Too Long; Didn't ReadPhineas Finn and Lady Laura Kennedy sat together discussing the affairs of the past till the servant told them that "My Lord" was in the next room, and ready to receive Mr. Finn. "You will find him much altered," said Lady Laura, "even more than I am."
"I do not find you altered at all."
"Yes, you do,—in appearance. I am a middle-aged woman, and conscious that I may use my privileges as such. But he has become quite an old man,—not in health so much as in manner. But he will be very glad to see you." So saying she led him into a room, in which he found the Earl seated near the fireplace, and wrapped in furs. He got up to receive his guest, and Phineas saw at once that during the two years of his exile from England Lord Brentford had passed from manhood to senility. He almost tottered as he came forward, and he wrapped his coat around him with that air of studious self-preservation which belongs only to the infirm.
"It is very good of you to come and see me, Mr. Finn," he said.
"Don't call him Mr. Finn, Papa. I call him Phineas."
"Well, yes; that's all right, I dare say. It's a terrible long journey from London, isn't it, Mr. Finn?"
"Too long to be pleasant, my lord."
"Pleasant! Oh, dear. There's no pleasantness about it. And so they've got an autumn session, have they? That's always a very stupid thing to do, unless they want money."