A Flat Iron for a Farthing

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Purchase of this book includes free trial access to www.million-books.com where you can read more than a million books for free. This is an OCR edition with typos. Excerpt from book: CHAPTER IV. AUNT MARIA—THE ENEMY ROUTED—LONDON TOWN. Aunt Maria was my father's sister. She was married to a wealthy gentleman, and had a large family of children. It was from her that we originally got Nurse Bundle; and anecdotes of her and of my cousins, and wonderful accounts of London (where they lived), had long figured conspicuously in Mrs. Bundle's nursery chronicles. Aunt Maria came, and Uncle Ascott came with her. It is not altogether without a reason that I speak of them in this order. Aunt Maria was the active partner of their establishment. She was a clever, vigorous, well-educated, inartistic, kindly, managing woman. She was not exactly " meddling," but when she thought it her duty to interfere in a matter, no delicacy of scruples, and no nervousness baulked the directness of her proceedings. When she was most sweeping oruncompromising, Uncle Ascott would say, " My dear Maria 1" But it was generally from a spasm of nervous cowardice, and not from any deliberate wish to interrupt Aunt Maria's course of action. He trusted her entirely. Aunt Maria was very shrewd, and that long interview with Nurse Bundle in her own room was hardly needed to acquaint her with the condition of domestic politics in our establishment. She " took in" the Burtons with one glance. The ladies " fell out" the following evening. The Burtons left Dacrefield the next morning, and at lunch Aunt Maria " pulled them to pieces " with as little remorse as a cook would pluck a partridge. I never saw Miss Eliza Burton again. Aunt Maria did not fondle or spoil me. She might perhaps have shown more tenderness to her brother's only and motherless child but, after Miss Burton, hers was a fault on the right side. She had a kindly interest in me, and she showed it by asking me to pay her a vi... --This text refers to the Paperback edition.
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