I put my overcoat on the sofa, picked up the candle and glanced at the books in the corner: Lavater's indestructible work, a paper-covered Whitaker, the Licensed Victuallers' Almanac, Johnny Ludlow, the illustrated catalogue of the Exhibition of 1856, Cruden's Concordance, and seven or eight volumes of Knight's Penny Encyclopædia.
This practical suggestion met with general approbation, and the little party returned more cheerily to the parlour, where Horace performed marvellous exploits with the bell-handle, and succeeded, in the incredible time of seven minutes, in bringing up a small slipshod girl, who, after a good deal of staring about her, and a critical survey of the pattern of Mrs Cruden's dress, contrived to gather a general idea of what was required of her.
But, unusual as it was, he made the bold venture of jumping to the conviction of Reginald's innocence; and that theory once started, everything went beautifully. On the evening following Mrs Cruden's sudden illness, Mr Durfy strolled down in rather a disconsolate frame of mind towards the Shades. Since his expulsion from the Rocket office things had not been going pleasantly with him.
Of the shelf-ful of books which in thirty years had drifted by one accident or another into the Lessways household, she had read every volume, except Cruden's Concordance. A heterogeneous and forlorn assemblage! Lavater's Physiognomy, in a translation and in full calf! Thomson's Seasons, which had thrilled her by its romantic beauty! Mrs.
These observations were made when we returned with my chest to Mr Cruden's, where we again met my future captain; and when the sum agreed on for my voyage was paid into the hands of the first-named person, my father's heart was softened towards me; and after he had exhausted all the good advice he could think of, and had given me several useful books, and many little articles of his own property, he made me a present of six pounds as pocket-money, and to purchase anything I might wish to bring back from America.
"One of the ladies I once lived with used to say, 'Rest is an old-fashioned remedy, but it's the best remedy of all." Mr. Sleuth himself removed the Bible and Cruden's Concordance off the table out of her way, and then he stood watching his landlady laying the cloth. Suddenly he spoke again. He was not often so talkative in the morning. "I think, Mrs.
Despite the heat, Reginald shivered as he stood a moment at the door, and then sprang towards the telegram, which his mother gave into his hand. It was from Mr Cruden's coachman, dated from Saint Nathaniel's Hospital. "Master was took ill driving from City brought here, where he is very bad indeed. Doctor says no hope."
Finally, worn out in mind and body, they took shelter in bed, and for a blessed season forgot all their misery and forebodings in sleep. There is no magic equal to that which a night's sleep will sometimes work. The little party assembled cheerfully at the breakfast-table next morning, prepared to face the day bravely. A large letter, in Mr Richmond's handwriting, lay on Mrs Cruden's plate.
There was a little silence. "You see," said Gypsy, breaking it, "I'm trying to reform." "Reform?" said Sarah, with some vague ideas of Luther and Melancthon, and Gypsy's wearing a wig and spectacles, and reading Cruden's "Concordance." "Yes," nodded Gypsy, "reform. I never knew anybody need it as much as I. I never do things anyway, and then I do them wrong, and then I forget all about them.
As it was, she guessed only too truly that he would be raging with himself for telling her so much. Her mother could do nothing. She would probably fly with the news to Mrs Cruden's bedside, and possibly kill her outright. Horace! She might tell him, but she was afraid. The news would fall on him like a thunderbolt, and she dreaded being the person to inflict the blow.