Chapter 164385490

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Chapter NumberIX
Chapter Title
Chapter Url
Full Date1884-01-19
Page Number103
Word Count4938
Last Corrected2018-04-03
Newspaper TitleThe Sydney Mail and New South Wales Advertiser (NSW : 1871 - 1912)
Trove TitleSubstantive or Adjective
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Substantive or Adjective.

By C. H. Sfence.

Chatter IX. ?'-?-?

When the travellers reached Penaluna, Mr. Arnold's \ carriage was in waiting for his niece. Frankland settled himself at the Crown Inn, with the determination to make excursions all round about; but to manage to see Miss Grant every day. All that he heard about Mr. Arnold was against him, and he saw that the neice was greatiy T-itied for her imprisonment .to a eick room, though

no doubt it would be made up to her in the long run fey his wfll. The relapse which had hastened her return was con sidered to be a made-up thing. Mr. Arnold could never bear people who were dependent on him to mind their own bnsiness or to take their own pleasure in their own way. It had teen a happy release for Ellice's mother to escape from his arbitrary temper, even for a struggling, wandering life with an actor, and it must be especially galling to a woman of thirty, who had known the sweets of independence, to submit to his whims. Frankland once or twice penetrated

to the sickroom, and was irritated beyond measure by the words and tones of the autocrat addressed to his faithful nurse. 'Was (his the strong-minded woman of his old aversion who could take reproaches so meekly, and turn aside wrath by fanswers sometimes soft and sometimes ingenious? But he differed in opinion from the villagers of Penaluna as to the health of Mr. Arnold. He was convinced that he was really ill and suffering much. ' I suppose you want to so out for a walk and to leave me to Sally's tender mercies, which are cruel ?' said 'the old gentleman one afternoon. 'Dr. Potter Eaye I ought to get out ones a day,*' said Ellice; «f the weather is fine, and,you,are pretty well, so I had better take my walk now.' *? Pretty well ! That is all you know about it.1' *' Well, at least, no worse than usual.' ?* I always grow, worse as the day advances. You. should take your walk in the morning.'1 'But It Tained hard all the morning.'* ' ** And there was no one to go oat with you then,' said the invalid. ; 'Exactly so,', said Ellice quietly; 'but as Mr. Frank land has arranged hia mining explorations so as to give mo bis company, I think it will cheer me a little, and I shall be brighter for you when I return.' However, when Ellice got clear of the sick room, she did cot go out into the fresh air at once. ' I must finish this article on 'Caroline Fox,* which I have promised for the magazine, while I have an hdur to spare. I cannot bear to lose my literary connection, which has cost- so much to buildup; and my uncle cannot endure to see me with the pen in my hand. So I can only work while he sleeps.' ' Then I must go end leave you in peace.' 'No, not so. It does me good to see you ; it quiets my serves, and besides I want your opinion on what I have already written ; I fear it smells of the lamp. If you can offer any criticism or suggest any improvement, I shall be verv glad. One cannot write one' d best when one is overtaxed. ' She sat down at the library table, and handed to Franklaud the sheets or MS. to revise. How differently now he esti mated that cramp hand- writing ; every curve and angle seemed full of her individuality. When he looked up and watched her pen rapidly running ever the papfer, and now and then pausing while Bhe appeared to be gathering her thoughts together, he confessed to himself that a writing woman might under certain circumstances be as charming as a playing or singing or dancing woman. The wearied look went out of her eyes ; she was all alive in her con genial work. .-- He read eagerly what was already written. The talk about this charming, intelligent, sympathetic woman hal made the subject especially interesting to him ; but haste and worry had not made the composition quite as faultless as might be. Here and there there were Blips. His orders were to correct all mistake, and he had the pleasure of really improving the article in several places and of verifying a quotation. '? Thank you,' said Miss Grant, 'yon have saved me ? time and trouble. Now, please do the same good part by the conclusion. I do not quite like my concluding sentence. Can you Buggest any alteration that would be better ?' ' Can you trust me F' 11 1 can. This reminds me of old days. My father always liked to do the final revision for me, and to put in the stops. ' He was an authority .in punctuation.' ' But I am not,' said Frankland. ' I think they seem all right' When the packet was made up and addressed there was balf-an-hourto spare for a walk, and Frankland promised to see. to the posting of the MS. ' This is too hard woik for you, Miss Grant. It is like knocking off work to chop wood, as we say in Australia, to take a rest from continuous nursing by hard literary work. Dn hotter would burning the candle at both ends. I feel quite sure that if ho knew he would say it must be put; a stop to. ? ; 'In the interest* of his real patient ? ' *' In the interests of both patient and nurse. If all they eay is true, you will not need to work so hard in future; but I can conceive that it is a relief to get out of this sick-room atmosphere of querulous distrust into company with goad books and your own beautiful thoughts.' ' Tee, 1 feel better after this ; but, see, we have lost the fine weather ; here Comes a shower, but I don't mind, if you - do fcot. The driving rain seems to be friendly somehow, and to make me glad to feel its fresh greeting.' 