Miss Grantham's sense of humour got the better of her at this point, and, tottering towards a chair, she sank into it, exclaiming in tragic accents:'Oh Heavens! I am betrayed!' His lordship blenched; both he and miss Laxton regarded her with guilty dismay. Miss Grantham buried her face in her handkerchief, and uttered one shattering word: 'Wretch!
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Oh, yes, she's unusual!' he said bitterly. 'She blurts our whatever may come into her head;she tumbles from one outrageous escapade into another;she's happier gromming horses and hobnobbing with stable-hands than going to parties; she's impertinent; you daren't catch her eye for fear she should start to giggle; she hasn't any accomplishments; I never saw anyone with less diginity; she's abominable, and damnably hot at hand, frank to a fault, and-a darling!
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I don't know what you may have seen fit to tell her, Venetia, but so far as I understand it you could think of nothing better to do than to beguile her with some farrago about wishing Damerel to strew rose-leaves for you to walk on!" Damerel, who had resumed his seat, had been staring moodily into the fire, but at these words he looked up quickly. "Rose-leaves?" His eyes went to Venetia's face, wickedly quizzing her. "But my dear girl, at this season?" "Be quiet, you wretch!" she said, blushing.
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Miss Trent regarded her thoughtfully. "Well, it's an odd circumstance, but I've frequently observed that whenever you boast of your beauty you seem to lose some of it. I expect it must be the change in your expression." Startled, Tiffany flew to gaze anxiously into the ornate looking-glass which hung above the fireplace. "Do I?" she asked naively. "Really do I, Ancilla?" "Yes, decidedly," replied Miss Trent, perjuring her soul without the least hesitation.
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Well, sir, do you mean to remain there, commending my father's taste in wine, or do you mean to accompany me to Ashtead?' 'Set off for Ashtead at this hour, when I have been traveling for two days?' said Sir Horace. 'Now, do, my boy, have a little common sense! Why should I?' 'I imagine that your parental feeling, sir, must provide you with the answer! If it does not, so be it! I am leaving immediately!' 'What do you mean to do when you reach Lacy Manor?' asked Sir Horace, regarding him in some amusement. 'Wring Sophy's neck!' said Mr. Rivenhall savagely. 'Well, you don't need my help for that, my dear boy!' said Sir Horace, settling himself more comfortably in his chair.
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Only trust me! You have fallen into a fit of despondency and there is not the least need! In fact, nothing could be more fatal, in any predicament! It encourages one to suppose that there is nothing to be done, when a little resolution is all that is wanted to bring matters to a happy conclusion.
I'm really not quite as frippery a fellow as you seem to think! I own that in my grasstime I committed a great many follies and extravagances, but, believe me, I've long since out-grown them! I don't think they were any worse than what nine out of ten youngsters commit, but unfortunately I achieved, through certain circumstances, a notoriety which most young men escape. I was born with a natural aptitude for the sporting pursuits you regard with so much distrust, and I inherited, at far too early an age, a fortune which not only enabled me to indulge my tastes in the most expensive manner imaginable, but which made me an object of such interest that everything I did was noted, and talked of. That's heady stuff for greenhorns, you know! There was a time when I gave the gossips plenty to talk about. But do give me credit for having seen the error of my ways!
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The Viscount stepped into the room. "Came to see if you was dead, " he said. "Laid Pom odds you weren't." Lethbridge passed his hand across his eyes. "I'm not, " he replied in a faint voice. "No. I'm sorry, " said the Viscount simply. He wandered over to the table and sat down. "Horry said she killed you, Pom said So she might, I said No. Nonsense." Lethbridge still holding a hand to his aching head tried to pull himself together. "Did you?" he said. His eyes ran over his self invited guest. "I see. Let me assure you once more that I am very much alive." "Well I wish you'd put your wig on, " complained the Viscount. "What I want to know is why did Horry hit you on the head with a poker?" Lethbridge gingerly felt his bruised scalp. "With a poker was it? Pray ask her, though I doubt if she will tell you." "You shouldn't keep the front door open, " said the Viscount. "What's to stop people coming in and hitting you over the head? It's preposterous." "I wish you'd go home, " said Lethbridge wearily. The Viscount surveyed the supper-table with a knowing eye. "Card-party?" he inquired.
