Marianne assented most feelingly to the remark; and her mother was ledby it to an enumeration of Colonel Brandon’s injuries and merits, warmas friendship and design could unitedly dictate. Her daughter did notlook, however, as if much of it were heard by her.
Elinor, according to her expectation, that Marianne did not continue to gain strength as she had done;but while her resolution was unsubdued, and she still tried to appearcheerful and easy, her sister could safely trust to the effect of timeupon her health.
Margaret returned, and the family were again all restored to eachother, again quietly settled at the cottage; and if not pursuing theirusual studies with quite so much vigour as when they first came toBarton, at least planning a vigorous prosecution of them in future.
Elinor grew impatient for some tidings of Edward. She had heardnothing of him since her leaving London, nothing new of his plans,nothing certain even of his present abode. Some letters had passedbetween her and her brother, in consequence of Marianne’s illness; andin the first of John’s, there had been this sentence:– “We knownothing of our unfortunate Edward, and can make no enquiries on soprohibited a subject, but conclude him to be still at Oxford;” whichwas all the intelligence of Edward afforded her by the correspondence,for his name was not even mentioned in any of the succeeding letters.She was not doomed, however, to be long in ignorance of his measures.
Their man-servant had been sent one morning to Exeter on business; andwhen, as he waited at table, he had satisfied the inquiries of hismistress as to the event of his errand, this was his voluntarycommunication.