Part 19 out of 19
Lady Carbury had at first opposed the scheme. Terribly difficult as
was to her the burden of maintaining her son, she could not endure the
idea of driving him into exile. But Mr Broune was very obstinate, very
reasonable, and, as she thought, somewhat hard of heart. 'What is to
be the end of it then?' he said to her, almost in anger. For in those
days the great editor, when in presence of Lady Carbury, differed very
much from that Mr Broune who used to squeeze her hand and look into
her eyes. His manner with her had become so different that she
regarded him as quite another person. She hardly dared to contradict
him, and found herself almost compelled to tell him what she really
felt and thought. 'Do you mean to let him eat up everything you have
to your last shilling, and then go to the workhouse with him?'
'Oh, my friend, you know how I am struggling! Do not say such horrid
'It is because I know how you are struggling that I find myself
compelled to say anything on the subject. What hardship will there be
in his living for twelve months with a clergyman in Prussia? What can
he do better? What better chance can he have of being weaned from the
life he is leading?'
'If he could only be married!'
'Married! Who is to marry him? Why should any girl with money throw
herself away upon him?'
'He is so handsome.'
'What has his beauty brought him to? Lady Carbury, you must let me
tell you that all that is not only foolish but wrong. If you keep him
here you will help to ruin him, and will certainly ruin yourself. He
has agreed to go;--let him go.'
She was forced to yield. Indeed, as Sir Felix had himself assented, it
was almost impossible that she should not do so. Perhaps Mr Broune's
greatest triumph was due to the talent and firmness with which he
persuaded Sir Felix to start upon his travels. 'Your mother,' said Mr
Broune, 'has made up her mind that she will not absolutely beggar your
sister and herself in order that your indulgence may be prolonged for
a few months. She cannot make you go to Germany of course. But she can
turn you out of her house, and, unless you go, she will do so.'
'I don't think she ever said that, Mr Broune.'
'No;--she has not said so. But I have said it for her in her presence;
and she has acknowledged that it must necessarily be so. You may take
my word as a gentleman that it will be so. If you take her advice £175
a year will be paid for your maintenance;--but if you remain in England
not a shilling further will be paid.' He had no money. His last
sovereign was all but gone. Not a tradesman would give him credit for
a coat or a pair of boots. The key of the door had been taken away
from him. The very page treated him with contumely. His clothes were
becoming rusty. There was no prospect of amusement for him during the
coming autumn or winter. He did not anticipate much excitement in
Eastern Prussia, but he thought that any change must be a change for
He assented, therefore, to the proposition made by Mr Broune, was duly
introduced to the Rev. Septimus Blake, and, as he spent his last
sovereign on a last dinner at the Beargarden, explained his intentions
for the immediate future to those friends at his club who would no
doubt mourn his departure.
Mr Blake and Mr Broune between them did not allow the grass to grow
under their feet. Before the end of August Sir Felix, with Mr and Mrs
Blake and the young Blakes, had embarked from Hull for Hamburg,--having
extracted at the very hour of parting a last five pound note from his
foolish mother. 'It will be just enough to bring him home,' said Mr
Broune with angry energy when he was told of this. But Lady Carbury,
who knew her son well, assured him that Felix would be restrained in
his expenditure by no such prudence as such a purpose would indicate.
'It will be gone,' she said, 'long before they reach their
'Then why the deuce should you give it him?' said Mr Broune.
Mr Broune's anxiety had been so intense that he had paid half a year's
allowance in advance to Mr Blake out of his own pocket. Indeed, he had
paid various sums for Lady Carbury,--so that that unfortunate woman
would often tell herself that she was becoming subject to the great
editor, almost like a slave. He came to her, three or four times a
week, at about nine o'clock in the evening, and gave her instructions
as to all that she should do. 'I wouldn't write another novel if I
were you,' he said. This was hard, as the writing of novels was her
great ambition, and she had flattered herself that the one novel which
she had written was good. Mr Broune's own critic had declared it to be
very good in glowing language. The 'Evening Pulpit' had of course
abused it,--because it is the nature of the 'Evening Pulpit' to abuse.
