The beating of his heart quickened almost unbearably, as the train drew near Par. Isola would meet him at the Junction, perhaps. He had not announced the actual hour of his arrival, for matters had been a little uncertain when he wrote yesterday, and he had not cared to telegraph this morning before he left Paddington. Yet she would know[Pg 75] that this was the only likely train for him to choose; and she would be at the Junction, he thought, smiling her glad welcome, a fair young face, rosy in the sunset; for it was evening as he drew near the end of his journey.
Allegra and Captain Hulbert were watching at the gate. Colonel Disney had gone into the wood to look for her, and had naturally taken the wrong direction."Yes, yes; it is true."
He had pleaded his hardest and pleaded in vain for a June wedding. Isola's state of health was too critical for the contemplation of any change in the family circle.
"You are going to question her about me, I suppose?"
He remembered how agitated he had seen her many times in the little church at San Remo, and how, although hanging eagerly upon his preaching, she had persistently avoided anything like serious conversation with him upon the few occasions when he had found himself alone with her."And you are to be my husband," she said. "Mine! I shall speak of you to people as my own peculiar property. 'My husband will do this or that.' 'My husband has gone out, but he will be home soon.' Home. Husband. How strange it sounds!"
Allegra was very much of her sweetheart's opinion.
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He could not clasp her to his breast before a flyman; but he seized both her hands, gripped them convulsively, and then led her towards the house, leaving Masters's man to deal as he pleased with portmanteaux and hat-box, gun-case and umbrella-case, despatch-box, and other chattels; to leave them out in the lane to the dews and the night-birds, if he so listed. Martin Disney had no consciousness of anything in this world except the woman by his side.
Colonel Disney handed his wife into a station brougham. The two portmanteaux were put upon the roof, and the order was given—99, Hans Place—for albeit Mr. Hazelrigg's splendid mansion was described on his cards and his writing-paper as The Towers, it is always as well to have a number for common people to know us by."I don't know. People act as often from caprice as from reason.""Martin, dearest, I know you have some great trouble. Why don't you tell me? Is it anything very bad? Does it mean loss of fortune; poverty to be faced; this pretty home to be given up, perhaps?"详情
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