The Way We Live Now
Yes I'm A Baronet
How eager Lady Carbury was that her son should at once go in form to Marie's father and
make his proposition may be easily understood. 'My dear Felix,' she said, standing over
his bedside a little before noon, 'pray don't put it off; you don't know how many slips
there may be between the cup and the lip.'
'It's everything to get him in a good humour,' pleaded Sir Felix.
'But the young lady will feel that she is ill-used.'
'There's no fear of that; she's all right. What am I to say to him about money? That's the
'I shouldn't think of dictating anything, Felix.'
'Nidderdale, when he was on before, stipulated for a certain sum down; or his father did
for him. So much cash was to be paid over before the ceremony, and it only went off
because Nidderdale wanted the money to do what he liked with.'
'You wouldn't mind having it settled?'
'No I'd consent to that on condition that the money was paid down, and the income
insured to me say L7,000 or L8,000 a year. I wouldn't do it for less, mother; it wouldn't
be worth while.'
'But you have nothing left of your own.'
'I've got a throat that I can cut, and brains that I can blow out,' said the son, using an
argument which he conceived might be efficacious with his mother; though, had she
known him, she might have been sure that no man lived less likely to cut his own throat
or blow out his own brains.
'Oh, Felix! how brutal it is to speak to me in that way.'
'It may be brutal; but you know, mother, business is business. You want me to marry this
girl because of her money.'
'You want to marry her yourself.'
'I'm quite a philosopher about it. I want her money; and when one wants money, one
should make up one's mind how much or how little one means to take and whether one is
sure to get it.'
'I don't think there can be any doubt.'