Lilly Watson; or, The Star on the Deep

by Anonymous

Eliza Cook’s Journal, vol. 2, issue 32 (1850)

Pages 105-109

NOTE: This entry is in draft form; it is currently undergoing the VSFP editorial process.

Introductory Note: “Lilly Watson” is a brief narrative from Eliza Cook’s Journal that was written for a female audience. The narrative explores the economic and social difficulties of Lilly, a young woman who has recently been orphaned. Struggling through her grief, Lilly encounters multiple setbacks that push her to seek refuge in her faith in God and a philanthropic soldier.

It was Sunday afternoon, and in the cemetery which occupies the slope of the hills overlooking the little village of R——, on the sea coast, a few stragglers still lingered who had come thither out of curiosity, to behold a body consigned to its parent clay. No pompous show had been seen at that burial. She who had departed was a poor widow, but her death had left a void in two hearts which would not easily be filled up. The rich feelings which God has bestowed alike on the humble and on the wealthy gushed forth in bitter tears at this moment by the newly-made grave. The little crowd had dispersed, and two figures only remained sitting on the turf. One was that of a girl about sixteen, pale as ashes, but extremely beautiful, in spite of a worn and haggard look, earned by long attendance on her sick mother. Lilly Watson was now left alone to combat with the world, and to protect her little brother from its snares. He sat at her side sobbing bitterly for the loss of one who had made his infancy and childhood, though passed amid toil, sweet and bright by the glance of affection, that, where it in reality exists, destroys the sting of hardship, toil, and affliction. Lilly, however, when she had given way to her first overpowering sense of sorrow, felt within herself that to indulge it was to sin against Him who disposes of all things well; rising, therefore, and drying her own eyes, she kissed away her brother’s tears, and bade him come home. In silence they wandered hand in hand down the hill side, and took their way to one of the cottages in the midst of the village. This, their home, when reached, renewed their sorrow once again; it appeared so desolate, so empty, now that she was gone. Lilly sat down by the window, and leaning her pale cheek upon her hand, gazed out upon the vast expanse of ocean, which sent forth a troubled murmur, as if it meditated some display of its power ere long. She little knew how deeply the voice of the deep waters was connected with her own future destiny. Into the little port of R——, vessels sometimes put, either to take in water, or when driven there by stress of weather. A ship had not long since arrived, and there she lay, her sails furled, and her little flag floating in the breeze. Lilly called her brother to watch the men rowing in to shore, thinking thus to divert his attention, while her own thoughts wandered to her position.

Mrs. Watson was the widow of a seaman who had been shipwrecked upon the coast. Early trained in the way of adversity, her mind had been chastened and elevated by her sorrows. If, in the innermost recesses of her heart, she repined that the chosen of her youth was gone, she strove, from her own experience, to instil into the minds of her fatherless children the lesson that all things here below are unstable. She argued with herself that, perhaps, she had set her heart too deeply upon her earthly affection, and had made her husband too much of an idol. Still, though she spoke thus and thought thus, there were moments when the sense of his absence, of his irrevocable removal from her side, would fill her soul with bitterness and regret. Poverty, too, came upon her; and though much respected by the gentry around, and though her little home, by the charity of a good neighbour, had been secured to her and her children rent free, she sometimes found it no easy matter to support herself in the long winter months by needlework, which was her only means of subsistence. Lilly, up to her mother’s death, had assisted her, and now hoped to be able to continue her labour. But the neighbourhood of the village had, of late, much deteriorated; most of the respectable families had removed nearer the town, which lay some few miles distant, in a situation less exposed to the vicissitudes of climate. Less work, therefore, was in circulation; and Lilly, who had found it difficult during her mother’s illness to secure bread, looked forward sorrowfully to the future. She had just turned to assuage a fresh burst of sorrow from her brother, when she was startled by hearing a voice at the window. Looking round, she beheld the sunburnt good-humoured face of a sailor peeping in. His chestnut hair was piled above a broad forehead, deeply stained by the weather, while his bright blue eyes twinkled merrily as he surveyed the startled group.

“Beg your pardon, young lady,” said he, “but couldn’t help peeping in to see what was the matter, as I heard sobs inside; what are you both crying for in this way?”

“Sir, our mother is dead,” answered Lilly, with a quivering lip, “and I cannot console my little brother.”

