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Chapter 26

Summer was already past its prime, when Edgar reluctantly
yielded his assent to their entreaties, and Catherine and I
set out on our first ride to join her cousin.

It was a close, sultry day, devoid of sunshine, but with a sky too
dappled and hazy to threaten rain; and our place of meeting had
been fixed at the guide-stone, by the crossroads. On arriving there,
however, a little herd-boy, despatched as a messenger, told us

“Maister Linton wer just ut this side th’ Heights: and he’d be
mitch obleeged to us to gang on a bit further.”

“Then Master Linton has forgot the first injunction of his
uncle,” I observed: “he bid us keep on the Grange land, and here
we are, off at once.”

“Well, we’ll turn our horses’ heads round, when we reach him,”
answered my companion, “our excursion shall lie towards home.”

But when we reached him, and that was scarcely a quarter of a
mile from his own door, we found he had no horse; and we were
forced to dismount, and leave ours to graze.

He lay on the heath, awaiting our approach, and did not rise till
we came within a few yards. Then he walked so feebly, and looked
so pale, that I immediately exclaimed:

“Why, Master Heathcliff, you are not fit for enjoying a ramble,
this morning. How ill you do look!”

Catherine surveyed him with grief and astonishment; and
changed the ejaculation of joy on her lips to one of alarm, and the
congratulation on their long-postponed meeting to an anxious
inquiry, whether he were worse than usual.

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