back that Frog got a good look at the faces beneath the
To him it seemed like trampling on the little grave beneath the willows, and it required all Maude's powers of persuasion to dry his tears and soothe the pain which every child must feel when first they know that the lost mother, whose memory they so fondly cherish, is to be succeeded by another.
She was a most magnificent looking woman, as she sat within her richly furnished room on that warm September night, now gazing idly dawn the street and again bending her head to catch the first sound of footsteps on the stairs. Personal preservation had been the great study of her life, and forty years had not dimmed the luster of her soft, black eyes, or woven one thread of silver among the luxuriant curls which clustered in such profusion around her face and neck. Gray hairs and Maude Glendower had nothing in common, and the fair, round cheek, the pearly teeth, the youthful bloom, and white, uncovered shoulders seemed to indicate that time had made an exception in her favor, and dropped her from its wheel.
With a portion of her history the reader is already acquainted. Early orphaned, she was thrown upon the care of an old aunt who, proud of her wondrous beauty, spared no pains to make her what nature seemed to will that she should be, a coquette and a belle. At seventeen we find her a schoolgirl in New Haven, where she turned the heads of all the college boys, and then murmured because one, a dark-eyed youth of twenty, withheld from her the homage she claimed as her just due. In a fit of pique she besieged a staid, handsome young M.D. of twenty-seven, who had just commenced to practice in the city, and who, proudly keeping himself aloof from the college students, knew nothing of the youth she so much fancied. Perfectly intoxicated with her beauty, he offered her his hand, and was repulsed. Overwhelmed with disappointment and chagrin, he then left the city, and located himself at Laurel Hill, where now we find him the selfish, overbearing Dr. Kennedy.
But in after years Maude Glendower was punished for that act. The dark-haired student she so much loved was wedded to another, and with a festering wound within her heart she plunged at once into the giddy world of fashion, slaying her victims by scores, and exulting as each new trophy of her power was laid at her feet. She had no heart, the people said, and with a mocking laugh she thought of the quiet grave 'mid the New England hills, where, one moonlight night two weeks after that grave was made, she had wept such tears as were never wept by her again. Maude Glendower had loved, but loved in vain; and now, at the age of forty, she was unmarried and alone in the wide world. The aunt, who had been to her a mother, had died a few months before, and as her annuity ceased with her death Maude was almost wholly destitute. The limited means she possessed would only suffice to pay her, board for a short time, and in this dilemma she thought of her old lover, and wondered if he could again be won. He was rich, she had always heard, and as his wife she could still enjoy the luxuries to which she had been accustomed. She knew his sister,--they had met in the salons of Saratoga,--and though it hurt her pride to do it, she at last signified her willingness to be again addressed.
It was many weeks ere Dr. Kennedy conquered wholly his olden grudge, but conquered it he had, and she sat expecting him on the night when first we introduced her to our readers. He had arrived in Troy on the western train, and written her a note announcing his intention to visit her that evening. For this visit Maude Glendower had arrayed herself with care, wearing a rich silk dress of crimson and black--colors well adapted to her complexion.
"He saw me at twenty-five. He shall not think me greatly changed since then," she said, as over her bare neck and arms she threw an exquisitely wrought mantilla of lace.
The Glendower family had once been very wealthy, and the last daughter of the haughty race glittered with diamonds which had come to her from her great-grandmother, and had been but recently reset. And there she sat, beautiful Maude Glendower--the votary of fashion- -the woman of the world--sat waiting for the cold, hard, overbearing man who thought to make her his wife. A ring at the door, a heavy tread upon the winding stairs, and the lady rests her head upon her hand, so that her glossy curls fall over, but do not conceal her white, rounded arm, where the diamonds are shining.
"I could easily mistake him for my father," she thought, as a gray- haired man stepped into the room, where he paused an instant, bewildered with the glare of light and the display of pictures, mirrors, tapestry, rosewood, and marble, which met his view.
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