The Haunted Hotel: A Mystery of Modern Venice

By Wilkie Collins | Go to book overview
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ceeded more impenetrably with the last words she had to say to Agnes.

"Advise your interesting Mrs. Ferrari to wait a little longer," she said. "You will know what has become of her husband, and you will tell her. There will be nothing to alarm you. Some trifling event will bring us together the next time --as trifling, I daresay, as the engagement of Ferrari. Sad nonsense, Mr. Westwick, is it not? But you make allowances for women; we all talk nonsense. Good-morning, Miss Lockwood."

She opened the door--suddenly, as if she was afraid of being called back for the second time-- and left them.


"Do you think she is mad?" Agnes asked.

"I think she is simply wicked. False, superstitious, inveterately cruel--but not mad. I believe her main motive in coming here was to enjoy the luxury of frightening you."

"She has frightened me. I am ashamed to own it--but so it is."

Henry looked at her, hesitated for a moment, and seated himself on the sofa by her side.

"I am very anxious about you, Agnes," he said. "But for the fortunate chance which led me to call here to-day--who knows what that vile woman might not have said or done, if she had found you alone? My dear, you are leading a sadly unprotected solitary life. I don't like to


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