Another goal of ours was to create the kind of family togetherness
"Bring her to me," her ladyship commanded.
The girl was brought in, overawed and trembling. She was a country- bred young creature, as the lacquey had said, being of the simple rose-and-white freshness of seventeen years perhaps, and having childish blue eyes and fair curling locks.
She was so frightened by the grandeur of her surroundings, and the splendid beauty of the lady who was so soon to be a duchess, and was already a great earl's widow, that she could only stand within the doorway, curtseying and trembling, with tears welling in her eyes.
"Be not afraid," said my Lady Dunstanwolde. "Come hither, child, and tell me what you want." Indeed, she did not look a hard or shrewish lady; she spoke as gently as woman could, and a mildness so unexpected produced in the young creature such a revulsion of feeling that she made a few steps forward and fell upon her knees, weeping, and with uplifted hands.
"My lady," she said, "I know not how I dared to come, but that I am so desperate--and your ladyship being so happy, it seemed--it seemed that you might pity me, who am so helpless and know not what to do."
Her ladyship leaned forward in her chair, her elbow on her knee, her chin held in her hand, to gaze at her.
"You come from Sir John Oxon?" she said.
Anne, watching, clutched each arm of her chair.