'No Australian ever quarrels withrain,' said Frankland. ' This marvellous verdure of the south-west of England is a result of these weeping Bkies and this mild climate. I cannot help a little envy when I see it.' ' Tour Australian poet, Kendall, seems to give a terrible - description of those * Swarthy wastelands, wide and woodless, stretching miles and 'mfles'awar, ?_ '? ' -When Tom goes out I expect to hear as graphic accounts '.of your scenery as he- gave of the Sunderbunds of Bengal and the canons of the .Far West/' ?'Tom writeBto you, I suppose ? He has not written to me since I came here. What is his news f'' u Tour cousin has refused him.' «? On what ground ?' 'The usual ground— that she has no thought of mar rying at present, and certainly never had any idea ' of marrying him. She appeared surprised at his presumption. Tom fancies that it is his want of money that goes against him; he says, pathetically, 'Why was not I born rich instead of good-looking ?' ' Is Tom much disappointed V'' ' Oh, desperately disappointed. He is always in extremes. He says he will try again. He wonders if he has a rival. He suggests that it. may be Mr. Richard Oliver, Mr. . Matthews, or yourself. If it is you he would not interfere, but he would enjoy cutting out the others.' Franklandlaughed. ' I am not the favoured rival.' «? Tom says the man who perseveres wins. His theory iit that any man can win any woman, if his heart is not pre engaged, provided he is sufficiently in earnest. But he has idealised Miss Hose marvellously.' ' Have you sympathised with his disappointment ?' ':1 have but uttle time, but I managed to write a short letter to him. I cannot sympathise much. I think the refusal will do him good. These disagreeable things ought always to do us good.' So long as Phoebe had laid herself out to charm himself Frankland had lonnd her really charming, but now he was rather amused by Tom's infatuation. Was it Tom's want ' of moqey really that stood in his way ? Was not Miss Grantr*- advice goo3, to check an unwise liberality that might have broughtabont'a disastrous marriage Y On reflection, tow could a shallow, ignorant girl who had only the appearance of good nature which youth and beauty give really steady Tom P ' It was a good escape for everybody concerned. Bufin.the rebound-might not Tom turn to his faithful friend and find consolation, and discover how very deaf she was to him? That was a more discomposing idea to Frankland than the Phoebe affair. At any rate, he' was on the spot, and he prosecuted his mineral researches with great diligence and enterprise. It .was in vain that Mr. Arnold snubbed him persistently ?when tie called to inquire for his health ; it was in vain that Ellice told him this* was scarcely fair to his mother and brother. The mineral country must be thoroughly investi gated! at leasfwithin reasonable distance from Penaluna— that was a sine qua turn. , 'You really. ought to: go home to be. with your mother and laugh Tom out of his passion. I have not the heart to do so On paper. I do not think there is much chance of my patient recovering, but he may last in this state for months.' He was light-headed last night, and said strange things . about my mother, for whom he took me.' ??« Has Mr. Arnold made his will?' ' He has made no new will since his illness that I know of.' , ? . -- ?..?,-. ' He ought to do so. It is quite possible that he has left his property to some public institution or to some stranger; for until he sent for you he utterly ignored you, and now he sacrifices you without scruple to his convenience.' -«T cannot ask such a thing, and, indeed, to tell the truth, donotwieh it — . Give me again my hollow tree, A crust of bread, and liberty. Way should remote kinship such as mine make people think that I should inherit his wealth? Let Mr. Arnold leave it to pay off the National Debt, and let me return to earn my own livelihood.' ?' He is far more likely to endow almshouses to be called the Arnold Charity, to be inhabited by decayed men and women | -f the name of Arnold, with all sorts of minute

