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spite of his silly mother and her medicines, and laggards at Baum
anxiety during But when Lady Kew arrived at that period of the illness had her discourse, in which she stated that Kew would been Lady Walmake the best little husband in England, poor ham's, so was Ethel's eyes filled with tears; we must remember hers the delight that her high spirit was worn down by watching of the recovery. The commander-in-chief of the and much varied anxiety, and then she confessed family, the old lady at Baden, showed her symthat there had been no reconciliation, as all the pathy by sending couriers, and repeatedly issuing family fancied, between Frank and herself-on orders to have news of Kew. Sick beds scared the contrary, a parting, which she understood to be her away invariably. When illness befell a memfinal; and she owned that her conduct toward ber of her family she hastily retreated from boher cousin had been most captious and cruel, and fore the sufferer, showing her agitation of mind, that she could not expect they should ever again however, by excessive ill-humor to all the others come together. Lady Kew, who hated sick beds within her reach. and surgeons, except for herself, who hated her fortnight passed, a ball had been found and daughter-in-law above all, was greatly annoyed extracted, the fever was over, the wound was at the news which Ethel gave her; made light progressing favorably, the patient advancing toof it, however, and was quite confident that a ward convalescence, and the mother, with her very few words from her would place matters on child once more under her wing, happier than their old footing, and determined on forthwith she had been for seven years past, during which setting out for Kehl. She would have carried her young prodigal had been running the thoughtEthel with her, but that the poor Baronet with less career of which he himself was weary, and cries and moans insisted on retaining his nurse, which had occasioned the fond lady such anguish. and Ethel's grandmother was left to undertake | Those doubts which perplex many a thinking man, this mission by herself, the girl remaining behind and when formed and uttered give many a fond acquiescent, not unwilling, owning openly a great and faithful woman pain so exquisite, had most regard and esteem for Kew, and the wrong which fortunately never crossed Kew's mind. His early she had done him-feeling secretly a sentiment impressions were such as his mother had left which she had best smother. She had received them; and he came back to her as she would a letter from that other person, and answered it have him, as a little child, owning his faults with with her mother's cognizance; but about this lit- a hearty, humble repentance, and with a thoutle affair neither Lady Ann nor her daughter hap- sand simple confessions lamenting the errors of pened to say a word to the manager of the whole his past days. We have seen him tired and family.
ashamed of the pleasures which he was pursuing,
of the companions who surrounded him, of the CHAPTER XXXVIII.
brawls and dissipations which amused him no IN WHICH LADY KEW LEAVES HIS LORDSHIP QUITE more; in those hours of danger and doubt, when CONVALESCENT.
he had lain, with death perhaps before him, makIMMEDIATELY after Lord Kew's wound, and as ing up his account of the vain life which probably it was necessary to apprise the Newcome family he would be called upon to surrender, no wonder of the accident which had occurred, the good-na- this simple, kindly, modest, and courageous soul tured young Kew had himself written a brief note thought seriously of the past and of the future; to acquaint his relatives with his mishap, and and prayed, and resolved, if a future were awardhad even taken the precaution to antedate a couple ed to him, it should make amends for the days of billets to be dispatched on future days; kindly gone by; and surely as the mother and son read forgeries, which told the Newcome family and together the beloved assurance of the divine forthe Countess of Kew that Lord Kew was pro- giveness, and of that joy which angels feel in gressing very favorably, and that his hurt was heaven for a sinner repentant, we may fancy in trifling. The fever had set in, and the young the happy mother's breast a feeling somewhat patient was lying in great danger, as most of the akin to that angelic felicity, a gratitude and joy of all others the loftiest, the purest, the keenest. the fierce old mother-in-law who had worsted Lady Walham might shrink with terror at the Lady Walham in many a previous battle. Frenchman's name; but her son could forgive It was what they call the summer of St. Marhim, with all his heart, and kiss his mother's tin, and the weather was luckily very fine; Kew hand, and thank him as the best friend of his could presently be wheeled into the garden of life.
