Within the Maze, Vol. 1 (of 2) A Novel
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(the Bavarian State Library)
WITHIN THE MAZE BY MRS. HENRY WOOD
IN TWO VOLUMES.
WITHIN THE MAZE.
MRS. HENRY WOOD,
AUTHOR OF "EAST LYNNE," ETC.
IN TWO VOLUMES.
The Right of Translation is reserved.
OF VOLUME I.
|I.||Mrs. Andinnian's Home.|
|III.||Done at Sunset.|
|V.||Unable to get strong.|
|VI.||An Atmosphere of Mystery.|
|VII.||At the Charing-Cross Hotel.|
|VIII.||In the Avenue d'Antin.|
|IX.||Down at Foxwood.|
|X.||Mrs. Andinnian's Secret.|
|XI.||At the Gate of the Maze.|
|XII.||Taking an Evening Stroll.|
|XIII.||Miss Blake gets in.|
|XIV.||Miss Blake on the Watch.|
|XV.||Revealed to Lady Andinnian.|
|XVI.||A Night at the Maze.|
|XVII.||Before the World.|
|XVIII.||A Night Alarm.|
|XIX.||In the same Train.|
|XX.||Only one Fly at the Station.|
|XXI.||Hard to Bear.|
|XXII.||With his Brother.|
WITHIN THE MAZE.
Mrs. Andinnian's Home.
The house was ugly and old-fashioned, with some added modernimprovements, and was surrounded by a really beautiful garden. Thoughsituated close upon a large market town of Northamptonshire, it stoodalone, excluded from the noise and bustle of the world.
The occupant of this house was a widow lady, Mrs. Andinnian. Herhusband, a post-captain in the Royal Navy, had been dead some years.She had two sons. The elder, Adam, was of no profession, and livedwith her: the younger, Karl, was a lieutenant in one of Her Majesty'sregiments. Adam was presumptive heir to his uncle, Sir JosephAndinnian, a baronet of modern creation: Karl had his profession aloneto look to, and a small private income of two hundred a year.
They were not rich, these Andinnians: though the captain had deemedhimself well-off, what with his private fortune, and what with hispay. The private fortune was just six hundred a year; the pay notgreat: but Captain Andinnian's tastes were simple, his wants few. Athis death it was found that he had bequeathed his money in three equalparts: two hundred a year to his wife, and two hundred each to hissons. "Adam and his mother will live together," he said in the will;"she'd not be parted from him: and four hundred pounds, with her bitof pension, will be enough for comfort. When Adam succeeds his uncle,they can make any fresh arrangement that pleases them. But I hope whenthat time shall come they will not forget Karl."
Mrs. Andinnian resented the will, and resented these words in it. Herelder boy, Adam, had always been first and foremost with her: never amother loved a son more ardently than she loved him. For Karl shecared not. Captain Andinnian was not blind to the injustice, andperhaps thence arose the motive that induced him not to leave hiswife's two hundred pounds of income at her own disposal: when Mrs.Andinnian died, it would lapse to Karl. The captain had loved his sonsequally: he would willingly have left them equally provided for inlife, and divided the fortune that was to come sometime to Adam. Mrs.Andinnian, in spite of the expected rise for Adam, would have had himleft better off from his father's means than Karl.
There had been nearly a lifelong feud between the two familybranches. Sir Joseph Andinnian and his brother the captain had not metfor years and years: and it was a positive fact that the latter's sonshad never seen their uncle. For this feud the brothers themselves werenot in the first instance to blame. It did not arise with them, butwith their wives. Both ladies were of a haughty, overbearing, andimplacable temper: they had quarrelled very soon after their firstintroduction to each other; the quarrel grew, and grew, and finallyinvolved the husbands as well in its vortex.
Joseph Andinnian, who was the younger of the two brothers, had been anoted and very successful civil engineer. Some great work, that he hadoriginated and completed, gained him his reward--a baronetcy. While hewas in the very flush of his new honours, an accident, that he metwith, laid him for many months upon a sick-bed. Not only that: itincapacitated him for future active service. So, when he was littlemore than a middle-aged man, he retired from his profession, and tookup his abode for life at a pretty estate he had bought in Kent,called Foxwood Court, barely an hour's railway journey from London: byexpress train not much more than half one. Here, he and his wife hadlived since: Sir Joseph growing more and more of an invalid as theyears went on. They had no children; consequently his brother, CaptainAndinnian, was heir to the baronetcy: and, following on CaptainAndinnian, Adam, the captain's eldest son.
Captain Andinnian did not live to succeed. In what seemed the pride ofhis health and strength, just after he had landed from a three years'voyage, and was indulging in ambitious visions of a flag, symptoms ofa mortal disease manifested themselves. He begged of his physicians tolet him know the truth; and they complied--he must expect but a veryfew weeks more of life. Captain Andinnian, after taking a day or twoto look matters fully in the face, went up to London, and thence
down to Sir Joseph's house in Kent. The brothers, once face to face,met as though no ill-blood had ever separated them: hands were
locked in hands, gaze went out to gaze. Both were simple-minded,earnest-hearted, affectionate-natured men; and but for their wives--towhom, if the truth must be avowed, each lay in subjection--not a
mis-word would ever have arisen between them.
"I am dying, Joseph," said the captain, when some of their mutualemotion had worn away. "The doctors tell me so, and I feel it to betrue. Naturally, it has set me on the thought of many things--that Iam afraid I have been too carelessly putting off. What I have comedown to you chiefly for, is to ask about my son--Adam. You'll tell methe truth, won't you, Joseph, as between brothers?"
