As he (as well as I) expected that I should receive a letter from you this day by Collins, I suppose he will not be long before he returns; and then, possibly, he is to be mighty stately, mighty mannish, mighty coy, if you please! And then must I be very humble, very submissive, and try to insinuate myself into his good graces: with downcast eye, if not by speech, beg his forgiveness for the distance I have so perversely kept him at?—Yes, I warrant!—But I shall see how this behaviour will sit upon me!—You have always rallied me upon my meekness, I think: well then, I will try if I can be still meeker, shall I!—O my dear!—
But let me sit with my hands before me, all patience, all resignation; for I think I hear him coming up. Or shall I roundly accost him, in the words, in the form, which you, my dear, prescribed?
He is come in. He has sent to me, all impatience, as Dorcas says, by his aspect.—But I cannot, cannot see him!
The contents of your letter, and my own heavy reflections, rendered me incapable of seeing this expecting man. The first word he asked Dorcas, was, If I had received a letter since he had been out? She told me this; and her answer, that I had; and was fasting, and had been in tears ever since.
He sent to desire an interview with me.
I answered by her, That I was not very well.
In the morning, if better,
I would see him as soon as he pleased.
Very humble! was it not, my dear? Yet he was too royal to take it for humility; for Dorcas told me, he rubbed one side of his face impatiently; and said a rash word, and was out of humour; stalking about the room.
Half an hour later, he sent again; desiring very earnestly, that I should admit him to supper with me. He would enter upon no subjects of conversation but what I should lead to.
So I should have been at liberty, you see, to court him!
I again desired to be excused.
Indeed, my dear, my eyes were swelled: I was very low spirited; and could not think of entering all at once, after the distance I had kept him at for several days, into the freedom of conversation which the utter rejection I have met with from my relations, as well as your advice, has made necessary.
He sent up to tell me, that as he heard I was fasting, if I would promise to eat some chicken which Mrs. Sinclair had ordered for supper, he would acquiesce.—Very kind in his anger! Is he not?
I promised that I would. Can I be more preparatively condescending?—How happy, I’ll warrant, if I may meet him in a kind and forgiving humour!
I hate myself! But I won’t be insulted. Indeed I won’t, for all this.
Miss Clarissa Harlowe, to miss
Tuesday, may 16.