Heartsease or Brother's Wife
The lowliest flowers the closest cling to earth,
And they first feel the sun; so violets blue,
So the soft star-like primrose drenched in dew,
The happiest of spring's happy fragrant birth,
To gentlest touches, sweetest tones reply;
So humbleness, with her low-breathed voice,
Can steal o'er man's proud heart, and win his choice.
'She is ready to see you,' said Arthur, meeting Theodora, as she came down at
nine the next morning after church.
Violet's face, white as a lily, was on the pillow, and a little dark downy head was
A sense of being too late, of neglect and disappointment, rushed over Theodora,
and made her looks not what the mother expected, as with smiling eyes and
feeble voice she said, 'Your niece, dear Theodora.'
'I did not know--' were Theodora's first words, and their dissatisfied sound made
Arthur regret his abrupt introduction; though she recovered herself enough to say
something of gladness, and of hopes that Violet was comfortable.
'Yes, thank you, quite. I am so thankful! I am so glad of everything. Now I hope
Arthur will not lose the 12th of August.'
'Only don't talk now, my sweet one. Come, Theodora,' as if he only wanted to get
her out of the room.
'I have not looked at the baby. What a fine one!' and she was going to take her.
'Oh, please don't!' said Violet; 'she will begin screaming again!' Then, seeing the
cloud return, 'Presently, dear aunt, when she wakes. Is not she a beauty?'
Arthur, his hand on the door, hurried Theodora again.
'I will come' she said, impatiently, 'I will come and sit with you after breakfast,
Violet; I only wish I had been called.'
'Indeed, I know how kind you would have been,' said Violet, holding her hand,
and watching to see whether the displeasure was removed: 'but it seemed a pity
to disturb you. Please don't be vexed; I'll give you plenty of trouble yet.'
She had, roused herself enough to alarm Arthur and the nurse.
'This will never do,' he said, laying his hand on his sister's arm, and drawing her
away almost by force: 'You MUST keep quiet, Violet.'
'I will, indeed, but please, Theodora--'
'She pleases all you wish. Never mind,' said Arthur, fairly putting her out, then
stepping back, 'Lie still, and mind your big baby; that is all you have to do.'
'Only don't let her be vexed.'
'No such thing.'
But when out of Violet's hearing he could not refrain from telling Theodora his
displeasure. 'I thought you had more sense, or I would never have let you in.'
'I knew nothing of it.'
'Your own fault for marching off at that time in the morning! I had been up to tell
you, and could not think where you were.'