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      The boys all started out in good shape, and there had been hardly time for them to get sick much yet. So up to this stage of the regiment's history the doctors had found little to do but issue arnica and salve for lame legs and blistered feet, and strut around in their shiny uniforms.

      But we must not leave the matter there, for it is not enough for us to be deeply convinced p. 31that the doctrine of the Mass is opposed to the whole truth of God, for such a conviction, though it may keep us clear of Rome, will not, if it be all, bring us to God. What we want is not merely a conviction of the truth, but a personal appropriation of it in our own hearts. It is a blessed thing to know that a perfect sacrifice has been offered, and that no further sacrifice is either necessary or possible; but that knowledge, blessed as it is, may leave the heart dissatisfied, and the conscience ill at ease. When that is the case, we cannot be surprised at persons restlessly feeling after anything that promises peace; and I believe there is no state of mind in which persons are so liable to be led away by Rome, as when the conscience is awakened, but the heart not at rest in Christ the Saviour. It is when we can look to that cross of Christ, assured that the atonement there made was sufficient even for us, and when we can rest in the conviction that, because the atonement was sufficient, we, even we, are free; and when we learn to rest, not on feelings, not on sacraments, not on our doings of any kind whatever, but simply on the great, grand, glorious fact, that a full propitiation has been made even for the chief of sinners, so that we, though the chief p. 32of sinners, are no longer under the guilt of sin; then it is that we discover the strength of the rock under our feet, and, resting on it, we need no other stay. It is enough, for Christ hath died, and through Him God is reconciled. Blessed! oh, blessed that Christian believer, who can thus rest in a perfect Saviour; and be kept in perfect peace through the Saviours perfect work!Though e spirit of these young patriots was willing, the flesh was weak. It wasn't long till Si began to limp. Now and then a groan escaped his lips as a fresh blister "broke." But Si clinched his teeth, humped his back to ease his shoulders from the weight of his knapsack, screwed up his courage, and tramped on over the stony pike. He thought the breathing spells were very short and a long way apart.

      Instantly there was a loud clicking all along the line. The Illinois soldiers, almost to a man, fixed their bayonets. Half of them sprang to their feet, and all aimed their shining points at the poor young Hoosier patriot, filling the air with shouts of derision.

      Mre de Sainte-Claude, the Superior, a sister of Ramesay, late commandant of Quebec, one morning sent him a note of invitation to what she called an English breakfast; and though the repast answered to nothing within his experience, he says that he "fared exceedingly well, and passed near two hours most agreeably in the society of this ancient lady and her virgin sisters."

      He drew away from her. "Oh no, I couldn't let you.""I guess that's common enough," he said with a laugh.

      Si hesitated; it was human nature. The offer was a tempting one, but he remembered his responsibility to his country, and his stomach appealed in vain. Duty came before stewed chicken or roasted sparerib.

      "Well, tell me what you expect to prove."


      "Please put it where you got it."


      "They have a complete case against you," said Pen. "And don't you see, they think you ran away." She gave him the points of the evidence against him.It worked. A dazzling white beam suddenly flashed in her face. Pen screamed and scrambled to her feet. She did not have to act that. But oh! it was a relief to have it over with. As she stood up other lights were thrown on her. She could see nothing for the shifting, blinding circles. Some were held on her, others ran all over the place like quicksilver, like scrambling little devils of light nosing in the corners. One even ran around under the dome as if it expected to find Don clinging there like a bat.


      Jan. 1, 1863, was an exceedingly solemn, unhappy New Year's Day for the union soldiers on the banks of Stone River. Of the 44,000 who had gone into the line on the evening of Dec. 30, nearly 9,000 had been killed or wounded and about 2,000 were prisoners. The whole right wing of the army had been driven back several miles, to the Nashville Pike. Cannon, wagon-trains, tents and supplies had been captured by the rebel cavalry, which had burned miles of wagons, and the faint-hearted ones murmured that the army would have to surrender or starve."Don't ye never blow on this thing," said Si. "It'll be a cold day for us if they'd find it out."