Beechcroft at RockstoneChapter I. A Dispersion
'A telegram! Make haste and open it, Jane; they always make me so nervous! I believe thatis the reason Reginald always
telegraph when he is coming,' said Miss Adeline Mohun, avery pretty, well preserved, though delicate-looking lady of some age about forty, as herelder sister, brisk and lively and some years older, came into the room.'No, it is not Reggie. It is from Lily. Poor Lily! Jasper--- accident---Come.''Poor dear Lily! Is it young Jasper or old Jasper, I wonder?''If it were young Jasper she would have put Japs. I am afraid it is her husband. If so, shewill be going off to him. I must catch the 11.20 train. Will you come, Ada?''Oh no; I should be knocked up, and on your hands. The suspense is bad enough at home.''If it is old Jasper, we shall see in the paper to-day. I will send it down to you from thestation. Supposing it is Sir Jasper, and she wants to go out to him, we must take in some of the children.''Oh! Dear little Primrose would be nice enough, but what should we do with that Halfpennywoman? If we had the other girls, I suppose they would be at school all day; but surelysome might go to Beechcroft. And mind, Jane, I will not have you overtasking yourself! Donot take any of them without having Gillian to help you. That I stipulate.'Jane Mohun seemed as if she did not hear as these sentences were uttered at intervals,while she stood dashing off postcards at her davenport. Then she said, on her way to thedoor---'Don't expect me to-night. I will send Fanny to ask one of the Wellands to come in to you,and telegraph if I bring any one home with me.'But, Jane dear--'However, the door was shut, and by the time Miss Adeline had reached her sister's room,the ever-ready bag was nearly packed.'I only wanted to say, dear Jane, that you must give my love to dear Lily. I am grieved---grieved for her; but indeed you must not undertake anything rash.' (A shake of the head, asthe shoes went into their neat bag.) 'Do not let her persuade you to stay at Silverfold in herabsence. You cannot give up everything here''Yes, yes, Ada, I know it does not suit you. Never fear.''It is not that, but you are much too useful here to drop everything, especially now everyone is away. I would willingly sacrifice myself, but--'