So she had argued with herself, telling herself that the praise was
all true, whereas the censure had come from malice. After that article
in the 'Breakfast Table,' it did seem hard that Mr Broune should tell
her to write no more novels. She looked up at him piteously but said
nothing. 'I don't think you'd find it answer. Of course you can do it
as well as a great many others. But then that is saying so little!'
'I thought I could make some money.'
'I don't think Mr Leadham would hold out to you very high hopes;--I
don't, indeed. I think I would turn to something else.'
'It is so very hard to get paid for what one does.'
To this Mr Broune made no immediate answer; but, after sitting for a
while, almost in silence, he took his leave. On that very morning Lady
Carbury had parted from her son. She was soon about to part from her
daughter, and she was very sad. She felt that she could hardly keep up
that house in Welbeck Street for herself, even if her means permitted
it. What should she do with herself? Whither should she take herself?
Perhaps the bitterest drop in her cup had come from those words of Mr
Broune forbidding her to write more novels. After all, then, she was
not a clever woman,--not more clever than other women around her!
That very morning she had prided herself on her coming success as a
novelist, basing all her hopes on that review in the 'Breakfast
Table.' Now, with that reaction of spirits which is so common to all
of us, she was more than equally despondent. He would not thus have
crushed her without a reason. Though he was hard to her now,--he who
used to be so soft,--he was very good. It did not occur to her to rebel
against him. After what he had said, of course there would be no more
praise in the 'Breakfast Table,'--and, equally of course, no novel of
hers could succeed without that. The more she thought of him, the more
omnipotent he seemed to be. The more she thought of herself, the more
absolutely prostrate she seemed to have fallen from those high hopes
with which she had begun her literary career not much more than twelve
On the next day he did not come to her at all, and she sat idle,
wretched, and alone. She could not interest herself in Hetta's coming
marriage, as that marriage was in direct opposition to one of her
broken schemes. She had not ventured to confess so much to Mr Broune,
but she had in truth written the first pages of the first chapter of a
second novel. It was impossible now that she should even look at what
she had written. All this made her very sad. She spent the evening
quite alone; for Hetta was staying down in Suffolk, with her cousin's
friend, Mrs Yeld, the bishop's wife; and as she thought of her life
past and her life to come, she did, perhaps, with a broken light, see
something of the error of her ways, and did, after a fashion, repent.
It was all 'leather or prunello,' as she said to herself;--it was all
vanity,--and vanity,--and vanity! What real enjoyment had she found
in anything? She had only taught herself to believe that some day
something would come which she would like;--but she had never as yet
in truth found anything to like. It had all been in anticipation,--but
now even her anticipations were at an end. Mr Broune had sent her son
away, had forbidden her to write any more novels and had been refused
when he had asked her to marry him!
The next day he came to her as usual, and found her still very
wretched. 'I shall give up this house,' she said. 'I can't afford to
keep it; and in truth I shall not want it. I don't in the least know
where to go, but I don't think that it much signifies. Any place will
be the same to me now.'
'I don't see why you should say that.'
'What does it matter?'
'You wouldn't think of going out of London.'
'Why not? I suppose I had better go wherever I can live cheapest.'
'I should be sorry that you should be settled where I could not see
you,' said Mr Broune plaintively.
'So shall I,--very. You have been more kind to me than anybody. But
what am I to do? If I stay in London I can live only in some miserable
lodgings. I know you will laugh at me, and tell me that I am wrong;
but my idea is that I shall follow Felix wherever he goes, so that I
may be near him and help him when he needs help. Hetta doesn't want
me. There is nobody else that I can do any good to.'
'I want you,' said Mr Broune, very quietly.
