11. CHAPTER XI
"The old lady! No, the young lady, to be sure. I shall think you
a great blockhead, Frank, if you bring the aunt without the niece."
"Oh! I beg your pardon, sir. I did not immediately recollect.
Undoubtedly if you wish it, I will endeavour to persuade them both."
And away he ran.
Long before he reappeared, attending the short, neat, brisk-moving aunt,
and her elegant niece,--Mrs. Weston, like a sweet-tempered
woman and a good wife, had examined the passage again,
and found the evils of it much less than she had supposed before--
indeed very trifling; and here ended the difficulties of decision.
All the rest, in speculation at least, was perfectly smooth.
All the minor arrangements of table and chair, lights and music,
tea and supper, made themselves; or were left as mere trifles
to be settled at any time between Mrs. Weston and Mrs. Stokes.--
Every body invited, was certainly to come; Frank had already written
to Enscombe to propose staying a few days beyond his fortnight,
which could not possibly be refused. And a delightful dance it was
Most cordially, when Miss Bates arrived, did she agree that it must.
As a counsellor she was not wanted; but as an approver, (a much
safer character,) she was truly welcome. Her approbation, at once
general and minute, warm and incessant, could not but please;
and for another half-hour they were all walking to and fro,
between the different rooms, some suggesting, some attending,
and all in happy enjoyment of the future. The party did not break
up without Emma's being positively secured for the two first dances
by the hero of the evening, nor without her overhearing Mr. Weston
whisper to his wife, "He has asked her, my dear. That's right.
I knew he would!"