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   Chapter 9 HOW TO CLEAR IT UP.

The Twins By Martin Farquhar Tupper Characters: 4894

Updated: 2017-12-06 00:03


In all this there was mystery enough for a dozen lovers to have crazed their brains about. Emily might be a queen of the East, defrauded of hereditary glories, and at any rate deserved such rank, if Charles was to be judge; but what was more important, if the general had any reason at all for his arbitrary mandate prohibiting their love, it was very possible that reason was a false one.

Meantime, Charles had little now to live for, except his dear forbidden Emily, any more than she for him. And to peace of mind in both, the elucidation of that mystery which hung about her birth, grew more needful day by day. At last, one summer evening, when they had managed a quiet walk upon the sands under the Beacon cliff, Charles said abruptly, after some moments of abstraction, "Dearest, I am resolved."

"Resolved, Charles! what about?" and she felt quite alarmed; for her lover looked so stern, that she could not tell what was going to happen next.

"I'll clear it up, that I will; I only wish I had the money."

"Why, Charles, what in the world are you dreaming about? you frighten me, dearest; are you ill? don't look so serious, pray."

"Yes, Emily, I will; at once too. I'm off to Madras by next packet; or, that is to say, would, if I could get my passage free."

"My noble Charles, if that were the only objection, I would get you all the means; for the kind-kind general suffers me to have whatever sums I choose to ask for. Only, Charles, indeed I cannot spare you; do not-do not go away and leave me; there's Julian, too-don't leave me-and you might never come back, and-and-" all the remainder was lost in sobbing.

"No, my Emmy, we must not use the general's gold in doing what he might not wish; it would be ungenerous. I will try to get somebody to lend me what I want-say Mrs. Sainsbury, or the Tamworths. And as for leaving you, my love, have no fears for me or for yourself; situated as we are, I take it as a duty to go, and make you happier, setting you in rights, whatever these may be; and for the rest, I leave you in His holy keeping who can preserve you alike in body, as in soul, from all things that would hurt you, and whose mercy will protect me in all perils, and bring me back to you in safety. This is my trust, Emmy."

"Dear Charles, you are always wiser and better than I am: let it be so then, my best of friends. Seek out good nurse Mackie, I can give you many clues, hear what she has to say;

and may the God of your own poor fatherless Emily speed your holy mission! Yet there is one thing, Charles; ought you not to ask your parents for their leave to go? You are better skilled to judge than I can be, though."

"Emmy, whom have I to ask? my father? he cares not whither I go nor what becomes of me; I hardly know him, and for twenty years of my short life of twenty-one, scarcely believed in his existence; or should I ask my mother? alas-love! I wish I could persuade myself that she would wish me back again if I were gone; moreover, how can I respect her judgment, or be guided by her counsel, whose constant aim has been to thwart my feeble efforts after truth and wisdom, and to pamper all ill growths in my unhappy brother Julian? No, Emily; I am a man now, and take my own advice. If a parent forbade me, indeed, and reasonably, it would be fit to acquiesce; but knowing, as I have sad cause to know, that none but you, my love, will be sorry for my absence, as for your sake alone that absence is designed, I need take counsel only of us who are here present-your own sweet eyes, myself, and God who seeth us."

"True-most true, dear Charles; I knew that you judged rightly."

"Moreover, Emmy, secresy is needful for the due fulfilment of my purpose." (Charles little thought how congenial to his nature was that same secresy.) "None but you must know where I am, or whither I am gone. For if there really is any mystery which the general would conceal from us, be assured he both could and would frustrate all my efforts if he knew of my design. The same ship that carried me out would convey an emissary from him, and nurse Mackie never could be found by me. I must go then secretly, and, for our peace sake, soon; how dear to me that embassy will be, entirely undertaken in my darling Emmy's cause!"

"But-but, Charles, what if Julian, in your absence-"

"Hark, my own betrothed! while I am near you-and I say it not of threat, but as in the sight of One who has privileged me to be your protector-you are safe from any serious vexation; and the moment I am gone, fly to my father, tell him openly your fears, and he will scatter Julian's insolence to the winds of heaven."

"Thank you-thank you, wise dear Charles; you have lifted a load from my poor, weak, woman's heart, that had weighed it down too heavily. I will trust in God more, and dread Julian less. Oh! how I will pray for you when far away."

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