Lady Anna. It is not only that—If they were married, it would be quite proper for them to go abroad together.
Hadda Padda [looks angrily at her mother, but says nothing].
The judge [discovers it. Walks up to his wife, and lays his arm on her shoulder]. We have not grown so old as you would have us. [Heartily.] Perhaps then, it is not proper for an old venerable judge to be as much in love with his silver-haired wife as when they were engaged. But he can’t help it, and that’s just the reason, he still understands love in young people. [To Hadda.] Ask your mother once more to let you go. Maybe she will when she knows you have my consent.
Lady Anna. Well, I see what this is leading to. You know I don’t usually oppose you.
Hadda Padda. Father, you’re always so good to me. [Kisses him.]
The judge [in a whisper to Hadda]. Now kiss your mother too!
Hadda Padda. Nice mother! I will be twice as much pleasure to you when I come back. [Kisses her.]
Little Skuli [enters]. Hadda Padda, do you want the ship to have two or three masts?
Hadda Padda. Now let me see, my boy. [Goes out with him.]
The judge. To-morrow—that will be a happy day. At last I shall see my fondest wish fulfilled, mine and my dear old friend’s—that our children should belong to each other. I never suspected this would happen when Hrafnhild went abroad last year.
Lady Anna. And now she is to go with him again. She has much to thank her father for.
The judge. I think time has kept them apart long enough.—I had a long talk with Helga the other day—they are very good friends, you know, and she was in Copenhagen at the same time as Hadda last year. She told me that Ingolf had quite given up his studies, and it was Hadda Padda who made him take them up again. ... From Christmas on, last year, he studied from morning to night,—and now he will pass his examination, and begin here as an attorney. Then they will probably marry next autumn.
Lady Anna [nods]. He must be kind to Hrafnhild—she is more than just fond of him. Have you noticed that she is beginning to resemble him?
The judge. Now, in spite of everything, I think we are beginning to grow old; our sight is failing us.
Lady Anna. Not my sight. Listen to me. You should have seen her with the flowers this summer while she was home. When she watered them, she talked with them as if they could understand her. It was as if she returned every rise of fragrance with a smile. And the flowers thrived and blossomed, as if they absorbed her tenderness.
The judge. I have noticed something else lately: that every time she comes into a room it is as though the air were filled with the beauty of peace. I could have myself blindfolded, and all Reykavik could walk through the room on soles of velvet—when she entered I could recognize her by the delightful calm that accompanies her.