"DEAREST MOTHER,--I slept ill last night, and got up aching from head to foot, as if I had been well hided. But they sent me to the top of Cairnhope Peak, and, what with the keen air and the glorious view, I came home and ate like a hog. That pleased Martha Dence, and she kept putting me slices off her own plate, till I had to cry quarter. As soon as I have addressed this letter, I'm off to bed, for it is all I can do not to fall asleep sitting.
"I am safe to be all right to-morrow, so pray don't fret. I am, dear mother," etc., etc.
"DEAREST MOTHER,--I hope you are not fretting about me. Dr. Amboyne promised to stop all that. But do write, and say you are not fretting and fancying all manner of things at my cutting away so suddenly. It was the doctor's doing. And, mother, I shall not stay long away from you, for I slept twelve hours at a stretch last night, and now I'm another man. But really, I think the air of that Cairnhope Peak would cure a fellow at his last gasp.
"Thank you for the linen, and the brushes, and things. But you are not the sort to forget anything a fellow might want," etc.
"No, my darling son. Be in no hurry to leave Cairnhope. Of course, love, I was alarmed at first; for I know doctors make the best of every thing; and then the first parting!--that is always a sorrowful thing. But, now you are there, I beg you will stay till you are quite recovered. Your letters are a delight, and one I could not have, and you as well, you know.
"Since you are at Cairnhope--how strange that seems--pray go and see the old church, where your forefathers are buried. There are curious inscriptions, and some brasses nobody could decipher when I was a girl; but perhaps you might, you are so clever. Your grandfather's monument is in the chancel: I want you to see it. Am I getting very old, that my heart turns back to these scenes of my youth?
"P.S.--Who is this Martha Dence?"
"DEAR MOTHER,--Martha Dence is the farmer's daughter I lodge with. She is not so pretty as her sister Jael that is with Miss Carden; but she is a comely girl, and as good as gold, and bespoke by the butcher. And her putting slices from her plate to mine is a village custom, I find.