screen attached to the white marble mantelpiece shading her face from the fire. Her gown was black and white: grey and black ribbons composed her head-dress. She looked half-dead with ennui. Those large women are often incorrigibly idle and listless: she never took up a needle, never cared to turn the pages of a book. She was indolent by nature, and had grown more so during her life in India before the death of her husband, Colonel St. Clare.

But her face lighted up to something like animation when Mr. Raynor entered and went forward. Margaret fell into the background. After shaking hands with Mrs. St. Clare, he turned to the opposite side of the fireplace; where, in another easy-chair, enveloped in a pink morning-wrapper, sat the invalid, Lydia.

She was a tall, fair, Roman-nosed young woman too, promising to be in time as large as her mother. As idle she was already. Dr. Raynor said all she wanted was to

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