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True Riches T.S. Arthur

Chapter VI

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"Perhaps not. But all will depend on my wife. We are living, now, in two rooms, and keep no domestic. An addition of one to our family might so increase her care and labour as to make a servant necessary. Then we should have to have an additional room; the rent of which and the wages and board of the servant would amount to nearly as much as we would receive from you on account of the child."

"Yes, I see that," returned Jasper. And he mused for some moments. He was particularly anxious that Claire should take the orphan, for then all the trouble of looking after and caring for her would be taken from him, and that would be a good deal gained.

"I'll tell you what, Edward," he added. "If you will take her, I will call the sum six dollars a week--or three hundred a year. That will make the matter perfectly easy. If your wife does not seem at first inclined, talk to her seriously. This addition to your income will be a great help. To show her that I am perfectly in earnest, and that you can depend on receiving the sum specified, I will draw up a little agreement, which, if all parties are satisfied, can be signed at once."

Claire promised to talk the matter over with his wife at dinner-time.

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The morning did not pass without varied assaults upon the young man's recent good resolutions. Several times he had customers in from whom it would have been easy to get more than a fair profit, but he steadily adhered to what he believed to be right, notwithstanding Jasper once or twice expressed dissatisfaction at his not having made better sales, and particularly at his failing to sell a piece of cloth, because he would not pledge his word as to its colour and quality--neither of which were good.

The proposition of Jasper for him to make, in his family, a place for the orphan, caused Claire to postpone the announcement of his intention to leave his service, until after he had seen and conferred with his wife.

At the usual dinner-hour, Claire returned home. His mind had become by this time somewhat disturbed. The long-cherished love of money, subdued for a brief season, was becoming active again. Here were six dollars to be added, weekly, to his income, provided his wife approved the arrangement,--and it was to come through Jasper. The more he thought of this increase, the more his natural cupidity was stirred, and the less willing he felt to give up the proposed one hundred dollars in his salary. If he persisted in leaving Jasper, there would, in all probability, be a breach between them, and this would, he felt certain, prevent an arrangement that he liked better and better the more he thought about it. He was in this state of mind when he arrived at home.

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True Riches
T.S. Arthur

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