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I wonder if the gloomy old cavern ever before saw such a picture,—a dim light shining on the handsome, merry face of a young sleeper who in

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a careless ? attitude lay against the dark rocks! How long he slept it is impossible to know ; but it

' must have been some hours, for when he awoke,


it was in total darkness,-not the darkness of the darkest night above ground, but a terrible blackness, that can only be imagined by those who have been in it.

For a minute after awaking, Leonard could not recollect where he was. Then, in a flash, as he felt the rocks about him, the truth rushed upon him, and he sprang up in wildest terror. “I am dreaming !--it is a nightmare !-it cannot be !" The horror of that moment still returns to him in dreams; but words cannot convey what he felt. He screamed aloud, and the sound of his voice 3 reverberated through the 4 cavernous depths with so weird an effort that, from very awe, he was silent.

Leonard was naturally brave, even to recklessness; but this was a situation calculated to appal the stoutest heart. There is a feeling of 6 supernatural awe that creeps over one, even in company, and with lights, when 'penetrating those gloomy passages : but fancy awakening to find yourself alone in the pitchy blackness of the Mammoth Cave!

Leonard sank back against the rocks in utter despair, to which feeling he abandoned himself for some time.

“They will never find me !-I shall die here ! " For he remembered that, the more 8 effectually to conceal himself, he had gone some-yards into the passage. At length he thought he would try to

. grope his way

back towards the main passage. He




felt the rocks about him, and tried to recall, as minutely as possible, how many steps he had taken. He thought he could remember placing his light between himself and the entrance ; so he felt about, but could not touch the candlestick. He continued groping his way cautiously along, taking each step with the utmost care, lest he should plunge headlong into some pit. “I think I must be near the entrance now,-yes, here is where I stepped up,” as, on trying the ground, he found a landing-place a foot or two below the level where he stood. He also fancied he could feel a stronger current of air ; but, alas ! poor Leonard was only placing himself farther from chance of discovery, for he was going in exactly the contrary direction to what he imagined

“ I can do nothing more, only wait,” he moaned. “ They must come soon ”; and for a moment hope was in the 10 ascendency, as he thought of his loving mother and sister, and knew they would leave no means untried to find him.

boulder, a mass of any rock, rounded or not, which has been transported (carried) by natural agencies from its native bed (split off by some means from a rock). ? attitude, posture or position. 3 reverberated, echoed ; sounded again. * cavernous, full of caverns (deep hollows or caves in the earth). 5appal, terrify ; scare ; depress or discourage with fear. 6 supernatural awe, fear or dread mingled with reverence, arising from being surrounded by mysterious things. ?penetrating, piercing, or making way through the interior of anything. 8 effectually, with effect; in order to produce a certain result, or to bring a certain thing to pass. °grope, search out by feeling in the dark. ascendency, superior or controlling influence; the feeling uppermost in his mind.

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in-tol'-er-a-ble ea'-ger-ly nec'-tar Hours passed by, and Leonard remained crouching amongst the rocks, sometimes hoping, more frequently despairing. “I cannot endure this !" he exclaimed at last, rising to his feet. “I must do something, or I shall go mad!” He stood still a moment, thinking. “I might grope my way out,--at any rate I will try." And he reached about with his hands. “ It seems wider here ; I must be in the main passage.'

And for a quarter of an hour he pushed on, stumbling over rocks, until, faint and footsore, he sat down, and gave himself up to despondency.

Again hours passed on, and hope grew fainter and fainter.

"O God, help me! help me!” cried Leonard, at last.

“Help me to get out, or help me to bear it!” He had, from infancy, kept up the habit of repeating a prayer each night before retiring—that is, when he was not too tired or too sleepy. But this, I think, was the first real petition he had ever uttered. He now felt moreresigned, and lay down hoping to sleep away some of the dreary hours ; but sleep flees when too eagerly pursued, and thought was busy in that young brain. How bitterly he now regretted his folly! How longingly he thought

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of his tender, gentle mother, whose caresses and love he had so carelessly 3 requited! What would he not now have given to lay his head in her lap, as he had so often done in childhood ! Neglected opportunities ! how they crowded before him,at school, at home, everywhere! “Oh, if I ever do get out," thought poor Leonard, “I will be different ! I can never forget this terrible time.”

After what seemed to him ages of thought and listening—for he kept his ears on the strain all the time-he sank into slumber. When he awoke again it was to soreness and faintness of body : a little hungry, and oh, so thirsty ! what would he not have given for a drink of water! He could think of nothing else, and the remembrance of a pitcher of ice-water he had seen on a stand in his mother's room arose again and again so 5vividly, that he would reach involuntarily to pour himself a drink.

His thirst grew at length so? intolerable, that he thought he must drink or die. He remembered seeing frequent springs and pools when traversing the cavern, and the hope sprang up that he might be able to find some water. He was now so stiff and faint, that it was with difficulty he dragged himself along ; but the anxiety to procure water made him forget & physical suffering, and, for a time, his dreadful situation. On he stumbled, through the darkness, carefully following up every 9 indication of moisture, stopping to rest, and again pushing on. Leonard, of course, had no means of

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