Id Lady AnSley's Secret.
was not fit for passenger traffic; she was not fit to carry im¬
patient Hving creatures with hearts and souls; she was fit foi
nothing but to be laden with bales of stupid wool, that might
rot on the sea and be none the worse for it.
The sun was dropping down behind the waves as George
Talboys Hghted his cigar upon this August evening. Only ten
days more, the sailors had told him that afternoon, and they
would see the EngHsh coast. "I wiU go ashore in the first
boat that hails us," he cried; " I wiU go ashore in a cockle-sheU.
By Jove, if it comes to that, I wiU swim to land I"
His friends in the aft-cabin, with the exception of the pale
governess, laughed at his impatience: she sighed as she watched
the young man, chafing at the slow hours, pushing away his
untasted wine, flinging himself restlessly about upon the cabin
sofa, rushing up and down the companion ladder, and staring
at the waves.
As the red rim of the sun dropped into the water, the gover¬
ness ascended the cabin-stairs for a stroU on deck, wlule the
passengers sat over their wine below. She stopped when she
came up to George, and standing by his side, watched the fading
crimson in the western sky.
The lady was very quiet and reserved, seldom sharing in the
after-cabin amusements, never laughing, and speaking very
Httle; but she and George Talboys had been excellent friends
throughout the passage.
" Does my cigar annoy yon. Miss Morley P " he said, taking
it out of his mouth.
" Not at all; pray do not leave off smoking. I only came up
to look at the sunset. What a lovely evening!"
"Yes, yes, I daresay," he answered, impatiently; "yet so
long, so long! Ten more interminable days and ten more weary
nights before we land."
" Yes," said Miss Morley, sighing. " Do you wish the time
shorter ? "
" Do IP " cried George; " indeed I do. Don't yon P "
" But is there no one you love in England P Is there no one
you love looking out for your arrival P "
" I hope BO," she said, gravely. They were silent for some
time, he smoking his cigar with a furious impatience, as if ho
could hasten the course of the vessel by his own restlessness;
she looking out at the waning light with melancholy blup eyes:
eyes that seemed to have faded with poring over closely-pi-inted
books and dif&cult needlework; eyes that had faded a little,
perhaps, by reason of tears secretly shed in the dead hours of
the lonely night.
" See 1 " said George, suddenly pointing in another direction