Shortly after breakfast Henry left them for Woodston,
where business required and would keep him two or three
days. They all attended in the hall to see him mount his
horse, and immediately on re-entering the breakfast-room,
Catherine walked to a window in the hope of catching an-
other glimpse of his figure. ‘This is a somewhat heavy call
upon your brother’s fortitude,’ observed the general to Elea-
nor. ‘Woodston will make but a sombre appearance today.’
‘Is it a pretty place?’ asked Catherine.
‘What say you, Eleanor? Speak your opinion, for ladies
can best tell the taste of ladies in regard to places as well
as men. I think it would be acknowledged by the most im-
partial eye to have many recommendations. The house
stands among fine meadows facing the south-east, with an
excellent kitchen-garden in the same aspect; the walls sur-
rounding which I built and stocked myself about ten years
ago, for the benefit of my son. It is a family living, Miss Mor-
land; and the property in the place being chiefly my own,
you may believe I take care that it shall not be a bad one.
Did Henry’s income depend solely on this living, he would
not be ill-provided for. Perhaps it may seem odd, that with
only two younger children, I should think any profession
necessary for him; and certainly there are moments when
we could all wish him disengaged from every tie of busi-
ness. But though I may not exactly make converts of you
young ladies, I am sure your father, Miss Morland, would
agree with me in thinking it expedient to give every young
man some employment. The money is nothing, it is not an
object, but employment is the thing. Even Frederick, my el-
dest son, you see, who will perhaps inherit as considerable
a landed property as any private man in the county, has his
Something had been said the evening before of her being
shown over the house, and he now offered himself as her
conductor; and though Catherine had hoped to explore it
accompanied only by his daughter, it was a proposal of too
much happiness in itself, under any circumstances, not to be
gladly accepted; for she had been already eighteen hours in
the abbey, and had seen only a few of its rooms.
To be continued
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