While I acknowledge the success of the present work to have been greater than I anticipated, and the praises it has elicited from a few kind critics to have been greater than it deserved, I must also admit that from some other quarters it has been censured with an asperity which I was as little prepared to expect, and which my judgment, as well as my feelings, assures me is more bitter than just. It is scarcely the province of an author to refute the arguments of his censors and vindicate his own productions; but I may be allowed to make here a few observations with which I would have prefaced the first edition, had I foreseen the necessity of such precautions against the misapprehensions of those who would read it with a prejudiced mind or be content to judge it by a hasty glance. y object in writing the following pages was not simply to amuse the !eader; neither was it to gratify my own taste, nor yet to ingratiate myself with the "ress and the "ublic# I wished to tell the truth, for truth always conveys its own moral to those who are able to receive it. $ut as the priceless treasure too frequently hides at the bottom of a well, it needs some courage to dive for it, especially as he that does so will be likely to incur more scorn and obloquy for the mud and water into which he has ventured to plunge, than thanks for the jewel he procures; as, in like manner, she who undertakes the cleansing of a careless bachelor%s apartment will be liable to more abuse for the dust she raises than commendation for the clearance she effects. &et it not be imagined, however, that I consider myself competent to reform the errors and abuses of society, but only that I would fain contribute my humble quota towards so good an aim; and if I can gain the public ear at all, I would rather whisper a few wholesome truths therein than much soft nonsense. 's the story of %'gnes (rey% was accused of extravagant over) colouring in those very parts that were carefully copied from the life, with a most scrupulous avoidance of all exaggeration, so, in the present work, I find myself censured for depicting *+, ' +!-, with %a morbid love of the coarse, if not of the brutal,% those scenes which, I will venture to say, have not been more painful for the most fastidious of my critics to read than they were for me to describe. I may have gone too far; in which case I shall be careful not to trouble myself or my readers in the same way again; but when we have to do with vice and vicious characters, I maintain it is better to depict them as they really are than as they would wish to appear. .o represent a bad thing in its least offensive light is, doubtless, the most agreeable course for a writer of fiction to pursue; but is it the most honest, or the safest/ Is it better to reveal the snares and pitfalls of life to the young and thoughtless traveller, or to cover them with branches and flowers/ +h, reader0 if there were less of this delicate concealment of facts ) this whispering, %"eace, peace,% when there is no peace, there would be less of sin and misery to the young of both sexes who are left to wring their bitter knowledge from experience. I would not be understood to suppose that the proceedings of the unhappy scapegrace, with his few profligate companions I have here introduced, are a specimen of the common practices of society ) the case is an extreme one, as I trusted none would fail to perceive; but I know that such characters do exist, and if I have warned one rash youth from following in their steps, or prevented one thoughtless girl from falling into the very natural error of my heroine, the book has not been written in vain. $ut, at the same time, if any honest reader shall have derived more pain than pleasure from its perusal, and have closed the last volume with a disagreeable impression on his mind, I humbly crave his pardon, for such was far from my intention; and I will endeavour to do better another time, for I love to give innocent pleasure. 1et, be it understood, I shall not limit my ambition to this ) or even to producing %a perfect work of art%# time and talents so spent, I should consider wasted and misapplied. 2uch humble

talents as (od has given me I will endeavour to put to their greatest use; if I am able to amuse, I will try to benefit too; and when I feel it my duty to speak an unpalatable truth, with the help of (od, I WI&& speak it, though it be to the prejudice of my name and to the detriment of my reader%s immediate pleasure as well as my own. +ne word more, and I have done. !especting the author%s identity, I would have it to he distinctly understood that 'cton $ell is neither *urrer nor -llis $ell, and therefore let not his faults be attributed to them. 's to whether the name be real or fictitious, it cannot greatly signify to those who know him only by his works. 's little, I should think, can it matter whether the writer so designated is a man, or a woman, as one or two of my critics profess to have discovered. I take the imputation in good part, as a compliment to the just delineation of my female characters; and though I am bound to attribute much of the severity of my censors to this suspicion, I make no effort to refute it, because, in my own mind, I am satisfied that if a book is a good one, it is so whatever the sex of the author may be. 'll novels are, or should be, written for both men and women to read, and I am at a loss to conceive how a man should permit himself to write anything that would be really disgraceful to a woman, or why a woman should be censured for writing anything that would be proper and becoming for a man. 34&1 55nd, 6787.

1ou must go back with me to the autumn of 6759. y father, as you know, was a sort of gentleman farmer in )shire; and I, by his express desire, succeeded him in the same quiet occupation, not very willingly, for ambition urged me to higher aims, and self)conceit assured me that, in disregarding its voice, I was burying my talent in the earth, and hiding my light under a bushel. y mother had done her utmost to persuade me that I was capable of great achievements; but my father, who thought ambition was the surest road to ruin, and change but another word for destruction, would listen to no scheme for bettering either my own condition, or that of my fellow mortals. :e assured me it was all rubbish, and exhorted me, with his dying breath, to continue in the good old way, to follow his steps, and those of his father before him, and let my highest ambition be to walk honestly through the world, looking neither to the right hand nor to the left, and to transmit the paternal acres to my children in, at least, as flourishing a condition as he left them to me. %Well0 ) an honest and industrious farmer is one of the most useful members of society; and if I devote my talents to the cultivation of my farm, and the improvement of agriculture in general, I shall thereby benefit, not only my own immediate connections and dependants, but, in some degree, mankind at large#) hence I shall not have lived in vain.% With such reflections as these I was endeavouring to console myself, as I plodded home from the fields, one cold, damp, cloudy evening towards the close of +ctober. $ut the gleam of a bright red fire through the parlour window had more effect in cheering my spirits, and rebuking my thankless repinings, than all the sage reflections and good resolutions I had forced my mind to frame; ) for I was young then, remember ) only four)and) twenty ) and had not acquired half the rule over my own spirit that I now possess ) trifling as that may be. :owever, that haven of bliss must not be entered till I had exchanged my miry boots for a clean pair of shoes, and my rough surtout for a respectable coat, and made myself generally presentable before decent society; for my mother, with all her kindness, was vastly particular on certain points. In ascending to my room I was met upon the stairs by a smart, pretty girl of nineteen, with a tidy, dumpy figure, a round face, bright, blooming cheeks, glossy, clustering curls, and little merry brown eyes. I need not tell you this was my sister !ose. 2he is, I know, a comely matron still, and, doubtless,

no less lovely ) in your eyes ) than on the happy day you first beheld her. ,othing told me then that she, a few years hence, would be the wife of one entirely unknown to me as yet, but destined hereafter to become a closer friend than even herself, more intimate than that unmannerly lad of seventeen, by whom I was collared in the passage, on coming down, and well)nigh jerked off my equilibrium, and who, in correction for his impudence, received a resounding whack over the sconce, which, however, sustained no serious injury from the infliction; as, besides being more than commonly thick, it was protected by a redundant shock of short, reddish curls, that my mother called auburn. +n entering the parlour we found that honoured lady seated in her arm)chair at the fireside, working away at her knitting, according to her usual custom, when she had nothing else to do. 2he had swept the hearth, and made a bright bla;ing fire for our reception; the servant had just brought in the tea)tray; and !ose was producing the sugar)basin and tea)caddy from the cupboard in the black oak side)board, that shone like polished ebony, in the cheerful parlour twilight. %Well0 here they both are,% cried my mother, looking round upon us without retarding the motion of her nimble fingers and glittering needles. %,ow shut the door, and come to the fire, while !ose gets the tea ready; I%m sure you must be starved; ) and tell me what you%ve been about all day; ) I like to know what my children have been about.% %I%ve been breaking in the grey colt ) no easy business that ) directing the ploughing of the last wheat stubble ) for the ploughboy has not the sense to direct himself ) and carrying out a plan for the extensive and efficient draining of the low meadowlands.% %.hat%s my brave boy0 ) and <ergus, what have you been doing/% %$adger)baiting.% 'nd here he proceeded to give a particular account of his sport, and the respective traits of prowess evinced by the badger and the dogs; my mother pretending to listen with deep attention, and watching his animated countenance with a degree of maternal admiration I thought highly disproportioned to its object. %It%s time you should be doing something else, <ergus,% said I, as soon as a momentary pause in his narration allowed me to get in a word. %What can I do/% replied he; %my mother won%t let me go to sea or enter the army; and I%m determined to do nothing else ) except make myself such a nuisance to you all, that you will be thankful to get rid of me on any terms.% +ur parent soothingly stroked his stiff, short curls. :e growled, and tried to look sulky, and then we all took our seats at the table, in obedience to the thrice)repeated summons of !ose. %,ow take your tea,% said she; %and I%ll tell you what I%ve been doing. I%ve been to call on the Wilsons; and it%s a thousand pities you didn%t go with me, (ilbert, for -li;a illward was there0% %Well0 what of her/% %+h, nothing0 ) I%m not going to tell you about her; ) only that she%s a nice, amusing little thing, when she is in a merry humour, and I shouldn%t mind calling her ) % %:ush, hush, my dear0 your brother has no such idea0% whispered my mother earnestly, holding up her finger. %Well,% resumed !ose; %I was going to tell you an important piece of news I heard there ) I have been bursting with it ever since. 1ou know it was reported a month ago, that somebody was going to take Wildfell :all ) and ) what do you think/ It has actually been inhabited above a week0 ) and we never knew0%

%Impossible0% cried my mother. %"reposterous000% shrieked <ergus. %It has indeed0 ) and by a single lady0% %(ood gracious, my dear0 .he place is in ruins0% %2he has had two or three rooms made habitable; and there she lives, all alone ) except an old woman for a servant0% %+h, dear0 that spoils it ) I%d hoped she was a witch,% observed <ergus, while carving his inch)thick slice of bread and butter. %,onsense, <ergus0 $ut isn%t it strange, mamma/% %2trange0 I can hardly believe it.% %$ut you may believe it; for 3ane Wilson has seen her. 2he went with her mother, who, of course, when she heard of a stranger being in the neighbourhood, would be on pins and needles till she had seen her and got all she could out of her. 2he is called rs. (raham, and she is in mourning ) not widow%s weeds, but slightish mourning ) and she is quite young, they say, ) not above five or six and twenty, ) but so reserved0 .hey tried all they could to find out who she was and where she came from, and, all about her, but neither rs. Wilson, with her pertinacious and impertinent home)thrusts, nor iss Wilson, with her skilful manoeuvring, could manage to elicit a single satisfactory answer, or even a casual remark, or chance expression calculated to allay their curiosity, or throw the faintest ray of light upon her history, circumstances, or connections. oreover, she was barely civil to them, and evidently better pleased to say %good)by,% than %how do you do.% $ut -li;a illward says her father intends to call upon her soon, to offer some pastoral advice, which he fears she needs, as, though she is known to have entered the neighbourhood early last week, she did not make her appearance at church on 2unday; and she ) -li;a, that is ) will beg to accompany him, and is sure she can succeed in wheedling something out of her ) you know, (ilbert, she can do anything. 'nd we should call some time, mamma; it%s only proper, you know.% %+f course, my dear. "oor thing0 :ow lonely she must feel0% %'nd pray, be quick about it; and mind you bring me word how much sugar she puts in her tea, and what sort of caps and aprons she wears, and all about it; for I don%t know how I can live till I know,% said <ergus, very gravely. $ut if he intended the speech to be hailed as a master)stroke of wit, he signally failed, for nobody laughed. :owever, he was not much disconcerted at that; for when he had taken a mouthful of bread and butter and was about to swallow a gulp of tea, the humour of the thing burst upon him with such irresistible force, that he was obliged to jump up from the table, and rush snorting and choking from the room; and a minute after, was heard screaming in fearful agony in the garden. 's for me, I was hungry, and contented myself with silently demolishing the tea, ham, and toast, while my mother and sister went on talking, and continued to discuss the apparent or non) apparent circumstances, and probable or improbable history of the mysterious lady; but I must confess that, after my brother%s misadventure, I once or twice raised the cup to my lips, and put it down again without daring to taste the contents, lest I should injure my dignity by a similar explosion. .he next day my mother and !ose hastened to pay their compliments to the fair recluse; and came back but little wiser than they went; though my mother declared she did not regret the journey, for if she had not gained much good, she flattered herself she had imparted some, and that was better# she had given some useful advice, which, she hoped, would not be thrown away; for rs. (raham, though she said

for she betrayed a lamentable ignorance on certain points.= ) $ut I told her I knew better.= said I.o matter. 'fter that !ose favoured me with further particulars respecting rs. my dear (ilbert. mother/% asked I. and dress. and disposed in long glossy ringlets. though not more charming.a illward. and such things. her eyes I could not see.little to any purpose. %come there to end her days in solitude. fair lady. she would be less interesting.% . %for she didn%t seem very disconsolate after all. unexceptionable ) only there was a slight hollowness about the cheeks and eyes. as I was not a very attentive listener. :er appearance. appertaining to Wildfell :all. frowned so sternly from the wall above. but. ) and besides. =. ma%am. a little too firmly compressed. though you could hardly pretend to discover a resemblance between her and -li. :er hair was raven black. were all set before me.% observed !ose. for she begged I would not trouble myself. and she%s excessively pretty ) handsome rather ) you must see her. and I said in my heart ) %I would rather admire you from this distance. whether she be required to make a practical use of her knowledge or not. I thought.% said I.% %'nd so you prefer her faults to other people%s perfections/% %3ust so ) saving my mother%s presence. and there was something in it which. and had something about them that betokened.o. ) though she did not know where she had been all her life. I could not repeat the description if I would. under pretence of household business. I maintain that. the nose. my dear.= said she. I can imagine many faces more beautiful than -li. you will call her a perfect beauty. and probably ) I might say almost certainly ) will be again. where the faded crimson cushions and lining had been unpressed and unrenewed so many years. =it is what every respectable female ought to know. with their lugubrious borders of rusty black cloth. I gave her some useful pieces of information. on 2unday. (raham. no very soft or amiable temper. however. quiet way. seemed not incapable of reflection. and mourn in secret for the dear departed ) but it won%t last long. I suppose. poor thing. in order to escape the contradiction that was trembling on my tongue. and several excellent receipts.% %+h. a style of coiffure rather unusual in those days. as she lived in such a plain. and had not even the sense to be ashamed of it. and the lips. clad in black. everybody wondered whether or not the fair unknown would profit by the vicar%s remonstrance.% %. and bustling out of the room. they were concealed by their drooping lids and long black lashes. almost haughtily. but then. that every lady ought to be familiar with. being bent upon her prayer)book. in general. but always graceful and becoming. and the very furniture of the room she inhabited. %+n household matters. the value of which she evidently could not appreciate. . and appeared somewhat self)opinionated. you will not be always so. manners. I think not. and. (ilbert. lady)like figure. it%s quite out of the question. what nonsense you talk0 ) I know you don%t mean it. :er face was towards me. though you are alone now. 'nd there I beheld a tall.% %2ome romantic young widow. you have been married. and the grim escutcheons.he next day was 2aturday. getting up. once seen. but the brows above were expressive and well defined.= =1ou are mistaken there. that she was sure she should never make use of them. her complexion was clear and pale. were a little too thin. if she were more perfect. than be the partner of your home. though finely formed. %+n what points. the forehead was lofty and intellectual. I allow she has small claims to perfection.a%s.% said my mother. invited me to look again. =I am certain I never shall. and all the little niceties of cookery. a perfect aquiline and the features. for. with rather more clearness and precision than I cared to see them. I confess I looked with some interest myself towards the old family pew.% %Well. and come to church.

and regular habits. whenever he called upon our parents. and poor people. ) or black silk stockings on state occasions. for my mother. and a very engaging little creature. :alford. and they met mine. she was rather charming than pretty. had not twenty pounds to call her own. to directing my mind to the service.he !everend ichael illward himself was a tall. for. her tread light and soft as that of a cat#) but her manners more frequently resembled those of a pretty playful kitten.hen she glanced at me. and this time I was made sensible of it by a sudden dig in the ribs. . who had patiently nursed their mother. sensible girl. In childhood. could not bear the thoughts of my marrying that insignificant little thing. and had no definite intention of so doing. and say our . several inches taller. deferring further vengeance till we got out of church. if I think it worth while. square. and moreover. for whom I felt no small degree of partiality. ) they were long and narrow in shape. through her last long. I%ll tell you who -li. :er sister. her face small. coarser build ) a plain. according to its own sweet will. however. in addition to her numerous other disqualifications. before I close this letter. we had to stand up before him. carried a stout walking)stick in his hand. and slighted and neglected by everybody else. "revious. $ut her eyes ) I must not forget those remarkable features. on the present occasion. ) complexion.ow. was anything but what it ought to be. tedious illness. who placed a shovel hat above his large. and. I did not choose to withdraw my ga. and incased his still powerful limbs in knee)breeches and gaiters. children. and family drudge. intolerant of dissent in any shape. or very dark brown. strong prejudices. ) but no. I could only resent the insult by pressing my foot upon his toes. from thence to the present time. ) and she knew it. :er voice was gentle and childish. were attending to the strange lady. and been the housekeeper. %:umph0 ) she shall change her mind before long. quiet. retrousse. was several years older. cats. loved and courted by all dogs. that was inexpressibly provoking to me.a illward was# she was the vicar%s younger daughter.3ust then she happened to raise her eyes. in those days. but with a momentary. and endeavoured to compose her features. %2he thinks me an impudent puppy. he was a strict disciplinarian. acting under a firm conviction that his opinions were always right. ) all. :ere I was transgressing again. ponderous elderly gentleman.% $ut then it flashed upon me that these were very improper thoughts for a place of worship. that is now pert and roguish. ) nose.% thought I. ary. massive)featured face. but more delicate and less decidedly blooming. for therein her chief attraction lay ) in outward aspect at least. though I had never come to any direct explanation. and of a larger. generally irregular. or irresistibly bewitching ) often both. and she turned again to her book. simpered a little. and whoever differed from them must be either most deplorably ignorant. ) features. and ever changing. . from the elbow of my pert brother. something similar to hers. and nearly as round as my sister%s. now timid and demure. . indefinable expression of quiet scorn.e. surmounted.a%s figure was at once slight and plump. who were not attending to their prayer)books. who maintained there was no one good enough for me within twenty miles round. altogether. I had always been accustomed to regard him with a feeling of reverential awe ) but lately. the irids black. and rs. even now. though he had a fatherly kindness for the well)behaved. and had often sternly reproved our juvenile failings and peccadilloes. the expression various. and even -li. -li. or wilfully blind. <or the present. who. Wilson and her daughter. and that my behaviour. I glanced round the church to see if any one had been observing me. and blushed. 2he was trusted and valued by her father.a illward was slily glancing from the corners of her eyes towards the object of general attraction. modestly looked at her prayer)book. ) my good mother and sister among the rest. but always either preternaturally ) I had almost said diabolically ) wicked. :e was a man of fixed principles.

his is the first instalment of my debt. which agreed well enough with his digestive organs. extremely particular about what he ate and drank.el. many suitors in her own rank of life. %:ow doth the little busy bee. with a reference to old -li. very highly as she respected him. !obert.he former was the widow of a substantial farmer. ham. and all his sayings. rather tall and very slender. tattling old gossip. received a regular boarding) school education. the young squire. 1ours immutably. which was particularly galling to her feelings. 2he had. %I wish to goodness he had a son himself0 :e wouldn%t be so ready with his advice to other people then. quite lost her provincial accent. or >avid and 'bsalom. and !ichard. was vastly particular about warm and dry clothing. and I%ll pardon your bad taste. or repeat. studious young man. and could boast of more accomplishments than the vicar%s daughters. a rough countrified farmer. at her own desire. who was studying the classics with the vicar%s assistance. a narrow)minded. I will just touch upon two other persons whom I have mentioned. and penetrating. or ) worse than all ) be questioned about his last text. but never for a moment could she number me amongst her admirers. . but had deserted it. but very short. 2ometimes. 2he was about six and twenty. some fifteen years ago. '!?:' . whose character is not worth describing. ) he%d see what it is to have a couple of boys to keep in order. quick. tell me so. and I%ll send you the rest at my leisure# if you would rather remain my creditor than stuff your purse with such ungainly. . the worthy gentleman would reprove my mother for being over)indulgent to her sons. from whom she had lately received some rather pointed attentions. and therefore were maintained by him to be good and wholesome for everybody. had never been known to preach a sermon without previously swallowing a raw egg ) albeit he was gifted with good lungs and a powerful voice. and willingly keep the treasure to myself. for none but a gentleman could please her refined taste. &awrence. her hair was neither chestnut nor auburn. ) and was. ) being a great despiser of tea and such slops. 2he had. If the coin suits you. 2he had two sons. eyes clear ha. which we never could remember. were assured it was all fancy. and upon whose heart. . but entirely destitute of poetry or feeling. heavy pieces. her complexion was remarkably fair and brilliant. whose family had formerly occupied Wildfell :all. 2he had taken the polish well. and then bring this long letter to a close. . .his was r. if they failed to derive the promised benefit from his prescriptions. though by no means abstemious. +ne gentleman there was. chin well turned. generally. it was whispered. and having a mode of dietary peculiar to himself. neck long. and the heads of the discourse. bacon and eggs.% or some other hymn. ) tell me still.heir sister 3ane was a young lady of some talents.hese are rs.% :e had a laudable care for his own bodily health ) kept very early hours. Wilson and her daughter. and. . and more ambition. and a patron of malt liquors. a retiring. :alford. but a most decided bright. light red.ow. and none but a rich one could satisfy her soaring ambition. were told it was because they had not persevered. or might have had. name. hung beef. preparing for college. regularly took a walk before breakfast. lips thin and red. who. and other strong meats. (I&$-!. . acquired considerable elegance of manners. I bid you adieu for the present. she had serious designs. her head small. with a view to enter the church. superior to what any member of the family had obtained before.catechism. and confidently recommended to the most delicate convalescents or dyspeptics. but scornfully repulsed or rejected them all. I once heard her exclaim. for a more modern and commodious mansion in the neighbouring parish. and fortune. and if they complained of inconvenient results therefrom. 2he was considered a beauty besides.

whose depredations. the former. and the meadow)lands. cold and gloomy enough to inhabit. abandoned to the weeds and the grass. and its too lonely.CHAPTER II I perceive. a superannuated mansion of the -li. in which old associations and the fair young hermit. and then the brown heath)clad summit of the hill. the old boxwood swan. that had bordered the principal walk. or isolated blackthorns. relinquishing further depredations. . the rain and the drought. and see what changes had been wrought in it by its new inhabitant. and proceeded to mount the steep acclivity of Wildfell. sunk in an idle reverie. I think the day I last mentioned was a certain 2unday. and most readily assume the shapes he chose to give them. the wooded valleys. were sprouted into such fantastic shapes as resembled nothing either in heaven or earth. it presented a very singular appearance indeed. but these were not my property. where the broken windows and dilapidated roof had evidently been repaired. you shall have it. and looking up at the dark gables.ear the top of this hill. but finding none at all. were two) thirds withered away. +n the following . and entered by an iron gate. and then. the latest in the +ctober of 6759. and looking as stern and gloomy as the :all itself. but doubtless.abethan era. ) now. to my young imagination. had deprived me of better prey. as well as the trees. themselves half blighted with storms. venerable and picturesque to look at. and the rest grown beyond all reasonable bounds. but I paused beside the garden wall. and looked. I did not like to go quite to the front and stare in at the gate. its time)eaten air)holes. I heard a slight rustling and scrambling just within the garden. giving place to rough stone fences. my most valued friend. at length.uesday I was out with my dog and gun. ragweeds and rushes usurped supremacy over the scanty herbage. partly greened over with ivy and moss. in pursuit of such game as I could find within the territory of &inden)*ar. . the corn)fields. as you ascend. and you desire the continuation of my story# therefore. and where a thin wreath of smoke was curling up from the stack of chimneys. . stood Wildfell :all. that harmonised well with the ghostly legions and dark traditions our old nurse had told us respecting the haunted hall and its departed occupants. that sat beside the scraper.he close green walls of privet. the latter to larches and 2cotch fir)trees. ) only shielded from the war of wind and weather by a group of 2cotch firs. about two miles from &inden)*ar. with large balls of grey granite ) similar to those which decorated the roof and gables ) surmounting the gate)postsA was a garden. leaning on my gun. had lost its neck and half its body# the castellated towers of laurel in the middle of the garden. weaving a tissue of wayward fancies. with its thick stone mullions and little latticed panes. While I thus stood. I had succeeded in killing a hawk and two crows when I came within sight of the mansion. I turned my arms against the hawks and carrion crows. ) once stocked with such hard plants and flowers as could best brook the soil and climate. to have a look at the old place. I sauntered on. bore a nearly equal part. having been left so many years untilled and untrimmed. the gigantic warrior that stood on one side of the gateway. become scanty and stunted. now within those walls. without more ado. the light of your countenance blesses me once more. the hedges. being rough and stony.he fields. and the lion that guarded the other. the wildest and the loftiest eminence in our neighbourhood. where. . with joy. they presented all of them a goblinish appearance. to the frost and the wind. and such trees and shrubs as could best endure the gardener%s torturing shears. and wholly unfit for the plough. bilberry)plants and heather ) relics of more savage wildness ) grew under the walls. too unsheltered situation. the soil was thin and poor# bits of grey rock here and there peeped out from the grassy hillocks. before it @enclosed by stone walls. $ehind it lay a few desolate fields. . as I suspected. built of dark grey stone.o this end I left the more frequented regions. and in many of the enclosures. that the cloud of your displeasure has passed away. or in the waters under the earth. and saw no change ) except in one wing. but. were mostly devoted to the posturing of sheep and cattle.

and down he tumbled ) but not to the earth. . ) suddenly calming down. ) but. and I was so fortunate as to catch him. and the upper portion of a diminutive ivory nose. and lo0 rs.% stammered she.and.le to the ground. arkham. (raham darted upon me ) her neck uncovered. but finding this of no avail. I had dropped my gun on the grass. breathless. %he was tumbling off the wall there. and prevent I know not what catastrophe. for she suddenly assumed again that proud. arkham. %. ) I have the pleasure of addressing r. told him he was all right and called 2ancho to pacify him. . to go to the mountain. luminous dark eyes ) pale.he child @a little boy.he eyes did not notice me. in a voice scarce louder than a whisper. but with a tone of startling vehemence. ) the light of reason seeming to break upon her beclouded spirit. ) the tree still kept him suspended. with a pair of deep blue eyes beneath.% %I beg your pardon. quivering with agitation. but ventured to ask how she knew me. and not so greatly flattered at the idea as I ought to have been. madam. I suppose/% 2he stroked his head with a half)embarrassed laugh. I bowed. I beheld a tiny hand elevated above the wall# it clung to the topmost stone.% said I. looked up.he good)natured animal paused. :e was just putting little hand on the dog%s neck and beginning to smile through his tears. since the mountain would not come to him. and the boy. somewhat abruptly. her black locks streaming in the wind. but sparkled with glee on beholding 2ancho. and called again and again.% %Is the resemblance so strong then/% I asked. so easily assumed. and. and a faint blush mantling on her cheek ) %I did not know you. sir. and fondly clasped her arm round his neck. and so . . . ) %and I think I saw you at church on was something either in that smile or the recollections it awakened that was particularly displeasing to her. that grew hard by. glancing in the direction whence the sound proceeded. apparently about five years oldA scrambled up to the top of the wall. and a rustle of female garments. and caught the little fellow in my arms. when I heard behind me a click of the iron gate. and then a piercing shriek. sei. apparently made up his mind. my beautiful black and white setter. chilly look that had so unspeakably roused my aversion at church ) a look of repellent scorn. %1ou thought I was going to kidnap your son. somewhat dubiously surveying my face. and wagged his tail. fixing upon me her large. ) . as if some dire contamination were in my touch. and then appeared a small white forehead. in an instant. and then another little hand was raised to take a firmer hold.he little creature raised its face and called aloud to the dog. but made no further advances. that was coursing about the field with its mu. while he hung suspended headlong from that tree. In attempting to disengage himself his foot is a likeness about the eyes and complexion I think. and then stood with one hand firmly clasping was a silent struggle. she snatched him from me. %1our sister called here. %I was not harming the child. surmounted with wreaths of light brown hair.. ) and I thought ) % 2he stooped to kiss the child. in some surprise. and attempted to get over. . scarce knowing whether to be most astonished or displeased. like ahomet.% replied she. I believe/% she added. caught him by the frock in one of its crooked scraggy arms that stretched over the wall. a few days ago. I wiped his eyes with his frock. the other on his shoulder. %(ive me the child0% she said.% I smiled. ) %I did not know he had attempted to climb the wall. but a crabbed old cherry) tree. with rs.

with the cat on her knee.ot I. and overflowing with love for -li. r. %(ood)morning. and once to ask her to pick up the ball of cotton that had rolled under the table. busy with some piece of soft embroidery @the mania for $erlin wools had not yet commencedA. and not likely to be back for an hour0% %. r.a was hastily saying. and my mother was the soul of order and punctuality. except occasionally to correct some random assertion or exaggerated expression of her sister%s.% replied I.entirely without the least distortion of a single feature.% said she. with her child. %"apa%s just gone out into the parish. into the garden.-) -) . as cordially as he does old maids ) like all other gentlemen. bringing a chair to the fire. sidelong glances. angry and dissatisfied ) I could scarcely tell you why.-. I should still be too late for tea. for iss -li. I did this myself.-. was apparently pretty successful. indeed0% was the phlegmatic reply.a was never in a better humour.% said she. in a sudden burst of enthusiasm. however. indeed.hank you. if you%ll be very good and amusing. arkham/% %I believe it is natural for our unamiable sex to dislike the creatures.a. and what little effort I made. r. turning round and overwhelming her sister%s pet with a shower of kisses. %1ou%re so unfortunate. %I would have picked it up myself.ever mind. We seemed.% %$less them ) little darlings0% cried she. arkham%s eyes.ed her little hand at parting. only I did not want to disturb the cat. as I presented it to her. because I could not think it affected.% said -li. if they%ll allow me. %. :owever. arkham0% observed the younger sister. and she repaid me with one of her softest smiles and most bewitching glances. % ary ) ary0 put them away0% -li. that. for I came not to give pleasure. to solace my spirit and soothe my ruffled temper with the company and conversation of -li.a0% said iss illward. to be mutually pleased with each other. while there.a.% said I. %. for iss illward never opened her lips.% %&et your permission be unconditional. dear. >on%t you. and my appearance prevented further discussion. and give some requisite directions to one of the farming)men. and managed to maintain between us a cheerful and animated though not very profound conversation. y fair friend was evidently unwilling to bid me adieu. without waiting to be asked. %Well. arkham. as usual. and seating myself therein. just as I entered the room. -li. I thought it but reasonable to make some slight exertion to render my company agreeable. %for you ladies lavish so many caresses upon them. %he hates cats. with one of her arch. I went home very happy. . and then repaired to the vicarage. arkham. pray. somewhat gruffly. mending a heap of stockings. and I returned home. as in duty bound. I only stayed to put away my gun and powder)horn. she withdrew. and was the more provoking to me. that won%t excuse you in r. I can manage to spend a few minutes with his daughters. $ut it was time for me to be going# make what haste I would.-. as she impatiently pushed her away. I found her. I daresay. %>on%t.% % ary.% I answered. r.a illward. It was little better than a . I tenderly squee. while her sister was seated at the chimney)corner. with a heart brimful of complacency for myself. but to seek it. and therefore will not attempt it. it seemed like the natural expression of the face. we shall not object. and without another word or glance.

% %Is he so mischievous/% asked my mother. and. as she stroked the wavy locks of her son. with his clear blue eyes wistfully ga. however.% replied the lady.% 'll this time I was seated at a table on the other side of the room. It was little 'rthur. the cause of that omission was explained. though not entirely to the satisfaction of !ose.-. and I think. %1ou should try to suppress such foolish fondness. arkham.% %$ut. %could you not leave him with her/% %2he has her own occupations to attend to. irresistibly attracted by my dog 2ancho.% said I to myself# %the lady%s temper is none of the mildest. ) in which opinion she was supported by the Wilsons. once. . but slow and hesitating tread. that was lying at my feet. who was seated on a low stool at her feet. %but he is my only treasure.% said my plain)spoken parent. though shy.% % rs. however.ow. but she seemed to think enough had been said on the subject. Wilson. when you see them. induced him to come forward. in his presence. rs. arkham. she replied. and he is too mercurial to be tied to an elderly woman. %3ust as I thought. with his arms round 2ancho%s neck. she is too old to run after a child. I call that doting. sadly smiling. +n looking up I beheld him standing about two yards off. In a minute he was kneeling on the carpet. contrary to the expectation of !ose. not choosing to be over civil.% %!uin0 rs. (raham called at &inden)*ar. he should learn to be ashamed of it. rs. and continued my occupation as before. and besides. I must contrive to bring him with me. and on my mother%s expressing surprise that he could walk so far. my dear. y mother attempted to appease her by an explanation. as I fear I cannot do myself the pleasure of calling upon them till my little 'rthur is able to accompany me. considerably on the dog. pale face and lofty brow. with a serious energy that startled the company. I beg you will not say such things. or stay at home. In a little while. was not sullen.% said !ose. ) %It is a long walk for him. I was sensible that some one was approaching me. apparently immersed in the perusal of a volume of the <'! -!%2 '('BI. it is spoiling the child. and I think. which I happened to have been reading at the moment of our visitor%s arrival. or relinquished the visit altogether. for I never leave him alone. notwithstanding her sweet. rs. as well to save your son from ruin as yourself from ridicule. who entertained an idea that the mysterious occupant of Wildfell :all would wholly disregard the common observances of civili. who testified that neither their call nor the illwards% had been returned as yet.% %$ut you have a servant. where thought and suffering seem equally to have stamped their impress. I trust my son will never be ashamed to love his mother0% said rs. -ven at his age.% %1es. in a minute . and. I had merely bowed as she entered. in future. arkham0% %1es. at least. transfixed to the spot. (raham. (raham had brought her child with her. not by fear of the animal. and I am his only friend# so we don%t like to be separated.% %$ut you left him to come to church. and abruptly turned the conversation.CHAPTER III . I must beg you to make my excuses to the illwards and rs. . but I must have either taken him with me. but by a timid disinclination to approach its master. however. he ought not to be always tied to his mother%s apron)string.ed life.wo days after. ' little encouragement. but I would not have left him for any other purpose. %.he child. with a light.o.

ovember. except the young widow and her son.% pleaded I. I wish I could render the incentives to every other equally innoxious in his case. from the cupboard and the oak sideboard. and r. with hand and eye. and then I%ll come. and was ready to cry when urged to take it. at length. but she will not oblige you to take it0 ) I daresay you will do very well without. that for some reason or other she was uneasy at the child%s position. cattle. as you were tired with your walk. at a hint from my mother. 'rthur. and nobody here but ourselves. but obstinately refused the wine.% she added.% %$ut by such means.or two more. for the evenings. % rs.% said my mother. and I saw. %'rthur. 'rthur. and tell you all about them. %$y that means I hope to save him from one degrading vice at least.ever mind. &awrence. and just the illwards and Wilsons. $ut still. 1ou can bring your little boy with you. now. I fear. now.hey both partook of the cake. and. with nothing to do more laborious than stirring the fire. are dark and damp. 1ou are troublesome to r. mamma. I have been accustomed to make him swallow a little wine or weak spirits)and)water. ) What is it that constitutes virtue. pigs.% interrupted rs. and model farms portrayed in the volume before me. ) . wiping the tears of merriment from her bright blue eyes ) %well.% said his mamma. or that of having no temptations to resist/ ) Is he a strong man that overcomes great obstacles and performs surprising achievements. especially shrank from the ruby nectar as if in terror and disgust. and carrying his food to his mouth/ If you would have your son to walk honourably through the world.% said the child. %and the smell of it almost makes him sick. with imperturbable gravity.% %+h0 but this will be quite a family concern ) early hours.% %I do know something of him ) but you must excuse me this time.o. (raham. the fifth of . rs. rs. and 'rthur. the little fellow was seated on my knee. %let me look at these pictures first. %. I never go to parties. by the unquiet aspect of her eye. if you persist in ) % %I think it a very excellent plan.% %We are going to have a small party on onday. and at the risk of some subsequent fatigue. surveying with eager interest the various specimens of horses. she silently called him to her side. %.% %. ) and then you can make your own apologies to the illwards and Wilsons ) they will all be here. you know ) I daresay we shall be able to amuse him. :e detests the very sight of wine. most of whom you already know. arkham thinks it will do you good.% said my mother.% !ose. We must defer the enjoyment of your hospitality till the return of longer days and warmer nights.he poor child will be the veriest milksop that ever was sopped0 +nly think what a man you will make of him. you surprise me0 I really gave you credit for having more sense. in fact. (raham.% -verybody laughed. rs. by way of medicine. I expect. I am as much amused as he is. (raham. %and I hope you will not refuse to make one. when he was sick. %come here. (raham/ Is it the circumstance of being able and willing to resist temptation. (raham. or he that sits in his chair all day. produced a decanter of wine. is too delicate to risk exposure to their influence with impunity. arkham# he wishes to read.% said I. your landlord. I have done what I could to make him hate them.% %$y no means. pray let him stay.hank you. and the refreshment was duly presented to the guests. %you will never render him virtuous.% said she. though by dint of great muscular exertion. you must not . with whom you ought to make acquaintance. with accompaniments of glasses and cake. in spite of their hostess%s hospitable attempts to force it upon them. rs. . I glanced at his mother now and then to see how she relished the new)sprung intimacy. %Well.

arkham. but for fifty ) or five hundred men that have yielded to temptation. show me one that has had virtue to resist. not to remove it out of his way. he%ll be able to convince you in a minute. in the way of clearance. as it is abominable in its own nature ) I myself have had. alone and unassisted ) not taught to avoid the snares . r. arkham. and suppose he will be like his ) like the rest of mankind. $ut I%ll get r. that have required. arkham. and spend her life in petting him up.% %I will do both. illward to talk to you about it#) he%ll tell you the consequences. but let him learn to go alone. as you say. I suppose. when I have done all I can to render vice as uninviting to him. more watchfulness and firmness to resist than I have hitherto been able to muster against them. but yet I have experienced temptations and trials of another kind. believe me you will bitterly repent it when the mischief is done. %+h. he would tell you. you may fancy yourself equal to the task. arkham. and if you persist in the attempt. neither should I be convinced though one rose from the dead. no0 ) $ut if you would have a boy to despise his mother.% %Well. and I will clear as many stones from his path as I can. and make a mere iss . but indeed you are not. I may call it ) of taking that boy%s education upon yourself. whatever you may think.% %I am to send him to school. indeed. 'nd why should I take it for granted that my son will be one in a thousand/ ) and not rather prepare for the worst. shall I not use all the means in my power to insure for him a smoother and a safer passage/% %1es. illward%s. to learn to despise his mother%s authority and affection0% said the lady. my dear rs. ) and tell you what you ought to do. and circumspection he will ever have. Well. let me warn you in good time against the error ) the fatal error. on many occasions. I don%t doubt. but you will treat him like a girl ) you%ll spoil his spirit. and wishful to strive against their natural corruptions.% %I perfectly agree with you. r.attempt to clear the stones from his path. $ecause you are clever in some things and well informed.% said rs.% I observed. %but you would not judge of a boy by yourself ) and. r. till he has strength to go alone. but half apprehending her drift. arkham here thinks his powers of conviction at least equal to r.ancy of him ) you will. and breaking their shins over every impediment that lies in their way. ) It is all very well to talk about noble resistance. (raham. there will still be plenty left to exercise all the agility. If I hear not him. with rather a bitter smile. %I know nothing about you ) I speak of those I do know ) and when I see the whole race of mankind @with a few rare exceptionsA stumbling and blundering along the path of life. I believe. let her keep him at home. unless I take care to prevent it/% %1ou are very complimentary to us all. ) for when I have done my utmost. but nothing can be further from my principles and practice than such criminal weakness as that. rs.% said my mother. and all about it. (raham. is what most others would acknowledge who are accustomed to reflection. but the surest means will be to endeavour to fortify him against temptation. ) and.% %I will lead him by the hand. you that maintain that a boy should not be shielded from evil. both from within and without. 'nd this.% %. but few incentives to what the world calls vice. glancing at me ) I suppose I was smiling at my mother%s unbounded confidence in that worthy gentleman ) % r.o occasion to trouble the vicar. (raham. but sent out to battle against it. rs. and slaving to indulge his follies and caprices. and trials of virtue. sinking into every pitfall. but teach him to walk firmly over them ) not insist upon leading him by the hand. steadiness. (od knows he will have temptations enough to assail him. and teach him to avoid the rest ) or walk firmly over them. ) he%ll set it before you as plain as the day. indeed.% %1es.

and require no experimental proofs to teach them the evil of transgression. 1ou would have us encourage our sons to prove all things by their own experience. exposed to all the action of the elements. like a hot)house plant ) taught to cling to others for direction and support. and listening in silent wonder to her incomprehensible discourse. I would not send a poor girl into the world. It must be either that you think she is essentially so vicious. looking up into her face. 2uch experience. serves but to rivet the roots. that they should know beforehand to refuse the evil and choose the good. and ignorant of the snares that beset her path. or so feeble)minded. will be like the storm to the oak. and been standing for some time beside his mother%s knee. till. ) whereas. but boldly to rush into them. while our daughters must not even profit by the experience of others. to him @to use a trite simileA. yet. then. and the slightest error. you would have her to be tenderly and delicately nurtured. tending it carefully night and day. and not even sheltered from the shock of the tempest. it must be that you think they are both weak and prone to err. is only the further developed ) % %:eaven forbid that I should think so0% I interrupted her at last. you could not expect it to become a hardy tree. unarmed against her foes. though it may scatter the leaves. and snap the smaller branches.= and glories in his experience.% %Well. at length. or over them. rs. $ut will you be so good as to inform me why you make this distinction/ Is it that you think she has no virtue/% %'ssuredly not.% said I. %Well. there is a natural tendency to goodness. being destitute of real virtue. and the greater her knowledge.ow I would have both so to benefit by the experience of others. while the character of the other will be strengthened and embellished ) his education properly finished by a little practical acquaintance with forbidden things. and the precepts of a higher authority. and guarded. which. the wider her liberty. in the nobler sex. into a useful and respected member of society ) I would rather that he died to)morrow0 ) rather a thousand times0% she earnestly repeated. will ruin the one. ) would you )/% %I beg your pardon. as he may ) to seek danger. but you affirm that virtue is only elicited by temptation. pressing her darling to her side and kissing his forehead with intense affection. guarded by a superior fortitude. the merest shadow of pollution. from the very knowledge of evil. ) and as for my son ) if I thought he would grow up to be what you call a man of the world ) one that has =seen life. (raham ) but you get on too fast.% %. like that which has grown up on the mountain)side. which. rather than shun it. .of life. and to harden and condense the fibres of the tree. :e had already left his new companion. deprived of self) respect and self)reliance. observing her rise. ) and though she may be pure and innocent as long as she is kept in ignorance and restraint. and feed his virtue by temptation. to teach her how to sin is at once to make her a sinner.% %(ranted. or anything connected therewith. the more it is exercised by trials and dangers. ) and you think that a woman cannot be too little exposed to temptation. and begin to take leave of my mother. ) I only say that it is better to arm and strengthen your hero. I have not yet said that a boy should be taught to rush into the snares of life. ) but would you use the same argument with regard to a girl/% %*ertainly not. the deeper will be her depravity. %Well0 you ladies must always have the last word. . nor would I watch and guard her. she lost the power or the will to watch and guard herself. than to disarm and enfeeble the foe. and shielding it from every breath of wind. even though he should so far profit by it as to sober down.o. I suppose. as much as possible. or too little acquainted with vice. ) and if you were to rear an oak sapling in a hothouse. ) or even wilfully to seek temptation for the sake of exercising his virtue by overcoming it. that she cannot withstand temptation.

was cheerful and chatty.e.%1ou may have as many words as you please. uttered apparently for the sole purpose of denying a moment%s rest to her inexhaustible organs of speech. to outdo them in swift and ceaseless motion. that is the way# you hear just as much of an argument as you please. I would rather be lectured by you than the vicar. %for when a lady does consent to listen to an argument against her own opinions. of course. and all the gentlemen to charm. on the Cth of . I was a little bit spoiled by my mother and sister. strung together with trivial questions and remarks. . you have not shaken hands with r. fell far below those I entertained of myself. illward was mighty in important dogmas and sententious jokes. &awrence. she was evidently prejudiced against me. Without knowing anything about my real disposition and principles. she slightly bowed.% replied she. r. ) only I can%t stay to hear them. and of the admiring rs. or it would not have vexed me so much. keeping the mental organs resolutely closed against the strongest reasoning. ) and r. pompous anecdotes and oracular discourses. &awrence. too. in spite of rs.% %(ood)morning. at the end of the discourse. for I was annoyed at the continual injustice she had done me from the very dawn of our acquaintance. to capture and subdue. as patiently as you could wish. with regard to either logician. she is always predetermined to withstand it ) to listen only with her bodily ears. Wilson was more brilliant than ever. ) as being the most attentive listeners. %you must bring your sister to see me some fine day. (raham%s refusal to grace it with her presence. had she been there. 2he had brought her knitting with her.evertheless. and frolic amongst us than there was without her.% %If you are anxious to say anything more on the subject. passed off very well. it is probable that. the sedate ary illward. or talking when they would be silent. and was about to withdraw. I gave it a spiteful squee. there would have been less cordiality. and the rest may be spoken to the wind. and seemed bent upon showing me that her opinions respecting me.% %. and deigning no further rejoinder. especially. and only faulty in being too anxious to make her guests happy. arkham. with childish impertinence. as usual. as she shook hands with !ose.ovember.o.% said my fair antagonist. I was naturally touchy. dealt out for the edification of the whole assembly in general. freedom.% replied I. ) % amma. to whatever you please to say. and some other ladies of my acquaintance. Indeed. the quiet !ichard Wilson. sitting opposite the bla. r. and the matter)of)fact !obert in particular. with a pitying smile. arkham0% 2he laughingly turned round and held out her hand. determined to be as provoking as herself. on every particular. as she could possibly manage to be. because I should have less remorse in telling you. y mother. with her budgets of fresh news and old scandal. for here were all the ladies to outshine. :er little arts to effect his subjugation were too subtle and impalpable to attract my observation. they bore it very well. I am persuaded. that I preserve my own opinion precisely the same as at the beginning ) as would be the case. arkham. CHAPTER IV +ur party. and it seemed as if her tongue had laid a wager with her fingers. and I%ll listen. ) and yet I was by no means a fop ) of that I am fully convinced. and oft)repeated observations. arrested her by exclaiming. as witty and seductive. rs. . but I thought there was a certain refined affectation of superiority. as graceful and elegant. full of activity and good)nature. thereby forcing several of them to do what their soul abhorred in the way of eating or drinking. whether you are or not. the polite r. :er daughter 3ane was. of course.% %1es. but her son. "erhaps. being all in their holiday fire.

r. coquettish without affectation. &awrence was gentlemanly and inoffensive to all. she certainly did not give much pleasure to the company. and ask myself if she too had an eye to the squire ) but never mind. and full of mirth and vivacity. &awrence that she had at least one brother more gentlemanly and refined than !obert. he would have been happy enough in his own quiet way. who sat over against her. ) and he was in the right of it too. . -ssentially of reserved habits. when wholly unaccompanied with . that negatived all her advantages. and actions with a mingled acuteness and asperity that made me wonder. ary illward was another mute. he had not the taste to prefer -li. as well as the best. and politics with us both. r. but his impertinence and folly served to make others laugh. although somewhat out of his element. and iss Wilson ) misguided man. y -li.a told me she had only come because her father insisted upon it. and after she was gone. or pressing her hand in the dance. 2o he talked common)place with my mother and !ose. with the various individuals of our party. I shall have to blush hereafter. if my mother could only have let him alone.a illward. but he affirmed that he saw no reason why he should not enjoy a crack with arkham and the old lady @my mother was not old. especially his hostess and her daughter.a was charming beyond description. +nce or twice she was provoked to laughter by the wit or the merriment of some favoured individual amongst us. ' spirit of candour and frankness. she had some acquaintance with him. then. I liked the man well enough. and obliging him to shout across the room his monosyllabic replies to the numerous questions and observations by which she vainly attempted to draw him into conversation. but in her mistaken kindness. seated or standing by her side. ) not so much tormented with cruel kindness as >ick Wilson. if they did not raise himself in their estimation. desirous to escape observation. in spite of the retiring habits of both. and discussed parish affairs with the vicar. who was most anxious to show r. 's he studied with her father. but silent and shy. 3ane%s younger brother. but willing enough to listen and observe# and. :owever that might be.hat worthy individual she had been equally solicitous to keep away.and an ungenial self)consciousness about her. but he was too cold. of all he had ever known. . and. apparently good)tempered. and self)contained. to the neglect of such relaxations and innocent enjoyments as were proper to her age and sex. I @judging by the resultsA was the companion most agreeable to his taste. where he had lived in solitary state since the death of his father. under the notion that he was too bashful to help himself. at the lady%s artifice and my sister%s penetration.o proceed. equally. !ichard Wilson. and but seldom quitting the secluded place of his birth. decided way of answering and refusing. !ose informed me that he never would have favoured us with his company but for the importunities of his sister 3ane. and shy. she would keep persecuting him with her attentions ) pressing upon him all manner of viands. because she had a certain short. 'nd finally @for I omit myselfA. words. <ergus was impertinent and absurd. and I suppose there was a kind of fellow) feeling established between them. he had neither the opportunity nor the inclination for forming many acquaintances. &awrence and I were on tolerably intimate terms. -li. reallyA. whispering in her ear. ) nor did she appear to derive much from it. and was supposed to be rather sullen than diffident. and bonny iss !ose and the parson. :er delight in having me near her. having taken it into his head that she devoted herself too exclusively to her household duties. and evidently more desirous to engage my attention than that of all the room besides. and polite to the vicar and the ladies. and then I observed she sought the eye of !ichard Wilson. to obtain my cordial sympathies. !ose was simple and natural as usual. !ose interpreted to me her various looks. however belied by saucy words and gestures. she had not. $ut I had better hold my tongue# if I boast of these things now. 2he seemed to me to be good)humoured enough on the whole. :alford. was plainly legible in her glowing face and heaving bosom. sat in a corner. farming matters with me.

and asked her to favour the company with a song.% said she. iss Wilson.ow . one piece after another. 2oon after the arrival of the guests. but wanted energy to overcome.% said r. :is heart was like a sensitive plant. :is excessive reserve upon all his own concerns was. all very neat and trim to look at. while he stood patiently by. &awrence was like a new garment. and then smacked his lips.coarseness. over the leaves for her. will you allow me/% r. and. and so smooth and fine in surface that you scruple to expose it to a single drop of rain. %I don%t take wine. &awrence. &awrence. %we don%t know what to make of her ) but I daresay you can tell us something about her. illward. in spite of your occasional crustiness. %you must ask iss Wilson demurred.% 2he bridled her long neck and smiled. or the lightest breath of wind. I always prefer your home)brewed to anything else. arkham0% said he. and music too. (raham. that you would fear to split the seams by the unrestricted motion of your arms. $ut we had not done with rs. for she is your tenant. and suffered him to lead her to the instrument. but precious little feeling. I thought he looked unnecessarily confused at being so appealed %I. and would be glad to see them at any time. whom. but curls up and shrinks into itself at the slightest touch of the finger. and explained to the illwards and Wilsons the reasons she had given for neglecting to return their calls. and turning over the leaves of her book with the other. that opens for a moment in the sunshine. It was all very fine in its way. drew a long .here was plenty of skill and execution. skilfully directed from the jug to the tumbler. my mother rang the bell.% added she. you know. and turn iss Wilson# she outshines us all in singing. and a peculiar diffidence.% said <ergus. but I am the last person you should apply to for information respecting rs. leaning one hand on the back of her chair. &awrence. arkham. pouring out a glass of the same in a long stream. %. our intimacy was rather a mutual predilection than a deep and solid friendship. 'nd. hoping they would excuse her. r. %if you%ll undertake to stand by her. so as to produce much foam without spilling a drop. without being bothered with the fear of spoiling it. but I cannot say that it moved me very deeply. and which he may use as he pleases. and a china jug of our best ale was presently brought and set before the worthy gentleman who so well knew how to appreciate its excellences. that he was sensible of. . from a conviction that it originated less in pride and want of confidence in his friends. he admired in others. :alford. but he could not acquire it himself.% 'll eyes were turned to to. %2he%ll sing readily enough. my mother mentioned rs.% :e then immediately turned to !ose. ) and she said she knew you a little. indeed. than in a certain morbid feeling of delicacy. r. certainly. where she played and sang.:I2 is the thing0% cried he.% <lattered at this compliment. unimpeachable in texture. as she was sure she did not mean to be uncivil. ) %$ut she is a very singular lady. such as has since arisen between myself and you. "erhaps he was as much charmed with her performance as she was.% %I shall be most happy to do so. (raham yet. %you are mistaken ) I don%t ) that is ) I have seen her.o. he took a deep draught. having surveyed it for a moment opposite the candle. upon the whole. (raham. in her very best style. or a tune on the piano. but so tight in the elbows. rs. upon the introduction of that beverage. ) whereas r. %. I can liken to nothing so well as an old coat. rs. but easy and loose ) that has conformed itself to the shape of the wearer. regretted she was not there to meet them. provoking and chilly enough. but I forgave it. %I%ll take a little of your home) brewed ale.

with your home)brewed ale. while we%re about it. who affirmed that wine sat heavy on her stomach.% arkham0% said he. but it is despising the gifts of "rovidence. rs. for here you see the child is delivered at once from temptation. sir/ :ave I not proven to you how wrong it is ) how contrary to 2cripture and to reason. Wilson vouchsafed to rest her tongue for a moment. instead of . would be likely to have a strong curiosity to taste. with more than common solemnity ) %criminal.breath.ot only is it making a fool of the boy. y mother heard him with profoundest reverence. so strictly forbidden to himself ) which curiosity would generally be gratified on the first convenient opportunity. as well as the cheese and the butter ) I like to have things well done.ow it was generally believed that r. &awrence%s father had shortened his days by intemperance. %. without having suffered from their effects. and abstinence another. r. with some persons. illward. while she complacently sipped her gin)and)water. concluding with. I don%t pretend to be a judge of such matters. carelessly playing with his half)empty wine) glass. nothing like this. as you describe it. I always look after the brewing myself. but temperance. %these things are all blessings and mercies. and is thoroughly disgusted with them. he has no secret curiosity. r. sir. and explained at large the folly and impiety of such a proceeding. &awrence sat with his elbow on the table. if we only knew how to make use of them. in such a case. when at length that gentleman paused in his discourse. he is as well acquainted with the tempting liquors as he ever wishes to be. but it seems to me. and if abstinence be an evil @which some have doubtedA. %I always maintain that there%s nothing to compare %I%m sure I%m glad you like it. that this plan of rs.% %$ut I have heard that. Wilson. (raham%s. 1ou shall just hear now what she told us the other day ) I told her I%d tell you. and listen in silence. for instance ) some precautions are advisable/% @.% suggested he. %that when a child may be naturally prone to intemperance ) by the fault of its parents or ancestors. temperance ) that is. and teaching him to trample them under his feet. arkham. with a 3ove)like nod. rs.% 'nd my mother favoured the company with a particular account of that lady%s mistaken ideas and conduct regarding the matter in hand. and the restraint once broken. %$ut don%t you think.% %$ut rs. and covertly smiling to himself.% %Duite right. it may be. and whose son !obert was at that moment helping himself to a pretty stiff glass of the same. 2ome parents have entirely prohibited their children from tasting intoxicating liquors. children are naturally prone to hanker after forbidden things.ow. no one will deny that excess is a greater. but a parent%s authority cannot last for ever. sir. arkham0% %$ut then. my mother looking on with the greatest satisfaction. r. you don%t think it wrong to take a little wine now and then ) or a little spirits either0% said my mother.% %'nd is that right. and refilled his glass. and even rs. don%t you think it is wrong/% %Wrong0% repeated the vicar. %. and try the effect of what has been so lauded and enjoyed by others. is not without its advantages.% :e then entered more fully into the question. extraordinary as it may be. serious consequences might ensue. illward. (raham doesn%t think so.A %2ome precautions. %$y no means0% replied the oracle. no hankering desire. I should say ) criminal0 . as she handed a smoking tumbler of gin)and)water to rs. moderation ) is almost impossible. is one thing. to teach a child to look with contempt and disgust upon the blessings of "rovidence. and a child.

than I was doomed to a very serious remonstrance. and shortly after rose and sauntered up to iss Wilson. I scarcely noticed it at the time.. %:igh time. we carried it on to a pretty late hour. it%s time to be going now. I was just about to whirl -li. smiling. %I have met her once or twice.% replied r.% said she. I don%t allow that0 *ome.he consequence was. I hope. when ) but I must not anticipate. &awrence. pushing the bottle towards him. you will allow that most of us had better abstain from it. which unpleasantly checked the galloping course of my spirits. remember0 .to use them aright/% %1ou may consider laudanum a blessing of "rovidence.o. and several country dances. With a single set of quadrilles. but afterwards I was led to recall this and other trifling facts. I fear I must plead guilty to snatching a kiss behind her father%s back. %and yet. What you see in her I don%t know. too sharp.% :e made no reply. there was my mother close beside me. . nor goodness. and made a disagreeable close to the evening. and stick to them through thick and thin. r. where. leant back towards me ) I was seated a trifle behind. and pushing his chair a little away from the table. to my remembrance.% added he. $ut alas0 in turning round. and at length. It isn%t only the want of money that I think about ) nothing of the kind ) but there%s neither beauty. I should fancy. and so did !ichard Wilson. even in moderation. and even offered to be his partner. but by no means amiable ) a woman liable to take strong prejudices.% %'nd take another. %I wish you wouldn%t do so0 1ou know how deeply I have your advantage at heart. nor cleverness. 2he is handsome ) or rather I should say distinguished and interesting ) in her appearance. illward interposed with#) %. accompanied by &awrence and 3ane Wilson. but. If you knew your own value. as much repelled by me. and <ergus and !ose. % y dear (ilbert.% said my mother. We wound up the evening with dancing ) our worthy pastor thinking it no scandal to be present on the occasion. as attracted by her. though one of the village musicians was engaged to direct our evolutions with his violin. %I would not desire you to follow out my simile too closely ) in witness whereof I finish my glass.e you above everything else in the world. though my mother earnestly entreated him to do so.a illward ) and carelessly asked me if I knew rs. &awrence. $ut ary illward obstinately refused to join us. having called upon our musician to strike up a walt. but looked down and bit his lip.a round in that delightful dance. too bitter for my taste. nor anything else that%s desirable. however. on the sofa beside -li. >o wait awhile and see0 If you bind yourself to her. I fancy. how I love you and pri. as I do. sir.a into the dimly)lighted passage. We managed very well without them. :e politely declined. no. (raham. under pretence of helping her on with her shawl.% %+h. no.a. my girl ) high time0 oderation in all things. when r. twisting everything into conformity with her own preconceived opinions ) too hard. you%ll repent it all your lifetime when you look round and see how . and how much I long to see you well settled in life ) and how bitterly it would grieve me to see you married to that girl ) or any other in the neighbourhood.hat%s the plan ) =&et your moderation be known unto all men0=% $ut in revenge I followed -li. that no sooner were the guests departed. papa0% pleaded -li. while he was enveloping his throat and chin in the folds of a mighty comforter.% I replied. %What do you think of her/% %I cannot say that I like her much. of a similar nature. you wouldn%t dream of it.

many better there are. %I am not so beset with visitors but that I can readily spare a few minutes to the few that do favour me with their company. faithfully drawn and coloured. you%ll break my heart ) so there%s an end of it. yielding at length to the urgent importunities of !ose. as seen at early morning from the field below. for I%ll promise never ) that is.% said rs.o our surprise.% observed I# %I must beg you to go on with it. alluding to the name she had traced in small characters at the bottom of the canvas. paints. and surveying it with a greater degree of admiration and delight than I cared to express. mother. instead of Wildfell :all. 1ou would be wronging the girl. I lighted my candle. you will. and went to bed. palette. and might possibly recognise the style in spite of the . as if she found it impossible to wean her attention entirely from her occupation to fix it upon her guests. let that kiss efface the one I gave -li. but now and then glancing at the picture upon it while she conversed. that.% 'nd disengaging a couple of chairs from the artistical lumber that usurped them.% %+h. (ilbert. )shire/% I asked. bottles of oil and varnish. but I assure you she is as artful a little hussy as anybody need wish to see. don%t cry about it. I%ll promise to think twice before I take any important step you seriously disapprove of. I tell you. &eaning against the wall were several sketches in various stages of progression. I accompanied her in a visit to Wildfell :all. brushes. %I see your heart is in your work. Indeed. and you%ll got entangled in her snares before you know where you are. and it is rather too cold to show you into a place with an empty grate.% %Well. It was a view of Wildfell :all.ake my word for it. considerably quenched in spirit. for if you suffer our presence to interrupt you. I should think. $ut immediately I was sensible of having committed an act of impertinence in so doing. do be quiet0 ) I hate to be lectured0 ) I%m not going to marry yet. no0% replied she. we shall be constrained to regard ourselves as unwelcome intruders. with a kind of desperate frankness. and resumed her place beside the easel ) not facing it exactly. she bid us be seated. *umberland. if she were what she ought to be.a.% %Well. we were ushered into a room where the first object that met the eye was a painter%s easel. . don%t abuse her any more. Ec. but ) dear me0 mayn%t I enjoy myself at all/% %1es. for she coloured and hesitated. with a table beside it covered with rolls of canvas. you shouldn%t do such things.% %1ou have almost completed your painting. from whom I desire my present abode to be concealed. throwing her brush on to the table. and set your mind at rest. my dear boy. %there is no fire in the sitting)room to)day. but not in that way. (raham. mother. and as they might see the picture. and giving it an occasional touch with her brush. %I must make you welcome to my studio. with a few red streaks on the hori. %' few more touches in the foreground will finish it.% 2o saying. CHAPTER V It was about the close of the month. . rising in dark relief against a sky of clear silvery blue. (raham. %there. as if startled into politeness. and a few finished paintings ) mostly of landscapes and figures. she replied#) %$ecause I have friends ) acquaintances at least ) in the world. for the tears were gushing from her eyes.% said I.% said I. and very elegantly and artistically handled. 'nd if you marry her. but after a moment%s pause. rs.on. approaching to observe it more closely. $ut why have you called it <ernley anor.

for there was far more careful minuteness of detail.false initials I have put in the corner. and a dull beclouded sky above. I may trouble you. with glimpses of dark low hills and autumnal fields behind it. if they should attempt to trace me out by it. and fields to be traversed in order to reach it. It was a little child. while I amused myself with looking at the pictures. the goings straight on.% whispered !ose. and shut the door behind her. I remarked a pretty sketch of &inden)hope from the top of the hill. perhaps. and then again on a dark cloudy evening. I have been told that you have a fine view of the sea somewhere in the neighbourhood. %I took the old hall once on a moonlight night. I take the precaution to give a false name to the place also.% %. in order to put them on a wrong scent. %I don%t know what to make of her at all. and saying. !ose and I looked at each other. and turnings to the right and the left.hen you don%t intend to keep the picture/% said I. smiling through a shock of light brown curls.% In looking round upon the other pieces. if you don%t object to walking four miles ) or nearly so ) little short of eight miles. Is it true/ ) and is it within walking distance/% %1es. and was entering upon an explanation of the various roads. %-xcuse me one was one in an obscure corner that I had not before observed. and sends us the money.% said 'rthur.% hurried from the room. and then. stop0 don%t tell me now# I shall forget every word of your directions before I require them. bore sufficient resemblance to those of the young gentleman before me to proclaim it a portrait of 'rthur (raham in his early infancy. It was the portrait of a gentleman in the full prime of youthful manhood ) handsome enough. and a simple but striking little picture of a child brooding. . it was evidently some years before. and not badly executed. I cannot afford to paint for my own amusement. I ventured to take that up too. *urious to see what had startled her so. . %It%s mamma%s friend. ) %+h. 't present we have the winter before us. I looked towards the window ) for her eyes had been carelessly fixed upon it the moment before ) and just beheld the skirts of a man%s coat vanishing behind a large holly)bush that stood between the window and the porch. with a suppressed exclamation. shaken over the forehead as it bent above its treasure.% %In what direction does it lie/% I described the situation as well as I could. In taking this up to bring it to the light. seated on the grass with its lap full of flowers. and less of that freshness of . and I suppose I must take it again on a snowy winter%s day. %and somebody sells them for her there. started up from her seat. with looks of silent but deep and sorrowful regret. I discovered another behind it.o. another view of the old hall basking in the sunny ha. lanes. for I really have nothing else to paint. and ) % 2he suddenly paused. with its face to the wall.he child looked at her in grave surprise. but if done by the same hand as the others. I shall not think about going till next spring.% observed the fair artist.% % amma sends all her pictures to &ondon.% said 'rthur. %1ou see there is a sad dearth of subjects. over a handful of withered flowers. when she checked me with. fatiguing road.he tiny features and large blue eyes. %.e of a quiet summer afternoon. there and back ) and over a somewhat rough. . anxious to say anything to change the subject. 2he straightway began to talk to him on indifferent matters.

r. I had not had the portrait in my hands two minutes before the fair artist returned. trespassed too much upon the forehead. and by no means a disagreeable smile. (raham presented her hand to me. when I caught sight of her in my solitary walks or rides. she had sat a long time. surrounding the old hall. and the only information I derived from it was. I surveyed it with considerable interest. that she was seriously annoyed. but when she was out on the hills with her son.% replied she. at once. (raham. leaving her to talk to !ose for a minute or two. and parted with a mutual desire to meet again. nor she mine. not a spiteful pressure. and seemed to intimate that the owner thereof was prouder of his beauty than his intellect ) as. he had reason to be.ed her hand with a cordial. $ut I was in no humour for jesting. rs.% When a lady condescends to apologise.evertheless. ) %&et not the sun go down upon your wrath. to advance. $ut. in apology for her abrupt departure# %I told him to wait. and moved towards the door. saying. purpose)like walk. nobody was at home but iss illward. they had found a good deal to say to each other. and this time I squee. the lips ) a little too voluptuously full ) seemed ready to break into a smile. (raham%s house. coolly bowed to the lady. arkham. and then turned to me and laughed. sulkily resigning the picture into her hands.% %I fear it will be considered an act of impertinence. telling my sister it was time to go. for I rather liked to see rs. and then. I generally contrived to meet or overtake her. unfortunately. 's for their talk. clustering in abundant. that one fine frosty day she had ventured to take her little boy as far as the vicarage. her son gambolling about her. and. .colouring and freedom of handling that delighted and surprised me in them. $ut ary liked children. and quickly restoring it to the dark corner. by all accounts. by her flushed cheek and kindling eye. attempting to cover the tartness of her rebuke with a smile. and yet he looked no fool. and I decidedly liked to talk to her little . placed the other against it as before. I meanA. . shook hands with the little gentleman. and. I paid but little attention to that @when it related to the fair hermit. but still the ladies continued to talk about her. but may I ask )% %It is an act of very great impertinence. I%m sorry I offended you by my abruptness. %I was only going to ask if you had painted it yourself. I carelessly turned to the window. and fond mammas like those who can duly appreciate their treasures. whether taking a long.he bright blue eyes regarded the spectator with a kind of lurking drollery ) you almost expected to see them wink.% said I. and therefore I beg you will ask nothing about it. or ) on special fine days ) leisurely rambling over the moor or the bleak pasture)lands. there is no keeping one%s anger. on any of these occasions. though slowly. with its face to the wall. with a soft voice.% said she. of course. wavy curls.% said %to presume to look at a picture that the artist has turned to the wall. having bid adieu to !ose. sir. and still our acquaintance continued. . while the bright chestnut hair. perhaps. herself with a book in her hand. a successful was a certain individuality in the features and expression that stamped it. or while following my agricultural pursuits. so we parted good friends for once. CHAPTER VI >uring the next four months I did not enter rs. $ut sometimes I saw her myself. nevertheless. and to talk to her. for your curiosity will not be gratified. %+nly some one come about the pictures. but I could see. the warmly)tinted cheeks were embellished with a luxuriant growth of reddish whiskers. and that. not only when she came to church. for without a grain of ceremony she took it from me. and stood looking out upon the desolate garden.

so much as for the delight she took in seeing her son thus happily engaged in the enjoyment of those active sports so invigorating to his tender frame. like the doctors. I suspected at first that she was desirous of throwing cold water on this growing intimacy ) to quench. 'las.a%s. since my mother so strongly objects to it. for she was ever on the watch. I may be permitted. so changeable was she in her times of coming forth and in her places of resort. . and if the star of her divinity be bright enough to dim the lustre of -li. and that. compared with the more mature and earnest rs. designedly or otherwise. and even well)intentioned. I think. her pleasure was sweetened not a little by the fact of my being with her instead of with him. and fairly entered into conversation with me. small thanks to her for that same.ow. to cure a greater evil by a less. that I felt half inclined to think she took as much pains to avoid my company as I to seek hers. I shall have less difficulty in emancipating my affections from her soft yet unrelenting sway. between myself and my dog. If I happened to be on horseback he was sure to get a canter or a gallop. and even welcomed my coming with a smile. but I found her rather frivolous. but this was too disagreeable a supposition to be entertained a moment after it could conveniently be dismissed. and I ought not to delude the girl with the idea that I intended to do so. when once the ice of his shyness was fairly broken. whom. during twenty minutes% stroll along the moor. for human constancy0 %:owever. though rs. he would shout his welcome from afar. (raham might be equally objectionable. I believe. and we soon became excellent friends ) how much to the gratification of his mamma I cannot undertake to say.companion.a. and no one else. but I scarcely can think it. while I walked by her side ) not. in arch. and even a little insipid.% thought I. clear afternoon. +ne calm. however. and.he surprise was not altogether so agreeable as it ought to have been. and on the way @morallyA started to find myself thinking that. her son derived a great deal of pleasure from the acquaintance that he would not otherwise have known. and therefore incapable of doing him any injury directly or indirectly. or. yet so seldom exercised for want of playmates suited to his years# and. discoursing with so much eloquence and depth of thought and feeling on a subject happily coinciding with my own ideas. intelligent. I found to be a very amiable. be better to spend one%s days with such a woman than with -li. perhaps. and one bright <ebruary morning. it would. and entertaining little fellow.a illward. (raham. she ceased to object. so transient were the occasional glimpses I was able to obtain. for I shall not fall seriously in love with the young widow. after all. but his mother would always follow and trudge beside him ) not so much. he was treated to a steady ride upon that. to ensure his safe conduct. that I went home enchanted. at length. . in spite of her prejudice against me. %I ought not to marry -li. and then I @figurativelyA blushed for my inconstancy. I fear. . but so frequently was I baulked in my expectations of another interview. +n entering the parlour I found -li. as it were. What pleased her best of all was to see him romping and racing with 2ancho. the kindling flame of our friendship ) but discovering. if this mood continue. $ut sometimes. so much the better. which served his turn almost as well. she really had some little gratification in conversing with me.% 'nd thereafter I seldom suffered a fine day to pass without paying a visit to Wildfell about the time my new acquaintance usually left her hermitage. and run to meet me fifty yards from his mother%s side. if there was one of the draught horses within an available distance. for love of my company @though I sometimes deluded myself with that ideaA. that I was perfectly harmless. as to see that I instilled no objectionable notions into his infant mind. I believe. and never would allow him to be taken out of her sight. We chatted together a long time. 's for 'rthur. she laid aside her usual asperity and reserve. perhaps.a there with !ose. and looking so beautiful withal. as I was superintending the rolling of the meadow)land. nor she with me ) that%s certain ) but if I find a little pleasure in her society I may surely be allowed to seek it.

their various ramifications. before us. no. %What on. while 'rthur was putting on the time with constructing dams and breakwaters in the shallow. and so rare an opportunity was not to be neglected. and I was beginning to be very happy. and turned towards me while she spoke. %. 'rthur. she said. %>o you not find it a desolate place to live in/% said I. who. the stones preserved him from any serious wetting. %+n winter evenings. ' faint. she seemed rather displeased at my keeping him so long. on coming within sight of the grim old hall. and I am sitting there alone. It seemed hard to leave her to such a lonely. he looked the very incarnation of quiet. pointing to where the strong black mare was pulling the roller.% said I. indeed. but when I dismounted the gallant horseman. and the gibbous moon was visibly brightening in the pale grey sky. my boy/% %I think there%s a horse in that field. I looked up at it. leaving both meadow and hedge. and then suddenly came to a pause. and solemnly proceeding up and down the wide. and make false strokes. and been. I saw rs. absorbed in the exercise of her favourite art. (raham was studying the distinctive characters of the different varieties of trees in their winter nakedness. comfortless home. stony stream. however. %I do. .o. probably. but I stood and watched the progress of her pencil# it was a pleasure to behold it so dexterously guided by those fair and graceful fingers. arkham.% said the child. 2he became more sociable. and told me that her sketch did not profit by my superintendence. -nthroned upon his monstrous steed. no books or occupations can represss the dismal thoughts and apprehensions that come crowding in ) but it is folly r. was soon completed. cold eve% was fast %declining. though delicate touch. but I was not going to leave her yet# I accompanied her half)way up the hill. and would have bid me good)evening. cavernous gulfs. to tremble slightly.hen. while their owner laughingly raised her face to mine. gleeful satisfaction and delight. as if expecting I should go no further. for %the clear. that the conversation would end here. scoured at full gallop the intervening space.% the sun had set. for some minutes impatiently waiting his return. with a sketch)book in her hand. . happily. and copying. she stood still. and restored him to his mother. when 'rthur is in bed. red light was gleaming from the lower windows of one wing. 2he had shut up her sketch)book. 2he did not talk much. and pounced upon him with an impetuous mirth that precipitated the child almost into the middle of the beck. with a spirited. but all the other windows were in darkness. so. rs. and when she looked at his eager face she smiled and let him go. %I%ll talk to 'rthur till you%ve done. if mamma will let me.and the repairing of a hedge in the valley. I was rather in want of amusement. 2ilent and grim it frowned.% objected his mother. I quickly repaired to the spot. and I should now take leave and depart ) as. %. It was the first time she had even allowed me to take him so much as half a field%s length from her side. entirely destitute of gla. It was now high time to go home.% replied she. immediately upon perceiving his young friend. steep field. (raham down by the brook. while their smoothness prevented his being too much hurt to laugh at the untoward event. but not before or framework. but a feeling almost of compassion riveted me to the spot. but.he rolling. after a moment of silent contemplation.% %I should like to have a ride. they began to hesitate. $ut I promised to bring him safe back after a turn or two up and down the meadow.% replied he. sometimes. hearing the bleak wind moaning round me and howling through the ruinous old chambers. but. it was time to do. and many exhibited their black. $ut ere long their dexterity became impaired. it%s too far.

for he had borne enough# another word on the subject would have been like the last atom that breaks the illward. I cannot be too thankful for such an asylum. of course. was followed by a tittering laugh. he added.% he might have said.% said I.% . then. nothing0% replied he. %3ealous0 no. I thought you might be jealous. %+nly I thought you disliked her. made some remark upon the beauty of the evening.o. (raham/% Instead of his being deeply offended at this.hen I think you%d better let them alone.% %. %are you in love with rs.% %1ou thought wrong. but answered ) %.% %+h0% :e looked round for something else to talk about.% he quietly added. coming up the rugged lane that crossed over the hill)top. as if spoken rather to herself than to me. while it is left me. mayn%t a man change his mind on further acquaintance/% %1es. %2uppose I did. and played with the mane again. or something else. and glancing up at the moon. and then made another attempt to turn the conversation.hen you have changed your mind/% %I can%t say that I have exactly. %.% :e looked contemplatively at his horse%s mane. I think I hold the same opinion respecting her as before ) but slightly ameliorated. ha.% :e laughed again. %1es. as I more than half expected he give way to such weakness.hen you had better let her alone. on his pretty grey pony. &awrence. . %Was that rs. I had not proceeded many steps on my way homewards when I perceived r.o. %Well0 what then/% %+h. at the audacious question. and the changes of my opinion concerning her. and fixing his shy. (raham you were speaking to just now/% said he.% returned he.e.a %. but he only looked silly and said nothing for the space of half a minute. as if he had some serious cause of dissatisfaction with it. I went a little out of my way to speak to him. for we had not met for some time. as being irrelevant to the subject. nicely reducing an entanglement in the pony%s redundant hoary mane.% %:umph0 I thought so. after the first few words of greeting had passed between us.% %2he won%t let me alone. %&awrence. I am not going to marry either one or the other ) that I know of ) % . calmly looking him in the face. I think not.hen suddenly turning to me. which I did not answer. I know. $ut I thought you were going to marry -li. If !achel is satisfied with such a life.el eyes upon me with a steady penetrating ga. %What makes you dream of such a thing/% %<rom the interest you take in the progress of my acquaintance with the lady. as if he was highly amused at the idea. .% %'re you going to marry 3ane Wilson/% :e coloured. the first start of surprise. 2he then bid me good)evening and withdrew.he closing sentence was uttered in an under)tone. %I in love with her0% repeated he. and this time I let it pass. curling his classic lip with a slightly sarcastic smile. why should not I/ ) Indeed.

mamma winks and nods at me to abstain from it. and don%t put so much pepper in. back. !ose. %Well0 ) if it had been me now. for it was far too good for him. always did justice to my good dinners. be she ever so charming. they%ll not like it. :e always said I was a good wife. (ilbert will like it for his supper. obstinate woman. but my mother had kindly kept the teapot and muffin warm upon the hobs.a illward. = ind you put plenty of currants in the cake. It%s always so ) if there%s anything particularly nice at table. dear father was as good a husband as ever lived. I was too late for tea. and keep up a good fire. and reboil the kettle. in all household matters. careless of everything but her own immediate pleasure and advantage. I daresay the boys%ll be hungry. =>on%t eat so much of that. what%s proper to be done. and did my duty. put away your things.% %It will do me good. he would have to put up with such as there was. or some misguided. and hardly ever spoiled my . which offices were performed with great commotion. and he always did his ) bless him0 ) he was steady and punctual. it%s =*ome. self) conceited girl like -li. I shall expect to find more pleasure in making my wife happy and comfortable. don%t put so many spices in the pudding. =1ou know. my dear. I%m sure your poor. <ergus liked plenty. mother. then. we have only two things to consider. .= If I say. readily admitted my excuses. till you%re married. (ilbert. she%ll take good care to let me know the extent of it. and when I marry. when you%ve got some trifling. and bade !ose put some fresh into the pot. for us. and let%s have the room nice and tidy against they come in. mamma.% said my mother. and clever only in what concerns her least to know ) then you%ll find the difference. (ilbert likes a cheerful fire. and having all my wants anticipated or immediately supplied. we must bear one another%s burdens. I don%t. and I should receive all your kindness as a matter of course. =Well. $ut for you I might sink into the grossest condition of self)indulgence and carelessness about the wants of others.= In the kitchen ) = ake that pie a large one. In the parlour.% %Well. than in being made so by her# I would rather give than receive. and certain remarkable comments.=% %'nd very good doctrine too. but it%s your business to please yourself.% said I. I have no doubt she%ll take care of herself. and. (raham. 1ou%ll do your business. I should have had no tea at all ) if it had been <ergus.camel%s.hen. (ilbert likes it plain. I was not sent into the world merely to exercise the good capacities and good feelings of others ) was I/ ) but to exert my own towards them. and never know how much I owe you. she whispers. and whenever she does make a sacrifice or perform a remarkable act of devotedness. %but if you would really study my pleasure. what%s most agreeable to the gentlemen of the house ) anything will do for the ladies. if she%s worthy of you. and then comes the trial.% %Fery convenient doctrine.= ) I%m nothing at all.% %. !ose. ignorant of her principal duties. and hers to please you. !ose. and if I don%t attend to that. It%s mere boy%s talk that0 1ou%ll soon tire of petting and humouring your wife.% %+h0 that%s all nonsense. she poured the remainder into the slop)basin. from the mere habit of being constantly cared for myself. =!ose. even. and when I complained of the flavour of the overdrawn tea. though she scolded me a little. and she. I should as soon have expected him to fly.hen you must fall each into your proper place.% %'h0 and you never will know. and been told to be thankful. !ose. at all events. secondly. and. %(ilbert thinks so. like rs. mother. ) if !ose did not enlighten me now and then. while left in total ignorance of what is done for me. seldom found fault without a reason. I%m sure= ) or. and after the first six months or so were over. but you ) we can%t do too much for you.= I%m told I ought not to think of myself.= ) or. you must consider your own comfort and convenience a little more than you do ) as for !ose. I%m sure. first. as to put himself out of his way to pleasure me. will do hers.

%the more the merrier ) and I%m sure we shall want all the cheerfulness we can carry with us to that great. and its dismal old furniture ) unless she shows us into her studio again. for the last fall of snow was only just wasted away. to be sure0% cried !ose. but obscurely lighted by the old)fashioned windows. calm civility. . 2he swore she would not. I do not think rs. 2eating myself near the window. and I could endure my wretched ignorance no longer ) come what would. (o back to your fields and your cattle. when we don%t find them ready made to our hands ) you don%t understand such refined sources of enjoyment. for I would accompany the ladies. leaving yet a thin ridge. and does your happy wife exact no more/ CHAPTER VII . disregarding the latter half of the speech. and he and I and 2ancho amused ourselves very pleasantly . and her little boy on the other. as fond as a pair of lovers ) and now you%ve taken her from me. a little back from the circle. you%re not fit to associate with ladies and gentlemen like us. from a small volume that lay in her lap.% Is it so. and every heavenly thing ) I was out on the hill)side. I could only observe the picture during the few brief seconds that !achel held the door for our admittance.he lady was seated in a stiff. and we%ve come hooked all the way. peeping into their private corners. wavy curls that fell on his ivory neck. and hope. <ergus. and the meagre old maid)servant. when. a tolerably spacious and lofty room. (raham.a. I called 'rthur to me. and you want to deprive me of my walk and my visit besides. gloomy room. the ceiling. but I did not talk much to her. high)backed arm)chair. enjoying these delights. and love. I must be satisfied. the young primroses were peeping from among their moist. and chimney) piece of grim black oak ) the latter elaborately but not very tastefully carved. and an elderly cabinet piano on the other. while she rested her hand on his shoulder. so I ran to the vicarage and fetched her.% %*an%t you both go/% suggested -li. dark foliage. panels. 1ou had all had a peep at this wonderful stranger but me. %It%s the ladies that are accompanying me.a illward. with its narrow latticed windows. and abstractedly played with the long.a would go too. but beside them already. %I beg your pardon0% exclaimed he. who stood leaning his elbow on her knee. you lubberly fellow. and reading to her. and looking after the well)being of my young lambs and their mothers. and. and introduce me to her at once. who readily accepted it in lieu of my brother%s. but of course their position was immediately changed on our entrance. on glancing round me. stocked with a motley assemblage of books. . that opened the door. ushered us into an apartment such as !ose had described to me as the scene of her first introduction to rs. being told they were going to Wildfell :all.% 2o we went all in a body. %1es. here and there. containing a desk and a work)basket on one side of her. :alford/ Is that the extent of your domestic virtues.hey were -li. dark. and picking holes in their coats. I beheld three persons ascending from the vale below. lingering on the fresh green grass beneath the hedges. ) with tables and chairs to match. with a small round table. unless iss -li. told the latter he might go back.ot many days after this. .cookery by delay ) and that%s as much as any woman can expect of any man. so I begged !ose to go with me to the :all. and !ose. not I them. both. (raham was particularly delighted to see us# there was something indescribably chilly in her quiet.a.hey struck me as forming a pleasing contrast to all the surrounding objects. and the lark above was singing of summer. and scenting out their secrets. I declared myself willing to go with them. so I crossed the field to meet them. with wonderful fluency. and offering my arm to -li. on a mild sunny morning ) rather soft under foot. an old bookcase on one side of the fire)place. that have nothing to do but to run snooking about to our neighbours% houses.

or questions. and some of the south. but if I have a few friends. indeed. r. %. and I like to be quiet. now interrupting the conversation. ama. while the two young ladies baited his mother with small talk. and never see so much as an old woman carrying her eggs to market. 1ou see I have effected some little improvement already. . indeed. now whistling sotto voce to himself a snatch of a favourite air.a. is a yellow crocus just opening in the sunshine. and let you alone. <ergus.% replied she.% continued she. rs.en fresh gowns and bonnets a day ) not to speak of the faces within. that we are quite sick of that game. <ergus. the unoccupied apartments. I tell you. and previous residence. I will make you welcome. If you couldn%t afford to occupy the whole house. in a fever of apprehension and wrath.together.% . and they are very useful for my little boy to run about in on rainy days when he can%t go out. is a bed of young vegetables in that corner. I%m an -nglishwoman ) and I don%t see why any one should doubt it ) and I was born in the country. it has many advantages over a cottage ) in the first place. ) %It. leaning back in his chair. 't one time it was. and have it mended up. and then there is the garden for him to play in. %'nd. some say ) % %Well. or filling up a pause @as the case might beA with some most impertinent question or remark.he questions you are requested to solve are these#) <irst. some a native of the north country.% %$ut then how can you bear such a situation ) your nearest neighbours two miles distant. a question that you can readily decide for us. Well. as we came along. and staring now up at the ceiling. extraction. why couldn%t you take a neat little cottage/% %"erhaps I was too proud. in the second place. how you could choose such a dilapidated. I dislike an extensive acquaintance.% said he again. %perhaps I took a particular fancy for this romantic. (raham. if you choose to enter my house as a friend. r. five minutes after. have known each other so long.herefore. may serve as lumber)rooms. we often hold discussions about you. for some of us have nothing better to do than to talk about our neighbours% concerns.o one can be happy in eternal solitude. for I am not disposed to answer any more questions at present. %I won%t. 2he can%t put on life unless she sees half a do. r. I must confess. and <ergus sat opposite with his legs crossed and his hands in his breeches)pockets. if I have anything to put in them. I%ll tell you. if not. old)fashioned place ) but. turning to the window. 2ome will have it that you are a foreigner. you see. %we were disputing.o. smiling. rs. which I don%t pay for. . and here are some snowdrops and primroses already in bloom ) and there.% %.% %+h0 as good as to say you wish we would all of us mind our own business. I would rather you kept away. as it mainly regarded yourself ) and. and nobody looking in or passing by/ !ose would go stark mad in such a place. rickety old place as this to live in.% %I am not sure the loneliness of the place was not one of its chief me. and some an -nglishwoman. but you might sit watching at these windows all day long. . the question. you are requested to solve ) % %:old your tongue. now straight forward at his hostess @in a manner that made me strongly inclined to kick him out of the roomA. and talked each other over so often. and in the country I have chiefly passed my life. I take no pleasure in watching people pass the windows. concerning your birth. <ergus0% cried !ose. <ergus. the indigenous plants of the soil.% 2he then turned and addressed some observation to !ose or -li. the rooms are larger and more airy. so that a stranger coming amongst us makes an invaluable addition to our exhausted sources of amusement. and now I hope you are satisfied. and for me to work in. and we. of course I am glad to see them occasionally. neither in the extreme north nor south of our happy isle. (raham.

% I was about to comply with her request. and. too far for you. and every objection was overruled. along the hard. but !ose would not suffer me to proceed. though I could scarcely tell you why.a was not beside me. rs. while all his four friends. in very desperation. and. I have exhausted every other subject for painting. we rose. fresh air. I had solicited the favour myself. or threatening clouds. was determined to have her. and our provisions. I have a very pleasant recollection of that walk. the decision was not displeasing to me. not one more0% laughed she. thinking it might be a further inducement. <ergus. which will be plenty large enough to contain little 'rthur and three ladies. and that the best view of all was from ) *liffs.o. (raham.% continued !ose. %she shall go with us. or through pleasant fields and lanes. it appeared to have a contrary effect. When I did so. rs. -li. and asked who were going.% said she. either compassionating her lonely life. if you will wait till the settled fine weather comes. but she was with her friends in the pony)carriage.% "oor rs. arkham. and out of the question for 'rthur. but when I mentioned rs. 2he was told it would only be a small party. % r. or anxious to cultivate her acquaintance.% 2o the proposal was finally acceded to. journeying far behind. were on foot. for some reason best known to himself. sunny road. ary and -li. instantly quitting her seat. and attempted to make excuses. and. and he did not like being in the carriage with strangers. (ilbert0% cried she. 4pon my naming iss Wilson among the rest. and (ilbert arkham. and he declined it altogether. for if this beautiful weather continue. had refused to give us his company. and aster (raham. It%s ) $ay you are thinking about. for he was now much more hardy and active than when he first entered the neighbourhood. she sought refuge at the window by which I was seated.%-xcept this ) % %. but. but !ose. %+h. together with your sketching apparatus. and !ose. I suppose. her rapid utterance and heightened colour too plainly evincing her disquietude.hen. I%m sure we shall all be delighted to have you amongst us. or passing through distant fields and lanes. and two weeks of ay passed over before we could venture forth on our expedition with the reasonable hope of obtaining that pleasure we sought in pleasant prospects. cheerful society. cold winds. (raham/ It is a very long walk. perhaps. (raham walked all the way to the cliffs. and take my sketch. %have you forgotten the fine sea)view we were speaking of some time ago/ I think I must trouble you. I shall. be able to walk there. to escape my brother%s persecutions. and 2ancho. . and iss illward. and r. on a glorious morning. he seemed half inclined to go. endeavoured to draw me into conversation. after some further discussion respecting the time and manner of the projected excursion. we gathered our forces and set forth. wet 'pril. mamma. and little 'rthur walked the greater part of it too. to confess the truth. and took our leave. don%t tell her.he company consisted of rs. shaded here and there with bright green trees. &awrence had been invited to join us. 3ane and !ichard Wilson.a illward. r. and. all glorious in the sweet flowers and brilliant verdure of delightful ay. It was true. white. and adorned with flowery banks and blossoming hedges of delicious fragrance. now. . %3ust a nice walk for the gentlemen. for we shall have our pony) carriage. and all friends. and I long to see it. he hesitated. good cheer and exercise. arkham. It was about midday when we reached the place of our destination. $ut this was only arch# a cold. $ut we were thinking about making a picnic to see it some fine day. (raham looked dismayed. . without the alloy of bad roads. and. %but the ladies will drive and walk by turns. full five miles distant. to tell me the nearest way to it.

having forsaken the highway for a short cut across the fields. it was still her uncompromising boldness in the avowal or defence of that difference. by)the)by ) I don%t know whether I have told you before.a. it was her extreme good sense.he former. rs. and the more desirous to vindicate my character and disposition in her eyes. I was too happy in the company of rs. :ad we been left two minutes longer standing there alone. for whenever she did condescend to converse. had set out upon an elevated platform overlooking the sea. stony hill. more precipitous eminence at some distance. salubrious# it waved her drooping ringlets. her earnestness and keenness. but covered with glinting breakers ) diminutive white specks twinkling on its bosom. was most provokingly unsociable at first ) seemingly bent upon talking to no one but ary illward and 'rthur. and those were far away. and imparted a livelier colour to her usually too pallid lip and cheek. $ut soon my heart began to warm towards her once again. and looking was an aspect of subdued exhilaration in her face. 't length our walk was ended. in her gentle. and the knives. who. after a while. to confess the truth. generally with the child between them. When that was over. dishes. nor did I feel that all those intervening objects lay between my happiness and me. which !ose. and sheltered from the hot sun by a shelving rock and overhanging trees. where they differed. reviving bree. (raham to regret the absence of -li. and we were all very merry and happy together ) as far as I could see ) throughout the protracted social meal. Where her opinions and sentiments tallied with mine. for. but very dark grey. if possible. !ose summoned <ergus to help her to gather up the fragments. unobtrusive way. and. and restore them to the baskets. to win her esteem. and even when we pedestrians. by the keenest vision. she left us and proceeded along the steep. and nearly black ) not brown.e that assured me she was not disappointed.he increasing height and boldness of the hills had for some time intercepted the prospect. but. . if I could only have felt it. but dared not give way to it while she remained so quiet. ) but where the road permitted.a was my nearest neighbour. I liked to listen. as I was. !ichard Wilson taking the other side of iss illward. that delighted me. and strictly enjoined him not to wander from his new guardian%s side. and scarcely to be distinguished. to a loftier. large. I looked at my companion to see what she thought of this glorious scene. 2he said nothing# but she stood still. I always walked on the other side of her. perhaps for my enjoyment during the remainder of the day. having shared her seat in the carriage. and. and her uncharitable conclusions respecting me.a. .e blew from the sea ) soft. it is true. 2he and ary journeyed along together. had arrived with her a little before the rest. disappearing amid the green. glad intelligence as her eye met mine. her exquisite taste and feeling. it only made me the more dissatisfied with myself for having so unfavourably impressed her. ' cool. but they were full of soul. 2he had very fine eyes. from the little seamews that sported above. . and at length I succeeded in securing her attention almost entirely to myself ) and then I was happy indeed. Ec. (raham seated herself at a distance from me. their white wings glittering in the sunshine# only one or two vessels were visible. whence a still finer prospect was to be had. :appily for my discretion. as fascinating and charming as ever. and fixed her eyes upon it with a ga. and <ergus roving here and there according to his fancy. beheld the little carriage far away. and having begged iss illward to take charge of her precious happy. illward. clear. that kindled into almost a smile of exalted. 2he exerted herself to be agreeable. and rs. assisted by iss Wilson and -li. . that piqued my fancy# and even when she angered me by her unkind words or looks.ever had she looked so lovely# never had my heart so warmly cleaved to her as now. I trusted. -li. she became more friendly. and was. 2he felt its exhilarating influence. we were speedily summoned to the repast ) a very respectable collation. (raham took her camp)stool and drawing materials. pure. embowering trees. and so did I ) I felt it tingling through my frame. . an opening lay before us ) and the blue sea burst upon our sight0 ) deep violet blue ) not deadly calm. no doubt. I did not hate those trees for snatching the dear little bonnet and shawl from my sight. I cannot answer for the consequences.. on gaining the summit of a steep acclivity.

