Part 2 out of 2
As for our family! . . . Harry, and your name! Good-bye. Do your
I was in the mood to ask, 'On behalf of the country?' She had, however,
a glow and a ringing articulation in her excitement that forbade
trifling; a minute's reflection set me weighing my power of will against
my father's. I nodded to her.
'Come to us when you are at liberty,' she called.
I have said that I weighed my power of will against my father's.
Contemplation of the state of the scales did not send me striding to meet
him. Let it be remembered--I had it strongly in memory that he
habitually deluded himself under the supposition that the turn of all
events having an aspect of good fortune had been planned by him of old,
and were offered to him as the legitimately-won fruits of a politic life.
While others deemed him mad, or merely reckless, wild, a creature living
for the day, he enjoyed the conceit of being a profound schemer, in which
he was fortified by a really extraordinary adroitness to take advantage
of occurrences: and because he was prompt in an emergency, and quick to
profit of a crisis, he was deluded to imagine that he had created it.
Such a man would be with difficulty brought to surrender his prize.
Again, there was his love for me. 'Pater est, Pamphile;--difficile est.'
How was this vast conceit of a not unreal paternal love to be
encountered? The sense of honour and of decency might appeal to him
personally; would either of them get a hearing if he fancied them to be
standing in opposition to my dearest interests? I, unhappily, as the
case would be sure to present itself to him, appeared the living example
of his eminently politic career. After establishing me the heir of one
of the wealthiest of English commoners, would he be likely to forego any
desperate chance of ennobling me by the brilliant marriage? His dreadful
devotion to me extinguished the hope that he would, unless I should
happen to be particularly masterful in dealing with him. I heard his
nimble and overwhelming volubility like a flood advancing. That could be
withstood, and his arguments and persuasions. But by what steps could I
restrain the man himself? I said 'the man,' as Janet did. He figured in
my apprehensive imagination as an engine more than as an individual.
Lassitude oppressed me. I felt that I required every access of strength
possible, physical besides moral, in anticipation of our encounter, and
took a swim in sea-water, which displaced my drowsy fit, and some
alarming intimations of cowardice menacing a paralysis of the will: I had
not altogether recovered from my gipsy drubbing. And now I wanted to
have the contest over instantly. It seemed presumable that my father had
slept at my lodgings. There, however, the report of him was, that he had
inspected the rooms, highly complimented the owner of them, and vanished.
Returning to the pier, I learnt that he had set sail in his hired yacht
for the sister town on the Solent, at an early hour:--for what purpose?
I knew of it too late to intercept it. One of the squire's horses
trotted me over; I came upon Colonel Hibbert Segrave near the Club-house,
and heard that my father was off again:
'But your German prince and papa-in-law shall be free of the Club for the
next fortnight,' said he, and cordially asked to have the date of the
marriage. My face astonished him. He excused himself for speaking of
this happy event so abruptly. A sting of downright anger drove me back
at a rapid canter. It flashed on me that this Prince Ernest, whose suave
fashion of depressing me, and philosophical skill in managing his
daughter, had induced me to regard him as a pattern of astuteness, was
really both credulous and feeble, or else supremely unsuspecting: and I
was confirmed in the latter idea on hearing that he had sailed to visit
the opposite harbour and docks on board my father's yacht. Janet shared
my secret opinion.
'The prince is a gentleman,' she said.
Her wrath and disgust were unspeakable. My aunt Dorothy blamed her for
overdue severity. 'The prince, I suppose, goes of his own free will
where he pleases.'
Janet burst out, 'Oh! can't you see through it, aunty? The prince goes
about without at all knowing that the person who takes him--Harry sees
it--is making him compromise himself: and by-and-by the prince will
discover that he has no will of his own, whatever he may wish to resolve
'Is he quite against Harry?' asked my aunt Dorothy.
'Dear aunty, he 's a prince, and a proud man. He will never in his
lifetime consent to . . . to what you mean, without being hounded
into it. I haven't the slightest idea whether anything will force him.
I know that the princess would have too much pride to submit, even to
save her name. But it 's her name that 's in danger. Think of the
scandal to a sovereign princess! I know the signification of that now; I
used to laugh at Harry's "sovereign princess." She is one, and thorough!
there is no one like her. Don't you understand, aunty, that the
intrigue, plot--I don't choose to be nice upon terms--may be perfectly
successful, and do good to nobody. The prince may be tricked; the
princess, I am sure, will not.'
Janet's affectation of an intimate and peculiar knowledge of the princess
was a show of her character that I was accustomed to: still, it was
evident they had conversed much, and perhaps intimately. I led her to
tell me that the princess had expressed no views upon my father. 'He
does not come within her scope, Harry.' 'Scope' was one of Janet's new
words, wherewith she would now and then fall to seasoning a serviceable
but savourless outworn vocabulary of the common table. In spite of that
and other offences, rendered prominent to me by the lifting of her lip
and her frown when she had to speak of my father, I was on her side, not
on his. Her estimation of the princess was soundly based. She discerned
exactly the nature of Ottilia's entanglement, and her peril.
She and my aunt Dorothy passed the afternoon with Ottilia, while I
crossed the head of the street, looking down at the one house, where the
princess was virtually imprisoned, either by her father's express
injunction or her own discretion. And it was as well that she should not
be out. The yachting season had brought many London men to the island.
I met several who had not forgotten the newspaper-paragraph assertions
and contradictions. Lord Alton, Admiral Loftus, and others were on the
pier and in the outfitters' shops, eager for gossip, as the languid
stretch of indolence inclines men to be. The Admiral asked me for the
whereabout of Prince Ernest's territory. He too said that the prince
would be free of the Club during his residence, adding:
'Where is he?'--not a question demanding an answer. The men might have
let the princess go by, but there would have been questions urgently
demanding answers had she been seen by their women.
Late in the evening my father's yacht was sighted from the pier. Just as
he reached his moorings, and his boat was hauled round, the last steamer
came in. Sharp-eyed Janet saw the squire on board among a crowd, and
Temple next to him, supporting his arm.
'Has grandada been ill?' she exclaimed.
My chief concern was to see my father's head rising in the midst of the
crowd, uncovering repeatedly. Prince Ernest and General Goodwin were
behind him, stepping off the lower pier-platform. The General did not
look pleased. My grandfather, with Janet holding his arm, in the place
of Temple, stood waiting to see that his man had done his duty by the
My father, advancing, perceived me, and almost taking the squire into his
affectionate salutation, said:
'Nothing could be more opportune than your arrival, Mr. Beltham.'
