"My darling child, there's nothing on earth I love but you. When shall I see you smile again?"
"In a few hours, years. God knows."
One evening--he had been in Hillsborough that day--he said, "My dear, I have seen an old friend of yours to-day, Mr. Coventry. He asked very kindly after you."
"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."