13 May 1852
I have wanted to write you a long letter all week, but you know Mother has been sick, and I have had more to do; but I've tho't of you all the time, and thought too how happy we should be if you were living at home.
It is very hard to have it so, but I try to be as happy and as cheerful as I can to keep father and mother from feeling so very lonely as they must all the while.
Mattie was with me most of all the afternoon - we had a long, sad talk about Sue and Michigan, and Life, and our own future, and Mattie cried and I cried, and we had a solemn time, and Mat said she had a beautiful letter from you last night. She was going to send some flowers in a box, the other day, but you had'nt then answered her letter, and Mat is very shy, so you see why you did'nt get them. John Thompson brought us the books - he arrived Monday - no, it was Tuesday evening - I have read "Ellen Middleton" and now Mat has it.
I need'nt tell you I like it, nor need I tell you more, for you know already.
I thank you more and more for all the pleasures you give me - I can give you nothing Austin, but a warm and grateful heart, that is your's now and always. Love from all, and Mat.