“Which would you prefer?” said the holy Bridget, “to be healed of your disease or to have the cow?”
Mr. and Mrs. Creswell came home two days before they were expected, or rather before they had originally intended. Marian had heard of her mother's illness, and expressed a wish to go to her at once--a wish which of course decided Mr. Creswell's course of action. The tenants and villagers, to whom the news of Mr. Creswell's intended political experiment had been imparted during his absence, had intended to give him a welcome in which they could express their sentiments on flags and mottoes and triumphal arches; and they had already arranged an alliterative sentence, in which "Creswell and Conservatism!" each picked out with gigantic capital letters, were to play conspicuous parts; but Dr. Osborne, who got wind of what was threatened, drove off to Brocksopp in his little pony-chaise, and there took Mr. Teesdale, the agent, into confidence, and revealed to him the real state--hovering between life and death--in which Mrs. Ashurst then lay. On the reception of this information, Mr. Teesdale took upon himself to hint that the intended demonstration had better be postponed for a more convenient season; and accordingly Mr. and Mrs. Creswell, arriving by the train at Brocksopp, and having their carriage to meet them, drove through the streets when the working-people were all engaged at their factories and mills, and made their way home, scarcely exciting any recognition.
Then he felt the bounds about his arms and legs being removed. Then a Thrid voice—amazingly, a familiar Thrid voice—said:
“I said to him that Lady Yardly had told her husband all, that I was empowered to recover the jewel, and that if it were not immediately handed over proceedings would be taken. Also a few more little lies which occurred to me. He was as wax in my hands!”
"Absolutely, as far as one can judge, sir," Arthur replied.
And the solemn owl, with his dull “too-hoo”
"That's a pretty kind of servant, 'pon my word!" said the Captain.
Yet there was hope. And upon this hope Eben staked his chances for the elusive dollar and for the main object of his visit—which was no mere dollar. Briefly, in his mind, he reviewed the case and the possibilities and laid out his plan of campaign. Halting his bony horse at the mouth of the lane, he hailed Link.
[Pg 152]详情 ➢
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