The Bartons were delighted to have Edith with them again, for nothing had gone right during her absence. Mrs. Barton had not been accustomed to take any part in the household arrangements or keeping the servants in order, consequently everything had gone wrong.
Edith grew eloquent when describing the dauntless courage of Carlton in rescuing her from a fate too horrible to be thought of. On hearing this, Arthur rose at least fifty per cent. in the estimation of Mrs. Barton, with whom he had always been a great favourite, and she warmly thanked him for the exertion he had made in behalf of her young friend. Taking advantage of the opportunity thus afforded him, Arthur, on the spur of the moment, disclosed to her everything concerning his engagement to Edith, and solicited their approval to the union on his attaining the rank of Captain. He was warmly supported by Edith, who did not hesitate to declare her affection for one whom she had known so long, and who had risked so much for her. And when Mrs. Barton found that the wedding was not to take place for some time, and that Edith was to return with them to England, she professed herself to be satisfied on the subject, whereupon it was arranged that the party should proceed to the sea coast. On reaching Doollia, the lovers parted in hopes of meeting again at no distant day in England, for the ratification of those vows that were exchanged during their ride for life through the Goozeratte.
Independent of the inward satisfaction felt by Edith, that her engagement to Arthur had met the approval of the kind friends to whom she owed so much, she experienced a great deal of pleasure during the overland journey to Europe. Both Horace and Pauline had twice traversed the route, and therefore were enabled to point out the various objects of interest that were met with in the different places they passed through. The Egyptian Pyramids, Cleopatra’s Needle, and the far-famed Catacombs at Alexandria, with many a new and strange sight, encountered during their short sojourn at Malta and Gibraltar, which had been unheeded on her passage out, so depressed and sad at heart had she felt at the death of her uncle. But, time having healed that mental wound, and a bright future opening before her, she could now fully enjoy those scenes and the associations they usually call up.
Arthur Carlton lost no time in making his way to the Capital and reporting himself to the Commander-in-Chief. His Excellency was pleased to accept graciously his reasons for throwing up his appointment on the staff of General D——, at Goolampore. Our hero had expected to get a good rap over the knuckles for acting as he had done without first applying to headquarters, and this, doubtless, would have been the case at any other time, but the blind folly and general mismanagement of the late Brigadier had already been commented upon and censured by the authorities,