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but the two last, have spoken a great deal about Mr. Malden, and then I suppose she found out that she was in love with him, and thought it time to hold her tongue.”
"As to fortune,” answered lord Burton, "Malden's must now be more than equal to the expences of so moderate a man, for lately a deanery has been given to him, and the living poor doctor Wilson had is a very good one. Should my life continue, I will also use every influence I possess to raise him in the church, for he is one of those men who will do honour to his station." 1: "Speaking of doctor Wilson," said Charles, “ lady Anne informed me, that you were very anxious to discover what had become of his niece, a Miss Travers I think; have you been at all successful in your inquiries?" . “Not at all," answered lord Burton; “ Malden's letter gave me the only accurate information I have received. Doctor
Wilson's sister married a Mr. Travers, who lived in Devonshire, and after her death, which took place twelve or four. teen years ago, her eldest daughter came to live with our rector. I was abroad at doctor Wilson's death, and did not hear of it for some time; and before I did so, Miss Travers had returned to her father, who, I had the best reason to believe, had fallen in circumstances; and during my stay in England, I could gain no information of where the family were. Malden now writes to me, that he has made inquiries in the part of the country where they formerly resided, and where he says they still bear the highest character in every respect. The people in the neighbourhood represent Mr. Travers as a man who spent a very large income amongst them, and who fell into poverty, not by his own extravagance, but by the unexpected termination of a lawsuit, which not only obliged him to yield a large por. tion of his property, but to sell the rest, in order to pay back rents, which had accumulated against him by the title to the estate being undisputed for many years. His family was very ancient, and he was too proud to be seen in poverty; he accordingly paid every debt, with even libe. rality, and leaving the spot where he had shone in affluence, he concealed the refuge of his distress so carefully, that no one could give Malden the least clue to his retreat. I have, however, one certain way of discovering them : he has a son in the navy, now in the East Indies, and through his means I have no doubt I shall be able to make up, in some degree, for the loss Miss Travers has sustained by doctor Wilson dying without leaving any property, or having ensured his life.”
“ It is an interesting search," said Charles ; " I shall be glad to hear how it terminates."
“I am sure I don't know how my feelings have become so deeply engaged in it,” rejoined lord Burton ; “ is it, think
you, that perverseness of human nature, which makes us pursue more eagerly an object that flies from us, and is difficult to overtake?”
“ Nay, give it a fair motive, Frederic,” replied Mr. Melville: “ that is like Rochefoucault, who deprives human nature of all its bias towards good, and traces our very virtues to some selfish origin.” ." I do believe,” replied lord Burton, “ that people, in searching for original motives, get themselves perplexed in the mazes of the human mind, and often attribute an action to a bad principle, which naturally sprung from a good one. Philosophers almost always carry their theories too far, and having gained a glimpse of truth, run so fast, that they get far beyond her. It may be sometimes, and no doubt is, that deeds which not only the world, but the doers themselves, think great, proceed from some mean motive, concealed in the closest recesses of the human
heart; but to say that it is always so, is a libel upon nature."
They were now upon the return home, and soon rejoined Mary and lady Anne Milsome, with whom the baron de Shad still continued. Charles could now meet him with feelings of unmixed pleasure, and the beginning of a strong friend. ship had already commenced between them. To lord Burton the society of the baron was particularly agreeable, from habits of old intimacy, and the kind of melancholy that hung upon each of them produced a sympathy of feeling, and a similarity of ideas, that drew them more strongly together than ever. The elegance of the baron's manners, and the ex. tensive information he possessed, made him a pleasant companion to the ladies of the party; and all, in short, looked forward to his accompanying them to Naples as a great addition to the pleasure they expected. · Accordingly, on the day proposed, they