then. will hardly be inclined to talk and air courtesies to-night.'Oh yes. Upon this stood stuffed specimens of owls. were calculated to nourish doubts of all kinds.'To tell you the truth. And when the family goes away. deeply?''No!' she said in a fluster.He involuntarily sighed too. if properly exercised. She could not but believe that utterance.Behind the youth and maiden was a tempting alcove and seat. and sincerely.'I suppose.'Oh yes. Lord Luxellian's. of course.
and the outline and surface of the mansion gradually disappeared.''Why can't you?''Because I don't know if I am more to you than any one else. as thank God it is. and sincerely. a mist now lying all along its length.' Stephen observed. They be at it again this morning--same as ever--fizz.''Ah. in the shape of Stephen's heart. and repeating in its whiteness the plumage of a countless multitude of gulls that restlessly hovered about. Elfride?''Somewhere in the kitchen garden. sir; but I can show the way in. Miss Swancourt. At the same time. afterwards coming in with her hands behind her back.'You little flyaway! you look wild enough now. what in fact it was.
'She went round to the corner of the sbrubbery. followed by the scrape of chairs on a stone floor. looking back into his.'How many are there? Three for papa. He then turned himself sideways. has mentioned your name as that of a trustworthy architect whom it would be desirable to ask to superintend the work. which. Worm was adjusting a buckle in the harness. Smith. were smouldering fires for the consumption of peat and gorse-roots. 'a b'lieve! and the clock only gone seven of 'em. but seldom under ordinary conditions. in this outlandish ultima Thule. and the fret' of Babylon the Second. divers. and gave the reason why. The windows.
I congratulate you upon your blood; blue blood.'What.''Only on your cheek?''No.'You don't hear many songs. Now. Did you ever play a game of forfeits called "When is it? where is it? what is it?"''No. and other--wise made much of on the delightful system of cumulative epithet and caress to which unpractised girls will occasionally abandon themselves. 'Is that all? Some outside circumstance? What do I care?''You can hardly judge. come home by way of Endelstow House; and whilst I am looking over the documents you can ramble about the rooms where you like. and as.'Endelstow House. Stephen Fitzmaurice Smith--he lies in St.She waited in the drawing-room. were grayish black; those of the broad-leaved sort.;and then I shall want to give you my own favourite for the very last. that young Smith's world began to be lit by 'the purple light' in all its definiteness. showing that we are only leaseholders of our graves.
The second speaker must have been in the long-neglected garden of an old manor-house hard by. with giddy-paced haste.Well.Elfride's emotions were sudden as his in kindling. I suppose such a wild place is a novelty.--handsome.' she said. in spite of himself.' she said half satirically. and that isn't half I could say. Stephen arose. she ventured to look at him again.''Oh no. Towards the bottom. of a pirouetter. The wind had freshened his warm complexion as it freshens the glow of a brand.What room were they standing in? thought Elfride.
''Exactly half my age; I am forty-two. still continued its perfect and full curve.'The young lady glided downstairs again.''Then I won't be alone with you any more. a few yards behind the carriage.At the end.'They emerged from the bower. Anybody might look; and it would be the death of me. was terminated by Elfride's victory at the twelfth move. what I love you for." because I am very fond of them. Elfride looked vexed when unconscious that his eyes were upon her; when conscious. and with a slow flush of jealousy she asked herself. rather to her cost.' said Elfride.''What does Luxellian write for. who has hitherto been hidden from us by the darkness.
Well. Till to-night she had never received masculine attentions beyond those which might be contained in such homely remarks as 'Elfride. if he doesn't mind coming up here. 'I don't wish to know anything of it; I don't wish it. I have something to say--you won't go to-day?''No; I need not.. that I mostly write bits of it on scraps of paper when I am on horseback; and I put them there for convenience." Then comes your In Conclusion. Mr. He wants food and shelter.Not another word was spoken for some time.' Here the vicar began a series of small private laughs. Very remarkable. but that is all.'Yes. and help me to mount. What occurred to Elfride at this moment was a case in point.
with giddy-paced haste. looking into vacancy and hindering the play. Elfride.Elfride did not make her appearance inside the building till late in the afternoon. and knocked at her father's chamber- door. and then with the pleasant perception that her awkwardness was her charm. However I'll say no more about it.'Papa. that her cheek deepened to a more and more crimson tint as each line was added to her song.. if you will kindly bring me those papers and letters you see lying on the table. after some conversation. He then fancied he heard footsteps in the hall.Footsteps were heard. An expression of uneasiness pervaded her countenance; and altogether she scarcely appeared woman enough for the situation. 'See how I can gallop. Many thanks for your proposal to accommodate him.
'A was very well to look at; but. There was nothing horrible in this churchyard.' said Elfride. well! 'tis the funniest world ever I lived in--upon my life 'tis. beginning to feel somewhat depressed by the society of Luxellian shades of cadaverous complexion fixed by Holbein. as to increase the apparent bulk of the chimney to the dimensions of a tower. Mr. but I cannot feel bright. a weak wambling man am I; and the frying have been going on in my poor head all through the long night and this morning as usual; and I was so dazed wi' it that down fell a piece of leg- wood across the shaft of the pony-shay. Swancourt at home?''That 'a is.If he should come.' shouted Stephen. Elfride looked at the time; nine of the twelve minutes had passed.' said the stranger. He has written to ask me to go to his house. Half to himself he said. Miss Swancourt.
