A rustle in a field beyond the hedge attracted his attention. “What’s here to do?” he asked himself leisurely going towards the gate and looking over. “No jealous paper-miller? No pleasures of the chase in this part of the country? Mostly fishing hereabouts!”

The field had been newly mown, and there were yet the marks of the scythe on the yellow-green ground, and the track of wheels where the hay had been carried. Following the tracks with his eyes, the view closed with the new hayrick in a corner.

Now, if he had gone on to the hayrick, and gone round it? But, say that the event was to be, as the event fell out, and how idle are such suppositions! Besides, if he had gone; what is there of warning in a Bargeman lying on his face?

“A bird flying to the hedge,” was all he thought about it; and came back, and resumed his walk.

“If I had not a reliance on her being truthful,” said Eugene, after taking some half-dozen turns, “I should begin to think she had given me the slip for the second time. But she promised, and she is a girl of her word.”

Turning again at the water-lilies, he saw her coming, and advanced to meet her.

“I was saying to myself, Lizzie, that you were sure to come, though you were late.”

“I had to linger through the village as if I had no object before me, and I had to speak to several people in passing along, Mr. Wrayburn.”

“Are the lads of the village — and the ladies — such scandal-mongers?” he asked, as he took her hand and drew it through his arm.

She submitted to walk slowly on, with downcast eyes. He put her hand to his lips, and she quietly drew it away.

“Will you walk beside me, Mr. Wrayburn, and not touch me?” For, his arm was already stealing round her waist.

She stopped again, and gave him an earnest supplicating look. “Well, Lizzie, well!” said he, in an easy way though ill at ease with himself “don’t be unhappy, don’t be reproachful.”

“I cannot help being unhappy, but I do not mean to be reproachful. Mr.Wrayburn, I implore you to go away from this neighbourhood, to-morrow morning.”

“Lizzie, Lizzie, Lizzie!” he remonstrated. “As well be reproachful as wholly unreasonable. I can’t go away.”

“Why not?”

“Faith!” said Eugene in his airily candid manner. “Because you won’t let me. Mind! I don’t mean to be reproachful either. I don’t complain that you design to keep me here. But you do it, you do it.”

“Will you walk beside me, and not touch me;” for, his arm was coming about her again; “while I speak to you very seriously, Mr. Wrayburn?”

“I will do anything within the limits of possibility, for you, Lizzie,” he answered with pleasant gaiety as he folded his arms. “See here! Napoleon Buonaparte at St. Helena.”

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