'Ah,--that is so kind of you. There is nothing makes one so good as
goodness;--nothing binds your friend to you so firmly as the acceptance
from him of friendly actions. You say you want me, because I have so
sadly wanted you. When I go you will simply miss an almost daily
trouble, but where shall I find a friend?'
'When I said I wanted you, I meant more than that, Lady Carbury. Two
or three months ago I asked you to be my wife. You declined, chiefly,
if I understood you rightly, because of your son's position. That has
been altered, and therefore I ask you again. I have quite convinced
myself,--not without some doubts, for you shall know all; but, still, I
have quite convinced myself,--that such a marriage will best contribute
to my own happiness. I do not think, dearest, that it would mar
This was said with so quiet a voice and so placid a demeanour, that
the words, though they were too plain to be misunderstood, hardly at
first brought themselves home to her. Of course he had renewed his
offer of marriage, but he had done so in a tone which almost made her
feel that the proposition could not be an earnest one. It was not that
she believed that he was joking with her or paying her a poor insipid
compliment. When she thought about it at all, she knew that it could
not be so. But the thing was so improbable! Her opinion of herself was
so poor, she had become so sick of her own vanities and littlenesses
and pretences, that she could not understand that such a man as this
should in truth want to make her his wife. At this moment she thought
less of herself and more of Mr Broune than either perhaps deserved.
She sat silent, quite unable to look him in the face, while he kept
his place in his arm-chair, lounging back, with his eyes intent on her
countenance. 'Well,' he said; 'what do you think of it? I never loved
you better than I did for refusing me before, because I thought that
you did so because it was not right that I should be embarrassed by
'That was the reason,' she said, almost in a whisper.
'But I shall love you better still for accepting me now if you will
The long vista of her past life appeared before her eyes. The ambition
of her youth which had been taught to look only to a handsome
maintenance, the cruelty of her husband which had driven her to run
from him, the further cruelty of his forgiveness when she returned to
him; the calumny which had made her miserable, though she had never
confessed her misery; then her attempts at life in London, her
literary successes and failures, and the wretchedness of her son's
career;--there had never been happiness, or even comfort, in any of it.
Even when her smiles had been sweetest her heart had been heaviest.
Could it be that now at last real peace should be within her reach,
and that tranquillity which comes from an anchor holding to a firm
bottom? Then she remembered that first kiss,--or attempted kiss,--when,
with a sort of pride in her own superiority, she had told herself that
the man was a susceptible old goose. She certainly had not thought
then that his susceptibility was of this nature. Nor could she quite
understand now whether she had been right then, and that the man's
feelings, and almost his nature, had since changed,--or whether he had
really loved her from first to last. As he remained silent it was
necessary that she should answer him. 'You can hardly have thought of
it enough,' she said.
'I have thought of it a good deal too. I have been thinking of it for
six months at least.'
'There is so much against me.'
'What is there against you?'
'They say bad things of me in India.'
'I know all about that,' replied Mr Broune.
'I think I may say that I know all about that also.'
'And then I have become so poor!'
'I am not proposing to myself to marry you for your money. Luckily for
me,--I hope luckily for both of us,--it is not necessary that I should
'And then I seem so to have fallen through in everything. I don't know
what I've got to give to a man in return for all that you offer to
give to me.'
'Yourself,' he said, stretching out his right hand to her.
And there he sat with it stretched out,--so that she found herself
compelled to put her own into it, or to refuse to do so with very
absolute words. Very slowly she put out her own, and gave it to him
without looking at him. Then he drew her towards him, and in a moment
she was kneeling at his feet, with her face buried on his knees.
Considering their ages perhaps we must say that their attitude was
awkward. They would certainly have thought so themselves had they
imagined that any one could have seen them. But how many absurdities
of the kind are not only held to be pleasant, but almost holy,--as long
as they remain mysteries inspected by no profane eyes! It is not that
Age is ashamed of feeling passion and acknowledging it,--but that the
display of it is without the graces of which Youth is proud, and which
On that occasion there was very little more said between them. He had
certainly been in earnest, and she had now accepted him. As he went
down to his office he told himself now that he had done the best, not
only for her but for himself also. And yet I think that she had won
him more thoroughly by her former refusal than by any other virtue.