the hotel, whence he could see the broad turbid During all the days of his illness Kew had current of the swollen Rhine: the French bank never once mentioned Ethel's name, and once or fringed with alders, the vast yellow fields behind twice as his recovery progressed, when with doubt them, the great avenue of poplars stretching away and tremor his mother alluded to it, he turned to the Alsatian city, and its purple minster yonfrom the subject as one that was disagreeable and der. Good Lady Walham was for improving the painful. Had she thought seriously on certain shining hour by reading amusing extracts from things? Lady Walham asked. Kew thought not; her favorite volumes, gentle anecdotes of Chinese but those who are bred up as you would have and Hottentot converts, and incidents from misthem, mother, are often none the better, the hum- sionary travel. George Barnes, a wily young ble young fellow said. I believe she is a very diplomatist, insinuated “Galignani," and hinted good girl. She is very clever, she is exceedingly that Kew might like a novel; and a profane work handsome, she is very good to her parents and called “Oliver Twist” having appeared about this her brothers and sisters; but—he did not finish time, which George read out to his family with the sentence. Perhaps he thought, as he told admirable emphasis, it is a fact that Lady Wal Ethel afterward, that she would have agreed with ham became so interested in the parish boy's Lady Walham even worse than with her impe- progress, that she took his history into her bedrious old grandmother.
room (where it was discovered, under BlatherLady Walham then fell to deplore Sir Brian's wick's “ Voice from Mesopotamia,” by her ladycondition, accounts of whose seizure of course ship's maid), and that Kew laughed so immensely had been dispatched to the Kehl party, and to at Mr. Bumble, the Beadle, as to endanger the lament that a worldly man as he was should have reopening of his wound. such an affliction, so near the grave and so little While, one day, they were so harmlessly and prepared for it. Here honest Kew, however, held pleasantly occupied, a great whacking of whips, out. “Every man for himself, mother," says he. blowing of horns, and whirring of wheels was “ Sir Brian was bred up very strictly, perhaps too heard in the street without. The wheels stopped strictly as a young man. Don't you know that that at their hotel gate; Lady Walham started up; good Colonel, his elder brother, who seems to me ran through the garden door, closing it behind about the most honest and good old gentleman I her; and divined justly who had arrived. The ever met in my life, was driven into rebellion and landlord was bowing; the courier pushing about; all sorts of wild courses by old Mrs. Newcome's waiters in attendance; one of them, coming up tyranny over him? As for Sir Brian, he goes to to pale-faced Lady Walham, said, “Her Excel church every Sunday: has prayers in the family lency the Frau Gräfinn von Kew is even now every day: I'm sure has led a hundred times bet- absteiging." ter life than I have, poor old Sir Brian. I often “Will you be good enough to walk into our have thought, mother, that though our side was salon, Lady Kew?" said the daughter-in-law, wrong, yours could not be altogether right, be- stepping forward and opening the door of that cause I remember how my tutor, and Mr. Bonner apartment. The Countess, leaning on her staff, and Dr. Laud, when they used to come down to entered that darkened chamber. She ran up tous at Kewbury, used to make themselves so un-ward an easy chair, where she supposed Lord happy about other people.” So the widow with Kew was. “My dear Frank !" cries the old drew her unhappiness about Sir Brian; she was lady; “my dear boy, what a pretty fright you quite glad to hope for the best regarding that in- have given us all! They don't keep you in this valid.
