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remarkable, as when she first scanned that young lady’s face and
figure, she had entertained certain inward misgivings that they
would never agree.

‘But now,’ said Miss Knag, glancing at the reflection of herself
in a mirror at no great distance, ‘I love her--I quite love her--I
declare I do!’

Of such a highly disinterested quality was this devoted
friendship, and so superior was it to the little weaknesses of
flattery or ill-nature, that the kind-hearted Miss Knag candidly
informed Kate Nickleby, next day, that she saw she would never
do for the business, but that she need not give herself the slightest
uneasiness on this account, for that she (Miss Knag), by increased
exertions on her own part, would keep her as much as possible in
the background, and that all she would have to do, would be to
remain perfectly quiet before company, and to shrink from
attracting notice by every means in her power. This last
suggestion was so much in accordance with the timid girl’s own
feelings and wishes, that she readily promised implicit reliance on
the excellent spinster’s advice: without questioning, or indeed
bestowing a moment’s reflection upon, the motives that dictated it.

‘I take quite a lively interest in you, my dear soul, upon my
word,’ said Miss Knag; ‘a sister’s interest, actually. It’s the most
singular circumstance I ever knew.’

Undoubtedly it was singular, that if Miss Knag did feel a strong
interest in Kate Nickleby, it should not rather have been the
interest of a maiden aunt or grandmother; that being the
conclusion to which the difference in their respective ages would
have naturally tended. But Miss Knag wore clothes of a very
youthful pattern, and perhaps her feelings took the same shape.

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