Persuasion (Chapter 9, page 2 of 6)

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Chapter 9

The two families had always been on excellent terms, there being no
pride on one side, and no envy on the other, and only such a
consciousness of superiority in the Miss Musgroves, as made them
pleased to improve their cousins. Charles's attentions to Henrietta
had been observed by her father and mother without any disapprobation.
"It would not be a great match for her; but if Henrietta liked him,"--
and Henrietta did seem to like him.

Henrietta fully thought so herself, before Captain Wentworth came; but
from that time Cousin Charles had been very much forgotten.

Which of the two sisters was preferred by Captain Wentworth was as yet
quite doubtful, as far as Anne's observation reached. Henrietta was
perhaps the prettiest, Louisa had the higher spirits; and she knew not
now, whether the more gentle or the more lively character were most
likely to attract him.

Mr and Mrs Musgrove, either from seeing little, or from an entire
confidence in the discretion of both their daughters, and of all the
young men who came near them, seemed to leave everything to take its
chance. There was not the smallest appearance of solicitude or remark
about them in the Mansion-house; but it was different at the Cottage:
the young couple there were more disposed to speculate and wonder; and
Captain Wentworth had not been above four or five times in the Miss
Musgroves' company, and Charles Hayter had but just reappeared, when
Anne had to listen to the opinions of her brother and sister, as to
which was the one liked best. Charles gave it for Louisa, Mary for
Henrietta, but quite agreeing that to have him marry either could be
extremely delightful.

Charles "had never seen a pleasanter man in his life; and from what he
had once heard Captain Wentworth himself say, was very sure that he had
not made less than twenty thousand pounds by the war. Here was a
fortune at once; besides which, there would be the chance of what might
be done in any future war; and he was sure Captain Wentworth was as
likely a man to distinguish himself as any officer in the navy. Oh! it
would be a capital match for either of his sisters."

"Upon my word it would," replied Mary. "Dear me! If he should rise to
any very great honours! If he should ever be made a baronet! 'Lady
Wentworth' sounds very well. That would be a noble thing, indeed, for
Henrietta! She would take place of me then, and Henrietta would not
dislike that. Sir Frederick and Lady Wentworth! It would be but a new
creation, however, and I never think much of your new creations."

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