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some thousands a year beyond the net rent-roll | decidedly. “I'd rather smash up at once - go did not conduce to disembarass them.
abroad and live on five hundred a year- the The difficulties in raising money increased rents will pay the interest of the mortgages." daily; even the accommodating banker, Wil- But, my lord,” said the banker, with a sinliam Weston, began to get very chary of his ister look,“ supposing that the mortgagees are hundreds and thousands. At last came the not satisfied with the rents — supposing they time when Lord Carrington was informed that demand back their capital — supposing, in deno further advances could be made; his account, fault, they chose to foreclose ! ” said the banker, was already overdrawn some Lord Carrington turned pale at the dreadful thousands of pounds, and the estates were en- word “foreclose.” cumbered almost to their full value.
" But you are the mortgagee, Weston! SureThe ruined Earl hurried to town on learning ly you would not do anything so shabby as the stern truth, and came in all haste to Lom- foreclose ?" bard-street.
“My lord, money is very scarce just now. I He was shown into the bank parlor, where fear a financial crisis is impending. We have the wealthy banker received him with the ut- immense sums out at interest. It
may be that most urbanity and deference; but in answer to
we shall have difficulty in meeting our engageenquiries as to the possibility of raising more
ments. In that case, I fear we should be commoney -- if only twenty thousand — the reply pelled to foreclose. However, my lord, I will
take the affair into my most serious considera“ My lord, I assure you it is utterly impossible. tion,” he continued, observing carefully the No professional money-lender would lend you effect his words produced. “I have an urgent as much as we have on the fee simple of the appointment on the Exchange now, and cannot estates by at least twenty thousand pounds. further prolong the discussion ; but if your lord
“What, then, is to be done?” asked the ship will honor me by dining with me this peer. Money I must have; here I have over evening, at seven, we can talk it over.” three thousand to pay next week at Tattersall's Carrington dared not have refused, had he over the Ascot settling."
felt so inclined. As it was, seeing a chance of "Really, my lord, it is very embarrassing - coming to an arrangement, he accepted the inI may say extremely embarrassing. I hardly vitation, not without a feeling of wounded know what to advise or suggest to your lordship. pride and humiliation. To be sure, there is the Cambermere estate; it The party assembled at the banker's table is mortgaged for seventy thousand pounds. I consisted only of themselves and Julia Weston, think I might venture to say I could find a pur- the host's only daughter. Under other circumchaser at eighty thousand. That would leave stances, Lord Carrington might have been your lordship a balance of ten thousand."
attracted by the grace and beauty of the young “The Cambermere estate,” said the Earl, lady. As it was, he only saw in her the daugbtittering, “ which has been in our family since ter of a vulgar city banker — of the Shylock the Conquest. And you wish me to sell that; who held the bond, and who seemed inclined and who might the proposed purchaser be?” to claim his pound of flesh to the last ounce.
“ It is possible that I myself, my lord, might | He could not fail to be struck by her singular feet inclined to venture on it as a speculation - beauty, notwithstanding the all-absorbing topic merely as a speculation, my lord. I am a busi- which engrossed his mind. Tall and well formed, ness man and cannot afford the luxury of a
Julia was just budding into womanhood. Regplurality of country seats — merely as a specu- ular features, beautiful eyes, and a profusion of lation, I repeat, and to oblige your lordship." ringleted brown hair had Julia Weston. Her
Already to “ oblige his lordship” William figure was grace itself, and though from her Weston had become the possessor of one large youth (not yet nineteen) slender, it yet gave estate adjoining the ancestral one from which promise, by its exquisite proportions, of its the Earl derived his title; now it seemed that maturer beauties. After Julia had retired to another was about to be swallowed up, leaving the drawing-room, the peer and the banker the peer only Carrington Park and estates, entered into a long discussion, marked by calm these latter mortgaged to their full value.
reticence on the one part — by feverish and “ No; I will not sell, Weston," said the peer impetuous hastiness on the other. The banker
would commit himself to nothing — not even Had he been observing enough to have seen another mortgage would he consent to. The the expression on the banker's face, he would utmost that could be wrung from him was an have trembled for his estates. advance of five thousand pounds, to enable “Yes,” was the calm reply; "she is a very Carrington to meet his engagements at Tatter- beautiful girl, and would be an ormament to sall's. This, however, was in a bill of exchange, any station. Any man, no matter what his at a month, which Weston distinctly stated he rank, might be proud to call her his wife. should pay away in the course of business, “Well, I don't know about that; you can't leaving the other to meet it, when due, or take make a silk purse out of a sow's ear,' as the the consequences.
