"You are very kind," she faltered; "and for a few days; until I can think; until-- Oh, Mr. Carlyle, are papa's affairs really so bad as they said yesterday?" she broke off, her perplexities recurring to her with vehement force. "Is there nothing left?"
Now Mr. Carlyle might have given the evasive assurance that there would be plenty left, just to tranquilize her. But to have used deceit with her would have pricked against every feeling of his nature; and he saw how implicitly she relied upon his truth.
"I fear things are not very bright," he answered. "That is, so far as we can see at present. But there may have been some settlement effected for you that you do not know of. Warburton & Ware--"
"No," she interrupted: "I never heard of a settlement, and I am sure there is none. I see the worst plainly. I have no home, no home and no money. This house is yours; the town house and Mount Severn go to Mr. Vane; and I have nothing."
"But surely Mr. Vane will be delighted to welcome you to your old home. The houses pass to him--it almost seems as though you had the greater right in them, than he or Mrs. Vane."
"My home with them!" she retorted, as if the words had stung her. "What are you saying, Mr. Carlyle?"
"I beg your pardon, Lady Isabel. I should not have presumed to touch upon these points myself, but--"
"Nay, I think I ought to beg yours," she interrupted, more calmly. "I am only grateful for the interest you take in them--the kindness you have shown. But I could not make my home with Mrs. Vane."