Page:Tales of John Oliver Hobbes.djvu/40

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24
Some Emotions and a Moral.
 

working, I suppose. God knows what he works at; even Dobbs admits that he has very little to show for his promise. In case he's a trifle dull, I have asked the Cargills to come as well."

"Edward is so dull himself," said Cynthia.

"I don't know so much about that," said the Rector. "Edward is a man of sound common sense and good-wearing, everyday ability. I have always thought you were too severe in your judgment of Edward."

Mr. Heathcote, in spite of his touch for Chopin and fine eye for water-colours, was sufficiently of this world to see that it would not be altogether amiss if Cynthia could be brought to regard with some kindness the son of his neighbour Sir James Cargill. He knew that independence and force of will like hers were scarcely fitted to the married state; was well aware, moreover, that her force was wholly beyond the range of mathematical calculations—her impetuosity, a decided wilfulness, and a fatal obstinacy rendered her moods peculiarly various: if she married at all, her husband should not be too much given to mental analysis. Now Edward Cargill was the son of a rich baronet, was a man of quiet tastes and iron nerves. He held few opinions, and these were of the general-principles order; he thought the natural instincts extremely natural, and had no Theory of Life beyond that of taking the world as he found it. He could sympathize with A, who pulled down temples, and admire B, who raised them up again, but he never gave more than a smile—and perhaps a guinea subscription—to either. Thus he was an extremely forbearing, mild-tempered young fellow, who struck