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Frank Leward: Memorials

Same to the same

Same to the same.

The Shrubbery.

My dearest Mother, I write at once to tell you that our boy is vindicated. I knew he would be. I enclose two letters, one from Mr. Saunders, and one from dear Bampton and one written by Frank to Bampton just before he went. What they say about Frank is only what I always knew. I always knew too the injustice of Dr. Pott's suspicions would soon be discovered.

I thought that Jones could not be bad either because Frank was so fond of him and his soul was too pure to allow anything unworthy to share in his friendship, but I sometimes feared his great kindness of heart might allow him to be deceived.

But O Mamma where has Frank gone? Dr. Pott has had the country round Upton thoroughly searched. Mr. Jones has put the matter into the hands of the cleverest officers in London and he as a lawyer could do this better than any one. Francis has left no stone unturned to find out where the foolish boys are hiding, but no answer comes—it all seems such a mystery. Poor old page 25Mrs. Vamperley declares she saw Frank here on Waterloo night, as she calls it, looking up at my window, and that he suddenly vanished away, so she told the servants. The poor people think she is a witch, and she is no doubt very strange and superstitious, but not so bad as they make out. She has known Frank from a baby and although very fond of him always predicted he would have a wandering blighted life. God grant it may not come true more terribly true than this poor creature ever dreamed of in her foolish ignorant dreams.

I have gone on telling you, without much coherence I fear all that we know. I still seem in a lethargy, and although the two letters comforted me beyond expression, yet all is so strange and like a nightmare. Still I cannot weep. I feel fast bound in bonds of iron, and the iron has indeed entered into my soul. To think that I may never never hear that happy laugh or see his face again. I cannot bear it. It seems so unnatural to think of one so full of life suddenly taken away. I lie awake at night, and if I do fall asleep for a few minutes I start up expecting to see his spirit in the room, and half in fear and yet almost wishing I might see him even as a spirit, for then at least I should know the worst, and perhaps he would beckon me to follow him to that blessed country where he may even now be and we should kneel for ever at the foot of the great white throne, and I should be happy with my boy a blessed angel the brightest of that bright band, and with my dear father too we should wait in perfect bliss to welcome you dear page 26mother to that far-off happy land where sorrow cannot enter and where we shall meet to part no more.

Write soon, dearest mother, and forgive this unintelligible scrawl you know how ill I am.

—Your loving