I had scarce tied the strings of the portfolio, when, looking athis watch, he said abruptly-。， 'Madam, I should like some tea,' was the sole rejoinder she got.She hastened to ring the bell; and when the tray came, she proceededto arrange the cups, spoons, etc., with assiduous celerity. I andAdele went to the table; but the master did not leave his couch.
。， 'Why, no- perhaps not. I believe there were somemisunderstandings between them. Mr. Rowland Rochester was not quitejust to Mr. Edward; and perhaps he prejudiced his father againsthim. The old gentleman was fond of money, and anxious to keep thefamily estate together. He did not like to diminish the property bydivision, and yet he was anxious that Mr. Edward should have wealth,too, to keep up the consequence of the name; and, soon after he was ofage, some steps were taken that were not quite fair, and made agreat deal of mischief. Old Mr. Rochester and Mr. Rowland combinedto bring Mr. Edward into what he considered a painful position, forthe sake of making his fortune: what the precise nature of thatposition was I never clearly knew, but his spirit could not brook whathe had to suffer in it. He is not very forgiving: he broke with hisfamily, and now for many years he has led an unsettled kind of life. Idon't think he has ever been resident at Thornfield for a fortnighttogether, since the death of his brother without a will left himmaster of the estate; and, indeed, no wonder he shuns the old place.'