BOOK VII. CONTAINING THREE DAYS.
6. Chapter vi. Containing great variety of matter.
Containing great variety of matter.
The squire overtook his sister just as she was stepping into the
coach, and partly by force, and partly by solicitations, prevailed
upon her to order her horses back into their quarters. He succeeded in
this attempt without much difficulty; for the lady was, as we have
already hinted, of a most placable disposition, and greatly loved her
brother, though she despised his parts, or rather his little knowledge
of the world.
Poor Sophia, who had first set on foot this reconciliation, was now
made the sacrifice to it. They both concurred in their censures on her
conduct; jointly declared war against her, and directly proceeded to
counsel, how to carry it on in the most vigorous manner. For this
purpose, Mrs Western proposed not only an immediate conclusion of the
treaty with Allworthy, but as immediately to carry it into execution;
saying, "That there was no other way to succeed with her niece, but by
violent methods, which she was convinced Sophia had not sufficient
resolution to resist. By violent," says she, "I mean rather, hasty
measures; for as to confinement or absolute force, no such things must
or can be attempted. Our plan must be concerted for a surprize, and
not for a storm."
These matters were resolved on, when Mr Blifil came to pay a visit to
his mistress. The squire no sooner heard of his arrival, than he stept
aside, by his sister's advice, to give his daughter orders for the
proper reception of her lover: which he did with the most bitter
execrations and denunciations of judgment on her refusal.
The impetuosity of the squire bore down all before him; and Sophia, as
her aunt very wisely foresaw, was not able to resist him. She agreed,
therefore, to see Blifil, though she had scarce spirits or strength
sufficient to utter her assent. Indeed, to give a peremptory denial to
a father whom she so tenderly loved, was no easy task. Had this
circumstance been out of the case, much less resolution than what she
was really mistress of, would, perhaps, have served her; but it is no
unusual thing to ascribe those actions entirely to fear, which are in
a great measure produced by love.