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her children in it, who were removing on some parish complaint to Skipton—They were a sad fick crew, and dying of an infectious fever...."
George Delmont started in horror, clasped his hands eagerly together, and seemed almost unable to endure this additional shock.
“ Fever!” cried he, “ an infectious fever! and my Medora !"
" Your Medora, as the woman at the inn told me, nursed the children, and gave money to the mother; all the had about her, and bought them wine; and so they all got to a small hedge ale-house together, from whence the carter, who had driven them, shewed her the way to a better inn and there she put herself into the protection of the man and his wife, who had agreed to put her into one of the night coaches for London, when from a window on the other side of the inn-yard she faw me, and, as many other beautiful young ladies have done, threw herself into my arms."
" You cannot misunderstand that, I think, Major Delmont, it was on my protection The meant to throw herself. You must immediately, nay you did immediately, understand it so. And had you then so little honour, fo little principle, as to abuse this confidence? Tell me, Sir, where is she now?"
“ Really, George, this sort of treatment I do not understand, though I have borne it for some time."
Nay, Major Delmont, it is I who have had to endure the contumely, which not only now, but on all occafions, you think proper to treat me with; but which, on any other occasion, I could much better forgive. To end discourse wbich is insupportable, tell me where Miss Glenmorris now is ?”
Upon my soul I do not know." “ That answer, Major Delmont, will not satisfy me."
“ It niuft, Farmer Delmont, for I have no other to give you."
“ Where did you leave her, Sir?”
" I did
" I did not leave her at all the little ungrateful baggage left me.
“ And would she have done fo? would she have fled from protection which, from so near a relation of mine, she would have thought she had a right to claim, had you not, instead of befriending her as a brother, insulted her as a libertine? I know Medora well, and know that no false prudery would have driven her away alone , and destitute. You rudely, you cruelly took advantage of her helpless fituation.”
Upon my foul I only told her the was a bewitching girl; and would you, who are a professed lover of truth, quarrel with me for that?"
“ It was unworthy of you as a gentleman and as a man.'
“ I represented to her, that if she was disposed to continue her journey northward, I was very much at her service; or if she would honour me with her company in my postchaise to London, she
would make me the happiest of beings, and so forth.”
“ And if you had made such an offer as a man of humanity, of honour, ought to have made it, would she not joyfully have accepted it ?"
" I assure you I intended fhe thould have accepted it; and upon my foul the was frightened at nothing; or sie might repent, for ought I know, and with to return to Goolequill. Yet, hang it, the dear rogue looks too intelligent for that; The can never have so bad a taste. I de. clare, George; nay, now I am serious, that I began playing the fool, that is, only mak. ing fine fpeeches; for I did not touch the end of her imperious little finger ; I be. gan, I say, playing the fool--only because the witch was devilish handsome, and I had no very exalted opinion of her sublime virtue from what I had learned one way or other about her ; but when I saw I could make nothing of her for myself, and had been convinced she was a true turtle
dove to thee, why I should have quietly made the best of it, and brought her back as properly and soberly as a cardinal or a judge. The monkey, I tell you, took fright at nothing. A girl, who had seen only one winter in London or Dublin, would never have thought of such skittisi: nonsense; but your rice bird, forsooth, would not trust me, a little deceitful toad, but was off again in the morningI could not find where or for what."
“ And have you no means of telling me, Major Delmont,” said George, shewing him the letter he had found at Upwood, “ whether this letter was written before or after you met Miss Glenmorris.'
Before, I think most likely,” said Adolphus, after he had perused it. “Well! and so now. What do
What do you intend to do ?”
“ I know not. I ain distracted! Oh!' Adolphus, would I have acted towards the woman you loved, as you have done to: wards this dear, innocent, injured girl!”.