Page:Guy Boothby--A Bid for Fortune.djvu/192

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182
A BID FOR FORTUNE.

so? Why then should you endeavour to keep us apart?"

"Because an alliance with you, sir, is distasteful to me in every possible way. I have other and more ambitious views for my daughter you must learn." Here Phyllis could keep silence no longer, and broke in with—

"If you mean by that that you will force me into this hateful marriage with a man I despise, papa, you are mistaken. I will marry no one but Mr. Hatteras, and so I warn you."

"Silence, Miss! How dare you adopt that tone with me! You will do as I wish in this and all other matters, and so we'll have no more talk about it. Now Mr. Hatteras, you have heard what I have to say, and I warn you that, if you persist in this conduct, I'll see if something can't be found in the law to put a stop to it. Meanwhile, if you as much as show your nose in my grounds again I'll have my servants throw you out into the street! Good-day."

Unjust as his conduct was to me there was nothing for it but to submit, so picking up my hat I bade poor little frightened Phyllis farewell and went towards the door. But before taking my departure I was determined to have one final shot at her irascible parent, so I said, "Mr. Wetherell, I have warned you before, and I do so again: your daughter loves me, and come what may I will make her my wife. She is her own mistress, and you cannot force her into marrying anyone against her will. Neither can you prevent her marrying me if she wishes it. You will be sorry some day that you have behaved like this to me."

But the only answer he vouchsafed was a stormy one.