She, as she sat alone, late into the night, became subject to a
thorough reaction of spirit. That morning the world had been a perfect
blank to her. There was no single object of interest before her. Now
everything was rose-coloured. This man who had thus bound her to him,
who had given her such assured proofs of his affection and truth, was
one of the considerable ones of the world; a man than whom few,--so
she told herself,--were greater or more powerful. Was it not a career
enough for any woman to be the wife of such a man, to receive his
friends, and to shine with his reflected glory?
Whether her hopes were realised, or,--as human hopes never are
realised,--how far her content was assured, these pages cannot tell;
but they must tell that, before the coming winter was over, Lady
Carbury became the wife of Mr Broune and, in furtherance of her own
resolve, took her husband's name. The house in Welbeck Street was
kept, and Mrs Broune's Tuesday evenings were much more regarded by
the literary world than had been those of Lady Carbury.
CHAPTER C - DOWN IN SUFFOLK
It need hardly be said that Paul Montague was not long in adjusting
his affairs with Hetta after the visit which he received from Roger
Carbury. Early on the following morning he was once more in Welbeck
Street, taking the brooch with him; and though at first Lady Carbury
kept up her opposition, she did it after so weak a fashion as to throw
in fact very little difficulty in his way. Hetta understood perfectly
that she was in this matter stronger than her mother and that she need
fear nothing, now that Roger Carbury was on her side. 'I don't know
what you mean to live on,' Lady Carbury said, threatening future evils
in a plaintive tone. Hetta repeated, though in other language, the
assurance which the young lady made who declared that if her future
husband would consent to live on potatoes, she would be quite
satisfied with the potato-peelings; while Paul made some vague
allusion to the satisfactory nature of his final arrangements with the
house of Fisker, Montague, and Montague. 'I don't see anything like an
income,' said Lady Carbury; 'but I suppose Roger will make it right.
He takes everything upon himself now it seems.' But this was before
the halcyon day of Mr Broune's second offer.
It was at any rate decided that they were to be married, and the time
fixed for the marriage was to be the following spring. When this was
finally arranged Roger Carbury, who had returned to his own home,
conceived the idea that it would be well that Hetta should pass the
autumn and if possible the winter also down in Suffolk, so that she
might get used to him in the capacity which he now aspired to fill;
and with that object he induced Mrs Yeld, the Bishop's wife, to invite
her down to the palace. Hetta accepted the invitation and left London
before she could hear the tidings of her mother's engagement with Mr
Roger Carbury had not yielded in this matter,--had not brought himself
to determine that he would recognize Paul and Hetta as acknowledged
lovers,--without a fierce inward contest. Two convictions had been
strong in his mind, both of which were opposed to this recognition,--
the first telling him that he would be a fitter husband for the girl
than Paul Montague, and the second assuring him that Paul had
ill-treated him in such a fashion that forgiveness would be both
foolish and unmanly. For Roger, though he was a religious man, and
one anxious to conform to the spirit of Christianity, would not allow
himself to think that an injury should be forgiven unless the man who
did the injury repented of his own injustice. As to giving his coat to
the thief who had taken his cloak,--he told himself that were he and
others to be guided by that precept honest industry would go naked in
order that vice and idleness might be comfortably clothed. If any one
stole his cloak he would certainly put that man in prison as soon as
possible and not commence his lenience till the thief should at any
rate affect to be sorry for his fault. Now, to his thinking, Paul
Montague had stolen his cloak, and were he, Roger, to give way in this
matter of his love, he would be giving Paul his coat also. No! He was
bound after some fashion to have Paul put into prison; to bring him
before a jury, and to get a verdict against him, so that some sentence
of punishment might be at least pronounced. How then could he yield?
