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The Hand of Ethelberta

2.Christopher's House - Sandbourne Town -
Sandbourne Moor
During the wet autumn of the same year, the postman
passed one morning as usual into a plain street that ran
through the less fashionable portion of Sandbourne, a
modern coast town and watering- place not many miles from
the ancient Anglebury. He knocked at the door of a flat-faced
brick house, and it was opened by a slight, thoughtful young
man, with his hat on, just then coming out. The postman put
into his hands a book packet, addressed, 'Christopher Julian,
Esq.'
Christopher took the package upstairs, opened it with
curiosity, and discovered within a green volume of poems,
by an anonymous writer, the title-page bearing the
inscription, 'Metres by E.' The book was new, though it was
cut, and it appeared to have been looked into. The young
man, after turning it over and wondering where it came from,
laid it on the table and went his way, being in haste to fulfil
his engagements for the day.
In the evening, on returning home from his occupations, he
sat himself down cosily to read the newly-arrived volume.
The winds of this uncertain season were snarling in the
chimneys, and drops of rain spat themselves into the fire,
revealing plainly that the young man's room was not far
enough from the top of the house to admit of a twist in the
flue, and revealing darkly a little more, if that social rule-of-
three inverse, the higher in lodgings the lower in pocket,
were applicable here. However, the aspect of the room,
though homely, was cheerful, a somewhat contradictory
group of furniture suggesting that the collection consisted of
waifs and strays from a former home, the grimy faces of the
old articles exercising a curious and subduing effect on the
 
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