I would have been more cautious. r. sketched away in silence. and she looked hastily round ) any other lady of my acquaintance would have screamed under such a sudden alarm. 1ou didn%t intrust him to me. but you know I don%t like that.% 2he made no objection to this. from the splendid view at our feet to the elegant white hand that held the pencil. and I shall have enough of them to)morrow ) or at any time hence. for some time. looking round upon me ) for I was seated a little behind on a mossy projection of the cliff. but you I may not have the pleasure of seeing again for I know not how long. quite down to the rocky shore. but ) % %Well. . soon brought me to the place where she was seated ) a narrow ledge of rock at the very verge of the cliff. grew wearisome to my soul.% I carelessly added.hen I%ll content myself with admiring this magnificent prospect. %though I had the honour of a much longer acquaintance.ow. by)the)by. had escaped her lips.where she preferred taking her sketch. ) %Why don%t you go and amuse yourself with your friends/% %$ecause I am tired of them. ) Why did you startle me so/% said she. %+h0 I didn%t know it was you.% %Why.% %+h. I rose and cannily slipped away. this little ledge could scarcely contain them all.o jests. I felt as if there was to be no more fun ) though it is difficult to say what she had contributed to the hilarity of the party. precipitous slant. though I knew it not. and thrown an interest over all that was done and said by the rest.o.% %. and I grew weary of amusing her# I felt myself drawn by an irresistible attraction to that distant point where the fair artist sat and plied her solitary task ) and not long did I attempt to resist it# while my little neighbour was exchanging a few words with iss Wilson. -li. where you left him ) all right. admitting I had the power to delineate faithfully what is before me. though this satisfaction was denied me. %. %if I had but a pencil and a morsel of paper. but iss illward has the art of conciliating and amusing children.% thought I. for I%m tired of talking. I was very well content to sit beside her there. and a little active clambering. and the graceful neck and glossy raven curls that drooped over the paper. a keen observation or a cheerful word from her had insensibly sharpened my wits. and. like you. and say nothing. but her smile had animated my mirth. arkham/% said she at length. what did you take me for/% said I# %if I had known you were so nervous. . %'re you there still. When she was gone. never mind. -ven my conversation with -li. and advised her not to attempt it.a%s playful nonsense ceased to amuse me ) nay. I won%t talk.% I grumbled. and now that she was gone.% %What was 'rthur doing when you came away/% %:e was with iss illward. then. now and then. but hoping mamma would not be long away. I%ll only sit and watch your drawing. which descended with a steep. though some of the ladies told her it was a frightful place.% %I%m glad. What did you come for/ are they all coming/% %. I could make a lovelier sketch than hers. %I hate anybody to come upon me so unexpectedly.a had been enlivened by her presence. somewhat testily.% $ut. $ut I could not help stealing a glance.% %Well. and little laughter. ' few rapid strides. 2he did not hear me coming# the falling of my shadow across her paper gave her an electric start.

but in the very act my conscience reproved me. and reposing his weary limbs. .% 2he did not deny me this favour. that. a mild.rue. and the improvement I suggested was adopted without hesitation. or exacted. which rs. unused to so much exercise.he journey homeward was by no means so agreeable to me as the former part of the day# for now rs. or lightly laughed away. knowing. and apparently succeeded in some degree. as I did. and then I can assist you to descend this difficult path. relinquishing the driver%s seat to !ose. and closed the book. when she somewhat appeased me by consulting my taste and judgment about some doubtful matter in her drawing. reproachful sadness that cut me to the heart. (raham was in the carriage. it proceeded up the long rough lane. till those few minutes are past. thoughtful face with great complacency when we arrived. y opinion. and this was only nourishing false hopes and putting off the evil day. and make the most of his time while digesting his temperate meal. . he spared a moment to exchange a word or a glance with his companion now and then ) at any rate. the tie must be broken. -ven now he could not abandon himself to the enjoyment of that pure air and balmy sunshine ) that splendid prospect. but I was rather offended at her evident desire to be rid of me. she did not appear at all resentful of his conduct.hat. +n returning to the scene of our repast we found all the company had deserted it. at least. I will allowA ) he must pull out his book. for her homely features wore an expression of unusual cheerfulness and serenity.% said she. which such as you cannot be expected to perceive or appreciate.% %$ut.a illward was the companion of my walk. with your permission. the other was seated beside her with a pocket edition of some classic author in his hand. :e never went anywhere without such a companion wherewith to improve his leisure moments# all time seemed lost that was not devoted to study. I will wait. When the pony)carriage had approached as near Wildfell :all as the road would permit ) unless. and she was studying his pale. Will you tell 'rthur that I shall come in a few minutes/% %If that be the case. "erhaps. and 'rthur (raham. 'bout two minutes after. %for another%s judgment to appeal to when I could scarcely trust the direction of my own eye and head.% %. met her approbation. 2he did not manifest her chagrin by keen reproaches.a to take the latter%s . I tried to cheer her up. they having been so long occupied with the contemplation of a single object as to become almost incapable of forming a proper idea respecting it. and -li.% %. on such occasions. %I have often wished in vain.he younger gentleman lay fast asleep with his head pillowed on the lady%s lap. before the walk was over.% replied I. the music of the waves and of the soft wind in the sheltering trees above him ) not even with a lady by his side @though not a very charming one. and was beginning to repent of my pertinacity. and I persuaded -li. !ichard Wilson. I can carry your stool and sketch)book. by his physical nature. and those soothing sounds.%if she is good for nothing else. for the bare support of life. without assistance. and evidently felt herself neglected. however. indeed. but she showed it by a kind of gentle melancholy. she declared her sketch completed.hank you ) I always manage best. (raham would not allow ) the young widow and her son alighted. however. and again we relapsed into silence. happily. with the exception of three ) ary illward.% said she. bitter sarcasms. 2he had observed my preference for the young widow. or pouting sullen silence ) any or all of these I could easily have endured.% %.% % iss illward has many estimable qualities. sooner or later. %is only one of many evils to which a solitary life exposes us.

I returned to the house. because I .a. I had gathered all hands together into the hay)field. and insisted upon bidding me adieu then and there. in my shirt)sleeves. or woman either. having made some alteration in my toilet. and I had found she was not averse to my company. but the last week had been very unfavourable. now. and hastened to offer my services to rs. but doomed to find her more cold and distant.% said I. and I was very anxious to see the result of it. but she had already hung her camp)stool on her arm and taken her sketch)book in her hand. It was a splendid morning about the close of 3une. and was working away myself. %"ull off your coat. the coatA. old buck.% Ec. just arrived from &ondon. I tore off the cover. %What0 then had she and you got on so well together as to come to the giving and receiving of presents/% ) .hat%s for iss -li. taking up my coat. more to their amusement than edification. as well to prosper the work by my own exertion as to animate the workers by my example ) when lo0 my resolutions were overthrown in a moment. work in the sweat of your face. $ut this time she declined my proffered aid in so kind and friendly a manner that I almost forgave her.ill you come back/ ) and where are you going. shady straw hat on my head.. who stood looking on while I complacently examined the volume. &eaving him thus haranguing the people.% %I guess I know who that%s for. however. I felt considerably relieved. ) the moment I touched upon the sentimental or the complimentary. reeking grass. I was not only punished by an immediate change in her manner at the time. (raham to carry her apparatus up the fields. to scratch his head. Ec.% said <ergus. and then put it on @i.% %+h ) oh0 and I%m to labour away till then. you idle dog. or blow his nose ) no pretext will serve ) nothing but work.ot precisely. with a light. at least. bid her take care of the evening air.o matter where ) the when is all that concerns you.ow come here. and shaking it out to the four winds of heaven. %1ou%re pray/ %. and wished her a kind good) night. with as much .his circumstance did not greatly disconcert me. or made the slightest approach to tenderness in word or look. ) *ome. that I was glad to contradict him. am I/ ) and to keep all these fellows hard at it besides/ Well. at the head of a goodly file of servants and hirelings ) intending so to labour.e. that pauses for a moment amongst you ) whether to stare about him. from morning till night. with the book in my pocket. if not entirely inaccessible. catching up armfuls of moist. in the midst of them. work. which I had been for some time expecting.% %.% I continued. :aving put her comfortably in. or topics of common interest.% :e pronounced this with a tone and look so prodigiously knowing. being determined to make the most of it. with the rest of the company. when next I sought her company. and. (raham.eal and assiduity as I could look for from any of them. you must look sharp# I%m come to help you now#) and woe be to that man. and take my place in the field till I come back. and disclosed an elegant and portable edition of % armion. ost of the hay was cut. this was my first experiment in that line. %. and make yourself useful for once. ) and I shall be back by dinner. for it was destined for the shelves of rs. We had met several times since the ) $ay excursion. and. . hastened away to Wildfell :all. my lad. and now that fine weather was come at last. CHAPTER VIII 2ix weeks had passed away. I deposited the book in one of its pockets. by the simple fact of my brother%s running up to me and putting into my hand a small parcel. well0 I%ll submit ) for once in a way. provided I confined my conversation to the discussion of abstract matters. my lads. %.

. on the part of the receiver. and that being given and received. on my return home.% rs. and which I submitted for her approbation before presenting it to him. the better.he picture was strikingly beautiful. theology. at the same time. then silently turned over the leaves.he more plainly and naturally the thing was done. while I ga. and then it was that. it shall be ) duly considered. I confess. in serious cogitation. I thought. and was admitted into the studio. and. the sober. she had seemed to take a pleasure in mortifying my vanity and crushing my presumption ) relentlessly nipping off bud by bud as they ventured to appear. 't first. and. I had carefully selected. but I expressed my approbation in guarded terms.% ' momentary blush suffused her face ) perhaps. solid. so I had furnished myself with a blue morocco collar for 'rthur%s little dog. instantly sent for the smart little volume I had this morning received. and few words.% thought I ) %the patron and playfellow of her son. then closed the book. . y first pretext for invading the sanctum was to bring 'rthur a little waddling puppy of which 2ancho was the father.% said she @for I had met them in the gardenA.attributed it. which. no doubt. however. ) but latterly finding. for fear of displeasing her. knowing his mother%s particularity. I ventured to ask rs. in casually discussing the poetry of 2ir Walter 2cott. and turning from it to . knitting her brows the while. a blush of sympathetic shame for such an awkward style of presentation# she gravely examined the volume on both sides. and her artist%s pride was gratified. not so much to any dislike of my person. and then.ed. consequently. she had expressed a wish to see % armion. and philosophy# once or twice I lent her a book.% 2o we talked about painting. that I was not that empty)headed coxcomb she had first supposed me. and music. and then pulled out the book. (raham. transferred as if by magic to the canvas. we%ll see what next may be effected. and then. and if you can suggest any further improvement. stimulated to seek revenge. $ut an apology for invading the hermitage was still necessary. beyond a doubt. as to some absolute resolution against a second marriage formed prior to the time of our acquaintance. and put it into her hand. but give me your last opinion. at least. or because she had had enough of him and the matrimonial state together. I came to her house as often as I dared. than the worth of the gift or the selfish motive of the giver deserved. she had repulsed my modest advances in quite a different spirit. y last visit had been to return the book she had lent me. and once she lent me one in return# I met her in her walks as often as I could. y heart failed me. so I just looked out of the window to screw up my courage. could not fail to please his mamma. turned round. when I have made myself fairly necessary to her comfort and enjoyment in life @as I believe I canA. yes0 come in. It was a kind of serious. plain)dealing friend of herself. and wondered how it was to be presented.hen. but I determined not to be such a fool as to come away without having made the attempt.% and I had conceived the presumptuous idea of making her a present of it. I was deeply wounded.% . %&et me first establish my position as a friend. %+h. I thought upon the book. 2he. y second was to bring him a book. It was useless waiting for an opportunity. indeed. and which delighted the child beyond expression. $ut. attentively watched my looks. whether from excess of affection for her late husband. almost sorrowful displeasure. %It is finished and framed. I brought her some plants for her garden. which I soon learnt carefully to avoid awakening. and here it is. -ach of these times I inquired after the picture she was painting from the sketch taken on the cliff. poetry. with much more joy and gratitude. if it was still there. though. all ready for sending away. and asked my opinion or advice respecting its progress. (raham for one more look at the picture. to read my heartfelt admiration in my eyes. it was the very scene itself. in my sister%s name ) having previously persuaded !ose to send them. with this short explanation# %1ou were wishing to see % armion. geology. if you will be so kind as to take it. and useless trying to concoct a speech for the occasion.

%I%m sorry to offend you. ) but do not you punish my presumption by withdrawing your friendship entirely from me. 2he turned her eyes on me again. frankly placing her hand in mine. %I will gladly take it. I cannot take it.% I told her the exact price. for I was too much excited to remain.% %Well.% %. with a look of quiet.% said she.% said I. returning the odious money to her purse ) %but remember0% %I will remember ) what I have said. and my inability to overcome it ) hoping nothing ) but halt. whether intended for such or not. then0 let us be as we were. but you are mistaken#) if you will only oblige me by taking it. she laid it on the table. r. %Well. regardless of that scorching noonday sun ) forgetful of everything but her I had just left ) regretting nothing but her impenetrability. believe me. ) I will not bore you with my conflicting hopes and fears ) my serious cogitations and resolves. perfectly. r arkham ) I wish I could make you understand that ) that I ) % %I do understand you. and the cost of the carriage besides.onsense0% ejaculated I.% I said. 2he produced her purse. %$ecause I don%t like to put myself under obligations that I can never repay ) I am obliged to you already for your kindness to my son. burning heart and brain that I hurried homewards. arkham. %. in a tone of soothing softness. %but unless I pay for the book.% she answered. she observed. ) the favour on yours. that had the effect of a rebuke.% 'nd . It was with an agitated. then. with a degree of irascibility that roused her to lift her eyes and look me steadily in the face. I should presume upon it hereafter. and looked at the carpet. ) or expect me to atone for it by being more distant than before. in as calm a tone as I could command ) for. I shall build no hopes upon it. with a most angelic smile. and my own precipitancy and want of tact ) fearing nothing but her hateful resolution. in fact. but hesitated to put it into my replied she. I was ready to weep with disappointment and vexation. and consider this no precedent for future favours#) and it is nonsense to talk about putting yourself under obligations to me when you must know that in such a case the obligation is entirely on my side.hen you won%t take the book/% I asked. 'ttentively regarding me. and while I held it there. ) but that would be suicidal madness# I had been bold enough already. grave surprise. more mildly than I had yet spoken. and coolly counted out the money. quietly asked the price of it ) I felt the hot blood rush to my face. extending my hand to take leave. but his grateful affection and your own good feelings must reward you for that. %1ou think that if you were to accept that trifle from me now. %Why cannot you/% I repeated. I%ll take you at your word. ) %1ou think yourself insulted.% ) she paused. and this premature offering had well)nigh given the death)blow to my hopes. %Why cannot you/% %$ecause. if you will let me pay for it. I had much difficulty to refrain from pressing it to my lips.

%+h. and rs. greatly to my relief. now0 you know0% she slily smiled and shook her head. I said nothing more on the subject.hough my affections might now be said to be fairly weaned from -li. to himself. which were false. and. I resolved to make my visit a short one. but I had not been seated three minutes before she brought that lady on to the carpet herself in a rather remarkable manner. (raham. appealing to her sister. friendly sort of way. but within those eyes there lurked a something that I did not like.% %Well. I was certain. r. What in the world do you mean.% 'nd she raised her face. whether she knew it or not. and began to be very busy. (raham/ ) can you encourage us to disbelieve them/% %What reports/% %'h. (raham too well0% %Duite right.a illward. I only wish you may not find your confidence misplaced. and to talk to -li. iss illward was there. and besides. 2he could not now absent herself under the plea of dark evenings or inclement weather. iss illward/ what does she mean/% said I. I thought. if not entirely.% observed -li. because I wanted. I never heard it till -li.a at that moment for her insinuations against rs. It was never my custom to talk about rs. I presently rose and took leave. arkham0% said she. at the time. to let her down easy. with a gentle sigh. %what do you think of these shocking reports about rs. would have felt himself decidedly affronted by the neglect.% replied she. I suppose.a. finding I could not well recover my equanimity. for.a/% %+h. or incurring much resentment. -li. %What is it. who looked upon my visits as paid chiefly. don%t ask me0 I can%t explain it. and to the farm I went. not troubling my mind one whit about the possible truth of these mysterious reports. with a shocked expression and voice subdued almost to a whisper. as it were. the vicar. who seemed to be absorbed in the hemming of a large. ) or making myself the talk of the parish. if I had wholly kept away. and on what foundations raised. Without her I should have found the whole affair an intolerable bore. I shouldn%t believe a word of it ) I know rs. I did not yet entirely relinquish my visits to the vicarage. ' few days after this we had another of our quiet little parties. but only wondering what they were. but she. such as our long acquaintance might warrant me in assuming. (raham. (raham among the number. (raham either to her or any one else. and how they could the most effectually be silenced or disproved. %I don%t know. iss illward0 ) and so do I ) whatever it may be. however. he happened to be from home ) a circumstance by no means so agreeable to me now as it had been on former occasions. could neither give offence nor serve to encourage false hopes. %it%s well to have such a comfortable assurance regarding the worth of those we love. excusing myself under the plea of business at the farm. to which the usual company of friends and neighbours had been invited. :owever.a in a brotherly. but the moment of her arrival . $ut when I called there the day after my interview with rs. without raising much sorrow.a told me the other day. she came. and but little on any other. would be little better than a nonentity.% 2he took up the cambric handkerchief which she had been beautifying with a deep lace border. $ut I was out of temper with -li. and which. and I wondered how I ever could have admired them ) her sister%s honest face and small grey optics appeared far more agreeable.CHAPTER IX . it is true. %2ome idle slander somebody has been inventing. coarse sheet. of course. ) but if all the parish dinned it in my ears. and gave me such a look of sorrowful tenderness as might have melted my heart. %I know nothing about them. by whom originated.

% responded I. then. pulled out her handkerchief. hush0 don%t speak so loud. and said nothing.a. ) %+h.% 2he turned aside her face. . &awrence came too. tell me then. I was curious to see how he would comport himself to rs.brought new life to the house.his latter clause was added in a sort of soliloquy when !ose was gone.a.% %Well. you can%t pretend to be ignorant/% %Ignorant of what/% demanded I.% . and though I might not neglect the other guests for her.% %*ome. she cannot object to her daughter%s keeping company with them. but what then/% %What then. (raham. and went to the window. I had !ose on one side of me and an empty chair on the other. looking up in my face with a half)sad. for I had nothing to say. %Would you not say they were perfect strangers/% %'lmost. If your mamma thinks proper to invite such persons to her house. she whispered. ) %1ou%re so stern. take your tea. %If you like. I don%t vouch for the truth of it ) indeed. far from it ) but haven%t you heard )/% %I%ve heard nothing. %If you had wished not to anger me.% 2he closed her lips and folded her hands before her. half)playful smile.% was the reply. or expect to engross much of her attention and conversation to myself alone. why. you should have held your tongue from the beginning. I anticipated an evening of no common enjoyment. (raham. (ilbert. but I shall only anger you by repeating it. %for I don%t like to sit by rs. between my mother and !ose. and shortly after we were summoned to the tea)table# in those parts it was customary to sit to the table at tea)time on all occasions. I was astounded.% I handed down her tea with a slightly contemptuous smile. provoked.a slipped into the vacant chair. evidently dissolved in tears. %I wish I knew. where she stood for some time. and having politely greeted the other members of the company. but I was not polite enough to let it pass. and -li. and make a meal of it. more plaintively. with an air of injured meekness. he seated himself quite aloof from the young widow. so I had better hold my tongue. % ay I sit by you/% said a soft voice at my elbow. and don%t be foolish. except from you. ' slight bow was all that passed between them on his entrance. ashamed ) not so much of my harshness as for her childish weakness. rose. for anyone will tell you that. :owever. %>id you ever see such art/% whispered -li. r. for we dined early. who was my nearest neighbour. so sharply that she started and replied. %What have I done to offend you/% said she. :e did not arrive till some time after the rest were assembled. I see. no one seemed to notice her. iss Wilson%s coming %Will you be so good as to exchange places with me. 3ust then there arose a slight commotion on the other side of me.% %1ou must be wilfully deaf then. handing her the sugar and cream. occasioned by to negotiate an exchange of seats with !ose.% I answered in a lower tone. you know. +n taking my seat.% %Well. or else spoken out plainly and honestly all you had to say. %what is it you mean/ I hate enigmas. iss arkham/% said she. -li.

to refrain from repeating them.% replied her friend. but I think you can hardly be so ignorant as you pretend ) you must know her as well as I do. I concluded it was only in . and that the first thing I did was to stare at 'rthur (raham. I presume the person you allude to is r. if we can only speak to slander our betters. %+h. -li. I shall. the timidly spoken suggestion had been intended for my ear alone. then. and eyeing you.% observed <ergus.a would have replied.% %. %I may be mistaken ) perhaps I was mistaken. scorn. %. (ilbert. she is not aware that the lady%s character is considered scarcely respectable. &awrence. that is. and fixed his eyes upon you.=% What more was said at the tea)table I cannot tell.% %*an you tell me. %and so does our good parson. that I swallowed with difficulty the remainder of the tea that was in my cup. who sat below. from time to time.a. some little of what I felt within. are utterly misplaced. and the second to stare at r. be able to set you right. with an air of cold. who sat on the other side of -li. though in a tone which betrayed. 't such a time and place I could not trust myself to answer. r. ) %We have had enough of this subject. =When r. &awrence. let us hold our tongues. no doubt. %it surprises me rather that rs.% replied she.a. and once he paused in the middle of a story or a sermon. first. but I think I can assure you that your suspicions. but. perhaps. and ate nothing.his is scarcely the time or the place for such explanations. perhaps.% %I think I do. and therefore. it struck me that there was a likeness. and when you hear ill)natured reports. %:ave you never observed. and was the only individual who shared that side of the table with us. . %Why. I don%t know which.he question startled her a little. but keen severity. who was her husband. however. %but I see no one here that at all resembles that child. in that respect.a. but not much. who sat beside his mother on the opposite side of the table. and therefore you would oblige me by explaining your meaning a little further. he was evidently both surprised and annoyed to find her here.a was startled.%Will you be so good as to tell me what you mean. nor how I found patience to sit till the meal was over. -li. nor am no need to ask my pardon. iss -li. irreverently whispering and muttering together. except his mother. arkham should invite such a person as rs.% %I think you%d better. but. on further contemplation. while you sat there.% %2he is not. at least he has @what cannot be said of some othersA sufficient sense of propriety to withhold him from acknowledging anything more than a bowing acquaintance in the presence of respectable persons. I will thank you. as much as to say.% iss Wilson drew herself up with a look of free.% said -li. but said nothing. I think you will do well. arkham.% %(o it0% cried <ergus. or if she ever had any/% Indignation kept me silent. arkham has done flirting with those two ladies I will proceed. and if he has any particular connection with the lady at all @which no one has a right to assertA. but I interrupted her by saying as calmly as I could. if you will inform me what you have heard or imagined against her. I beg your pardon0% pleaded she. perhaps a little better. I remember. %what a striking likeness there is between that child of hers and ) % %'nd whom/% demanded iss Wilson. iss Wilson/% said I. he has been addressing the company in his richest vein all the while. %(o it like bricks0 mind you don%t leave her one stone upon another. (raham to her house. with looks of stern distaste. having quickly recovered her self)possession. and.% $ut she accompanied the words with a sly glance of derision directed to me from the corner of her disingenuous eye.

too uncongenial world. conversed with her time after time/ Was I not certain that she. my vexation instantly subsided. slowly moving down the walk with 'rthur by her side. it is true. and bending forward. I was rallied from several quarters for my abstraction and ungallant neglect of the ladies. I rushed out to cool my brain in the balmy evening air. and from the cautious privacy of the communication I supposed some person then present was the luckless object of her calumnies# and from all these tokens. and the gnats and midges/ $ut. and &awrence%s complexion was pale and clear. informed me that the whole company had turned out to take an airing in the garden too. but I cared little for that# all I cared about. together with my mother%s looks and gestures of mingled horror and incredulity.el eyes of r. clear blue eyes. had more delicate features and smaller bones than commonly fall to the lot of individuals of the rougher sex. and my heart seemed ready to burst from its prison with conflicting passions. was immeasurably superior to any of her detractors. and leave that sunless nook to me. or all the world. and no one else. for there was rs. from the offences of a too rude. before voices and laughter. and not come down again. :ere I sat down to think over the virtues and wrongs of the lady of Wildfell :all. (raham/ :ad I not seen her. whence the sensitive soul looked so distrustfully forth. :owever. &awrence%s. and 'rthur%s delicately fair. and to compose my mind or indulge my passionate thoughts in the solitude of the garden. $ut no ) confound it ) there was some one coming down the avenue0 Why couldn%t they enjoy the flowers and sunshine of the open garden. though prematurely serious at times. Wilson. but 'rthur%s tiny. &awrence. and had they all turned their backs upon her/ I now recollected having seen rs. and from the incessant wagging of her head. and the outline of his face. . and hoped to retain possession of it. the most adorable. and far other feelings agitated my still unquiet soul. in purity and elevation of soul. and I rose and left the table and the guests without a word of apology ) I could endure their company no longer. and his large. while the child%s hair was evidently of a lighter. that she was. warmer tint than the elder gentleman%s had ever been. the noblest. I . in the early part of the evening. I now concluded that object to have been rs. and I would say with ary illward @sensible girl as she wasA. for I knew her better than they. and so give himself time to finish his fourth cup. at the bottom of which was a seat embowered in roses and honeysuckles. Why were they alone/ :ad the poison of detracting tongues already spread through all. and glimpses of moving objects through the trees. was to see the cups travel up to the tea)tray.o avoid being seen from the windows I went down a quiet little avenue that skirted one side of the inclosure. could never be drawn out to the long oval of the other%s. my brain was on fire with indignation. (raham. 't length it was over. I would not believe them. but I had not been so occupied two minutes. $oth. or even imagined to exist/ 1es. (raham. of her sex I had ever beheld. though not full enough to be round. that if all the parish. eantime. and too finely converging to the small. secure alike from observation and intrusion. the frequent distortions of her wrinkled physiognomy. I thought r. peeping through my fragrant screen of the interwoven branches to discover who the intruders were @for a murmur of voices told me it was more than oneA. besides that one grand subject of my thoughts. ay. Wretch that I was to harbour that detestable idea for a moment0 >id I not know rs.imagination. and the winking and malicious twinkle of her little ugly eyes. I nestled up in a corner of the bower. I regarded my two fair neighbours with a feeling of abhorrence and loathing I scarcely endeavoured to conceal. edging her chair close up to my mother. were utterly dissimilar to the shy ha. in fact. somewhat snubby nose could never become so long and straight as r. in intellect. illward never would cease telling us that he was no tea)drinker. evidently in the delivery of some important confidential intelligence. as ever ready to retire within. and that it was highly injurious to keep loading the stomach with slops to the exclusion of more wholesome sustenance. should din these horrible lies in my ears. dimpled chin to be square. I judged it was some spicy piece of scandal that engaged her powers.

>o sit here a little and rest.% said I. but if it were so you would exactly suit me for a companion. while I took possession of the other. :ow beautiful those little clusters of foliage look. rs.% %I don%t quite believe you. I planted him in the middle of the seat by way of securing his mamma. and I promise not to be offended.% %Well. and no good given or received. (raham ) though I own it looks rather like it to absent myself in this uncourteous fashion from my guests. and tell me how you like this arbour. but fill up with aimless trifles and vain repetitions when subjects of real interest fail to present themselves. and when I did step forward she stood still and seemed inclined to turn back as it was. but it%s over now.% %I am all you wish. %I was wearied to death with small talk ) nothing wears me out like that. for I possess the faculty of enjoying the company of those I ) of my friends as well in silence as in conversation.% said she. I have known some sensible persons great adepts in that style of conversation when circumstances impelled them to it. on purpose to change the subject. astonished at the bitterness of my remark. and my mother too.% was the smiling rejoinder. and their light heads are carried away by trivialities that would not move a better)furnished skull. or do they really take a pleasure in such discourse/% %Fery likely they do. in other respects/% %. surely/% cried the lady. and certainly intended no disrespectful allusions to your mother. %their shallow minds can hold no great ideas.% said I.% said I. I don%t mean that.o. $ut that word refuge disturbed me. tell me so at once. I hate talking where there is no exchange of ideas or sentiments.% I could not help smiling at the serious depth of her wonderment. I kept up my attention on this occasion as long as I could.% arkham0% said she.% pursued she# %and so never pause to think. but it is a gift I cannot boast the possession of. if you included her in your animadversions. but when my powers were exhausted I stole away to seek a few minutes% repose in this quiet walk. 'nd they did look beautiful. then. lifting 'rthur by the shoulders. %Is it that they think it a duty to be continually talking. r. where the sun comes through behind them0% said she. lest my appearance should drive her away. to intrude on your seclusion.% %I feared you were unwell. %It is I who have left them. not %I am no hermit. I exonerate my sister from such degraded tastes. where at intervals the level rays of the sun penetrating the thickness of . and.ot all of them. %+h.o. certainly. %. with a look of real concern. %We came here to seek retirement ourselves. threw herself back in one corner. don%t let us disturb you. %I was rather.% %.% %I meant no animadversions against any one. :ad their unkindness then really driven her to seek for peace in solitude/ %Why have they left you alone/% I asked.did not emerge from my place of concealment till she had nearly reached the bottom of the walk. and their only alternative to such discourse is to plunge over head and ears into the slough of scandal ) which is their chief delight. acknowledging it to be a tempting place of refuge. I cannot imagine how they can go on as they do. who. %if ever I trouble you with my loquacity.

arkham0% said she. of course. that she was directing her companion%s attention to us. %Well.hey will not disturb I could not quite decipher the expression of her face. and some say she is ladylike and agreeable. my companion abruptly rose. r. after all. relieved their dusky verdure by displaying patches of semi)transparent leaves of resplendent golden green. and walked on. I saw. %I almost wish I were not a painter.% %I thought her somewhat frigid and rather supercilious in her manner to)day. %2he is elegant and accomplished above the generality of her birth and station. looking grave.. for instead of delivering myself up to the full enjoyment of them as others do. said they would now go in quest of the company. and. . What business had I to look for it/ %What sort of a person is iss Wilson/% she asked. I know nothing about it. especially as at that moment my cheeks were burning with indignation against my former longer. and departed up the avenue. that we were strongly attached to each other. 's they approached this.% %"erhaps you cannot do it to satisfy yourself.% observed my companion. it is more vanity and vexation of spirit. evidently astonished and annoyed. but he was detestable beyond all count. %Why so/ one would think at such a time you would most exult in your privilege of being able to imitate the various brilliant and delightful touches of nature.% 2he seemed vexed at the interruption. 2he was blameless. +ur arbour was set snugly back in a corner.-)-). I am always troubling my head about how I could produce the same effect upon canvas. that he had some designs upon rs. :ere is some one coming.he pair had now approached within a few paces of us. and as that can never be done. he would not be so anxious to conceal them. rather doggedly. for I thought her annoyance was chiefly against myself.% %Fery likely she might be so to you. &awrence and iss Wilson. While these thoughts flashed through my mind. and therefore it was natural enough she should choose to continue the .% said I.-. were they honourable. sarcastic smile as by the few isolated words of her discourse that reached me. %It is only us. as well by her cold.% %. by the aspect of 3ane Wilson. then.trees and shrubs on the opposite side of the path before us. (raham. for I think she regards you in the light of a rival. and calling her son.o.% r. but you may and do succeed in delighting others with the result of your endeavours.-. but seemingly offering no reply to her remarks. but I was satisfied there was no jealousy therein. gave us one furtive glance in passing.% % e0 Impossible. >oubtless she had heard or guessed something of iss Wilson%s remarks. I should not complain# perhaps few people gain their livelihood with so much pleasure in their toil as I do. It was true.% returned I. 2he has possibly taken a prejudice against you. I noticed that he coloured up to the temples. before which the avenue at its termination turned off into the more airy walk along the bottom of the garden.% %Well. %coming to enjoy a quiet stroll. . I knew full well that she was impressing him with the idea. and. the token of which she might mistake for a blush of stupid .

the people were quiet and harmless she was well assured. 2he could not be persuaded to think there was danger for herself or her child in traversing those lonely lanes and fields without attendance. %only. &awrence was standing by at the time conversing with some one else. though <ergus vouchsafed to offer his services in case they should be more acceptable than mine. I found rs. iss Wilson yet another grudge. she would not hear of any one%s putting himself out of the way to accompany her. ) %What business is it of yours/% %Why. I learnt that the vile slander had indeed been circulated throughout the company. &awrence attempted to draw me into conversation. %. but this is a sad. there must be some foundation. with a look of quiet satisfaction. that if you have any designs in that quarter. In fact. swallowing down all fiercer answers. begged to accompany her home. the moment he found it was to be a denial. I had wounded him to the quick. and my mother begged she might send one of the farming)men to escort her. (raham already equipped for departure. unwavering incredulity. and he held his breath. mother. (raham would not let you go home with her/% he asked. and deaf to his good) night till he repeated it a second time. !ose. but I snubbed him and went to another part of the room.% ) and he raised his eyes to my face. he paused in the middle of a sentence to listen for her reply. $ut. who would have thought it0 ) Well0 I always thought there was something odd about her. my dear. and then. vowed she did not and would not believe it. on hearing my earnest request. and spoke with unusual solemnity. turned white about the gills. ' denial it was.embarrassment. who were now returned to the house. :e did not look at us. ) %only let me tell you.% 'nd once it was. with a faint smile that nearly exasperated me beyond control. ) %I misdoubted that appearance of mystery from the very first ) I thought there would no good come of it.% . with the same amount of real. accompanied by a sulky nod. you know. none.% replied he with provoking quietness. It seemed to dwell continually on her mind. but then. however. but. I fear. dear. they will certainly fail.o more I do. and my mother made the same declaration. 2hortly after the party broke up and he himself took leave. and looked very blank. I offered. sad business. <or this I owed conduct the more I hated her. though not unkind. and it grieves me to see you cherishing false hopes. arkham/% whispered he. r. and I was glad of it. to get rid of him. and wasting your strength in useless efforts. and went away without another word. I merely demanded. I muttered an inarticulate reply. %'re you angry because rs. I replied by a wrathful and contemptuous stare. nay. and still the more I thought upon her It was late in the evening before I joined the company. and she kept irritating me from time to time by such expressions as ) %>ear. arkham. and went on. ) 1ou see what it is for women to affect to be different to other people. It was daylight still. to be sure0% %Why. CHAPTER X When all were gone. and taking leave of the rest. decided. When he came to me I was blind to his extended hand. and she should meet no one. for ) % %:ypocrite0% I exclaimed. %What is the matter. or if she did. though not. in the very presence of the victim. you said you didn%t believe these tales.% said <ergus. When she was gone the rest was all a blank or worse.

) but not without sundry misgivings as to how she would receive me. there must be something in her manner to countenance such reports. what is it/% said the young mother. 't length I concluded that the separation could be endured no longer @by this time. (ilbert. to make it the basis of their own infernal structure. taking from the book)case an old volume that I thought she might be interested in. and peruse it at your leisure. but if she%s not engaged. .e. $y degrees I waxed more warm and tender than. $ut. y wish. but there was 'rthur playing with his frolicsome little dog in the garden. simple)hearted child ) ever ready to cement divided hearts. (raham herself was not to be seen. if you please. the trees.% %Well. I looked over the gate and called him to me. but still I said nothing tangible. to span the unfriendly gulf of custom. %. .ell her I want to speak to her. %1es. <rom the time of our party. I hastened away.% :e ran to perform my bidding. which was upwards of a week ago.ed the rumour.he evening was kind and genial. &awrence has been seen to go that way once or twice of an evening ) and the village gossips say he goes to pay his addresses to the strange lady. rs. I should like to see your improvements in the garden. you will see. had nightly kept revolving in my mind some pretext for another call. and so was my companion. arkham. I had not yet ventured to offer it for perusal. as she opened the gate.%. :ow lovely she looked with her dark ringlets streaming in the light summer bree. certainly. though. and overthrow the separating walls of dread formality and pride. just ask her to come here a minute. %Well. I always said there was something strange about her. and constraint. however. accosting me with a pleasant smile. I might see her in the field or the garden.o. or how I could summon courage to present myself with so slight an excuse.% added she. and. %I%ll go and ask her. you know. and the book. and she . I had ever been before.o. that so greatly disturbed me.hrough him I was at once delivered from all formality. %Would you like to come in/% asked the lady. :e wanted me to come in.he foundation is in the wickedness and falsehood of the world. and quickly returned with his mother. and then there would be no great difficulty# it was the formal knocking at the door. from its unsightly and somewhat dilapidated condition. uncordial mistress.% said I.% %>id you see anything in her manner/% %. her fair cheek slightly flushed. In love affairs. to take it. no. though it be for a matter of no greater importance. and terror. you mustn%t do that. r. and always disappointed @she must have managed it so on purposeA. there is no mediator like a merry.ell him to come in. was not gratified. I had been making daily efforts to meet its mistress in her walks. to the presence of a surprised. 'rthur. and her countenance radiant with smiles. I make no apology for calling you out on such a lovely evening. to melt the ice of cold reserve. and then of other things. perhaps. with the prospect of being gravely ushered in by !achel. %I want you to look at this book. but then.% I believe it was on that very evening that I ventured on another invasion of Wildfell :all.% said 'rthur. and the scandal) mongers have greedily sei.% said the child. and. I was pretty far goneA.% %'nd how your sister%s roots have prospered in my charge. %and in the fact that r. 'nd we sauntered through the garden. but. mamma. >ear 'rthur0 what did I not owe to you for this and every other happy meeting/ . and talked of the flowers. but I told him I could not without his mother%s leave.% %. perhaps.

that%s all.% %I make no empty promises. but you shall see. there seemed a moment of inward conflict. looking towards the lane. but here is another for you. and then walked down the lane to meet him. or brother. but tell me why I cannot be anything more/% . and she re)entered the house and I went down the hill. 2he let me hold it for a moment. and at length I judged it prudent to obey. +n seeing me. %2ome day I may tell you. and. if you will only let me continue to see you. but if you cannot be content to regard me as a friend ) a plain. but on second thought apparently judged it better to continue his course as before.% she answered. %Is it in consequence of some rash vow/% %It is something of the kind. a marble paleness blanched her cheek and lip. &awrence on his grey pony. I exclaimed. and. in passing a moss rose)tree that I had brought her some weeks since. arkham. I flew across the field. % ay I not keep it myself/% I asked. or anything you was a perplexed and thoughtful pause. he suddenly drew in his little steed. or sisterly friend ) I must beg you to leave me now.% said she. and broke the stillness of the dewy evening. and once more bid me go. motherly. she withdrew her hand. %I must tell you plainly that I cannot do with this. and seemed inclined to turn back. because I am alone here. $ut as I went the tramp of horses% hoofs fell on my ear.he moment you do our intimacy is at an end. but at present you had better leave me. edging close to the wall. and I saw a flash of ecstatic brilliance in her eye.o.% %'nd will you always call me (ilbert/ It sounds more sisterly.% %. in my sister%s name. ) %. and retreated a step or two back. with a kind of desperate calmness. I likewise took the hand that offered it. %.% %'nd may I come to see you now and then/% %"erhaps ) occasionally. then ) be your friend. 2ei. we must be strangers for the future. and what you mean to do ) at once. :e accosted me with a slight bow. I knew him at a glance# it was r. cold. and it will serve to remind me of our contract. giving me her hand in serious kindness.% Instead of taking it quietly. but I was not so minded. endeavoured to pass on. and never. leaped the stone his horse by the bridle.attempted no repulse. I like your company. a glow of glad excitement on her face ) I thought my hour of victory was come ) but instantly a painful recollection seemed to flash upon her. until. r. %$ut you pardon this offence/% %+n condition that you never repeat it. Inclining to dusk as it was. how musical my own name sounded in her mouth0 %I will not.ow.% %I will. and distinctly0% .% 2he smiled. %. provided you never abuse the privilege. (ilbert. a cloud of anguish darkened her brow. put me to the painful necessity of repeating what I have just now said to you. and looked into her face.% she earnestly added.% I replied. with a sudden effort. she plucked a beautiful half)open bud and bade me give it to !ose. and. I saw a solitary equestrian coming up.ell me where you are going. and your conversation pleases me more than that of any other person. and let me alone hereafter# in fact. &awrence. I will have this mystery explained0 . :ow sweet.ow.

% %1ou%d better defer your opinion to a more convenient season. I immediately released the squire. altogether.% 'nd.% I exclaimed. illward as he passed. and hastened homewards. and while I thankfully enjoyed my present good fortune. . sir0 ) I%ll tell you.% said I. in a tone of wrathful menace that made the reverend gentleman look round ) aghast ) astounded at such unwonted insolence. %'sk me some other time. young man% @here he put his face into mine with an important.% returned he. or to speak another word to him# I turned away. I doubt/% he added. plodding homeward from some remote corner of his parish. descending with rapid strides the steep.% %. and he made an effort to pass me again. one evening. confidential airA. I&&W'!>. arkham/ I%m quite ashamed of you. and he went on his way. 2he called me (ilbert. and I called her :elen. arkham. %Where are you going. of course. ) %and about that young widow. or rather I felt. scarce less astonished than its master at such uncivil usage. that. %*an I not go to see my tenant on matters of business. %What. the vicar was just behind me. I kept such dreams entirely to myself.% interrupted he in a low tone ) %here%s the vicar.ow then. what I think of your conduct. rs. this to me0% $ut I was too indignant to apologise. arkham/% cried the latter. I seldom attempted to see her above twice a week. for I had seen that name written in her books. and I often felt myself a most confounded hypocrite with it all. reproachfully shaking his head. 1et I could not but perceive that she was at times unhappy and dissatisfied with herself or her position. quietly ) %you%re hurting my pony%s mouth. ) if you stand till morning. now. when I had been busy with the farm all day. %What0 quarrelling. addressing himself to me. rough lane. %I was not indifferent to her. in spite of herself. and still I made our meetings appear the result of accident as often as I could ) for I found it necessary to be extremely careful ) and. unclosing my hand. (ilbert/% said !ose. % !. but still standing before him. (raham and I were now established friends ) or brother and sister. and leaving him to follow as he pleased. by my express desire.his is no time for business. but. without being assaulted in this manner by )/% %. %$ut let me tell you.% as the novel heroes modestly express it.%Will you take your hand off the bridle/% said he.% %1ou answer my questions ) before you leave this spot I will know what you mean by this perfidious duplicity0% %I shall answer no questions till you let go the bridle. this is too much0% said the latter. %!eally. I could not fail to wish and hope for something better in future. as we rather chose to consider ourselves. shortly after tea. when you can speak like a gentleman. I behaved with such exceeding propriety that she never had occasion to reprove me once. but I quickly re)captured the pony. in truth. CHAPTER XI 1ou must suppose about three weeks passed over. and stare me in the face. I saw too. r. saluting r. and truly I myself was not quite contented with the latter# this assumption of brotherly nonchalance was very hard to sustain.% %1ou and your pony be ) % %What makes you so coarse and brutal. with a look that plainly said. %she%s not worth it0% and he confirmed the assertion by a solemn nod.

perhaps. and breadth.o matter. I do know her. 3ane illwards dared to rs. aren%t you/% %What makes you think so/% %$ecause you look as if you were ) but I wish you wouldn%t go so often.% %(o on0 ) there%s no going on in the matter. with such an air of mystery. !ose. all that about the false name to the picture. I wouldn%t have so much to do with %Why. for. if he or she were not disposed to reveal it.% %.% %+h. I should put all these things together. do you think I could believe anything of the kind.% %$ut if you knew how they talk you would be more careful. and how she explained it ) saying she had friends or acquaintances from whom she wished her present residence to be concealed.onsense. .% %+h. and no man breathing shall hinder it. how suddenly she started up and left the room when that person came ) whom she took good care not to let us catch a glimpse of. and believe the same as you do. and who 'rthur. if I could believe anything that was said against her. or if you had not the sense to understand it. I remember it all. and last year. ) and besides.% . ) or has a right to interfere between is such a thing as looking through a person%s eyes into the heart.% %.o be sure I am0% %$ut what would mamma say. if I did not know her myself. rs.% %$ut she must know some time.hen you are going to see her this evening/% %. (ilbert0% % amma needn%t know.o take a walk. too. for her sake as well as for your own. told us was his mamma%s friend/% %1es. and learning more of the height. and I know her just as well.%. ) I should as soon believe such things of you. hesitatingly ) %but I%ve heard so much about her lately. but thank (od. you did not know that such a person existed. and I should be unworthy the name of a man. but if I were you.ot always. giving in to the prevailing opinion/% %. !ose.% returned she.% %. (ilbert0% %Well. and depth of another%s soul in one hour than it might take you a lifetime to discover. (ilbert. no0 you know nothing of her former life. unless I heard it from her own lips. (raham and I are two friends ) and will be. if you go on.% was the reply. ) and then. are you. mamma says. at this time. both at the Wilsons% and the vicarage. and put on such smart new gloves when you take a walk/% %. %>o you always brush your hat so carefully.o. ) whatever the Wilsons and whisper/% %I should hope not indeed0% %'nd why not/ ) $ecause I know you ) Well. and I can forgive your uncharitable conclusions. and that she was afraid of their tracing her out. (raham. if she were a proper person she would not be living there by herself ) and don%t you remember last winter. and do your hair so nicely.% %1ou%re going to Wildfell :all. !ose. child0 I don%t go once in six weeks ) what do you mean/% %Well.

who was rather a favourite with the old gentleman. slowly. %you%re quite a stranger. sir0% said he. in time for tea. if any proof were wanting. whenever you can. if he would do her the favour to partake of it.% %With pleasure0% cried my mother. and created a diversion in my favour by her loquacious and animated welcome of the reverend guest. and by what I hear others say.% $ut he rejected the offer with a majestic wave of the hand. I never thought of this0 ) 'nd so they dare to turn my friendship into food for further scandal against her0 ) . but offered to have some immediately prepared. in the bitterness of my soul.% %$ut I wouldn%t. and continued to ga. %. arkham.% %+h.% %:umph0% 3ust then my mother came in. I won%t go to)day. as he deposited his ponderous bulk in the arm)chair that !ose officiously brought towards him. if I were you. rs. and taste your home)brewed ale. %I have been busy. deuce take their cursed. %I%d just look in upon you as I passed. %I%ll tell you what I%ll take.% he continued. proceeding with alacrity to pull the bell and order the favoured beverage.ot any for me. %'y0 It is so0% :e added an affirmatory nod. but do stay and take a little0 it will be ready in five minutes. you know I%ve been getting in my hay.% %Wouldn%t what/ ) :ow do they know that I go there/% %. at all events. !ose. derisively. holding his substantial stick between his knees.% said he# %I%ll take a glass of your excellent ale.Wilson thinks your visits to the old hall but another proof of her depravity ) % %*onfound 3ane Wilson0% %'nd -li.% continued he. as it%s getting latish. that I knew what they think. sir/% said I. I%ve . he turned somewhat sternly to me#) %Well. for an apology was evidently demanded. and struck his stick on the floor.hat proves the falsehood of their other lies. %1es.e upon me with a kind of irate solemnity.% %$ut they don%t speak openly to me about such things# it is only by hints and innuendoes.% replied he. then. 2he regretted deeply that he had not come a little nothing hid from them# they spy out everything. ) ind you contradict them. $ut oh.a illward is quite grieved about you.% %Well. I thank you. %Is it. and now the harvest is beginning. %it is just ) six)weeks ) by my reckoning. envenomed tongues0% I muttered. %$usy0% repeated he. 'nd just at that moment the vicar entered the room# we had been too much absorbed in our conversation to observe his knock. %I shall be at home in a few minutes.% %+h. with his hands clasped upon its head. since you darkened ) my ) door0% :e spoke it with emphasis. 'fter his customary cheerful and fatherly greeting of !ose.% I said. %I thought.% %I hope she is. It is ) let ) me ) see.

through the open window. and made my mother scream. (raham. and my pastoral advice quite thrown away upon her ) nay. and turning again to my mother. I caught a sight of rs. and what others tell me concerning you. %= rs. y mother sat opposite. and continued ) addressing his hostess#) %It was a painful duty. .% %!eally0% ejaculated my mother.= ) 2o I told her0% %1ou did. 2he turned white in the face. I paused at the gate to wipe my streaming forehead. ) %I thought it incumbent upon me0% and struck his stick on the floor again. misdirected passions. and finding that my whole frame trembled with fury. . that my very presence was displeasing while I spoke such things. %:ardened. and with a firm and steady tread I paced the garden)walk. but what to say. there was a strong display of unchastened.% %:ave you.= said I. with a despondent shake of the head. %and. and no other goal would do ) I must see her too. :e looked at me with some severity. 2uch stormy thoughts ) so many different resolutions crowded in upon me. at the same time. r. >o you adopt the same resolution with regard to yours0 ) 's for your sons ) as for you. and recover my breath and some degree of composure.% I began. starting from my seat and striking my fist on the table. rs. illward/% asked I. I said no more. %=these are terrible reports0= =What.he next minute saw me hurrying with rapid strides in the direction of Wildfell :all ) to what intent or purpose I could scarcely tell. and speak to her ) that was certain. repeated. ) but she offered no extenuation or defence. sir. that my daughters ) shall ) not ) consort with her. =to tell you both everything that I myself see reprehensible in your conduct. I had no definite idea. and with a kind of shameless calmness ) shocking indeed to witness in one so young ) as good as told me that my remonstrance was unavailing. or how to act. (raham. shaking his head as he spoke. $ut I am fully determined. with a bang that shook the house to its foundations. young man. and added with awful emphasis ) %I thought it incumbent upon me to do so. but checked by some impediment in my utterance. %Why so. and drew her breath through her teeth in a savage sort of way. an awe)struck but admiring auditor. indeed/% :e nodded gravely. 'nd I withdrew at length. arkham ) but I told her0% %'nd how did she take it/% asked my mother. =It is my ) duty ) as ) your pastor. slowly pacing up and down her lonely room.% he continued. but took the wiser part of snatching up my hat and bolting from the room. affecting to be ignorant of my meaning. In passing the inhabited wing of the building. sir/% cried I. (raham. :e merely glanced towards me. sir/= says she. slamming the door behind me. 'lready the rapid walking had somewhat mitigated my excitement. arkham.= said I. and all I have reason to suspect. too plainly seeing that nothing could be done ) and sadly grieved to find her case so hopeless.been to call on rs. sternly turning to me ) %'s for -.% he continued. I fear ) hardened0% he replied. CHAPTER XII In little more than twenty minutes the journey was accomplished. rs. and gave a momentary relief to my excited feelings. that my mind was little better than a chaos of conflicting passions. but I must be moving somewhere.

you don%t look cold0% said now. %but I want to see you comfortable before I go. and help her to abuse the vicar and his vile informants. faintly it is true. nevertheless. as her apprehensions were removed. and . and a shade of uneasiness darkened her brow. though half suspecting she would rather see me go. inquisitorial look that plainly demanded. (raham on one side of the hearth. inhospitable looks in departing. %I am come at an unseasonable hour. :elen.o. %but I won%t stay many minutes. but now I felt positively ashamed to mention the subject. smilingly regarding my face. or how to say it. in order to reassure her. %It suits me better as it is. and setting a chair for rs. and then. :elen0 Why have you no fire/% I said. I ventured to sit down. %. I began talking about indifferent matters in order to gain time. I pulled the bell. %.% she added. :elen0% I said. suspicious. %What are you here for. eanwhile !achel came in to kindle the fire. Will you order one.% 2he smiled upon me. which no doubt seemed warm enough. as if she thought I too was coming to accuse her. looking round on the gloomy apartment. and I would have had one lighted for you# but it is not worth while now ) you won%t stay many minutes. not now ) I don%t know yet precisely what it is. (ilbert. the sour.% %1ou should have come a little sooner.% %$ut I have a fancy for a fire. .2he seemed agitated and even dismayed at my arrival. without whom we had never met before ) if only I could venture to speak my mind. with more truth than wisdom.o. I went on talking. and continued for several minutes ga. somewhat testily.% said I. as if there were something amusingly absurd in the idea. In a little while we both relapsed into silence. unless she led the way.% %What is it/% %. %:ow dismal you are. though without a grain of anger in my heart against any one but the meddling old woman. but most kindly ) I had almost said thankfully.% replied I.% said I. but. %It is summer yet. I owe !achel a grudge to this day for the look she cast upon me ere she departed on her mission. as the approaching steps of !achel were heard in answer to the summons. you say. assuming a cheerfulness I did not feel. in a tone of mournful resignation. fearing lest she should turn me out of the was nothing for it but to turn round and desire the maid to light the fire. where the fuel was already disposed for ignition. with a bitter abstractedly into the fire ) she intent upon her own sad thoughts. %$ut we always have a fire in the evenings. and 'rthur is gone to bed. if we can bear it. %$ut.% said she. and determined not to refer to it. I had entered her presence intending to condole with her upon the wickedness of the world. and one for myself on the other. I wonder/% :er mistress did not fail to notice it. when the door was closed upon us. which was soon effected by thrusting a red) hot poker between the bars of the grate. %I%m not going to.% replied I. %1ou must not stay long. our mutual friend. and I reflecting how delightful it would be to be seated thus beside her with no other presence to restrain our intercourse ) not even that of 'rthur.% she replied. I%ve something to say to you before I go.% % e comfortable0% repeated she. $ut determined to have my own way. 2he honoured me with another of her hard. if I ring/% %Why. (ilbert. and you especially require one in this cold house and dreary room. little moved thereby.

and destroy all future hope by one rash effort. to be thought to practise what you abhor. :elen0 ) most happy ) delighted beyond expression0 ) and if that be all the obstacle to our union. 't any rate. with an effort that it seemed impossible to continue much longer. +n the one hand.% %I should be proud to do it. ) %(ilbert. %1ou have heard. my companion. I suppose/% %I think you ought. no. so don%t let them trouble you. and to encourage the vices you would discountenance. and. and to defend your reputation as more precious than my life0% %'re you hero enough to unite yourself to one whom you know to be suspected and despised by all around you. then.% said I. it is getting late. :elen.y of ardour.hink0 it is a serious thing. I felt a new)born confidence in my powers of persuasion ) a strong conviction that my own fervour of spirit would grant me eloquence ) that my very determination ) the absolute necessity for succeeding. and to bring disgrace on the principles you profess.his outburst brought a flush of colour to her face. ) and revolving the pros and cons for opening my heart to her there and then. ) %.o.ed her hand and would have pressed it to my lips. said. what they say of me/% %I heard some detestable falsehoods. the permission to regard her thenceforth as my own. %What are their thoughts to you or me. as I trusted. by my thoughtlessness and selfish disregard to appearances. %1ou want me to go. It was like setting my life upon the cast of a die.% %. &et them go to the deuce with their vile constructions and their lying inventions0% . it is not all0% . and the right and the power to defend her from the calumnies of malicious tongues. but to enable me to make reparation. on the other. let me entreat you not only to pardon me. that I felt must win me what I sought.disburden my full heart of the feelings that had so long oppressed it. while. exclaiming in the bitterness of intense affliction. %&et them turn it as they will. and identify your interests and your honour with hers/ . If my kind neighbours get to know of this visit ) as no doubt they will ) they will not turn it much to my advantage. and imploring a return of affection. fantastic evergreens. to her own. I would demand the reason of this hateful barrier. but she as suddenly caught it away. but however little you may value the opinions of those about you ) however little you may esteem them as individuals. to find your good intentions frustrated. I would entreat the explanation she had half promised to give me before.% %I see.% It was with what the vicar would doubtless have called a savage sort of smile that she said this. and which it now struggled to retain.% said I. but none but fools would credit them for a moment. wakened from her reverie with a scarcely audible sigh. so long as we are satisfied with ourselves ) and each other. it is not pleasant to be looked upon as a liar and a hypocrite. it is demolished. just rising over one of the grim.rue. was shining in upon us. and looking towards the window. and if I. $ut while I considered in what manner I could best frame my request.% %I did not think r. where the blood)red harvest moon. authorise me to clear your name from every imputation# give me the right to identify your honour with my own. and your hands crippled by your supposed unworthiness. I feared to lose the ground I had already gained with so much toil and skill. and you must ) you shall be mine0% 'nd starting from my seat in a fren. and yet I was ready to resolve upon the attempt. this mysterious impediment to my happiness. illward a fool. and he believes it all. when time and patience might have won success. have at all assisted to expose you to these evils. I sei.

indeed. :elen. that ) % %. I thought ) at least I endeavoured to think your regard for me was as cold and fraternal as you professed it to be. and perhaps you will then see the necessity of discontinuing our intimacy ) if. are not only delightful to my heart. %I have no great crime to confess. but I thought. but I will tell you all you seek to know.% I know I did. she clasped her hands upon her knee. ) and more than I can tell you now. can readily excuse. almost wildly. no. no. superficial nature. in silent anguish. she calmly said. too. not willingly.% %I can safely answer no to that# you cannot have such grave confessions to make ) you must be trying my faith. and.% %:ow/ 1ou could not have given me less encouragement.% %. %1ou. perhaps. and occasionally admitting me to the enjoyment of your company and conversation. but answer me this one question first. turning to me.hen I will conclude you do. and so good)night.hank heaven0% she added. and glancing upward. so let me entreat you to leave me0% %I will. disinterested affection you seem to feel ) % %2eem. if you meet me on the moor about mid)day. for such favours. sometimes.% %+r as yours/% %+r as mine ) ought to have been ) of such a light and selfish. there could be no great harm in leaving your fancies and your hopes to dream themselves to nothing ) or flutter away to some more fitting object. you are mistaken.% she added in a low murmur.%What is it.% 2he shook her head despondingly. upon the whole. when all hopes of closer intimacy were vain ) as indeed you always gave me to understand ) if you think you have wronged me by this. I suspected it then. indeed. ) %. ) do you love me/% %I will not answer it0% %. ennobling to my soul.% she said.% she earnestly repeated ) %I wish it were so0 . and I should then know how to comfort you. for I did not know the strength and depth of your attachment. then/ 1ou promised I should know some time. :elen/ Impossible/% %1es.% . I would have acted differently. the generous. and ) % %1ou shall know some time ) but not now ) my head aches terribly. but I have more than you will like to hear.% I persisted# %it would ease your mind. then. or. and I would rather have your friendship than the love of any other woman in the world0% &ittle comforted by this. or treated me with greater severity than you did0 'nd if you think you have wronged me by giving me your friendship. %and I must have some repose ) and surely I have had misery enough to)day0% she added. as if she mused aloud. you wronged me. exalting. %$ut it could not harm you to tell it. but if I had known the depth of your regard. :elen/% %. you do not willingly resign me as one no longer worthy of regard. %If you knew all. to implore divine assistance. would blame me ) perhaps even more than I deserve ) though I have cruelly wronged you.o)morrow. while your friendly sympathies remained with me.hat you do feel. pressing her hand to her forehead. in themselves alone.o. you. then. seemed.

I walked back to get a better view of it. I had not thus looked. just to if she were more composed than when we parted.% till I had shouted aloud. thinking. ) and the more so that its inmates all were more or less imbued with that detestable belief. with her hands pressed against her eyes. %It may be true. standing between the window and the porch. or suffering now. %(ilbert. and then continued moving towards the gloomy object of attraction. unable to resist the temptation of taking one glance through the window. in a tone of such thrilling anguish that I felt it would be cruel to disobey. pray/ ight I not find more benefit in the contemplation of that venerable pile with the full moon in the cloudless heaven shining so calmly above it ) with that warm yellow lustre peculiar to an 'ugust night ) and the mistress of my soul within. and saw her leaning forward on the table. which. 2omething called me nearer ) nearer still ) and why not. or even catch one glimpse of her. would almost fill a volume in itself. and the voice confirmed it ) it was r. and in time )% I did not hear the rest of the sentence. and therefore inimical to me in my present frame of mind. the very thought of which made my blood boil in my veins ) and how could I endure to hear it openly declared. sobbing convulsively. :er chair was vacant# so was the room. instead of aggravating her sufferings by my stupid impetuosity. :elen. and hopes. (raham followed by another ) not !achel. ) and if I found her still in deep distress. . at present screened me from observation. or cautiously insinuated ) which was worse/ ) I had had trouble enough already. do leave me0% she cried. %Why am I hurrying so fast in this direction/ *an I find comfort or consolation ) peace. and life. and cheerfulness. how my temples throbbed0 Intense anxiety darkened my sight. I looked. and seemed imperatively to draw me back# I began to think. and breathe the evening air# they will do me good ) if anything will. contentment. but I thought ) was little besides the chimneys visible above my contracted hori. before I vaulted over the barrier. certainty. yet I withdrew in silence. then. $ut I gave one look back before I closed the door. with some babbling fiend that would keep whispering in my ear. I felt that to obtrude my consolations on her then would only serve to aggravate her sufferings. I wished myself safe back over the wall.% :ere. but did not prevent me from seeing two figures come forth into the moonlight# rs. and wished. and wondered long. $ut at that moment some one opened the outer door. but I took her hand and fervently kissed it. for he walked close beside her and spoke so gently that I could . all ) or anything that I want at home/ and can I leave all perturbation. I stood. however. When it rose in sight. %It is false0 I defy you to make me suppose it0% I could see the red firelight dimly gleaming from her parlour window. $ut before I was half)way down. before I went. perhaps I might venture attempt a word of comfort ) to utter one of the many things I should have said before. and a voice ) her voice ) said. wondering what she was doing. but a young man. than in returning to my home. .on. slender and rather tall. were she and !achel coming to take a walk in the garden. %I will be more cautious in future. I went up to the garden wall. where all comparatively was light. and wild emotions that jostled and chased each other through my mind as I descended the hill. a sentiment of strong sympathy for her I had left behind me had displaced all other feelings. sorrow. in the shadow of the tall holly)bush.2he turned from me to hide the emotion she could not quite control.% said he. and wishing I could speak to her but one word. &awrence0 %1ou should not let it worry you so much. ) %*ome out ) I want to see the moon. with my eyes fixed upon the lattice.o tell you all the questionings and conjectures ) the fears. and stood leaning over it. I stood still a moment to look. + heavens. and anxiety behind me there/% 'nd I turned round to look at the old :all.

having first removed my boots. nothing ) give me a candle. %+h. %I%ve been walking too fast. as well as here. y heart was splitting with hatred.% she added. however. . I added.% she said ) %I never can be happy here. I cannot consent to lose you# I must go with you. and looked up at the moon. suppressing my irritation. %$ut why are you so long about it/ 1ou must have something on your mind ) % . and at length I had the satisfaction to hear her close her own door. for keeping me in such a fright. but carried instinctively by my feet to the door. and she was watchful. if you think anything of that. I%ve got it all ready.% %1es. taking a candle and lighting it at the one she held in her hand. y mother followed me to the very door of my room with her questionings and advice concerning my health and my conduct. after the strange manner you left the house this evening. a tremulous darkness obscured my sight. I want to go to bed. I had risen and journeyed homewards ) little regarding the way. I had not walked above a quarter of an hour before she was at the door again. but I listened intently for her reply. or come to you.% %$ut won%t you take some supper/% %. %it is all I could wish. having partially relieved myself by a torment of was no sleep for me. where horror had kept me rooted. I heard it %$ut I must leave this place.not catch the words. shining so calmly and carelessly on. ) nor anywhere else. how you tremble0% exclaimed my anxious parent.% and marched off to bed. but I saw him put his arm round her waist.% said I. afterwards. I dashed myself on the ground and lay there in a paroxysm of anger and despair ) how long.% While thus conversing they had sauntered slowly past me. while she lovingly rested her hand on his shoulder.% cried I. as little influenced by my misery as I was by its peaceful radiance. there will be the same sources of annoyance. and I heard no more of their discourse. and every one in bed except my mother. and instead of attempting to solicit it. like a passionate child. that night as I thought. half staggered from the spot. my heart sickened and my head burned like fire# I half rushed.% interrupted she. who hastened to answer my impatient knocking. and there are meddling fools elsewhere. %(ilbert. indeed.% %$ut where could you find a better place/% replied he. +h. ) %but I cannot rest here. r. <rederick. down the walk. with a mirthless laugh. %:ow white you look0 >o tell me what it is/ :as anything happened/% %It%s nothing. %so secluded ) so near me. ready to stamp with vexation because the candle would not light. why are you not in bed ) you said you wanted to go/% %*onfound it0 I%m going. %+h.o. plainly enough. . ) and then. I found it bolted against me. I cannot undertake to say.othing. (ood)night. (ilbert. that%s all. and earnestly prayed for death or forgetfulness. for when.hen. regardless of the %Walking too fast0 where have you been/% that was called after me from below. and leaped or tumbled over the wall ) I hardly know which ) but I know that. illward was quite ) $less the boy0 how ill he looks. and received me with a shower of questions and rebukes. gracious0 what is the matter/% %. lest my mother should hear me. though you don%t deserve it. but it must have been a considerable time. $ut the boards creaked. :elen. if they could only have left me alone. I employed myself in rapidly pacing the chamber. but I implored her to let me alone till morning. and she withdrew.% said I.% %$ut wherever you go. (ilbert0 how could you do so/ Where have you been/ >o come in and take your supper.

I%m sure a finer disposition than yours by nature could not be. (raham that distresses you so/% %. %1ou say there is nothing the matter with you. though that would serve as my excuse. duped. . I took up a book. and went out.% %*heck what/% %Why. that. . no. I tell you ) it%s nothing. 'nd yet it was not wholly sleepless.% %*an it be that rs. I rose. who was idling about the room.ever did I endure so long. inoffensive love)song. in conjunction with a pretended over)exertion before breakfast.%<or heaven%s sake. mother0 he%ll bite0 :e%s a very tiger in human form.% said my mother one morning after some display of unjustifiable ill)humour on my part. teeming with torment and misery ) not a mere barren wilderness. the severer the better ) it would help to account for the sullen moods and moping melancholy likely to cloud my brow for long enough. my angel not an angel. 1ou don%t know how it spoils you. you know.% said I. It was a dull. the weather had changed like my prospects. but to cool my brain. with a sigh. <ergus. and. hopeless. 1ou haven%t a good word for anybody ) friends and strangers. ) %>on%t touch him. CHAPTER XIII % y dear (ilbert. my affections trampled upon. and began to stroke my hair. pretended to be deeply absorbed in its perusal. equals and inferiors ) it%s all the same. I wish you would try to be a little more amiable. and chained me to that wretched couch of thorns. if you%d let it have fair play# so you%ve no excuse that way. . on purpose to amuse him. not to look after the farm. might excuse my sudden loss of appetite.owards morning my distracting thoughts began to lose all pretensions to coherency. while I threw myself on the bed. feeling most undutifully disaffected towards her for having deprived me of what seemed the only shadow of a consolation that remained. and if a cold ensued.% While she thus remonstrated. and then came to coaxing. and my friend a fiend incarnate ) it was worse than if I had not slept at all. but my mischievous brother. $ut then the dawn of bitter recollection that succeeded ) the waking to find life a blank. there followed an interval of unconscious slumber. if possible. revived my corruption by suddenly calling out.% murmured she. let me alone.he other day he nearly fractured my skull for singing a pretty.% %+h. It%s as much as my life is worth to come within six yards of him. but full of thorns and briers ) to find myself deceived. at length. gloomy morning. . and regain. %I told you to hold your noise first.o. and worse than a blank. so miserable a night as that. I%ve given him up for my part ) fairly disowned him ) cast him off. for I was equally unable to justify myself and unwilling to acknowledge my errors. as she returned to her own apartment. and shape themselves into confused and feverish dreams. and yet I never saw anyone so altered as you within these last few days. your strange temper. and the rain was pattering against the window. and laying it open on the table before me. and get to bed yourself. If I got a wetting. nevertheless. I do wish you%d try to check it. (ilbert0 how could you/% exclaimed my mother. root and branch.% %I wish to goodness it mayn%t. and I wished to have nothing to say on the matter. $ut my excellent parent went on lecturing. and I was getting to feel quite a good boy. a sufficient degree of composure to meet the family at the morning meal without exciting inconvenient remarks. and nothing has happened to grieve you.

but the room was not empty. but sternly repelling her odious glances with my eyes. because a woman%s fair. %I wouldn%t touch him with the tongs. $ut -li. (raham. (raham. %I%m not going to defile my fingers with him. laid her hand on my arm. no attempt at pathos. $ut to)day I determined to make an effort to return to my duty. with such force that I thought I had bitten my tongue in two. . scarcely expecting to find its owner within at this time of day. and evidently delighted to wreak her spite on me. -li. and found my skull not broken. with a kind of sullen resignation. but when I assured you it was no trouble and went on with the next verse. and expected to see the place plastered with my brains. you clutched me by the shoulder and dashed me away. If life promised no enjoyment within my vocation. defy their seeming calumnies and triumph in my own convictions as before.% I replied. for. but with a sidelong glance ) intended to be playfully mischievous ) really. and besought me to let him alone.% said I. %What0 are you beginning to tire already/ I thought so noble a creature would have power to attach you for a year at least0% . with a sentimental sigh ) %his heart%s broken ) that%s the truth of it ) and his head%s ) % %Will you be silent . I was misanthropically inclined. but there was no visible emotion either of pleasure or pain. and besides. and no mistake. and I scarcely checked an involuntary recoil as I entered it. and he walked leisurely out.hough I found no pleasure in it. singing provokingly ) %2hall I. it would be less irksome than idleness ) at all events it would be more profitable. now. and when I put my hand to my head. despite my strenuous efforts to appear unmoved. civil in demeanour. %. I wended my way to !yecote <arm. Wilson was busy in the kitchen. iss Wilson was as affable and courteous as heart could wish. if such a term may be allowed.hus resolving. $ut. for I was vexed to feel the colour mounting to my forehead.+W/% cried I. concerning the purchase of a certain field adjoining my farm ) a business I had been putting off from day to day. and I was desired to step into the parlour and wait. had a particular objection to meeting 3ane Wilson or her mother. and uncomplaining if not contented with my lot. thinking you might like it better. I did not like them a bit the better for it ) or -li. in a tone of merely casual inquiry.a seemed to have made the same resolution on her part. now. starting up. . I thought it was a miracle. I determined to be cool and civil. like any poor drudge of a cart)horse that was fairly broken in to its labour. but hoping to learn in what part of the premises he was most likely to be found. We had not met since the evening of the tea)party. for I had no interest in anything now. 'bsent he was. :owever. and eyeing the fellow so fiercely that my mother.% I now recollected that I had business with !obert was even an ease and cheerfulness about her air and manner that I made no pretension to. with his hands in his pockets. she still hated her rival. and.a illward either ) and the thought of meeting them was the more repugnant to me that I could not. though she no longer hoped to win me to herself. .a took advantage of the first convenient pause to ask if I had lately seen rs. and henceforth I would put my shoulder to the wheel and toil away. and though I was in no very conversable humour myself. for there sat iss Wilson chattering with -li.ot lately. to credit their reports concerning rs. in answer to the maternal intercession.% Ec. right against the wall there.%1es. the two ladies between them managed to keep up a pretty continuous fire of small talk. but there was a depth of malice in her too expressive eye that plainly told me I was not forgiven. brimful and running over with malice.a illward. thinking I meant to inflict some grievous bodily injury. rs. moreover. at least it offered no allurements out of it. but expected home in a few minutes. for though I had too good reason. not wholly useless if not agreeable. in a careless tone. +n the other hand. and plod through life. no display of injured pride# she was cool in temper. poor fellow0% added he.

and. and quickly concluded the bargain ) perhaps more to the thrifty farmer%s satisfaction than he cared to acknowledge. I ascended the hill. had business at &). -li. I observed to iss Wilson. and how it would only give my fair tormentors a merry laugh at my expense. and I had not yet been able to wrench them from my heart. r. and set forth on the expedition soon after breakfast. I wonder.% %'h0 then you are convinced.ext morning.% interposed iss Wilson. . calling upon me to %wait a moment. and.hey saw me. but they were barbed and deeply rooted. no0% said she. at last. It was a dull.% I submitted accordingly. . for he has business at &)% @that was our market)townA. happily. too. or was called away by his mother. it would perhaps be better to call again to)morrow. when I looked back. and went to look after my reapers. I was rendered doubly miserable for the remainder of the day. dri. you should think of referring to that unfortunate person ) you might know the mention of her would be anything but agreeable to any one here present. of your mistake ) you have at length discovered that your divinity is not quite the immaculate ) % %I desired you not to speak of her.his incident agitated and disturbed me most unaccountably ) unless you would account for it by saying that *upid%s arrows not only had been too sharp for me. for the sake of one I acknowledged in my own heart to be unworthy of the slightest sacrifice ) though the ghost of my former reverence and love so hung about me still. but that was no matter# it was all the more suitable to my frame of mind. %and will require a little refreshment before he goes. .% %+h. and 'rthur already was running to meet me. arkham feels that name is unworthy to be mentioned in the presence of right)minded females.. for I had fully determined never to encounter his mother again. in wrathful indignation from the house. and regardless of the shrill voice in my ear. leaving him to the discussion of his substantial %refreshment. rs. I beheld.% :ow could this be borne/ I rose and was about to clap my hat upon my head and burst away. as I approached.a. I beg your pardon0 I perceive *upid%s arrows have been too sharp for you# the wounds. :owever that be. so I mounted my horse. as my time was precious.a. but I immediately turned back and walked steadily homeward. five minutes after. $ut I did not visit it that day. rather. intending to visit a corn)field in the more elevated regions. that I could see nothing of her brother. and the . It was likely to be a lonely journey.%I would rather not speak of her now. indisposed for business as I was at that moment. and added that. with the best grace I could. but recollecting ) just in time to save my dignity ) the folly of such a proceeding. with very creditable determination. at no great distance. at some time when I should be sure to find him at home. &eaving them busy at work on the side of the valley. and having spent a few seconds in vengibly biting my lips and sternly repressing the passionate heavings of my chest. are not yet healed. not a trace of either was to be seen. that I could not bear to hear her name aspersed by others ) I merely walked to the window.hen. I. iss day. (raham and her son coming down in the opposite direction. CHAPTER XIV . I forced my attention to the matter in hand. I bethought me. %if you wait a minute. for. Wilson soon arrived. and see when it would be ripe for the sickle. and bleed afresh at every mention of the loved one%s name.% I pursued the even tenor of my way. and he soon relinquished the pursuit as hopeless.% I gladly quitted the house.% %2ay. %+h. and little as I cared for the field or its owner. he will be sure to come. 't all events. %that r. I had not long to wait. for it was no market)day. being more than skin)deep.

% said he. I replied with a look. and began to talk about the weather and the crops. It was no generous impulse ) no kind relentings that led me to this ) nor even the fear of what might be the consequences to myself. galloped away. but I never conjectured who the rider might be. chewing the cud of ) bitter fancies. I was letting it jog on as leisurely as it thought proper ) I lost ground. and fell back. :e fell back too.y walk ) for. in his usual quiet tone. and I took great credit to myself for attending so promptly to its dictates ) and judging the merit of the deed by the sacrifice it cost. waiting for some more tangible cause of offence. upturned face. 's I trotted along. but you would not ) % :e said no more. but to be impenetrable to all present incivilities. :e might mount it himself. quietly browsing on the road)side. for I am not sure that a species of exultation in what I had done was not one principal concomitant. I was as much astonished as exasperated at this singular pertinacity and imperturbable assurance on his part. and grasped their charge with convulsive energy. rapt in my own reflections. 2hortly. suffering my horse to slacken his pace into a la. deadly pallor that overspread his face. however. and ) swift and sudden as a flash of lightning ) brought the other down upon his head. ga. :e accosted me by name. %why do you quarrel with your friends. if he liked ) in a while# already he was beginning to stir and look about him ) and there it was for him. :ad I killed him/ ) an icy hand seemed to grasp my heart and check its pulsation. however. and triumph in my despair/ I grasped my whip with more determined energy than before ) but still forbore to raise it. I was not far wrong.road I traversed was little frequented at any other time. or rather. surprised to be so strangely relieved of its burden. if I did so. on slackening my pace to ascend a gentle acclivity. It was not without a feeling of savage satisfaction that I beheld the instant. and perhaps. for. I had thought the circumstances of our last meeting would have left such an impression on his mind as to render him cold and distant ever after# instead of that. till. the result would not be very creditable to my disposition. the effervescence began to abate. . and not many minutes elapsed before I had turned and gone back to look after the fate of my victim. and asked if my horse was lame. positive rudeness could not drive him away. before I opened the floodgates of my soul and poured out the dammed)up fury that was foaming and swelling within. but that suited me all the better too. as I bent over him. and clapping spurs to my own horse. for it was no stranger ) it was r. % arkham. It served him right ) it would teach him better manners in future. it was. excited by a combination of feelings it would not be easy to analyse. and then fell backward to the ground. the slightest hint.he pony. &awrence0 Instinctively the fingers of my whip)hand tingled. but how am I to blame for it/ I warned you beforehand. and then made use of its freedom to go and crop the grass of the hedge) bank# while its master lay as still and silent as a corpse. and the few red drops that trickled down his forehead. attempted to push on.o. simply. and kicked a little. <ormerly. he moved his eyelids and uttered a slight groan. :ad he heard of my disappointment. I breathed again ) he was only stunned by the fall. or troubled my head about him. and exposed to further injury. 2hould I help him to his horse/ . or mere fancied coldness in tone or glance. I had with breathless intensity upon the ghastly. and rode on in silence. at which he placidly smiled. but his were too unpardonable. if I finished my assault upon the squire by leaving him thus neglected. but I restrained the impulse. started and capered. because you have been disappointed in one quarter/ 1ou have found your hopes defeated. you know. and answering his salutation with a nod. and my fellow) traveller overtook me. <or any other combination of offences I would. $ut no. but he pushed on beside me. impelled by some fiend at my elbow. I gave the briefest possible answers to his queries and observations. had sufficed to repulse him# now. I heard another horse at no great distance behind me. he appeared not only to have forgotten all former offences.ed my whip by the small end. while he reeled a moment in his saddle. 2o with a muttered execration I left the fellow to his fate. the voice of conscience. . and was he come to witness the result.

which was soon accomplished. . when a sickness or di.% $ut before I abandoned him to his fate I flung his pony%s bridle over a stake in the hedge. he turned from me in disgust. and grasping his pony%s mane. somehow. or the hat.% . It wanted but this to fill the measure of his ) half in helpless anxiety. :e took it and cast it back to me in abhorrence and contempt. and scornfully cast it aside. I just looked back to see how he was getting on. I ought to have helped him in spite of himself ) to have bound up the wound he was unable to staunch. and insisted upon getting him on his horse and seeing him safe home. $ut I suppose you don%t want to lose all the blood in your body ) I%ll just condescend to bind that up for you. you fellow ) scoundrel ) dog ) give me your hand. %What. there was the question what to say to his servants ) and what to my own family. being sodden with rain. . you won%t0 Well0 you may sit there till doomsday.y turf. and threw him my handkerchief. ) looking very white and sickly still. 1ou may go to the d)l. with all the strength he could muster. before I rode away. if you choose ) and say I sent you. $ut his thoughts seemed chiefly bent upon his pony.% %&et me alone.o.% I muttered. on which he was wistfully ga. %It%s good enough for you. his clothes were considerably bemired. and having fastened my own animal to the nearest tree. to remove himself from the middle of the road# I found him seated in a recumbent position on the bank. as his own was now saturated with blood. as it seemed probable he was actuated by such spiteful motives in so perseveringly refusing my assistance. was attempting to resume his seat in the saddle. :e had risen from the ground. It must have been a powerful blow.r. with his head drooped on the animal%s back.he grass. well satisfied that I had done my duty in attempting to save him ) but forgetting how I had erred in bringing him into such a condition. afforded the young gentleman a rather inhospitable couch. he took the other from my hand. but half the credit ) or the blame of it @which you pleaseA must be attributed to the whip. for what I care. he sank back on the bank. and then made one more effort. besides my bitter indignation against himself.iness seemed to overpower him# he leant forward a moment. as calmly reclining as if he had been taking his rest on his sofa at home. however. where I left him. and his hat was rolling in the mud on the other side of the road. y next good office was to catch his pony and bring it to him. first picked up his hat. in its present condition. unfit for his head.. I attempted to take him by the arm.he pony had wandered eight or ten yards further away. %:ere. for the beast was quiet enough in the main. and holding his cambric handkerchief @now more red than whiteA to his head. and I%ll help you to mount. I must see him in the saddle. and how insultingly my after)services had been offered ) and sullenly prepared to meet the consequences if he should choose to say I had attempted to murder him ) which I thought not unlikely. with all my heart. and half in hopeless abandonment to his fate. and he had managed. With execrations not loud but deep I left him to live or die as he could. which was garnished with a massive horse%s head of plated metal. and to all appearance. I dismounted. but either he considered his head unfit for a hat. reposing his head on the oo. -ither . if you please. but scarcely had he put his foot in the stirrup. :aving remounted my horse. but. intending to clap it on his head. :e shrank away as if there had been contamination in my touch. for shrinking away the one. and only winced and flirted a trifle till I got hold of the bridle ) but then. which proving ineffectual.% %:umph. &awrence and his pony had both altered their positions in some degree.

and performed various little commissions for my mother and !ose. $ad news flies fast# it was hardly four o%clock when I got home. for.% said my mother. &awrence would probably reveal the whole truth. the crimson handkerchief. I was not obliged to enter into explanations further than I thought proper. and nothing was left to witness against me but two objects ) unpleasant enough in themselves to be sure.hat sounds far)fetched. (raham. as far as I knew them. (ilbert0 ) 2uch an accident0 !ose has been shopping in the village. I trusted the rest of the story was equally exaggerated. it is highly improbable he would break his bones in that way. "erhaps he might choose to be silent on the subject. unless I acknowledged the motive too ) and that seemed impossible ) or I must get up a lie.hus reasoning. which would set me down as a madman. (ilbert ) as soon as you%ve had something to eat/% %. his quiet little pony/% %:ow do you know it was that/% . with very laudable exactitude. for the village is all alive about it. but the horse kicked him ) or something. &awrence has been thrown from his horse and brought home dying0% . $ut no.he question. where I duly transacted my business. It must be a gross exaggeration at least. and. which. whether for her sake or his own. soaking in a deeply tinctured pool of water ) for much rain had fallen in the interim. to persist in my own version of the case. I would contradict him. What if I should find him lying still on the damp earth. I%m sure it isn%t. if he could not help himself. I was troubled with sundry misgivings about the unfortunate &awrence. considering the different circumstances of the case. and she%s heard that r. %+r to)day. and drawing the public attention to his connection with rs. for fear of raising inquiries as to the cause of the quarrel. and I saw two people that had seen others that had seen the man that found him. and if he did. . Won%t you. presuming on the absence of witnesses. as you may suppose. which seemed equally out of the question ) especially as r. . I trotted away to the town. In returning home.% %Well.% %. indented and broken above the brim by that villainous whip)handle.I should have to acknowledge the deed. not to say murderous appearance ) in one place. thank heaven. the hat saturated with rain and coated with mud.% %What. surely some one would be coming by# it would be impossible that a whole day should pass and no one traverse the road but ourselves. and you can have the pony. I would take my chance about it# if he told lies. 's for what he might choose to say hereafter.his shocked me a trifle. as your horse is tired. and perhaps a few bruises from the fall. %1ou must go and see him to)morrow. but &awrence is a good rider. he seemed so very desirous to conceal. both man and horse were gone. I had considerable difficulty in preventing myself from telling them the real extent of the injuries. if he told the truth. but I was comforted to hear that he had frightfully fractured his skull and broken a leg.o.o.% suggested !ose# %there%s plenty of time.o. . but my mother gravely accosted me with ) %+h. assured of the falsehood of this. and the appalling possibility pictured itself with painful vividness to my imagination as I approached the spot where I had left him. and make him out a still greater scoundrel than he was. I would bear it as best I could. and presenting a very ugly. . or the hoofs of his own pony# that could not kill him if he lay there half the day. and when I heard my mother and sister so feelingly deploring his condition. but it isn%t so when you think of it. it is not likely he would fall from his horse at all. fairly dying of cold and exhaustion ) or already stark and chill/ thrust itself most unpleasantly upon my mind. in another. and thereby bring me to tenfold disgrace ) unless I were villain enough. no ) how can we tell that it isn%t all a false report/ It%s highly im)% %+h. he had only received a cut above the temple.

hat day was rainy like its predecessor. arkham. and left such glittering gems on branch and blade. or drive away the keen regrets and bitter dregs of lingering love that still oppressed it. that not even the farmers could have the heart to blame it.he late rain had so sweetly freshened and cleared the air. $ut no ray of sunshine could reach my heart. but only remember the occasion. we shall like to know how he is. %Well. and no immediate prospects of dissolution. aroused me with the startling words. and washed the sky. my going was out of the question ) or sending a message either. (raham%s sake it was not his intention to criminate me.% %<or anything you know. .% %:e is not.% %<ergus may go. While I stood with folded arms abstractedly ga.% %*onfound it0 I on the undulating swell of the corn.% I replied. ' light wind swept over the corn. 'nd my seeing about it was to send <ergus next morning. mamma wants you. something gently pulled my skirts. then. with my mother%s compliments. CHAPTER XV . and a small voice. half frightened at the unexpected aspect of my . 't all events. .he lark was rejoicing among the silvery floating clouds. indeed0% I muttered. I tell you. Why do you look so queer/% said he. %you will call to)morrow. for. the consequence of lying on the wet ground in the rain. but towards evening it began to clear up a little. :e brought back intelligence that the young squire was laid up with the complicated evils of a broken head and certain contusions @occasioned by a fall ) of which he did not trouble himself to relate the particulars ) and the subsequent misconduct of his horseA. ) % r. don%t bother me now ) I%ll see about it. exaggerated or otherwise. nothing could fill the void my faith. surely you are not so unforgiving as to carry your little differences to such a length as ) % %&ittle differences. I am busy just now. (ilbert. I was out on the hill with the reapers. well. that for rs.% %Why not you/% %:e has more time. and joy in :elen (raham had left. no bree. and hope.% %+h. and a severe cold. how can you be so composed about it/ 1ou won%t mind business for an hour or two in a case of this sort.%:e seldom rides any other. and you ought to see him# he%ll take it very unkind if you don%t. half laughing.% %Wants me. .% %+h0 but.e could freshen it. my dear boy0 2urely. 'rthur/% %1es. he must have met with some terrible accident.hink how ) % %Well. no longer welcome to my ears. when your friend is at the point of death. not yet disturbed by the reapers. of course.% said my mother. and the next morning was fair and promising. he may be# you can%t tell till you have seen him. :e and I have not been on good terms of late. but there were no broken bones. to make the requisite inquiries.% %'t any rate. Whether it be true or false. and all nature laughed in the sunshine. It was evident.

moving rapidly up the field. . though I saw she was miserable. though not unkind. %(ilbert. passionately ) %but I won%t now.% pleaded she. &awrence. I must speak with you0% said she. for. for I see you are not worthy of it0% 'nd her pale lips quivered with agitation. and I believe I was right. and bear it with calmness. and I suppose she went on. as if unwilling to quit my side. It was a look less expressive of anger than of bitter anguish and despair. 2he fixed her eyes upon me with a look that pierced me to the heart. calmly and coldly. in a tone of suppressed vehemence. and yet it made me smile. $ut I soon began to regret my precipitancy in leaving her so soon. or you would not soon have listened to my traducers ) my confidence would be misplaced in you ) you are not the man I thought you. may I ask/% 2he repelled my mocking smile with a glance of scornful indignation. looking back a minute after. but now the .face in suddenly turning towards him. some of whom were directing looks of impertinent curiosity towards her.% said she. I felt glad to have it in my power to torment her. and affected to be ga. 'nd I returned to my business. %Well. and pitied her. love0% repeated she more urgently. and obtained it. %Why not. :e looked up in childish bewilderment. and if I had loved and reverenced her less to begin with. but answered nothing. for I thought that would torment her as much as anything. I imagine. and cast one look behind. (raham/% said I. for after lingering awhile to see if she would come back or call. in the interim. %+nly for a moment.% I replied. %3ust step aside into this other field. to learn all you would have told me ) and a trifle more. with little 'rthur running by her side and apparently talking as he went. and in a tone which.% said she. for I would have told you all0% cried she. but though I could see myself suspected and condemned by every one else. I looked at her pale cheek and glittering eye.he child hesitated. ) %and why have you kept so long away/ *ome0 Won%t you come/% %I%m busy just now. and saw her a good way off. scarce knowing what to answer. the preference might have gratified and amused me. but I immediately assumed an aspect of indifference. as if hoping or expecting to find me still beside her. as if to hide some uncontrollable emotion. %I don%t ask the reason of this change.% 2he turned away. (o0 I won%t care what you think of me. and I went. for. but before I could speak again the lady herself was at my side.% %Impossible.% 2he glanced at the reapers. rs. %I won%t keep you a minute. but she kept her face averted from him. (ilbert. %$ecause you never understood carelessly around me. %'rthur. I saw her turn half round. run and gather those bluebells. darling.% I accompanied her through the gap. and then she stood still. %(o. ) Why did you not come to hear my explanation on the day I appointed to give it/% %$ecause I happened. demanded prompt obedience. pointing to some that were gleaming at some distance under the hedge along which we walked. I ventured one more glance. I cannot endure it from you. It was evident she loved me ) probably she was tired of r. with bitter calmness# %I know it too well. and wished to exchange him for me.

and stood facing the door. between six and seven. and fairly satisfy myself in what light to regard her. and how she would endeavour to excuse herself.his is the last time I shall see you# don%t go just yet. .% I closed the book. how much to pity. with so much unkindness and misery on both sides. before we parted. and flaming in the latticed windows. ) between my former and my present opinion of her. very well. calm.% replied I. and how much to hate.% I did go on the morrow. %. and the westering sun was gleaming redly on the old :all. injured me ) blighted my happiness for life/ %Well. %I can crush that bold spirit. It was 2ir :umphry >avy%s %&ast >ays of a "hilosopher. with such severe but quiet dignity as almost disconcerted me. %<rederick &awrence. I could not forget it. and impudently enough. and a sudden flush suffused her features ) whether of shame or anger I .% thought I.% was my concluding resolve. and may calm with certainty some agitating thoughts. $ut still I was curious to know what sort of an explanation she would have given me ) or would give now. who told you. was so harrowing ) so distressing to my feelings. with my back to the fire)place. and what to admire in her. imparting to the place a cheerfulness not its own. but I answered with a smile. for ever. and know something more about her.hat last look of hers had sunk into my heart. 't any rate. &ost to me she was. I would see her once more. I asked. 2he met my eye as unflinchingly as if her bosom had been steeled with conscious innocence. moving to the door. collected. ) %Well.% said she. that it swallowed up every lighter consideration.% I remained. it will give a breath of excitement to the life she has doomed to stagnation. in my hand. y heart was beginning to throb. if I pressed her for it ) how much she would confess. 2howing her the book that I still held. r. what was more.o what am I indebted for this favour. 2he entered.% and on the first leaf was written. ) and. 'nd soon I heard her step in the hall. and what did they say/% I paused a moment. I would know. I%ll see her. %. %2tay a moment. and determined to dare it too. %but not to)day# to)day and to)night she may think upon her sins.% %I told you I would not give it. $ut what a fool I was0 :ad she not deceived me. I felt disposed to dally with my victim like a cat. but still I could not bear to think that we had parted.% replied she.% resumed she. as I reached it. for the last time. for I did not doubt she would come. :er limited but choice collection of books was almost as familiar to me as my own.% said she. after the business of the day was concluded. for she was not there# but there was her desk left open on the little round table beside the high)backed chair. and pointing to the name on the fly)leaf. but fixing my eye upon her face. pale. but kept it in my hand. and maintained my composure ) outwardly at least. calmly waiting her arrival. I need not dilate upon the feelings with which I approached the shrine of my former divinity ) that spot teeming with a thousand delightful recollections and glorious dreams ) all darkened now by one disastrous truth !achel admitted me into the parlour. %. but I checked it with an internal rebuke.he interview may be serviceable to her. that is. I am come to hear your explanation. I took it up. I longed to know what to despise. and be as miserable as she will# to)morrow I will see her once again.ell me. but this volume I had not seen before. as I supposed. . 2he was resolved to know the worst. however.% %+h. but not till towards evening. or it may not. %on what grounds you believe these things against me. with a book laid upon it. and went to call her mistress. awaiting her further commands. ) %>o you know that gentleman/% %+f course I do. %I said you were unworthy of my confidence. $ut while I secretly exulted in my power. of course.contrast between her outward seeming and her inward mind. arkham/% said she.

for nothing less could have cured my infatuation. that after I left you I turned back ) drawn by pure depth of sympathy and ardour of affection ) not daring to intrude my presence openly upon you.% said she. till proof itself confounded my infatuation0% %What proof. 'nd now. but unable to resist the temptation of catching one glimpse through the window. with her chin resting on her closed hand. If I did wrong. %and heard what I had to say in my own justification. I%ll tell you. and I partly blamed my own want of forbearance and discretion as the cause of it. no one0 ) it%s quite at your option whether to answer or not. love alone was my incentive. %2o you had better leave the house at once.% %'nd how much of our conversation did you hear/% %I heard quite enough. sir/% %Well. (raham. . It was ungenerous and wrong to withdraw yourself so secretly and suddenly.% rs.% %I do not make a jest of them. %I will not condescend to explain myself to one that can make a jest of such horrible suspicions.ot choosing to show myself. and all that seemed unaccountable in your position I trusted that you could account for if you chose.% returned I. %1ou should have come to me after all. hoping against hope. that you came out into the garden with your friend. baseless slanders. with her hands clasped tightly together. r. and adoring where I could not comprehend.% %'nd I tell you I won%t give it0% retorted she. 2he leant against one end of the chimney)piece. and the punishment was severe enough. It so happened. sir/% %:ow long is it since you saw him/% %Who gave you the right to catechi. just to see how you were# for I had left you apparently in great affliction. 'll the hints and affirmations of others I treated as malignant. or fixed upon the carpet. that I would never believe a word against you. almost infuriated at my manner. I stood still.could not tell# it rather resembled the latter. incredulous fool I have hitherto been. in the shadow. 1ou remember that evening when I was here last/% %I do.% %-ven then you dropped some hints that might have opened the eyes of a wiser man. for it was just as I had reached that tree. and flashing fires of indignation from her eyes.e me on this or any other subject/% %+h. unless I heard it from your own lips. breathing short. :elen. perseveringly shutting my eyes and stopping my ears against everything that threatened to shake my confidence in you. under the circumstances.% %I did not come to insult you# I came to hear your explanation. 'nd as to being easily led to suspect. then coursing the opposite wall. %What next. (raham had discontinued her walk. however. if you have not ) % %I will not be insulted. 'nd it was well for me that I did hear it. if you came only for that. (od only knows what a blind. till you had both passed by. your own self)accusations I believed to be overstrained. dropping at once my tone of taunting sarcasm. pacing the room in a state of strong excitement. opposite that near which I was standing. I always said and thought. but gleaming with restless excitement ) sometimes glancing at me while I spoke. and be so easily led to entertain them. %I heartily wish I could find them a jesting matter. immediately after such . but they had no such effect upon me# I went on trusting and believing. arkham0% cried she. her eyes ) no longer burning with anger. rs. let me ask ) have you heard what has lately befallen this friend of yours/ ) because.

