I will endeavour to think of some method, of some scheme, to get you from him, and to fix you safely somewhere till your cousin Morden arrives—A scheme to lie by you, and to be pursued as occasion may be given. You are sure, that you can go abroad when you please? and that our correspondence is safe? I cannot, however (for the reasons heretofore mentioned respecting your own reputation,) wish you to leave him while he gives you not cause to suspect his honour. But your heart I know would be the easier, if you were sure of some asylum in case of necessity.
Yet once more, I say, I can have no notion that he can or dare mean your dishonour. But then the man is a fool, my dear—that’s all.
However, since you are thrown upon a fool, marry the fool at the first opportunity; and though I doubt that this man will be the most ungovernable of fools, as all witty and vain fools are, take him as a punishment, since you cannot as a reward: in short, as one given to convince you that there is nothing but imperfection in this life.
And what is the result of all I have written, but this—Either marry, my dear, or get from them all, and from him too.
You intend the latter, you’ll say, as soon as you have opportunity. That, as above hinted, I hope quickly to furnish you with: and then comes on a trial between you and yourself.
These are the very fellows that we women do not naturally hate. We don’t always know what is, and what is not, in our power to do. When some principal point we have long had in view becomes so critical, that we must of necessity choose or refuse, then perhaps we look about us; are affrighted at the wild and uncertain prospect before us; and, after a few struggles and heart-aches, reject the untried new; draw in your horns, and resolve to snail-on, as we did before, in a track we are acquainted with.
I shall be impatient till I have your next. I am, my dearest friend,
Your ever affectionate and faithful
Mr. Belford, to Robert Lovelace,
Wednesday, may 17.
I cannot conceal from you any thing that relates to yourself so much as the enclosed does. You will see what the noble writer apprehends from you, and wishes of you, with regard to Miss Harlowe, and how much at heart all your relations have it that you do honourably by her. They compliment me with an influence over you, which I wish with all my soul you would let me have in this article.