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4G CHAPTER III. The week passed by, and Hilary received no ill tidings from home. Incessant occupation kept her from dwelling too much on anxious subjects: besides, she would not have thought it exactly right, while her time and her mental powers were, for so many hours per diem, legally Miss Balquid- der's, to waste the one, and weaken the other, by what is commonly called "fretting." Nor, carrying this conscientious duty to a higher degree, and towards a higher Master, would she have dared to sit grieving overmuch over their dark future. And yet it was very dark. She pondered over what was to be done with Ascott, or whether he was still to be left to the hopeless hope of doing something for himself: how long the little establishment at No. 15 could be kepttogether, or whether, after Selina's marriage, it would not be advisable to make some change that should contract expenses, and prevent this hard separation, from Monday to Saturday, between Johanna and herself. These, with equally anxious thoughts, attacked her in crowds, every day and every hour; but she had generally sufficient will to put them aside : at least till after work was done, when they could neither stupefy nor paralyse her. Trouble had to her been long enough familiar to have taught her its own best lesson that the mind can, in degree, rule itself, even as it rules the body. Thus, in her business duties, which were principally keeping accounts, in her management of the two young people under her, and of the small domestic establishment connected with the shop, Hilary went steadily on, day after day; made no blunders in her arithmetic, no mistakes in her housekeeping. Being new to all herresponsibilities, she had to give her whole mind to them; and she did it; and it was a blessingto her the sanctifie...