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THE SCANDINAVIAN RING.

CHAPTER I.

RUDOLF AND BESSIE.

L

EAVING Robert and his efforts for a

time, for he went backwards and forwards more than once, and suffered distress and disappointment, we may follow Bessie, who lived for three years or more at the Morton Langdales, for Rudolf's fortunes were not of the brightest.

A country house full of visitors is very gay and cheerful: gentlemen go out to shoot, and leave the ladies for the whole day, which is quite natural, and only the

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foolish ones grumble, though at times we do hear of girls who dress in thick boots, and can fire a gun as well as their brother, or officer friends, and have no more compunction in bringing down a partridge or grouse than in plucking a flower.

One morning Mrs Morton Langdale and her sister, newly arrived from the Sister Isle, where her husband had been quartered, and whence he had come for the delights of September, Mrs the hostess and Mrs the guest sat in the breakfast parlour, after all the others had left.

"I cannot think,' said the latter, 'why you took a Danish governess, you who are so particular about accent.?

'I have tried so many, and either they have been too attractive or too ugly. I heard of Mademoiselle Brinkmann when she was with Lady Susan Golden, and I was assured by the Paris agent that her academical French was to be relied upon. I have not yet regretted our choice.'

'No, you have had this Dane a long time; is she good-looking ?'

Very; that is, in my eyes ; but she keeps out of our way very much, and still goes to the Trulybridges when she can, and, I suppose, has some Danish friends to console her, for she is no trouble.'

'Is she expensive?' Mrs Brembridge asked.

No, Laura, not at all.. We give her a hundred a year, as we gave the other finishing governesses; but they all wanted so many extras. This lady asks for nothing but reasonable comfort.'

“She did not get that, I suspect, at the Duchess of Goldenisle's.'

I have never heard ; she does not tell us anything of that sort.'

She is a paragon! Does she come into the drawing-room in the evenings ?'

Very seldom;-she prefers to have the evening to herself. She objects to spend her

money in evening dress, I fancy, and

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the girls tell me she has letters to write in the evenings. It is that we like so much. The last governess we had was so overdressed; she was absurd, and she used to challenge Henry to amuse her with écarté or chess.'

"Perhaps she thought she amused him.'

'Perhaps so, Laura; but she got him into bad habits. He used to fall asleep to avoid her; indeed, poor thing! she was very vain, and always sought to bring her accomplishments forward.? What did

you

do with her ?' Sent her

away,

of course. ' Perhaps Miss Brinkmann has fewer.'

Oh no, even more; but she is of a quieter temperament, and seems satisfied with her lot.

“Then she is in love,' said Mrs Brembridge, for I never knew a governess who was not seeking first for her own establishment in life, and then to get her pupils on.

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