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whole arrangement to Mrs. Sniggs, who is such a very nice woman.” “Kitty,” said Harriet, “whatever opinion Mrs. Brandyball may form of strangers, not only to herself but to us, I must be permitted to think that we, who are the nearest connexions you have in England, and who can have no interest separate from yours, are quite as likely to advise for the best as Mrs. Sniggs.” “Yes,” said Kate, “that is quite true, but then you say you are not able to be out and about shopping.” “No,” said Harriet, “nor should I be out and about shopping, while your brother lay unburied, even if I were otherwise well enough to undertake the fatigue.” “Ah, well,” said Kate, with an air of independence more impertinent than any thing I had yet seen, “that’s as you think: of course I am not as old as you are, and don’t know so much ; but I am older than Jane, and when I order her to do any thing, good-natured as I am to her in general, I expect it to be done.” “Not,” said I, “if what you ask is contrary to her feelings and principles.” “I don’t know,” said Kate, “about principles; but I know that when Tom was alive, I didn't care more for him than she did : but now that he is dead and all that, I wished to go and see him in his coffin—not only because he was my brother, but because I knew it would please Pappy.” I wish any indifferent person had been present to have seen the expression of my poor Harriet's countenance at the end of this pretty speech, “However, I have been,” said Kate, “and have done what is right, and have bought what I wanted at the shop; and now I shan’t want to go out any more till the funeral.” “You continue,” said I, “in the same mind about going to the funeral, Kitty 1" “Of course I do,” said Kate. “Pappy wishes it; and Mr. so when he comes here, either this afternoon or tomorrow, I forget which—(he said he would come when he could)—will tell you that it is the express desire of Pappy that we should go.” “Pray, Kitty,” said I, “ didn't my brother send any note or letter to me! You haven't forgotten or mislaid any parcel ?” “O no,” said Kate; “Pappy said that as poor Tom was turned out of the house, and died at the doctor's, you of course cared nothing about it; and he is so much obliged to the Sniggses, that I believe he only meant us to come here because the Sniggses have no room in their house for us.” “No, Kate,” said Jane, “I don't think Pappy meant that: he said, as long as Ashmead belonged to Uncle Gilbert, we might as well have the use of it.” “Ah, well,” said Kitty, “it was something of that sort, I know.” Here slipped out unintentionally a pretty sort of allusion to my occupancy, which did not escape the notice of Harriet, who, I believe, permitted this seene to be acted in her room, in order to catch the points as they fell. " “However,” said Kate, “I am glad I went, for I have got the music part all settled.” “The what " said Harriet. “The music,” said Kate. “Pappy was very anxious—so Mrs. Brandyball writes, at least—that there should be some solemn music played upon the organ when poor Tom was brought in -> “I know,” said Harriet, “I have heard that.” “They do it abroad, don't they !” said Jane, in perfect innocence. “I don't know, dear,” said Harriet. “Well, and—” “So as Mr. Sniggs told us,” said Kate, “in the morning, that Mr. Stopzanpoff, the German, who is organist here, is gone to London, I got Mrs. Sniggs to call on Mr. Kittington, . who plays upon all sorts of instruments, to ask him to do the dirge.” “And was he at home 4” said I. “Yes,” said Kate, “and he has promised to do it, out of respect to Pappy.” “Miss Kitty,” said Harriet, firing with rage, and rising from her seat, “this is too bad! I declare—” “Harriet, my love,” said I, “pray, pray consider.”


