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Amelia

III.9.
Containing Very Extraordinary Matters
"Miss Bath," continued Booth, "now recovered so fast, that she was abroad as
soon as my wife. Our little partie quarree began to grow agreeable again; and we
mixed with the company of the place more than we had done before. Mons.
Bagillard now again renewed his intimacy, for the countess, his mistress, was
gone to Paris; at which my wife, at first, shewed no dissatisfaction; and I
imagined that, as she had a friend and companion of her own sex (for Miss Bath
and she had contracted the highest fondness for each other), that she would the
less miss my company. However, I was disappointed in this expectation; for she
soon began to express her former uneasiness, and her impatience for the arrival
of Captain James, that we might entirely quit Montpelier.
"I could not avoid conceiving some little displeasure at this humour of my wife,
which I was forced to think a little unreasonable."--"A little, do you call it?" says
Miss Matthews: "Good Heavens! what a husband are you!"--"How little worthy,"
answered he, "as you will say hereafter, of such a wife as my Amelia. One day,
as we were sitting together, I heard a violent scream; upon which my wife,
starting up, cried out, 'Sure that's Miss Bath's voice;' and immediately ran
towards the chamber whence it proceeded. I followed her; and when we arrived,
we there beheld the most shocking sight imaginable; Miss Bath lying dead on the
floor, and the major all bloody kneeling by her, and roaring out for assistance.
Amelia, though she was herself in little better condition than her friend, ran hastily
to her, bared her neck, and attempted to loosen her stays, while I ran up and
down, scarce knowing what I did, calling for water and cordials, and despatching
several servants one after another for doctors and surgeons.
"Water, cordials, and all necessary implements being brought, Miss Bath was at
length recovered, and placed in her chair, when the major seated himself by her.
And now, the young lady being restored to life, the major, who, till then, had
engaged as little of his own as of any other person's attention, became the object
of all our considerations, especially his poor sister's, who had no sooner
recovered sufficient strength than she began to lament her brother, crying out
that he was killed; and bitterly bewailing her fate, in having revived from her
swoon to behold so dreadful a spectacle. While Amelia applied herself to soothe
the agonies of her friend, I began to enquire into the condition of the major, in
which I was assisted by a surgeon, who now arrived. The major declared, with
great chearfulness, that he did not apprehend his wound to be in the least
dangerous, and therefore begged his sister to be comforted, saying he was
convinced the surgeon would soon give her the same assurance; but that good
man was not so liberal of assurances as the major had expected; for as soon as
he had probed the wound he afforded no more than hopes, declaring that it was
 
 
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