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The Pickwick Papers 63







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hundred--hundred and twelve--breach of honour--and loss of the lady-- Yes, my dear Sir, yes, said the little man, with a knowing look, never mind the last two items. Thats a hundred and twelve--say a hundred--come. And twenty, said Mr. Jingle. Come, come, Ill write you a cheque, said the little man; and down he sat at the table for that purpose. Ill make it payable the day after to-morrow, said the little man, with a look towards Mr. Wardle; and we can get the lady away, meanwhile. Mr. Wardle sullenly nodded assent. A hundred, said the little man. And twenty, said Mr. Jingle. My dear Sir, remonstrated the little man. Give it him, interposed Mr. Wardle, and let him go. The cheque was written by the little gentleman, and pocketed by Mr. Jingle. Now, leave this house instantly! said Wardle, starting up. My dear Sir, urged the little man. And mind, said Mr. Wardle, that nothing should have induced me to make this compromise--not even a regard for my family--if I had not known that the moment you got any money in that pocket of yours, youd go to the devil faster, if possible, than you would without it-- My dear sir, urged the little man again. Be quiet, Perker, resumed Wardle. Leave the room, Sir. Off directly, said the unabashed Jingle. Bye bye, Pickwick. If any dispassionate spectator could have beheld the countenance of the illustrious man, whose name forms the leading feature of the title of this work, during the latter part of this conversation, he would have been almost induced to wonder that the indignant fire which flashed from his eyes did not melt the glasses of his spectacles--so majestic was his wrath. His nostrils dilated, and his fists clenched involuntarily, as he heard himself addressed by the villain. But he restrained himself again--he did not pulverise him. Here, continued the hardened traitor, tossing the licence at Mr. Pickwicks feet; get the name altered--take home the lady --do for Tuppy. Mr. Pickwick was a philosopher, but philosophers are only men in armour, after all. The shaft had reached him, penetrated through his philosophical harness, to his very heart. In the frenzy of his rage, he hurled the inkstand madly forward, and followed it up himself. But Mr. Jingle had disappeared, and he found himself caught in the arms of Sam. Hollo, said that eccentric functionary, furniters cheap where you come from, Sir. Self-acting ink, that ere; its wrote your mark upon the wall, old genlmn. Hold still, Sir; wots the use o runnin arter a man as has made his lucky, and got to tother end of the Borough by this time? Mr. Pickwicks mind, like those of all truly great men, was open to conviction. He was a quick and powerful reasoner; and a moments reflection sufficed to remind him of the impotency of his rage. It subsided as quickly as it had been roused. He panted for breath, and looked benignantly round upon his friends. Shall we tell the lamentations that ensued when Miss Wardle found herself deserted by the faithless Jingle? Shall we extract Mr. Pickwicks masterly description of that heartrending scene? His note-book, blotted with the tears of sympathising humanity, lies open before us; one word, and it is in the printers hands. But, no! we will be resolute! We will not wring the public bosom, with the delineation of such suffering! Slowly and sadly did the two friends and the deserted lady return next day in the Muggleton heavy coach. Dimly and darkly had the sombre shadows of a summers night fallen upon all around, when they again reached Dingley Dell, and stood within the entrance to Manor Farm.

CHAPTER XI

INVOLVING ANOTHER JOURNEY, AND AN ANTIQUARIAN DISCOVERY; RECORDING Mr. PICKWICKS DETERMINATION TO BE PRESENT AT AN ELECTION; AND CONTAINING A MANUSCRIPT OF THE OLD CLERGYMANS

A night of quiet and repose in the profound silence of Dingley Dell, and an hours breathing of its fresh and fragrant air on the ensuing morning, completely recovered Mr. Pickwick from the effects of his late fatigue of body and anxiety of mind. That illustrious man had been separated from his friends and fol lowers for two whole days; and it was with a degree of pleasure and delight, which no common imagination can adequately conceive, that he stepped forward to greet Mr. Winkle and Mr. Snodgrass, as he encountered those gentlemen on his return from his early walk. The pleasure was mutual; for who could ever gaze on

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