horrid noisy room facing the Ho-what is With some fears yet regarding her son-for this?” cries the Countess, closing her sentence many of the books with which the good lady trav- abruptly. cled could not be got to interest him; at some he “It is not Frank. It is only a bolster, Lady would laugh outright-with fear mixed with the Kew: and I don't keep him in a noisy room tomaternal joy that he was returned to her, and had ward the street," said Lady Walham. quitted his old ways; with keen feminine triumph, "Ho! how do you do? This is the way to him, perhaps, that she had won him back, and happi- I suppose;" and she went to another door-it was ness at his daily mending health, all Lady Wal- a cupboard full of the relics of Frank's illness, ham's hours were passed in thankful and delight from which Lady Walham's mother-in-law shrunk ed occupation. George Barnes kept the New back aghast. “Will you please to see that I have comes acquainted with the state of his brother's a comfortable room, Maria; and one for my maid, health. The skillful surgeon from Strasbourg next me? I will thank you to see yourself," the reported daily better and better of him, and the Empress of Kew said, pointing with her stick, little family were living in great peace and con- before which many a time the younger lady had tentment, with one subject of dread, however, trembled. hanging over the mother of the two young men, This time Lady Walham only rang the bell. "I the arrival of Lady Kew, as she was foreboding, don't speak German; and have never been on any floor of the house but this. Your servant had bet- Steyne's sister could not have looked more diater see to your room, Lady Kew. That next is bolical.) “Have you had advice for her ? Has mine; and I keep the door, which you are trying, nursing poor Kew turned her head. I came to locked on the other side.”
see him. Why have I been left alone for half an "And I suppose Frank is locked up there!" hour with this mad woman? You ought not to cried the old lady, " with a basin of gruel and a trust her to give Frank medicine. It is posbook of Watts's hymns." A servant entered at itively—" this moment, answering Lady Walham's sum-/ “Excuse me," said George, with a bow ; “I mons. “Peacock, the Countess of Kew says that don't think the complaint has as yet exhibited she proposes to stay here this evening. Please to itself in my mother's branch of the family. (She ask the landlord to show her ladyship rooms," always hated me," thought George ; " but if she said Lady Walham; and by this time she had had by chance left me a legacy, there it goes.) thought of a reply to Lady Kew's last kind speech. You would like, ma'am, to see the rooms up
“If my son were locked up in my room, ma- stairs? Here is the landlord to conduct your ladam, his mother is surely the best nurse for him. dyship. Frank will be quite ready to receive you Why did you not come to him three weeks soon when you come down. I am sure I need not beg er, when there was nobody with him?"
of your kindness that nothing may be said to agiLady Kew said nothing, but glared and show. tate him. It is barely three weeks since M. de ed her teeth-those pearls set in gold.
Castillonnes' ball was extracted ; and the doctors “ And my company may not amuse Lord wish he should be kept as quiet as possible." Kew"
You may be sure that the landlord, the courier, “ He-o-e!” grinned the elder, savagely. and the persons engaged in showing the Countess
“ But at least it is better than some to which of Kew the apartments above, spent an agreeable you introduced my son,” continued Lady Kew's time with her Excellency the Frau Grafinn von daughter-in-law, gathering force and wrath as she Kew. She must have had better luck in her enspoke. “Your ladyship may think lightly of me, counter with these than in her previous passages but you can hardly think so ill of me as of the with her grandson and his mother; for when she Duchesse d'Ivry, I should suppose, to whom you issued from her apartment in a new dress and sent my boy, to form him, you said; about whom, fresh cap, Lady Kew's face wore an expression when I remonstrated-for though I live out of the of perfect serenity. Her attendant may have shook world I hear of it sometimes you were pleased her fist behind her, and her man's eyes and face to tell me that I was a prude and a fool. It is looked Blitz and Donnerwetter ; but their misyou I thank for separating my child from me- tress's features wore that pleased look which they yes, you—for so many years of my life ; and for assumed when she had been satisfactorily punishbringing me to him when he was bleeding and al- ing somebody. Lord Kew had by this time got most a corpse, but that God preserved him to the back from the garden to his own room, where he widow's prayers ; and you, you were by, and awaited grandmamma. If the mother and her two never came near him."
sons had in the interval of Lady Kew's toilet tried "1-I did not come to see you-or-or-for to resume the history of Bumble the Beadle, I this kind of scene, Lady Walham," muttered the fear they could not have found it very comical. other. Lady Kew was accustomed to triumph, “Bless me, my dear child! How well you by attacking in masses, like Napoleon. Those look! Many a girl would give the world to have who faced her routed her.
