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Chapter VI

Besides, you can surely afford to smile at such nonsense, Richard? Mary strove to soothe him. It would be beneath your dignity to notice it. Especially as he wasnt himself. Distressed though she felt at this return for Richards kindness, Mary was also unpleasantly worked on by his interlarded My good man! and the general hoity-toity air of his narration. What a peppery fellow he was! How could he ever expect to succeed and be popular? That kind of tone would not go down here.

Come, this is really VERY jolly, Mary!

Not now, darling, Ive no time. You must wait till Mamma comes back.

Mahonys irritation burst its bounds. Well, upon my soul! . .. well, of all the monstrous pieces of folly! After which he broke off, to throw in caustically: Of course if it comes to that, I ll allow theyre well matched . . . in manners and appearance. But the fellows an incorrigible waster. Hell make ducks and drakes of old Ococks hard-earned pile. Besides, has he shown the least desire for matrimony? Are you not lending yourself to a vulgar intrigue on the womans part? If so, let me tell you that its beneath your dignity your dignity as my wife and I for one decline to permit anything so offensive to go on under my roof. Not to speak of having to see you bear the blame, should things go wrong.

At the best of times Mary found it hard to fix her mind on music for five minutes together; and on this evening she had had more than enough of it, and could now let her thoughts stray in comfort. She wondered what could be keeping the two men . . . it was certainly rather impolite of Richard . . . wondered if Nannan had at last got Cuffy to sleep. The dinner had been very nice; Cook neednt have made so much fuss beforehand. But there! When they undertook anything of this kind, it usually went off well. The house, of course, had something to do with it. This room, for instance, how well it lighted up! Richard declared he much preferred it to Johns, and Marys eyes wandered lovingly round walls and furniture, lingering on the great gilt-edged mirror, which reached to the ceiling; the lovely girandoles, a present from Richard; the lustred chandelier; the glass-shaded ormolu clock. The carpet, too, was of a most uncommon lemon colour; the suite, in a brocade to match, had a pattern of French lilies on it. She loved every inch of the place. WHAT a happy ending to all their ups and downs! . . . to be settled at last in such a home. Did she look back on the Black Hole, or the snails and damp of Buddlecombe, she felt she did not always fully appreciate her present good fortune.

Ah! but such a dear, kind, generous creature . . .

Poor little wife! And shall I tell you what I dwell most on? Pon my soul, Mary, its of getting my teeth into a really sweet apple again instead of a specimen thats red on one side only. I believe England will stick in my mind, for the rest of my days, as the land where the fruit doesnt ripen.

Going away? What would it be like? Hi-spy-hi in the garden? . . . or a pitchnick? . . . or Mamma putting on a pretty dress wif beads round her neck?

In regard to Cuffy, however, Nannans opinion was general: an awkward child to deal with. You never knew what fresh fad was going to get the whiphand of him. For instance his first fear, of Cousin Joseys suggesting that they would all be drowned, which had preyed on him during the voyage: this allayed, he was haunted by the dread of being lost, or at least overlooked like a bag or an umbrella in this great, strange, bewildering place. Even at the pantomime at Drury Lane, he suffered torments lest, when it was over, Nannan and Eliza should suddenly forget that he and the Dumplings were there and go home without them; and from the close of the first scene on, he inquired regularly every few minutes throughout the afternoon: Is this the end? till Nannans patience gave way, and she roundly declared that never would she bring him to a theatre again. It was the same at Madame Tussauds the same, plus an antipathy that amounted to a horror of all these waxen people with their fixed, glassy eyes; and a fantastic fear that he might be mistaken for one of them and locked in among them, did he not keep perpetually on the move. His hot little hand tugged mercilessly at Elizas baggy glove. Yes! more bother than half a dozen children put together. Just a walking bundle, said Nannan, of whims and crotchets.

Now, mother, give over trying to make yourself engaging, was Lisbys comment. You know the truth is, no one troubled less about the burglars than you. Before my mother went to bed she would lay out all the silver and plate and her rings and brooches, in neat piles on the table, so as to save the robbers trouble should they come.

Meanwhile, thought his wife, he was in his element, all tenderness and consideration for John he went to endless trouble in procuring for him the newest make of water-bed which was just what one would expect of Richard. Nor would he have him teased about religious questions or his approaching end. On the other hand, had John shown the least desire for religious consolation, Richard would have been the person to see that he got it.

Stateliness in person, gauzes and laces floating from arms and shoulders, trinkets and chains a-jingle, Lizzie swept through the hall, a majestic figure indeed. No wonder John was still unable to refuse her anything.

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2021-06-12 19:52:35 [泸州市网友]

Seated in a saloon carriage Mary undid her bonnet-strings and put her feet up on the cushions. Off at last! And opposite her sat Richard a morose and unamiable Richard, it was true, who made it abundantly plain that he was being dragged to Ballarat against his will. Still, there he was, and that was the main thing. Up to the last minute she hadnt felt sure of him.

2021-06-12 19:52:35 [阳江市网友]

Well, look here, Poll, I can ask Purd about it if you like. He may know, and if e doesnt, e can easily find out I mean whether old S. is really going to hop the twig or what. Purd has strings e can pull.

2021-06-12 19:52:35 [长治市网友]

Emmy wept.

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2021-06-12 19:52:35 [山南地区网友]

In the conveyance that left Collins Street at midday for South Yarra, Mahony sat feeling mildly stunned by the extent of his good fortune, as by Simmonds confident prediction of still grander things to come; sat with far-away eyes, absently noting the velvety black shadows that accompanied vehicles and pedestrians up and down the glaring whiteness of the great street. He had already drawn attention to himself by smiling broadly at thought of the news he was taking home to Mary. Now, as a fresh idea struck him, he uttered a smothered exclamation and tried to slap his knee a gesture that entangled him with a stout party whose crinoline overflowed him, and gave a pimply faced youth sitting opposite a chance to exercise his wit.

2021-06-12 19:52:35 [昭通市网友]

I know better.

2021-06-12 19:52:35 [郑州市网友]

My dear, if you had gone through what I did to-night! I suppose I may as well out with it; for as usual with your wild shot you have hit the bulls-eye. The fact of the matter is, what I had to tell John did amount to a sentence of death.

2021-06-12 19:52:35 [泰安市网友]

My dear, if you had gone through what I did to-night! I suppose I may as well out with it; for as usual with your wild shot you have hit the bulls-eye. The fact of the matter is, what I had to tell John did amount to a sentence of death.

2021-06-12 19:52:35 [酒泉市网友]

Buddlecombe was all a-twitter and agog: the affair was discussed over counters by tradesmen and goodwives; at mahogany dinner-tables; in the oaken settles of inns. Every one knew to a T everything that had happened . . . and a good deal more: were for and against the two doctors in their feud. Tis aanyway little bettern bootchers a hoald tlot of un, thus Raby, the town crier, summed up the matter to his cronies of the Buddlecombe Arms. Buut if us was caalves, tis the haand us knows as us ud raather die by.