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You must not imagine that Papa or I have the least notion of compelling you to marry anyone whom you hold in aversion, for I am sure that such a thing would be quite shocking! And Charles would not do so either, would you, dear Charles?'(Elizabeth Ombersley) 'No, certainly not. But neither would I consent to her marriage with any such frippery fellow as Augustus Fawnhope!' 'Augustus, ' announced Cecilia, putting up her chin, 'will be remembered long after you have sunk into oblivion!' 'By his creditors? I don't doubt it.
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I see, ' agreed Rule. 'You are going to be the Sacrifice.' She looked up at him rather shyly. 'It c-can't signify to you, can it? Except that I know I'm not a Beauty, like L-Lizzie. But I have got the Nose, sir.' Rule surveyed the Nose. 'Undoubtedly, you have the Nose, ' he said. Horatia seemed determined to make a clean breast of her blemishes. 'And p-perhaps you could become used to my eyebrows?' The smile lurked at the back of Rule's eyes. 'I think, quite easily.' She said sadly: 'They won't arch, you know. And I ought to't-tell you that we have quite given up hope of my g-growing any taller.' 'It would certainly be a pity if you did, ' said his lordship. 'D-do you think so?' Horatia was surprised. 'It is a great trial to me, I can assure you.' She took a breath, and added, with difficulty: 'You m-may have n-noticed that I have a - a stammer.' 'Yes, I had noticed, ' the Earl answered gently. 'If you f-feel you c-can't bear it, sir, I shall quite understand, ' Horatia said in a small, anxious voice. 'I like it, 'said the Earl.
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He shut the door, and stood looking across the room at her. 'Cressy, what did you mean when you told that harridan that your affections were engaged?' The colour deepened a little in her cheeks, but she replied lightly: 'Well, she talked so much like someone in a bad play that I became carried away myself! Besides, I had to say something to convince her! I could see she didn't quite believe me when I said I wasn't going to marry your brother.' He let his breath go in a long sigh, and walked forward, setting his hands on her shoulders, and saying: 'You don't know how much I have wanted to tell you the truth! Cressy, my dear one, forgive me! I've treated you abominably, and I love you so much!' Miss Stavely, who had developed an interest in the top button of his coat, looked shyly up at this. 'Do you, Kit?' she asked. 'Truly?' Mr Fancot, preferring actions to words, said nothing whatsoever in answer to this, but took her in his arms and kissed her. Miss Stavely, who had previously thought him unfailingly gentle and courteous, perceived, in the light of this novel experience, that she had been mistaken: there was nothing gentle about Mr Fancot's crushing embrace; and his behaviour in paying no heed at all to her faint protest could only be described as extremely uncivil. She was wholly unused to such treatment, and she had a strong suspicion that her grandmother would condemn her conduct in submitting to it, but as Mr Fancot seemed to be dead to all sense and propriety it was clearly useless to argue with him.
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Perhaps, ' murmured his lordship, 'I yielded to a compassionate impulse.' 'A what?' gasped his best friend. 'Oh, did you think I never did so?' said his lordship, the satirical glint in his eyes extremely pronounced. 'You wrong me! I do, sometimes-not frequently, of course, but every now and then!
It has always seemed to me that if one falls in love with any gentleman one becomes instantly blind to his faults.But I am not blind to your faults, and I do not think that everything you do or say is right! Only-Is it being-not very comfortable-and cross-and not quite happy, when you aren't there?' 'That, my darling, ' said his lordship, taking her ruthlessly into his arms, 'is exactly what it s!' 'Oh-!' Frederica gasped, as she emerged from an embrace which threatened to suffocate her. 'Now I know! I am in love!
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Then Frederica went towards him, holding out her hand, and he raised his eyes from Felix's eager countenance, and smiled at her, causing Mr. Moreton to suffer a shock. It was not at all the sort of smile with which his lordship beguiled his flirts, but something warmer and more intimate. Good God! mentally ejaculated Mr. Moreton. Sits the wind in that quarter?
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He would not object, he said, to accepting a post as a librarian. But as Cecilia was unable to imagine that her father or her brother would feel any marked degree of satisfaction in giving her in marriage to a librarian, this very handsome concession on Mr Fawnhope's part merely added to her despondency.
