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"Oh, no, Derek! For heaven's sake! There's been enough trouble." I could imagine the loud voice. "What's going on in there? Are you the owners of this boat? Come on out and let's have a look at you."

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鈥楢ug. 22, 1890.鈥擨 must amuse you and dear Leila by a little Oriental episode. A nice simple young widow, called W., is being prepared for Baptism. Female converts, who have not husbands, are specially welcome, as there is a great difficulty to poorer Christians about getting wives. Even before W.鈥檚 baptism, therefore, 鈥斺€ wished to secure her for a favourite convert. I spoke for him to W., and she consented just to see M. N., being assured that, if either she or he were not satisfied, there should be no marriage.[458] As we are very proper here, the important interview took place in my presence; but I went a little aside, so as to be no g锚ne. The man seemed very sensible and nice. He began religious conversation at once, questioning the girl to whom he was paying his addresses, as a Pastor might have done with a candidate for baptism.

On the 4th of March comes the second inaugural, in which Lincoln speaks almost in the language of a Hebrew prophet. The feeling is strong upon him that the clouds of war are about to roll away but he cannot free himself from the oppression that the burdens of the War have produced. The emphasis is placed on the all-important task of bringing the enmities to a close with the end of the actual fighting. He points out that responsibilities rest upon the North as well as upon the South and he invokes from those who under his leadership are bringing the contest to a triumphant close, their sympathy and their help for their fellow-men who have been overcome. The address is possibly the most impressive utterance ever made by a national leader and it is most characteristic of the fineness and largeness of nature of the man. I cite the closing paragraph:The kiss had not been mentioned, but Gala's efforts to preserve an atmosphere of aloofness had collapsed under the excitement of examining a lobster that Bond had dived for and caught with his hands. Reluctantly they put it back into one of the rockpools and watched it scuttle backwards into the shelter of the seaweed. And now they lay, tired and exhilarated by their icy swim, and prayed that the sun would not slip behind the clifftop high above their heads before they were warm and dry enough to get back into their clothes. When I first came to Waltham Cross in the winter of 1859-1860, I had almost made up my mind that my hunting was over. I could not then count upon an income which would enable me to carry on an amusement which I should doubtless find much more expensive in England than in Ireland. I brought with me out of Ireland one mare, but she was too light for me to ride in the hunting-field. As, however, the money came in, I very quickly fell back into my old habits. First one horse was bought, then another, and then a third, till it became established as a fixed rule that I should not have less than four hunters in the stable. Sometimes when my boys have been at home I have had as many as six. Essex was the chief scene of my sport, and gradually I became known there almost as well as though I had been an Essex squire, to the manner born. Few have investigated more closely than I have done the depth, and breadth, and water-holding capacities of an Essex ditch. It will, I think, be accorded to me by Essex men generally that I have ridden hard. The cause of my delight in the amusement I have never been able to analyse to my own satisfaction. In the first place, even now, I know very little about hunting — though I know very much of the accessories of the field. I am too blind to see hounds turning, and cannot therefore tell whether the fox has gone this way or that. Indeed all the notice I take of hounds is not to ride over them. My eyes are so constituted that I can never see the nature of a fence. I either follow some one, or ride at it with the full conviction that I may be going into a horse-pond or a gravel-pit. I have jumped into both one and the other. I am very heavy, and have never ridden expensive horses. I am also now old for such work, being so stiff that I cannot get on to my horse without the aid of a block or a bank. But I ride still after the same fashion, with a boy’s energy, determined to get ahead if it may possibly be done, hating the roads, despising young men who ride them, and with a feeling that life can not, with all her riches, have given me anything better than when I have gone through a long run to the finish, keeping a place, not of glory, but of credit, among my juniors. A project with the code name OPERATION GRAND SLAM.

'I was carried off, by force of arms,' said Steerforth, 'the very next morning after I got home. Why, Daisy, what a rare old bachelor you are here!'

"Now get away from me," she said fiercely, and slammed the door and locked it.