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"Well, Harry, I won't press you for an answer, now. Stay here a month or two, and look around you; and then, we'll talk the matter over again, and see if we cannot settle upon something that shall be mutually satisfactory. For so long, surely, you can afford to be my guest.".
Soon, too, these things were made more noticeable by contrast, as a long line of neatly-kept grounds and well ordered fences came into view. Shortly after, a pleasant cottage, amply provided with broad, cool, vine-draped piazzas, appeared on the right; standing a little apart from the road, in the midst of a group of live-oak trees scarcely less grand and venerable than those which flung their heavy shadow over Bergan Hall. At sight of it, the Major's face grew dark again; especially as Bergan, pleased with its neat and cheerful aspect, turned to give it a second look..
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The house won Bergan's liking, at a glance. It stood on a corner; it was large and airy; double piazzas surrounded it on three sides; over it a hale old live-oak and half-a-dozen gray, decrepit china-trees flung their pleasant shade. In the rear, was a tempting thicket of a garden, which Art had first planted, and then handed over to Nature, to be taken care of at her leisure,—the result being an altogether admirable and Eden-like wilderness of boughs and vines, and, in their season, flowers and fruits, such as can be seen nowhere but at the South. The interior of the dwelling wore a most attractive look of neatness, comfort, and refinement, notwithstanding its extreme plainness of finish and furniture. Crossing its threshold, he felt that a true home had received him into its beneficent shadow. Nothing could be better for him, he thought, than to find an abiding place therein.?
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Bergan looked up quickly,—almost angrily,—but there was nothing in the doctor's face or manner to indicate that his general remark was weighted with any ulterior meaning. He was holding his wine up to the light with the air of a connoisseur, and having sufficiently enjoyed its color and bouquet, he tossed it off with apparent relish. Yet Bergan could scarcely have failed to notice, had he been less preoccupied, that he then quietly pushed both glass and bottle aside, and seemed to forget their existence.
The only point wherein the real man resembled the ideal one, was in a certain ineffaceable pride of birth, showing itself not only in his port, but darkening his harsh features with a heavy shade of hauteur.
The evening passed much like its predecessor. When, at last, he went up to his room, leaving his uncle to the dear companionship of his bottle and glass, he found it half-flooded with water from a newly sprung leak in the roof. Hastily declining the Major's hesitating offer of a share in his own apartment, he begged permission to quarter himself in the old Hall.
21 August, 2019 - 13:08
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21 August, 2019 - 13:08
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