Page:The Wheel of Time, Collaboration, Owen Wingrave (New York, Harper & Brothers, 1893).djvu/76

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been pedantic, she had taken his life in hand. Rich as she was, she had known how to give him lessons in economy; she had taught him how to manage in London on his means. A month ago his servants had been horrid; to-day they were the best he had ever known. For Vera she was plainly a providence; her behavior to Vera was transcendent.

He had privately made up his mind that Vera had in truth had her coup de foudre—that if she had had a chance she would have laid down her little life for Arthur Tregent; yet two circumstances, he could perceive, had helped to postpone, to attenuate even somewhat, her full consciousness of what had befallen her. One of these influences had been the prompt departure of the young man from London; the other was simply the diversion produced by Mrs. Tregent's encompassing art. It had had immediate consequences for the child; it was like a drama in perpetual climaxes. This surprising benefactress rejoiced in her society, took her "out," treated her as if there were mysterious injustices to repair.