Imágenes de páginas
PDF
EPUB

given her very little feeling of any kind, except vanity, and that could not fail of gratification, as the wife of the rich, the elegant, and the admired lord Burton. .

Lady Delmont had fallen for a moment into thought, (an unusual occurrence with her ladyship). ' Perhaps she was calculating in her own mind her daughter's settlement-perhaps arranging her wedding dress; but' so it was, she had fallen into thought, when she was interrupted in her meditations by Mr. Ross' the butler, who announced, with a face of great impor. tance, that a young lady desired to speak with her ladyship.

“ Who is she, Ross?” asked lady Del

[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]

mont.

" She says she has a letter from lady M- , my lady,” replied the butler.

« Do look at Ross's face,” whispered lady Jane Evelyn to lord Burton; “ did you ever see such a'look of mystery as the man bears, Frederic? He always looks as if he was going to communicate

[ocr errors]

great

great tidings, and it all ends in nothing. I call him the wonderful Mr. Ross !"

“Oh, send her in, Ross, send her in," rèplied lady Delmont, after a moment's consideration ; " it is only a governess lady M- has recommended to me, and one must ask questions and all that you know; these things are very tiresome, but they must be done." .

The eyes of the party were pretty generally directed towards the door at which the stranger was to make her appearance, for so dull had been the society at lady Delmont's, that the arrival of lord Burton had been just in time to save some of them from dying of pure ennui, and the fresh importation of even so insignificant a person as a governess, was likely to enliven theni at least for a moment. Lord Burton was the only person who did not look in that direction, for feeling that the stare of so many must be unpleasant to any one, he took up the newspaper, and carelessly glanced his eye over the columns.

Lady Lady Delmont acted differently; for, raising her glass to her eye, she regarded the person who entered from head to foot. -“ Oh, you are the person,” said she, " that lady M— recommended to me.”

A soft, timid voice answered, in rather an agitated tone, that she was the same.

Lord Burton raised his eyes, and almost started when he beheld the young lady who had travelled with him from Wincanton, blushing deeply under the haughty stare of lady Delmont. Lord Burton immediately rose, and, with graceful ease, placed a chair for her at the breakfast-table. -" I hope," said he at the same time, " that you have not suffered, Miss Stanhope, from the fatigue of your journey ? My carriage broke down on the road,” he continued, turning to lady Delmont, “which circumstance gave me the pleasure of travelling with this young lady in the coach from Wincanton to Exeter;" and a kindly smile lighted up his countenance whilst he spoke, that greatly relieved the

E 3

object

object of his attention from her first embarrassment.

At the same moment lady Jane Evelyn came round, and sitting down by the fair stranger, took one of her hands in hers“ We are friends, Miss Stanhope,” said she, “ perhaps you don't know that; but lady M- wrote to me that I should see a Miss Stanhope here, whom I should love very much. My name is Evelyn; she mentioned my name to you, I know."

Lord Burton regarded his cousin with a gratified look; and lady Delmont finding that the stranger was not quite so unprotected as she thought, relaxed her features into a kind, condescending smile“ Dear lady M- ” she said, " is really quite an angel, such a sweet, amiable creature! I am sure I shall like any one she recommends very much.” ........

“ She is indeed an excellent woman," replied lord Burton, " as charming in her manners as she is benevolent in disposition; it is many years since I have seen

her;

[ocr errors]

-. ...an

[ocr errors]

.

her; my unfortunate absence from this country has deprived me of many pleasures," and a deep shadow came over his brow. . . .

The conversation now turned upon other subjects, and Miss Stanhope having overcome her first timidity, became as easy and elegant as the most refined of the party; and after breakfast lady Delmont withdrew with her, in order to introduce her to the younger Miss Delmonts, who were to be her pupils. • No sooner was she gone, than Miss Delmont exclaimed-" How vulgarly she blushes!”

“ Yes," replied lord Burton, “ very vulgarly indeed, for I find that modesty has gone out of fashion in England during my residence abroad.”

I dare say she thinks herself handsome, and that it is becoming to her,” continued Miss Delmont. “ If she does, I must own myself very E 4

much

« AnteriorContinuar »