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she felt that it would distress Julian; but else, no thought, no dream of wealth, or a good match for herself ever crossed her mind. She had devoted herself to one cause, her uncle's happiness, and he seemed happy!
De Villeneuve often wrote letters full of deep sentiment and passionate eloquence; and welcome, oh, how welcome ! let those say who have dwelt six hundred miles from that magic spot we call our home! And Julian wrote, but less frequently, but he was struggling with Fate; he was toiling to maintain himself, and to assist them. He spoke of Augusta's marriage with perfect calm, and his letters were become cheerful, and sometimes even merry.
Augusta wrote seldom, and with little but details of fashionable acquaintance, fine parties, and new modes. Annie's letters were short and unsatisfactory; but she pleaded her engrossing pursuits, and thus quieted the ready apprehensions of all who loved her; and things were in this state when the snows began to melt away, and Spring to dawn on the desolate earth.
“I dream of Love, enduring faith, a heart
The Sea Captain.
The London season had commenced, and La Zelie was to re-appear as prima donna. The beau monde was in a fever of expectation to see her again ; and she, wan and wasted, vainly tried to rouse her spirit, and summon up strength and courage for the many-headed monster she had to face.
Mrs. Chester was still her chaperon; no change had taken place in her; she was of the unfeeling, and, therefore, the unchangeable school; she had a set of looks, speeches, attitudes, and occupations -- whatever happened, she continued these ; no events swept her along with them. She smiled, canted, chatted, and knitted, come what would; but Zelie was accustomed to her, and she would have dreaded strange eyes, however kind, more than those round, light orbs, which were like blue stones, so cold and soulless; for, to their expression, or, rather, want of expression, she was used.
She was lying listlessly on a sofa, placed near the window, watching the sunset. The house was in the Regent's Park; the prospect was so complete and ornamental, that it was like some remembered and highly-finished scene of a play. The windows of the white and gracefully formed villas were gleaming redly with the reflected sunset. The grass and shrubs were green with the youth of the year, and over the blue, still waters the white swans sailed,
like proud and happy thoughts over a pure,
The sunset was fantastically rich and varied; it seemed as if a city of the clouds was on fire, or, rather, had been on fire, and was smouldering away ; tints of crimson and orange, purple and gold, floated far and far around the piles and masses of ruins, growing paler and paler, till they lost themselves in the clear grey of evening; and opposite all the splendour of this burning city, and its setting monarch, rose the moon, looking wan and dull, and out of place, like an actress by daylight.
Mrs. Chester was sitting close to one window, industriously knitting, and, in her character of chaperon and companion, occasionally offering a counsel, making a remark, or proffering an assertion.
“ Well, it's a very fine evening, and I shouldn't wonder if we have a very fine day to-morrow.”
Zelie, with "a glorious sympathy with suns