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pelled to do. Her uncle was delighted to see her once
more. Mrs. Elton addressed her with kindness, and
Lady Emily with sweet cordiality. She herself seemed
to care for nobody and nothing. As soon as dinner
was over, she sent for her maid, and withdrew to her
own room. It was a great relief to Hugh to feel that
he was no longer in danger of encountering her eyes.
Gradually she recovered strength, though it was
again some days before she appeared at the dinner-
table. The distance between Hugh and her seemed to



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CHANGES. 8^

increase instead of diminish, till at length he scarcely
dared to offer her the smallest civility, lest she should
despise him as a hypocrite. The further she removed
herself from him, the more he felt inclined to respect
her. By common consent they avoided, as much as
before, any behaviour that might attract attention;
though the effort was of a very different 'nature now.
It was wretched enough, no doubt, for both of them.

The time drew near for Lady Emily's departure.

"What are your plans for the winter, Mrs. Elton?"
said Mr. Arnold, one day.

"I intend spending the winter in London,'' she
answered.

"Then you are not going with Lady Emily to
Madeira?"

"No. Her father and one of her sisters are going
with her."

"I have a great mind to spend the winter abroad
myself; but the difficulty is what to do with Harry."

"Could you not leave him with Mr. Sutherland?"

"No. I do not choose to do that."

"Then let him come to me. I shall have all my
little establishment up, and there will be plenty of
room for Harry."

"A very kind offer. I may possibly avail myself
of it"

"I fear we could hardly accommodate his tutor,
though. But that will be very easily arranged. He
could sleep out of the house, could he not? "

" Give yourself no trouble about that. I wish Harry
to have masters for the various branches he will* study.
It will teach him more of men and the world generally,

6*



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$4 DAVID ELGINBROD.

and prevent his ^ being too much influenced by one
style of thinking."

"But Mr. Sutherland is a very good tutor."

"Yes. Very."

To this there could be no reply but a question;
and Mr. Arnold's manner not inviting one, the con-
versation was dropped.

Euphra gradually resumed her duties in the house,
as far as great lameness would permit. She continued
to show a quiet and dignified reserve towards Hugh.
She made no attempts to fascinate him, and never
avoided his look when it chanced to meet hers. But
although there was no reproach any more than fascina-
tion in her eyes, Hugh's always fell before hers. She
walked softly like Ahab, as if, now that Hugh knew,
she, too, was ever conscious.

Her behaviour to Mrs. Elton and Lady Emily was
likewise improved, but apparently only from an increase
of indifference. When the time came, and they de-
parted, she did not even appear to-be much relieved.

Onc6 she asked Hugh to help her with a passage
of Dante, but betrayed no memory of the past. His
pleased haste to assist her, showed that he at least, if
fancy-free, was not memory-clear. She thanked him
very gently and truly, took up her book like ^ school-
girl, and limped away. Hugh was smitten to the heart.
"If I could but do something for her!" thought he;
but there was nothing to be done. Although she had
deserved it, somehow her behaviour made him feel as
if he had wronged her in ceasing to love her.

One day,, in the end of September, Mr. Arnold
and Hugh were alone after breakfast. Mr. Arnold
spoke:



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CHANGES. 85

"Mr. Sutherland, I have altered my plans with
regard to Harry. I wish him to spend the winter in
London."

Hugh listened and waited. Mr. Arnold went on,
after a slight pause:

"There I wish him to reap such advantages as are
to be gained in the metropolis. He has improved
wonderfully under your instruction; and is now, I think,
to be benefited principally by a variety of teachers. I
therefore intend that he shall have masters for the dif-
ferent branches which it is desirable he should study.
Consequently I shall be compelled to deny him your
services, valuable as they have hitherto been."

"Very well, Mr. Arnold," said Mr. Sutherland, with
the indifference of one who feels himself ill-used.
"When shall I take my leave of him?" >

"Not before the middle of the next month, at tha
earliest. But I will write you a cheque for your salary
at once."

So saying, Mr. Arnold left the room for a moment,
and returning, handed Hugh a cheque for a year's
salary. Hugh glanced at it, and offering it again to
Mr. Arnold, said;

"No, Mr. Arnold; I can claim scarcely more than
half a year's salary."

"Mr. Sutherland, your engagement was at so much
a year; and if I prevent you from fulfilling your part
of it, I am bound to fulfil mine. Indeed, you might
claim further provision."