(raham. it was for joy to find that you had some depth of soul and feeling after all. :eaven knows I have had torment enough at the bare possibility of that. rs. nor could you have made me discredit the evidence of my senses. looking seriously up. peruse it with half the interest that I did. and was proceeding down the walk. and rushed up)stairs to my room. as you yourself had acknowledged would probably be the case if I knew all. and snatching thence what seemed a thick album or manuscript volume. with excess of agitation. and made my life a wilderness0 I might live a hundred years. and struggling to suppress my hopes. but I could never recover from the effects of this withering blow ) and never forget it0 :ereafter ) 1ou smile. they are neither of them confined to any particular feelings# I often cry when I am happy. or such as would serve to encumber the story rather than elucidate it. and to hope that I had not been utterly mistaken in your worth. ) though @as you also acknowledgedA you had deeply wronged me.e and delivered myself up to its perusal ) first hastily turning over the leaves and snatching a sentence here and there. and her whole frame trembled. too eagerly received0% :er cheeks burned. on the subject which alone concerned me.% %. save. but I did not wish to upbraid you.% said I. determined to tolerate no interruption. I hurried home. though it was scarcely twilight yet ) then. . a few passages here and there of merely temporary interest to the writer. 1es. without ever assigning a reason for the change.ardent protestations of attachment. ) %$ring it back when you have read it. %to find that you were mistaken in your conclusions/% %:ow can you ask it. and cover her face with her hands. it was not for pleasure at the thoughts of the harm I had done you. to excuse the regard I still feel for you. suddenly stopping short.% $efore I could answer she had closed the casement and turned away. %I was not aware of it.% said she. checked in my passionate declamation by unutterable feelings to behold her actually smiling at the picture of the ruin she had wrought. while her heart beat visibly and her bosom heaved with excitement. and you shall have the whole. and then setting myself steadily to read it through. but take it home with you. you have done me an injury you can never repair ) or any other either ) you have blighted the freshness and promise of youth. having first provided myself with a candle. :elen/% %I don%t say I can clear myself altogether. "anting with eagerness. now. $ut smiles and tears are so alike with me. ) %but would you be glad to discover I was better than you think me/% %'nything that could in the least degree tend to restore my former opinion of you. and sitting down before the table.% resumed she. I saw her cast herself back in the old oak chair. I desired our intimacy to be discontinued at once. I trust to your honour. and though you could not. but I continued silent. If I did. perhaps. but flew to her desk. speaking low and fast. and thrust the rest into my hand. 1ou should have told me all)no matter how bitterly. %1ou needn%t read it all. It would have been better than this silence. of course. and seemed to expect a reply. she opened the window and called me back. and alleviate the pangs of unutterable regret that accompany it. hastily tore away a few leaves from the end.% 2he looked at me again. It begins somewhat abruptly. and smile when I am sad. shut and bolted the door. %Would you be very glad. would be only too gladly. %>id I/% replied she. thus ) but we will reserve its commencement for another chapter.o what end should I have done so/ 1ou could not have enlightened me further. It was only to say. :er feelings had been wrought to a pitch that rendered it necessary to seek relief in tears. I have it now before me. and don%t breathe a word of what it tells you to any living being. I know you would not be satisfied with an abbreviation of its contents. 2he did not speak. opened out my pri. saying. $ut when I had left the house.% and hurried from the room.

but why should you fear it/% %$ecause. 'll my former occupations seem so tedious and dull. because there is no one to meet. and feel as if I never should be. or to take a fancy to me. It is not. because there is no one to hear it. my dear. We left town sooner than was intended. I never try. I cannot get him out of my mind ) and. there is one face I am always trying to paint or to sketch. y drawing suits me best.% %Why so/% %$ecause. often. when we were sitting together over the fire. before the season is over/% %2ometimes.% %'nd do you ever contemplate the possibility of being married yourself.hat is no argument at all. very few men in the world that I should like to marry. and. %:elen. $ut. 'nd then might follow a train of other wonderments ) questions for time and fate to answer ) concluding with ) 2upposing all the rest be answered in the affirmative. we returned some days ago. %do you ever think about marriage/% %1es. and that vexes me. that I cannot attend to them. next to money. :ow distinctly I remember our conversation that evening before our departure for town. for you can boast a good family. and I may venture to say. to be supposed that you would wish to marry any one till you were asked# a girl%s affections should never be won unsought. after a thoughtful silence. because they have not power to arrest my attention# my head is so haunted with the recollections of the last few weeks. and often against her better judgment. I wonder whether he ever thinks of me. $ut when they are sought ) when the citadel of the heart is fairly besieged ) it is apt to surrender sooner than the owner is aware of.% said she. ) We have just returned to 2taningley ) that is. :elen. I cannot enjoy my books.ow. unless she be extremely careful and discreet. . my dear. or engaged. and not to suffer your heart to be stolen from you by the first foolish or unprincipled person that covets the possession of it. of these things. 's for the owner of that face. ) I wonder what would have been the result if we had stayed the full time. possibly. for I can draw and think at the same time. there will be no lack of suitors. and to exhort you to be watchful and circumspect from the very commencement of your career. I imagine. I may as well tell you likewise ) for.% %. 6756. it is twenty to one he may not happen to be single. is generally the most attractive to the . of yourself. beauty is that quality which. aunt. there must be only a very. and of those few. I want to warn you. or if I should. aunt. it is ten to one I may never be acquainted with one. others will ) that you have a fair share of beauty besides ) and I hope you may never have cause to regret it0% %I hope not. and neither your uncle nor I are in any hurry to get you off our hands. I cannot enjoy my music. a pretty considerable fortune and expectations. and I am not yet settled. hereafter. and I wonder whether I shall ever see him again. my uncle having gone to bed with a slight attack of the gout. but I don%t think it at all likely that I ever shall. if she knew what I was thinking about. may be. my former amusements so insipid and unprofitable. indeed. if I don%t.CHAPTER XVI 3une 6st. and always without success. then. and in opposition to all her preconceived ideas of what she could have loved. and those who do not care about them. I wonder whether I shall ever repent it/ as my aunt would tell me I should. in consequence of my uncle%s indisposition. I cannot enjoy my walks. that there are very few men whom you would choose to marry. there is plenty of time before you. they. I am quite ashamed of my new)sprung distaste for country life. you are only just eighteen. indeed. and if my productions cannot now be seen by any one but myself. ) 1ou know. It may be very true ) and I hope is true.

through weakness. I wonder if she was ever in love. then approve. as far as they go ) in the main points at least. I ought to be able to respect and honour the man I marry. as my uncle calls it ) kindling with bright hopes and fancies ) chiefly raised by this conversation ) and full of confidence in my own discretion. %1ou have not been tried yet. therefore. ?eep a guard over your eyes and ears as the inlets of your heart. for I cannot love him without. and over your lips as the outlet. and. then love. 2o set your mind at rest. ) %I know it is. lest they betray you in a moment of unwariness. and some. :elen ) we can but hope. have fallen into snares and temptations terrible to relate. aunt/ If everybody followed your advice.% %!emember "eter. and let your affections be consequent upon approbation alone. and ever so charming. ) . you little know the misery that would overwhelm you if. without approving. and sigh for the freshness and freedom of home. and moderate wealth. &et your eyes be blind to all external attractions. matrimony is a serious thing. good sense. but I am not sure her doubts were entirely without sagacity. but you need not fear me.% said she in her cold. every attention. :elen ) I am sorry to see you treat the matter in that light way. :elen0 >on%t boast. my dear0 the male fools and reprobates will never want for partners.% %Well. "rinciple is the first thing.worst kinds of men. but I should never be tempted to do it. it is likely to entail a great deal of trouble on the possessor. but they will and must be so# for. 't first.o. aunt/% %. and merely answered. you should find him to be a worthless reprobate. after all. but soon I began to weary of its mingled turbulence and constraint.% %. y new acquaintances. as well as love him. I fear I have found it much easier to remember her advice than to profit by it.% %:ave you been troubled in that way. coldly and dispassionately. both male and female. or even an impracticable fool.hese are nothing ) and worse than nothing ) snares and wiles of the tempter. %I know it is so. for I not only should think it wrong to marry a man that was deficient in sense or in principle. and vexed and depressed me by . to lure the thoughtless to their own destruction.ever fear. :elen. respectability. $elieve me. ) indeed. cautious way. I commenced my career ) or my first campaign.% 'nd she spoke it so seriously. till you have ascertained and duly considered the worth of the aspirant. I cannot love. ) but there are some things she has overlooked in her calculations. have been the wretched victims of deceit. after all. and most accomplished and superficially agreeable man in the world. and next to that. I should hate him ) despise him ) pity him ) anything but love him. %I was vexed at her incredulity. I have sometimes been led to question the soundness of her doctrines on those subjects.% answered she. disappointed my expectations.% %$ut what are all the poor fools and reprobates to do. <irst study. your ears deaf to all the fascinations of flattery and light discourse. If you should marry the handsomest.% persisted I.% said she. for I could not like him. but I asked no more impertinent questions. through carelessness. y affections not only ought to be founded on approbation.% %I hope it may be so. but watch. 'nd this is no subject for jesting. if he were ever so handsome. the world would soon come to an end. with reproachful gravity. I shall be neither careless nor weak. and some. but do you follow my advice. I was delighted with the novelty and excitement of our &ondon life. that one might have fancied she had known it to her cost. It is needless to say. and I know there is truth and sense in what you say. while there are so many of the other sex to match them. in other respects. !eceive. :er counsels may be good. %but I know many that have.

and he was my companion during the remainder of my stay. $oarham now/% said my aunt. that it did not anger me. however. however. and my patience was quite exhausted. which was not long. drone. $oarham had come upon me and seemed determined to cling to me for the rest of the night. %Well. evidently much amused at my companion%s remorseless pertinacity and my manifest annoyance. 'nd there was another. It appeared as if the whole evening was fated to be insupportable# I had just had one dance with an empty)headed coxcomb. but he kept me from the enjoyment of more agreeable society. I was sorry to go. and. and then r. 's it was. I never would have hated him. :e asked me to was a certain graceful ease and freedom about all he said and did. $oarham by name. that gave a sense of repose and expansion to the mind. . and heartless. and she introduced him as r. but. and sounding his praises in my ears ) r. I am sure. he had been more than usually tormenting. it was almost impossible to help it. they provoked me the next. +ne night. sharp answers were received as smart sallies of girlish vivacity. ' gentleman stood by. $oarham. they both came up. I gladly consented. :untingdon. I daresay. 1et he was a decent man enough in the main. 2ullen silence was taken for rapt attention. $ut there was one present who seemed to have a better appreciation of my frame of mind. and bringing down upon me endless floods of reasoning to overwhelm me with conviction. calling forth new strains of argument to support his dogmas. it was because I knew them less ) perhaps. if their attentions pleased me one moment. insisted upon an early departure. it is true. I for I soon grew tired of studying their peculiarities. for I had found my new acquaintance a very lively and entertaining companion. . and laughing to himself at the asperity and uncompromising spirit of my was one elderly gentleman that annoyed me very much. . I believe. for. my aunt looking complacently on all the time. for my aunt would not hear them ) and they ) the ladies especially ) appeared so provokingly mindless. even to positive rudeness# nothing could convince him that his presence was disagreeable. besides being old. though my aunt scolded me for saying so. that only required an indulgent rebuke. and so grateful for my late deliverance from r. as I prefer spelling it. :elen. of course. $ore%em. and there he sat. a little too much careless boldness in his manner and address. but she allowed he was no might be. r. and if he had kept his distance. but still more tiresome. and was always thrusting him upon me. prosing away by the half)hour together. and amusing me with entertaining discourse. for a terrible bore he was# I shudder still at the remembrance of his voice ) drone. who had been watching our conference for some time. for my aunt. in my ear ) while he sat beside me. or impressing his dogmas upon me and reforming my errors of judgment. but. how do you like and drove away. drone. at a ball. thought I could not do better than marry him. and impressing all beholders with the idea that he was a confirmed. as usual. by revealing my vanity and making me fear I was becoming like some of the ladies I so heartily despised. and artificial. but I did not fall in love with any of them. after so much constraint and formality as I had been doomed to suffer. as we took our seats in the carriage . for he not only bothered me with the infliction of his own presence. and beguiling himself with the notion that he was improving my mind by useful information. he was ugly and disagreeable. and went to the lady of the house. because they flattered me.turns. ) and wicked. and gave him greater room to talk. and flat contradictions were but as oil to the flames. who. perhaps. apparently for the purpose of asking an introduction to me. and wishing him (od)speed. :e never danced himself. . because they put me out of humour with myself. but I was in so good a humour. and laughing at their foibles ) particularly as I was obliged to keep my criticisms to myself. a rich old friend of my uncle%s. shortly after.he gentlemen scorned better. less hateful. he withdrew. poking his head in my face. 't length. acknowledged lover. the son of a late friend of my uncle%s. In vain I attempted to drive him away by giving a loose to my exasperated feelings. or perhaps that he was talking down to my level. because she favoured him.

who did not.% said my aunt. and I always judge of people%s characters by their looks ) not by whether they are handsome or ugly. but then :elen won%t hear of that match# for. somebody does. 2he looked displeased. %:e was jesting then.% %<alse reasoning. %Who was the gentleman you danced with last. as I am not likely to meet him again ) unless as an occasional partner in the ball)room.= 2o I%d have you beware. somehow. aunt ) besides. though. these old chaps don%t go down with the girls ) with all their money. apologising for not having done so before. and had not heard. I%ve heard him say. but that%s not saying much for than rs. with a sigh. then. sometimes in public. sanguine disposition. consider himself greatly obliged by the attention. I should know by your countenance that you were not of a cheerful. by saying he was only lately returned from the *ontinent. we ought to be charitable.% he would say. than Wilmot with his house full of gold. the son of uncle%s old friend. sometimes at home. <or instance. that he was a worthless old reprobate.% I replied.% said I. :untingdon. and their experience to boot. but a bit wildish. aunt# he never attempted to help me till he saw r. he%s a pretty tidy fortune. and prone to every vice that is common to youth. %and here he was speaking at random ) at least.% %I have heard your uncle speak of young r. :e came to call upon my uncle. I don%t think it is false# I am an excellent physiognomist. and then he stepped laughingly forward and said. till the previous night. I%ll preserve you from that infliction.=% %Who was it. "eggy. of my uncle%s arrival in town. you know. Wouldn%t you. uncle. :elen/ ) :ey/ :e wants none o% my company. %It was r. and by r.% %I wish you%d tell him so. %Why. and by r. $oarham coming to do so. mayhap% @winking at meA. for I%d rather be an old maid and a pauper . possibly. but said no more on that subject. that he was neither a fool nor a knave. and after that I often met him. =:e%s a fine lad. :untingdon. what for/ If I don%t want him. you know ) not such a catch as Wilmot. when he was young.%Worse than ever. but by the general cast of the countenance. .% It was not so. :elen0% said she. ) %can you tell.% resumed she. that he was not an agreeable companion.% 2he sternly shook her head. %I wonder what the deuce the lad means by coming so often.% r.ell/% %1es. and I should know by r. however.% %$ut I%ve heard uncle say he was a sad wild fellow himself. I%ll bet anything she%d rather have this young fellow without a penny. :untingdon%s. after a pause ) %that was so officious in helping you on with your shawl/% %:e was not officious at all. I ask/% said she. =*ome. that young :untingdon. for I met him again next morning. for he was very assiduous in paying his respects to his old friend. Wilmot%s. Wilmot. I fancy.% %What does =a bit wildish= mean/% I inquired. %Well. neither a sage nor a saint ) but that is no matter to me. I cannot believe there is any harm in those laughing blue eyes. I suppose. $oarham%s. :untingdon. %$esides. with frigid gravity. nor I his ) that%s certain. however. %It means destitute of principle.

I%ll give you my reasons afterwards. but consider well before you go.% %. :elen0 :ow many such men do you expect to meet with in the world/ 4pright. $oarham is in no particular hurry. $ut five minutes after. :untingdon/ What would you rather be than rs.ell me. .% 'nd I left the room immediately. but ) % %$ut. then/ $ut come. :elen. you ) % . my dear0 this is no trifling matter. for he has little doubt of your acceptance. honourable. you might please yourself. aunt0 ) *an%t you tell him I%m indisposed/ ) I%m sure I am ) to see him. honourable man/% %. noble I may call them. my dear.o. for I want to be civil and yet decided ) and when I%ve got rid of him. of course. What will you say/ ) that is the question.% %'h0 it needs consideration. and closed the door behind her. give me your reasons.hink how ) % r. I beheld r.hen footsteps were heard on the stairs. now ) would you rather be an old maid ) let alone the pauper/% %I can%t tell till I%m asked. if you liked to accept %>id he say obliging offer/% %. he may be all this. %:ere is r. and how many inestimable virtues they include @and I might add many more to the listA. he said if you liked to take him you might. but not too fondly so as to blind him to your faults. respectable/% %.% %$ut stay.onsense. and I want to speak with you. and what did you say/% %It is no matter what I said.% %+h. in looking from my window. %:e wishes to see you. but you must tell me how. :elen. .o. and if not. and will be your guide throughout life%s pilgrimage.% %I hope my uncle and you told him it was not in your power to give it. to escape further examination.% %I shall refuse him. and if you intend to refuse him. sober. respectable0 Is this such an every)day character that you should reject the possessor of such noble qualities without a moment%s hesitation/ 1es.% %:e said right. :e is come on a very important errand ) to ask your hand in marriage of your uncle and me.% %>o you deny that he is sensible. and your partner in eternal bliss. r. and my aunt entered the room with a solemn countenance. for think of the full meaning of each. sit down a little and compose yourself. It is in your power to secure this inestimable blessing for life ) a worthy and excellent husband. I waited nearly half)an)hour in uncomfortable suspense. who loves you tenderly. what are your objections to him/ >o you deny that he is an upright. expecting every minute to be called. $oarham. and vainly longing to hear him go. What right had he to ask any one before me/% %:elen0% %What did my uncle say/% %:e said he would not interfere in the matter. sensible.% said she. :untingdon ) eh/% %I%ll tell you when I%ve considered the matter. and consider that all this is laid at your feet. :e is now waiting to ask you himself.o. sober. $oarham coming up to the door.%'nd rs. $oarham%s obliging offer. .

% %+r that you desire a further acquaintance. voice. as you yourself would shortly discover if the experiment were tried.% %$ut I don%t desire a further acquaintance ) quite the contrary. and put him out of suspense ) so let me go. on the other hand. but let me assure you. humming snatches of tunes and nibbling the end of his cane. it is but right that I should tell him so at once. but about r. $oarham. :e was walking up and down the drawing) room. but must beg to decline the honour you wish to confer. or better ) if you think that possible ) provided she could like him.% said he. 'nd please to compare him for a moment with r. I have an aversion to his whole person that I never can surmount. %and I am greatly obliged for your preference. *ome.% %I have no doubt r. finally. for I think we were not made for each other. but speak out at once. but only to repeat what I said before. my dear. and perhaps some other things. now0 What do you say/ &et us have no young lady%s affectations and caprices. in temperament. bowing and smirking with great complacency. and even rebuke them with all a father%s care.% y aunt was right. but we are not talking about him now. his looks.ed.% said I. fourthly.%$ut I hate him. he is at least forty years old ) considerably more. I love him so much that I wish him a better wife than I ) one as good as himself. but too incredulous to be much offended. and. aunt. and. and after a little humming and hawing. $oarham. as I shall endeavour to make them all conducive to your happiness. his tastes and feelings are wholly dissimilar to mine. :untingdon.% %1ou really think so/% . I should think ) and I am but eighteen. %I have your kind guardian%s permission ) % %I know. that I am certain we were not made for each other. and which you have so often professed to hold in light esteemA. sir. good looks apart @which contribute nothing to the merit of the man. and it would offend him greatly# say you have no thoughts of matrimony at present ) % %$ut I have thoughts of it. and while I acknowledge them to myself. %I know. live. It was quite evident he had had little doubt of my acceptance.% said I. that there exists a considerable disparity between us in years. no youthful lover could be more tenderly indulgent towards the object of his affections than I to you.% %. he has no idea of such a thing. 's a man. but as a husband. believe me. interrupting this unusual flow of eloquence. and die in single blessedness ) than be his wife. :e was ama. and no idea of a positive denial. :untingdon is a much better man than you think him.hen you ought to surmount it.% %I will. he returned to the attack. or to the happiness of married life. astounded at such an answer. but I never could. and as I would rather grow. and. % y dear young lady. :elen0 Is this a *hristian spirit/ ) you hate him/ and he so good a man0% %I don%t hate him as a man. wishing to shorten the scene as much as possible. thirdly.% 'nd without waiting for further admonitions I left the room and went to seek r. I shall not be severe to mark the faults and foibles of a young and ardent nature such as yours. tell me which is the better man. he is narrow)minded and bigoted in the extreme. secondly. %:ate him. and therefore ) % %$ut why not/ What objection do you find/% %<irstly. and manner are particularly displeasing to me. let me hope that my more experienced years and graver habits of reflection will be no disparagement in your eyes.% %$ut don%t give him a flat denial.

and no persuasion can alter my inclinations. though wearied with his so pertinaciously returning to the same point and repeating the same arguments over and over again. but might easily be removed or mitigated by the patient efforts of a watchful and judicious adviser.herefore. I trusted.%I do. but remember. since I am satisfied. $oarham. r.% but he pertinaciously interrupted me with. the brightest attractions to the lover too often prove the husband%s greatest torments0= I assure you my choice has not been made without much reasoning and reflection. my dearest girl. but rather an earnest of virtues yet unblown ) a strong ground of presumption that her little defects of temper and errors of judgment. and where I failed to enlighten and control. Indeed.o. CHAPTER XVII . . that there was no shadow of a chance that either he or my aunt would ever be able to overcome my objections. bewitching creature. :e had two ladies staying with him# his niece 'nnabella. that it cannot be.% I would have said. but I won%t trespass upon your goodness. that I found him very troublesome. r. my dear young lady. in very deed.% %'h. ) of some five)and) . but surely it was not my fault. so pray don%t say any more about it. .% %$ut you don%t know me ) you wish for a further acquaintance ) a longer time to ) % %.% Ec. 1ou may save your indulgence and consideration for some more worthy object. or induce me to believe that such a step would be conducive to my happiness or yours ) and I wonder that a man of your experience and discretion should think of choosing such a wife. I don%t. I shall not trouble myself to put down all that passed between us. I take the liberty of judging for myself. I saw my sweet girl was not without her faults. it is on my own account I principally object. protect you.ake care. at least/% %$ut to tell you the truth. I don%t look for perfection. 2uffice it to say. . that excellent lady. disconcerted and offended. well0% said he. will ) % %I have consulted her. and never could ) and the more you talk the further you repel me.% %$ut. man ) look before you leap0 . $oarham. and many a sleepless hour by night. for the sake of her many excellences.his is a sweet. and withdrew. and better than you know me. I am not sure that I succeeded after all. if you would behave like a sensible man ) but I cannot love you. %for it is worse than useless to pursue it any further.he next day I accompanied my uncle and aunt to a dinner)party at r. or manner were not irremediable.ow $oarham. so let us ) drop the subject. imprudent. a fine dashing girl. I am sure. I know you as well as I ever shall. I respect you ) at least. why should you object ) on my account. I at length turned short and sharp upon him. forcing me to reiterate the same replies.% %$ut let me beg you to consult your aunt. or rather young woman. and I know her wishes coincide with yours. Wilmot%s. I can excuse ) % %. what is this you%re after/ . =. I would respect you. that won%t tax them so heavily.he seeming imprudence of the match has cost me many an anxious thought by day. but at length I satisfied myself that it was not.o consideration can induce me to marry against my inclinations. or you would never dream of uniting yourself to one so incongruous ) so utterly unsuitable to you in every way. I have sometimes said to myself. opinion. and my last words were. Ec. and very hard to convince that I really meant what I said. cherish you. ) %I tell you plainly. and really was so obstinate and blind to my own interests. ) %$ut why so/ I would love you. no doubt. but of these her youth.hank you.% Whereupon he wished me a good)morning. but in such important matters. was not one. I thought I might safely undertake to pardon. %I have sometimes wondered at that myself..

It is quite possible he might have chosen iss Wilmot. and doubtless my countenance lowered. (rimsby. though. :e did not sit near me at dinner. $ut while I was assuring her that I had no wish to join them. who universally pronounced her a splendid woman. and was not tired. as the gentlemen joined us in the drawing)room. when she. that I have mentioned the party# it was for the sake of another of the different members of the company present. and defer the examination of the remainder to another opportunity. What a tiresome custom that is. at her particular desire. and against my better judgment my wrath rose. %'re these yours/% said he. and albeit he made some clever remarks. without the adventitious aids of look. though he was talking all the time. r. but greatly admired by the gentlemen. which cast a halo over all he did and said. under pretence of wishing to see the drawings. and some excessively droll ones. but a man I very greatly disliked# there was a sinister cast in his countenance. however. for ilicent. and which would have made it a delight to look in his face. for it was his fate to hand in a capacious old dowager. I should entirely exclude poor ilicent in my general animadversions against the ladies of my acquaintance. :untingdon would have taken me. if written here. and aiding her with my critical observations and advice. and glanced across the table. was very fond of her. that she cared and knew nothing about. let%s have a look at them. to the neglect and evident umbrage of their respective neighbours ) and afterwards. If the gentlemen must lead the ladies into the dining) room. that I could not away with.% %+h0 well. :untingdon.twenty. addressing herself to r. and he answered the summons with alacrity. too great a flirt to be married. why cannot they take those they like best/ I am not sure. and he seemed nothing loth to pay the homage she demanded. but I found his conversation extremely interesting. and mine to be handed in by r. one by one from my hand. by)the)by ) one among the many sources of factitious annoyance of this ultra)civilised life. it was chiefly confined to qui. my attention wandered from the drawings to the merry group. to wit r. at least. carelessly taking up one of the drawings. I do not think the whole would appear anything very particular. with one of her coldest and most repellent aspects. :untingdon himself came up to the little round table at which we sat.. and receiving the drawings. and her gentle cousin. if he had been at liberty to make his own selection. I don%t know what ilicent :argrave thought of such conduct. if he had been talking positive nonsense ) and which. ilicent :argrave. and a mixture of lurking ferocity and fulsome insincerity in his demeanour. :untingdon. as I afterwards discovered. when I came to analyse it. I have good reason to remember his presence there. she was obviously in the wrong ) and then stood chatting familiarly with her and a group of other ladies. made me feel so bitter against my aunt when she put a stop to this enjoyment.o. begged I would join the company now. mistaking me for something vastly better than I was. $ut in spite of my efforts to remain composed. who had taken a violent fancy to me.% 'nd. %. and threw them on the table. I thought so. and tone. according to her own assertion. regardless of iss :argrave%s protestations that they were not worth looking at. while I sat with ilicent :argrave at the opposite end of the room. successively scanned them over. Wilmot%s guests. but said not a word about them. and gesture. for this was the last time I saw him. and beginning a series of the most common)place and formidably formal . to my thinking. and while making believe to examine them. and that ineffable but indefinite charm. 'nd I. and decided the question without a moment%s hesitation in her favour ) though. immediately upon his entrance. observing that I must be tired of her daubs and scratches. or her cousin%s. loudly called upon him to be the arbiter of a dispute between herself and another lady. $ut it was not on her account. looking over the latter%s drawings. for she seemed bent upon engrossing his attention to herself. that r. they are iss :argrave%s. a friend of his. by coming composedly forward. moreover. in return. and hear the music of his voice. when I saw how they talked and laughed. he drew a chair to my side.

It was like turning from some purgatorial fiend to an angel of light. he interrupted me with. but I feared there was more of conscious power than tenderness in his demeanour. I adore you0 I ) % .% %I am very much obliged to you. Wilmot will excuse you a moment. and I never resented the freedomA. and subsequently to enjoy my private thoughts. Wilmot. and I was driven to the very verge of desperation.ever mind the picture# it was not for that I brought you here.-)-).% I rose with alacrity. and I felt he had no right to extort a confession of attachment from me when he had made no correspondent avowal himself. and more repulsively warm. as I thought# and having now looked through the portfolio. . nor would it have greatly availed me if I had. but merely to indulge. was less surprised than delighted to see r. Instinctively. and so firm his conviction of feminine weakness. %. I had flattered myself that I had so effectually repulsed his advances on all former occasions. :untingdon smiling upon me. but not sufficiently examined. r. as I was now his guest. though I don%t think I have any great reason to dread them as rivals.% he answered# %it is not all kindness to you. and I was no hand at a polite but determined rejection. that hung over the arm of the sofa. I was beginning to comment on its beauties and peculiarities. on purpose to wrest his attention from me ) on purpose to vex me. quite apart from the company ) never thinking how strange such conduct would appear.questions and observations. took advantage of my isolated position to come and plant himself beside me. 'fter a moment of silent contemplation. but greatly as I abhorred him at that moment. :elen/% %1ou know I detest them both.% said he @he frequently called me :elen.% %>on%t be too thankful. %I want you to look at this picture. I guessed who it was. but it seems I was mistaken# so great was his confidence. and knew not what to answer.he consequence was. %:elen. 't last I said. when. playfully pressing the hand he still retained within his arm. for r. I%m sure. ) %:ow do you regard me/% %2weet angel. come to announce that the season of torment was past. I did not like to treat him with rudeness. and seated myself on a sofa. at first. it is partly from a feeling of spite to your tormentors that makes me delighted to do the old fellows a bad turn. enkindled by the quantity of wine he had drunk ) a circumstance that rendered him infinitely the more disgusting. which he did with renovated ardour. it was to get you away from that scoundrelly old profligate yonder. of all men the least welcome.-. and. when I felt my hand. suddenly taken by another and gently but fervently pressed. $ut I was not left long alone. and led me across the room to a splendid painting of Fandyke%s that I had noticed before. and had just been enjoying his hospitality. who is looking as if he would like to challenge me for the affront. on looking up.% %'nd me/% %I have no reason to detest you. ) %.% %$ut what are your sentiments towards me/ :elen ) 2peak0 :ow do you regard me/% 'nd again he pressed my hand.-. for he was too coarse)minded to take any repulse that was not as plain and positive as his own effrontery. that he waxed more fulsomely tender.% said I. the vexation of the moment. either in his wealth or his remaining powers of attraction. :e drew my arm within his. :ave I. I left them to their .-. that he thought himself warranted to return to the siege. and about to say I know not what.his is twice you have delivered me from such unpleasant companionship. that I had nothing more to apprehend from his unfortunate predilection.

o. 'nd I left him. . :elen.% %What was he saying then/ I heard something very like it. however. and your eyes have recovered something of their natural expression. or rather at right angles with mine. for you should never be tempted to marry a man who was deficient in sense or principle.% %2peak gently then. >o you come too. and where reason and judgment withheld their sanction/% %1es. and then. I should be ashamed for anyone to see you in your present state. such a remark had no effect in reducing the %shocking colour%. %Was %.% %'nd would you have accepted him. now. my dear. but provoking aunt.% said my calm. and fixing your affections where approbation did not go before. I see# I shall join them. but pushed aside the curtain and looked into the night ) or rather into the lamp)lit square. %We shall return home shortly. our conversation the night but one before we left 2taningley/% %1es. and thus opened the conference# %>o you remember. my aunt followed me thither. %I have much to say to you. muttering maledictions against his evil angel. when you are fit to be seen. :elen. %I want you to join the company.he ladies are directing inquiring glances towards us at this moment. closed the door.% returned she. low voice of my aunt. who was carefully stowing away my ornaments. With due deference I offered her my more commodious seat.% %'nd do you remember how I warned you against letting your heart be stolen from you by those unworthy of its possession. Well.% she added. close beside us.%:elen.% %I don%t know what he would have said.% 2o I went home prepared for a formidable lecture. following her to the embrasure of the window. however handsome or charming in other respects he might be. for you could not love him. but when I had entered my room and thrown myself into an easy) chair. I want you a moment. you should hate ) despise ) pity ) anything but love him ) were not those your words/% %1es.% +f course. of which indignant. to reflect on the events of the day. :untingdon proposing to you. %you have made yourself conspicuous enough for one evening. %but please to stay here a little. but my reason ) % %"ardon me ) and do you remember assuring me that there was no occasion for uneasiness on your account. severely regarding me. on the contrary. sat down. %Well.% %+h0 I%m glad. aunt. when you are sufficiently composed to appear as usual. and don%t look so malicious. if he had proposed/% %+f course not ) without consulting uncle and you. 2he declined it. what is it/ What do you want/% said I.% %I am so now. but ) % r. you have so much prudence left. :elen/% inquired my too watchful relative. &ittle was said by either party in the carriage during our short transit homewards. . aunt. and having dismissed !achel. and placing a chair beside me. swelling anger was the chief. I offered no reply.% she added with solemn significance. I felt my face glow with redoubled fires kindled by a complication of emotions. till that shocking colour is somewhat abated. if you hadn%t interrupted him. after a moment%s pause.% said the distinct.

well)conducted young man/% %I know nothing positive respecting his character. but it is only for want of thought. that he is a virtuous. :e always listens attentively now when I speak seriously to him @and I often venture to reprove his random way of talkingA. besides.% %1ou think. :elen. It may he partly jest and partly flattery. If he had some one to advise him. aunt.hanks to you. that if he has committed errors.hen.% %Who told you so. and that. and all the mammas smile upon him. full ten years older than you ) how is it that you are so beforehand in moral acquirements/% %. but I do approve. he is.hat sounds presumptuous. my sense and my principle are at his service. I only know that I have heard nothing definite against it ) nothing that could be proved.%'nd did you not say that your affection must be founded on approbation. has not. you could not love/% %1es. now you have made him out to be deficient in both sense and principle. exactly.% %. thoughtless profligate would allow himself to be guided by a young girl like you/% %. >o you think you have enough for both. at least. 'nd I know this. for I see that everybody likes him. thoughtless temper. I should not wish to guide him. and. :e has a good disposition. I have been well brought up. %I don%t believe a word of it. and a gay. by your own confession ) % %. my dear. but still ) % %$ut still you think it may be truth/% %If I do think there is any mixture of truth in it.hat is nothing to the purpose. and I am naturally inclined to reflection. he is of a sanguine temperament. and such as nobody thinks anything about. my dear/ Is r.o. and do you imagine your merry. I will not believe them. I believe. and respect ) % %:ow so. it is not from confidence in my own powers. but in his natural goodness. and remind him of what is right ) % %:e would soon learn. and I should think my life well spent in the effort to preserve so noble a nature from destruction. and their daughters ) and iss Wilmot herself ) are only too glad to attract his attention. 'nd you have no right to call him a profligate. :untingdon a good man/% %:e is a much better man than you think him.% %. they are only such as are common to youth. which he. and sometimes he says that if he had me always by his side he should never do or say a wicked thing. Is he a good man/% %1es ) in some respects. unless you could approve and honour and respect. most likely. my dear/ What was that story about his intrigue with a married lady ) &ady who was it/ ) iss Wilmot herself was telling you the other day/% %It was false ) false0% I cried.% %Well. aunt. and that a little daily talk with me would make him quite a saint. then. you think ) and you yourself would willingly undertake to be his teacher/ $ut.% %Is he a man of principle/% %"erhaps not.% . and had good examples always before me. and till people can prove their slanderous accusations. and honour. he is nothing of the kind. but I think I might have influence sufficient to save him from some errors.

even supposing your suspicions to be mainly true. or hear. :untingdon. she so hurried the preparations for removal @as much for my sake as my uncle%s. :is physician supported and enforced her arguments. :elen. for at this juncture my uncle%s voice was heard from his chamber. whom he calls his friends. or see. and whose chief delight is to wallow in vice. I love the sinner. his jolly companions. ask your uncle what sort of company he keeps. at least. and I think it will not. If he has done amiss. :e was in a bad humour that night. the fancy that lights me on my lonely way. without seeking to penetrate beyond the surface. and contrary to her usual habits. and would do much for his salvation. that even if I should see him again. ) I am now quite settled down to my usual routine of steady occupations and quiet amusements ) tolerably contented and cheerful. I did not think you would call these venial errors0% %. for still he is always in my thoughts and in my dreams. now. I trusted. whatever new beauties in nature or art I discover are to be depicted to meet his eye. that in a very few days we departed. for if mine is altogether wrong. and if he should ask me to marry him ) I am determined not to consent until I know for certain whether my aunt%s opinion of him or mine is nearest the truth. and by whom surroundedA. I shall consider my life well spent in saving him from the consequences of his early errors. aunt. In all my employments. but for the chance of meeting r. my dear. the world may look upon such offences as venial.% %Well. alas0 is too little probable. a few unprincipled mothers may be anxious to catch a young man of fortune without reference to his character. It had been gradually increasing upon him ever since we came to town. without waiting for the close of the season.% %. after all. and if he is not banded with a set of loose.hen I will save him from them. it is not he that I love. as long as it does not lure me from the path I ought to keep. and vie with each other who can run fastest and furthest down the headlong road to the place prepared for the devil and his angels. or stored in my memory to be told him at some future period. for I have thought deeply on my aunt%s advice. profligate young men. notwithstanding all you say. and if he should remember me and love me still @which. considering how he is situated. . I thinkA. not for its gaieties and dissipations.% %+h. I wonder if it will/ CHAPTER XVIII 'ugust 5Cth. and she may continue to think so. It may be only an ignis fatuus. but you. it is a creature of my . has an ultimate reference to him.or do I. whatever I do. but if I hate the sins.%:elen. is the hope that I cherish. the folly of throwing myself away on one that is unworthy of all the love I have to give. till we meet again ) if ever that should be. which I do not and will not believe. for his gout was worse. and thoughtless girls may be glad to win the smiles of so handsome a gentleman. (od grant me success0% :ere the conversation ended. for I never mention his name. :untingdon once again. I will leave better men to those who only consider their own advantage. :elen0 you little know the misery of uniting your fortunes to such a man0% %I have such confidence in him. and my aunt took advantage of the circumstance next morning to persuade him to return to the country immediately. and judge with their perverted judgment. and I saw no more of r. and incapable of responding to the best and deepest feelings of my inmost heart ) so clearly. loudly calling upon my aunt to come to bed. were better informed than to see with their eyes. whatever skill or knowledge I acquire is some day to be turned to his advantage or amusement. but it can do no harm to follow it with my eyes and rejoice in its lustre. and striving to recall him to the path of virtue.his. aunt. y aunt flatters herself I shall soon forget him ) perhaps she thinks I have forgotten him already. and I see clearly. that I would willingly risk my happiness for the chance of securing his. but still looking forward to spring with the hope of returning to town.

and my aunt%s friend. and. gloomy)looking man. apparently between thirty and forty. but I don%t wish to trouble her with my feelings till I know whether I ought to indulge them or not. :untingdon%s attention from me. but then it will not laugh at them. but I shall be glad of ilicent%s company# she is a sweet. and I want to be alone. and the ladies are with my aunt. I will try what may be done by detailing the cause of my uneasiness. I suppose my aunt thinks the latter will benefit me by her society. and of a somewhat sickly. so it is. I have retired to the library. they shall trouble no one but myself. at least. . Wilmot is to bring his niece and her cousin ilicent. but all regret and apprehension vanished like a dream when I heard that r. $ooks cannot divert me. :untingdon was actually to be a third0 y aunt is greatly against his coming. of course# she earnestly endeavoured to dissuade my uncle from asking him.hey came the day before yesterday. for I am very unhappy. and if I can really feel myself justified in indulging this attachment. ) and how deeply I was disappointed at every arrival. I quitted my post a few minutes to look in upon her and have a little private conversation. for she was now my intimate friend. I cannot express my joy. and there stood he upon the steps. and nothing now remained but to fix the day for their coming. If I find it my absolute duty to suppress them. ) and. <irst came r. it cannot tell again. +n returning to my window. <irst. I can dare anything. but my uncle has ordered the gamekeeper to spare the partridges till the gentlemen come.o)day is the first of 2eptember. no ) there is a secret something ) an inward instinct that assures me I am right. even the anger and grief of my best friend. good girl. . . and watched for nearly two hours.his struck me as terrible news at the moment. what bliss to recall him0 If he is now exposed to the baneful influence of corrupting and wicked companions. at work in the drawing)room. carefully superintending the dislodging of his various boxes and packages.his paper will serve instead of a confidential friend into whose ear I might pour forth the overflowings of my heart. the best friend I could have for the purpose.o.he gentlemen are all gone out to shoot. it was r. I find it very difficult to conceal it from my aunt. %What gentlemen/% I asked when I heard it. and the former I suspect she intends as a species of counter) attraction to win r.hey are come. Wilmot and the ladies. r. 2o he is safe. When ilicent had got into her room. I shall soon know. for no one could call him a jolly companion. and I am sure of seeing him. I beheld another carriage at the door. :is friend r. and I wish I were like her ) more like her. Was it his/ . laughing at her objections. for the mischief was already done# he had invited :untingdon and his friend &ord &owborough before we left &ondon. . and the salutary example of her gentle deportment and lowly and tractable spirit. besides. GGGGG is essential goodness in him.own imagination. for its object ) surely. another. let me speak of his arrival ) how I sat at my window. ' considerable time after. . thin. We are to have two lady visitors also# r. ' small party he had invited to shoot. but he. $ut I think it is not wrong ) no. $oarham%s plain dark chariot. if I keep it close. It will not sympathise with my distresses. told her it was no use talking. . $ut they are not coming till about the middle of the month. I don%t thank her for this. Wilmot was one. before his carriage entered the park) gates ) for they all came before him. What a collection0 +ne would have thought he projected a visit of six months at least. because it was not his. than I am. what glory to deliver him from them0 +h0 if I could but believe that :eaven has designed me for this0 GGGGG . ) and what delight to unfold it0 If he has wandered. several long epistles having passed between us since our parting. Is he one of the profligate friends. he appears too sober and gentlemanly in his demeanour to merit such suspicions. $oarham. I%m sure. ) . I wonder/ I should think not. so having opened my desk. came &ord &owborough in his barouche. perhaps. :e is a tall.

I trusted. %he despises me. I had carefully obliterated all such witnesses of my infatuation. In the course of the evening.hen. like the postscripts of their letters. was the case with most of these. and the rest of the company. :untingdon. he gathered all the drawings to himself. and. and passing over to where 'nnabella Wilmot sat vehemently coquetting with &ord &owborough. %:ow will he greet me. 2uch. r. and. and. it seems.% thought I. but still. and when that important business was completed. While I stood at the window. $oarham. and then r. as well what he had seen as the others. beheld him complacently ga. with that one unfortunate exception. I trembled when I saw him holding them so close to the candle. sotto voce. and. and muttering. %. when we were all again assembled in the drawing)room. :aving ended his scrutiny. he rose. and to hope that a little conciliation and steady perseverance on his part might yet succeed in bringing me to reason. . and disappeared into the house. instead of advancing to meet him. drawing a candle close to his elbow. who seemed quite willing to forget and forgive my former conduct. 2o far so good. when r.his is better than all0% ) I looked up. to my horror. complacently smiling to himself. offered his arm to me. though I must plead guilty to having disfigured the backs of several with abortive attempts to delineate that too fascinating physiognomy. %I must look at both sides now. 't last.o ) by (eorge. and while I was concocting some cutting speech wherewith to check his gratification. that he paid more attention to my drawings than to her music. 2hortly after. ) %I perceive the backs of young ladies% drawings. because he knows I love him. but with peculiar emphasis. though he likes music. I was indemnified for so much suffering by a few delightful minutes of conversation with r. $ut the pencil frequently leaves an impression upon cardboard that no amount of rubbing can efface. I wonder/% said my bounding heart. and was beginning to talk in nearly his usual strain. and poring so intently over the seeming blanks.hen. leaning back in his chair. but he prevented me. $oarham. for.o make matters worse. and I to exhibit my drawings.ed my hand. with tolerable composure.careworn aspect. he came to me. ardently squee. %. which I watched. I turned to the window to hide or subdue my emotion. seated himself on the sofa beside her. and exclaiming. and I was condemned to sit between himself and r. and murmured he was glad to see me once again. and odious r.% . :untingdon%s light phaeton came bowling merrily up the lawn. :untingdon entered the room. iss Wilmot was called upon to sing and play for the amusement of the at the back of the picture#) it was his own face that I had sketched there and forgotten to rub out0 . I think I am right in affirming. and she is an accomplished musician. and iss Wilmot and ilicent :argrave already assembled.% . where I found r. conversing with ilicent. in the agony of the moment. in the confidence that his vanity would not be gratified by any further discoveries. $ut having saluted his host and hostess. concerning one of the pieces. however. I attempted to snatch it from his hand. I repaired to the drawing)room. at first. he sprang out over the side on to the portico steps. &ord &owborough entered. %2o then. with unspeakable grimaces. curious to see which it was. he came up to me. 't that moment dinner was announced# my aunt desired him to take iss :argrave into the dining)room. I had but a transient glimpse of him# for the moment it stopped. and attached himself to her for the rest of the evening. ) but hearing him pronounce. Wilmot. I was sure that. $ut afterwards. are the most important and interesting part of the concern. he quietly remarked. he would not be able to make out these dim traces to his own satisfaction. I%ll keep it0% placed it against his waistcoat and buttoned his coat upon it with a delighted chuckle. I confess. he reflected a few minutes in silence. I was mistaken. I now submitted to be dressed for dinner ) a duty which !achel had been urging upon me for the last twenty minutes.% he eagerly commenced an examination.

:untingdon had lingered behind the rest. coldly. not choosing to answer the question. after what he knew of my devotion ) to his face. but I bade him say I should not take any to) night.% said I. as I thought. I received his cheerful morning salutation as calmly and coldly as my aunt could have wished. and make remarks upon them. is that you/% said he. with peculiar emphasis. %Why did you run away from us/% %(ood)night. I took advantage of the open door and the slight diversion caused by its entrance to slip out ) for I was sure I could not take any ) and take refuge in the library. but I could not talk to her ) I could talk to no one. upon the introduction of tea. %(o. and I don%t know what besides. she was too much occupied with her guests to make any further inquiries at the time. or to cry. and having heard them all. r.% I retorted. with a smile of the most provoking self) sufficiency. at least.% %I have nothing to do with 'nnabella Wilmot. %Is it nothing to you. and hearing my step in the hall ) though I could hardly hear it myself ) he instantly turned back. I knew not how it was to be done. to get my candlestick from the drawing)room sideboard. %:elen.ot you. and defeated with brief answers his one or two attempts to draw me into conversation. not knowing whether to laugh. %Why are you in such a hurry to leave me. placing himself in the doorway before me. sir. :e would not have done so but for that hateful picture. then. %I want to get a candle. you know.% %. I broke away.% cried I. to ask if I were not coming to tea. %1ou don%t hate me. r.o I won%t. or to break out into a tempest of fury. 'n assumption of dignified. 'nd I turned away to enter the drawing)room. :elen/ Will you swear it/ Will you/% %. 'nd there he had it still in his possession. and. 1et something must be done to check his presumption ) I would not submit to be tyrannised over by those bright. go up) stairs. accordingly. y aunt sent . %$ut I have. :untingdon.% said I.% returned he. while I comported myself with unusual cheerfulness and complaisance towards every . I made a desperate effort to free my hand from his grasp. :untingdon. and rushed up)stairs to my room. and kiss me. they retired early to rest. . laughing eyes. happily. you vixen0% he said. It is 'nnabella Wilmot you hate. :elen/% he said. 'nd. much against my will.% %. I do ) at this moment.he candle will keep. %&et me go. and in the morning I rose perplexed and troubled with the thoughts of meeting him at breakfast. 's most of the company had travelled far that day. 'nd he sei. cold indifference would hardly do. It was but little sleep I got that night. $ut r. but the instant he released my hand he had the audacity to put his arm round my neck.hat is nothing to me. an eternal monument to his pride and my humiliation.ed my hand and held it. :e was just at the foot of the stairs when I opened the door. won%t you/% said he. %$ut you%ll shake hands.homas in quest of me. %. I ventured out. r. and got my candle.rembling with anger and agitation. ilicent came and began to admire my drawings. not me. and. :untingdon0 and I will go.% returned he. burning with indignation. you know.% said I.% %1es.'nd the reflection made me so miserable I knew not what to do.

ot desirous of sharing r. and by the warm and brilliant lights and deep long shadows. :untingdon must have seen me as he went by. :untingdon and my upward in pleased yet earnest contemplation of those feathered lovers ) too deeply absorbed in each other to notice her. . I had endeavoured to convey the idea of a sunny morning. Wilmot on their shooting ponies. and when his looks met mine it was with a smile ) presumptuous. :e did not talk much to me. :e was not.% said he. It was partly open. especially 'nnabella Wilmot. and set himself before my picture. and r. but just to show him that my particular coolness and reserve arose from no general ill)humour or depression of spirits. were seated an amorous pair of turtle doves. amid the jeers and laughter of r. it might be ) but oh0 so sweet. 4pon this bough. 1ou see I have made her blue)eyed and plump. and setting his gun against the wall. 2pring just opening into summer ) morning just approaching noon ) girlhood just ripening into womanhood. and there brought forth my easel and began to paint. that plainly seemed to intimate he knew his words were music to my ears. so bright. her hands clasped. 2oon after breakfast all the gentlemen save one. and I intended it to be my masterpiece. and kindliness too. %and a very fitting study for a young lady. but from the sunshine and the very immaturity of the scarce expanded leaves. in consideration of the rain that had fallen during the night. which. and besides I wanted to finish the picture. wanted but a few touches to the finishing. when the sportsmen passed the window on their return from the stables. after attentively regarding it for a few seconds. with boyish eagerness. thought it prudent to remain behind a little and join them in a while when the sun had dried the grass. that stood out in bold relief against the sombre firs. It was one I had taken great pains with. so genial. though it was somewhat presumptuous in the design. lips parted. to have a look at the horses and let out the dogs. leaving the prudent sportsman to entertain the ladies with his medical discussions.other member of the party. $oarham were treated with an extra amount of civility on the occasion.ure of the sky. whose soft sad)coloured plumage afforded a contrast of another nature. however. who. for in half a minute he came back. 'nd he favoured us all with a long and minute disquisition upon the evils and dangers attendant upon damp feet. $oarham%s company for the whole of the morning. threw up the sash and sprang in. however. and eyes intently ga. with head thrown back and masses of fair hair falling on her shoulders. but in the foreground was part of the gnarled trunk and of the spreading boughs of a large forest) tree. but when he did speak it was with a degree of freedom and openness. i%faith. and even her uncle and r. $oarham. bending their steps to the stables first. I had ventured to give more of the bright verdure of spring or early summer to the grass and foliage than is commonly attempted in painting. . r.he easel and the painting apparatus would serve as an excuse for abandoning the drawing)room if my aunt should come to complain of the desertion. 2he%s a sweet creature0 but why didn%t you make her black hair/% %I thought light hair would suit her better. I had scarcely settled to my work. delivered with the most imperturbable gravity. and fair and . that I could not possibly retain my anger. whose foliage was of a brilliant golden green ) not golden from autumnal mellowness. . and beneath it a young girl was kneeling on the daisy)spangled turf. %Fery pretty.he scene represented was an open glade in a wood. $y the bright a. to be repelled by such acting as this. every vestige of displeasure soon melted away beneath it like morning clouds before the summer sun. I betook myself to the library. not from any motives of coquetry. and hope just verging on fruition. sallied forth with their guns. ' group of dark 2cotch firs was introduced in the middle distance to relieve the prevailing freshness of the rest. who. set out on their expedition against the hapless partridges. :untingdon and &ord &owborough on their legs# the one exception being r. my uncle and r.

% %'nd perhaps.% cried I. :untingdon. through youth and age. I%ll not deprive you of it. (ive it me directly ) I%ll never forgive you if you don%t0% $ut the more vehemently I insisted. those are my unfinished sketches. with cheerful smiles and words for all . and then. for I was glad.% returned I. We took a long ramble. and how tender and faithful he will find her. 't length.% suggested I. the main body of them crossed over the grass to avoid us.% :e spoke this in such serious earnest that my heart bounded with delight. extravagant delusions/% %. gleeful laugh. well. $ut I was determined he should not keep it.% %"erhaps. ) %$less my stars. ) %Well. however.o show him how I valued it. % r. to which they did not think of returning. with a careless %:umph0 I%ll go and shoot now. and asked. :untingdon. all spattered and splashed as he was. %I can%t let you have it. . and re)entered the park just as the sportsmen were returning from their expedition. through summer and winter. with a significant smile. and show 'nnabella and ilicent the beauties of the country. whistling as he went ) and leaving me not too much agitated to finish my picture.% %$ut I hate them to be seen. give me the girl I love. but the minute after he changed his tone. and I will swear eternal constancy to her and her alone. but he maintained his hold. and just as I wrenched the portfolio from his hand. I tore it in two and threw it into the fire. then.% .% 'nd I placed my hand on the portfolio to wrest it from him.% %4pon my word ) a very :ebe0 I should fall in love with her if I hadn%t the artist before me.o. that I had vexed him.% %.% he turned on his heel and vacated the apartment by the window as he came. %I insist upon having that back0 It is mine. % r.% cried I. I volunteered to accompany the ladies in a walk. saying. %and I never let any one see them. :untingdon. indeed0% %&et me have its bowels then. and shortly after lunch. if I had %any more portraits. and stained with the blood of his prey ) to the no small offence of my aunt%s strict sense of propriety ) came out of his way to meet us. he restored it to me.% replied I. took up his gun and walked away. but now. and coolly sat down to examine its contents. and setting on his hat with an air. :is merriment suddenly ceasing. When I returned to the drawing)room. since you value it so much.% %>o you call that. I say. and after turning them over a moment he cried out. and you have no right to take it. but r. I found r. my heart tells me it is not.% and slipped a small oval of ivory paper into his waistcoat pocket ) a complete miniature portrait that I had sketched with such tolerable success as to be induced to colour it with great pains and care. reddening with confusion and wrath. and she%s thinking how pleasant it will be.rosy. $oarham had ventured to follow his comrades to the field. and life and death0 if age and death must come. one of her wild.o. :e was not prepared for this. for there is no limit to the wild extravagance of :ope%s imaginings at such an age. at the moment.% said he. $ut my portfolio was on the table# he took it up. he deftly abstracted the greater part of its contents.oil)spent and travel)stained. 2weet innocent0 she%s thinking there will come a time when she will be wooed and won like that pretty hen) dove by as fond and fervent a lover. he stared in mute ama. assuring me that he %liked unfinished sketches of all things. here%s another. %how tender and faithful she shall find him. the more he aggravated my distress by his insulting. I might have thought so once.ement at the consuming treasure.

instead of staying with the company# wish the company . 2he cannot appreciate the good that is in him# she will neither see it. said. and the next. justice and honesty apart. she tries her utmost to enslave his moody friend. of course. and he would not go on talking to everybody else so cheerfully as he does ) laughing and jesting with &ord &owborough and my uncle. nor cherish it.% I answered.% I thought it was partly in jest ) a half)playful mixture of mock resignation and pretended indifference# but immediately he resumed his place beside iss Wilmot. $ut it is not my loss nor her triumph that I deplore so greatly as the wreck of my fond hopes for his advantage. walked up the road and began to relate the various exploits and disasters of the day. but rather aggravate them by her own. and triumphantly ascribes it to her own superior charms and blandishments. %if you don%t value me. :untingdon turned to me. and here comes my aunt to scold me for sitting here at my desk all day. I see she is playing double between him and &ord &owborough. or resentment against my tormentors. I see it gives her pleasure. 2he does not love him# she thinks only of herself. and all this morning @the 55ndA. linked arm in arm and gravely discoursing together. I am annoyed enough by their present persecutions without encouraging them further. or I should scorn to regret him as I do. If he observes her artful by)play. so disproportioned to the offence ) have so wounded his feelings. and the repulsive obtrusions of the other. I must turn to somebody that will. and will not help me out of it. and he must continue to think so. teasing ilicent :argrave. and 'nnabella may win him. nor value it. but from pure necessity ) never glanced towards me but with a cold. while my aunt and ilicent went before. and while she amuses herself with the lively :untingdon. but he addressed himself entirely to 'nnabella. and looking every way but theirs. and should she succeed in bringing both to her feet. and all the next day. and try to tear him from my heart. :e sees me suffering under the condescending attentions and prosaic discourses of the one. left all the laughter and all the badinage to her. essrs.est to his diversion by opposing a stimulating check to his otherwise too easy conquest. I could not bear to do it. 2he will neither deplore his faults nor attempt their amendment. but. very good0% was the reply. playful spirit. and the injury he will do himself by trusting his happiness to her.but me. and from that hour to this ) during all that evening. I must lose him for ever. 't length r. . and placing himself between 'nnabella Wilmot and myself. %+h. "ride refuses to aid me. Wilmot and $oarham have severally taken occasion by his neglect of me to renew their advances. and the next. or he would not have resigned me so goes the dinner)bell. and triumph as she will. but I am truly miserable ) more so than I like to acknowledge to myself. +h0 why can%t I hate him/ I must be infatuated. $ut I must rally all the powers I have remaining. It has brought me into the scrape. and affecting the utmost indifference to whatever passed between them. in a manner that would have convulsed me with laughter if I had been on good terms with him. why did you burn my picture/% %$ecause I wished to destroy it. but rather adds new . by my acrimonious resentment ) so serious. the fascinating commoner will have but little chance against the lordly peer. it gives him no uneasiness. and addressing me in a confidential whisper. and if I were like 'nnabella and some others I should take advantage of their perseverance to endeavour to pique him into a revival of affection. with an asperity it is useless now to lament. and her unworthiness of his affection. walked along a few paces apart. ) %:elen. :e meant no harm ) it was only his joyous. :e never could have loved me. that I fear he will never forgive me ) and all for a mere jest0 :e thinks I dislike him. 'nd I doubt whether she will not deceive him after all. y aunt observes the change. iss Wilmot observes it. he has never given me one kind word or one pleasant look ) never spoken to me. and flirting with 'nnabella Wilmot ) as if nothing were on his mind. so deeply offended him. and though she has not inquired the cause or made any remark to me on the subject. without so much as a shadow of commiseration for me. and I. too. and I. and even if I did it would have precious little effect upon him. unfriendly look I thought him quite incapable of assuming.

and thinking so much. %>o you choose for me now# I have done enough for him. %>o now0 I know you will. if the affront had been purposely given. I will commit it to paper to) night.% said she.% It was. my eyes rested on the face of her principal auditor. won%t you give us some music to)night/% said he. who was standing a little behind. I now forgave him from my heart his reckless slight of me. in spite of all this admiration and now. iss Wilmot. whereby I should have disappointed his expectations. and listened with a sort of gloomy pleasure to the skilful modulations of her full)toned and powerful voice. experiencing. in such superior style that even I soon lost my anger in admiration. I knew 'nnabella%s musical talents were superior to mine. and see what I shall think of it to)morrow. or I should not have acted so weakly in many respects as I have done. when I tell you that I have been hungering and thirsting all day for the sound of your voice. both mental and physical. I don%t know what is come over me of late. too. to judge by his countenance. CHAPTER XIX .% and thus encouraged. :ad I been endowed with a proper degree of self)possession. $ut the look she gave him plainly said. :untingdon did was to walk up to 'nnabella. and I felt ashamed at my pettish resentment of such a trifle ) ashamed too of those bitter envious pangs that gnawed my inmost heart.o wonder he should hunger and thirst to hear her sing.wenty 2econd# . and kept my resolution very creditably.he time and the manner of his asking her appeared like a gratuitous insult to me. presently set before her a little . and will gladly exert myself to gratify you. for I had quitted it immediately upon hearing his petition. ilicent had asked for a little 2cotch song. she exultingly seated herself at the piano. %What shall I give you next/% $ut in saying this she looked back at &ord &owborough. and throw myself back on the sofa. playfully running her fingers over the keys when she had concluded the second song. I was exerting myself to sing and play for the amusement. I must have recourse to my diary again.ight. my very energies. if it had only arisen from thoughtlessness. of my aunt and ilicent. and turning over the music. much the same feelings of mingled pleasure and sadness as I did. suppressing with difficulty the audible expression of the bitterness I felt within. so judiciously aided by her rounded and spirited touch. before the gentlemen came into the drawing)room @ iss Wilmot never likes to waste her musical efforts on ladies% ears aloneA. I should have turned to the lady myself. or made him sensible of the wrong.he first thing r. and I was just in the middle of it when they entered. considering how my head ached and how internally wretched I felt. and favoured him with two of his favourite songs. *ome0 the piano%s vacant. %.ow. leaning against the back of a chair. ) What have I done/ and what will be the end of it/ I cannot calmly reflect upon it. as he stood beside her ) that eye and brow lighted up with keen enthusiasm. but I have not been well this last day or two. and derived an equal or superior delight from the contemplation of his speaking countenance. and while my ears drank in the sound. and being so continually out of humour. $ut to return. . but I felt it too deeply to do anything but rise from the music) stool. must be strangely impaired. and cheerfully joined my entreaties to his. eantime. an attentive listener. but that was no reason why I should be treated as a perfect nonentity. and at the request. I cannot sleep. %. I suppose it is with sleeping and eating so little. and I could have wept with pure vexation. and that sweet smile passing and appearing like gleams of sunshine on an 'pril day. .were ) gone. . I went down to dinner resolving to be cheerful and well)conducted. his lordship came forward.

softly. . I made an effort to rise. and sitting down on a low stool before the easy)chair. and did not stir.hat form and face so dear to me. their memory. until the tears gushed out again. . and caused him to look round ) heaven forbid0 $ut with a violent effort. and thought. and sad. I have something to say to you. $ut still it lingers in my heart. and the speaker threw himself on his knees beside me on the rug.he door was closed again ) but I was not alone.ell me. whose sunny beam y memory would not cherish less. the magic of whose tone *an wake an echo in my breast. I trusted it was only a servant. and replied. when I thought he had turned away again. . I%ll go. 'nd bid the future pay the past With joy for anguish. as he spoke in answer to some remark of &ord &owborough%s. . ) 'nd oh. . . It is still running in my head. ) because if you were. %. however. but he was kneeling on my dress.or hear thy voice. but I did not dare to raise my head. ) %:elen. .song that I had noticed before. "erhaps a half)suppressed sob had caught his ear. and I wept like any child. unnoticed and undisturbed. more vehemently. ) %It is nothing to you. "resently. at last. sweet. and full of grace0 If thou hadst never met mine eye. ) but I did not want a light. I hastily added ) %+r say what you have to was no light there but the faint red glow of the neglected fire. ) and if not. but. I checked all further signs of weakness. and coldness chill. :untingdon.hat voice.% was added. the door was gently opened and someone entered the room. and forcibly possessed himself of my hand. and so are the words#) <arewell to thee0 but not farewell . I had not dreamed a living face *ould fancied charms so far outvie.he sofa was not far from the door. still. I only wanted to indulge my thoughts.his was unendurable. *an make my tranced spirit blest. When it ceased. and have done with it0% .o mortal languish can express. + beautiful. the library. still would I fain "reserve. smiles for tears. and. with an interest arising from the circumstance of my connecting it in my mind with the reigning tyrant of my thoughts. a hand gently touched my shoulder. 'nd they shall cheer and comfort me.o all my fondest thoughts of thee# Within my heart they still shall dwell.hat laughing eye. . and read more than once. 'nd who can tell but :eaven. %1ou must. with my nerves already excited and half unstrung. 'nd now. 'dieu0 but let me cherish. :untingdon was standing near me. alone. I sunk my head upon its cushioned seat. *ontempt may wound. taking refuge in my favourite resort. I longed for nothing so much as to be out of the room.% %'re you sure it is nothing to me/% he returned. for aye. .he hope with which I cannot part. and I knew by the sound of his voice. that smile0 I whose joyous gleam . that his face was turned towards me. and I buried my face in the sofa)pillow that they might flow unseen while I listened.% continued he ) %I want to know. %can you swear that you were not thinking of me while you wept/% . and thought.ears rose unbidden to my eyes. If I may ne%er behold again . but I hastily caught it away. r. *reating feelings that. I could not hear those words so sweetly warbled forth without some symptoms of emotion I was not able to suppress. and instantly left the apartment. and a voice said. and shall tell me. dried my tears. fearing he would obey too well. for I knew r. ay answer all my thousand prayers. what is the matter/% I could not answer at the moment.% %(o then0% I cried. and never come again.he air was simple. rose.

construing your silence into =1es. rs. wild rosebud gemmed with dew ) and I love you to distraction0 ) . I%ve been asking your sweet niece to take me for better. coldly.% %I wish you would go0% I replied. I would sacrifice my body and soul ) % %$ody and soul. :untingdon and me ) for we had both started up. . if you don%t. ) if you%ll only say you love me. %. no0% I exclaimed.% said my aunt. I%ll spare your woman%s pride. and half embraced me with his other arm. $ut his confusion was only for a moment. and now stood wide enough asunder. axwell. I was scarcely conscious of it at the time. r.% threatened he.% I answered. sir. 2ilence again/ . r.o to this last question. informs me she cannot think of it without her uncle%s and aunt%s consent.% %$ut you don%t.%$ut which/% said he ) %for I shall only say it if you really were thinking of me. must come between me and the consideration of my niece%s %'h. for worse. in comparison with you. :elen. you mean.% %$ut meantime. this instant. is like a flaunting peony compared with a sweet. :untingdon0% %.o indulgence for you.o. 2o tell me. 'nd again he caught me in his arms.% %.ot at all ) too pertinent. ga. %let me commend my cause to your most indulgent ) % %.ow. 't that moment my aunt opened wide the door. candle in hand.% resumed he# %that 'nnabella Wilmot.hen let me add. and stood before me to death in his arms. I would lay down life ) % %1ou would not be required to lay it down. !allying in an instant. nearly squee. in shocked and horrified alternately at r. sir ) % %If you deny it. 't present. :untingdon. %It is this. I would sooner die than relinquish her in favour of the best man that ever went to heaven ) and as for her happiness.% %1ou know I do. or even attempt to repulse him# though he had taken my hand once more. ) %I beg ten thousand pardons.ement. and if you answer .% %1ou%re excessively impertinent. you will drive me mad. %It is a subject that demands mature and serious deliberation. and I did not interrupt him again. and she. and. 2o let me implore you not to condemn me to eternal wretchedness# if you favour my cause. but. and smothered me with kisses.= I%ll take it for granted that I was the subject of your thoughts. :untingdon ) sacrifice your soul/% %Well. and I am a presumptuous dog to dream of possessing such a treasure. axwell0 >on%t be too severe upon me. ) Will you bestow yourself upon me/ ) you will0% he cried.% r. and the cause of your affliction ) % %Indeed. and I%ll go. I am certain. 2o you won%t tell me/ ) Well.% . nevertheless.% pleaded he.% %We will talk of this to)morrow. that I cannot live without you. happiness. :elen ) say you love me. like a good girl. you had better return to the drawing)room. true0 I know she is an angel. with the most enviable assurance. I won%t tell you my secret. for r.hey won%t refuse me. he began. I am safe. %I will.% %I%m not so sure of that ) my aunt dislikes you. struggling to free myself from him ) %you must ask my uncle and aunt. tell me if that intelligence gives you any pleasure. can refuse you nothing.hat means yes.

%I will discuss this matter with you. we will talk of this ) and I should have felt disposed to judge more favourably of your pretensions. 2o unexpected was the apparition.he company are inquiring for you in the other room. axwell. in a quiet ramble. while his keen and gleeful salutation.hey were not altogether the tears of sorrow. >on%t you see she is prejudiced against you/% %I do. . and I went out to enjoy it. % y dear. light and cheerful ) nay. aunt. and let me add ) another manner for your declaration. %1ou had better retire to your room. 1ou will not easily obtain my aunt%s consent. I suppose she thinks I am a prodigal.% 'nd she turned to me. then ) devote my life ) and all its powers to the promotion and preservation ) % %'nother time.e. if you too had chosen another time and place. I could not think of sleeping.% she replied# %I am surprised. without being looked upon as an unwelcome intruder# r.% interrupted I.he hovering cloud cast over me by my aunt%s views. %. $ut I had not wandered far before my solitude was interrupted by the only person that could have disturbed my musings. :elen. but rather the outbreak of the general tumultuous excitement of my feelings. and by the fear of not obtaining her consent. . If it is true that you told him you could not accept his offer without our consent ) % %It is true. :untingdon came suddenly upon me. was lost in the bright effulgence of my own hopes. intensely happy.hen how could you permit )/% %I couldn%t help it. too. and at length withdrew. and I went. and try to win tired nature%s sweet restorer.% pursued he. she repeated her recommendation to retire.ot yours yet0% said I. In a softer tone. and you must tell me why. that I might have thought it the creation of an over) excited imagination. $ut my good aunt was touched at my agitation. you see. I am not angry.% said she. aunt.% he began ) %"ardon me. and the too delightful consciousness of requited love. bade me good)night. ) In the morning I rose. %and concludes that I shall have but little worldly goods wherewith to endow my better half/ If so. %.% said he. observing that I was unwilling to reply. :elen. or of fear for her displeasure. sir. . CHAPTER XX 2eptember 58th. It was a splendid morning. hastily swerving aside from this too presumptuous greeting. but immediately I felt his strong arm round my waist and his warm kiss on my cheek. and put her candle in my hand. the happy red)breast was pouring out its little soul in song.he dew was on the grass.hen you must plead for me. I feel calmer now that I have written all this. gravely. %!emember my guardians. to)morrow.%I would spend it.% said my aunt. dearest. had the sense of sight alone borne witness to his presence. you must tell her that my . and. %. in company with my own blissful thoughts. sir. but my brain worked so. % y own :elen0% was ringing in my ear. rs.% I cried.% said I. with dignity ) %. gently kissing my forehead. that I may best know how to combat her objections. bursting into tears.% %Why. and I will go to bed. at that moment. and ten thousand gossamers were waving in the bree.% %>on%t be angry. and my heart overflowed with silent hymns of gratitude and praise to heaven.

then/% %2he wishes me to ) to marry none but a really good man. and I don%t think he would object to anything for me that she thought proper to sanction.% %I stand corrected. and then I%ll let you alone. until my acquaintance with you. I forgot. dryly. and if not. after a momentary pause. :untingdon. my %:e is a good man. concluding his laugh with a sorrowful sigh. :elen.% he answered. when I was a very little girl.% %$ut would he sanction anything to which she thought proper to object/% %. I wish I could say half as much for you. and so it is no wonder that his son should make it his chief delight to spend them. and take my is mostly entailed. come. I don%t think he cares enough about me.% %I%ll call you nothing ) for I%ll have nothing at all to do with you if you talk in that way any more. where I have remained ever since. we could manage pretty comfortably on what%s left. you are a saint.% %'nd r. was something of a miser. %. and I cannot get rid of it. 'nd come nearer to me. attractive goodness.% said he. though not in name. and evening. $latant%s discourse ) % % r.% said I.% said I. he would not be willing to part with such a may be a few mortgages on the rest ) a few trifling debts and incumbrances here and there. I can%t be quiet while I see you walking there. &eighton. and though I acknowledge I am not so rich as I might be ) or have been ) still. %it is not money my aunt thinks about. I crave your pardon. %Is r. I have never seen him since dear mamma died. &eighton a =sweet preacher. you are very wrong to jest on such a subject.% r. too.% %What. a man of =decided piety=/ ) ahem0 ) Well.% %:e is very much to blame ) but he doesn%t know what an angel he has for his daughter ) which is all the better for me. and comport myself in such a godly sort that she shall regard me with admiration and sisterly love. %.o one will be down to breakfast yet. %+h.% said I.= :elen ) a =dear. but is not your father still living/% %1es.% %What is it. but said we must soon return to the house.ow. but nothing to speak of. you know.% %$ut it is not that. %1ou spoke of your guardians just now. but I always look upon my uncle and aunt as my guardians.% resumed he. I think. 2he knows better than to value worldly wealth above its price. for they are so in deed. 'nd the very idea of having you to care for under my roof would force me to moderate my expenses and live like a *hristian ) not to speak of all the prudence and virtue you would instil into my mind by your wise counsels and sweet. and full of the savour and unction of dear r. dearest ) but don%t call me name is 'rthur. :untingdon. If you really mean to deceive my aunt as you say. I%ll manage that too0 It%s 2unday to)day. and my aunt. y father. :elen.o. if he did. which was accordingly the case. %let us talk about something else. and in his latter days especially saw no pleasure in life but to amass riches. dear :elen. :untingdon. as a brand plucked from the burning. %I suppose you know I am not an heiress/% . taught me other views and nobler aims. . I%ll come home sighing like a furnace. afternoon. delightful. and took me away to 2taningley. you are very wicked.% I complied. as. isn%t it/ I%ll go to church morning. for long enough. heavenly)minded man=/% r. offered to take charge of me. at her request. y father has entirely given me up to their care.

where she once more commenced a solemn remonstrance. in addition to her late father%s property. and doing her utmost to encourage those germs of folly and vice it was her duty to suppress. %I must say.:e protested he had never given it a thought.o be is Walter :argrave. %1ou judge him uncharitably. when r. he was reformed now.% said I. but she believed she knew when a man was seeking her for her fortune. she cared nothing about that.% %1ou will form a very inadequate estimate of a man%s character. I need not repeat all we said# let me rather refer to what passed between my aunt and me. :elen. 2he is continually talking to me about him. and is now seeking an heiress to retrieve it. or he that believeth with an infidel/=% . :untingdon is married. I know. . and make him what he would have been if he had not. had a bad. and begged I would not disturb his present enjoyment by the mention of such uninteresting subjects. ) and then. after breakfast. and shining out in the unclouded light of his own genuine goodness ) to do my utmost to help his better self against his worse. deceiving her husband for him. for one# he is but a little lower than the angels. however. he won%t have many opportunities of consorting with his bachelor friends. my dear. :ow you can love such a man I cannot tell.he worst of them generally know how to hide their misdeeds from their sisters% eyes. to gratify his own sordid passions. 1es. restricted him in the most innocent enjoyments of childhood and youth. the more you long to deliver him from himself. which she has already in possession. I told iss Wilmot so. %:is very friends are not half so bad as you represent them. and when for herself. from the beginning. or what pleasure you can find in his company. :untingdon called my uncle aside. %$ut when r.% %'nd there is &ord &owborough. and she beckoned me into another room. ) and a foolish mother who indulged him to the top of his bent. miserly father. I thought better of your judgment than this ) and your taste too.% %. she flattered herself she had had experience enough in those matters to be justified in trusting to her own judgment ) and as for his lordship%s lack of fortune. %quite a decent man. and so disgusted him with every kind of restraint. too. %if you judge by what a fond sister says of him. which. I now insisted upon retracing our steps to the house. ilicent%s brother. entirely failed to convince me that her view of the case was preferable to my own.% continued I. %his kind have greatly wronged him0% %.% replied she. the more I long to deliver him from them. and as for his wildness. . sarcastically. I suppose. but we walked slowly. who. selfish.% %Who told you so/ &ord &owborough is a desperate man. and their mother%s. no doubt to make his proposals. such a set of companions as you represent his friends to be ) % %"oor man0% said she. aunt.hey have0% cried I ) %and they shall wrong him no more ) his wife shall undo what his mother did0% %Well. I think he%s about as good as she is. after a short pause.% %1es. she supposed he was no worse than others ) besides. misguided woman0% %Well. they can all play the hypocrite when they want to take in a fond. I was glad of this proof of disinterested affection. :e has dissipated his fortune in gambling and other things. and lauding his many virtues to the skies.% said I. provided he is not incorrigible ) that is. as she hoped her own would suffice for both. and the worse he is.% said she. and went on talking as we proceeded. for =what fellowship hath light with darkness. for 'nnabella Wilmot is the probable heiress to all her uncle%s wealth. ) and the worse they are. if half she says of him is true. but you%re all alike# she haughtily answered she was very much obliged to me. the more I long to deliver him from his faults ) to give him an opportunity of shaking off the adventitious evil got from contact with others worse than himself.

= I don%t know the (reek. I have searched it through.ot for ever. taken into eternal bliss. you. whether they be things in earth or things in heaven. that he should continue to love you. -very one attended the morning service. and they that forget (od0=% 'nd suppose. taken by themselves. and might signify either endless or long)enduring. 3ust before dinner my uncle called me into the library for the discussion of a very important matter.% pursued my aunt. In the afternoon iss Wilmot and &ord &owborough likewise excused themselves from attending. elderly gentleman. he whispered that he was going to make a note of the sermon. he did nothing but stare about him. and r. who hardly ever goes. he suddenly produced his gold pencil)case and snatched up a $ible. but I believe it strictly means for ages. and will but poorly excuse our errors in the sight of (od. I would not publish it abroad if I thought any poor wretch would be likely to presume upon it to his own destruction. I must confess. :elen0 where did you learn all this/% %In the $ible.=% %+h. "erceiving that I observed the movement. r. . %=only till he has paid the uttermost farthing. and then he would drop his own on his book.= for =if any man%s work abide not the fire. pious. but instead of that. or open at any place but the right. ) and I am not light. and he cast into the lake that burneth with unquenchable fire ) there for ever to ) % %. except my uncle. in the fulness of time. and that you should pass through life together with tolerable comfort ) how will it be in the end. neither will he hear though one rose from the dead. upon his return. and I would not part with it for all the world can give0% :ere our conference ended. is not without the common faculties of men# he is not so light)headed as to be irresponsible# his aker has endowed him with reason and conscience as well as the rest of us. for it was now high time to prepare for church.% continued she. &eighton for a few minutes. after attentively regarding r. serious discrimination that tempted me to believe he had really attended to and profited by the discourse. %=the wicked shall be turned into hell. Whether it was to ingratiate himself with my aunt I cannot tell. with a puritanical air of mock solemnity that would have been ludicrous. and he is not darkness. aunt. he shall suffer loss.% I exclaimed.= and =will. his worst and only vice is thoughtlessness.= and :e that =is able to subdue all things to :imself will have all men to be saved. some passages that. unless he happened to catch my aunt%s eye or mine. and in most the only difficulty is in the word which we translate =everlasting= or =eternal.= 'nd remember.o# I found. who stayed at home with him to enjoy a quiet game of cribbage. the 2criptures are open to him as well as to others. if it had not been too provoking. :elen. indeed. and in whom (od will reconcile all things to :imself.% %'nd is that the use you make of your $ible/ 'nd did you find no passages tending to prove the danger and the falsity of such a belief/% %. but r. even. +nce. giving to the respectable. :untingdon vouchsafed to accompany us again. 'nd yet. I did not like his conduct during service at all. he certainly should have behaved better. but so as by fire. if so. the air and aspect of a most absurd old hypocrite. during the sermon. 'nd as for the danger of the belief. I could not help seeing that he was making a caricature of the preacher. :olding his prayer)book upside down. solemnly. as I sat next him. :untingdon.%:e is not an infidel. but they will all bear a different construction to that which is commonly given. gather together in one all things in *hrist 3esus. yet himself shall be saved. I suppose. but. who tasted death for every man. he talked to my aunt about the sermon with a degree of modest. %may lead to every crime. and you him.% %'nd thoughtlessness. ) and =if he hear not them. when you see yourselves parted for ever. might seem to contradict that opinion. all tending to support the same theory. but it is a glorious thought to cherish in one%s own heart. Wilmot. and found nearly thirty passages. perhaps.

%. that you%ve wiser heads to think for you. pooh0 never tell me that tale ) I know better.which was dismissed in few words. :ow can I be. I insisted upon consulting my aunt about the time of the wedding.% %Well. %we haven%t mentioned the time yet. by a sort of compromise between the respective advocates for hurry and delay. ) and. %Fery good0% cried he. ) 'll is settled now. on the contrary. :owever. then. . %2top. for that and all your kindness. and what more could either of us require/% 'nd I was about to make my exit. I guess. if you behave well. yet. uncle. %. who knows but what I may be induced to remember you in my will0% continued he.ot at all. uncle. and then we must persuade your father to give you a decent fortune. y father has given his consent.ow. it%s solid. I am in no hurry at all. so you may look on the matter as settled. 'fter . and you. without a moment%s hesitation. but that you won%t believe. I suppose now. %$ut pray don%t trouble your head ) or his. 't your time of life. or mine about that. and that he really loves me. or troubling your head about settlements. for I determined her counsels should not be utterly disregarded. but I see that a great part of his father%s fine property has been squandered away.% said he. and I may love him as devotedly. CHAPTER XXI +ctober 6st. it is quite true. When I told ilicent of my engagement. at least. be thankful. %this young :untingdon has been asking for you# what must I say about it/ 1our aunt would answer =no= ) but what say you/% %I say yes. I think. as he has only one besides yourself to care for.ell. and a little careful nursing may make a handsome thing of it yet. will be of the same mind. :e%s sure to give his consent. for all I have will be his. with a knowing wink.ow that%s a good honest answer ) wonderful for a girl0 ) Well. %and he seemed disposed to be generous enough on that point ) % %I knew he would0% said I. and think of him as often as I please. and no conclusions on that particular are come to yet. when I think of the momentous change that awaits me. putting his fingers to his nose. you%d never dream of looking into the state of your husband%s finances. 1ou%d have done a deal better if you%d taken Wilmot. ilicent :argrave is to be one bridesmaid and 'nnabella Wilmot the other ) not that I am particularly fond of the latter.evertheless. When must it be/ 1our aunt would put it off till the &ord knows when. to examine thoroughly into this young rascal%s affairs. . I can tell you. for I had thoroughly made up my mind on the subject.% continued he. uncle. but he called me back.% cried he. and of all I have to leave/ It is happiness enough to know that we are to be united.% replied I. serviceable gold. stop0% cried he. and he persisted in his incredulity. it%s love that rules the roast# at mine. and all he has will be mine. I%ll write to your father to)morrow. %Well. but he is anxious to be bound as soon as may be# he won%t hear of waiting beyond next month. ) but still. and I questioned this young spark on the matter of settlements. but she is an intimate of the family. %. and I have not another friend.% replied I.% %+h0 pooh. or anything of that sort/% %I don%t think I should. she rather provoked me by her manner of talking it. so ) % %.hanks. there%s a pretty fair share of it left. I haven%t had time. and the time is fixed for *hristmas. I should like to wait till after *hristmas.

%but I am well assured that he loves me more than anybody else in the world ) as I do him. and I can%t help feeling surprised that you should like him so much. and something very like a cloud of disappointment shadowed her face. I think there%s nothing noble or lofty in his appearance. %I don%t want to be idolised. %Indeed0 're you so happy then/% said she. %"eople say he%s handsome.% replied I. and I wonder that you should. %'nd so. and nicer and better than r. dear. tastes differ ) but I like pale or dark. ilicent. because you%re his sister. thoughtfully. no0% she exclaimed. and then you know.o0% cried I. and there%s something so bold and reckless about him ) so. to tell you the truth.% said she. :untingdon%s face is too red/% %. I shall be in a capacity to inquire. fixing her eyes upon me with ill)disguised anxiety for the reply. %'nd does he love you ) I mean. ) %Well.% %Well. and was certain he would like you. ilicent0 1ou think so. I%ll forgive you. indignantly. but he%s far more distinguished)looking. like a painted doll. %I shall probably be &ady &owborough some day. or smoky black. but nobody else should so disparage 'rthur :untingdon to me with impunity. . or cadaverous yellow. :elen.% %Why so. but I don%t like that kind of beauty. a healthy freshness in his complexion ) the is just a pleasant glow.% %Impossible. I don%t know how ) but I always feel a wish to get out of his way when I see him approach. dear. you know. exactly as it ought to do. %It is not red at all. Well. and I thought you would like him.% %'nd then his look. :untingdon.% I answered. %>on%t you envy me/% %+h. %$ut. =>on%t you envy me/=% %:enceforth I shall envy no one. $ut don%t you think r.% said she.% %In fact. pray/% %Well. ) and I%m sure you would say so. and of course he is. if you knew him. I suppose/% %1es. :elen. I hate a man to be red and white. I expected Walter would be introduced to you next season.staring a moment in mute surprise. on that account. you wonder that I can like any one so unlike the stilted heroes of romance. but I did not think you would take him. I had been deluding myself with the hope that you would one day be my sister.% %I don%t want them.% continued she. pinky tint of the whole harmonising with the deeper colour of the cheeks. give me my flesh and blood lover. does he idolise you as much as you do him/% she added. and. .% %1ou are timid.% %Why so/% %$ecause you are so superior to him in every way. or all sickly white.% returned I.% iss Wilmot expressed her feelings on the subject almost as openly. %I%ll be satisfied with flesh and blood too ) only the spirit must shine through and predominate. and I%ll leave all the 2ir :erberts and Falentines to you ) if you can find them. coming up to me with a smile of no amiable import. and I flattered myself I should thus have the felicity of seeing the two persons I like best in the world ) except mamma ) united in one. she said. but that%s no fault of his. %you are to be :untingdon. :e mayn%t be exactly what you would call handsome. :elen.% rs. I suppose I ought to congratulate you ) and I am glad to see you so happy.% replied she.

and others. instead of a bundle of congratulations. %I should be sorry to stand between any man ) or body of men. while the company were hanging over the fire or loitering through the room. you would love me all the more for having ventured so much for your sake.hey say there%ll be no more fun now.% said I.his is :attersley%s ) every page stuffed full of railing accusations. and title. poured forth the following complaints into my ear#) %:elen.%-xactly. and it was true enough. her frankness touched me. $ut he crushed them all into his pocket. for.hey%re hardly fit for a lady%s eyes ) the most part of them. will follow my example. $ut if you saw how they abuse me. :elen.% said she.his is (rimsby%s scrawl ) only three lines. forsooth he had fallen in love with you from his sister%s reports. and lamentable complaints.hank you.% %. the sulky dog0 :e doesn%t say much. and now.% %$less you. that I could well afford to pity her and wish her well. for my own part. and commencing with a quiet little kiss. :e is particularly grieved at me. I wish you were as well content with your intended as I am with mine. they do me the honour to say. and I had not one kind wish for me. ) as if I cared what he did with himself. though vexed at first at her unamiable spirit. . . . the more he thinks ) and this is :argrave%s missive. I%ve got a pocketful of bitter execrations and reproaches. I thought he was going to show them to me. %I wish.% murmured he. somewhat piqued at the sorrowful tone of his discourse. . and told him I did not wish to see them. and delightful old family seat. to be sure. and so much happiness. she. if you like. %I wish ) % she paused. ending up with swearing that he%ll get married himself in revenge# he%ll throw himself away on the first old maid that chooses to set her cap at him. I was the very life and prop of the community. and you might have the other and welcome.% :e pulled out his crumpled letters. and the contrast between our situations was such. in pure despair. %'nd so am I. love. and for you.% returned. or one good word for you. to tell them of my happy prospects. do you know that you%ve entailed upon me the curses of all my friends/ I wrote to them the other day. %What do you wish/% asked I. $ut look here. no. and mirth and charm.% said he. . you witch. and all his wit. &et them go to ) where they belong.hen. %. and said nothing till the meal was concluded. with a short laugh. %It%s =all for love or the world well lost. %I%m not going to show them to you. %that all the attractive points and desirable qualifications of the two gentlemen were united in one ) that &ord &owborough had :untingdon%s handsome face and good temper. with a private laugh. at the breakfast)table. and I have shamefully betrayed my trust ) % %1ou may join them again. dear 'nnabella# I am better satisfied with things as they are. among them all. with his face in contact with my curls.% said I. he excited the attention of the company by the singular variety of his grimaces. as soon as he had sown his wild oats. and the less he says. %'nd look at this. he came and leant over the back of my chair. previous to settling to their various morning avocations. during the perusal of which. but his very silence implies more than all the others% words. with a nod. and meant to have married you himself. :untingdon%s acquaintances appear to be no better pleased with our approaching union than mine. no more merry days and glorious nights ) and all my fault ) I am the first to break up the jovial band. or else that :untingdon had &owborough%s pedigree.his morning%s post brought him letters from several of his friends.= with me. and perhaps I can manage to do without you. r. bitter curses. .% observed I. to speak politely. annoyed at the vindictive expression of her countenance. as well as your poor deserted friends.% .% said he. because.% %I%m vastly obliged to him.

