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44 MBMOIES OF JOSEPH GEIMA-LKI.
anxious to know who the lady is, and so desirous that Joe should
" "Why, upon my word," said Mrs. Lewis, "I think I should
be doing wrong if I showed it to you, unless Joe said I might."
" Wrong!" echoed the young lady; " oh! if you only knew
how much I have suffered since last night!" Here she paused
for some moments, and added, with some violence of tone and
manner, that if that suspense lasted much longer, she should go
"Hey-day! Miss Maria," exclaimed Mrs. Lewis,—"mad!
Why, surely you cannot have been so imprudent as to have
formed an attachment to Joe yourself? But you shall see the
letter, as you wish it; there is only one thing you must promise,
and that is, to plead Joe's cause with the lady herself."
Miss Hughes hesitated, faltered, and at length said, she would
At this point of the discourse, Mrs. Lewis produced the la-
boured composition, and placed it in her hand.
Miss Hughes raised the letter, glanced at the direction, saw
bee own name written as plainly as the nervous fingers of its
agitated writer would permit, let it fall to the ground, and sunk
into the arms of Mrs. Lewis*
While this scene was acting in a private room, Grimaldi was
acting upon the public stage ; and conscious that his hopes de-
pended upon his exertions, he did not suffer his anxieties, great
as they were, to interfere with his performance. Towards the
(wadusion of the first piece he heard somebody enter Mr.
Hughes's box—and there sat the object of all his anxiety.
M She has got the letter," thought the tremblbg actor ; " she
must have decided by this time."
He would have given all he possessed to have known what
had passed,—when the business of the stage calling him to the
frant, exactly facing the box in which she sat, their eyes met,
and she nodded and smiled. This was not the first time thatrs. Lewis, looking very sly.