Page:Authors daughter v1.djvu/34

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to know about you," said Mr. Hammond; "certainly they ought."

"And have you no uncles, nor aunts, nor grandparents?" asked Mrs. Hammond.

It was very trying to the child in her grief to be questioned in this way by strangers. "I wish you would not speak about it," said she. "It used to be papa, and mamma, and me, and that was enough. Then it was papa and me, and now it is only me. I have one aunt, but I never saw her but once."

"Your half-brother and sister live with their father's relatives, I suppose," said Mrs Hammond.

"Yes," said Amy.

"Had your mother never any letters from them?"

"No, I don't think so," said the child, growing still more distressed. Mr. Hammond interposed. He whispered something in his wife's ear and received a sort of assent. Mrs. Hammond looked for a few seconds at the dead man and he living daughter with a cold scrutiny that might have convinced her husband that in this instance they had not got to the soft side of her heart. Amy felt the gaze unspeakably painful. At first, when Mrs. Hammond entered the room, the dress, the air, the voice of a lady had given her some hope that she might throw herself into her arms and weep