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stances. He did not say that Mr. Lloyd should be free, whether it were kept or not. Her life was a perpetual struggle; and she did not dare, even if she wished it, to confide either in her mother or sister, for she was bound down to secresy.
Colonel Llewellen was a constant visitor both at the parsonage and cottage. He was a singular man, and no one could thoroughly make him out; but he was evidently very much interested in his new acquaintances. He would go away for a week or so, and return again, taking up his quarters principally with Mr. Lloyd, who delighted in having him with him, that he might hear him repeat, over and over again, the history of his casual meeting with Herbert. Clare could never learn whether he had discovered, through her aunt, who they were, for he avoided mentioning that lady, and she, of course, never broached the subject. Mr. Grant's sur
prise had been great, when he found that Miss Llewellen, the heiress, was Gwenthlean's sister ; but never having heard her parentage mentioned, he was satisfied with the general information given him, of her having discovered their relationship at the Wynnes', and acquiesced in Lady Llewellen's request that he should not make it known. He had pleasant surinises, however, that the humble Gwenthlean was of higher origin than was supposed, but he left it to time to develop what that origin was.
His only enemy at Craigyvellyn, he believed to be Clare, and he feared her, because he was conscious that she knew him, and dreaded her influence on her sister. But Clare perceived that Gwenthlean had gone too far to retract with hononr, therefore, could only look on in silence. Lady Llewellen received occasional remittances from the firm in which her little property was invested, with the information that they hoped to repay what was due, when certain difficulties were mastered which had threatened a failure. So far matters were brightening
Mr. Grant was making splendid preparations for his marriage, which now began to be generally talked of. The poor people rejoiced in what they considered Gwenthlean's good fortune. Mr. Lloyd sighed and said nothing. The worthy miller set his face against it. It did not promise to be a cheerful wedding, for every one concerned, except Mr. Grant, felt a kind of indescribable oppression ; and when the ladies began to think it necessary to consult about the trousseau, Miriam was the only one who entered into the subject with all her heart, and as it deserved. As to Gwenthlean, she tried in vain to take an interest. Unlike Trotty Veck's daughter Meg, she did not sit and sing over her wedding dress until mid-. night; but like Flora Mac Ivor, when she
worked at her brother's shroud, she tried to be calm, when anguish was on her
Clare inwardly called the approaching nuptials, “a sacrifice," and dreaded the day as one that was to seal her sister's title to the tomb.
But for this, Clare would have been the happiest of human beings. She had not known enough of her youngest sister, to make her feel her loss very acutely, deep as was the lesson she had learnt from her death; and she found in her mother and Gwenthlean, all that her heart had panted for from childhood; warm love, example and instruction.
If Clare ever sighed, it was when she thought of Lord Hastings ; and then she laughed at what she called her sentiment. - She thought that she had now so many to love, who really loved her, that it was folly to regret him, with all his aristocratic pride and coldness, especially as she felt
fully convinced that he did not regret her.
About a week before Gwenthlean's marriage, or, as Clare would have called it, sacrifice; Clare walked to the village, the bearer of a dozen messages from her mother. The first person she met was that determined Squire of Dames—that Don Quixote—that Malvolio—the jolly miller, and he sported his best English with a decided Welsh accent, in compliments and politenesses as he walked by her side.
- Make so bold, miss; when you are going—ahem!-to follow the other miss's good example ?" he began.
“ As soon as I can get any one to take coni passion on me, Mr. Jenkins," said Clare, archly. “But I am a very useless piece of furniture. I never made a pudding, pickle, or anything that a good house-keeper ought to do, in my life.”
“Soon learnt, miss,” replied the miller. “ I dare say, now, there are plenty of fine