The Portion of Labor

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Purchase of this book includes free trial access to where you can read more than a million books for free. This is an OCR edition with typos. Excerpt from book: CHAPTER III By the next morning all the city was in a commotion over little Ellen's disappearance. Woods on the outskirts were being searched, ponds were being dragged, posters with a stare of dreadful meaning in large characters of black and white were being pasted all over the fences and available barns, and already three of the local editors had been to the Brewster house to obtain particulars and photographs of the missing child for reproduction in the city papers. The first train from Boston brought two reporters representing great dailies. Fanny Brewster, white - cheeked, with the rasped redness of tears around her eyes and mouth, clad in her blue calico wrapper, received them in her best parlor. Eva had made a fire in the best parlor stove early that morning. "Folks will be comin' in all day, I expect," said she, speaking with nervous catches of her breath. Ever since the child had been missed, Eva's anxiety had driven her from point to point of unrest as with a stinging lash. She had pelted bareheaded down the road and up the road; she had invaded all the neighbors' houses, insisting upon looking through their farthest and most unlikely closets; she had even penetrated to the woods, and joined wild-eyed the groups of peering workers on the shore of the nearest pond. That she could not endure long, so she had rushed home to her sister, who was either pacing her sitting-room with inarticulate murmurs and wails of distress in the sympathizing ears of several of the neighboring women,or else was staring with haggard eyes of fearful hope from a window. When she looked from the eastern window she could see her mother-in-law, Mrs. Zelotes Brewster, at an opposite one, sitting immovable, with her Bible in her lap, prayer in her heart, and an eye of grim holding to faith u...
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