regulations to be carried out, so that his dead hand may be felt as heavy as bis living one. To sink individuality in the ' extinction of a fractional part of the National Debt and to fill only one short paragraph in the newspapers would not eatisfy your uncle's wish for posthumous fame.' ? ' I dare eay you are right,' said Ellice, smiling ; ' but he must be allowed to settle his own affairs in his own way. It is a matter of indifference to me.' Mr. Frankland, however, felt it was the right thing to do to ask Dr. Potter if he knew anything about a will. Dr. Potter referred him to Mr. Cox, the lawyer, who said. that to the best of bis belief no later will had been made than one executed ten years ago, by which Miss Grant was the residuary legatee; but he was very diplomatic as to the amount of property and as to the ottier legacies. Still this arrangement was just and right. Frankland wondered if she would misunderstand him even if he did not speak till she was a rich woman. No,' she would not misanderstsnd him. Under any circumstances she would have to choose between the life of an independent woman in England in the beart of civilisation, and that of the wife of an Austra lian colonist whose interests demanded that he should live on him station. Whether the independence was through in heritance or through her own exertions was a trifle. In deed, it was rather the career than the country that would be hard (o give up. If she loved him as he loved her, all the advantages of her position would be as nothing. If she did not love him, why, then, he would try to make her love him. Surely if the ?? any man' and *l any woman' , theory was gocd for anything, it might come in here. How strange it appeared to him' now that he could have objected to the substantive woman. Surely a woman needed indi vidual character to be a counsellor in perplexity and an encourager in every worthy effort, and her very individuality gave her that weight and sympathy which make the best ci mforter in sorrow. A telegram from an Australian friend in London sum moned him to town, and he had to take leave without' a personal farewell, as the patient was too ill to ba seen, and loo ill to be left. He wrote a short letter in which he thought she might read between the lines and understand how he felt towards her. But Tom had written her such letters often, and Ellice only thought she had made a gooi and steadfast friend. She had all through her life thrown into her friendship much of the warmth and enthusiasm of her nature, and she was glad that Mrs. Frankland's good eon found her interesting at last. CHAPTER X. Mr. Arnold's time was shorter than his attendants sup posed. A few days after Frankland lett the neighbourhood the wandering of his mind became worse and worae, and he had no lucid intervale, In this state, after a wild series of delusions, he dozed out of life in a collapse. The mournful thing about this death was that there was no sorrow lett : the dead man was neither missed nor mourned. To Ellice it was restoration to liberty, and she had- -not felt that he loved or valued her. He had onfy missed her when she was out of sight and supposed to be occupied with other interests than bis. He had left the most minute directions as to his funeral, which was to be of the costliest description, as befitted one of an old family and prominent position. ?????? Harry and Tom Frankland came to attend -the fune ral, and neighbours from far and near were invited. But the real wealth of the dead man was not in accordance with these lavish arrangements, for it appeared that in a mining panic he had sold all his property many years ago,: and as the trice was far below its old holding value he had invested the proceeds in a life annuity, which died with htm. He had, nevertbless, left a legacy to the county hospital for an additional wing, to be called the Arnold Ward, on a scale , commensurate with his income, so that the value of the. 'house and furnitute, which' were his own, was completely swallowed up by the payment of current debts, funeral expenses, and this legacy'; and the residuary legiteeship was not worth a penny to . Miss Grant. Mr. Cox had anticipated that his client had bean saving from his handsome income, but no such thing could be traced- He had lived rather beyond it thin within it. Tom Frankland was indignant. ' It is a shame, it is a burning scandal. Here is a man who has done no good in his life, and who takes, e taps, so that no one shall be the better fcrhimaflerTiis death.' ? ' '*? Toil forget the hospital,' jaaid Ellice. ' I dare say it is scandalously managed', as all these, old - - fashioned routine hOBpitala are. - If he had left the money to you, the sick and the poor would have been the better for it by a great deal. But I think annuities are mean things always.' ? 'You do not think it mean to live up to your income, however, which secures that no one will be the better for your, death,' said Miss Grant. *' I' think annuities are excellent .things in very many cases. Why should old , people past work pinch hard to live on ordinary interest, that they may leave the principal to their children, in the prime of life, when they might have something like ease and coinfortthrough investing it in an annuity '?'' 'And people on annuities live proverbially to a great age. Your great-uncle is no exception; eighty-as is quite sixteen years beyond his fair share of life,' said lorn. ' He must have got the better of the purchaser.' 