyes fell upon the verse at the bottom that the page.
"Lay not up for yourselves prizes upon earth."
That had been the text of the sermon a few weeks before. Sleepily, heavily, the tried to fix his mental upon it and also recall it. What was it that doctor Snodgrass had said? Ah, yes--that it was a mistake come pause here in analysis the verse. We have to read on there is no a pause--Lay no up prizes upon earth where moth and rust do corrupt and where thieves rest through and steal--that was the true doctrine. Us may have treasures top top earth, but they should not it is in put right into unsafe places, yet into safe places. A most comforting doctrine!
He had constantly followed it. Moths and rust and also thieves had actually done no harm to his investments.
John Weightman"s drooping eye turned come the next verse, in ~ the peak of the second column.
"But put up for yourselves prizes in heaven."
Now what had the physician said about that? how was that to it is in understood--in what sense--treasures--in heaven?
The publication seemed to float far from him. The light vanished. He wonder dimly if this could be Death, comes so suddenly, so quietly, therefore irresistibly. He struggled because that a minute to hold himself up, and also then sank slowly forward ~ above the table. His head rested upon his folded hands. That slipped into the unknown.
How long afterward mindful life returned to him he did not know. The blank might have been an hour or a century. He knew just that omething had happened in the interval. What is was he can not tell. He discovered great challenge in recording the object of his identity again. The felt the he to be himself; but the trouble was to do his connections, to verify and place himself, to recognize who and where that was.
At critical it grew clear. John Weightman to be sitting ~ above a stone, not far from a road in a strange land.
The roadway was not a official highway, fenced and also graded. That was more like a great travel-trace, worn by hundreds of feet passing across the open country in the same direction. Under in the valley, right into which he could look, the road seemed to type itself gradually out of countless minor paths; little footways coming throughout the meadows, winding tracks complying with along beside the streams, faintly significant trails arising from the woodlands. But on the hillside the threads were much more firmly woven into one clear band of travel, despite there were still a couple of dim routes joining it here and also there, as if persons had been climbing up the hill by other ways and had turned at critical to seek the road.
From the sheet of the hill, whereby John Weightman sat, he can see the travelers, in small groups or larger companies, gathering from time to time by the various paths, and also making the ascent. Castle were all clothed in white, and the form of their clothing was strange to him; it was favor some old picture. Lock passed him, group after group, talk quietly with each other or singing; not relocating in haste, yet with a details air of eagerness and joy together if they to be glad to be on their means to an appointed place. They go not remain to speak come him, but they looked at him often and spoke to one another as castle looked; and also now and then one of them would smile and also beckon the a trusted greeting, so the he felt castle would like him to be with them.
There was quite an interval between the groups; and also he complied with each that them v his eyes after it had actually passed, blanching the long ribbon of the road for a little transient space, rising and receding across the wide, billowy upland, amongst the rounded hillocks the aerial green and gold and lilac, until it pertained to the high horizon, and also stood outlined for a moment, a small cloud that whiteness against the soft blue, before it vanished over the hill.
For a lengthy time he satellite there watching and wondering. It was a an extremely different world from the in i beg your pardon his mansion top top the Avenue was built; and also it looked strange come him, but most real--as actual as anything that had ever seen. Presently that felt a strong desire to recognize what country it was and also where the human being were going. He had actually a pass out premonition of what it must be, but he wished to it is in sure. For this reason he rose from the stone where he to be sitting, and came down v the brief grass and also the lavender flowers, toward a passing group of people. One of them turn to fulfill him, and held out his hand. It to be an old man, under whose white beard and also brows man Weightman believed he saw a ide of the challenge of the town doctor who had actually cared because that him years ago, when he was a young in the country.
"Welcome," claimed the old man. "Will girlfriend come v us?"
"Where space you going?"
"To the heavenly city, to see our mansions there."
"And who are these with you?"
"Strangers to me, till a tiny while ago; I recognize them much better now. However you I have actually known because that a lengthy time, john Weightman. Don"t girlfriend remember your old doctor?"
"Yes," he cried--"yes; your voice has not readjusted at all. I"m glad undoubtedly to watch you, physician McLean, particularly now. Every this seems really strange to me, virtually oppressive. Ns wonder if--but might I go with you, carry out you suppose?"
"Surely," answered the doctor, with his acquainted smile; "it will perform you good. And you also must have actually a mansion in the city waiting for you--a well one, too--are you not looking front to it?"
"Yes," replied the other, hesitating a moment; "yes--I believe it must be so, back I had actually not intended to see it so soon. But I will go with you, and we can talk by the way."
