Heartsease or Brother's Wife HTML version
There's pansies for you, that's for thoughts.
How far less am I blest than they,
Daily to pine, and waste with care,
Like the poor plant, that from its stem
Divided, feels the chilling air.--MICKLE'S Cumnor Hall
Arthur and Violet arrived at their new home in the twilight, when the drawing-
room fire burnt brightly, giving a look of comfort. The furniture was good; and by
the fire stood a delightful little low chair with a high back, and a pretty little
rosewood work-table, on which was a coloured glass inkstand, and a table-stand
of books in choice bindings.
'Arthur, Arthur, how charming! I am sure this is your doing.'
'No, it is John's; I can't devise knick-knackeries, but he is a thorough old
bachelor, and has been doing all sorts of things to the house, which have made it
'How very kind he is! The books--how beautiful! Just what I wanted. That one he
lent me--he talked to me of that. This Emma has--I saw your sister reading that,
and wished to see more of it. But I can't look at them all now; I must see Sarah,
she was to bring something from home.'
A Wrangerton face had great charms, though it was starched and severe, without
one smile in answer to the joyous greeting, 'Well, Sarah, I am glad you could
come. How are they all?'
'Thank you, ma'am, Mr. and Mrs. Moss, and the young ladies, and Mr. Albert, are
all very well, and desires their love,' replied a voice solemn enough for the
announcement that they were all at the point of death. Violet's spirits would have
been damped but for the sight of the table spread with parcels directed in dear
familiar writing, and she was pouncing on them when Sarah began her grave
requests for orders, and Violet felt her own ignorance and incapacity growing
more patent every moment as questions about arrangements beset and
tormented her on every side. At last she was left to enjoy the out- spreading of
the precious gifts, the devices characteristic of the kind hands that had prepared
them, and all her own private possessions--a welcome sight.
It was a happy evening, and the days that followed were full of pleasure and
occupation--in settling her treasures and making purchases. When she seated
herself in her own carriage, she thought now indeed it would be delightful to
show herself to her mother and sisters. She had no relation in London but an
uncle, a solicitor, fond and proud of her, but too sensible to wish to frequent her
house. He gave her a silver tea-pot; and being asked to dinner now and then on
Sunday was all the attention he required. Her brother Albert did, indeed,
sometimes come to town on business; and Violet, after many hopes, was, one
evening, charmed at seeing him make his appearance. Arthur asked him to stay
to dinner, after which they were going to a party.