’It’s to be “Cropper and Burgess,” he said to Dorothy one afternoon. ’They fought hard for “Cropper, Cropper, and Burgess” but I wouldn’t stand more than one Cropper.’
‘Of course not,’ said Dorothy, with something almost of scorn in her voice. By this time Dorothy had gone very deeply into banking business.
‘I wouldn’t do it, if I was you’
Miss Stanbury at this time was known all through Exeter to be very much altered from the Miss Stanbury of old or even from the Miss Stanbury of two years since. The Miss Stanbury of old was a stalwart lady who would play her rubber of whist five nights a week, and could hold her own in conversation against the best woman in Exeter, not to speak of her acknowledged superiority over every man in that city. Now she cared little for the glories of debate; and though she still liked her rubber, and could wake herself up to the old fire in the detection of a revoke or the claim for a second trick, her rubbers were few and far between, and she would leave her own house on an evening only when all circumstances were favourable, and with many precautions against wind and water. Some said that she was becoming old, and that she was going out like the snuff of a candle. But Sir Peter Mancrudy declared that she might live for the next fifteen years, if she would only think so herself. ‘It was true,’ Sir Peter said, ’that in the winter she had been ill, and that there had been danger as to her throat during the east winds of the spring, but those dangers had passed away, and, if she would only exert herself, she might be almost as good a woman as ever she had been.’ Sir Peter was not a man of many words, or given to talk frequently of his patients; but it was clearly Sir Peter’s opinion that Miss Stanbury’s mind was ill at ease. She had become discontented with life, and therefore it was that she cared no longer for the combat of tongues, and had become cold even towards the card-table. It was so in truth; and yet perhaps the lives of few men or women had been more innocent, and few had struggled harder to be just in their dealings and generous in their thoughts.