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Hope Benham
A Story for Girls

written by "Perry, Nora, 1841-1896"
...—the quivering lips, the eyes that were striving against tears,—and obeying a swift, warm impulse of pity and sympathy, forgot her fears in it, and called out softly,— "Dorothea! Dorothea!" Dorothea turned a startled glance behind her at this call. Then, "What! you here, Hope?" she exclaimed. "Yes, with Mrs. Sibley." "Oh, and you're going straight home—to Miss Marr's? Mrs. Sibley is to take you?" stepping back to Hope's side. "Yes." "And may I—will you let me come with you?" in a whisper, and clutching Hope's wrist nervously. "Yes, oh, yes; I was going to ask you if you wouldn't like to come with us." "Were you?" A quick glance at Hope from the black eyes still struggling against tears, a closer clutch upon Hope's wrist, then a sudden conquering of the quivering lips, and, "I needn't keep you waiting any longer, I have found friends who will take me home," Mr. Raymond Armitage was told with a dignity that surprised and rather abashed him. Hope, too, was surprised at the real dignity displayed, and slid her hand into the hand that was clutching her wrist, with a sudden movement of approbation and sympathy. Dorothea gave a quick start, and turned an inquiring look upon Hope's face at this movement,—a look that seemed to ask, "Do you really feel like this toward me?" With wise forethought, Mrs. Sibley, on leaving the Park, had directed her coachman, who was awaiting her with the carriage at that point to drive round to the theatre and await her there. If he did not find her ready for him at once, he was to return at four o'clock. She had thus provided for either result of her expedition. If the elevated, swift though it was, did not enable them to reach the theatre in time to interview Dorothea as she arrived, the carriage would be on hand at four to take her back with them after the play, for Mrs. Sibley had no manner of doubt from the first that the girl would go with them, though s...

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