And Paul Montague had shown himself to be very weak in regard to women.
It might be,--no doubt it was true,--that Mrs Hurtle's appearance
in England had been distressing to him. But still he had gone down
with her to Lowestoft as her lover, and, to Roger's thinking, a man
who could do that was quite unfit to be the husband of Hetta Carbury.
He would himself tell no tales against Montague on that head. Even
when pressed to do so he had told no tale. But not the less was his
conviction strong that Hetta ought to know the truth, and to be
induced by that knowledge to reject her younger lover.
But then over these convictions there came a third,--equally strong,--
which told him that the girl loved the younger man and did not love
him, and that if he loved the girl it was his duty as a man to prove
his love by doing what he could to make her happy. As he walked up and
down the walk by the moat, with his hands clasped behind his back,
stopping every now and again to sit on the terrace wall,--walking there,
mile after mile, with his mind intent on the one idea,--he schooled
himself to feel that that, and that only, could be his duty. What did
love mean if not that? What could be the devotion which men so often
affect to feel if it did not tend to self-sacrifice on behalf of the
beloved one? A man would incur any danger for a woman, would subject
himself to any toil,--would even die for her! But if this were done
simply with the object of winning her, where was that real love of
which sacrifice of self on behalf of another is the truest proof? So,
by degrees, he resolved that the thing must be done. The man, though
he had been bad to his friend, was not all bad. He was one who might
become good in good hands. He, Roger, was too firm of purpose and too
honest of heart to buoy himself up into new hopes by assurances of the
man's unfitness. What right had he to think that he could judge of that
better than the girl herself? And so, when many many miles had been
walked, he succeeded in conquering his own heart,--though in conquering
it he crushed it,--and in bringing himself to the resolve that the
energies of his life should be devoted to the task of making Mrs Paul
Montague a happy woman. We have seen how he acted up to this resolve
when last in London, withdrawing at any rate all signs of anger from
Paul Montague and behaving with the utmost tenderness to Hetta.
When he had accomplished that task of conquering his own heart and of
assuring himself thoroughly that Hetta was to become his rival's wife,
he was, I think, more at ease and less troubled in his spirit than he
had been during these months in which there had still been doubt. The
sort of happiness which he had once pictured to himself could
certainly never be his. That he would never marry he was quite sure.
Indeed he was prepared to settle Carbury on Hetta's eldest boy on
condition that such boy should take the old name. He would never have
a child whom he could in truth call his own. But if he could induce
these people to live at Carbury, or to live there for at least a part
of the year, so that there should be some life in the place, he
thought that he could awaken himself again, and again take an interest
in the property. But as a first step to this he must learn to regard
himself as an old man,--as one who had let life pass by too far for
the purposes of his own home, and who must therefore devote himself to
make happy the homes of others.
So thinking of himself and so resolving, he had told much of his story
to his friend the Bishop, and as a consequence of those revelations
Mrs Yeld had invited Hetta down to the palace. Roger felt that he had
still much to say to his cousin before her marriage which could be
said in the country much better than in town, and he wished to teach
her to regard Suffolk as the county to which she should be attached
and in which she was to find her home. The day before she came he was
over at the palace with the pretence of asking permission to come and
see his cousin soon after her arrival, but in truth with the idea of
talking about Hetta to the only friend to whom he had looked for
sympathy in his trouble. 'As to settling your property on her or her
children,' said the Bishop, 'it is quite out of the question. Your
lawyer would not allow you to do it. Where would you be if after all
you were to marry?'
'I shall never marry.'
'Very likely not,--but yet you may. How is a man of your age to speak
with certainty of what he will do or what he will not do in that
respect? You can make your will, doing as you please with your
property;--and the will, when made, can be revoked.'
'I think you hardly understand just what I feel,' said Roger, 'and I
know very well that I am unable to explain it. But I wish to act
exactly as I would do if she were my daughter, and as if her son, if
she had a son, would be my natural heir.'
