NORƮANGR ABI │ ĆAPTR 26

Fṛm ɖs tîm, ɖ subjict wz frīqntli cánvst bî ɖ ʈri yuñ ppl; n Caʈrin faund, wɖ sm s’prîz, ɖt hr tū yuñ frendz wr prf̣cli agrìd in cnsidrñ Iẓbela’z wont v consiqns n fortyn az lîcli t ʈro gret dificltiz in ɖ we v hr mariyñ ɖer bruɖr. Ɖer psweźn ɖt ɖ jenṛl wd, upn ɖs grǎnd alon, indipndnt v ɖ objx́n ɖt mt b rezd agnst hr caṛctr, opoz ɖ cnx́n, trnd hr fīlñz morovr wɖ sm alarm twdz hrslf. Ś wz az inṣgnificnt, n phps az porśnlis, az Iẓbela; n f ɖ ér v ɖ Tilni proṗti hd nt granjr n wlʈ inuf in himslf, at ẃt pônt v inṭrest wr ɖ dmandz v hiz yungr bruɖr t rest? Ɖ vri penfl rflex́nz t ẃć ɖs ʈt léd cd onli b dsprst bî a dpndns on ɖ ifct v ɖt ptiklr parśiaḷti, ẃć, az ś wz gvn t unḍstand bî hiz wrdz az wel az hiz ax́nz, ś hd fṛm ɖ frst bn so forćṇt az t xît in ɖ jenṛl; n bî a rec̣lex́n v sm most jenṛs n disinṭrestd sntimnts on ɖ subjict v muni, ẃć ś hd mor ɖn wns hŕd him utr, n ẃć tmtd hr t ʈnc hiz disṗziśn in sć matrz misunḍstd bî hiz ćildṛn.

Ɖe wr so fŭli cnvinst, hvr, ɖt ɖer bruɖr wd nt hv ɖ curij t aplî in prsn fr hiz faɖr’z cnsnt, n so rpitidli aśurd hr ɖt h hd nvr in hiz lîf bn les lîcli t cm t Norʈangr ɖn at ɖ preznt tîm, ɖt ś sufrd hr mînd t b at īz az t ɖ nseṣti v eni sudn rmuvl v hr ǒn. Bt az it wz nt t b s’pozd ɖt Captin Tilni, ẃnvr h md hiz apḷceśn, wd gv hiz faɖr eni just îdīa v Iẓbela’z cnduct, it ocŕd t hr az hîli xpīdịnt ɖt Henri śd le ɖ hol biznis bfr him az it riyli wz, ineblñ ɖ jenṛl bî ɖt mīnz t form a cūl n imparśl opińn, n priper hiz objx́nz on a fẹrr grǎnd ɖn iniqoḷti v sićueśnz. Ś pṛpozd it t him acordñli; bt h dd nt cać at ɖ meźr so īgrli az ś hd xpctd. “No,” sd h, “mî faɖr’z handz nīd nt b streñʈnd, n Fredric’s cnfeśn v foli nīd nt b fōrstōld. H mst tel hiz ǒn stori.”

“Bt h wl tel onli haf v it.”

“A qortr wd b inuf.”

A de or tū pást awe n bròt no tîdñz v Captin Tilni. Hiz bruɖr n sistr ń nt ẃt t ʈnc. Smtmz it apird t ɖm az f hiz sîḷns wd b ɖ naćṛl rzult v ɖ sspctd ingejmnt, n at uɖrz ɖt it wz hoļi incmpatibl wɖ it. Ɖ jenṛl, mnẃl, ɖo ofndd evri mornñ bî Fredric’s rmisnis in raitñ, wz fri fṛm eni riyl añzayti abt him, n hd no mor presñ s’liṣtyd ɖn ɖt v mcñ Mis Morḷnd’z tîm at Norʈangr pas plezntli. H ofn xprest hiz unīzinis on ɖs hed, fird ɖ semnis v evri de’z ssayti n implômnts wd dsgust hr wɖ ɖ ples, wśt ɖ Ledi Frezrz hd bn in ɖ cuntri, tōct evri nǎ n ɖen v hvñ a larj parti t dinr, n wns or twîs bgan īvn t calklet ɖ numbr v yuñ dansñppl in ɖ nebrhd. Bt ɖen it wz sć a ded tîm v yir, no wîldfaul, no gem, n ɖ Ledi Frezrz wr nt in ɖ cuntri. N it ol endd, at last, in hiz telñ Henri wn mornñ ɖt ẃn h nxt wnt t Wŭdstn, ɖe wd tec him bî s’prîz ɖr sm de or uɖr, n īt ɖer mutn wɖ him. Henri wz gretli onrd n vri hapi, n Caʈrin wz qt dlîtd wɖ ɖ scīm. “N ẃn d y ʈnc, sr, I me lc fwd t ɖs pleźr? I mst b at Wŭdstn on Munde t atnd ɖ pariśmītñ, n śl probbli b oblîjd t ste tū or ʈri dez.”

