Clarissa Harlowe LETTER X



Why should you permit a mind, so much devoted to your service, to labour under such an impatience as you must know it would labour under, for want of an answer to a letter of such consequence to you, and therefore to me, as was mine of Thursday night?—Rogers told me, on Thursday, you were so ill; your letter sent by him was so melancholy!—Yet you must be ill indeed, if you could not write something to such a letter; were it but a line, to say you would write as soon as you could. Sure you have received it. The master of your nearest post-office will pawn his reputation that it went safe: I gave him particular charge of it.

God send me good news of your health, of your ability to write; and then I will chide you—indeed I will—as I never yet did chide you.

I suppose your excuse will be, that the subject required consideration— Lord! my dear, so it might; but you have so right a mind, and the matter in question is so obvious, that you could not want half an hour to determine.—Then you intended, probably, to wait Collins’s call for your letter as on to-morrow!—Suppose something were to happen, as it did on Friday, that he should not be able to go to town to-morrow?—How, child, could you serve me so!—I know not how to leave off scolding you!

Dear, honest Collins, make haste: he will: he will. He sets out, and travels all night: for I have told him, that the dearest friend I have in the world has it in her own choice to be happy, and to make me so; and that the letter he will bring from her will assure it to me.

I have ordered him to go directly (without stopping at the Saracen’s-head-inn) to you at your lodgings. Matters are now in so good a way, that he safely may.

Your expected letter is ready written I hope: if it can be not, he will call for it at your hour.

You can’t be so happy as you deserve to be: but I doubt not that you will be as happy as you can; that is, that you will choose to put yourself instantly into Lady Betty’s protection. If you would not have the wretch for your own sake; have him you must, for mine, for your family’s, for your honour’s, sake!—Dear, honest Collins, make haste! make haste! and relieve the impatient heart of my beloved’s

Ever faithful, ever affectionate, ANNA HOWE.