I was just in time to save the explosion. Harriet's good sense came suddenly at my call to check the expression of her feelings; and, contenting herself with lifting up her eyes, and firmly closing her lips, she threw herself back in her chair, not, however, without Kate's perceiving that she was considerably excited, and that her forbearance was an effort: still, it was clear to me, from the manner in which she mentioned the dancing-master's readiness to do the dirge, that she was not at all aware of the extent of my knowledge of her previous proceedings with regard to that person; and I satisfied myself also, that after Kittington’s conduct about the letter, he would do nothing inconsistent with honour and propriety. . - To have refused to do that, which Kate, as I imagined had, in Cuthbert's name, requested him to do, would have been impossible. His agreeing to play the organ—since, according to the young lady’s version of the history, my ill-starred brother was so anxious about such a performance—was no indication of any change in his views and feelings as regarded herself, and the presence of Mrs. Sniggs would naturally have hindered any conversation—except, indeed, with “eloquent eyes”—between them, in the way of explanation, as to his not having answered her affectionate letter. “Well, then,” said Kitty, apropos to nothing, “I shall go and take off my bonnet and things, and set my maid to work to make up my mourning. Come, Jane, I have had all the trouble of fetching you, so I desire you will do as I bid you.” “My mourning is all ready,” said Jane, “and I am reading to my aunt: when I have finished, I will come.” “Well, I’m sure " said Kitty, with a toss of her head that would have suited Gay's Lucy; “see if I don’t tell Pappy-how very rudely you behave to me.” And away she went. As she closed the door sharply, Jane's eyes rested on Harriet's face, and a sympathetic exression of feeling animated both their countenances, which did not regret to see. I begin to like Jane—nay I this very day called her Jenny, and the adoption of what Entick oddly enough calls the abbreviation of the word Jane into Jenny, and Ann into Nancy, convinced me, almost unconsciously, that affection is taking place of formality. Two events rapidly succeeded this scene, for one of which only I was altogether unprepared ; for although it might seem that I had no very favourable opportunity of making myself well acquainted with the world's ways, I had a sort of intuitive perception into character, and fancied that I should not often be deceived into a miscalculation of the real qualities of those with whom I came in contact. The former of the two events was the arrival of Mr. Sniggs, clad in a suit of sables, which shone like stickingplaster—his shirt cuffs doing duty as weepers, and his hat nearly covered with crape. “Good morning, Sir,” said Galen: “I haven't been able to get to you before—a good deal of sickness flying about— hope all's well here?” - “Yes,” said I, “we ought to be very grateful.” “I suppose,” said Sniggs, “that Miss Falwasser has informed you of your kind, generous brother's solicitous anxiety to pay every respect to the memory of the dear departed—I think all-the arrangements are now nearly complete.” " “Miss Falwasser,” said I, “has not been particularly communicative upon the point; nor did it seem necessary that she should be so, since my brother has confided his daughters-in-law, pro hde vice at least, to Mrs. Sniggs.” “Ah, there it is,” said Sniggs, “I knew it—I told Mrs. S. I said, ‘Depend upon it, Mrs. S., they will be miffed, up at Ashmead, at your interference.” However, my dear Sir, what could we do?—there was the letter—the kind and generous letter—of that most excellent brother of yours; and of course we could not remonstrate with him upon the point.” “There was not the least occasion for your doing so,” said I : “Cuthbert has every right to please himself; and, I assure you, I think the details which have been entrusted to you and Mrs. Sniggs are not of a nature to gratify any persons to whom they are confided.” “I believe,” said Sniggs, “that Mr. Cuthbert intends asking Mr. Wells to give a funeral sermon next Sunday, to which I conclude he will not object. The subject is so moving—so touching—the early flower nipped in its bud— the instability of earthly vanities—the 39 “Has Cuthbert written to the Rector 4" said I. “I don't know,” replied Sniggs, “but I know Mrs. Brandyball told me she should do so.”

The conversation which had passed between that estimable lady and my vivacious father-in-law on the evening when she described the merits of Montpelier, and the impression it had made upon his mind, flashed into my memory as my medical friend talked of a correspondence between them upon such a subject as this. - - “But,” said Sniggs, raising his eyebrows into an arch of interesting inquisitiveness, “perhaps if she should omit to do so—you would 3 * . . . “Oh dear no " said I; “I could not think of interfering in any of the proceedings.” “Oh I see,” said Sniggs; “only, as you have been good enough to request Mr. Kittington to supply the place of Dr. Stopzanpoff at the organ during the funeral ceremony, I thought perhaps you might extend your kindness a little farther.” Now came a puzzler. It was clear that Miss Kitty had used my name in making the request to Mr. Kittington, and it was equally clear that he must think me the most extraordinary of all human beings, after what had occurred between us, to send that volatile young lady on a commission to his house, even under the protection of so respectable a chaperon as Mrs. Sniggs. The question was—and it was to be decided on the instant—should I repel the insinuation, and by declaring the truth, proclaim Miss Kitty Falwasser that which I knew her to be or, by slurring over the affair in its present stage, content myself with disabusing the mind of the dancingmaster at the first favourable opportunity ? If I took the former course “war to the knife” would soon be the cry from the Cuthbert party, and my reasons for positively denying the fact, and for Kate's taking upon herself to use my name, would necessarily be required ; and then adieu to all further concealment of any of the other circumstances of the case. If I adopted the latter, I might in another hour vindicate myself to Mr. Kittington, at the sacrifice, certainly, of Kate's reputation for veracity; but as the young lady herself had thought proper long since to let Mr. Kittington into some of the peculiarities of her disposition and character, not altogether disconnected from dissimulation, nor much more venial than a plain straight-forward falsehood; and as I felt I was safe with him, I resolved upon merely listening to the further disclosures of my medical friend, without saying yea or nay upon this last curious and surprising point of the young lady's conduct. “I have fixed ten o'clock for the funeral,” said Sniggs; o

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