Philip could not refuse; but his feelings towards Guy were not warmed by the work he had to go through, when conducted to the cottage, where lived old Lady Mabel Edmonstone and her daughter, and there required to dilate on Guy's excellence.
'Never had man such delight in the "brute creation." 'They have been his chief playfellows, said Mrs. Edmonstone. 'The chief of his time was spent in wandering in the woods or on the beach, watching them and their ways. 'I fairly dreamt of that Elysium of his last night, said Charles: 'a swamp half frozen on a winter's night, full of wild ducks.
Her father was very affectionate, and often called her his jewel of good girls; but he was too much afraid of women's tears to talk to her about Guy, he left that to her mother: and Mrs. Edmonstone, having seen her submit to her father's will, was unwilling to say more.
'Well, old fellow, said Charles, 'did you ever see the like of such a dressing-gown? Are you satisfied? Give me your paw, and let us swear an eternal friendship. 'I am quite glad to see a dog in the house again, said Laura, and, after a few more compliments, Bustle and his master followed Mr. Edmonstone out of the room. 'One of my father's well-judged proceedings, murmured Charles.
Certainly teasing Philip was a dear delight to Charles, though it was all on trust, as, if he succeeded, his cousin never betrayed his annoyance by look or sign. About a quarter of an hour after, there was a knock at the dressing-room door. 'Come in, said Mrs. Edmonstone, looking up from her letter-writing, and Guy made his appearance, looking very downcast.
It would be the correct thing, and I should not like to fail in any token of respect for poor old Sir Guy. 'Of course of course, said Mr. Edmonstone; 'it would be the correct thing. I am sure he was always very civil to us, and you are next heir after this boy. Little Charlotte made a sort of jump, lifted her eyebrows, and stared at Amabel. Philip answered.
It was not till night had closed in that Mrs. Edmonstone was at all satisfied about her, and had at length the comfort of seeing her fall into a sound deep sleep; such an unbroken dreamless sleep as had scarcely visited her since she first went to Recoara. Even this sleep did not restore her; she became very unwell, and both Dr.
Edmonstone said offence had already been taken at his absence from the dinner; he would not have had this happen for fifty pounds; she ought not to have suffered it; but it was all her nonsense about Charles, and as to not being late, she should have waited till midnight rather than not have brought him.
A springy, running step was heard on the stairs and in the passage, and Mary, though she could not see her little friend's face, perceived her neck turn red for a moment, after which Amy took her arm, pressed it affectionately, and they went down. Mrs. Edmonstone was very glad to see Amabel looking tolerably natural.
Edmonstone, who was so pleased to see her looking cheerful, in her altered dress, that he kissed her repeatedly, and confidentially told Mrs. Henley that his little Amy was a regular darling, the sweetest girl in the world, poor dear, except Laura. Mrs. Henley, in the richest of all silks, looked magnificent and superior. Mrs.