proverb says. Of course, you know, Weston, Again and again Lord Carrington found him- it's not her fault, nor your fault, that she is not self seated at the banker's table, each time, of gentle blood.” however, coming away more and more dissatis
“ Pass the wine, Lord Carrington — by the fied at the prospect of the future.
by, I hear, from my manager, that we have very Thus a month wore on, day by day. Weston heavy calls to meet next week. It is absolutely put him off with promises to "see what could
redeem those mortgages of be done,” which resulted in nothing.
yours, to the extent, at least, of a hundred Carrington, for about the tenth time, was thousand. Absolutely necessary, my lord ! ” seated at the banker's table. The bill for five and he slowly and deliberately filled his glass thousand was due on the following day. When and passed the bottle. he received the five thousand pounds he had " But it's impossible !” said Carrington, turnsigned a warrant of attorney. It is true, as a ing very pale. peer of the realm, that his person was secure
el ** I'm very sorry to hear it, my lord. The from arrest; not so, however, his property; and alternative is very painful, but it is absolutely well he knew that within twenty-four hours of necessary. The money must be had, or the dishonor of the bill, the bailiffs would be in foreclosure. Pass the bottle again, if you possession of Carrington Park. On this occa- please.” sion he drank deeply of wine, even before Miss Carrington was now quite sobered. Ruin Weston retired.
stared him in the face — not at a remote time, Grown desperate from the state of affairs, he but imminent a few days would suffice to yet endeavored to be in good spirits, and, for ruin him utterly — credit, position, all would go nearly the first time, paid great attention to the at one fell swoop. young lady. As the wine mounted in his head, “As you were pleased to observe, my lord,” his attentions became more marked, and were
said the banker, after a long silence; “my even somewhat bold, as though he considered daughter is an exceedingly beautiful young lady. her worthy of his passing notice, but not of his It is unfortunate, as you say, that she bas not serious attention.
“gentle blood.' I'll trouble you for the filberts, Julia received his flattery and fulsome if you please — thanks — that, however, cannot speeches with calm composure, merely taking be helped. I venture to repeat, however, notthe trouble to acknowledge them. The banker withstanding that drawback, that she is calculooked on meanwhile, with a smile of triumph lated to adorn any station — even that of a peer on his bard face, watching narrowly both Car- of the realm.” rington and his daughter. Occasionally, as the Lord Carrington did not venture to contrapeer, under the influence of the wine, would dict this time. verge on the boundaries of impropriety in his « In addition to her great personal advantages language, Weston's brow would lower and his she will bring to the happy man, who shall be face pale. It was after one of these speeches her husband, the treasures of a highly educated of the latter that the banker signalled to his and richly stored mind — and last, though in daughter to retire.
in the estimation of most people not least, I “A devilish pretty girl that daughter of shall give her on her marriage a dowry of one yours, Weston!” said Carrington, insolently; hundred and twenty thousand pounds. By-the"a pity she has not got blood as well as beauty. by, my lord, I think that is exactly the amount She'd be quite a belle at the West End. She to which Carrington Park is mortgaged-sin
may observe. Then she has her mother's for- Manner, my dear girl — merely manner tune settled on her, in itself a good income, so I assure you he thinks most highly of you." that. as far as worldly advantages are concerned, Then ensued a long and painful scene. The my daughter is in a very enviable position. I father was stern and determined; he used all think, my lord, that few young ladies, even of his arguments, all his paternal authority, to gentle blood, could bring to their husbands at gain his point. Julia was alone and unfriended. once greater beauty and fortune combined. Ever accustomed to yield implicit obedience to Singular, very singular,” he added, cracking a her father, it is not wonderful that she should nut, " is it not, that her dowry should tally with at last give way so far as to declare that if Lord the encumbrances on Carrington Park ?” Carrington should persist in his suit, after she
The ruined Earl saw it all now, and wondered had acquainted him with one fact, that she at his own former obtuseness.
would no longer object. The price of the banker's forbearance was to
“ And what is that fact?" asked her father. be a coronet for his daughter.