"You are very kind, Mr. Arnold."

"Only just," rejoined Mr. Arnold, with conscious
dignity. "I am under great obligation to you for the
way in which you have devoted yourself to Harry."



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86 DAVID ELGINBROD.

Hugh's conscience gave him a pang. Is anything
more painful than undeserved praise?

"I have hardly done my duty by him," said he.

"I can only say that the boy is wonderfully altered
for the better, and I thank you. I am obliged to yCii:
oblige me by putting the cheque in your pocket."

Hugh persisted no longer in his refusal ; and indeed
it had been far more a feeling of pride than of justice
that made him decline accepting it at first. Nor was
there any generosity in Mr. Arnold's cheque; for Hugh,
as he admitted, might have claimed board and lodging
as well. But Mr. Arnold was one of the ordinarily
honourable, who, with perfect characters for upright-
ness, always contrive to err on the safe side of the
purse , and the doubtful side of a severely interpreted
obligation. Such people, in so doing, not unfrequently
secure for themselves, at the same time, the reputation
of generosity.

Hugh could not doubt that his dismissal was some-
how or other connected with the loss of the ring; but
he would not stoop to inquire into the mafteqr. He
hoped thgit time would set all right; and, in fact, felt
considerable indifference to the opinion of Mr. Arnold,
or of any one in the house, except Harry.

The boy burst into tears when informed of his
father's decision with regard to his winter studies, and
could only be consoled by the hope which Hugh held
out to him — certainly upon a very slight foundation —
that they might meet sometimes in London. For the
little time that remained, Hugh devoted himself un-
ceasingly to his pupil; not merely studying with him,
but walking, riding, reading stories, and going through
all sorts of exercises for the strengthening of his person



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EXPLANATIONS. 87

and constitution. The best results followed both for
Hany and his tutor.



CHAPTER XXXI.
EXPLANATIONS.

I have done nothing good to win belief,

My life hath been so faithless ; all the creatures

Made for heaven^s honours, have their ends, and good ones ;

All but . . . false women . . . When they die, like tales

ni-told, and unbelieved, they pass away.



I will redeem one minute of my age.
Or, like another Niobe, Til weep
Till I am water.

Bbattmont aitd FiiBTOHBB.— TA« Mtttd's Tragedy.

The days passed quickly by; and the last evening
that Hugh was to spend at Amstead arrived. He
wandered out alone. He had been with Harry all day,
and now he wished for a few moments of solitude. It
was a lovely autumn evening. He went into the woods
behind the house. The leaves were still thick upon
the trees, but most of them had changed to gold, and
brown, and red; and the sweet faint odours of those
that had fallen, and lay thick underfoot, ascended like
a voice from the grave, saying: "Here dwelleth some
sadness, but no despair." As he strolled about among
them, the whole history of his past life arose before
him. This often happens before apy change in our
history, and is surest to take place at the approach of
the greatest change of all , when we are about to pass
into the unknown, whence we came.

In this mood, it was natural that his sins should
rise before him. They came as the shadows of his
best pleasures. For now, in looking back, he could



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88 DAVID ELGINBROD.

fix on no period of his history, around which the
aureole, which glorifies the sacred things of the past,
had gathered in so golden a hue, as around the
memory of the holy cottage, the temple in which
abode David, and Janet, and Margaret. All the story
glided past, as the necromantic Will called up the
sleeping dead in the mausoleum of the brain. And
that solemn, kingly, gracious old man, who had been
to him a father, he had forgotten; the homely tender-
ness which, from fear of its own force, concealed itself
behind a humorous roughness of manner, he had — no,
not despised — ^but forgotten, too; and if the dim
pearly loveliness of the trustful, grateful maiden had
not been quite forgotten, yet she too had been
neglected, had died, as it were, and been buried in
the churchyard of the past, where th^ grass grows
long over the graves, and the moss soon begins to fill
up the chiselled records. He was ungrateful. He
dared not allow to himself that he Wias unloving; but
he must confess himself ungrateful.

