Anthony Trollope: The Belton Estate


Some four or five days before Christmas there came a visitor to Mr Green with whom the reader is acquainted, and who was no less a man than the Member for Perivale. Captain Aylmer, when Clara parted from him on the morning of her return to Belton Castle, had resolved that he would repeat his offer of marriage by letter. A month had passed by since then, and he had not as yet repeated it. But his intention was not altered. He was a deliberate man, who did not do such things quite as quickly as his rival, and who upon this occasion had thought it prudent to turn over more than once in his mind all that he proposed to do. Nor had he as yet taken any definite steps as to that fifteen hundred pounds which he had promised to Clara in her aunt's name, and which Clara had been, and was, so unwilling to receive. He had now actually paid it over, having purchased government stock in Clara's name for the amount, and had called upon Mr Green, in order that that gentleman, as Clara's lawyer, might make the necessary communication to her.

'I suppose there's nothing further to be done?' asked Captain Aylmer.

'Nothing further by me,' said the lawyer. 'Of course I shall write to her, and explain that she must make arrangements as to the interest. I am very glad that her aunt thought of her in her last moments.'

'Mrs Winterfield would have provided for her before, had she known that everything had been swallowed up by that unfortunate young man.'

'All's well that ends well. Fifteen hundred pounds are better than nothing.'

'Is it not enough?' said the captain, blushing.

'It isn't for me to have an opinion about that, Captain Aylmer. It depends on the nature of her claim; and that again depends on the relative position of the aunt and niece when they were alive together.'

'You are aware that Miss Amedroz was not Mrs Winterfield's niece?'

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