The squire rejoined: 'I wanted to see you, Mr. Richmond; and not in
'I grant the private interview, sir, at your convenience.'
Janet went up to General Goodwin. My father talked to me, and lost a
moment in shaking Temple's hand and saying kind things.
'Name any hour you please, Mr. Beltham,' he resumed; 'meantime, I shall
be glad to effect the introduction between Harry's grandfather and his
Highness Prince Ernest of Eppenwelzen-Sarkeld.'
He turned. General Goodwin was hurrying the prince up the steps, the
squire at the same time retreating hastily. I witnessed the spectacle of
both parties to the projected introduction swinging round to make their
escape. My father glanced to right and left. He covered in the airiest
fashion what would have been confusion to another by carrying on a jocose
remark that he had left half spoken to Temple, and involved Janet in it,
and soon--through sheer amiable volubility and his taking manner--the
squire himself for a minute or so.
'Harry, I have to tell you she is not unhappy,' Janet whispered rapidly.
'She is reading of one of our great men alive now. She is glad to be on
our ground.' Janet named a famous admiral, kindling as a fiery beacon to
our blood. She would have said more: she looked the remainder; but she
could have said nothing better fitted to spur me to the work she wanted
done. Mournfulness dropped on me like a cloud in thinking of the bright
little princess of my boyhood, and the Ottilia of to-day, faithful to her
early passion for our sea-heroes and my country, though it had grievously
entrapped her. And into what hands! Not into hands which could cast one
ray of honour on a devoted head. The contrast between the sane service--
giving men she admired, and the hopping skipping social meteor, weaver of
webs, thrower of nets, who offered her his history for a nuptial
acquisition, was ghastly, most discomforting. He seemed to have
entangled us all.
He said that he had. He treated me now confessedly as a cipher. The
prince, the princess, my grandfather, and me--he had gathered us
together, he said. I heard from him that the prince, assisted by him in
the part of an adviser, saw no way of cutting the knot but by a marriage.
All were at hand for a settlement of the terms:--Providence and destiny
were dragged in.
'Let's have no theatrical talk,' I interposed.
'Certainly, Richie; the plainest English,' he assented.
This was on the pier, while he bowed and greeted passing figures. I
dared not unlink my arm, for fear of further mischief. I got him to my
rooms, and insisted on his dining there.
'Dry bread will do,' he said.
My anticipations of the nature of our wrestle were correct. But I had
not expected him to venture on the assertion that the prince was for the
marriage. He met me at every turn with this downright iteration. 'The
prince consents: he knows his only chance is to yield. I have him fast.'
'How?' I inquired.
'How, Richie? Where is your perspicuity? I have him here. I loosen a
thousand tongues on him. I--'
'No, not on him; on the princess, you mean.'
'On him. The princess is the willing party; she and you are one. On
him, I say. 'Tis but a threat: I hold it in terrorem. And by heaven,
son Richie, it assures me I have not lived and fought for nothing. "Now
is the day and now is the hour." On your first birthday, my boy, I swore
to marry you to one of the highest ladies upon earth: she was, as it
turns out, then unborn. No matter: I keep my oath. Abandon it? pooh!
you are--forgive me--silly. Pardon me for remarking it, you have not
that dashing courage--never mind. The point is, I have my prince in his
trap. We are perfectly polite, but I have him, and he acknowledges it;
he shrugs: love has beaten him. Very well. And observe: I permit no
squire-of-low-degree insinuations; none of that. The lady--all earthly
blessings on her!--does not stoop to Harry Richmond. I have the
announcement in the newspapers. I maintain it the fruit of a life of
long and earnest endeavour, legitimately won, by heaven it is! and with
the constituted authorities of my native land against me. Your grandad
proposes formally for the princess to-morrow morning.'
He maddened me. Merely to keep him silent I burst out in a flux of
reproaches as torrent-like as his own could be; and all the time I was
wondering whether it was true that a man who talked as he did, in his
strain of florid flimsy, had actually done a practical thing.
The effect of my vehemence was to brace him and make him sedately
emphatic. He declared himself to have gained entire possession of the
prince's mind. He repeated his positive intention to employ his power
for my benefit. Never did power of earth or of hell seem darker to me
than he at that moment, when solemnly declaiming that he was prepared to
forfeit my respect and love, die sooner than 'yield his prince.' He wore
a new aspect, spoke briefly and pointedly, using the phrases of a
determined man, and in voice and gesture signified that he had us all in
a grasp of iron. The charge of his having plotted to bring it about he
accepted with exultation.
'I admit,' he said, 'I did not arrange to have Germany present for a
witness besides England, but since he is here, I take advantage of the
fact, and to-morrow you will see young Eckart down.'
I cried out, as much enraged at my feebleness to resist him, as in
disgust of his unscrupulous tricks.
'Ay, you have not known me, Richie,' said he. 'I pilot you into harbour,
and all you can do is just the creaking of the vessel to me. You are in
my hands. I pilot you. I have you the husband of the princess within
the month. No other course is open to her. And I have the assurance
that she loses nothing by it. She is yours, my son.'
'She will not be. You have wrecked my last chance. You cover me with
'You are a youngster, Richie. 'Tis the wish of her heart. Probably
while you and I are talking it over, the prince is confessing that he has
no escape. He has not a loophole! She came to you; you take her. I am
far from withholding my admiration of her behaviour; but there it is--she
came. Not consent? She is a ruined woman if she refuses!'
'Through you, through you!--through my father!'
'Have you both gone mad?'
'Try to see this,' I implored him. 'She will not be subjected by any
threats. The very whisper of one will make her turn from me . . .'
He interrupted. 'Totally the contrary. The prince acknowledges that you
are master of her affections.'
'Consistently with her sense of honour and respect for us.'
'Tell me of her reputation, Richie.'
'You pretend that you can damage it!'
'Pretend? I pretend in the teeth of all concerned to establish her
happiness and yours, and nothing human shall stop me. I have you
grateful to me before your old dad lays his head on his last pillow.
And that reminds me: I surrender my town house and furniture to you.
Waddy has received the word. By the way, should you hear of a good
doctor for heart-disease, tell me: I have my fears for the poor soul.'
He stood up, saying, 'Richie, I am not like Jorian, to whom a lodging-
house dinner is no dinner, and an irreparable loss, but I must have air.
I go forth on a stroll.'
It was impossible for me to allow it. I stopped him.