Musing sorrowfully and self-reproachfully, he cam6
to the Ghost's Avenue. Up and down its aisle he
walked, a fit place for remembering the past, and the
sins of the present. Yielding himself to what thoughts
might arise, the strange sight he had seen here on that
moonlit night, of two silent wandering figures — or
could it be that they were one and the same, suddenly
changed in hue? — returned upon him. This vision
had been so speedily followed by the second and more
alarming apparition of Lady Euphrasia, that he had
hardly had time to speculate on what the former could
have been. He was meditating upon all these strange
events, and remarking to himself that, since his mid-



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EXPLANATIONS. 89

night encounter with Lady Euphrasia, the house had
been as quiet as a church-yard at noon, when all
suddenly, he saw before him, at some little distance, a
dark figure approaching him. His heart seemed to
bound into his throat and choke him, as he said to
himself: "It is the nun again!" But the next moment
he saw that it was Euphra. I do not know which he
would have preferred not meeting alone, and in the
deepening twilight: Euphra, too, had become like a
ghost to him. His first impulse was to turn aside into
the wood, but she had seen him, and was evidently
going to address him. He therefore advanced to meet
her. She spoke first, approaching him with painful



"I have been looking for you, Mr. Sutherland. I
wanted very much to have a little conversation with
you before you go. Will you allow me?"

Hugh felt like a culprit directly. Euphra's manner
was quite collected and kind; yet through it all a con-
sciousness showed itself, that the relation which had
once existed between them had passed away for ever.
In her voice there was something like the tone of wind
blowing through a ruin.

"I shall be most happy," said he.

She smiled sadly. A great change had passed
upon her.

"I am going to be quite open with you," she said.
"I am perfectly aware, as well as you are, that the
boyish fancy you had for me is gone. Do not be
offended. You are manly enough, but your love for
me was boyish. Most first loves are childish, quite
irrespective of age. I do not blame you in the least."

This seemed to Hugh rather a strange style to



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•V' '



90 DAVID ELGINBROD.

assume, if all was true that his own eyes had reported.
She went on:

"Nor must you think it has cost me much to
lose it."

Hugh felt hurt, at which no one who understands
yfill be surprised.

"But I capnot afford to lose j^ou, the only friend I
have," she added.

Hugh turned towards her with a face full of man-
hood and truth.

"You shall not lose me, Euphra, if you will be
honest to yourself and to me."

"Thank you. I can trust you. I will be honest."

At that moment, without the revival of a trace of
his former feelings, Hugh felt nearer to her than he
had ever felt before. Now there seemed to be truth
between them, the only medium through which beings
can unite.

"I fear I have wronged you much," she went on.
"I do not mean some time ago." Here she hesitated.
— "I fear I am the cause of your leaving Arnstead."

"You, Euphra? No. You must be mistaken."

"I think not. But I am compelled to make an
unwilling disclosure of a secret — a sad secret about
myself. Do not hate me quite — I am a somnambulist."

She hid her face in her hands, as if the night
which had now closed around them did not hide her
enough. Hugh did not reply. Absorbed in the
interest which both herself and her confession aroused
in him, he could only listen eagerly. She went on,
after a moment's pause:

"I did not think at first that I had taken the ring.



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EXPLANATIONS. Ql

I thought another had. But last night, and not till
then, I discovered that I was the culprit."

"How?"

"That requires explanation. I have no recollec-
tion of the events of the previous night when I have
been walking in my sleep. Indeed, the utter absence
of a sense of dreaming always makes me suspect that
I have been wandering. But sometimes I have a vivid
dream, which I know, though I can give no proof of
it, to be a reproduction of some previous somnambulic
experience. Do not ask me to recall the horrors I
dreamed last night. I am sure I took the ring."

"Then you dreamed what you did with it?"

"Yes, I gave it to "

Here her voice sank and ceased. Hugh would
not urge her.

"Have you mentioned this to Mr. Arnold?"

"No. I do not think it would do any good. But
I will, if you wish it," she added submissively.

"Not at all. Just as you think best."

"I could not tell him everything. I cannot tell
you everything. If I did, Mr. Arnold would turn me
out of the house. I am a very unhappy girl, Mr.
Sutherland."

From the tone of these words, Hugh could not for
a moment suppose that Euphra had any remaining
design of fascination in them.

"Perhaps he might want to keep you, if I told
him all; but I do not think, after the way he has
behaved to you, that you could stay with him, for he
would never apologize. It is very selfish of me; but
indeed I have not the courage to confess to him."



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92 DAVID ELGINBROD.

"I assure you nothing could make me remain now.
But what can I do for you?"

"Only let me depend upon you, in case I should
need your help; or "

Here Euphra stopped suddenly, and caught hold
of Hugh's left hand, which he had lifted to brush an
insect from his face.

