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don't think my mother knew more. I fancy in
some previous letter he told her of his wife's
death, and the general unsatisfactoriness of

"Heâ??your uncle, I meanâ??is then a

"Yes," replied George. " I won't bother you
with the whole of this long letter, Mrs. Routh;
the gist of it is this: My cousin, Arthur
Felton, is not a good son, nor a good anything I
fancy, for I find my uncle congratulating my
mother upon my affection for her, my good feeling,
in spite of allâ??(bless the poor man! he
little knew how his words would wound, and
how ill-deserved is the extenuation!)â??and
prophesying all manner of good things about me.
It appears this hopeful son of his has been in
Europe for some months, and probably in London
for some months too, as my uncle saysâ??â??
stay, here is the passage: 'Arthur has with him
a letter of introduction to you and Mr.
Carruthers, some trifles from this side of the world
which I thought you might like, and my instructions
to make his cousin's acquaintance as soon
as possible. You speak of George as living
habitually in London; I hope by this time they
have met, are good friends, and are, perhaps,
chumming together. I have not heard from
Arthur for some time. He is a careless
correspondent, and not at any time so regardful of the feelings of other people as he might be. I dare
say the first intelligence I shall have of him
from England, as he cannot possibly want
money'â??that looks bad, Mrs. Routh," said
George, breaking off abruptly, and looking up at
her; "that looks badâ??'as he cannot
possibly want money, will be from you. I know
you will receive him kindly, and I earnestly
hope he may make a favourable impression on
Mr. Carruthers.'" Here George left off reading
the letter, and looked blankly at Harriet.

"And he has never presented himself at
Poynings, has he?" she asked.

"Never, that I know of; and of course
Ellen Brookes would have told me, if he had.
Besides, you see this letter was late for the
mail, and arrived with this other one. My
mother never saw either, and they have been
lying more than six weeks at Poynings."

"No doubt your cousin is still in Paris. All
Americans delight in Paris. He would be in no
hurry to leave Paris, depend on it, if he had no
more interesting acquaintance than that of an
aunt and a cousin to make in London, and
as much time before him as he chose."

"I should think with you, Mrs. Routh, only
that this letter, written at New York on the
third of April, says my uncle had heard from
Arthur, who had merely written him a line from
London, saying: 'Here I am. Particulars by
next mail.' The mail brought no particulars, and
my uncle writes to my mother, subsequently to
this long letter, which is cheerful enough, you'll
observe, that he is a prey to a presentiment
that something is wrong with Arthur, also that
he has conceived the strongest wish to come
to England and see her, and especially to
see meâ??that he has sufficient money and
leisure to gratify the inclinationâ??that he will
wait for the chance of further intelligence of
Arthur, and to arrange certain business matters,
a month longer, and then come to England.
He seems to have formed a remarkably elementary
notion of my respected step-father's manners,
customs, and general disposition, for he
proposes to present himself at Poynings
immediately on his arrival, arid never appears to
entertain the least misgiving as to the cordiality of
his reception. He must have been astonished at
getting no answer to either letter, and I should
think must have had his presentiments
considerably sharpened and strengthened by the fact."

Here George referred to the date of the
later of the two letters, and exclaimed:

"By Jove! I should not be surprised if he
were at Poynings now!"

At this moment Routh entered the room,
and, in his turn, had the new aspect of affairs
explained to him, but at no great length. He
displayed very little interest in the matter,
thought it very probable that Mr. Felton might
have arrived in England, or even at Poynings, but
did not see what George could do in that case.

"You can't go and entertain another man at
a house where you haven't the entrée yourself,"
he said. "I suppose the old woman will let
you know if he really comes to Poynings. In
the mean time, send the letters on to Mr.
Carruthers. You expect to get his address from
some girl or otherâ??his niece, I think I understood
Harrietâ??and ask what is to be done. It's
rather a lucky turn up, Dallas, I take it, and
will help your good-boy intentions towards
your step-father wonderfully, to have a rich
uncle to act as a connecting-link between you.
By-the-by, he's sure to set you up in life,
George, and periodical literature will be robbed
of a shining luminary."

George did not altogether like the tone in
which all this was said. It was a little sneering,
and altogether careless. Nothing was so
difficult to Routh, as it always is to men of his
class, as the sustained assumption of interest
in any affairs but their own; and now that his
anxieties of the previous day were relieved, and
he had no immediate object in which Dallas
was concerned, to gain, he was impatient of
any interruption of his immediate pursuits, and
harsh and rough with him. He sat down, and
ate his breakfast hastily, while he read a heap
of letters which lay beside his plate.

"I don't know, indeed," George had replied
good humouredly to the speech which had
jarred upon him; "but you are busy, Routh,
and I won't trouble you with my business just
now. Mrs. Routh and I will discuss the letter
to Mr. Carruthers."

"A telegram for Mr. Dallas," said the
irreproachable servant, who entered the room while
George was speaking. "Please to sign this, sir."

Routh looked up from his letters, Harriet
set down the teapot, and quietly taking up the
slip of paper which the man had laid upon the
table by George's elbow, signed it with his name,