such a complexion. There is nothing like a moth“No; you did not come for me, I know very er for a nurse! Ah, no! Maria, you deserve to well," the daughter went on. “You loved me no be the Mother Superior of a House of Sisters of better than you loved your son, whose life, as Charity, you do. The landlord has given me a long as you meddled with it, you made wretched. delightful apartment, thank you. He is an exYou came here for my boy. Haven't you done tortionate wretch ; but I have no doubt I shall be him evil enough? And now God has mercifully very comfortable. The Dodsburys stopped here, preserved him, you want to lead him back again I see, by the travelers' book-quite right, instead into ruin and crime. It shall not be so, wicked of sleeping at that odious buggy Strasbourg. We woman ! bad mother! cruel, heartless parent !- have had a sad, sad time, my dears, at Baden. George !" (Here her younger son entered the Between anxiety about poor Sir Brian, and about room, and she ran toward him with fluttering you, you naughty boy, I am sure I wonder how I robes and seized his hands.) “Here is your have got through it all. Doctor Finck would not grandmother; here is the Countess of Kew, come let me come away to-day ; but I would come." from Biden at last ; and she wants—she wants “I am sure it was uncommonly kind, ma'am," to take Frank from us, my dear, and to-give- says poor Kew, with a rueful face. him-back to the Frenchwoman again. No, “That horrible woman against whom I always no! O, my God! Never! never !" And she warned you—but young men will not take the adflung herself into George Barnes's arms, fainting vice of old grandmammas—has gone away these with an hysteric burst of tears.
ten days. Monsieur le Duc fetched her; and if “ You had best get a strait-waistcoat for your he locked her up at Montcontour, and kept her on mother, George Barnes," Lady Kew said, scorn bread and water for the rest of her life, I am sure and hatred in her face. (If she had been lago's he would serve her right. When a woman once daughter, with a strong likeness to her sire, Lord forgets religious principles, Kew, she is sure to
go wrong. The Conversation Room is shut up. it was; many and many a day I used to say so to The Dorkings go on Tuesday. Clara is really a myself, and longed to get rid of it. I am a poor dear little artless creature; one that you will like, weak devil, I know, I am only too easily led into Maria--and as for Ethel, I really think she is an temptation, and I should only make matters worse angel. To see her nursing her poor father is the if I married a woman who cares for the world more most beautiful sight; night after night she has than for me, and would not make me happy at sate up with him. I know where she would like home.” to be, the dear child. And if Frank falls ill again, “Ethel care for the world !" gasped out Lady Maria, he won't need a mother or useless old Kew; "a most artless, simple, affectionate creat, grandmother to nurse him. I have got some ure; my dear Frank, she” pretty messages to deliver from her ; but they are Ho interrupted her, as a blush came rushing for your private ears, my lord ; not even mammas over his pale face. “Ah!" said he, w if I had and brothers may hear them."
been the painter, and young Clive had been Lord "Do not go, mother! Pray stay, George !” Kew, which of us do you think she would have cried the sick man (and again Lord Steyne's sis chosen ? And she was right. He is a brave, ter looked uncommonly like that lamented mar- handsome, honest young fellow, and is a thouquis), “My cousin is a noble young creature,” sand times cleverer and better than I am.” he went on. “She has admirable good qualities, “ Not better, dear, thank God," cried his mothwhich I appreciate with all my heart; and her er, coming round to the other side of his sofa, and beauty, you know how I admire it. I have thought seizing her son's hand. of her a great deal as I was lying on the bed yon- “No, I don't think he is better, Frank,” said der (the family look was not so visible in Lady the diplomatist, walking away to the window. Kew's face), and—and I wrote to her this very And as for grandmamma at the end of this little morning; she will have the letter by this time, speech and scene, her ladyship’s likeness to her probably."