“Come, come,” said the sailor, as he lifted the latch and unceremoniously entered, “come, my man, you must not cry—it’s wicked—it’s naughty—I don’t know what to call it. Look here,” said he, before the child had time to recover his surprise, “look here,” he continued, uncovering a cage in which a beautiful parrot was ensconced, “I will give you this, all for yourself, if you will only stop crying.”

The new toy, the bewilderment into which he was thrown, soon made the child dry his eyes; while Lilly, standing a little apart, surveyed the stranger with a look of wonder not unmingled with awe. His rough entrance, the familiarity of his behaviour, all surprised her, and she knew not scarcely what to think. With a tact which good and upright hearts possess, and which showed no inconsiderable knowledge of the human heart, the new comer insinuated himself into the confidence of the young orphans. He commenced by informing her that he was the captain of the vessel that had just put into port, that he had business which would detain him a few days, but that then, weather permitting, he was bound on a long voyage. Lilly found herself, by degrees, telling her own little history to the stranger guest; he listened with much attention, but whether it was the face of the young speaker, or the facts she was relating, which chiefly riveted his attention, we must leave to the reader to determine. Before he quitted, he had promised to procure her work, and that he would do all in his power to interest his friends in her favour.

As he opened the door of the cottage, in going out, a young woman who was passing started back, and with a look of mingled anger and surprise cried:

“Are you landed, and is this your destination?”

“Come Catherine, come,” said the Captain, as he seized her hand, “is this my welcome? I will explain all by-and-by. Come say, are you not glad to see me?”

The girl did not answer, save by a look of unutterable scorn at Lilly, who stood in the background, but suffered the Captain to lead her away. Catherine Morgan was the daughter of a village grocer, and was universally believed to be destined for the future wife of the Captain of the merchant ship. A sort of engagement had indeed subsisted between them, but his affections had received of late too many shocks long to survive them. He still came to see her more from habit than inclination, but partly because he felt himself bound in honour to fulfil his promises, should she still seem to expect it of him. Between Catherine and Lilly Watson there had never subsisted any friendship. The former was envious of her beauty, her sweetness, the universal esteem in which she was held; and spared no opportunity to throw her rival into the shade. When, therefore, she saw the Captain issuing from her cottage on landing, before he came to pay his respects to her, her anger knew no bounds; and she at this moment vowed against Lilly, the utmost revenge which chance should throw in her way. To allow her designs to be visible, however, would, she felt, be unadvisable; she therefore began to speak of Lilly to her lover in the highest terms of friendship and pity, which raised her infinitely higher in the Captain’s esteem than she had previously stood. Together they concerted a scheme for her assistance, which engaged them in pleasant conversation until they reached home. Mr. Morgan and his second daughter welcomed their guest with cordiality, and the evening passed away; not without adding fresh fuel, however, to Catherine’s wrath, for when she heard the story of the parrot, and felt that had it not been for this unlucky contretemps, it would have been her own, all her bitterest feelings were awakened 1“Contretemps” refers to an inopportune occurrence..

Early the next morning Captain Johnson found his way to Lilly’s cottage, bringing with him a large parcel, which he told her was work he wished her to do for him, and for which, as he expected to be long absent, he should pay her in advance. This unexpected good fortune brought tears of joy into Lilly’s eyes, her heart swelled with gratitude towards her new friend, and her voice quivered with emotion, as she tried to thank him. It was not, however, to receive words of thankfulness that Captain Johnson had come. To look once again on the sweet face that had filled his dreams of the previous night, to hear her voice before he quitted her to listen only to the warring waves, was his object. He was to leave the village that night, and the remembrances he would carry away with him were not of Catherine Morgan, but of the innocent young girl, who, without a friend in the world to advise with, or console her, was about to attempt to steer her way alone. There was something pure in the atmosphere of that humble tenement. It seemed as if no thought of ill had ever entered there, and as Captain Johnson patted little William on the head, and shook Lilly’s hand, an unbidden tear started to his eye.

