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can make it very neatly, and have it done in time, you can take it.”
7. “ It shall be done in time," said the young woman, reaching out eagerly for the bundle.
“ And remember, I shall expect it made well. If I like your work, I will give you more.”
8. “I will try to please you,” returned the girl in a low voice.
" To-morrow evening, recollect.” “ Yes, sir, I will have it done.”
9. The girl turned and went quickly away. back room, in the third story of an old house in Cherry Street, was the home of the poor sewing girl. As she entered, she said in a cheerful voice to her sick sister, “ Mary, I have got work; it is a vest, and I must have it done by to-morrow evening.
10. “ Can you finish it in time?" inquired the invalid, in a feeble voice.
“O, yes, easily."
11. It proved to be a white Marseilles. As soon as the invalid sister saw this, she said, “ I am afraid you will not be able to get it done in time, Ellen. You are not very fast with the needle, and besides, you are far from being well.”
12. “Don't fear in the least, Mary; I will do all I engaged to do.”
13. It was after dark the next night when Ellen had finished the garment. She was weary and faint, having taken no food since the morning. The want of every thing, and particularly food for herself and sister, made seventy-five cents, the sum which she expected to receive for making the garment, a treasure in her imagination.
11. She hurried off with the vest, the moment it was finished, saying to her sister, “I will be back as soon as possible, and bring you some cordial, and something for our supper and breakfast."
15. “ Here it is past eight o'clock, and the vest is
not yet in," said Mr. Lawson, in a fretful tone. had my doubts about the girl when I gave it to her. But she looked so poor, and seemed so earnest about work, that I was weak enough to intrust her with the garment."
16. At this moment, Ellen came in, and laid the vest on the counter where Mr. Lawson was standing. She said nothing. Neither did he. Taking the vest, he unfolded it in a manner that plainly showed him not to be in a very placid frame of mind.
17. “Goodness!” he ejaculated, turning over the garment, and looking at the girl. She shrunk back. from the counter, and looked frightened.
Well, this is a pretty job for one to bring in!” said the tailor, in an excited tone of voice 66 a pretty job, indeed ;” at the same time tossing the vest away from him in angry contempt, and walking off to another part of the store.
Ellen remained at the counter.
18. At length he said to her, “You need not stand there, miss, thinking I am going to pay you for ruining the job. It is bad enough to lose my material, and a customer into the bargain. In justice, you should pay me for the vest; but there is no hope for that. So take yourself off, and never let me set eyes on you again.”
19. Ellen" made no reply. She turned round, raised her hand to her forehead, and bursting into tears, walked slowly away.
1. After Ellen had gone, Mr. Lawson returned to the front part of the store, and taking up the vest, brought it back to where an elderly man was sitting, and holding it towards him, said, by way of apology for the part he had taken in the little scene, “ That is a beautiful article for a gentleman to wear, isn't it?"
2. The man made no reply, and the tailor, after a pause, added, “ I refused to pay her, as a matter of principle. She knew she couldn't make the garment when she took it away.
She will be more careful how she tries again to impose herself upon customer tailors, as a good vest maker.”
3. “ Perhaps,” said the elderly gentleman, in a mild way, “necessity drove her to undertake a job that required greater skill than she possessed. She certainly looked very poor."
4. “ It was because she appeared so poor and miserable, that I was weak enough to place the vest in her hands,” replied Mr. Lawson, in a less severe tone of voice. “But it was an imposition in her, to ask for work she did not know how to make."
5. “ Mr. Lawson,” said the old gentleman, who was known as a pious and good man, "we should not blame with too much severity the person who, in extreme want, undertakes to perform a piece of work for which he does not possess the requisite skill.
6. “ The fact that a young girl, like the one who was just here, is willing, in her extreme poverty, to labor, instead of sinking into vice and idleness, shows her to possess both virtue and integrity of character; and that we should be willing to encourage, even at some sacrifice.
7. « Work is slack now, as you are aware, and
there is but little doubt that she had been to
many places seeking employment before she came to you. It may be that she and others, depending on the meagre returns of her labor, were reduced to the utmost extremity.
8. “ It may be, that even their next meal was dependent upon the receipt of the money, that was expected to be paid for making the vest you hold in your hand. The expression of her face as she turned away, her lingering step, her drooping form, and her whole demeanor, had in them a language which told me of all this, and even more.”
9. A change came over the tailor's countenance. " I didn't think of that,” fell in a low tone from his lips.
10. “I did not suppose you did, brother Lawson," said his monitor. “We are all more apt to think of ourselves than of others. The girl promised the vest this evening; and so far as that was concerned, she performed her contract. Is the vest made very badly?” 11. Mr. Lawson took
the garment, and examined it more carefully. “Well, I can't say the work is so very badly done. But it is dreadfully -soiled and rumpled ; and it is not as neat a job as it should be, nor at all such as I wished it.”
12. “ All this is very annoying, of course; but, still, we should be willing and ready to make some excuse for the shortcomings of others. The poor girl may have had a sick mother or sister to attend to, which constantly interrupted her; and under such circumstances, you could hardly wonder, if the garment should come some soiled from under her hands.
13. “ All this may be the case ; and if so, you could not find it in your heart, to speak unkindly to the poor creature, much less to turn her away angrily, and without the money she had toiled for so earnestly."
14. “ I didn't think of that,” was murmured in a low, suppressed tone of voice.
15. Ellen, on returning home, entered the room, and, without uttering a word, threw herself upon the bed by the side of her sick sister, and, burying her face in a pillow, endeavored to smother the sobs that came up convulsively from her bosom.
16. Mary asked no questions. She understood the meaning of Ellen's agitation. It told her that she had been disappointed in her expectation of receiving the money for her work.
17. Just at that moment, there was a knock at the door; but no voice bade the applicant for admission enter. It was repeated, but it met no response.
Then the latch was lifted, the door swung open, and the tailor stepped into the room.
18. The sound of his feet aroused the distressed sisters; and Ellen raised herself up, and looked at Mr. Lawson with a countenance suffused with tears.
19. “I felt that I was wrong in speaking to you in the way that I did," said Mr. Lawson, advancing towards the bed, and holding out to Ellen the money she had earned. Here is the price of the vest. It was better made than I at first thought it
To-morrow I will send you more work. Try to cheer up."
20. Mr. Lawson, finding his presence was embarrassing, withdrew, leaving the two sisters so deeply affected that they
could only look their thankfulness. 21. Shortly after, they received a basket in which was a supply of nourishing food and a sum of money to procure such articles as might be necessary for the sick sister. Though no one's name was sent with it, they were not in any doubt as to the individual who sent it.
22. Mr. Lawson was not an unfeeling man; but, like too many others in the world, he