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"No, my pet; it 'ud be a hard heart as 'ud be wicked to you." But though Mrs. Hodge was sorry, she could not help the children, and soon after ten o'clock they once more stepped out into the streets. The sun was shining, and Maurice's spirits were high. But Cecile, who had the responsibility, felt sad and anxious.

The Vice-Chairman was always there, and Mr. Marthorne was always there. It sometimes happened that while Hodge the lately intoxicated, or Hodge the recent pugilist, was stolidly waiting for his sentence, the two justices in the retiring room were convulsed with laughter; the one recounting, the other imbibing, some curious racy anecdote concerning the family history of a local magnate.

"Of course it's at night and that makes it harder for Harry." "Yes, I suppose it does. In the daytime Harry could find people to tell him which way Graves was going, couldn't he?" "Yes. That's just what I meant." "Oh, I say, won't Gaffer Hodge be in bed and asleep?" "I don't think so. He doesn't seem to like to go to bed.

Merriwell communicated his suspicions to Hodge, whom he urged to keep a close watch on Bland. He then divided the searchers into five parties, leaving Bart in charge of the one including Bland, while he took O'Toole with him. The Irishman had disappeared, and, having appointed a definite spot at which to meet, Frank's party scattered to look for O'Toole and continue the search at the same time.

He is perhaps now laughing at it, and thinks it is a rose-leaf which cools his cheek. That Hodge is such a queer bird! But we will at once see what there is to-day, and what farce is being performed now." He crept softly up-stairs, and, opening the door of his room, closed it again behind him quickly and gently.

Lizette, the French nurse, came softly and lightly down the stairs and found Frank Merriwell pacing the library floor, while Bart Hodge and Elsie Bellwood talked to him soothingly. "Madame will see you now, saire," said the nurse, with a little curtsy. "Ze doctaire he is gone now some time. Madame she is comforterbill. She say she see you alone." Frank was all eagerness to go.

"I will be a damned otter, if I begged her for it, and if I understand a single word of what she says!" said Hodge, wholly dumfounded and quaking all over. "Ah, you understand not a word of what she says?" screamed Gammer Gurton. "Well, but I understand it. I understand that everything between us is past and done with, and that I have nothing more to do with you, you Moloch, you!

"What's this?" shrieked Fred Davis, dropping to his knees and staring into the face of the fellow he had helped to rescue. "This isn't Merriwell! It's Bascomb!" Exclamations of astonishment came from every lip, for all had thought they were rescuing Frank. "Great Jupiter!" gasped Bart Hodge. "It must be that Merriwell went clean down the face of the bluff!"

"Stay, brother Hodge," quoth the Blind man, breaking into the talk, "I would not doubt our brother here, but bear in mind we know him not. What art thou, brother? Upright-man, Jurkman, Clapper-dudgeon, Dommerer, or Abraham-man?" At these words Robin looked from one man to the other with mouth agape.

We used to sit for morning after morning over her accounts, debating for hours together the propriety of selling the Slopperton property; but no arrangement was come to yet about it, for Hodge and Smithers could not get the price she wanted. And, moreover, she vowed that at her decease she would leave every shilling to me.