al of the little deception that had been practised, lest some ill-timed visitor should inopportunely let out the secret, which had already been endangered more than once by the forgetfulness of the servants: but Frances wished to prolong their diversion till she should find some happy moment for the dénouement; added to which, she had an extreme curiosity to know how Major Elliott intended to release himself from the engagement formed by Colonel Seymour, in which he had tacitly, if not avowedly, acquiesced. It was certainly very flattering that her charms had proved sufficiently powerful to make him forget it; but that he should have yielded to the temptation without the slightest appearance of a struggle, did somewhat surprise her, as indeed, from their knowledge of his character, it did Mr and Mrs Gaskoin. Not that they would have expected him to adhere to the contract, if doing so proved repugnant either to himself or the young lady; but under all the circumstances of the case, they would h
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