It was about the middle of a March afternoon when Dr. Tolbridge, giving his horse and buggy into the charge of his stable boy, entered the warm hall of his house. His wife was delighted to see him; he had not been at home since noon of the preceding day. "Yes," said he, as he took off his gloves and overcoat, "the Pardell boy is better, but I found him in a desperate condition." "I knew that," said Mrs. Tolbridge, "when you told me in your note that you would be obliged to stay with him all night." The doctor now walked into his study, changed his overcoat for a well-worn smoking-jacket, and seated himself in an easy chair before the fire. His wife sat by him. "Thank you," he said, in answer to her inquiries, "but I do not want anything to eat. After I had gone my round this morning I went back to the Pardells, and had my dinner there. The boy is doing very well. No, I was not up all night. I had some hours' sleep on the big sofa."