Anthony Trollope, Can You Forgive Her?: Vol. 1, Ch. 14

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Chapter XIV: Alice Vavasor Becomes Troubled 

Kate Vavasor had sent to her brother only the first half of her cousin's letter, that half in which Alice had attempted to describe what had taken place between her and Mr Grey. In doing this, Kate had been a wicked traitor,—a traitor to that feminine faith against which treason on the part of one woman is always unpardonable in the eyes of other women. But her treason would have been of a deeper die had she sent the latter portion, for in that Alice had spoken of George Vavasor himself. But even of this treason, Kate would, I think, have been guilty, had the words which Alice wrote been of a nature to serve her own purpose if read by her brother. But they had not been of this nature. They had spoken of George as a man with whom any closer connection than that which existed at present was impossible, and had been written with the view of begging Kate to desist from making futile attempts in that direction. "I feel myself driven," Alice had said, "to write all this, as otherwise,—if I were simply to tell you that I have resolved to part from Mr Grey,—you would think that the other thing might follow. The other thing cannot follow. I should think myself untrue in my friendship to you if I did not tell you about Mr Grey; and you will be untrue in your friendship to me if you take advantage of my confidence by saying more about your brother." This part of Alice's letter Kate had not sent to George Vavasor;—"But the other thing shall follow," Kate had said, as she read the words for the second time, and then put the papers into her desk. "It shall follow."

To give Kate Vavasor her due, she was, at any rate, unselfish in her intrigues. She was obstinately persistent, and she was moreover unscrupulous, but she was not selfish. Many years ago she had made up her mind that George and Alice should be man and wife, feeling that such a marriage would be good at any rate for her brother. It had been almost brought about, and had then been hindered altogether through a fault on her brother's part. But she had forgiven him this sin as she had forgiven many others, and she was now at work in his behalf again, determined that they two should be married, even though neither of them might be now anxious that it should be so. The intrigue itself was dear to her, and success in it was necessary to her self-respect.

She answered Alice's letter with a pleasant, gossiping epistle, which shall be recorded, as it will tell us something of Mrs Greenow's proceedings at Yarmouth. Kate had promised to stay at Yarmouth for a month, but she had already been there six weeks, and was still under her aunt's wing.