Chapter 174510291

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Chapter NumberXXVI
Chapter Title
Chapter Urlhttp://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article174510291
Full Date1892-03-19
Page Number1
Corrections0
Word Count1267
IllustratedN
Last Corrected0000-00-00
Newspaper TitleThe Bendigo Independent (Vic. : 1891 - 1918)
Trove TitleThe Devil's Own. An Australian Story
article text

CHAPTER XXVI.

“Dire was his thought who first in poison siceped The weapon formed for slaughter, direr his, And worthier of damnation who instilled

The mortal vonom in Iho social cup, To ill! tbo veins with death instead of life.” COWJPEII. . JEALOUSY. 11 1 shall swear in a minute, I know T shall. I feel in such a bad temper this morning—positively salanclc. No won der, such a game of cross purposes. There’s Sir Hubert—if ho is Sir lluijort, Fanchotto will have it ho ls not—gone, ac tually gone without faying good-bye, and there 1 was dying to question him. ,1 cannot get the idea out of my head that there is a mystery about him, per haps hois married, or worse; something wrong somewhere. Ho never looks .one straight in the faco. I don’t think lie squints. Thou there’s Fanobotto, well, if

that is not enough to provoke any saint, to think after ail I have dona for her— the ungrateful little monkey to disap point me so. Girls are a bother, I shall not trouble myself any more about her, ?he rimy ‘gang lierain gate’ and marrylhat courier. Silly child, when alio might have done so well for herself. I know Mr. Forth admired her. However, homo to her friend she goes. That reminds me that I have to inquire about the Stun ners. I shall not wait any longer for the widow, parlmpssheis mourning for Sir Hubert; no, it cannQl be, she dislikes him. I have wasted half the day,” said Mrs, Choltuondoloy, ringing her bell as she got up to leave the room, determined not to allow herself to bo longer vexed, but return to her usually placid “ set fair ” condition of temperament. The-fact was, Mrs. Annoylayo had been troubled about many things that morn ing. A telegram from Norman Fortescue had been sent to the Nest that morning, followed by a not", stating that Lord Vereker had been taken suddenly ill after a late breakfast with a party of friends, who had been j dned in their ma tutinal meal by the barono*, who seemed unusually high spirited at getting away. He had been hail fellow, well mot by everyone, Lord Vereker in particular, which was not to be wondered a r , “ seoin’ as ow the burrownito is an awful flunkey as to titles,” said Jimmy Gordon. They had wished Sir Hubert bon voy age, champagne had gone round liberally, | the members of the Goldsborough Club never being behind hand in hospitality, j It was soon aft-r that Lord Vereker had been seized with violent sickness to the consternation of everyone. There was a groat commotion. Doctors wore seen scurrying in and out, with puzzled brains, and the club district was a S.ivillo Row as to M.D’s. The patients sudden collapse was a poser. They eventually came to the conclusion that he must have oaten some poisonous lisli, spurious mush | rooms, or perhaps something indigestible, though his case looked too serious for that, and it so happened that Lord Vere kor had only taken some coffee and but tered toast. Ho had sent for Mr. Fortescue, and Mr. Fortescue had for gone in alarm his intended journey up country, taking his place by the couch of his friend, who for some days was very ill. “ Don’t let them telegraph to my people. Keep it out of the papers if you can Fortescue, it might frighten thorn, and it may be; nothing," “111 tidings travel fast if you only scribble a line. I will get it on board,” said Norman. “ I’ll help you—just a scratch in haste will do.” “I’ll try, but I feel awfully shaky,”, said the young nobleman, trying to sit up and bold the pen, but thanks to hia friend, he managed to scribble a few merry words “ to the old people,” as bo expressed it, and felt infinitely relieved at so doing. Regai dless of Lord Vercker’a assertion that ho had only taken toast and a cup of coffee, the club cook was examined. Days passed away before Lord Vereker could be moved, then he was ordered to the seaside or up country for a thorough change. “ I wish to goodness it wasn’t so hot at Soringajust now, it would ba just the pi ice for you in spite of its being in a topsy tarvy state. I have sold it, you know; I had to I am sorry to say,” said Norman sadly. “ And I have to look out fresh pastures for the Jiblo ones sake.” “Miss Vavasour toll mo it was all settled you were all to go homo with Vera next month. She said *ho wouldn’t go without Mrs. Annoy lay e and Mrs. Anneylayo won’t go without you. Don’t trouble about mo, I’ll go to the Bayton Hotel.” “ I’ll toll you what. Mrs, Anneylayo will be glad to have you, and my wife will look aftL»r you. It is awfully quiet down there, but there is plenty of sea said Norman innocmtly. Lord Vereker protested against going to the Nest. “An invalid is such a nuis ance.” “ Rubbish m in ! the women like an in valid and love nursing—its their element —and we colonists never think about trouble. Wo never use the word ; a friend or a stranger is. ever welcome, and a sick friend doubly welcome and doubly car*, d for.” And to the little widows'surprise and perplexity Lord Vereker was moved clown to Bayton, where, in the cosy library at the Neat, in which a pretty French bod Iml been placed, he was potted and caressed, fondled and fed, with sisterly care by Mrs. Fortescue, un til days after he felt bound to confess he ought to bo out of thoir hand?, he felt so well. The little widow had felt very tad and nervous from the first tid ings of Lord Voroker’s sudden illness, though she religiously kept her heartburn ings to herself, remembering the night of the ball—the garden scene. Regu larly as clock work she sat by him, road to him, but it was always when Norman oi Connie was there. . “ You look so much bettor to-day, Lord Vereker,” she said one morning, opening the bay window to give him some fresh balmy air and a more lovely view of the hay with the th’ps passing. “Yes, bat I don’t want took better or I may be turned out neck and crop,” hw raid comically, at which original idea his friend Norman looked ol him for a second and thought volumes “Perhaps Lord Vereker would like to remain in after wo leave. The now tenant doesn’t come in till February,” said Miss Vavasour innocently. •• Perhaps he would,” said Mrs. Annoy layfl. “ Perhaps ho wouldn’t,” said Norman. “ I distinctly hoard him conjuring about a cabin in the Lahore,” “ The Lahore I ” said Mihs Vavasour. Why, my dear boy, that's our ship. I have t-ikon four cabins—yes, really; don’t look so suprised. You ore all in for it now,” and the old lady laughed away as if it was the greatest joke in the world. Norman looked serious. He had longed to pay old England a visit for years, but the expense of it with a family, to say nothing of the responsibility, had driven away any idea of such a treat, and now he couldn’t believe, fn fact ho didn’t like the idea that the good, kind, old lady should undertake such an expensive expedition. (TO UK CONTINUKlO