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wish returned. It was not so very late. The neighbours were yet about, passing under the window to their homes-she thought, and thought again, till her sensations became vivid, even to painfulness-her bosom was aching to give them
The village clock struck ten!-the neighbours ceased to pass under the window. Rosamund, stealing down stairs, fastened the latch behind her, and left the cottage.
One, that knew her, met her, and observed her with some surprise. Another recollects having wished her a good night. Rosamund never returned to the cottage.
An old man, that lay sick in a small house adjoining to Margaret's, testified the next morning, that he had plainly heard the old creature calling for her grand-daughter. All the night long she made her moan, and ceased not to call upon the name of Rosamund. But no Rosamund was
there the voice died
away, but not till near
When the neighbours came to search in the morning, Margaret was missing! She had stragqled out of bed, and made her way into Rosamund's
room-worn out with fatigue and fright, when she found the girl not there, she had laid herself down to die—and, it is thought, she died praying-for she was discovered in a kneeling posture, her arms and face extended on the pillow, where Rosamund had slept the night before-a smile was on her face in death.
FAIN Would I draw a veil over the transactions of that night-but I cannot-grief, and burning shame, forbid me to be silent-black deeds are about to be made public, which reflect a stain upon
our common nature.
Rosamund, enthusiastic and improvident, wandered unprotected to a distance from her guardian doors through lonely glens, and wood walks, where she had rambled many a day in safetytill she arrived at a shady copse, out of the hearing of any human habitation.
Matravis met her." Flown with insolence and wine," returning home late at night, he passed that way!
Matravis was a very ugly man.
plexioned! and if hearts can wear that colour, his heart was sallow-complexioned also.
A young man with grey deliberation! cold and systematic in all his plans; and all his plans were evil. His very lust was systematic.
He would brood over his bad purposes for such a dreary length of time, that it might have been expected, some solitary check of conscience must have intervened to save him from commission. But that Light from Heaven was extinct in his dark bosom.
Nothing that is great, nothing that is amiable, existed for this unhappy man. He feared, he envied, he suspected; but he never loved. The sublime and beautiful in nature, the excellent and becoming in morals, were things placed beyond the capacity of his sensations. He loved not poetrynor ever took a lonely walk to meditate-never beheld virtue, which he did not try to disbelieve, or female beauty and innocence, which he did not lust to contaminate.
A sneer was perpetually upon his face, and malice grinning at his heart. He would say the most ill-natured things, with the least remorse, of any man I ever knew. This gained him the repu
tation of a wit-other traits got him the reputation of a villain.
And this man formerly paid his court to Elinor Clare!-with what success I leave my readers to determine.-It was not in Elinor's nature to despise any living thing-but in the estimation of this man, to be rejected was to be despised—and Matravis never forgave.
He had long turned his eyes upon Rosamund Gray. To steal from the bosom of her friends the jewel they prized so much, the little ewe lamb they held so dear, was a scheme of delicate revenge, and Matravis had a two-fold motive for accomplishing this young maid's ruin.
Often had he met her in her favourite solitudes, but found her ever cold and inaccessible. Of late the girl had avoided straying far from her own home, in the fear of meeting him-but she had never told her fears to Allan.
Matravis had, till now, been content to be a villain within the limits of the law-but, on the present occasion, hot fumes of wine, co-operating with his deep desire of revenge, and the insolence of an unhoped for meeting, overcame his customary prudence, and Matravis rose, at once, to an audacity of glorious mischief.
Late at night he met her, a lonely, unprotected, virgin-no friend at hand-no place near of refuge.
Rosamund Gray, my soul is exceeding sorrowful for thee-I loathe to tell the hateful circumstances of thy wrongs. Night and silence were the only witnesses of this young maid's disgrace -Matravis fled.
Rosamund, polluted and disgraced, wandered, an abandoned thing, about the fields and meadows till day-break. Not caring to return to the cottage, she sat herself down before the gate of Miss Clare's house-in a stupor of grief.
Elinor was just rising, and had opened the windows of her chamber, when she perceived her desolate young friend. She ran to embrace her -she brought her into the house-she took her to her bosom-she kissed her-she spake to her; but Rosamund could not speak.
Tidings came from the cottage.
death was an event, which could not be kept concealed from Rosamund. When the sweet maid heard of it, she languished, and fell sick-she never held up her head after that time.
If Rosamund had been a sister, she could not have been kindlier treated, than by her two friends.