She spent the hours between breakfast and luncheon hard at work in her painting-room鈥攁 little room with a large window facing northward. She had the coachman's girl and boy for her models, and was engaged upon a little water-colour picture after the school of Mrs. Allingham, a little picture which told its story with touching simplicity.
She might never enter it again, perhaps. Lord Lostwithiel was so seldom there. His absenteeism was the lament of the neighbourhood. The things he ought to have done and did not do would have filled a book. He had been wild in his youth. He had once owned a theatre. He had done, or was supposed to have done, things which were spoken of with bated breath; but of late years he had developed new ambitions, and had done with theatrical speculations. He had become literary, scientific, political. He was one of the lights of the intellectual world, or of that small section of the intellectual world which is affiliated to the smart world. He knew all the clever people in London, and a good many of the intellectualities of Paris,[Pg 10] Berlin, and Vienna. He had never married; but it was supposed that he would eventually marry, before he was forty, for instance, and that he would make a great match. He was not rich, but he was Lord Lostwithiel. He was by no means handsome, but he was said to be one of the most fascinating men in London.
? 一一级黄 British Council
Isola fancied that her adventure was all over and done with after that ceremonious call of inquiry; but in so narrow a world as that of Trelasco it was scarcely possible to have seen the last of a man who lived within three miles; and she and Lord Lostwithiel met now and then in the course of her solitary rambles. The walk into Fowey, following the old disused railway, was almost her favourite, and one which she had occasion to take oftener than any other, since Tabitha was a stay-at-home person, and expected her young mistress to do all the marketing, so that Isola had usually[Pg 34] some errand to take her into the narrow street on the hillside above the sea. It was at Fowey that she oftenest met Lostwithiel. His yacht, the Vendetta, was in the harbour under repairs, and he went down to look at the work daily, and often dawdled upon the deck till dusk, watching the carpenters, or talking to his captain. They had been half over the world together, master and man, and were almost as familiar as brothers. The crew were half English and half foreign; and it was a curious mixture of languages in which Lostwithiel talked to them. They were most of them old hands on board the Vendetta, and would have stood by the owner of the craft if he had wanted to sail her up the Phlegethon.. "Is the storm over?" she asked, by-and-by, with her face turned towards the loggia and the starlight above the garden.
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