“Wel, wel, w wl tec ǎr ćans sm wn v ɖoz dez. Ɖr z no nīd t fix. Y r nt t pt yrslf at ol ǎt v yr we. Ẃtvr y me hapn t hv in ɖ hǎs wl b inuf. I ʈnc I cn ansr fr ɖ yuñ lediz mcñ alawns fr a baćlr’z tebl. Let m si; Munde wl b a bizi de wɖ y, w wl nt cm on Munde; n Tyzde wl b a bizi wn wɖ m. I xpct mî sveyr fṛm Brocm wɖ hiz rport in ɖ mornñ; n aftwdz I canot in dīsnsi fel atndñ ɖ club. I riyli cd nt fes mî aqentns f I steid awe nǎ; fr, az I am noun t b in ɖ cuntri, it wd b tecn xidñli amis; n it z a rūl wɖ m, Mis Morḷnd, nvr t gv ofns t eni v mî nebrz, f a smōl sacṛfîs v tîm n atnśn cn privnt it. Ɖe r a set v vri wrɖi men. Ɖe hv haf a buc fṛm Norʈangr twîs a yir; n I dîn wɖ ɖm ẃnvr I cn. Tyzde, ɖrfr, w me se z ǎt v ɖ qsćn. Bt on Wenzde, I ʈnc, Henri, y me xpct s; n w śl b wɖ y rli, ɖt w me hv tîm t lc abt s. Tū aurz n ʈri qortrz wl cari s t Wŭdstn, I s’poz; w śl b in ɖ carij bî ten; so, abt a qortr bfr wn on Wenzde, y me lc fr s.”

A bōl itslf cd nt hv bn mor welcm t Caʈrin ɖn ɖs litl xcrśn, so stroñ wz hr dzîr t b aqentd wɖ Wŭdstn; n hr hart wz stl bǎndñ wɖ jô ẃn Henri, abt an aur aftwdz, cem būtd n gretcotd intu ɖ rūm ẃr ś n Eḷnr wr sitñ, n sd, “I am cm, yuñ lediz, in a vri moṛlîzñ stren, t obzrv ɖt ǎr pleźrz in ɖs wrld r olwz t b peid fr, n ɖt w ofn prćs ɖm at a gret dis’dvantij, gvñ redi-munid acćl hapinis fr a draft on ɖ fyćr, ɖt me nt b onrd. Witnis mslf, at ɖs preznt aur. Bcz I am t hop fr ɖ saṭsfax́n v siyñ y at Wŭdstn on Wenzde, ẃć bad weɖr, or twenti uɖr cōzz, me privnt, I mst g awe d’recli, tū dez bfr I intndd it.”

“G awe!” sd Caʈrin, wɖ a vri loñ fes. “N ẃ?”

“Ẃ! Hǎ cn y asc ɖ qsćn? Bcz no tîm z t b lost in frîṭnñ mî old hǎscīpr ǎt v hr wits, bcz I mst g n priper a dinr fr y, t b śr.”

“Ǒ! Nt sirịsli!”

“Ai, n sadli tù—fr I hd mć rɖr ste.”

“Bt hǎ cn y ʈnc v sć a ʈñ, aftr ẃt ɖ jenṛl sd? Ẃn h so ptiklrli dzîrd y nt t gv yrslf eni trubl, bcz enʈñ wd d.”

Henri onli smîld. “I am śr it z qt uņesṣri upn yr sistr’z acǎnt n mîn. Y mst nǒ it t b so; n ɖ jenṛl md sć a pônt v yr pṛvîdñ nʈñ xtrordnri: bsdz, f h hd nt sd haf so mć az h dd, h hz olwz sć an xḷnt dinr at hom, ɖt sitñ dǎn t a miḍlñ wn fr wn de cd nt sigṇfî.”

“I wś I cd rīzn lîc y, fr hiz sec n mî ǒn. Gdbî. Az tmro z Súnde, Eḷnr, I śl nt rtrn.”

