Page:My Life and Loves.djvu/338

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MY LIFE AND LOVES.

He was in the office and forthwith I told him the whole story, how Smith had tried to persuade me and how I had resisted till this page of Emerson had convinced me: "I am sorry to leave you in the lurch," I explained; but "I must go and go at once".

He told me it was madness: I could study German right there in Lawrence; he would help me with it gladly. "You mustn't throw away a livelihood just for a word", he cried, "it is madness, I never heard a more insane decision!"

We argued for hours: I couldn't convince him any more than he could persuade me; he tried his best to get me to stay two years at any rate and then go with full pockets: "you can easily spare two years", he cried, but I retorted, "not even two days: I'm frightened of myself."

When he found that I wanted the money to go round the world with first, he saw a chance of delay and said I must give him some time to find out what was coming to me; I told him I trusted him utterly (as indeed I did) and could only give him the Saturday and Sunday, for I'd go on the Monday at the latest. He gave in at last and was very kind.

I got a dress and little hat for Lily and' lots of books beside a chinchilla cape for Rose and broke the news to Lily next morning, keeping the afternoon for Rose. To my astonishment I had most trouble with Lily: she would not hear any reason: "There is no reason in it", she cried again and again, and then she broke down in a storm of tears: "What will become of met" she sobbed, "I always hoped you'd marry me!" she confessed at last, "and now you go away for nothing, nothing—on a wild-goose chase—to study", she added in a tone of absolute disdain, "just as if you couldn't study here!"

"I'm too young to marry, Lily," I said, "and—"