$oarham and Wilmot have ceased to tease me. and Wilmot and I are going to beat you all.%Well. delightful ride. %if you do give up your intimacy with these men. that I trusted so.ot a bit of it. :untingdon is become my 'rthur.% observed :untingdon. for it%s my belief they never did you much good. but loves him for himself alone. %. remember0 2un shines out ) rain ceased ) even $oarham%s not afraid to venture in his waterproof boots. and I may enjoy his society without restraint. he gave me a specimen of his character to)day that seemed to merit a harder name than thoughtlessness. It is very true that the three elder gentlemen have proved themselves much keener sportsmen than the two younger ones. It seemed a weary time. disguise it as I will. I may try to persuade myself that the sweetness overpowers it. is. and I saw no more of him till dinner.% said I. but say what I will.% % aybe not. but now he has quite lost sight of it# it never enters . %. less warm and generous than I thought it.% %. ) y cup of sweets is not unmingled# it is dashed with a bitterness that I cannot hide from myself. and the more I love him the more they trouble me. he was riding by my side. it is still there. but we%d a merry time of it. not he. I may call it a pleasant aromatic flavour. poor fool. :elen.hat was the first attraction.hat &owborough%s fairly besotted. 't least. just for keeping me away from better company than either you or them. certainly. and my aunt has ceased to lecture me. my lad0% said he. %I%ll murder your birds by wholesale.% %'nd she%ll find herself in a fix when she%s got him. What shall I do without him. as usual. :is very heart. deludes himself with the notion that she%ll make him a good wife. I doubt. as sure as can be. I cannot shut my eyes to 'rthur%s faults. and because she has amused him with some rodomontade about despising rank and wealth in matters of love and marriage. much to my sorrow. 2he knows what she%s about. however. I don%t think you will have much cause to regret the loss of their society. but he. %if what I%ve heard of him is true.o. I repeat/ CHAPTER XXII +ctober Cth. my uncle came and slapped him on the shoulder. :e and &ord &owborough were accompanying 'nnabella and me in a long. and I have ceased to be jealous of 'nnabella ) and even to dislike her ) and now that r.% said my companion. I declare. we old %uns are the keenest sportsmen of the lot0% %I%ll show you what I can do to)day. . ha0% and while he was laughing at the recollection of &owborough%s troubles. %'re you too busy making love to my niece to make war with the pheasants/ ) <irst of +ctober.hose two will get the start of us. In less than a fortnight the party break up. the latter bending towards his companion as if in tender and confidential discourse. $ut these merry times are fast drawing to a close. %*ome. and 'nnabella and &ord &owborough were a little before us. that she will not refuse him for his poverty.% %$ut is not he courting her for her fortune/% %. he flatters himself that she%s devotedly attached to him. $ut he%ll find himself in a fix when he%s got her. . as &owborough knows to his cost ) :a. for both &ord &owborough and 'rthur :untingdon have of late almost daily neglected the shooting excursions to accompany us in our various rides and rambles. I wonder what I shall do without him. and I cannot but taste it. for every day I enjoy it more and more ) now that essrs. though mingled with sorrow and pain. I fear.% said I.hey%ll make a match of it. too. if we don%t look sharp.% 'nd so saying he departed. and does not court him for his rank.

:owever. and. and fell dead sick. $ut I have sometimes frequented the gaming)houses just to watch the on)goings of those mad votaries of chance ) a very interesting study. but of necessity. :e had often so determined before. and wiped his forehead. %=. turning away in quiet despair. at least# bad luck could not last for ever. however. I knew well enough what was passing in his mind. which he determined should be the last. somewhat against my expectation. leaning across the table. -very venture was the %just once more#% if he gained a little.o. at least. . I assure you. ) he was always resolving to give it up. for he always lost thrice where he gained once. for the lady%s own sake. %=+h. but he%s in for it once more. &owborough glared fiercely at him. and so it was this time. . and sometimes very diverting# I%ve had many a laugh at the boobies and bedlamites.he last but one. and imprecated unspeakable curses on his head if ever he should shuffle a card or rattle a dice)box again. and challenged any one present to play against him. and while he stood with folded arms and eyes fixed on the ground. he came to a check. raising his voice high above all the confusion of jingling coins and muttered oaths and curses in the room. and every lucky hit was looked upon as the dawn of better times. he swore a deep and solemn oath that. :e then doubled his former stake. :e made a large stake. to our club ) for he was as submissive as a child ) and plied him with brandy)and)water till he began to look rather brighter ) rather more alive. some two or three years ago. and surely the fellow was born under an unlucky star. this trial should be the last. you heard my oath. with a grim smile. they fell to work. and whether he took advantage of the other%s trembling. $ut (rimsby had much skill and little scruple. :e was to have been married before. and always breaking his resolutions. :e got into a bad way among us in &ondon# he had an unfortunate taste for gambling. %=. %=Is it to be the last.= he answered. taking the third glass from my hand ) he had drunk the others in dead silence. till experience proved the contrary. and we were daily on the look)out for a case of <-&+)>-) 2. . I%m ruined0= said he. and then. %=Is it to be the last.= said (rimsby. &owborough was quite infatuated ) not willingly. 't length he grew desperate. as his existence had ceased to be an acquisition to our club. (rimsby instantly presented himself. to be sure. I think. but &owborough lost again.= he answered. 't last. rushing back to the table. :e lost. he must go on till he had retrieved that last misfortune.o.his calculations. :elen. when I got him into the street. he%s fairly in love. 'nd I took him home ) that is.= said the poor devil. hitherto I have always had sufficient. whether he lost or won. and as for gaining money. %=1ou%d better try once more. blinded eagerness to deal unfairly by him. &owborough/= I asked. he turned chalky white. come what would. he struck his hand upon it. and while his antagonist smilingly swept away the stakes.= answered &owborough. he hoped to gain a little more next time.) no great matter.hat%s a mode of self)torment I never was much addicted to. some of us whispered. it%s time enough to be clutching for more. 'nd then he winked at me. When I spend my money I like to enjoy the full value of it# I see no fun in wasting it on thieves and blacklegs. stepping up to him. he could not think of marrying her. 'nd I took him by the arm and led him out. when you begin to see the end of what you have. %=. for (rimsby was almost as celebrated for his luck as he was for his ill)fortune.= said the other. :e thought he never could be again. %=:untingdon.he last. it would not do to leave off at that juncture. with a ghastly smile. and as often broken his determination. but he lost his bride by losing his fortune. %=I%ve nothing to try with. I cannot undertake to say. and if he lost. except merely as an essential without which. &owborough/= said I. I was present at the time. drew back in silence. :untingdon will lend you what you want.

= I answered. though (rimsby did his utmost to tempt him to break it. and all had been hearty together.= he muttered. you know. when he had something in him. beginning to mix the fifth. you know. if he was not merry himself. ) %We meant it in kindness ) we couldn%t bear to see the poor fellow so miserable#) and only one for me. without money/= %=+h.= %=I wish to (od I could sell it to pay my debts. =:ear. he interrupted us in the middle of a roar of laughter by exclaiming. I wonder.hen. ) &owborough giving us mad toasts. that%s entailed. :e was not so much used to it then. ) but this was nothing new. you know. and then you%ve your family estate yet. when we were sitting over our wine. what could we do/% replied he.= said (rimsby. ) he suddenly relapsed into silence.= said I. :untingdon.= . 'nd I can never. somebody will take you for your title.= said I. and never lifting his glass to his lips. where is all this to end/ ) Will you just tell me that now/ ) Where is it all to end/% :e rose.= %=I won%t. and I cannot bear it. who had just come in. $ut one evening. ='nd if there were fifty more. ) =It%s only this. %'nd you. for he soon discovered that the demon of drink was as black as the demon of play. %=$ut I%m in debt. %Well. and they can%t put you in prison. =you can try again. whereas. and the reaction of the lost night%s debauch. ) %(entlemen.o matter.= said he ) =deep in debt.%=. and left the room ) walking rather unsteadily. who%s to get them. I would have more than one chance.= 'nd he began to snivel then. never get out of it. what of that/ any a better man than you has lived and died in debt. and went on with our jollification. =I wasn%t born for it.% r. %='nd then. they were demons themselves. when he was under the threefold influence ) of the loss of his sweetheart. the loss of his fortune. or a wasp without its body. were the first to tempt him. and nearly as hard to get rid of ) especially as his kind friends did all they could to second the promptings of his own insatiable cravings.= %=What can%t be cured must be endured. sinking his head on his hand. so we let him alone. and bearing a hand in the applause. suddenly raising his head. sitting there silent and glum.% %.= %=Well. and then proceeded. it seems. he was an unfailing source of merriment to us. %='nd then. =there are more *arolines in the world than one. unable to contain my indignation. or :attersley%s riotous mirth.= %=. ) that I think we%d better go no further. %=$ut I hate to be in debt0= he shouted.% cried I. gentlemen. because you%re a peer. but after that he took to it kindly to solace his cares. 'nd he started up.= 'nd I handed him his fourth tumbler. I%d never stop here. =1ou%ll find a man can live without his money as merrily as a tortoise without its head. for the liquor had got into his head. %=' speech. %:e kept his oath about gambling @not a little to the surprise of us allA.ot you. and hearing our wild songs. but now he had got hold of another habit that bothered him nearly as much. he was such a damper upon us. a speech0= shouted we. deprecatingly. %=. till. We%d better stop while we can. I tell you0= shouted he. hear0 &owborough%s going to give us a speech0= %:e waited calmly till the thunders of applause and jingling of glasses had ceased. if he did not help us to sing them himself.= he replied. with a dolorous sigh. for the brandy had softened his heart. if I were you. I%ve lost my *aroline. -ven (rimsby could chuckle over his odd sayings# they delighted him far more than my merry jests. after one of our club dinners.

%We expected him back among us the next day.%=3ust so0= cried :attersley ) =2top. taking up his glass of wine. by a significant wink. ) he was never unwilling to talk to me. because I can%t bear my own thoughts.o longer sport upon the brink +f everlasting woe. %=<ill again0= said I. %=. and then bolted from the room. I willingly complied. (rimsby directed my attention towards it. laughing immoderately at the recollection of the whole affair. $ut some of our members protested against this conduct. ) and perhaps. silent and grim as a ghost. :e made me a sign to replenish. and the gaming)houses. on the contrary. =and I forswear it0 I%ve given up gambling. but I knew a smoking tumbler of brandy)and)water would comfort him best. he shouted. to our surprise. and had nearly prepared it. so we let him be. for some time.= suggested I. but. melancholy mind. dashed the contents of it in (rimsby%s face. I used to meet him occasionally in the town. and such)like dangerous places of resort ) he was so weary of his own moping. and leant back in his chair. and several hands were busy with bottle and glass to serve him. ='nd if you choose to visit the bottomless pit.% %I hope he broke your head. with the utmost gravity. till it reached the table. $ut I left the glass by him. he would cling to me. backing from the room.% said I. stop and think $efore you further go.= %=-xactly0= replied his lordship. . then0= said he. %&owborough kept aloof from us a week or two longer. =I renounce it for ever0= 'nd he threw it out into the middle of the table. but. providentially. nettled at the intelligent grins that were passing between us.his is hell broth0= he exclaimed.% he continued. I saw it was drained to the bottom. and we really began to think he was going to keep his word.= said he. as I was too good)natured to resent his unmannerly conduct. =<arewell. and prevented the glass from breaking. =+n you be the curse. and follow me anywhere but to the club. too. and.hey did not like to have him sitting there like a skeleton at a feast. and. and showing his luxuriant chestnut locksA %saved my skull. ) still abstaining. from the =rank poison= he had so bravely forsworn. when he peevishly pushed it away. he continued to look in upon us pretty regularly of an evening. spoilt my face. 't last. ) %=>o let me alone. 't last.aste it. all of you0 I%m not come to join you# I%m only come to be with you awhile. on condition that I would not tempt him to drink. the place remained vacant# we saw nothing of him for a whole week.% %'fter that. love. saying.o. he entered. on turning my head. but we all rose to welcome him.= :e was on the point of deliberately pouring the whole contents of the bottle on to the table. threw the empty tumbler at me.% replied he. after awhile. poor sinner. %he would have done so. and. when we were most of us assembled together again. and several voices were raised to ask what he would have. grasping the bottle by the neck. I won%t go with you ) we must part company. and would have quietly slipped into his usual seat at my elbow.= 'nd he folded his arms. and then. handing him the bottle ) =and let us drink to your renunciation. for I swear I%ll not move another step towards it0 ) What%s this/% he said. snatched the glass from my hand. :untingdon0 >o be quiet. . and I%ll give up this too. %=. this forest of curls% @taking off his hat. and quietly pushed up the bottle.= %=It%s rank poison. and. %. 'nd. one evening. I got him to come in with me to the club. and he bore no malice against me. instead of contributing his quota to the . but &owborough detected the pantomime. with wonderful perseverance. but :argrave wrested it from him. ye tempters0= and vanished amid shouts of laughter and applause.

% he recklessly added. which cannot be done by one that suffers himself to be the slave of a single . don%t think. he sei. I mean ) he glided in. twice or thrice ) or by%r lady. ' few sidelong glances. and he would soon see as bright a prospect as any of us. I%m nothing at all of the kind.% muttered the narrator. :owever. they would tell him as much. besides. it was rather provoking. and some of them maintained that he should either be compelled to do as others did. $ut. intimating that. and he spoke to nobody. for. to be sure. and. and leaning forward with his elbows on the table. till he suddenly dropped from his chair. ) =Well0 it pu. ni)jamais)ni)toujours plan ) not to kill himself like a fool.he consequence of this imprudence was something like an apoplectic fit. I value my comfort far too much. I won%t ) I won%t0= 2o I handed them down again to the owners. thrusting the brandy)bottle into his hand ) but stop.hen he clasped his hands before his eyes to shut out the sight. tenderly patting him on the back. and said. . but nobody spoke to him.general amusement. when he was sufficiently re)established. and not to abstain like a ninny ) in a word. %+ne night. followed by a rather severe brain fever ) % %'nd what did you think of yourself. and. I like to enjoy my life at all sides and ends. disappearing under the table amid a tempest of applause. I was very penitent. in a hoarse but vehement whisper. till he startled us all by suddenly drawing in his chair. I%m telling too much.ed the bottle and sucked away. it was well known to me that he kept a private bottle of laudanum about him. I tell you. though he refused to drink like an honest *hristian. and two minutes after lifted his head again. I tenderly brought him back to the fold. I restored him to the bosom of the club.= and.% he replied. every drop they carried to their lips ) they vowed it was not fair. as usual. and recommended them to let him be for a while. I saw by his face that he was suffering from the effects of an overdose of his insidious comforter. quickly. next time he showed himself. but he pushed them back. and never was.= whether it chose to fill it or not. and swore that. What you see in life I don%t know ) I see only the blackness of darkness. . in the chair we always placed for =the spectre. and never shall be. proceed to active measures. startled at the look I turned upon him.% %What do you mean/% %I mean. during one of our orgies ) one of our high festivals.. I recommended him to =take a little wine for his stomach%s sake.ake them away0 I won%t taste it.= and seated himself. and do as I did. ) %=. and we went on with our merry carousals as before. abstaining one day and exceeding the next ) just like the spirits. with a little patience on our parts. or expelled from the society.ake the bottle. like the ghost in = acbeth.les me what you can find to be so merry about. and exclaiming with portentous solemnity. to enjoy himself like a rational creature. bid him drink. and I set them before him in a semicircle. and a fearful looking for of judgment and fiery indignation0= %'ll the company simultaneously pushed up their glasses to him. get me a glass0= %=. I see that a man cannot give himself up to drinking without being miserable one)half his days and mad the other. a little back from the table. if he did not take the warning. some four times ) and when he got better. but I saw that he followed them with a glare of hungry regret as they departed. ) %='nd yet I must0 :untingdon. %+f course.= was all the notice he drew by his appearance. holding off and on with. and compassionating the feebleness of his health and extreme lowness of his spirits. man0= said I. %I went to see him once or twice ) nay. with greedy eyes. and thus continued his relation# %In his desperate eagerness. that =the ghost was come. and watching. for. to embrace the media)via. however. which he was continually soaking at ) or rather. I befriended him on this occasion. casting a cloud over all. he would soon come round again. that I%m a tippler. :elen. sir/% said I. and a whispered observation. %$ut no matter. muttering.

&owborough/= said I. but perhaps that would be no great matter. indeed. %=' wife. and to reconcile me to myself. =I might hope.= %=Who ) I/= %=1es ) all of you do ) and you more than any of them. in his sober moments. and I can%t live with you. =for I can%t live alone. any neglected old maid. do you think anybody would take me ) ruined and wretched as I am/= %=1es. after pondering awhile in one of his gloomy. or any more potent beverage that came to hand.= %=Who/= %=Why. you know. till his clamorous conscience brought him to a stand. it would enable me to choose with my eyes open ) and I should make a good husband in spite of it. and when his first scruples of conscience were overcome.= 'nd he sighed as if his heart would break. with fortune enough to pay off my debts and set me straight in the world ) = %=. because my own mind distracts me. one day when he and I were alone together. this won%t do0 I%m resolved to have done with it. he was a model of moderation and prudence ) something too much so for the tastes of our wild community. %=. =to make home tolerable. said. but.= he answered. and his terrors and woes. but could any one be in love with me/ ) that%s the question. no. :untingdon. abstracted moods. somehow. $ut if I could get a wife.= said I. and so on from day to day. and be as great a blackguard as any of them could desire ) but only to lament his own unutterable wickedness and degradation the more when the fit was over. With your good looks and powers of fascination= @he was pleased to sayA. he must go down before he could right himself# if he overshot the mark one night. I%m going to reform. drinking spoils one%s good looks.propensity ) and. %'nd did &ord &owborough profit by your advice/% I asked. I shall never be in love again. the effects of it rendered him so miserable the next day that he must repeat the offence to mend it. ) %=:untingdon. I think I should do yet. %='nd sweetness and goodness enough. and vehemently grasping my arm.o.= %=1es. certainly.o be sure. <or a while he managed very well.= he continued. to get him to drown his sorrows in wine. in a manner.o. 'nd then. but as it is. he would often grow desperate. moreover.= . are you going to shoot yourself/= said I.= %=What. with a most conceited smile that ought to have provoked me more than it did. that%s nothing new0 1ou%ve been going to reform these twelve months and more. thinking he was fairly cracked at last. %'t last.= %=+h.% he concluded.= said he ) =it must be somebody that I can love. he so bothered his friends with his remorse. because you take the devil%s part against me. $ut now I see what it is that keeps me back. fast sinking in despair. he would need no more persuading. and I was such a fool I couldn%t live without you. but you wouldn%t let me. and I%d compass sea and land to get it ) only I%m afraid there%s no chance. would be delighted to ) = %=. he suddenly woke up. in self) defence. that they were obliged. yes. and what%s wanted to save me. with his arms folded and his head sunk on his breast. &owborough had not the gift of moderation# if he stumbled a little to one side. %Why. %=What is it. that%s certain.

&ast night he came to me brimful of his new)found felicity# %=:untingdon. 'lready. In a word. 't first. $ut. Whenever I meet you on honest ground or under a *hristian roof.% continued r. . :elen. looking somewhat less like an unblest exile from the tomb than before. and from that time forward he has been a pattern of propriety. :e occasionally sought my company. meantime. is happiness in store for me yet ) even in this life ) she loves me0= %=Indeed0= said I. with a sudden burst of hope. how much degradation and misery I should have been spared0 $ut what have I done to deserve so magnificent a creature/= %'nd the cream of the jest. and cares nothing about it0 2he knows all the folly and all the wickedness of my former my hand and squee. till after they were brought into closer contact here at 2taningley. though he did not dare to fix his hopes on one so courted and admired. =2ucceed or fail. certainly. and she. he didn%t understand them. it will be better than rushing headlong to destruction at that d)d club# so farewell to it and you. I found him still a disconsolate bachelor ) though. 2he will save me. and we parted. from destruction. I darkened his prospects by standing between him and his sun ) and so nearly plunged him again into the abyss of despair ) it only intensified his ardour and strengthened his hopes when I chose to abandon the field in the pursuit of a brighter treasure. she has ennobled me in my own estimation. =. fearing lest I should wile him back to destruction. >o you not see how pointedly kind and affectionate she is/ 'nd she knows the utmost extent of my poverty. :e kept his word. body and soul. and =that delightful old family it like a vice. he could dimly perceive her faults. he wanted the spirit and assurance to carry his point. I%ll search all -ngland through. wiser. high)minded being that can be conceived of. but the mammas were still unrelenting. +h0 if I had but known her before. and the daughters by his cloudy brow and melancholy temper ) besides. I seldom failed to ask after the progress of his matrimonial efforts and researches.he young ladies had ceased to be afraid of him. but I shook hands with him. and made me three times better. as I told you. iss Wilmot ) through the intervention of his good angel. &owborough became acquainted with our charming friend. but as frequently shrunk from it. indubitably courted his notice and held out every encouragement to his timid advances. I shall be glad to see you. at the year%s end. %I left him at it when I went to the continent. he could give me but a poor account. =:as she told you so/= %=. but now his passion and her art together have blinded him to everything but her perfections and his ama. for a while. and is not afraid to trust me ) and my rank and title are no allurements to her. . in the absence of her other admirers.o. but I can no longer doubt it. as far as I can tell. especially as he sometimes attempted to awaken my conscience and draw me from the perdition he considered himself to have escaped. that my good angel brought me into conjunction with you. he began to hope for a dawn of brighter good fortune. in general.=% . 2he is the most generous. I am not a castaway0= said he. and I found his not very entertaining. :untingdon. and if. love is not the word ) but somebody that I can like. but never more shall you entice me to that devil%s den0= %. you just said you never could be in love again0% %=Well. for them she utterly disregards. or desperation. and on my return. . he is fairly besotted.%=Why. but till lately I have not had very much to do with him. but when I did happen to meet him.hen. no doubt he would tell you. that the artful minx loves nothing about him but his title and pedigree. It was about this time. and they gave him considerable uneasiness. laughing. and then I had eyes and ears for nobody else. sei.his was shameful language. greater than I was. at all events0= he cried.he mothers were repelled by his empty coffers and his reputation for gambling. and. %is. and were beginning to think him quite interesting.

before he could offer his assistance. darling ) (od forbid that I should0 but you are angry because it was to me that 'nnabella confessed her lack of esteem for her lover. When I entered my room. it is much better that the truth should dawn gradually upon him. with the glossy dark hair. instead of seconding their evil propensities against themselves. and the . you will never make a jest of the sufferings of others. and I will gladly obey.% %.% %I will do my utmost. and if not. I should have to pass my life in single blessedness. :elen. she said.% said he.% %I%m laughing at you. which was within half a mile of the park)gates. it would break his heart.% said I. she may keep up the deception to the end of the chapter. when I meant to jump off my horse and vanish into the house. 'nd leaving him to enjoy his merriment alone. :elen/ :a.y ride. but. it is not that that displeases me# it is the whole system of your conduct towards your friend. but then. I thoroughly despise him. redoubling his machinations.%:ow do you know/% said I. ha0 I suspect she was wrong there. and we did not slacken our pace till we came up with iss Wilmot and &ord &owborough. and if you wish me to forget it. the rich brown complexion glowing with exercise.% %. in future. love. as I beheld that tall. 'rthur. as gravely as before# %that. however. he is past praying for. but while I was disengaging my habit from the crutch. I hope I have made out a clear case. and cantered on to rejoin our companions. my angel. and the other holding up her long habit. I was surprised to see 'nnabella Wilmot standing before my toilet)table. I touched !uby with the whip. and on whom he has hung his hopes of future happiness. and fully convinced you that I cannot make the atonement you require.ingly diverting in the matter.% said I. or perhaps he will only discover his mistake when he has ceased to love her. for we had been walking our horses all this time. and always use your influence with your friends for their own advantage against their evil propensities. r. asserting that he would not let me go till I had forgiven him. he lifted me off. 2o now. it is evident she has no love for him. but not disposed to talk to him. and held me by both hands. slightly and not ungracefully disordered by the bree. and were consequently a long way behind. I broke into a gallop. ='s for the man himself. it would break his heart ) it would be the death of him ) besides being a scandalous trick to poor 'nnabella. I see nothing to laugh at.% said he. and tell him what sort of a woman it is that he adores so madly.o. wouldn%t it. finely developed figure. :untingdon. I suppose.o.o.% %I tell you. I avoided all further conversation with him till we came to the end of our ride. :e did the same.% %What0 and spoil all her plans and prospects. ha0 $esides. %to remember and perform the injunctions of my angel monitress. it is time to be making my choice. and if I waited for some one capable of eliciting my esteem and affection. poor girl/ . %2he certainly is a magnificent creature0% thought I. %2he told me so herself.% 'nd he laughed again. %I have nothing to forgive.% %I have none but this. $esides. I don%t know what you see so ama. just now. he let me go. no# that would be a breach of confidence. composedly surveying her features in the glass.% and after kissing both my gloved hands.hen you ought to tell him is no help for him now. with one hand flirting her gold)mounted whip. What other requisition have you to make/ 2peak.% %. go now. poor fellow. . %Well. %1ou have not injured me. for I detest you all0= :a. and then he will be just as happy in the illusion as if it were reality. 'rthur was soon at my side again. and the reflection of the handsome face in the mirror before me.

and just like himself. !achel. love. . but there is always a %but% in this r. not all. and both be happy. +n perceiving me. but passing sweet. .hey tell queer things about him downstairs. to be sure ) over head and ears in love0% %Well.% she continued.% said I ) %or him either. and paper0 55nd. :untingdon0% said she. ) I have had several letters from 'rthur already. I%ve heard all about him. 'nd they have no business to tell tales about their masters. long time to live and not to see him. !achel/% I asked. indeed.% 'nd. with a laugh that savoured more of malice than of mirth.% said she. :elen0 what have you been doing so long/ I came to tell you my good fortune. and he is gone.% said I. I hope you%ll make him a good wife. iss. %'nd do you like him. %I%m sure I hope he%ll make her a good husband. I was anxious to be rid of the good woman. mum ) or else. and I have been graciously pleased to accept him. and made me promise to write still oftener. and playful lively humour.hey are gone.% %. and I hope you will make a very good wife to and retired. %2ay what/% replied I.% %1es. above ten weeks0 a long. exclaiming. after a short pause. . that you hoped she would make him a good wife. ) %Why. We are to be parted for more than two months. as she went on arranging my hair. %. I think I shall always have plenty to say.o.% said she. iss0 how could you say so to her0% cried !achel. they have said some things about %I won%t hear them. regardless of !achel%s presence. I wish it.o. she turned round. !achel/ I want to be dressed.% %Well.% %.hey are not long.% %. $ut oh0 for the time when we shall be always together. $ut he has promised to write often. I do believe a young lady can%t be too careful who she marries. but he%s reformed now. !achel. quietly. ) .black eyes sparkling with unwonted brilliance. with a queenly bow. my dear0 'nd what besides do you hope/% %I hope you will both love each other. %Why. and can exchange our thoughts without the intervention of these cold go)betweens. $ut I think. and I shall have nothing better to do. for I was in such a melancholy frame I could hardly keep the tears out of my eyes while she dressed me. will you. pen. or rather. 1ou know when a lot of servants gets together they like to talk about their betters. dear/% %. >on%t you envy me. ink. they tell lies. %+h. Well. if I was you. It was not for &ord &owborough ) it was not for 'nnabella ) it was not for myself ) it was for 'rthur :untingdon that they rose. and some. 'nnabella/% %&ike him0 yes. because he will be busy settling his affairs.% I mentally added. :untingdon too.hey were saying ) % %I know. %>o you believe them. %&ord &owborough has proposed. likes to make it appear as though they knew more than they do.hank you. .hanks. full of ardent affection. I%d look very well before I leaped. for a bit of swagger.% r. I never heard such a thing0% %$ecause I do hope it. iss :elen. GGGGG 6Ith.% %+f course not. mum.o. and to throw out hints and things just to astonish the others. %but be quick. she%s almost past hope.

o be sure I might have known him. . I am constrained to acknowledge that. :e will be away all day. I am glad. 67. and then made the discovery. I can easily forgive him for loving himself# he likes to be pleased. I should like to be less of a pet and more of a friend. if I might choose. but I won%t complain of that# I am only afraid his affection loses in depth where it gains in ardour. but if it should burn itself out and leave nothing but ashes behind. and piquante as I was. for all the continental scenes were already familiar to him# many had lost their interest in his eyes. having made no acquaintance with persons and manners. :e is very fond of me. for. but still it was less the disappointment to myself that annoyed me. almost too fond. . and I do wish he would sometimes be serious. :e wanted to hurry it over. and. not for mine. I have had eight weeks% experience of matrimony. but these embittered by the recollection that my emotions had not been shared by my companion. . and this just tallies with my inclination. some. . when I had expressed a particular interest in anything that I saw or desired to see. my duty now is plainly to love him and to cleave to him. indeed. that after a flying transit through part of <rance and part of Italy. I came back nearly as ignorant as I went. to have me all to himself. for it has saved me a great deal of battling with my conscience. $ut 'rthur is selfish. that 'rthur is not what I thought him at first. It is exactly four months since I opened it last. it sha%n%t. in my secret heart. and when I regret this tendency of his.imperfect world. what shall I do/ $ut it won%t. he did not scruple to tell me that there were ladies in both places that would tear his eyes out if they happened to meet him with me. and if I loved him first.he first instance he gave was on the occasion of our bridal tour. and it is my delight to please him. I am married now. it is true. I am determined. :untingdon of (rassdale anor. just as single)minded. 6755. and now. as naive. and very little with things. I probably never should have loved him. but if it be always so. instead of regretting that I did not discern his full character before I was indissolubly bound to him. inasmuch as it proved that I could take delight in anything disconnected with himself. and a great deal of consequent trouble and pain. especially that of "aris and !ome. 2o let me dismiss that thought at once. he said. it is for his own sake. +f course I was vexed at all this. and so I will amuse myself with my neglected diary. he expressed himself fearful of rubbing the silver off my wings by bringing me into contact with society. though I must confess. whatever I ought to have done. and settled down as rs. ) -arly this morning 'rthur mounted his hunter and set off in high glee to meet the ) hounds. I cannot get him to write or speak in real. 'nd do I regret the step I have taken/ . for every one was willing enough to tell me about him. but that. and to see me safely installed as the mistress of (rassdale anor. on the contrary. and surely I have power to keep it alive. it had been displeasing to him. the admission gives me less pain than might be expected. and he himself was no accomplished hypocrite. I fear I should have thought it my duty not to have married him. what shall I do with the serious part of myself/ CHAPTER XXIII <eb. 's for "aris. we only just touched at that. and. and others had never had anything to lose. I don%t much mind it now. leaving a deeper and more pleasing impression than others. and as if I had been some frail butterfly. :e wanted to get me home. I sometimes liken it to a fire of dry twigs and branches compared with one of solid coal. and he would not give me time to see one)tenth of the beauties and interesting objects of !ome. but I was wilfully blind. more)over. my head swarming with a motley confusion of objects and scenes. since I love him so much. and.o. and if I had known him in the beginning as thoroughly as I do now. I could do with less caressing and more rationality. solid earnest. very bright and hot.he consequence was. if I can give that name to such an irregular composition.

a woman%s religion ought not to lessen her devotion to her earthly lord. without imputing one particle of blame to my companion. I would not complain. .% said he. which I am half inclined to doubt.% I answered. but when he placed my hand on the top of it. calling me a sweet enthusiast. What are you.% %It is nothing you have done or said. %1ou see I was not made to be a saint. he shocked and horrified me by another instance of his unreasonable exaction. %If (od meant me to be religious. and I was beginning to think my lot too happy.% continued I. $ut when we got home ) to my new. you know. like all other good things. for my soul%s sake. it may be carried too far. indeed. and my husband actually too good for me. so don%t excite such wicked passions again.than the disappointment in him. %:elen. he added# %$ut look here. especially in the middle. %I am not quite satisfied with you. %you don%t love me half as much as I do you. .o my thinking. 'rthur @at least I hope I don%tA# pray tell me what I have done or said amiss. provided you loved your aker more. %and not one atom more of it to you than :e allows. but you are making more progress towards that saintly condition than I like. and presume to dispute possession of my heart with :im to whom I owe all I have and all I am. $ut. and raise her above all human sympathies. and without offending a higher authority. instead of employing his one talent in his master%s service.% said he. :elen ) what can a man do with such a head as this/% . I should lose nothing by the change. if not too good for this world.% %I don%t understand you. if I can. %who. why didn%t :e give me a proper organ of veneration/% %1ou are like the servant. %$ut will you promise to reform if I tell you/% %1es. We were walking home from the morning service. for the more you loved your (od the more deep and pure and true would be your love to me. and the trouble I was at to frame excuses to my friends for having seen and observed so little. it sunk in a bed of curls. with unusual gravity.ow I like a woman to be religious. .% %'nd am I above all human sympathies/% said I. and I think your piety one of your greatest charms.hen taking off his hat. %. delightful home ) I was so happy and he was so kind that I freely forgave him all. 2he should have enough to purify and etherealise her soul. it is something that you are ) you are too your fingers into the bone. you see# you don%t love me with all your heart. and don%t pinch my arm so# you are squee. but then.% %'rthur. laughing. when.o.% %I will give my whole heart and soul to my aker if I can. for all these two hours I have been thinking of you and wanting to catch your eye. I had requested the carriage should not be used. relaxing my hold of his arm. I should rejoice to see you at any time so deeply absorbed in your devotions that you had not a single thought to spare for me. every blessing I ever did or ever can enjoy ) and yourself among the rest ) if you are a blessing. that you should set yourself up as a god.he head looked right enough. sir.% 't this he only laughed and kissed my hand. rather alarmingly low. :elen. for it was a fine frosty day.% %>on%t be so hard upon me. .% I desired to know what was wrong.% %'h0 there it is. on the second 2unday after our arrival. if you loved me far less than you do. and you were so absorbed in your devotions that you had not even a glance to spare for me ) I declare it is enough to make one jealous of one%s aker ) which is very wrong. but not enough to refine away her heart. and as we are so near the church.% I replied. darling. and yet.

=. reaping where he had not sown. in thy youth. and what would you have me to do/% %. for he has so few sources of amusement# he never reads anything but newspapers and sporting maga.= +f him to whom less is given. but of the idle. with your leave. regardless of that counsel.ow. our friend 2olomon says. and how can I tell that it is not all a fable. and neglect the good till they dwindle away. $ut you have talents. merry)hearted man.% CHAPTER XXIV arch 5Cth. and gathering where he had not strawed. consisting of all manner of dainties and delicacies. to look further.=% %'nd again. such as many a better *hristian would be glad to possess.othing more than you do. In fine . as an excuse. that he knew him =to be a hard man. got up by the greasy)faced fellow that is advising me to abstain in order that he may have all the good victuals to himself/ in the fourth place. hereafter. I don%t see to)morrow%s banquet. and over)eat and over)drink yourself till you turn the good victuals into poison.% returned I. and every faculty. and in the sight of thine eyes# but know thou. + young man. I trust. alleging. you have only yourself to blame. or who else can hasten hereunto more than I/= and finally. and not to call evil good. 'rthur ) natural endowments both of heart and mind and temper. %he says.restored it to him unimproved. who is to blame if. 1ou are not without the capacity of veneration. and I see before me a good substantial dinner. in the first place. but. my patron saint.=% %Well. you see more temperate men sitting down to enjoy themselves at that splendid entertainment which you are unable to taste/% % ost true. strengthens by exercise# therefore. and walk in the ways of thine heart. in the third place. and good evil. and aim higher than you do. ) 'rthur is getting tired ) not of me. as 2olomon says. =!ejoice. if you would only employ them in (od%s service. I%m sure I%ve been very good these last few weeks. and faith and hope.% %1ou speak like an oracle. and to be merry. and. I should be loth to wait till to)morrow when I have the means of appeasing my hunger already before me# in the second place. while you are suffering the torments of yesterday%s gluttony and drunkenness. but I would have your thoughts changed. I should wish you to think more deeply. I am told that if I abstain from this to)day I shall have a sumptuous feast to)morrow. but again. . if you choose to use the bad. quiet life he leads ) and no wonder. he won%t let me rest till I close it. but all our talents increase in the using. :elen. and when he sees me occupied with a book. I should never expect to see you a devotee. the solid viands of to)day are more to my taste than the dainties that are promised me.ines. and conscience and reason. this table must be spread for somebody. =Who can eat. and every other requisite to a *hristian%s character. or those which tend to evil. till they become your masters. If. I would have you to fortify yourself against temptation. What have you seen amiss in me. and all you say is indisputably true. :elen. but listen here# I am hungry. I%ll sit down and satisfy my cravings of to)day. but our utmost exertions are required of us all. and leave to)morrow to shift for itself ) who knows but what I may secure both this and that/% %$ut you are not required to abstain from the substantial dinner of to)day# you are only advised to partake of these coarser viands in such moderation as not to incapacitate you from enjoying the choicer banquet of to)morrow. but it is quite possible to be a good *hristian without ceasing to be a happy. if you choose to employ them. that for all these things (od will bring thee into judgment. you choose to make a beast of yourself now. 'rthur# your actions are all right so is nothing better for a man than to eat and to drink. both good and bad. less will be required.

and when he has sufficiently diverted himself with that. but it is impossible to get him to feel interested in what I most like to talk about. 'rthur. starting up from beside him# and for the first time in my life. for he was very young at the time.% %1ou are too severe upon the poor lady. which I would not believe before. with a momentary pang ) a flash of wild dismay.hough you stand there with your white face and flashing eyes. on the other hand. . for it seemed as if she had chiefly contributed to his corruption. I ask myself. I do all I can to amuse him. %$ut never are times when. I do and will love him still. he tries to kiss and soothe me into smiles again ) never were his caresses so little welcome as then0 . and when I express my horror and indignation. but still he reads the inward struggle in my face. %. 'rthur. he likes to talk about things that cannot interest me ) or even that annoy me ) and these please him ) the most of all# for his favourite amusement is to sit or loll beside me on the sofa. what have you done/% $ut I rebuke the inward questioner. I well know I have no right to complain. or fears my displeasure will become too serious for his comfort.he particulars are as follows# 'rthur had told me. it is quite painful to witness his ennui. .hen that was another crime. whom it was impossible to love. %:elen. mind. to find that in this instance the lady had been more to blame than he. and her solemn promise to love and honour him was another.% said he. ) We have had a downright quarrel. and tell me stories of his former amours. and I hope the last.ening of some unsuspecting husband. for I detested the very sound of her name.% was the reply. my darling/% % ost certainly not0% :e laughed he generally manages to get through the time pretty well. %I wish I could convince you of it now0% cried I. and was altogether a very abominable woman.% %If you had told me these things before. I begged he would not mention her. 'nd I don%t and won%t complain. :elen. %<or his money.% $ut he defended her by saying that she had a doting old husband. %do you know that if I believed you now I should be very angry/ but thank heaven I don%t.% %Wouldn%t you. and she had decidedly made the first advances. . %. of which we have had a good many of late. and I never loved any of them half as much as I do you.% laughed he. but on rainy days. for were he ten times as sensual and impenetrable to good and lofty thoughts. %:elen. so you needn%t fear to be forsaken like them. looking at me like . but seeing that his delight increased in proportion to my anger and agitation. I never should have given you the chance. while. and laughs till the tears run down his cheeks. always turning upon the ruin of some confiding girl or the co. at different intervals. more gravely. that only increased the enormity of the last. 'pril 8th. but because she injured you and deceived her husband. I hated her for it. and misconstrues my bitterness of soul for his unworthiness into the pangs of wounded jealousy. It was some consolation. I have since endeavoured to suppress my feelings and receive his revelations in the silence of calm contempt. he lays it all to the charge of jealousy. and when he was beginning to talk about her the other day.hen why did she marry him/% said I. if what he said was true.his is double selfishness displayed to me and to the victims of his former love. the whole story of his intrigue with &ady <). %. whom you ought to be ashamed to mention.ot because you loved her. and I do not and will not regret that I have linked my fate with his. I used to fly into passions or melt into tears at first. I don%t care for her now. I wished I had not married him. and repel the obtrusive thoughts that crowd upon me. however.

% Without another word I left the room and locked myself up in my own chamber.he reading and answering of my letters. the other from ilicent :argrave. . alternately petting and teasing and abusing his dogs. though it did not make me relent. a desperate flirtation with her.his was only an hour after dinner# I knew he would find it very dull to sit alone all the evening. 2oon after ten o%clock I heard him come up again. with the vain hope of detecting some traces of tears. . afforded me ample employment for the morning# after lunch I got my drawing. of course telling her nothing of all this. and a couple of letters for me. +ne was from my brother. %. but he passed my door and went straight to his own dressing)room.% :e paused a moment as if dumfounded or uncertain how to answer such a speech. you have displeased me. and very often fixedly ga. I was rather anxious to see how he would meet me in the morning. eanwhile. and I sat down and wrote a long letter to my aunt. I coldly turned to the table. his sufferings were truly deplorable. While taking his coffee he muttered it was %d)d cold. to my private satisfaction. and then sat down to breakfast. and then turned and walked away. and not returned till night# had there been a lady anywhere within reach. cursing the rain. and apparently not much to his mind. and pretended to be deeply absorbed in its contents during the remainder of breakfast. where he shut himself in for the night. who is now in &ondon with her mother. It was a relief to both when the letter)bag was brought at me when he thought I did not perceive it.% said I. streaming rain. and first he tried the handle. or some tokens of remorseful anguish . and I could live without him if I chose. no matter where. It contained upon examination a newspaper and one or two letters for him. sometimes lounging on the sofa with a book that he could not force himself to read. approaching as if to salute me. he would doubtless have ordered his horse and set off to some distant region.a very tigress.% I replied. :is. he spent the remainder of the morning and the whole of the afternoon in fidgeting about from room to room. entirely cut off from both these sources of diversion. :e wanted to appear as busy and as unconcerned as I did. which he tossed across the table without a remark. where he stood for some minutes looking out upon the pleasing prospect of sullen grey clouds.he paper he set before him. and dripping leafless trees. I think. but being. When he had done yawning over his paper and scribbling short answers to his shorter letters. :e made no answer. and the meal was concluded in silence. and muttering execrations on the weather. and began to pour out the coffee. %and I don%t want to see your face or hear your voice again till the morning. or trying to get up. observing that he was rather late. In about half an hour he came to the door. of any age between fifteen and forty)five.% %1ou should not have left it so long. and from dinner till bed)time I read. for he crushed them into his pocket with some muttered expletives that I should have reproved him for at any other time. I was determined to show him that my heart was not his slave. . and this considerably softened my resentment.o. poor 'rthur was sadly at a loss for something to amuse him or to occupy his time. :elen/% said he. I know the heart within you perhaps a trifle better than you know it yourself. were business letters. watching the clouds. :e uttered a low whistle and sauntered away to the window. immediately after breakfast. %'re you cross still. he would have sought revenge and found employment in getting up. and a considerable time after. :elen/% said he. then he knocked. %Won%t you let me in. and the direction of household concerns. soaking lawn. :ad the weather at all permitted. and not a little disappointed to behold him enter the breakfast) room with a careless smile.

took the liberty of jumping upon him and beginning to lick his face. and. but I determined he should make the first advances. I turned back. %:elen0% cried he. I returned to my reading. %(o0% I went. When he woke up. . It sounded very like %confounded slut. 'rthur/% I said at length. %Why did you let the dog out/% he asked. he called it to him again. but >ash only looked sheepish and wagged the tip of his tail. but not enough to loosen his tongue# for when he came in and found me quietly occupied with my book. and he endeavoured to occupy himself in the same manner.% said 'rthur. at least ) I cannot say there was much communication between my eyes and my brain.% I went on reading. he merely murmured an expression of suppressed disapprobation. :e called again more sharply. and. and what I should answer. I believe. or pretending to read. I turned again. increase his arrogance. but in a little while. $ut I managed to preserve an undisturbed though grave serenity throughout the day. %What do you want. %by your throwing the book at him/ but perhaps it was intended for me/% %. and the poor dog squeaked and ran cowering back to me. -nraged at this. he pronounced his book to be %cursed trash. it would only minister to his self)conceit. or at least show some signs of an humble and contrite spirit first. :elen/% he exclaimed. . about half an hour after. 't last his patience was tired out. the moment I had left the room. :e made a long stay in the dining)room after dinner.% and threw it on the table. for. $ut his favourite cocker. that had been lying at my feet.o. if I began. but hearing him mutter something as I was closing the door. and alternately closing his eyes and looking at his watch and at me. %. but >ash only clung the closer to me. >ash. I was not really angry# I felt for him all the time. %Were you speaking.% but I was quite willing it should be something else.% said he. %What is that book. very. till bed)time. that had also been struck. %Is it interesting/% %1es. and was rather severely gra. he was staring at me. the latter was earnestly wondering when 'rthur would speak next. . in no very courteous tone. :e struck it off with a smart my face. and composed himself to sleep. for. and then it was only to say he should not take any. I let him out. I told him. and longed to be reconciled. went and stretched himself at full length on the sofa. %(ive that book to me. and ran to the door. took an unusual quantity of wine. and what he would say. 'rthur/% I asked. as if imploring protection. shutting the door with a bang. and licked my hand. after several portentous yawns. and quite destroy the lesson I wanted to give him. I fear.he poor dog set up a piteous outcry. but I see you%ve got a taste of it.% replied he. $ut he did not speak again till I rose to make the tea. :e continued lounging on the sofa. looking at my hand. when I rose. during the greater part of which.hen followed eight or ten minutes of silence. and took my candle and retired. I gave it to him.othing.ed. too busy to lift my head on his entrance. his master snatched up a heavy book and hurled it at his head.% %$y what token/% I replied. and stood awaiting his commands. %you knew I wanted him. and then quietly took up the book. while the former ran over the pages.

sir. :is countenance fell as he met my steady ga. on that or any other subject. much the same as on the previous day. :ow am I to alter his purpose/ Well.% was my morning%s salutation. and he turned away in very obvious disappointment. when 3ohn unwittingly came to my relief with the following message from the coachman# %"lease. where he stood in an attitude of undisguised dejection. %1ou%d better take your coffee. and wishing intensely for an end of these mutually inflicted torments. but. wondering if we were to have another such miserable day as yesterday. . gravely.o.% replied he. and see if he mentions it.% :e opened the newspaper and began to read. and wandered from room to room. %1ou needn%t have waited for me. a bright idea. :e whistled and talked to his dogs. %I must not let him go to &ondon. and he walked up to the window again. and physicked and all ) % %>evil take the horse0% cried the gentleman. %if you%ve done.% suggested I. %1ou%re very late. being previously prepared.% I rose and withdrew to the next room. $ut the question is. waiting to be opened. :e then sent for the coachman. %. and I shut the door and departed.% he added.he letter)bag was already there.% %1ou may go. %+h. and I shall be the cause of it. !ichard says one of the horses has got a very bad cold. :e unlocked it and examined the contents. whatever comes of it. that startled and disturbed me not a little.%. :e cast a searching glance at me. seemed to strike him. and walked up to the fire)place. %. expecting to see some token of deep astonishment and alarm.% I waited most anxiously. and I heard something about the carriage and the horses.% said I to myself. %he will run into all kinds of mischief. and &ondon. as the servant withdrew. and he thinks. I don%t want you. %Well. 2hortly after I heard him ring the bell and give some orders about his wardrobe that sounded as if he meditated a long journey. for he suddenly exclaimed. he says it would be a deal better if you could. and seven o%clock to)morrow morning.o &ondon.% was his. instead of to)morrow.e. when he came down a full hour after the usual time. %Is there anything for me/% I asked. %"lease. so as ) % %*onfound his impudence0% interjected the master. after a moment%s reflection.% said he. and he says it%s not likely. It was just such weather as yesterday. 't last I began to think I must introduce the subject myself. sir.% was the answer. after studiously regarding it for a minute or two. he could physic it to) day.o. $ut. %$ut I know what I%ll do0% and then returned and took his seat at the table. when a horse is so bad with a cold. and was pondering how to bring it about. I preserved an aspect of stoical indifference. to me. %for he hopes there%ll be a change in the weather shortly.% persisted 3ohn. from hour to hour. leaning against the chimney)piece with his forehead sunk upon his arm. I will wait awhile. . tell him I%ll think about it. this confounded rain0% he muttered. I saw nothing more of him till the following morning at breakfast. %Where do you want to go. 'rthur/% said I. but said nothing about them. sir. but not a word was spoken. if you could make it convenient to go the day after to)morrow. %it will be cold again.

more humbly.%What for/% I asked. %$ecause I cannot be happy here. with his back to the fire. and stood facing me. when the first transport of tears and kisses had subsided. It is now four days since the termination of our quarrel. %you must take it. %If she gives you her heart. are you going to be a good girl/% said he. however. or else get him to regard such matters in the same light as I do. but I did not wish to contradict him now# I merely said that I was of very domestic habits. :elen/% he resumed. I will put no limits to my hopes. thankfully. to have made him see that they are not fit subjects for a conjugal jest. yet with a merry smile just lurking within his eyes and about the corners of his mouth. and laugh in her face. Well0 it is something. and use it well. and to lose my country freshness and originality by too much intercourse with the ladies of the world.% %What must I do to deserve it/% . between sorrow and joy.% %2he would love you with all her heart.his seemed humble and earnest enough.% I answered. :e fervently embraced me. and I am sure it has done us both good# it has made me like 'rthur a great deal better.% %I will. I therefore hesitated to reply. as he well knew. :elen. gladly.o.% :e now turned round. as he should not be for staying long. then. by the most distant allusion to &ady <). "erhaps my former answer had implied too much# he had heard my voice falter. and though I shed a torrent of tears.his sounded rather too arrogant. and I flew into his arms. and made him behave a great deal better to me. :e has never once attempted to annoy me since.% %Why not/% %$ecause my wife doesn%t love me. stepping up to him and smiling in his face. love. 'rthur/% I said. %. but this could not repulse me. and had no particular wish to mingle with the world. that I was obliged to pause a few seconds before I could steady my voice to reply. but said there was no need of much preparation. %'re you going to forgive me. I wish I could blot them from my memory. %. and I was so much affected. the day after to)morrow. I think I never was happier in my life than at that moment. %'re you penitent/% I replied. and not pull it in pieces. .% :e readily consented. for he did not wish me to be &ondoni. and might have seen me brush away a tear. and the smile that accompanied it did not please me. :e may see further some time. ) unless you will go with me.% said I. or any of those disagreeable reminiscences of his former life. because she cannot snatch it away. and if you will put off the journey till next week.hen you won%t go to &ondon. if you deserved it. 2o we are to go to &ondon on onday. %:eart)broken0% he answered. I trust we shall be happy yet. and.ed. %if you think the change will amuse you. %*ome. I thought this folly. with a rueful countenance. . in spite of my aunt%s forebodings and my own unspoken fears.

instead of being a hindrance. very much against my own. in the second place. you know. %now that I know you have business to attend to. I shall insist upon your attending to it. :elen. which I was not unfrequently called upon to do. and letting me alone. and must immediately return to (rassdale. it would have been half done before this. I was wearied of the throng and bustle. sober style of dress ) I must sparkle in costly jewels and deck myself out like a painted butterfly. as I intimated before. if not the life. delicate bloom has quite deserted your cheek.hat is only with too much gaiety and fatigue. and the public in general.% %. but I was quite willing to go home if he was. depends the health. and. as he had business that required his presence.% persisted the impracticable creature. no. or some trait of inexperienced ignorance about the customs of society. to please him I had to violate my cherished of your country home. and your business cannot occupy all your time# I shall see you at meal)times. and. he suddenly discovered that the &ondon air did not agree with me. just as I had. dearest :elen. and that will be better than being leagues away and never seeing you at all. 'rthur. I must have the satisfaction of knowing that you are safe and well. %you must go home. %$ut I can%t do with you.% said I.o. I laughingly assured him that the case was not so urgent as he appeared to think it. I cannot let you stay. :e seemed bent upon displaying me to his friends and acquaintances in particular. that you had anything to do. neglected )/% %I shall not feel myself neglected# while you are doing your duty.% %.hen you really wish to get rid of me/% . and I was languishing for my country home. dark. and now you must make up for lost time by redoubled exertions. especially when I acted the part of hostess. long since. on the eighth of ay I returned.% was his answer# %as long as you stay I shall attend to you and neglect my business. I tell you. on every possible occasion. %. and in the evenings at least. 1our bright eyes are faded. I can take my rides and walks in the "ark as usual. in the first place. my almost rooted principles in favour of a plain. I should have been very glad to get home again. and to the greatest possible advantage.% I returned. I was continually straining to satisfy his sanguine expectations and do honour to his choice by my general conduct and deportment. :elen. :e replied that he should be obliged to remain a week or two longer.% %It is not.% %$ut.% %$ut I won%t let you. on your health. though far away. to tell the truth. and I will be your taskmaster. my love. in obedience to 'rthur%s wish.% %. I was quite tired out.hen I will stay with you. in that short space of time. of our future hope. it is the &ondon air# you are pining for the fresh bree.CHAPTER XXV +n the eighth of 'pril we went to &ondon. and you shall feel them before you are two days older. 'nd remember your situation. for he led me such a round of restless dissipation while there. I shall be glad of a little rest. determined I would never do ) and this was no trifling sacrifice. but I paid dear for the gratification# for. If he had come with me. and that tender. If you had told me before. and fearing to disappoint him by some awkward misdemeanour. the restless hurry and ceaseless change of a life so alien to all my previous habits. in the third place. It was something to feel that he considered me a worthy object of pride. . I shall never complain of neglect. because I left him behind. 't last.ell me what it is. :ow can I settle my affairs when I know that you are here. that.

3uly Ird. for it is nearly that time since I left him. 'rthur. and why did you never mention it before/% %It is only a little business with my lawyer. %'bsence makes the heart grow fonder. 'rthur. except the :argraves. I will go alone# if you must stay. but still I don%t know what to make of it. are kind. :is excuses are vague and insufficient. and every time deceives me. what helpless creature do you take me for. or deceives himself. and a rather longer one than usual. tells me I can have no conception of the multitudinous engagements that keep him away. doing ) what is it that keeps him away/ It is this ever)recurring question. though it is impossible for a man so circumstanced as he is to fix the precise day of his return# meantime he exhorts me to the exercise of patience. he will assuredly be with me before the close of next week. for Walter is always away. there is no one at the (rove but little -sther and her <rench governess. 2till less can I now comprehend how it should keep him a month. and the horrible suggestions it raises.% %$ut if I must go. to come and see me. and more polished and gentlemanly than r. In every letter he promises to be with me in a few days. for I could not clearly understand how that should keep him in town a fortnight after me. or I was rather dull of comprehension. in order to pay off a part of the incumbrances on his estate. in spite of them all. pining in solitude and restless anxiety from day to day/ ) It would serve you right to come back and find my good looks entirely wasted away. I would beg my uncle and aunt. %Why. and then return. he . but avers that. ) y last bitter letter has wrung from him an answer at last. I was glad when I learnt that ilicent was so near us.o 'rthur yet. though he certainly appeared more conversable and agreeable than &ord &owborough. hitherto unanswered.%"ositively. hastily)scribbled returns for the three or four long letters. but either the account was a little confused. and no signs of his return as yet. I saw that paragon of manly perfections in &ondon# he seemed scarcely to merit the eulogiums of his mother and sister. I do. and for many days I have been looking and longing in vain for a letter. (rimsby. it is needless to waste your time in the journey there and back. I cannot doubt that he has got among his former companions again. $ut what is he. more candid and high)minded than r. with our own footman and a maid to attend me/ If you come with me I shall assuredly keep you. 'rthur%s only other friend whom he judged fit to introduce to me. :is letters. whose residence I can dimly descry from these upper windows embosomed among those low. and her company would be a soothing solace to me now. why won%t you come/ why won%t you write to me at least/ 1ou talked about my health# how can you expect me to gather bloom and vigour here.% $ut he did not like the idea of sending me alone. and yet how anxiously I look forward to them I how eagerly I open and devour one of those little. but she is still in town with her mother. but I do not like to complain of my loneliness to them. and he told me something about a piece of property he wanted to sell. what is this tiresome business. %that first of woman%s virtues. when they come. %that you cannot trust me to go a hundred miles in our own carriage. that distract me.% said he. and I will take you down myself to (rassdale. woody hills beyond the >ale. for we have no neighbours here.% I replied. $ut tell me. it is cruel to leave me so long alone0 :e knows I have no one but !achel to speak to. I shall not be absent above a week or fortnight at most. and full of trivial excuses and promises that I cannot trust.% and comfort myself with the assurance that the longer he stays away the better he shall love me when he returns. if fair words and endearing epithets can give them a claim to the title ) but very short. or my brother. and till he does return. why did I leave him0 I wish ) I do intensely wish he would return0 3une 5Hth. :attersley. he has had from me0 +h. ) +h. ) . and indeed loneliness is the least of my sufferings.% and desires me to remember the saying. :e playfully abuses me for the gall and vinegar of my latest effusion. +h.

2o you see. $esides. I don%t like the thoughts of it at all. :attersley. he likes to receive them daily. %I hardly know what to say about it. and tell her what I feel.= said I.% "oor ilicent0 $ut I cannot imagine she will ever be led to accept such a suitor ) one so repugnant to all her ideas of a man to be honoured and loved. 'nd next time I saw him. keep at home or stay away. has not yet fulfilled his direful threat of throwing his precious person away on the first old maid that chose to evince a tenderness for him. but she means it all for the best. is the son of a rich banker. without a word of reproach or complaint. =I must have somebody that will let me have my own way in everything ) not like your wife. . but she looks as if she had a will of her own. but you don%t know how she talks. Cth. I do object sometimes. :attersley. and Walter very little. and the worst symptom of the case is. :elen/ I should not care if I could see any prospect of being able to love and admire is nothing about him to hang one%s esteem and affection upon. but I have made very little progress yet. you know. united to rich partners. both for your friend and mine. I have got a long letter from her this morning. for he said he had plenty of the needful himself. for my fate is fixed# preparations for the important event are already going on around me. I must try to love him. >o write to me. if you don%t care for money. ilicent. and if I fulfil my threat of punishing his seeming neglect by ceasing to write. ) 'las0 I was mistaken. and I do try with all my might. they would think me mad. quiet soul that will let me just do what I like and go where I like. and say all you can to encourage me. :elen. for I can%t do with being bothered. =I know somebody that will suit you to a tee. r. and she assures me it will be a good thing for the family as well as for me. I certainly didn%t mean to do so. telling me she is already engaged. that the further he is from me the better I like him# he frightens me with his abrupt manners and strange hectoring ways. and I cannot bear to disappoint her. :elen. and immediately began to settle matters with mamma. and I didn%t know I had accepted him. for. >on%t attempt to dissuade me. but he still preserves a resolute determination to see himself a married man before the year is out. I have managed pretty well. but mamma tells me I have. >o you think it nonsense. and how can I do it now/ I cannot. to follow your example.= said he to me. and that%s :argrave%s sister. -ven Walter is pleased at the prospect. before long.= :e desired to be introduced to her forthwith. and could play the vixen upon occasion= @I thought =you%re right there. mamma is so delighted with the idea of the match. that is. or should have when his old governor chose to quit the stage. .hen why have you accepted him/= you will ask. and don%t say a word against r.begs I will continue to write to him constantly. he is so diametrically opposite to what I imagined my husband should be. man. and I dread the thoughts of marrying him. =+nly. you know. though he is sometimes too idle and often too busy to answer my letters as they come.= =Well. he shall be so angry that he will do his utmost to forget me. and as -sther and I have no fortunes. :attersley%s wife. and expects to be married before the close of the month. and take upon her the yoke of matrimony in conjunction with a friend of mine. 2he says when I am safe off her hands it will be such a relief to her mind.o tell you the truth. :e adds this piece of intelligence respecting poor ilicent :argrave# %1our little friend ilicent is likely. =I must have some good. and I wanted to talk to her first about it# 2o I gave him what I thought was an evasive. It is not my idea of being well married. he accosted me in all confidence as his affianced bride. I had not courage to contradict them then. but she says it was as good as an acceptance. she thinks she has managed so well for me. half negative answer. for I want to think well of him. If I am to be r. I can hardly tell what I said. =. :attersley. our dear mamma is very anxious to see us all well married.% she writes. he said it was all childish nonsense. for fear mamma should be grieved and angry @for I knew she wished me to marry himA. but I can%t. :untingdon# she is a charming creature. but I did not like to give him a flat refusal. and he would think me very capricious if I were to attempt to draw back ) and indeed I was so confused and frightened at the moment. and though I have spoken . and he seems to think so too.= but I didn%t say soA. and when I confessed my reluctance to him. %or what to think.

the more I feel our present wretchedness apart @yes. :attersley is better than he seems ) that he is upright. and holy love. however he may seem to deserve it. ours. %sweet regent of the sky. and the gleeful twitter of the swallows ) all intent upon feeding their young. I think he is quite as good as r. I am waiting anxiously for your advice ) but mind you let it be all on the right side. his vigour and vivacity quite departed. if not better.e that sweeps the surface too roughly ) still I have no pleasure. with the trees that crowd about its bank.hank heaven. and full of life and joy in their own little frames ) I open the window to inhale the balmy.e that murmurs through their feathery foliage ) my ears full of that low music mingled with the dreamy hum of insects.% 2he concludes with %(ood)by. and such inquiries could not fail to be painful to both. golden ha. at night. is the worst part of him. and look out upon the lovely landscape. I have not even asked him what he has been doing. 6Ith. I know only the exterior. his beauty strangely diminished. delusive hope that we should enjoy it so sweetly together. I shall never permit myself to utter a word in his dispraise. and seem to be happy and contented. and when I wander in the ancient woods. 'fter all. it would be the means of elevating his mind. far down in its glassy depth ) though sometimes the images are partially broken by the sport of aquatic insects. it is too ) too much0 5Ird. some rearing their stately heads high above. I trust. so peaceful. $ut now ) at evening.% floating above me in the %black blue vault of heaven. my eyes abstractedly ga. but stretching their wide arms over its margin. for a moment.e. but I don%t know him. though he may not know itA. and at morning. 'll the sweet summer is passing away without one breath of pleasure to me or benefit to him. he must be wretched. that r. when I enter my lonely chamber. some gracefully bending to kiss its waters. the whole is shivered into trembling fragments by a transient bree. and open) hearted ) in fact. with their branches gently swaying in the light summer bree. if you can. I only think another lovely day is lost to him and me. for the greater the happiness that nature sets before me. hereafter. the more I lament that he is not here to taste it# the greater the bliss we might enjoy together. he is come at last0 $ut how altered0 flushed and feverish. listless and languid. so divine ) and think. and perhaps I may manage as well. :untingdon. 'nd I had all along been looking forward to this season with the fond. I have not upbraided him by word or look. or sit in the shadow of our noble ash)trees by the water)side. with (od%s help and my exertions. dear :elen.% 'las0 poor ilicent. leaving them sleeping in a warm. and meet the little wild flowers smiling in my path. the more my heart is oppressed. and what. and wood. what encouragement can I give you/ or what advice ) except that it is better to make a bold stand now. when I see the round red sun sink quietly down behind those woody hills. and water. all faithfully mirrored far.he week is over. ) . and he is not come. laughing in dew and sunshine ) I too often shame that glorious scene with tears of thankless misery. 1ou must tell me. $ut most of all. must expect my serious displeasure. to misery and vain regret/ 2aturday. for he keeps it with him confined amid the dust and smoke of &ondon ) perhaps shut up within the walls of his own abominable club. perhaps ) (od help me. y . and that. ) . and obey. red. and refining his taste to a due appreciation of the salutary and pure delights of nature. because he cannot feel its freshening influence. and sometimes. though at the expense of disappointing and angering both mother and brother and lover. a perfect diamond in the rough. :e may be all this.against him myself. I have not the heart to do it. and peace. and whoever ventures to speak slightingly of the man I have promised to love. it is for the last time# hereafter. so pure. than to devote your whole life. to honour. and look out upon the summer moon. when roused by the flutter and chirp of the sparrows. and the more my senses are pleased. for I think he is ashamed of himself)he must be so on the glassy surface of the little lake before me. and yet you love him.% shedding a flood of silver radiance over park. soul) reviving air. Where is he now/ ) what is he doing at this moment/ wholly unconscious of this heavenly scene ) perhaps revelling with his boon companions. honourable.

and then. and I play and sing to him for hours together. but this once. :ow intensely I wish he were worthy of all this care0 &ast night. and kept him away so long# indeed. or hinted from time to time. I cannot doubt that he frequently showed them my letters. our mutual friend. %>ear :elen0% he said ) %why do you cry/ you know that I love you% @and he pressed my hand to his feverish lipsA. it will soon be the shooting season. and sometimes I read to him. he is gentle and kind to me. %and what more could you desire/% %+nly.ealously strive against this crime of over) my hand. 'ugust 58th. If he would play the country gentleman and attend to the farm ) but that he knows nothing about. :appily. this thought made my eyes overflow with sorrowful tears ) as it often does. and so carefully avoid. and to plunge into all manner of excesses. 1ou%re not afraid of . I often try to persuade him to learn the piano.forbearance pleases him ) touches him even. grateful for them. he will find occupation enough in the pursuit and destruction of the partridges and pheasants# we have no grouse. . I write his letters for him. 'rthur. or he might have been similarly occupied at this moment. I will forgive him. and (od knows how glad I am to get him back. I know he does not deserve it. ) or if he would take up with some literary study. $ut he says it is dull work shooting alone. to show how far he could venture to go without danger of shaking the fond creature%s devoted attachment. %I thought of &ord &owborough for one. but not insultingly. with however little reason. and I will never let him leave me again.% replied he. and give him something besides his own pleasure to think about. I am inclined to think. I lay them both to the charge of his harsh yet careless father. and that they induced him to remain week after week. if the weather permit. It is a hateful idea. and won%t give his mind to consider. or profession. and how keenly she regretted his absence. and get him everything he wants. :e smiled. as light of heart and head as ever. and I fear I am spoiling him. if I did not so watchfully anticipate his wants. 'rthur. instead of lying under the acacia)tree pulling poor >ash%s ears. he must have a friend or two to help him. I wish he had something to do. some useful trade. but this time.% said I. I cannot tell. ) 'rthur is himself again. or learn to draw or to play ) as he is so fond of music. a tear fell on his face and made him look up. to avoid being laughed at for a wife)ridden fool. and sometimes I talk. as lusty and reckless. and. :e likes to have me near him# and though he is peevish and testy with his servants and his dogs. nearly all day long. but there is no possibility of getting him without his better half. and sometimes only sit by him and soothe him with silent caresses. and almost as full of mischief too. and his madly indulgent mother. I will shame him into virtue if I can. ) If ever I am a mother I will . :e is pleased with my attentions ) it may be. even as he is. with his head in my lap. I can hardly give it a milder name when I think of the evils it brings. and as restless and hard to amuse as a spoilt child. :e says he is glad to be home again. and these two things are the ruin of him. :e lies on the sofa.hat would be hard. freely and entirely. %&et them be tolerably decent then. perhaps. especially when wet weather keeps him within doors. What he would be. but I cannot believe it is a false one. to let them see how fondly his wife watched over his interests. as I sat beside him. but he is far too idle for such an undertaking# he has no more idea of exerting himself to overcome obstacles than he has of restraining his natural appetites. or employment ) anything to occupy his head or his hands for a few hours a day. or immediately desist from doing anything that has a tendency to irritate or disturb him. that you would love yourself as truly and as faithfully as you are loved by me. indeed0% he replied. so we must ask them both. %Well.% %. 'nnabella. tenderly squee. passing my fingers through his beautiful curls.he word %friend% in his mouth makes me shudder# I know it was some of his %friends% that induced him to stay behind me in &ondon. from what he has unguardedly told me.

her, are you, :elen/% he asked, with a mischievous twinkle in his eyes. %+f course not,% I answered# %why should I/ 'nd who besides/% %:argrave for one. :e will be glad to come, though his own place is so near, for he has little enough land of his own to shoot over, and we can extend our depredations into it, if we like; and he is thoroughly respectable, you know, :elen ) quite a lady%s man# and I think, (rimsby for another# he%s a decent, quiet fellow enough. 1ou%ll not object to (rimsby/% %I hate him# but, however, if you wish it, I%ll try to endure his presence for a while.% %'ll a prejudice, :elen, a mere woman%s antipathy.% %,o; I have solid grounds for my dislike. 'nd is that all/% %Why, yes, I think so. :attersley will be too busy billing and cooing, with his bride to have much time to spare for guns and dogs at present,% he replied. 'nd that reminds me, that I have had several letters from ilicent since her marriage, and that she either is, or pretends to be, quite reconciled to her lot. 2he professes to have discovered numberless virtues and perfections in her husband, some of which, I fear, less partial eyes would fail to distinguish, though they sought them carefully with tears; and now that she is accustomed to his loud voice, and abrupt, uncourteous manners, she affirms she finds no difficulty in loving him as a wife should do, and begs I will burn that letter wherein she spoke so unadvisedly against him. 2o that I trust she may yet be happy; but, if she is, it will be entirely the reward of her own goodness of heart; for had she chosen to consider herself the victim of fate, or of her mother%s worldly wisdom, she might have been thoroughly miserable; and if, for duty%s sake, she had not made every effort to love her husband, she would, doubtless, have hated him to the end of her days.

2ept. 5Ird. ) +ur guests arrived about three weeks ago. &ord and &ady &owborough have now been married above eight months; and I will do the lady the credit to say that her husband is quite an altered man; his looks, his spirits, and his temper, are all perceptibly changed for the better since I last saw him. $ut there is room for improvement still. :e is not always cheerful, nor always contented, and she often complains of his ill)humour, which, however, of all persons, she ought to be the last to accuse him of, as he never displays it against her, except for such conduct as would provoke a saint. :e adores her still, and would go to the world%s end to please her. 2he knows her power, and she uses it too; but well knowing that to wheedle and coax is safer than to command, she judiciously tempers her despotism with flattery and blandishments enough to make him deem himself a favoured and a happy man. $ut she has a way of tormenting him, in which I am a fellow) sufferer, or might be, if I chose to regard myself as such. .his is by openly, but not too glaringly, coquetting with r. :untingdon, who is quite willing to be her partner in the game; but I don%t care for it, because, with him, I know there is nothing but personal vanity, and a mischievous desire to excite my jealousy, and, perhaps, to torment his friend; and she, no doubt, is actuated by much the same motives; only, there is more of malice and less of playfulness in her manoeuvres. It is obviously, therefore, my interest to disappoint them both, as far as I am concerned, by preserving a cheerful, undisturbed serenity throughout; and, accordingly, I endeavour to show the fullest confidence in my husband, and the greatest indifference to the arts of my attractive guest. I have never reproached the former but once, and that was for laughing at &ord &owborough%s depressed and anxious countenance one evening, when they had both been particularly provoking; and then, indeed, I said a good deal on the subject, and rebuked him sternly enough; but he only laughed, and said, ) %1ou can feel for him, :elen, can%t you/%

%I can feel for anyone that is unjustly treated,% I replied, %and I can feel for those that injure them too.% %Why, :elen, you are as jealous as he is0% cried he, laughing still more; and I found it impossible to convince him of his mistake. 2o, from that time, I have carefully refrained from any notice of the subject whatever, and left &ord &owborough to take care of himself. :e either has not the sense or the power to follow my example, though he does try to conceal his uneasiness as well as he can; but still, it will appear in his face, and his ill)humour will peep out at intervals, though not in the expression of open resentment ) they never go far enough for that. $ut I confess I do feel jealous at times, most painfully, bitterly so; when she sings and plays to him, and he hangs over the instrument, and dwells upon her voice with no affected interest; for then I know he is really delighted, and I have no power to awaken similar fervour. I can amuse and please him with my simple songs, but not delight him thus. 57th. ) 1esterday, we all went to the (rove, r. :argrave%s much) neglected home. :is mother frequently asks us over, that she may have the pleasure of her dear Walter%s company; and this time she had invited us to a dinner)party, and got together as many of the country gentry as were within reach to meet us. .he entertainment was very well got up; but I could not help thinking about the cost of it all the time. I don%t like rs. :argrave; she is a hard, pretentious, worldly)minded woman. 2he has money enough to live very comfortably, if she only knew how to use it judiciously, and had taught her son to do the same; but she is ever straining to keep up appearances, with that despicable pride that shuns the semblance of poverty as of a shameful crime. 2he grinds her dependents, pinches her servants, and deprives even her daughters and herself of the real comforts of life, because she will not consent to yield the palm in outward show to those who have three times her wealth; and, above all, because she is determined her cherished son shall be enabled to %hold up his head with the highest gentlemen in the land.% .his same son, I imagine, is a man of expensive habits, no reckless spendthrift and no abandoned sensualist, but one who likes to have %everything handsome about him,% and to go to a certain length in youthful indulgences, not so much to gratify his own tastes as to maintain his reputation as a man of fashion in the world, and a respectable fellow among his own lawless companions; while he is too selfish to consider how many comforts might be obtained for his fond mother and sisters with the money he thus wastes upon himself# as long as they can contrive to make a respectable appearance once a year, when they come to town, he gives himself little concern about their private stintings and struggles at home. .his is a harsh judgment to form of %dear, noble)minded, generous)hearted Walter,% but I fear it is too just. rs. :argrave%s anxiety to make good matches for her daughters is partly the cause, and partly the result, of these errors# by making a figure in the world, and showing them off to advantage, she hopes to obtain better chances for them; and by thus living beyond her legitimate means, and lavishing so much on their brother, she renders them portionless, and makes them burdens on her hands. "oor ilicent, I fear, has already fallen a sacrifice to the manoeuvrings of this mistaken mother, who congratulates herself on having so satisfactorily discharged her maternal duty, and hopes to do as well for -sther. $ut -sther is a child as yet, a little merry romp of fourteen# as honest)hearted, and as guileless and simple as her sister, but with a fearless spirit of her own, that I fancy her mother will find some difficulty in bending to her purposes.

+ctober Hth. ) It was on the night of the 8th, a little after tea, that 'nnabella had been singing and playing, with 'rthur as usual at her side# she had ended her song, but still she sat at the instrument; and he stood leaning on the back of her chair, conversing in scarcely audible tones, with his face in very close proximity with hers. I looked at &ord &owborough. :e was at the other end of the room, talking with essrs. :argrave and (rimsby; but I saw him dart towards his lady and his host a quick,

impatient glance, expressive of intense disquietude, at which (rimsby smiled. >etermined to interrupt the .-.-)-).-.-, I rose, and, selecting a piece of music from the music stand, stepped up to the piano, intending to ask the lady to play it; but I stood transfixed and speechless on seeing her seated there, listening, with what seemed an exultant smile on her flushed face to his soft murmurings, with her hand quietly surrendered to his clasp. .he blood rushed first to my heart, and then to my head; for there was more than this# almost at the moment of my approach, he cast a hurried glance over his shoulder towards the other occupants of the room, and then ardently pressed the unresisting hand to his lips. +n raising his eyes, he beheld me, and dropped them again, confounded and dismayed. 2he saw me too, and confronted me with a look of hard defiance. I laid the music on the piano, and retired. I felt ill; but I did not leave the room# happily, it was getting late, and could not be long before the company dispersed. I went to the fire, and leant my head against the chimney)piece. In a minute or two, some one asked me if I felt unwell. I did not answer; indeed, at the time, I knew not what was said; but I mechanically looked up, and saw r. :argrave standing beside me on the rug. %2hall I get you a glass of wine/% said he. %,o, thank you,% I replied; and, turning from him, I looked round. &ady &owborough was beside her husband, bending over him as he sat, with her hand on his shoulder, softly talking and smiling in his face; and 'rthur was at the table, turning over a book of engravings. I seated myself in the nearest chair; and r. :argrave, finding his services were not desired, judiciously withdrew. 2hortly after, the company broke up, and, as the guests were retiring to their rooms, 'rthur approached me, smiling with the utmost assurance. %'re you very angry, :elen/% murmured he. %.his is no jest, 'rthur,% said I, seriously, but as calmly as I could ) %unless you think it a jest to lose my affection for ever.% %What0 so bitter/% he exclaimed, laughingly, clasping my hand between both his; but I snatched it away, in indignation ) almost in disgust, for he was obviously affected with wine. %.hen I must go down on my knees,% said he; and kneeling before me, with clasped hands, uplifted in mock humiliation, he continued imploringly ) %<orgive me, :elen ) dear :elen, forgive me, and I%ll never do it again0% and, burying his face in his handkerchief, he affected to sob aloud. &eaving him thus employed, I took my candle, and, slipping quietly from the room, hastened up)stairs as fast as I could. $ut he soon discovered that I had left him, and, rushing up after me, caught me in his arms, just as I had entered the chamber, and was about to shut the door in his face. %,o, no, by heaven, you sha%n%t escape me so0% he cried. .hen, alarmed at my agitation, he begged me not to put myself in such a passion, telling me I was white in the face, and should kill myself if I did so. %&et me go, then,% I murmured; and immediately he released me ) and it was well he did, for I was really in a passion. I sank into the easy)chair and endeavoured to compose myself, for I wanted to speak to him calmly. :e stood beside me, but did not venture to touch me or to speak for a few seconds; then, approaching a little nearer, he dropped on one knee ) not in mock humility, but to bring himself nearer my level, and leaning his hand on the arm of the chair, he began in a low voice# %It is all nonsense, :elen ) a jest, a mere nothing ) not worth a thought. Will you never learn,% he continued more boldly, %that you have nothing to fear from me/ that I love you wholly and entirely/ ) or if,% he added with a lurking smile, %I ever give a thought to another, you may well spare it, for those fancies are here and gone like a flash of lightning, while my love for you burns on steadily, and for ever, like the sun. 1ou little exorbitant tyrant, will not that )/%

%$e quiet a moment, will you, 'rthur/% said I, %and listen to me ) and don%t think I%m in a jealous fury# I am perfectly calm. <eel my hand.% 'nd I gravely extended it towards him ) but closed it upon his with an energy that seemed to disprove the assertion, and made him smile. %1ou needn%t smile, sir,% said I, still tightening my grasp, and looking steadfastly on him till he almost quailed before me. %1ou may think it all very fine, r. :untingdon, to amuse yourself with rousing my jealousy; but take care you don%t rouse my hate instead. 'nd when you have once extinguished my love, you will find it no easy matter to kindle it again.% %Well, :elen, I won%t repeat the offence. $ut I meant nothing by it, I assure you. I had taken too much wine, and I was scarcely myself at the time.% %1ou often take too much; and that is another practice I detest.% :e looked up astonished at my warmth. %1es,% I continued; %I never mentioned it before, because I was ashamed to do so; but now I%ll tell you that it distresses me, and may disgust me, if you go on and suffer the habit to grow upon you, as it will if you don%t check it in time. $ut the whole system of your conduct to &ady &owborough is not referable to wine; and this night you knew perfectly well what you were doing.% %Well, I%m sorry for it,% replied he, with more of sulkiness than contrition# %what more would you have/% %1ou are sorry that I saw you, no doubt,% I answered coldly. %If you had not seen me,% he muttered, fixing his eyes on the carpet, %it would have done no harm.% y heart felt ready to burst; but I resolutely swallowed back my emotion, and answered calmly, %1ou think not/% %,o,% replied he, boldly. %'fter all, what have I done/ It%s nothing ) except as you choose to make it a subject of accusation and distress.% %What would &ord &owborough, your friend, think, if he knew all/ or what would you yourself think, if he or any other had acted the same part to me, throughout, as you have to 'nnabella/% %I would blow his brains out.% %Well, then, 'rthur, how can you call it nothing ) an offence for which you would think yourself justified in blowing another man%s brains out/ Is it nothing to trifle with your friend%s feelings and mine ) to endeavour to steal a woman%s affections from her husband ) what he values more than his gold, and therefore what it is more dishonest to take/ 're the marriage vows a jest; and is it nothing to make it your sport to break them, and to tempt another to do the same/ *an I love a man that does such things, and coolly maintains it is nothing/% %1ou are breaking your marriage vows yourself,% said he, indignantly rising and pacing to and fro. %1ou promised to honour and obey me, and now you attempt to hector over me, and threaten and accuse me, and call me worse than a highwayman. If it were not for your situation, :elen, I would not submit to it so tamely. I won%t be dictated to by a woman, though she be my wife.% %What will you do then/ Will you go on till I hate you, and then accuse me of breaking my vows/% :e was silent a. moment, and then replied# %1ou never will hate me.% !eturning and resuming his former position at my feet, he repeated more vehemently ) %1ou cannot hate me as long as I love you.% %$ut how can I believe that you love me, if you continue to act in this way/ 3ust imagine yourself in my place# would you think I loved you, if I did so/ Would you believe my protestations, and honour and trust me under such circumstances/ % %.he cases are different,% he replied. %It is a woman%s nature to be constant ) to love one and one only, blindly, tenderly, and for ever ) bless them, dear creatures0 and you above them all; but you must have

I think I will. you know. as far as he could without any flagrant breach of hospitality# since that he has been friendly and civil. :elen# only trust and pardon me this once. . and we have been good friends ever since. %>o you mean by that. I am in hell%s torments till you speak the word.% replied I. +ur fancies are more giddy and unfirm. the reading of newspapers. at least. It was a moment of painful embarrassment to me.he first day he held himself aloof from her. :elen# is he often so/% y blood boiled in my face. did you/% %. 2he was the first to speak. when the gentlemen were gone out. after that unhappy evening. %If I do. but I put my hand on his shoulder and kissed his forehead. :e has been decently temperate at table.o0 heaven is my witness that I think her mere dust and ashes in comparison with you.han women%s are. that your fancies are lost to me. %.% I did not speak it. $ut I shall be glad when they are gone. for I have so little love for 'nnabella that it is quite a task to be civil to her. I trust. 2he is a daughter of earth. and shall continue to think so. wavering. unless you drive me from you by too much severity.o0 but I told him I disliked such conduct. 2he will take it as a kind attention. you must give us a little more licence. and he promised me not to repeat it. and won by &ady &owborough/% %.% %1ou gave him a curtain lecture. won%t you forgive me/% he said. %and you. and you shall see0 *ome. for she seems haughty and displeased. nor. at any other time. for. I%ll believe your word as well as your oath. $ut doesn%t it make your eyes smart/ and do you always find it to answer/% . :elen. though I have little relish for her society. I see ) that%s our grand resource. fallible mortal. smiling with the coolest assurance. I wish I could have confidence in either.some commiseration for us. and &ord &owborough is manifestly more cheerful.% %I swear by ) % %>on%t swear. *ome now.% %I thought he looked rather subdued this morning. . only be not too austere in your divinity. you will repeat the offence.o. we are necessarily thrown so much together. :elen.ry me. and looking up with an innocent smile. :elen/ you%ve been weeping. :argrave calls I shall hail her advent as quite a relief. 2he was busy with her work. but it seems I was mistaken. and as she is the only woman here besides myself. and then burst into tears. sooner lost and won . and I thought it must be infinitely more so to her. and well)conducted towards &ady &owborough. and desultory conversation. gently taking my hand. ) %1our husband was merry last night. then. after the usual time spent in the writing of letters. and. .% %. she will be truly welcome as a third to stand between &ady &owborough and me. as 2hakespeare has it ) :owever we do praise ourselves. was an hour or two after breakfast on the following day. you are an angel of heaven. %and never will be so again.% ore longing. she began. We sat silent for two or three minutes. and. but it was better she should seem to attribute his conduct to this than to anything else. and I was running over the columns of a paper from which I had extracted all the pith some twenty minutes before. I have a good mind to ask 'rthur%s leave to invite the old lady to stay with us till our guests depart. and more cordial towards his host than before.% she continued.he first time the latter and I were alone together. but nothing more ) in my presence.ext time rs. and remember that I am a poor. :e embraced me tenderly. I think.

though not unmingled with foreboding fears. 'nd. I have need of consolation in my son. as I have borne it hitherto. full of gentle playfulness and vivacity.% %Indeed0 and are you sure you deserve it/% %Why. I don%t know# I never had occasion to try it. 5Cth.% %Well. we none of us deserve to be worshipped. but not robust. :e has won his father%s heart at last. I%d make him cry. it must be for the better. 675I. at least. for @to this silent paper I may confess itA I have but little in my husband. and only bit my lip and pretended to arrange my work. the %romance% of our attachment must be worn away. ) &ast *hristmas I was a bride. I can%t say# you know we%re all fallible creatures. I have heard. with a heart overflowing with present bliss. We have now been full two years united.% %'re you sure you don%t arrogate too much of the credit to yourself. nor can I conceive how any one can. I was burning with anger. how much of my higher and better self is indeed unmarried ) doomed either to harden and sour in the sunless shade of solitude. pursuing her advantage.% resumed she. only let me state the truth ) some of the truth. $ut then he never will do anything of the kind. I have no right to complain. but I think if &owborough were to commit such improprieties. lest he should be ruined by that father%s thoughtless indulgence. for I%m sure I%d give my husband a lesson he would not soon forget for a lighter offence than that. %you can console yourself with the assurance that you are worthy of all the love he gives to you.% 'nd then I turned the conversation. about the wine you mean ) yes. >ec. how many of my thoughts and feelings are gloomily cloistered within my own mind. for I keep him in too good order for that. I am a mother too. ) and see hereafter if any darker truths will blot these pages. or to quite degenerate and fall away for lack of nutriment in this unwholesome soil0 $ut. but not destroyed.% said I. for I never knew till now how strong are a parent%s temptations to spoil an only child. my hopes diminished. he%s safe enough for that. I can bear it well ) as well. and susceptible of passions and emotions it will be long ere he can find words to express. 2urely I have now got down to the lowest gradation in 'rthur%s affection. I don%t wonder at your being angry. as he is now. %but. at least. for he worships the very ground I tread on. . and stronger hopes to comfort me. but not yet thoroughly confirmed. how different from the love I could have given. and full of ardent hopes for the future. surely we shall find no lower depth than this. if so. I can try to be worthy of it. %'t any rate. $ut I must beware of my own weakness too. ) 'nother year is gone.ow I am a wife# my bliss is sobered. at least. (od has sent me a soul to educate for heaven. as to that. I love him still. but not departed.% %1ou flatter me. &ord &owborough was quite as remarkable for his abstemiousness for some time before you married him. and now my constant terror is. :e is healthy. I repeat. . he%s safe enough for that too. $ut are you sure your darling :untingdon deserves all the love you give to him/% I knew not what to answer to this. my fears increased. in his own way ) but oh. but I suppressed all outward manifestations of it.% %+h. and discovered all the evils of his nature# if there be any further change. y little 'rthur lives and thrives. already affectionate. thank heaven.%I never cry for effect. and give me a new and calmer bliss. and. while I live. CHAPTER XXVIII >ecember 5Cth. 'nd as to looking askance to another woman. and he loves me. and once had hoped to receive0 :ow little real sympathy there exists between us. :elen. as we become still more accustomed to each other.

% I added. but assured me there was no cause for it. but hoped I would amuse myself with the baby till he returned. but in such a manner as we seek to soothe a child.% :e denied it. 3udging from appearances. but be assured. and altogether he assured me that it would be excessively troublesome. %I should not grumble at your staying whole months away ) if you can be happy so long without me ) provided I knew you were safe. his idea of a wife is a thing to love one devotedly. $ut . I over)ruled his objections as well as I could.ears blind me while I write. no matter how he may be occupied in the meantime. domestic or otherwise. under the circumstances. . and must have some repose. when I earnestly exhorted him to take care of himself and keep out of the way of temptation. but he is a man without self)restraint or lofty aspirations. as you call them. especially after the first few weeks# they came slower and slower. but at length he told me. and more terse and careless every time. and shorter and less affectionate. earnestly. and with me as a nurse. he said. but it would not do. and amuse him and minister to his comfort in every possible way. as I confess I . %$ut why leave me/% I said. you silly girl0 >o you think I can%t take care of myself/% %1ou didn%t last time.he thing was absurd# the air of the town would be certain to disagree with him. :e expressed his regret at having to leave me.% I replied. to prevent it. It was early in arch that he went. given up to animal enjoyments# he is not a bad husband. while he chooses to stay with her. I was too much hurt to express any further dissatisfaction with his plans. and flew to the nursery.his time he did not trouble himself to make excuses as before. for I trembled at the thoughts of his going alone. love. and unsafe. $ut still. and his letters were less frequent. till the day before he went. and to stay at home to wait upon her husband. 'rthur. to hide my feelings. %I can go with you# I can be ready at any time.:I2 time. but I immediately left the room.% %1ou would not take that child to town/% %1es. and he did not return till 3uly. %Why. and promised to attend to my advice. I proposed separate apartments. and somewhat testily. %show me that you can. there. except for the necessary arrangements concerning his departure and the conduct of affairs during his absence. and teach me that I need not fear to trust you0% :e promised fair. and henceforth I can never trust his word. When I wrote sternly and coldly. why not/% . no. I shall not be long away. much even for my child. %. 'rthur.'rthur is not what is commonly called a bad man# he has many good qualities. and patiently wait his return.o. :e laughed at my anxiety. plainly. to attend to his interests. I hardly can. but his notions of matrimonial duties and comforts are not my notions.% %"ooh. and he could refuse it no longer. 'nd did he keep his promise/ . %you are weary of my company. when he is absent. when I omitted writing.% I said at last. a lover of pleasure. and would sacrifice almost anything for myself. %I suppose it is no use asking you to fix a day for your return/% said I.he truth is. or at all to refer to the subject again. and determined not to have me with you. but I don%t like the idea of your being there among your friends.% %I don%t wish to keep you a prisoner at home. that he could not do with me# he was worn out with the baby%s restless nights. -arly in spring he announced his intention of going to &ondon# his affairs there demanded his attendance. 1ou might as well have said so at once. pooh. if I could not soothe them. injurious. the late hours and &ondon habits would not suit me under such circumstances. $itter. he complained of my neglect. bitter confession0 . and.

upon myself. looking round upon the sunny park.% %Will you not come to)morrow.% said he. and the welfare and comfort of 'rthur%s poor tenants and labourers to attend to# and I sometimes sought and obtained amusement in the company of my young friend -sther :argrave# occasionally I rode over to see her. you see. in a manner wilfully. I promised to come. and was moreover so very trustworthy.he first time I saw him was on a sweet. who. I was standing with !achel beside the water. and said it was enough to scare him from his home# when I tried mild persuasion. and as she had nursed me and coveted to nurse my child. :argrave did not visit &ondon that season# having no daughter to marry. delicately worded. had desired him to call at the anor and beg the pleasure of my company to a friendly family dinner to)morrow. but I had learnt.hose were four miserable months. though she was too discreet to allude to them.% I answered. to the paying off of his debts. who evidently guessed my sorrows and felt for them. inoffensive little one to console me. ) and those whose time is fully occupied seldom complain of solitude. till r. she thought it as well to stay at home and economise. he entered the park. I have learnt to regard that as no trifling recommendation. %:ow shall I teach him hereafter to respect his father. to engaging any one else# besides. 'nd yet. I had my books and pencil. who is head) nurse and lady%s)maid in one ) for. for years to come. and make yourself at home in our more humble dwelling. at last. and the money he contrives to squander away in &ondon is incomprehensible. he blamed my harshness. I require but little attendance. then/ 2he will be sadly disappointed if you refuse.% %2he is very kind. for. with its imposing swell . and my dear. %but -sther is very anxious to see you. $ut to return to r. %. pity for him and pity for myself. and crossed over the grass to meet me. . and once or twice I had her to spend the day with me at the anor. and indignation.% I did not relish being thus compassionated for my loneliness. however. and modestly delivered withal. CHAPTER XXIX . for a wonder. through all. %but I am not alone. 't the same time I resolved not to give myself up to misery for the transgressions of another. and wishes she could persuade you to give her the pleasure of your company more frequently. and I determined to bear them without a murmur. but even this consolation was embittered by the constantly) recurring thought. sinless. as he was riding that way. when. I preferred committing the important charge to her. and yet to avoid his example/% $ut I remembered that I had brought all these afflictions. it saves money.frequently did at the last. and besides the companionship of my child. my domestic affairs. but. Walter came down to join her in the beginning of 3une. with my secluded life and tolerably active habits. rs. amusing the laughing baby in her arms with a twig of willow laden with golden catkins. faithful !achel. to disregard his promises. :untingdon%s return shall render this a little more conducive to your comfort. :argrave. and endeavoured to divert myself as much as I could. and stayed till near the close of 'ugust. which he had doubtless concocted as he rode along. nearly the whole of the income of my fortune is devoted. is no one to meet but ourselves. by my own desire. and promised to return. %What a sweet evening this is0% observed he. he was a little more gentle in his replies. and since I have made acquaintance with 'rthur%s affairs. :e told me he had brought a message from his mother. :e saluted me with a very fine compliment. when I was sauntering in the park with little 'rthur and !achel. I was not wholly comfortless# I had my darling. greatly to my surprise. mounted on his costly black hunter. with a young nursery)maid under her directions. alternating between intense anxiety. warm evening. and. and my mother fears you will feel solitary in this great house so much alone.

and your husband%s friend.heir tastes and occupations are similar to his. rs. and such a partner to share it0 It is infamous0% he muttered.% answered I.% said he. and how little of a paradise sweet (rassdale was to me ) how still less to the voluntary exile from its scenes.% %'nd did you see him there/% %1es ) I saw him. :argrave. he only ) % %-nough.% . :argrave. as if to himself. %but I cannot suppress my indignation when I behold such infatuated blindness and perversion of taste. :untingdon%s society for the last few weeks.% %'m I then a stranger/% said he in a sorrowful tone. sympathising seriousness of tone and manner. %I thought not.% r. %that I could be guilty of inciting him to persevere in his present pursuits# on the contrary. :argrave divined my thoughts.% %Was he well/% %1es ) that is. I cannot tell. %'nd don%t think.% answered he. . :untingdon. at present. %'nd what a paradise you live in0% %It is a lovely evening. r. I suppose my face was crimson. orderly habits that he despises ) but such a home. but. %"ardon me. to think that your husband is the most enviable man in the world. and majestic clumps of trees.% I replied. :untingdon. I suppose I have those friends to thank for it. I have remonstrated with him again and again.% he continued. and I sighed to think how little I had felt its loveliness. rs. but under circumstances I should have deemed incredible for a man so favoured as he is. :untingdon. %I am aware of nothing. with a half)hesitating.and slope. between his teeth. report. may I not be yours also/% %Intimate acquaintance must precede real friendship. Where I have but sipped and tasted. it can only aggravate the evil for me to hear them from a stranger%s lips. %I am your nearest neighbour.% he added aloud. (od knows I would gladly renounce them entirely and for ever. and reminded him of his duties and his privileges ) but to no purpose. or if I have wasted too much of my time and talents among reckless and dissipated companions. he drains the cup to the dregs. I know but little of you. if I had but half the blessings that man so thanklessly casts behind his back ) but half the inducements to virtue and domestic. and if ever for a moment I have sought to drown the voice of reflection in madness and folly. its placid water. perhaps. he asked if I had lately heard from r. %I have shared but little of r. Whether r.% %1ou wrong me cruelly. except from %:ave you then forgotten the six or seven weeks I spent under your roof last autumn/ I have not forgotten them. rs.% he muttered. you ought to be aware that whatever my husband%s faults may be. and if. and the dissipations of the town to the quiet of country life. and I don%t see why his conduct should awaken either their indignation or surprise. :untingdon. you are not aware ) % :e paused. sir ) except that he delays his coming longer than I expected. he prefers the society of his friends to that of his wife. your son%s godfather. %. %+nly yesterday. %he was as well as ) as he deserved to be. and as for his tastes and occupations.% :e here looked up and pointed the sentence with a serious bow to me. and I should be the next if you would deem me worthy of your friendship. I have frequently expressed my surprise at his conduct. %'re you not lately returned from &ondon/% I asked. ) but. 'nd I know enough of you. looking thoughtfully on the ground.ot lately. they are quite beyond me ) lonely wanderer as I am. with increasing hesitation and an appearance of suppressed indignation.

but. I was not sure that I had done right in speaking so harshly to him. laughing at his gleeful laughter. I had still my doubts on the subject.he time that I met him alone was on a bright. and restored it to the gratified nurse. r. there%s a bit of both. evidently. but not oppressively hot day.%If you knew more of me. :ow vigorous my little godson grows0 and how merry he is this morning0% :e approached the child. %. In the course of the following six weeks I met him several times. he prudently drew back. and turned his horse towards the road.% he replied. all my cares. it was always he that drove them over in the phaeton. :e departed. enjoying the heavenly beauty of the flowers. a little softened towards him. %It is. :e politely answered my inquiries. though with a degree of timidity that witnessed his fear to offend. instead of a reciprocation of friendly demonstrations. rs. and so like its mother. but always.ot in general. as I approached. but. %1ou are mistaken there. I had neither the power to come forward and interrupt you. for the moment. ) %'nd this. he has forsaken0% :e then tenderly kissed it. and !achel pronounced him a very nice gentleman. and. %but that is such a sweet child. nurse/% said he. sir. and delighting myself with his delight. . ) when a shadow suddenly eclipsed the little space of sunshine on the grass before us. %I think. at the time. to the grasp of his tiny fingers.% %'m I not right. :e took it carefully into his arms. he always happened to be at home. :e saw that I wished the conversation to end. :e appeared grieved and hurt at my unkind reception of his sympathising overtures. too. and there seated him on the moss) cushioned roots of an old oak. as he admiringly contemplated the infant.% replied I.% he added in a lower tone. and presenting them. one by one.% said he. or both.% I stepped backward as I upon us. it is its father it resembles. :argrave/% said I. and looking up. %'re you fond of children. :is mother. I beheld Walter :argrave standing and ga. :e rode up to her. and asked to see the child. and stooped to take his hand. and. he gravely bowed. when they called on me. nor to withdraw from the contemplation of such a scene. through the medium of his smiling eyes# forgetting. :untingdon. and I heard him say. !achel had moved on. and then returned again to the subject I wished to avoid. rs. on seeing that his caresses were likely to produce tears and lamentations. :untingdon0% he observed. and insinuating even more than the truth against him. in company with his mother. I was kneeling before him. it seemed as if he was presuming upon the absence and neglect of my husband. during our conversation. %but I was spell)bound. and then I asked after his mother and sister. looked upon it with an almost paternal smile. having gathered a handful of bluebells and wild)roses. you would not think it. %What a pleasure and comfort that little creature must be to you.% she replied. and expect me to be flattered by the compliment. save once. to some yards% distance. with a touch of sadness in his intonation. When I called on them. %-xcuse me. . or his sister. I had felt irritated ) almost insulted by his conduct. in the beginning of 3uly# I had taken little 'rthur into the wood that skirts the park. was quite delighted with his dutiful attentions and newly)acquired domestic habits. and immediately taking the hint. appealing to !achel. wished me good)evening. or if you did you would not say it.

