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This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 142 pages of information about Barford Abbey.

It is well Lady Elizabeth stands portress at the door of my heart:—­there is such bustling and pushing to get in;—­but, notwithstanding her Ladyship’s vigilance, Miss Powis has slipp’d by, and sits perch’d up in the same corner with Darcey.

If you go back to Lady Mary’s dressing-room, you will find nobody there:—­but give a peep into the dining-parlour, and you will see us just set down at dinner;—­all smiling,—­all happy;—­an inexhaustible fountain of pleasure in every breast.

I will go down to Slope Hall;—­give Lady Dorothy a hint that she has it now in her power to make one man happy;—­a hint I believe she never had before.—­A snug twenty thousand added to my present fortune,—­the hand of Lady Elizabeth,—­and then, Risby, get hold of my skirts, and you mount with me.

Next Tuesday prepare, as governor of the castle, for a warm siege.—­Such a battery of eyes,—­such bundles of darts,—­such stores of smiles,—­such a train of innocence will be laid before the walls, as never was withstood!—­No; I shall see you cap-a-pee open the gates to the besiegers.—­Away goes my pen.—­I write no more positively.




Barford Abbey.

Are you well, Madam?  Is my dear father well?  Tell me you are, and never was so happy a creature as your daughter.  I tremble with pleasure,—­with joy,—­with delight:—­but I must—­my duty, my affection, every thing says I must sit down to write.—­You did not see how we were marshall’d at setting out:—­I wish you could have got up early enough:—­never was there such joyous party!

All in Lady Mary’s dining-room by seven;—­the fine equipages at the door;—­servants attending in rich new liveries, to the number of twenty;—­Lord Darcey and his heavenly bride that is to be,—­smiling on each other,—­smiling on all around;—­Lady Mary Sutton—­yes, she is heavenly too;—­I believe I was the only earthly creature amongst them;—­Lord and Lady Hampstead,—­the angelic Ladies Elizabeth and Sophia,—­Mr. Molesworth,—­the generous, friendly, open-hearted Mr. Molesworth,—­Lord Hallum.—­But why mention him last?—­Because, Bessy, I suppose he was last in your thoughts.—­Dear Madam, how can you think so?

In Lady Mary’s coach went her Ladyship, Lord Darcey, Mrs. and Miss Powis:—­in Lord Hampstead’s, his Lordship, Lady Hampstead, Lady Elizabeth, and Mr. Molesworth:—­in Lord Darcey’s, Lady Sophia, Mr. Powis, Lord Hallum, and your little good-for-nothing:—­in Mr. Powis’s, the women-servants.—­We lay fifty miles short of the Abbey, and the next evening reach’d it at seven.

We reach’d Barford Abbey, I say—­but what shall I say now?—­I cannot do justice to what I have seen of duty,—­of affection,—­of joy,—­of hospitality.—­Do, dear Madam, persuade my father to purchase a house in this neighbourhood.

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