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Frank Leward: Memorials

Mrs. Leward to Mr. Leward

page 68

Mrs. Leward to Mr. Leward.

The Glades, July 24.

My dear Husband,—We have been spending a very happy time here. I wish you could have come with us. The only drawback has been mamma's rheumatism which often confines her to her room. She has aged considerably. The excitement of having us with her, and of seeing Frank again rather upset her at first. Frank is very good and attentive. Bampton came last week, and is a great addition to our party, he talks so well and is so clever and gentle and fond of Frank. I don't think he is nearly so High Church as people say, at any rate he does not show it. He is very anxious that Frank should work with a tutor and go up to Oxford. How I wish it might be done. I and Bampton have long talks together on the subject. My dear husband you little know our boy's affectionate and sensitive nature, or I think you would be more considerate to him. You are so much wiser and know so much more of things than I do I know but I believe Frank notices a coldness on your part, and that it pains him deeply. From what he has said to me and more from what Bampton has told me I am afraid he has made up his mind to emigrate. He says he hates an idle life, and never will be dependent on any one, and would rather go away to make a home for himself than be a burden upon you. I have told him he will of course succeed to mamma's property at her death, and that however much we all wish to keep her with us yet in the course of nature we must expect page 69her to be taken from us before long and that we cannot hope that she will live many more years.

She I know has said much the same to Frank herself for dear Mamma does not fear the end—why should she? —she rather looks forward to it as to a happy release from the infirmities of old age and to the prospect of joining my dear father in heaven. You know how devoted they were to one another, and ever since his death I think she has regarded this life only as something standing in the way of a happy reunion with him she so dearly loved and loves.

Don't scold me dear Francis for what I have written. If you drive Frank from me again I think I would rather go with mamma and be relieved from the changes and chances of this variable world. I have felt for some time that the happiness I have had since Frank's return was too great to last and that I ought to expect some great overpowering sorrow to make up for it.

I forgot to mention that Mabel is here frequently, she and Frank are much together, and seem so happy in one another's company. Only the other day mamma and I were watching them from her window as they were walking together in the garden, and we could not help expressing what we had both so long thought how nice it would be if some day they were to become man and wife. I know she likes him and I believe he is very fond of her.

Write soon, and remember to tell us exactly how you are my dear husband.

Your very affectionate wife