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Chapter 9 (continued)
'I mean it,' she said. 'It really is too bad of you! You might have had some sense and a little consideration. Ask yourself if we are in a position here to entertain visitors. Well, I'm going to make myself very unpopular with this Mr Chalmers of yours. By this evening he will be regarding me with utter loathing, for I am about to persecute him.'
'What do you mean?' asked Nutty, alarmed.
'I am going to begin by asking him to help me open one of the hives.'
'For goodness' sake!'
'After that I shall--with his assistance--transfer some honey. And after that--well, I don't suppose he will be alive by then. If he is, I shall make him wash the dishes for me. The least he can do, after swooping down on us like this, is to make himself useful.'
A cry of protest broke from the appalled Nutty, but Elizabeth did not hear it. She had left the room and was on her way downstairs.
Lord Dawlish was smoking an after-breakfast cigar in the grounds. It was a beautiful day, and a peaceful happiness had come upon him. He told himself that he had made progress. He was under the same roof as the girl he had deprived of her inheritance, and it should be simple to establish such friendly relations as would enable him to reveal his identity and ask her to reconsider her refusal to relieve him of a just share of her uncle's money. He had seen Elizabeth for only a short time on the previous night, but he had taken an immediate liking to her. There was something about the American girl, he reflected, which seemed to put a man at his ease, a charm and directness all her own. Yes, he liked Elizabeth, and he liked this dwelling-place of hers. He was quite willing to stay on here indefinitely.
Nature had done well by Flack's. The house itself was more pleasing to the eye than most of the houses in those parts, owing to the black and white paint which decorated it and an unconventional flattening and rounding of the roof. Nature, too, had made so many improvements that the general effect was unusually delightful.
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