Symud i'r prif gynnwys
Cuddio Rhestr Erthyglau

7 erthygl ar y dudalen hon



A "WOMAN'S WILL; on, N E II G Y REWARDED CHAPTER XI. ■ 4( .A A TE'f'E-A-TETE. -A she should go to-day, if Sir Philip were not nungj" Suj(i ^orace in a bitter whisper tc Astasia. Lady Whittlesea. was buried in her afternoon's j, and the only occupants of the room were Mrs. otffaCe aiul A •i'stu.-ia. Anastasia was sitting on an toman, a book in her lap, but she was not reading-, seemed wholly occupied in studying the pattern ady "Whlttlese.i's carpet. ■al- B^en;'er, childish figure, with arms and neck of faster; a soft, 11 owing dress, and a string of gold c*ds clasped round her delicate throat. ^iioh was An;stasia. e "'as, in fu t, dressed up to receive Sir Philip, 0 was stayiiii' in the town, and who would most drop in fort™. ijj A,1asta £ iH was reading a book of poems. One of 6 t 8" poems was about love, and perhaps this had v-r j lastasia dreaming. She had not heard one inrtv ^le but tie scene depicted by her augus tr>v liLLt the mention of Sir Philip called her t0 herself. She closed the book, saying gentlv-for she feared ? awake Ladv 'Vhittlesea- Who should go, «i«inaia r" lb ^ow tiresome vou are, Anastasia I have taken V'oubiu to tell you about it, and now you answer 4| your head were in the clouds.' « LWus in the clouds just then, mamma." Then pray come down, my dear, and attend to g0(V,"ary -'ife. I am determined Miss Godirey shall so, mamma? I rather like her." A ,ioii always do like extraordinary people, ^"stasia..Hut you must please cea^e to like her. le 3s a girl without any principle, and she has ton 111 y mollu-r into letting her stay. Perkins "lfi mo all a'.out it, and I am convinced that she is «<•»]- Perkins:" Cr0(jl y dear, how stupid you are! iNo, Miss ^Irs. Horace spoke too loudly, and without auffi- nt discretion. Lady Whittlcsra awoke. Miss Godfrey," she repeated. "I want her; ^ere is she r" "Mother," said Mrs. Horace, "I beg you will not allow that woman to make tea while Sir Phi.p is here." "Indeed I shall. Just ring the bell, Anastasia." Anastasia did so. Perkins, I want Miss Godfrey." Perkins retired, and there was a pause. Mrs. IIojace looked white and grim. Anastasia oegan to study the carpet. Presently the door °peued, and in rustled Winifred. I want you to make the tea, Miss Godfrey, said old ladv, "boluly.. ■Mrs. Horace was ahout to explode, when Sir Philip that pre, ise moment entered the drawing-room— sn event which occasioned a temporary suspension ■Of hostilities. Mrs. Horace smoothed her rumed plumes, and deceived hiai with great courtesy. Lady Whittlesea held out her hand to him. "AUowme to introduce Miss Godfrey, a young iriend ( f mine," she said. Sir Philip bowed politely. He was a middle-aged man, quiet and undemonstrative in his manner- Hot quite young enough for Anastasia, Still he had houses and lands. He was an unex- ceptionable match. Of course she will marry him," thought Wini- fred, "and there will be a grand wedding, with feathers, and laces, and diamonds. Dear me it is something to be bom fortunate Winifred presided at tea, according to the will and pleasure of her patroness. It was not a very so. -able meal. Sir Philip had no great conversa- tiunal powers, Anastasia was wholly silent, and Mrs. Hor ice and her mother had to do all the talking between them. After tea the party broke up by mutual consent. -Mrs. Horace and her mother went to the old lady's dressing-room, and Winifred, left alone with the lovers, beat an instant retreat. Then Sir Philip and Anastasia were tete-a-tete. Anastasia, shy and beautiful as any nymph of old, sat on the sofa, her fair head bent over the book of poems, her shining curls almost concealing ei' face. She had hitherto evaded Sir Philip. She had con- lv, d to slip away at the all-important moment, and secret" herself till he was gone. He had never been ^ble to hscrt tain the important question as to how "0 stood in her affections. She would have followed her mother from the Z()Orfi on the present occasion, but Mrs. Horace had f^'d in a stern whisper, "Remain." And Anastasia ~,n°t dared to do otherwise. Phe poor child was like a fawn driven to bay. She sat on the sofa, her cold, trembling fingers holdmg her book of poems. She would have held it 'up, haa she the courage, as a barrier between herself and the terrible Sir Jrhilip. For Sir Philip, to her unspeakable dread, came and sat beside her. She gave a little start, and would have flown, but he took her hand in his, and detained her prisoner. She glanced round the room in a kind of despair. There was nothing but empty chairs and sofas to appeal to. A hard, forbidding likeness of Lady Whittlesea, that hung against the wall, gave her no ^neourageuieiit whatever. Her cheek like a rose, her €.vcs glittering with tears, her lip quivering, she was bewitching in her agitation that Sir Philip, in a h»rst of enthusiasm, raised the lily-white hand to his lips. Then Anastasia, roused by this demonstration, sprang up, flushing scarlet, and pulled violently to aN' It was of no use. Her hand was fast, as in a 'lce. This time Sir Fhilip would have no trifling. 'My dear Miss Horace, listen to me. I have a Question to put to you. Nay: nay Eet me go! let me go!" cried Anastasia, struggling with all her might, and the crystal drops down her cheeks. lionI-U let you go if you will answer my ques- ^.hat do you want to know?" said Anastasia, c??1.?" still, her face averted. TV •vou my wife> Anastasia ?" cf t> 16 Was a Pr°f°UU(l silence. The solemnity dumb (iuestion seemed to have struck Anastasia y ill you?" cried Sir Philip, eagerly, "will lefc1'" ^nd, in the excitement of the moment, he lil ?° *ler Anastasia, finding herself at 'f^y, looked round with a frightened air; then, Jtn a sudden bound, she sprang^to the door and was ?°n,e.' Sir I'hilip darted after her with a vehemence d not often display. But it was too late—she had vanished. V. I Wout back baffled and disappointed. But he a(t great perseverance. He intended to follow her Ul spite of rebuffs. -A'l in good time," he thought, "alJ. in good time, -^astasia is but a child at present."