"Where is your ring?" she said, in a tone of sup-
pressed anxiety.

"Gone, Euphra. My father's ring! It was lying
beside Lady Euphrasia's."

Euphra's face was again hidden in her hands.
She sobbed and moaned like one in despair. When '
she grew a little calmer, she said:

"I am sure I did not takej^our ring, dear Hugh —
I am not a thief. I had a kind of right to the other,
and he said it ought to have been his, for his real
name was Count von Halkar — the same name as Lady
Euphrasia's before she was married, ffe took it, I am
sure."

"It was he that knocked me down in the dark
that night then, Euphra."

"Did he? Oh! I shall have to tell you all. — That
wretch has a terrible power over me. I loved .him
once. But I refused to take the ring from your desk,
because I knew it would get you into trouble. He threw
me into a somnambulic sleep, and sent me for the
ring. But I should have remembered if I had taken
yours. Even in my sleep, I don't think he could have
made me do that. You may know I speak the truth,
when I am telling my own disgrace. He promised to
set me free if I would get the ring; but he has not
done it; and he will not."



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EXPLANATIONS. 93

Sobs again interrupted her.

**I was afraid your ring was gone. I don't know
why I thought so, except that you hadn't it on, when
you came to see me. Or perhaps it was because I am
sometimes forced to think what that wretch is think-
ing. He made me go to him that night you saw me,
Hugh. But I was so ill, I don't think I should have
been able, but that I could not rest till I had asked
him about your ring. He said he knew nothing
about it."

"I am sure he has it," said Hugh. And he related
to Euphra the struggle he had had with Funkelstein
and its result. She shuddered.

"I have been a devil to you, Hugh; I have be-
trayed you to him. You will never see your ring again.
Here, take mine. It is not so good as yours, but for
the sake of the old way you thought of me, take it."

"No, no, Euphra; Mr. Arnold would miss it. Be-
sides, you know it would not be my father's ring, and
it was not for the value of the diamond I cared most
about it. And I am not sure that I shall not find it
again. I am going up to London, where I shall fall
in with him, I hope."

"But do take care of yourself. He has no con-
science. God knows, I have had little, but he has
none."

"I know he has none; but a conscience is not a
bad auxiliary, and there I shall have some advantage
of him. But what could he want that ring of Lady
Euphrasia's for?"

"I don't know. He never told me."

"It was not worth much."

"Next to nothing."



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94 DAVID ELOINBROD.

"I shall be surer to find that than my own. And
I will find it, if I can, that Mr. Arnold may believe I
was not to blanie."

"Do. But be careful."

"Don't fear. I will be careful."

She held out her hand,, as if to take leave of him,
but withdrew it again with the sudden cry:

"What shall I do? I thought he had left me to
myself, till that night in the library."

She" held down her head in silence. Then she said,
slowly, in a tone of agony :

"I am a slave, body and soul. — Hugh!" she added,
passionately, and looking up in his face, "do you think
there is a God?"

Her eyes glimmered with the faint reflex from
gathered tears, that silently overflowed.

And now Hugh's own poverty struck him with grief
and humiliation. Here was a soul seeking God, and
he had no right to say that there was a God, for he
knew nothing about him. He had been told so; but
what could that far-off" witness do for the need of a
desolate heart? She had been told so a million of
times. He could not say that he knew it. That was
what she wanted and needed.

He was honest, and so replied:

"I do not know. I hope so."

He felt that she was already beyond him; for she
had begun to cry into the vague, seemingly heartless
void, and say:

"Is there a God somewhere to hear me when I
cry?"

And with all the teaching he had had, he had no



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EXPLANATIONS* 95

word of comfort to give. Yes, he had: he had known
David Elginbrod.

Before he had shaped his thought, she said:

"I think, if there were a God, he would help me;
for I am nothing but a poor slave now. I have hardly
a will of my own."

The sigh she heaved told of a hopeless oppression.

"The best man, and the wisest, and the noblest I
ever knew," said Hugh, "believed in God with his
whole heart and soul and strength and mind. In fact,
he cared for nothing but God; or rather, he cared for
everything because it belonged to God. He was never
afraid of anything, never vexed at anything, never
troubled about anything. He was a good man."

Hugh was surprised at the light which broke upon
the character of David, as he held it before his mind's
eye, in order to describe it to Euphra. He seemed
never to have understood him before.

