Wlliam Gilmore Simms
Joscelyn: A Tale of the Revolution >> Chapter XXII: Escape >> Page 209

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Novel (Romance) | The Reprint Company | 1975, 1976
Transcription JOSCELYN2o9
led the unresisting and seemingly well satisfied, but very silent Wal-
ter. She said apologetically, at length, as if to justify her exactions:
"You see, you young people will have to learn to see and know
how to do all these things for yourselves, and who can better teach
you than Grace and myself, who have been doing and seeing to them
all our lives? Angelica, you see, Walter, knows little or nothing of
them, as I may say. It all falls upon Grace. She is my right hand,
and sometimes my left hand too. I don't know what I could do
without her; and it's well for you, Walter, that Angey took your
fancy, and not Grace, for I could never have given Grace to any-
body that might take her from me."
Angelica found much to vex her in this very natural speech. Sev-
eral times during the talk of the old lady, her compliments to Grace
as a dutiful daughter, and an admirable housekeeper, had grated
harshly on her ears, though it is quite probable they had made but
little impression upon those of her lover.
Walter did not show himself impatient only languid. He did
not seem sullen, but he was mostly silent.
To Grace, had she been present, it would have been evident that
his thoughts were wandering off, all the while, from the sphere of
his companions, and that the same melancholy, or savage brooding,
over one intensely working idea, which had been apparent to her
before, argued still for those fears, in her mind, which we have
heard her sQ urgently express.
At length, as if somewhat exhausted with her own eloquence, and,
perhaps, somewhat fatigued with her ramble, Mrs. Kirkland led the
way to the dwelling, quietly followed by the young couple. As
Walter. had shown no impatience, both Angelica and herself had
come to the conclusion that the fears of Grace were groundless. They
both accordingly relaxed in their vigilance; and though, for some
little while after, the good mother continued to challenge the atten-
tion of Walter, having brought up the subject of the land-title in
dispute, and some other law matters, she yet finally forgot altogether
the mission which she had undertaken, and fell to dozing in her
oaken arm-chair- over the half-finished stockings in her lap.
Grace had watched, at intervals, the several progresses of the party.
She had witnessed their quiet return, all together, to the house. She
had heard no movement below stairs which could indicate the de-