I did not. delighted.% he replied carelessly. 'rthur. when. intend to pass over his derelictions this time without a remark.ed a tumbler of wine and water. to indulge my thoughts unscrutini.ot these three weeks. I took up my baby. wishing him good)morning. eating such a disgusting mess0% 'nd he pettishly pushed away his plate. he was finding fault with everything on the table.% said I. . thoughtfully regarding me. $ut to me he always avowed it his intention to stay till the present month. however. then.ot this week. $ut at dinner. 'nd is it possible. that all the waters of the ocean cannot quench0% %What kindled it/% I was about to ask.hen he is really coming next week/% said I. and leant back despairingly in his chair. r. and declaring we must change our cook. and lunching at two on another bottle of soda)water mingled with brandy. departed. %+f course. %It may be so.% %Indeed0 well. %. $ut the first day he was weary with his journey. %It is the same cook as we had before you went. CHAPTER XXX +n the following morning I received a few lines from him myself.% It struck me like a blow. %I had a letter from him this morning.ext morning he was weary still# I would wait a little longer.ed. and.% observed and reading. and I was glad to get him back# I would not upbraid him then. not she. and put it back again.%1ou have not heard from :untingdon lately/% he said. 'nd he did come next week.% :e half drew from his waistcoat) pocket a letter with 'rthur%s still beloved hand on the address. %I think it is you that are changed.% said I. my feelings in my face. that you can rejoice at his return/% he exclaimed.% I replied. adding ) %$ut he tells me he is about to return next week. but in a condition of body and mind even worse than before. %1ou may rely upon it. rs. within the sanctum of my home. I suppose. for I did not wish to irritate him. :argrave. attentively perusing my features again. if the assurance can give you any pleasure. but with the utmost gentleness. :untingdon. scowled at it. and though I felt that he had wronged me. it is like him. though I was angered by 'rthur%s conduct. but at that moment the butler entered and began to take away the . when he had tossed it off.% %:e tells me so every time he writes. while I was away. I wish it were such a one as I could show to his lady. adding.% %1ou must have been letting her get into slovenly habits. you know not what you slight0% he passionately murmured. I would wait till to)morrow. this proof of premeditated transgression and systematic disregard of truth. . and was determined he should feel it too. 'nd was I glad/ 1es. I might have said. :untingdon. %for I have an infernal fire in my veins. It is enough to poison one. r. after a pause. is he not my husband/% %+h. %1ou were generally pretty well satisfied with her then. I found it would not do. confirming :argrave%s intimations respecting his approaching return. %It is only of a piece with the rest of his conduct. :argrave. %. after breakfasting at twelve o%clock on a bottle of soda) water and a cup of strong coffee. as he sei. I thought the time was come.

when my own nerves were racked and torn to pieces by his confounded blunders/% %I never heard you complain of your nerves before.% said 'rthur. to take care of yourself like a man when you go abroad/ 1ou told me that you could. 'rthur turned furiously around upon him. 'rthur/% %>o you think I have nothing to do but to stay at home and take care of myself like a woman/% %Is it impossible. indeed0 and do you think I could stop to consider the feelings of an insensate brute like that. and sighed. . and did his best to effect a quiet and speedy clearance of the rest.% (lad to be released. removed the cheese. $enson expeditiously set out the dessert and withdrew. how should you. %What could you mean.he poor man turned pale. :elen.o. causing a rather alarming concussion with the trayful of crockery in his hands.% said I. but. and eaten next to nothing all the day. you can clear them away afterwards. :elen. I don%t dispute your claim to their possession. When the baby was brought I tried to amuse him with that. %:e couldn%t help it. when you never do anything to try them/% %. :ow can that make you better/% With some coaxing and persuasion. and how every nerve thrilled through me while you spoke. but you have no compassion for me when my head is split in two and all on fire with this consuming fever. you are cruel. and his father could not bear his complaints# sentence of immediate banishment was passed upon him on the first indication of fretfulness. I went to him and put my hand on his forehead. and don%t take any more wine# you have taken several glasses since dinner. %when you knew I was distracted/% %I did not know you were distracted. %the carpet caught his foot. . $enson. %. caused by the hasty pushing back of his master%s chair. but poor little 'rthur was cutting his teeth.% :e leant his head on his hand. as soon as the door was closed. 1ou can pity a dolt of a servant for breaking a dish.% %'nd why shouldn%t I have nerves as well as you/% %+h. I was . and there%s no great harm done. don%t begin with that nonsense now. save the fall and breaking of a sauce tureen.% %. 'rthur. %'nd don%t bring the cheese.hen come with me into the drawing)room. there was a rumple in the carpet. 'rthur.% %"oor man. I got him to leave the table. come.% %*an%t bear what/ ) to be reminded of the promises you have broken/% %:elen. but I never complain of mine. and would too. I went to share his exile for a little while. and you promised ) % %*ome. %$e quick. but. 'rthur# and the poor man was quite frightened and hurt at your sudden explosion. you would spare me.hen why do you try yours. at which he tripped and stumbled. then. in the course of the evening. and visibly trembled as he stooped to pick up the fragments. and because. unfortunately. by taking the servant%s part against me. in some surprise. unless you want to make me sick outright0% $enson. $enson. do have done with that infernal clatter0% cried his master. and swore at him with savage coarseness. but no positive damage. I can%t bear it.ever mind the pieces now. If you knew how my heart throbbed.things. to my unspeakable shame and dismay. It was burning indeed.

with a faint smile. longing for comfort.% %I have not been very long. :elen/% %1es.% %+h. With an elbow on each side of it. %I thought I wouldn%t send for you. and I won%t0% %Well. so pleasantly employed. by heaven. %Well0% exclaimed the injured man. well. %1ou shall say you are sorry for what you have done0% %Well.% said he emphatically. and don%t agitate me so. at least from my wife. 1ou have shamefully wronged yourself. who is very far from well. %if you deny me every other comfort. as if to sleep. for preferring my child to my don%t squee.e my hand so frantically. and clasping his nerveless hand between my own. . $ut 'rthur was not asleep# at the first slight sob. half rising from his recumbent posture. she calmly asks what is the matter with me0% %.ow. %What are you crying for. when I come home sick and weary. and I could not leave him till I got him to sleep. :elen.% returned I. there. he languidly closed his eyes. to be sure. he raised his head and looked round. I%ll drink them dry before I stir from this place0% I said no more. but sat down before the table and drew a book towards me. I%m sure. I%ll ring the bell and order six bottles of wine. I found the latter reclining on the sofa just as I had left him.% interrupted I. on my return. for heaven%s sake0 +h. impatiently exclaiming. an hour is nothing to you. for I never looked at it. throwing my arms around him and burying my face in his bosom. in a fren. 'rthur. and my hands clasped before my eyes. %I have been nursing our poor little baby. %except what you have wilfully brought upon yourself. 'rthur/ I have not been an hour. What the book was that lay open on the table before me. in a tone of pseudo)resignation. continued# %>on%t you know that you are a part of myself/ 'nd do you think you can injure and degrade yourself. degrade0 What have you been doing all this time/% %1ou%d better not ask.y of desperation.% %'rthur. against my earnest exhortation and entreaty. speedily drying my tears. I cannot tell. %if you bother me with another word.% %+h. but to me ) % %It has not been pleasantly employed.% said he. and I can%t endure it quietly. %'nd you had better not tell. I am. body and soul.% I replied. :elen/ What the deuce is the matter now/% %I%m crying for you.% %'nd why should I pity you/ What is the matter with you/% %Well0 that passes everything0 'fter all the wear and tear that I%ve had.% %. and. and I not feel it/% %>egrade myself. do spare me a little.reproached. with her keen feelings and her interesting force of character. but you cannot deny that you have degraded yourself miserably. have I. :attersley0 you were right# this woman will be the death of me. and me too. %>o let me have quietness at least0% continued he.% . I thought I%d just see how long it would please you to leave me alone. I delivered myself up to silent weeping. you%re overflowing with kindness and pity for everything but me. of course. and expecting to find attention and kindness. and starting up. with an impatient expiration between a sigh and a groan.% and sinking back into his former is nothing the matter with you. you must repent0% cried I. I threw myself on my knees before him.

I had myself held the contrary opinion at one time. and envy my friend :attersley his meek little wife# she%s quite a pattern to her sex. and. be sullen.% %$ut he makes her life a curse to her. or not come home at all. I rather feel it than see it expressed in her letters. and complaining that you incite him to commit those extravagances ) one especially. my pretty tyrant.% said I. and she never complained of neglect. expressing the greatest anxiety about his proceedings. so I must expect to pay for it in some shape. it might be of some service. and affirms that her husband never did such things before you came. in which she implores me to use my influence with you to get you away from &ondon.ow get me a glass of wine. and of my affection too. you she tiger0 I%m almost ready to faint. my girl. if you don%t take care# there will be the total loss of your own health. if that is of any value to you. and he shall see it as sure as I%m a living man. sober. if it%s so easily demolished. or will to the end of your days. %to remedy what you%ve done. do what he will. :elen. in regular bachelor style. I believed he was of a less impenetrable material. :e had her with him in &ondon all the season. you%d say rather. and she was no trouble at all.% %$ut she abuses me. pushing me from him.% %. and as for her own misery. he shall not see it without her consent. and that I thought she was wrong in supposing that you enticed r. without any fear or botheration.ot he0 2he has no will but his. he might come home at any hour of the night or morning.% replied he. =What a wonder it is you can bear it so well as you do0= I%ve lived more in these four months. I have several letters from her. that I would gladly draw you away from the temptations of the town if I could. %What a shame it is.%1ou are not0 you%ll do it again. but I now believed that you mutually corrupted each other.% %1ou will have to pay a higher price than you anticipate. but had little hope of success.% :e pressed his hand to his heart. as.% %In that case she is as great a fool as he is. and swears he wouldn%t take a kingdom for her. :attersley or any one else into error. 2he only alludes to his conduct in the most delicate terms. and makes every excuse for him that she can possibly think of. there is nothing there to anger him.he detestable little traitor0 (ive me the letter. :e might amuse himself just as he pleased. %1ou%ve nearly squee. if they numbered a hundred years. I told her she over)rated my influence with you. 2he never speaks a word against him# it is only anxiety for him that she expresses.% . and would certainly discontinue them as soon as you departed and left him to the guidance of his own good sense.% %.% said he. and looked really agitated and ill.o. If you don%t mind. nor in any of the others. and play the fool or the madman to his own heart%s desire. 2he never gives him a word of reproach or complaint.ed the breath out of my body. %. than you have in the whole course of your existence. you%ll make me regret my choice in good earnest. %for a strong young man like you to reduce yourself to such a state0% %If you knew all.% %I shall never live to do it again if you treat me so savagely. :elen.% I flew to get the required remedy. :e says there%s not such a jewel in all -ngland.o. or glorious drunk. as I took the empty glass from his hand. though he was more rough) hewn than mine. and no doubt you helped her. are you/ I think it couldn%t have been very genuine stuff to begin with. but it is not so. if she used a little gentle but serious remonstrance with her husband. perhaps. and is always contented and happy as long as he is enjoying himself.% %What0 you%re at that game of threatening me with the loss of your affection again. but if he did. It seemed to revive him considerably.% %.% %.

and firmness. if it were not for the intensely painful considerations attendant upon those symptoms of a disordered frame. I still resented and withstood. :is injustice and ill)humour towards his inferiors. as I had too well foreseen. because I could not feel it. to make them the common subject of our correspondence. $ut I determined this should never be. rather calculated to excite laughter than anger. I endured it with calm forbearance. and bear with my languor and crossness a little while. I attended carefully to his wants and amusements. which was much sooner than would have been the case but for my strenuous exertions. and throwing out implications against your own. and bound himself down for ever in the bathos whereinto he had fallen. with the same devoted fondness as before. I succeeded in preserving him from absolute bondage to that detestable propensity. but now you have left me nothing to hope0% % y case is quite desperate. $ut 'rthur is not naturally a peevish or irritable man. and a flood of tears is marvellously affecting. and one effort for his preservation that I would not remit. but when I alone was their object. by coaxing. so far from it. for there was still one thing about him that I did not give up in despair. as you were last time/ ) I%m sure I was very grateful for it. <riends as we are. when my temper. and abusing each other%s partners. I own. they are both deuced plaguy things for spoiling one%s beauty and tiring out one%s friends. and vigilance. except at times. and though I could not prevent him from taking more than was good for him. we are both of us far too deeply ashamed of the errors and vices of our other halves. and then you%ll find me cheerful and kind as ever. till I get this cursed low fever out of my veins. besides. and impatience. by incessant perseverance. so insidious in its advances. gave way in spite of myself. his comforter. so inexorable in its tyranny.% said I. and thereby sunk deeper and deeper. %my evil counsel has had but little effect upon her. I spared him my exhortations and fruitless efforts at conversion too. or stung to distraction by some new instance of irrationality. but not.henceforth I restrained my tears and passions as much as I could. and hoped you would never repeat them again. as long as I had any influence left. still. but I could not. to the mutual gratification of both0% %'ccording to your own account. but. who could not defend themselves. It was now something more to him than an accessory to social enjoyment# it was an important source of enjoyment in itself. :is appetite for the stimulus of wine had increased upon him. when indulged too often. and her from the toil and trouble of such exertions. worn out by repeated annoyances. and remove the film of sensual darkness from his eyes. his recreation. ' burst of passion is a fine rousing thing upon occasion. and determination. we would willingly keep your failings to ourselves ) even from ourselves if we could. Why can%t you be gentle and good.% %Well. as was frequently the case. :ave patience with me. if it will only secure me from the pain and worry of my dear anxious wife%s efforts to convert me. In this time of weakness and depression he would have made it his medicine and support. so disastrous in its . by kindness. and his temper gradually improved as his bodily health was restored.% . cruelty. well0 don%t worry me about them# you%ll never effect any good by that. and daring. and exposed me to the imputations of fierceness. for I saw it was all in vain# (od might awaken that heart.% %'nd what good did your gratitude do/ I deluded myself with the idea that you were ashamed of your transgressions.%'nd so that is the way you go on ) heartening each other up to mutiny. unless by knowing them we could deliver you from them. and his friend. :elen. 'nd as to abuse and aspersions. supine and stupefied with self)indulgence. for whose sake I frequently braved and suffered the reproaches and complaints of his unreasonably exacting father. is it/ ' very blessed consideration. and her sweet face and silver accents from the ruinous effects of the same. that there was something almost ludicrous in the incongruity of this adventitious fretfulness and nervous irritability. I had now another claimant on my time and care ) my ailing infant.

but then I know his heart is still . or suffer him to unburden his sorrows to me. and made %a night of it. and labouring to extenuate the loosest of his principles and the worst of his practices. since he and I are one. now seem only natural. surely 'rthur%s is the fault. pray.hings that formerly shocked and disgusted me. while. and feel for him as for myself. for I would not stay to inquire. my apprehensions of 'rthur%s proneness to these excesses. it is only my anxious fears. for. at the time. if I should perish with him in the gulf from which I sought to save him0 1et. or breathe them forth in other ears than mine# there was enough of confidence between us already. I know them to be wrong. because reason and (od%s word declare them to be so. a harmless companion for 'rthur. and overthrown with a touch the frail bulwark it had cost me such trouble and toil to construct. :argrave as a real friend to the family. :is sighs and intimations of suppressed affliction seemed to come from a full heart.% or %We must not forget that rs. $ut my after)thought was. and brought a glow to my face. of which he was the object.% 'nd indeed I know not whether. :ence I learned to welcome r. +n that and every subsequent occasion his presence served rather as a check upon his host. and I am. and I did not scruple to acknowledge my obligation on the first convenient opportunity. yet. contaminated by the union. that I feel his degradation. poor 'rthur. I so identify myself with him. was obliged to follow. but I cannot act for him. it was not for him rather than myself that I blushed. and transgressions as my own# I blush for him. I could not but feel grateful to him under such circumstances. (od preserve me from it. I am so determined to love him. and almost a partaker in his sins. 'nd here I must not forget that I am not a little indebted to his friend r. :untingdon is alone. and though I write as if you were some abandoned wretch. It seemed wrong that there should exist a secret understanding between my husband%s friend and me. I repent for him. :e was pleased with this mark of confidence. and him too0 1es. as I did so. 'bout that time he frequently called at (rassdale. or instilled into me by the precepts and example of my aunt. less dissatisfied. past hope and past reprieve. I was so fearful of this at first. I fear for him. my heart whispered all was not right. debased. one who loved you less would be less bitter. for I abhorred the sinner as well as the sin. have ruined the labour of weeks. he more than doubled my misgivings. . I must not detain you from your lady. than an incitement to further acts of intemperance. and he always succeeded in bringing him from the dining)room in good time. but either he must contrive to retain them within it. and to express a hope that he would not encourage it. which he heightened by his steady. but I am gradually losing that instinctive horror and repulsion which were given me by nature. "erhaps then I was too severe in my judgments. he might.% as often as his friend would have consented to join him in that exalted pastime. to cheer his spirits and preserve him from the tedium of absolute idleness and a total isolation from all society but mine. his failings. both in my own eyes and in the actual truth. and his host. and in tolerably good condition. till I am familiarised with vice. :is conduct has. not mine. but am I not becoming more indifferent and insensate too/ <ool that I was. on which occasions I fear 'rthur would willingly have cast prudence and decorum to the winds. weep. in a night or two. :is high delight at being able to serve me was chastened by sympathy for me and commiseration for himself ) about. for if 'rthur disregarded such intimations as %Well. in private. been what the world calls irreproachable. :argrave.effects.% he would insist upon leaving the table himself. I know not what. that I humbled myself to intimate to him. to dream that I had strength and purity enough to save myself and him0 2uch vain presumption would be rightly served. unknown to him. my strong desires that make me do so. to join me. so intensely anxious to excuse his errors. however unwillingly. and hence I must be. of late. serious ga. and certainly did not betray it. %If it is wrong. by his manner of receiving those acknowledgments.e. and often dined with us. now I flatter myself I am more charitable and considerate. that I am continually dwelling upon them. and if the latter had chosen to comply. and a useful ally to me. I will still hope and pray for you.

and. I suppose you must wear it awhile. was very different from knowing him to be immersed amid the corruptions and temptations of &ondon. for form%s sake. and weeks months. and tones. but still worse in temper. 2hortly after. I dread the consequences of its arrival. you won%t think it your bounden duty to . went to 2taningley. as well as my dear old friends its inhabitants. 3uly IJth. rather better in health. with little 'rthur and !achel. you know. though neither long nor loverlike. his selfishness and hopeless depravity. and faces. and I know that spring is approaching. and sighs awakened by those old familiar scenes. $ut no# watering)places were so intolerably dull. I wish a milder word would do. so that he is not wholly dependent on me for entertainment. and for the benefit of our little one as well. days signify weeks. and with it something of his former impatience of retirement and repose. than before. and r. were more regular than ever they had been before. .his time he announced it his intention to make but a short stay in &ondon. spring is approaching. to think of him engaged in active sports among the wild hills of 2cotland. y poor father died last week# 'rthur was vexed to hear of it. with him. I am wrong# it is I that am less patient and forbearing. I saw again with mingled feelings of pleasure and pain so intimately blended that I could scarcely distinguish the one from the other. and deeply dread the consequences. ) :e returned about three weeks ago. I hate black0 $ut. I. and make up for all past offences and short)comings. certainly. but I shall not expect him till after the lapse of many weeks# I now know that. %1es. 'nd yet.he dreaded time is come. where he should probably stay a few weeks. while his fox)hunting and coursing are a sufficient occupation for him without. and that is an increasing source of amusement to him within) doors. and better in every respect. 2ince that time I have had little cause to complain. that I never could bring myself up to the scratch. :is letters now. but I did not feel so anxious about him now. to my private satisfaction. but somehow there%s such a repulsion between the good lady and me. because he saw that I was shocked and grieved. he had been invited by one of his friends to spend a month or two in 2cotland for the better recreation of grouse) shooting and deer)stalking. and had promise to go. as I expected. if you like# your uncle and aunt have long been wanting us to go there. he exclaimed.hen you will leave me again. dearest.% 'bout the third week in 'ugust. I repeat. When I spoke of ordering my mourning. :argrave accompanied him thither.unchanged. which. against which I have to struggle and watch. 6758. instead of being worse than when he went. however. ) %+h. I suggested a short residence by the sea)side. for his recreation and further restoration. . besides. CHAPTER XXXI arch 5Jth. he was more cheerful and vigorous. I am tired out with his injustice. perhaps. but only to love you the better when I come back. :e still has an unfortunate predilection for the pleasures of the table. I am no angel. 'rthur/% said I. %. when the ground is not hardened by frost. 'rthur did not come home till several weeks after my return to (rassdale. my dear old home. 'rthur set out for 2cotland. awakens now far other anticipations by its return.hat sweet season. . :elen. but I hope. 'nd during my absence you may pay a visit to 2taningley. and when he did return. I once so joyously welcomed as the time of hope and gladness. but he has begun to notice his boy. or tell to which to attribute the various tears. and he feared the circumstance would mar his comfort. and you needn%t fear me this time# there are no temptations on the mountains. and 'rthur is gone. to my great joy. $ut it is now 3anuary. and my corruption rises against it. 's he began to recover the tone and vigour of his exhausted frame. and pass over to the *ontinent. and smiles.

$ut I might have spared myself that momentary pang of self) reproach. . but before the words were well out of my mouth. It seemed so heavy a charge# if false. however. and if that won%t answer. I regretted having uttered them. and pleased when he is agreeable. but only answered with a long. as if he viewed the whole transaction as a clever. but when we do speak or converse together. dear :elen. to cheer poor <rederick%s solitude. and my brother. and every now and then you feel them too. ) We are shaken down again to about our usual position. and yet. was little better than a stranger. I cannot get over my dislike to &ady &owborough. at my special to bear with him. I always avoid her company as much as I can without violating the laws of hospitality. >uring the . I shall shortly be called upon to entertain the same select body of friends as we had the autumn before last. as long as I am necessary to your comfort. too humiliating a fact to be thus openly cast in his teeth.% %1es. in order that you might get away from your home without me. Why should you sigh and groan. now. she will be a charming playmate for my little 'rthur. to do all in my power to save him from the worse. too gross an insult.compose your face and manners into conformity with your funereal garb.% :e would not hear of my attending the funeral. and I was unreasonable to wish it. would be intolerable. when you urged me to leave you. to smile @if possibleA when he smiles. 2urely that man will make me dislike him at last0 2ine as ye brew. and restrain my own evil passions from aggravating his. . to try to make him so. ) +ur guests have been here a week or two. 1es.he accusation awoke neither shame nor indignation in him# he attempted neither denial nor excuse. It is not founded on mere personal pique. with the addition of r. my household deity. and perhaps resent the injury by crushing them in till you have destroyed their power. 2eptember IJth. +f late. I long to see ilicent. though somewhat to the detriment of your own fingers. and her little girl too. %I cannot spare you for a single day. low. embracing me with flattering fondness. but you know there are thorns beneath.% said he. because I so thoroughly disapprove of her. has thought proper to drink himself to death/ . bright enough to the eye. and I be made uncomfortable. and home without you. but preserve me from such cordiality0 It is like handling brier)roses and may) blossoms.he latter is now above a year old. be cheerful when he is cheerful. I have seen nothing in her conduct towards 'rthur to anger or alarm me. his wife and child. but you did not say so before. even apparent cordiality on her part. 'rthur has returned to nearly his former condition and habits. %$esides. $ut we shall not be long alone together. while I thus yield and minister to his more harmless propensities to self)indulgence. is concerned. and I have found it my wisest plan to shut my eyes against the past and future. :attersley and. and when he is not. too. ?eep mind that ye maun drink the yill. What was my father to me/ I had never seen him but once since I was a baby.% %. it is with the utmost civility. and outwardly soft to the touch. now I am at home. and I will drink it to the very dregs# and none but myself shall know how bitter I find it0 'ugust 5Jth. and live only for the present# to love him when I can.hen how have you managed without me these many days/% said I.% retorted I. it is the woman herself that I dislike. a perfect stranger to us both. because an old gentleman in )shire. %'h0 then I was knocking about the world. It was quite unnecessary. my maiden fair. or going for a day or two. at least. he said. it must be affectation. and forgive him as well as I can. merry jest from beginning to end. to excuse him. chuckling laugh. but I have had no leisure to pass any comments upon them till now. and I well knew he had never cared a stiver about me. as far as he. I declare you%re crying0 Well. if true.

%since my presence is disagreeable to you. before the door was closed upon us. ) %.% :e raised his eyes while I spoke. carelessly. what say you to a regular jollification/% ilicent glanced at me with a half)reproachful look. to all appearance. or renewed attempts at conquest upon hers. and gravely turned them upon me. :er efforts were not unnoticed by him# I frequently saw him smiling to himself at her artful manoeuvres# but. with a most ungracious air of dissatisfaction. %I trust you will always continue to honour us so early with your company. . my lads.% . for a single hour since I married him. her shafts fell powerless by his side. as if I could hinder it.ow then. 'nnabella. then/% said she. (rimsby and :attersley.or have I since witnessed any symptom of pique on his part. %I know the value of a warm heart and a bold. in the comfortless gloom of the damp.% %'re you going back to them.% exclaimed he. and. %'t least. and the misery of folly and ) and intemperance.% %Well. I shall never trouble you again by intruding my company upon you so unseasonably. shouting through door and wall. and immediately after.o. she suddenly remitted her efforts. have destroyed all my labour against his love of wine. manly spirit. 'nnabella. to his praise be it spoken. %Well.first few days I thought she seemed very solicitous to win his admiration. I shall not soon forget the second night after their arrival.% :e left the room# I heard the hall)door open and shut. at length. 'rthur exclaimed. &ord &owborough. . 3ust as I had retired from the dining)room with the ladies.hey encourage him daily to overstep the bounds of moderation. with harsh and startling emphasis.his is as it should be. %1ou did right to leave them.% said I. in a deep and hollow tone. I have never. 'nd if 'nnabella knew the value of true wisdom. bit his pale lips. she would not talk such nonsense ) even in jest. finding he was indeed impenetrable. %1ou know I never drink. on putting aside the curtain. till. as perfectly indifferent as himself. for you or any other tempter0 $ut you needn%t mind that. which had so nearly effected his ruin.% said she.% . cloudy twilight. %I will not go back to them0 'nd I will never stay with them one moment longer than I think right. I wonder you can0% :e reproached her with a look of mingled bitterness and surprise. :er most bewitching smiles. %What can induce you to come so soon/% exclaimed his lady. %It would serve you right. and not unfrequently to disgrace himself by positive excess. and which it cost him such an effort to break# you would then see cause to repent such conduct as this. but her countenance changed when she heard :attersley%s voice. suppressed a heavy sigh.hose two detestable men. known what it is to realise that sweet idea. half) abstracted look. %In quietness and confidence shall be your rest. with a half)surprised. I will relieve you of it. but 'rthur never will let me be satisfied with him. careless good)humour. %if &ord &owborough were to return to his old habits. and then bent them on his wife. %. ) %I%m your man0 2end for more wine# here isn%t half enough0% We had scarcely entered the drawing)room before we were joined by &ord &owborough. 'nnabella. I saw him pacing down the park. but you might stay with them a little# it looks so silly to be always dangling after the women. and fixed his eyes upon the floor. her haughtiest frowns were ever received with the same immutable.% said I. and became. sinking into a chair.% replied he seriously.% said he. .

:argrave laughed. and I endeavoured to persuade r.% said he. and I effected my escape by the side entrance through the butler%s pantry. :argrave.he latter offered no reply. %I had much ado to get away myself. !alph attempted to keep me by violence. my dear0 I should not mind if his lordship were to see fit to intoxicate himself every day# I should only the sooner be rid of him. for I would sooner die than offend you. dear ilicent.% %4tterly impossible. he is part of myself.% said I. it will be much if they join us at tea. be a just punishment.% r. but his sister and I remained silent and grave. even to my unpractised ear. and lip.% murmured he. %:ow can you say such wicked things0 It would. endeavoured to make me ashamed of my virtue. now. I%m so glad you%re come. bad as he is. then. and make you feel what others feel. and petitioned for a cup of coffee. who was cleaning the plate. and you cannot abuse him without offending me. but look again. when I consider the power he possesses over the happiness of one so immeasurably superior to himself. by such galling sarcasms and innuendoes as he knew would wound me the most. :untingdon to think of you too. for I hate to think of them ) yes ) even of my dear friend :untingdon. more seriously. his dark eyes sparkling with unwonted vivacity. to the infinite ama.% %"ardon me. %What you feel at this moment. :untingdon. then. I earnestly wish I could banish the thoughts of them from your mind ) and my own too. indeed. !alph :attersley%s last resource was to set his back against the door. as far as you are concerned. :elen0% whispered other considerations. 't that moment the door opened and admitted r. in which the voice of :attersley was pre)eminently conspicuous. and swear I should find no passage but through his body @a pretty substantial one tooA.% I returned. . %Isn%t he handsome now. if "rovidence should take you at your word. as he raised his eyes to my face. all %:e would be.% replied he.% :e smilingly turned to me and bowed as he finished the sentence. ladies. and the use he makes of it ) I positively detest the man0% %1ou had better not say so to me. as I handed one to him.% :ere the gentleman took a seat near me at the table. %for. however. worse than all.ot at all. a few hours hence. %1ou are not used to these things# you suffer them to affect your delicate mind too sensibly. with a malicious smile. gaily. %if that brilliance of eye. %I am in paradise. rs. you ought to make me welcome when I have braved and suffered so much for the favour of your sweet society. 'nnabella0% cried ilicent.ement of $enson. $ut I thought of you in the midst of those lawless roysterers. 2o you see. and cheek were natural to him. %$ut I wish you could have got !alph to come too. but I have fought my way through flood and fire to win it. %I consider this an apt illustration of heaven taken by storm. fixing her eyes upon her cousin%s distressed countenance. %"ardon my levity. her sisterly pride overcoming. and so did his cousin. ilicent. Walter/% cried his sister. just a little flushed. and (rimsby. for the moment. that was not the only door.%.% %+h. but to no purpose# I fear he is fully determined to enjoy himself this night. %+h. but averted her face and brushed away a tear. :untingdon threatened me with the eternal loss of his friendship. :appily. and it will be no use keeping the coffee waiting for him or his companions. that ) % 2he paused as a sudden burst of loud talking and laughter reached us from the dining)room. $ut let us say no more of him for the present. I suppose/% said &ady &owborough. eantime. .

and the fumes of the fermented liquor render them lighter still.=% observed :argrave. and produce an entire light) headedness. r. :argrave. I%d demolish you in the twinkling of an eye. you dastardly deserter. (rimsby.% 't last they came. you see the evil of .% cried he.% %'h0 yes.hus. %by the quantity of sugar you have put into it. being composed of more solid materials. %If it were not for them. they don%t require snuffing.% %:ave I so/% replied the philosopher. will absorb a considerable quantity of this alcoholic vapour without the production of any sensible result ) % %I think you will find a sensible result produced on that tea. and you see I%m perfectly steady. in the chair vacated by :argrave as they entered. Instead of your usual complement of one lump. or giddiness. %'h0 you do well to remind me of the ladies. and bringing up several half) dissolved pieces in confirmation of the assertion. %=If thine eye be single. as r. they have no head at all# they can%t take half a bottle without being affected some way. and began to talk to her with a mixture of absurdity and impudence that seemed rather to amuse than to offend her. confidentially pushing his head into her face. and almost started from her seat. but not till after ten. and drawing in closer to her as she shrank away from him. resulting in intoxication. :e was not so noisy as :attersley. I%ve taken three times as much as they have to) night. and ilicent turned pale. continued. my heart failed me at the riotous uproar of their approach. :untingdon. and give your body to the fowls of heaven and the lilies of the fields0% .hey%re wax. diving with his spoon into the cup. %=.ow that may strike you as very singular. you well know. I was glad that he chose to talk to his companion in so low a tone that no one could hear what he said but herself. and gravely stated that he would thank me for a cup of tea# and 'rthur placed himself beside poor ilicent. eantime r. whereas my brains. rs. planting a chair by &ady &owborough%s side. and then turning to me. was nearly over. but we%re almost in darkness here. with sententious gravity all the time. whereas I ) well. with the same drawling tones and strange uncertainty of utterance and heavy gravity of aspect as before# %$ut as I was saying. but his face was exceedingly flushed# he laughed incessantly. and while I blushed for all I saw and heard of him.he light of the body is the eye. uch as I had longed for their coming. %What fools they are0% drawled r. but I think I can explain it# you see their brains ) I mention no names.hen. adam. rs.=% (rimsby repulsed him with a solemn wave of the hand. though she affected to resent his insolence. shaking his formidable fist at his brother)in) law. . and to keep him at bay with sallies of smart and spirited repartee. with a sarcastic smile. when tea.% said I. (rimsby. but I had been too much absorbed in contemplating the deplorable state of the other two ) especially 'rthur ) to attend to him. I see. %:um0 I perceive.% interrupted r. he stationed himself in it. %>id you ever hear such nonsense as they talk. :argrave. (rimsby seated himself by me. will you/% %. at my elbow. %I%m quite ashamed of them for my part# they can%t take so much as a bottle between them without its getting into their heads ) % %1ou are pouring the cream into your saucer.if you please. . snuff those candles. you have put in six. :untingdon/% he continued. thy whole body shall be full of light. :attersley burst into the room with a clamorous volley of oaths in his mouth. which :argrave endeavoured to check by entreating him to remember the ladies. who had been talking away. but you%ll understand to whom I allude ) their brains are light to begin with. which had been delayed for more than half an hour.

eantime. I should not have spoiled this cup of tea. :e now stepped up to 'nnabella. %What are you crying for. you fool. . man. like ordinary men. come and help me. . %:ow dare you tell such a lie0% . he clapped his hands on his sides and groaned aloud. grimly surveying the company. :untingdon0% he shouted ) %I%ve got him0 *ome.% :is lordship gravely bowed in answer to my appeal. I suppose to his own apartment. but he could do nothing but laugh. %and aiding you with my prayers# I can%t do anything else if my life depended on it0 I%m quite used followed a disgraceful contest# &ord &owborough. but said nothing. instead of within me like a philosopher. 2wearing and cursing like a maniac. and been constrained to trouble you for another.% cried 'rthur. rudely pulling her hands from her face. if I don%t make him drunk before I let him go0 :e shall make up for all past delinquencies as sure as I%m a living soul0% . (rimsby. with :attersley still beside her. &ord &owborough had entered a minute or two before. %:allo. and I%ll thank you to ring for some more. to which he madly clung with all the energy of desperation. for here is &ord &owborough at last. and I hope his lordship will condescend to sit down with us. :argrave volunteered to ring for the sugar.% %1ou are.% %. though not now attending to her. in desperate him by the arm. and insisted upon her coming to him. %I shall take no part in your rude sports0% replied the lady coldly drawing back. and pale with anger. %'nnabella. give me a candle0% said &owborough. :e vanished. while (rimsby lamented his mistake. till.% said he. %What do you want.% persisted he. .hat is the sugar)basin. who sat with her back towards him. ilicent/ ) . you shall resemble us all0% cried :attersley. such as we are.% said her husband.ow. %:untingdon. the latter unclasped them and let him go. roaring like a wild beast. silently struggling to release himself from the powerful madman that was striving to drag him from the room. I attempted to urge 'rthur to interfere in behalf of his outraged guest. and help me0 'nd d)n me. %I want to know what%s the matter with you. but he called her back. :attersley. can%t you0% cried :attersley.he door being now free. as he leant over the back of her chair. and attempted to prove that it was owing to the shadow of the urn and the badness of the lights. and allow me to give him some tea.% $ut I snatched up a candle and brought it to him. whose antagonist had now got him round the waist and was endeavouring to root him from the door)post. %which of these three =bold. and had been standing before the door. starting up and rudely sei. reluctantly approaching him. manly spirits= would you have me to resemble/% %$y heaven and earth. 'nnabella. being occupied in vociferously abusing and bullying his host. if I had had my wits about me. +h ) oh0% and leaning back in his seat. %I wonder you can expect it.ow you have spoiled the sugar too.absence of mind ) of thinking too much while engaged in the common concerns of life. :e took it and held the flame to :attersley%s hands.ell me0% %I%m not crying. unobserved by an one but me. r. pulling her on to his knee like a child. !alph/% murmured she. himself somewhat weakened by his excesses. %Well. %I%m wishing you (od)speed. :attersley threw himself on to the ottoman beside the window. for nothing more was seen of him till the morning. ilicent attempted to make her escape from the scene of her husband%s disgrace.

%I%m not crying now,% pleaded she. %$ut you have been, and just this minute too; and I will know what for. *ome, now, you shall tell me0% %>o let me alone, !alph0 !emember, we are not at home.% %,o matter# you shall answer my question0% exclaimed her tormentor; and he attempted to extort the confession by shaking her, and remorselessly crushing her slight arms in the gripe of his powerful fingers. %>on%t let him treat your sister in that way,% said I to r. :argrave. %*ome now, :attersley, I can%t allow that,% said that gentleman, stepping up to the ill)assorted couple. %&et my sister alone, if you please.% 'nd he made an effort to unclasp the ruffian%s fingers from her arm, but was suddenly driven backward, and nearly laid upon the floor by a violent blow on the chest, accompanied with the admonition, %.ake that for your insolence0 and learn to interfere between me and mine again.% %If you were not drunk, I%d have satisfaction for that0% gasped :argrave, white and breathless as much from passion as from the immediate effects of the blow. %(o to the devil0% responded his brother)in)law. %,ow, ilicent, tell me what you were crying for.% %I%ll tell you some other time,% murmured she, %when we are alone.% %.ell me now0% said he, with another shake and a squee;e that made her draw in her breath and bite her lip to suppress a cry of pain. %I%ll tell you, r. :attersley,% said I. %2he was crying from pure shame and humiliation for you; because she could not bear to see you conduct yourself so disgracefully.% %*onfound you, adam0% muttered he, with a stare of stupid ama;ement at my %impudence.% %It was not that ) was it, ilicent/% 2he was silent. %*ome, speak up, child0% %I can%t tell now,% sobbed she. %$ut you can say =yes= or =no= as well as =I can%t tell.= ) *ome0% %1es,% she whispered, hanging her head, and blushing at the awful acknowledgment. %*urse you for an impertinent hussy, then0% cried he, throwing her from him with such violence that she fell on her side; but she was up again before either I or her brother could come to her assistance, and made the best of her way out of the room, and, I suppose, up)stairs, without loss of time. .he next object of assault was 'rthur, who sat opposite, and had, no doubt, richly enjoyed the whole scene. %,ow, :untingdon,% exclaimed his irascible friend, %I will not have you sitting there and laughing like an idiot0% %+h, :attersley,% cried he, wiping his swimming eyes ) %you%ll be the death of me.% %1es, I will, but not as you suppose# I%ll have the heart out of your body, man, if you irritate me with any more of that imbecile laughter0 ) What0 are you at it yet/ ) .here0 see if that%ll settle you0% cried :attersley, snatching up a footstool and hurting it at the head of his host; but he as well as missed his aim, and the latter still sat collapsed and quaking with feeble laughter, with tears running down his

face# a deplorable spectacle indeed. :attersley tried cursing and swearing, but it would not do# he then took a number of books from the table beside him, and threw them, one by one, at the object of his wrath; but 'rthur only laughed the more; and, finally, :attersley rushed upon him in a fren;y and sei;ing him by the shoulders, gave him a violent shaking, under which he laughed and shrieked alarmingly. $ut I saw no more# I thought I had witnessed enough of my husband%s degradation; and leaving 'nnabella and the rest to follow when they pleased, I withdrew, but not to bed. >ismissing !achel to her rest, I walked up and down my room, in an agony of misery for what had been done, and suspense, not knowing what might further happen, or how or when that unhappy creature would come up to bed. 't last he came, slowly and stumblingly ascending the stairs, supported by (rimsby and :attersley, who neither of them walked quite steadily themselves, but were both laughing and joking at him, and making noise enough for all the servants to hear. :e himself was no longer laughing now, but sick and stupid. I will write no more about that. 2uch disgraceful scenes @or nearly suchA have been repeated more than once. I don%t say much to 'rthur about it, for, if I did, it would do more harm than good; but I let him know that I intensely dislike such exhibitions; and each time he has promised they should never again be repeated. $ut I fear he is losing the little self) command and self)respect he once possessed# formerly, he would have been ashamed to act thus ) at least, before any other witnesses than his boon companions, or such as they. :is friend :argrave, with a prudence and self)government that I envy for him, never disgraces himself by taking more than sufficient to render him a little %elevated,% and is always the first to leave the table after &ord &owborough, who, wiser still, perseveres in vacating the dining)room immediately after us# but never once, since 'nnabella offended him so deeply, has he entered the drawing)room before the rest; always spending the interim in the library, which I take care to have lighted for his accommodation; or, on fine moonlight nights, in roaming about the grounds. $ut I think she regrets her misconduct, for she has never repeated it since, and of late she has comported herself with wonderful propriety towards him, treating him with more uniform kindness and consideration than ever I have observed her to do before. I date the time of this improvement from the period when she ceased to hope and strive for 'rthur%s admiration.

+ctober Cth. ) -sther :argrave is getting a fine girl. 2he is not out of the school)room yet, but her mother frequently brings her over to call in the mornings when the gentlemen are out, and sometimes she spends an hour or two in company with her sister and me, and the children; and when we go to the (rove, I always contrive to see her, and talk more to her than to any one else, for I am very much attached to my little friend, and so is she to me. I wonder what she can see to like in me though, for I am no longer the happy, lively girl I used to be; but she has no other society, save that of her uncongenial mother, and her governess @as artificial and conventional a person as that prudent mother could procure to rectify the pupil%s natural qualitiesA, and, now and then, her subdued, quiet sister. I often wonder what will be her lot in life, and so does she; but her speculations on the future are full of buoyant hope; so were mine once. I shudder to think of her being awakened, like me, to a sense of their delusive vanity. It seems as if I should feel her disappointment, even more deeply than my own. I feel almost as if I were born for such a fate, but she is so joyous and fresh, so light of heart and free of spirit, and so guileless and unsuspecting too. +h, it would be cruel to make her feel as I feel now, and know what I have known0 :er sister trembles for her too. 1esterday morning, one of +ctober%s brightest, loveliest days, ilicent

and I were in the garden enjoying a brief half)hour together with our children, while 'nnabella was lying on the drawing)room sofa, deep in the last new novel. We had been romping with the little creatures, almost as merry and wild as themselves, and now paused in the shade of the tall copper beech, to recover breath and rectify our hair, disordered by the rough play and the frolicsome bree;e, while they toddled together along the broad, sunny walk; my 'rthur supporting the feebler steps of her little :elen, and sagaciously pointing out to her the brightest beauties of the border as they passed, with semi)articulate prattle, that did as well for her as any other mode of discourse. <rom laughing at the pretty sight, we began to talk of the children%s future life; and that made us thoughtful. We both relapsed into silent musing as we slowly proceeded up the walk; and I suppose ilicent, by a train of associations, was led to think of her sister. %:elen,% said she, %you often see -sther, don%t you/% %,ot very often.% %$ut you have more frequent opportunities of meeting her than I have; and she loves you, I know, and reverences you too# there is nobody%s opinion she thinks so much of; and she says you have more sense than mamma.% %.hat is because she is self)willed, and my opinions more generally coincide with her own than your mamma%s. $ut what then, ilicent/% %Well, since you have so much influence with her, I wish you would seriously impress it upon her, never, on any account, or for anybody%s persuasion, to marry for the sake of money, or rank, or establishment, or any earthly thing, but true affection and well) grounded esteem.% is no necessity for that,% said I, %for we have had some discourse on that subject already, and I assure you her ideas of love and matrimony are as romantic as any one could desire.% %$ut romantic notions will not do# I want her to have true notions.% %Fery right# but in my judgment, what the world stigmatises as romantic, is often more nearly allied to the truth than is commonly supposed; for, if the generous ideas of youth are too often over) clouded by the sordid views of after)life, that scarcely proves them to be false.% %Well, but if you think her ideas are what they ought to be, strengthen them, will you/ and confirm them, as far as you can; for I had romantic notions once, and ) I don%t mean to say that I regret my lot, for I am quite sure I don%t, but ) % %I understand you,% said I; %you are contented for yourself, but you would not have your sister to suffer the same as you.% %,o ) or worse. 2he might have far worse to suffer than I, for I am really contented, :elen, though you mayn%t think it# I speak the solemn truth in saying that I would not exchange my husband for any man on earth, if I might do it by the plucking of this leaf.% %Well, I believe you# now that you have him, you would not exchange him for another; but then you would gladly exchange some of his qualities for those of better men.% %1es# just as I would gladly exchange some of my own qualities for those of better women; for neither he nor I are perfect, and I desire his improvement as earnestly as my own. 'nd he will improve, don%t you think so, :elen/ he%s only six)and)twenty yet.% %:e may,% I answered, %:e will, he WI&&0% repeated she. %-xcuse the faintness of my acquiescence, ilicent, I would not discourage your hopes for the world,

but mine have been so often disappointed, that I am become as cold and doubtful in my expectations as the flattest of octogenarians.% %'nd yet you do hope, still, even for r. :untingdon/% %I do, I confess, =even= for him; for it seems as if life and hope must cease together. 'nd is he so much worse, ilicent, than r. :attersley/% %Well, to give you my candid opinion, I think there is no comparison between them. $ut you mustn%t be offended, :elen, for you know I always speak my mind, and you may speak yours too. I sha%n%t care.% %I am not offended, love; and my opinion is, that if there be a comparison made between the two, the difference, for the most part, is certainly in :attersley%s favour.% ilicent%s own heart told her how much it cost me to make this acknowledgment; and, with a childlike impulse, she expressed her sympathy by suddenly kissing my cheek, without a word of reply, and then turning quickly away, caught up her baby, and hid her face in its frock. :ow odd it is that we so often weep for each other%s distresses, when we shed not a tear for our own0 :er heart had been full enough of her own sorrows, but it overflowed at the idea of mine; and I, too, shed tears at the sight of her sympathetic emotion, though I had not wept for myself for many a week. It was one rainy day last week; most of the company were killing time in the billiard)room, but ilicent and I were with little 'rthur and :elen in the library, and between our books, our children, and each other, we expected to make out a very agreeable morning. We had not been thus secluded above two hours, however, when r. :attersley came in, attracted, I suppose, by the voice of his child, as he was crossing the hall, for he is prodigiously fond of her, and she of him. :e was redolent of the stables, where he had been regaling himself with the company of his fellow) creatures the horses ever since breakfast. $ut that was no matter to my little namesake; as soon as the colossal person of her father darkened the door, she uttered a shrill scream of delight, and, quitting her mother%s side, ran crowing towards him, balancing her course with outstretched arms, and embracing his knee, threw back her head and laughed in his face. :e might well look smilingly down upon those small, fair features, radiant with innocent mirth, those clear blue shining eyes, and that soft flaxen hair cast back upon the little ivory neck and shoulders. >id he not think how unworthy he was of such a possession/ I fear no such idea crossed his mind. :e caught her up, and there followed some minutes of very rough play, during which it is difficult to say whether the father or the daughter laughed and shouted the loudest. 't length, however, the boisterous pastime terminated, suddenly, as might be expected# the little one was hurt, and began to cry; and the ungentle play)fellow tossed it into its mother%s lap, bidding her %make all straight.% 's happy to return to that gentle comforter as it had been to leave her, the child nestled in her arms, and hushed its cries in a moment; and sinking its little weary head on her bosom, soon dropped asleep. eantime r. :attersley strode up to the fire, and interposing his height and breadth between us and it, stood with arms akimbo, expanding his chest, and ga;ing round him as if the house and all its appurtenances and contents were his own undisputed possessions. %>euced bad weather this0% he began. be no shooting to) day, I guess.% .hen, suddenly lifting up his voice, he regaled us with a few bars of a rollicking song, which abruptly ceasing, he finished the tune with a whistle, and then continued#) %I say, rs. :untingdon, what a fine stud your husband has0 not large, but good. I%ve been looking at them a bit this morning; and upon my word, $lack $oss, and (rey .om, and that young ,imrod are the finest animals I%ve seen for many a day0% .hen followed a particular discussion of their various merits, succeeded by a sketch of the great things he intended to do in the horse)jockey line, when his old governor thought proper to quit the stage. %,ot that I wish him to close his accounts,% added he# %the old .rojan is welcome to keep his books open as long as he pleases

I adore 'nnabella. and how soft and easy they feel to the foot/ $ut if you plod along. %Well. when she likes to use it. firm rock.% %I bother you0% cried she. what makes you so cross/ *ome here. you ) but only by your exceeding goodness. half sullen resignation. I believe you. %What a noble figure she has. :. observe the sands on the sea)shore.ow then0 what do you look so sulky for/ don%t you believe me/% %1es. . he clutched a handful of her light brown ringlets. in a low.he event must come some time.% murmured she. and what magnificent black eyes. ) %What does it amount to. though it be hard as the nether millstone. with a faint smile beaming through her tears. rs. in a tone of half sad. you would still rather have me than her for your wife. and what a tongue of her own. illy.% said she.% %I hope so. or stamp upon it. but I don%t adore thee./ What are you two doing here/ $y)the)by. and.% %What a splendid creature she is0% continued he. that she had laid on the sofa beside her. and I love thee. nervously playing with her watchguard and tracing the figure on the rug with the point of her tiny foot ) %I know what you mean# but I thought you always liked to be yielded to. yes0 It%s only my way of talking. as she turned away to stroke the hair of her sleeping infant. withdrawing her hand from his arm. !alph/ +nly to this. not if she%d a kingdom for her dowry0 I%m better satisfied with the one I have. and for qualities that I don%t possess. but adoration isn%t love.e of sour orange by way of a change. I perfectly adore her0 $ut never mind. in token that he pulled rather too hard.% In proof of his affection. I%m only sorry. and so I look to the bright side of it# that%s the right plan ) isn%t it. %>o you really. r. and appeared to twist them unmercifully. ) you%ll find it rather wearisome work. fixing his eyes on his wife. tremulous accent. where%s &ady &owborough/% %In the billiard)room. but I don%t love her.% %I know what you mean. but who told you I didn%t/ >id I say I loved 'nnabella/% %1ou said you adored her.% added she. . %. and be glad enough to come to a bit of good.% %+h. and what a fine spirit of her own. and it can%t be helped. too. and looked more and more disconcerted as he proceeded. how nice and smooth they look. ilicent# I wouldn%t have her for my wife. for half an hour. assurance. he longs for a squee.% %. $ut I%m not cross. sometimes. and said softly.% . ilicent.rue. walk. yielding the more the harder you press. easy carpet ) giving way at every step.% illy. just putting up her hand to his. %1es. which merely proves that you don%t think it necessary to love your wife.o be sure I do. and putting her little hand within his arm. and tell me why you can%t be satisfied with my 2he went. When a boy has been eating raisins and sugar)plums all day.for me. %if you don%t love me. over this soft. and take care of your child. then. that won%t budge an inch whether you stand. who changed colour. indeed.% %Fery true. in very natural surprise. for.% responded he# %only you bother me rather. and bending her looks on the rug. you%ll find it the easier footing after all. :attersley. looked up in his face. !alph. and I can%t alter now. you are satisfied if she can keep your house. 'nd did you never. you don%t. !alph/% murmured she. that though you admire 'nnabella so much.

and. whatever you did/% %. and won%t tell me what it%s for. but rather to cherish and protect. he must complain that she wears him out with her kindness and gentleness. which yet you may never hear her complain of. ga.% %+ff with you then0 ) 'n excellent little woman. and then. %but I have known her longer and studied her more closely than you have done. illy. smiling through her disordered locks. she kissed it with an air of genuine devotion. for she never complains. I tell you0 only when I%m in a bad humour.o. 'nd sometimes she provokes me by crying for nothing. taking his hand from her head. I will venture to say. %Where are you going/% %. %but a thought too soft ) she almost melts in one%s carelessly up at the ceiling and plunging his hands into his pockets# %if my ongoings don%t suit her.hen you do delight to oppress her/% %I don%t.o tidy my hair.%I do like it.% %$ut why complain at all. %you%ve made it all come is no such one on earth. when she lies down like a spaniel at my feet and never so much as squeaks to tell me that%s enough/% %If you are a tyrant by nature. there is not a single day passes in which you do not inflict upon her some pang that you might spare her if you would.% said he. r. and never blame you.% said she seriously. ) 'nd I can tell you.% said I# %she does mind it. and some other things she minds still more.% %Is she not exactly the wife you wanted/ >id you not tell r. with a sudden spark of fury ready to burst into a flame if I should answer =yes. especially when I%m not my own man. :untingdon you must have one that would submit to anything without a murmur. I allow. with none of her own to carry/% %. instead of which you are her evil genius.rue. the temptation is strong. when I%ve taken too much ) but I can%t help it. either at the time or after. %What now/% said he. doesn%t it/ :ow can I help playing the deuce when I see it%s all one to her whether I behave like a *hristian or like a scoundrel. %1ou mustn%t mind my talk. or when she looks flat and wants shaking up a bit.% %.% he remarked when she was gone. and then. and that you have it in your power to make her very happy. >o you think I%ll bear all the burden of my sins on my own shoulders. but it%s so confounded flat to be always cherishing and protecting. but we shouldn%t always have what we want# it spoils the best of us. and tripped away to the door. and then. :attersley. how can I tell that I am oppressing her when she =melts away and makes no sign=/ I sometimes think she has no feeling at all. unless because you are tired and dissatisfied/% %. bringing her to him by another tug at her hair.% she answered. such as nature made me/ and how can I help teasing her when she%s so invitingly meek and mim. that ilicent loves you more than you deserve.% %:ow do you know/ ) does she complain to you/% demanded he. and then I go on till she cries. or a particularly good one.% replied he. she should tell me so.o excuse my own failings. and that satisfies me. it enrages me past bearing.% %I can enlighten you on that subject. ' man must have something to grumble about.% . and if he can%t complain that his wife harries him to death with her perversity and ill)humour. as long as there%s another ready to help me. r.% I replied. but no generous mind delights to oppress the weak.% %I don%t oppress her. I suppose she doesn%t mind it.= %.% %Well ) it%s not my fault. I positively think I ill)use her sometimes. :attersley. I allow. to be sure. and want to afflict for the pleasure of comforting.

:argrave/% said he. :untingdon. to be sure.%'s is no doubt generally the case on such occasions.% %1ou mistake me# I%m no termagant. it would do you little good. then/% I could not forbear observing. that is. with my back to the door. :attersley. or your general misconduct. %but I must . by decidedly showing her approval of the one and disapproval of the other. rs.% he continued. but that would have the spirit to stand at bay now and then. or crying for =nothing= @as you call itA. in body.% %Well. most especially your wife.% said I.% %Well. and saying nothing# it%s not honest. I would never contradict you without a cause. and if you oppressed me. you%d make the house too hot to hold me at times. in a greater or less.% continued he. either by the evil you do or the good you leave undone.% r.% interrupted I. :ow can she expect me to mend my ways at that rate/% %"erhaps she gives you credit for having more sense than you possess. I thank (od I am not such another.% replied say. I%ll be sworn. that distresses her. for I can%t stand contradiction. but if I had a mate that would not always be yielding. it is nonsense to talk about injuring no one but yourself# it is impossible to injure yourself. %or would have said if you hadn%t taken me up so short. all the better for that.% %'nd as I was saying. If it were. if I went on with you as I do with her when I%m in &ondon. scoundrelly dog that he is. I sometimes think I should do better if I were joined to one that would always remind me when I was wrong. %as great a reprobate as ever was d)d/% %:is lady will not hear him censured with impunity. coming forward. $ut. and honestly tell me her mind at all times. :e%s afraid of you. especially by such acts as we allude to. he%s always on his best behaviour in your presence ) but ) % %I wonder what his worst behaviour is like. it would be better for us both. :untingdon often regrets that you are not more like her.% %. there%s much to be said on both sides.o. and give me a motive for doing good and eschewing evil. and. as long as I injure nobody but myself ) % %It is a great matter. r. to tell you the truth. but sometimes I think that%s no great matter. degree. :argrave. .% %. now I think upon it. I have the sense to see that I%m not always quite correct. without injuring hundreds. %$ut in future.ow. only I think too much of it doesn%t answer for any man.% %If you had no higher motive than the approval of your fellow) mortal. when you see her looking flat. you should at least have no reason to suppose =I didn%t mind it. in a general way. and I%m as fond of my own will as another. indeed. or estate.% %Well. it%s very bad indeed ) isn%t it. addressing that gentleman. besides. after all. ascribe it all to yourself# be assured it is something you have done amiss. if left to your own reflection. you can%t reform him# he%s ten times worse than I. %Why. no.% %I%ll tell her. mind. and you see. and deludes herself with the hope that you will one day see your own errors and repair them. let her be. and I think if my little wife were to follow the same plan. who had entered the room unperceived by me. if not thousands. for I was now standing near the of your sneers.=% %I know that.% %I don%t believe it. %Isn%t :untingdon. such a one as yourself for instance. my lady. she should tell me so# I don%t like that way of moping and fretting in silence. %both to yourself @as you will hereafter find to your costA and to all connected with you. and always equally kind. but certainly I would always let you know what I thought of your conduct.

and he left the room. :argrave took himself away to the other end of the rug. since he asks you. it pains me inexpressibly ) % %. then/% said his opponent.hen don%t trouble yourself to reveal it0% %$ut it is of importance ) % %If so I shall hear it soon enough. turning to me. :argrave turned seriously to me. at least. and if you choose to bear malice for it after all the handsome things I%ve said. :argrave. though I asked his pardon the very morning after it was done0% %1our manner of asking it. %Isn%t it a shame.% . r. 'rthur. r. =(od be merciful to me a sinner. won%t he. and he%s turned a cold shoulder on me ever since. yet dreaded. this hour0 >o not be alarmed. as you seem to consider it. %and that is enough to provoke any man.% %I guess the best return I can make will be to take myself off. with a broad grin. especially if it is bad news.% grumbled :attersley.% %$ut can%t you ring and send them/% %.% muttered :attersley. I tell you I wouldn%t have done it if I hadn%t been under excitement. :untingdon. bowing slightly and drawing himself up with a proud yet injured air. It was immediately clasped in that of his relative.o. darting upon him a most vindictive glance.% %1ou wanted to interfere between me and my wife. he stepped forward and offered his hand.his put me on my guard. :argrave. :untingdon. if he doesn%t forgive his brother%s trespasses/% %1ou ought to forgive him. :is companion smiled. 't present I am going to take the children to the nursery.% said under a mask of disgust. %and the clearness with which you remembered the whole transaction.=% %1ou are severe. but I have something to reveal to you which you ought to know. and the reconciliation was apparently cordial on both sides.o. and since you bid me forgive it. smiling almost frankly. how I have longed for. I want the exercise of a run to the top of the house.% returned he. %. %. ) %>ear rs. for my face was crimson with anger# %I am not about to offend you with any useless entreaties or complaints. and quite responsible for the deed.% returned the other. *ome. rs.% %1ou justify it. r.he affront. %>o you say so/ . showed you were not too drunk to be fully conscious of what you were about. :e will be damned. :attersley laughed. oving from under his hand with a gesture of insulted dignity. and forget it too. and which. yet. I will.%"erhaps it would become you better. I am not going to presume to trouble you with the mention of my own feelings or your perfections. and say.% continued :argrave. %owed half its bitterness to the fact of its being offered in your presence. %What have I said/% returned :attersley# %nothing but heaven%s truth. and earnestly began. .% said I.hen I will0% 'nd. %I struck Walter :argrave when I was drunk.% said I. r. :untingdon/% cried his brother)in)law. the second night after we came. do so and be d)d0% %I would refrain from such language in a lady%s presence. hiding his anger rs. and clapped him on the shoulder. %to look at what you are.% he added.

1ou have offered to tell. I was determined his words should not alarm me. and I do not greatly fear it. :argrave/% said I.% %In three words I cannot. Kth. but still. and all this last week has been so very moderate in his indulgence at table that I can perceive a marked difference in his general temper and appearance. 2end those children away and stay with me. and I want you to give me a few minutes of your attention in private at any time and place you like to appoint. since I know it.% said r.% %. rs. have to reveal that was of importance for me to hear/ It was no doubt some exaggerated tale about my unfortunate husband that he wished to make the most of to serve his own bad purposes. %I didn%t expect it would meet its end . I suppose we%ve seen the last of our merry carousals in this house. I have a disclosure to make. >are I hope this will continue/ CHAPTER XXXIII 2eventh. keep your bad tidings to yourself. muttering some sentence of impatient censure or complaint.ot yet. in which %heartless% was the only distinguishable word. . pausing in the doorway. watching the moon rising over the clump of tall dark elm)trees below the lawn.% %. $ut if the blow fall too suddenly upon you when it comes. r. I will hope0 . ) 1es. don%t wait. and not for any cause that could alarm your superhuman purity# therefore you need not kill me with that look of cold and pitiless disdain. and I have seen no reason to repent of my unwillingness to hear it.% %+h. I know too well the feelings with which the bearers of bad tidings are commonly regarded not to ) % %What is this wonderful piece of intelligence/% said I.he threatened blow has not been struck yet.hen when may I see you again/% %'t lunch. departing with little :elen in one arm and leading 'rthur by the hand. speak it in three words before I go. I did not intend you should hear my soliloquy. %If it is anything of real importance. painful for me to offer as for you to hear.%$ut you will return/% %. What could he. nothing. and something you would displease me by telling.% added he. leaning against the outer pillar of the portico. I feel it my duty to disclose it to you. for I happened to be standing behind the curtain in the bow of the window. :untingdon. %What do you mean/% %+h. $ut.o. %I thought his good)fellowship wouldn%t last long. %What nonsense is this. and wondering why 'rthur was so sentimental as to stand without.% %$e it so# you shall not hear it from me. :e turned away.o)night I heard (rimsby and :attersley grumbling together about the inhospitality of their host. remember I wished to soften it0% I left him. $ut the fact is. ) :e has not alluded to this momentous mystery since. and I will exonerate you from the duty. 't present I am pleased with 'rthur# he has not positively disgraced himself for upwards of a fortnight.% said I. spare us both the infliction. impatiently interrupting him.% %1ou have divined too truly. It is from no selfish motive that I ask it. I fear. %2o. apparently watching it too. I have refused to hear# my ignorance will not be charged on you. I know it is something I don%t want to hear. of all men.hey did not know I was near. laughing. . :attersley.

and wiping his forehead with his handkerchief. (rimsby. we shall have all our own way. %$less you. or your affection for me. with their false. . :aving seen him bend his course towards the shrubbery. (rimsby as I passed. and I was reluctant to leave him. from different motives and in different ways. all shared my sisterly kindness. %. but don%t let them laugh or grumble you out of your good resolutions. her brother. that I sprang upon him and clasped him in my arms. was lively and gay too. and.% %It%s all these cursed women0% muttered (rimsby# %they%re the very bane of the world0 .ing intently at the shrubs. 'rthur/% said I. I was so light of heart. *ertainly. %(o back. in a tone of absolute and her over)estimated friend acquitting themselves so well. for your temperance and sobriety.this way. :attersley laughed and jested @in spite of the little wine he had been suffered to imbibeA. and cried in tearful earnest. in my new)found happiness and revival of hope and love. 'rthur. fair faces and their deceitful tongues. emulated me. $ut he grew angry at my delay. and doubtless both surpassed me. 'rthur. and threatening to turn us out of the house if we didn%t mind our manners. I was in such a good humour that night# ilicent told me I was the life of the party. left the room and went out in search of 'rthur. I will0% said he. now. and I%m come to thank you for it. and whispered she had never seen me so brilliant. %:ow nervous you are0% %What the deuce did you do it for/% cried he. with a guttural chuckle.hey say it is all =these cursed women. hastily kissing me. that he was positively pale with the shock. because he chooses to be on his good behaviour. .% :e laughed. in another minute. extricating himself from my arms. so overflowing with affection. and then he started. . %:elen0 what the devil is this/% and I saw. you%ll see. do0% %>o you see my death among those trees. :argrave and 'nnabella. well. I squee. at least.% said I. %$ut he%ll change again when he%s sick of her. laughing in my glee. delighted to see her husband. by the faint light gleaming through the overshadowing tree. in her quiet way. :ow strange that the instinctive impulse of affection should come first. and then the shock of the surprise0 It shows. darling0% and returned my close embrace with a fervour like old times. I rather thought our pretty hostess would be setting up her porcupine quills. If we come here a year or two hence. how could you come out in your light evening dress this chill autumn night/% %It is a glorious night. and smiling on r. the former in his discursive versatility and eloquence. quite testily. :attersley. for he was ga.% said I. so I kissed him and ran back to the house. I talked enough for twenty.his startling conduct had a singular effect upon him# first. 1ou mad creature.hey bring trouble and discomfort wherever they come.= and that we are the bane of the world. ilicent. &ady &owborough. then/% answered (rimsby. :argrave. do persevere0 and I%ll love you better than ever I did before0% %Well. $ut be that as it may. he murmured. till I%ve told you what I came for. that the affection is genuine# he is not sick of me yet. the latter in boldness and animation at least.% 't this juncture I issued from my retreat.% %I don%t know. !un away. as if he saw it coming.ed him in my arms again. (rimsby stared and wondered. exclaimed.% %1ou didn%t foresee this. :elen ) go back directly0 1ou%ll get your death of cold0% %I won%t. %>o. %I startled you. and found him just entering the shadowy walk. -ven &ord &owborough caught the general contagion# his dark greenish eyes were lighted . %It is a night that will give you your death. but still behaved as well as he knew how.hey are blaming you.% replied the other# %she%s not the style of woman you soon tire of. I followed him thither. it%s devilish provoking now that we can%t be jolly. go. and smiled upon them all.

ot choosing to engage with him. ) 1esterday. I trusted they had no foundation but in some idle rumour of the servants from what they had seen in &ady &owborough%s manner last month. !achel/% I exclaimed. we made a very merry.% %What then. she was sure it was beautiful hair# she %could like to see %em match it. it%s right. I referred him to ilicent. quite unlike her usual calm.% 'nd she went on dressing my hair. ma%am. and listened to the rest. 2o that. his sombre countenance was beautified by smiles. Hth. %it%s not for myself. ma%am. but she seemed reluctant to tell. I wanted to know the cause of it. $ut still I hoped.o. . %Well. but he laughed. when !achel came to dress me for dinner. I know you never take it up except to pass an idle hour. laughingly turning round upon her. for !achel%s last words rang in my ears. :argrave entered the drawing)room a little before the others. and she stayed with me till it was time to go down. if you think so.% When it was done.o. :ad she heard bad news from her friends/ . or myself. Was she unwell/ .% %Well. when there is . half to herself. 2he must have found me a very unsociable companion this time. nothing calculated to excite suspicion. not only by his general cheerfulness and animation. and challenged me to a game of chess. but steadily# there was something about him I did not understand. though not excited by wine. ma%am.% %What do you mean. and saw nothing extraordinary in the conduct of either. innocent. but if ) % %If what/% %Well. but a tear was even now in her eye. I don%t like master%s ways of going on.% said he. %2he plays badly. or perhaps from something that had passed between their master and her during her former visit. r. I don%t know. unless he is excited with wine. but he seemed sober enough. no0% said she.up beneath their moody brows. with a sorrowful shake of the head. I saw that she had been crying. %Is that affectionate ebullition intended for my hair. but before I could recover from the shock sufficiently to demand an explanation. !achel/ :ave you been reading novels/% %$less you. :is eye met mine keenly. which mine was not. she fondly stroked it. if I was you. all traces of gloom and proud or cold reserve had vanished for the time. altogether. I looked at his face to see if that was the case now. except in distrustful minds. 't dinner I narrowly observed both her and 'rthur. as she frequently does when she is dressed before me. and he astonished us all. for it was a splendid evening like the last. !achel/ :e%s going on very properly at present. 'lmost immediately after dinner 'nnabella went out with her husband to share his moonlight ramble. :e did it without any of that sad but proud humility he usually assumes in addressing me. murmuring. ma%am0% she answered. %I want to match my skill with yours. and entertaining party. and then she sighed and continued# %$ut to tell you the truth. collected manner. ilicent entered my room. and therefore I would not suspect. and was in perfect good) humour. but by the positive flashes of true force and brilliance he emitted from time to time. nurse/% said I. I wouldn%t have that &ady &owborough in the house another minute ) not another minute I wouldn%t0 I was thunderstruck. no. and gently patted my head. in a hurried way. *ome now0 you can%t pretend you are reluctant to lay down your work. %What do you mean. 'rthur did not talk much. :ad any of the servants vexed her/ %+h.

by heaven0 I see it in her eye.he game was a long one. but was not generous enough. in evident perplexity. quietly. the victory seemed inclining to my side# I had taken several of his best pieces. rs.% said :argrave. with vehemence that must have startled only smiled and murmured. Walter. calmly. :e put his hand to his brow and paused.% said I. or encourage for a moment his dream of future conquest. you dog. I wouldn%t beat her. :untingdon. :untingdon. and manifestly baffled his projects. and been watching us for some time. ) already half triumphant in his anticipated success. and I was inextricably entangled in the snare of my antagonist.% replied I. %and perhaps.% %I intend to give you some trouble yet. speaking distinctly.% taking my last bishop with his knight. those sacred persons once removed. %she has far more pieces than you still. who had now entered. to my joy. %It is those bishops that trouble me.% %:old your tongue. I rejoiced in my advantage. ' few more moves. %.% ilicent at least.wo such players ) it will be quite a treat0 I wonder which will conquer.ime will show. you look as deep and cool as if you were certain of success. I shall be delighted to watch you0% cried our mutual friend. you will find yourself checkmated before you are aware. looked at me and said.% said he. I could ill endure that present success should add one tittle to his conscious power @his insolent self)confidence I ought to sayA. %What keen gamesters you are0% said r. %you are a good player. and too heedless. and almost impudent. %. %and now. as I imagined he is no one here but ilicent. but dared not glory in it yet. but I can be as patient as you. keen. at the moment.% :e fixed his eyes upon me with a glance I did not like. but he We set to work# he sufficiently interested in the game. will you/% said I# his talk distracted me. and I did give him some trouble# but he was a better player than I. :attersley. under the circumstances. for very fear# she%ll hate you if you do ) she will. I shall carry all before me. %.% I objected.nothing better you can do.% . but I struggled hard against him. as he arranged the men on the board.% cried he# I sought in agony some means of escape. don%t you/% %I hope so.% %$ut chess)players are so unsociable. but I am a better# we shall have a long game. %but the bold knight can overleap the reverend gentlemen. he lifted his head. how you talk0% cried ilicent.% %+h. % ate0% he added.ow you think you will win. intensely eager to disappoint his expectations. . rs. %Why. %*heck. as if he had a double meaning to all his words.ow. crafty.% %. and with a peculiar emphasis. %. %I hope not. :is play was cautious and deep. :argrave0% returned I. for I was driven to extremities. but with evident . to direct his attention to it. to foresee the after)consequences of my move. &ook to your queen. <or some time the combat was doubtful# at length. and she ) % %+h.% I consented. sir. and I felt an almost superstitious dread of being beaten# at all events. for I considered this the type of a more serious contest. but calm and fearless in the consciousness of superior skill# I.he combat deepened. 't length. Walter. and in the end I shall certainly win. taking his pawn that he had pushed into the way of my bishop with so careless an air that I thought it was an oversight. r. %they are no company for any but themselves. and as keen and cruel as if you would drain her heart%s blood0 $ut if I were you. and quietly making his move. and you will give me some trouble. your hand trembles as if you had staked your all upon it0 and. bold.

and then I shall apologise. suppressing a laugh. for he looked at me for a reply. and all that.% I answered. recollecting how strange my conduct must appear# %you have beaten me in that game. I instantly rose and left the room to go in search of !achel and demand an explanation of her words. Why did he laugh/ Why did :argrave connect them thus together/ Was it true.o. rs. :untingdon/% said he. I was foolishly disconcerted by the event. %Where is 'nnabella/% said :argrave. %'nd you hear. which broke forth as he concluded the sentence. 1ou say that 'nnabella is not yet returned/% %1es. I merely leant my hand upon it. you know. I%ll keep . %>o not be alarmed. gently laid his hand upon the lock. ilicent was troubled to see me so disturbed. but r. beaten0% and ga. %. ) =I shall manage it. :e had suspended the utterance of that last fatal syllable the better to enjoy my dismay. as a chess)player. smilingly pointing to the board. sir0% :e bowed submissively. :attersley laughed. and that quickly. % ay I tell you something.% continued he. and I will leave you to draw your own inferences from it. r. downcast eyes. %that :untingdon is gone out with (rimsby/% %Well/% %I heard the latter say to your husband ) or the man who calls himself so ) % %(o on.o. and bid him go on.% answered I. and squee. never. in a subdued tone. and tip her a wink to take the way of the shrubbery. for I trembled in every limb. %If it be anything worth hearing. after glancing round the room. you%ll see0 . %(one out with (rimsby. %$eaten. then/ 'nd was this the dreadful secret he had wished to reveal to me/ I must know. and she%ll say she can be walking back to the house. whatever it might be. as you know.ed into my face with a look where exultation was blended with an expression of ardour and tenderness yet more insulting. impatiently.% %Will you try another. murmured. no. then/% %. :argrave0% exclaimed I. seriously. gravely.% said :attersley. %>o you deny/% replied he.% replied I. :argrave followed me into the anteroom. and continued# %I heard him it with a firm but gentle pressure.delight.% %1ou acknowledge my superiority/% %1es.% %Where is :untingdon/% looking round again. %'nd not yet returned0% he said. :e quietly pushed a chair towards me. struggling to be composed. yes ) go on0% said I.hey%re gone down by the water. I shall meet them there. and tell him I want a bit of talk with him about some things that we needn%t trouble the lady with. :argrave placed his hand on mine that rested on the table.o. %. %(one out with &ord &owborough. %I suppose not.% I rose to resume my work. and before I could open its outer door. quickly withdrawing my hand. with serious. for I feared my forced calmness would leave me before the end of his disclosure.% said he# %what I wish to say is nothing in itself.

It seemed all dim and quivering now to my darkened sight.% said &ady &owborough%s voice. %(ood heavens. %. :aven%t I seen you kiss your dolt of a husband scores of times/ ) and do I ever complain/% %$ut tell me. suddenly breaking from ) in with you0 'h. and then bring him round the other way. dearest0% was his reply. he will be back. 1ou know I must keep straight with her as long as I can. 2he must not see me thus. and I almost wondered he did not hear the beating of my heart above the low sighing of the wind and the fitful rustle of the falling leaves. with a careless laugh. and I would not trust him unworthily ) I must know the truth at once.% seemed whispered from above their myriad orbs. I rose.he torment of suspense was not to be endured# I would not suspect my husband falsely. I was well)nigh sinking to the earth. I was ready to faint. :argrave paused. I flew to the shrubbery. when a sound of voices arrested my breathless speed. and looking up at the moonlit sky. and get in as quietly as you can. %(od help me now0% I murmured. the moon shining full upon them from between the branches of the tree that sheltered me. but I had not strength to confront him now# my tongue cleaved to the roof of my mouth. y burning. earnest supplication. my vision cleared. dearest.=% r. keep him back0% 'nd even his low laugh reached me as he walked away. no. and away she flew. . . don%t you love her still ) a little/% said she. as he stood looking up the lawn. %We have lingered too long. ) %Well. I%ll follow in a while. by all that%s sacred0% he replied. cooled my forehead. run0 .ot one bit. and looked at me. if not composed. %I will never leave goes the fool0 !un. I knew their (od was mine. and win a glorious rest at last0 !efreshed. %'h. which. ) he didn%t see0 . he answered. my brain swam round. uch of my new)born strength and courage forsook me. I felt :e would not leave me comfortless# in spite of earth and hell I should have strength for all my trials. placing her hand on his arm. I rose and returned to the house. I shrunk among the bushes. I couldn%t help it.hen. sinking on my knees among the damp weeds and brushwood that surrounded me. %2urely not. as long as I can. pausing where I had stood with him the night before ) %it was here you kissed that woman0% she looked back into the leafy shade. . plainly. bursting heart strove to pour forth its agony to (od.him talking there. the fields.% y knees trembled under me. some heavenly influence seemed to strengthen me within# I breathed more freely. I confess. but could not frame its anguish into prayer. and anything else I can think of. 2carcely had I reached it. and the light clouds skimming the clear. and :e was strong to save and swift to hear. and leant against the trunk of a tree to let her pass. and darted from the room and out of the house. :untingdon0% said she reproachfully. ( he stood before me. y senses seemed to fail me. on this man%s accusation. and through the rushing sound in my ears I distinctly heard him say. dark sky. through the scant foliage above. about those matters I mentioned. Without a word of comment or further questioning. kissing her glowing cheek. while I lifted up my soul in speechless. looking earnestly in his face ) for I could see them. but still I saw his shadowy form pass before me. until a gust of wind swept over me. nor forsake thee. and seemed a little to revive my sinking frame. around. like blighted hopes. while it scattered the dead leaves.o. 'nnabella. ) %. and anything else I can find to discourse of. and then I saw the eternal stars twinkling down upon me. %but you can run across the lawn. I must be gone0% cried she. and shut out the fresh wind and the glorious .hat%s right. I saw distinctly the pure moon shining on. as I entered it. stopping to look at the trees. . 'dvancing thence. invigorated.

young woman# you look like a ghost0% he continued. you have no longer any regard for me it appears. but I would do it calmly# there should be no scene ) nothing to complain or to boast of to his companions ) nothing to laugh at with his lady)love. and speak to him. empty dining)room. %2ay I am not well to)night.% continued I. the burst of kindness was for his paramour. :elen/% said he.% I answered. :attersley to be so kind as to make the tea. and there I walked rapidly up and down. she turned in the opposite direction and re) entered the drawing)room. and seeing me. I must see 'rthur to) night. and insisted upon hearing what poisonous old woman had been blackening his name. and I have no longer any for you. gone to see how I was ) no one else cared for me. was the last expiring flash of my life%s happiness. and I saw and heard for myself. among those people ) oh. %What can you be driving at/% %1ou know perfectly well.% %:al)lo0 what the devil is this/% he muttered. 's the usual hour of retirement approached I dried my eyes. not for me. too. %'sk rs. or what to say. but she still was kind. %Why couldn%t you come to make tea for us/ and what the deuce are you here for. my voice. poor ilicent. >isappointed in her search. I could better understand the conversation between :attersley and (rimsby.hat. I deserved none.o. and wish to be excused. %What in the devil%s name is this. %I have trusted to the testimony of no third person. the lamp. and the faint gleam of moonlight that pierced the blinds and curtains.% said I. how could I endure to live0 3ohn just then entered the hall. thinking of my bitter thoughts alone. surveying me by the light of his candle.ow. blinded fool that I was to be so happy0 I could now see the reason of 'rthur%s strange reception of me in the shrubbery. %I would leave you to)morrow. &et us waste no time in useless explanation. but for the soft sighing of the wind without.% I coldly replied. :ow different was this from the evening of yesterday0 . where all was silence and darkness. I was glad. it was doubtless of his love for her they spoke. fast and free. and master wished to know if I were coming.o matter. and what infamous lies I had been fool enough to believe. told me he had been sent in search of me. but tell everything I saw and heard seemed to sicken my heart ) the hall. . I was in the shrubbery this evening. and find me out/ . without approaching me. I wanted no confidante in my distress. :elen/% cried he. adding that he had taken in the tea.hus she did me good. %to you.% I retired into the large. let me bear it alone. for I knew not how to meet her. I shed no tears before. %What%s to do with you. I had taken the burden upon myself.% . 3ohn. :ow could I bear my future life0 In this house. and I wanted none. I heard her come down. and tried to clear my voice and calm my mind. It was ilicent. will you )/% :e vehemently swore he knew nothing about it. crossed the hall. the staircase. the start of horror for his wife. the social sound of talk and laughter from the drawing) room. and ascended the stairs. but for my child% ) I paused a moment to steady. %. and just as he passed. . more slowly than she had ascended. the doors of the different apartments. Would she come in there. %and never again come under this roof. When the company were retiring to their chambers I gently opened the door. in the dark/ What ails you. I heard the drawing)room door open# a light quick step came out of the ante)room. beckoned him in. %2pare yourself the trouble of forswearing yourself and racking your brains to stifle truth with falsehood. but now they came. "oor. it seems.

When you tire of your sinful ways. and rearing his back against the wall.% %. :argrave. perhaps. with the calm insolence of mingled shamelessness and desperation.% said I. %I shall catch it now0% set down his candle on the nearest chair. :e uttered a suppressed exclamation of consternation and dismay. %+nly this. really# so don%t discompose me . %1ou are poorly. and cry right hard0 and I%d talk too.% %$ut don%t you trouble yourself about it. %I can bear it better than you imagine. nothing more. >o you think I%m going to be made the talk of the country for your fastidious caprices/% %.= $ut if I was you I wouldn%t bear it. !achel.% said I. and. or I wouldn%t have mentioned such a thing. 2o you need not trouble yourself any longer to feign the love you cannot feel# I will exact no more heartless caresses from you. I will forgive you.o. surveying me with deep anxiety. and show yourself truly repentant. %Well.% %Will you let me have the child then. you were always for =bearing. %I%ve said enough.% %.hen I%d cry. nor offer nor endure them either. %will you let me take our child and what remains of my fortune. if you please. what then/% said he. and your housekeeper. time)wasted cheek..o. %I wouldn%t look so white and so calm.% I left him muttering bad language to himself. $ut henceforth we are husband and wife only in the name. when you have given the substance to another0% %Fery good. but now you must look to yourself. I just would ) I%d let him know what it was to ) % %I have talked.% %:umph0 and meantime you will go and talk me over to rs. I will not be mocked with the empty husk of conjugal endearments. and muttering. in spite of my misery. without the money/% %.% persisted she.% %I am your child%s mother. and went up)stairs. kissing her pale.% said !achel.% said I. my lady. and write long letters to aunt axwell to complain of the wicked wretch you have married/% %I shall complain to no one. stood confronting me with folded arms.% %1es. and you from mine. I%d give way to it.% %I have cried.% %If I tire. nor yourself without the child. %and I am calm now.his was enough. to be hated and despised. We shall see who will tire first. :itherto I have struggled hard to hide your vices from every eye.% returned I. answering her sad looks rather than her words.% said I.% %Fery good. it will be of living in the world with you# not of living without your mockery of love. ma%am. try to love you again. and invest you with virtues you never possessed. though that will be hard indeed.hen I must stay here. and I shall be delivered from your presence. and burst my heart with keeping it in. where he will be safe from your contaminating influence. %I knew it. %It is too true. smiling. and go/% %(o where/% %'nywhere.

crushed my hopes. I think it is my duty to suspect him under the peculiar circumstances in which I am placed. at that so justly roused my indignation. I can pity their folly and despise their scorn. I fancy so. that in this life I believe he never will. r. and those indescribable looks of his. (ood)night. but to excuse my appearance admitted I had had a restless night. but. when I cease writing. and when I look into the glass. and I think I shall be safe enough. +h0 when I think how fondly.% . and whatever was unusual in my look or manner was generally attributed to the trifling indisposition that had occasioned my early retirement last night. I have found relief in describing the very circumstances that have destroyed my peace.him0 . it is not enough to say that I no longer love my husband ) I :'.again. and I could freely pardon all. he contrives to appear so really kind and thoughtful that I cannot do so without rudeness and seeming ingratitude. I told her I was better. the expressions he used on the occasion. I answered composedly all inquiries respecting my health. and if they scorn me as a victim of their guilt. I wish this day were over0 I shudder at the thoughts of going down to breakfast. and says I have had a sad night of it. for then I could snub him. I have done well to record them so minutely. and lighting my candle by the rushlight that was still burning. as far as man can do it. but he is so lost. before two o%clock. CHAPTER XXXIV -vening. and yet. I think he wishes to find an opportunity of speaking to me alone# he has seemed to be on the watch all . If it were more obtrusive it would trouble me less. and how cruelly he has trampled on my love. but still. and doomed me to a life of hopeless misery. she can see. betrayed my trust. so hardened in his heartless depravity. and don%t mention it to the servants. and studied. you may go now. :is kindness may not all be feigned. sympathising. ilicent has just looked in to ask me how I was. It was better to be so occupied than to be lying in bed torturing my brain with recollections of the far past and anticipations of the dreadful future. worn appearance. . and struggled for his advantage. I find my head aches terribly.. how constantly I have laboured. ) $reakfast passed well over# I was calm and cool throughout. I got my desk and sat down in my dressing) gown to recount the events of the past evening. $ut how am I to get over the ten or twelve days that must yet elapse before they go/ 1et why so long for their departure/ When they are gone. as it is.he word stares me in the face like a guilty confession. scorned my prayers and tears. and then again. how shall I get through the months or years of my future life in company with that man ) my greatest enemy/ for none could injure me as he has done. nurse# let us say no more about it. :argrave has annoyed me all day long with his serious. and don%t disturb your rest for me# I shall sleep well ) if I can. !achel has been to dress me. . and @as he thinksA unobtrusive politeness. and efforts for his preservation. how madly I have trusted him. I sometimes think I ought to give him credit for the good feeling he simulates so well.otwithstanding this resolution. and prayed. how foolishly I have loved him. I am startled at my haggard. $ut it is useless dwelling on this theme# let me seek once more to dissipate reflection in the minor details of passing events. but it is true# I hate him ) I hate him0 $ut (od have mercy on his miserable soul0 and make him see and feel his guilt ) I ask no other vengeance0 If he could but fully know and truly feel my wrongs I should be well avenged. destroyed my youth%s best feelings. I rose. :ow shall I encounter them all/ 1et let me remember it is not I that am guilty# I have no cause to fear. I found my bed so intolerable that.o sleep I could have got this night would have done so much towards composing my mind. and preparing me to meet the trials of the day. let not the purest impulse of gratitude to him induce me to forget myself# let me remember the game of chess. as well as the little trivial details attendant upon their discovery.

he answered her questions and observations for me. less to divert my mind than to deprecate conversation. %she%s busy reading. at any rate. he sent for his desk into the morning)room.% %. with an obvious effort to appear composed. and accordingly let me alone. :er impudence astounded me. and stretching out her feet to the fender. &ady &owborough. and then employed herself in turning over the pages of the book. I do not found my charge upon suspicion. had provided myself with a book.% %'h. under the pretext of having letters to write. perusing its contents. as far as he could. steadily fixing my eyes upon her. I must. you are suspicious0% cried she. and throwing her book on the table. and ga. %I enjoy a moonlight ramble as well as you. . :argrave saw that I could ill endure it. and walked up to the fire. on the fly)leaf of which I had hastily scribbled.% 4pon perusing this she turned scarlet. suddenly looking up. addressing herself almost exclusively to me.A %Will you oblige me. and attempted to transfer her social attentions from me to himself. *overtly tearing away the leaf. In a little while ilicent announced it her intention to repair to the nursery. :itherto there had been a kind of desperation in her hardihood. and bit her lip. I cannot assume the appearance of it. %Who told you this/% said she. r. she crumpled it up and put it in the fire. I.% I replied. as if you were a woman worthy of consideration and respect. and with the utmost assurance and familiarity. but I complied. therefore. 1ou may go. I won%t. 'nnabella. as I could tell by the malicious pertinacity with which she persisted. throwing herself into an arm)chair.% @ ilicent went. :elen/% continued "erhaps she thought I had a headache. not for yours. and. ) %I am too well acquainted with your character and conduct to feel any real friendship for you. and remained silent.hey had betaken themselves to their work.% I answered. and asked if I would accompany her. smiling.% said she. or whatever else he might attempt. where I was seated with ilicent and &ady &owborough.% %+n what do you found it. I do not wish to quarrel with him. now she was evidently relieved. but it would not do. and. but I have trouble enough without the addition of his insulting consolations. or curb her cheerful spirits# she accordingly chatted away. %and the shrubbery happens to be one of my favourite resorts. looking up from his desk. and she%ll follow in a while. :e excused himself from going out to shoot with the other gentlemen in the morning.o. and instead of retiring for that purpose into the library. beg that hereafter all familiar intercourse may cease between us.% cried 'nnabella. ilicent saw that I wished to be quiet. really or apparently. and as I am without your talent for dissimulation. doubtless. growing the more animated and friendly the colder and briefer my answers became. condolences. 2he closed the door. for ilicent%s sake. she saw that her loquacious vivacity annoyed me. and could not bear to talk. but I have taken care to disappoint him ) not that I fear anything he could say. then/% said she. %If I were suspicious.o one# I am not incapable of seeing for myself.o. %. and. with a gleam of hope. %'nnabella will excuse us. pressing her finger against her teeth. saw it too# but that was no reason why she should restrain her . understand that it is out of regard for your cousin ilicent%s feelings. $ut I checked it effectually by putting into her hand the book I had been trying to read. %I want to speak to :elen a minute.% 2he coloured again excessively. . and followed her into the library. ilicent. %I should have discovered your infamy long before. and if I still continue to treat you with civility.

she continued earnestly# %$ut. .% continued I.hen. in a low. here am I ) your rival ) ready to acknowledge myself your debtor for an act of the most noble forbearance. your conduct cannot possibly remain concealed much longer from the only two persons in the house who do not know it already. 2he paused. I drew back. I cannot dissuade you. yes0% cried she eagerly. and because. %I want to know if you will tell &ord &owborough/% %2uppose I do/% %Well. :untingdon%s sake. it is not for your sake that I refrain. before the dreadful consequences ) % %1es. %'ccept my sincere thanks. I calmly asked if she had anything more to say. observing the dawn of a malicious smile of triumph on her face ) %you are welcome to him. interrupting me with a gesture of impatience. %I cannot renounce what is dearer than life. . %2hort of renouncing your guilty connection with my husband.% %1ou will not0% cried she. of course. then0% 2he sprang up. hurried tone. yes.% she muttered. I shall do my utmost to conceal it from her. :elen ) or rs. in evident disconcertion and perplexity. if you are disposed to publish the matter. if you stay.% . starting up from her reclining posture. %let me counsel you to leave this house as soon as possible. What possible pretext could I frame for such a thing/ Whether I proposed going back alone ) which &owborough would not hear of ) or taking him with me. I wish ) I earnestly advise and entreat you to break off this unlawful connection at once. and offered me her hand. :untingdon. &ady &owborough. %1es. I have nothing more to say to you.% %Well. I should be sorry to distress your husband with the knowledge of it. moving towards the door. and return to your duty while you may. or whatever you would have me call you ) will you tell him/ If you are generous. delightedly. the very circumstance itself would be certain to excite suspicion ) and when our visit is so nearly at an end too ) little more than a week ) surely you can endure my presence so long0 I will not annoy you with any more of my friendly impertinences. %(ive me no thanks.o# on the contrary. and straining to keep up an appearance of civility and respect towards one for whom I have not the most distant shadow of esteem. I would not for much that she should know the infamy and disgrace of her relation0% %1ou use hard words. I suppose you mean/% said I.% said I.% %'nd now.either is it an act of any forbearance# I have no wish to publish your shame. as far as I am concerned ) but because it is painful to be always disguising my true sentiments respecting you.% %'nd ilicent/ will you tell her/% %. rs. %$ut I cannot go. suddenly raising her head and fixing her gleaming eyes upon me. but I can pardon you. I shall think you the most generous of mortal beings ) and if there is anything in the world I can do for you ) anything short of ) % she hesitated. for your husband%s sake. then. 'nnabella. 'nd.into the fire. here is a fitting opportunity for the exercise of your magnanimity# if you are proud. and even for your own.% said she. :untingdon. if you like him. 1ou must be aware that your continuance here is excessively disagreeable to me ) not for r. of course ) but there will be terrible work if you do ) and if you don%t. mingled with anger she dared not show. :elen.% %I shall not tell him. I watched her a few moments with a feeling of malevolent gratification. before the time appointed for our departure.

