“Good-bye, my dearest love!” said her mother, as she embraced her with transport, “and I shall be with you very soon; and, above all things, try to secure a good opera-box for the season. I assure you it is of the greatest consequence.”
The Duchess impatiently hurried from the congratulations of her family, and throwing herself into the splendid equipage that awaited her was soon lost to their view.
“Every white will have
And every sweet its sour:”
As Lady Juliana experienced. Her daughter was Duchess of Altamont, but Grizzy Douglas had arrived in Bath! The intelligence was communicated to Mary in a letter. It had no date, but was as follows:—
My DEAR MARY—You will See from the Date of this, that we are at last Arrived here, after a very long journey, which, you of Course Know it is from this to our Part of the country; at the same Time, it was uncommonly Pleasant, and we all enjoyed it very Much, only poor Sir Sampson was so ill that we Expected him to Expire every minute, which would have made it Extremely unpleasant for dear Lady M’Laughlan. He is now, I am Happy to say, greatly Better, though still so Poorly that I am much afraid you will see a very Considerable change upon him. I sincerely hope, my dear Mary, that you will make a proper Apology to Lady Juliana for my not going to Beech Park (where I know I would be made most Welcome) directly—but I am Certain she will Agree with me that it would be Highly Improper in me to leave Lady M’Laughlan when she is not at all Sure how long Sir Sampson may Live; and it would Appear very Odd if I was to be out of the way at such a time as That. But you may Assure her, with my Kind love, and indeed all our Loves (as I am sure None of us can ever forget the Pleasant time she spent with us at Glenfern in my Poor brother’s lifetime, before you was Born), that I will Take the very first Opportunity of Spending some time at Beech Park before leaving Bath, as we Expect the Waters will set Sir Sampson quite on his Feet again. It will be a happy Meeting, I am certain, with Lady Juliana and all of us, as it is Eighteen years this spring since we have Met. You may be sure I have a great Deal to tell you and Lady Juliana too, about all Friends at Glenfern, whom I left all quite Well. Of course, the Report of Bella’s and Betsy’s marriages Must have reached Bath by this time, as it will be three Weeks to-day since we left our part of the country; but in case it has not reached you, Lady M’Laughlan is of opinion that the Sooner you are made Acquainted with it the Better, especially as there is no doubt of it. Bella’s marriage, which is in a manner fixed by this time, I daresay, though of Course it will not take place for some time, is to Capt. M’Nab of some Regiment, but I’m sure I Forget which, for there are so many Regiments, you know, it is Impossible to remember them All; but he is quite a Hero, I know that, as he has been in Several battles, and had Two of his front teeth Knocked Out at one of them, and was Much complimented about it; and he Says, he is quite Certain of getting Great promotion—at any Rate a pension for it, so there is no Fear of him.