H wnt; n, it biyñ at eni tîm a mć simplr oṗreśn t Caʈrin t dǎt hr ǒn jujmnt ɖn Henri’z, ś wz vri sn oblîjd t gv him credit fr biyñ rît, hvr dis’griybl t hr hiz gwñ. Bt ɖ inxplic̣biḷti v ɖ jenṛl’z conduct dwelt mć on hr ʈts. Ɖt h wz vri ptiklr in hiz ītñ, ś hd, bî hr ǒn un’sistd obzveśn, olrdi dscuvrd; bt ẃ h śd se wn ʈñ so pozṭvli, n mīn anɖr ol ɖ ẃl, wz most un’cǎntbl! Hǎ wr ppl, at ɖt ret, t b unḍstd? Hu bt Henri cd hv bn awer v ẃt hiz faɖr wz at?

Fṛm Saṭde t Wenzde, hvr, ɖe wr nǎ t b wɖǎt Henri. Ɖs wz ɖ sad fināle v evri rflex́n: n Captin Tilni’z letr wd srtnli cm in hiz absns; n Wenzde ś wz vri śr wd b wet. Ɖ past, preznt, n fyćr wr ol īqli in glūm. Hr bruɖr so unhapi, n hr los in Iẓbela so gret; n Eḷnr’z spirits olwz afctd bî Henri’z absns! Ẃt wz ɖr t inṭrest or aḿz hr? Ś wz tîrd v ɖ wŭdz n ɖ śruḅriz—olwz so smuɖ n so drî; n ɖ abi in itslf wz no mor t hr nǎ ɖn eni uɖr hǎs. Ɖ penfl rmembṛns v ɖ foli it hd hlpt t nuriś n pfct wz ɖ onli imośn ẃć cd sprñ fṛm a cnsiḍreśn v ɖ bildñ. Ẃt a reṿluśn in hr îdiyz! Ś, hu hd so loñd t b in an abi! Nǎ, ɖr wz nʈñ so ćarmñ t hr imaɉneśn az ɖ unpritndñ cumf̣t v a wel-cnctd parṣnij, smʈñ lîc Fŭḷtn, bt betr: Fŭḷtn hd its fōlts, bt Wŭdstn probbli hd nn. F Wenzde śd evr cm!

It dd cm, n xacli ẃn it mt b rīzṇbli lct fr. It cem—it wz fîn—n Caʈrin trod on er. Bî ten o’cloc, ɖ śez n for cnveid ɖ trio fṛm ɖ abi; n, aftr an agriybl drîv v olmst twenti mîlz, ɖe entrd Wŭdstn, a larj n popyḷs vilij, in a sićueśn nt unpleznt. Caʈrin wz aśemd t se hǎ priti ś ʈt it, az ɖ jenṛl sīmd t ʈnc an apoḷji nesṣri fr ɖ flatnis v ɖ cuntri, n ɖ sîz v ɖ vilij; bt in hr hart ś prifŕd it t eni ples ś hd evr bn at, n lct wɖ gret adṃreśn at evri nīt hǎs abv ɖ ranc v a cotij, n at ol ɖ litl ćandlr’z śops ẃć ɖe pást. At ɖ frɖr end v ɖ vilij, n tolṛbli disingejd fṛm ɖ rest v it, std ɖ parṣnij, a ny-bilt sbstanśl ston hǎs, wɖ its semisrklr swīp n grīn gets; n, az ɖe drouv p t ɖ dor, Henri, wɖ ɖ frendz v hiz soḷtyd, a larj Nyfndḷnd pupi n tū or ʈri terịrz, wz redi t rsiv n mc mć v ɖm.

Caʈrin’z mînd wz tù fl, az ś entrd ɖ hǎs, fr hr îɖr t obzrv or t se a gret dīl; n, tl cōld on bî ɖ jenṛl fr hr opińn v it, ś hd vri litl îdīa v ɖ rūm in ẃć ś wz sitñ. Upn lcñ rnd it ɖen, ś psivd in a momnt ɖt it wz ɖ most cumftbl rūm in ɖ wrld; bt ś wz tù gardd t se so, n ɖ coldnis v hr prêz dis’pôntd him.

“W r nt cōlñ it a gd hǎs,” sd h. “W r nt cmperñ it wɖ Fŭḷtn n Norʈangr—w r cnsidrñ it az a mir parṣnij, smōl n cnfînd, w alǎ, bt dīsnt, phps, n habitbl; n oltgɖr nt infirịr t ɖ jeṇraḷti; or, in uɖr wrdz, I b’liv ɖr r fy cuntriparsṇjz in Ñgḷnd haf so gd. It me admit v impruvmnt, hvr. Far b it fṛm m t se uɖwz; n enʈñ in rīzn—a bo ʈroun ǎt, phps—ɖo, btwn ǎrslvz, f ɖr z wn ʈñ mor ɖn anɖr mî avrśn, it z a paćt-on bo.”

