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I saw now that I was in for it, and it must be done on the spot.

'You didn't care for that happiness in the least,' said Dora,
slightly raising her eyebrows, and shaking her head, 'when you were
sitting by Miss Kitt.'

Kitt, I should observe, was the name of the creature in pink, with
the little eyes.

'Though certainly I don't know why you should,' said Dora, or why
you should call it a happiness at all. But of course you don't
mean what you say. And I am sure no one doubts your being at
liberty to do whatever you like. Jip, you naughty boy, come here!'

I don't know how I did it. I did it in a moment. I intercepted
Jip. I had Dora in my arms. I was full of eloquence. I never
stopped for a word. I told her how I loved her. I told her I
should die without her. I told her that I idolized and worshipped
her. Jip barked madly all the time.

When Dora hung her head and cried, and trembled, my eloquence
increased so much the more. If she would like me to die for her,
she had but to say the word, and I was ready. Life without Dora's
love was not a thing to have on any terms. I couldn't bear it, and
I wouldn't. I had loved her every minute, day and night, since I
first saw her. I loved her at that minute to distraction. I
should always love her, every minute, to distraction. Lovers had
loved before, and lovers would love again; but no lover had loved,
might, could, would, or should ever love, as I loved Dora. The
more I raved, the more Jip barked. Each of us, in his own way, got
more mad every moment.

Well, well! Dora and I were sitting on the sofa by and by, quiet
enough, and Jip was lying in her lap, winking peacefully at me. It
was off my mind. I was in a state of perfect rapture. Dora and I
were engaged.

I suppose we had some notion that this was to end in marriage. We
must have had some, because Dora stipulated that we were never to
be married without her papa's consent. But, in our youthful
ecstasy, I don't think that we really looked before us or behind
us; or had any aspiration beyond the ignorant present. We were to
keep our secret from Mr. Spenlow; but I am sure the idea never
entered my head, then, that there was anything dishonourable in
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