The two men quickly captured up through the other people, and all go forward with each other along the road. The doctor had little to call of his experience, for it had actually been a plain, difficult life, uneventfully spent for others, and also the story of the village was an extremely simple. John Weightman"s adventures and triumphs would have actually made a far richer, an ext imposing history, complete of contacts with the an excellent events and also personages that the time. Yet somehow or other he did not treatment to speak much around it, walking on that wide heavenly moorland, under that tranquil, sunless arch the blue, in that free air the perfect peace, wherein the light was diffused without a shadow, as if the heart of life in all points were luminous.
There was only one human besides the doctor in that tiny company whom john Weightman had known before--an old bookkeeper who had spent his life end a desk, very closely keeping accounts--a rusty, dull small man, patient and also narrow, whose wife had remained in the insane asylum for 20 years and whose only child to be a crippled daughter, for whose comfort and also happiness he had toiled and sacrificed himself without stint. It to be a surprised to discover him here, together care-free and joyful as the rest.
The stays of rather in the agency were revealed in brief glimpses as they talked together--a mother, early on widowed, who had actually kept her small flock of children together and labored with hard and also heavy year to lug them up in purity and knowledge--a Sister the Charity that had devoted herself to the nursing of poor folk that were being eaten to death by cancer--a schoolmaster whose heart and life had been poured into his quiet work of training guys for a clean and thoughtful manhood--a medical missionary who had given up a brilliant career in scientific research to take it the charge of a hospital in darkest Africa--a beautiful woman with silver hair who had resigned her desires of love and marriage to treatment for an invalid father, and after his death had made her life a long, stable search for methods of law kindnesses to others--a poet who had actually walked amongst the overfilled tenements the the great city, pass cheer and also comfort not only by his songs, but by his wise and patient functions of practical aid--a paralyzed woman who had actually lain because that thirty year upon her bed, helpless yet not hopeless, succeeding by a wonder of courage in her single aim, never to complain, but constantly to send a little bit of joy and peace come every one that came close to her. Every these, and also other persons favor them, people of small consideration in the world, however now watch all complete of good contentment and also an inward gladness the made their steps light, to be in the company that passed along the road, talking with each other of things past and also things come come, and singing now and also then v clear voices native which the veil the age and sorrow was lifted.
John Weightman joined in few of the songs--which were acquainted to that from their use in the church--at first with a touch the hesitation, and also then more confidently. For as they went on his feeling of strangeness and also fear at his new experience diminished, and also his thoughts began to take on your habitual assurance and complacency. Were not these people going to the Celestial City? and was not he in his appropriate place among them? he had constantly looked front to this journey. If they to be sure, every one, of recognize a mansion there, might not he it is in far much more sure? His life had actually been much more fruitful 보다 theirs. He had been a leader, a founder of new enterprises, a column of Church and State, a prince the the house of Israel. Ten talents had actually been provided him, and he had actually made lock twenty. His reward would be proportionate. He was glad that his companions to be going to uncover fit dwellings prepared for them; yet he thought also with a specific pleasure that the surprised that several of them would certainly feel when they observed his appointed mansion.
So they pertained to the summit the the moorland and also looked over into the civilization beyond. It was a vast, environment-friendly plain, lightly rounded prefer a shallow vase, and also circled through hills the amethyst. A broad, shining river flowed through it, and many silver- threads the water to be woven throughout the green; and there were boundaries of tall trees on the banks of the river, and also orchards full of roses abloom follow me the tiny streams, and also in the midst of every stood the city, white and wonderful and also radiant.
When the travelers saw it they were filled through awe and joy. They passed over the tiny streams and among the orchards quickly and also silently, as if they feared to speak lest the city should vanish.
The wall surface of the city was an extremely low, a child can see end it, for it was made just of precious stones, i m sorry are never large. The gate of the city to be not like a gate a all, for it was no barred v iron or wood, yet only a solitary pearl, softly gleaming, significant the place where the wall ended and the entrance lay open.
A human being stood there whose confront was bright and grave, and whose robe was like the flower that the lily, not a woven fabric, but a life texture. "Come in," he said to the company of travelers; "you space at your journey"s end, and also your mansions are prepared for you."
John Weightman hesitated, because that he to be troubled by a doubt. Expect that the was no really, favor his companions, in ~ his journey"s end, however only transported for a little while the end of the regular course of his life into this secret experience? expect that, after all, he had actually not yes, really passed with the door of death, prefer these others, however only v the door of dreams, and was walking in a vision, a living man among the blessed dead. Would it be appropriate for him come go v them right into the heavenly city? would certainly it not be a deception, a desecration, a deep and also unforgivable offense? The strange, confuse question had actually no factor in it, together he really well knew; because that if he was dreaming, then it was every a dream; however if his companions to be real, then he likewise was through them in reality, and if lock had passed away then he must have passed away too. Yet he could not to escape his psychic of the feeling that there to be a difference between them and also him, and it make him afraid to go on. But, together he paused and turned, the goalkeeper of the door looked straight and also deep right into his eyes, and beckoned come him. Climate he knew that it was not only right but necessary that he should enter.
