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This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 454 pages of information about The Vicissitudes of Bessie Fairfax.
and straight, with a dark, handsome face and an expression of ability and resolution.  His age was seven-and-twenty, and he had the appearance of an accomplished citizen of the world.  Not to make a mystery of him, he was the poor young gentleman of great talents and great expectations of whom the heads of families had spoken as a suitable person to marry Elizabeth Fairfax and to give the old house of Abbotsmead a new lease of life.  He was a good-natured person, but he found Bessie rather heavy in hand; she was too young, she had no small talk, she was shy of such a fine gentleman.  They were better amused, both of them, in the rose-garden afterward—­Bessie with Dora and Dandy, and Mr. Cecil Burleigh with Miss Julia Gardiner, the most beautiful young lady, Bessie thought, that she had ever seen.  She had a first impression that they were lovers.

Mr. Fairfax had been entirely satisfied by his granddaughter’s behavior in her novel circumstances.  Bessie was pretty and she was pleased.  Nothing was expected of her either to do or to say.  She had a frank, bright manner that was very taking, and a pleasant voice when she allowed it to be heard.  Lady Latimer found time to smile at her once or twice, and to give her a kind, encouraging word, and when the guests began to disperse she was told that she must stay for a little dance there was to be in the evening amongst the young people in the house.  She stayed, and danced every dance with as joyous a vivacity as if it had been Christmas in the long parlor at Brook and Harry Musgrave her partner; and she confessed voluntarily to her mother and Mr. Phipps afterward that she had been happy the whole day.

“You see, dear Bessie, that I was right to insist upon your going,” said her mother.

“And the kettles never once bumped the earthen pot—­eh?” asked Mr. Phipps mocking.

“You forget,” said Bessie, “I’m a little kettle myself now;” and she laughed with the gayest assurance.

CHAPTER VIII.

BESSIE’S FRIENDS AT BROOK.

That respite till September was indeed worth much to Bessie.  Her mind was gently broken in to changes.  Mr. Fairfax vanished from the scene, and Lady Latimer appeared on it more frequently.  My lady even took upon her (out of the interest she felt in her old friend) to find a school for Bessie, and found one at Caen which everybody seemed to agree would do.  The daughters of the Liberal member for Hampton were receiving their education there, and Mrs. Wiley knew the school.

It was a beautiful season in the Forest—­never more beautiful—­and Bessie rode with her father whenever he could go with her.  Then young Musgrave came back from Wells.  Perhaps it is unnecessary to repeat that Bessie was very fond of young Musgrave.  It was quoted of her, when she was a fat little trot of seven years old and he a big boy of twelve, that she had cried herself to sleep because he had refused

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