Family Pride (Chapter III - Wilford Cameron, page 1 of 11)


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The day succeeding Katy Lennox's return to Silverton was rainy and cold for the season, the storm extending as far westward as the city of New York, and making Wilford Cameron shiver as he stepped from the Hudson River cars into the carriage waiting for him, first greeting pleasantly the white-gloved driver, who, carefully closing the carriage door, mounted to his seat and drove his handsome bays in the direction of No. ---- Fifth Avenue. And Wilford, leaning back among the yielding cushions, thought how pleasant it was to be going home again, feeling glad, as he frequently did, that the home to which he was going was in every particular unexceptionable. The Camerons he knew were an old and highly respectable family, while it was his mother's pride that, go back as far as one might on either side, there could not be found a single blemish or a member of whom to be ashamed. On the Cameron side there were millionaires, merchant princes, bankers and stockholders, professors and scholars, while on hers, the Rossiter side, there were LL.D.'s and D.D.'s, lawyers and clergymen, authors and artists, beauties and belles, the whole forming an illustrious line of ancestry, admirably represented and sustained by the present family of Camerons, occupying the brownstone front, corner of ---- Street and Fifth Avenue, where the handsome carriage stopped and a tall figure ran quickly up the marble steps. There was a soft rustle of silk, an odor of delicate perfume, and from the luxurious chair before the fire kindled in the grate an elderly lady arose and advanced a step or two toward the parlor door. In another moment she was kissing the young man bending over her and saluting her as mother, kissing him quietly, properly, as the Camerons always kissed. She was very glad to have Wilford home again, for he was her favorite child, and brushing the raindrops from his coat she led him to the fire, offering him her own easy-chair and starting herself in quest of another. But Wilford held her back, and making her sit down, he drew an ottoman beside her and then asked her first how she had been and then how Jamie was, then where his sisters were, and if his father had come home--for there was a father, the elder Cameron, a quiet, unassuming man, who stayed all day in Wall Street, seldom coming home in time to carve at his own dinner table, and when he was at home, asking for nothing except to be left by his fashionable wife and daughters to himself, free to smoke and doze over his evening paper in the seclusion of his own reading-room.

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