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True Riches T.S. Arthur

Chapter XXI

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"If it is mine, father," said Fanny, "have I not a right to do with it what I please?"

"In a certain sense you have."

"Then I give it all to you--you, my more than father!"

"For such a noble tender, my dear child, I thank you in the very inmost of my heart. But I cannot accept of it, Fanny."

"Why not, father? Why not? You have bestowed on me more than wealth could buy! I know something of what you have borne and suffered for me. Your health, now impaired, was broken for me. Oh, my father! can I ever forget that? Can I ever repay you all I owe? Were the world's wealth mine, it should be yours."

Overcome by her feelings, Fanny wept for some time on the breast of him she knew only as her father; and there the interview closed for the time.

Soon after it was renewed; and the occasion of this was an advantageous business offer made to Claire by Mr. Melleville, if he could bring in a capital of twelve thousand dollars. Two of the houses received from Jasper, with some stocks, were sold to furnish this capital, and Claire, after his long struggle, found himself in a safe and moderately profitable business; and, what was more, with a contented and thankful spirit. Of what treasures was he possessed? Treasures of affection, such as no money could buy; and, above all, the wealth of an approving conscience.

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Mrs. Claire--happy wife and mother!--how large too was her wealth. From the beginning she had possessed the riches which have no wings--spiritual riches, that depend on no worldly changes; laid up in the heaven of her pure mind, where moth could not corrupt, nor thieves break through and steal. The better worldly fortune that now came added to her happiness, because it afforded the means of giving to their children higher advantages, and procured for them many blessings and comforts to which they were hitherto strangers.

Five years, passed under an almost cloudless sky, succeeded, and then the sweet home circle was broken by the withdrawal of one whose presence made perpetual sunshine. One so good, so lovely, so fitted in every way to form the centre of another home circle as Fanny Elder, could hardly remain unwooed or unwon. Happily, in leaving the paternal haven, her life-boat was launched on no uncertain sea. The character of her husband was based on those sound, religious principles, which regard justice to man as the expression of love to God.

A few weeks after the husband of Fanny had taken his lovely young wife to his own home, Claire waited upon him for the purpose of making a formal transfer of his wife's property.

"There are four houses," said Claire, in describing the property; "besides twelve thousand dollars which I have in my business. A portion of this latter I will pay over; on the balance, while it remains"--

"Mr. Claire," returned the young man, interrupting him, "the house you now live in, Fanny says, is your property--also the capital in your business."

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True Riches
T.S. Arthur

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