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cotton saque, (so we called a kind of upper gown) made by mysel', and a full petticoat, wi' a sma' basket hoop, and my hair was curled in a bonny bunch on my forehead, with a sma' sprinkling of pooder, and a sma’ white muslin ornament on my head, also of my ain devising, and likewise made by my ain sel. I'm sure I never looked sae bonny as on that day.”
“ Now,” said Mr. Lindsay, who saw Augusta was hurt, “I know not which of my nieces to love the best-Augusta for her graceful compliance with another's will, or Ellen for her noble defence of her own.”
“I hope,” said the conciliating Mrs. Lindsay, “ Ellen's refusal has not offended my dear nephew. I'm sure his taste is the finest I ever met with.”
“Thank you, aunt. Ellen is right in the sacrifice of appearance to principle, as Brutus was right when he sacrificed his own son. But Augusta and I are not made of such stern stuff, nor capable of such an heroic self-martyrdom. This evening I am going to introduce my friend the Count De Villeneuve, and if I have been a little too urgent with Ellen, it is because he is at Paris “the glass of fashion, and the mould of form,' and I wanted to prove to him that there are women worth looking at even in England.”
“Leave it to us to prove that,” said Miss Tibby, drawing herself up, “and dinna you prove that there's na mon worth speaking to, when once he's been out o' England.”
At this moment in came Annie, fresh from the hands of Le Gracieux, her fine auburn hair gracefully braided round her handsome Scotch face. She had compressed her Hebe form into a Parisian dress Augusta had given her. The metamorphosis was complete, and to the cursory glance the wild Scotch lassie was the handsome Parisian élégante.
When pensive, it seemed as if that very grace,
“ Bon jour, belle Zelie !” said Julian, entering a drawing-room in the Marine Hotel at Worthing, where a young and foreign-looking girl lay on a sofa near the window-a soft September breeze blowing freshly from the sea, and a bright September sun sending through the crimson curtains a glow like that of health on the clear olive complexion of the young sufferer. “How are you this morning ?” he added, kindly taking her hand; “ still feverish, I fear-I came to lure away
your brother for this evening, but I fancy you are not well enough to be left alone.”
“ If he can bear to leave me, I can bear to be left, Monsieur Jules," replied Zelie, while her colour rose and tears filled her eyes.
“ No, no, I will not propose it,” replied Julian, struck by her emotion.
Zelie smiled her thanks, but at that moment Alphonse De Villeneuve himself entered from an inner room. He was attired in a flowered satin dressing-gown, antique slippers curved upwards at the toes, his long black hair was surmounted by an Apollo cap, and his beard and moustachios might have belonged for length and thickness to an itinerant vender of “old clo',” but for the care evidently bestowed upon their gloss and perfume.
“ You will not propose to take me,” he said ; " then I must propose to go-Zelie and I have had a little quarrel,” he added, smiling, “and nothing secures pardon between those who love, like a brief absence. Repentance is the offspring of solitude, and I am sure, when I am gone, she will whisper something to Zelie's heart.”
Alphonse spoke in French; Zelie burst into tears, and replied, “I have repented, Alphonse ; do not leave me alone in this drear place, with nothing to look at but the sea, one wave supplanting another, all monotonous and selfish as mankind-I am not well, oh! do not leave me.”
Julian walked to the window, fearful of seeming indiscreet in listening to this dispute between the brother and sister. Alphonse drew near the sofa, and whispered something to Zelie. He then joined Julian, and said, “ Zelie is reconciled to my going, she even wishes it. I will get ready. Come !"
“I hope you are not angry with me?" said Julian, speaking in a low tone to Zelie, while the French exquisite went to exchange his elegant undress for a toilette distinguée.
“ No,” said Zelie, also in a low tone, “I am too miserable to be angry."
“ You are nervous and low-spirited from past illness.”
" It is not the past, it is the future affects me.”