The Palace Beautiful eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 369 pages of information about The Palace Beautiful.
If you ask me for your money, I cannot refuse you—­I have absolutely no choice in the matter; the money is yours, and when you want it you must have it.  Now I tell you plainly that Mrs. Ellsworthy and Miss Martineau are dreadfully shocked with your scheme.  I may be wrong, but I confess I am not shocked.  I fancy that you are the kind of girls who will come out victorious, and that though you will have rather a hard struggle, you will not be beaten; but there is one thing I am most anxious to do for you, and that is to keep part of your money.  You have exactly two hundred pounds.  How much of this little capital do you propose to spend a year?”

“As little as ever we can,” answered Primrose.

“Yes, my dear young lady, but you must have some sort of idea with regard to your expenses.  I would counsel you on no account to spend more of your capital than seventy pounds a year; by restricting yourselves to this sum you will have a very tiny but certain, income for two years, and will have something to fall back on even in the third year, if you are not then earning enough.  Suppose I divide your seventy pounds into four quarterly instalments, and send it to you as you require it.  You know nothing of keeping a banking account yourself, and it will absolutely not be safe for you to live in London lodgings, and have a large sum of money with you.  Take my advice in this particular, Miss Primrose, and allow me still to be your banker.”

“There is one little difficulty,” said Primrose; “we really want to be independent, and as we know that there will be difficulties and discouragements in the career we are marking out for ourselves, and that we may often grow faint-hearted and lonely, Jasmine and I feel that we had better put ourselves quite out of the way of temptation.  We have, therefore, made up our minds not to give our address to any one in Rosebury for at least two years.  How can you send us the money, Mr. Danesfield, if you don’t know where to send it?”

“My dear young lady, I fear you are a little bit too headstrong, and though I admire your spirit, I cannot quite approve of your cutting yourselves off from all communications with your friends.  However, it is not for me to interfere.  Will this satisfy you, Miss Primrose?—­shall I give you my solemn promise only to use the address with which you favor me to forward your money each quarter, and never to divulge your secret to anybody else?”

Finally this plan was adopted, and Primrose received her small quarterly allowance with great regularity.



After his interview with Jasmine in St. Paul’s Cathedral, Arthur Noel went home to his very luxurious chambers in Westminster, and wrote the following letter to Mrs. Ellsworthy:—­


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The Palace Beautiful from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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