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take me on to Gimmerton, and tell a servant to seek up a few
clothes in my wardrobe.”

The intruder was Mrs. Heathcliff. She certainly seemed in no
laughing predicament,--her hair streamed on her shoulders,
dripping with snow and water; she was dressed in the girlish dress
she commonly wore, befitting her age more than her position,--a
low frock with short sleeves, and nothing on either head or neck.
The frock was of light silk, and clung to her with wet, and her feet
were protected merely by thin slippers; add to this a deep cut
under one ear, which only the cold prevented from bleeding
profusely, a white face scratched and bruised, and a frame hardly
able to support itself, through fatigue, and you may fancy my first
fright was not much allayed when I had leisure to examine her.

“My dear young lady,” I exclaimed, “I’ll stir nowhere, and hear
nothing, till you have removed every article of your clothes, and
put on dry things; and certainly you shall not go to Gimmerton
tonight, so it is needless to order the carriage.”

“Certainly, I shall,” she said. “walking or riding; yet I’ve no
objection to dress myself decently. And--ah, see how it flows down
my neck now! The fire does make it smart.”

She insisted on my fulfilling her directions, before she would let
me touch her; and not till after the coachman had been instructed
to get ready, and a maid set to pack up some necessary attire, did I
obtain her consent for binding the wound and helping to change
her garments.

“Now, Ellen,” she said, when my task was finished and she was
seated in an easy chair on the hearth, with a cup of tea before her,
“you sit down opposite me, and put poor Catherine’s baby away: I
don’t like to see it! You mustn’t think I care little for Catherine,

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