LIFE AMONG THE LOWLY 461
He spoke kinder than usual, and said he should come back, but it did n't deceive me. I knew that the time had come. I was just like one turned into stone; I could n't speak, nor shed a tear. He kissed me, and kissed the children, a. good many times, aud went out. I saw him get on his horse, and I watched him till he was quite out of sight; and then I fell down, and fainted.
" Then he came, the cursed wretch ! he came to take possession. He told me that he had bought me and my children; and showed me the papers. I cursed him before God, and told him I 'd die sooner than live with him.
" ' Just as you please,' said he; ' but, if you don't behave reasonably, I '11 sell both the children, where you shall never see them again.' He told me that he always had meant to have me, from the first time he saw me; and that he had drawn Henry on, and got him in debt, on, purpose to make him willing to sell me; that he got him in love with another woman; and that I might know, after all that, that he should not give up for a few airs and tears, and things of that sort.
" I gave up, for my hands were tied. He had my children ; — whenever I resisted his will anywhere, he would talk about selling them, and he made me as submissive as he desired. Oh, what a life it was ! to live with my heart breaking, every day, — to keep on, on, on, loving, when it was only misery; and to be bound, body and soul, to one I hated. I used to love to read to Henry, to play to him, to waltz with him, and sing to him ; but everything I did for this one was a perfect drag, — yet I was afraid to refuse anything. He was very imperious, and harsh to the children. Elise was a timid little thing ; but Henry was bold and high-spirited, like his father, and he had never been brought under, in the least, by any one. He was always finding fault, and quarreling with him; and I used to live in daily fear and dread. I tried to make the child respectful; — I tried to keep them apart, for I held