When the Captain was gone, Lilly opened her parcel, and found it to contain merely a piece of exquisitely fine linen, with a purse of money, which seemed to her then an inexhaustible mine of wealth. She called William to look at it, and both expressed their surprise at the notice which the stranger was taking of them. In the course of the evening they saw the ship gliding out from shore, spreading her sails to the wind, and rising and falling as moved by a slightly troubled sea. Lilly’s heart sunk within her, she scarcely knew why, when she saw the shadows of evening fall over the landscape, and hide the bark from her sight. A foreboding of evil crept over her, and in order to restore the train of her thoughts, she resolved to go and pray at her mother’s grave. The material of the work she had to do was of no little value, she accordingly carefully stowed it away in a box up stairs in her little room, and then merely latching the door of the cottage, as was the custom in that secluded village, she went out with her brother. It was now late in the evening and dark shadows spread over the streets, and the passers-by became fewer and fewer. Lilly had not quitted the cottage many minutes before a figure wrapped in a large shawl came hastily up, looked cautiously round, then lifted the latch and entered. She looked curiously about, peered into a little cupboard, and then hastened up the stairs. Catherine Morgan stood in the uncertain light of that little bed-chamber, hesitating for a few moments as to what course she should take. Flinging back her shawl, she revealed a countenance pale as death, and features distorted by vehement passions. Her dark eyes flashed, while her compressed lips were curled into an expression of intense scorn. She paused only for a moment, her heart beat violently, she stepped across the room, raised the lid of the box, and beheld the linen which Lilly had placed there.

“It is true,” she murmured, “but I will be revenged; bitterly shall she rue the fancied triumph she has gained over him.”

Hastily cutting a piece off the linen, she placed it in her pocket, re-closed the lid, and stood trembling like a guilty convicted felon before the reproaches of her own conscience. The first moment of agony that succeeds the commission of evil is more excruciating, sometimes, than the long remorse of after years. Catherine, as she gazed on every object around the little couch where one was accustomed to repose, whose mission upon earth seemed to her to be to diffuse sweet and gentle thoughts, to minister to the comfort of others, to sacrifice daily all selfish feelings, to smile upon her fellow men, and find her reward in the serenity of her heart, in the deep peace of her guileless soul, and the looks of love which seemed kindled as she moved—Catherine, we say, felt that she, with her proud rebellious soul, her revengeful passions, had no right there, bent as she was on a mission of evil, which she intended should give a colour to the whole of Lilly’s future fate. When stirred, however, by such hateful passions, we are deaf to the appeals of conscience or compassion. Catherine had taken the first step in her plot, and to proceed in it was now her only resource; to retreat, she felt was impossible. Scarcely had she time to replace everything in the order in which she had found it, when, looking out of the window, she saw Lilly and her brother at the top of the lane leading down to the village. The colour in her cheeks came and went, she hurried down stairs, then opened the door of the cottage, and sat herself down in a chair, near at hand. When Lilly entered she was not a little surprised to behold her guest. She welcomed her however, with much sweetness.

Catherine with the greatest apparent cordiality shook her warmly by the hand, and asked kindly after her health.

“I want you,” she said, “to come home with me tonight, and stay for an hour. William will mind the house. They are all out at home, and I felt lonely. Do come.” she continued, “I shall think it so kind of you.”

“I have no objection to come,” answered Lilly, “for a short time, but I must not stay late.”

“Oh dear no, you need not stay late, so come along,—good-by, William,” she said, as she tapped him on the shoulder. “You and I must see a little more of each other.”

Catherine Morgan was not so thoroughly hardened in the way of evil as not to feel, even while assuming this reckless appearance of levity, deep reproaches for the part she was playing towards the unsuspecting girl who walked by her side, speaking of her mother and her brother in terms of the deepest affection, and thanking Catherine over and over again for the interest she had manifested in her that night.

To one more skilled in the human heart, Catherine’s behaviour would have appeared not a little strange. When arrived at her own house she was restless and unsettled; now rising and going to the window to look out, now sitting down, and talking with rapidity for a short time, now again relapsing into silence. Suddenly she started up and said—

“Excuse me, Lilly, for ten minutes; you wait here. I must run out, but shall be back in that time, and will see you home.”

“If anything should detain you, I must go in ten minutes,” said Lilly.

“Nothing can detain me,” said Catherine, “so don’t go.”

Catherine went out and left Lilly alone; she did not feel comfortable at being left there, especially as it was the first time she had visited the place, and she thought it would appear very strange, if Mr. Morgan and his younger daughter should return and find her there. She was not sorry, therefore, when the next quarter of an hour had elapsed, when she would have an excuse for quitting the place. Catherine had not returned, so resuming her bonnet and shawl, she passed out through the shop, and answered kindly to the “good night” of the boy who was minding it. As she passed on her way home, along the sea-coast, she noticed far away over the waters, what seemed to be a little star dancing over the waves. She looked and looked again; there it shone, glittering brightly on the surface of the ocean. Lilly asked herself what it could be? then not discovering any probable or satisfactory answer to her questions, she contented herself with watching it rise and fall. The night passed, and Lilly rose to commence another day of toil. She had promised to go to a house some distance off, to procure some work; so she shut up the house, and set off with William on her expedition.

