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This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 469 pages of information about Emma.
as my brother imagined? can it be possible for this man to be beginning to transfer his affections from Harriet to me?—­Absurd and insufferable!”—­ Yet he would be so anxious for her being perfectly warm, would be so interested about her father, and so delighted with Mrs. Weston; and at last would begin admiring her drawings with so much zeal and so little knowledge as seemed terribly like a would-be lover, and made it some effort with her to preserve her good manners.  For her own sake she could not be rude; and for Harriet’s, in the hope that all would yet turn out right, she was even positively civil; but it was an effort; especially as something was going on amongst the others, in the most overpowering period of Mr. Elton’s nonsense, which she particularly wished to listen to.  She heard enough to know that Mr. Weston was giving some information about his son; she heard the words “my son,” and “Frank,” and “my son,” repeated several times over; and, from a few other half-syllables very much suspected that he was announcing an early visit from his son; but before she could quiet Mr. Elton, the subject was so completely past that any reviving question from her would have been awkward.

Now, it so happened that in spite of Emma’s resolution of never marrying, there was something in the name, in the idea of Mr. Frank Churchill, which always interested her.  She had frequently thought—­especially since his father’s marriage with Miss Taylor—­that if she were to marry, he was the very person to suit her in age, character and condition.  He seemed by this connexion between the families, quite to belong to her.  She could not but suppose it to be a match that every body who knew them must think of.  That Mr. and Mrs. Weston did think of it, she was very strongly persuaded; and though not meaning to be induced by him, or by any body else, to give up a situation which she believed more replete with good than any she could change it for, she had a great curiosity to see him, a decided intention of finding him pleasant, of being liked by him to a certain degree, and a sort of pleasure in the idea of their being coupled in their friends’ imaginations.

With such sensations, Mr. Elton’s civilities were dreadfully ill-timed; but she had the comfort of appearing very polite, while feeling very cross—­and of thinking that the rest of the visit could not possibly pass without bringing forward the same information again, or the substance of it, from the open-hearted Mr. Weston.—­So it proved;—­ for when happily released from Mr. Elton, and seated by Mr. Weston, at dinner, he made use of the very first interval in the cares of hospitality, the very first leisure from the saddle of mutton, to say to her,

“We want only two more to be just the right number.  I should like to see two more here,—­your pretty little friend, Miss Smith, and my son—­and then I should say we were quite complete.  I believe you did not hear me telling the others in the drawing-room that we are expecting Frank.  I had a letter from him this morning, and he will be with us within a fortnight.”

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