away–an intimacy resulting principally from Miss Crawford’s desire of something new, and which had little reality in Fanny’s feelings. Fanny went to her every two or three days: it seemed a kind of fascination22: she could not be easy without going, and yet it was without loving her, without ever thinking like her, without any sense of obligation for being sought after now when nobody else was to be had; and deriving23 no higher pleasure from her conversation than occasional amusement, and that often at the expense of her judgment24, when it was raised by pleasantry on people or subjects which she wished to be respected. She went, however, and they sauntered about together many an half-hour in Mrs. Grant’s shrubbery, the weather being unusually mild for the time of year, and venturing sometimes even to sit down on one of the benches now comparatively unsheltered, remaining there perhaps till, in the midst of some tender ejaculation of Fanny’s on the sweets of so protracted25 an autumn, they were forced, by the sudden swell26 of a cold gust27 shaking down the last few yellow leaves about them, to jump up and walk for warmth.
“This is pretty, very pretty,” said Fanny, looking around her as they were thus sitting together one day; “every time I come into this shrubbery I am more struck with its growth and beauty. Three years ago, this was nothing but a rough hedgerow along the upper side of the field, never thought of as anything, or capable of becoming anything; and now it is converted into a walk, and it would be difficult to say whether most valuable as a convenience or an ornament28; and perhaps, in another three years, we may be forgetting–almost forgetting what it was before. How wonderful, how very wonderful the operations of time, and the changes of the human mind!” And following the latter train of thought, she soon afterwards added: “If any one faculty29 of our nature may be called more wonderful than the rest, I do think it is memory. There seems something more