In forms natural to the age and his individual thought, if not altogether in such as I have here put down, Richard thus fashioned his insights as he sauntered home upon Lady, his head above the clouds, and his heart higher than his head—as it ought to be once or twice a day at least. Poor indeed is any worldly success compared to a moment’s breathing in divine air, above the region where the miserable word success yet carries a meaning.
The death of the marquis took place in December, long before which time the second marquis of Worcester, ever busy in the king’s affairs, and unable to show himself with safety in England, or there be useful, had gone from Ireland to Paris.
As the country was now a good deal quieter, and there was nothing to detain her in London, and much to draw her to Wyfern, Dorothy resolved to go home, and there, if possible, remain. Indeed, there was now nothing else she could well do, except visit Mr. Herbert at Llangattock. But much as she revered and loved the old man, and would have enjoyed his company, she felt now such a longing for activity, that she must go and look after her affairs. What with the words of the good marquis and her own late experiences and conflicts, Dorothy had gained much enlightenment. She had learned that well-being is a condition of inward calm, resting upon yet deeper harmonies of being, and resulting in serene activity, the prevention of which natural result reacts in perturbation and confusion of thought and feeling. But for many sakes the thought of home was in itself precious and enticing to her. It was full of clear memories of her mother, and vague memories of her father, not to mention memories of the childhood Richard and she had spent together, from which the late mists had begun to rise, and reveal them sparkling with dew and sunshine. As soon, therefore, as marquis Henry had gone to countess Anne, Dorothy took her leave, with many kind words between, of the ladies Elizabeth, Anne, and Mary, and set out, attended by her old bailiff and some of the men of her small tenantry, who having fought the king’s battle in vain, had gone home again to fight their own.
At Wyfern she found everything in rigid order, almost cataleptic repose. How was it ever to be home again? What new thing could restore the homefulness where the revered over-life had vanished? And how shall the world be warmed and brightened to him who knows no greater or better man than himself therein—no more skilful workman, no diviner thinker, no more godlike doer than himself? And what can the universe have in it of home, of country, nay even of world, to him who cannot believe in a soul of souls, a heart of hearts? I should fall out with the very beating of the heart within my bosom, did I not believe it the pulse of the infinite heart, for how else should it be heart of mine? I made it not, and any moment it may seem to fail me, yet never, if it be what I think it, can it betray me. It is no wonder then, that, with only memories of what had been to render it lovely in her eyes, Dorothy should have soon begun to feel the place lonely.