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of her raillery, fhe felt for him the tenderness of a fifter, and treated him with the confidence of a friend. Her heart was truly generous: I do not speak of that light, tranfient, and fometimes affected difregard for money which young people, who have never experienced its utility, often carelessly display; but of that real liberality which could circumfcribe its own defires to increase the comforts of thofe around it. Far, therefore, from regretting the fums which fir William expended in Henry's education and fupport, or viewing the progrefs which he made in the good baronet's affections with envy or jealousy, fhe continually urged him immediately to bestow upon the valuable oddity, as the tiled him, that independence which his noble mind richly deserved.. "I even tell him," fhe would fay to her Lucy," that in fo doing he will make

"me happier; for I cannot help feel

ing that I was thrown in the way moft "unfeasonably to mar that dear fellow's "expectations. But for me, you know, "Lucy, he would have been heir to all my father's princely fortune."

Such folicitude for Henry's intereft had convinced fir William that his scheme was in the most profperous way; and when, deeming the golden harvest of hope to be fully ripe, he informed his daughter, with a fignificant fmile, that he had fent for her coufin to Powerfcourt upon business in which the was materially concerned, he certainly thought that he was communicating welcome intelligence. Far different were the agonized feelings of Geraldine, feelings which her anxiety to fave her elated father from the pangs of fudden disappointment could fcarcely restrain. She


flew to Lucy, and, throwing herself into her arms, conjured her, by all their infantine tenderness, if ever she loved, ever pitied her, to do fomething to fave her from the dreadful alternative of a detested marriage, or offending an almost adored father.

Lucy mingled her tears with Geraldine's with more than the common fenfibility of friendship. She could recollect nothing but her mother's folemn adjuration, and the repeated her arguments with fidelity; but the moment of ftrong paffion was unfavourable to cool confideration. "O cease, my dearest

girl!" interrupted Miss Powerfcourt, " cease to urge the only propofal to " which I cannot accede. Even your "mother, all prudent, all felf-poffeffed

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as fhe is, would ftrongly reprobate "folemn perjury. Had this union not " been proposed, my regard for lord "Mon

"Monteith fhould never have induced << me to have taken any ftep contrary to 66 my father's will, nor fhould he have " discovered that the facrifice I made to " filial duty was at the expence of my "happiness. But to bind myself for "ever to another, when my heart is ir"revocably his; to fhut out every hope "that time might remove my father's "reluctance; honour, delicacy, affec❝tion, nay, even my esteem for Henry "Powerscourt, all ftrongly forbid fuch "an unhallowed bond!"

Lucy was quite a convert to these arguments; but when Geraldine again called upon her to fuggeft fome plan of conduct that might obviate these threatened evils, the artless weeping girl could form no other fcheme than that she fhould throw herself at fir William's feet, and own a pre-engagement. Mifs Powerfcourt feemed not to have fuffi

cient courage for a difcovery which fhe apprehended muft produce disagreeable events; but while depreffed and unrefolved, the feemed firm in nothing but that fhe would ultimately reject her coufin's hand. The important eclairciffement came from another quarter.

I fhall pass over many unimportant converfations, to give a fuller account of the interview in which fir William unequivocally, and in fure expectation of a joyful acceptance, informed his kinfman of his defign to make him the heir of his fortunes, and the depofitary of his daughter's happiness. But when he expected to see the highly-favoured youth break out in a ftrain of grateful rapture, (for even his phlegmatic temper expected rapturous acceptance when Geraldine was the gift,) how cruelly was he disappointed to fee his countenance betray diftrefs almoft bordering


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