and in the middle lay a diamond drop of dew. Several letters were delicately cut on its golden stem, and a guard pin showed how much its wearer valued it.
"My sister Lucretia was a good deal older than I, for the three boys came between," began Mrs. Warburton, still gazing at the fire, as if from its ashes the past rose up bright and warm again. "She was a very lovely and superior girl, and I looked up to her with wonder as well as adoration. Others did the same, and at eighteen she was engaged to a charming man, who would have made his mark had he lived. She was too young to marry then, and Frank Lyman had a fine opening to practise his profession at the South. So they parted for two years, and it was then that he gave her the brooch, saying to her, as she whispered how lonely she should be without him, 'This pensée is a happy, faithful thought of me. Wear it, dearest girl, and don't pine while we are separated. Read and study, write much to me, and remember, "They never are alone that are accompanied with noble thoughts."'"
"Was n't that sweet?" cried Eva, pleased with the beginning of the tale.
"So romantic!" added Carrie, recalling the "amber amulet" one of her pet heroes wore for years, and died kissing, after he had killed some fifty Arabs in the desert.
"Did she read and study?" asked Alice, with a soft color in her cheek, and eager eyes, for a budding romance was folded away in the depths of her maidenly heart, and she liked a love story.