Japhet, in Search of a Father eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 432 pages of information about Japhet, in Search of a Father.

“A Miss Temple, sir.”

“Temple—­it is a very good name.  I think girls brought up in the country make the best wives.”

“They do, sir, most certainly; they are more domestic, and make their husbands more content and happy at home.”

“Well, my dear boy, I have mentioned the subject, and wish you would think of it.  You will please me much.”

“My dear father, I shall be most happy to obey in everything else, but in so serious a point as uniting myself for life, I think you must allow that a little discretionary power should be given to a son.  All I can say is this, show me a young person who is eligible, and if I find that I can love her, I will not refuse to obey your wishes.”

“Well, sir, do as you please,” replied my father, very angrily; “but I think, sir, when I desire you to fall in love, it is your duty to obey.”

“Suppose I was to fall in love with a person you did not like, would you allow me to marry her?”

“Most certainly not, sir.”

“Then, sir, is it reasonable to expect me to marry without being in love?”

“I did not marry for love, sir.”

“No,” replied I, forgetting myself a little; “and a pretty mess you made of it.”

“I did,” rejoined my father in a rage, “by begetting an undutiful, good-for-nothing, graceless, insolent, ungrateful son.”

“My dear father, I was not aware that I had a brother.”

“I mean you, sir.”

“To prove to you how unjust you are, sir, and how little I deserve what you have called me, I now promise you to marry as soon as you wish.”

“Thank you, my boy, that’s kind of you; but I will say that you are a comfort and a treasure to me, and I bless the day that brought you to my arms.  Well, then, look about you.”

“No, sir, I leave it all to you; select the party, and I am willing to obey you.”

“My dear boy!  Well, then, I’ll talk the matter over with Mr Masterton to-morrow,” and the general shook me warmly by the hand.

The next day I picked up Harcourt, and proceeded to Park Street.  A note from him had informed them of our intended visit, and other visitors had been denied.  “All has been explained, Cecilia,” said I, after the first greeting:  “I was very wrong, and very foolish.”

“And made me very miserable.  I little thought that you, Japhet, would have made me cry so much; but I forgive you for it, as I would a thousand times as much more.  Now sit down and tell us all that has happened since you left us.”

“Not yet, my dear Cecilia.  You, as well as I, owe a reparation to poor Harcourt, whom, I think, you have treated cruelly.  You were about to answer a question of vital moment when I broke in upon you, and you have since kept him in a state of cruel suspense for more than three weeks, refusing him an answer until he brought me into your presence.  An hour of such suspense must be dreadful, and before we sit down, I wish everyone should feel comfortable and happy.”

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Japhet, in Search of a Father from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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