"He is almost as pale as you are. He has been very ill, he tells me. And, really, I believe it was your illness upset him."
"Poor Mr. Coventry!" said Grace, but with a leaden air of indifference.
"I hope I didn't do wrong, but when he asked after you so anxiously, I said, 'Come, and see for yourself.' Oh, you need not look frightened; he is not coming. He says you are offended with him."
"Not I. What is Mr. Coventry to me?"
"Well, he thinks so. He says he was betrayed into speaking ill to you of some one who, he thought, was living; and now that weighs upon his conscience."
"I can't understand that. I am miserable, but let me try and be just. Papa, Mr. Coventry was trying to comfort me, in his clumsy way; and what he said he did not invent--he heard it; and so many people say so that I--I--oh, papa! papa!"
Mr. Carden dropped the whole subject directly.
However, she returned to it herself, and said, listlessly, that Mr. Coventry, in her opinion, had shown more generosity than most people would in his case. She had no feeling against him; he was of no more importance in her eyes than that stool, and he might visit her if he pleased, but on one condition--that he should forget all the past, and never presume to speak to her of love. "Love! Men are all incapable of it." She was thinking of Henry, even while she was speaking of his rival.