LIFE AMONG THE LOWLY 145
— hang it, I won't follow my judgment! " he added, suddenly ; "so here, George," and taking out a roll of bills from his pocket-book, he offered them to George.
" No, my kind, good sir! " said George, " you 've done a great deal for me, and this might get you into trouble. I have money enough, I hope, to take me as far as I need it."
" No; but you must, George. Money is a great help everywhere ; — can't have too much, if you get it honestly. Take it, — do take it, now, — do, my boy! "
" On condition, sir, that I may repay it at some future time, I will," said George, taking up the money.
" And now, George, how long are you going to travel in this way ? — not long or far, I hope. It's well carried on, but too bold. And this black fellow, — who is he ? "
" A true fellow, who went to Canada more than a year ago. He heard, after he got there, that his master was so angry at him for going off that he had whipped his poor old mother; and he has come all the way back to comfort her, and get a chance to get her away."
" Has he got her ? "
" Not yet; he has been hanging about the place, and found no chance yet. Meanwhile, he is going with me as far as Ohio, to put me among friends that helped him, and then he will come back after her."
" Dangerous, very dangerous ! " said the old man.
George drew himself up, and smiled disdainfully.
The old gentleman eyed him from head to foot, with a sort of innocent wonder.
" George, something has brought you out wonderfully. You hold up your head, and speak and move like another man," said Mr. Wilson.
" Because I 'm a free man! " said George, proudly. " Yes, sir; I 've said Mas'r'for the last time to any man. I'm free ! "
" Take care ! You are not sure, — you may be taken."
" All men are free and equal in the grave, if it comes to that, Mr. Wilson," said George.