*AIRY FAIRY LILIAN.' 253
arms. * Don't be frightened, I wUl hurt you as little
as I can help,' He lifts her tenderly, but the move¬
ment causes pain, and a touch of agony turns her face
jvhite again. She is not a hero where real suffering is
' Oh, Cyril, be careful,' says Mrs, Arlington, fear¬
fully ; quite unconscious, in her concern for Lilian's
comfort that she has used the Christian name of her
When Lilian is at length settled in tne carriage,
she raises herself to stoop out and take CeciHa's
' Good-bye, and thank you again so much,' she
says, earnestly. ' And when I am well, may I come and
see you ?'
' You may indeed '—warmly. ' I shall be anxiously
expecting you ; I shall now'—with a gentle glance
from the loving grey eyes—' have a double reason for
wishing you soon well.'
Moved by a sudden impulse Lilian leans forward,
and the two women as their lips meet seal a bond of
friendship that lasts them all thefr lives.
For some time after they have left Cecilia's bower
Lilian keeps silence, then all at once she says to Cyril
in tones of the liveHest reproach:
' I wouldn't have believed it of you.'
' Would you not ?'—replies he, somewhat startled by
this extraordinary address, being plunged in meditation
of his own. ' You don't say so ! But what is it then
you can't believe ? '
' I think'—with keen upbraiding—' you might have
' So I should, my dear, instantly, if I only knew
what it was,'—growing more and more bewildered.
' If you don't want to bring on brain-fever, my good
Lilian, you will explain what you mean.'
' You must have guessed what a treat a real lc?ve
affair would be to me, who never knew a single in-