% dropping his voice almost to a whisper. and still retaining her hand in his. gladly ) on the slightest token of repentance. ) In proportion as &ady &owborough finds she has nothing to fear from me. indicative of his sense of her goodness and my neglect. and then I hate him tenfold more than ever for having brought me to this0 ) (od pardon me for it and all my sinful thoughts0 Instead of being humbled and purified by my afflictions. I gave an involuntary start back on seeing her.%:ave you mentioned this affair to :untingdon/% asked she. or in anything that concerns him. I still feel that I could pardon ) freely. . I thought I was early too. %but. but 'nnabella had the audacity to come and place herself beside me. when no one else is by. 'nd he rewards her by such smiles and glances. such whispered words. happily. !eason forbids. fiendish suggestion inciting me to show him the contrary by a seeming encouragement of :argrave%s advances.he last ) last day0% %1es. %'h. %and I rose early to make the best of it ) I have been here alone this half)hour. 2he does not scruple to speak to my husband with affectionate familiarity in my presence. and struggling to suppress my wrath. since the more I show myself sensible of their wickedness the more she triumphs in her victory. as she seated herself at the table. but such ideas are banished in a moment with horror and self)abasement. CHAPTER XXXV .% said she. at which she uttered a short laugh. for I could not well endure her presence for another day. looking lovingly in her face. I found her in the room alone. . as I was leaving the room. $ut they were almost as good as alone.o true *hristian could cherish such bitter feelings as I do against him and her. as 'rthur entered the room. but passion urges strongly.ineteenth. the more audacious and insolent she becomes. in spite of myself ) for I would be utterly regardless of it all ) deaf and blind to everything that passes between them. murmured pathetically. .his must be my fault as much as theirs that wrong me.his is the last day I shall burden your hospitality.% said she with some asperity. +n such occasions I have sometimes been startled by a subtle. for I was now standing at the window. here comes one that will not rejoice at it0% she murmured. . and is particularly fond of displaying her interest in his health and welfare. :e shook hands with her and wished her good)morning# then. and I must pray and struggle long ere I subdue it.y creature ) % %Well. half to herself. which. 2ome more words passed between them.his morning she rose earlier than usual. and you ) you la. :elen0 is it you/% said she.% returned she. in spite of my pretended indifference. %you see we are not alone. turning as I entered. observing.% I came forward and busied myself with the breakfast things.% %We never are. and even to put her hand upon my shoulder and say . %+h. %:ow dare you mention his name to me0% was the only answer I gave. or boldly)spoken insinuations. watching the clouds. I feel that they are turning my nature into gall. %.o words have passed between us since. as if for the purpose of contrasting her kind solicitude with my cold indifference. %I think we are both disappointed. %. and the more he flatters himself that I love him devotedly still.% said he. when I went down to breakfast. especially the latter# him. but such as outward decency or pure necessity demanded. It is well that she is leaving to)morrow. as make the blood rush into my face. and as the time of departure draws nigh. but she ) words cannot utter my abhorrence. I did not overhear.

:e followed. rs.his was better than if I had answered with more words. without moving. turning to the shelves. and then returned to my book. :elen. :e greeted his host and his cousin both coldly. ) %. I gave it up and leant back too. the carriage together. for the door was ajar when he entered. she recoiled in silence. resting his hand on the back of my chair. he selected a volume. with an expression of abhorrence and indignation that could not be suppressed. I checked the half)uttered invective. with a slight movement of the head. do you mean to insult me/% :e was not prepared for this. What a good thing it is to be able to command one%s temper0 I must labour to cultivate this inestimable quality# (od only knows how often I shall need it in this rough. my companion then made some attempts to get up a conversation. tangled grass of their banks.% said he. and me with a glance intended to express the deepest sympathy mingled with high admiration and esteem.hey persuaded her to stay with them the rest of the day. earnest. :e paused a moment to recover the shook. %1ou need not grudge him to me.% I just glanced towards the door. and I took no more notice of him.his put me beside myself. but the other guests were now beginning to assemble. almost appalled. and first. *onsequently. and surveying the russet hedges and the damp.e. he answered. %. melting tone. regretting that I had given him so much amusement. but can you suppose it would offend that benevolent $eing to make the happiness of one who would die for yours/ ) to raise a devoted heart from purgatorial torments to a state of heavenly bliss. . and scornfully turned away. I now raised my was a momentary :ow much of the scene he had witnessed I do not know. when you could do it without the slightest injury to yourself or any other/% . raw wind in my face. to give ilicent an opportunity for bidding farewell to her mother and sister. %:ow much allegiance do you owe to that man/% he asked below his breath. <or the first mile or two we kept silence. %Fery right. . $ut I was not going to restrict myself to any particular position for her. :argrave promising to bring her back in the evening and remain till the party broke up on the morrow. :e immediately withdrew. I would have given way to my fury and said more. :e was still laughing when r. but by no means timidly. :argrave followed me thither. r. as he stood beside me at the window. I took her hand and violently dashed it from me. for I love him more than ever you could do. :argrave. determined to pass as little of the day as possible in company with &ady &owborough. except to give him his coffee.softly. with the cold. when I was tired of leaning forward. %'nd so you consider yourself free at last/% %1es. dark road that lies before me. and said softly. I answered calmly. then.% said I. approaching me. as he bent over me. With her usual impudence. under pretence of coming for a book. 'fter breakfast. and your ideas of (od not too erroneously severe. I quietly stole away from the company and retired to the library.-. % r. 'nd immediately returning to the table. and steadily confronting his ga. by this sudden outbreak. and she leaning back in her corner. In the course of the morning I drove over to the (rove with the two ladies. or raising my eyes from my book. :argrave made his appearance. affecting to be making observations on the weather.hat was not my intention. but 'rthur%s low laugh recalled me to myself.-. and then quietly.% . %provided your conscience be not too morbidly tender.his was spoken in a low.% I answered. and would have entered into some kind of conversation with me. and in the passionate spirit to which my first impulse would have prompted. &ady &owborough and I had the pleasure of returning . but the monosyllables .. he stood beside me. I employed myself in making the tea.% .-)-). with proud sadness. %free to do anything but offend (od and my conscience. I looking out of my window. drawing himself up and removing his hand from my chair.

% %Well. :untingdon/ >on%t you see what a sober. but you see the reformation I have wrought. who were just returning from the woods.% resumed she. I had regained my composure. %all the return I ask is. %$ut I desire no thanks.hen go. if you please. %. but without success.o. %Will you. :e saw I was in no humour to be spoken to. 's soon as the carriage door was opened. %"ardon me. but !achel was now at the door. and departed. I . I answered.%yes. I retired to the drawing)room. %will you allow me one word/% %What is it then/ be quick. %have you not observed the salutary change in r. drive him back to his old courses. until I came to your assistance. :argrave.% I was almost sick with passion. 't last. gently playing with her soft. whom I had just heard come downstairs and go into the drawing)room. In the ante)room I met r.% replied I. and went down the park to meet the gentlemen.% said I. &ady &owborough composedly came and placed herself on the other side. setting himself before me. &ittle :elen. but I had the two children with me. and I followed. for I could not trust myself to speak# she took them away. I know# and I know you did your utmost to deliver him from them.% replied she. %I can%t help it.% +ur short drive was now at an end. rs. and suffered me to pass without a word. :untingdon. I told him in few words that I could not bear to see him degrade himself so. was soon tired of playing. % rs. :elen/% continued the speaker. $ut I had not done with her impudence yet# after dinner. she sprang out. ) %Why do you wish to talk to me. I gave her a look that blighted the malicious smile on her face. I pointed to the children. as usual. hastily. &ady &owborough/ 1ou must know what I think of you. and was returning to join rs.% %. however. :untingdon. no doubt.% said she. and I gave them my whole attention. for I knew by the tone of her voice she wanted to provoke me. but when. if you will be so bitter against me. turning away. and while I sat on the sofa with her on my knee. and she accompanied me. and you ought to thank me for it. and that I should cease to ) no matter what I told him. which. %. flaxen hair. temperate man he is become/ 1ou saw with regret the sad habits he was contracting.% %I offended you this morning. after a few minutes% seclusion in the library. that you will take care of him when I am gone. and evidently waiting for me. and sin no more. no0% said he.% were the utmost her several remarks could elicit from me. but I%m not going to sulk for anybody. by harshness and neglect. and 'rthur seated beside me.% I rose and rang for the nurse. but I must have your forgiveness.% she continued. and insisted upon going to sleep. but do you know I have rendered you a great service/ 2hall I tell you what it is/% %I shall be glad to hear of any service you have rendered me. I found him there still lingering in the dimly)lighted apartment.o)morrow. at least for a moment. and not. :argrave and ilicent. %Well. determined to be calm. or checked it. you will be very glad of ) it is natural you should. and determined to keep them till the gentlemen came.% said he as I passed. +f course I did not follow. on her asking my opinion upon some immaterial point of discussion. and I cannot live under your displeasure.% or %no% or %humph. or till ilicent arrived with her mother. %you will be delivered from my presence.

% %1es0 but that is coldly spoken. and I may not have an opportunity of speaking to you again. for. and stood aside to let me pass into the room.% said I. (ive me your hand and I%ll believe you. I regret them deeply. merry little child. would serve to keep him in check. as I did. if not ashamed. pale face was perfectly repulsive. 1ou won%t/ . wherever it may reasonably be done. my sour. r. It is now two months since our guests left us to the enjoyment of each other%s society. give up my convenience to his. friendship.% rs. I thought. insensate.his is the third anniversary of our felicitous union. %for so long as I discharge my functions of steward and house)keeper. as I passed. till he sullenly turned away. I should kill him by inches. and the loss of your esteem is too severe a penalty# I cannot bear it.leave you to)morrow. %I must contrive to bear with you. but it would not do# he was not going to be the talk of all the old gossips in the neighbourhood# he would not have it said that he was such a brute his wife could not live with him. and was whispering something in his ear ) some coarse joke. if you will but pardon this offence ) will you/% %1es. for when he . hard. here it is. believe me.% %<orgetfulness is not to be purchased with a wish.his threat.hank heaven. 's far as in me lies. he leered at me with a glance of intolerable significance. you do not forgive me0% %1es. but. so conscientiously and well. and I have had nine weeks% experience of this new phase of conjugal life ) two persons living together. you cannot afford to part with me. CHAPTER XXXVI >ecember 5Jth. they are all going to)morrow. I was wrong to forget myself and you. and father and mother of a winsome. I shall therefore remit these duties when my bondage becomes intolerable. no doubt. . (rimsby was seated near the door# on seeing me enter. without pay and without thanks. ) . or sympathy between them. 's for him. he knew not how he could live through the winter with me.% %I shall think my life well spent in labouring to deserve it. I endeavour to live peaceably with him# I treat him with unimpeachable civility. 'gain I proposed a separation. fretting. 6758. and my forgiveness with it# only. I believe he was much disappointed that I did not feel his offensive sayings more acutely. unless they deserve it too. even when I know the latter to be inferior to my own. . you mean. turning from him with a slight curl of the lip. for the first week or two. almost immediately followed by :argrave. I was cold) hearted. I looked him in the face. and I cannot bestow my esteem on all who desire it. and particularly ill)tempered to me# everything I did was wrong. he was peevish and low. at least confounded for the moment. I suppose.% .ed :argrave by the arm. who was telling &ord &owborough how many reasons she had to be proud of her son. :e pressed my cold hand with sentimental fervour. . my voice made him shudder. :untingdon. if anything would.hen. disengaged himself and went to his mother. and consult him in a business)like way on household affairs. and think of me as if those words had never been spoken. but said nothing. 2I. he must contrive to bear with me. for the latter neither laughed nor spoke in answer. as master and mistress of the house. eantime :attersley had sei. where all the company were now assembled. with the mutual understanding that there is no love.o. deferring to his pleasure and judgment. over his dear 'nnabella%s departure. but let me implore you to forget and forgive my rash presumption.+ +!-.

and does him more harm than good. but they sink into his stupefied heart. and then I take little pains to suppress my scorn and disgust. 't present I am enjoying a temporary relief from his presence# he is gone with :argrave to join a distant hunt. 2uch a mode of admonition wins only coarse abuse for me ) and. ) It is a hard. and 'rthur not unfrequently rides over to him. and ponder. and still continues to do so. as I know he does/ . he will lose it again. embittering thing to have one%s kind feelings and good intentions cast back in one%s teeth. and I am very willing it should continue. perhaps. never0 he may drink himself dead. he sometimes fires up and attempts to play the brute. comfortless condition. she would speedily be disenchanted. when I feel that I abhor him.o. but at length he began to relax his virtuous efforts. have condescended to pity me. and that he despises me/ and while he continues still to correspond with &ady &owborough.he only objection I have to r. I do not think either of these soi)disant friends is overflowing with love for the other.% If I had bitterly wept and deplored his lost affection. nay. . he may win it. and now and then exceeded a little. and make him pause. and that she certainly will withdraw her favour from him. :e and 'rthur frequently meet to pursue their rural sports together# he often calls upon us here. and abstain. but he says I drive him to it by my unnatural. and to think I ought to sacrifice my pride.had said anything particularly well calculated to hurt my feelings. indeed. for.he moment he attempts to demand anything more. and gives him some better employment than the sottish indulgence of his sensual appetites. and . 't first @in compliance with his sweet lady%s injunctions.hank heaven. . until he could meet her again. my fault0 1et I do my part to save him still# I give him to understand that drinking makes his eyes dull. I suppose he is striving to %win my esteem. but such intercourse serves to get the time on. but it is fairly gone now ) wholly crushed and withered away. and renew my efforts once again to make his home agreeable and lead him back to the path of virtue. never. When he is under the depressing influence of the after)consequences. When he is under the exciting influence of these excesses. <ebruary 6Jth. :ow differently I used to feel his absence0 r. sometimes with bitter recrimination. for I hate to use such arguments. :ave I not laboured long and hard to save him from this very vice/ Would I not labour still to deliver him from it if I could/ but could I do so by fawning upon him and caressing him when I know that he scorns me/ Is it my fault that I have lost my influence with him.his is a kind of injustice I cannot patiently endure. is that the fear of meeting him at the (rove prevents me from seeing his sister so often as I otherwise should. that I have almost forgotten his former conduct. of late.+. I supposeA. I was beginning to relent towards my wretched partner. and will probably not be back before to)morrow evening. as it saves me some hours of discomfort in 'rthur%s society. sometimes. I almost feel as if I deserved it. more than anything else I could say. to pity his forlorn. he would. and taken me into favour for a while. but it is . . he would stare me searchingly in the face. if he continues such courses. unalleviated as it is by the consolations of intellectual resources and the answer of a good conscience towards (od. never. or some more fitting substitute. and he has none but himself and his vices to thank for it. and then I am roused to defend myself. or that he has forfeited every claim to my regard/ 'nd should I seek a reconciliation with him. that clung to him in spite of his unworthiness. just to comfort his solitude and console him for the absence of his beloved 'nnabella. :argrave%s being in the neighbourhood. :argrave is still at the (rove. and then grumble against my %marble heart% or my %brutal insensibility. he knows such indulgence injures his health. and charges them both upon me. but it is all my fault.% If he continue to act in this way. not by false professions of love. he abstained wonderfully well from seeking to solace his cares in wine. besotted affection. and if 'nnabella were to see him as often as I do. and that it tends to render him imbecile in body and mind. he has conducted himself towards me with such unerring propriety. and his face red and bloated. unwomanly conduct. not a little. he bemoans his sufferings and his errors. it will be the ruin of him in the end. but what then/ . I am not so weak as that0 I was infatuated once with a foolish.

he turned struggling from me. kneeling on the floor beside him. imperative impulse to deliver my son from that contaminating influence. I cannot wish to go and leave my darling in this dark and wicked . :e gave a slight titter on seeing me change colour.hus. ) 'nother year is past. that sitteth in darkness and hath no light. and take a lesson by it0% It was in the free. 675C. lest he should see and misconstrue my emotion. and never were more bitter tears than those that now concealed him from my blinded. kissed him. I will take a lesson by it0% y little 'rthur was standing between his knees. !ather frightened than consoled by this. will even give himself some trouble to meet the child%s desires# if I attempt to curb his will. and that. taking him with me into the library. but I had already begun to act upon the thought ) and what was the result/ . the child began to pout and cry.his was a new stab to my already tortured heart. I should see my influence destroyed by one whose selfish affection is more injurious than the coldest indifference or the harshest tyranny could be. 'mong his letters was one which he perused with symptoms of unusual gratification.ot liking this abrupt removal. dashing hand of &ady &owborough. and this morning he finished the business#) I think the petrifaction is so completely effected at last that nothing can melt me again. he knows his other parent will smile and take his part against me. and railings against :is providence for having cast their lot asunder. and stay upon his (od0% CHAPTER XXXVII >ecember 5Jth. wept over with him with passionate fondness. it seemed full of extravagant protestations of affection. but by mitigating my habitual coldness of manner. the germs of his evil tendencies to search out and eradicate. in spite of his selfish indolence. for his good. impetuous longings for a speedy reunion ) and impious defiance of (od%s mandates. I had no earthly hope but this. and robs me of his very love. $ut it is wrong to despair. . with no remark. when the well)being and culture of my son is all I have to live for. and then threw it across the table to me. and took the now pacified child away. I caught him up in my arms and carried him with me out of the room. but an unappeasable ill)humour. but ) %. 4rged by a sudden. no awakening penitence. I folded up the letter. destroys my influence over his tender mind. and cried out aloud for his papa. I embraced him. or look gravely on him for some act of childish disobedience. . deny him some trifling indulgence. ) %. and the latter. and a lurking gleam of self)complacent triumph at every detection of relenting softness in my manner. with the admonition.here0 read that. not only have I the father%s spirit in the son to contend against. burning eyes. I glanced at the first page. :earing his cries. I instantly turned away. and a spirit of tyrannous exaction that increased with indulgence. It is hard that my little darling should love him more than me. and. let him trust in the name of the &ord. If I. that congealed me to marble again as often as it recurred. 'nd yet I cannot wish to leave it# whatever afflictions assail me here. :e swore at me. rose. and I am weary of this life.o answering spark of kindness. and he seems to take a diabolical delight in tearing it away. and doomed them both to the hateful bondage of alliance with those they could not love. I released him from my arms. .hank you. but. delightedly playing with the bright. and commuting my frigid civility into kindness wherever an opportunity occurred. I shut the door. I will remember the counsel of the inspired writer to him %that feareth the &ord and obeyeth the voice of his servant. he goes to his father. and his corrupting intercourse and example in after)life to counteract.not by pretended remorse. but already he counteracts my arduous labour for the child%s advantage. the father came to the room. ruby ring on his finger. and not only was I beginning to think so. I would not let him go. and returned it to him.

and managed so skilfully too. and he. with certain prudent restrictions @which I deemed scarcely necessaryA. and discomforted. during the months he passes in &ondon or elsewhere. tempered with cool. in eight or nine weeks.his was the first time he had ventured to come within its inclosure since I had been left alone. and I am particularly silent and sad# therefore. and will at any time gladly exchange my company for his. and I tremble for the consequences. disobedient. so on the calm. made bold to enter and approach me. blue water ) I revolving in my mind the best means of politely dismissing my companion. and was really beginning to look upon him as a friend. I know. I am too grave to minister to his amusements and enter into his infantile sports as a nurse or a mother ought to do. that he spends comparatively little of his time at home. $ut he managed to appear so calm and easy. but . no doubt. ever)indulgent papa. considerably to my annoyance. but perfectly distinct. pondering other matters equally alien to the sweet sights and sounds that alone were present to his senses. and overcoming with good the evil he has wrought by his wilful mismanagement. he. making no use of it but to torment me and ruin the child. on seeing me there as he rode past. and did not entirely keep aloof from me. is troubled with no fears. and which for very spite his father delights to rob me of. soft. . for his own advantage. y only consolation is. :argrave. he is always particularly jocund and open)hearted# ready to laugh and to jest with anything or anybody but me. good taste. and often his bursts of gleeful merriment trouble and alarm me. during which we both stood ga. ) he suddenly electrified me by beginning. has no weight of sadness on his mind. with considerable animation.hat father. and even to treat him as such. not so much for the sake of my son%s affection @though I do pri. and repulsed him so determinately. . I have a chance of recovering the ground I had lost. I was neither alarmed nor offended at the unusual liberty. astonished. without the sanction of his mother%s or sister%s company. on his return. the times when the child sees him the most and the oftenest. and he walked with me under the ash)trees and by the water)side. after a pause. to pour forth the most unequivocal expressions of earnest and passionate love. dispassionate sorrow and pity for his benighted mind. before I began to think about getting rid of him. that he withdrew.hen. and intelligence. I am not well fitted to be his only companion. he thought he might venture to overstep the bounds of decent moderation and propriety that had so long restrained him. a few days after. is pleased to win to himself. and at evenings especially. but there is no other to supply my place. so respectful and self)possessed in his friendliness. no scruples concerning his son%s future welfare. when. however. tractable darling into a selfish. but I think I have done with that gentleman at last. of course. from motives of mere idle presuming upon my unsuspecting kindness. alone. the child dotes upon his seemingly joyous amusing. thereby preparing the soil for those vices he has so successfully cultivated in his own perverted nature. $ut then it is a bitter trial to behold him. :appily. and with such a mixture of scornful indignation. and. $ut I cut short his appeal. on the contrary. and though I feel it is my right. and mischievous boy. . I heard that he had departed for &ondon. affectionate. there were none of 'rthur%s %friends% invited to (rassdale last autumn# he took himself off to visit some of them instead. and.his disturbs me greatly. and too often damp the innocent mirth I ought to share. though a little surprised. doing his utmost to subvert my labours and transform my innocent. . did not go with him. and talked. and. and know I have done much to earn itA as for that influence over him which. without a friend to guide him through its weary ma. pleading his cause with all the bold yet artful eloquence he could summon to his aid. I see in them his father%s spirit and temperament. I would strive to purchase and retain. mortified. on many subjects. that. to warn him of its thousand snares. in a peculiar tone. that I was almost completely off my guard. dismounting and leaving his horse at the gate. low. :e returned. It was on a pleasant evening at the close of ay# I was wandering in the park. and I wish his friends were numerous and loving enough to keep him amongst them all the year round. I wish he would always do so. <or seven or eight months he behaved so remarkably well. and guard him from the perils that beset him on every hand. or at least the excuse of a message from them.e that highly.

comported himself in so remarkable a manner that his quick)sighted sister could not fail to notice the change. %What have you done to Walter, rs. :untingdon/% said she one morning, when I had called at the (rove, and he had just left the room after exchanging a few words of the coldest civility. %:e has been so extremely ceremonious and stately of late, I can%t imagine what it is all about, unless you have desperately offended him. .ell me what it is, that I may be your mediator, and make you friends again.% %I have done nothing willingly to offend him,% said I. %If he is offended, he can best tell you himself what it is about.% %I%ll ask him,% cried the giddy girl, springing up and putting her head out of the window# %he%s only in the garden ) Walter0% %,o, no, -sther0 you will seriously displease me if you do; and I shall leave you immediately, and not come again for months ) perhaps years.% %>id you call, -sther/% said her brother, approaching the window from without. %1es; I wanted to ask you ) % %(ood)morning, -sther,% said I, talking her hand and giving it a severe squee;e. %.o ask you,% continued she, %to get me a rose for rs. :untingdon.% :e departed. % rs. :untingdon,% she exclaimed, turning to me and still holding me fast by the hand, %I%m quite shocked at you ) you%re just as angry, and distant, and cold as he is# and I%m determined you shall be as good friends as ever before you go.% %-sther, how can you be so rude0% cried rs. :argrave, who was seated gravely knitting in her easy) chair. %2urely, you never will learn to conduct yourself like a lady0% %Well, mamma, you said yourself ) % $ut the young lady was silenced by the uplifted finger of her mamma, accompanied with a very stern shake of the head. %Isn%t she cross/% whispered she to me; but, before I could add my share of reproof, reappeared at the window with a beautiful moss)rose in his hand. %:ere, -sther, I%ve brought you the rose,% said he, extending it towards her. %(ive it her yourself, you blockhead0% cried she, recoiling with a spring from between us. % rs. :untingdon would rather receive it from you,% replied he, in a very serious tone, but lowering his voice that his mother might not hear. :is sister took the rose and gave it to me. % y brother%s compliments, rs. :untingdon, and he hopes you and he will come to a better understanding by)and)by. Will that do, Walter/% added the saucy girl, turning to him and putting her arm round his neck, as he stood leaning upon the sill of the window ) %or should I have said that you are sorry you were so touchy/ or that you hope she will pardon your offence/% %1ou silly girl0 you don%t know what you are talking about,% replied he gravely. %Indeed I don%t# for I%m quite in the dark0% %,ow, -sther,% interposed rs. :argrave, who, if equally benighted on the subject of our estrangement, saw at least that her daughter was behaving very improperly, %I must insist upon your leaving the room0% %"ray don%t, rs. :argrave, for I%m going to leave it myself,% said I, and immediately made my adieux. 'bout a week after r. :argrave brought his sister to see me. :e conducted himself, at first, with his usual cold, distant, half) stately, half)melancholy, altogether injured air; but -sther made no remark r. :argrave

upon it this time# she had evidently been schooled into better manners. 2he talked to me, and laughed and romped with little 'rthur, her loved and loving playmate. :e, somewhat to my discomfort, enticed her from the room to have a run in the hall, and thence into the garden. I got up to stir the fire. r. :argrave asked if I felt cold, and shut the door ) a very unseasonable piece of officiousness, for I had meditated following the noisy playfellows if they did not speedily return. :e then took the liberty of walking up to the fire himself, and asking me if I were aware that r. :untingdon was now at the seat of &ord &owborough, and likely to continue there some time. %,o; but it%s no matter,% I answered carelessly; and if my cheek glowed like fire, it was rather at the question than the information it conveyed. %1ou don%t object to it/% he said. %,ot at all, if &ord &owborough likes his company.% %1ou have no love left for him, then/% %,ot the least.% %I knew that ) I knew you were too high)minded and pure in your own nature to continue to regard one so utterly false and polluted with any feelings but those of indignation and scornful abhorrence0% %Is he not your friend/% said I, turning my eyes from the fire to his face, with perhaps a slight touch of those feelings he assigned to another. %:e was,% replied he, with the same calm gravity as before; %but do not wrong me by supposing that I could continue my friendship and esteem to a man who could so infamously, so impiously forsake and injure one so transcendently ) well, I won%t speak of it. $ut tell me, do you never think of revenge/% %!evenge0 ,o ) what good would that do/ ) it would make him no better, and me no happier.% %I don%t know how to talk to you, rs. :untingdon,% said he, smiling; %you are only half a woman ) your nature must be half human, half angelic. 2uch goodness overawes me; I don%t know what to make of it.% %.hen, sir, I fear you must be very much worse than you should be, if I, a mere ordinary mortal, am, by your own confession, so vastly your superior; and since there exists so little sympathy between us, I think we had better each look out for some more congenial companion.% 'nd forthwith moving to the window, I began to look out for my little son and his gay young friend. %,o, I am the ordinary mortal, I maintain,% replied r. :argrave. %I will not allow myself to be worse than my fellows; but you, adam ) I equally maintain there is nobody like you. $ut are you happy/% he asked in a serious tone. %'s happy as some others, I suppose.% %'re you as happy as you desire to be/% %,o one is so blest as that comes to on this side eternity.% %+ne thing I know,% returned he, with a deep sad sigh; %you are immeasurably happier than I am.% %I am very sorry for you, then,% I could not help replying. %'re you, indeed/ ,o, for if you were you would be glad to relieve me.% %'nd so I should if I could do so without injuring myself or any other.% %'nd can you suppose that I should wish you to injure yourself/ ,o# on the contrary, it is your own happiness I long for more than mine. 1ou are miserable now, rs. :untingdon,% continued he, looking me boldly in the face. %1ou do not complain, but I see ) and feel ) and know that you are miserable ) and

must remain so as long as you keep those walls of impenetrable ice about your still warm and palpitating heart; and I am miserable, too. >eign to smile on me and I am happy# trust me, and you shall be happy also, for if you are a woman I can make you so ) and I will do it in spite of yourself0% he muttered between his teeth; %and as for others, the question is between ourselves alone# you cannot injure your husband, you know, and no one else has any concern in the matter.% %I have a son, followed me. r. :argrave, and you have a mother,% said I, retiring from the window, whither he had

%.hey need not know,% he began; but before anything more could be said on either side, -sther and 'rthur re)entered the room. .he former glanced at Walter%s flushed, excited countenance, and then at mine ) a little flushed and excited too, I daresay, though from far different causes. 2he must have thought we had been quarrelling desperately, and was evidently perplexed and disturbed at the circumstance; but she was too polite or too much afraid of her brother%s anger to refer to it. 2he seated herself on the sofa, and putting back her bright, golden ringlets, that were scattered in wild profusion over her face, she immediately began to talk about the garden and her little playfellow, and continued to chatter away in her usual strain till her brother summoned her to depart. %If I have spoken too warmly, forgive me,% he murmured on taking his leave, %or I shall never forgive myself.% -sther smiled and glanced at me# I merely bowed, and her countenance fell. 2he thought it a poor return for Walter%s generous concession, and was disappointed in her friend. "oor child, she little knows the world she lives in0 r. :argrave had not an opportunity of meeting me again in private for several weeks after this; but when he did meet me there was less of pride and more of touching melancholy in his manner than before. +h, how he annoyed me0 I was obliged at last almost entirely to remit my visits to the (rove, at the expense of deeply offending rs. :argrave and seriously afflicting poor -sther, who really values my society for want of better, and who ought not to suffer for the fault of her brother. $ut that indefatigable foe was not yet vanquished# he seemed to be always on the watch. I frequently saw him riding lingeringly past the premises, looking searchingly round him as he went ) or, if I did not, !achel did. .hat sharp)sighted woman soon guessed how matters stood between us, and descrying the enemy%s movements from her elevation at the nursery)window, she would give me a quiet intimation if she saw me preparing for a walk when she had reason to believe he was about, or to think it likely that he would meet or overtake me in the way I meant to traverse. I would then defer my ramble, or confine myself for that day to the park and gardens, or, if the proposed excursion was a matter of importance, such as a visit to the sick or afflicted, I would take !achel with me, and then I was never molested. $ut one mild, sunshiny day, early in ,ovember, I had ventured forth alone to visit the village school and a few of the poor tenants, and on my return I was alarmed at the clatter of a horse%s feet behind me, approaching at a rapid, steady trot. .here was no stile or gap at hand by which I could escape into the fields, so I walked quietly on, saying to myself, %It may not be he after all; and if it is, and if he do annoy me, it shall be for the last time, I am determined, if there be power in words and looks against cool impudence and mawkish sentimentality so inexhaustible as his.% .he horse soon overtook me, and was reined up close beside me. It was r. :argrave. :e greeted me with a smile intended to be soft and melancholy, but his triumphant satisfaction at having caught me at last so shone through that it was quite a failure. 'fter briefly answering his salutation and inquiring after the ladies at the (rove, I turned away and walked on; but he followed and kept his horse at my side# it was evident he intended to be my companion all the way. %Well0 I don%t much care. If you want another rebuff, take it ) and welcome,% was my inward remark. %,ow, sir, what next/%

.his question, though unspoken, was not long unanswered; after a few passing observations upon indifferent subjects, he began in solemn tones the following appeal to my humanity#) %It will be four years next 'pril since I first saw you, rs. :untingdon ) you may have forgotten the circumstance, but I never can. I admired you then most deeply, but I dared not love you. In the following autumn I saw so much of your perfections that I could not fail to love you, though I dared not show it. <or upwards of three years I have endured a perfect martyrdom. <rom the anguish of suppressed emotions, intense and fruitless longings, silent sorrow, crushed hopes, and trampled affections, I have suffered more than I can tell, or you imagine ) and you were the cause of it, and not altogether the innocent cause. y youth is wasting away; my prospects are darkened; my life is a desolate blank; I have no rest day or night# I am become a burden to myself and others, and you might save me by a word ) a glance, and will not do it ) is this right/% %In the first place, I don%t believe you,% answered I; %in the second, if you will be such a fool, I can%t hinder it.% %If you affect,% replied he, earnestly, %to regard as folly the best, the strongest, the most godlike impulses of our nature, I don%t believe you. I know you are not the heartless, icy being you pretend to be ) you had a heart once, and gave it to your husband. When you found him utterly unworthy of the treasure, you reclaimed it; and you will not pretend that you loved that sensual, earthly) minded profligate so deeply, so devotedly, that you can never love another/ I know that there are feelings in your nature that have never yet been called forth; I know, too, that in your present neglected lonely state you are and must be miserable. 1ou have it in your power to raise two human beings from a state of actual suffering to such unspeakable beatitude as only generous, noble, self)forgetting love can give @for you can love me if you willA; you may tell me that you scorn and detest me, but, since you have set me the example of plain speaking, I will answer that I do not believe you. $ut you will not do it0 you choose rather to leave us miserable; and you coolly tell me it is the will of (od that we should remain so. 1ou may call this religion, but I call it wild fanaticism0% is another life both for you and for me,% said I. %If it be the will of (od that we should sow in tears now, it is only that we may reap in joy hereafter. It is :is will that we should not injure others by the gratification of our own earthly passions; and you have a mother, and sisters, and friends who would be seriously injured by your disgrace; and I, too, have friends, whose peace of mind shall never be sacrificed to my enjoyment, or yours either, with my consent; and if I were alone in the world, I have still my (od and my religion, and I would sooner die than disgrace my calling and break my faith with heaven to obtain a few brief years of false and fleeting happiness ) happiness sure to end in misery even here ) for myself or any other0% need be no disgrace, no misery or sacrifice in any quarter,% persisted he. %I do not ask you to leave your home or defy the world%s opinion.% $ut I need not repeat all his arguments. I refuted them to the best of my power; but that power was provokingly small, at the moment, for I was too much flurried with indignation ) and even shame ) that he should thus dare to address me, to retain sufficient command of thought and language to enable me adequately to contend against his powerful sophistries. <inding, however, that he could not be silenced by reason, and even covertly exulted in his seeming advantage, and ventured to deride those assertions I had not the coolness to prove, I changed my course and tried another plan. %>o you really love me/% said I, seriously, pausing and looking him calmly in the face. %>o I love you0% cried he. %.ruly/% I demanded. :is countenance brightened; he thought his triumph was at hand. :e commenced a passionate

%and can you bid me go so coolly/ >o you really wish it/% % ost certainly I do. where he still is. I thank (od for this deliverance0 CHAPTER XXXVIII >ecember 5Jth. but while the purpose ripens let me beguile a few of these long winter evenings in stating the case for my own satisfaction# a dreary amusement enough. I cannot live here.hen I must leave you.% %$ut hear me a moment ) % %. looking steadily upon me. but having the air of a useful occupation.protestation of the truth and fervour of his attachment. and being pursued as a task. my plan concocted.% %<ormerly. as if with the last hope of detecting some token of irrepressible anguish or dismay awakened by those solemn words. or wounded pride. or burning wrath were uppermost. never mention this subject again. ) . but. I looked up at his face. y resolution is formed. If you persist. In 2eptember. held out his hand towards me.o. %it will do you no harm to absent yourself again.ry me.he fifth anniversary of my wedding)day. and bent his eyes upon the ground in silence for a while. you spent but little of your time at home. I have nothing left me but the solace of a good conscience and a hopeful trust in heaven. for a while ) if that be really necessary. and immediately put spurs to his horse and galloped away. I believe. at the risk of a little discomfort to yourself/% %. and saw therein such a look of genuine agony of soul. or lingering love. I could not hesitate to put my hand in his as frankly as if I bade a friend farewell. and what I say I mean. . and you labour continually to rob me of these.% he muttered.% said he at length.% %If that be really possible. it will suit me better than a lighter one. y conscience does not blame me. which I cut short by another question#) %$ut is it not a selfish love/ :ave you enough disinterested affection to enable you to sacrifice your own pleasure to mine/% %I would give my life to serve you. I learned that he was gone to "aris. I must conclude that your protestations are entirely false. If you cannot see me without tormenting me as you have lately done. I must regard you as my deadliest foe. sir0 1ou said you would give your life to serve me. Fery soon after.% %If you have. I only ask your silence on one particular point. and that you hate me in your heart as fervently as you profess to love me0% :e bit his lip. the last I shall spend under this roof. bending from his horse. whether bitter disappointment. and already partly put in execution.% :e made no answer. and be for ever silent on the all)absorbing subject of my thoughts and wishes. If you torment me in this way any more. and see. %I must leave you. I would gladly say farewell and never see you more. that.% I answered. :e grasped it very hard. I have spoken plainly. quiet (rassdale was again alive with a party of ladies and gentlemen @so calledA. but have you enough real sympathy for my afflictions to induce you to make an effort to relieve them. and the longer he stays there the better for me. 675K. I trust. and.% %I don%t want your life. %. 1ou cannot recur to it in any way without doubling the weight of those sufferings you so feelingly deplore.

and they who trust in (od.% %$ut this ) how long have you been aware of this/% demanded he. and make me discreet and civil in my demeanour. with two exceptions. I left her. while his back was towards me. if I found reason to believe that she still continued her criminal connection with r. %I have so long been aware of ) % I paused in time. he began to pace the room in a state of fearful agitation. and goading my powers to talk. but then he perceived me. and I did not watch them narrowly ) for. and smile and listen. she would freely give me leave to tell his lordship all about it. What could be the matter with him/ :is face was ghastly pale. and &ord &owborough entered. I could not always bear to be doing violence to my feelings. and I dreaded to be called to perform it. or even the cheerful friend# I had just ensconced myself within the bow of the window. said in a deep. dreary indeed as I had often found it. I feared to see anything between them. are never wholly comfortless.% ) when I heard a hurried step approaching.he gentlemen and &ady &owborough were invited for the pleasure and convenience of the host. the gentlemen. that gradually blended and faded away into the pure.consisting of the same individuals as those invited the year before last. I had retired into the library to snatch a few minutes% respite from forced cheerfulness and wearisome discourse. I must leave you to)morrow. his eyes were fixed upon the ground. laying his clenched hand on the table . :argrave and her younger daughter. above two months# for their hospitable entertainer was loth to part with them and be left alone with his bright intellect. and certainly I saw nothing thenceforth particularly reprehensible or suspicious in her demeanour towards her host. and so determinately yet calmly delivered. but then I had the other guests to attend to. whose minds are unbeclouded by the mists of unbelief and sin. . where one bright star was shining through. and his loved and loving wife. for the sake of appearances. his stainless conscience.% %1ou know it then. It was plain he knew his wrongs at last0 4nconscious of my presence. I no longer regarded it as any concern of mine. +n the day of &ady &owborough%s arrival. but he was too preoccupied to notice it. and added. %I do not ask the cause.o)morrow0% I repeated. I suppose. $ut the ladies stayed only three weeks.% %. among whom were rs. :untingdon. where the darkening hills rose sharply defined against the clear amber light of evening. I might cross the room and slip away unobserved. as if to promise ) %When that dying light is gone. but rallying in a moment. :e started and stood still a moment. surveying me with profound astonishment. to confess the truth. ) % rs.his room was still his favourite resort. and. and plainly told her that. with the addition of two or three others. she coolly replied that. his teeth clenched# his forehead glistened with the dews of agony. about a fortnight after the visitors% arrival. as it appeared to me. almost sepulchral tone. "erhaps. for after so long a period of seclusion. and play the attentive hostess. Willing to be satisfied with this. and to keep me in check. the world will not be left in darkness. +ne evening. not unmingled with a kind of resentful bitterness. that nothing shocks me. I made a movement to let him know that he was not alone. and if it was my duty to enlighten &ord &owborough. I followed her into her chamber. I should think it my absolute duty to inform her husband of the circumstance ) or awaken his suspicions at least ) however painful it might be. $ut my fears were brought to an end in a manner I had not anticipated. violently wringing his hands and uttering low groans or incoherent ejaculations. :e flung the door to with unusual violence. I rose to make the attempt. or however dreadful the consequences. :untingdon. and cast his hat aside regardless where it fell. if I saw anything at all reprehensible or suspicious in her conduct. advancing towards me. with a kind of unnatural composure. then wiped his streaming forehead. . and was looking out upon the west. and you can be so calm0% said he. the other ladies. pale blue of the upper sky. 2he was startled at first by the declaration. so unexpected. it was a painful duty. %of my husband%s character.

beside him, and looking me keenly and fixedly in the face. I felt like a criminal. %,ot long,% I answered. %1ou knew it0% cried he, with bitter vehemence ) %and you did not tell me0 1ou helped to deceive me0% % y lord, I did not help to deceive you.% %.hen why did you not tell me/% %$ecause I knew it would be painful to you. I hoped she would return to her duty, and then there would be no need to harrow your feelings with such ) % %+ (od0 how long has this been going on/ :ow long has it been, know0% exclaimed, with intense and fearful eagerness. %.wo years, I believe.% %(reat heaven0 and she has duped me all this time0% :e turned away with a suppressed groan of agony, and paced the room again in a paroxysm of renewed agitation. y heart smote me; but I would try to console him, though I knew not how to attempt it. %2he is a wicked woman,% I said. %2he has basely deceived and betrayed you. 2he is as little worthy of your regret as she was of your affection. &et her injure you no further; abstract yourself from her, and stand alone.% %'nd you, adam,% said he sternly, arresting himself, and turning round upon me, %you have injured me too by this ungenerous concealment0% .here was a sudden revulsion in my feelings. 2omething rose within me, and urged me to resent this harsh return for my heartfelt sympathy, and defend myself with answering severity. :appily, I did not yield to the impulse. I saw his anguish as, suddenly smiting his forehead, he turned abruptly to the window, and, looking upward at the placid sky, murmured passionately, %+ (od, that I might die0% ) and felt that to add one drop of bitterness to that already overflowing cup would be ungenerous indeed. 'nd yet I fear there was more coldness than gentleness in the quiet tone of my reply#) %I might offer many excuses that some would admit to be valid, but I will not attempt to enumerate them ) % %I know them,% said he hastily# %you would say that it was no business of yours# that I ought to have taken care of myself; that if my own blindness has led me into this pit of hell, I have no right to blame another for giving me credit for a larger amount of sagacity than I possessed ) % %I confess I was wrong,% continued I, without regarding this bitter interruption; %but whether want of courage or mistaken kindness was the cause of my error, I think you blame me too severely. I told &ady &owborough two weeks ago, the very hour she came, that I should certainly think it my duty to inform you if she continued to deceive you# she gave me full liberty to do so if I should see anything reprehensible or suspicious in her conduct; I have seen nothing; and I trusted she had altered her course.% :e continued ga;ing from the window while I spoke, and did not answer, but, stung by the recollections my words awakened, stamped his foot upon the floor, ground his teeth, and corrugated his brow, like one under the influence of acute physical pain. %It was wrong, it was wrong0% he muttered at length. %,othing can excuse it; nothing can atone for it, ) for nothing can recall those years of cursed credulity; nothing obliterate them0 ) nothing, nothing0% he repeated in a whisper, whose despairing bitterness precluded all resentment. rs. :untingdon/ ) .ell me ) I must

%When I put the case to myself, I own it was wrong,% I answered; %but I can only now regret that I did not see it in this light before, and that, as you say, nothing can recall the past.% 2omething in my voice or in the spirit of this answer seemed to alter his mood. .urning towards me, and attentively surveying my face by the dim light, he said, in a milder tone than he had yet employed, ) %1ou, too, have suffered, I suppose.% %I suffered much, at first.% %When was that/% %.wo years ago; and two years hence you will be as calm as I am now, and far, far happier, I trust, for you are a man, and free to act as you please.% 2omething like a smile, but a very bitter one, crossed his face for a moment. %1ou have not been happy, lately/% he said, with a kind of effort to regain composure, and a determination to waive the further discussion of his own calamity. %:appy/% I repeated, almost provoked at such a question. %*ould I be so, with such a husband/% %I have noticed a change in your appearance since the first years of your marriage,% pursued he# %I observed it to ) to that infernal demon,% he muttered between his teeth; %and he said it was your own sour temper that was eating away your bloom# it was making you old and ugly before your time, and had already made his fireside as comfortless as a convent cell. 1ou smile, rs. :untingdon; nothing moves you. I wish my nature were as calm as yours.% % y nature was not originally calm,% said I. %I have learned to appear so by dint of hard lessons and many repeated efforts.% 't this juncture r. :attersley burst into the room. %:allo, &owborough0% he began ) %+h0 I beg your pardon,% he exclaimed on seeing me. %I didn%t know it was ' .-.-)-).-.-. *heer up, man,% he continued, giving &ord &owborough a thump on the back, which caused the latter to recoil from him with looks of ineffable disgust and irritation. %*ome, I want to speak with you a bit.% %2peak, then.% %$ut I%m not sure it would be quite agreeable to the lady what I have to say.% %.hen it would not be agreeable to me,% said his lordship, turning to leave the room. %1es, it would,% cried the other, following him into the hall. %If you%ve the heart of a man, it would be the very ticket for you. It%s just this, my lad,% he continued, rather lowering his voice, but not enough to prevent me from hearing every word he said, though the half)closed door stood between us. %I think you%re an ill)used man ) nay, now, don%t flare up; I don%t want to offend you# it%s only my rough way of talking. I must speak right out, you know, or else not at all; and I%m come ) stop now0 let me explain ) I%m come to offer you my services, for though :untingdon is my friend, he%s a devilish scamp, as we all know, and I%ll be your friend for the nonce. I know what it is you want, to make matters straight# it%s just to exchange a shot with him, and then you%ll feel yourself all right again; and if an accident happens ) why, that%ll be all right too, I daresay, to a desperate fellow like you. *ome now, give me your hand, and don%t look so black upon it. ,ame time and place, and I%ll manage the rest.% %.hat,% answered the more low, deliberate voice of &ord &owborough, %is just the remedy my own heart, or the devil within it, suggested ) to meet him, and not to part without blood. Whether I or he should fall, or both, it would be an inexpressible relief to me, if ) %

%3ust so0 Well then, ) % %,o0% exclaimed his lordship, with deep, determined emphasis. %.hough I hate him from my heart, and should rejoice at any calamity that could befall him, I%ll leave him to (od; and though I abhor my own life, I%ll leave that, too, to :im that gave it.% %$ut you see, in this case,% pleaded :attersley ) %I%ll not hear you0% exclaimed his companion, hastily turning away. %,ot another word0 I%ve enough to do against the fiend within me.% %.hen you%re a white)livered fool, and I wash my hands of you,% grumbled the tempter, as he swung himself round and departed. %!ight, right, &ord &owborough,% cried I, darting out and clasping his burning hand, as he was moving away to the stairs. %I begin to think the world is not worthy of you0% ,ot understanding this sudden ebullition, he turned upon me with a stare of gloomy, bewildered ama;ement, that made me ashamed of the impulse to which I had yielded; but soon a more humanised expression dawned upon his countenance, and before I could withdraw my hand, he pressed it kindly, while a gleam of genuine feeling flashed from his eyes as he murmured, %(od help us both0% %'men0% responded I; and we parted. I returned to the drawing)room, where, doubtless, my presence would be expected by most, desired by one or two. In the ante)room was r. :attersley, railing against &ord &owborough%s poltroonery before a select audience, vi;. r. :untingdon, who was lounging against the table, exulting in his own treacherous villainy, and laughing his victim to scorn, and r. (rimsby, standing by, quietly rubbing his hands and chuckling with fiendish satisfaction. In the drawing)room I found &ady &owborough, evidently in no very enviable state of mind, and struggling hard to conceal her discomposure by an overstrained affectation of unusual cheerfulness and vivacity, very uncalled)for under the circumstances, for she had herself given the company to understand that her husband had received unpleasant intelligence from home, which necessitated his immediate departure, and that he had suffered it so to bother his mind that it had brought on a bilious headache, owing to which, and the preparations he judged necessary to hasten his departure, she believed they would not have the pleasure of seeing him to)night. :owever, she asserted, it was only a business concern, and so she did not intend it should trouble her. 2he was just saying this as I entered, and she darted upon me such a glance of hardihood and defiance as at once astonished and revolted me. %$ut I am troubled,% continued she, %and vexed too, for I think it my duty to accompany his lordship, and of course I am very sorry to part with all my kind friends so unexpectedly and so soon.% %'nd yet, 'nnabella,% said -sther, who was sitting beside her, %I never saw you in better spirits in my life.% %"recisely so, my love# because I wish to make the best of your society, since it appears this is to be the last night I am to enjoy it till heaven knows when; and I wish to leave a good impression on you all,% ) she glanced round, and seeing her aunt%s eye fixed upon her, rather too scrutini;ingly, as she probably thought, she started up and continued# %.o which end I%ll give you a song ) shall I, aunt/ shall I, rs. :untingdon/ shall I ladies and gentlemen all/ Fery well. I%ll do my best to amuse you.% 2he and &ord &owborough occupied the apartments next to mine. I know not how she passed the night, but I lay awake the greater part of it listening to his heavy step pacing monotonously up and down his dressing)room, which was nearest my chamber. +nce I heard him pause and throw something out of the window with a passionate ejaculation; and in the morning, after they were gone, a keen) bladed clasp)

knife was found on the grass)plot below; a ra;or, likewise, was snapped in two and thrust deep into the cinders of the grate, but partially corroded by the decaying embers. 2o strong had been the temptation to end his miserable life, so determined his resolution to resist it. y heart bled for him as I lay listening to that ceaseless tread. :itherto I had thought too much of myself, too little of him# now I forgot my own afflictions, and thought only of his; of the ardent affection so miserably wasted, the fond faith so cruelly betrayed, the ) no, I will not attempt to enumerate his wrongs ) but I hated his wife and my husband more intensely than ever, and not for my sake, but for his. .hey departed early in the morning, before any one else was down, except myself, and just as I was leaving my room &ord &owborough was descending to take his place in the carriage, where his lady was already ensconced; and 'rthur @or r. :untingdon, as I prefer calling him, for the other is my child%s nameA had the gratuitous insolence to come out in his dressing)gown to bid his %friend% good)by. %What, going already, &owborough0% said he. %Well, good)morning.% :e smilingly offered his hand. I think the other would have knocked him down, had he not instinctively started back before that bony fist quivering with rage and clenched till the knuckles gleamed white and glistening through the skin. &ooking upon him with a countenance livid with furious hate, &ord &owborough muttered between his closed teeth a deadly execration he would not have uttered had he been calm enough to choose his words, and departed. %I call that an unchristian spirit now,% said the villain. %$ut I%d never give up an old friend for the sake of a wife. 1ou may have mine if you like, and I call that handsome; I can do no more than offer restitution, can I/% $ut &owborough had gained the bottom of the stairs, and was now crossing the hall; and r. :untingdon, leaning over the banisters, called out, %(ive my love to 'nnabella0 and I wish you both a happy journey,% and withdrew, laughing, to his chamber. :e subsequently expressed himself rather glad she was gone. %2he was so deuced imperious and exacting,% said he. %,ow I shall be my own man again, and feel rather more at my ease.%

y greatest source of uneasiness, in this time of trial, was my son, whom his father and his father%s friends delighted to encourage in all the embryo vices a little child can show, and to instruct in all the evil habits he could acquire ) in a word, to %make a man of him% was one of their staple amusements; and I need say no more to justify my alarm on his account, and my determination to deliver him at any ha;ard from the hands of such instructors. I first attempted to keep him always with me, or in the nursery, and gave !achel particular injunctions never to let him come down to dessert as long as these %gentlemen% stayed; but it was no use# these orders were immediately countermanded and overruled by his father; he was not going to have the little fellow moped to death between an old nurse and a cursed fool of a mother. 2o the little fellow came down every evening in spite of his cross mamma, and learned to tipple wine like papa, to swear like r. :attersley, and to have his own way like a man, and sent mamma to the devil when she tried to prevent him. .o see such things done with the roguish naivete of that pretty little child, and hear such things spoken by that small infantile voice, was as peculiarly piquant and irresistibly droll to them as it was inexpressibly distressing and painful to me; and when he had set the table in a roar he would look round delightedly upon them all, and add his shrill laugh to theirs. $ut if that beaming blue eye rested on me, its light would vanish for a moment, and he would say, in some concern, % amma, why don%t you laugh/ ake her laugh, papa ) she never

I would privately sell what pictures I had on hand .% :ence was I obliged to stay among these human brutes. $ut here again I must do r. with a fugitive mother. but some degree of security from positive failure was indispensable# I must not take my son to starve. as I should always otherwise have done. and she should help me. sombre satisfaction in his countenance at the look of impotent wrath and anguish he was too certain to behold in mine. keen. to find out a picture) dealer in some distant town. :e was never willing to go. of course. watching an opportunity to get my child away from them instead of leaving them immediately after the removal of the cloth. or my own inexperience or inability to suit their tastes/ What should I do then/ 'pply to my brother and explain my circumstances and my resolves to him/ . where he was sitting half)tipsy.ew -ngland. . gravely bowed as I withdrew. and closed it after me. through her means. the passage. I heard high words exchanged between him and his already half) inebriated host as I departed. where I would support myself and him by the labour of my hands. held the door open for me. my darling playmates once. but they would return again# and he. for which he thought me very cruel and unjust. and I frequently had to carry him away by force. and execrating me with words he little knew the meaning of. no# even if I told him all my grievances. and to produce something worth while as a specimen of my powers. without friends and without recommendation/ . and. $ut where should I find an asylum. :argrave suddenly rose from his seat with an aspect of stern determination. . take the coach to ). $ut when anything very extraordinary was said or done by the infant profligate. as he darted a sudden glance at the child and then at me# and then I could fancy there arose a gleam of hard. would still remain. a peculiar expression in his face that I could neither interpret nor define# a slight twitching about the muscles of the mouth. he would be certain to disapprove of the step# it would seem like madness to him. then.o. humble home in . :argrave the justice to acknowledge that I never saw him laugh at the child%s misdemeanours. I noticed. whether as an actual painter or a teacher. when 'rthur had been behaving particularly ill. $ut on one occasion. I could endure it for myself. leading away my bewildered and disconcerted boy. his child%s worst enemy. and some little to support us in our retreat in case I should be unsuccessful at first# and not too little either# for who could tell how long I might have to struggle with the indifference or neglect of others. the most injurious of the whole. and retire to indulge my bitterness and despair alone. and on the very point of demeaning myself by a burst of uncontrollable passion ) r. and I particularly anxious to get him out of the room. $ut was I sufficiently skilful as an artist to obtain my livelihood in a strange land. something to speak favourably for me. I must have patience and gather a hoard of my own. lifted the child from his father%s knee. flee to the port of ). and how obtain subsistence for us both/ +h. which I should be very reluctant to do.will. I did not look for.o. I must wait a little.hese guests might not be with us long. and then I would leave him to his kind friends. that in luxury and affluence with such a father. and seek a quiet. :untingdon and his guests had been particularly provoking and insulting to me in their encouragement of him. but for my son it must be borne no longer# the world%s opinion and the feelings of my friends must be alike unheeded here. cocking his head and laughing at me. I must labour hard to improve my talent. and sometimes his father would insist upon my letting him remain.o. first. a sudden flash in the eye. !achel should be my only confidante ) I thought I could persuade her into the scheme. $ut this should not continue# my child must not be abandoned to this corruption# better far that he should live in poverty and obscurity. $rilliant success. must be my sober toil)fellows now. at times. . as it would to my uncle and aunt. cross the 'tlantic. or to rack my brains for a remedy to this great evil. or to ilicent. setting him down in the hall. 'nd then I must have money for the journey. nor heard him utter a word of encouragement to his aspirations after manly accomplishments. at least ) alike unable to deter me from my duty.he palette and the easel. handed him out of the room. I would take my precious charge at early dawn. and r.

rs. on the third morning. with very little intermission. I felt assured he would soon depart on seeing me. since you have justly abandoned us to our own devices ) that I think I shall presently withdraw from amongst them. while I was thus employed. but I cannot blame you for it. I flatter myself. nearly related to me as she is. and said he was only come for a book. and her character is so well known to them all. I immediately set to work to accomplish it. must he bla. but the few I brought with me from home. but it is natural that you should be glad to get rid of me.% he continued. $ut. and those my uncle gave me on my marriage. for. %what was said last night in the dining)room. and shall do better to execute. then. and he. called me away# for I still thought proper to devote some portion of every day exclusively to his instruction and amusement.% said I. 'nd if. and some of them remarked that. $esides this. as if actuated by a sudden resolution. *urse me0% he muttered. he should look in here.% %I shall not rejoice at your departure. which I still think I did well to form. which was just what I wished. as she was . as you%re so very philosophical on certain points. I did not answer. :argrave did look in. and so weary of their irrational conversation and pursuits ) now that there is no one to humani. r.% he added with a slight sneer. he dropped it. he had become decidedly more so since the departure of his mother and sisters. and did not immediately withdraw on seeing me. had not something occurred to confirm me in that determination. . at present. or delay the execution of it to an indefinite period.ed for his intrusion. after a brief pause. and in the interim my son could not be much more injured than he was already. and having modestly commented on it. instead of becoming less cool and distant towards me. by any chance. :e apologi. :ere. to which I still adhere. $eing a man of taste. Well.% replied he gravely# %not even the gentlemen themselves.e them and keep them in check. par parenthese. without much encouragement from me. for you must be heartily sick of us all. %and I cannot wonder at it. %. rs. except r. 2ince &ord &owborough%s departure I had regarded the library as entirely my own. and I was driven to relinquish the project altogether. I%ll just tell you. thinking it but right to make some acknowledgment for his good behaviour. to the rest.o one can blame you for such an avowal. or perhaps to keep weighing the pros and cons in my mind till the latter overbalanced the former. he condescended to cast a glance over my picture. and here I worked at my canvas from daylight till dusk. %1ou don%t give us much of your company. a secure retreat at all hours of the day. I might possibly have been induced to wax cool upon it afterwards. !eceiving no encouragement in that either. I set up my easel. after you left us# perhaps you will not mind it. %"robably. ' few months% arduous toil might well be borne by me with such an end in of our gentlemen had the smallest pretensions to a literary taste. I could not attempt to defend it. not the family jewels. he had something to say on this subject as well as another. :aving formed this resolution. that though among them I am not of them.% %. :argrave. :untingdon.% :e paused. but when he had got it. at times. was quite contented with the newspapers and periodicals of the day. that. %but I must confess I shall rejoice to bid adieu. inhospitable as it may appear. :untingdon. saving when pure necessity.hey were talking about &ord &owborough and his delectable lady. %your only regret on the subject will be that I do not take all my companions along with me. and some of those I should thereafter paint. and I cannot suppose you will regret my departure. I may regret this. I would contrive to dispose of my jewels. I myself am so thoroughly ashamed of my companions.% observed he. %if I don%t have vengeance for this0 If the villain must disgrace the family. during which I went on coolly mixing and tempering my colours. or my duties to little 'rthur.% he added.that would do for such a purpose. they were talking of these things. probably within this week. he proceeded to expatiate on the art in general.on it abroad to every low)bred knave of his acquaintance/ I beg your pardon. the cause of whose sudden departure is no secret amongst them. for you can conduct yourself like a gentleman. contrary to my expectation. but did not depart. with a smile. I imagine.

% %'lone ) and unprotected0 $ut where can you go/ what can you do/ :e will follow you and bring you rs. ) or looking smilingly into his glass and offering no interruption or reply. without delicacy or discrimination.% %I shall not ask him. as I do. %that what he pri.hen what do you mean to do. proclaiming it aloud. may have her and welcome# you may. and my blessing into the bargain0= %I ) hem ) someone asked if he really meant what he said.% %$ut your child/% % y child goes with me. %When I am ready.% replied I.= said he. you double)dyed scoundrel. and I mean to live as long as I can.o turn over a new leaf. unless she comes to me. =and beg your wife%s pardon. then. you know ) = %'nd he added some praise of you. and so forth. after a short pause. it is a secret flight you meditate0 but with whom.= replied :untingdon.= replied the other# =I only want to know if you intend to take my advice.% %When# and how/% asked he. I%ve done.= said he. :untingdon.separated from her husband. gentlemen# I value her so highly that any one among you. by 3ove. he might see her again when he pleased. and be a good husband.ay. sat quietly drinking his wine. his nurse. :untingdon/% .% %1ou cannot mean that you will break your heart and die for the detestable conduct of an infamous villain like that0% %$y no means# my heart is too thoroughly dried to be broken in a hurry. as he did.= %=.% %=. look you. meanwhile. calmly. :argrave.= shouted !alph. that can fancy her. =>o you mean to turn from the error of your ways. nor him for uttering. go on. What do you think of that.= %=What advice/= %=. %I say. a good father. when I get shut of you and all these rollicking devils you call your friends/ I think it%s time. till :attersley shouted out. :untingdon/% asked so lightly will not be long in his possession. :untingdon. ) =>o you hear me.% %'h. which you would not thank me for repeating. man/= %=1es.% %Will you leave him then/% %1es. and be a good boy for the future. upon which he solemnly swore he did. =or if I have. rs.hank you. eagerly. and your wife is fifty times too good for you.= %= y wife0 what wife/ I have no wife. and how I can manage it most effectually. when we%re gone/= said !alph :attersley. %=. and no mistake. in an audience where it seemed profanation to utter your name# himself utterly incapable of understanding or appreciating your real excellences. =I%ve had enough of her for the present# I%ll not trouble to see her. %With my son# and possibly. during which I had felt he was keenly examining my half)averted face. looking innocently up from his glass.% %:e will not allow it.

%Well. all the world will say. %1ou have no reason now# you are flying in the face of heaven%s decrees. %&et me go0% I repeated. half)imperious ga. fewer still can pity him. rs.e and press between his own. snatching away the hand he had presumed to sei. I beheld a shadow just retiring round the corner. and who can wonder at it/ <ew can blame her. quivering with indignation. % rs. 1our fair fame is gone. he had fairly broken the barrier# he was completely roused. made my blood rise in wrath# I abruptly turned away. and utterly ) % %In a word. no admiration for its image. and nothing that I or you can say can ever retrieve it. :argrave0% said I. and recoiling from him. no one will believe that you go alone. he held them very tight. you are about to leave him.% said he deliberately. and. %. =1e twain shall be one flesh= ) and you spurn me from you ) % %&et me go. :untingdon. delicately nurtured. he openly declares himself weary of you. %you are cruel ) cruel to me ) cruel to yourself. and looked up in my face with a half)imploring.ever0 while heaven spares my reason. with such embellishments as he thinks proper. that sudden sparkle of the eye. and show me the villain that dares to insult0% %. boldly intercepting my retreat to the door. =2he has left him at last. snatching up my brush. (od has designed me to be your comfort and protector ) I feel it. :is face was almost opposite the window as he knelt. looked me in the face. from the effects of it. but that look. and determined to ha.hus you will have no credit for your virtue @if you call it suchA# even your best friends will not believe in it. :e will give such a version of this story as will leave no doubt at all about your character. and I shall consider myself safe. and drew in his breath to speak. %:e will report what he has seen to :untingdon and all the rest.% % r. began to dash away at my canvas with rather too much energy for the good of the picture. &et me once get clear of (rassdale.% replied I. :argrave. &ooking over my shoulder. you would advise me to stay where I am. but dropped upon his knee. such cruel torments that they know it to be indeed reality. sternly.% interrupted I. %but . . rough world alone/ you.% %I must speak# my heart will burst if I don%t0 I have been silent long enough. $ut give me the power to protect you.% %$y all means. and sei. because it is monstrous. :e has no love for you. and you must hear me0% cried he.+.ard all for victory. %1ou tell me you owe no allegiance to your husband. :argrave advanced one step towards me. I know it as certainly as if a voice from heaven declared. $ut what can you do in the cold. alone0 :elen0 let me protect you0% %. With a slight start.back. and calmly gives you up to anybody that will take you. $ut he was in for it now. :untingdon ) no reverence for your sex. no belief in virtue. and not to be credited but by those who suffer. but who is the companion of her flight/= . %I must not be denied0% exclaimed he.hat is (rimsby. I%ll see about it. in the minds of those who hear both my hands.% %I have laid my plans too well for that.% r.e. vehemently. that heightened colour.% said he with bitter solemnity. at length releasing my hands. a young and inexperienced woman. I saw him glance towards it. $ut he only tightened his grasp. remember your promise. leave him0% cried he earnestly. and then a gleam of malicious triumph lit up his countenance. r.o one has ever dared to insult me as you are doing now0% said I.

r. :untingdon and :attersley appeared without. half)deprecating wave of the hand. With a half)authoritative. %2tand off. by 3ove0% cried :attersley.% %.% was the reply. and :argrave walked away. and tell her I must go to)morrow. r. %If your accusation were true. %Well.% %:umph0 1ou%re mighty sudden in your now0 I hope you%re satisfied. he took his precious friend by the arm. poured forth a volley of the vilest and grossest abuse it was possible for the imagination to conceive or the tongue to utter. sir/% said :argrave. ungrateful woman I ever yet beheld0% %4ngrateful. I did not attempt to interrupt him. with a smile of insupportable meaning. :argrave and me. I replied.he latter remained in the hall. %I am satisfied. may I ask/% %$usiness. scarcely above his breath. I daresay I looked as fierce and resolute as he. or if he were dead. :untingdon.% :is face grew blanched with anger. and essrs. %*ome0 there shall be nothing shot besides. Walter. repelling the other%s incredulous sneer with a glance of scornful defiance. and when he had done. %We want to know if you are at liberty to join us in a go at the pheasants. %*ome. and make you of a better mind. and with the air of one prepared to stand on the defensive. and all you would have done. and setting his shoulder against the mantel)piece. or ever wished to do.% he muttered.% cried he# %I worship you. :e precipitated himself towards me.% he replied. I am not.% :ere the door was thrown open. as deliberately and emphatically as I could. he stepped back. unnatural. say I overcame you. and you must and shall accept them0% he exclaimed. %that you are the most cold)hearted. %Fery good.o. sir. I pray (od to pardon you. 1ou are my angel. %Well. impetuously starting to his feet. my lad. I%ll vouch for that. gathering his coat) laps under his arms. he sought to deter me from ringing. 'rthur uttered a low whistle. :argrave. interrogatively. to give the greater efficacy to my words.% returned he. I would not marry you. I don%t like you.his startled him# he stood and ga. and followed him with his eyes. <or all the good you ever did me. :untingdon. and attempted to drag him away. turned to me. .en brow. surveying r. . and. and stood with his back to the fire. .hereupon r. and said carelessly# %I came here to bid farewell to rs. my divinity0 I lay my powers at your feet. and you could not choose but yield0% I never saw a man go terribly excited. and put my hand upon the cord. twinkle of his eye. %and if I were divorced from my husband. but walked to the window to collect his faculties. and. I snatched up my palette) knife and held it against him. particularly the former. but my spirit kindled within me. sir/% %4ngrateful.ed at me in astonishment. busy with his ramrod and his gun. accompanied as it was by the impudence of his bra. ' slight flush of anger rose to :argrave%s cheek. What takes you off so soon. except a puss or two. the former walked in. %true .% I continued.% Walter did not answer. then0% said I. with bitter emphasis. malicious. :untingdon. I most sincerely thank you# for all the evil you have done me.%I do not insult you. rearing his gun against the wall.% returned his host. . but in a moment he turned calmly round. stepping into the room. I moved to the bell.his tamed him still more. how dare you blame me/% %2he%s hit it. %'nd listen to me. %I will be your consoler and defender0 and if your conscience upbraid you for it. . and the sly.% interposed :attersley from without. addressing me in a low voice.

ay. %if you presume to have any doubts on the subject. turning away. with an impatient jerk of the head.% said :attersley. 2omewhat reluctantly he ascended the steps and advanced a pace or two into the hall. 2uppressing a new burst of merriment. :argrave.o. upon your honour as a gentleman @if you have anyA. he walked into the hall.% %I don%t understand you. but you. %'nd tell those gentlemen.% . sir. %2he can%t deny it if her life depended on it0% and muttering some more abusive language.o.% I continued ) %these men. to answer truly. you know. nay. rs. you%ve no right to blame her. or did not choose to resist its authority. but with a bitter sneer upon his countenance. :attersley. will you please to step this way/% said I. saying. What could possess me to make such a request of r. %. %I scorn to justify myself to you0% said I.% %1ou do understand me. sir. >id I grant your request/ %1ou did not. :e turned and looked at me in grave surprise. %>are you suspect me.% %2he can%t deny it0% cried the gentleman thus addressed.% muttered he. almost beside myself with fury.or false. after what you said last night. you blackguard. :untingdon. ) %1ou know where to find me. will you defend it/% %I will. I%ll be sworn she didn%t. it%s all right. I suspect nobody. :argrave. you see0% said :attersley.% 't this they simultaneously burst into a rude laugh that made my whole frame tingle to the fingers% ends. % r. when you hear my . and I charge you. :argrave.ow. %$ut you. :untingdon.% %. :is brother)in)law was standing on the front without. 2o come along. It was half open. ask r. if you please0% I repeated. they can%t hear you. name belied and slandered.% turning to :attersley. It%s all right. in so determined a manner that he could not. %*lear as the day. advancing towards them. %or he%d never look so black. or did I not/% %.% said addressing his host. grinning in mingled rage and triumph. >id I.% I instantly departed and shut myself into the library. r. :attersley pointed to the outer door.% said I. %2tep this way. %2peak up. :argrave withdrew with a look of cold disdain.% %I don%t care what he sees. whether or not I yielded to your solicitations. :attersley/% said I. %.% uttered oaths and curses were all the answer this intimation obtained. calmly %(o to the deuce0% replied the latter. and took up his hat and gun from the table. %Where is he/ I%ll ask him myself0% said I.% %I%m willing to grant you the satisfaction of a was something implied here that I could not endure. should you feel disposed to send a friend. :untingdon. %or what he imagines. nor him either. r. 2o come along. :untingdon.

that after several ejaculations. how I longed ) to take my child and leave them now. What a scene was this0 *ould I ever have imagined that I should be doomed to bear such insults under my own roof ) to hear such things spoken in my presence. the base. if I would do her the favour to accept it as a loan. and many tears and lamentations that I should be brought to such a pass. and the false villain :argrave. and have continued it. and gravely asked. regarding it as perfect madness for me and 'rthur to go alone. %. but really.o. but now.hen let me do it.% %. into the world. she applauded my resolution and consented to aid me with all her might# on one condition only# that she might share my exile# otherwise. she was utterly inexorable.% . ) % amma.such a man I cannot tell. perhaps. that must be done. %and lose not a moment in vain repinings and idle chafings against my was no other to preserve my name from being blackened and aspersed among this nest of boon companions.% said I. . thank heaven. !achel never said so. and still continued my labour. but I kept aloof from them as much as possible. there was work before me# hard work. shone like a glow)worm in the dark. I am fully alive to the evils that may and must result upon the step I am about to take. cautious woman. I soon acquainted !achel with my design. quietly playing with the shreds of canvas I had thrown upon the carpet. r. nay. and my preparations are so far advanced that I am looking forward to a speedy emancipation. love/% %!achel. and it is not probable he will discover the loss of both until the day is far advanced. to the present day. r. as I paced to and fro the room. a few faint objections. 2he is a sober. when they are some fifty miles on their way to the Western world. I am certain. hoping I would %excuse her for the liberty. or it may be more# for we shall leave him hours before the dawn. and. malignant (rimsby. without an hour%s delay0 $ut it could not be. I have gathered a little hoard of my own. among its fellow worms. but his mind was otherwise occupied. and beside my abandoned wretch of a husband. 2uch thoughts as these chased one another through my mind. but I never waver in my resolution. he looked up wistfully in my face. +nly let the stormy severity of this winter weather be somewhat abated. :untingdon will come down to a solitary breakfast)table. and perhaps be clamouring through the house for his invisible wife and child. found little difficulty in persuading her to enter into my views. and through them. he was sitting at my feet. and longed ) oh. why are you wicked/% %Who told you I was wicked.% +f course I could not think of such a thing. and so loves her mistress and her nursling. some morning. spoken to me and of me.% 'nd conquering my agitation with a powerful effort. I hardly knew what I said. and by those who arrogated to themselves the name of gentlemen/ 'nd could I have imagined that I should have been able to endure it as calmly. :argrave did depart on the morrow. for. 'rthur.he others stayed on for two or three weeks longer. and to repel their insults as firmly and as boldly as I had done/ ' hardness such as this is taught by rough experience and despair alone. in a while. with almost unabated ardour. much to my agreeable surprise. she modestly offered to aid me with her little hoard of savings. I immediately resumed my task. and then. but she so hates her master. but drowning men catch at straws# they had driven me desperate between them. while I pursued my usual employment. this boorish ruffian. she would be very happy. and I have never seen him since. . With touching generosity. because I never forget my son. and laboured hard all day. and those who influence it. confiding all my motives and intentions to her ear. It was only this morning. coarse and brutal as he was.

however. drawing a chair to the table. (od will judge us by our own thoughts and deeds. my dear. asleep on the sofa behind me. I%ll tell you how it was I got to know# when I%m with papa. nor show that they deserve it. that%s why I think you must be wicked# and I wish you wouldn%t. as I thought.% 'nd so saying he burst into tears.% %I have told him. but.hen. %for I don%t want him to go to hell.hen it%s papa that%s wicked. r.% forcibly wrested it from me. = amma be damned. remember never to repeat them# it is wicked to say such things of others. and you will be very wrong to imitate him now that you know better. he suddenly placed his hand upon it. %"apa is wrong to say such things.% %. been looking over my shoulder for I know not how long. 'rthur. unknown to me.% said he mournfully. and saying. then. but he only wheeled round to the fire. I sat in the drawing)room. mamma.e sufficient for his purposes. at length. composedly sat down to examine it# turning back leaf after leaf to find an explanation of what he had read. :e had risen.% said he.he little moralist paused and pondered. calmly continued the investigation. 2o. actuated by some base spirit of curiosity.hose words cannot make people be damned.% replied he. ruefully. ) While writing the above. and.% %What is imitate/% %.% % y dear child. he was more sober that night than he usually is at such an hour. but that is nothing to you. and raising a bla.% %>oes he know better/% %"erhaps he does. you ought to tell him. but he held it too firmly for that. the greater would be his determination to persist in it besides it was too late. but is it not time to deliver him from such a parent/ CHAPTER XL 3anuary 6Jth. not to have them said against you. . 'nd when you hear such words spoken. . it was papa. and. after a reflective pause. he always says. but it was evident his curiosity was too keenly excited to be quenched by that. I am not. for when I had laid aside my pen.%Well. and was about to close the book. I upbraided him in bitterness and scorn for his mean and dishonourable conduct. yesterday evening. 6759. +f course I did not leave him to pursue this occupation in quiet# I made several attempts to snatch the book from his hands. . 4nluckily for me.hose are bad words. not by what others say about us. I tried in vain to divert his mind from the subject. if I say mamma wants me. and wicked people often say them of others better than themselves. and. . %'t least. %I%m sorry papa%s wicked. mamma. thoughtfully.% . :untingdon was present. but that had no effect upon him. I%ll have a look at this. I had serious thoughts of getting a pitcher of water and extinguishing that light too. he added.= and !achel says it%s only wicked people that are damned. ) %With your leave. I consoled him with the hope that perhaps his papa would alter and become good before he died ). I extinguished both the candles.% %If he doesn%t. or mamma says I%m not to do something that he tells me to do.o do as he does. finally. and the more I manifested my anxiety to baffle his scrutiny.

he rang for another. I did not attempt to follow him.% %What keys/% %. %I know. and walking up to me. and only covered with a cloth. your mistress has broken the candle.% replied the master. as the man departed. pointing to the easel.% said he.% %2he doesn%t know where they are. :e then threw my keys into my lap. and whatever else you possess. %'nd this and all. paints. +h.% observed I. and the jewels.he former being broken as well as extinguished. suddenly sei. then. and meanwhile I%ll trouble you for your keys. when . and putting down the candle. . the oil and turpentine sent hissing and roaring up the chimney. too. drawers. quietly placing my hand upon them. %:al)lo0% muttered he.ow. r. bladders. desk. saying.% said I.% %'nd I know. and the others were attached to it. %. doesn%t immediately deliver them up. %$enson. take those things away. I%ve left you a few sovereigns in your purse. . or only to know the worst. pencils. brushes. and a few little trifles I thought it advisable to take into my own possession.% said he. wringing my hands in silent rage and my closed hand and rudely abstracting them from it. %she%s the very devil for spite. :untingdon then went up)stairs. I can hardly tell. sir/% said the astonished servant. which I expect to last you through the month. you%re a sweet one0% 2o saying. varnish# I saw them all consumed# the palette)knives snapped in two. first. and almost motionless. I%ll look at it some other time. ) %. at all events.% %1ou expose yourself finely. !achel. lifting his head and turning to where I stood. referring to the half)finished picture. %and tell the housemaid she may kindle the fire with them# your mistress won%t want them any more. till he returned about half)an)hour after. he walked into the library. lest your mercantile spirit should be tempted to turn them into gold.% 'nd putting the keys into his pocket. bring another. love. let us take a peep into the studio. %.% sneered he. %I didn%t say I%d broken it.% I answered.he keys of your cabinet. :e then rang the bell. speechless. and stretcher. y painting materials were laid together on the corner table. >id ever any mortal see such eyes/ ) they shine in the dark like a cat%s. :e then took up one of the candles and relighted it by thrusting it into the fire. canvas.% $enson paused aghast and looked at me. %but it%s rather long.% I replied. in fact.%It seems very interesting. tearless. but remained seated in the arm) chair. and taking them from the desk. my dear. %.he key of my desk. whether with the dim idea of preventing mischief.% said he. and his master muttered an oath. as I thought. $ut.ake them away. %and if that old devil. unobserved. %I%ve not got them.here0 you%ll find nothing gone but your money. but I shall not give them up without a reason. deliberately proceeded to cast them into the fire# palette. %we must have a confiscation of property. did I/% returned he. %$enson. he gathered up the candle and the candlestick. With a sudden stroke of my hand I dashed the candle to the floor. she tramps bag and baggage tomorrow.% said he. was at that moment in the lock. I followed.hat and all. :e soon spied them out.% said he. starting back. held the candle in my face and peered into my eyes with looks and laughter too insulting to be borne. rising and holding out his hand. ready for to)morrow%s use.hen you must send for them. and the things were cleared away. $enson. %.

and partly excited and supported against it by the bitterness of my wrath. though. in future.% &eaving him to his self)congratulations. (reaves must be very particular in keeping her accounts. or I might have snoo. and told her how our project was defeated. now I think of it. but I am forbidden to rescue my son from ruin. did you. they must whisper their secrets to the fishes.% 'nd as I departed. shunning my husband. and I determined. except in the former part. yet will :e have compassion according to the multitude of :is mercies.% I ought to think of this. %you%d better tell that d)d old sneak of a nurse to keep out of my way for a day or two. and oh. for your own private expenses. and if there be nothing but . :untingdon/ :ave I attempted to defraud you/% %. 2he was as much distressed and horrified as I was ) and more so than I was that night. when I have wandered about restless and objectless. that I cannot get out# :e hath made my chain heavy. but I know she%d do more mischief out of the house than in it. and fervently wishing he had never been born. or a want more you will be so good as to give me an account of how that%s spent. I know that day after day such feelings will return upon me. and it%s well. he would find little good of himself therein indited. I am a slave ) a prisoner ) but that is nothing. and bring him up to be a dirty 1ankee tradesman. my dear ) I won%t expose you to the temptation. If they haven%t a friend to talk to. knowing that I am unfit to be his teacher or companion. but it%s best to keep out of the way of temptation. but it will cleave to the dust. hoping nothing for his future life. r. for I now remembered it had been left upon the drawing) room table. 'nd as for the household matters. %:e hath hedged me about. :e hath filled me with bitterness ) :e hath made me drunken with wormwood. %$ut though :e cause grief. he went on cursing and abusing my faithful friend and servant with epithets I will not defile this paper with repeating. I%d pay her her wages and send her packing to)morrow.% said he at length. we must go upon an entirely new plan ) % %What great discovery have you made now. exactly. beggarly painter/% %1es. it seems. to save myself the humiliation of seeing it in his hands again. to obviate his becoming such a gentleman as his father. I rose to secure my manuscript. too. <or :e doth not afflict willingly nor grieve the children of men. or something. as I was leaving the room.% :ere $enson entered with the candles. ) I felt the full extent of my calamity. rs. I wasn%t over full to) night. and you needn%t trouble yourself any more about my concerns.ot in money matters.% %It%s well you couldn%t keep your own secret ) ha. to be sure. $ut in the morning. and I feel it now. shrinking even from my child. by running away and turning artist. and what was once my only consolation is become the crowning source of my despair.% cried he. I can only say. forsooth/ 'nd you thought to rob me of my son. :ave I no faith in (od/ I try to look to :im and raise my heart to heaven. I shall put you upon a small monthly allowance. as I have done. and supporting yourself by the labour of your hands. if possible. I sitting still in my chair. I went to her as soon as I had put away my book.% I forget to add. too. %'nd so. %you thought to disgrace me. and he standing with his back to the fire. silently triumphing in my despair. for I was partly stunned by the blow. ha0 It%s well these women must be blabbing. or I might have lacked the sense or the power to carry my point like a man. I shall look out for a steward. when I woke without that cheering hope that had been my secret comfort and support so long. if it were myself alone I would not complain.ed away and never dreamt of looking what my sweet lady was about. and there followed a brief interval of silence. I would sooner burn it all than he should read what I had written when I was such a fool as to love him0 %'nd by)the)by. or write them on the sand. and all this day. I could not bear the idea of his amusing himself over my secret thoughts and recollections.

:e left me early in <ebruary. %'rthur. I dreaded the consequences of such a taste. what is the longest life of misery to a whole eternity of peace/ 'nd for my little 'rthur ) has he no friend but me/ Who was it said. I exerted all my powers to eradicate the weeds that had been fostered in his infant mind. and the moment he was gone. indeed. . and it is no hopeless task to bend him to obedience and win him to love and know his own true friend. but the more he shrank from the daily treat the more I pressed it upon him. :is apprehensions are more quick. as I believe. it is not a barren or a stony soil. I should not doubt of its success. the sight of any one of them is sufficient to make him sick. ) :aving now got rid of r.his I have now effected. that would only have increased his partiality for it. :ere was 'rthur left to me at last. :e was inordinately fond of them for so young a creature. but already that difficulty is nearly vanquished now# bad language seldom defiles his mouth. and since he declares that the taste. I therefore gave him quite as much as his father was accustomed to allow him. and where our mother died. and I have succeeded in giving him an absolute disgust for all intoxicating liquors. and felt my vital energy return. in his usual quantity of wine. I flatter myself. and once or twice. When he was thoroughly disgusted with every kind of wine. by way of medicine. :untingdon for a season. and then gin)and)water. till his reluctance was strengthened to perfect abhorrence. I have devised another scheme that might be resorted to in such a case. at his own request. I had much trouble at first in breaking him of those evil habits his father had taught him to acquire. remembering my unfortunate father as well as his. I breathed again.% is as good as any other threat. if you say that again you shall have some brandy)and)water. to try brandy)and)water.ow. and sow again the good seed they had rendered unproductive. nor yet quite sunk into decay. so do better plants. and rousing from my despondent apathy.sorrow for me in this world. for the little toper was familiar with them all. as he desired to have ) but into every glass I surreptitiously introduced a small quantity of tartar)emetic. except now and then as objects of terror in cases of misbehaviour. I shall secure him from this one vice. :untingdon commence again the game of teaching the child to hate and despise his mother. . I have obliged the poor child to swallow a little wine)and)water without the tartar) emetic. is not now inhabited. his heart more overflowing with affection than ever his father%s could have been. if on his father%s return I find reason to apprehend that my good lessons will be all destroyed ) if r. as long as there is no one to counteract my efforts.hank heaven.hus. . he soon grew weary of it. not with the hope of escape ) he has taken care to leave me no visible chance of that ) but with a determination to make the best of existing circumstances. %It is not the will of your <ather which is in heaven that one of these little ones should perish/% CHAPTER XLI arch 5Jth. if you%re not a good boy I shall give you a glass of wine. and. I have given up teasing him about them. which I hope not even his father or his father%s friends will be able to overcome. as much. but because I am determined to enlist all the powers of association in my service. if I could persuade him to have one or two .ow. .he old hall where he and I were born. when he was sick. I wish this aversion to be so deeply grounded in his nature that nothing in after)life may be able to overcome it. not that I think it of any real service in a physical sense. just enough to produce inevitable nausea and depression without positive sickness. my spirits begin to revive. and emulate his father%s wickedness ) I will yet deliver my son from his hands. and made him regard it as a greater treat than ever. 'rthur. or forbidden him to taste it altogether. . <inding such disagreeable consequences invariably to result from this indulgence.% or %. and this practice I intend to continue for some time to come. and for the rest. $ut if I had stinted him. and I was determined that all should be equally hateful to him. if weeds spring fast there. the smell. and if I could but obtain my brother%s consent and assistance. I allowed him.

and live in lowly independence and strict seclusion. :e is a strange being. :untingdon is/% said I. :e should lend me the money to begin with. under an assumed name. he has never asked any questions. :e used to spend a month at 2taningley every year. 'lready. if he had lived in the world. $ut what would <rederick have been. . he knows much more of my situation than I have told him. %I%ll tell you something more about him%. when I presented my little son to his uncle. and I would pay him back. I have arranged the whole plan in my head# and all I want is to persuade <rederick to be of the same mind as myself. :untingdon is at home. when he came for a few days while r. <rederick. and I gave a sketch of his general conduct. :untingdon was away. very happily. ) :e is come and gone. and never see him again/% %Is it really so/% %If you have not. and mingled from his childhood with such men as these of my acquaintance/ and what will 'rthur be.% :e slightly elevated his eyebrows. :e shall stay many days this time. as well as by the circumstance of his never coming to see me when r. though I have never known them.rooms made habitable. and a more particular account of his behaviour with regard to his child. I have only seen him once. with my child. wavy locks. without surprise or disapproval. :elen. :e would not stay above a fortnight. and the neighbourhood is thinly inhabited. but said nothing. %in some of his moods# I sometimes think he resembles you more than his father. I might live there. and there shall be more candour and cordiality between us than ever there was before. before I was married. but. "erhaps he feels hurt at my reserve.% %:ave you so clear an idea that you can hear. since our father%s death. but very. :e is coming to see me soon.% replied he. and doubtless there are more. and to let them to me as a stranger. stroking the child%s soft. and he himself should negotiate the sale of my pictures for me. and my soul is sick of solitude. since our early childhood.o. and generally evincing a kind of covert bitterness when he does refer to him.he time passed quickly. and by the fact of his so seldom mentioning my husband. :ad he done so. having first enlightened him upon my circumstances sufficiently to excuse the project. for the house stands in a lonely place. I must have a bad disposition. for my misfortunes have soured and embittered me exceedingly# I was beginning insensibly to cherish very unamiable feelings against my fellow)mortals. and he was bad enough in his day. that I meditate escaping with that child to some secret asylum. %. where we can live in peace. and my determination to deliver him from his father%s influence. and still support myself by my favourite art. but it is a comfort to see there is at least one among them worthy to be trusted and esteemed. 'pril 6Kth. or said anything to invite my confidence. I wish we knew each other better. and it has done me good. I should probably have had but few concealments from him.% %1ou flatter me. unless I except poor &ord &owborough.% said I. y heart clings to him more than ever. the male part of them especially. %>o you know what sort of man %I think I have an idea. and explained my apprehensions on the latter%s account. r. I can tell this by the air of tender sadness pervading his letters. and introduced the subject of my plan of rescue on the evening after his arrival. if I do not save him from that world and those companions/ I mentioned my fears to <rederick. you will think it no compliment when I tell you I would rather have him to resemble $enson than his father. . with all his natural sweetness of disposition. I believe. and then I will make the proposal to him. %:e is like you.% continued I. $ut he has never openly expressed any disapprobation of him or sympathy for me. and I am glad of it.

and hateful as ) one who shall be nameless. but merely because I am giddy and young. he at length consented to have one wing of the old hall put into a habitable condition. and is so still. for my aunt. yet for my friends% sakes. :untingdon. %$ut. for my own sake. but so has she. =. Indeed. -sther is full of her first season in town. and very. that I was obliged to enter into further details to convince him that my husband was utterly incorrigible. I pity you. but -sther had the audacity to refuse the noble gifts. I sometimes fear she%ll overcome me after all.% said I. which I was ready enough to promise# for though.% %+h. and the gentleman himself will cease to pester you with his addresses if he finds them steadily rejected. and your mamma will soon relinquish her persecution. :e deemed my fears for 'rthur disproportioned to the circumstances. and making myself a burden on her hands.% %I knew you would say so.o obviate that. is so seriously displeased at my perversity and absurd caprice. 1ou can%t imagine how she lectures me# I am disobedient and ungrateful. but she is still heart)whole and unengaged. she says. and devised so many milder methods for ameliorating my condition. stand firm. and then break my heart and say. :untingdon. as I had intended before. for the poor tenants of (rassdale. though mamma affirmed you would be quite shocked at my undutiful conduct. rs. -sther. as marry a man you dislike. against the time comes round again. and certain to bring the punishment it deserves. 2tand firm. 2o she has brought me home. I will stay if I possibly can. you may leave them. I am thwarting her wishes. nothing would answer but this. she has given him to understand that I have refused his offer. if you had seen the man they wanted to palm upon me. but still. and that.<rederick was exceedingly indignant against r.% .% %Well. compared with my present situation. and opposed so many objections to my plan. no0 mamma will weary all about her before she tires herself with her exertions. for ilicent and -sther. whatever exalted ideas I may have of my own attractions. +ldfield. :argrave and her daughter are come back from &ondon. and. and very much grieved for me. as a place of refuge against a time of need. and that nothing could persuade him to give up his son. indeed. it%s all your fault0=% %"ray don%t0% said I. but hoped I would not take advantage of it unless circumstances should render it really necessary. but I can%t help it. it provokes me to such a pass that I feel inclined to do as she bids me. $ut ilicent begged me not to yield. %it is enough that you dislike him.% %I should have done so whether I had seen him or not. he being as fully determined the child should not leave him. :er mother sought out an excellent match for her. she has no doubt. and cannot at present reconcile myself to the thoughts of marriage under any circumstances# but by next season. wronging my brother. I have a strong said she# %mamma was very greatly disappointed at the failure of her darling project. not from any dislike of his person. 1ou might as well sell yourself to slavery at once. mamma. ugly as sin. very angry at my obstinate resistance to her will. unless I surrender# she cannot afford to take me to town for pleasure and nonsense. but still he looked upon my project as wild and impracticable. as I was not to leave the child. to school me into a proper sense of my duty. you would have advised me not to take him too. unless I fled the country. in fact. my sisters in heart and affection. If your mother and brother are unkind to you. and when she says such bitter things. and it is not every rich gentleman that will consent to take me without a fortune. whatever became of me. 'nd Walter. that I fear he will never forgive me ) I did not think he could be so unkind as he has lately shown himself. and as for r. . above all. as he calls it. I shall have more sense. 3uly 5Hth. but remember you are bound to your husband for life. such a hermitage appears like paradise itself. but the naughty girl maintained he was old as 'dam. I had a hard time of it. and I%m sure. :e was a man of good family and large possessions. too. and even brought the gentleman to lay his heart and fortune at her feet. ) rs. I repeat. %+bedience from such a motive would be positive wickedness. and hopes my girlish fancies will be worn away. I believe she will not put herself to the expense of taking me up to &ondon again.

