Emily Trevelyan, before the arrival of that letter from her husband, had determined that she would not leave Italy. It had been her purpose to remain somewhere in the neighbourhood of her husband and child; and to overcome her difficulties or be overcome by them, as circumstances might direct. Now her plans were again changed or, rather, she was now without a plan. She could form no plan till she should again see Mr Glascock. Should her child be restored to her, would it not be her duty to remain near her husband? All this made Nora’s line of conduct the more difficult for her. It was acknowledged that she could not remain in Italy. Mrs Trevelyan’s position would be most embarrassing; but as all her efforts were to be used towards a reconciliation with her husband, and as his state utterly precluded the idea of a mixed household, of any such a family arrangement as that which had existed in Curzon Street, Nora could not remain with her. Mrs Trevelyan herself had declared that she would not wish it. And, in that case, where was Nora to bestow herself when Sir Marmaduke and Lady Rowley had sailed? Caroline offered to curtail those honeymoon weeks in Switzerland, but it was impossible to listen to an offer so magnanimous and so unreasonable. Nora had a dim romantic idea of sharing Priscilla’s bedroom in that small cottage near Nuncombe Putney, of which she had heard, and of there learning lessons in strict economy; but of this she said nothing. The short journey from the Baths of Lucca to Florence was not a pleasant one, and the Rowley family were much disturbed as they looked into the future. Lodgings had now been taken for them, and there was the great additional doubt whether Mrs Trevelyan would find her child there on her arrival.
The Spaldings went one way from the Florence station, and the Rowleys another. The American Minister had returned to the city some days previously, drawn there nominally by pleas of business, but, in truth, by the necessities of the wedding breakfast, and he met them at the station. ‘Has Mr Glascock come back?’ Nora was the first to ask. Yes he had come. He had been in the city since two o’clock, and had been up at the American Minister’s house for half a minute. ’And has he brought the child?’ asked Caroline, relieved of doubt on her own account. Mr Spalding did not know; indeed, he had not interested himself quite so intently about Mrs Trevelyan’s little boy, as had all those who had just returned from the Baths. Mr Glascock had said nothing to him about the child, and he had not quite understood why such a man should have made a journey to Siena, leaving his sweetheart behind him, just on the eve of his marriage. He hurried his women-kind into their carriage, and they were driven away; and then Sir Marmaduke was driven away with his women-kind. Caroline Spalding had perhaps thought that Mr Glascock might have been there to meet her.