It was very pleasant in the walled garden sweet with

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It was very pleasant in the walled garden, sweet with the scent of the lilies and the old-fashioned cabbage roses. Now and again came a rich fruity whiff from the direction of the white house that showed beyond the gnarled apple- boughs. Eliza Doyle, Father James's housekeeper, was making raspberry jam in the kitchen. Now and again as she brought a steaming panful to cool on the table by the window she stood a second or two to watch the pacing figure beyond the tangle of apple-boughs. "He's got something on his mind," she thought. "Lord send there's nothing wrong with Master James. 'Tis a while since he's come to see us: and there was that hussy yesterday. I didn't like the looks of her somehow." Then she smiled, for she remembered how fond Master James was of raspberry jam, and certain boyish raids of his on her store-cupboard. "Sure," she thought again, "sure you've only to look in the coaxing face of him to forgive him, no matter what he does." James Lester was Father James Barren's nephew, his only sister's only child, and dear to his uncle's heart as if he had been his own child. It was quite surprising what a difference it had made to Father James, his possession of a scapegrace nephew. Jim had been given over altogether to his uncle at six years old, when his mother died. Father James had brought him up. The child and boy had been such a joy to him that he had often wondered why he should have been selected for so much happiness above
his fellows. The lot of other priests was a lonely and barren one compared with his. "You see I'm a family man," he used to say roguishly to the other priests. And indeed his vicarious fatherhood had all the joys, all the possible sorrows of real fatherhood. Every one loved Jim Lester as every one loved Father James. Allowing for some forty years of difference in their ages they were strikingly alike. Time had been when Father James's thinning curls had been like his nephew's, golden-brown and plentiful. The priest's eyes yet were nearly as blue as the lad's. Both faces had the expression of a quiet and roguish humour. Father James was old enough to have had continental training, and although he was only a farmer's son he was a fine gentleman. Perhaps it was because of their association together that Jim Lester had learnt his uncle's ways. He had a charming way with women, not common among his class. No wonder that girls had been in love with him from the time he began to make love, and that was very early in his career. Jim had flitted about from girl to girl as the bee from flower to flower. It had not made his uncle seriously uneasy. Jim had flirted so openly, so universally, that hitherto he had escaped the consequences of his flirtations. Father James had almost ceased to be anxious. He could remember a time, before he had known that the Church was his only love, when he had been gay and irresponsible among the girls himself. He could trust Jim, he thought, not to do any harm, not to hurt any one. Why Jim was the softest- hearted fellow alive. Ask the dogs if he wasn't? Ask the animals that had the

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