"Oh, I am so glad!" cried poor Mrs. Hare. "Perhaps he will not mind having the tea in at once, if I told him how thirsty /I/ am."
The justice came in. A middle sized man, with pompous features, and a pompous walk, and a flaxen wig. In his aquiline nose, compressed lips, and pointed chin, might be traced a resemblance to his daughter; though he never could have been half so good-looking as was pretty Barbara.
"Richard," spoke up Mrs. Hare from between her shawls, the instant he opened the door.
"Would you please let me have tea in now? Would you very much mind taking it a little earlier this evening? I am feverish again, and my tongue is so parched I don't know how to speak."
"Oh, it's near seven; you won't have long to wait."
With this exceedingly gracious answer to an invalid's request, Mr. Hare quitted the room again and banged the door. He had not spoken unkindly or roughly, simply with indifference. But ere Mrs. Hare's meek sigh of disappointment was over, the door re-opened, and the flaxen wig was thrust in again.
"I don't mind if I do have it now. It will be a fine moonlight night and I am going with Pinner as far as Beauchamp's to smoke a pipe. Order it in, Barbara."
The tea was made and partaken of, and the justice departed for Mr. Beauchamp's, Squire Pinner calling for him at the gate. Mr. Beauchamp was a gentleman who farmed a great deal of land, and who was also Lord Mount Severn's agent or steward for East Lynne. He lived higher up the road some little distance beyond East Lynne.