The Young Step-Mother eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 626 pages of information about The Young Step-Mother.

’Well, this must have been an unexpected reception of such a proposal.’

’You may say that!  The English think everything may be bought with money!  I’d have overlooked his ignorance, poor old gentleman, if he would not have gone and spoken of my O as vulgar.  Vulgar!  So when I began to tell him how it began from Tigearnach, the O’More of Ballymakilty, that was Tanist of Connaught, in the time of King Mac Murrough, and that killed Phadrig the O’Donoghoe in single combat at the fight of Shoch-knockmorty, and bit off his nose, calling it a sweet morsel of revenge, what does he do but tell me I was mad, and that he would have none of my nonsensical tales of the savage Irish.  So I said I couldn’t stand to hear my family insulted, and then—­would you believe it? he would have it that it was I that was insolent, and when I was not going to apologize for what I had borne from him, he said he had always known how it would be trying to deal with one of our family, no better than making a silk purse out of a sow’s ear.  “And I’m obliged for the compliment,” said I, quite coolly and politely, “but no Irish pig would sell his ear for a purse;” and so I came away, quite civilly and reasonably.  Aye, I see what you would do, Mr. Kendal, but I beg with all my heart you won’t.  There are some things a gentleman should not put up with, and I’ll not take it well of you if you call it my duty to hear my father and his family abused.  I’ll despise myself if I could. You don’t—­’ cried he, turning round to Albinia.

’Oh, no, but I think you should try to understand Mr. Goldsmith’s point of view.’

’I understand it only too well, if that would do any good.  Point of view—­why, ’tis the farmyard cock’s point of view, strutting on the top of that bank of his own, and patronizing the free pheasant out in the woods.  More fool I for ever letting him clip my wings, but he’s seen the last of me.  No, don’t ask me to make it up.  It can’t be done—­’

‘What can be done to the boy?’ asked Albinia; ’how can he be brought to hear reason?’

‘Leave him alone,’ Mr. Kendal said, aside; while Ulick in a torrent of eager cadences protested his perfect sanity and reason, and Mr. Kendal quietly left the room, again to start on a peace-making mission, but it was unpromising, for Mr. Goldsmith began by declaring he would not hear a single word in favour of the ungrateful young dog.

Mr. Kendal gathered that young O’More had become so valuable, and that cold and indifferent as Mr. Goldsmith appeared, he had been growing so fond and so proud of his nephew, as actually to resolve on giving him a share of the business, and dividing the inheritance which had hitherto been destined to a certain Andrew Goldsmith, brought up in a relation’s office at Bristol.  Surprised at his own graciousness, and anticipating transports of gratitude, his dismay and indignation at the reception of his proposal were extreme, especially as he had no conception of the offence he had given regarding the unfortunate O as a badge of Hibernianism and vulgarity.  ’I put it to you, Mr. Kendal, as a sensible man, whether it would not be enough to destroy the credit of the bank to connect it with such a name as that, looking like an Irish haymaker’s.  I should be ashamed of every note I issued.’

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The Young Step-Mother from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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