In the Sixties is one of the greatest works in the field of fiction by the Harold Frederic. It is one of the vintage collections by the Harold Frederic.
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CHAPTER III ABSALOM ONCE, in the duck-season, as I lay hidden among the marsh-reeds with an older boy, a crow passed over us, flying low. Looking up at him, I realized for the first time how beautiful a creature was this common black thief of ourshow splendid his strength and the sheen of his coat, how proudly graceful the sweep and curves of his great slow wings. The boy beside me fired, and in a flash what I had been admiring changedeven as it stopped headlong in mid-airinto a hideous thing, an evil confusion of jumbled feathers. The awful swiftness of that transition from beauty and power to hateful carrion haunted me for a long time. I half expected that Abner Beech would crumple up in some such distressing way, all of a sudden, when I told him that his son Jeff was in open rebellion, and intended to go off and enlist. It was incredible to the senses that any member of the household should set at defiance the patriarchal will of its head. But that the offence should come from placid, slow-witted, good-natured Jeff, and that it should involve the appearance of a Beech in a blue uniform these things staggered the imagination. It was clear that something prodigious must happen. As it turned out, nothing happened at all. The farmer and his wife sat out on the veranda, as was their wont of a summer evening, rarely exchanging a word, but getting a restful sort of satisfaction in together surveying their barns and haystacks and the yellow-brown stretch of fields beyond. " Jeff says he's goin' to-night to Tecumseh, an' he's goin' to enlist, an' if you want him to run over to say good-by you're to let him know there." I leant upon my newly-acquired fish-pole for support, as I unburdenedmyself of these sinister tidings. The old pair looked at me in calm-eyed silen...