Peter was now standing very close - as if he wanted to comfort me - as if he knew how hurt I felt that Mrs Knowles had not asked me to play or to sing. And I did feel comforted. It was as if a tide of warmth was carrying me out of myself, inclining me to trust him and to conduct myself well.
Before I could reply, he had picked me up, literally swept me off my feet, and kissed me. And afterwards, when I tried to speak, he silenced me in much the same manner. It was a shock (but not at all distasteful) to be so caught up. Later - when he at last set me down - he handled me more gently. He took of my glasses and told me that he loved me.
I am at a loss to understand why people hold Miss Austen's novels at so high a rate, which seem to me vulgar in tone, sterile in artistic invention, imprisoned in their wretched conventions of English society, without genius, wit, or knowledge of the world. Never was life so pinched and narrow. ... All that interests in any character [is this]: has he (or she) the money to marry with? ... Suicide is more respectable.
At that moment a solitary violin struck up. But the music was not dance music; it was more like a song - a solemn, sweet song. (I know now that it was Beethoven's Romance in F.) I listened, and suddenly it was as if the fog that surrounded me had been penetrated, as if I were being spoken to.
It is a truth universally acknowledged, that a single man in possession of a good fortune, must be in want of a wife,' I said, sighing.'Is it?' said Veronica, looking surprised. 'Universally acknowledged? Surely that presupposes life similar to human societies beyond this planet, and besides--''No, no, it's a quote from ... Never mind,' I said.
Shortly after you left the room, Bushell came over and spoke to your father. I was not near enough to hear what he said, but Maria Lucas told me afterwards that he had been -' (she smiled) 'amazingly impertinent.''Peter actually spoke to Papa?''He did. According to Maria, he had the impudence to criticise Mr Bennet for his treatment of you. I must say it gives me the most favourable idea of his character.
I did not have an opportunity to speak privately with Peter until just as he was leaving, when he handed me one of the Burns song-sheets and (with a most earnest look) told me to read it before I went to bed.The song was 'My Love is Like a Red, Red Rose,' but it was not until was up in my bedchamber that I saw he had written on the inside page: 'My mother would be honoured if you visited her after church tomorrow.