’He expresses his impatience to see her. He will set out, he says, the moment he knows the result of her family’s determination; which, he doubts not, will be favourable. Nor will he wait long for that.’
When I had read the letter through to the languishing lady, And so, my friends, said she, have I heard of a patient who actually died, while five or six principal physicians were in a consultation, and not agreed upon what name to give his distemper. The patient was an emperor, the emperor Joseph, I think.
I asked, if I should write to her cousin, as he knew not how ill she was, to hasten up?
By no means, she said; since, if he were not already set out, she was persuaded that she should be so low by the time he could receive my letter, and come, that his presence would but discompose and hurry her, and afflict him.
I hope, however, she is not so very near her end. And without saying any more to her, when I retired, I wrote to Colonel Morden, that if he expects to see his beloved cousin alive, he must lose no time in setting out. I sent this letter by his own servant.
Dr. H. sent away his letter to her father by a particular hand this morning.
Mrs. Walton the milliner has also just now acquainted Mrs. Smith, that her husband had a letter brought by a special messenger from Parson Brand, within this half hour, enclosing the copy of one he had written to Mr. John Harlowe, recanting his officious one.
And as all these, and the copy of the lady’s letter to Col. Morden, will be with them pretty much at a time, the devil’s in the family if they are not struck with a remorse that shall burst open the double-barred doors of their hearts.
Will. engages to reach you with this (late as it will be) before you go to rest. He begs that I will testify for him the hour and the minute I shall give it him. It is just half an hour after ten.
I pretend to be (now by use) the swiftest short-hand writer in England, next to yourself. But were matter to arise every hour to write upon, and I had nothing else to do, I cannot write so fast as you expect. And let it be remembered, that your servants cannot bring letters or messages before they are written or sent.
Dr. H. To James Harlowe, Senior,
London, Sept. 4.
If I may judge of the hearts of other parents by my own, I cannot doubt but you will take it well to be informed that you have yet an opportunity to save yourself and family great future regret, by dispatching hither some one of it with your last blessing, and your lady’s, to the most excellent of her sex.