Page:Austen Sanditon and other miscellanea.djvu/62

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38
SANDITON

with them, would suit her best, and therefore the stroll on the Cliff gave way to an immediate return home. ‘No, no,’ said her Ladyship, ‘I will not have you hurry your Tea on my account. I know you like your Tea late. My early hours are not to put my Neighbours to inconvenience. No, no, Miss Clara and I will get back to our own Tea. We came out with no other Thought. We wanted just to see you and make sure of your being really come, but we get back to our own Tea.’ She went on however towards Trafalgar House and took possession of the Drawing-room very quietly, without seeming to hear a word of Mrs. Parker’s orders to the Servant as they entered, to bring Tea directly. Charlotte was fully consoled for the loss of her walk, by finding herself in company with those, whom the conversation of the morning had given her a great curiosity to see. She observed them well. Lady Denham was of middle height, stout, upright and alert in her motions, with a shrewd eye, and self-satisfied air, but not an unagreeable Countenance, and though her manner was rather downright and abrupt, as of a person who valued herself on being free-spoken, there was a good humour and cordiality about her, a civility and readiness to be acquainted with Charlotte herself, and a heartiness of welcome towards her old friends, which was inspiring the Good will she seemed to feel. And as for Miss Brereton, her appearance so completely justified Mr. Parker’s praise that Charlotte thought she had never beheld a more lovely, or more Interesting young Woman. Elegantly tall, regularly handsome, with great delicacy of complexion and soft Blue eyes, a sweetly modest and yet naturally graceful Address, Charlotte could see in her only the most perfect representation of whatever Heroine might be most beautiful and bewitching, in all the numerous volumes they had left behind them on Mrs. Whitby's shelves. Perhaps it might be partly owing to her having just