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of humour to the loss of a purchase in the southwest of Scotland, on which he had set his heart; but I do not suspect his equanimity of being so easily thrown off its balance. His first excursion was with Mr Mervyn's barge across the lake to the inn I have mentioned. You may imagine the agony with which I awaited his return-Had he recognized Brown, who can guess the consequence. He returned, however, apparently without having made any discovery. I understand, that, in consequence of his late disappointment, he means now to hire a house in the neighbourhood of this same Ellangowan, of which I am doomed to hear so much - he seems to think it probable that the estate for which he wishes may soon be again in the market. I will not send away this letter until I hear more distinctly what are his intentions.»
« I have now had an interview with my father, as confidential, as, I presume, he means to allow me. He requested me to-day after breakfast, to walk with him into the library; my knees, Matilda, shook under me, and, it is no exaggeration to say, I could scarce follow him into the room. I feared I knew not what- From my childhood I had seen all tremble around him at his frown-He motioned me to seat myself, and I never obeyed a command so readily, for, in truth, I could hardly stand. He himself conti
nued to walk up and down the room. You have seen my father, and noticed, I recollect, the remarkably expressive cast of his features. His eyes are rather naturally light in colour, but agitation or anger gives them a darker and more fiery glance; he has a custom also of drawing in his lips, when much moved, which implies à combat betwéén native ardour of temper and the habitual power of self-command. This was the first time we had been alone since his return from Scotland, and, as he betrayed these tokens of agitation, I had little doubt that he was about to enter upon the subject I most dreaded.
« To my unutterable relief, I found I was mistaken, and that whatever he knew of Mr Mer vyn's suspicions or discoveries, he did not intend to converse with me on the topic. Coward as I was, I was inexpressibly relieved, though if he had really investigated the reports which may have come to his ear, the reality could have been nothing to what his suspicion's might have conceived. But, though my spirits rose high at my unexpected escape, I had not courage myself to provoke the discussion, and remained silent to receive his commands.
“Julia,' he said, my agent writes me from Scotland, that he has been able to hire a house for me, decently furnished, and with the necessary accommodation for my family, it is within three miles of that I had designed to purchase.
--Then he made à pause, and seemed to expect an answer.
* Whatever place of residence suits you, sir, 'must be perfectly agreeable to me.'
Umph! I do not propose, however, Julia, that you shall reside quite alone in this house during the winter.
« Mr and Mrs Mervyn, thought I to myself. Whatever company is agreeable to you, sir.'
"O, there is a little too much of this universal spirit of submission; an excellent disposition in action, but your constantly repeating the jargon of it puts me in mind of the eternal salams of our black dependants in the East. In short, Julia, I know you have a relish for society, and I intend to invite a young person, the daughter of a deceased friend, to spend a few months with us.'
“Not a governess, for the love of Heaven, papa!' exclaimed poor I, my fears at that moment getting the better of my prudence.
"No, not a governess, Miss Mannering,'replied the Colonel, somewhat sternly, "but a young lady from whose excellent example, bred as she has been in the school of adversity, I trust you may learn the art to govern yourself.'
« To answer this was trenching upon too dangerous ground, so there was a pause.
• Is the young lady a Scotchwoman, papa ?'
Of the devil!' answered my father hastily; do you think I care about a's and aa's and i's and ce's I tell you, Julia, I am serious in the matter. You have a genius for friendship, that is, for running up intimacies which you call such(was not this very harshly said, Matilda ?-) Now I wish to give you an opportunity at least to make one deserving friend, and therefore I have resolved that this young lady shall be a member of my family for some months, and I expect you will pay to her that attention which is due to misfortune and virtue.
*Certainly, sir—is my future friend red-haired ?'
« He gave me one of his stern glances; you will say, perhaps, I deserved it, but I think the deuce prompts me with teasing questions on some occasions. .
She is as superior to you, my love, in personal appearance, as in prudence and affection for her friends.
'Lord, papa, do you think that superiority a recommendation?— Well, sir, but I see you are going to take all this too seriously-Whatever the young lady may be, I am sure, being recommended by you, she shall have no reason to complain of my want of attention.–After a pause)-Has she any attendant? because you know I must provide for her proper accommo
dation, if she is without one.' · "N-no-no-not properly an attendant-the
chaplain who lived with her father is a very good sort of man, and I believe I shall make room for him in the house.'
Chaplain, papa? Lord bless us !
new in that word? had we not a chaplain at the Residence, when we were in India?'
“Yes, papa, but you were a commandant then.'.
So I will be now, Miss Mannering,-in my own family at least.
Certainly, sir, - but will he read the church of England service?" · « The apparent simplicity with which I asked this question got the better of his gravity. “Come, Julia,' he said, “you are a sad girl, but I gain nothing by scolding you-of these two strangers, the young lady is one whom you cannot fail, I think, to love the person whom, for want of a better term, I called chaplain, is a very worthy and somewhat ridiculous personage, who will never find out you laugh at him, if you don't laugh very loud indeed.'
* Dear papa, I am delighted with that part of his character but pray, is the house we are going to as pleasantly situated as this ??
'Not perhaps as much to your taste-there is no lake under the windows, and you will be under the necessity of having all your music within doors.'
« This last coup de main ended the keen encounter of our wits, for you may believe, Matilda, it quelled all my courage to reply.
« Yet my spirits, as perhaps will appear too manifest from this dialogue, have risen insensibly, and, as it were, in spite of myself. Brown alive, and free, and in England !- embarrassment and