Page:Austen Sanditon and other miscellanea.djvu/102

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there is the family of the poor Man who was hung last assizes at York, though we really have raised the sum we wanted for putting them all out, yet if you can get a Guinea from her on their behalf; it may as well be done.’ ‘My dear Dianal’ exclaimed Mrs. Parker, ‘I could no more mention these things to Lady Denham than I could fly.’ ‘Where’s the difficulty? I wish I could go with you myself but in five minutes I must be at Mrs. Griffiths’s to encourage Miss Lambe in taking her first Dip. She is so frightened, poor Thing, that I promised to come and keep up her Spirits, and go in the Machine with her if she wished it; and as soon as that is over, I must hurry home, for Susan is to have Leeches at one o’clock, which will be a three hours’ business, therefore I really have not a moment to spare; besides that (between ourselves) I ought to be in bed myself at this present time, for I am hardly able to stand, and when the Leeches have done, I dare say we shall both go to our rooms for the rest of the day.’ ‘I am sorry to hear it, indeed; but if this is the case I hope Arthur will come to us.’ ‘If Arthur takes my advice, he will go to bed too, for if he stays up by himself, he will certainly eat and drink more than he ought; but you see, Mary, how impossible it is for me to go with you to Lady Denham’s.’ ‘Upon second thoughts, Mary,’ said her husband, ‘I will not trouble you to speak about the Mullinses. I will take an opportunity of seeing Lady Denham myself. I know how little it suits you to be pressing matters upon a Mind at all unwilling.’ His application thus withdrawn, his sister could say no more in support of hers, which was his object, as he felt all their impropriety and all the certainty of their ill effect upon his own better claim. Mrs. Parker was delighted at this release, and set off very happy with her friend and her little girl, on this walk to Sanditon House. It was a close, misty morning, and when they reached the brow of the Hill, they could not for some time