“It was very provoking, though,” said he, “to be left out of your pleasant party. I hope you will consider that, Lady Mabel, and forgive me for the little alarm I have given you.”
“Not to-night,” said she. “My nerves are quite too much shaken. But if I sleep well, and feel like myself again, I may possibly forgive you to-morrow.”
(Rosalind reading a paper.)
From the east to western Ind,
No jewel is like Rosalind,
Her worth being mounted on the wind,
Through all the world bears Rosalind,
All the pictures fairest lined,
Are but black to Rosalind,
Let no face be kept in mind,
But the face of Rosalind.
rhyme you so, eight years together; dinners and
suppers, and sleeping hours excepted; it is the right butter-woman’s
rank to market.
As You Like It.
Whenever L’Isle took holiday from his military duties, he was pretty sure to take it out of his regiment, the next day. On parade, next morning, he inspected the ranks, bent on detecting some defect in bearing or equipment, and peered into the faces of the men, as if hunting out the culprits in the latest breach of discipline. Men and officers looked for a three hours’ drill, to improve their wind, and put them in condition. But, to their great comfort, he soon let them off, and hastened back to his quarters. Arrived there, he called to his man for his portfolio, and at once sat down to write as if he had a world of correspondence before him. But it was plain to this man, who had occasion to come often into the room, that his master did not get through his work with his usual facility. He found him, not so often writing, as leaning on the table in laborious cogitation, or biting the feather end of his quill, or rapping his forehead with his knuckles, to stimulate the action of the organs within, or else striding up and down the room, in a brown study, over sundry half-written and discarded sheets of paper, scattered on the floor. L’Isle’s servant wished to speak to him, but was too wise to disturb him in the midst of those throes of mental labor. But, when pausing suddenly in his walk, he pressed his forefinger on his temple, and exclaimed, “I had it last night, and now I have lost it!” his confidential man thought it time to speak. “What is it, sir, shall I look for it?”
L’Isle stared at him, as if just roused from a reverie, and bursting into a hearty laugh, bid him go down stairs until he called for him.
Down stairs he went, and told his two companions that their master was at work on the toughest despatch or report, or something of that sort, he had ever had to make in his life, adding, “I would not be surprised if something came of it.”
“I have not a doubt,” answered Tom, the groom, in a confident tone, “that the colonel has found out some new way to jockey the French, and is about to lay it before Sir Rowland Hill, or, perhaps my Lord Wellington himself.”