Musing before getting up, and as I dressed, of Miss Walker – I think we should be happy together – I should gently lead her into my own ways and soon be really attached to her, to the exclusion of all care for anyone else.
Or rather, the last twenty-five minutes incurred a cross thinking of Miss Walker – I shall think myself into being in love with her – I am already persuaded I like her quite well enough for comfort.
Bordering on love making in the hut – said I should certainly take her off with me – hoped she could trust me. Yes, she had the greatest confidence in me, and our going together was actually agreed on – and we afterwards talking of it as a thing settled, depending only on our respective aunts, both of whom [are] in a precarious way.
Our liaison is now established – it is to be named to nobody but her sister and aunt and my aunt, and that not till a week or ten days before being off. We shall now go on swimmingly and our courtship will progress naturally – she already likes me – perhaps scarce knows how [much], and we shall both be in love seriously enough before our journey.
I should breakfast at Lightcliffe tomorrow and [would say I] could not resist calling as I returned, to ask if she had got cold – if she is out, I am to go to her at Cliff Hill. My aunt had hoped she would come on Monday, to which she readily consented – so that we shall probably see a good deal of each other. She looks happy and as if the remainder of the victory to be won would not cost me too much difficulty. Thought I, as I returned, ‘well, M- set me at liberty in May – in less than five months I am re-provided [for] and the object of my choice have perhaps three thousand a year or near it, probably two thirds at her own disposal. No bad pis aller – even if I liked her less – a better take than Lady Gordon or perhaps Vere either. Well, now I will be steady and constant and make the poor girl as happy as I can, so that she shall have no reason to repent.
[On my return home, found on my desk [a] parcel: the letter-press (presse-papier) and note from Miss Walker – explaining about Collins and that she should hope to find me in my walk between 3 & 5 – begins with ‘I have real pleasure in sending the letter-press, tho’ my own motive, and its possible utility, are its only recommendation to your acceptance] We are in smooth waters now – she tells me more and more of her affairs – she feels at ease and happier with me than perhaps she could easily explain, and probably we shall both be impatient by and by to be off. I myself am surprised at my so rapid success and at the novelty of my situation. Perhaps after all, she will make me really happier than any of my former flames – at all rates we shall have money enough and I don’t fancy she will either be close or stingy or cold to me. Had just written the above of today at 8 ¾. How little my aunt thinks what is going on! M- believes me safe at home and dreams not how she is losing all chance of me – she is right served.
[Margin] Like the day of engagement between Miss W- and me.