Vivian Grey, by Benjamin Disraeli

Chapter 9

It was impossible for any human being to behave with more kindness than the Marquess of Carabas did to Vivian Grey after that young gentleman’s short conversation with Mrs. Felix Lorraine in the conservatory. The only feeling which seemed to actuate the Peer was an eager desire to compensate, by his present conduct, for any past misunderstanding, and he loaded his young friend with all possible favour. Still Vivian was about to quit Château Desir; and in spite of all that had passed, he was extremely loth to leave his noble friend under the guardianship of his female one.

About this time, the Duke and Duchess of Juggernaut, the very pink of aristocracy, the wealthiest, the proudest, the most ancient, and most pompous couple in Christendom, honoured Château Desir with their presence for two days; only two days, making the Marquess’s mansion a convenient resting-place in one of their princely progresses to one of their princely castles.

Vivian contrived to gain the heart of her Grace by his minute acquaintance with the Juggernaut pedigree; and having taken the opportunity, in one of their conversations, to describe Mrs. Felix Lorraine as the most perfect specimen of divine creation with which he was acquainted, at the same time the most amusing and the most amiable of women, that lady was honoured with an invitation to accompany her Grace to Himalaya Castle. As this was the greatest of all possible honours, and as Desir was now very dull, Mrs. Felix Lorraine accepted the invitation, or rather obeyed the command, for the Marquess would not hear of a refusal, Vivian having dilated in the most energetic terms on the opening which now presented itself of gaining the Juggernaut. The coast being thus cleared, Vivian set off the next day for Sir Berdmore Scrope’s.

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Last updated Friday, March 7, 2014 at 15:19