I am very glad thy honest man has let thee into the affair of Sally Godfrey. But pr’ythee, Pamela, tell us how he did it, and thy thoughts upon it, for that is a critical case, and as he has represented it, so shall I know what to say of it before you and him: for I would not make mischief between you for the world.
This, let me tell you, will be a trying part of your conduct. For he loves the child, and will judge of you by your conduct towards it. He dearly loved her mother; and notwithstanding her fault, she well deserved it: for she was a sensible, ay, and a modest lady, and of an ancient and genteel family. But he was heir to a noble estate, was of a bold and enterprising spirit, fond of intrigue—Don’t let this concern you—You’ll have the greater happiness, and merit too, if you can hold him; and, ’tis my opinion, if any body can, you will. Then he did not like the young lady’s mother, who sought artfully to entrap him. So that the poor girl, divided between her inclination for him, and her duty to her designing mother, gave into the plot upon him: and he thought himself—vile wretch as he was for all that!—at liberty to set up plot against plot, and the poor lady’s honour was the sacrifice.
I hope you spoke well of her to him—I hope you received the child kindly—I hope you had presence of mind to do this—For it is a nice part to act; and all his observations were up, I dare say, on the occasion—Do let me hear how it was. And write without restraint; for although I am not your mother, yet am I his eldest sister, you know, and as such—Come, I will say so, in hopes you’ll oblige me—your sister, and so entitled to expect a compliance with my request: for is there not a duty, in degree, to elder sisters from younger?
As to our remarks upon your behaviour, they have been much to your credit: but nevertheless, I will, to encourage you to enter into this requested correspondence with me, consult Lady Betty, and will go over your papers again, and try to find fault with your conduct, and if we see any thing censurable, will freely let you know our minds.
But, before-hand, I can tell you, we shall be agreed in one opinion; and that is, that we know not who would have acted as you have done, upon the whole. So, Pamela, you see I put myself upon the same foot of correspondence with you. Not that I will promise to answer every latter: no, you must not expect that. Your part will be a kind of narrative, purposely designed to entertain us here; and I hope to receive six, seven, eight, or ten letters, as it may happen, before I return one: but such a part I will bear in it, as shall let you know our opinion of your proceedings, and relations of things. And as you wish to be found fault with, you shall freely have it (though not in a splenetic or ill-natured way), as often as you give occasion. Now, Pamela,