But he was dissatisfied with Torrentville; there was not room enough for a young man of his ability to expand himself. He had no taste for farming, and for two years had been a clerk in Captain Fishley's store. He wanted to go to New Orleans, where he believed he could make his fortune. About a year after the death of his father, he decided to try his luck in the metropolis of the south-west.
I told my story, from the day my father died, keeping back nothing except the matter relating to Squire Fishley's infirmity. "And your brother is here in New Orleans?" said he. "Yes, sir. He has gone into business here." "What is his name?" "Clarence Bradford." "Bradford! I thought your name was Buckland." "John Buckland Bradford, sir." "I know your brother very well.
I placed my sister's bed on the raft, and taking her in my arms, I laid her upon it, and covered her with blankets, that the night air might not injure her. I then pushed the raft over to the branch of the creek. "Is that the raft?" exclaimed Flora, as I pointed it out to her. "That's it; and I am sure you will be happier on board of it than at Fishley's." "The house looks real nice!
"The way that Captain Fishley's folks treated us." "You don't mean to say they abused you!" "That's just what I mean to say. I thought I spoke plain enough in my letters for you to understand me." "I had no idea that you were actually abused. Boys are always grumbling and complaining, and some of them think their lot is a great deal harder than it is.
"Not much," I replied. "We have some things." "You know all the furniture in my room here belongs to us," she added. I did know it, but I had not thought of it before. When we went from our own home to Captain Fishley's, Clarence had brought all the furniture from Flora's room. I decided to carry off as much as I could of it, including her bed, and the little rocking-chair in which she always sat.
I gave him some information in regard to Ham Fishley's habits, and he called in the keeper of the livery stable connected with the hotel. This man assured him that Ham had paid him over thirty dollars within two months for the use of his best team.
He was willing to work hard for enough to eat. He was not a dandy, and the clothes question did not trouble him. It was only terrible to be hungry. "Sim, I'm going to run away myself," said I. "What, from Fishley's?" he demanded, opening his eyes. "Yes, from Fishley's." "Don't they give you enough to eat?" "Plenty."
Ham Fishley's father was "the old man," and I knew that it would not be for the want of any good will on his part, if the case was not settled by him. I had rebelled, and I must take my chances. I went to the barn, harnessed the black horse to the wagon, and hitched him at a post in the yard, in readiness to go down to Riverport for the mail, which I used to do every evening after supper.
The saints and martyrs could bow resignedly at the stake in the midst of the flaming fagots; but none of them had to keep house for a husband and three children, and two of them not her own. To make a fair and just division of Mrs. Fishley's cares, one tenth of them were real, and nine tenths of them were imaginary; and the imaginary ones were more real to her than the actual ones.
Fishley's taking my poor deformed sister by the arm, and shaking her, was too revolting, and even horrible, to be endured. If I could bear everything else, I could not bear that. At the present time, I have this pleasant consciousness, that I did not strike the woman; I only grasped her by the shoulders, and hurled her away from her victim. It was a vigorous movement on my part, and Mrs.