Lady Rose's Daughter eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 377 pages of information about Lady Rose's Daughter.

“Yes.  I came over with my cousins yesterday.”

She asked nothing more.  It did not occur to her to notice that he had no luggage, no bag, no rug, none of the paraphernalia of travel.  In her despairing fatigue and misery she let him guide her as he would.

He made her take some soup, then some coffee, all that she could make herself swallow.  There was a dismal period of waiting, during which she was hardly conscious of where she was or of what was going on round her.

Then she found herself in the sleeping-car, in a reserved compartment, alone.  Once more the train moved through the night.  The miles flew by—­the miles that forever parted her from Warkworth.

XIX

The train was speeding through the forest country of Chantilly.  A pale moon had risen, and beneath its light the straight forest roads, interminably long, stretched into the distance; the vaporous masses of young and budding trees hurried past the eye of the traveller; so, also, the white hamlets, already dark and silent; the stations with their lights and figures; the great wood-piles beside the line.

Delafield, in his second-class carriage, sat sleepless and erect.  The night was bitterly cold.  He wore the light overcoat in which he had left the Hotel du Rhin that afternoon for a stroll before dinner, and had no other wrap or covering.  But he felt nothing, was conscious of nothing but the rushing current of his own thoughts.

The events of the two preceding days, the meaning of them, the significance of his own action and its consequences—­it was with these materials that his mind dealt perpetually, combining, interpreting, deducing, now in one way, now in another.  His mood contained both excitement and dread.  But with a main temper of calmness, courage, invincible determination, these elements did not at all interfere.

The day before, he had left London with his cousins, the Duke of Chudleigh, and young Lord Elmira, the invalid boy.  They were bound to Paris to consult a new doctor, and Jacob had offered to convey them there.  In spite of all the apparatus of servants and couriers with which they were surrounded, they always seemed to him, on their journeys, a singularly lonely and hapless pair, and he knew that they leaned upon him and prized his company.

On the way to Paris, at the Calais buffet, he had noticed Henry Warkworth, and had given him a passing nod.  It had been understood the night before in Heribert Street that they would both be crossing on the morrow.

On the following day—­the day of Julie’s journey—­Delafield, who was anxiously awaiting the return of his two companions from their interview with the great physician they were consulting, was strolling up the Rue de la Paix, just before luncheon, when, outside the Hotel Mirabeau, he ran into a man whom he immediately perceived to be Warkworth.

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Lady Rose's Daughter from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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