“Yes, please, Margaret.”
“How do you feel to-day?”
“Oh, so much better, dear Margaret! Your kindness will make me well.”
“I am so glad! Do lie still awhile, and I will bring you some breakfast. Mrs. Elton will be so pleased to find you let me wait on you!”
“She asked me, Margaret, if you should; but I was too miserable — and too naughty, for I did not like you.”
“I knew that; but I felt sure you would not dislike me always.”
“Because I could not help loving you.”
“Why did you love me?”
“I will tell you half the reason. — Because you looked unhappy.”
“What was the other half?”
“That I cannot — I mean I will not tell you.”
“Perhaps never. But I don’t know. — Not now.”
“Then I must not ask you?”
“No — please.”
“Very well, I won’t.”
“Thank you. I will go and get your breakfast.”
“What can she mean?” said Euphra to herself.
But she would never have found out.
He being dead yet speaketh.
HEB., xi. 4.
In all ‘he’ did
Some figure of the golden times was hid.
From this time, Margaret waited upon Euphra, as if she had been her own maid. Nor had Mrs. Elton any cause of complaint, for Margaret was always at hand when she was wanted. Indeed, her mistress was full of her praises. Euphra said little.
Many and long were the conversations between the two girls, when all but themselves were asleep. Sometimes Harry made one of the company; but they could always send him away when they wished to be alone. And now the teaching for which Euphra had longed, sprang in a fountain at her own door. It had been nigh her long, and she had not known it, for its hour had not come. Now she drank as only the thirsty drink, — as they drink whose very souls are fainting within them for drought.
But how did Margaret embody her lessons?
The second night, she came to Euphra’s room, and said:
“Shall I tell you about my father to-night? Are, you able?”
Euphra was delighted. It was what she had been hoping for all day.
“Do tell me. I long to hear about him.”
So they sat down; and Margaret began to talk about her childhood; the cottage she lived in; the fir-wood all around it; the work she used to do; — her side, in short, of the story which, in the commencement of this book, I have partly related from Hugh’s side. Summer and winter, spring-time and harvest, storm and sunshine, all came into the tale. Her mother came into it often; and often too, though not so often, the grand form of her father appeared, remained for a little while, and then passed away.