MEMOIRS OS1 JOSEPH GRIMALDI. 67
sterers, eyen the painters, had left the Penton-street mansion,
and there being- no pantomime, it seemed a very eligible period
for being1 married at once.
Grimaldi told Miss Hnghes that he thought so: Miss Hughes
replied that he had only to gain her father's consent in the first
instance, and then the day should be fixed -without more ado.
This was precisely what the lover was most anxious to avoid,
for two reasons : firstly, because it involved the very probable
postponement of Ms happiness; and secondly, because the ob-
taining- this consent was an awkward process. At last he recol-
lected that in conseqiience of Mr. Hughes being oxit of town, it
was quite impossible to ask him.
"Yery good," said Miss Hughes; "everything happens for
the best. I am sure you would never venture to speak to him on
the subject, so you had far better write. He will not keep you
long in suspense, I know, for he is quite certain to answer your
letter by return of post."
Mr. Hughes was then at Exeter; and as it certainly did ap-
pear to his destined son-in-law a much better course to write
than to speak, even if he had been in London, he sat down
without delay, and, after various trials, produced such a letter
as he thought would be most likely to find its way to the father's
heart. Miss Hughes approving of the contents, it was re-read,
copied, piinctuated, folded, and posted.
Next day the lady was obliged to leave town, to spend a short
time with some friends at Grravesend; and the lover, very much
to Ms annoyance and regret, was fain to stay behind, and con-
sole himself as he best could, in his mistress's absence, and the
absence of a reply from her father, to which he naturally looked
forward with considerable impatience and anxiety.
live days passed away, and still no letter came; and poor
Grimaldi, being left to his own fears and apprehensions, was
reduced to the most desperate and dismal forebodings. Having
110 employment at the theatre, and nothing to do but to think of