We were in the midst of a debate as to his right of personal freedom,
upon the singularity of which he commented with sundry ejaculations, when
Temple arrived and General Goodwin sent up his card. Temple and I left
the general closeted with my father, and stood at the street-door. He
had seen the princess, having at her request been taken to present his
respects to her by Janet. How she looked, what she said, he was dull in
describing; he thought her lively, though she was pale. She had
mentioned my name, 'kindly,' he observed. And he knew, or suspected, the
General to be an emissary from the prince. But he could not understand
the exact nature of the complication, and plagued me with a mixture of
blunt inquiries and the delicate reserve proper to him so much that I had
to look elsewhere for counsel and sympathy. Janet had told him
everything; still he was plunged in wonder, tempting me to think the
lawyer's mind of necessity bourgeois, for the value of a sentiment seemed
to have no weight in his estimation of the case. Nor did he appear
disinclined to excuse my father. Some of his remarks partly swayed me,
in spite of my seeing that they were based on the supposition of an 'all
for love' adventure of a mad princess. They whispered a little hope,
when I was adoring her passionately for being the reverse of whatever
might have given hope a breath.
General Goodwin, followed by my father, came down and led me aside after
I had warned Temple not to let my father elude him. The General was
greatly ruffled. 'Clara tells me she can rely on you,' he said. 'I am
at the end of my arguments with that man, short of sending him to the
lock-up. You will pardon me, Mr. Harry; I foresaw the scrapes in store
for you, and advised you.'
'You did, General,' I confessed. 'Will you tell me what it is Prince
Ernest is in dread of?'
'A pitiable scandal, sir; and if he took my recommendation, he would find
instant means of punishing the man who dares to threaten him. You know
I explained that I was aware of the threat, not of the degree of the
prince's susceptibility; and asked him if he had seen the princess.
'I have had the honour,' he replied, stiffly. 'You gain nothing with her
by this infamous proceeding.'
I swallowed my anger, and said, 'Do you accuse me, General?'
'I do not accuse you,' he returned, unbendingly. 'You chose your path
some ten or twelve years ago, and you must take the consequences.
I foresaw it; but this I will say, I did not credit the man with his
infernal cleverness. If I speak to you at all, I must speak my mind.
I thought him a mere buffoon and spendthrift, flying his bar-sinister
story for the sake of distinction. He has schemed up to this point
successfully: he has the prince in his toils. I would cut through them,
as I have informed Prince Ernest. I daresay different positions lead to
different reasonings; the fellow appears to have a fascination over him.
Your father, Mr. Harry, is guilty now--he is guilty, I reiterate, now of
a piece of iniquity that makes me ashamed to own him for a countryman.'
The General shook himself erect. 'Are you unable to keep him in?' he
My nerves were pricking and stinging with the insults I had to listen to,
and conscience's justification of them.
He repeated the question.
'I will do what I can,' I said, unsatisfactorily to myself and to him,
for he transposed our situations, telling me the things he would say and
do in my place; things not dissimilar to those I had already said and
done, only more toweringly enunciated; and for that reason they struck me
as all the more hopelessly ineffectual, and made me despair.
My dumbness excited his ire. 'Come,' said he; 'the lady is a spoilt
child. She behaved foolishly; but from your point of view you should
feel bound to protect her on that very account. Do your duty, young
gentleman. He is, I believe, fond of you, and if so, you have him by a
chain. I tell you frankly, I hold you responsible.'
His way of speaking of the princess opened an idea of the world's, in the
event of her name falling into its clutches.
I said again, 'I will do what I can,' and sang out for Temple.
He was alone. My father had slipped from him to leave a card at the
squire's hotel. General Goodwin touched Temple on the shoulder kindly,
in marked contrast to his treatment of me, and wished us good-night.
Nothing had been heard of my father by Janet, but while I was sitting
with her, at a late hour, his card was brought up, and a pencilled
entreaty for an interview the next morning.
'That will suit grandada,' Janet said. 'He commissioned me before going
to bed to write the same for him.'
She related that the prince was in a state of undisguised distraction.
From what I could comprehend--it appeared incredible--he regarded his
daughter's marriage as the solution of the difficulty, the sole way out
of the meshes.
'Is not that her wish?' said Temple; perhaps with a wish of his own.
'Oh, if you think a lady like the Princess Ottilia is led by her wishes,'
said Janet. Her radiant perception of an ideal in her sex (the first she
ever had) made her utterly contemptuous toward the less enlightened.
We appointed the next morning at half-past eleven for my father's visit.
'Not a minute later,' Janet said in my ear, urgently. 'Don't--don't let
him move out of your sight, Harry! The princess is convinced you are
not to blame.'
I asked her whether she had any knowledge of the squire's designs.
'I have not, on my honour,' she answered. 'But I hope . . . It is so
miserable to think of this disgraceful thing! She is too firm to give
way. She does not blame you. I am sure I do not; only, Harry, one
always feels that if one were in another's place, in a case like this,
I could and would command him. I would have him obey me. One is not
born to accept disgrace even from a father. I should say, "You shall not
stir, if you mean to act dishonourably." One is justified, I am sure, in
breaking a tie of relationship that involves you in dishonour. Grandada
has not spoken a word to me on the subject. I catch at straws. This
thing burns me! Oh, good-night, Harry. I can't sleep.'
'Good-night,' she called softly to Temple on the stairs below. I heard
the poor fellow murmuring good-night to himself in the street, and
thought him happier than I. He slept at a room close to the hotel.
A note from Clara Goodwin adjured me, by her memory of the sweet, brave,
gracious fellow she loved in other days, to be worthy of what I had been.
The General had unnerved her reliance on me.
I sat up for my father until long past midnight. When he came his
appearance reminded me of the time of his altercation with Baroness
Turckems under the light of the blazing curtains: he had supped and drunk
deeply, and he very soon proclaimed that I should find him invincible,
which, as far as insensibility to the strongest appeals to him went, he
'Deny you love her, deny she loves you, deny you are one--I knot you
He had again seen Prince Ernest; so he said, declaring that the Prince
positively desired the marriage; would have it. 'And I,' he dramatized
their relative situations, 'consented.'
After my experience of that night, I forgive men who are unmoved by
displays of humour. Commonly we think it should be irresistible. His
description of the thin-skinned sensitive prince striving to run and
dodge for shelter from him, like a fever-patient pursued by a North-
easter, accompanied by dozens of quaint similes full of his mental
laughter, made my loathing all the more acute. But I had not been an
equal match for him previous to his taking wine; it was waste of breath
and heart to contend with him. I folded my arms tight, sitting rigidly
silent, and he dropped on the sofa luxuriously.
