He sat down, and dead silence ensued. Tears of emotion stood in the eyes of the hearers, men as well as women, and tears of gratitude and thanksgiving gushed warmly from those of Asenath. An ineffable peace and joy descended upon her heart.
When the meeting broke up, Friend Mitchenor, who had not recognized Richard Hilton, but had heard the story with feelings which he endeavored in vain to control, approached the preacher.
"The Lord spoke to me this day through thy lips," said he; "will thee come to one side, and hear me a minute?"
"Eli Mitchenor!" exclaimed Friend Carter; "Eli! I knew not thee was here! Doesn't thee know me?"
The old man stared in astonishment. "It seems like a face I ought to know," he said, "but I can't place thee." They withdrew to the shade of one of the poplars. Friend Carter turned again, much moved, and, grasping the old man's hands in his own, exclaimed--
"Friend Mitchenor, I was called upon to-day to speak of myself. I am--or, rather, I WAS--the Richard Hilton whom thee knew."
Friend Mitchenor's face flushed with mingled emotions of shame and joy, and his grasp on the preacher's hands tightened.
"But thee calls thyself Carter?" he finally said.
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