The Twins (1912)
- Summaries (1)
They lived in the country with their father, a widower, and although they were poor they were happy. Then the father died and there was no one to love and care for the two little girls. Their neighbors were poor, and none of them would undertake the care of the children, and for a time it looked as if they would be sent to an institution. Their pastor, however, in searching the father's few effects, found the name of a distant relative, a rich resident of New York, and wrote asking him to look after the children. The Uncle, a selfish old bachelor, could not see why he should be bothered, but he finally consented to receive one of the girls. The other, he said, must shift as best she could. Each child wanted the other to have the good fortune. Finally the minister picked out the one who was to go to New York, and sorrowfully led the other to the orphan asylum, which was designed to be her home. In the city, the little girl soon won the love of her cross old uncle, but he was too shame-faced to admit it. She was happy in her new life, her one regret being that she was separated from her "twin," but she hoped that sometime they might be brought together again. The child in the orphan asylum mourned constantly and at last ran away. She hunted up her sister, who received her joyously, smuggled her into the rich house and hid her away in her room. When two children determined to be as little nuisance as one, they can accomplish it. As the twins looked exactly alike it was possible for them to divide up the good times, and some meals gruff old cousin ate with one child and some with the other. And the one who dined foraged for the other. Gruff old uncle, on his way to bed one night after a midnight cigar, stopped to look into his little niece's room, to see if she was all right. He never would have admitted that he would do so, nor that he was growing mighty fond of the bright child who made her home with him. The fact is that he bent over the bed tenderly. Then he started with surprise for there were two sweet faces on the pillow and they looked exactly alike. Before he had solved the problem, the twins awoke. Pitifully they admitted their crime and begged him not to separate them again. The stern old man gazed at them, the men who had known him for years would have been surprised to see the tender look on his face. "I was just beginning to realize," he said, "that a little girl had won a place in my heart. I don't know which of you it is, but I guess you are equally guilty. Send either of you away? I'd like to see anybody try it." Down in Wall Street some time later, where gruff old uncle is a power, a broker was telling a group something that interested them and it had nothing to do with stocks or bonds either. "I was up in Central Park to-day," said the broker, "and there 1 saw him. He had two little girls, twins, just alike and they were all feeding squirrels. He told me they were his nieces, but he could not have been prouder had they been his daughters. They are making the old man young again, and they are really fond of him."
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