North Carolina Newspapers

VOL. II., NO. 12.
PINEIIURST, N. C, JAN. 13, 1899.
well, Cicero, go a-head with
your explanatory remarks and don't lie,
if you can help it."'
(Written for The Outlook.)
concluded, j "H'ull, you see, Mars Julius, 't war
".wiiwiiiu j i'ino i4 ii no. uiMY o uic vm uis jcic uie coat uat I se got
health, an' how s yore tambly ? I hope oat uster b'long to Mr. Dewey
V(u-uns is right peart dis mawniif." uif lie an' I had a promulgation 'bout hit
The old man bowed very low, and then, way back in las' Jinerwerry, an' he done
pulling his head on one-side with an in- promise hit tome, ez soon ez he v;
giatiaiing grin, auvaneeu to warn Mickle wiu inc. jsut lie kej) a wearin' hit
holding out a long envelope, once white, an' 11 wearin' hit, an' I 'gun to git mMitv
but now very grimy with handling. skeered, I did, for fear he'd jest natchel
'What's this':'"' asked the lawyer, eye- W wear de coat out. A if besides all dat
ing both the envelope and its bearer 1 war a needuf hit powerful bad at de
w ith extreme disfavor, and making no same identikeler time. So every now an
motion toward taking what Cicero of- (en I'd jist 'mind him of his promise, an
feral him. "What are you trying to im- say : 'Jest you wait, Cicero, leetle
pose on the long suffering public with hit longer, he 'most ready to shed dis
now, you old hypocrite? Some sort of yere gyarment, an' dis yere ole body
a subscription paper, 111 be bound. CO() Mini t hab no use for 'em much
15ut 'taint any good coming here with it. mo-' Den he'd look sorter mo'nful an
I've got other use for my money than S offmutterin' somepin' 'bout dat 'pore
supporting you and your family in idle- foolish boy, Robert.' Wall, things went
turpentine on
pate, Cicero.
on 'bout like dat ontwel "
"Oh, come, come!" exclaimed Miekte
impatiently, "what is the use of all
that? Tell me about these papers, if
ness. Just you go to work old man.
You'll lind it easier in the long run than
toting these subscription papers 'round."
"H-b-but, Mars Julius," stuttered
Cicero, in his eagerness to set himself Vu know anything to tell.''
iigm, ".vou-uns is mistooken. Dis yere "Just you hole on, Mars Julius
aint no 'seription paper. De ole man Don't be oneasv, Ise a-comiif to dat
aint tryiif to 'pose on nobuddy nor nuf- Ez I war sayin', things went on dat a
im. Jest you look at de dockymunts way ontwel de fust of April a week,
what's inside dis yere en' lope, an' den reckon, a iter ole Mis' Dewey died.
you'll feel right down sorry dat you war jist a-passiif one ebeniif'bout half
spoke so ha'sh to ole uncle Cicero, an hour by sun, when 1 seed dis yere ole
Deed you will, sah." coat a-hangiif on de paliif ob de gyardin
1 letding to the old man s importunity, fence back ob Mr. Dewev's house. Hit
and being, indeed, somewhat stirred to war on de behine-mos' part ob de gyai
curiosity by his air of mystery and im- din", an de outside ob de fence."
lMdtance, Mickie took the dirty envelope At this point Mickle stamped his foot
rather gingerly, and proceeded to ac- and swore with such energy that the
quaint himself with its contents. old man fell into one of his stuttering
He was so long in doing this, and was tits and could not get on for several
so utterly oblivious of Cicero Truby all minutes. At last lie managed to take up
the while, that the latter gentleman be- his story again where he had been scared
came very uneasy, lie coughed slightly out of it.
iiom time to time, ducked his head, rolled "Dis yere coat hung on de paliif jist
his eyes, grinned, sniggered, scraped natehelly pintiif right towards my half,
with his feet, dropped his hat and, in an, says I to myself, 'Cicero Truby, you
getting down after it, knocked over a tall ongrateful ole nigger, whail'ur you been
wooden stool, which fell with a. tremen- thinkiif dat Mr. Dewey warn't gwine to
dous clatter. But still the lawyer did gib you dis yere coat? See dar, now, he
"t look ui) from the mmiM-a im wjia ro:wl. 'member bow vou been axiif for dat
'g through so carefully. coat a heap ob times, aif he think p'raps
At length Cicero could stand it no you'se 'shamed to ax agin. So he jist
longer. He must talk or burst. hung hit on dis yere paliif , right where
"1 war jist gwine to obsarve, Mars you'd git hit in a kinder modest, easy
Julius, how restra ordinary hit war dat I way widout hurtiif yore pride. Now
i. at up wid dat yere en'lope," said he in ain't dat kind? 1 says to myself. Alter
a wheedling tone. dat good ole man hab tooken all dis
The lawyer looked up from his read- yere sti ubble, you ain't gwine to dis'pint
'iig and replied with significant empha- him, is you, Cicero?"'
si "Yes, Cicero, you have a great "But 1 thought you and old man Dew
eptitation for finding things in a pecul- ey had a right smart quarrel last
tiii" way. You found these papers, I winter."
