The Legacy of Cain HTML version

22. Eunice's Diary
I said so to Miss Jillgall, and I say it again here. Nothing will induce me to think ill of
My sister is a good deal tired, and a little out of temper after the railway journey. This is
exactly what happened to me when I went to London. I attribute her refusal to let me read
her journal, after she had read mine, entirely to the disagreeable consequences of
traveling by railway. Miss Jillgall accounted for it otherwise, in her own funny manner:
"My sweet child, your sister's diary is full of abuse of poor me." I humored the joke:
"Dearest Selina, keep a diary of your own, and fill it with abuse of my sister." This
seemed to be a droll saying at the time. But it doesn't look particularly amusing, now it is
written down. We had ginger wine at supper, to celebrate Helena's return. Although I
only drank one glass, I daresay it may have got into my head.
However that may be, when the lovely moonlight tempted us into the garden, there was
an end to our jokes. We had something to talk about which still dwells disagreeably on
my mind.
Miss Jillgall began it.
"If I trust you, dearest Euneece, with my own precious secrets, shall I never, never, never
live to repent it?"
I told my good little friend that she might depend on me, provided her secrets did no
harm to any person whom I loved.
She clasped her hands and looked up at the moon--I can only suppose that her sentiments
overpowered her. She said, very prettily, that her heart and my heart beat together in
heavenly harmony. It is needless to add that this satisfied me.
Miss Jillgall's generous confidence in my discretion was, I am afraid, not rewarded as it
ought to have been. I found her tiresome at first.
She spoke of an excellent friend (a lady), who had helped her, at the time when she lost
her little fortune, by raising a subscription privately to pay the expenses of her return to
England. Her friend's name--not very attractive to English ears--was Mrs. Tenbruggen;
they had first become acquainted under interesting circumstances. Miss Jillgall happened
to mention that my father was her only living relative; and it turned out that Mrs.
Tenbruggen was familiar with his name, and reverenced his fame as a preacher. When he
had generously received his poor helpless cousin under his own roof, Miss Jillgall's
gratitude and sense of duty impelled her to write and tell Mrs. Tenbruggen how happy
she was as a member of our family.