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Cymric Strain - Book 2
By Una Howell (USA - circa 1893)
Chapter 40 - Mother Cook and the Mansion
Copyright Scott Dunbar 2010
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Mother Cook and the Mansion
An ample old Victorian house with bay windows, a plethora of stained glass, tall steps, and a walk that led to the wrought iron gates at the front corner. The house was set above a grassy terraced lawn. It sat firmly on its haunches in the middle of the yard. A brick wall led to the corner entrance gate. The taxi driver delivered us to the stone step that did duty for a porte cochere and we disembarked.
It was not until the question of marriage had come up that it became important. My family was dearer to me than anything on earth and I could not face a prospect that involved strained relations. It was only when George assured me that her aversion to me was a thing of the past that I even considered it. “All mothers of sons,” he said, “think no girl is good enough to marry her son.” That seemed plausible to me.
Now, as a member of the Cook family, I was determined that I would do everything in my power to make them like me. Furthermore I was sure they would approve when they saw how devoted I was to their son and brother, and that my motives were alright. Sadly, naiveté was my middle name.
I soon discovered that the Rich Young Man’s mother still carried her grudge. Also, if she made an incorrect statement, that was her affair, not mine. It was an unpleasant discovery. We had been discussing the family of Senator Mason one day and she had added a few (three) extra children to his family roster. When I spoke up suggesting that there were ten, not thirteen, children, she not only stood her ground but also refused to be corrected. (I knew the family well enough to spend weekends with them, as the Senator was the uncle of one of my good friends.) When we arrived at home, George lectured me and informed me that whether right or wrong, Mother Cook always was to have her way.
Chapter 1 - Evanston
Chapter 2 - The Department of Music
Chapter 3 - Northwestern University
Chapter 4 - Beaued
Chapter 5 - Late for the 1am Train!
Chapter 6 - A Visit from Home
Chapter 7 - Bill Declares Himself
Chapter 8 - Engaged to be Married
Chapter 9 - A Grand Piano for Me?
Chapter 10 - Apartment Life in Evanston
Chapter 11 - On the Train with a Pass
Chapter 12 - Eric’s Decline
Chapter 13 - The Organist
Chapter 14 - Lilly Dies
Chapter 15 - An Unprincipled Woman
Chapter 16 - Music Critic
Chapter 17 - A Rich Young Man
Chapter 18 - Helping the World
Chapter 19 - On a Bicycle Built for Two
Chapter 20 - Mendelssohn Concerto in E Major
Chapter 21 - The Meister Way
Chapter 22 - An Admirer
Chapter 23 - Gentlemen Callers
Chapter 24 - The Scotchman
Chapter 25 - Checking on Maynard
Chapter 26 - Rich Young Man - Not so Much
Chapter 27 - A Page Removed!
Chapter 28 - The Marriage
Chapter 29 - Plans for a New Marriage
Chapter 30 - Honeymoon
Chapter 31 - A New Home
Chapter 32 - Getting to Know Elgin -1901
Chapter 33 - Our First Mobile (Auto)
Chapter 34 - Life in Elgin
Chapter 35 - Preparing for Birth
Chapter 36 - Stillborn!
Chapter 37 - Leave Leeches to Treat an Ear Ache
Chapter 38 - Winfield Illinois Sanatorium
Chapter 39 - George's Mother