troduction had t▓aken place in the early part of the evening●.Laura bowed, Sir Sydney thought, coldly, ●and quietly passed on to the pian●o.The song was selected and sung.She had▓ often been heard before, but her v●oice had never seemed the same

as a

t that moment▓.It might have been that wha▓t a baronet and his sister listen▓ed to with such interest, th

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▓at the former had moved himsel▓f some distance from Miss Morlan▓d’s fascinations to look at and li●sten to the singer unobserved, must be o▓f greater value than it had ever before ●been supposed, or that there really w●as some spell in the song which Laura● had never been hea

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rd to sing● before (Miss Wilhelmina, seein●g it amongst her music, had spoken on supposit▓ion merely); but it fell upon the mos●t thoughtless, the most obtuse, wit▓h such unaccountable power, that eve▓n when the strain ceased, the s●udden and unusual hush continued▓, until rudely


broken by Mr.Gustavus ●Brown and Mr.Gilbert Givevoice clapping● their hands most vehemently, excitin●g an uproar of applause, under which Lau●ra tried to make her escape, but she● was prevented by the friendly adva●nce of Miss Harcourt, who, with both hands▓ extended, exclaimed,

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so as to ▓be heard by all, “Miss Gascoigne, wi●ll you permit me to thank you● for your beautiful song and claim your acqu▓aintance in the same breath We ha●ve, in truth, never met before; but if you k●new me as well as I know you from r●eport, we should be friends—nay ▓more, al


lies—already.You need not▓ look so very terrified,” she a▓dded, with laughing earnestnes▓s; “I am not a very formidable▓ person, though my want of ceremony ▓may really be rather startling; but I am ▓so glad to have found you, t▓hat I must entreat Miss Brown’s ▓kind permission to excuse me, if I do forget ●everybody but you for a little while.●” Her ready tact met with the● rejoinder she desired: she w▓as entreated by all the sisters to make▓ herself quite at home; they

w●ere delighted she should know their dear ●Laura.The blue room was qui

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any perception less obtuse than the Misses ▓Brown’s, have betrayed intense emo▓tion; but Miss Wilhelmina only read casual acqua●intanceship, and supposed an in
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