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"I travelled yesterday from the North to London.
My only object in taking this long journey,
was to see Norah once more. I had been suffering
for many weary weeks past, such remorse as only
miserable women like me can feel. Perhaps, the
suffering weakened me; perhaps, it roused some
old forgotten tendernessGod knows!— I can't
explain it; l can only tell you that I began to think
of Norah by day, and to dream of Norah by night,
till I was almost heart-broken. I have no better
reason than this to give for running all the risks
which I ran, and coming to London to see her.
I don't wish to claim more for myself than I
deserve; I don't wish to tell you I was the
reformed and repenting creature whom you might
have approved. I had only one feeling in me
that I know of. I wanted to put my arms round
Norah's neck, and cry my heart out on Norah's
bosom. Childish enough, I dare say. Something
might have come of it; nothing might have come
of itwho knows?

"I had no means of finding Norah without
your assistance. However you might disapprove
of what I had done, I thought you would not
refuse to help me to find my sister. When I lay down,
last night, in my strange bed, I said to myself, ' I
will ask Miss Garth, for my father's sake and my
mother's sake, to tell me.' You don't know what
a comfort I felt in that thought. How should
you? What do good women like you know of
miserable sinners like me? All you know is that
you pray for us at church.

"Well, I fell asleep happily, that nightfor
the first time since my marriage. When the
morning came, I paid the penalty of daring to be
happy, only for one night. When the morning
came, a letter came with it, which told me that
my bitterest enemy on earth (you have meddled
sufficiently with my affairs to know what enemy
I mean) had revenged herself on me in my
absence. In following the impulse which led
me to my sister, I had gone to my ruin.

"The mischief was beyond all present remedy,
when I received the news of it. Whatever had
happened, whatever might happen, I made up my
mind to persist in my resolution of seeing Norah,
before I did anything else. I suspected you of
being concerned in the disaster which had over-
taken mebecause I felt positively certain at
Aldborough, that you and Mrs. Lecount had
written to each other. But I never suspected
Norah. If I lay on my death-bed at this
moment, I could say with a safe conscience, I never
suspected Norah.

"So I went this morning to Westmorland
House to ask you for my sister's address, and to
acknowledge plainly that I suspected you of
being again in correspondence with Mrs.

"When I inquired for you at the door, they
told me you had gone out, but that you were
expected back before long. They asked me
if I would see your sister, who was then in the
schoolroom. I desired that your sister should
on no account be disturbed: my business was
not with her, but with you. I begged to be
allowed to wait in a room by myself, until you

"They showed me into the double room on
the ground floor, divided by curtainsas it
was when I last remember it. There was a fire
in the outer division of the room, but none in the
inner; and for that reason, I suppose, the
curtains were drawn. The servant was very civil
and attentive to me. I have learnt to be thankful
for civility and attention, and I spoke to her as
cheerfully as I could. I said to her, ' I shall see
Miss Garth here, as she comes up to the door,
and I can beckon her in, through the long
window.' The servant said I could do so, if you
came that waybut that you let yourself in some-
times, with your own key, by the back-garden
gate; and if you did this, she would take care to
let you know of my visit. I mention these trifles,
to show you that there was no premeditated
deceit in my mind when I came to the house.

"I waited a weary time, and you never came.
I don't know whether my impatience made me
think so, or whether the large fire burning made
the room really as hot as I felt it to beI only
know that, after a while, I passed through the
curtains into the inner room, to try the cooler

"I walked to the long window which leads into
the back garden, to look out; and almost at the
same time, I heard the door openedthe door of
the room I had just leftand your voice and the
voice of some other woman, a stranger to me,
talking. The stranger was one of the parlour
boarders, I dare say. I gathered from the first
words you exchanged together, that you had met
in the passageshe, on her way down stairs, and
you, on your way in from the back garden. Her
next question and your next answer, informed me
that this person was a friend of my sister's, who
felt a strong interest in her, and who knew that
you had just returned from a visit to Norah. So
far, I only hesitated to show myself, because I
shrank, in my painful situation, from facing a
stranger. But when I heard my own name
immediately afterwards on your lips and on hers
then, I purposely came nearer to the curtain
between us, and purposely listened.

"A mean action, you will say? Call it mean,
if you like. What better can you expect from
such a woman as I am?

"You were always famous for your memory.
There is no necessity for my repeating the words
you spoke to your friend, and the words your
friend spoke to you, hardly an hour since. When
you read these lines, you will know, as well as I
know, what those words told me. I ask for no
particulars; I will take all your reasons and all
your excuses for granted. It is enough for me
to know that you and Mr. Pendril have been
searching for me again, and that Norah is in the
conspiracy this time, to reclaim me in spite of
myself. It is enough for me to know, that my
letter to my sister has been turned into a trap
to catch me, and that Mrs. Lecount's revenge