the river-bank and, shading his eyes with his hand, gazed

steadily down stream.

Patches of green fodder and blossoming potatoes melted into soft

fields that had been lately mown, and there were glimpses of

tasseling corn rising high to catch the sun. Far, far down on

the opposite bank of the river was the hint of a brown roof, and

the tip of a chimney that sent a slender wisp of smoke into the

clear air. Beyond this, and farther back from the water, the

trees apparently hid a cluster of other chimneys, for thin

spirals of smoke ascended here and there. The little brown roof

could never have revealed itself to any but a lover's eye; and

that discerned something even smaller, something like a pinkish

speck, that moved hither and thither on a piece of greensward

that sloped to the waterside.

"She's up!" Stephen exclaimed under his breath, his eyes shining,

his lips smiling. His voice had a note of hushed exaltation

about it, as if "she," whoever she might be, had, in

condescending to rise, conferred a priceless boon upon a waiting

universe. If she were indeed a "up" (so his tone implied), then

the day, somewhat falsely heralded by the sunrise, had really

begun, and the human race might pursue its appointed tasks,

inspired and uplifted by the consciousness of her existence. It

might properly be grateful for the fact of her birth; that she

had grown to woman's estate; and, above all, that, in common with

the sun, the lark, the morning-glory, and other beautiful things

of the early day, she was up and about her lovely, cheery,

heart-warming business.

The handful of chimneys and the smoke spirals rising here and

there among the trees on the river-bank belonged to what was

known as the Brier Neighborhood. There were only a few houses in

all, scattered along a side road leading from the river up to

Liberty Centre. There were no great signs of thrift or

prosperity, but the Wiley cottage, the only one near the water,

was neat and well cared for, and Nature had done her best to

conceal man's indolence, poverty, or neglect.

Bushes of sweetbrier grew in fragrant little forests as tall as

the fences. Clumps of wild roses sprang up at every turn, and

over all the stone walls, as well as on every heap of rocks by

the wayside, prickly blackberry vines ran and clambered and

clung, yielding fruit and thorns impartially to the neighborhood

children.

The pinkish speck that Stephen Waterman had spied from his side

of the river was Rose Wiley of the Brier Neighborhood on the

Edgewood side. As there was another of her name on Brigadier

Hill, the Edgewood minister called one of them the climbing Rose

and the other the brier Rose, or sometimes Rose of the river.

She was well named, the pinkish speck. She had not only some of

the sweetest attributes of the wild rose, but the parallel might

have been extended as far as the thorns, for she had wounded her

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