MISS MELMOTTE'S COURAGE
Too Long; Didn't ReadLady Carbury continued to ask frequent questions as to the prosecution of her son's suit, and Sir Felix began to think that he was persecuted. "I have spoken to her father," he said crossly.
"And what did Mr. Melmotte say?"
"Say;—what should he say? He wanted to know what income I had got. After all he's an old screw."
"Did he forbid you to come there any more?"
"Now, mother, it's no use your cross-examining me. If you'll let me alone I'll do the best I can."
"She has accepted you, herself?"
"Of course she has. I told you that at Carbury."
"Then, Felix, if I were you I'd run off with her. I would indeed. It's done every day, and nobody thinks any harm of it when you marry the girl. You could do it now because I know you've got money. From all I can hear she's just the sort of girl that would go with you." The son sat silent, listening to these maternal councils. He did believe that Marie would go off with him, were he to propose the scheme to her. Her own father had almost alluded to such a proceeding,—had certainly hinted that it was feasible,—but at the same time had very clearly stated that in such case the ardent lover would have to content himself with the lady alone. In any such event as that there would be no fortune. But then, might not that only be a threat? Rich fathers generally do forgive their daughters, and a rich father with only one child would surely forgive her when she returned to him, as she would do in this instance, graced with a title. Sir Felix thought of all this as he sat there silent. His mother read his thoughts as she continued. "Of course, Felix, there must be some risk."