| brother, the late revered Lord Steyne, was more “ Bien! Frank !" Lady Kew, smiled in her frightful than ever. supernatural way) almost as much as her portrait, After a minute's pause, she rose up on her by Harlowe, as you may see it at Kewbury to this crooked stick, and said, “I really feel I am unvery day. She is represented seated before an worthy to keep company with so much exquisite easel, painting a miniature of her son, Lord virtue. It will be enhanced, my lord, by the Walham.
thought of the pecuniary sacrifice which you are "I wrote to her on the subject of the last con-making, for I suppose you know that I have been versation we had together," Frank resumed, in hoarding-yes, and saving, and pinching-denyrather a timid voice, “the day before my acci- ing myself the necessities of life, in order that my dent. Perhaps she did not tell you, ma'am, of grandson might one day have enough to support what passed between us. We had had a quarrel; his rank. Go and live and starve in your dreary one of many. Some cowardly hand, which we both old house, and marry a parson's daughter, and of us can guess at, had written to her an account sing psalms with your precious mother; and I of my past life, and she showed me the letter. have no doubt you and she-she who has thwartThen I told her, that if she loved me she never ed me all through life, and whom I hated-yes, would have showed it me: without any other I hated from the moment she took my son from words of reproof I bade her farewell. It was not me and brought misery into my family, will be all much, the showing that letter; but it was enough. the happier when she thinks that she has made a In twenty differences we have had together, she poor, fond, lonely old woman more lonely and had been unjust and captious, cruel toward me, miserable. If you please, George Barnes, be good and too eager, as I thought, for other people's ad- enough to tell my people that I shall go back to miration. Had she loved me, it seemed to me Baden;" and waving her children away from her, Ethel would have shown less vanity and better the old woman tottered out of the room on her temper. What was I to expect in life afterward crutch. from a girl who before her marriage used me so ? Neither she nor I could be happy. She could be So the wicked Fairy drove away disappointed gentle enough, and kind, and anxious to please in her chariot with the very dragons which had any man whom she loves, God bless her! As for brought her away in the morning, and just had me, I suppose, I'm not worthy of so much talent time to get their feed of black bread. I wonder and beauty, so we both understood that that was whether they were the horses Clive and J. J. and a friendly farewell; and as I have been lying on Jack Belsize had used when they passed on their my bed yonder, thinking, perhaps, I never might road to Switzerland? Black Care sits behind all leave it, or if I did, that I should like to lead a sorts of horses, and gives a trinkgelt to postillions different sort of life to that which ended in send all over the map. A thrill of triumph may be pering me there, my resolve of last month was only mitted to Lady Walham after her victory over her confirmed. God forbid that she and I should lead mother-in-law. What Christian woman does not the lives of some folks we know; that Ethel like to conquer another; and if that other were should marry without love, perhaps to fall into it a mother-in-law, would the victory be less sweet? afterward; and that I, after this awful warning I Husbands and wives both will be pleased that have bad, should be tempted back into that dreary Lady Walham has had the better of this bout: life I was leading. It was wicked, ma'am, I knew and you, young boys and virgins, when your tum
comes to be married, you will understand the hid-, don't mean her beauty merely, but such a noble den meaning of this passage. George Barnes bred one! And to think that there she is in the got “ Oliver Twist” out, and began to read there- market to be knocked down to- I say, I was in. Miss Nancy and Fanny again were sum- going to call that three-year-old, Ethelinda. We moned before this little company to frighten and must christen her over again for Tattersall's, delight them. I dare say even Fagin and Miss Georgy." Nancy failed with the widow, so absorbed was A knock is heard through an adjoining door, she with the thoughts of the victory which she and a maternal voice cries, “It is time to go to had just won. For the evening service, in which bed!" So the brothers part, and, let us hope, her sons rejoiced her fond heart by joining, she sleep soundly. lighted on a psalm which was as a Te Deum after the battle--the battle of Kehl by Rhine, where The Countess of Kew, meanwhile, has returned Kew's soul, as his mother thought, was the ob- to Baden; where, though it is midnight when ject of contention between the enemies. I have she arrives, and the old lady has had two long said, this book is all about the world and a re- bootless journeys, you will be grieved to hear that spectable family dwelling in it. It is not a ser- she does not sleep a single wink. In the mornmon, except where it can not help itself, and the ing she hobbles over to the Newcome quarters; speaker pursuing the destiny of his narrative finds and Ethel comes down to her pale and calm. such a homily before him. O friend, in your life How is her father? He has had a good night: and mine, don't we light upon such sermons daily? | he is a little better, speaks more clearly, has a don't we see at home as well as among our neigh- little more the use of his limbs. bors that battle betwixt Evil and Good ? Here, “I wish I had had a good night!" groans out on one side, is Self and Ambition and Advance- the Countess. ment; and Right and Love on the other. Which " I thought you were going to Lord Kew, at shall we let to triumph for ourselves—which for Kehl,” remarked her granddaughter. our children?