66 That I do not love him, that I never can Proud as Lucifer — looking down on the love him, and that I love another.” middle and commercial classes with the utmost Weston's brow grew dark at these words, contempt, and hating what he was pleased to but after considering for a moment, he said term in conversation with a friend, “ money
calmly grubbing bankers,” particularly, he yet made
“ Then, if I understand you aright, you will up his mind at once to accept the proffered accept Lord Carrington, if he does not think terms.
the fact of your not loving him at present an
obstacle." “ You are quite right, my dear sir,” he said, your daughter would indeed
* Neither at present nor at any future time,
grace any station. Now, did I think I had the slightest chance of will I ever feel for him anything but distaste success, I need scarcely say how proud I should and aversion.” be to offer my hand and title. You must have
“Why so? Is he not noble, good-looking, observed lately the admiration with which she and in the prime of life? Surely, apart from has inspired me."
any such folly as love, the title, the position, Weston had observed nothing of the kind.
might well deserve your consideration. The “If you think I have the least chance of Countess of Carrington — surely you are not favorably impressing the young lady, Mr. insensible to the rank and position the title will Weston ?”
bestow — you will mix with the highest and “ I really cannot answer your question, Lord noblest in the land. Your beauty will comCarrington ; I must leave that to my daughter
mand admiration, your
envy, your wealth herself. I think, however, it is extremely prob- every luxury you can desire. Say no more able that with my sanction she might entertain Lord Carrington will call on you to-morrow your proposal favorably."
see that you receive him in a proper spirit." And thus did this man dispose of his daugh- There the conversation dropped. Weston ter, as if she were a bale of merchandise. seeing no obstacle to the marriage in Julia's “I think said
you hal an engagement at girlish scruples — she, seeing in the fact of her your club at ten,” said Weston, looking at his loving another, a means of escape. watch ; " it is now half-past nine; you will Knowing nothing of the worldly nature if come up to the drawing-room ?”
the bargain on both sides, she thought, poor No, I thank you, not now; shall you be at girl, that she merely would have to candidly home to-morrow?"
own to her noble suitor that her heart was en" I shall be at the bank; my daughter, how- gaged, for him at once to withdraw his suit. ever, will be at honie. I will see that your bill Determined to tell him all, she had little fear for five thousand is duly met. Good night, of the result, as she could not conceive a man Lord Carrington."
noble, and, as she supposed, wealthy, acting so
base a part, as to force an unwilling girl to be“ Julia, my dear,” said Weston ; “ Lord Car- stow her hand where she could not bestow her rington will make you a proposal to-morrow.” heart.
" Lord Carrington! why he scarcely treats On the following morning Lord Carrington me with the respect due to a lady ! »
called as her father had said
respectful and almost deferential, but, had she glass ; let us drink to the health of the future no other reason, the cool manner in which he Countess of Carrington.” The toast was drunk; at once came to business and offered the bank- the banker nodded and said, “ Julia, my dear.” er's daughter his hand and title, would at once The lord merely bowed towards her — and in a have offended her pride.
month's time Julia Weston became the Countess In spite of his deferential manner and the air of Carrington. of diffidence which he assumed, Julia could discern the fact that he had not the least idea of
All this I heard afterwards, as, not liking the such an absurdity as a refusal. But what was
man, although an old schoolfellow, I never her dismay when, having heard him out, and called on the Westons except professionally, and stated the fact of her indifference to him and of late my services had not been required. love for another, he coolly declared that he was Some months previously, however, I had conextreinely sorry that any girlish fancy should stantly attended Miss Weston, whose health was prejudice him in her
that he was not so none of the best. Pain and sickness have a happy as to possess her heart; and ended by wonderfully softening effect on the mind, espechoping that as Countess of Carrington she would ially of women; they long for some one to conspeedily forget any little affair du caur of the fide in
some one to talk to about the inmost past, and reflect new lustre by her beauty and feelings of their heart. I soon felt convinced accomplishments on his ancestral coronet.
that my fair patient had some secret cause, if * Surely, my lord,” she exclaimed in terror, not for sorrowing, for anxiety. It was no feelas she saw the probability of her hopes being ing of idle curiosity which prompted me to disdashed to the ground,“ surely you would not cover what this care might be. I am one of accept my hand when I have no heart to give those who believe that, in order successfully to
- surely you would not be so cruel, so unkind, treat the body the physician must ascertain if as to force me into an union which is distasteful, there be not “a mind diseased,” and endeavor, nay, hateful to me? ”
possible, to soothe the spirit before attempting “ Force you, Miss Weston," he said. “I have to deal with physical ailments. First exacting not the power even if I had the will - I can
a promise of secresy, which I smilingly gave, only respectfully press my suit, and trust that my patient proceeded to initiate me into a little your feelings may undergo a change."
