My own darling Eugénie,
Your real nice letter received yesterday afternoon was indeed most welcome for I hardly dared to look for one so soon and was prepared to wait with patience till Monday morning, there being no second delivery to-day. (Sunday)
I have thought about you so much to-day, not that the habit is unusual, but somehow on Sunday I always feel that I can trace your steps more closely, thus, I imagine you at the school at 10 and an hour later when going to church myself I like to feel that my dear Eugénie is just attending the same service, and perhaps I picture her in my mind’s eye with a certain little prayer book which I flatter myself she will not use without thinking of somebody whose name is in the fly leaf! and later on I can trace the walk with Papa, and a quiet evening with some music, and I seem to know that my name is not forgotten by my darling before she closes her eyes, perhaps too at the same time that I am trying to be thankful enough for the blessing of my own Eugénie’s love.
And now for a little bit of news, I have obtained the promise of a house belonging to Mr Hitchman, at Michaelmas, which will be convenient, and I fancy comfortable for us, it is in the town close to our lower office in fact the house, or rather the larger part of the house, in which Mr H. used to live before he built Kitebrook, it has lately been let to a tenant at a three months' notice as Mr H. has always thought his Son might require it, however it is Alfred Hitchman’s particular wish that I should have it and so the old gentleman has written to the present tenant to tell him he will receive three months’ notice from mid-summer “in consequence of Mr Sladden’s intended marriage”. So I hope to have possession by 1st October next, then it will of course take a few weeks to paint paper &c and get some new furniture in, and altogether make as nice and comfortable a home as lies in my power for its future mistress, and then, when the long November days come about and sunless days outside make dull and black the sky, I shall hope to realise within a far brighter day, the true happy spring-tide of my life, the golden time when I may be allowed to come and claim my darling girl and when she, I trust, will feel that she may indeed lay her head upon my breast and know that there is home – true home – for that underneath there beats a heart whose love shall know no ending till it’s latest pulse.
And now, having just read over what I have written, I feel you will smile, though I am sure kindly, at my perhaps somewhat poetical strain, so I will pause, merely observing that this not un-natural for I have always felt a strangely close kinship between poetry and love! I will enclose all the modern photos I possess, for surely they are yours by right, the shadow must belong to the owner of the original! you have already one of those by Elliott & Fry, I do not remember which, but the duplicate one may, if you please, go into Papa’s book for I should like to have my rightful position there I need not say next to whom! Do not think your talk about music, or anything you do, wearies me for indeed I like to hear all about your doings.
I hope your great friend May & her husband will be able to extend their stay a little, for your sake, and I should like to see them again myself when I come over.
I am glad you are getting comfortable in the new house and to know that the worry and fatigue are over.
I have your letter before me now, it makes me very happy to hear my darling say she can really give me all her love and trust, I will indeed always try to merit so great a treasure.
And now I must close my rambling letter which I shall hope you will receive early on Tuesday. Good-night my darling, a sweet good night, is the loving wish of yours ever most affectionately