They passed native street to street among fair and also spacious dwellings, set in amaranthine gardens, and adorned v an infinitely differed beauty of magnificent simplicity. The mansions differed in size, in shape, in charm: each one appeared to have actually its own an individual look that loveliness; yet every were alike in fitness to their place, in harmony through one another, in the enhancement which every made to the singular and also tranquil splendor that the city.
As the little company came, one by one, come the mansions i m sorry were prepared for them, and also their overview beckoned to the happy inhabitant to enter in and also take possession, there was a soft murmur the joy, half wonder and fifty percent recognition; as if the brand-new and immortal dwelling to be crowned v the beauty, beauty of surprise, lovelier and nobler than all the desires of it had actually been; and also yet likewise as if it to be touched through the beauty, beauty of the familiar, the remembered, the long-loved. One after an additional the travelers were resulted in their very own mansions, and also went in gladly; and from within, v the open doorways came sweet voices that welcome, and also low laughter, and song.
At last there was no one left v the Guide but the two old friends, physician McLean and also John Weightman. They were standing in former of among the largest and also fairest the the houses, who garden glowed softly with radiant flowers. The overview laid his hand ~ above the doctor"s shoulder.
"This is because that you," he said. "Go in; over there is no an ext pain here, no more death, nor sorrow, nor tears; for her old enemies are every conquered. But all the an excellent that you have done for others, all the assist that you have actually given, all the comfort that you have brought, every the strength and also love that you have actually bestowed top top the suffering, are here; for we have developed them all right into this mansion for you."
The great man"s face was lighted through a still joy. That clasped his old friend"s hand closely, and also whispered: "How wonderful it is! walk on, you will pertained to your mansion next, it is not much away, and we shall watch each various other again soon, an extremely soon."
So the went v the garden, and also into the music within. The goalkeeper of the gate turned to john Weightman through level, quiet, searching eyes. Then he asked, gravely:
"Where execute you great me to command you now?"
"To watch my own mansion," answered the man, v half-concealed excitement. "Is there no one below for me? You may not permit me enter it yet, perhaps, because that I must confess to you that i am only--"
"I know," stated the goalkeeper of the Gate--"I recognize it all. You room John Weightman."
"Yes," claimed the man, more firmly than he had spoken at first, because that it gratified him the his surname was known. "Yes, ns am man Weightman, senior Warden that St. Petronius" Church. I wish very much to view my mansion here, if just for a moment. I believe that you have actually one for me. Will you take me to it?"
The keeper of the Gate attracted a little book native the breast of his robe and turned over the pages.
"Certainly," the said, v a curious look at the man, "your surname is here; and you shall view your mansion if you will follow me."
It appeared as if they must have actually walked miles and also miles, v the substantial city, pass street ~ street of homes larger and also smaller, that gardens richer and also poorer, however all complete of beauty and also delight.
They came right into a kind of suburb, wherein there to be many little cottages, with plots that flowers, an extremely lowly, yet bright and also fragrant. Finally they reached an open up field, bare and lonely-looking. Over there were two or three small bushes in it, there is no flowers, and the grass to be sparse and thin. In the facility of the field was a small hut, hardly big enough for a shepherd"s shelter. That looked together if it had been built of discarded things, scraps and also fragments of other buildings, put along with care and also pains, by part one who had tried to make the most of cast-off material.
There was something pitiful and shamefaced around the hut. That shrank and also drooped and faded in that barren field, and also seemed to cling only by sufferance to the edge of the splendid city.
"This," stated the goalkeeper of the Gate, was standing still and speaking through a low, unique voice--"this is your mansion, john Weightman."
An virtually intolerable shock that grieved wonder and also indignation choked the guy for a minute so that he might not speak a word. Then he rotate his challenge away from the poor tiny hut and began come remonstrate eagerly through his companion.
"Surely, sir," he stammered, "you should be in error around this. Over there is miscellaneous wrong--some other John Weightman--a confusion of names--the book must it is in mistaken."
"There is no mistake," said the keeper of the Gate, really calmly; "here is her name, the record of your title and your possessions in this place."
"But how might such a house be prepared for me," cried the man, with a resentful tremor in his voice--"for me, after mine long and also faithful service? Is this a suitable mansion for one so fine known and also devoted? Why is it so pitifully small and mean? Why have actually you not built it big and fair, choose the others?"
