“Exactly, for Amy keeps me pointing due west most of the time, with only an occasional whiffle round to the south, and I haven’t had an easterly spell since I was married. Don’t know anything about the north, but am altogether salubrious and balmy, hey, my lady?”
“Lovely weather so far. I don’t know how long it will last, but I’m not afraid of storms, for I’m learning how to sail my ship. Come home, dear, and I’ll find your bootjack. I suppose that’s what you are rummaging after among my things. Men are so helpless, Mother,” said Amy, with a matronly air, which delighted her husband.
“What are you going to do with yourselves after you get settled?” asked Jo, buttoning Amy’s cloak as she used to button her pinafores.
“We have our plans. We don’t mean to say much about them yet, because we are such very new brooms, but we don’t intend to be idle. I’m going into business with a devotion that shall delight Grandfather, and prove to him that I’m not spoiled. I need something of the sort to keep me steady. I’m tired of dawdling, and mean to work like a man.”
“And Amy, what is she going to do?” asked Mrs. March, well pleased at Laurie’s decision and the energy with which he spoke.
“After doing the civil all round, and airing our best bonnet, we shall astonish you by the elegant hospitalities of our mansion, the brilliant society we shall draw about us, and the beneficial influence we shall exert over the world at large. That’s about it, isn’t it, Madame Recamier?” asked Laurie with a quizzical look at Amy.
“Time will show. Come away, Impertinence, and don’t shock my family by calling me names before their faces,” answered Amy, resolving that there should be a home with a good wife in it before she set up a salon as a queen of society.
“How happy those children seem together!” observed Mr. March, finding it difficult to become absorbed in his Aristotle after the young couple had gone.
“Yes, and I think it will last,” added Mrs. March, with the restful expression of a pilot who has brought a ship safely into port.
“I know it will. Happy Amy!” and Jo sighed, then smiled brightly as Professor Bhaer opened the gate with an impatient push.
Later in the evening, when his mind had been set at rest about the bootjack, Laurie said suddenly to his wife, “Mrs. Laurence.”
“That man intends to marry our Jo!”
“I hope so, don’t you, dear?”
“Well, my love, I consider him a trump, in the fullest sense of that expressive word, but I do wish he was a little younger and a good deal richer.”
“Now, Laurie, don’t be too fastidious and worldly-minded. If they love one another it doesn’t matter a particle how old they are nor how poor. Women never should marry for money . . .” Amy caught herself up short as the words escaped her, and looked at her husband, who replied, with malicious gravity . . .