Abbildungen der Seite

He flung himself into a chair, and prepared to write. The letter was to be cool and contemptuous, but utterly decisive. He sought for her's as a model; it was gone. He glanced from the window; and, to his surprise, saw its innumerable shreds coursing each other through the air like a swarm of butterflies, or trampled under the clonted shoon of the muleteers. He regretted that he had disposed of it so hastily.. He sat down again to write; but heri image rose before him in sweetness and beauty. He paused. “She might be daz-, zledi and bewildered, but not whollyestranged; misled and overruled for a time, but not faithless and lost to him for ever." He tore his paper, and determined to await the explanation of timé.

e Having adopted this resolution, it may well be supposed that he looked for Eoglish letters with anxiety; but day after day, and week after week, passed on without the only letter that could set him at 01 Litro; wa

From his mother he heard occasionally; but she had left London almost immediately after General Greville's ar rival, and her intercourse with the fa mily had necessarily relaxed. Besides, he had never made her his confidant, and could not expect that she should enter on the subject which interested him with such deep and absorbing passion. Catherine's name was seldom and but slightly mentioned by her, and then not in a way calculated to give any clue to the mystery which perplexed him; the world was be

[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]

ginning to look like a bauble in his clouded eyes, i tot

The gratitude of Velasquez had prosi cured him several high and valuable introductions; and, as far as outward gratification could be supposed to con tribute to his happiness, he would have been pronounced not justified in coma plaining: but he was disappointed and darkened in soul. Even the grand struggle, in which all Europe was just then involved, had lost its interest for him.

As he one day walked thoughtfully, along by the parade of one of the regiri! ments, he perceived the officers all with countenances of peculiar animation, concis versing apparently on some remarkablets news: he turned away.. " I shall known all in good time," said he to himself

coldly, reluctant to enter into any dis cussion, and he passed on. He was. suddenly followed by a young officer, one of his intimate friends, with "Where: are you flying to, Vaughan?: Glorious. tidings! nothing less than that. Napor leon has surrendered at Fontainbleau. Then comes peace,-then the route homewards,--and so for merry England again.”

“ How, unfortunate!” said Vaughan, his thoughts instantly reverting to the dubious reception which awaited him at, home.

The officer ståred, and burst into laughter. “Mad,” said he. “Perhaps so;" said Vaughan; “I shall soon know nay fate.” “Know your fate!" said the officer hastily:

"Why, we shall all know our fates before long. I am tired

of forced marches and sleepless nights, sallow nuns, vesper bells, confoundedly hot days, and the eternal Bolero. Eng. land for ever!” Well, then," said Vaughan, with a cold smile, “ let come what will.come. England for ever!”

[ocr errors]
[ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors]
« ZurückWeiter »