The Doctor's Garden
Too Long; Didn't ReadMary had contrived to quiet her lover with considerable propriety of demeanour. Then came on her the somewhat harder task of quieting herself. Young ladies, on the whole, are perhaps quite as susceptible of the softer feelings as young gentlemen are. Now Frank Gresham was handsome, amiable, by no means a fool in intellect, excellent in heart; and he was, moreover, a gentleman, being the son of Mr Gresham of Greshamsbury. Mary had been, as it were, brought up to love him. Had aught but good happened to him, she would have cried as for a brother. It must not therefore be supposed that when Frank Gresham told her that he loved her, she had heard it altogether unconcerned.
He had not, perhaps, made his declaration with that propriety of language in which such scenes are generally described as being carried on. Ladies may perhaps think that Mary should have been deterred, by the very boyishness of his manner, from thinking at all seriously on the subject. His "will you, won't you—do you, don't you?" does not sound like the poetic raptures of a highly inspired lover. But, nevertheless, there had been warmth, and a reality in it not in itself repulsive; and Mary's anger—anger? no, not anger—her objections to the declarations were probably not based on the absurdity of her lover's language.