Meanwhile a strange scene was enacting at Mr. Morgan’s home. Catherine came down in the morning with a curious expression upon her countenance, scarcely speaking at the breakfast table, and appearing every moment to be lost in deep thought. Her sister Sarah, a bright, cheerful-looking girl, whom all the village acknowledged to be gifted with shrewd good-sense, and respected for her care of her father’s home since her mother’s death, asked her several times what was the matter, but the answer she invariably met with was—

“Nothing.”

All the morning Catherine occupied herself with searching her boxes, her trunks, her drawers, and cupboards, as though she were seeking for something she had mislaid.

“What have you lost?” enquired Sarah, completely weary of seeing her sister thus employed; “if you tell me, I shall, perhaps, know how to direct you to it.”

“Why, the fact is, Sarah, I don’t like to suspect any one of being dishonest; but I have missed a very valuable piece of linen.”

“Linen! What linen? I never knew that you had any.”

“Do you know every thing I purchase?” said Catherine, with a toss of the head.

“No, nor do I wish to know; but it seems strange that you should buy anything of that kind secretly, when there is no occasion to make any concealment of the affair; but that is not the question; where was it kept?”

“In my drawers, I thought I put it; but I have searched everywhere, and cannot find it.”

“Are you sure, before you suspect any one, that you have lost it?”

“Oh, I am quite sure now; look, I had cut off a piece to begin work with it, and this is all that is left. It cost a good bit of money,” she said, holding out the bill.

Sarah looked at it for a moment, and saw that it was receipted and paid for; after reflecting a little, she said—

“Do you suspect any particular person? have you any idea how the linen has been lost?”

Catherine hesitated—coloured crimson—then turned pale—

“I hardly like to say it; but Lilly Watson was here last night. I went to fetch her down to console her a little, and was obliged to go out for a few minutes; when I came back she was gone.”

“Gone!”

“Yes; and my impression is that she took it.”

“I don’t believe it, Catherine.”

“Why should you not believe it? What is there so extraordinary in Lilly Watson’s stealing, any more than in other people’s?”

“It is impossible!” said Sarah, “perfectly impossible.”

“Well, that shall be seen,” said Catherine, flouncing out of the room.

In spite of Sarah’s representations and entreaties that they would quietly investigate the matter, and spare the poor orphan the mortification of the scene that was to ensue, Mr. Morgan was prevailed on by the vehemence of his eldest daughter, to procure the attendance of the village constable to search Lilly’s home, on the suspicion of having stolen the missing piece of linen. The young girl was just returning, when she saw her cottage surrounded by a crowd, attracted together by the report of her dishonesty. Many doubted, but many also believed the story, and denounced her ingratitude and wickedness, in taking advantage of Catherine’s kindness and temporary absence to commit a theft. Lilly was rudely asked for the key of her little house, and she delivered it up immediately. The constable shut out all the throng, except Mr. Morgan and Catherine, who had come to identify her property, and Sarah, who had come to comfort the bereaved girl, whom she felt to be innocent as yet.

When the purport of the visit was made known to Lilly, she gazed in bewildered stupefaction on the group, and could only stare in utter silence.

“Speak, girl,” said the constable; “do you know anything of the linen?”

“I have some linen upstairs,” she said, slowly recovering her composure, as the consciousness of innocence and truth gave her strength, “but it is not my own. It was given me by the Captain of the vessel that left yesterday, to do some work for him. You can see it if you wish!”

Sarah gazed admiringly on the calm aspect of the injured girl, as she pointed the way up stairs, with the air of one accustomed to be obeyed.

“A very pretty story, my dear, very pretty; but this young lady,” pointing to Catherine, “gives a different account of it. She says the linen is hers, and that you conveyed it away last night while she was absent.”

The look that Lilly cast upon her accuser was one of withering scorn. She sought her averted eyes, and said:

“Do you dare to accuse me of this?”

“Certainly I do. Come let us go and see—I shall know the linen in a moment.”

She went up-stairs, the box was opened, and the linen drawn forth.

“Was it a whole piece the Captain left with you?” sneeringly inquired Catherine.

