Nothing but the dread of needing their help could have made it an easier alternative to take their advice.
It was a crushing alternative to Maggie.
…the few hundreds Mr. Timpson advanced toward his daughter’s fortune did not suffice for the purchase of handsome furniture, together with a stock of wine, a grand piano, and the laying out of a superior flower-garden, it followed in the most rigorous manner, either that these things must be procured by some other means, or else that the Rev. Mr. Stelling must go without them, which last alternative would be an absurd procrastination of the fruits of success, where success was certain.
Philip was silent a few moments, and then said, in that high, feeble voice which with him indicated the resolute suppression of emotion,— "Is there no other alternative, Maggie?
There are no more uses of "alternative" in the book.