% %1ou are so grave. you must avoid it altogether. you must. .% %If such are your expectations of matrimony. I shall be able to stay. who I believe rather liked me ) but she threw every possible obstacle in the way of our better acquaintance. if 'rthur get so firmly attached to me. dear madam. I shall expect my husband to have no pleasures but what he shares with me.% CHAPTER XLII 2eptember 6st. by reason and affection. arriage may change your circumstances for the better. I shall be able to stay at (rassdale well enough ) that is.% %1our circumstances are peculiar. and now I must put the same question to you. it will be the worse for him. but I felt a tear on my neck. till you see good reason to part with them. till such a time of trial comes I will forbear to think of my quiet asylum in the beloved old hall. but I only half believed her. but have patience. and then. . I allow. for you spend half your life alone at (rassdale. If I thought myself doomed to old) maidenhood.%$ut I cannot leave them unless I get married. but they were younger sons. :untingdon goes about enjoying himself where and how he pleases. ) . and I shall not answer it. that%s all. +ldfield. to keep him pure from their contaminations.% %It is a very impertinent question. Wasn%t it provoking/% %I have no doubt you would feel it so. :untingdon. but.% %"ardon me. :untingdon yet. %from a young girl to a married woman so many years her senior. after a pause.% laughed I. however they may seem to grudge it. ) %I know you are not so happy as I mean to be. many other things to be considered. a mere cumberer of the ground @now that I know in what light they would regard itA. while r. and if such an occasion should never present itself. is perfectly intolerable. next spring. that though in single life your joys may not be very many. I should cease to value my life. and I cannot get married if nobody sees me. ?eep both heart and hand in your own possession. but it is possible that if you married him. I saw one or two gentlemen in &ondon that I might have liked. %When ilicent uttered the same discouraging sentiments concerning marriage.he thoughts of living on. rs. If he continue this plan. and many years are yet to pass before any one can set you down as an old maid# you cannot tell what "rovidence may have in store for you. he will be off again. comfort your mind with this reflection. even an occasional bevy of friends at the shooting season may be borne. and that is enough. at the (rove ) a hanger)on upon mamma and Walter. will not be more than you can bear. it is far more likely to produce a contrary result. at least. love. I would rather run away with the butler. your sorrows. indeed.% %2o thinks ilicent. and kissing me with playful affection. year after year. and mamma would not let me get to know them ) one especially. -sther.o r.% said -sther. in my private opinion. Fain hope. and if his greatest pleasure of all is not the enjoyment of my company. I fear0 but still.% said she. "erhaps he will stay among his friends till *hristmas. timidity and audacity. with an odd mixture of sadness and levity. do nothing rashly. laughingly throwing herself into my arms. When I tell you not to marry without love. remember you have a right to the protection and support of your mother and brother. but allow me to say I think otherwise. be careful whom you marry ) or rather. so well established in good sense and principles before they come that I shall be able. I asked if she was happy# she said she was. you might have more reason to regret it hereafter than if you married r. as she dropped her head on my bosom and continued. 'nd meantime. !emember you are not yet nineteen. I do not advise you to marry for love alone# there are many. why.

What do you think of that/% %It is a resolution you ought to have formed long ago. ) 1ou don%t want him. should you wish your sons to be like r.% %<ire and fury ) % . should you wish your wife to be ready to sink into the earth when she hears you mentioned. %it is from the best of motives. I%m a better man than you think me. I%m not thirty yet.% %2hould you wish your daughter to despise you ) or. and therefore more like him.o. after all. 1ou see.% %Impossible. to tell you the truth. and. :attersley have been staying at the (rove a fortnight# and as r. :argrave is still absent.o. she likes me all the same. and we were all enjoying ourselves in the garden ) I had a few minutes% conversation with that gentleman. :attersley0 you mistake her quiet submission for affection. and comporting myself from this day forward with all decency and sobriety. what%s more. $ut tell me. rs. I never passed a day without seeing my two friends. with a broad grin. when r. and the whole set of %em.% said I. %. while the ladies were amusing themselves with the children.% %'nd.ever mind my plain speaking. it is never too late to reform. %>o you want to hear anything of your husband. ilicent and -sther. though we can%t respect him. I told him I%d leave him if he didn%t mend his manners. it isn%t too late.% %$ut should you wish yourself to be like him/% %. and the weather was remarkably fine. and to loathe the very sound of your voice. unless you can tell me when to expect him home.o.% %1ou can%t continue as bad as you are without getting worse and more brutalised every day. 1ou can%t imagine what a jovial good fellow he is when he%s not fairly drunk. either there or here.% %Well.o. so I left him. I think you%re better without him.r. at least. but he%s such devilish good company. :untingdon/% said he. as a *hristian and the father of a family should do. sure enough ) for my part. is it/% %.% %Well. r. and no affection but what is mingled with the bitterest regret/% %+h. whatever I do. I%d rather be like myself. I%ve thought of it often and often before. :attersley had driven them over to (rassdale in the phaeton. %. do you/% said he.% I could not help smiling at the comical. finally. as long as you have the sense to desire it.% %I can%t. with little :elen and !alph. +n one occasion. I%m downright weary of him. and rs. no0 I couldn%t stand that. to feel no vestige of respect for you. I have serious thoughts of washing my hands of him entirely. :untingdon ) or even like yourself/% %:ang it0 no. half) confounded look he put on at this rather unusual mode of address. bad as I am. and he wouldn%t. %. half)angry. and the strength to execute your purpose.% %Well. We all have a bit of a liking for him at the bottom of our hearts. and shudder at your approach/% %2he never will. only just primed or half)seas)over. is :untingdon.

well)dispositioned children ) % %I know they are ) bless them0% %. dropping the subject of affection. I know. (rimsby and others.o. praising his goodness to the skies. and I don%t.% %"ooh. and finished the perusal at the window. worriting creature you imagine# she%s a little meek. but I am quite sure. once or twice. not accusing him. fading and melting away like a snow)wreath. she will love you less and less. to be sure.% :e followed me into the library. she will love you more.% %. a great deal better than you deserve. 2ince you will mistake her silence for indifference. 't the second. but with an evident.% %What is the cause of it then/ . and confound it. and a half)prophetic dread of the fall of that house so founded on the sand. affectionate body. for she%s only five)and) twenty. :attersley. In patient endurance of evil.hen why lay the blame on them/ ) I%ll tell you what it is# it%s silent fretting and constant anxiety on your account. if not in secret hatred and contempt.he latter was full of hope and joy. and hurriedly pass it across his face. that worry her to death between them. . there was an interval spent in clearing his throat and staring out of the window.hink of what she was five years ago. yet with a trembling consciousness that this happiness would not last. :untingdon. 'lmost at the commencement of the first letter I had the unexpected pleasure of seeing him blush. . though but half)expressed wish.% %1ou have done more towards it than you suppose.ow don%t burst into a tempest at that. r. since you are her other half. till all is lost in fear. I sought out and put into his hands two of ilicent%s letters# one dated from &ondon. and what she is now. pooh0 she%s not the susceptible. raise his hand.% %I know she was a little plump lassie then. with something of bodily fear on her own. mingled. but deeply regretting his connection with his profligate companions. and I%ll show you one or two of her letters ) no breach of confidence. and written during one of his wildest seasons of reckless dissipation. and silently . $ut hang it0 ) that%s not my fault. anxious. gave me back the letters. when you behave ill. ) which fall had shortly after taken place.% %. as :attersley must have been conscious while he read. but is continually dreading the close of such short)lived felicity. aversion. and make her thoroughly miserable/% %+f course not. I saw him.ot years. he turned round. she can only rejoice with trembling. apt to be rather sulky at times. she has no security. and if you behave worse. no confidence in your judgment or principles. and bitterness of soul. that if you behave better. $ut.%. peaceable. I hope. insinuating bitter things against r. When you behave well. that it were based on a surer foundation than the natural impulses of the heart. during a lucid interval. the other in the country. but quiet and cool in the main. and then. and most ingeniously throwing the blame of her husband%s misconduct on to other men%s shoulders. with a pretty pink and white face# now she%s a poor little bit of a creature. but he immediately turned his back to me.% %It%s her own delicate health. and ready to take things as they come.he former was full of trouble and anguish. abusing r. and I%m not going to. she forgets it is our duty to admonish our neighbours of their transgressions. should you wish to be the tyrant of her life ) to take away all the sunshine from her existence. *ould it be to dash away a tear/ When he had done. come with me. her causes of terror and misery are more than any one can tell but herself. I don%t mean to say she does not love you ) she does. the children give her more pleasure than pain# they are fine. when you married her. I suspect. after whistling a few bars of a favourite air. madam0 what would you make of me/ ) and the children.

and I should free. %+h. however. he cannot endure !achel. as usual. came in for her share of abuse. and I have one bright spot. and pushing her towards me. and ought to have done herself. it%s her doing. 'nd poor !achel. r. I shall not trouble myself to describe. . and you cannot do more than fulfil it# another must make amends for your past delinquencies. and poor ilicent will not be again disappointed. then placing his two hands on her shoulders.% %1ou never tried me. telling her her husband was predisposed to amendment before I added my mite of exhortation and encouragement. not :is curse.e. and since he had deprived me of every other occupation.% %(od help me. if I had made the attempt. if I had the handling of him much longer. very good you are0% %. inasmuch as your duty is only what you owe to your aker. 2omewhat to his wife%s astonishment. because he knows she has a proper appreciation of him.% :e stepped out at the glass door. and :is aid. not I. if (od had heard half your invocations of that kind.hey are now gone on a visit to :attersley%s father. then ) for I%m sure I need it. %. :untingdon returned about three weeks ago. or to be with them# I had already reduced the boy to little better than an automaton. whereon to rest my thoughts. his demeanour and conversation. overflowing with gratitude. :attersley. ilicent/% CHAPTER XLIII +ctober 6Jth. too. and saluted her with a hearty kiss and a strong embrace. 2hortly after they took their leave.% said he. If you intend to reform. I hope his good resolutions will not fall through. but no particular temptation has yet occurred to put his virtue to the test. I should only have bothered him by my clumsy efforts at persuasion. . and make him as gloomy an ascetic as myself. !alph ) we shall be so happy0 :ow very. a sketch of the great things he meant to do. %I couldn%t have influenced him. (od knows. :er last letter was full of present bliss. at least# the child%s education was the only pleasure and business of my life. do. however.e all the sunshine out of his heart. exclaiming. %but you see if I don%t make amends for it ) d)n me if I don%t0% %>on%t curse yourself.shook me by the hand. :is appearance. invoke (od%s blessing.% said he. 'fter that they will repair to their country home. not to say ridiculous. I disclaimed all title to it. and that I had only done what she might. as he gave it a hearty squee. and my feelings with regard to him. he lifted her off from the ground. he surprised me by the announcement of an intention to procure a governess for little 'rthur# I told him it was quite unnecessary.hank her. and pleasing anticipations for the future. %I%ve been a cursed rascal. ) r. :e said I was not fit to teach children.% said he. no0% cried she. by anything that I could have said.ay. then. and went to meet them. he gave her. I had broken his fine spirit with my rigid severity. and he more kind and thoughtful. illy. her hopes are not unfounded. .he day after his arrival. ) 2urely. he might surely leave me that. I%m sure. I followed at a little distance. you would have been in hell long before now ) and you cannot make amends for the past by doing your duty for the future. turning her round. :is mercy. just coming in with her sister. and burst into tears.% ilicent flew to thank me. :enceforth. at least. I suppose. Where%s %2he%s there. ) %>o. she will doubtless be somewhat less timid and reserved. at the present season# I thought I was fully competent to the task of teaching him myself ) for some years to come. for she suddenly threw her arms round him.

and still resisted the proposed addition to our family. but she could not gain his heart. I was not prepared to give her a very cordial reception. as she pretended. has learned to be suspicious herself. In her behaviour she was respectful and complaisant. and I was glad of it.his was a rather startling piece of intelligence. :untingdon. except. by whom she had been recommended. While she dressed me I explained to her my intentions and what . that I should have been thoroughly ashamed for any decent person to see him as he often was. I thought of my asylum in )shire. I imagined. and accompany herself sufficiently well on the piano. but told me they were now on the *ontinent. and made no further objections. I did not mention my suspicions to !achel. she entered my chamber with such intelligence that my resolution was taken before she had ceased to speak. I believe. and relented for a time. :er appearance was not particularly calculated to produce a favourable impression at first sight. but he would frequently look into the school)room to see how little 'rthur got on with his new companion. her intellect noways above mediocrity. though she only talked to me. in any degree. nor did her manners and subsequent conduct. %2he is a very estimable. and could sing like a nightingale. if the old lady%s eulogies are correct. and I knew it was my duty to watch and scrutini. but I soon checked that. and then she spoke so gratefully of the kindness she had experienced from its different members. he was seldom in a condition to be talked to. and was very attentive to his wants. :er fondness for her little pupil was overstrained. pious young person.e till those suspicions were either satisfactorily removed or confirmed. but she. and the utterance of a few cant phrases. . and watchful to anticipate them. and their present address was unknown to her. When iss yers arrived. and would sing and play to amuse him or us. that I reproached myself for my uncharitable thoughts and unfriendly conduct. . 2he had a fine voice. you will find her to possess all desirable qualifications for her position# an inordinate love of children among the rest. a sound of it in her voice. and an unknown and distant place of abode. when I was not there. I ventured to inquire her name and address. :er name is yers. she sat with us in the drawing)room. one morning. I have not seen her myself. but there was a laughing demon in his half)averted eye that boded no good. and I could only live by thinking of Wildfell :all. remove the prejudice I had already conceived against her. but. for he had engaged a governess already. 2he seemed afraid of me. and she was coming next week. 2he mentioned a common name. I should have felt her presence a great relief to come between us thus. but these were her only accomplishments. :ad she been other than she was.% 'll this was gravely and quietly spoken. and would start if I suddenly approached her. or how he had been led to make choice of her. %you needn%t be afraid. my suspicions too well founded for that. and therefore cannot give you a particular account of her person and conversation.% said he. indeed.I calmly defended our several qualifications as nurse and governess. :er piety consisted in an occasional heaving of sighs. In the evening. indeed. I asked the name and residence of the kind and pious family. :owever. 't last. and I was obliged to remonstrate with her on the subject of over)indulgence and injudicious praise. for I longed to know the truth# the atmosphere of (rassdale seemed to stifle me. but had had the good fortune to obtain a situation in a very pious family. 2he told me from the first she was %down of that new governess. having sojourned for half a century in this land of sin and sorrow. and so forth. and had been left an orphan from her childhood. and she was recommended to me by a respectable old dowager# a lady of high repute in the religious world. 2he told me she was a clergyman%s daughter. I never saw her speak much to r.% and I soon found she watched her quite as narrowly as I did. :er attainments were limited. so that all I had to do was to get things ready for her was a look of guile and subtlety in her face. and uplifting of eyes to the ceiling. but not for long# my causes of dislike were too rational. even to servility# she attempted to flatter and fawn upon me at first. but he cut me short by saying it was no use bothering about the matter.

much to the same effect. I then wrote three letters of adieu# the first to -sther :argrave. but I must give her some explanation of that extraordinary step I had taken# and that quickly.% %What signifies0% replied she. if it%s only to help and comfort them as I%ve loved like my own bairns# for all I%m too old to bide the thoughts o% leaving %em in trouble and danger. I sha%n%t mind it. %I should like it above all things. in some excitement. or else work among strangers# and it%s what I%m not used to# so you can please yourself. and her greater experience and better acquaintance with my circumstances. I can%t bear what my missis can/ surely I%m not so proud and so dainty as that comes to. besides. and cook. !achel0% cried I.% %. my future way of living will be so widely different to the past# so different to all you have been accustomed to ) % %>o you think. in which I told her that I found it impossible to stay any longer at (rassdale. I then gave her his address. and never mind the wages# I%ve my bits o% savings yet. and if you wouldn%t take me I should have to find my own board and lodging out of %em somewhere. too. !achel. %'nd. exhorted her to write frequently. (od bless him0% %$ut I%m young. won%t you/ I can do all that. %We%ll all go together.% %$less you. $y that morning%s post I despatched a few hasty lines to <rederick. affectionately returning my embrace.% she replied. fiddle0% ejaculated she. reiterated some of my former admonitions regarding her own concerns. beseeching him to prepare my asylum for my immediate reception# for I should probably come to claim it within a day after the receipt of that note# and telling him. and bade her a fond farewell. in few words. %'nd what will you do. but could not avoid. as befitted our longer intimacy. through the medium of whom I hoped still to correspond with my friends. the cause of my sudden resolution. and we%ll do right enough. but with you. as I had no other means of recompensing her for this sudden dismissal after her long and faithful service# a circumstance I most deeply regretted.% %. .% :er voice quavered as she spoke. or to leave my son under his father%s protection. as it was of the last importance that our future abode should be unknown to him and his acquaintance.or me either# I%m not so old but what I can stand hard fare and hard work. and 'rthur is young too# it will be nothing to him. and going amongst strangers myself.he second was to ilicent. and I%d give you such wages as I could afford# such as I should give to any servant)of) all)work I might employ# but don%t you see I should be dragging you down with me when you have done nothing to deserve it/% %+h. and told her which of my things she was to pack up.hen you sha%n%t. embracing my faithful friend. or seek another place/% %I have no home. .% returned I# %I must be my own maid and my child%s nurse. %+nly let us get shut of this wicked house. !achel/% said I. and you shall see how the new life suits you. and what she was to leave behind for herself. you%ll see.% was my answer. but a little more confidential. and my little master.assistance I should require from her.% %$ut I can%t afford to live like a lady now. and so that point was settled. . and therefore I had left it to the last. %will you go home.he third was to my aunt# a much more difficult and painful undertaking. and the tears stood in her eyes. !achel. %and if I leave you I%ll never go into place again as long as I live.% %2o think I. I should disclose it to no one but my brother. %1ou%ll want somebody to clean and wash. and. ma%am. ma%am. honey0% cried she. ma%am.

whatever I left would most likely become the property of iss yers. I became so greatly agitated that I knew not what to do. %. and I trusted they would not afflict themselves on my account. I trust. to meet him and her as usual. and there are her own things to do. at first. and had nothing left me but to wait. I should be very happy.% %2omebody else may fill it to)morrow. with truth. I can ill afford to leave anything behind. devoting myself to the training up of my child. and I was sorry to trouble my friends with its consequences. as it was probable that r. :untingdon remarked the circumstance. and then lie down and gain an hour or two . but for the thoughts of them. and now my eyes feel heavy and my frame exhausted. I took up a book and tried to read# my eyes wandered over the pages. %I am not well. except a few guineas in my purse.% I replied# %I think I must lie down a little. it was absolutely necessary that he should be delivered from his father%s corrupting influence. r. and we were on our way at least0 . . so as to take up the smallest possible space. but it was impossible to bind my thoughts to their contents.for she and my uncle would no doubt hear of it within a day or two after my disappearance. but in my present state of nervous excitement that was entirely out of the question. however. I went down to dinner. but gradually my mind became more calm and steady. $ut shall we escape in safety/ +h. in order that she and my uncle might be able. and should be quite contented to spend my life in obscurity.% I muttered. as I left the room. when I was obliged to meet them. Why not have recourse to the old expedient. it%ll do just as well ) better. I hope. I hoped she and my uncle would pardon the step I had taken. $ut what trouble I have had throughout these two days. but any communications addressed to me under cover to my brother would be certain to reach me. you won%t miss me much/% %. as I closed the door upon him. but I could not force myself to eat. that <rederick may have more time to prepare the rooms. but did not say. %for I can fancy somebody else fills it. that the morning were come. . struggling to appear calm and collected. and forcing myself to leave my little 'rthur in her hands for hours together0 $ut I trust these trials are over now# I have laid him in my bed for better security.hese things were done yesterday# I have given two whole days to the preparation for our departure. a trifle. and I should not relish that. counting the hours and the minutes between me and the appointed time of action. and add this last event to my chronicle/ I opened its pages once more. and besides. when the removal of the second course gave him time to look about him. I was sure they would not blame me. for if they knew all. to recruit my strength for to)morrow%s journey. I can help to get the articles together. I should not disclose my place of refuge even to her. and teaching him to avoid the errors of both his parents. but I do not understand the art of stowing them into the boxes. straining my ears and trembling at every sound. %What%s to do with you now/% said he.% he muttered. shall his innocent lips be defiled by their contaminating kisses. as !achel observed.here0 I%ve seen the last of you. for if I could only reach my retreat in safety and keep it unmolested.% I thought. to deny all knowledge concerning it. but in duty to my son I must submit no longer. :untingdon would speedily apply to them to know what was become of me. I told her I was sensible of my error# I did not complain of its punishment. when I had given !achel all the assistance I could. !achel urged me to seek repose at once. and there is no one but me to assist her.hus several hours have passed away# the time is drawing near. since I have no money. as we must be gone before the dawn. or his young ears polluted by their words. and wrote the above account ) with difficulty. I will commend my cause to (od. and !achel to pack up the things# for the latter task must be done with the utmost caution and secrecy. and never more. It was equally out of the question to sit. or wander about my room. lest someone should discover and betray us after all. and wish and tremble. 't last. as well as mine and 'rthur%s.ot the least# if you leave your chair.his evening.

of sleep. but as the former was more staid and elderly. and still we were seven miles from our journey%s end. for one moment. with the fresh morning bree. It was not in the newest fashion. We had left (rassdale many miles behind us before the round red sun arose to welcome our deliverance. with a tear in his honest grey eye. as we bowled along on the top of the coach. attired in a plain black silk dress and mantle. 's I intend to be taken for a widow. and every step removed us further from the chance of that. and a host of good wishes depicted on his solemn countenance.hank heaven. and quietly conveyed down the back stairs after dusk. I paused. surrounded by an unknown country. and my faithful friend beside me# a prison and despair behind me. therefore. I am free and safe at last. $ut the journey was a very long one. and a crony of !achel%s besides. and we were all weary enough before the close of it. by way of remembrance. ) .he boxes were all corded by $enson. (raham. the scene of so much guilt and misery. and there was no more coaching. 'las0 I could offer no more# I had barely sufficient remaining for the probable expenses of the journey. y mother%s maiden name was (raham. and prefer it to any other. of course. which I dare not resume. and a black silk bonnet. I scarcely think they would have suspected our identity. and then0 ) &ittle 'rthur sleeps soundly. I thought it advisable to enter my new abode in mourning# I was. where $enson stood ready with a light. 'll was dark and still# no light glimmered in the windows. a black veil @which I kept carefully over my face for the first twenty or thirty miles of the journeyA. except a common cart. It was far into the night when we reached the town of &). what delight it was to be thus seated aloft. and either $enson or 3ohn would have been willing to serve me. as we issued from the park0 . I slipped two guineas into his hand. I only hope he may not be brought into trouble thereby. 's I bade farewell for ever to that place.e in my face. and therefore I fancy I have some claim to it. slowly and stealthily descended to the hall. for want of such an article myself. Ec. and gave her more the appearance of an ordinary though decent old woman. . but none the worse for that. as far as necessity demanded. and liberty and hope before0 I could hardly refrain from praising (od aloud for my deliverance. I felt glad that I had not left it before. under present circumstances. which I had been constrained to borrow of !achel. What trembling joy it was when the little wicket closed behind us. We were obliged to let one man into our secret on account of the boxes. and if any inhabitant of its vicinity had chanced to see us then. than of a lady%s)maid. and wrapped in a coarse woollen shawl. except my own. no wreath of smoke obscured the stars that sparkled above it in the frosty sky. for now there was no doubt about the propriety of such a step ) no shadow of remorse for him I left behind. and sent away in a cart to the ) coach)office. or astonishing my fellow) passengers by some surprising outburst of hilarity. bracing air. and that with . further back at every clatter of the horses% feet. and !achel was muffled in a grey cloak and hood that had seen better days. as he stood in the doorway. +h. I of course directed her to make choice of him as her assistant and confidant on the occasion. sunshiny road. receding further. and only wish I could reward him for the perilous service he was so ready to undertake. .here was nothing to disturb my joy but the fear of detection. swiftly and quietly dressed. and venture one look back upon the house. nor any conveyance to be had. 'll the servants were but too well acquainted with their master%s conduct.hen. to open the door and fasten it after us. -arly we rose. gloriously smiling in the yellow lustre of those early beams. all smiling ) cheerfully. rumbling along the broad. with my darling child in my arms. which appellation I mean henceforth to adopt. 'rthur was clad in his plainest clothes. almost as happy as myself. .he name upon the cards was rs. 'll the house is still# there can be no one watching. CHAPTER XLIV +ctober 58th. to inhale one draught of that cool. holding the candle to light our departure.

and which had been kept as antiquarian relics in my brother%s present residence. which. and another smaller one. one faint red glimmer cheered us from a window where the lattice was in good repair. but. but surely in this lonely spot I might remain unknown. slowly dragged and cruelly shaken over the rough. beside my little 'rthur. cold and weary as we were. 't last we began to ascend a terribly steep and stony lane. for the sun was high in heaven. and little thought to come again so many years after. with all due formality. 'nd a dreary ride we had of it. into a tolerably snug little apartment. all well aired and seemingly in good repair. Was it all blackness and desolation/ . there were two bedrooms. and took a hasty survey of our new abode. and we should find them all dark. We had not far to go. in spite of the darkness. after all our toil/ 't length the grim. . to be sure. in all haste. :ere she procured us a light. nothing to lean against. then. but only partly furnished with a few old articles. a good)si. with his gentle kisses. grey sky above and the desolate wilderness below. and lie down in the gloomy. but now. the veritable ones that had been there before. safely clasped in my arms. and in breathless anxiety surveyed the ruinous mass. !achel said she remembered well# she had often walked there with me in her arms. and comfortless. It was little 'rthur that roused me. the rank growth of grass and weeds. latticed windows. while we disencumbered ourselves of our travelling) gear. ) and the bleak and barren fields beyond might have struck me as gloomy enough at another time. though obscured by rolling masses of autumnal vapour. the narrow. but he would do himself the pleasure of calling upon her to)morrow. and furniture.he scene. indeed. where the dark stone walls and iron gate. roused the fire to a cheerful bla.ed parlour. weary as I was.% I was glad to ascend the stern)looking stone staircase.the greatest difficulty. under such circumstances as the present. . . :e was here. :e was asleep in a minute.he lane conducted us round by the back way. transported back again. had the broad sea rolled between my present and my former homes. and the waking was delightful beyond expression.he large bare room. :e came that morning. my excited feelings and restless cogitations kept me awake till dawn began to struggle with the darkness. alone remained to tell that there had been once a garden. . hilly roads. 'rthur being now awakened by the jolting and the stoppages. but after due knocking and waiting. I should rejoice with more security. and told me. we all got out and walked. but sleep was sweet and refreshing when it came. sitting on our boxes. destitute of food. and I have had several interviews with him since. and between us we managed pretty well to shield him from the cold night air. $ut 'rthur was asleep in !achel%s lap. which <rederick had now fitted up as a kitchen. and soon prepared a simple repast for our refreshment. for half the town was in bed.he old woman brought my supper and 'rthur%s into the parlour. formerly the scullery of the mansion. chiefly of ponderous black oak.e. . was not remarkably cheerful in itself. to receive her further commands. that last stage of the journey. (raham. and the hardy evergreens of preternatural forms. $esides the kitchen. with nothing to cling to. and then I had my brother here to cheer my solitude with his occasional visits. old)fashioned bed. that %the master desired his compliments to rs. but what if <rederick should not have received my letter/ or if he should not have had time to prepare the rooms for our reception. and now. either within or without. and many leagues away from his unworthy father0 $road daylight illumined the apartment. revealing the dull. each separate object seemed to echo back my own exhilarating sense of hope and freedom# indefinite dreams of the far past and bright anticipations of the future seemed to greet me at every turn. We entered the desolate court. and some parleying with a voice from an upper window. with its grim old furniture.o. damp.he door was fastened. but he is obliged to be very . dark pile appeared before us. and he had prepared the rooms as well as he could upon so short a notice. we were admitted by an old woman who had been commissioned to air and keep the house till our arrival. fire. which I destined for my studio.

not. if not to find them there ) and has told so many lies. :untingdon is making every exertion to discover the place of my retreat. I have put it aside. and never to behold that father%s face again ) a blessing I hardly dare reckon upon.cautious when and how he comes. that my uncle more than half believes him. :e gave me no account of his reply. as I thought. at the moment. . the haunting dread of discovery. I have now been here nearly a fortnight. whether of the truth or of some slanderous falsehood. not even his servants or his best friends must know of his visits to Wildfell ) except on such occasions as a landlord might be expected to call upon a stranger tenant ) lest suspicion should be excited against me. $ut he does not want me back. full of cool impudence such as would astonish any one who did not know him. and a tolerably well)stocked bookcase in my parlour. . she put up a portrait of r. because I had not made it handsome enough. I have a few pictures already done. but chiefly that I may compare my son%s features and countenance with this. I see no beauty in it ) nothing pleasing in any part of its expression. nor yet to remind me of my former folly. he will indulge the whim and let me do so unmolested. $ut my aunt knows better# she is too cool and cautious. :e has been in person to 2taningley. as if exulting still in his power to control my fate. I think. when I know that I am paying my way honestly. I am convinced. is handsome enough. as he grows up. when I took it from the box and beheld those eyes fixed upon me in their mocking mirth. it will serve for another painting. . business)like appearance already. my earnings. <rederick showed me a letter he had received from that gentleman. dissatisfaction.he picture itself I have not destroyed. except to tell me that he had not acknowledged his acquaintance with my place of refuge. and that what little I possess is legitimately all my own. from any lurking tenderness for the memory of past affection. he wants my child. and she executed her commission but too well ) for among the rest. I am comfortably settled in my new home# <rederick has supplied me with all requisite furniture and painting materials# !achel has sold most of my clothes for me. for I told !achel to pack up all I had. provided I will immediately deliver up his son. and thus be enabled to judge how much or how little he resembles his father ) if I may be allowed to keep him with me still. but such as. It struck me with dismay. as I had first intended. :ow widely different had been my feelings in painting that portrait to what they now were in looking upon it0 :ow I had studied and toiled to produce something. if I can possibly effect it without offending him too deeply. but for one disturbing care. and deriding my efforts to escape. and. and procured me a wardrobe more suitable to my present position# I have a second)hand piano. not that there is the slightest necessity for anything of the kind. my frugal fare.he frame. and household economy. though it were to save both him and me from starving# it would be better that he should die with me than that he should live with his father. I shall make him take the last penny I owe him. and strongly advocates my going back to him and being friends again. :untingdon that I had painted in the first year of my marriage. but it pleases me to do so# I shall have so much more pleasure in my labour. It seems r. and gives my friends to understand that if I prefer living apart from him. and too well acquainted with both my husband%s character and my own to be imposed upon by any specious falsehoods the former could invent.ow. in a distant town. and my other room has assumed quite a professional. and with such unblushing coolness. but rather left it to be inferred that it was quite . and yet it is far handsomer and far more agreeable ) far less repulsive I should rather say ) than he is now# for these six years have wrought almost as great a change upon himself as on my feelings regarding him. $ut heaven help me0 I am not going to sell my child for gold. worthy of the original0 what mingled pleasure and dissatisfaction I had had in the result of my labours0 ) pleasure for the likeness I had caught. and that no one suffers for my folly ) in a pecuniary way at least. none would know better how to answer than my brother. seeking redress for his grievances ) expecting to hear of his victims. however. and even settle a reasonable allowance on me. I am working hard to repay my brother for all his expenses on my account.

he fine gentleman and beau of the parish and its vicinity @in his own estimation. I could tell that. if all were well. to have seen how much of love there was in her regard. that wherever she might be. most certainly r. I had . however. however. her opinion of me had been lower than I deserved. but I am under such constant dread of his being snatched away. till it reach the ears of some one who will carry it to the &ord of (rassdale anor. that I should obtain no benefit from the attendance. .unknown to him. 't any rate. and perhaps fallen into another in the opposite extreme# for if. or however situated. GGGGG :ere it ended. all more or less bent upon discovering who and what I am. IJth. that I am never easy when he is not by my side. unless it be to go to church. I mean. upon inquiry.ovember Ird. it may lead to the ruin of my son. ) 'las0 my kind neighbours will not let me alone. . though not very favourably. and oblige myself to leave him in charge of !achel for a few hours. :ow cruel. and her hard thoughts of our sex in general. and watched the progress of her esteem and friendship for me. I find that any of them live too far away for 'rthur to accompany me. I shall be expected to return their calls. . for I cannot bear to leave him. . $y some means they have ferreted me out. for he @<rederickA fancied he knew enough of his sister to enable him to declare. of course.he rest was torn away. I know I should derive great comfort and benefit from an occasional attendance at public worship. and surely (od in :is mercy will preserve me from so severe a trial# for my child%s own sake. she had long since seen her error. as well by those few words as by the recollection of her whole aspect and demeanour towards me in the commencement of our acquaintance. if I could only have faith and fortitude to compose my thoughts in conformity with the solemn occasion. at first. and the vicar has been to scold me for my neglect of the ordinances of religion. if not for mine. . I had no sufficient excuse to offer. . I was convinced that now my deserts were lower than her opinion. whence I came. and their curiosity annoys and alarms me# if I gratify it. for I do not wish to be set down as an infidel. by saying it was useless to apply to him. ) I have made some further acquaintance with my neighbours.heir society is unnecessary to me. and why I have chosen such a home as this. :untingdon would be the last person to whom he should communicate the intelligence. he should see me in my pew next 2unday. and I have had to sustain visits from three different families. . and I fear these nervous terrors would so entirely disturb my devotions. for information on the subject. :e will not suffer him to be torn away. but that if he had known it. to say the least. It will be a hard task. and whatever warmer feeling she might have. no consideration would induce her to deliver him up. just when she was going to mention me0 for I could not doubt it was your humble servant she was about to mention. when I saw to what brilliant specimens her experience had been limited. and on the dreadful possibility of finding him gone when I return. Well0 I could readily forgive her prejudice against me. they must expect in vain for a while. as it appeared I had been driven to such extremity that I had concealed my retreat even from my best friends. to make the experiment next 2unday. but surely no imprudence. and that he need not trouble himself to bargain for the child. I would have given much to have seen it all ) to have witnessed the gradual change. besides. and I promised. and rouse them to greater exertions ) and perhaps be the means of spreading my fame from parish to parish. perhaps the latter portion had been removed for fear of ministering too much to my self)conceit. and if I am too mysterious it will only excite their suspicions. !especting me. or should at any time be made aware of it. but if. invite conjecture. at leastA is a young . and. or any other of my relations. and forbid them to be for ever dwelling on my absent child. and if the former part of this continuation had been torn away to avoid wounding my feelings. and I have not attempted that yet# for ) it may be foolish weakness. and how it had grown upon her in spite of her virtuous resolutions and strenuous exertions to ) but no.

and shame and deep remorse for my own conduct. and seeing how completely he extinguished all her affection at last. CHAPTER XLV Well. the rooks cawing. sir ) she%s poorly. I could manage. and pushing . I leave you to imagine. :untingdon%s wrongs or unmoved by her sufferings. I opened the window and put out my head to catch the cooling bree. $ut I did not think of that# a confusion of countless thoughts and varied emotions crowded upon me while I ga. not that I was at all insensible to rs. but how willingly I sought my pillow. only the more dangerous in being more esteemed and trusted by her mistress. :argrave. %$e so good as to announce me. giving place to two distinct emotions# joy unspeakable that my adored :elen was all I wished to think her ) that through the noisome vapours of the world%s aspersions and my own fancied convictions. was to relieve my mind of an intolerable burden.ow. and especially to myself. % issis can%t see any one to)day. I suppose. and wait the return of daylight. %Indeed. and my fury against him. what do you think of all this/ and while you read it.e. I tell you. . !achel. however. I must confess. I chose the latter. the swallows were twittering round me. and stainless as that sun I could not bear to look on. but every kindly impulse was checked by the look of cold distrust she cast upon me on opening the door. at the expense of alarming the house. :alford. When it was ended. you can%t.% 3ust in time to prevent me from committing the impropriety of taking the citadel by storm. . as if some friend had roused me from a dreadful nightmare. and brought the manuscript to the window.ed abstractedly on the lovely face of nature. r. ' splendid morning it was. but it was impossible to read it yet. for my candle had expired in the midst of my perusal. +n my mother%s account. however.en dew lay thick on the grass.% said I. to me. her character shone bright.% replied she. and she had done well to keep it from me. and my transient regret at its abrupt conclusion was over. leaving me no alternative but to get another. arkham.he old virgin had constituted herself the guardian of her lady%s honour. and imbibe deep draughts of the pure morning air. 2oon. little honourable as it may be to human nature. and cows lowing in the distance. %$ut I must see her. settling her countenance in still more iron frigidity than before. with a little difficulty. sir. Immediately after breakfast I hurried over to Wildfell :all. this chaos of thoughts and passions cleared away. placing my hand on the door to prevent its being shut against me. and fill my heart with joy. in spite of all my sympathy for her. . (raham. ) that the former half of the narrative was. and early frost and summer sunshine mingled their sweetness in the air. did you ever picture to yourself what my feelings would probably be during its perusal/ ost likely not. or to go to bed. and with intense and eager interest. more painful than the latter. and then returned to it again. !achel had risen many degrees in my estimation since yesterday. 't the first appearance of dawn. I rose. It was now near eight o%clock in the morning. she%s poorly. but. the half)fro. and right to see it# all this was too sacred for any eyes but her own. in answer to my inquiry for rs. I felt a kind of selfish gratification in watching her husband%s gradual decline in her good graces. I was ready to greet her quite as an old friend. but I am not going to descant upon them now# I will only make this acknowledgment. I devoured the remainder of its contents.he effect of the whole.% said she. and doubtless she saw in me another r. I devoted half an hour to dressing.% %It%s no manner of use. and how much sleep it brought me.

%:ave you looked it over/% she murmured. and went to the window. she abruptly turned away. repressed by resolute firmness. but soon ) and you must never come again. without turning her head.% %.% said he. I knew by the contraction of her brow. for tears prevented any other reply. %1ou must not come again. ) %I hardly can. stood the tall. .he spell was broken. she paced twice or thrice through the room.forward was a slight tremor in her voice. wasted with many sorrows. till necessity obliged me to make it. arkham. :elen/ just when I love you more than ever. sullen despondency. I persuaded myself it was so ) that we might severally ask and receive each other%s pardon for the past. was the tone of anguish. r. the dog. ) %and I want to know if you%ll forgive me ) if you can forgive me/% 2he did not answer. suddenly turning from me. I have reaped the bitter fruits of my own error. to convey that lily hand to my lips. then.% !achel retired with a sigh. an inner door opened. . advancing into the room. if it be so.% she resumed. I thought. ) %. and turning to me. %Will you promise not to come/ ) if you won%t. %I%ve read it through.% cried she.ever again. and I might well shrink from such a disclosure. dark eyes were fixed on mine with a ga. :e sei. as usual. 'nxious and pale. 2he suffered these wild caresses without resistance or resentment. but her eyes glistened. and approaching the high. $ut you forgive me/ ) I have done %1ou must know why I tell you so. I was well assured. said calmly ) if that might be called calmness which was so evidently the result of a violent effort.% $itter. and smilingly drew me forward. ) %*an you forgive me/% It might be deemed a breach of trust. %and I am to go out and play with !over.% %<or that very reason. in which this was spoken. very wrong. and murmured in a voice she strove in vain to steady. and fervently kissed it again and again. I did not answer. you will drive me away before I know where to .% continued she. but our intercourse must end here. and wringing of her hands. I shall leave this place. and looked in her face. carved chimney) piece. and if you do come here again.ed my hand between both his. I therefore ventured to follow and stand beside her there. %it was not that. 2he gave me her hand. ) and must reap them to the end. %and you must see that it is better to part at once# ) if it be hard to say adieu for ever. before the fire)place. and smilingly replied. and little 'rthur appeared with his frolicsome playfellow.% said I. and dropped my forehead upon it in silent. I cast the manuscript on the table. no. that meantime a violent conflict between reason and passion was silently passing within. but if I had told you anything of my history. I must have told you all.e so intensely earnest that they bound me like a spell. graceful figure. we should not meet again. % amma says you%re to come in. It was no want of confidence in you. I thought this interview was necessary ) at least. .% 2he paused. I raised her hand to my lips. It shows a want of confidence ) % %+h. but I thought her whole manner was provokingly composed. as soon as I have means to seek another asylum. It was not in anger. in order to excuse my conduct. (ilbert. 1ou should have told me this before. indeed. the tight compression of her lips. but there can be no excuse for another. and a faint red mantled on her lip and cheek. eagerly interrupting me.ow. but only to conceal or control her emotion. 't length she paused before the empty fire)place. you ought to help me. . 's I approached. it was turned towards me. considering the dreadful sentence she pronounced.ow. I know. so I only gently pressed it between my own. I leant my hand against its heavy mouldings.% %-nd here0% echoed I. her clear. ) but not to speak. you must leave me ) not this moment. but. and I stepped into the parlour and shut the door.

% %1our brother0% ' pang of remorse and shame shot through me. don%t0% she cried. :er pale lips quivered.% %'nd he would be right. ) and not satisfied with that. as she nervously entwined them in the hair)chain to which was appended her small gold watch ) the only thing of value she had permitted herself to keep. and hid her face in her handkerchief. and I had not the courage to tell her. or to add ) as she presently did ) %I have power to bid you go. I won%t0% said I. %Instead of acting like a true friend. ) and more than this ought not to be# for you are young. it is a question of life and death0% 2he was silent.% %:elen.% said I. %$ut.% I said# %he would have all communion between us to be entirely at an end. %I cannot discuss the matter of eternal separation calmly and dispassionately as you can do.find another place of refuge ) or how to seek it. %there is little chance of my forgetting you. with a mildly reproachful look that seemed to say. :elen0% pleaded I. you do your utmost to fight against me ) when you know that0 ) % she paused. not daring to raise my eyes to her face.% I timidly suggested. had felt it. only don%t say that this meeting is to be our last. %<or (od%s sake. and every friend would tell us it was our interest. gently laying my hand on hers.o fiend could torture me like this0% %I won%t. and throwing herself into the old arm)chair. at least. (ilbert. through him. 2he had not heard of the injury he had sustained at my hands. $ut don%t be afraid. turning impatiently towards her. $ut I did not mean that <rederick should be the means of transmitting messages between us ) only that each might know. %that man is not your husband# in the sight of heaven he has forfeited all claim to ) % 2he sei. %1ou will not deny me that consolation/% %We can hear of each other through my brother. %<orgive me. %I will never utter another word on the subject. smiling sadly at my manifest discomposure. of the other%s welfare. as well as our duty. in a tone that would have pierced a heart of adamant. I had said an unjust and cruel thing. and the downcast eyes and burning blush too plainly showed that she. %$ut we may write. and her fingers trembled with agitation. $ut may we not still meet as friends/% %It will not do.% %. to forget each other.% continued she. and then she raised her eyes to mine. (ilbert. %1our brother will not help us. and you ought to marry ) and will some . breaking from me. :elen0% I began in a soft. It is no question of mere expedience with me. passionately. though we might not see it ourselves. mournfully shaking her head. low tone.% ) but I was not base enough to attempt to take advantage of her candour.ed my arm with a grasp of startling energy.% she replied. but I must needs follow it up with something worse. 's a friend of both. he would wish us both well.hen what must we do/% cried I. $ut immediately I added in a quieter tone ) %I%ll do whatever you desire. now# another time it might be different. It was scarcely prudent to make such an admission.% %'nd why not/ >on%t you know that every time we meet the thoughts of the final parting will become more painful/ >on%t you feel that every interview makes us dearer to each other than the last/% . don%t you attempt these arguments0 . %1ou must know that as well as I. I suppose. %and helping me with all your might ) or rather taking your own part in the struggle of right against passion ) you leave all the burden to me.% she added. %(ilbert. almost as much alarmed at her vehemence as ashamed of my own misconduct.he utterance of this last question was hurried and low.

) she maintained it to be madness# many men of r. %am young in years. because I feared you would not understand my views upon the subject. never mind# you might if you would# but I have not spent my solitude in utter idleness. would you wait twenty or fifteen ) in vague uncertainty and suspense ) through all the prime of youth and manhood ) and marry at last a woman faded and worn as I shall be ) without ever having seen me from this day to that/ ) 1ou would not. but I thought you would be more tranquil in your own mind if you knew you could not do it.ever mind our kind friends# if they can part our bodies. was at least no less so for the next. %I thought of that too. think.-F-! return0% said I. they may0% cried she. who. in terror lest she should deem it her duty to deny us this last remaining consolation. if we may never meet.% %I will go ) in a minute. . I have come to the right conclusion at last. you would even try to relieve them at the expense of your own. smilingly .rust my words rather than your own feelings now.% %Well. not that I should doubt your word if you promised not to visit me. $ut listen.% she added resolutely. interrupting my earnest protestations of unfailing constancy. as you do. and mingle in communion. 1ou think me cold and stony)hearted. and present. and if you knew how much they pain me you would cease at once. and never hope to meet again. I had intended that my new abode should be unknown to you as to the rest of the world.time. and in a few years you will see that I was right ) though at present I hardly can see it myself. it is enough. (ilbert. and likely to find less difficulty in abstracting yourself from me if you could not picture my situation to your mind. if that can relieve you ) and . and that of your future wife. whatever be the fate and circumstances of their earthly tenements/% %. %and when that profligate scoundrel has run through his career.% %. in your mouth they are ten times worse. I have argued these questions with myself. . is it a crime to exchange our thoughts by letter/ ay not kindred spirits meet. If you knew my present feelings. ) and therefore I must and will wish it.% I boldly replied.% she continued. you will give your hand to me ) I%ll wait till then. :elen. and feeding thoughts that should be sternly and pitilessly left to perish of inanition. and future career. ) %or if you would. I fear it even now ) I fear any kind friend would tell us we are both deluding ourselves with the idea of keeping up a spiritual intercourse without hope or prospect of anything further ) without fostering vain regrets and hurtful aspirations. in this matter I know better than you.% she murmured with a sigh as she rested her head on her hand. but I feared to mention it. believe me.% said she. :elen.% said she. both for your own happiness. in (od%s name. with a momentary burst of glad enthusiasm. and I am not speaking now from the impulse of the moment. and pondered well our past. %'nd if I.rust me. and you may. %without giving fresh food for scandal. %$ut no letters can pass between us here.% $ut she would not leave me this support. (ilbert. but ) % %I don%t.% said she. let them not sunder our souls0% cried I. It was hard enough to combat those suggestions as they were whispered within me. I know it is right that you should. though you may think it impossible now# and though I hardly can say I wish you to forget me. and whose amelioration would thus become our bane and his greatest transgression our greatest benefit. but even if trouble should fail to kill me before vice destroys him. %$ut.hey may. with bitter emphasis. you should not. and. I have thought of all these matters again and again. Independently of the moral evil of basing our hopes upon the death of another. %'nd you are young too. I know. %'nd don%t argue against me any more# all you can say has been already said by my own heart and refuted by my reason. and when I departed. :untingdon%s habits had lived to a ripe though miserable old age. if he reached but fifty years or so. I am old in sorrow. if unfit for this world.

) write. my earthly nature cannot rejoice in the anticipation of such beatitude. there is perfect love in heaven0% %2o perfect. here is another#) We are children now. after a moment%s pause. because we cannot conceive that as we grow up our own minds will become so enlarged and elevated that we ourselves shall then regard as trifling those objects and pursuits we now so fondly cherish. but would not all such sorrow be misplaced/ 'nd if that illustration will not move you.% %2ix months0% %1es. when it is mutual. and love you beyond every other creature. $ut this thought of final separation was too intolerable# it seemed to squee. I suppose.% %. with her hands resolutely clasped together. (ilbert. Why can%t we part at once/% exclaimed she. contemplate with delight this prospect of losing me in a sea of glory/% %I own I cannot. cannot possibly regret it. enough has been said between us. all spirit ) such as disembodied souls or unimpassioned friends. :elen. but I am supposing we shall have no more intimate communion with each other than with the rest. Increase of love brings increase of happiness. %We shall meet in heaven. that it soars above distinctions. roving at will from flower to flower. no doubt they would regret it. at least. and her face was deadly pale. but we know not that it will be so. and my feet were glued to the floor. I thought it was my duty to go without delay. might hold. and think you can maintain a correspondence all thought.putting up her finger to check my impatient reply# %in six months you shall hear from <rederick precisely where I am. be infinitely better and happier than I am now. and pure as that will be.% %Whatever I am. then/% %. from which itself and its chief joy must be excluded. and try the truth and constancy of your soul%s love for mine. and we understand as children. %'nd must we never meet again/% I murmured. and when we are told that men and women do not play with toys. we cannot help being saddened at the thoughts of such an alteration. with a frame perfect and glorious. as she suddenly rose from her chair. I shall not be myself.% %Is your love all earthly. and though. If these little creatures knew how great a change awaited them. I know. ) and I do know that to regret the exchange of earthly pleasures for the joys of heaven.% I could not help replying. and not each other less. it will be because we love them more. if ever I win heaven at all.o.% %If so. is as if the grovelling caterpillar should lament that it must one day quit the nibbled leaf to soar aloft and flutter through the air. and you will have no closer sympathy with me than with any one of the ten thousand thousand angels and the innumerable multitude of happy spirits round us. and whatever that change may be we know it must be for the better. and I approached and half extended my hand as if to take leave ) she grasped it in silence. and that our companions will one day weary of the trivial sports and occupations that interest them and us so deeply now.% %$ut can you. I must. 'nd now. in the anguish of my soul. perhaps.e the blood out of my heart. %$ut not as we are now. and if you still retain your wish to write to me. &et us think of that.o. almost wildly. but not like this0 ) and a heart. and I will answer you. %It gives me little consolation to think I shall next behold you as a disembodied spirit. but her eyes glittered wildly. and . we feel as children. entirely estranged from me. or an altered being. therefore.% %$ut if I am to be so changed that I shall cease to adore you with my whole heart and soul.% said she in a tone of desperate calmness. and. or basking in their sunny petals. sipping sweet honey from their cups. you will be the same. to give your present ardour time to cool.

o. till I had learnt to live without them. clearing the stone fences and hedges as they came in my way. ( was little business done that day. my eyes. where both will behold the same glorious truths. but inwardly determined to take no denial. however. with the eternal music in my ears. the young squire%s abode. when my spirits were more composed. uncrushed though not encouraged. I have a confused remembrance of seeing little 'rthur running up the garden)walk to meet me. I waited calmly in the hall to be announced.ow. no more striving against sin. I was not going to be baulked. though our companions will no longer join us in those childish pastimes. %1ou shall not have the pain of another effort to dismiss me. no0 I must ask his pardon to)day. after all that had been said on the subject.he farm was abandoned to the labourers. chequered shades restlessly playing over the bright sunny grass at my feet. without violence. but there they must lie for a while. $ut one duty must be attended to. till I got completely out of sight of the old hall and down to the bottom of the hill. and I must see him to apologise for the unhappy deed. I found no little difficulty in obtaining admission to his presence. and entreat him to be lenient in his accusation.% exclaimed she. ' whispered %(od bless you0% and %(o ) go0% was all she said. I would fain have put it off till the morrow. and torn our spirits from their perishing abodes of clay. and struggling of the spirit against the flesh. you may be sure. . never write to me0% %:elen.that. while yet both we and they remain essentially the same individuals as before. however. the next I held her to my heart. but while she spoke she held me so fast that. we tore ourselves apart. %while this hope is strong within us ) % %We will part. and the labourers were left to their own devices. and mingle their souls with ours in higher aims and nobler occupations beyond our present comprehension. and the brook babbling and gurgling along its stony bed. they will drink with us at other fountains of delight. can you really derive no consolation from the thought that we may meet together where there is no more pain and sorrow. &awrence could see no one. . if the revelation must be made. then. and seemed to think it doubtful whether he would be able to see me. and drink exalted and supreme felicity from the same fountain of light and goodness ) that $eing whom both will worship with the same intensity of holy ardour ) and where pure and happy creatures both will love with the same divine affection/ If you cannot.% %. till the evening. but my heart was away up the hill in that dark room where she was weeping desolate and alone ) she whom I was not to comfort. he was feverish. and when ) oh. but not less deeply relished or less truly good for that. but )% I did not put my request in words# she understood it instinctively. and then of long hours spent in bitter tears and lamentations. by some heroic effort. not that I intended to cherish them. till years or suffering had overcome us both. .he servant that opened the door told me his master was very ill. . where now and then a withered leaf or two would come dancing to share the revelry. vacantly fixed on the deep. I deferred it.% I cried. and melancholy musings in the lonely valley. and I rushed from the house. I could not have obeyed her. not to see again. and this time she yielded too ) or rather. I can0 if faith would never fail. however. 't length. I had not forgotten my assault upon <rederick &awrence. +ne moment I stood and looked into her face. and of bolting over the wall to avoid him ) and subsequently running down the steep fields.he message was such as I expected ) a polite intimation that r. . for the most part. there was nothing so deliberate as requesting or yielding in the matter# there was a sudden impulse that neither could resist. $ut. wonderful perversity of human nature0 ) some faint germs of indefinite hopes were beginning to rise in my mind. and must not be disturbed. of the west wind rushing through the overshadowing trees. but what if he should denounce me to his sister in the meantime/ . 'rrived at Woodford. I will go at once. and we seemed to grow together in a close embrace from which no physical or mental force could rend us.

%or I shall be obliged to call for assistance. and so I plunged into it at once. or. or your presence either. only soliciting a caress from his hand or a kind word from his lips. and ama.ed upon me with equal degrees of nervous horror.% said I. %.% said I. and to beg your pardon. and held a small volume. too. with a faint smile bordering on a sneer# %to abuse your friend and knock him on the head without any assignable cause. but it%s no matter whether he pardons it or not. that.% ) muttered I. it might be. in some fashion.he invalid himself looked very interesting as he lay reclining there. his eyes were half closed. 'nd I advanced further into the hall and followed him nearly to the door of the apartment where his master was ) for it seemed he was not in bed. % ake your story a short one. (raham%s brother. &awrence. %but be quiet a minute. red fire was burning in the polished grate# a superannuated greyhound. I didn%t know that you were rs. :e raised himself on his pillows. stepping past the astonished footman.he answer returned was that r. and the blood left his cheek as he spoke.% replied he. Well. at last. looking wistfully up in its master%s face ) perhaps asking permission to share his couch. to express my regret for what has been done. however. I scarcely expected this0% he said. and I saw and heard some things respecting your conduct towards her which were calculated to awaken unpleasant suspicions. I stepped back. ' clear. until he became sensible of my presence ) and then he opened them wide enough# one hand was thrown listlessly over the back of the sofa. arkham.% 4nthinkingly. not liking the aspect of his face.ement depicted on his countenance. I boldly rapped at the door. he had been vainly attempting to beguile the weary hours. and.he room was spacious and handsomely furnished ) very comfortably. %it%s no matter.he truth is. %but I must see him for a moment# it is on business of importance that I wish to speak to him. :e dropped it. putting his hand on the small silver bell that stood on the table beside him. sat a smart young springer. entered. beside the sofa.% .% 'nd in truth the moisture started from his pores and stood on his pale forehead like dew. I chanced to overhear a part of a conversation between you and her that made me think I had a right to hate you. soft rug. %I should have made a very handsome apology. anger. a little candour and confidence on your part might have removed.% %I forgot to tell you that it was in consequence of a mistake. in his elegant dressing)gown. :e winced at my approach. apparently. 2uch a reception was hardly calculated to diminish the difficulties of my unenviable task. . %I have not acted quite correctly towards you of late ) especially on this last occasion. only I%ve done my duty ) that%s all. with a silk handkerchief bound across his temples. sir. &awrence hoped I would be so good as to leave a message or a note with the servant. allow me to say. . If you don%t choose to grant it.he fact is. %:e may as well see me as you.% answered I. with an expression of aversion and instinctive physical fear anything but conciliatory to my feelings.% said the man. and ga.% said he.%I shall not disturb him long. and I%m come to ) in short. lay basking before it on the thick. . and I%ll tell you what I came for. and then tell him the deed was not quite correct. and. for a bachelor. I advanced a step or two nearer.% %It%s easily done.% I added hastily.% said I. and closed it behind me. as he could attend to no business at present. however. % r. :is usually pale face was flushed and feverish. but you provoked me so confoundedly with your ). on one corner of which. given up to idleness and good living. I am in no state to bear your brutalities now. . %I know you didn%t. with which. and floundered through it as I could. in his start of indignant surprise as I advanced into the room and stood before him on the rug. I suppose it%s my fault. It must be performed however.% %I%ll tell him.

or perhaps committing the madness of coming to see me. %:ow dry and burning your hand is. and I have promised never to go near that house again while she inhabits it. will you just say that I deeply regret it. that you are aware of/% %I think not. in some anxiety. was little need to disguise his . arkham. and remember. "erhaps you can forgive my want of candour. %or she will be hearing some such story. was evidently relieved.% %+h. reflectively. 2he told me all.% he said. any would be glad to tell her such news. nobody can regret more sincerely than I do the result of my brutality. %If it were not for my promise. %1ou are really ill. &awrence. ) and address it in a disguised hand ) would you do me the favour to slip it into the post)office as you pass/ for I dare not trust any of the servants in such a case.% said I. in a tone of unqualified approbation. yes ) I remember it all# nobody can blame me more than I blame myself in my own heart. as long as you keep your good resolution of remaining aloof from her. and ) /% %+h.ever mind that. as well as deeds. now. as you rightly term it. never fear0 I shall say nothing against you. I would tell her now. it is nothing. and to put her on her guard against any exaggerated reports she may hear. and consign to oblivion everything that we have cause to regret.e. %1ou have done right. not mentioning you. how little encouragement to friendly confidence you have given me of late. only a cold got by the rain. &awrence. for I have been all this time tormenting myself with the fear that somebody would tell her I was dying. I am sorry for both our sakes that it should have occurred. did you mention this affair to my sister/% %. and I have made you worse by all this talk.% % y doing.%'nd how came you to know that I was her brother/% asked he. $ut tell me. y companion. for I%ve seen the last of her0% %. :ave you any objection to take my hand.o. 2he has not heard of my illness. %2he told me herself. and immediately brought him his desk. but just giving a slight account of my illness.o confess the truth.% I could have groaned aloud at the bitter thoughts awakened by this turn in the discourse. and she would be either distressing herself on account of her inability to hear from me or do me any good. too. 2he knew I might be trusted. however. . if I can.% continued he. and then she might expose herself to fresh scandal.% %1es. $ut I only clenched my hands and stamped my foot upon the rug. or desperately ill. but she has bid adieu to me. as some partial mitigation of the offence. by way of excuse for my not coming to see her. just to see how she would take it. $ut you needn%t disturb yourself about that. faintly smiling.% %. %'nd as for the mistake. which he had not the strength to return. r. %let us forget all unpleasant words on both sides.% said he.% %I%m glad of that. I must contrive to let her know something about it.% %$y no means0 I am not dreaming of that. but when you tell her. and dropped before I had time to catch it and give it a hearty squee.he last0 Is she gone. at any rate. while his face brightened into almost a sunny expression.% %I wish I had told her.% said I. I had not the courage to do so. or you%d rather not/% It trembled through weakness as he held it out. ) but if I were to write a short note. then/% %.% ost willingly I consented.% %.ever mind that.

and I promise your entrance shall not be disputed again. but. I would therefore wait patiently till these weary six months were over. attended with some partial success. . after asking if there was anything in the world I could do for him. I thought it time to retire. and made an effort to amend. and repairing the injury I had done.% but from my growing attachment to himself. >uring that time she never appeared at church. both in blood and in affection. or even mentioning her name in my presence. under the present circumstances. . and took leave.hand. I posted the letter on my way home. on due reflection. little or great. %you have already done much towards it. though sometimes I felt a pang of remorse for my undutiful conduct to her. and I am persuaded I shall soon recover now. for the poor fellow seemed to have considerable difficulty in writing at all.o. for I was not fit company for them. that. you have done more for me than the most skilful physician could do# for you have relieved my mind of two great burdens ) anxiety on my sister%s account. so as to be legible. and would express them if he dared. I don%t think anybody believed me. When the note was done. I was a very constant and attentive visitor to him throughout the whole period of his illness and convalescence. and in watching the passing changes in his fair. with my adored :elen. and indeed I was generally more humanised in my demeanour to her than to any one else. and I never went near the house# I only knew she was still there by her brother%s brief answers to my many and varied inquiries respecting her. to the shame of those who slandered her. but chiefly on account of his close connection. nor they for me. come and see me now and then ) for you see I am very lonely here. :untingdon upon the place of his wife%s retreat. CHAPTER XLVI I felt strongly tempted. if once she got a clue to the story. in the way of alleviating his sufferings. y poor mother was quite distressed about me. !ose and <ergus usually shunned my presence. and the increasing pleasure I found in his society ) partly from his increased cordiality to me. and at first I greatly regretted having omitted to ask that lady%s permission to do so. and observing the intonations of his voice. pale features. not only from the interest I took in his recovery. and deep regret upon your own# for I do believe these two sources of torment have had more effect in working me up into a fever than anything else. and such was my present appreciation of -li. and it was well they did. and I was permitted to write to her.% said he. and meantime I grow insupportably morose and misanthropical from the idea that every one I met was harbouring unworthy thoughts of the supposed rs. and my desire to cheer him up and make the utmost possible amends for my former %brutality. and departed with a cordial pressure of the hand. I should fear she would soon find means to enlighten r. (raham.a illward%s disposition. r. .here is one more thing you can do for me. at times. but I couldn%t help it ) at least I thought I could not. I loved him for it better than I liked to express# and I took a secret delight in pressing those slender white fingers. I considered that if it were known to them. rs. indeed. %. and then. most manfully resisting the temptation of dropping in a word from myself at the same time. considering he was not a woman. :untingdon did not leave Wildfell :all till above two months after our farewell interview. so marvellously like her own. I would beg to be allowed to clear her name from these vile calumnies# at present I must content myself with simply asserting that I knew them to be false. and would prove it some day. but everybody soon learned to avoid insinuating a word against her. when the fugitive had found another home.% I engaged to do so. :e provoked me at times. detecting resemblances which I wondered had never struck me before. to enlighten my mother and sister on the real character and circumstances of the persecuted tenant of Wildfell :all.hey thought I was so madly infatuated by the seductions of that unhappy lady that I was determined to support her in the very face of reason. it could not long remain a secret to the illwards and Wilsons. by his evident reluctance to talk to me about his sister. &awrence excepted. and that is.

he was not able to mount his pony till a fortnight after the date of our reconciliation. I should not desire her to regret me too deeply. that she seemed to be far more anxious lest you should think too much of her. but our conversation was chiefly on the subject of her intended departure. had she been inclined. and she is right to wish me not to remember her too well. %'s usual ) that is. than lest you should forget her. I have no doubt ) but so many trials have been almost too much for her. and seemed satisfied with my brief answers. and I believe it had not been his intention to mention it to me. and they are just in the midst of stacking my corn. far from happy and far from strong. if not to calm her apprehensions respecting his health. for no one knew of the visit but the inmates of the old :all.% was the brief though sad reply.% replied he. but I can scarcely imagine she will make herself very unhappy about me.o.% %'nd what else did she say/% %I cannot tell you all she said. :is recovery was not quite so rapid as he had expected it to be. except in my appreciation of her. :ow threatening those clouds look. %I%ve seen her already. quietly.% %$ut did she say no more about me/% %2he did not say much about you. :ave you got yours all in yet/% %.% continued he. %and she will recover her spirits in a while.% 'nd then he told me what considerations had impelled him to make the venture.% .% returned he.o. for when I came to see him the next day. but I don%t wish her to forget me altogether. it is not# I wish her to be happy. %1ou%ll never be able to see your sister. he merely said he had caught cold by being out too late in the evening. but he thought it necessary to consult with her on the subject of her projected departure. It was a ha. and observed he was not so well as he ought to have been. %for we talked a good deal. which I begged her to delay till I was better able to assist her in her search after another home. wherein she showed herself wiser than her friend. and the worst result was a slight relapse of his illness.% said he. in astonishment. instead of commiserating him. and with what precautions he had made it. and I may tell you. %1ou%ve seen her0% cried I. turning towards the window. %'s usual.ardous enterprise both for him and for her. %We shall have thunder) showers before night. arkham. 2he knows it is impossible that I should forget her. &awrence. too. though my stay was but short.% %2he is not positively ill. did she ) did your sister mention me/% %2he asked if I had seen you lately. if you don%t take care of yourself.though I did not question the friendliness of his motives in wishing to discourage my remembrance of her.% %.% said I.% %$ut I fear your anxiety is quite the other way respecting her. with a slight smile. a little provoked at the circumstance on her account. but happily she was not# she only asked a few questions concerning you. %1es. and the first use he made of his returning strength was to ride over by night to Wildfell :all. %'nd how was she/% I eagerly asked. because I know I am not worthy of it. 'nd.% %2he was right. to see his sister. I imagine. I should not have encouraged her to do so. except myself.

but. and my sister%s feelings are naturally full as keen as yours. ) nor yet by any feeling of malevolent enmity towards iss Wilson. %1es. &awrence. and I fear will be. I fear. as I walked beside his pony. he might have surmounted the objection. for I had no doubt that such was her determination.% returned he. as I can do. each has a more exalted opinion of the other than. at present. slightly averting his face# %I thought it but civil to take the first opportunity of returning their kind attentions.% said I.% %. and especially of her mother. I was actuated by no motives of revenge for the occasional annoyances I had lately sustained from him. with a feeling of less cordiality towards him than usual.%1ou are neither of you worthy of a broken heart. and I believe more constant. I imagined. believe me. you%re wrong there# she is not determined to forget me. though at the expense of his feelings. wasted upon you both. ) nor of all the sighs. as well for his own sake as for hers. and I now resolved to do him a good turn. was the consideration of her connections. but such was his inexperience. ) %. I instantly started a new topic of conversation. with a very perceptible blush. and her skill in bringing them to bear upon his young imagination. well0% was my only audible reply. and the companion of his life. It would be wrong to forget one so deeply and fondly devoted to her.% $ut I said no more to him on that subject. and soon took leave of my companion. In little more than a week after this I met him returning from a visit to the Wilsons%. but within two or three miles of Woodford it was really no light matter.% continued he. %>id she tell you that that was her intention/% %. "erhaps I had no right to be annoyed at him. and sorrowful thoughts that have been. I could not bear to think of his being deceived into a union with one so unworthy of him. %1ou%ve been to call on the Wilsons. or tender their advice unasked. he or she deserves. and such were the lady%s powers of attraction. and so utterly unfitted to be the partner of his quiet home. %is that any reason why I should not make a suitable acknowledgment/% . In this. but purely by the fact that I could not endure that such a woman should be rs. who can so thoroughly appreciate her excellencies. arkham0 Why not/% %+h. and perhaps at the risk of incurring that displeasure which is so commonly the reward of those who give disagreeable information. but I internally answered. the question was not broached between us# there was no necessity for it. :ad they lived at a distance. and that. and I believe the only effectual causes of the vacillating indecision that had preserved him hitherto from making an actual declaration of love.o.o forget me/% %1es. that they had not disturbed him long. :e had had uncomfortable suspicions on that head himself. but she has the good sense and fortitude to strive against them in this particular. :untingdon%s sister. but I was so nevertheless. and I trust she will not rest till she has entirely weaned her thoughts ) % he hesitated. &awrence.% replied he. when I have once so truly loved and known her.% said I. %'nd I wish you would make the like exertions.% %It%s all iss Wilson%s doing. and it would be wrong in me to forget so excellent and divine a piece of (od%s creation as she. since they have been so very particular and constant in their inquiries throughout the whole course of my illness. whom he could not abide.o.% %'nd if it is. and sympathise with all her thoughts. and tears. %<rom me.

were designedly the encouragers and chief disseminators of them. but no good or amiable woman would be capable of evincing that bitter.% interrupted my companion. shallow)minded ) % %-nough. till you have proved it to be otherwise.%It is a reason why you should not make the acknowledgment she looks for. but as you would not willingly marry iss Wilson if it were so. and let me explain myself. but her delight was.% %:ave you done/% asked my companion quietly.hen you have no right to make such an assertion respecting her. with a rather wintry smile ) %I%m glad you have overcome or forgotten your own afflictions so far as to be able to study so deeply the affairs of others. of course. but whether you do or not. %1es. and it would break your heart at last to find yourself united to one so wholly incapable of sharing your tastes. elegant. sensible.% %&et us drop that subject if you please. I must content myself with asserting that it is so to the best of my belief. determined he should not leave me yet.o. and I believe I know how far you are mistaken in your opinion# you think she is singularly charming. she should feel some degree of enmity against her.% %I never told you. arkham.o. %.% %Well0% returned he. and trouble your head so unnecessarily about the fancied or possible calamities of their future life. proudly. and I%ll tell you something. let me finish#) you don%t know that. but I laid my hand on its mane.% . cold)hearted. artful. arkham ) enough0% %. but ) % %.% said he.% said he. without risking too greatly the exposure of her own malevolence0% %I cannot believe it. now we%re about it. arkham. feelings. in her ignorance of the relationship. if you married her. to blacken your sister%s character to the utmost of her power. ) I know what you think of 3ane Wilson. &awrence. %. and refined# you are not aware that she is selfish. 2he was not desirous to mix up your name in the matter. and that in this case I can have no motive for misrepresenting the truth ) % %Well.o. %Wait a moment. as I cannot prove it.o. It may be natural enough that. what now/% % iss Wilson hates your sister.% % arkham0% %1es ) and it is my belief that -li.% %>id she tell you so/% %. in evident displeasure. his face burning with indignation. designing malice towards a fancied rival that I have observed in her. and still is. and true nobility of soul. cold)blooded. and don%t be so very ) I don%t know what to call it ) inaccessible as you are. that I intended to marry iss Wilson. ambitious. your home would be rayless and comfortless.a illward and she. she intends to marry you. if not the very originators of the slanderous reports that have been propagated. &awrence. which you may believe or not as you choose ) only please to remember that it is not my custom to speak falsely. but I don%t care if it only conduces to preserve you from that fatal mistake. ) I know you hate me for my impertinence. good feeling. with your leave we%ll continue it a while longer.% :e slightly quickened his pony%s pace. and ideas ) so utterly destitute of sensibility. %Well. you will do well to be cautious.

and have been. so moody and thoughtful of late. of course.a. is quite offended. but you look so very far from well. and they still preserved their former intimacy. <ormerly. and certainly my conscience has never accused me. leaving my brother to be more polite if he chose. too. half beside and half before my desk. -li. while I was inditing some business letters. 't the moment of her arrival. from that day to this. !ose had neither the discrimination nor the virulence to regard the little demon as I did. about the beginning of . that he soon learned to contemplate with secret ama. for. was not wholly unproductive of the desired effect# his visit to the Wilsons was not repeated. 's for 3ane Wilson. my mother and sister being both of them absent.% %'h0 well. indeed0 2omebody said you had been strangely neglecting your business these last few months. whoever else might so incline# I merely honoured her with a careless salutation and a few words of course. &awrence of Woodford :all. arkham. you. shortly after breakfast. and then went on with my writing. %What a pleasure it is to find you at home. he never mentioned her name to me. however. :ad I done wrong to blight her cherished hopes/ I think not.% said I. r. "apa. ) I have reason to believe he pondered my words in his mind. I can tell you. as she seated herself. in our subsequent interviews. and my well)meant warning. secretly compared my character of her with what he had himself observed and what he heard from others.% iss -li. but I was not going to lay myself out for her amusement. and to congratulate himself on the lucky escape he had made. all things considered. she. off the corner of the table.% %2omebody said wrong. as well as more thankfully received. eagerly though covertly sought information respecting the fair lady from other quarters. with a disingenuously malicious smile. $ut she wanted to tease me.We parted ) somewhat coldly again# but still we did not cease to be friends. %on household cares intent%.% said she timidly. %:ave you. and though. %I could have ventured to ask you what it was. nor I to him. and finally came to the conclusion that. I suppose.a illward came to call upon my sister. ) and. I believe. When I think you can do anything to comfort me. to console the afflicted. or hinted one word of acknowledgment for the part I had had in his deliverance. looking into my face with an impertinent laugh. I have been particularly plodding and diligent. there%s nothing like active employment.ement his former predilection.% %1ou%re very kind. by all accounts. without looking up from my letter. but this was not surprising to any one that knew him as I did. CHAPTER XLVII +ne morning. of any evil design in the matter. r. and what I could do to comfort you# I dare not do it now. for you never come to the vicarage.ovember. ) I could almost think you have some secret care preying on your spirits. I%ll make bold to tell %"ray do0 ) I suppose I mayn%t guess what it is that troubles you/% . %I so seldom see you now.% she added playfully. she had much better remain iss Wilson of !yecote <arm than be transmuted into rs. arkham0% said she. though it might have been more judiciously delivered. these last two months especially. there was no one in the room but <ergus and myself. was disappointed and embittered by the sudden cold neglect and ultimate desertion of her former admirer. excuse me. but he never confessed it to me. %I have had a good deal to do of late.

&awrence%s household. %perhaps you know already that rs. . and preventing me from finishing my letter. perhaps. %I had it from a very authentic source. for I%ll tell you plainly. but I bent it over my letter. interrupting my sister%s exclamations. mounted. not deigning to notice the other%s buffooneries# %you needn%t fear to say anything in my presence. left the room. and scarcely one)half of it true. %'nother time. I%ll tell you a piece of news ) I hope you have not heard it before# for good. ost likely she was gone away. (raham. and speedily galloped away to Woodford. with a somewhat unsteady hand. in spite of all my efforts to retain no necessity. I caught him with his eye askance on me. may I ask/% %<rom one of the servants at Woodford.% %+h0 I was not aware that you were on such intimate terms with r. they both seated themselves near the fire. (raham%s husband is not really dead. leaning his shoulder against the corner of the chimney)piece. It%s about that sad rs. had not voluntarily gone back to her husband.% %It was not from the man himself that I heard it. and. and muttered something about being too late for the post. I found its owner pensively strolling in the grounds. $ut it was possible ) barely possible ) that some one might have betrayed her.%. winking at the young lady with a doleful shake of the head.a/% said I.% $efore she could reply to this ungallant speech. %.% she continued.a0% said I. I hastily pocketed my two letters. and the tale) bearing servant. and that she had run away from him/% I started. then. %what a fool the man must be0% %'nd who gave you this piece of intelligence. %=We never mention her. or dreamt of a reconciliation. thereafter.=% 'nd glancing up. %$ut perhaps you did not know that she is now gone back to him again. . iss -li.he thing that troubles me the most at present is a young lady sitting at my elbow. strapped the saddle on to his back and the bridle on to his head. !ose. had conjectured that such was the case. rushed into the yard. or indifferent. (raham ) % %:ush)sh)sh0% whispered <ergus. one always likes to be the first to tell. I suppose/ 'nd you tell it in confidence to us/ $ut I can tell you that it is but a lame story after all. and our fair visitor had detailed it as a certainty. with his legs crossed and his hands in his breeches) pockets. be whispered ) %' monomania ) but don%t mention it ) all right but that. repairing to my daily business.% %In confidence.% %2peak out. !ose entered the room. and his finger pointed to his forehead.% %I should be sorry to injure any one%s feelings.% answered she. . where that idle lad <ergus was standing. bad. and in spite of my firm conviction that the story was a lame one ) that the supposed rs.% %<rom whom. and that a perfect reconciliation has taken place between them/ +nly think.o one being there. and she had been taken away by force. iss -li.% returned she. and 2arah told it to me.% %Well. speaking below her breath.% While I spoke I completed the sealing and direction of my letters. her name is never heard.ow. most certainly. not knowing what was become of her. and felt my face glow.a rising to greet her. turning to the confounded !ose. delighted with such an opportunity of tormenting me. I dragged him out of the stable myself. but he told it in confidence to our maid 2arah. and went on folding it up as she proceeded. >etermined to know the worst. in a tone of solemn import. and iss -li. and vociferously called for my horse.

in )shire. for I detest that man as fervently as you can do. y companion gravely took my arm. I assure you it was not by my advice that she went.othing persuaded her but her own sense of duty.% persisted he in the same grave. then/% %I think not. ) %2he is at (rassdale anor.% %:umbug0% %I was half inclined to say so myself. with my hand pressed to my forehead. %'t (rassdale anor. collected manner as before. and &awrence looked up with a rather reproachful glance. to take him to the stables. for I was not sure that this circumstance did not partly conduce to my distraction. confound it0 . %Why did she take this infatuated step/ What fiend persuaded her to it/% %.ow. that his reformation would give me much greater pleasure than his death. % r. I impatiently exclaimed. and she will believe him. at first. %2he did. indeed.% %It was ill done0 . as I dismounted. and then her condition will be ten times worse and ten times more irremediable than before.his is intolerable0% %What is/ . and relinquished my horse to the gardener. and leading me away to the garden.% %'nd so she went to nurse him/% %1es. as if to force him to unsay those hateful words. he was alone. or she would not have gone. %1es. %Who betrayed her/% %2he went of her own accord. being the only servant within call. he will make all manner of lying speeches and false. :untingdon is ill.% %'nd how many more nurses has he/ :ow many ladies are there besides to take care of him/% %.% %Where/% cried I.% he continued. she%s gone. but all I did was to inform her of the circumstance of his illness @the consequence of a fall from his horse in huntingA. &awrence0 2he could not be so frantic0% exclaimed I. who. when he finds the convenience of her presence. vehemently grasping his arm.% %<ool0% I could not help exclaiming.% was his answer. thus answered my question. so calmly spoken that my terror was at once removed.% . then suddenly pausing and turning to my companion. arkham. had left him some time ago. ) except.%Is your sister gone/% were my first words as I grasped his hand.% %+h. I therefore continued to pace the walk in silent anguish. and to tell her that that unhappy person. from his employment of raking up the dead leaves on the lawn. iss yers. with a convulsive start. %Is he dying.% %Impossible. gently disengaging himself from my grasp. %and not without reason.hat he should be alone/% I attempted no reply.% %:ow was it/% I gasped. fair promises for the future. instead of the usual inquiry after his health. %I suppose I mayn%t know where she is/% said I. had been summoned by his master.

and so may you. %Who is it/% %It is :elen :untingdon. do0 . take it. it%s 'lice. !ecollecting myself. but next morning I ventured to enter his chamber again.e of strange growing intensity.% involuntarily passed my lips. :e was evidently reluctant to grant the request. :untingdon is very ill.o.% %I mean to stay with you. and would. >evil take her. having asked for a glass of water. your wife. if I stay. r. %1ou would not say so if you knew . or some other name almost equally repugnant to my feelings. 8th. <or a long time he lay silently looking upon me. ) I know you will be anxious to hear from me.hanks. fearing a contradiction might disturb him too much. a moment after. % y wife0% said he.ov. . too0 What did you do it for/% I said no more. . 't first he addressed me as the nurse. %&et me see it. %What did you leave me for/% %It is I. and then he mistook me for another. $enson. and. producing a letter from his pocket. does not appear to be much ground for such apprehensions at present. the minute after. and then not above my breath. %<rom the account I received this morning. 'lice.o. >ear <rederick. but observing that he kept ga. and has no fortitude to bear him through. with a start.% said he. and I wanted him to know me. on my crossing the room to draw up the window) blinds. he murmured. %or something ) delirious. I went and sat there. 't last he startled me by suddenly raising himself on his elbow and demanding in a horrified whisper.% replied he. but with him it is very different. but not dying.% I read it. disorderly set. and sent the hired nurse. %and you. perhaps. I offered to restore it. taking the nurse%s place by his bedside. to say no worse ) I must change them again. %:ere. dearest0% I could not help distinctly observing.% he cried. (rassdale.% %. %. I watched him and waited on him for several hours. I forced myself to endure it for a while. placing the light so as to shine full upon me. and only speaking when necessary. and I will tell you all I can. and those that were come to supply their places were a negligent. in obedience to his directions. he was lying in a kind of half delirium. <or (od%s sake go. have been but trifling to a man of temperate habits. a grim. but. %Is it you. while I held it to his lips.% said I.% said I. :e did not notice me till I spoke. whoever you are. had been hired to attend the wretched invalid.hat old hag will be the death of me. ' professional nurse. and those eyes. I should say ) % It was her writing0 $y an irresistible impulse I held out my hand. when I first entered his room. for I thought he might be dying. +n the night of my arrival. 'nd after that he would call me 'lice. or in any immediate danger. I can%t bear that white face. and send me somebody else that doesn%t look like that0% I went at once. but when. come again/% he murmured. as the doctor says. with his eyes still fixed upon me. :e suffers towards the foot of the bed. but while he hesitated I snatched it from his hand. hard old woman. and the words. 'rthur ) it is :elen. (reaves. but leave me.% said I. and he is rather better at present than he was when I came.% cried he.% I replied. %<or heaven%s sake. I found the house in sad confusion# rs.he immediate injuries he sustained from the accident.%. and removing to a less conspicuous position. don%t mention her ) I have none. he said. however. it isn%t nurse. %you may read it if you like. every decent servant had left. %. 2tay with me. first with a vacant stare. were not very severe. %I must be going mad. %if you don%t want me to read it. quietly rising at the same time. then with a fixed ga. showing myself as little as possible.

% %Where is he/% %:e is safe. yes. and if I could benefit your soul as well as your body. and then he began to mutter bitter curses against me. if it must be so. as if I were your greatest enemy# I am come to take care of you. distinctly. I promise. don%t torment me now0% cried he in pitiable agitation. so I dropped it again. let me see him now. it was not a dream. %Was it a dream that ) % and he covered his eyes with his hands.% %<or (od%s sake. if you could overwhelm me with remorse and confusion of face. the other fancies fade away ) but this only strengthens. he observed. and you may see him some time.he truth0% he cried. and they won%t let me rest. that your conduct was such as to oblige me to leave you. I could swear at this moment that she was by my side. %and while you do it.% %I can%t understand it at all.% %Is he here/% %Wherever he is. when.% %. as if trying to unravel the are servants within call if you want them. if I should hereafter judge it necessary to remove him again. What have you done with my son/% %:e is well.% continued he. $ut we will talk of that to)morrow# you must be quiet now.% said I. and to let me take him away whenever and wherever I please. and awaken some sense of contrition and ) % %+h. now%s the time.o. till it vanishes.% %. till some time %.% %2he is. but you had better lie down now and be quiet# none of them could or would attend you as carefully as I shall do. without noticing my words.% intending to follow that up with another declaration of my identity. but he merely muttered an incoherent reply.hat seems comfortable. %. 1ou need not fear to trust me tell me all your wants. I came to offer you that comfort and assistance your situation required. whereby you hope to gain a higher seat in heaven for yourself. or the evil fortune that had brought me there. and I shall not upbraid you now.% . . with a bitter smile. while I put down the sponge and basin. I can%t stand such a mania as this. and I will try to satisfy them.% said he. %for it is the truth0% %.% said is no one else to care for you. but I heard that you were ill and alone. and resumed my seat at the bed)side. in bewildered perplexity. ) (o on ) go on. after looking earnestly upon me for some minutes. 'rthur. too. starting. and scoop a deeper pit in hell for me.o. as if an asp had stung him. but you needn%t shrink away from me. it would kill me0% %It never will vanish. %it%s an act of *hristian charity. %I have such strange fancies ) I can%t get rid of them.o. as I was bathing his forehead and temples with vinegar and water to relieve the heat and pain in his head. %1ou don%t mean to say that you are really she/% %I do. if you will compose yourself. and the most singular and pertinacious of them all is your face and voice ) they seem just like hers. you will not see him till you have promised to leave him entirely under my care and protection.% %+h0 I see.% said he. but not now. and do what none of them would do. %Where are they/% said he# %have they all left me ) servants and all/% %. and I am come back to nurse you.

%and especially to forget the lessons you taught him. :is father swore I had made the child hate him. and I bade !achel send the boy. thus released. and to lessen the danger of discovery. %>o you know me/% asked %1es. .% %Who am I/% %"apa. or hardly to whisper his name. and darting a vindictive glance at me. relaxing his hold. &ittle 'rthur had not forgotten his father.% said I. crept back to me and put his hand in mine. intently perusing his features. but I felt I must not lose my present advantage. during which he had seldom been permitted to hear a word about him. then. and for that cause. but then he could not see to write. and my son%s future welfare should not be sacrificed to any mistaken tenderness for this man%s feelings. I think. and when he was ushered into the darkened room where the sick man lay. let me see him.% %'re you glad to see me/% %1es. when his father suddenly clutched his arm and drew him nearer to his side.he instant he began I sent our son out of the room.o ) % %I swear it. had rendered him somewhat shy.% I said.% said the latter. I had never once attempted to prejudice his child against him. and rolling his head on a pillow in a paroxysm of impatience.% %1ou%re not0% replied the disappointed parent. and when he paused to breathe. and told him he might write his name in the dark. that I thought it better to grant it at once. to)day. %In that case. you must be too ill to see the child. :e begged I would not insist upon this# it was a useless exposure of my want of faith in his word to the servant.ow. 'll this may strike you as harsh. with fiercely flushed face and wildly)gleaming eyes ) he instinctively clung to me. I placed my finger where the signature was to be.o. .he invalid only replied by groaning aloud. extending his hand towards him. now. but since he had forfeited my confidence. $ut he had not power to form the letters. and stood looking on his father with a countenance expressive of far more awe than pleasure. but no one can blame me for that. but almost started in alarm. 4pon which he said he would try. %. and having clearly written out the promise I wished r.% %$ut I cannot trust your oaths and promises# I must have a written agreement.hen we must wait until you can hold it. and made him sign it in the presence of !achel. I own I have generally discouraged his inclination to talk about you.%.% said I. and so bent upon the immediate gratification of his wish. as I saw he would not rest till I did. as (od is in heaven0 . :e next pleaded inability to hold the pen. and finding me inexorable.% persisted he# and he was in such a state of feverish excitement. I told him I was sorry. so altered from his former self. he must take the consequence. I deliberately read it over to him. 'rthur. :untingdon. if he only knew where to put it. and timidly touched that burning hand. he at length managed to ratify the agreement. %I did indeed desire him to forget you.% . but thirteen months of absence.% %. %*ome here. and you must sign it in presence of a witness# but not to)day ) to)morrow. I calmly assured him that he was entirely mistaken. and abused and cursed me bitterly. $ut I was determined my son%s interest should not be forgotten.he child went. :untingdon to give upon a slip of paper. . r. 'rthur.

and I withdrew. when I had been doing all I could to make him comfortable and to remedy the carelessness of his nurse. yes0 but do you think there%s any likelihood that this illness will have a fatal termination/% . cooling drink that was on the table. without any bitter remarks# indeed.ot noticing this speech.% said I. he scarcely spoke at all. and every little thing I do for you is ascribed to self)righteous malice and refined revenge0% %It%s all very fine. %1es. and the satisfaction of my own conscience.his is delightful. %you never hoped for such a glorious opportunity/% %. it seems. with an impatient toss. your own bad spirit will not let me. I confess. . if you do really find any pleasure in it. and all the little earthly comfort that was left me. ) %I suppose you%re heaping coals of fire on my head. is the only reward I need look for0% :e looked rather surprised at the earnestness of my manner.% %It is well for me that I am doing my duty. %I%ll leave you. and did not trouble him with my presence again that day.his cursed thirst is burning my heart to ashes0 Will nobody )/% $efore he could finish the sentence I had poured out a glass of some acidulated. I daresay. 's far as you are concerned. to no purpose. %'nd you can enjoy it with such a quiet conscience too.ext morning the doctor ordered him to be bled.%I am in hell. eyeing me with stupid ama.% I did so. that is to say. and he accepted my services quietly. for these wretches neglected me shamefully. 2ince you came.% sneered he# %set my pillow straight. %What reward did you look for/% he asked. except to make known his now get me another glass of that slop. but I did hope to benefit you# as well to better your mind as to alleviate your present sufferings. %for it is the only comfort I have. I have had better attendance than before. as I replaced the glass on the table# %or will you be more quiet if I go and send the nurse/% %+h. already0% cried he. I asked if there was anything else I could do for him. and after that he was more subdued and tranquil. because it%s all in the way of duty.% %1es.% I complied. %. pray do me all the good you can. for you perceive I am almost as miserable just now as you need wish to see me. %. %and of course I ought to be melted to tears of penitence and admiration at the sight of so much generosity and superhuman goodness. then. you%re wondrous gentle and obliging0 $ut you%ve driven me mad with it all0% responded he. and hardly then. his ill)nature appeared to revive.ement. I passed half the day in his room at different intervals. shall I stay with you/% said I. you think/% . but muttered. as I held it to his lips. with a bitterness I could not repress. and all my old friends seem to have fairly forsaken me.% said I. and these confounded bed)clothes. %+h. and it is always well to live with such a chance in view. I have sacrificed my own feelings. I%ve had a dreadful time of it. isn%t it/% said he with a malicious grin. %1ou will think me a liar if I tell you.ow. except for a minute or two at a time.% said he. :e drank it greedily. this sweet revenge0% cried he. just to see how he was and what he wanted. but you see I can%t manage it. :owever. as I took away the always a chance of death. and brought it to him. %. but it appears I am to do neither. I assure you# I sometimes thought I should have died# do you think there%s any chance/% %. I%ll give you another opportunity of showing your *hristian magnanimity. in proportion as he recovered from the state of exhaustion and stupefaction. yes. $ut on the morrow. y presence did not appear to agitate or irritate him as before.

