DID you ever have a bit of cloth that you thought clean until some time it happened to be laid close by a new piece, and then you saw it was soiled? In a similar way people discover facts about themselves, sometimes, as Burt and Johnnie Lee did when their Scotch cousin came to live with them. They were "pretty good boys," and would have been very angry if anybody had called them deceitful. Well, when their cousin came they were delighted. 

He was little, but very bright and full of fun. He could tell curious things about his home in Scotland and his voyage across the ocean. He was as far advanced in his studies as they were, and the first day he went to school they thought him remarkably good. He wasted no time in play when he should have been studying, and he recited finely. At night, before the close of school, the teacher called a roll, and the boys began to answer, 


When Willie understood that he was to say "ten" if he had not whispered during the day, he replied, "I have whispered."

"More than once? " asked the teacher.

"Yes, sir," answered Willie.

"As many as ten times? "

"Maybe I have," faltered Willie.

"Then I shall mark you 'zero,'" said the teacher, sternly, "and that is a great disgrace."

"Why, I did not see you whisper once," said Johnnie that night after school.

"Well, I did," said Willie. "I saw others doing it, and so I asked to borrow a book; then I lent a slate pencil, and asked a boy for a knife, and did several such things. I supposed it was allowed."

"Oh, we all do that," said Burt, reddening. "There isn't any sense in the old rule, and nobody could keep it; nobody does."

"I will, or else I will say, 'I haven't,'" said Willie. "Do you suppose I would tell ten lies in one heap?"

"Oh, we don't call them lies," muttered Johnnie. "There wouldn't be a credit among us at night if we were so strict."

"What of that if, you told the truth?" laughed Willie, bravely.

In a short time the boys all saw how it was with him. He studied very hard, played with all his might in playtime, but according to his own account he lost more credits than any of the rest. After some weeks the boys answered, "Nine" and "Eight" oftener than they used to; yet the school-room seemed to have grown much quieter. Sometimes, when Willie Grant's mark was even lower than usual, the teacher would smile peculiarly, but said no more of "disgrace." Willie never preached at them or told tales; but somehow it made the boys ashamed of themselves, just the seeing that this sturdy, blue-eyed Scotch boy must tell the truth. It was putting the clean cloth by the half-soiled one, you see; and they felt like cheats and "story-tellers." They talked him over and loved him, if they did nickname him "Scotch Granite," he was so firm about a promise.

"Well, at the end of the term Willie's name was very low down in the credit-list. 

When it was read, he had hard work not to cry, for he was very sensitive, and he had tried hard to be perfect. But the very last thing that day was a speech by the teacher, who told of once seeing a man muffled up in a cloak. He was passing him without a look, when he was told the man was General --, the great hero. "The signs of his rank were hidden, but the hero was there just the same," said the teacher. 

"And now, boys, you will see what I mean when I tell you that I want to give a little gold medal to the most faithful boy the one really the most conscientiously 'perfect in his deportment' among you. Who shall have it?

"Little Scotch Granite!" shouted forty boys at once; for the child whose name was so "low" on the credit-list had made truth noble in their eyes. 

S. S. Visitor.