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Frank Cheeryble; and Mrs Nickleby and the elder gentleman
followed at a short distance, the kindness of the good merchant,
his interest in the welfare of Nicholas, and his admiration of Kate,
so operating upon the good lady’s feelings, that the usual current
of her speech was confined within very narrow and circumscribed
limits. Smike (who, if he had ever been an object of interest in his
life, had been one that day) accompanied them, joining sometimes
one group and sometimes the other, as brother Charles, laying his
hand upon his shoulder, bade him walk with him, or Nicholas,
looking smilingly round, beckoned him to come and talk with the
old friend who understood him best, and who could win a smile
into his careworn face when none else could.

Pride is one of the seven deadly sins; but it cannot be the pride
of a mother in her children, for that is a compound of two cardinal
virtues--faith and hope. This was the pride which swelled Mrs
Nickleby’s heart that night, and this it was which left upon her
face, glistening in the light when they returned home, traces of the
most grateful tears she had ever shed.

There was a quiet mirth about the little supper, which
harmonised exactly with this tone of feeling, and at length the two
gentlemen took their leave. There was one circumstance in the
leave-taking which occasioned a vast deal of smiling and
pleasantry, and that was, that Mr Frank Cheeryble offered his
hand to Kate twice over, quite forgetting that he had bade her
adieu already. This was held by the elder Mr Cheeryble to be a
convincing proof that he was thinking of his German flame, and
the jest occasioned immense laughter. So easy is it to move light

In short, it was a day of serene and tranquil happiness; and as

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