That's all I want." We left the boy, with his head on one side and his arms on the gate, fondling and sucking the spikes, and went back to Lincoln's Inn, where Mr. Skimpole, who had not cared to remain nearer Coavinses, awaited us. Then we all went to Bell Yard, a narrow alley at a very short distance. We soon found the chandler's shop.
I ventured to inquire, generally, before replying, what would happen if the money were not produced. "Jail," said the strange man, coolly putting his handkerchief into his hat, which was on the floor at his feet. "Or Coavinses." "May I ask, sir, what is " "Coavinses?" said the strange man. "A 'ouse." Richard and I looked at one another again.
"I made ten pounds, clear, out of Coavinses' business." "How was that?" said I. "Why, I got rid of ten pounds which I was quite content to get rid of and never expected to see any more. You don't deny that?" "No," said I. "Very well! Then I came into possession of ten pounds " "The same ten pounds," I hinted. "That has nothing to do with it!" returned Richard.
That, all that time, he had been giving employment to a most deserving man, that he had been a benefactor to Coavinses, that he had actually been enabling Coavinses to bring up these charming children in this agreeable way, developing these social virtues!
Jarndyce had ascertained the amount, either from Mr. Skimpole himself or from Coavinses, and had placed the money in my hands with instructions to me to retain my own part of it and hand the rest to Richard.
The sun was shining, the wind was blowing, the lights and shadows were passing across the fields, the birds were singing." "Nobody said they warn't, in MY hearing," returned Coavinses. "No," observed Mr. Skimpole. "But what did you think upon the road?" "Wot do you mean?" growled Coavinses with an appearance of strong resentment. "Think!
"An individual of Clifford's character," he remarks, "can always be pricked more acutely through his sense of the beautiful and harmonious than through his heart." And he suggests that, if Clifford had not been so long in prison, his aesthetic zeal "might have eaten out or filed away his affections." This was what befell Harold Skimpole himself "in prisons often" at Coavinses!
Skimpole. "Know'd it yes'day aft'noon at tea-time," said Coavinses. "It didn't affect your appetite? Didn't make you at all uneasy?" "Not a bit," said Coavinses. "I know'd if you wos missed to-day, you wouldn't be missed to-morrow. A day makes no such odds." "But when you came down here," proceeded Mr. Skimpole, "it was a fine day.
There had been times when, if he had been a sultan, and his grand vizier had said one morning, "What does the Commander of the Faithful require at the hands of his slave?" he might have even gone so far as to reply, "The head of Coavinses!" But what turned out to be the case?
"I certainly did NOT," said Coavinses, whose doggedness in utterly renouncing the idea was of that intense kind that he could only give adequate expression to it by putting a long interval between each word, and accompanying the last with a jerk that might have dislocated his neck. "Very odd and very curious, the mental process is, in you men of business!" said Mr. Skimpole thoughtfully.