'Bed, Richie!' he waved to me. 'You drink no wine, you cannot stand
dissipation as I do. Bed, my dear boy! I am a God, sir, inaccessible to
mortal ailments! Seriously, dear boy, I have never known an illness in
my life. I have killed my hundreds of poor devils who were for imitating
me. This I boast--I boast constitution. And I fear, Richie, you have
none of my superhuman strength. Added to that, I know I am watched over.
I ask--I have: I scheme the tricks are in my hand! It may be the doing
of my mother in heaven; there is the fact for you to reflect on. "Stand
not in my way, nor follow me too far," would serve me for a motto
admirably, and you can put it in Latin, Richie. Bed! You shall turn
your scholarship to account as I do my genius in your interest. On my
soul, that motto in Latin will requite me. Now to bed.'
'No,' said I. 'You have got away from me once. I shall keep you in
sight and hearing, if I have to lie at your door for it. You will go
with me to London to-morrow. I shall treat you as a man I have to guard,
and I shall not let you loose before I am quite sure of you.'
'Loose!' he exclaimed, throwing up an arm and a leg.
'I mean, sir, that you shall be in my presence wherever you are, and I
will take care you don't go far and wide. It's useless to pretend
astonishment. I don't argue and I don't beseech any further: I just sit
on guard, as I would over a powder-cask.'
My father raised himself on an elbow. 'The explosion,' he said,
examining his watch, 'occurred at about five minutes to eleven--we are
advancing into the morning--last night. I received on your behalf the
congratulations of friends Loftus, Alton, Segrave, and the rest, at that
hour. So, my dear Richie, you are sitting on guard over the empty
I listened with a throbbing forehead, and controlled the choking in my
throat, to ask him whether he had touched the newspapers.
'Ay, dear lad, I have sprung my mine in them,' he replied.
'You have sent word--?'
'I have despatched a paragraph to the effect, that the prince and
princess have arrived to ratify the nuptial preliminaries.'
'You expect it to appear this day?'
'Or else my name and influence are curiously at variance with the
confidence I repose in them, Richie.'
'Then I leave you to yourself,' I said. 'Prince Ernest knows he has to
expect this statement in the papers?'
'We trumped him with that identical court-card, Richie.'
'Very well. To-morrow, after we have been to my grandfather, you and I
part company for good, sir. It costs me too much.'
'Dear old Richie,' he laughed, gently. 'And now to bye-bye! My blessing
on you now and always.'
He shut his eyes.
AN ENCOUNTER SHOWING MY FATHER'S GENIUS IN A STRONG LIGHT
The morning was sultry with the first rising of the sun. I knew that
Ottilia and Janet would be out. For myself, I dared not leave the house.
I sat in my room, harried by the most penetrating snore which can ever
have afflicted wakeful ears. It proclaimed so deep-seated a peacefulness
in the bosom of the disturber, and was so arrogant, so ludicrous, and
inaccessible to remonstrance, that it sounded like a renewal of our
midnight altercation on the sleeper's part. Prolonged now and then
beyond all bounds, it ended in the crashing blare whereof utter
wakefulness cannot imagine honest sleep to be capable, but a playful
melody twirled back to the regular note. He was fast asleep on the
sitting-room sofa, while I walked fretting and panting. To this twinship
I seemed condemned. In my heart nevertheless there was a reserve of
wonderment at his apparent astuteness and resolution, and my old love for
him whispered disbelief in his having disgraced me. Perhaps it was
wilful self-deception. It helped me to meet him with a better face.
We both avoided the subject of our difference for some time: he would
evidently have done so altogether, and used his best and sweetest manner
to divert me: but when I struck on it, asking him if he had indeed told
me the truth last night, his features clouded as though with an effort of
patience. To my consternation, he suddenly broke away, with his arms up,
puffing and stammering, stamping his feet. He would have a truce--he
insisted on a truce, I understood him to exclaim, and that I was like a
woman, who would and would not, and wanted a master. He raved of the
gallant down-rightedness of the young bloods of his day, and how
splendidly this one and that had compassed their ends by winning great
ladies, lawfully, or otherwise. For several minutes he was in a state of
frenzy, appealing to his pattern youths of a bygone generation, as to
moral principles--stuttering, and of a dark red hue from the neck to the
temples. I refrained from a scuffle of tongues. Nor did he excuse
himself after he had cooled. His hand touched instinctively for his
pulse, and, with a glance at the ceiling, he exclaimed, 'Good Lord!' and
brought me to his side. 'These wigwam houses check my circulation,' said
he. 'Let us go out-let us breakfast on board.'
The open air restored him, and he told me that he had been merely
oppressed by the architect of the inferior classes, whose ceiling sat on
his head. My nerves, he remarked to me, were very exciteable. 'You
should take your wine, Richie,--you require it. Your dear mother had a
low-toned nervous system.' I was silent, and followed him, at once a
captive and a keeper.
This day of slackened sails and a bright sleeping water kept the
yachtsmen on land; there was a crowd to meet the morning boat. Foremost
among those who stepped out of it was the yellow-haired Eckart, little
suspecting what the sight of him signalled to me. I could scarcely greet
him at all, for in him I perceived that my father had fully committed
himself to his plot, and left me nothing to hope. Eckart said something
of Prince Hermann. As we were walking off the pier, I saw Janet
conversing with Prince Ernest, and the next minute Hermann himself was
one of the group. I turned to Eckart for an explanation.
'Didn't I tell you he called at your house in London and travelled down
with me this morning!' said Eckart.
My father looked in the direction of the princes, but his face was for
the moment no index. They bowed to Janet, and began talking hurriedly in
the triangle of road between her hotel, the pier, and the way to the
villas: passing on, and coming to a full halt, like men who are not
reserving their minds. My father stept out toward them. He was met by
Prince Ernest. Hermann turned his back.
It being the hour of the appointment, I delivered Eckart over to Temple's
safe-keeping, and went up to Janet. 'Don't be late, Harry,' she said.
I asked her if she knew the object of the meeting appointed by my
She answered impatiently, 'Do get him away from the prince.' And then:
'I ought to tell you the princess is well, and so on--pardon me just now:
Grandada is kept waiting, and I don't like it.'
