Mr. Powys now asked where this place was that she had hurried to.
The unhappy ladies of Brookfield, quick as they were to read every sign surrounding them, were for the moment too completely thrown off their balance by Emilia’s extraordinary exhibition of will, to see that no reflex of her shameful and hideous proceeding had really fallen upon them. Their exclamations were increasing, until Adela, who had been the noisiest, suddenly adopted Lady Gosstre’s tone. “If she has gone, I suppose she must be simply fetched away.”
“Do you see what has happened?” Lady Charlotte murmured to Wilfrid, between a phrase.
He stumbled over a little piece of gallantry.
“Excellent! But, say those things in French.—Your dark-eyed maid has eloped. She left the room five minutes after Captain Gambier.”
Wilfrid sprang to his feet, looking eagerly to the corners of the room.
“Pardon me,” he said, and moved up to Lady Gosstre. On the way he questioned himself why his heart should be beating at such a pace. Standing at her ladyship’s feet, he could scarcely speak.
“Yes, Wilfrid; go after her,” said Adela, divining his object.
“By all means go,” added Lady Gosstre. “Now she is there, you may as well let her keep her promise; and then hurry her home. They will saddle you a horse down below, if you care to have one.”
Wilfrid thanked her ladyship, and declined the horse. He was soon walking rapidly under a rough sky in the direction of Ipley, with no firm thought that he would find Emilia there.
ETEXT EDITOR’S BOOKMARKS:
Being heard at night, in the nineteenth century
Pleasure sat like an inextinguishable light on her face
Beyond a plot of flowers, a gold-green meadow dipped to a ridge
His alien ideas were not unimpressed by the picture
Hushing together, they agreed that it had been a false move
I had to make my father and mother live on potatoes
I had to cross the park to give a lesson
She was perhaps a little the taller of the two
The circle which the ladies of Brookfield were designing
The gallant cornet adored delicacy and a gilded refinement
The philosopher (I would keep him back if I could)
They had all noticed, seen, and observed