"I'll tell you anything, Harry," was Sir Joseph's answer. "The truthabout what?"
"Whether he is to succeed you or not?"
"Why, of course he must succeed: failing yourself. What are youthinking of, Harry, to ask it? I've no son of my own: it's not likelyI shall have one now. He will be Sir Adam after me."
"It's not the title I was thinking of, Joseph. Failing a direct heir,I know that must come to him. But the property?--will he have that? Itis not entailed; and you could cut him out absolutely."
"D'ye think I'd be so unjust as that, Harry?" was the half indignantreply. "A baronet's title, and nothing to keep it up upon! I havenever had an idea of leaving it away from you; or from him if you wentfirst. When Adam succeeds to my name and rank, he will succeed to myproperty. Were my wife to survive me, she'd have this place for life,and a good part of the income: but Adam would get it all at herdeath."
"This takes a weight off my mind," avowed Captain Andinnian. "Adam wasnot brought up to any profession. Beyond the two hundred a year he'llinherit from me----"
"A bad thing that--no profession," interrupted Sir Joseph. "If I hadten sons, and they were all heirs to ten baronetcies, each one shouldbe brought up to use his brains or his hands."
"It's what I have urged over and over again," avowed the captain. "Butthe wife--you know what she is--set her face against it. 'He'll be SirAdam Andinnian of Foxwood,' she'd answer me with, 'and he shall notsoil his hands with work.' I have been nearly, always afloat, too,Joseph: not on the spot to enforce things: something has lain inthat."
"I wonder the young man should not have put himself forward to be ofuse in the world!"
"Adam is idly inclined. I am sorry for it, but it is so. One thing hasbeen against him, and that's his health. He's as tall and strong ayoung fellow to look at as you'd meet in a summer's day, but he is, Ifear, anything but sound in constitution. A nice fellow too, Joseph."
"Of good disposition?"
"Very. We had used to be almost afraid of him as a boy; he would puthimself into such unaccountable fits of passion. Just as--as--somebodyelse used to do, you know, Joseph," added the sailor with somehesitation.
Sir Joseph nodded. The somebody else was the captain's wife, andAdam's mother. Sir Joseph's own wife was not exempt from the same kindof failing: but in a less wild degree than Mrs. Andinnian. With herthe defects of temper partook more of the nature of sullenness.
"But Adam seems to have outgrown all that: I've seen and heard nothingof it since he came to manhood," resumed the captain. "I wish from myheart he had some profession to occupy him. His mother always filledhim up with the notion that he would be your heir and not want it."
"He'll be my heir, in all senses, safe enough, Harry: though I'drather have heard he was given to industry than idleness. How does heget through his time? Young men naturally seek some pursuit as anoutlet for their superfluous activity."
"Adam has a pursuit that he makes a hobby of; and that is his love offlowers; in fact his love of gardening in any shape. He'll be outamidst the plants and shrubs from sunrise to sunset. Trained to it,he'd have made a second Sir Joseph Paxton. I should like you to seehim: he is very handsome."
"And the young one--what is he like? What's his name by the way?Henry?"
" Karl?" repeated Sir Joseph in surprise, as if questioning whetherhe heard aright.
"Ay, Karl. His mother was in Germany when he was born, it being acheap place to live in--I was only a poor lieutenant then, Joseph, andjust gone off to be stationed before the West Indies. A great friendof hers, there, some German lady, had a little boy named Karl. My wifefell in love with the name, and called her own infant after it."
"Well, it sounds an outlandish name to me," cried the baronet, who wasentirely unacquainted with every language but his own.
"So I thought, when she first wrote me word," assented CaptainAndinnian. "But after I came home and got used to call the lad by it,you don't know how I grew to like it. The name gains upon your favourin a wonderful manner, Joseph: and I have heard other people say thesame. It is Charles in English, you know."
"Then why not call him Charles?"
"Because the name is really Karl, and not Charles. He was baptized inGermany, but christened in England, and in both places it was done as'Karl.' His mother has never cared very much for him."
"For him or his name, do you mean?"
"Oh, for him."
Sir Joseph opened his eyes. "Why on earth not?"
"Because all the love her nature's capable of--and in her it'stolerably strong--is given to Adam. She can't spare an atom from him:her love for him is as a kind of idolatry. For one thing, she was veryill when Karl was born, and neither nursed nor tended him: he wasgiven over to the care of her sister who lived with her, and who hadhim wholly, so to say, for the first three years of his life."
"And what's Karl like?" repeated Sir Joseph.
"You ought to see him," burst forth the Captain with animation. "He'severything that's good and noble arid worthy. Joseph, there are notmany young men of the present day so attractive as Karl."
"With a tendency to be passionate, like his brother?"
"Not he. A tendency to patience, rather. They have put upon him athome--between ourselves; kept him down, you know; both mother andbrother. He is several years younger than Adam; but they are attached
to each other. A more gentle-natured, sweet-tempered lad than Karl
never lived: all his instincts are those of a gentleman. He will make
a brave soldier. He is ensign in the -- regiment."
"The -- regiment," repeated Sir Joseph. "Rather a crack corps that, isit not?"
"Yes: Karl has been lucky. He will have to make his own way in theworld, for I can't give him much. But now that I am assured of yourintentions as to Adam, things look a trifle brighter. Joseph, I thankyou with all my