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but he would only shake his head, with a ray of humour

time:2023-12-07 04:09:41 author:law read:942次

‘You must not talk so,’ said Margaret, impatiently. ‘He said you might live for years. Oh, mother! we will have you back at Helstone yet.’

but he would only shake his head, with a ray of humour

‘No never! That I must take as a just penance. But, Margaret — Frederick!’ At the mention of that one word, she suddenly cried out loud, as in some sharp agony. It seemed as if the thought of him upset all her composure, destroyed the calm, overcame the exhaustion. Wild passionate cry succeeded to cry —‘Frederick! Frederick! Come to me. I am dying. Little first-born child, come to me once again!’

but he would only shake his head, with a ray of humour

She was in violent hysterics. Margaret went and called Dixon in terror. Dixon came in a huff, and accused Margaret of having over-excited her mother. Margaret bore all meekly, only trusting that her father might not return. In spite of her alarm, which was even greater than the occasion warranted, she obeyed all Dixon’s directions promptly and well, without a word of self-justification. By so doing she mollified her accuser. They put her mother to bed, and Margaret sate by her till she fell asleep, and afterwards till Dixon beckoned her out of the room, and, with a sour face, as if doing something against the grain, she bade her drink a cup of coffee which she had prepared for her in the drawing-room, and stood over her in a commanding attitude as she did so.

but he would only shake his head, with a ray of humour

‘You shouldn’t have been so curious, Miss, and then you wouldn’t have needed to fret before your time. It would have come soon enough. And now, I suppose, you’ll tell master, and a pretty household I shall have of you!’

‘No, Dixon,’ said Margaret, sorrowfully, ‘I will not tell papa. He could not bear it as I can.’ And by way of proving how well she bore it, she burst into tears.

‘Ay! I knew how it would be. Now you’ll waken your mamma, just after she’s gone to sleep so quietly. Miss Margaret my dear, I’ve had to keep it down this many a week; and though I don’t pretend I can love her as you do, yet I loved her better than any other man, woman, or child — no one but Master Frederick ever came near her in my mind. Ever since Lady Beresford’s maid first took me in to see her dressed out in white crape, and corn-ears, and scarlet poppies, and I ran a needle down into my finger, and broke it in, and she tore up her worked pocket-handkerchief, after they’d cut it out, and came in to wet the bandages again with lotion when she returned from the ball — where she’d been the prettiest young lady of all — I’ve never loved any one like her. I little thought then that I should live to see her brought so low. I don’t mean no reproach to nobody. Many a one calls you pretty and handsome, and what not. Even in this smoky place, enough to blind one’s eyes, the owls can see that. But you’ll never be like your mother for beauty — never; not if you live to be a hundred.’

‘Mamma is very pretty still. Poor mamma!’

‘Now don’t ye set off again, or I shall give way at last’ (whimpering). ‘You’ll never stand master’s coming home, and questioning, at this rate. Go out and take a walk, and come in something like. Many’s the time I’ve longed to walk it off — the thought of what was the matter with her, and how it must all end.’


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