“Most assuredly,” replied Lilly.

“Indeed!” ejaculated Catherine, drawing forth the piece, and matching it into the place from whence she had cut it— “this seems as though I were right.”

Even Lilly for a moment was staggered—Sarah looked doubting. Mr. Morgan assumed a stern appearance, and the constable said that he must perform his duty, and convey his prisoner to the lock-up-house, preparatory to her being sent to the magistrate in the town on the morrow.

Lilly had evidently been unprepared for this. So fully convinced had she been of her own innocence, that she felt assured that the investigation of the affair would prove it. Now, when she heard the coarse speech of the constable, and gazing around, saw that she was friendless, save in the helpless child that clung sobbing and frightened to her, she wildly clasped her hands and raised her eyes to Heaven, silently sending forth from the depths of her soul, a prayer for aid from thence, if denied her upon earth.

“Will no one have compassion on me?” she cried, “and prevent me from being taken to prison? Can you, Catherine Morgan—can you, however I may have wronged you—can you have the heart to see me thus used?—You know I am innocent—By the remembrance of your own mother, I beseech you speak for me!”

And Lilly would have knelt at Catherine’s feet, but she repulsed her with a scornful laugh, and tossing her head, said:

“A pretty story you have contrived to make up. —I know you to be innocent; I wish I did. You with your smooth tongue think to deceive us all into a belief of your own innocence.”

“Nay, Catherine, the punishment of her fault, if she has committed one, is enough,” said Mr. Morgan; “we need not reproach her,” and he raised the poor girl kindly, for he remembered he had daughters, and how they would feel placed in a similar situation.

“Come,” said Sarah, softly, “come, cheer up. God never deserts the innocent,” she whispered. “There is no cause for grief, if you are innocent.”

“But to be shut up like a felon all night—Oh, will no one spare me that—is there no one to speak one kind word for me?”

Catherine had hurried away, for she could not look unmoved on the misery she had created. The constable advanced to do his duty, and Lilly, fainting, was borne away. Sarah after much entreaty, and vain attempts at consolation, persuaded little William to accompany her home, and await the event of the morrow. No one spoke to Catherine, they shunned her that night, and she, guilty and comfortless, slunk away to her room, with a consciousness that she had done that, the consequences of which would surely haunt her dreams.

