The best way to picture it all is to say that I was off my guard
For, if he had ever been out of my thoughts for a few moments together since the hiding had begun, it was in those very moments when he was closest to me; and to think that I should be so unconscious and off my guard
after all my care, was as if I had shut an avenue of a hundred doors to keep him out, and then had found him at my elbow.
I felt he was only affecting fervour in order to put me off my guard
, to induce me to come out in return, so I scarcely even smiled.
For seven or eight months he behaved so remarkably well, and managed so skilfully too, that I was almost completely off my guard
, and was really beginning to look upon him as a friend, and even to treat him as such, with certain prudent restrictions (which I deemed scarcely necessary); when, presuming upon my unsuspecting kindness, he thought he might venture to overstep the bounds of decent moderation and propriety that had so long restrained him.
But I cannot imagine how I could be so off my guard
The wording of the invitation and the manner of the messenger threw me entirely off my guard
, so cordial was the one and respectful the other, and the result was that I went willingly, telling Ajor that I would return presently.
A telling move with a good many, I dare say, but it won't put ME off my guard
My principle is never to be off my guard
with friends or relatives; you can't perish except through weakness.