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Carmilla

consolation. The nearest village on your route is distant, and affords no such inn
as you could think of placing your daughter at; you cannot allow her to continue
her journey for any considerable distance without danger. If, as you say, you
cannot suspend your journey, you must part with her to-night, and nowhere could
you do so with more honest assurances of care and tenderness than here.”
There was something in this lady’s air and appearance so distinguished and
even imposing, and in her manner so engaging, as to impress one, quite apart
from the dignity of her equipage, with a conviction that she was a person of
consequence.
By this time the carriage was replaced in its upright position, and the horses,
quite tractable, in the traces again.
The lady threw on her daughter a glance which I fancied was not quite so
affectionate as one might have anticipated from the beginning of the scene; then
she beckoned slightly to my father, and withdrew two or three steps with him out
of hearing; and talked to him with a fixed and stern countenance, not at all like
that with which she had hitherto spoken.
I was filled with wonder that my father did not seem to perceive the change, and
also unspeakably curious to learn what it could be that she was speaking, almost
in his ear, with so much earnestness and rapidity.
Two or three minutes at most I think she remained thus employed, then she
turned, and a few steps brought her to where her daughter lay, supported by
Madame Perrodon. She kneeled beside her for a moment and whispered, as
Madame supposed, a little benediction in her ear; then hastily kissing her she
stepped into her carriage, the door was closed, the footmen in stately liveries
jumped up behind, the outriders spurred on, the postillions cracked their whips,
the horses plunged and broke suddenly into a furious canter that threatened
soon again to become a gallop, and the carriage whirled away, followed at the
same rapid pace by the two horsemen in the rear.
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