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Lord Rainsforth had turned hastily down another walk, and left me alone, to ponder over an answer which concealed a riddle. Slowly I took my way towards the house and sought Lady Ellinor, half hoping, half dreading to find her alone. There was a little room communicating with a conservatory, where she usually sat in the morning. Thither I took my course.

Rainsforth could not be content without Mrs. Kendal's maternal and medical opinion of the baby, on the road to and from the nursery consulting her on all the Mediterranean climates, and telling her what each doctor had said of Mr. Rainsforth's lungs, in the course of which Miss Durant and her romance were put as entirely out of the little lady's mind as if she had never existed.

Lord Rainsforth had leisure to resume his easy conferences with me; and one day, walking in his garden, he gave me the opportunity, for I need not say, Pisistratus," said my father, looking at me earnestly, "that before any man of honor, if of inferior worldly pretensions, will open his heart seriously to the daughter, it is his duty to speak first to the parent, whose confidence has imposed that trust."

I bowed my head and colored. "I know not how it was," continued my father, "but Lord Rainsforth turned the conversation on Ellinor. After speaking of his expectations in his son, who was returning home, he said, 'But he will of course enter public life, will, I trust, soon marry, have a separate establishment, and I shall see but little of him. My Ellinor!

Lord Rainsforth had leisure to resume his easy conferences with me; and one day, walking in his garden, he gave me the opportunity, for I need not say, Pisistratus," said my father, looking at me earnestly, "that before any man of honor, if of inferior worldly pretensions, will open his heart seriously to the daughter, it is his duty to speak first to the parent, whose confidence has imposed that trust."

She can only prefer a man whose talents, congenial to hers, will win their own career, and ere I die that career may be made. Lord Rainsforth paused; and then how, in what words I know not, but out all burst! my long-suppressed, timid, anxious, doubtful, fearful love. The strange energy it had given to a nature till then so retiring and calm!

Thus the family identified themselves with the aristocracy of intellect, and seemed unconscious of their claims to the lower aristocracy of rank. You must bear this in mind throughout my story. Lord Rainsforth talked to me of my career.

She said she had feared Miss Durant was looking ill, and had something weighing on her spirits, though she was always so cheerful and helpful, but baby had not been well, and Mr. Rainsforth was not at all strong, and her views had evidently taken no wider range. Albinia began to think her proposal cruel, and prefaced it by a few words on the state of the case.

Not so discouraged as you may suppose; for Lord Rainsforth often hinted encouragement which even I could scarcely misconstrue.

She can only prefer a man whose talents, congenial to hers, will win their own career, and ere I die that career may be made. Lord Rainsforth paused; and then how, in what words I know not, but out all burst! my long-suppressed, timid, anxious, doubtful, fearful love. The strange energy it had given to a nature till then so retiring and calm!