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Page 151

SERVICE AND THRIFT
THE KING OF THE GOLDEN RIVER; OR, THE BLACK BROTHERS by
JOHN RUSKIN

Gluck left the room melancholy enough. The brothers ate as much mutton as they could, locked the rest in the cupboard, and proceeded to get very drunk after dinner.
Such a night as it was ! Howling wind and rushing rain, without intermission. The brothers had just sense enough left to put up all the shutters and double-bar the door, before they went to bed. They usually slept in the same room. As the clock struck twelve, they were both awakened by a tremendous crash. Their door burst open with a violence that shook the house from top to bottom.
" What's that?" cried Schwartz, starting up in his bed.
" Only I," said the little gentleman.
The two brothers sat up on their bolster, and stared into the darkness. The room was full of water; and by a misty is moonbeam, which found its way through a hole in the shutter, they could see in the midst of it an enormous foam globe, spinning round, and bobbing up and down like a cork, on which, as on a most luxurious cushion, reclined the little old gentleman, cap and all. There was plenty of room for it now, for the roof was off.
" Sorry to incommode you," said their visitor, ironically. "I'm afraid your beds are dampish ; perhaps you had better go to your brother's room; I've left the ceiling on there."
They required no second admonition, but rushed into Gluck's room, wet through, and in an agony of terror.
" You'll find my card on the kitchen table," the old gentleman called after them. "Remember, the last visit."
" Pray Heaven it may!" said Schwartz, shuddering. And the foam globe disappeared.
Dawn came at last, and the two brothers looked out of Gluck's little window in the morning. The Treasure Valley was one mass of ruin and desolation. The inundation had swept away trees, crops, and cattle, and left in their stead

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