18 Flower and Weed.
Tompion did not believe this ; but was too well-trained a
servant to argue, even with a mistress who had grown up to
Lucille laughed and talked gaily all luncheon-time. She
was full of Bruno's return.
' What are we to do to amuse him, Marjy, now that there's
no hunting or shooting ? ' she asked. ' We must have tennis.
Those girls from the Vicarage must be allowed to come every
afternoon. And we must have picnics and excursionising
of all kinds. I wonder whether my father would object to
my learning to throw a fly. 1 should so like to go trout-
fishing with Bruno.'
Miss Marjorum held forth gravely on the impropriety of
■ ]\Iy dear Lucille, you really ought to remember that you
might actually have been presented this season,' she said;
and this was her most solemn form of reproval. •
' I am very glad I wasn't,' answered the girl. ' I am most
grateful to his lordship for the year's reprieve.'
' Most girls in your position would long to be out.'
' I haven't the faintest longing. I daresay I shall enjoy
society very well when I am in it; and I do long for the
opera, to hear all the music I know so well upon the piano,
sung by grand singers. Yes, that must be too delightful.
But I don't suppose I shall ever be happier than I have been
' My dear, however happy your lot may be, you will dis¬
cover the hollowness of life,' answered Miss Marjorum,
winding up a very substantial lunch with cream cheese,
spring radishes, and Bath Olivers. ' We all do that as we
advance in years.'
■ Dear Miss Marjorum, I hope your life has not been very
hollow,' said Lucille, wondering a little wherein the hollow¬
ness of such a life could lie; seeing that, for the last ten
years, Jane Marjorum had lived upon the fat of the land,
had been in receipt of a handsome salary, had been petted
and made much of by her pupil, and most generously treated
by the Earl; while her duties were ever of the lightest.
But Jane Marjorum was not taken aback by this question.
' I am one of those who find out the hollowness of life
before the bloom of youth has departed,' she said, in a
solemn voice. ' I was engaged for five years to a young man
whom I believed an ajDostle. I assisted him to keep his
college terms at St. Catherine's, Cambridge (vulgarly called
Cat's); and no sooner was he ordained than he proved hollow.'