“’The lines are in Burns—you know, we read him for the first time together at Margate—and I have been used to refer them to you, and to call you, in my mind, Glencairn,—for you were always very good to me. I had a thousand failings, but you would love me in spite of them all. I am going to drink your health.’”
I shall detain my reader no longer from the narrative.
* * * * *
They had but four rooms in the cottage. Margaret slept in the biggest room up-stairs, and her grand-daughter in a kind of closet adjoining, where she could be within hearing, if her grandmother should call her in the night.
The girl was often disturbed in that manner—two or three times in a night she has been forced to leave her bed, to fetch her grandmother’s cordials, or do some little service for her—but she knew that Margaret’s ailings were real and pressing, and Rosamund never complained—never suspected, that her grandmother’s requisitions had anything unreasonable in them.
The night she parted with Miss Clare, she had helped Margaret to bed, as usual—and, after saying her prayers, as the custom was, kneeling by the old lady’s bedside, kissed her grandmother, and wished her a good-night—Margaret blessed her, and charged her to go to bed directly. It was her customary injunction, and Rosamund had never dreamed of disobeying.
So she retired to her little room. The night was warm and clear—the moon very bright—her window commanded a view of scenes she had been tracing in the daytime with Miss Clare.
All the events of the day past, the occurrences of their walk arose in her mind. She fancied she should like to retrace those scenes—but it was now nine o’clock, a late hour in the village.
Still she fancied it would be very charming—and then her grandmother’s injunction came powerfully to her recollection—she sighed, and turned from the window-and walked up and down her little room.
Ever, when she looked at the window, the wish returned. It was not so very late. The neighbors were yet about, passing under the window to their homes—she thought, and thought again, till her sensations became vivid, even to painfulness—her bosom was aching to give them vent.
The village-clock struck ten!—the neighbors ceased to pass under the window. Rosamund, stealing downstairs, fastened the latch behind her, and left the cottage.
One, that knew her, met her, and observed her with some surprise. Another recollects having wished her a good-night. Rosamund never returned to the cottage.
An old man, that lay sick in a small house adjoining to Margaret’s, testified the next morning, that he had plainly heard the old creature calling for her granddaughter. All the night long she made her moan, and ceased not to call upon the name of Rosamund. But no Rosamund was there—the voice died away, but not till near daybreak.