Lilly meanwhile was conveyed to her dreary abode for the night. The lock-up-house stood upon a slightly elevated spot near the sea, a little distance from the village. In the room appropriated to prisoners, there was one window very high up and very small. When left alone to her own thoughts, Lilly after giving way to a burst of tears, knelt down in the darkness, and prayed long and fervently. As she did so, a deep calm stole over her mind, and she felt that she was strengthened for the trial of to-morrow. By mounting on her solitary chair, she found that she could reach the window, and amuse herself with the scene partially enshrouded in darkness. There before her lay the ocean, uttering a deep restless murmur, as ever and anon the billows rolled one over the other to the shore. The village to her left was sprinkled with lights, all wore a cheerful appearance there; and she sighed to think of the many happy homes it contained—while where was she? To her right was a low ridge of hills sweeping out in a long curve into the sea, and ending miles away in a sharp point. Lilly’s thoughts wandered far over the deep waves, to one whom she had seen but for a brief span. There was more of love in the anxious yearning she felt for his presence, than she knew. She wondered if in his pilgrimage to lands which seemed like creations of the imagination, so beautiful had he painted them, she wondered if ever he would think of her; if ever he returned, would he come.—Yes he would come, were it only to claim Catherine for his wife, and this thought alone, sent a stab to her heart. Heavenward then flew her hopes. She gazed up into the blue ether, and it seemed as she gazed, as if her anxious thoughts would pierce through to where her mother’s spirit dwelt. Through the calm air above everything seemed to waft a remembrance of her love. Lilly felt as though she would be borne upward then, at that moment, to Heaven. Suddenly, above the crest of the heaving billows, there appeared that star. There it burnt brightly and clearly, as though stationed there to bring hope to Lilly’s heart. It was a resting point for the eye, to let it fall upon that bright light, after wandering over the undiversified bosom of the ocean, which in the uncertain light seemed an illimitable moving expanse, bounded only by deep darkness beyond. There was something in the air which told of the coming of a storm. For two days the wind had been blowing threateningly, and now the Heavens were overcast with black clouds. The waves rose higher and higher, and now and then the star was lost entirely. Lilly watched the scene with increasing interest. The sea-mew shrieked along the rocks, and its shrill scream re-echoed far and near. Through the crevices of the rocks, and round the jutting promontory, the wind howled with fearful violence, and the waves mounted higher, and as they broke upon the shore sounded like the crashing of a ship upon the rocks. Lilly trembled, for she remembered the night when her father was cast upon the sand, when the villagers flocked down with torches to the beach, and bore up the bodies to their kindred and friends. Her thoughts wandered to the vessel, which she pictured to herself far out at sea, tossed by every gale, and a silent prayer swelled in her breast for the stranger who had come with words of consolation to her home. Suddenly in the midst of the storm the star disappeared utterly—all was darkness—then it arose again, but seemed driven by the wind now to one side now to another. Lilly watched with extreme eagerness the course taken by the light, for the thought now struck her that it was some vessel unable to proceed for the storm. As the fury of the elements increased, so did Lilly’s excitement, and when the light seemed to be coming nearer and more near, she could scarcely contain her emotions. The fearful weather had aroused the inhabitants of the village, for Lilly saw lights re-appearing in many of the houses previously darkened; and from a point of land jutting out into the sea, the light-house, only kindled in times of danger, shed forth a bright glare over the water. Down along the coast Lilly could perceive dark figures gliding to and fro, and she knew that these were the wreckers, who were waiting for their prey. The roaring of the wind along that unsheltered coast seemed like one prolonged clap of thunder, and almost entirely deadened the sound of the waves which angrily lashed the shore. The light had now come much nearer, but was driven by the blast near to the line of the promontory, which Lilly knew to be full of shoals and breakers. Her heart beat quickly, she held her breath, and broken prayers for the safety of the vessel passed her lips. As long as the light appeared and reappeared on the surface of the angry waters, she knew that all was safe. Now and then long intervals elapsed between its appearances. Crowds with torches were running down to the beach, when a long cry was heard out at sea, rising for a moment above the roar of the blast. The light, faint and dim, crested the waves, sunk down, and over the angry sea all was darkness. Lilly watched and strained her eyes to discover some trace for hope, and waited for the re-appearance of the light, but all in vain.

There was increased bustle on the beach, lights passed and repassed, torches flared in the wind, and figures hastened to-and-fro. There had been a wreck, and the crew were, even now, perhaps, struggling with the waves. Lilly hid her face and wept, for it seemed as if she were transported back again to a night of terror in the long past, and her mother’s agonizing wail over her father’s corpse seemed borne on every gale. All night there was movement upon the beach, and all night Lilly watched, and as the dawn broke the leaden atmosphere over the ocean, it seemed all clear and still. The wind was hushed, and the waves were sinking gradually to rest. Lilly now fell asleep for a short time, and dreamt of her childhood. Early associations and forms glided spirit-like round her couch, and fairy gardens and palaces were created by her imagination, while through the trees voices seemed to whisper “God never deserts the innocent.” And morning came, and the first words which greeted her half-awakened senses were, “God never desert the innocent.” Startling up she beheld Sarah Morgan leaning over her, and William at her side, while through the half-open door a sunburnt face looked in with a joyous smile. Lilly, in speechless surprise, looked from one to the other, while Sarah hastened to speak,

“Your innocence is fully proved, Lilly,—Captain Johnson came ashore last night from the wreck in the life-boat, and has cleared up everything by his presence. It only remains for you, Lilly, to forgive my misguided sister her wickedness, and this, you, who love God and his precepts, will easily do.”

To linger over explanations is not our object. It will suffice, briefly, to tell the reader that the consequences of the storm at sea were to bring happiness to most of the personages of our tale. Catherine, with her family, immediately quitted the village and settled in a town far distant, where the effect of her disgrace, it was hoped, would not follow her; but Lilly Watson no longer dwelt in the little village, Captain Johnson made her his wife, and soon after obtaining a situation on the coast, gave up his long and dangerous voyages on the sea. He had been prevented by contrary winds from proceeding further on his voyage for two days, and when the storm came the vessel struck upon a rock, though every life was saved. The star that Lilly had watched was the bright light issuing from the cabin-window. Lilly, from all that occurred, learnt to believe, with even more steadfast faith, that God watches over the fatherless and the oppressed, and will protect them through every circumstance of life.

 

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2 November 2018

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Notes   [ + ]

1. “Contretemps” refers to an inopportune occurrence.