Fanny Burney, Evelina : Vol. 3, Ch. 15

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"No, no, my Lord; you must not, a second time, reproach me with making an appointment."

"Do you then," said he, laughing, "reserve that honour only for
Mr. Macartney?"

"Mr. Mccartney," said I, "is poor, and thinks himself obliged to me; otherwise-"

"Poverty," cried he, "I will not plead; but, if being obliged to you has any weight, who shall dispute my title to an appointment?"

"My Lord, I can stay no longer,-Mrs. Selwyn will lose all patience."

"Deprive her not of the pleasure of her conjectures,-but tell me, are you under Mrs. Selwyn's care?"

"Only for the present, my Lord."

"Not a few are the questions I have to ask Miss Anville: among them, the most important is, whether she depends wholly on herself, or whether there is any other person for whose interest I must solicit?"

"I hardly know, my Lord, I hardly know myself to whom I most belong."

"Suffer, suffer me, then," cried he, with warmth, "to hasten the time when that shall no longer admit a doubt!-when your grateful Orville may call you all his own!"

At length, but with difficulty, I broke from him. I went, however, to my own room, for I was too much agitated to follow Mrs. Selwyn. Good God, my dear Sir, what a scene! surely the meeting for which I shall prepare to-morrow cannot so greatly affect me! To be loved by Lord Orville,-to be the honoured choice of his noble heart,-my happiness seemed too infinite to be borne, and I wept, even bitterly I wept, from the excess of joy which overpowered me.

In this state of almost painful felicity I continued till I was summoned to tea. When I re-entered the drawing room, I rejoiced much to find it full of company, as the confusion with which I met Lord Orville was rendered the less observable.

Immediately after tea, most of the company played at cards,-and then-till supper time, Lord Orville devoted himself wholly to me.

He saw that my eyes were red, and would not let me rest till he made me confess the cause; and when, though most reluctantly, I had acknowledged my weakness, I could with difficulty refrain from weeping again at the gratitude he expressed.

He earnestly desired to know if my journey could not be postponed! and when I said no, entreated permission to attend me to town.

"Oh, my Lord," cried I, "what a request!"

"The sooner," answered he, "I make my devotion to you in public, the sooner I may expect, from your delicacy, you will convince the world you encourage no mere danglersw."

"You teach me, then, my Lord, the inference I might expect, if
I complied."

"And can you wonder I should seek to hasten the happy time, when no scruples, no discretion will demand our separation? and the most punctilious delicacy will rather promote, than oppose, my happiness in attending you?"

To this I was silent, and he re-urged his request.

"My Lord," said I, "you ask what I have no power to grant. This journey will deprive me of all right to act for myself."

"What does Miss Anville mean?"

X [w] danglers

"one who hangs or hovers about a woman." OED