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When breakfast was brought to her in the closet adjoining to her chamber, Gillian informed her that Cyprian wished to see her previously to his departure, which had been appointed for that day. She desired that he might be sent to her, and in a few minutes be entered her presence.
“Well, my good friend,” said Eleonora, as soon as she beheld him, "you must then quit me? you know not how it grieves my heart to part from one so firmly attached to the interests of
unfortunate family as you are; but Lady Blunt conducts herself towards me with so great kindness, that I dare not appear to impose upon her goodness, by asking her permission for you to remain here."
“I am glad you have not done so, my dear young Lady,” replied Cyprian ; “for I think that I can be of infinitely greater service to your feelings elsewhere than I could be here.”—He paused.
“How so? where do you mean?” in-. quired Eleonora
Why,” returned the old man,
6 I am
She quitted her station, and in a short time reached the house.
On entering it she was met by Lady Blunt. “I shall sup with you to-night, my dear Eleonora,” she said ; “Sir Sigismund is so well as to dispense with my society this evening.” The table was already spread in an apartment adjoining to the castle-hall; they seated themselves at it, and Eleonora was well satisfied to find that Sir Hildebrand did not join them at their repast.
When the servants were retired, Lady Blunt said, “To-morrow you will become known to Sir Sigismund; he will to-morrow again mix with his family; indeed, I believe he would have done so a few days ago, but for a religious reason-about a week before your arrival, our family priest paid the debt of nature; we have not yet been able to replace bim, and Sir Sigismund feels a reluctance to mix with society till he has attended the celebration of mass in our private chapel. To-morrow morn
ing, a holy man from a neighbouring monastery comes hither for the express purpose of performing this important office, and receiving the confessions of such of our household as wish for this communication with him. In our religion, Eleonora, , we cannot feel happy unless one of the members of our household be a reverend man, whose holy function authorises him to administer to us the ceremonies of our faith; and of these the unfortunate death of our lamented Cyril has lately deprived
A silence ensued-Lady Blunt broke it: “O how venerable a man was our beloved Father Cyril!” she exclaimed; “O how truly did he act the part of a father towards us all! Conviction of the right flowed from his tongue in its most persuasive tones; the impression which his actions and his arguments alike made on the heart, few have the fortitude or eloquence to equal." “Could you have heard my poor father
in his religious office,” replied Eleonora, struggling with her tears; “but the difference of your opinions bas prevented
“It has, my love,” replied Lady Thomasine; “but you must not consider, that because Sir Sigismund and myself are warm adherents to the faith in which we both have been born and educated, that the slightest degree of asperity rankles in our bosoms against those who profess opposite opinions to our own; if you do, great is the injustice which you render us; we are both, I trust,, too good members of christianity to bear enmity against such of our fellow-beings as endeavour to approach towards Heaven by a different path from that in which we judge it right to tread.”
“ With such liberal sentiments on your part," answered Eleonora, “I am more than ever surprised that a familiar intercourse should not have subsisted between you and my parents; for the spirit of my father is of all others the most indulgent
towards every sect which acknowledges the existence of a supreme Creator."
“I know it, know it well,” returned Lady Blunt, tenderly; “ Latimer is a relative whom I venerate, and whom I love: Sir Sigismund discouraged the intercourse which in the early part of our lives subsisted between us."
“Sir Sigismund then dislikes my father," said Eleonora.
“Not so," replied Lady Blunt; “Oh no! Sir Sigismund never speaks of him but with respect and praise; far from disliking, he pities him, and laments his present misfortunes; were it in his power to serve him, I am certaiu that he would not suffer any obstacle to withhold him from exerting himself in his cause. my love, I will not scruple to confess that there are irreconcileable features in Sir Sigismund's character; he is a good, a worthy man, but his motives are often inscrutable, incomprehensible!”
“Would he, indeed, serve my dear fa. ther!” exclaimed Eleonora, unable to re