But, as it must not be, I will acquiesce; and so, I hope, will you: for you see in what respects I am not unhappy; and in those that I am, they lie not in your power to remedy.
Then as I have told you, I have all my clothes in my own possession. So I am rich enough, as to this world, in common conveniencies.
You see, my venerable and dear friend, that I am not always turning the dark side of my prospects, in order to move compassion; a trick imputed to me, too often, by my hard-hearted sister; when, if I know my own heart, it is above all trick or artifice. Yet I hope at last I shall be so happy as to receive benefit rather than reproach from this talent, if it be my talent. At last, I say; for whose heart have I hitherto moved? —Not one, I am sure, that was not predetermined in my favour.
As to the day—I have passed it, as I ought to pass it. It has been a very heavy day to me!—More for my friends sake, too, than for my own!— How did they use to pass it!—What a festivity!—How have they now passed it?—To imagine it, how grievous!—Say not that those are cruel, who suffer so much for my fault; and who, for eighteen years together, rejoiced in me, and rejoiced me by their indulgent goodness!—But I will think the rest!—Adieu, my dearest Mrs. Norton!—
Miss Clarissa Harlowe, to miss
Friday, July 21.
If, my dearest Sister, I did not think the state of my health very precarious, and that it was my duty to take this step, I should hardly have dared to approach you, although but with my pen, after having found your censures so dreadfully justified as they have been.
I have not the courage to write to my father himself, nor yet to my mother. And it is with trembling that I address myself to you, to beg of you to intercede for me, that my father will have the goodness to revoke that heaviest part of the very heavy curse he laid upon me, which relates to hereafter; for, as to the here, I have indeed met with my punishment from the very wretch in whom I was supposed to place my confidence.
As I hope not for restoration to favour, I may be allowed to be very earnest on this head: yet will I not use any arguments in support of my request, because I am sure my father, were it in his power, would not have his poor child miserable for ever.
I have the most grateful sense of my mother’s goodness in sending me up my clothes. I would have acknowledged the favour the moment I received them, with the most thankful duty, but that I feared any line from me would be unacceptable.
I would not give fresh offence: so will decline all other commendations of duty and love: appealing to my heart for both, where both are flaming with an ardour that nothing but death can extinguish: therefore only subscribe myself, without so much as a name,