On the evening previous to
her being brought to my home, my mother had said playfully, "I have a pretty present for my Victor--tomorrow he shall have it." And when, on the morrow, she presented Elizabeth to me as her promised gift, I, with childish seriousness, interpreted her words literally and looked upon Elizabeth as mine--mine to protect, love, and cherish.
I may here state, and on my faith as an honest man, that though more than three years have elapsed since I left this same identical vessel, she still continues; in the Pacific, and but a few days since I saw her reported in the papers as having touched at the Sandwich Islands previous to going on the coast of Japan.
The sun's rays had expended all their fury upon us; and to add to our discomfort, we had omitted to supply ourselves with water previous to starting.
Her behaviour, I confess, has been calculated to do away with such an idea; I have not detected the smallest impropriety in it--nothing of vanity, of pretension, of levity; and she is altogether so attractive that I should not wonder at his being delighted with her, had he known nothing of her previous to
this personal acquaintance; but, against reason, against conviction, to be so well pleased with her, as I am sure he is, does really astonish me.