“You are the grandest girl that ever was made.”
“I do not want to be grand at all, and I never will be wise any more. Only do not frown at me and look savage.” Then she put up her hand to smooth his brow. “I am half afraid of you still, you know. There. That will do. Now let me go, that I may tell my aunt. During the last two months she has been full of pity for poor Lord Chiltern.”
“It has been poor Lord Chiltern with a vengeance!” said he.
“But now that we have made it up, she will be horrified again at all your wickednesses. You have been a turtle dove lately;—now you will be an ogre again. But, Oswald, you must not be an ogre to me.”
As soon as she could get quit of her lover, she did tell her tale to Lady Baldock. “You have accepted him again!” said her aunt, holding up her hands. “Yes,—I have accepted him again,” replied Violet. “Then the responsibility must be on your own shoulders,” said her aunt; “I wash my hands of it.” That evening, when she discussed the matter with her daughter, Lady Baldock spoke of Violet and Lord Chiltern, as though their intended marriage were the one thing in the world which she most deplored.
The Beginning of the End
The day of the debate had come, and Phineas Finn was still sitting in his room at the Colonial Office. But his resignation had been sent in and accepted, and he was simply awaiting the coming of his successor. About noon his successor came, and he had the gratification of resigning his arm-chair to Mr. Bonteen. It is generally understood that gentlemen leaving offices give up either seals or a portfolio. Phineas had been put in possession of no seal and no portfolio; but there was in the room which he had occupied a special arm-chair, and this with much regret he surrendered to the use and comfort of Mr. Bonteen. There was a glance of triumph in his enemy’s eyes, and an exultation in the tone of his enemy’s voice, which were very bitter to him. “So you are really going?” said Mr. Bonteen. “Well; I dare say it is all very proper. I don’t quite understand the thing myself, but I have no doubt you are right.” “It isn’t easy to understand; is it?” said Phineas, trying to laugh. But Mr. Bonteen did not feel the intended satire, and poor Phineas found it useless to attempt to punish the man he hated. He left him as quickly as he could, and went to say a few words of farewell to his late chief.
“Good-bye, Finn,” said Lord Cantrip. “It is a great trouble to me that we should have to part in this way.”
“And to me also, my lord. I wish it could have been avoided.”
“You should not have gone to Ireland with so dangerous a man as Mr. Monk. But it is too late to think of that now.”
“The milk is spilt; is it not?”