The bishop was seated in a deep canvas chair on his wide veranda, looking out over his garden toward a distant line of blue hills. His little wife sat close to his side on a low rocker, very busy with the making of buttonholes in a small girl's frock of white dimity and lace. Betty Towers loved lace and pretty things.
The small girl was playing about the garden paths with her puppy and chattering with Frale in her high, happy, childish voice, while he bent weeding among the beds of okra and egg-plant. His face wore a more than usually discontented look, even when answering the child with teasing banter. Now and then he lifted his eyes from his work and watched furtively the movements of David Thryng, who was pacing restlessly up and down the long veranda in earnest conversation with the bishop and his wife.
The two in the garden could not understand what was being said at the house, but each party could hear the voices of the other, and by calling out a little could easily converse across the dividing hedge and the intervening space.
"Talk about the influence of the beautiful in nature upon the human soul,—it is all very pretty, but I believe the soul must be more or less enlightened to feel it. I've learned a few things among your people up there in the mountains. Strange beings they are."