"Ah! I wish I knew him. I would go to that man,
and ask him to save me." Where does he live?"

"Alas! I do not know whether he is alive or dead
— the more to my shame. But he lives, if he lives,
far away in the north of Scotland."

She paused.

"No. I could not go there. I will write to him."

Hugh could not discourage her, though he doubted
whether a real communication could be established be-
tween them.

"I will write down his address for you, when I go
in," said he. "But what can he save you from?"

"From no God," she answered, solemnly. "If
there is no God, then I am sure that there is a devil,
and that he has ^ot me in his power."



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96 DA.VID ELGINBROD.

Hugh felt her shudder, for she was leaning on his
arm, she was still so lame. She continued;

**OhI if I had a God, he would right me, I know,"

Hugh could not reply. A pause followed.

"Good-bye. I feel pretty sure we shall meet again.
My presentiments are generally trufe," said Euphra, at
length.

Hugh kissed her hand with far more real devotion
than he had ever kissed it with before.

She left him, and hastened to the house "with
feeble speed." He was sorry she was gone. He walked
up and down for some time, meditating on the strange
girl and her strange words; till, hearing the dinner bell,
he too must hasten in to dress. ,

Euphra met him at the dinner-table without any
change of her late manner. Mr. Arnold wished him
good night more kindly than usual. When he went
up to his room, he found that Harry had already cried
himself to sleep.



CHAPTER XXXIl.
DEPARTURE.

I fancy deemed fit guide to lead 1117 way,

And as I deemed I did pursue her track;
Wit lost his aim, and will was fancy^s prey ;
The rebel won, the ruler went to wrack.
But now sith £ancy did with folly end.
Wit, bought with loss— will, taught by wit, will mend.

SonTHW]Bi<L,-rX>ao»<I's Peccmi.

After dinner, Hugh wandered over the well-known
places, to bid them good-bye. Then he went up to
his room, and, with the vanity of a young author, took
his poems out of the fatal old desk; wrote: "Take



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DEPARTURE. 97

them, please, such as they are. Let me be your
friend;*' inclose^ them with the writing, and addressed
them to Euphra. By the time he saw them again, they
were so much waste paper in his eyes.

But what were his plans for the future?

First of all, he would go to London. There he
would do« many things. He would try to find Funkel-
stein. He would write. He would make acquaintance
with London life; for had he not plenty of money in
his pocket? And who could live more thriftily than
he? — During his last session at Aberdeen, he had
given some private lessons, and so contrived to eke out
his small means. These were wretchedly paid for,
namely, not quite at the rate of sevenpence-halfpenny
a lesson! but still that was something, where more
could not be had. — Now he would try to do the same
in London, where he would be much better paid. Or
perhaps he might get a situation in a school for a
short time, if he were driven to ultimate necessity.
At all events, he would see London, and look about
him for a little while, before he settled to anything
definite.

With this hopeful prospect before him, he next
morning bade adieu to Amstead. I will not describe
the parting with poor Harry. The boy seemed ready
to break his heart, and Hugh himself had enough to
do to refrain from tears. One of the grooms drove
him to the railway in the dog-cart. As they came near
the station, Hugh gave him half-a-crown. Enlivened
by the gift, the man began to talk.

"He's a rum customer, that ere gemman with the
foring name. The colour of his puss I couldn't swear
to now. Never saw sixpence o' his'n. My opinion is,

J>mrid Elsinbrod, //. 7



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gS DAVID ELGINBROD.

master had better jook arter his spoons. And for
missus — well, it's a pity! He's a rum un, as I say,
anyhow."

The man here nodded several times, half compas-
sionately, half importantly.

Hugh did not choose to inquire what he meant.
They reached the station, and in a few minutes he was
shooting along towards London, that social vortex,
which draws everything towards its central tumult.

But there is a central repose beyond the motions
of the world; and through the turmoil of London,
Hugh was journeying towards that wide stillness — that
silence of the soul, which is not desolate, but rich' with
unutterable harmonies.



END OF THE SECOND BOOK.



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BOOK III.

LONDON.

Art thou poor, yet halt thon golden slumbers?

Oh, sweet content I ^

Art thou rich, yet is thy mind perplexed?

Oh, punishment!
Dost thou laugh to see how fools are vexed
To add to goldefi numbers, golden numbers?


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