He got up and threw open the windows, to let in the soft breath of the afternoon,
and the healthy scent of the firs that made a belt round the Hermitage. The soft
air did not help his resolution, as he leaned out and looked into the leafy
distance. But he considered his resolution sufficiently fixed: there was no need to
debate with himself any longer. He had made up his mind not to meet Hetty
again; and now he might give himself up to thinking how immensely agreeable it
would be if circumstances were different-- how pleasant it would have been to
meet her this evening as she came back, and put his arm round her again and
look into her sweet face. He wondered if the dear little thing were thinking of him
too--twenty to one she was. How beautiful her eyes were with the tear on their
lashes! He would like to satisfy his soul for a day with looking at them, and he
MUST see her again--he must see her, simply to remove any false impression
from her mind about his manner to her just now. He would behave in a quiet, kind
way to her--just to prevent her from going home with her head full of wrong
fancies. Yes, that would be the best thing to do after all.
It was a long while--more than an hour before Arthur had brought his meditations
to this point; but once arrived there, he could stay no longer at the Hermitage.
The time must be filled up with movement until he should see Hetty again. And it
was already late enough to go and dress for dinner, for his grandfather's dinner-
hour was six.