Murray, the man cook, did come down from Dublin, just in time; but he behaved very badly. He got quite drunk on the morning of the wedding. He, however, gave Richards an opportunity of immortalising herself. She behaved, on the trying occasion, so well, that she is now confirmed in her situation; and Lady Cashel has solemnly declared that she will never again, on any account, be persuaded to allow a man cook to enter the house.
Lady Selina—she would not officiate as one of the bridesmaids—is still unmarried; but her temper is not thereby soured, nor her life embittered. She is active, energetic, and good as ever: and, as ever, cold, hard, harsh, and dignified. Lord Kilcullen has hardly been heard of since his departure from Grey Abbey. It is known that he is living at Baden, but no one knows on what. His father never mentions his name; his mother sometimes talks of “poor Adolphus;” but if he were dead and buried he could not give less trouble to the people of Grey Abbey.
No change has occurred, or is likely to take place, in the earl himself—nor is any desirable. How could he change for the better? How could he bear his honours with more dignity, or grace his high position with more decorum? Every year since the marriage of his niece, he has sent Lord and Lady Ballindine an invitation to Grey Abbey; but there has always been some insuperable impediment to the visit. A child had just been born, or was just going to be born; or Mrs O’Kelly was ill; or one of the Miss O’Kellys was going to be married. It was very unfortunate, but Lord and Lady Ballindine were never able to get as far as Grey Abbey.
Great improvements have been effected at Kelly’s Court. Old buildings have been pulled down, and additions built up; a great many thousand young trees have been planted, and some miles of new roads and walks constructed. The place has quite an altered appearance; and, though Connaught is still Connaught, and County Mayo is the poorest part of it, Lady Ballindine does not find Kelly’s Court unbearable. She has three children already, and doubtless will have many more. Her nursery, therefore, prevents her from being tormented by the weariness of the far west.
Lord Ballindine himself is very happy. He still has the hounds, and maintains, in the three counties round him, the sporting pre-eminence, which has for so many years belonged to his family. But he has no race-horses. His friend, Dot, purchased the lot of them out and out, soon after the famous Derby; and a very good bargain, for himself, he is said to have made. He is still intimate with Lord Ballindine, and always spends a fortnight with him at Kelly’s Court during the hunting-season.
Sophy O’Kelly married a Blake, and Augusta married a Dillon; and, as they both live within ten miles of Kelly’s Court. and their husbands are related to all the Blakes and all the Dillons; and as Ballindine himself is the head of all the Kellys, there is a rather strong clan of them. About five-and-twenty cousins muster together in red coats and top-boots, every Tuesday and Friday during the hunting-season. It would hardly be wise, in that country, to quarrel with a Kelly, a Dillon, or a Blake.