'So be we!'
'I wonder what she is like - the lady they say his family have looked out for him!'
'I wonder,' said Izz.
'Some lady looked out for him?' gasped
Tess, starting. 'I have never heard o' that!'
'O yes--'tis whispered; a young lady of his own rank, chosen by his family; a Doctor of Divinity's daughter near his father's parish
of Emminster; he don't much care for her, they say. But he is sure to marry her.'
They had heard so very little of this; yet it was enough to build up wretched dolorous
dreams upon, there in the shade of the night. They pictured all the details of his being won round to consent
, of the wedding preparations, of the bride's happiness, of her dress and veil, of her blissful
home with him, when oblivion
would have fallen upon themselves as far as he and their love were concerned. Thus they talked, and ached, and wept till sleep charmed their sorrow away.
After this disclosure
Tess nourished no further foolish thought that there lurked
any grave and deliberate import in Clare's attentions to her. It was a passing summer love of her face, for love's own temporary
sake - nothing more. And the thorny crown of this sad conception
was that she whom he really did prefer in a cursory way to the rest, she who knew herself to be more impassioned in nature, cleverer, more beautiful than they, was in the eyes of propriety far less worthy of him than the homelier ones whom he ignored.