I skip over the little transactions of several days, to let you know how much you rejoice me, in telling me Sir Simon has been so kind as to comply with my wishes. Both your most agreeable letters came to my hand together, and I thank you a hundred times for them; and I thank your dear mamma, and Sir Simon too, for the pleasure they have given me in this obliging permission. How happy shall we be!—But how long will you be permitted to stay, though? All the winter, I hope:—and then, when that is over, let us set out together, if God shall spare us, directly for Lincolnshire; and to pass most of the summer likewise in each other’s company. What a sweet thought is this!—Let me indulge it a little while.
Mr. B. read your letters, and says, you are a charming young lady, and surpass yourself in every letter. I told him, that he was more interested in the pleasure I took in this favour of Sir Simon’s than he imagined. “As how, my dear?” said he. “A plain case, Sir,” replied I: “for endeavouring to improve myself by Miss Darnford’s conversation and behaviour, I shall every day be more worthy of your favour.” He kindly would have it, that nobody, no, not Miss Darnford herself, excelled me.
’Tis right, you know, Miss, that Mr. B. should think so, though I must know nothing at all, if I was not sensible how inferior I am to my dear Miss Darnford: and yet, when I look abroad now-and-then, I could be a proud slut, if I would, and not yield the palm to many others.
Well, my dear Miss,
Is past and gone, as happy as the last; the two ladies, and, at their earnest request, Sir Jacob bearing us company, in the evening part. My Polly was there morning and evening, with her heart broken almost, poor girl!—I put her in a corner of my closet, that her concern should not be minded. Mrs. Jervis gives me great hopes of her.
Sir Jacob was much pleased with our family order, and said, ’twas no wonder I kept so good myself, and made others so: and he thought the four rakes (for he run on how much they admired me) would be converted, if they saw how well I passed my time, and how cheerful and easy every one, as well as myself was under it! He said, when he came home, he must take such a method himself in his family; for, he believed, it would make not only better masters and mistresses, but better children, and better servants too. But, poor gentleman! he has, I doubt, a great deal to mend in himself, before he can begin such a practice with efficacy in his family.
In the afternoon. Sir Jacob took his leave of us, highly satisfied with us both, and particularly (so he said) with me; and promised that my two cousins, as he called his daughters, and his sister, an old maiden lady, if they went to town this winter, should visit me, and be improved by me; that was his word. Mr. B. accompanied him some miles on his journey, and the two ladies, and Lord Davers, and I, took an airing in the coach.