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Fai. Well, well, never mind; thou'lt come and eat a morsel of dinner with us.
Giles. Nay, but just to have a bit of a joke with her
at present Miss Pat, I say won't you open the
Harh! 'tis I your own true lover,
Fai. Patty, child, why would'st not thou open the door for our neighbour Giles?
Pat. Really, father, I did not know what was the matter. 850
Fai. Well, another time; he'll be here again presently. He's gone up to the castle, Patty; thou know'st it would not be right for us to do any thing without giving his lordship intelligence, so I have sent the farmer to let him know that he is willing, and we are willing; and with his lordship's approbation—
Pat. Oh dear father—what are you going to say?
Fai. Nay child, I would not have stirr'd a step for fifty pounds, without advertising his lordship beforehand. 260
Pat. 'But surely, surely, you have not done this rash, this precipitate thing.
Fai. How rash, how is it rash, Patty? I don't understand thee.
Pat. Oh, you have distress'd mc beyond imagination—but why would you not give me notice, speak to me first?
Fai. Why han't I spoken to thee an hundred times? No, Patty, 'tis thou that would'st distress me, and thou'lt break my heart. 270
Pat. Dear father!
Fai. All I desire is to see thee well settled; and now that I am likely to do so, thou art not contented; I am sure the farmer is as sightly a clever lad as any in the country; and is he not as good as we?
Pat. 'Tis very true, father; I am to blame; pray forgive me.
Fat. Forgive thee! Lord help thee, my child, I am not angrv with thee; but quiet thyself, Patty, and thou'lt see all this will turn out for the best. 280
What will become of me ?—my lord will certainly imagine this is done with my consent—Well, is he not himself going to be married to a lady, suitable to him in rank, suitable to him in fortune, as this farmer is to me; ancf under what pretence can I refuse the husband my father has found for me! Shall I say that I have dared to raise my inclinations above my condition, and presumed to love, where my duty taught me only gratitude and respect? Alas! who could live in the house with lord Aimworth, see him, converse with him, and not love him! I have this consolation, however, my folly is yet undiscover'd to any; else, how should I be ridiculed and despised; nay, would not my lord Ivmself despise me, especially, if he knew that I have more than once construed his natural affability and politeness into sentiments as unworthy of him, as mine are bold and extravagant. Unexampled vanity! did I possess any thing capable of attracting such a notice, to what purpose could a man of his distinction cast his eyes on a girl, poor,
meanly born, and indebted for every thing to the ill ■ placed bounty of his family? 30a
Ah! why shouldfate, pursuing
A wretched thing lihe me,
And add to misery?
In secret let me share;
Is more than 1 can bear. 310
Changes to a Chamber in Lord Aimworth'i House. Sir Harry Sycamore, Theodosia.
S. Har. Well, but Theodosia, child, you are quite unreasonable.
The. Pardon me, papa, it is not I am unreasonable: when I gave way to my inclinations for Mr. Mervin, he did not seem less agreeable to you and my mama than he was acceptable to me. It is, therefore, you have been unreasonable, in first encouraging his addresses, and afterwards forbidding him your house, in order to bring me down here, to force me on a gentleman 320
S. Har. Force you, Dossy, what do you mean! By the la, I would not force you on the Czar of Muscovy.
The. And yet, papa, what else can you call it? for tho' lord Aimworth is extremely attentive and obliging, I assure you he is by no means one of the most ardent of lovers.
5. Har. Ardent, ah! there it is; you girls never think there is any love, without kissing and hugging; but you shou'd consider, child, my lord Aimworth is a polite man, and has been abroad in France and Italy, where these things are not the fashion; I remember when I was on my travels, among the madames and signoras, we never saluted more than the tip of the ear. 334
The. Really, papa, you have a very strange opinion of my delicacy; I had no such stuff in my thoughts.
S. Hot. Well come, my poor Dossy, I see you are chagrin'd, but you know it is not my fault; on the contrary, I assure you, I had always a great regard for young Mervin, and should have been very glad
The. How then, papa, could you join in forcing me to write him that strange letter, never to see me mere; or how indeed could I comply with your commands? what must he think of me? 344
S. Har. Ay, but hold, Dossy, your mama convinced me that he was not so proper a son-in-law for us as Lord Aimworth.
The. Convinced you! Ah, my dear papa, you were not convinced.
5. Har. What don't I know when I am convinced?
The. Why no, papa; because your good-nature and easiness of temper is such, that you pay more re