between Mrs. Churchill's importance in the world, and Jane Fairfax's, struck her; one was every thing, the other nothing --and she sat musing on the difference of woman's destiny, and quite unconscious on what her eyes were fixed, till roused by Miss Bates's saying,
'Ay, I see what you are thinking of, the piano forté. What is to become of that?--Very true. Poor dear Jane was talking of it just now.--"You must go," said she. "You and I must part. You will have no business here.--Let it stay, however," said she; "give it house-room till Colonel Campbell comes back. I shall talk about it to him; he will settle for me; he will help me out of all my difficulties."--And to this day, I do believe, she knows not whether it was his present or his daughter's.'
Now Emma was obliged to think of the piano forté; and the remembrance of all her former fanciful and unfair conjectures was so little pleasing, that she soon allowed herself to believe her visit had been long enough; and, with a repetition of every thing that she could venture to say of the good wishes which she really felt, took leave.
EMMA'S pensive meditations, as she walked home, were not interrupted; but on entering the parlour, she found those who must rouse her. Mr. Knightley and Harriet had arrived during her absence, and were sitting with her father.--Mr. Knightley immediately got up, and in a manner decidedly graver than usual, said,
'I would not go away without seeing you, but I have no time to spare, and therefore must now be gone directly. I am going to London, to spend a few days with John and Isabella. Have you any thing to send Or say, besides the "love," which nobody carries?'
'Nothing at all. But is not this a sudden scheme?'
'Yes--rather--I have been thinking of it some little time.'