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which some childish event was not entwined, and back it came
upon the mind--as events of childhood do--nothing in itself:
perhaps a word, a laugh, a look, some slight distress, a passing
thought or fear: and yet more strongly and distinctly marked, and
better remembered, than the hardest trials or severest sorrows of
a year ago.

One of these expeditions led them through the churchyard
where was his father’s grave. ‘Even here,’ said Nicholas softly, ‘we
used to loiter before we knew what death was, and when we little
thought whose ashes would rest beneath; and, wondering at the
silence, sit down to rest and speak below our breath. Once, Kate
was lost, and after an hour of fruitless search, they found her, fast
asleep, under that tree which shades my father’s grave. He was
very fond of her, and said when he took her up in his arms, still
sleeping, that whenever he died he would wish to be buried where
his dear little child had laid her head. You see his wish was not

Nothing more passed at the time, but that night, as Nicholas sat
beside his bed, Smike started from what had seemed to be a
slumber, and laying his hand in his, prayed, as the tears coursed
down his face, that he would make him one solemn promise.

‘What is that?’ said Nicholas, kindly. ‘If I can redeem it, or hope
to do so, you know I will.’

‘I am sure you will,’ was the reply. ‘Promise me that when I die,
I shall be buried near--as near as they can make my grave--to the
tree we saw today.’

Nicholas gave the promise; he had few words to give it in, but
they were solemn and earnest. His poor friend kept his hand in
his, and turned as if to sleep. But there were stifled sobs; and the

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