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not but discover, he thought he had greater reason to suspect that I made reprisals: thus his sagacity multiplied his vices, and my virtue defeated its own purpose.
" Some maxims, however, which I had gathered from novels and plays were still uppermost in my mind. I reflected often upon the arts of Amanda, and the persevering tenderness and discretion of Lady Easy; and I believed, as I had been taught by the sequel of every story, that they could not be practised without success, but against sordid stupidity and obdurate ill nature; against the Brutes and the Sullens, whom, on the contrary, it was scarce a crime to punish, by admitting a rake of parts to pleasures of which they were unworthy.
“ From such maxims, and such examples, I therefore derived some hope. I wished earnestly to detect Hilario in his infidelity; that, in the moment of conviction, I might rouse his sensibility of my wrongs, and exalt his opinion of my merit: that I might cover him with confusion, melt him with tenderness, and double his obligations by generosity
* The opportunity for which I had so often wished, but never dared to hope, at length arrived. I learned by accident one morning, that he intended
go in the evening to a masquerade; and I immediately conceived a design to discover his dress, and follow him to the theatre; to single him out, make some advances, and, if possible, bring on an assignation, where, in the ardour of his first address, I might strike him with astonishment by taking off my mask, reprove him without reproach, and forgive him without parade, mingling with the soft distress of violated affection, the calm dignity of injured yirtue.
“ My imagination was fired with these images,
which I was impatient to realize. My pride, which had hitherto sustained me above complaint, and thrown a veil of cheerfulness over my distress, would not suffer me to employ an assistant in the project I had undertaken; because this could not be done without revealing my suspicions, and confiding my peace to the breast of another, by whose malice or caprice it might be destroyed, and to whom I should, therefore, be brought into the most slavish subjection, without insuring the secrecy of which my dependence would be the
price. I therefore resolved, at whatever risk or disappointment or detection, to trace him to the warehouse where his habit was to be hired, and discover that which he should choose myself.
" He had ordered his chariot at eleven :-I therefore wrapped myself up in an undress, and sat alone in my room till I saw him drive from the door. I then came down, and as soon as he had turned into St. James's Street, which was not more than twenty yards, I went after him, and meeting with a hackney coach at the end of the street, I got hastily into it, and ordered the driver to follow the chariot at some distance, and to stop when it stopped.
“I pulled up both the windows; and after half an hour spent in the most tormenting suspense and anxiety, it stopped at the end of Tavistock Street. I looked hastily out of the window, hiding my face with my handkerchief, and saw Hilario alight at the distance of aboạt forty yards, and go into a warehouse, of which I could easily distinguish the sign. I waited till he came out, and as soon as the chariot was out of sight, I discharged the coach, and going immediately to the warehouse that Hilario bad left, I pretended to want a habit for myself. I saw many lying upon the counter, which I supposed had been brought out for Hilario's choice; about these,
therefore, I was very inquisitive, and took particular notice of a very rich Turkish dress, which one of the servants took up to put away. When I saw he was about to remove it, I asked hastily whether it was hired, and learned with unspeakable satisfaction, that it had been chosen by the gentleman who was just gone. Thus far I succeeded to the utmost of my hopes, not only by discovering Hilario's dress, but by his choice of one so very remarkable; for if he had chosen a domino, my scheme would have been rendered impracticable, because in a domino I could not certainly have distinguished him from others.
“As I had now gained the intelligence I wanted, I was impatient to leave the shop; which it was not difficult to do, as it was just filled with ladies from two coaches, and the people were in a hurry to accommodate them. My dress did not attract much notice, nor promise much advantage; I was, therefore, willingly suffered to depart, upon slightly leaving word that I would call again.
“When I got into the street, I considered that it would not have been prudent to have hired a habit, where Hilario would either come to dress, or send for that which he had hired for himself: I therefore took another coach at the end of Southampton Street, and went to a shop near the Haymarket, where I had before purchased a capuchin, and some other trifles, and where I knew habits were to be hired, though not in so public a manner as at other places.
“ I now returned home; and such was the joy and expectation which my success inspired that Í had forgot I had succeeded only in an attempt, for which I could find neither motive nor apology but in my wretchedness.
During the interval between my return and the time when the doors of the theatre were to be opened,
I suffered the utmost inquietude and impatience. I
of expressing the alphabet with my fingers, which I have since discovered to be more generally known than at that time I imagined. Hilario, during his courtship, had once observed me using it to a lady who had been my schoolfellow, and would never let me rest till I had taught it him. In this manner I saw my Turk conversing with a Nun, from whom he suddenly turned with an appearance of vexation and disappointment. I thought this a favourable opportunity to accost him; and, therefore, as he passed by me, I pulled him gently by the sleeve, and spelt with my fingers the words I understand.' At first I was afraid of being discovered by showing my art; but I reflected, that it would effeetually secure me from being discovered by my voice, which I considered as the more formidable danger. I perceived that he was greatly pleased; and after a very short conversation, which he seemed to make a point of continuing in the manner I had begun, an assignation was made, in consequence of which we proceeded in chairs to a bagnio near Covent Garden, During this journey my mind was in great agitation; and it is difficult to determine whether pleasure or pain was predominant. I did not, however, fail to anticipate my triumph in the confusion of Hilario; I conceived the manner and the terms in wbich I would address him, and exulted in the superiority which I should acquire by this opposition of his character to mine.
No. 118. SATURDAY, DEC. 22, 1753.
“ He was ready to receive me when my chair was brought into the entry, and, giving me his hand, led me hastily up stairs. As soon as we entered the room he shut the door, and, taking off his mask, ran to me with the utmost impatience to take off mine. This was the important moment; but at this moment I discovered, with inexpressible astonishment and terror, that the person with whom I was alone in a brothel, was not Hilario, but Caprinus, a w tch whom I well remembered to have seen among the rakes that he frequently brought to his table.
“ At this sight, so unexpected and so dreadful, I shrieked aloud, and threw myself from him into an easy chair that stood by the bedside. Caprinus, probably believing I had fainted, hastily tore away my mask to give me air.
At the first view of my face he started back, and gazed at me with the same wonder that had fixed my eyes upon him. But our amazement was the next moment increased; for Hilario, who had succeeded in his intrigue, with whatever lady, happened to be in the next room, and, either alarmed by the voice of distress, or knowing it to be mine, rushed in at the door which flew open
before him; but, at the next step, stood fixed in the same stupor of astonishment which had seized us.
After a moment's recollection he came up to me, and dragging me to the candle, gazed steadfastly in my face with a look so frightful as never to be forgotten; it was the pale countenance