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“ Extravagance frequently throws us « into unpleasant circumstances,” said Mr. Richardson, coldly.

“. I feel it, Sir," replied Charles, sand. “ cannot help, for a moment, placing my" self in the situation of that poor boy, “ and thinking what I should feel to see niy “ dear Mary fuffer like his fifter.”

“ The miseries to which they are exposed s are indeed dreadful," answered Mr. Richardson, “and cold and hunger among “ the least ; at present they appear inno“cent; but may not the companions « they must necessarily meet with in their “ peregrinations, such as gypfies and other 6 vagabonds, work on their poverty and « inexperience, and corrupt their hearts, “ though naturally honest, until by degrees *** they convert them to midnight robbers, " and barbarous assassins ?”

“ Merciful goodness! how horrible!” cried Mary. “ I wish, with all my heart, “ I was a woman." “ What then, my dear girl ?" returned

Mr.

Mr. Richardson, in a voice of cheerful kindness.

" Why then, Sir, I would shelter them “ from danger ; they should never wan. o der again.”

“ Heaven forbid you should be pre“ vented in so praise-worthy a resolve. We “ will inquire more particularly into their “ story, and if we find they have spoken “ truth, I will advance to you, Charles, a 66 sum fufficient to, apprentice the boy to « fome trade by which he may gain a liv. “ ing; and for the girl, Mary shall place is her at the village-school, near our coun4 try-house, where they may occasionally 66 superintend her improvement, until she 6 can be rendered useful in the family; * and you will both have the pleasure of « contemplating, that, in all probability, “ you have preserved to society two worthy “ members, who, but for your interfee rence, might have proved a scourge to “ their fellows, and a disgrace to human * nature"

" What

- « What an enchanting thought !” ex" claimed Charles; “but for you, my « dear, Sir, we should not have enjoyed it; 6 for though they interested me at the mo“ ment, I should soon have forgotten them.”

" And had it not been for you, papa," said Mary, “ I should have sent them half 66 a crown, and thought myself very ge6 nerous, when in reality it would have 6 done them no essential service; while, as “ you have settled it, they are safe from 6 danger; and if they are good, we shall « have the pleasure of thinking that we " have contributed towards making them 6-10 Ah, if you had not questioned them, as we should not have enjoyed this fatisfac« tion.”

.6 A false pride, my dear children, fre“ quently deprives us of the highest enjoy~ ments; how erroneously do they judge, “ who live only to gratify their own cas price; the sunshine of their benevolence * never extending farther than the shadow 56 of their own persons. But it grows late ;

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“ we will dispose of your new charge, and “ pursue our journey.”

Mr. Richardson ordered the children to be sent up ; when he informed them of the determination in their favour, and received in return every acknowledgment which the grateful fimplicity of their hearts could sug

gest.

He then gave them in charge to the waiter, desiring him to send them by the first conveyance that passed towards Acton, where he had lately hired a small house to retire occasionally with his children.

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CHAP. IV.

Laudable Curiosity.-- Arrival in London.

Mr. Richardson proceeded no farther that night than his little villa at Acton, where, the ensuing morning early, Charles and Mary had the satisfaction of seeing their new dependants arrive; and, in a few hours, by the skill of the good old housekeeper, so metamorphosed, that they were scarcely to be recognized. Charles could not cease observing that he should never have thought his old coat could have been altered to fit Frank so well; and Mary was never weary of admiring Patty; who dressed in a neat brown gown, straw hat, and white tippet, charmed her so highly, that she jumped round her in rapture, exclaiming, “ Mind, « Patty, you are my own, own girl! What « a good father is mine, to let me have “ you! Ah, I hope I shall never offend « him as long as I live !"

If the pleasure of Charles and Mary was

great

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