BOOK XV. IN WHICH THE HISTORY ADVANCES ABOUT TWO DAYS.
10. Chapter x. Consisting partly of facts...
To these it is so far from being sufficient that their defence would
acquit them at the Old Bailey, that they are not even contented,
though conscience, the severest of all judges, should discharge them.
Nothing short of the fair and honourable will satisfy the delicacy of
their minds; and if any of their actions fall short of this mark, they
mope and pine, are as uneasy and restless as a murderer, who is afraid
of a ghost, or of the hangman.
Mrs Miller was one of these. She could not conceal her uneasiness at
this letter; with the contents of which she had no sooner acquainted
the company, and given some hints of her distress, than Jones, her
good angel, presently relieved her anxiety. "As for myself, madam,"
said he, "my lodging is at your service at a moment's warning; and Mr
Nightingale, I am sure, as he cannot yet prepare a house fit to
receive his lady, will consent to return to his new lodging, whither
Mrs Nightingale will certainly consent to go." With which proposal
both husband and wife instantly agreed.
The reader will easily believe, that the cheeks of Mrs Miller began
again to glow with additional gratitude to Jones; but, perhaps, it may
be more difficult to persuade him, that Mr Jones having in his last
speech called her daughter Mrs Nightingale (it being the first time
that agreeable sound had ever reached her ears), gave the fond mother
more satisfaction, and warmed her heart more towards Jones, than his
having dissipated her present anxiety.
The next day was then appointed for the removal of the new-married
couple, and of Mr Jones, who was likewise to be provided for in the
same house with his friend. And now the serenity of the company was
again restored, and they past the day in the utmost chearfulness, all
except Jones, who, though he outwardly accompanied the rest in their
mirth, felt many a bitter pang on the account of his Sophia, which
were not a little heightened by the news of Mr Blifil's coming to town
(for he clearly saw the intention of his journey); and what greatly
aggravated his concern was, that Mrs Honour, who had promised to
inquire after Sophia, and to make her report to him early the next
evening, had disappointed him.