Her actual dislike was to see Prince Ernest in dialogue with my father,
it seemed to me; and the manner of both, which was, one would have said,
intimate, anything but the manner of adversaries. Prince Ernest appeared
to affect a pleasant humour; he twice, after shaking my father's hand,
stepped back to him, as if to renew some impression. Their attitude
declared them to be on the best of terms. Janet withdrew her attentive
eyes from observing them, and threw a world of meaning into her
abstracted gaze at me. My father's advance put her to flight.
Yet she gave him the welcome of a high-bred young woman when he entered
the drawing-room of my grandfather's hotel-suite. She was alone, and she
obliged herself to accept conversation graciously. He recommended her to
try the German Baths for the squire's gout, and evidently amused her with
his specific probations for English persons designing to travel in
company, that they should previously live together in a house with a
collection of undisciplined chambermaids, a musical footman, and a mad
cook: to learn to accommodate their tempers. 'I would add a touch of
earthquake, Miss Ilchester, just to make sure that all the party know one
another's edges before starting.' This was too far a shot of nonsense
for Janet, whose native disposition was to refer to lunacy or stupidity,
or trickery, whatsoever was novel to her understanding. 'I, for my
part,' said he, 'stipulate to have for comrade no man who fancies himself
a born and stamped chieftain, no inveterate student of maps, and no dog
with a turn for feeling himself pulled by the collar. And that reminds
me you are amateur of dogs. Have you a Pomeranian boar-hound?'
'No,' said Janet; 'I have never even seen one'
'That high.' My father raised his hand flat.
'Bigger than our Newfoundlands!'
'Without exaggeration, big as a pony. You will permit me to send you
one, warranted to have passed his distemper, which can rarely be done for
our human species, though here and there I venture to guarantee my man as
well as my dog.'
Janet interposed her thanks, declining to take the dog, but he dwelt on
the dog's charms, his youth, stature, appearance, fitness, and grandeur,
earnestly. I had to relieve her apprehensions by questioning where the
'In Germany,' he said.
It was not improbable, nor less so that the dog was in Pomerania
The entry of my aunt Dorothy, followed by my grandfather, was silent.
'Be seated,' the old man addressed us in a body, to cut short particular
My father overshadowed him with drooping shoulders.
Janet wished to know whether she was to remain.
'I like you by me always,' he answered, bluff and sharp.
'We have some shopping to do,' my aunt Dorothy murmured, showing she was
there against her will.
'Do you shop out of London?' said my father; and for some time he
succeeded in making us sit for the delusive picture of a comfortable
My grandfather sat quite still, Janet next to him. 'When you've
finished, Mr. Richmond,' he remarked.
'Mr. Beltham, I was telling Miss Beltham that I join in the abuse of
London exactly because I love it. A paradox! she says. But we seem to
be effecting a kind of insurance on the life of the things we love best
by crying them down violently. You have observed it? Denounce them--
they endure for ever! So I join any soul on earth in decrying our dear
London. The naughty old City can bear it.'
There was a clearing of throats. My aunt Dorothy's foot tapped the
'But I presume you have done me the honour to invite me to this
conference on a point of business, Mr. Beltham?' said my father,
admonished by the hint.
'I have, sir,' the squire replied.
'And I also have a point. And, in fact, it is urgent, and with your
permission, Mr. Beltham, I will lead the way.'
'No, sir, if you please.
I'm a short speaker, and go to it at once, and I won't detain you a
second after you've answered me.'
My father nodded to this, with the conciliatory comment that it was
The old man drew out his pocket-book.
'You paid a debt,' he said deliberately, 'amounting to twenty-one
thousand pounds to my grandson's account.'
'Oh! a debt! I did, sir. Between father and boy, dad and lad; debts!
. . . but use your own terms, I pray you.'
' I don't ask you where that money is now. I ask you to tell me where
you got it from.'
'You speak bluntly, my dear sir.'
'You won't answer, then?'
'You ask the question as a family matter? I reply with alacrity, to the
best of my ability: and with my hand on my heart, Mr. Beltham, let me
assure you, I very heartily desire the information to be furnished to me.
Or rather--why should I conceal it? The sources are irregular, but a
child could toddle its way to them--you take my indication. Say that I
obtained it from my friends. My friends, Mr. Beltham, are of the kind
requiring squeezing. Government, as my chum and good comrade, Jorian
DeWitt, is fond of saying, is a sponge--a thing that when you dive deep
enough to catch it gives liberal supplies, but will assuredly otherwise
reverse the process by acting the part of an absorbent. I get what I get
by force of arms, or I might have perished long since.'
'Then you don't know where you got it from, sir?'
'Technically, you are correct, sir.'
'A bird didn't bring it, and you didn't find it in the belly of a fish.'
'Neither of these prodigies. They have occurred in books I am bound to
believe; they did not happen to me.'
'You swear to me you don't know the man, woman, or committee, who gave
you that sum?'
'I do not know, Mr. Beltham. In an extraordinary history, extraordinary
circumstances! I have experienced so many that I am surprised at
'You suppose you got it from some fool?'
'Oh! if you choose to indict Government collectively?'
'You pretend you got it from Government?'
'I am termed a Pretender by some, Mr. Beltham. The facts are these: I
promised to refund the money, and I fulfilled the promise. There you
have the only answer I can make to you. Now to my own affair. I come to
request you to demand the hand of the Princess of Eppenwelzen-Sarkeld on
behalf of my son Harry, your grandson; and I possess the assurance of the
prince, her father, that it will be granted. Doubtless you, sir, are of
as old a blood as the prince himself. You will acknowledge that the
honour brought to the family by an hereditary princess is considerable:
it is something. I am prepared to accompany you to his Highness, or not,
as you please. It is but a question of dotation, and a selection from
one or two monosyllables.'
Janet shook her dress.
The squire replied: 'We 'll take that up presently. I haven't quite
done. Will you tell me what agent paid you the sum of money?'
'The usual agent--a solicitor, Mr. Beltham; a gentleman whose business
lay amongst the aristocracy; he is defunct; and a very worthy old
gentleman he was, with a remarkable store of anecdotes of his patrons,
very discreetly told: for you never heard a name from him.'
'You took him for an agent of Government, did you? why?'
'To condense a long story, sir, the kernel of the matter is, that almost
from the hour I began to stir for the purpose of claiming my rights--
which are transparent enough this old gentleman--certainly from no
sinister motive, I may presume--commenced the payment of an annuity; not
sufficient for my necessities, possibly, but warrant of an agreeable sort
for encouraging my expectations; although oddly, this excellent old Mr.
