I now come to your ladyship’s fourth particular.
And highly delighted I am for having obtained your approbation of my conduct to the child, as well as of my behaviour towards the dear gentleman, on the unhappy lady’s score. Your ladyship’s wise intimations about having the child with me, make due impressions upon me; and I see in them, with grateful pleasure, your unmerited regard for me. Yet, I don’t know how it is, but I have conceived a strange passion for this dear baby; I cannot but look upon her poor mamma as my sister in point of trial; and shall not the prosperous sister pity and love the poor dear sister that, in so slippery a path, has fallen, while she had the happiness to keep her feet?
The rest of your ladyship’s articles give me the greatest pleasure and satisfaction; and if I can but continue myself in the favour of your dear brother, and improve in that of his noble sister, how happy shall I be! I will do all I can to deserve both. And I hope you will take as an instance of it, my cheerful obedience to your commands, in writing to so fine a judge, such crude and indigested stuff, as, otherwise I ought to be ashamed to lay before you.
I am impatient for the honour of your presence here; and yet I perplex myself with the fear of appearing so unworthy in your eye when near you, as to suffer in your opinion; but I promise myself, that however this may be the case on your first visit, I shall be so much improved by the benefits I shall reap from your lessons and good example, that whenever I shall be favoured with a second you shall have fewer faults to find with me; till, as I shall be more and more favoured, I shall in time be just what your ladyship will wish me to be, and, of consequence, more worthy than I am of the honour of stiling myself your ladyship’s most humble and obedient servant, P.B.
From Miss Darnford, in answer to Mrs. B.’s, p. 60.
MY DEAR MRS. B.,
You are highly obliging in expressing so warmly your wishes to have me with you. I know not any body in this world, out of our own family, in whose company I should be happier; but my papa won’t part with me, I think; though I have secured my mamma in my interest; and I know Nancy would be glad of my absence, because the dear, perversely envious, thinks me more valued than she is; and yet, foolish girl, she don’t consider, that if her envy be well grounded, I should return with more than double advantages to what I now have, improved by your charming conversation.
My papa affects to be in a fearful pet, at your lecturing of him So justly; for my mamma would show him the letter; and he says he will positively demand satisfaction of Mr. B. for your treating him so freely. And yet he shall hardly think him, he says, on a rank with him, unless Mr. B. will, on occasion of the new commission, take out his Dedimus: and then if he will bring you down to Lincolnshire, and join with him to commit you prisoner for a month at the Hall, all shall be well.