After a very recherche breakfast, served in Gunter’s best style, in the handsome drawing room of the Cotterells’, in Harley Street, Tom and his fair bride took their departure en route for the Continent. They were to make a tour of several months through France, Germany and Switzerland, likewise enjoy several weeks on the banks of the beautiful Rhine.
Mr. Cotterell undertook to arrange matters concerning the purchase of the cottage so much admired, which he intended to present to his daughter as a marriage gift, and aunt Sarah, Emily, and Mrs. Ashburnham took upon themselves the responsibility of furnishing the said cottage, and otherwise rendering it in every way suitable for the reception of the happy couple, and thus enable them to commence housekeeping immediately on their return to England.
The various events and proceedings were duly recorded and forwarded from time to time for the information of Horace and Pauline Barton, in their Eastern home on the banks of the Hoogly; and Edith, who still kept up a correspondence with Kate and Julia, received a full account, descriptive of the wedding trousseaus and paraphernalia incident to both ceremonies, and followed up by a delicate enquiry as to when she intended to return the compliment by favouring them with the details of an Indian wedding, which they supposed must soon take place, and would, no doubt, prove a gorgeous and magnificent affair in true oriental style. So wrote the happy girls to their old friend and companion in Calcutta, for, according to Pauline’s account, she had no end of suitors among the wealthiest in the land.
To all those enquiries Edith’s usual reply was that the time was somewhat distant when she could indulge in dreams of happiness. Her position was somewhat changed, thus, probably, the event they so often alluded to might never take place, and the reader must remember, that although Edith and Arthur were, beyond doubt, devotedly attached to each other, the word that would have made them both happy had not yet been spoken; there was no engagement, or in fact, any advance towards one, yet both, in their heart of hearts, realized the great love they felt for each other. But prudential motives had kept Arthur silent. Edith knew this and was content to wait for the developments of the future. In the meantime she did not hesitate to participate in the amusements and enjoyments which offered, and which were continually pressed upon her by her kind friends, the Bartons.