Bannerbridge invariably served up the dish in a sauce that did not agree
with it, by advising me of the wish of the donator that I should abandon
my Case. I consequently, in common with my friends, performed a little
early lesson in arithmetic, and we came to the one conclusion open to
reflective minds--namely, that I was feared.'
My aunt Dorothy looked up for the first time.
'Janet and I have some purchases to make,' she said.
The squire signified sharply that she must remain where she was.
'I think aunty wants fresh air; she had a headache last night,' said
I suggested that, as my presence did not seem to be required, I could
take her on my arm for a walk to the pier-head.
Her face was burning; she would gladly have gone out, but the squire
refused to permit it, and she nodded over her crossed hands, saying that
she was in no hurry.
'Ha! I am,' quoth he.
'Dear Miss Beltham !' my father ejaculated solicitously. 'Here, sir,
oblige me by attending to me,' cried the squire, fuming and blinking.
'I sent for you on a piece of business. You got this money through a
gentleman, a solicitor, named Bannerbridge, did you?'
'His name was Bannerbridge, Mr. Beltham.'
'Dorothy, you knew a Mr. Bannerbridge?'
She faltered: 'I knew him .... Harry was lost in the streets of London
when he was a little fellow, and the Mr. Bannerbridge I knew found him
and took him to his house, and was very kind to him.'
'What was his Christian name?'
I gave them: 'Charles Adolphus.'
'The identical person!' exclaimed my father.
'Oh! you admit it,' said the squire. 'Ever seen him since the time
Harry was lost, Dorothy?'
'Yes,' she answered. 'I have heard he is dead:
'Did you see him shortly before his death?'
'I happened to see him a short time before.!
'He was your man of business, was he?'
'For such little business as I had to do.'
'You were sure you could trust him, eh?'
My aunt Dorothy breathed deeply.
'By God, ma'am, you're a truthful woman!'
The old man gave her a glare of admiration.
It was now my turn to undergo examination, and summoned by his apostrophe
to meet his eyes, I could appreciate the hardness of the head I had to
'Harry, I beg your pardon beforehand; I want to get at facts; I must ask
you what you know about where the money came from?'
I spoke of my attempts to discover the whence and wherefore of it.
'Government? eh?' he sneered.
'I really can't judge whether it came from that quarter,' said I.
'What do you think?--think it likely?'
I thought it unlikely, and yet likelier than that it should have come
from an individual.
'Then you don't suspect any particular person of having sent it in the
nick of time, Harry Richmond?'
I replied: 'No, sir; unless you force me to suspect you.'
He jumped in his chair, astounded and wrathful, confounded me for
insinuating that he was a Bedlamite, and demanded the impudent reason of
my suspecting him to have been guilty of the infernal folly.
I had but the reason to instance that he was rich and kind at heart.
'Rich! kind!' he bellowed. 'Just excuse me--I must ask for the purpose
of my inquiry;--there, tell me, how much do you believe you 've got of
that money remaining? None o' that Peterborough style of counting in the
back of your pate. Say!'
There was a dreadful silence.
My father leaned persuasively forward.
'Mr. Beltham, I crave permission to take up the word. Allow me to remind
you of the prize Harry has won. The prince awaits you to bestow on him
the hand of his daughter--'
'Out with it, Harry,' shouted the squire.
'Not to mention Harry's seat in Parliament,' my father resumed, 'he has a
princess to wife, indubitably one of the most enviable positions in the
country! It is unnecessary to count on future honours; they may be
alluded to. In truth, sir, we make him the first man in the country.
Not necessarily Premier: you take my meaning: he possesses the
combination of social influence and standing with political achievements,
and rank and riches in addition--'
'I 'm speaking to my grandson, sir,' the squire rejoined, shaking himself
like a man rained on. 'I 'm waiting for a plain answer, and no lie.
You've already confessed as much as that the money you told me on your
honour you put out to interest; psh!--for my grandson was smoke. Now
let's hear him.'
My father called out: 'I claim a hearing! The money you speak of was put
out to the very highest interest. You have your grandson in Parliament,
largely acquainted with the principal members of society, husband of an
hereditary princess! You have only at this moment to propose for her
hand. I guarantee it to you. With that money I have won him everything.
Not that I would intimate to you that princesses are purchaseable. The
point is, I knew how to employ it.'
'In two months' time, the money in the Funds in the boy's name--you told
'You had it in the Funds in Harry Richmond's name, sir.'
'Well, sir, I'm asking him whether it's in the Funds now.'
'Oh! Mr. Beltham.'
'What answer's that?'
The squire was really confused by my father's interruption, and lost
sight of me.
'I ask where it came from: I ask whether it's squandered?' he continued.
'Mr. Beltham, I reply that you have only to ask for it to have it; do so
'What 's he saying?' cried the baffled old man.
'I give you a thousand times the equivalent of the money, Mr. Beltham.'
'Is the money there?'
'The lady is here.'
'I said money, sir.'
'A priceless honour and treasure, I say emphatically.' My grandfather's
brows and mouth were gathering for storm. Janet touched his knee.
'Where the devil your understanding truckles, if you have any, I don't
know,' he muttered. 'What the deuce--lady got to do with money!'
'Oh!' my father laughed lightly, 'customarily the alliance is, they say,
as close as matrimony. Pardon me. To speak with becoming seriousness,
Mr. Beltham, it was duly imperative that our son should be known in
society, should be, you will apprehend me, advanced in station, which I
had to do through the ordinary political channel. There could not but be
a considerable expenditure for such a purpose.'
'In Balls, and dinners!'
'In everything that builds a young gentleman's repute.'
'You swear to me you gave your Balls and dinners, and the lot, for Harry
'On my veracity, I did, sir!'
'Please don't talk like a mountebank. I don't want any of your
roundabout words for truth; we're not writing a Bible essay. I try my
best to be civil.'
My father beamed on him.
'I guarantee you succeed, sir. Nothing on earth can a man be so
absolutely sure of as to succeed in civility, if he honestly tries at it.
Jorian DeWitt,--by the way, you may not know him--an esteemed old friend
of mine, says--that is, he said once--to a tolerably impudent fellow whom
he had disconcerted with a capital retort, "You may try to be a
gentleman, and blunder at it, but if you will only try to be his humble
servant, we are certain to establish a common footing." Jorian, let me
tell you, is a wit worthy of our glorious old days.'
My grandfather eased his heart with a plunging breath.