"I did go, and returned with wretches who The young men were sitting smoking the Ves- would not bring me more than five miles an hour! per segar. (Frank would do it, and his mother I dismissed that brutal grinning courier; and I actually lighted his segar for him now, enjoining have given warning to that fiend of a maid.”. him straightway after to go to bed.) Kew smoked “And Frank is pretty well, grandmamma?”. and looked at a star shining above in the heaven. “Well! He looks as pink as a girl in her first Which is that star? he asked; and the accom- season! I found him, and his brother George, plished young diplomatist answered it was Ju- and their mamma. I think Maria was hearing piter.
them their catechism," cries the old lady. "What a lot of things you know, George!” “N, and M. together! Very pretty," says cries the senior, delighted; " You ought to have Ethel, gravely. “George has always been a been the elder--you ought, by Jupiter. But you good boy, and it is quite time for my Lord Kew have lost your chance this time."
to begin.” “Yes, thank God!" says George.
The elder lady looked at her descendant, but “And I am going to be all right--and to turn Miss Ethel's glance was impenetrable. “I supover a new leaf, old boy-and paste down the pose you can fancy, my dear, why I came back ?” old ones, eh? I wrote to Martins this morning said Lady Kew. to have all my horses sold; and I'll never bet “Because you quarreled with Lady Walham, again—so help me—so help me, Jupiter. I made grandmamma. I think I have heard that there a vow-a promise to myself, you see, that I used to be differences between you.” Miss Newwouldn't if I recovered. And I wrote to cousin come was armed for defense and attack; in which Ethel this morning. As I thought over the mat- cases we have said Lady Kew did not care to aster yonder, I felt quite certain I was right, and sault her. “My grandson told me that he had that we could never, never pull together. Now written to you," the Countess said. the Countess is gone, I wonder whether I was “Yes; and had you waited but half an hour right-to give up sixty thousand pounds, and the yesterday, you might have spared me the humi. prettiest girl in London?"
liation of that journey." “Shall I take horses and go after her? My - You—the humiliation-Ethel!" mother's gone to bed, she won't know," asked “Yes, me !" Ethel flashed out. “Do you supGeorge. “Sixty thousand is a lot of money to pose it is none to have me bandied about from lose."
bidder to bidder, and offered for sale to a gentleKew laughed. “If you were to go and tell man who will not buy me? Why have you and our grandmother that I could not live the night all my family been so eager to get rid of me? through; and that you would be Lord Kew in Why should you suppose or desire that Lord the morning, and your son, Viscount Walham, I Kew should like me? Hasn't he the Opera; and think the Countess would make up a match be- such friends as Madame la Duchesse d'Ivry, to tween you and the sixty thousand pounds, and whom your ladyship introduced him in early life? the prettiest girl in England: she would by- He told me so: and she was good enough to inby Jupiter. I intend only to swear by the hea- form me of the rest. What attractions have I in then gods now, Georgy. No, I am not sorry I comparison with such women? And to this man wrote to Ethel. What a fine girl she is !-I from whom I am parted by good fortune; to this