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His attention caught, her companion raised his eyes from the book which lay open beside him on the table and directed them upon her in a look of aloof enquiry. 'What's that? Did you say something to me, Venetia?' 'Yes, love, ' responded his sister cheerfully, 'but it wasn't of the least consequence, and in any event I answered for you. You would be astonished, I daresay, if you knew what interesting conversations I enjoy with myself.
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The Reverend William Trent, whose mind was of a serious order, had several times warned his elder sister that too lively a sense of humour frequently led to laxity of principle. She now perceived how right he was; and wondered, in dismay, whether it was because he invariably made her laugh that instead of regarding the Nonesuch with revulsion she was obliged to struggle against the impulse to cast every scruple to the winds, and to give her life into his keeping.
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My lord said, amongst other things, that he did not propose to burden the doctor with the details of his genealogy. He consigned the doctor and all his works, severally and comprehensively described, to hell, and finished up his epic speech by a pungent and Rabelaisian criticism of the whole race of leeches.
She stretched out her hand, saying, "Vernon! My dear, what a delightful surprise!" "What's surprising about it?" he enquired, lifting his black brows. "Didn't you ask me to come?" The smile remained pinned to Lady Buxted's lips, but she replied with more than a touch of acidity: "To be sure I did, but so many days ago that I supposed you had gone out of town!" "Oh, no!" he said, returning her smile with one of great sweetness.
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The Marquis believed himself to be hardened against flattery. He thought that he had experienced every variety, but he discovered that he was mistaken: the blatantly worshipful look in the eyes of a twelve-year-old, anxiously raised to his, was new to him, and it pierced his defences.
It has always seemed to me that if one falls in love with any gentleman one becomes instantly blind to his faults.But I am not blind to your faults, and I do not think that everything you do or say is right! Only""Is it being""not very comfortable""and cross""and not quite happy, when you aren't there?" "That, my darling," said his lordship,taking her ruthlessly into his arms,"is exactly what it s!" "Oh""!" Frederica gasped, as she emerged from an embrace which threatened to suffocate her. "Now I know! I am in love!
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Spread the glad tidings that it will not disappoint Miss Heyer's many admirers. Judging from the letters I've received from obviously feeble-minded persons who do so wish I would write another These Old Shades, it ought to sell like hot cakes. I think myself I ought to be shot for writing such nonsense, but it's questionably good escapist literature and I think I should rather like it if I were sitting in an air-raid shelter, or recovering from flu. Its period detail is good; my husband says it's witty---and without going to these lengths, I will say that it is very good fun.
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Did you imagine that you would make me believe ill of Sophy with your foolish and spiteful letter!' he demanded. 'You have tried to set me against her from the outset, but you over-reached yourself today, my girl! How dared you write in such terms to me! How could you have been so crassly stupid as to suppose that Sophy could ever need your countenance to set her right in the eyes of the world, or that I would believe one word of slander against her?
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I was under the impression that I warned you that in London country ways will not do, Frederica!" "You did!" she retorted. "And although I can't say that I paid much heed to your advice it so happens that I am accompanied today by my aunt!" "Who adds invisibility to her other accomplishments!
You must not imagine that Papa or I have the least notion of compelling you to marry anyone whom you hold in aversion, for I am sure that such a thing would be quite shocking! And Charles would not do so either, would you, dear Charles?"(Elizabeth Ombersley) "No, certainly not. But neither would I consent to her marriage with any such frippery fellow as Augustus Fawnhope!" "Augustus," announced Cecilia, putting up her chin, "will be remembered long after you have sunk into oblivion!" "By his creditors? I don't doubt it.
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Sir Richard sighed. "Rid yourself of the notion that I cherish any villainous designs upon your person," he said. "I imagine I might well be your father. How old are you?" "I am turned seventeen." "Well, I am nearly thirty," said Sir Richard. Miss Creed worked this out. "You couldn't possibly be my father!" "I am far too drunk to solve arithmetical problems. Let it suffice that I have not the slightest intention of making love to you.
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His attention caught, her companion raised his eyes from the book which lay open beside him on the table and directed them upon her in a look of aloof enquiry. 'What's that? Did you say something to me, Venetia?' 'Yes, love,' responded his sister cheerfully, 'but it wasn't of the least consequence, and in any event I answered for you. You would be astonished, I daresay, if you knew what interesting conversations I enjoy with myself.
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