Emma HTML version

Chapter 13
Emma continued to entertain no doubt of her being in love. Her ideas only varied
as to the how much. At first, she thought it was a good deal; and afterwards, but
little. She had great pleasure in hearing Frank Churchill talked of; and, for his
sake, greater pleasure than ever in seeing Mr. and Mrs. Weston; she was very
often thinking of him, and quite impatient for a letter, that she might know how he
was, how were his spirits, how was his aunt, and what was the chance of his
coming to Randalls again this spring. But, on the other hand, she could not admit
herself to be unhappy, nor, after the first morning, to be less disposed for
employment than usual; she was still busy and cheerful; and, pleasing as he
was, she could yet imagine him to have faults; and farther, though thinking of him
so much, and, as she sat drawing or working, forming a thousand amusing
schemes for the progress and close of their attachment, fancying interesting
dialogues, and inventing elegant letters; the conclusion of every imaginary
declaration on his side was that she refused him. Their affection was always to
subside into friendship. Every thing tender and charming was to mark their
parting; but still they were to part. When she became sensible of this, it struck her
that she could not be very much in love; for in spite of her previous and fixed
determination never to quit her father, never to marry, a strong attachment
certainly must produce more of a struggle than she could foresee in her own
"I do not find myself making any use of the word sacrifice," said she.-- "In not one
of all my clever replies, my delicate negatives, is there any allusion to making a
sacrifice. I do suspect that he is not really necessary to my happiness. So much
the better. I certainly will not persuade myself to feel more than I do. I am quite
enough in love. I should be sorry to be more."
Upon the whole, she was equally contented with her view of his feelings.
"He is undoubtedly very much in love--every thing denotes it--very much in love
indeed!--and when he comes again, if his affection continue, I must be on my
guard not to encourage it.--It would be most inexcusable to do otherwise, as my
own mind is quite made up. Not that I imagine he can think I have been
encouraging him hitherto. No, if he had believed me at all to share his feelings,
he would not have been so wretched. Could he have thought himself
encouraged, his looks and language at parting would have been different.-- Still,
however, I must be on my guard. This is in the supposition of his attachment
continuing what it now is; but I do not know that I expect it will; I do not look upon
him to be quite the sort of man-- I do not altogether build upon his steadiness or
constancy.-- His feelings are warm, but I can imagine them rather changeable.--
Every consideration of the subject, in short, makes me thankful that my
happiness is not more deeply involved.--I shall do very well again after a little
while--and then, it will be a good thing over; for they say every body is in love
once in their lives, and I shall have been let off easily."
When his letter to Mrs. Weston arrived, Emma had the perusal of it; and she read
it with a degree of pleasure and admiration which made her at first shake her