Page:The Poor Rich Man, and the Rich Poor Man.djvu/147
THE RICH MAN'S CHARITIES. 139
him with the somebodys or nobodys; but her glance descended to the plain and coarse garments of our friend in time to change a half-made courtesy to a salutation befitting an inferior. "Sit down," she said, waving her hand to the nearest chair.
Aikin took the offered seat, and awaited, with what patience he could, the forthcoming of the master of the splendid mansion, observing what was before him with a feeling, not of envy or covetousness, but with deep joy and thankfulness for the virtue and true happiness of his humble home. Miss Sabina Jane Finley, now a young lady of twelve years, after surveying Aikin from top to toe, said to her mother, in a suppressed but audible voice, "Gentleman!"
Mrs. Finley seemed to have what she, no doubt, thought a truly genteel unconsciousness of "the man's" presence. She was very richly dressed for a ball; but, as is a common case with poor human nature, she was transferring the fault of her faded and time-stricken face to her milliner. "I declare, Sabina Jane," she said, surveying herself in the mirror, "I never will get another cap of Thompson—these flowers are blue as the heavens."
"You selected them yourself, mamma."
"To be sure I did; but how could I tell how they would look in the evening?"
"Why don't you wear your new French cap, mamma?""Don't be a fool, child—have not I worn that twice already? Pull down that blonde over my shoulder—how it whoops! This is the second time Smetz has served me this way. This gown sets like fury. I never go out but I have some