else. “By faith in what, then,” asked Ernest of himself,
She lay in the warm air of the veranda, and turned her hollow eyes upon the sea; and every day life crept slowly back to her young body, but not to her desolate heart.
A brain fever either kills or blunts, and Grace's agony was blunted. Her mind was in a strange state. She was beginning to look two things in the face: that the man she loved was dead; that the man she loved, and had nearly died for, had loved another as well as herself: and this last grief, strange to say, was the saving of her. She forgave him with all her heart, for he was dead; she made excuses for him, for she loved him; but since his whole heart had not been hers, her pride and modesty rebelled against dying for him, and she resolved to live; she fought hard to live and get well. Finally, being a very woman, though a noble one, she hated Jael Dence.
She was not alone in the world. Her danger, her illness, and her misery had shown her the treasure of a father's love. He had found this sweet bower for her; and here he sat for hours by her side, and his hand in hers, gazing on her with touching anxiety and affection. Business compelled him to run into Hillsborough now and then, but he dispatched it with feverish haste, and came back to her: it drove him to London; but he telegraphed to her twice a day, and was miserable till he got back. She saw the man of business turned into a man of love for her, and she felt it. "Ah, papa," she said one day, "I little thought you loved your poor Grace so much. You don't love any other child but me, do you, papa?" and with this question she clung weeping round his neck.
"My darling child, there's nothing on earth I love but you. When shall I see you smile again?"
"In a few hours, years. God knows."
One evening--he had been in Hillsborough that day--he said, "My dear, I have seen an old friend of yours to-day, Mr. Coventry. He asked very kindly after you."
"He is almost as pale as you are. He has been very ill, he tells me. And, really, I believe it was your illness upset him."
"Poor Mr. Coventry!" said Grace, but with a leaden air of indifference.