'But, if she were your daughter, her son wouldn't be your natural heir
as long as there was a probability or even a chance that you might
have a son of your own. A man should never put the power, which
properly belongs to him, out of his own hands. If it does properly
belong to you it must be better with you than elsewhere. I think very
highly of your cousin, and I have no reason to think otherwise than
well of the gentleman whom she intends to marry. But it is only human
nature to suppose that the fact that your property is still at your
own disposal should have some effect in producing the more complete
observance of your wishes.'
'I do not believe it in the least, my lord,' said Roger somewhat
'That is because you are so carried away by enthusiasm at the present
moment as to ignore the ordinary rules of life. There are not,
perhaps, many fathers who have Regans and Gonerils for their
daughters;--but there are very many who may take a lesson from the
folly of the old king. "Thou hadst little wit in thy bald crown," the
fool said to him, "when thou gav'st thy golden one away." The world, I
take it, thinks that the fool was right.'
The Bishop did so far succeed that Roger abandoned the idea of
settling his property on Paul Montague's children. But he was not on
that account the less resolute in his determination to make himself
and his own interests subordinate to those of his cousin. When he came
over, two days afterwards, to see her he found her in the garden, and
walked there with her for a couple of hours. 'I hope all our troubles
are over now,' he said smiling.
'You mean about Felix,' said Hetta,--'and mamma?'
'No, indeed. As to Felix I think that Lady Carbury has done the best
thing in her power. No doubt she has been advised by Mr Broune, and Mr
Broune seems to be a prudent man. And about your mother herself, I
hope that she may now be comfortable. But I was not alluding to Felix
and your mother. I was thinking of you--and of myself.'
'I hope that you will never have any troubles.'
'I have had troubles. I mean to speak very freely to you now, dear. I
was nearly upset,--what I suppose people call broken-hearted,--when I
was assured that you certainly would never become my wife. I ought not
to have allowed myself to get into such a frame of mind. I should have
known that I was too old to have a chance.'
'Oh, Roger,--it was not that.'
'Well,--that and other things. I should have known it sooner, and
have got over my misery quicker. I should have been more manly and
stronger. After all, though love is a wonderful incident in a man's
life, it is not that only that he is here for. I have duties plainly
marked out for me; and as I should never allow myself to be withdrawn
from them by pleasure, so neither should I by sorrow. But it is done
now. I have conquered my regrets, and I can say with safety that I
look forward to your presence and Paul's presence at Carbury as the
source of all my future happiness. I will make him welcome as though
he were my brother, and you as though you were my daughter. All I ask
of you is that you will not be chary of your presence there.' She only
answered him by a close pressure on his arm. 'That is what I wanted to
say to you. You will teach yourself to regard me as your best and
closest friend,--as he on whom you have the strongest right to depend,
of all,--except your husband?'
'There is no teaching necessary for that,' she said.
'As a daughter leans on a father I would have you lean on me, Hetta.
You will soon come to find that I am very old. I grow old quickly, and
already feel myself to be removed from everything that is young and
'You never were foolish.'
'Nor young either, I sometimes think. But now you must promise me
this. You will do all that you can to induce him to make Carbury his
'We have no plans as yet at all, Roger.'
'Then it will be certainly so much the easier for you to fall into my
plan. Of course you will be married at Carbury?'
'What will mamma say?'
'She will come here, and I am sure will enjoy it. That I regard as
settled. Then, after that, let this be your home,--so that you should
learn really to care about and to love the place. It will be your home
really, you know, some of these days. You will have to be Squire of
Carbury yourself when I am gone, till you have a son old enough to
fill that exalted position.' With all his love to her and his
good-will to them both, he could not bring himself to say that Paul
Montague should be Squire of Carbury.
'Oh, Roger, please do not talk like that.'