'Well, sir, I didn't ask you here for your opinion or your friend's, and
I don't care for modern wit.'
'Nor I, Mr. Beltham, nor I! It has the reek of stable straw. We are of
one mind on that subject. The thing slouches, it sprawls. It--to quote
Jorian once more--is like a dirty, idle, little stupid boy who cannot
learn his lesson and plays the fool with the alphabet. You smile, Miss
Ilchester: you would appreciate Jorian. Modern wit is emphatically
degenerate. It has no scintillation, neither thrust nor parry. I
compare it to boxing, as opposed to the more beautiful science of
'Well, sir, I don't want to hear your comparisons,' growled the squire,
much oppressed. 'Stop a minute . . .'
'Half a minute to me, sir,' said my father, with a glowing reminiscence
of Jorian DeWitt, which was almost too much for the combustible old man,
even under Janet's admonition.
My aunt Dorothy moved her head slightly toward my father, looking on the
floor, and he at once drew in.
'Mr. Beltham, I attend to you submissively.'
'You do? Then tell me what brought this princess to England?'
'The conviction that Harry had accomplished his oath to mount to an
eminence in his country, and had made the step she is about to take less,
I will say, precipitous: though I personally decline to admit a pointed
'You wrote her a letter.'
'That, containing the news of the attack on him and his desperate
illness, was the finishing touch to the noble lady's passion.'
'Attack? I know nothing about an attack. You wrote her a letter and
wrote her a lie. You said he was dying.'
'I had the boy inanimate on my breast when I despatched the epistle.'
'You said he had only a few days to live.'
'So in my affliction I feared.'
'Will you swear you didn't write that letter with the intention of
drawing her over here to have her in your power, so that you might
threaten you'd blow on her reputation if she or her father held out
against you and all didn't go as you fished for it?'
My father raised his head proudly.
'I divide your query into two parts. I wrote, sir, to bring her to his
side. I did not write with any intention to threaten.'
'You've done it, though.'
'I have done this,' said my father, toweringly: 'I have used the power
placed in my hands by Providence to overcome the hesitations of a
gentleman whose illustrious rank predisposes him to sacrifice his
daughter's happiness to his pride of birth and station. Can any one
confute me when I assert that the princess loves Harry Richmond?'
I walked abruptly to one of the windows, hearing a pitiable wrangling on
the theme. My grandfather vowed she had grown wiser, my father protested
that she was willing and anxious; Janet was appealed to. In a strangely-
sounding underbreath, she said, 'The princess does not wish it.'
'You hear that, Mr. Richmond?' cried the squire.
He returned: 'Can Miss Ilchester say that the Princess Ottilia does not
passionately love my son Harry Richmond? The circumstances warrant me in
beseeching a direct answer.'
She uttered: 'No.'
I looked at her; she at me.
'You can conduct a case, Richmond,' the squire remarked.
My father rose to his feet. 'I can conduct my son to happiness and
greatness, my dear sir; but to some extent I require your grandfatherly
assistance; and I urge you now to present your respects to the prince and
princess, and judge yourself of his Highness's disposition for the match.
I assure you in advance that he welcomes the proposal.'
'I do not believe it,' said Janet, rising.
My aunt Dorothy followed her example, saying: 'In justice to Harry the
proposal should be made. At least it will settle this dispute.'
Janet stared at her, and the squire threw his head back with an amazed
'What! You're for it now? Why, at breakfast you were all t' other way!
You didn't want this meeting because you pooh-poohed the match.'
'I do think you should go,' she answered. 'You have given Harry your
promise, and if he empowers you, it is right to make the proposal, and
immediately, I think.'
She spoke feverishly, with an unsweet expression of face, that seemed to
me to indicate vexedness at the squire's treatment of my father.
'Harry,' she asked me in a very earnest fashion, 'is it your desire?
Tell your grandfather that it is, and that you want to know your fate.
Why should there be any dispute on a fact that can be ascertained by
crossing a street? Surely it is trifling.'
Janet stooped to whisper in the squire's ear.
He caught the shock of unexpected intelligence apparently; faced about,
gazed up, and cried: 'You too! But I haven't done here. I 've got to
cross-examine . . . Pretend, do you mean? Pretend I'm ready to go?
I can release this prince just as well here as there.'
Janet laughed faintly.
'I should advise your going, grandada.'
'You a weathercock woman!' he reproached her, quite mystified, and fell
to rubbing his head. 'Suppose I go to be snubbed?'
'The prince is a gentleman, grandada. Come with me. We will go alone.
You can relieve the prince, and protect him.'
My father nodded: 'I approve.'
'And grandada--but it will not so much matter if we are alone, though,'
'See the princess as well; she must be present.'
'I leave it to you,' he said, crestfallen.
Janet pressed my aunt Dorothy's hand.
'Aunty, you were right, you are always right. This state of suspense is
bad all round, and it is infinitely worse for the prince and princess.'
My aunt Dorothy accepted the eulogy with a singular trembling wrinkle of
She evidently understood that Janet had seen her wish to get released.
For my part, I shared my grandfather's stupefaction at their
unaccountable changes. It appeared almost as if my father had won them
over to baffle him. The old man tried to insist on their sitting down
again, but Janet perseveringly smiled and smiled until he stood up. She
spoke to him softly. He was one black frown; displeased with her;
Too soon after, I had the key to the enigmatical scene. At the moment I
was contemptuous of riddles, and heard with idle ears Janet's promptings
to him and his replies. 'It would be so much better to settle it here,'
he said. She urged that it could not be settled here without the whole
burden and responsibility falling upon him.
'Exactly,' interposed my father, triumphing.
Dorothy Beltham came to my side, and said, as if speaking to herself,
while she gazed out of window, 'If a refusal, it should come from the
prince.' She dropped her voice: 'The money has not been spent? Has it?
Has any part of it been spent? Are you sure you have more than three
parts of it?'
Now, that she should be possessed by the spirit of parsimony on my behalf
at such a time as this, was to my conception insanely comical, and her
manner of expressing it was too much for me. I kept my laughter under to
hear her continue: 'What numbers are flocking on the pier! and there is
no music yet. Tell me, Harry, that the money is all safe; nearly all; it
is important to know; you promised economy.'
'Music did you speak of, Miss Beltham?' My father bowed to her gallantly.
'I chanced to overhear you. My private band performs to the public at
She was obliged to smile to excuse his interruption.
'What's that? whose band?' said the squire, bursting out of Janet's
hand. 'A private band?'
