The Mysterious Key And What It Opened by Louisa May Alcott

The Mysterious Key And What It Opened

byLouisa May Alcott

Kobo ebook | June 6, 2013

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"This is the third time I've found you poring over that old rhyme. What
is the charm, Richard? Not its poetry I fancy." And the young wife laid
a slender hand on the yellow, time-worn page where, in Old English text,
appeared the lines she laughed at.

Richard Trevlyn looked up with a smile and threw by the book, as if
annoyed at being discovered reading it. Drawing his wife's hand through
his own, he led her back to her couch, folded the soft shawls about her,
and, sitting in a low chair beside her, said in a cheerful tone, though
his eyes betrayed some hidden care, "My love, that book is a history of
our family for centuries, and that old prophecy has never yet been
fulfilled, except the 'heir and heiress' line. I am the last Trevlyn,
and as the time draws near when my child shall be born, I naturally
think of his future, and hope he will enjoy his heritage in peace."

"God grant it!" softly echoed Lady Trevlyn, adding, with a look askance
at the old book, "I read that history once, and fancied it must be a
romance, such dreadful things are recorded in it. Is it all true,

"Yes, dear. I wish it was not. Ours has been a wild, unhappy race till
the last generation or two. The stormy nature came in with old Sir
Ralph, the fierce Norman knight, who killed his only son in a fit of
wrath, by a blow with his steel gauntlet, because the boy's strong will
would not yield to his."

"Yes, I remember, and his daughter Clotilde held the castle during a
siege, and married her cousin, Count Hugo. 'Tis a warlike race, and I
like it in spite of the mad deeds."

"Married her cousin! That has been the bane of our family in times past.
Being too proud to mate elsewhere, we have kept to ourselves till idiots
and lunatics began to appear. My father was the first who broke the law
among us, and I followed his example: choosing the freshest, sturdiest
flower I could find to transplant into our exhausted soil."

"I hope it will do you honor by blossoming bravely. I never forget that
you took me from a very humble home, and have made me the happiest wife
in England."

"And I never forget that you, a girl of eighteen, consented to leave
your hills and come to cheer the long-deserted house of an old man like
me," returned her husband fondly.

"Nay, don't call yourself old, Richard; you are only forty-five, the
boldest, handsomest man in Warwickshire. But lately you look worried;
what is it? Tell me, and let me advise or comfort you."

"It is nothing, Alice, except my natural anxiety for you--Well,
Kingston, what do you want?"

Trevlyn's tender tones grew sharp as he addressed the entering servant,
and the smile on his lips vanished, leaving them dry and white as he
glanced at the card he handed him. An instant he stood staring at it,
then asked, "Is the man here?"

Title:The Mysterious Key And What It OpenedFormat:Kobo ebookPublished:June 6, 2013Publisher:WDS PublishingLanguage:English

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