'But it is necessary, my dear. I want you to know what my wishes are,
and, if it be possible, I would learn what are yours. My mind is quite
made up as to my future life. Of course, I do not wish to dictate to
you,--and if I did, I could not dictate to Mr Montague.'
'Pray,--pray do not call him Mr Montague.'
'Well, I will not;--to Paul then. There goes the last of my anger.' He
threw his hands up as though he were scattering his indignation to the
air. 'I would not dictate either to you or to him, but it is right
that you should know that I hold my property as steward for those who
are to come after me, and that the satisfaction of my stewardship will
be infinitely increased if I find that those for whom I act share the
interest which I shall take in the matter. It is the only payment
which you and he can make me for my trouble.'
'But Felix, Roger!'
His brow became a little black as he answered her. 'To a sister,' he
said very solemnly, 'I will not say a word against her brother; but on
that subject I claim a right to come to a decision on my own judgment.
It is a matter in which I have thought much, and, I may say, suffered
much. I have ideas, old-fashioned ideas, on the matter, which I need
not pause to explain to you now. If we are as much together as I hope
we shall be, you will, no doubt, come to understand them. The
disposition of a family property, even though it be one so small as
mine, is, to my thinking, a matter which a man should not make in
accordance with his own caprices,--or even with his own affections. He
owes a duty to those who live on his land, and he owes a duty to his
country. And, though it may seem fantastic to say so, I think he owes
a duty to those who have been before him, and who have manifestly
wished that the property should be continued in the hands of their
descendants. These things are to me very holy. In what I am doing I am
in some respects departing from the theory of my life,--but I do so
under a perfect conviction that by the course I am taking I shall best
perform the duties to which I have alluded. I do not think, Hetta,
that we need say any more about that.' He had spoken so seriously,
that, though she did not quite understand all that he had said, she
did not venture to dispute his will any further. He did not endeavour
to exact from her any promise, but having explained his purposes,
kissed her as he would have kissed a daughter, and then left her and
rode home without going into the house.
Soon after that, Paul Montague came down to Carbury, and the same
thing was said to him, though in a much less solemn manner. Paul was
received quite in the old way. Having declared that he would throw all
anger behind him, and that Paul should be again Paul, he rigidly kept
his promise, whatever might be the cost to his own feelings. As to his
love for Hetta, and his old hopes, and the disappointment which had so
nearly unmanned him, he said not another word to his fortunate rival.
Montague knew it all, but there was now no necessity that any allusion
should be made to past misfortunes. Roger indeed made a solemn
resolution that to Paul he would never again speak of Hetta as the
girl whom he himself had loved, though he looked forward to a time,
probably many years hence, when he might perhaps remind her of his
fidelity. But he spoke much of the land and of the tenants and the
labourers, of his own farm, of the amount of the income, and of the
necessity of so living that the income might always be more than
sufficient for the wants of the household.
When the spring came round, Hetta and Paul were married by the Bishop
at the parish church of Carbury, and Roger Carbury gave away the
bride. All those who saw the ceremony declared that the squire had
not seemed to be so happy for many a long year. John Crumb, who was
there with his wife,--himself now one of Roger's tenants, having
occupied the land which had become vacant by the death of old Daniel
Ruggles,--declared that the wedding was almost as good fun as his own.
'John, what a fool you are!' Ruby said to her spouse, when this
opinion was expressed with rather a loud voice. 'Yes, I be,' said
John,--'but not such a fool as to a missed a having o' you.' 'No, John;
it was I was the fool then,' said Ruby. 'We'll see about that when
the bairn's born,' said John,--equally aloud. Then Ruby held her
tongue. Mrs Broune, and Mr Broune, were also at Carbury,--thus doing
great honour to Mr and Mrs Paul Montague, and showing by their
presence that all family feuds were at an end. Sir Felix was not
there. Happily up to this time Mr Septimus Blake had continued to
keep that gentleman as one of his Protestant population in the German
town,--no doubt not without considerable trouble to himself.