Janet had a difficulty in resuming her command of him. The mention of
the private band made him very restive.
'I 'm not acting on my own judgement at all in going to these foreign
people,' he said to Janet. 'Why go? I can have it out here and an end
to it, without bothering them and their interpreters.'
He sang out to me: 'Harry, do you want me to go through this form for
My aunt Dorothy whispered in my ear: 'Yes! yes!'
'I feel tricked!' he muttered, and did not wait for me to reply before he
was again questioning my aunt Dorothy concerning Mr. Bannerbridge, and my
father as to 'that sum of money.' But his method of interrogation was
confused and pointless. The drift of it was totally obscure.
'I'm off my head to-day,' he said to Janet, with a sideshot of his eye at
'You waste time and trouble, grandada,' said she.
He vowed that he was being bewildered, bothered by us all; and I thought
I had never seen him so far below his level of energy; but I had not seen
him condescend to put himself upon a moderately fair footing with my
father. The truth was, that Janet had rigorously schooled him to bridle
his temper, and he was no match for the voluble easy man without the
freest play of his tongue.
'This prince!' he kept ejaculating.
'Won't you understand, grandada, that you relieve him, and make things
clear by going?' Janet said.
He begged her fretfully not to be impatient, and hinted that she and he
might be acting the part of dupes, and was for pursuing his inauspicious
cross-examination in spite of his blundering, and the 'Where am I now?'
which pulled him up. My father, either talking to my aunt Dorothy, to
Janet, or to me, on ephemeral topics, scarcely noticed him, except when
he was questioned, and looked secure of success in the highest degree
consistent with perfect calmness.
'So you say you tell me to go, do you?' the squire called to me. 'Be
good enough to stay here and wait. I don't see that anything's gained by
my going: it's damned hard on me, having to go to a man whose language I
don't know, and he don't know mine, on a business we're all of us in a
muddle about. I'll do it if it's right. You're sure?'
He glanced at Janet. She nodded.
I was looking for this quaint and, to me, incomprehensible interlude to
commence with the departure of the squire and Janet, when a card was
handed in by one of the hotel-waiters.
'Another prince!' cried the squire. 'These Germans seem to grow princes
like potatoes--dozens to a root! Who's the card for? Ask him to walk
up. Show him into a quiet room. Does he speak English?'
'Does Prince Hermann of--I can't pronounce the name of the place--speak
English, Harry?' Janet asked me.
'As well as you or I,' said I, losing my inattention all at once with a
mad leap of the heart.
Hermann's presence gave light, fire, and colour to the scene in which my
destiny had been wavering from hand to hand without much more than
amusedly interesting me, for I was sure that I had lost Ottilia; I knew
that too well, and worse could not happen. I had besides lost other
things that used to sustain me, and being reckless, I was contemptuous,
and listened to the talk about money with sublime indifference to the
subject: with an attitude, too, I daresay. But Hermann's name revived my
torment. Why had he come? to persuade the squire to control my father?
Nothing but that would suffer itself to be suggested, though conjectures
lying in shadow underneath pressed ominously on my mind.
My father had no doubts.
'A word to you, Mr. Beltham, before you go to Prince Hermann. He is an
emissary, we treat him with courtesy, and if he comes to diplomatize we,
of course, give a patient hearing. I have only to observe in the most
emphatic manner possible that I do not retract one step. I will have
this marriage: I have spoken! It rests with Prince Ernest.'
The squire threw a hasty glare of his eyes back as he was hobbling on
Janet's arm. She stopped short, and replied for him.
'Mr. Beltham will speak for himself, in his own name. We are not
concerned in any unworthy treatment of Prince Ernest. We protest against
'Dear young lady!' said my father, graciously. 'I meet you frankly.
Now tell me. I know you a gallant horsewoman: if you had lassoed the
noble horse of the desert would you let him run loose because of his
remonstrating? Side with me, I entreat you! My son is my first thought.
The pride of princes and wild horses you will find wonderfully similar,
especially in the way they take their taming when once they feel they are
positively caught. We show him we have him fast--he falls into our paces
on the spot! For Harry's sake--for the princess's, I beg you exert your
universally--deservedly acknowledged influence. Even now--and you frown
on me!--I cannot find it in my heart to wish you the sweet and admirable
woman of the world you are destined to be, though you would comprehend me
and applaud me, for I could not--no, not to win your favourable opinion!
--consent that you should be robbed of a single ray of your fresh
maidenly youth. If you must misjudge me, I submit. It is the price I
pay for seeing you young and lovely. Prince Ernest is, credit me, not
unworthily treated by me, if life is a battle, and the prize of it to the
General's head. I implore you'--he lured her with the dimple of a
lurking smile--'do not seriously blame your afflicted senior, if we are
to differ. I am vastly your elder: you instil the doubt whether I am by
as much the wiser of the two; but the father of Harry Richmond claims to
know best what will ensure his boy's felicity. Is he rash? Pronounce me
guilty of an excessive anxiety for my son's welfare; say that I am too
old to read the world with the accuracy of a youthful intelligence: call
me indiscreet: stigmatize me unlucky; the severest sentence a judge'--he
bowed to her deferentially--'can utter; only do not cast a gaze of rebuke
on me because my labour is for my son--my utmost devotion. And we know,
Miss Ilchester, that the princess honours him with her love. I protest
in all candour, I treat love as love; not as a weight in the scale; it is
the heavenly power which dispenses with weighing! its ascendancy . . .'
The squire could endure no more, and happily so, for my father was losing
his remarkably moderated tone, and threatening polysyllables. He had
followed Janet, step for step, at a measured distance, drooping toward
her with his winningest air, while the old man pulled at her arm to get
her out of hearing of the obnoxious flatterer. She kept her long head
in profile, trying creditably not to appear discourteous to one who
addressed her by showing an open ear, until the final bolt made by the
frenzied old man dragged her through the doorway. His neck was shortened
behind his collar as though he shrugged from the blast of a bad wind.
I believe that, on the whole, Janet was pleased. I will wager that, left
to herself, she would have been drawn into an answer, if not an argument.
Nothing would have made her resolution swerve, I admit.
They had not been out of the room three seconds when my aunt Dorothy was
called to join them. She had found time to say that she hoped the money
ETEXT EDITOR'S BOOKMARKS:
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Like a woman, who would and would not, and wanted a master
One in a temper at a time I'm sure 's enough
Simple affection must bear the strain of friendship if it can
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