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that she could only be made aware of its previous existence by experiencing the subsequent pang of disappointment.
It was a fine night, or rather morning, like the beginning of June; Geraldine drew aside the draperies which shaded her windows, and threw open the sash, to gaze on the last star, as it retreated before the dawn of day.-“ So fade my hopes !" she sighed expressively; "for lovers have that in common with poets—they can assimilate every external object to the prevailing tenor of their minds.”
Her apartment was so situated as to command a view of the gardens of lord Beaudesert, who lived at no great distance. These, for a town-residence, were extensive, and laid out in the Italian taste. As she leant her cheek upon her hand, Geraldine almost fancied she felt wafted towards her the perfume of the orangetrees, which, in a season so temperate, feared not exposure to the night-air. She fancied.msay, did she wholly fancy, or is it
a pleasing reality? Did she overlook the scroll upon her toilet, or have invisible hands conveyed to her the billet I am going to transcribe? As I would not be suspected of dealing in the marvellous, I am inclined to think the former was the
“ To G. S.
“ To others a commonplace apology suffices; but I cannot think of losing sight of you, for an indefinite period, without attempting, at least, a few words in explanation-explanation did I say? I dare give none. Forgive me; I write in pain, and hardly know what I write. You will be told to-morrow where I am gone; but believe it not; it is not there I am to be found. Faulty as I have been, the want of a proper value for your unequalled merit has never been among my faults. Oh thou, who, in thy charming person, dost unite so perfectly the opposite attractions of softness and spirit, let them be exerted, on this occasion, for one more deserving of pity than I am. If ere I bid farewell, perhaps a long farewell, I durst prefer a request-console, console
This note, mysteriously worded, and as mysteriously conveyed, was not signed; but could Geraldine entertain a doubt respecting the allusions—the request it contained ? It was from O'Melvyl-still the same O'Melvyl, irresolute, unsatisfactory, incomprehensible--that character of contradictions--trusting without confidence, and praising without love, yet exacting kindnesses, as if conscious of deserving them, and asserting an influence over her actions in an adieu that was perhaps eternal. One circumstance pleased Geraldine--that he should think it necessary to explain and apologize for his conduct more particularly to herself than to lady Louisa or Miss Southwell. Such solicitude she could only explain in one manner, and that was a manner the most flattering and grateful to her feelings. All the rest was confusion, perturbation, and dismay; and her attention was only drawn from her own subjects of regret to contemplate those of the unhappy marquis of Beaudesert.
The next morning, it was reported, all over Dublin, that the “ mad lord O'Melvyl,” on the day he was expected to open a ball given at lady Louisa Southwell's, had set off, in a frolic, with a party of friends, on a tour to the Western Islands; but Geraldine knew a different story, and she soon fancied that the marquis, though he affected to be easy under his son's absence, was not without some vague suspicions; she also imagined he received, with a secret coldness and disgust, the assiduous attentions of the count di San Carlos.
Lord Beaudesert had a villa near Dublin, in which every refinement of foreign
luxury was lavished on the furniture and decorations. Taste and learning presided at the formation of the library, and in the selection of the pictures, vases, and statues ; while the disposition of the gardens vied with the elegance of the interior of the mansion. Here Geraldine spent many pleasing, if not quite happy hours; and if ever gossiping folly affected to pity her that those hours were stolen from dissipation, she silenced the effect of the remonstrance, by silently repeating O'Melvyl's expressive appeal —“Console my father!"
Matilda Southwell, incapable of intellectual occupation, had all that wayward fretfulness at seeing others better employed than herself, which distinguishes women of her stainp. She could not bear that Geraldine should seem for hours happy and amused with a gem, a medal, or an intaglio, that conveyed to her sluggish taste and uncultivated mind only confused and uninteresting perceptions. She could not endure to see her cousin range through