"The young clodhopper's on his dignity," he muttered to himself. "Well, wait a few months, and see if he won't sing a different tune."
Just then John's class was called up, and his dislike to Frank was not diminished by the superiority of his recitation. The latter, undisturbed by John's feelings, did not give a thought to him, but reflected with a touch of pain that this must be his last Latin recitation in school for a long time to come.
CHAPTER IX. THE LAST EVENING AT HOME
Three weeks passed quickly. October had already reached its middle point. The glory of the Indian summer was close at hand. Too quickly the days fled for the little family at the farm, for they knew that each brought nearer the parting of which they could not bear to think.
Jacob Carter, who had been sent for to do the heavy work on the farm, had arrived. He was a man of forty, stout and able to work, but had enjoyed few opportunities of cultivating his mind. Though a faithful laborer, he was destitute of the energy and ambition which might ere this have placed him in charge of a farm of his own. In New England few arrive at his age without achieving some position more desirable and independent than that of farm laborer. However, he looked pleasant and good-natured, and Mr. Frost accounted himself fortunate in securing his services.
The harvest had been got in, and during the winter months there would not be so much to do as before. Jacob, therefore, "hired out" for a smaller compensation, to be increased when the spring work came in.
Frank had not been idle. He had accompanied his father about the farm, and received as much practical instruction in the art of farming as the time would admit. He was naturally a quick learner, and now felt impelled by a double motive to prepare himself as well as possible to assume his new responsibilities. His first motive was, of course, to make up his father's loss to the family, as far as it was possible for him to do so, but he was also desirous of showing Mrs. Roxana Mason and other ill-boding prophets that they had underrated his abilities.
The time came when Mr. Frost felt that he must leave his family. He had enlisted from preference in an old regiment, already in Virginia, some members of which had gone from Rossville. A number of recruits were to be forwarded to the camp on a certain day, and that day was now close at hand.
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