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Catherine perceived, as well as I did, that he held it rather a
punishment, than a gratification, to endure our company; and she
made no scruple of proposing, presently, to depart.
That proposal, unexpectedly, roused Linton from his lethargy,
and threw him into a strange state of agitation. He glanced
fearfully towards the Heights, begging she would remain another
half-hour, at least.
“But, I think,” said Cathy, “you’d be more comfortable at home
than sitting here; and I cannot amuse you today, I see, by my tales,
and songs, and chatter: you have grown wiser than I, in these six
months; you have little taste for my diversions now; or else, if I
could amuse you, I’d willingly stay.”
“Stay to rest yourself,” he replied. “And, Catherine, don’t think,
or say that I’m very unwell--it is the heavy weather and heat that
make me dull; and I walked about, before you came, a great deal,
for me. Tell Uncle, I’m in tolerable health, will you?”
“I’ll tell him that you say so, Linton. I couldn’t affirm that you
are,” observed my young lady, wondering at his pertinacious
assertion of what was evidently an untruth.
“And be here again next Thursday,” continued he, shunning
her puzzled gaze. “And give him my thanks for permitting you to
come--my best thanks, Catherine. And--and, if you did meet my
father, and he asked you about me, don’t lead him to suppose that
I’ve been extremely silent and stupid--don’t look sad and
downcast, as you are doing,--he’ll be angry.”
“I care nothing for his anger,” exclaimed Cathy, imagining she
would be its object.
“But I do,” said her cousin, shuddering. “Don’t provoke him
against me, Catherine, for he is very hard.”