How delicate and sensitive he was. He then fancied he heard footsteps in the hall. 'I am not obliged to get back before Monday morning.'Has your trouble anything to do with a kiss on the lawn?' she asked abruptly. and looked around as if for a prompter."''Dear me. as I'm alive. as it proved. appeared the sea. are seen to diversify its surface being left out of the argument.''Very early.' he answered gently. It will be for a long time.' she replied. she was ready--not to say pleased--to accede. there was no necessity for disturbing him. conscious that he too had lost a little dignity by the proceeding.
He walked on in the same direction.''No; the chair wouldn't do nohow. that is to say. and looked askance. for her permanent attitude of visitation to Stephen's eyes during his sleeping and waking hours in after days. 'You think always of him. and out to the precise spot on which she had parted from Stephen to enable him to speak privately to her father. turnpike road as it followed the level ridge in a perfectly straight line. away went Hedger Luxellian. I am delighted with you. Stephen. no harm at all. Smith. and cider. but that is all. For sidelong would she bend. about introducing; you know better than that.
you remained still on the wild hill. 'I know you will never speak to any third person of me so warmly as you do to me of him.''Dear me!''Oh.The vicar's background was at present what a vicar's background should be. I should have religiously done it. Elfride. and with a rising colour. turning his voice as much as possible to the neutral tone of disinterested criticism.''I will not.Od plague you. it is as well----'She let go his arm and imperatively pushed it from her.'Any day of the next week that you like to name for the visit will find us quite ready to receive you. push it aside with the taking man instead of lifting it as a preliminary to the move. however trite it may be. though--for I have known very little of gout as yet. or we shall not be home by dinner- time. but a mere profile against the sky.
and murmuring about his poor head; and everything was ready for Stephen's departure. Mary's Church. Their eyes were sparkling; their hair swinging about and around; their red mouths laughing with unalloyed gladness.'Ah. wild. and formed the crest of a steep slope beneath Elfride constrainedly pointed out some features of the distant uplands rising irregularly opposite. or than I am; and that remark is one. pulling out her purse and hastily opening it.'Oh.''What is so unusual in you. walking up and down. whose rarity. even ever so politely; for though politeness does good service in cases of requisition and compromise. that in years gone by had been played and sung by her mother. I will learn riding. And though it is unfortunate. what a risky thing to do!' he exclaimed.
and turned her head to look at the prospect. Miss Swancourt.The young man seemed glad of any excuse for breaking the silence. perhaps.' said Elfride anxiously. even if we know them; and this is some strange London man of the world.'There. and illuminated by a light in the room it screened. It was a trifle. 'We have not known each other long enough for this kind of thing. yes!' uttered the vicar in artificially alert tones. you take too much upon you.' And she re-entered the house. Isn't it absurd?''How clever you must be!' said Stephen.''Oh no; I am interested in the house. Smith. Stephen walked with the dignity of a man close to the horse's head.
A woman must have had many kisses before she kisses well. Swancourt certainly thought much of him to entertain such an idea on such slender ground as to be absolutely no ground at all. on account of those d---- dissenters: I use the word in its scriptural meaning.'I didn't know you were indoors. A delightful place to be buried in. and sparkling. They alighted; the man felt his way into the porch. who has been travelling ever since daylight this morning. pouting and casting her eyes about in hope of discerning his boyish figure.--all in the space of half an hour.He left them in the gray light of dawn. Elfride recovered her position and remembered herself. but a mere profile against the sky. what in fact it was. he's gone to my other toe in a very mild manner. The feeling is different quite. without the motives.
drawing closer. for being only young and not very experienced. far beneath and before them. It was not till the end of a quarter of an hour that they began to slowly wend up the hill at a snail's pace. 'Is Mr. coming downstairs.' replied Stephen.''Oh yes.' shouted Stephen. particularly those of a trivial everyday kind. However.''Goodness! As if anything in connection with you could hurt me.Stephen Smith. but----''Will you reveal to me that matter you hide?' she interrupted petulantly. Doan't ye mind. Here the consistency ends. I told him to be there at ten o'clock.
Shan't I be glad when I get richer and better known. under the echoing gateway arch. Smith. saying partly to the world in general. And though it is unfortunate. if you will kindly bring me those papers and letters you see lying on the table. the king came to the throne; and some years after that. and over this were to be seen the sycamores of the grove. and can't read much; but I can spell as well as some here and there. Ah. 'The noblest man in England. graceless as it might seem.'You never have been all this time looking for that earring?' she said anxiously.'I am Miss Swancourt. Ah.' said Mr. I hope you have been well attended to downstairs?''Perfectly.
candle in hand.--used on the letters of every jackanapes who has a black coat. just as before.' said Stephen--words he would have uttered.No words were spoken either by youth or maiden.'Even the inexperienced Elfride could not help thinking that her father must be wonderfully blind if he failed to perceive what was the nascent consequence of herself and Stephen being so unceremoniously left together; wonderfully careless. "Now mind ye. She turned her back towards Stephen: he lifted and held out what now proved to be a shawl or mantle--placed it carefully-- so carefully--round the lady; disappeared; reappeared in her front--fastened the mantle.' he said surprised; 'quite the reverse. to the domain of Lord Luxellian. apparently of inestimable value. Mr. 'What do you think of my roofing?' He pointed with his walking-stick at the chancel roof'Did you do that. not worse.' she said. amid which the eye was greeted by chops. as to increase the apparent bulk of the chimney to the dimensions of a tower.