"Not quite. At any rate, he wishes you to go home. Will you allow me to pilot you through the room?"
"Oh, my dear, considerate papa!" she laughed. "He fears I shall be weary, and would emancipate me before the time. Thank you, Mr. Carlyle, but I will wait till the conclusion."
"No, no, Lady Isabel, it is not that. Lord Mount Severn is indeed worse."
Her countenance changed to seriousness; but she was not alarmed. "Very well. When the song is over--not to disturb the room."
"I think you had better lose no time," he urged. "Never mind the song and the room."
She rose instantly, and put her arm within Mr. Carlyle's. A hasty word of explanation to Mrs. Ducie, and he led her away, the room, in its surprise, making for them what space it might. Many an eye followed them, but none more curiously and eagerly than Barbara Hare's. "Where is he going to take her to?" involuntarily uttered Barbara.
"How should I know?" returned Miss Corny. "Barbara, you have done nothing but fidget all the night; what's the matter with you? Folks come to a concert to listen, not to talk and fidget."
Isabel's mantle was procured from the ante-room where it had been left, and she descended the stairs with Mr. Carlyle. The carriage was drawn up close to the entrance, and the coachman had his reins gathered, ready to start. The footman--not the one who had gone upstairs--threw open the carriage door as he saw her. He was new in the service, a simple country native, just engaged. She withdrew her arm from Mr. Carlyle's, and stood a moment before stepping in, looking at the man.