love affair which had been proceeding for some * But it is forcing me; it is nothing else," time. she cried passionately. “I told my father that In the immediate neighborhood of the estate I would tell you all, and that then, if you pressed which her father had purchased from the Earl your suit, I would not refuse. But then,” she of Carrington, and which he had determined to said bitterly, “ I thought you were an honorable retain as his country seat, was an old country man as well as a peer, and would scorn to use squire with an only son. Arthur Fanshawe, for your rank to influence me through my father.” so the young gentleman was called, was young,
“ I can only plead my great love and devotion | handsome, agreeable, and with boundless auas an extenuation of my fault in still seeking dacity. It is not, therefore, surprising that he your hand, Miss Weston. Pray, remember, if should have made the acquaintance of his beauit is a fault that it is yourself who are responsi- tiful neighbor, the banker's daughter, during the ble for it. What man can gaze on so much four months of their stay in the country. Julia grace, so much beauty, such great attraction thought him everything that was brave, noble, as you possess, and yet be wise, Miss Weston ?” and lovable. Unknown to her father she
Julia's answer was a flood of tears. She saw rode, walked, and went on fishing excursions she was in the coils and could discover no with him, till all this ended one fine day in the chance to escape, for now she had little hope of young couple vowing everlasting love and fidelLord Carrington relenting,
ity to each other. Now all this, though very That evening the Earl dined with them again. delightful to them, did not meet the stern faJulia was present — pale, sad, with traces of ther's approval, for, in the first place, the gross tears on her face, and a wild, frightened look in income of the squire was only about fifteen hunher beautiful eyes.
dred a year, while the son had absolutely noth“ My lord,” said the banker, with bland pom- ing during the father's life, not even a profes
could be called one. Besides, old Weston had “ Indeed I was not aware of it; allow me to set his heart on marrying his daughter to a peer, congratulate you. Has your father, then, reand a peer he was determined to get for her. lented in favor of your late lover ?—and have Thus it happened that, getting an inkling of I the pleasure of speaking to Mrs. Fanshawe?" what was going on, he suddenly removed his “Mrs. Fanshawe! Good heavens, no! Would daughter to town, thinking thus effectually to to God I were so — even Julia Weston again. put a stop to this folly. Vain hope!
Come with me, doctor, there is no one in my At first the young lady moped and fell ill – box, and I wish to speak to you." then I was called in and discovered the cause Not without some astonishment I followed of the mysterious ailment. Scarcely had I done her. Strange, I thought, that I should not so, then I remarked a wonderful improvement have heard of her marriage. Who could it be? in my patient's health and spirits. At the time I entered the box with her, and, seating myI could not quite account for the sudden change, self, prepared to listen to what she had to say. and did her the injustice to think that time had The box, which was on the grand tier, next to healed the wound. Subsequently, however, I that of royalty, commanded a view of the flies. learned that, once or twice a week, the same The ballet was about to commence, and we morning express which was wont, during their could see groups of girls assembled in readiness stay in the country, to whirl the banker up to to come on. Occasionally, too, the forms of town to business, now brought the faithful lover. aristocratic-looking men in evening dress might Julia, in London, enjoyed perfect liberty. Her be perceived, proving that a favored few, other father was engaged at the bank during the day, than professionals, were admitted behind the and having no female friends or relatives stay- scenes. ing in the house, of course she went occasionally “ There! do you see that gentleman talking for a walk alone. I need scarcely say that Ar- to the girl dressed as a fairy ?" exclaimed my thur Fanshawe met her by appointment, and it coinpanion suddenly. was this was the cause of the favorable change, “ Yes!" I said in some surprise; “ that is which all my medicaments could not effect.
Lord Carrington; I believe, from report, that
he is a constant worshipper of these beautiful But now Julia was Countess of Carrington, nymphs.” and her day dream of love and happiness was “You are quite right, doctor," she said, while over. The marriage was a private one, so that an angry flush mounted to her cheek; "and I heard nothing of it until some time after- now I must inform you that I am the Countess wards.
of Carrington." It was in the box lobby of her Majesty's the- I was apologizing for my unintentional ofatre that I next saw the banker's daughter. "I fence in speaking thus of her husband, when she had some nieces from the country staying with stopped me. me and, having promised to take them to the “ There don't apologize,” she said; “it is opera, had taken advantage of a box ticket needless – I am not jealous — I do not love placed at my disposal by a patient, to redeem him — never can love him — and, of course, my word. At the very commencement of the where there is no love there can be no jeal