Long after Pacifique's gay whistle had faded into the phantom of music and then into silence far up under the maples of Lover's Lane Anne stood under the willows, tasting the poignant sweetness of life when some great dread has been removed from it. The morning was a cup filled with mist and glamor. In the corner near her was a rich surprise of new-blown, crystal-dewed roses.
'No, I did not. And Isabel would have turned, but Mary begged her to take a few steps up the lane, that they might see how Lord Fitzjocelyn's new cottages looked. Isabel complied, and added, after a pause, 'Are you one of Lord Fitzjocelyn's worshippers? 'I should not like to worship any one, said Mary, looking straightforward. 'I am very fond of him, because I have known him all my life.
My luggage was to follow when I sent for it. Now, unhampered even by a hand-bag, I joyfully descended the steps at the north end of the bridge and headed for King's Bench Walk by way of the Embankment and Middle Temple Lane. Jeffrey Blackmore's Will My arrival at Thorndyke's chambers was not unexpected, having been heralded by a premonitory post-card.
She still wished to see her grandfather again; but the idea of being his chief comforter and support now seemed impossible, and rather foolish, and she would not have hinted it to Aunt Sarah on any account. Neither did it seem necessary, as the days went on, to mention her drive with Mr Oswald and the accident of passing her grandfather in the lane.
Allan Meredith had proceeded some distance, and was beginning to think that he must have passed the swing gate without noticing it, when, on turning a bend in the lane, he saw a young girl walking in advance.
Miss Carrington severely asked this question; and Mr. George protested. 'Secure him, Louisa, said Lady Jocelyn. 'See here: what's the matter with poor Dorothy? Dorothy came slowly trotting up to them along the green lane, and thus expressed her grief, between sobs: 'Isn't it a shame? Rose is such a tyrant.
"You never told me a word about yourself." For answer Red Payson rolled over wearily and turned his back. "Blair, I'll beat it, and let Red go to sleep," said Lane, taking up his hat. "Red, good-bye this time. I hope you'll be better soon." "I'm sorry, Lane," came in muffled tones from Payson. "Cut that out, boy. You've nothing to be sorry for. Forget it and cheer up."
As Helen came back into the room Mackay ran for her, and locking her in the same embrace even a tighter one than Swann's he fell into the strange steps that had so shocked Lane. Moreover, he was manifestly a skilful dancer, and showed the thin, lithe, supple body of one trained down by this or some other violent exercise. Lane did not watch the dancers this time.
Turning swiftly with tigerish grace, she bent upon Lane great green eyes whose strange expression he could not fathom. What passionately curious eyes did she now fasten on his prospective bride! Lane gripped Mel's hand. He felt the horror of what might be coming. What a blunder he had made! "Will the lady kindly remove her veil?" Hartley's voice sounded queer. His smile had vanished.
She drew away from Lane, still quivering, but composed. "Daren, all my life I'll thank you and bless you for that offer," she said, very low. "But, of course it is impossible." She disengaged her hands, and, turning away, looked out of the window. Lane rather weakly sat down. What had come over him? His blood seemed bursting in his veins.
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