Page by Page Books
Read Books Online, for Free
A Lady of Quality Frances Hodgson Burnett

A piteous story is told, and the old cellars walled in

Page 5 of 7

Table Of Contents: A Lady of Quality

Previous Page

Next Page

Previous Chapter

Next Chapter

More Books

More by this Author

"Did he go to church and sing and pray at first?" my lady asks.

"'Twas in church he saw me, your ladyship," she was answered. "He said 'twas his custom to go always when he came to a new place, and that often there he found the most heavenly faces, for 'twas piety and innocence that made a face like to an angel's; and 'twas innocence and virtue stirred his heart to love, and not mere beauty which so fades."

"Go on, innocent thing," my lady said; and she turned aside to Anne, flashing from her eyes unseen a great blaze, and speaking in a low and hurried voice. "God's house," she said--"God's prayers--God's songs of praise--he used them all to break a tender heart, and bring an innocent life to ruin--and yet was he not struck dead?"

Anne hid her face and shuddered.

"He was a gentleman," the poor young thing cried, sobbing--"and I no fit match for him, but that he loved me. 'Tis said love makes all equal; and he said I was the sweetest, innocent young thing, and without me he could not live. And he told my mother that he was not rich or the fashion now, and had no modish friends or relations to flout any poor beauty he might choose to wed."

"And he would marry you?" my lady's voice broke in. "He said that he would marry you?"

Tired of reading? Add this page to your Bookmarks or Favorites and finish it later.

"A thousand times, your ladyship, and so told my mother, but said I must come to town and be married at his lodgings, or 'twould not be counted a marriage by law, he being a town gentleman, and I from the country."

"And you came," said Mistress Anne, down whose pale cheeks the tears were running--"you came at his command to follow him?"

"What day came you up to town?" demands my lady, breathless and leaning forward. "Went you to his lodgings, and stayed you there with him,--even for an hour?"

The poor child gazed at her, paling.

"He was not there!" she cried. "I came alone because he said all must be secret at first; and my heart beat so with joy, my lady, that when the woman of the house whereat he lodges let me in I scarce could speak. But she was a merry woman and good-natured, and only laughed and cheered me when she took me to his rooms, and I sate trembling."

"What said she to you?" my lady asks, her breast heaving with her breath.

"That he was not yet in, but that he would sure come to such a young and pretty thing as I, and I must wait for him, for he would not forgive her if she let me go. And the while I waited there came a man in bands and cassock, but he had not a holy look, and late in the afternoon I heard him making jokes with the woman outside, and they both laughed in such an evil way that I was affrighted, and waiting till they had gone to another part of the house, stole away."

Page 5 of 7 Previous Page   Next Page
Who's On Your Reading List?
Read Classic Books Online for Free at
Page by Page Books.TM
A Lady of Quality
Frances Hodgson Burnett

Home | More Books | About Us | Copyright 2004