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Malbone: An Oldport Romance Thomas Wentworth Higginson

II. Place Aux Dames!

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To these maidens, thus united, came Emilia home from Europe. The father of Harry and Hope had been lured into a second marriage with Emilia's mother, a charming and unscrupulous woman, born with an American body and a French soul. She having once won him to Paris, held him there life-long, and kept her step-children at a safe distance. She arranged that, even after her own death, her daughter should still remain abroad for education; nor was Emilia ordered back until she brought down some scandal by a romantic attempt to elope from boarding-school with a Swiss servant. It was by weaning her heart from this man that Philip Malbone had earned the thanks of the whole household during his hasty flight through Europe. He possessed some skill in withdrawing the female heart from an undesirable attachment, though it was apt to be done by substituting another. It was fortunate that, in this case, no fears could be entertained. Since his engagement Philip had not permitted himself so much as a flirtation; he and Hope were to be married soon; he loved and admired her heartily, and had an indifference to her want of fortune that was quite amazing, when we consider that he had a fortune of his own.

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Malbone: An Oldport Romance
Thomas Wentworth Higginson

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