"That is every the product you sent out us."
"We have actually used all the material that you sent out us," repeated the keeper of the Gate.
"Now I know that you are mistaken," cried the man, with farming earnestness, "for all my life lengthy I have actually been doing things that must have supplied you v material. Have you not heard that ns have constructed a school-house; the wing of a hospital; two--yes, three--small churches, and the greater part of a big one, the spire of St. Petro--"
The keeper of the door lifted his hand.
"Wait," he said; "we understand all these things. Castle were not ill done. However they to be all marked and offered as structure for the name and mansion of john Weightman in the world. Did you not arrangement them for that?"
"Yes," reply the man, confused and taken aback, "I confess that ns thought often of them in the way. Maybe my love was collection upon that also much. Yet there are various other things--my endowment because that the college--my steady and also liberal contribute to all the developed charities--my support of every respectable--"
"Wait," stated the goalkeeper of the door again. "Were no all these very closely recorded on earth where they would include to your credit?
They were no foolishly done. Verily, girlfriend have had actually your reward for them. Would certainly you be paid twice?"
"No," cry the man, through deepening dismay, "I challenge not case that. I identify that I thought about my own interest as well much. Yet surely no altogether. You have said the these things were not foolishly done. They accomplished some great in the world. Does not that counting for something?"
"Yes," answered he keeper of the Gate, "it counts in the world--where friend counted it. Yet it does not belong to you here. We have actually saved and used whatever that you sent us. This is the mansion prepared for you."
As he spoke, his look grew deeper and more searching, like a fire of fire. John Weightman might not endure it. It seemed to strip him naked and also wither him. The sank to the soil under a crushing weight of shame, covering his eyes v his hands and also cowering face downward ~ above the stones. Dimly with the problem of his mind he felt your hardness and also coldness.
"Tell me, then," that cried, brokenly, "since my life has actually been so little worth, just how came I below at all?"
"Through the mercy of the King"--the price was choose the soft tolling that a bell.
"And how have I earned it?" that murmured.
"It is never earned; it is just given," come the clear, low reply.
"But how have I failed so wretchedly," he asked, "in all the function of my life? What might I have done better? What is it the counts here?"
"Only the which is truly given," answered the bell-like voice. Only that great which is done because that the love of law it. Only those plan in which the welfare of others is the master thought. Only those labors in i beg your pardon the sacrifice is better than the reward. Only those gifts in i beg your pardon the giver forgets himself."
The male lay silent. A an excellent weakness, one unspeakable despondency and humiliation were upon him. However the face of the keeper of the gate was infinitely tender as he bent end him.
"Think again, john Weightman. Has there to be nothing prefer that in her life?"
"Nothing," that sighed. "If there ever before were together things, it must have been long ago--they to be all crowded out--I have forgotten them."
There to be an ineffable smile on the confront of the goalkeeper of the Gate, and also his hand do the authorize of the cross end the bowed head as he speak gently:
"These room the points that the King never forgets; and because there to be a few of castle in her life, you have a little place here."
The feeling of coldness and hardness under man Weightman"s hands thrived sharper and much more distinct. The emotion of bodily weariness and also lassitude sweet upon him, yet there was a calm, nearly a lightness, in his heart as he listened to the fading vibrations the the silvery bell-tones. The chimney clock ~ above the mantel had just finished the critical stroke of seven as he lifted his head indigenous the table. Thin, pale strips that the city morning to be falling into the room v the small partings the the hefty curtains.
What to be it that had happened to him? had he to be ill? had actually he died and come come life again? Or had actually he only slept, and had his spirit gone visiting in dreams? He satellite for some time, motionless, no lost, but finding himself in thought. Then he take it a narrow publication from the table drawer, composed a check, and tore the out.
He went progressively up the stairs, knocked really softly at his son"s door, and, hear no answer, gone into without noise. Harold to be asleep, his bare arm thrown over his head, and also his eager face relaxed in peace. His father looked at him a moment with strange shining eyes, and then tiptoed quiet to the writing-desk, uncovered a pencil and a sheet of paper, and also wrote rapidly:
"My too ~ boy, here is what friend asked me for; carry out what you choose with it, and also ask for much more if you require it. If you are still reasoning of that work with Grenfell, we"ll speak it over to-day after ~ church.
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I desire to understand your heart better; and also if I have actually made mistakes--"
A slight noise do him revolve his head. Harold to be sitting up in bed v wide-open eyes.
"Father!" the cried, "is the you?"
"Yes, mine son," answered john Weightman; "I"ve come back--I average I"ve come up--no, I typical come in--well, right here I am, and also God give us a good Christmas together."