11 For my pert, I am glad that I inherit nothing,' said Ellice. ' 1 did not love my unole enough to care to benefit by him. It has been an experience which I dare say has done me no harm, and now London and liberty will be all the more welcome.' : « Now, shake off the dust of this confounded Penalune from your feet,' said Tom, ,' and leave it at once.'' '* Come back to Truscott and make your final arrange ments (here. My mother longs for you with exceeding longing,' said Frankland, who w,as not disappointed, but rather glad with Ellice that she was not any richer for her ? great- uncle. ~ . . ' It does not take long tor me to pack up,' said Ellice. ' I only mean to take one farewell walk to niy mother's favourite haunt, and then lam ready to go.' tC I know the place,' said Frankland. ' The Pixies' Well ; you told uie of it. Sou will allow me to accompany you, I hope?' 'Certainly,' said Ellice. ' Two is company ; three , is none. . I shall take my walks abroad in another direction,' said Torn, who began to suspect how his brother. felt towards his friend. It was a leisurely walk that they took. Ellice wanted to fill her memory with some recollections less j wring and painful than those of the sick room. Frankland respected her feelings, and only spoke when she seemed to wish it. But when they sat close together on the green moss, close to the Pixies' Well, he feit he had at last a golden oppor tunity, and he seized on it. : ? '1 hear from/the people about that there is a superstition with regard to this well— that if after a silence of five minutes you drop three stones, one after the other, into this well, and wish with all your heart, you will obtain what you wish for; Don't you consider the silence an appropriate thing to show the earnestness of the desire ?' ' And when you obtain it does it really come up to your expectations, or is it really good for you to have your heart's desire granted V' said Ellice, thoughtfully. *? If I were to wish 1 should desire a modest niche in the Temple of Fame ; but would that be really the best thing for me ?' 'Do not wish till I wish,' said Frankland, eagerly. ' Let me keep silence for the appointed time. That is easier for you than for the ordinary woman.' He took out his watch gravely, and they satin silence till the hand marked five minutes. He then dropped one. after another three -stones into the deep clear well. ' ' I wish that the dearest, noblest woman I ever saw or dreamed of would love me as I love her.'? Her face showed great surprise, but not displeasure. 'If not now, some time in the near future. Ah ! the decision is not with the well, it is with the woman herself. It is so much to ask you to give up; but 1 love you— 1 love you.' 'But how— why— when? You did not use to think of me in this way. Ton were prejudiced against all strong minded women. I could see that you became friendly with me through Tom, but I never dreamed of anything more.' ' And you like Tom better. Oh, the perveraeaess of fate and of woman's fancy. Would Tom make vou really happy?' ' No, not at all, even if he loved me, which he does not.' ' Could not I make yon happy ?' ' I do not know — I have 'not thought of it. I must have time to consider a question eo momentous and so unexpected. I never took into consideration the idea of marrying any* body ; least of all, of marrying to leave England and all my many ties here. I have not a heart to give to the first

person who asks for it. I respect you very much, Mr. Frankland ; I like you veryciach ;but— but— ^ — ' ' But I am not the eort of perron you are disposed to ? ' ' To be subordinated to- that is the difficulty.' ' Is there any one else whom you prefer ?' ??No — no one.' ' Then there is hope—— ?'» *' I suppose the reason why I have never been in love is became 1 have never met with any man who impressed his own individuality so ttrongly on me as to make me merge my own in it. I have felt books do that for a time and in certain directions, but marriage is different ; it is for life and for the whole nature.' ' But, Miss Grant, this need not be; In married life as In every other relation, the stronger must rule. If you are my superior— and it is strongly impressed upon me that you ?ate— I mutt be satisfied to take the second place. If you with to stay in London, I can sell out. If you wish to con tinue your literary work, I shall never hinder it' 'No, Mr. Frankland: that cannot be. The husband must order the life, and how and where it is to be led : his interests muet be supreme.' ' Cannot we be equals, then?' *' That, too, is a delusion.' ' I thought you despised the adjectival woman who could not stand without the substantive man.' ' I do not despise the right adjective. There are the two sorts .of women, but I cannot say which is the better. Surely yon understood me to admire Caroline Fox. I myself have been forced into an independent life. 1 had to think and to provide for my father, as mothers often have to do for their children. I hare been rather motherly than sisterly to your brother.' ' It may be very sweet to be thought for and planned for and cared for,' said Frankland. 'It may,' said Ellice. 'Give me time.' His face glowed with hope. ' Don't presume on this, Mr. Frank land. The woman who deliberates is not lost ; it is the woman who does not deliberate who is in the greater dagger. I must love you a great deal before I could dare to accept the love you offer. I muet deceive neither you nor myself. You want no half-hearted assent, overborne by your own passion or persuasion. If I feel prepared to go where you go to, f-ink my own life in yourf, to relinquish old ties and occupationsend ambitions for your sake, I shall tell you when I know. If 1 refuse you at last it will be for your happiness as much as for my own. Do not say a word on the subject for a month, even to Tom. I shall* live in your mother's house, and we shall have every opportunity of becoming acquainted with each other. Let us be honest and candid ; if we part, at least we must part friends.' 