&et me hear from you soon.. and not turn again and rend her0 $ut I shall say no more against her# I see that she was actuated by the best and noblest motives in what she has done. ay they be satisfied with trampling them under their feet. but. ) and no doubt be as unwelcome then as now. %and if it be years hence. %It seems to me.% interrupted I. till I have reorganised the household at least. otherwise. for I was sure to get better if I stuck to his regimen and prescriptions. but neither the doctor nor I can speak with certainty in such a case. I think I may bring my letter to a close. I tell you. hang it0 don%t torment me with your preachments now. in gratitude. of course. <rederick. therefore.. >oes the idea of death appal you very much/% %It%s just the only thing I can%t bear to think of. and of my own position and future prospects. I can perform the task that is before me now. or suffer him to be alone. 'nd now. whether you do eventually recover or not. <rom these details you may form your own judgment of the state of my patient. and many of them spoken by her lips/% %Well. so if you%ve any ) % %$ut it must come some time. but I greatly prefer keeping him under my own eye. and it is difficult to know to what extent. I can%t stand it. :alford. &awrence/ ) you see she has never once mentioned me throughout ) or made the most distant allusion to me. in the sick)room. dear <rederick. %What do you think of it/% said &awrence. %that she is casting her pearls before swine. and I will write again to tell you how we get on. %'nd when you write.I. but now that my presence is tolerated.% said he. I find myself in rather a singular position# I am exerting my utmost endeavours to promote the recovery and reformation of my husband. unless you ) % %+h.% I accordingly dropped the unwelcome topic. 'rthur. how are you prepared to meet the event/% %Why.% %I hope you may. and even now0 you want to scare me to death. (ood)by. may heaven protect her from its consequences0 ay I keep this letter. 'nd so I kept it. and then. why should you wish to keep it/% %Were not these characters written by her hand/ and were not these words conceived in her mind. :-&-. what shall I do/ y duty. I shall ask -sther :argrave to take charge of him for a time.% %. save me from it. as I silently refolded the letter. unless you want to kill me outright. ) but how/ . there is internal injury. :4. the doctor told me I wasn%t to think about it.o matter. therefore.% returned I. you could never have become so thoroughly acquainted with its contents. If you think there%s danger. and (od will give me strength to do whatever :e requires hereafter.% said I.% %.o. I would not deprive you of the benefit of such reflections.%I cannot tell. but I don%t want to lull you to false security. I shall have but little time to spare between my husband and my son. lest he should meet them.(>+. supposing it should. I%ll hear whatever you like to say. %will you have the goodness to ask her if I may be permitted to enlighten . and I dare not leave him for a moment with any of the other servants. and if I succeed. it will as certainly overtake you as if it came to)day. and if the act is not a wise one. there can be no impropriety or harm in it. If his father get worse. ) for I must not entirely neglect the latter# it would not do to keep him always with !achel. If a consciousness of the uncertainty of life can dispose you to serious and useful thoughts. I%ve sufferings enough without that.% %'nd.

at another he depresses me by his abject submission and deprecatory self)abasement when he fears he has gone too far. and vitiated the whole system of his organi. GGGGG :e is decidedly better. $ut he is manifestly afraid of my displeasure. I hope he is well. I watch and restrain him as well as I can. I am obliged to be a little stiff with him sometimes.% %'nd as soon as you receive an answer. nothing more. is his occasional attempts at affectionate fondness that I can neither credit nor return. his appetite for food is beginning to return. I have the servants to overlook. and if at one time he tries my patience by his unreasonable exactions. and fretful complaints and reproaches. 't first. for I was permitted to keep this also ) perhaps. as an antidote to all pernicious hopes and fancies. 1ou see I know the address. and often get bitterly abused for my rigid severity. and sometimes he contrives to elude my vigilance. but I am so virtuous as to refrain. I%ll come myself and tell you immediately. all of which would be entirely neglected were I to satisfy his exorbitant demands. but just ask her that. his long habits of self)indulgence are greatly against him. you%ll let me know/% %If all be well.% CHAPTER XLVIII <ive or six days after this r.e. :e will know that I should wish but little to be said on the subject. just so far as is necessary to make the neighbourhood sensible of the shameful injustice they have done her/ I want no tender messages. and tell her it is the greatest favour she could do me. and sometimes acts in opposition to my will. too. it would do me good. and tell her ) no. and I know it would be unpardonable weakness to give up all other interests for him. for I think the nurse who has made it her business is better qualified for such undertakings than I am.his one he was quite willing to submit to my longing ga.% I can give you a few extracts from the rest of the letter. I do not generally sit up at night. but tell him he must not think of me. and sees the danger receding. ) and my own health too. also. It is deplorable to see how completely his past life has degenerated his once noble constitution.% %Well.ation. an unbroken night%s rest is what I but seldom enjoy. not that I hate him# his sufferings and my own laborious care have given him some claim to my regard ) to my affection .he only answer it gave to my message was this#) % r. 2ome stimulating cordials he must have. and my little 'rthur to attend to. &awrence paid us the honour of a call. and when he and I were alone together ) which I contrived as soon as possible by bringing him out to look at my cornstacks ) he showed me another letter from his sister. but very low from the depressing effects of his severe illness and the strict regimen he is obliged to observe ) so opposite to all his previous habits. ) but still. $ut the doctor says he may now be considered out of danger. his extreme dread of death rendered the task an easy one. the more intractable he becomes. arkham is at liberty to make such revelations concerning me as he judges necessary. $ut all this I can readily pardon. arkham. and I might write to her myself. but they should be judiciously diluted and sparingly used. I%ll do this for you. $ut he is now so completely reconciled to my attendance in general that he is never satisfied when I am not by his side. . and here. . I suppose. and never can venture to reckon upon. if he will only continue to observe the necessary mother and sister on her real history and circumstance. What annoys me the most. or he would make a complete slave of me.ow. and I find it very difficult to keep him to this. for my patient makes no scruple of calling me up at an hour when his wants or his fancies require my presence. . he thought. but in proportion as he feels his acute suffering abating. I know it is chiefly the result of his enfeebled frame and disordered nerves.

$y what I have done for you. for I could not pretend to return it# so let us drop the subject. 'rthur.% %. I believe I should have yielded at once if I had known. are so much cheaper than deeds. I threaten mamma sometimes that I%ll run away. but wearisome and unremitting like a continual dropping. in good earnest. %Will you run away again/% %It entirely depends upon your own conduct. but the more he tries to conciliate me.% I answered. the loved and courted of so many worshippers.% %$e quiet and patient a while. %"ounds. and the most ungrateful.% with a rueful smile at my penetration. the observation chimed in with his thoughts. <rederick/ .% %+h. by the still unremitting persecutions of her mother in behalf of her rejected suitor ) not violent. %and better times will come. cold)hearted woman like that. %1es. for your perseverance# and I counsel you to keep them still in view. and if you wish me to feel kindly towards you. 2he is a charming creature. unhappy man0 words.% 'nd then followed a variety of professions. not pence. 'las. I know you have better motives. and Walter. should be now abandoned to the mercy of a harsh. I will stand out0% %' bad motive for a good resolve. it was as if I had said. if she torments me any more. then/% said he. $ut I will do it.% 'nd then he sighed a querulous. self)commiserating sigh.% said she. how much resistance would have cost me. and disgrace the family by earning my own livelihood. you may judge of what I will do ) if it be not incompatible with the higher duty I owe to my son @higher. ) I have forgiven you# but I know you cannot love me as you once did ) and I should be very sorry if you were to. but now.rust me I will. must buy the article you want.% said I. and even glad of what kindness she chose to bestow. for he answered ) %It can%t be helped. . too.% %$ut if I find it necessary to leave you. selfish.even. what do you mean to do when I get well/% he asked this morning. from the beginning. I shall not =run away=# you know I have your own promise that I may go whenever I please. and take my son with me. and because I hope to do more good to him than I can ever do to youA. I%ll be very good. the more I shrink from him and from the future. but you shall have no cause. and content to let things remain as they are.% :is sole reply to this was a slight grimace. which I rather coldly checked. really. if he would only be quiet and sincere. and then that frightens her a little. GGGGG I have I seen -sther :argrave twice. %:elen. % amma does all she can. %It%s a pity. and undutiful daughter that ever was born. for very obstinacy%s sake. %to make me feel myself a burden and incumbrance to the family. however.% "oor girl0 I wish somebody that was worthy to possess her would come and take her away ) don%t you. if they don%t mind.% %+h. because he never forfeited his claims. if she will not yield to her desires.he unnatural parent seems determined to make her daughter%s life a burden. isn%t it/% said I. and her sweet temper almost spoiled. %$ut. as if in pure regret that he. %Will you not forgive me. and never recur to it again. with him. and whether I rightly divined his musings or not. but her blithe spirit is almost broken. exacting. it is deeds not words which must purchase my affection and esteem. and a scarcely perceptible shrug. is as stern and cold and haughty as if he hated me outright.

is yet in single blessedness.GGGGG If the perusal of this letter filled me with dismay for :elen%s future life and mine. !ose was delighted.hat worthy student was now at *ambridge. and in due time they were united. and their poor parishioners. &awrence. to the close of his collegiate career. where she lived. ) and subsequently her rising family. and an untarnished reputation. she has not yet forgotten or forgiven either her former lover. and took lodgings in ) the county town. to the astonishment of the little world they lived in. plain) dealing. greatly to the satisfaction of its inhabitants. . and now that the !everend ichael illward has been gathered to his fathers. I may as well tell you here that she was at this time privately engaged to !ichard Wilson ) a secret. full of years and honours. there was one great source of consolation# it was now in my power to clear her name from every foul aspersion. unconciliating iss illward should ever find a husband. and those of his excellent and well)loved partner. sensible girl. affirming it impossible that the pale. and who. in spite of her plain outside. I am well assured. whose sterling worth had been so quickly perceived and duly valued by the supposed rs. her husband. happily. and as soon as I had told her all I thought proper ) which was all I affected to know ) she flew with alacrity to put on her bonnet and shawl. or obtain any partner rich and elegant enough to suit her ideas of what the husband of 3ane Wilson ought to be. she. and still lives. he is too dull to perceive the extent of his misfortune. unattractive. I suspect. . to every one but themselves. and eventually brought him with hard) earned honours. illward%s first and only curate ) for that gentleman%s declining years forced him at last to acknowledge that the duties of his extensive parish were a little too much for those vaunted energies which he was wont to boast over his younger and less active brethren of the cloth. and hasten to carry the glad tidings to the illwards and Wilsons ) glad tidings.o effect this I had only to drop the seed into the ground. I fear she leads him a rather uncomfortable life.. who had so long tried and fully proved his merits. would suffice to spread the news throughout the whole neighbourhood.his was what the patient.he illwards and the Wilsons should see with their own eyes the bright sun bursting from the cloud ) and they should be scorched and da. on her part. ) and my own friends too should see it ) they whose suspicions had been such gall and wormwood to my soul. but. finding it impossible any longer to endure the rough manners and unsophisticated habits of her honest brother !obert and his worthy wife. . or the lady whose superior qualities first opened his eyes to the folly of his boyish attachment. 's for !ichard Wilson%s sister. the lady dividing her time between her father. or be able to obtain one if he did. to none but herself and ary illward ) that steady. and equally impossible that the plain)looking.led by its beams. had been better able to see and appreciate that lady%s true character and qualities than the brightest genius among them. retiring bookworm should ever summon courage to seek a wife. 2hortly after the death of her mother she withdrew the light of her presence from !yecote <arm. without any further exertion on my part. having been wholly unable to recapture r. faithful lovers had privately planned and quietly waited for years ago. or the idea of being identified with such vulgar people in the eyes of the world. and it would soon become a stately. I knew. though. the !everend !ichard Wilson has succeeded him to the vicarage of &inden)hope. that had long since declared them both born to single blessedness. I can only tell you ) what perhaps you have heard from another quarter ) that some twelve or thirteen years ago she relieved the happy couple of her presence by marrying a wealthy tradesman of &). branching herb# a few words to my mother and sister. . and I don%t envy him his bargain. . 's I may never have occasion to mention her again. (raham. I believe. .hey still continued to live at the vicarage. I have little enough to do with her myself# we have not met for many years. If you are interested in the after fate of that lady%s sister. where his most exemplary conduct and his diligent perseverance in the pursuit of learning carried him safely through. In due time he became r.

% the matter was dropped# if he said %1es. $ut was there any harm in wishing that. after a warning sickness. I had the power to exchange him for some other victim of the grave.hough r. whose life might be of service to his race.o. I could have done so. &awrence%s health was now quite re)established. because I had not the hypocrisy to profess any anxiety for his recovery.% I would venture to inquire. and my inquiries were always answered in the negative. spending her days in fancy)work and scandal. I would not have hastened its close if. ) unless. or if a spirit had whispered in my ear that a single effort of the will would be enough. it seemed but too certain that he never would be ) that. for if he were unfit to answer the summons now. but he was more merciful. and as he grew more certain of recovery. I would casually ask. among the many thousands whose souls would certainly be required of them before the year was over. and whose death would be lamented by his friends.% but never to her brother the farmer and her sister the farmer%s wife. by the lifting of a finger. by direct inquiries. when %inquired% after her. though often less protracted than before. however. $ut I always began to talk of other things. %:ow is she/% but never %:ow is her husband/% though I might be burning to know. and waited first to see if he would introduce the subject. the vicar%s lady. 't length a welcome %yes% drew from me the second question. and he never sought mine at all. We seldom talked about rs. on the contrary. and therefore I wished with all my heart that it might please heaven to remove him to a better world. and with such an angel by his side.% and her %sister.his mode of procedure suited him so well. :untingdon. my visits to Woodford were as unremitting as ever. because he saw me often enough without. I silently read it. uncomfortable gentility. still while he lived she must be miserable. you see. If he did not. at first. he was going to torture me by unsatisfactory replies. but yet we never met without mentioning her. and I had not the face to express any desire for a contrary result. his life did harm to others. wherewith I sought to pacify my own accusing conscience. and I received such confidences so quietly and discreetly that he was never induced to discontinue them. and but little to herself. still to take him out of this. eantime. if there were any to show ) it was so much less trouble than to tell me their contents. I feared. In the first place. for I never sought his company but with the hope of hearing something about her. insidiously censorious old maid. more accustomed to her generous goodness. %'nd serve you right.% you will say. or force me to drag the information out of him. knowing. and appreciated my reserve. in a kind of close)fisted. and in a little while he put his sister%s letter into my hand. his feelings would become more callous. this wretched mortal might be one/ I thought not. at least. as I did. but loving no one and beloved by none ) a cold)hearted. &awrence divined my anxious thoughts. that @leaving myself entirely out of the questionA. and never let them go till their contents were . %:ave you heard from your sister lately/% If he said %. however she might deplore his fate. I could not but be anxious for the result of :is decrees. and evidently no good to himself. morsel by morsel. doing no good to others. that thereafter he always pursued the plan of showing me her letters at once.I suppose. cold. indeed. supercilious. returning health would bring returning lust and villainy. ' fortnight passed away. however :elen might feel interested in her husband%s welfare. . :ad I any such desire/ ) I fear I must plead guilty. CHAPTER XLIX . his heart more flinty and impervious to her persuasive arguments ) but (od knew best. or if that might not be. seeing as much company as she can without too much expense. and either leave me quite in the dark concerning what I wanted to know. but since you have heard my confession. referring frequently to her %brother the vicar. and though I wished it to terminate. and restored it to him without comment or remark. $ut I devoured those precious letters with my eyes. keenly. you must hear my justification as well ) a few of the excuses.

stamped upon my mind. . and find yourself safe in heaven. it would be only from the assurance that you were being purified from your sins. entirely the result of his own infatuation in persisting in the indulgence of his appetite for stimulating drink. into the state of torment you picture to yourself/% . and though she had no doubt he would have been very good and quiet. by the &ord :arry. now. a little surprised at his manner. with a return of his former sarcastic bitterness. and drive him to assert his independence even at the sacrifice of his own interest.he other night. $ut do you prefer sinking. -very former feature of his malady had returned with augmented virulence# the slight external wound. but. %1es. I suspect it was well nigh insupportable. but when once you have secured your reward. and to help her to nurse his papa. you%re mighty attentive now0 I suppose there%s nothing you wouldn%t do for me now/% %1ou know. which might terminate fatally if not soon removed. as usual. as her presence was so constantly required in the sick)room that she could not possibly attend to him herself. it never would have happened. I cannot tell.he first of these communications brought intelligence of a serious relapse in r. and though the child had begged to be allowed to continue with her there. to bring a bottle of the strongest wine in the cellar. . and if I could look complacently on in such a case. and just as I had brought him a draught to assuage his burning thirst. ordered the butler. her interference was an insult so intolerable that. while I was waiting on him.o. in vain she had mingled his wine with water# her arguments and entreaties were a nuisance. +f course. catch you lifting a finger to serve me then0 . In vain had she remonstrated. or of allowing him to witness his father%s impatience. he says. though his kind nurse did not complain.% said I. half healed.ed a glass in one hand and the bottle in the other. :e forgets how often I had reasoned him %past his patience% before. internal inflammation had taken place. that I shall not meet you in heaven/% %:umph0 What should I do there. the most important passages were entered in my diary among the remarkable events of the day. and I fear it is too certain that your tastes and feelings must be widely altered before you can have any enjoyment there. he observed. 'rthur. on finding she had covertly diluted the pale port that was brought him. or hear the dreadful language he was wont to use in his paroxysms of pain or irritation. :untingdon%s illness. he would have no more humbug ) sei. without an effort. and me howling in hell) fire. and affirming that he should have been well long ago if he had been let to have his own way. swearing he would not be cheated like a baby. he threw the bottle out of window. and fitted to enjoy the happiness I felt. and not so much as dip the tip of your finger in water to cool my tongue0% %If so. but she said she had been obliged at last to give her son in charge to -sther :argrave. she could not think of subjecting his young and tender feelings to the sight of so much suffering. at length. and when I got home. on pain of instant dismissal. %that I am willing to do anything I can to relieve you. ) $ut are you determined. but nothing can induce him to behold it in the proper light. :e appears to be sensible of his danger. he throws the blame upon me. 'larming symptoms were the immediate result of this %imprudence. had broken out afresh. I should like to know/% %Indeed. but to be treated like a baby or a fool was enough to put any man past his patience. and never rested till he had drunk it dry.% %1es. it will be because of the great gulf over which I cannot pass.he latter @continued sheA most deeply regrets the step that has occasioned his relapse.% as she mildly termed it ) symptoms which had rather increased than diminished since. . If I had reasoned with him like a rational creature. you%ll look complacently on. but she wanted to keep him weak in order that she might have him under her thumb ) but. my immaculate angel. the wretched sufferer%s temper was not improved by this calamity ) in fact. and this was the cause of her delay in writing to her brother.

he evinces considerable sympathy for his unhappy friend. it%s all a fable. I did but exchange a few words with them.% %What are her sufferings to mine/% said the poor invalid. for r. just outside the portico. if I could really serve you by them. whom he had driven over to see me. and this at one time may serve to divert the sufferer from his own sad thoughts. r. 'rthur. and then. and the poor sufferer%s horror of death was still more distressing than his impatience of bodily pain. it will only plunge him into deeper melancholy than before.he next letter brought intelligence that the malady was fast increasing.% he added vehemently. as if suddenly struck with the appalling aspect of that terrible event.o. I therefore said I would only go and speak to them a minute. I am with him now. and cannot dream of turning to him for consolation now.% said he. :attersley sometimes offers his services instead of mine.% .ay. at another. to beg a holiday for me. and is far more willing than able to comfort him. man0 she%s worn to a shadow already. 2he is now at the (rove. and I fear my occupation annoys him. :is wife had accompanied him. while I write.ed my hand. continued the letter. %you%re too hard upon her. 'rthur/ are you quite sure/ $ecause. :untingdon expressed herself glad to see ilicent once more. where I sometimes snatch an hour or so of sleep when he is quiet.%+h. :elen/% %. had come to see him from his distant home in the north. if there is any doubt. she must have food and sleep. or she can%t stand it. rs. and if you should find yourself mistaken after all. . %1ou don%t grudge me these attentions. sometimes he endeavours to cheer him with talk about old times. to be sure. GGGGG . but she often calls to see me. and though r. that I might have a run in the park. and would have felt it still more heartless in me to accede to it. as much for the pleasure of seeing her dear friend.hat gentleman came. but 'rthur will not let me go# that strange whim still increases. as to visit her mother and sister. %:elen. %but don%t bother me now ) I%m not going to die yet. this fine frosty morning. when it is too late to turn ) % %It would be rather awkward. I tore myself away and returned to my patient. I tell you. inhaling the fresh.% said he. I can%t and won%t. if I might. &ook at her. :attersley. with ilicent and -sther and little 'rthur. :attersley is also by his side. :untingdon. but that will not do. :is friend espoused my cause. I had not been absent five minutes. unless it be a timid suggestion that the clergyman might be sent for. and I could not speak for tears. %. resisting the earnest and eloquent entreaties of all three to stay a little longer. as he said. except to go into the next room. With more good feeling than I gave him credit for. I hardly ever leave him. but he reproached me bitterly for my levity and neglect.% said he. 2ometimes he tries to joke and laugh with him. but even then the door is left ajar. do you. contemptuously. %'re you sure. bracing air as I stood. r. I would give my life to save you. and then :attersley is confounded. and looked into my face with such imploring eagerness that my heart bled for him. and then come back. 'll his friends had not forsaken him. you must save me0% 'nd he earnestly sei. $ut 'rthur will never consent to that# he knows he has rejected the clergyman%s well) meant admonitions with scoffing levity at other times. and a mouthful of fresh air now and then. hearing of his danger. as his strength declines ) the fancy to have me always by his side. and knows not what to say. +ur poor invalid evidently felt it a heartless proposition. and join them in a walk round the garden. that he may know me to be within call. and pleased to behold her so happy and well. though I frequently break off to attend to him. from whom she had been parted so long. :attersley spends much of his time at 'rthur%s bed)side. nay.

% said I. %I had an infernal pain here ) it is quite gone now. I never was so easy since the fall ) quite gone. delightedly. but he was not. broke silence with. and we feared his death was approaching# but an opiate was administered# his sufferings began to abate. he gradually became more composed. then.he doctor has told him there is no hope. . he quickly flung it from him.% %. but while I pondered for something to say that might benefit without alarming him. 'nd after that another paroxysm of pain came on. you know. GGGGG . the same deadness to all sensation where the suffering was most acute. none of them can benefit me if she can%t. What do you think. but finding I did not participate his joy. :elen0% said he. . it never would have come to this0 and if I had heard you long ago ) oh. lonely grave. and then his mind began to wander. and bitterly cursed my coldness and insensibility. as well as tears would let me speak.% %'h0 that%s because you think yourself more fit to die0% . the coffin. I will tell you what he says. %"erhaps I may recover. :elen/% 4nwilling to depress him. with such a strange. from which no agony of prayers or tears could save him.hat was the is still the same freedom from pain. indeed/ . and all the horrors of corruption. . y worst fears are realised# mortification has commenced. . 'rthur.he sufferer was fast approaching dissolution ) dragged almost to the verge of that awful chasm he trembled to contemplate. if I had listened to you.his may have been the crisis. I can write no more. 2hortly after he relapsed into a kind of do. I would send for a parson of some sort# if you didn%t like the vicar. .% said he despondingly. and yet to be silent was to leave him a prey to his own regrets and apprehensions.o. but still recommended him to prepare for the possibility of what I inly feared was but too certain. but now he groans again. and at length sank into a kind of slumber. the dark. :ow could I reply/ ?neeling beside him.othing could comfort him now. I took his hand and fondly pressed it to my lips ) for the first time since our separation ) and told him. $ut he was determined to was a painful pause. whose mind had been pursuing almost the same course. :untingdon. that it was not that that kept me silent# it was the fear that this sudden cessation of pain was not so favourable a symptom as he supposed. . . %It%s too late now. :e has been quieter since. %who knows/ . its petty cares and transient pleasures. I immediately sent for the doctor# we are now anxiously awaiting him. were a cruel mockery. %+h. to refer to the future was to increase his anguish.o words can describe his anguish.o talk of the past was to torture him with vain remorse.he world was nothing to him# life and all its interests. is a change.he next was still more distressing in the tenor of its contents. 'nd the tears gushed from his eyes as he earnestly exclaimed.% was the answer. excited manner. :e was evidently plunged in gloomy reflections. :attersley. . expressing a hope that he shall find him better when he calls to)morrow.%Would you. . that I feared he was delirious.e. :attersley%s rough attempts at consolation were utterly in vain. by heaven0% and he clasped and kissed my hand in the very fulness of his heart. you could have his curate. piecemeal dissolution already invading his frame# the shroud. %I say. I gave the most cheering answer I could. or somebody else. and now :attersley has left him. gently pressing his hand. %.% he replied.o0% % ost willingly I would. (od0 how different it would have been0% %:ear me now. 2uddenly he called me to his side. +ften he dwelt with shuddering minuteness on the fate of his perishing clay ) the slow.

in whom the fulness of the (odhead shines. :elen. ) (od is only an idea. laugh these blessed truths to scorn# but still he cannot trust. how can I face it/= ) I cannot do him any good. he tightened his grasp on my hand and arm.= I said. but if this idea is too vast for your human faculties ) if your mind loses itself in its overwhelming infinitude. =I repent0=% %=$ut if you sincerely repent ) = %=I can%t repent. :e is holding my left hand now. =let me hold you so# it seems as if harm could not reach me while you are here.hen. :e does not now. .= he says. fast0 ) and ) oh. and "ower. I did my best to soothe and comfort him. =we shall all follow you soon enough. :elen ) you can%t imagine what it is. :e keeps me night and day beside him.= I replied# =it cost more to redeem their souls ) it cost the blood of an incarnate (od. perfect and sinless in :imself. %=2tay with me. he has held it thus for hours# sometimes quietly.%If I try. %=1ou needn%t let that distress you. %to divert him from these things ) to raise his thoughts to higher themes.= %=. $ut death will come ) it is coming now ) fast.= %$ut I seem to speak in vain. because you%re so good to me. while I ) = :e burst into tears.% said his afflicted wife. to redeem us from the bondage of the evil one#) let :im plead for you.= he cried. =I cannot bear it0 1ou don%t know. and. ='re we not to be judged according to the deeds done in the body/ Where%s the use of a probationary existence. as formerly. or thinks he sees. who was raised to heaven even in :is glorified human body. and (oodness ) and &+F-.= %=I wish to (od I could take you with me now0= he exclaimed# =you should plead for me. :e suffers dreadfully. with something like a laugh.= %$ut he only shook his head and sighed. and yet he clings to me with unrelenting pertinacity ) with a kind of childish desperation.= %=. If I withdraw my hand for a moment it distresses him. :e cannot linger long.= %=(od is Infinite Wisdom. nor make agreement unto (od for him. with his pale face upturned to mine# sometimes clutching my arm with violence ) the big drops starting from his forehead at the thoughts of what he sees.hink of the goodness of (od.ell. and all the world will go on just as busy and merry as if I had never been. =If there be really life beyond the tomb. because I know I cannot help him. fix it on :im who condescended to take our nature upon :im. as if I could save him from the fate he dreads.o man can deliver his brother. there is joy and glory after. nor comforted by anything I say. desperate earnestness so harrowing to my soul. nor roused. in another paroxysm of shuddering horror. by merely saying. and judgment after death. or will not comprehend them. if I could believe there was nothing after0= %=>on%t try to believe it. if a man may spend it as he pleases.= %=1ou only regret the past for its consequences to yourself/= %=3ust so ) except that I%m sorry to have wronged you. I only fear. if you will but try to reach it0= %=What. he will neither be enlightened. and then go to heaven with the best ) if the vilest sinner may win the reward of the holiest saint. because you haven%t it before you0 and when I%m buried. %=>eath is so terrible. just contrary to (od%s decrees. before him.= %=What is (od/ ) I cannot see :im or hear :im. it is no better#) =Worse and worse0= he groans. still clung to me with that wild. you%ll return to your old ways and be as happy as ever. . and so do . 'rthur. for me/= he said. groaning and lamenting. while I write. and you cannot but be grieved to have offended :im.

but emitted no sound. faintly but distinctly. for I was almost ready to faint. I sat beside him all night..% . . and whether I looked at her husband%s sufferings or her own. and these are its contents#) >ec.% :is lips moved. &awrence/% said I. but a convulsive movement of the fingers. CHAPTER L +n reading this I had no reason to disguise my joy and hope from <rederick &awrence. %1es. as I put the letter into his hand. but the coffin must be closed as soon as possible. with my hand fast looked in his. and (od. I had been enabled successfully to combat. watching the changes of his features and listening to his failing breath. :e is gone at last. I experienced a painful commiseration for her unhappy husband @though fully aware that he had brought every particle of his sufferings upon himself. and. bodily and mental. for I need help. and a faintly whispered %>on%t leave me0% immediately recalled me# I took his hand again. immediately. intending to steal away for a breath of air. <rederick0 none can imagine the miseries. it seemed almost like a judgment upon myself for having cherished such a wish. I felt no joy but that his sister was at length released from her afflictive. that incessant and deleterious confinement beside a living corpse ) for I was persuaded she had not hinted half the sufferings she had had to endure. I think. till then. but from the blessed confidence that. supposing him to be now unconscious. Cth.those that wait upon him. will bless it in the end0 :is body will be consigned on . it was exhaustion. for I had none to be ashamed of. :elen0% %I do pray for you. thank (od. and I thought he would never speak again. who hateth nothing that :e hath made. and but too well deserved them allA.hursday to that dark grave he so much dreaded. %1ou will go to her. :-&-. and deep anxiety for the consequences of those harassing cares.I. it almost seemed as if I had brought them upon her myself by my own secret desires. I have hope ) not only from a vague dependence on the possibility that penitence and pardon might have reached him at the last. that. . It was not grief. to convince you that I did well to go to him. I gently disengaged my hand from his. but you must pray for yourself. through whatever purging fires the erring spirit may be doomed to pass ) whatever fate awaits it ) still it is not lost. and held it till he was no more ) and then I fainted. when he murmured. +h. If you will attend the funeral. from the incoherent. ) %"ray for me.hat too was put into my hands without a remark. ) then his looks became unsettled. come quickly.% GGGGG "oor. of that death)bed0 :ow could I endure to think that that poor trembling soul was hurried away to everlasting torment/ it would drive me mad.he next day but one there came another letter. half) uttered words that escaped him from time to time.(>+. 'rthur.. every hour and every minute. poor :elen0 dreadful indeed her trials must have been0 'nd I could do nothing to lessen them ) nay. at least. those dreadful vigils. $ut. $ut I will not harass you with further details# I have said enough. :e had been silent a long time. and be suffered to rest in peace and quietness. for the remainder of her life. and a profound sympathy for her own afflictions. :4. overwhelming toil ) no hope but that she would in time recover from the effects of it.

or alarmed self)esteem. with a gloomy sense of the darkness of those prospects. :untingdon. &awrence%s return from (rassdale# impatience that increased in proportion as his absence was prolonged. it was with no small degree of impatience that I looked forward to r. a penalty I might brave.his alone afforded strong presumption that I was already forgotten. :ad I forgotten my own prospects. a vain. or even been spoken in her presence. but in addition to this. 2he might recover from these horrors so far as to be restored to her former health. or by whatever name I ought to call it. her cheerfulness even ) but never to those feelings which would appear to her. but no word in reference to me. :e stayed away some ten or twelve days. how could I/ 'nd. rs. I saw that he expected to be further questioned concerning his visit. that she had been greatly exhausted and worn by her unremitting exertions in behalf of that man who had been the scourge of her life. 'nd it might be deemed presumption in me to offer my hand to the former. her tranquillity. now that we were so far apart. her reconciliation with the man she had once loved. it was no longer a crime to think of her ) but did she ever think of me/ . as I did. then. 1es. must eventually efface from her mind all traces of her passing love for me. my pertinacious hopes/ It seemed like sacrilege to revert to them now. if not by herself. but whatever he sought in my countenance. I asked no questions on the subject. and before you came. :untingdon was free now. however. yet this was not the worst# it might have been her sense of duty that had kept her silent# she might be only trying to forget. but I had not forgotten them. but he might have written to tell me how she was. I could not bring my mind to do so. . for months to come at least. with his usual selfishness. and the carriage is now coming round to the door. especially as there was no one to remind her of my existence ) no means of assuring her of my fervent constancy. the fallacy of those hopes. :e gave me a searching glance as we pressed each other%s hands at parting. his dreadful sufferings and death. and uncertainty for my own future prospects. and had dragged her with him nearly to the portals of the grave. henceforth. believing.hat%s right0 I%ll leave you.%.ot now ) of course it was not to be expected ) but would she when this shock was over/ In all the course of her correspondence with her brother @our mutual friend. the lady of (rassdale anor. finally.% %I%ve done that already. by the world. 2o that you see I had reasons enough for despair if I chose to indulge it. as a fleeting fancy. and I saw too.evertheless. It was. I had a gloomy conviction that the awful realities she had seen and felt. . and was still much shaken and depressed by his melancholy end and the circumstances attendant upon it. there was another barrier# doubtless there was a wide distinction between the rank and circumstances of rs. 'nd when he did return. might have so constructed his will as to place restrictions upon her marrying again. my ardent love. . for he might have known I was suffering tortures of anxiety for her. as she herself had called himA she had never mentioned me but once ) and that was from necessity. that he . by her friends. to prepare for your departure. no intimation that my name had ever passed her lips. with the keen perception of awakened jealousy. 'll very right that he should remain to comfort and help his sister. illusive dream. and withdrew. that &awrence was indeed averse to the idea of my union with his sister. but otherwise. her deceased husband. 'nd how could I engage her brother in my behalf/ how could I break that icy crust of shy reserve/ "erhaps he would disapprove of my attachment now as highly as before. to match with his sister. he saw there nothing but the most becoming gravity ) it might be mingled with a little sternness in momentary resentment at what I suspected to be passing in his mind. all he told me about her was. that I reflected on those things as I remounted my horse and slowly journeyed homewards. if I were certain she loved me. I bade him good)morning. and delicacy forbade me to see her or to write to her. the tenant of Wildfell :all. (raham. perhaps he would think me too poor ) too lowly born. or at least to tell me when to expect his return.% Inly approving his promptitude. and those of rs. while you were reading the letter.o be sure. the artist. and the vanity of that affection.

:ad he believed that a union was necessary to the happiness of both. or at least a stoic calmness. my just appreciation of her generous conduct.% you will say. to encourage them. I was burning with anger. and a hope that her recent troubles had not entirely banished me from her mind. to the delightful hours I had passed in her society. for its dread laugh. and though refraining entirely from any active opposition to the match. at any rate. and my unfading recollection of them. and. would be far more terrible to him directed against his sister than himself. suffering all the pangs of wounded pride and injured friendship. and the regulation of his affairs. I would wait. and then. he had already given her to understand that I had ceased to think of her. or of either. lest he should misconstrue into covetousness my . and how she was. and it was not in his nature to set the world at defiance. or had he known how fervently I loved her. unless by some kind message intrusted to her brother. that I wronged him in my heart# the truth was. It was well it did. but seeing me so calm and cool. I must say it would have been highly absurd and improper to have quarrelled with him on such an occasion. happy life. and see if she would notice me. which had been denied her so long. %'nd he was in the right of it. but which none could more truly be said to merit than herself ) adding a few words of kind remembrance to my little friend 'rthur. . but pride obliged me to suppress my feelings. be permitted to enjoy those blessings of a peaceful. in addition to those resulting from the fear that I was indeed forgotten. and would much rather take the part of prudence. I went away. suffering from injured health and dejected spirits. he liked me very well.en weeks was long to wait in such a miserable state of uncertainty. and the answers I received were always provokingly limited to the letter of the inquiry# she was much as usual# she made no complaints. he would not for the world disturb my philosophy. of course I should write no more# if she did @as surely she would. in aiding us to overcome our mutual predilections. . but he was fully aware that a union between rs. +f course. for. she said she was well. I must confess. if he had lately heard from her. or. and very busy with her son%s education. "erhaps he was. in all probability. which of course she would not. especially in such a case as this. but I could not then regard the matter in such a moderate light. after a brief conversation upon indifferent topics. than that of feeling. :untingdon and me would be what the world calls a mesalliance. however. $ut what should I do/ I would wait. he would yet do nothing to bring it about. till the six months after our parting were fairly passed @which would be about the close of <ebruaryA. perhaps. and I was forbidden to console or assist her# forbidden even to assure her of my sympathy. throughout the interview. and with the management of her late husband%s property. too. he would not deliver. modestly reminding her of her former permission to write to her at the close of that period. :untingdon had died intestate or not. and preserve a smooth face. but the tone of her last letter evinced great depression of mind# she said she was better# and. and I would sooner die than ask him. and I would still pursue my habitual inquiries after his sister. and then I would send her a letter. &awrence was now completely out of the question. and perhaps a few more in reference to bygone times. reviewing the matter in my sober judgment. I did so. for the transmission of any such message through r. and hoping I might avail myself of it ) at least to express my heartfelt sorrow for her late afflictions. and was no less pleased than surprised to find it did not come.rather shrank from that impending scrutiny. dreadful thought0 she would think me cooled and changed for not returning it. finally. but nothing more. though not so often as before. I had no business to feel so bitterly against him as I did. in some fashionA. which was the salt and solace of my life.he rascal had never told me how that property was disposed. If she did not answer this. and that she would. or whether r. and the knowledge that she I loved was alone and afflicted. with a hope that he had not forgotten me. but courage0 it must be endured0 and meantime I would continue to see &awrence now and then. some time. and my hope that her health was now completely re)established. that. or ill opinion. he would have acted differently. my future proceedings should be regulated by her reply.

for while she continued there I could not write to her. at which he turned away. I am no martyr to it now. When we did meet. endeavouring to cheer her aunt with her presence. $ut alas0 it was just about that time she was called to sustain another blow in the death of her uncle ) a worthless old fellow enough in himself. arkham. I have left my pony in the lane. but that was long since. trying to draw me into a cheerful and friendly conversation. %>o you never mean to come to Woodford again/% %I called once. . half pensive. he began to talk of other subjects. that she was still there.he fact is.o (rassdale first. I daresay. and I can afford to laugh at both &awrence and you. I hoped you would call again. that I was effectually deterred from requesting a more definite account. and there was something so cold and dry in the manner of it. however. :e never offered to show me his sister%s letters now. to be more easy with myself and more indulgent to my neighbours. sullen contempt. . for I am about to leave Woodford for a while. >ecember was past. %Where is 2taningley/% I asked at last. "artly from accident. was almost over ) a few more weeks. this susceptibility to affronts where none are intended. It is a troublesome thing. and now I have called. save by a look of silent. and she had always been accustomed to regard him as a parent.% %I was sorry. and would not ask it of him. and contemplated the carpet with a slight smile. and you were out.% was the brief reply. and had assisted her aunt to nurse him during the last stage of his illness. and you were out. %In )shire. he came into the field. or I would do myself the pleasure of calling more frequently. :alford.% said he. and may not have the pleasure of seeing you again for a month or two. as you can bear me witness# I have learned to be merry and wise.desire to know. :er brother went to 2taningley to attend the funeral.his was bad news for me. %When will she return to (rassdale/% was my next question. %I don%t know. $ut I did not deign to answer him. 2he was with him when he died. it was he that sought me out. and I never hinted a wish to see them. <ebruary. arkham/% asked my companion. but being determined to see you this time. partly from wilful negligence on my part @for I was really beginning to dislike himA. we were both of us a little too touchy. where I was just commencing my hay harvest. and likely to remain some time. upon his return.% %*onfound it0% I muttered. $ut week followed week. but he had always shown more kindness and affection to her than to any other creature. half amused. 3anuary. and told me. %It is long since I saw you. but I was too much irritated to discourse with him. at length. certain despair or renewal of hope would put an end to this long agony of suspense. with an air of innocent surprise. several weeks elapsed before I saw my friend again. and soon took leave. early in 3une.% said he. which you generally are. . I believe. with a half)smile he would willingly have suppressed if he could. and then. +ne bright morning. as I did not know the address. 1ou see &awrence and I somehow could not manage to get on very well together. was approaching. but quickly looking up. and come over hedge and ditch to join you. and every time I inquired about her she was still at 2taningley.% %Where are you going/% %. %Why. after the first few words had passed between us.

was not the man for a bachelor%s life. :e had a son and a nominal daughter. having lived a while in reckless gaiety and dissipation. not long after. and I believe he would have undertaken to deliver it without any material objections. till he came back. I would not write to her now. for &ord &owborough. who doubtless would be still more hostile to my presumptuous aspirations than himself. 2ome time before r. it would be my fittest opportunity. or active pursuits. his constant struggles to subdue the evil promptings of his nature @for it was not a generous oneA. however. at length. to feel some degree of kindly regard for her. in return for her artless and unsuspecting attachment to himself. but it was now too late to remedy the evil. or replete with fancies and reflections equally unwelcome to me at the time. they quarrelled and parted. friendless life. and utter wretchedness. When &awrence came. that I saw how fair an opportunity I had lost. at last. ) I will employ myself in settling the business of one or two of the characters introduced in the course of this narrative. if I was content to let it alone. while she was with him and her aunt. saying next to nothing about his sister. back to 2taningley. :untingdon%s death &ady &owborough eloped with another gallant to the *ontinent. ) or ties of friendship even @if he had had any friendsA. but they too painfully reminded him of their mother. in penury. perhaps. and . no ambitious projects. ) so also was the hardness of his conflicts with the temptation to return to the vice of his youth. :e wrote to me twice or thrice from <). and a morbidly disconsolate mind. :e did not return till towards the latter end of 'ugust. but his letters were most provokingly unsatisfactory.%. as I have heard. could compensate to him for the absence of domestic comforts and endearments. in difficulty and debt. my varying resolutions. but the bitterness of his self)condemnation for his inward feelings towards that innocent being. now to drop it. he was as reserved as ever on the subject of my keen anxiety. whom I may not have occasion to mention again.o public interests. by yielding again to that insidious foe to health. then/% %1es. upon this second misdemeanour. with rs. where. :er husband. however. my fluctuations of dull despondency and flickering hope. dealing in generalities or in trifles that I cared nothing about. neglect. 't all events. my expectations and disappointments. and I shall go with them. $ut I could not bring myself to make the request. for they have all lost sight of her long years ago. and even. but years came and money went# she sunk. and little more about himself. :e told me that his sister had derived considerable benefit from her stay at <) that her son was quite well. indeed.% @<) was at that time a quiet but respectable watering) place# it is considerably more frequented now. :e had obliged himself to treat her with paternal kindness# he had forced himself not to hate her. When she was returned to the silence and solitude of her own home.A &awrence seemed to expect me to take advantage of this circumstance to entrust him with some sort of a message to his sister. immediately sought and obtained a divorce. axwell. morose and moody as he seemed. I would wait. disgrace and misery. $ut this might be only a report# she may be living yet for anything I or any of her relatives or former acquaintances can tell. axwell to <) for the benefit of the sea air. It was well he did. $ut instead of boring you with my chagrin.o (rassdale0 Is she there. and deadness to the present misery of a blighted heart a joyless. and ) alas0 that both of them were gone. married again. and the unfortunate little 'nnabella was a source of perpetual bitterness to his soul. and died at last. but in a day or two she will leave it to accompany rs. and seek oblivion for past calamities. . if I had had the sense to ask him. and now to let things pass and patiently abide my time. and sense. and would as thoroughly forget her if they could. it is true. though of course he would not offer to do so. though partly guessed at by those who knew him. however. and it was not till after he was gone. and then. and there they stayed at least three months. 2he went dashing on for a season. perhaps I could get something more out of him then. and now to persevere ) now to make a bold push. I deeply regretted my stupidity and my foolish pride. could be known to (od and his own heart alone. and.

. for I hated to go near the house. some even ridiculed it ) but in this their folly was more apparent than his.a illward by my side.% and behave like a man and a *hristian. I can only tell you that he went from bad to worse.he second object of his choice was widely different from the first.virtue. however. he had never wholly forgotten his resolution to %come out from among them. -sq. consorting only with the worst members of his club and the lowest dregs of society ) happily for the rest of the world ) and at last met his end in a drunken brawl. between thirty and forty ) remarkable neither for beauty. 2ome wondered at his taste. he did his best to reciprocate the good she did him. . she entered the room. and nothing short of bodily ill)usage @and that of no trifling natureA could excuse such a step ) nor even that. $ut it was not of him I intended to speak. :attersley.. which had so deplorably enslaved and degraded him before. I%ll . country gentleman. he has now full scope for the exercise of his prevailing tastes. he still maintained that she had done wrong to leave her husband. r. active. ready equipped for a walk.% said she. that he never needed another lesson of the kind. I had been to call upon her father. for I was walking home from the vicarage with no less remarkable a personage than iss -li. nor brilliant accomplishments. nor any other thing that I ever heard of. cloudy afternoon about the commencement of >ecember. and a tempting of "rovidence by laying herself open to temptation. and his fine family of stalwart sons and blooming daughters. for though now constrained to acknowledge himself mistaken in his former judgment. CHAPTER LI We will now turn to a certain still. and a fund of cheerful spirits. and so far succeeded that she was. is celebrated throughout the country for his noble breed of horses. it was of his daughter -li. I remember it well. :e. thought her a world too good for him. 'voiding the temptations of the town. and all who question the good taste of either partner may be thankful if their respective selections afford them half the genuine satisfaction in the end. the banker. it was a violation of her sacred duties as a wife. combined to render her an excellent mother to the children. your sister. and the last illness and death of his once jolly friend :untingdon so deeply and seriously impressed him with the evil of their former practices.en roads.a. nor wealth. having died some years ago and left him all his riches. if you have no objection. immersed in the usual pursuits of a hearty. 3ust as I was taking leave of the vicar.. . but because I had not half forgiven the old gentleman himself for his ill opinion of rs. as you way readily imagine. when the first fall of snow lay thinly scattered over the blighted fields and fro. and breeding horses and cattle. for in such a case she ought to appeal to the laws for protection. and I believe still is. warm)hearted benevolence. it is said. sinking from bathos to bathos of vice and villainy.a. (rimsby. or stored more thickly in the hollows of the deep cart)ruts and footsteps of men and horses impressed in the now petrified mire of last month%s drenching rains. and even at her taste in preferring him to other men. arkham. or repay their preference with affection half as lasting and sincere. his occupations being those of farming. and the society of his happy little wife @now cheerful and confiding as heart could wishA. diversified with a little hunting and shooting. of some brother scoundrel he had cheated at play. cold. he continued to pass his life in the country. :is father. and enlivened by the occasional companionship of his friends @better friends than those of his youthA. unswerving integrity.he lady was about his own age ) i. except genuine good sense. :untingdon. 's for r. with his usual self)depreciation. %and so.e. not myself. If you are at all interested in the fate of that low scoundrel. one of the happiest and fondest wives in -ngland. %I was just coming to see. and while he wondered at the kindness of "rovidence in conferring such a gift upon him. and I need not tell you that !alph :attersley. not merely on account of my antipathy to the once so bewitching -li. ) a sacrifice to civility undertaken entirely to please my mother. from the hands. and an invaluable wife to his lordship. active piety.hese qualities.

%Is he gone/% said I. and that was what she told me the footman told her#) that rs. I don%t see what reason 2arah should have for deceiving me.a.% %I trust I shall.% said she.% cried she. she continued. smiling archly. ha.e.% cried she. what a pity0 ) ha. alas0 ) she%s going to be married next . %I know it%s very rude. %'h0 then he hasn%t told you about his sister/% %What of her/% I demanded in terror. lest some evil should have befallen her. :untingdon was going to be married on . that%s false. with a tormenting laugh. but at the same time. as we closed the garden gate. %:a. I sei. mercy0 shall I call this man/ :ere.% %What makes you look so pale then/% said she. I think. %!eally you must excuse me. dear0 r. when it%s agreeable. ha. r.% rejoined the young lady. . %I believe so. Is there not some one that lives near ) or frequently visits the neighbourhood. and set our faces towards &inden)*ar. are you going to faint/ +h. ) % %:argrave/% suggested I. with well)feigned concern. sir/% %1ou are misinformed. iss -li. r. %Well.hursday0% %.% %. then/% %I think I do. that%s what they told me. %+h. 2he did tell me the name of the gentleman. for she shrank into herself with a faint cry of pain or terror.% %'m I/ >o you know better.accompany you home.a0% I exclaimed. and her face brightened. dear. 3acob ) % $ut checking the word on her lips. "erhaps you can assist me to remember it.% %>o you charge me with a falsehood.ed her arm and gave it. you know. smiling with delight at my emotion. but ha. I only =tell the tale as %twas told to me#= I don%t vouch for the truth of it. iss -li. &awrence is gone for/% 2he looked up anxiously for my reply. a pretty severe squee. for I%ve a little bit of news for her ) if you haven%t forestalled me. %Is it anger at poor me for telling such a fib/ Well. for ) alas. I like company when I%m walking out ) don%t you/% %1es. $ut you had better be quick about it. that has long been attached to her/ ) a r. composedly staring me in the face. %1ou%re right. and r. ha0 ) did you think to marry her yourself/ >ear.% %I/% %1es# do you know what r. but the spirit within her was not subdued# instantly rallying. 'nd then she broke out into a long shrill laugh that put me to my wit%s end with fury. in a tone that made her start.o. I can tell you. %that was the very name. with a bitter smile. ha.% %Impossible. arkham. how you blush0% cried she. do you think/% said she. arkham. &awrence was gone to the wedding. you have not forgotten her yet.hursday.hat of course. or her informant for deceiving her. but I%ve forgotten that. ) oh. 2o we proceeded together. ha0 (racious. %2hall I find !ose at home.

%What can I do for you/ Will you have some water ) some brandy/ I daresay they have some in the public)house down there. and stubble. I hastened to Woodford as fast as my legs could carry me. determined. with a foolish. %Is r. if you%ll let me run. yes. if not that. sternly.% %:ave done with this nonsense0% cried I. sir ) % $ut I turned and left him. and fly to (rassdale ) I must be there before the marriage. just as a bird might fly. you must be good enough company for yourself. till I came to the young squire%s gates. always tenaciously clinging to the thought that one day she might be mine. and pushing through the nearest gap in the hedge. It struck me that someone might have belied me to her# perhaps her brother. for a moment. or. I would know the truth. if she might be mine0 ) it was too rapturous a thought0 . at all events. and what remorse for me to think my foolish scruples had induced it all0 +h. looking very alert. some slight remembrance of our friendship and our love. over pasture)land. in order to secure her from me. %Went where/% %. I was not going to stand there to expose my tortured feelings to the insolent laughter and impertinent curiosity of a fellow like that. so good)evening. sir/ :e%s very close. %. she and I might both lament it to the latest moment of our lives. $ut if I could save her. making violent efforts to speak with proper dignity and composure. and lane. or at least might tell me it was now too late. and know my fate at once. %'nd since you are in such a merry mood. and to say nothing but what was coherent and sensible. but the moment I was out of sight of my fair tormentor cutting away across the country. now I think of it. and perhaps her desponding carelessness about her future life. iss -li. and taking advantage of her natural indignation. I would take the morning coach from &) @the evening one would be already goneA. I must see her ) she must know my truth even if I told it at the church door0 I might pass for a madman or an impertinent fool ) even she might be offended at such an interruption. simpering grin. to wait and hesitate no longer. first veering round by a circuitous course. master went yesterday. no doubt her brother had persuaded her that I was false and faithless. but cast false delicacy and stupid pride behind my back. sir ) wasn%t you aware. %1ou know I hate such jests.% said the fellow. to question him boldly concerning his sister.ever till now had I known the full fervour of my love ) the full strength of my hopes. and I don%t like to be laughed at.% With that I left her @smothering her malicious laughterA and turned aside into the fields.% returned I. >etermined at once to prove the truth ) or rather the falsehood ) of her story. at least that something of my memory.a. e she might forsake. had urged her. cruelly. I have business elsewhere.o (rassdale. without waiting to hear what he supposed. springing up the bank. %3ests indeed0 I wasn%t jesting0% %1ou were laughing. is master.% I continued. %I suppose. 'nd why/ $ecause a thought struck me that perhaps I might prevent it ) that if I did not. $ut what was to be done now/ *ould it be possible that she had left me for that man/ I could not believe it. 2he looked confounded ) almost frightened again. I marched up to the door. would be for ever cherished in her heart. not wholly crushed even in my hours of deepest despondency. if I saw the master. on to this other marriage.% replied he. distracted me. artfully. sir. and if she should only discover her mistake when too late to repair it ) to what a life of misery and vain regret might she be doomed as well as me. but not to give herself to him0 Well. to no concerns of daily life could I attend while this tempest of doubt and dread. &awrence at home/% I eagerly asked of the servant that opened the door. of jealousy and rage.o. . clearing hedges and ditches and hurdles. and therefore I shall leave you to finish your walk alone ) for. If this was the case. and fallow.

hallooing to carters and clodhoppers. but did not hide it. and doomed her. and goaded by these fears. slighter. I entered the neighbourhood of (rassdale.he first glimpse made me start ) but my eyes were darkened with exhaustion and despair. <orth came the bride and bridegroom. $ut the night was long and dark# the snow heavily clogged the wheels and balled the horses% feet. doubtless. >are I trust them/ %1es ) it is not she0 It was a younger. they merely stared and grinned at my impatience# one fellow even ventured to rally me upon it ) but I silenced him with a look that quelled him for the rest of the journey. the coachman most execrably cautious. the marriage would take place. demanding. vociferating in the uncouth dialect of their country something which signified. In my desperation. vexatious rather. I approached the little rural church ) but lo0 there stood a train of carriages before it. I hurried homewards to prepare for my departure on the morrow.y people from their beds. aching with weariness and desperation. but with far less dignity and depth of soul ) without that indefinable grace. to apprise me that there was a wedding within. I sent into the town to seek one# but they were such an intolerable time about it that I could wait no longer ) I thought my own feet could carry me sooner. my first on that detested mortal who had torn her from my heart. Instead of assisting me to bully the several coachmen and urge them forward. vain repining ) for what happiness could she enjoy with him/ I did not wish to shock her with my presence now. of course. at the last was none to be had# the only one in the town was under repair. I was certain. I could see that while she carried her head erect. for where so little work was to be done. . and I had to keep stopping to inquire my way. I had eyes for none but was a gig. if it were ready within an hour. but every feature was radiant with smiles. and her face and neck were suffused with a crimson blush. nor the merry voices of the village idlers assembled to witness the show. that ineffable power to attract and subjugate the heart ) my heart at least. . suddenly dropped off and made a rush for the porch. that I had been fool enough to wait so long. I would have taken the reins into my own hand. the passengers confoundedly apathetic in their supine indifference to the rate of our progression. her eyes were bent upon the ground. and stood intently ga. It was broad daylight when we entered ) and drew up at the %!ose and *rown. which so retarded the progress of the coaches on the following day that I was almost driven to distraction. that had been hanging like bees to the window. ' long veil shrouded half her graceful form. sometimes knocking up the la.% I alighted and called aloud for a post)chaise to (rassdale. %It%s over ) they%re coming out0% If -li. perhaps so little food and fire to be had. they all with one accord opposed it. then ) a fly ) car ) anything ) only be quick0% . with breathless eagerness.Winged by this hope. I hurried on. they cared not to curtail their slumbers. 't towards the door to take my last look on my soul%s delight.a illward had seen me then she might indeed have been delighted. it needed not the white favours bedecking the servants and horses.hat night there came a heavy fall of snow. the animals were consumedly la. that keenly spiritual yet gentle charm. I grasped the gate)post for support.he distance was little more than six miles. I told my mother that urgent business which admitted no delay. and I had much ado to calm her apprehensions of some disastrous mystery. I ran in among them. and was about to enter the churchyard gate. . I set off as fast as I could walk. but which I could not then explain.y. :im I saw not. to a life of misery and hollow. I .hey only gaped and stared.he gig did not overtake me# and it was well I had not waited for it. y deep anxiety and serious preoccupation could not be concealed from her maternal eyes. but the road was strange. for there were few abroad that winter%s morning. I travelled all night. but not a horse to spare. however. had the ceremony long commenced/ . and frequently invading the cottages. however. called me away. I pushed past them. %' gig. and bidding them send the conveyance after me. . when a group of ragged urchins. but I had not power to move away. and gleaming through the misty whiteness of her veil were clusters of golden ringlets0 +h. I had no time to think of them. for this was Wednesday# to)morrow morning. rosier beauty ) lovely indeed. and when. heavens0 it was not my :elen0 .

reproachfully. at the wildness of my looks. while she rested her glowing cheek on his shoulder. it being scarcely agreeable to stand there among so many ga. or even than you will take to read it.looked at the bridegroom ) it was <rederick &awrence0 I wiped away the cold drops that were trickling down my forehead. but. and keeping their friends waiting into the bargain.% said he. mind. I saw my happy friend fondly encircle his companion%s waist with his arm. with an air of guilty confusion. rs. %I did tell you. I acknowledge. %Why did you not tell me of this/% I said. and he knew me. and. but the young lady. and as I had hated him like a demon for the last forty hours.% %. pretending a resentment I did not feel @for in truth I was almost wild with joy to find myself so happily mistaken.% said he. and hastened to take his place beside his lady.his was no time or place for explanation or discourse# we had already stood long enough to excite the wonder of the village sight) seers. and immediately handing her into the carriage. this is r. arkham/% said he. though. endeavouring to hide his embarrassment by an assumption of careless gaiety. and stepped back as he approached.% :e shook my hand. the reaction from such a feeling was so great that I could pardon all offences for the moment ) and love him in spite of them tooA. and scores of letters. but not to that extent. . arkham. thank you. looking the very impersonation of loving.% %It must have crossed you on your way then ) it should have reached you yesterday morning ) it was rather late.ers. very opportunely came to my assistance by pinching her companion%s arm and whispering a suggestion that his friend should be invited to step into the carriage and go with them. of course. but I shall expect a very handsome apology. I stood beside the carriage. and vehemently wrung the bridegroom%s hand. %1es. &awrence.% I bowed to the bride.o. %Is that you. too. In the interval between the footman%s closing the door and taking his place behind she . glancing with dismay at her slight drapery. then. and overflowing with affection to him for this and for the base injustice I felt that I had done him in my mind ) he might have wronged me. and if he had reason to be proud of the sweet lady on his arm. :e smiled and coloured.he one announcing my intended marriage. %'nd so cold as it is too0% said he. %you received my letter/% %What letter/% %. (ood)by ) I needn%t wish you a pleasant journey. my friend arkham. he had no less cause to be ashamed of having concealed his good fortune so long. as if half)proud and half)ashamed of his identity. trusting bliss. some time. all this passed in a much shorter time than I have taken to relate. &awrence. and perhaps the wrath of the attendant bridal party. but we can drop you anywhere between this and >over. altered as my appearance must have been.% %I never received the most distant hint of such an intention. who had been busily patting the snow with her foot during our short sotto) voce colloquy. is that you/% I mustered the presence of mind to reply. if you received no information/% It was now my turn to be confounded. will you come/ We are going to "aris. before we meet again. $ut what brought you here. %'llow me to introduce you to my bride. his eyes fell upon me. the window being down. %-sther. % arkham. startled and confounded at the apparition ) perhaps. late iss :argrave.

I would see rs. playfully. but I couldn%t squee. "erhaps. still ) I hoped. if not by actually plotting against us.% %:umph0 . but he had wronged us. %$ut what is this/% he murmured. >oubtless he had made his first acquaintance with her ) his first intimate acquaintance at least ) during his three months% sojourn at <). Well might the servant say his master was %very close. as the carriages filed away before us. and absences more or less prolonged.e a tear for my life. the best of %em gone. %.led me before. for sundry departures from Woodford. . sir/ or you%re a stranger in these parts/% %I know them by report. I entered it. :e had not attempted to cheek the course of our love by actually damming up the streams in their passage. observing. as the carriage rolled away ) %and heaven grant it be not wholly vain0% I thought a cloud had suddenly darkened her husband%s face as she spoke. he thought of me# perhaps he regretted the part he had had in preventing our union.% %$less you for that wish0% I inwardly responded. among the rest. somewhere. for which he never satisfactorily accounted. . as what come to)morra. 'nd meantime he had been quietly proceeding with his own affairs.he tardy gig had overtaken me at last. %Why. ) ?now anything of that family. and this accounted for at least one)half his silence about all transactions there. was not disposed to leave me to the indulgence of my private cogitations. from that remarkable idiosyncrasy to which I have before alluded.% :e only answered with a kiss. for I now recollected that he had once casually let fall an intimation that his aunt and sister had a young friend staying with them at the time.. but he had passively watched the two currents wandering through life%s arid wilderness.he contrast between her fate and his must darken his bliss for a time. and concerning which he hated to be questioned on his return. %that our dear :elen were as happy as ourselves. %. CHAPTER LII . ) %I fear you must think me very insensible. -sther. and pressed her still closer to his bosom. you%re crying now0% %+h. and secretly hoping that both would lose themselves in the sand before they could be joined in one. and bade the man who brought it drive to (rassdale anor ) I was too busy with my own thoughts to care to drive it myself.ow. too. a loquacious. and take herself off.% sobbed she. declining to clear away the obstructions that divided them. What did he think/ *ould he grudge such happiness to his dear sister and his friend as he now felt himself/ 't such a moment it was impossible. $ut my companion. and deeply lamented my former ungenerous suspicions. partly. his heart and head had been so full of his fair lady that he had had but little thought to spare for others. I exonerated him from that charge now. <rederick# I know it is the custom for ladies to cry on these occasions. to live on her bit of a jointure. they go0% said he. :untingdon ) there could be no impropriety in that now that her husband had been dead above a year ) and by her indifference or her joy at my unexpected arrival I could soon tell whether her heart was truly mine. 'nd I suppose the old missis is agoing to leave after this stir%s gotten overed. forward be brave doings on yonder to) day.raised her smiling brown eyes to his face. too. and the young %un ) . by omitting to help us. perhaps.% $ut why this strange reserve to me/ "artly. it%s nothing ) it%s only too much happiness ) and the wish. I trusted that he had. or fear to disturb my philosophy by touching upon the infectious theme of love. I saw a reason for many little things that had slightly pu. from tenderness to my feelings.

. winding track left by the trooping deer ) the stately timber)trees with their heavy)laden branches gleaming white against the dull. only coming to (rassdale occasionally. with her nipping and screwing. . sir. unconditional possession of her own fortune @but I knew that her father had not given her muchA. nor as handsome either. but I couldn%t stand their niggardly ways ) she got ever longer and worse.ow then. and how the property had been disposed of.% 't ) I had time before the coach started to replenish my forces with a hearty breakfast. I asked him if he knew whether her late husband had left a will. but by no means encouraging to me. least the new %un @she%s none so very youngA ) is coming down to live at the (rove. be his mother%s.he park as beautiful now. .ow for the trial. ) all this was entailed upon little 'rthur. . she thought she%d never get a better. they say. give me the reins. you know. and he might take it and welcome. and the amelioration of some slight change in my . I%ve known him since he was quite a young gentleman. and the small additional sum that had been settled upon her before marriage. I was servant yonder for several years. but she wouldn%t let it go. and watching and grudging. to a widow lady. but was expected to return before *hristmas. If I should find her within ) but alas0 she might be still at 2taningley# her brother had given me no intimation to the contrary. :argrave wanted it all to hisself.% %Is r. she was with her aunt in )shire. yond%s the park. and could not under any circumstances. and so. however. but I lay she%ll rue her bargain afore long. he knew all about it. and I was quickly informed that to her had been left the full control and management of the estate during her son%s minority. strictly speaking. perlite. I must have some breakfast at the =!ose and *rown. the undulating swell and fall. and a wilful. then/% %'y. so I thought I%d find another place. when the management of affairs. interrupting him. a few months since. $efore the close of the explanation we drew up at the park)gates.= and then away to 2taningley by the first coach for ). sir. %. %I am. and the weeping ash and willow drooping their snow)clad boughs above it ) all presented a picture. 'y. and getting on to forty or past. striking indeed. 2he%s very plain. $ut how was she situated/ +vercoming with a sudden effort my repugnance to mention her name to my garrulous companion. and pleasing to an unencumbered mind. the deep. did missis. delightful gentleman %at she thought him afore marriage ) he begins a being careless and masterful already. and r. . if she didn%t jump at this hopportunity.% %1ou seem to be well acquainted with him. stainless and printless ) save one long.his one isn%t quite as rich.o. . but they couldn%t agree over the money# she%d a rare long purse. encircling woods.he requisite information was soon obtained. besides the absolute. and we%ll return to ). in its wintry garb. as it could be in its summer glory# the majestic sweep. I inquired at the porter%s lodge if rs.. required her presence. and a proud %un he was.% I observed. and so then they fell out. sir. my man. I guess she thought such a handsome young husband was worth all %at ever she had. . and she%ll find him harder and carelesser nor she thinks on.ear what town is 2taningley situated/% I asked. %1es. :e should a been wed afore. 2he usually spent most of her time at was one comfort. and to obtain the refreshment of my usual morning%s ablutions. %.hey say she begins already to see %at he isn%t not altogether that nice. +h.% %'re we not near the house/% said I. :untingdon were at home. :argrave married. grey sky. displayed to full advantage in that robe of da. but she hasn%t been married before. or the interest of her tenants and dependents.ling purity.% y heart sank within me to behold that stately mansion in the midst of its expansive grounds. generous. the broad expanse of water sleeping in fro.en quiet.

choosing rather to brook a little delay than to present myself worn. and an annuity to his wife.% said one of them. above all. or destroy the keen anticipation of what was to be# in fact. of all that she had passed through since our parting.% %'y. and. . in spite of my prudent endeavours to bind them down to a reasonable platitude by thinking of the undeniable difference between :elen%s rank and mine. sir. but add to this the idea of to what goal I was hastening. and she%s nursing a fine estate for him in ). a gruff elderly man.en snow. wild. passed through the neighbourhood of 2taningley. to his nephew down in )shire. conspicuous for their compact hedgerows. inhaling the pure. but I bestowed a little more than usual time and care upon my toilet. I mounted %. to assure her that I was still in existence.% ) @facetiously jogging me with his elbow.% %:umph0 2he%ll be a fine catch for somebody. or mar the vivid recollection of what had been said and felt between us.% %It was his. by way of remembrance. was exhilarating enough in itself. ha. and my spirits rose almost to madness.toilet. and you may have some faint conception of my frame of mind at the time ) only a faint one. sir. and only one child.hese considerations made my heart flutter with anxiety. I hope/% ) @to meA. frosty morning. and neat new gloves. .% %It%s strange. and crunching away over the crisp fro. . I had nearly two stages yet before me. cautious aunt. I could not realise their terrors now. ha0 . whose counsels she would doubtless be careful not to slight again.ext morning. and uncommon handsome# a fortune of her own. but they could not dim her image in my mind. It was a clear. and. and weather)beaten before my mistress and her aunt. %<ine land this. however. as well as his companionA ) %ha.% and resumed my journey. and fine timber)trees. bracing air. and it was her wish that this lady should have it. %'hem0 I should think she%ll marry none but a nobleman . and he always had a partiality for this one. sir0% %It is. who would be astonished enough to see me without that. and has left it all to his niece. therefore. and whom I expected to meet. 'nd then his wife advised him to be lots to speak for her0 %fraid there%s no chance for u. besides. I suppose. I was informed. surveying the snowy landscape and sweet sunny sky. I not only fortified myself with as substantial a breakfast as my excited feelings would allow me to swallow. and a cotton umbrella between his knees. and to excuse my non)appearance at the expected time.% %2he will so.he very fact of sitting exalted aloft. though# for my heart swelled with unspeakable delight. you%re aware.he &ightning. pointing with his umbrella to the wide fields on the right. . deep.owards the close of the journey.% %'ll/% %-very rood of it. and brought me low enough.% responded the other. well)brushed clothes. . 2he%s a widow. furnished with a change of linen from my small carpet)bag. but I did not deny myself needful refreshment on the road. sometimes in the midst of the enclosure# %very fine land. with a drab greatcoat buttoned up to the chin. if you saw it in the summer or spring. and also to despatch a short note to my mother @excellent son that I wasA. well)polished boots. %It%s old axwell%s. sir. but quite young yet. growing sometimes on the borders. of her long. $ut he had no near relations of his own ) none but a nephew he%d quarrelled with. a couple of my fellow) passengers kindly came to my assistance. well)cut ditches. they say# she%d brought most of the property. and my chest heave with impatience to get the crisis over. but he%s dead now. but the coach. and the mansion)house and all0 every hatom of his worldly goods. except just a trifle. nor even a night%s rest at a wayside inn. unbroken silence. It was a long journey to 2taningley for those slow)travelling days. I had nothing to do but to sit with folded arms and speculate upon the coming hour. and she wasn%t his own niece neither.o offence. of her cool. and having desired to be set down as near the :all as possible.

an overwhelming force of images. that I might have its outward form. but it must not be ) I must not suffer her to see me. her peace should not be broken by my presence. . I should not have remembered the fact of . apparently without fortune. dear :elen. and she should never know that I had approached the place of her abode# for though I might disclaim all idea of ever aspiring to her hand. %'dieu then. (ladly would I have lingered round the place for hours. preparatory to dropping myself down after it. or to sacrifice her individual wishes to the feelings of her friends and her own sense of prudence and the fitness of things/ . absorbed in my gloomy reverie. ) 'll right0% . too. :allo0 what now/% . I must tear myself away at once. and she had expressly forbidden me to hope for a re)union in this world. sir/% asked my talkative neighbour. impressed upon my mind as indelibly as her own image. and never sent me a line or a message from that day to this. a gentleman%s carriage came round the corner of the road.hank%ee. alas0 I must not see again ) then walked a few steps further. and had it rolled quietly by me. I daresay it was white enough. sir. you see. like the remembrance of a wild. or even of soliciting a place in her friendly regard. would most certainly have kept her unknown to me for ever/ 'nd this. family. lost in melancholy musings. the sorrow and displeasure of those she loved. sir.o ) and I would not0 I would go at once. and eyes fixed upon the ground. impressions crowding on my mind. leaving me. turning to his other neighbour. or the former imperatively call her ) whether she should deem it her duty to risk the slights and censures of the world. in the hope of catching at least one distant glimpse of her before I went. %that%s the :all# grand park. with folded arms. and nothing tangibly distinct but this# y love had been cherished in vain ) my hope was gone for ever. and banish or suppress all thoughts of her.myself. or connections. and lots of game. when she was reinstated in her proper sphere. &ook ye. mad dream. coachman0% %. %. toiling for her own support.he coachman pocketed his fee and drove away.his exclamation was occasioned by the sudden stoppage of the coach at the park)gates. :ere. thoughts. for a romantic idea of truth and constancy to me.he very idea was intolerable. %2ickly. with a view hereafter to obtain her hand/ 'nd could I bear that she should think me capable of such a thing/ ) of presuming upon the acquaintance ) the love. not walking up the park. CHAPTER LIII While standing thus. for what could have brought me hither but the hope of reviving her attachment. %(en%leman for 2taningley :all/% cried the coachman and I rose and threw my carpet)bag on to the ground. and then.o0 . if you will ) accidentally contracted. ought I to disturb her peace by awakening those feelings/ to subject her to the struggles of conflicting duty and inclination ) to whichsoever side the latter might allure. and then looked back.o. had it never failed her. at least. and claim a share in her prosperity.% resumed he. and pointing past me with his umbrella. 'nd even if she should have a lingering affection for me still. to come upon her now. for one last view of her stately home. staring me in the face. or rather forced upon her against her will. forever0 <orever adieu0% 2o said I ) and yet I could not tear myself away. and all them woods ) plenty of timber there. which. but pacing to and fro before its gates. I moved a few paces. when we had parted sixteen months ago. when she was an unknown fugitive. I did not look at it. which. paused again and leant my back against a rough old tree that grew beside the road. nor her heart afflicted by the sight of my fidelity.

he carriage stopped immediately. was attentively surveying my countenance from behind the thick black veil which. and it was not till 'rthur had been for some time gently pulling my coat. that I at length consented to accompany him into the apartment where the ladies awaited us. but I suppose mamma looked. waiting to recover my composure. grave. I paused on the steps and looked round me.% %*an you doubt/% %1es. %It is my hand in both his. .here was such evidence of joyous though suppressed excitement in the utterance of those few words ) especially that tremulous. elderly lady surveying me from the open window. full well. %(rown0 three inches. :elen eyed me as I entered with a kind of gentle. y little companion led me up the park. but I knew not to what to ascribe it. I dropped it. running round from the other door. entirely concealed her own from me. arkham. in a tone which betokened more displeasure or disappointment than surprise. and quickly sei. altered though you are. he shook it heartily. mamma.he carriage drove on and entered the gates before us.% . I knew that hand. and politely asked after rs. upon my word0% %I was seven last birthday. I felt. !ichard0% .its appearance at all. exclaimed. in spite of the blue eyes beaming with gladness. %In seven years more I shall be as tall as you nearly. %Will you not enter it. discoursing merrily all the way. or only passing by/% asked the low voice of its owner. .% was the proud rejoinder. and it was immediately withdrawn. and so did was a touch of sadness as well as coldness in her voice. at any rate. %1es. aunt0 here%s r. I respectfully answered her inquiries. %+h. who.% repeated she. and the bright locks clustering beneath his it. with the shadowing panels. yes0 he must enter.% I did not raise my eyes. mamma ) look for yourself.% replied I. and then she withdrew her head. %tell him to come in. %'m I not grown/% said he. surveying the comparatively tall. if possible ) or. %>o you remember me. I pressed it in my own ) ardently for a moment. and repeating his invitations to enter.he place. my little man. aunt% ) that it threw me almost off my guard. though a black glove concealed its delicate whiteness and half its fair proportions. while 'rthur screamed to the footman to let him out. rs. %I ) I came to see the place. 'rthur%s friend0 2top. axwell begged me to be seated. 2he bowed. slim young gentleman. with his mother%s image visibly stamped upon his fair. and I looked up and met the eye of a pale. sir/% said he. but instantly recollecting myself. .% said his mother. 'rrived at the hall)door. but presently the same voice answered. whose tones thrilled through my nerves. here%s r. for a clear melodious voice. !ichard. serious scrutiny. to remember my new)formed resolutions and the principles on which they were founded. % amma.% cried 'rthur. and sei. %Were you coming to see us.% faltered I. (o on. %. intelligent features. then/% %If you wish it. %+h. stretching himself up to his full height. but a tiny voice from within it roused me by exclaiming. but before that functionary could descend from his box a hand was silently put forth from the carriage window. arkham0% I did not hear the reply.% %'rthur. arkham and !ose.

for I was sensible that :elen was standing within a few feet of me beside the fire. and speaking fast and low. the season. but she supposed I had not travelled far that morning. 2he vouchsafed me an almost friendly smile of recognition ) a favour that demanded. by coach.ell me. and a look of timid though keen inquiry that made my cheeks tingle with inexpressible emotions. where he quietly amused himself with his dog.ell me how you all are at &inden)hope ) has nothing happened since I left you/% %I believe not. %. and unconcealed in its glossy luxuriance.observing it was rather cold. but when he saw that his pertness was seriously displeasing and painful to his aunt. Ec. and I had the greatest difficulty in forcing myself to attend to her remarks and answer them with ordinary politeness.% %:ere%s !achel.% observed 'rthur. When :elen was divested of her lugubrious bonnet and veil.% %+r ) or expecting to marry/ ) . adam. %I believe not.o old ties dissolved or new ones formed/ no old friends forgotten or supplanted/% 2he dropped her voice so low in the last sentence that no one could have caught the concluding words but myself. furtive glance. availing herself of the first pause in the attempted conversation between her aunt and me. % amma has left off her widow%s cap in honour of uncle%s marriage. were agitated with that restless. with her eyes bent on the gold chain ) for I now ventured another glance ) %. and that her fingers. %'nd you really did not mean to call/% she exclaimed.% I answered. directing my attention to that worthy individual. %. I dared not look at her. trembling motion which betokens high excitement.obody dead/ nobody married/% %. at least. sir. but just then I felt the restraint almost intolerable.% said 'rthur. axwell gravely discussed with me the interesting topics of the weather.o. I was particularly glad to see her beautiful black hair. he went and silently put his arm round her neck. and withdrew to the recess of one of the great bay)windows. %*ertainly not. as she played with her watch) chain. amma looked grave and rs. and the roads. I considered her presence very useful as a check upon my natural impulses ) an antidote to those emotions of tumultuous excitement which would otherwise have carried me away against my reason and my will. I thought her cheek was slightly flushed. and at the same time turned her eyes upon me with a dawning smile. she looked so like herself that I knew not how to bear it. reading my looks with a child%s mingled simplicity and quickness of observation. who had just entered to take her mistress%s things. a civil salutation on my part.% I answered. %I feared to intrude. %. most sweetly melancholy.ot on foot0% %. kissed her cheek.% said she. the only truly happy one amongst us.o.% :er face glowed in sympathy with mine. her heavy winter cloak. %'nd aunt axwell is never going to leave off hers. which was accordingly given and respectfully returned ) she had seen the error of her former estimation of my character. while rs. and from one hasty.% %. but I felt her eye was upon me. if others are as little changed as I.. unstinted still.% .% persisted the naughty boy.ot quite twenty miles. axwell shook her head.

but I continued caressing the dog. %What ) % but as if suddenly recollecting her aunt%s presence. and. and not daring to look in her face lest my firmness should forsake me altogether. of this opportunity of seeing you once more and knowing that you have not forgotten me. I lingered a few minutes to see the place. but was fully resolved to return to ) without seeing its mistress. and hastily turning over a do.% . had it depended on me to break it. I determined not to enter within them. but I did not know that this estate was yours until enlightened on the subject of your inheritance by the conversation of two fellow)passengers in the last stage of my journey. but I thought you had forgotten me long ago. $ut I am glad.% %1ou judged of others by yourself. :elen ) unfortunately I am as keen and passionate as ever ) it is not I. he declines to look in for fear of intruding0% % r. %I thought an interview would only disturb your peace and madden me. arkham is over)modest. and to ask after the welfare of its father 2ancho. from conscious inability to steady my voice. began to turn over the leaves in an energetic kind of abstraction. his friend. of which 'rthur thought he might venture to avail himself to introduce his handsome young setter. and fears that I should be as little welcome as expected when I cameA.% replied I.%. I know. what is the matter with you/ ) why are you so changed/ It is a very indiscreet question. . %+ver)ceremonious rather. .% she hastened to add# %perhaps a very rude one ) don%t answer it if you think so ) but I hate mysteries and concealments. was a pause. and professed a great attachment to my boy ) and when he passes the house.en leaves at once. and though I alighted at your gates. she dismissed the former from the room under pretence of wishing him to fetch his last new book to show me. I most likely should not have denied myself the pleasure of calling upon you.% %'nd if my aunt and I had not been just returning from our morning drive. in half a minute or less. continued ) %Why.% %I am not changed. now. my hostess impatiently rose. so many scores of miles from his home. :elen immediately pushed the book from her. this man is my brother%s close friend.% observed rs. and. and show me how wonderfully it was grown and improved.he child obeyed with alacrity. %If I had known. earnestly exclaimed ) %(ilbert. she checked herself.% said I. axwell. and then I saw at once the folly of the hopes I had cherished. and of assuring you that I shall never cease to remember you.o intrude0% cried she. and the madness of retaining them a moment longer. but not daring to speak above my breath.he silence might have lasted till its master%s return. turning to that lady. I should have seen and heard no more of you/% %I thought it would be better for both that we should not meet. taking her former station on the rug between me and the chimney corner.% said her niece ) %over ) well. and was my own intimate acquaintance @for a few short months at leastA. aunt. . with an impatient gesture.% said I. %I will confess that I came here for the purpose of seeing you @not without some monitory misgivings at my own presumption. axwell then withdrew to take off her things. it%s no matter. and after silently surveying her son.% %What circumstances/ >o tell me0% :er cheek was blanched with the very anguish of anxiety ) could it be with the fear that I had rashly pledged my faith to another/ %I%ll tell you at once. as calmly as I could. she seated herself in a chair beside the table. %that you would have honoured me by remembering me as an intimate acquaintance. and pulling a book to her by the cover. but. but reddening as she spoke.% 'nd turning from me.% muttered she without raising her eyes from the book. it is circumstances that are changed. and his dog for a few moments.

and having gently dashed the glittering powder from its leaves. but if you had sent me a message through your brother. rs. and yourself of mine. looking out upon the snowy lawn. %+h. and stood in the recess of the window.% %. %'re you going already/% said she. I only ought to be.% +nly too glad to obey. :elen ) rs. she turned away her glistening eye and crimson cheek. or to relieve her embarrassment. for I saw he did not wish to be questioned about you. "luck it. but. she broke the silence herself by suddenly turning towards me and observing ) %1ou might have had such an opportunity before ) as far.% %It was wrong to talk of it then. whether to calm her own. but your silence naturally led me to conclude myself forgotten. smiling. and its faint sun to warm it. blushing at the implied imputation. if I could have ventured to believe that you expected to hear from me. or it could not have carried me was a moment%s pause. but it would be wrong to talk of it now. with a most heroic resolution ) but pride was at the bottom of it. (ilbert. the bleak winds have . and not immediately letting it go. just peeping from the snow that had hitherto. at least. rs. I was not going to do more. :untingdon. %1ou told me you were not changed. she did. I will relieve her of my presence. :untingdon. %Why should I stay any longer/% %Wait till 'rthur comes.o. or to afford the slightest encouragement or assistance to my too obstinate attachment. I stood and leant against the opposite side of the window.% :elen did not reply. %certainly not.% said I. or even wasted a thought upon your unhappy friend. excited feelings.% %>id you expect me to write to you. >id she regard this as an intimation that modesty alone prevented me from asking her hand/ and was she considering how to repulse me with the smallest injury to my feelings/ $efore I could speak to relieve her from such a perplexity.% %I would have done so.% added I.% %>id you ever ask him/% %. :untingdon moved away.% said my companion# %you are ) very much so. $ut she remained in silence. but I did not know your address. no doubt. but this would not have deterred me for a moment. without waiting for an answer. if you had written to me. %'nd he was perfectly right. or even asked him about me now and then ) % %I did ask about you frequently. approached it to her lips and said# %.% continued she. then/% %. but it has stood through hardships none of them could bear# the cold rain of winter has sufficed to nourish it. as regards assuring me of your kindly recollections. and immediately I rose and advanced to take leave. because I thought he would object to my writing.% thought I. and was now melting away in the sun. %so long as you continued to restrict yourself to a few polite inquiries about my health.his rose is not so fragrant as a summer flower. and threw up the window and looked out. and did not like to ask your brother.o. taking the hand I offered. it would not now ) unless to do so would be to violate the truth.% %1our brother never told me that you had mentioned my name.% I was too much agitated to speak. I mean. however. or only to pluck that beautiful half)blown *hristmas)rose that grew upon the little shrub without. defended it from the frost..% %>o you mean to maintain that you have the same regard for me that you had when last we met/% %I have.o.

and what I ought to do or say upon the occasion. ) %$ut if you should repent0% %It would be your fault. :elen suddenly snatched it from my hand. I was in an agony of mingled love.% %1ou are changed. and suspense. picked up the flower. hope.% I replied. unless you bitterly disappoint me. and in a minute I had opened the window again. whether to give way to my feelings or restrain them still.e it more highly than anything in the world I possessed. as she took it in her hand. brought it in. with the cold snow even now on its petals. the only remedy I could think of was to take it away. and withdrew to the fire. %I will if ) if I must. 2he laid the rose across my palm.% said she ) %or. I snatched her hand. delight. are you going/% said she. %:elen. shut down the window with an emphasis. ) Will you have it/% I held out my hand# I dared not speak lest my emotion should overmaster me. with a most enchanting smile. and said. sarcastic smile. if I asked it/% %:ave I not said enough/% she answered. uncertainty. (ilbert. and pri.% I answered. I%m sorry I gave it you. and the keen frost has not blighted it.% 2tupid blockhead that I was0 ) I trembled to clasp her in my arms. :untingdon. what is worse. threw it out on to the snow. ) if not both. imploring her to give it me again. what means this/% I cried. %1ou did not understand my gift. leaped out. or broken its stem.ow. let me alone.% said she.% she replied# %I never shall.he rose I gave you was an emblem of my heart. so deeply was I absorbed in thinking what might be the meaning of her words. and yet restrained myself to say. or too indifferent to make his affection outweigh my worldly goods.% persisted she ) %you are grown either very proud or very indifferent. %It shall. %.% %1ou misunderstood me cruelly. ) %$ut have you considered the consequences/% %:ardly.not blanched it. take it. and would have fervently kissed it. %'nd will this content you/% said she. &ook. If you could see my heart ) % rs. or I should not have offered myself to one too proud to take me. but suddenly checked myself. but I scarcely closed my fingers upon it.% . but since I did make such a mistake. :elen ) rs. If you have not sufficient confidence in my affection to believe this. it is still fresh and blooming as a flower can be.% %I am neither. electrified at this startling change in her demeanour. %. as before/% %1ou must be one. then. I think. %. :untingdon looking on with a half) %:elen.% I pressed it earnestly to my lips. %would you take it away and leave me here alone/% %Would you give me your hand too. 'nd why rs. and presented it to her. and put it in my bosom. and I would keep it for ever for her sake. :untingdon/ ) why not :elen. isconstruing this hesitation into indifference ) or reluctance even ) to accept her gift. you despised but dared not believe in so much joy. then ) dear :elen0% I murmured.

% said I.hey will not greatly disapprove. and I know you will like each other. dear (ilbert. and clasped her closer to my heart in the instinctive dread of losing my new) found treasure. and sometimes you shall see me with your bodily eye. %I have not deserved it.ow are you satisfied/% 2he looked up in my face with a smile of ineffable tenderness. and another. but still fondly clasping my hand.% %'nd then you will be mine. alone. wild step.% said she. with your love/ 'nd you do love me. winter is such a dreary season. and learn to like you. after lunch. %'nother year0 +h. or. and cultivate her acquaintance.% %I thought so too. %2he would think it a rash. the close of summer. then/% %Well.% %$ut this is too much happiness. and fortune are as dust in the balance compared with the unity of accordant thoughts and feelings.% she earnestly replied. if they could. the greater will be my dread that something will intervene to snatch you from me ) and think. . % y aunt must not know of it yet.% %1our friends will disapprove.% replied she. at least. 'nd besides.% y darling angel ) my own :elen. perhaps. not doubting the fact. when they know you. if it depend on me alone.% %It would not be a separation# we will write every day# my spirit shall be always with you. and come again in spring. I could not wait so long0% %Where is your fidelity/% %I mean I could not endure the misery of so long a separation. but as my marriage is to please myself. :elen/% said I. embracing her again. birth. in spring. no ) next autumn. %If you loved as I do. %you would not have so nearly lost me ) these scruples of false delicacy and pride would never thus have troubled you ) you would have seen that the greatest worldly distinctions and discrepancies of rank. a thousand things may happen in a year0 ) I shall be in one long fever of restless terror and impatience all the time.% replied she gravely# %I would not be married in winter ) in >ecember.o ) in another year. %. :elen ) I dare not believe in such felicity# and the longer I have to wait.% said now0 be satisfied.% %. sympathising hearts and souls. but wishing to hear it confirmed by her own acknowledgment. and the terrible death that released her ) %and therefore I said another year. :elen. for I was as daring and impetuous now as I had been backward and constrained before. earnestly kissing my hand.% %2ummer.% . $ut have you thought of your aunt/% I trembled for the answer. and another. but she must know you herself.ext spring/% %. %they cannot. 1ou must leave us now.o.% she added. they would not be true friends ) I should not care for their estrangement. gently disengaging herself from my embrace.% %. %*an I be otherwise. . with a shudder ) for in that month had occurred both the ill)starred marriage that had bound her to her former husband. and make a longer stay.% cried I. I ought to consult my friends about the time of it. because she could not imagine how well I know you. I will not be such a hypocrite as to pretend that I desire to wait so long myself. printing a kiss upon her lips. now passionately kissing the hand I still retained. and throwing my left arm around her. %you never shall repent. and truly loving.% said I.

as I advanced to take leave of her. 'ny one but you would say I had made it too long already. Well0 I hope (od will prosper your union. I couldn%t find the book in either of the places you told me to look for it% @there was a conscious something in mamma%s smile that seemed to say. r. and as such I have ever since regarded him. (ood)by. and we will live either here or elsewhere as you and she may determine. I love her for your sake. I understand. of course. did my best to cultivate her acquaintance. for any tender colloquy that my companion had brought me there#) % y aunt is particularly fond of flowers. and followed her into a large and beautiful conservatory. I think. 2he received me very kindly. don%t astonish his infantile brain with your madness. and I am willing to make any reparation in my power. hoping ere long to have the pleasure of seeing me again. doubtless. and drew the little fellow between my knees. and will wish to know the last of her history. and her happiness shall be as dear to me as that of my own mother. I had little attention to spare for them.hank you.% GGGGG $ut it is time to bring my narrative to a close. It was not. and not entirely without success. but now I affectionately stroked his curling looks. agreeably to :elen%s injunctions. I knew you could not%A. I turned my best side out. %$ut you must not go till you have seen the conservatory. already prepared to think highly of my character by her niece%s too favourable report.% said :elen. that this may be her home as long as she lives. and make my dear girl happy at last. and even kissed his ivory forehead# he was my own :elen%s son. (ilbert ) let me go ) here%s 'rthur. . a natural history. my aunt%s winter garden. I did come again in spring. . I had not looked through half the book before rs. and ) if it be not our home likewise ) that I may often see her and be with her. I should not dream of wishing your aunt to leave the place under any circumstances. arkham. r. %and she is fond of 2taningley too# I brought you here to offer a petition in her behalf. and you shall see her as often as you like. darling0 you shall have a kiss for that. with all kinds of birds and beasts in it. she gradually became more kind and cordial. was ) %'nd so. and is at present residing in (rassdale anor with his young wife ) the merry little :elen :attersley of yore. for when I talked cheerfully to her. and therefore mine. dearest :elen0 ) do what you will with your own. I gladly availed myself of such a respite. dear. considering the season ) now ) there. of course. % amma. *ould she have been contented to remain . for I fear she will be sorry to lose me. When my ambitious intentions were made known to her. and the reading as nice as the pictures0% In great good humour I sat down to examine the book.% %$y all means. however. axwell appeared to invite me into the other room to lunch. arkham. even in that first short visit. in my hearing. you are going to rob me of my niece. :er only remark on the subject.hat pretty child is now a fine young man# he has realised his mother%s brightest expectations. %but !achel got it for me at last. . having been. I know she must be pained to part with you. with as much philosophy and self)command as I could summon to my aid. she took it more sensibly than I had ventured to hope.% she observed. $ut for your satisfaction I will add a few words more. plentifully furnished with flowers. and though she leads a retired and contemplative life. &ook.o. but I did my best to propitiate her. and when I departed she bade me a gracious adieu. and. because I know you will have a fellow) feeling for the old lady. %. :ad he come a minute before I should have received him less graciously.% %. distant manners rather chilled me at first. she is apt to get low) spirited if left too much alone. and we got along marvellously well together.While she was speaking 'rthur re)entered the room ) good boy for keeping out so long.hat lady%s cool.

in his own eyes. It took the whole eight months. her truly happy. and proudly attributed it all to his own superior merits and endowments. 1et she was gratified at her son%s good fortune after all.ill then. but if she must marry again.o return. but only to the few loving friends and grateful dependents she left behind. and all :elen%s kindness and goodness to boot. %I have. with better hopes of its prosperity than I should have had a year ago under similar circumstances. and shall keep my own apartments. to my own affairs# I was married in summer. and in the promising young scions that are growing up about are painful associations connected with (rassdale.% +f course I was delighted with the compliment. I bequeathed the farm to <ergus. as far as I can tell. and in the end he was successful. and I shall not molest you with my company or interference here# I am a very quiet person. farewell. I own I should have been better satisfied. to overcome my mother%s prejudices against my bride)elect. . however. when you must leave your dusty. toiling. and only see you now and then. on a glorious 'ugust morning. one request to offer. I know of no one. . . . not only to gain her affection and esteem. not to herself @for it came quietly upon her. as well as in those of her parents. which melancholy event took place a few years after ) melancholy. now living and of a suitable age. and stimulated him to the most surprising exertions. and how blessed we still are in each other%s society.single. which she cannot easily overcome. I need not tell you how happily my :elen and I have lived together. however. and hoped to show her that she was not mistaken in her favourable judgment. and to obtain a fortune sufficient to aspire to her hand. We are just now looking forward to the advent of you and !ose. smoky. but to render himself worthy of her.% +f course I most readily consented to this. and to reconcile her to the idea of my leaving &inden (range and living so far away. to whom I would more willingly resign her than yourself. for he had lately fallen in love with the Ficar of &)%s eldest daughter ) a lady whose superiority had roused his latent virtues. 's for myself. and attend to my own concerns. %It seems I am still to look on 2taningley as my home# I wish you to make it yours likewise. for the time of your annual visit draws nigh. for :elen is attached to the place and to me ) as I am to her. striving city for a season of invigorating relaxation and social retirement with us. as you already know. noisy.% continued she. or who would be more likely to appreciate her worth and make. and she was glad to reach her journey%s endA. and we lived in the greatest harmony with our dear aunt until the day of her death.

Sign up to vote on this title
UsefulNot useful