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by the fireside.

A high wind blustered round the house, and roared in the
chimney: it sounded wild and stormy, yet it was not cold, and we
were all together--I, a little removed from the hearth, busy at my
knitting, and Joseph reading his Bible near the table (for the
servants generally sat in the house then, after their work was
done). Miss Cathy had been sick, and that made her still; she leant
against her father’s knee, and Heathcliff was lying on the floor
with his head in her lap.

I remember the master, before he fell into a doze, stroking her
bonny hair--it pleased him rarely to see her gentle--and saying,

“Why canst thou not always be a good lass, Cathy?”
And she turned her face up to his, and laughed, and answered,
“Why cannot you always be a good man, Father?”

But as soon as she saw him vexed again, she kissed his hand,
and said she would sing him to sleep. She began singing very low,
till his fingers dropped from hers, and his head sank on his breast.
Then I told her to hush, and not stir, for fear she should wake him.
We all kept as mute as mice a full half-hour, and should have done
so longer, only Joseph, having finished his chapter, got up and
said that he must rouse the master for prayers and bed. He
stepped forward, and called him by name, and touched his
shoulder; but he would not move--so he took the candle and
looked at him.

I thought there was something wrong as he set down the light,
and seizing the children each by an arm, whispered them to ‘frame
upstairs, and make little din--they might pray alone that
evening--he had summut to do.’

“I shall bid Father good-night first,” said Catherine, putting her

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