''eckon, about two months ago, and now "Dat are a fact, Mars Julius. He done
rd like to know where you found 'em use some 'spressions to me, sah, dat no
il,il what you've' been doing with 'em all genimun 'ud use to annudder. But
the time."" " when I seed dis yere coat, Ijist ferguv
"For de Lawd's sake. Mars Julius, him to onct, for I knowed he had
don't go an' 'spieion nothin' 'gainst Ci- 'pented ob his eorndue", an war wishin'
fero befo' he hab time to 'splain hisself. to pour balm on dis pore wounded heart
ri1 jist expound to you torrectly how dat ob mine."
ve,,P en'lope never rt hvar befo' dis." "More likely he felt like pouring Hot
your rascally old blue
hat are you foolin
around this way for, anyhow? Why
don't you own up at once that you stole
the coat?"
"Stole dat coat? Mars Julius, 1
supprised. What kind ob a low-dow
nigger does you take me to be, sah? T
hear you say dat arter I'se been an' took
en you into my cornferunce do hurt my
reelin s powerful had. I ain't never said
nothin' like dat to you, now has I? No
sah, I woulden't use no such onrespec ful
langwidge to no white man."
"Well well, old man, go on with your
story. If you tell me the truth about
these papers 1 won't be hard on you for
stealing the coat."
Old Cicero cast a furtive glance at
Miekle's impassive countenance, and
recognized the fact that his ingenious
fiction had been entirely thrown away
He therefore laid aside the air of
offended dignity which sat somewhat
uneasily upon him, and resumed his
wheedling tone.
"He, he, he! Now ain't dat keen ez
a briar? Can't no nigger, nor white man
needer, fool Mars Julius. I tells my ole
woman jist day befo' yistiddy dat Mars
Julius Mickle ain't no low-down, oneddi
cated lawyer. Don't ketch him studyin
no law-books, savs I, 'cause he knows
what's in em all right plum froo fruni
beffimif to end. Y'es, sah, dat's what
I tole mv ole woman."
Mr. Mickle received this tribute with
just the slightest possible smile, of grati
tied vanity, and thus encouraged Cicero
went on.
"When I foun' dese papers in de pockit
ob dis yere coat, mos' de fust thing I
thought ob war to fotch dem right to
you, torectly, for I said to myself, dar
lin't nobudd' in dis yere ken try dat un-
erstaif dockymunts like Mars Julius.
But when 1 done heerd de very nex'
mawniif dat ole man Dewey war daid, I
war dat "stonished I fergit all 'bout de
papers an' what you think? 1 jist went
clar ofl'dovvn to Alabanf, a-visitiif my
brudder, a if toted dem wid me. Now,
ihft dat de inos' fergitfullest you ebber
heah tell ob?"
"But what made you bring "em back at
The old man wagged his head mysteri
ously, edged a step nearer to the lawyer,
and replied :
"De troof ob de matter am, Mars
Julius, dat I ain't had no luck since dese
papers come into my persession."
"Why, how is that Cicero?"
"Wall, dis spring 1 'lowed dat I'd go
into de well-diggin' business, an J done
git me a fine win'lass, an' right smart of
rope, an' two ob de best dirt buckets you
ebber seed. Den I hires me a good
strong han'' to dig, while 1 pulls up de
bucket an' empties de dirt. What you
think? De berry secon' day we war
ukkin' dat fool digger-nigger leggo de
rope befo' 1 cotch de bucket fair, an'
down she go, blnn I top ob Ins head.
Smashed dat nice bucket all to splinders.
Den arter dat I cotch de roomatiz an' de
misery in my bivas', a if de ole woman
broke her laig, a if I done los' de bes'
shoat I had an"
"There, that's enough. Don't tell any
more. I reckon you deserved all the had
luck you had. Now, be oil' with you anil
take care how yoxijind things after this.
You won't get oil' so easy next time."
At the door Cicero turned about and
made a grasp at his last straw of hope.
"Beckon you'll git a heap o' money
for takhf kyar ob dose paper, Mars
Julius," said he insinuatingly.
Mr. Mickle seemed to be absorbed in
examining the papers once more.
"Don't you s'pose you could uflb'd to
gimme 'bout a quarter for bringiif
back "
"(Jet out!" said Mickle disgustedly.
Again Bobert Dewey sat in his bare
little room reading a letter. It was not
a beautiful letter to look at. It was bad
ly written and worse spelled. It was
worn and soiled from much handling
and much iaunting about in Cicero
Truby 's pocket. But Dewey took no
note of these things. J lis eager eyes
weie wet with tears and he read as one
drinks who has been long denied.
"Poor lonely old man !" he murmured,
"and poor mother, too ! It never entered
my head that they really loved me. If
I had known it, perhaps I might some
how have broken down the barrier be
tween us."
"My dear son," the letter said, "I'm
if raid your mother and I have made a
mistake in the way we tried to bring you
up. I should Hue to make it right, it I
could, but I suppose it is too late for
that. I leave you what little property
there is, and hope it will help to make
your life some easier than it has been.
When vour mother died it is only about
i week ago she was dreadful set against
your having it. She said it would only
confirm vou in your sinful ways. We
both agreed to leave it to a college for
educating negroes. But now it is borne
in on me that we were wrong. It is just
as plain to my mind as if your mother
had come and told me herself, that she
thinks altogether differently now. So I
have made a new will, and shall leave it,
with this letter, to be delivered to you
when 1 am dead. That will not be very
long I guess, for 1 do not get along well
it all without your mother. I hope you
will believe, my dear son, that we have
loved you all the time, though perhaps
we have had a poor way of showing
Please excuse all mistakes, and accept
best wishes from
Your affectionate father,
John Dewey."
"Excuse my mistakes, too, dear father
and mother, 1 pray you," said Bobert
Dewey sadly. "What poor ways we
sometimes use of showing that we love
each other!"

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