Caʈrin dd nt hír inuf v ɖs spīć t unḍstand or b pend bî it; n uɖr subjicts biyñ stydịsli bròt fwd n s’portd bî Henri, at ɖ sem tîm ɖt a tre fl v rfreśmnts wz intṛdyst bî hiz srvnt, ɖ jenṛl wz śortli rstord t hiz cmplesnsi, n Caʈrin t ol hr yźl īz v spirits.

Ɖ rūm in qsćn wz v a cmodịs, wel-pṛporśnd sîz, n hansmli fitd p az a dînñparlr; n on ɖer qitñ it t wōc rnd ɖ grǎndz, ś wz śoun, frst intu a smōlr apartmnt, b’loññ pkłrli t ɖ mastr v ɖ hǎs, n md unyźli tîdi on ɖ oceźn; n aftwdz intu ẃt wz t b ɖ drw̃rūm, wɖ ɖ apiṛns v ẃć, ɖo unfrniśt, Caʈrin wz dlîtd inuf īvn t saṭsfî ɖ jenṛl. It wz a priṭli śept rūm, ɖ windoz rīćñ t ɖ grǎnd, n ɖ vy fṛm ɖm pleznt, ɖo onli ovr grīn medoz; n ś xprest hr adṃreśn at ɖ momnt wɖ ol ɖ onist simpliṣti wɖ ẃć ś flt it. “Ǒ! Ẃ d nt y fit p ɖs rūm, Mr Tilni? Ẃt a piti nt t hv it fitd p! It z ɖ pritiist rūm I evr sw; it z ɖ pritiist rūm in ɖ wrld!”

“I trust,” sd ɖ jenṛl, wɖ a most saṭsfaid smîl, “ɖt it wl vri spīḍli b frniśt: it wêts onli fr a ledi’z test!”

“Wel, f it wz mî hǎs, I śd nvr sit enẃr els. Ǒ! Ẃt a swīt litl cotij ɖr z amñ ɖ triz—apltrīs, tù! It z ɖ pritiist cotij!”

“Y lîc it—y apruv it az an objict—it z inuf. Henri, rmembr ɖt Robinsn z spocn t abt it. Ɖ cotij rmenz.”

Sć a complimnt rcōld ol Caʈrin’z conśsnis, n sîḷnst hr d’recli; n, ɖo pôntidli aplaid t bî ɖ jenṛl fr hr ćôs v ɖ privelñ culr v ɖ pepr n haññz, nʈñ lîc an opińn on ɖ subjict cd b drwn fṛm hr. Ɖ inflụns v freś objicts n freś er, hvr, wz v gret ys in diṣpetñ ɖz imbaṛsñ asośieśnz; n, hvñ rīćt ɖ orṇmntl part v ɖ preṃsz, cnsistñ v a wōc rnd tū sîdz v a medo, on ẃć Henri’z jīńs hd bgun t act abt haf a yir ago, ś wz sfiśntli rcuvrd t ʈnc it pritịr ɖn eni pleźrgrǎnd ś hd evr bn in bfr, ɖo ɖr wz nt a śrub in it hayr ɖn ɖ grīn benć in ɖ cornr.

A sōntr intu uɖr medoz, n ʈru part v ɖ vilij, wɖ a vizit t ɖ steblz t xamin sm impruvmnts, n a ćarmñ gem v ple wɖ a litr v pupiz jst ebl t rol abt, bròt ɖm t for o’cloc, ẃn Caʈrin scersli ʈt it cd b ʈri. At for ɖe wr t dîn, n at six t set of on ɖer rtrn. Nvr hd eni de pást so qcli!

Ś cd nt bt obzrv ɖt ɖ abundns v ɖ dinr dd nt sīm t criet ɖ smōlist astoniśmnt in ɖ jenṛl; nê, ɖt h wz īvn lcñ at ɖ sîdtebl fr cold mìt ẃć wz nt ɖr. Hiz sun n dōtr’z obẓveśnz wr v a difṛnt cnd. Ɖe hd sldm sìn him īt so harṭli at eni tebl bt hiz ǒn, n nvr bfr noun him so litl discnsrtd bî ɖ mltd butr’z biyñ ôld.

At six o’cloc, ɖ jenṛl hvñ tecn hiz cofi, ɖ carij agn rsivd ɖm; n so graṭfayñ hd bn ɖ tenr v hiz conduct ʈrt ɖ hol vizit, so wel aśurd wz hr mînd on ɖ subjict v hiz xpcteśnz, ɖt, cd ś hv flt īqli confidnt v ɖ wśz v hiz sun, Caʈrin wd hv qitd Wŭdstn wɖ litl añzayti az t ɖ Hǎ or ɖ Ẃn ś mt rtrn t it.

ĆAPTRZ: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31