'We thall not part,' said Frankland. Then, atter a pauBe, he resumed, 'You have not thrown in your stones. Are vou above such superstitions ?' . . ' I do not know what I wish, unless it is enlightenment. If it will please you I will wish for that.' And again, in .silence, they sat side by side till the allotted time had ex pired; and she let the stones fall into the well. Frankland augured well from her desire to please him ; but he did not on the whole overestimate his chances of success. Ellice was contemplating the possibility of a ohange that meant a great deal more to her than to a younger and less capable woman. - 1 The month passed both slowly and quickly. Never were thirty-one days more full of interesting matter to man or woman than these were. Looked back upon, each day ap peared like a week. Ellice felt the truth of what Bulwer says, that sometimes one lives a volume a day. Everything that was said J or done, everything that was seen or heard, everything that was supposed or anticipated, appeared full of wide, reacting interests. Frankland felt as if he had never lived before ;? but far from the close and intimate obm . munion with a clever woman convincing him of his own - inferiority, it appeared as if she brought out the very best that was in him and gave him confidence in his own eapacity. Tom lost the thought of his disappointment in his deep in terest in this love affair, which be discovered, though he was not allowed to speak. Phoebe thought both of her couBins wonderfully inattentive to her, but that was generally the consequence of a refusal, and she had refused one and as good as refused the1 other. An invitation was eagerly ac cepted to visit a friend in Brighton, where she would find fresh fields -and- pastures new, and she left Miss Grant the undisputed mistress of the situation* ? „ ? ? Ifwas new to Ellice to be everything to any man, and the Australian squatter had courage, patience, and enterprise. His abilities Had been mostly expended in active life, and he was modest in speaking of what he had done. It was with difficulty, and only with the help of Tom, that Ellice wrung from him tte incidents in his career, where his promptitude, his resolution, and self -denial had led to his success. He grew daily more interesting to her, far more interesting even than Tom. When the month was over, she gave ia handsomely and made no needless delay; and after mar riage' they bad three months on the Continent, which was what she had longed for all her life, and hadnot been able to compass. She had, indeed, had the idea of venturing with Emily, when they would have to scramble for them selves ; but there was a pleasantness in being thought for and planned for and cared for by a competent man. After Frankland's term of holiday was over, he turned homeward, taking his mother and brother with him. - Instead of the companionship being with her friend Emily White and the correspondence with Tom Frankland, Tom was to be her fellow -passenger, and Emily White was to be the home correspondent. Instead of its appearing like a sacrifice, one would have supposed that Australia and the bush were what Ellice had set her heart on all her life. Tom has got a start, and so far has done well, but our story is eo recent that we cannot be absolutely confident as to his future. His book has not been published yet, though Ellice still believes in it; but she would not allow Frank land to publish it at his own expense and risk. That, she says, is a confession of weakness. If it had been a scientific bock, or a book embodying some Bolid and valuable idea, she would have no hesitation in recommending such outlay ; but the world can live without one novel, more or less, even a good one. Phoebe met with her fate at Brighton in the pereon of a rich city man on the Stock Exchange, a good deal older than either of the. Franklands. Her house and furniture, her dress and carriages, are marvellous; she puts herself into the hands of her housekeeper, - her dressmaker, and her uphol sterer, and shakes herself clear of all responsibilities. She is a splendid lay figure on which to hang the outward and visible signs of wealth, and she does not flirt, that is to say Seriously flirt, any more than she did before her mar riage, which is very reasonable, all .things considered. She never ceases to express astonishment at her cousin Harry marrying an old maid and a bluestocking, but of course anything would do. for. Australia. Nothing in the world would ever have induced her to go there. * Mrs. Frankland, the elder, has never regretted being torn from her old ties and associations and feels acclimatised at once. As for Frankland himself, we do not think any one has ever called him Mrs. Frankland's husband, or Ellice Grant's husband either. His friends say they never knew how much was in him till he married that trump of a woman.