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“I am sure he will be delighted to renew his acquaintance with you,” said I. “My dear friend,” said Hull, “I don't know him. When say I know him, I speak of his connexions; but I know he is an excellent fellow—ay, and a remarkable good scholar. Did he ever tell you the story of his wedding-day and the soldiers? He s—he 1–he '" Whereupon I stared, and Hull stuck his thumb into my ribs to make “assurance doubly sure,” and I again received the most certain conviction that my omniscient friend was— what some horrible infidels sometimes doubted—always correct in his facts, and authentic in his histories. “You will meet Wells at dinner,” said I. “My dear friend, I can't stop to dine,” said Hull. “I am off to Portsmouth, where we last met, on most particular business—most particular; and you know what it is about.” “I:” said I; “indeed, no.” “Pooh pooh 1” said Hull; “don’t tell me—you know every thing—eh 4” “Upon my word I do not,” said I in return. “What!” exclaimed my friend growing almost blue with excitement, “not know ! You don't mean to say you don't know 4 I’m going to Mr. Dingygreen, the agent, about matters in which you are deeply interested.” The moment he uttered these words I felt conscious that all my forebodings were to be verified, and that something connected with myself was actually mixed up with his visit. “My dear friend,” said Hull, “haven't you heard?” “What?” said I. “Why, my old friend Cuthbert, your brother, is utterly ruined. Pooh! pooh you dog, you knew that 3" 64 n my honour, no,” said I. - “Why then,” said Hull, screwing up his mouth into a circular form, and reducing it to a size inconceivably minute, “I am afraid you must have wondered at what I have been saying: but you do know—eh –I know you do—don't tell 77te o

“All I know of my brother,” said I, “is, that he is at Bath, and on the verge of ruin I readily admit; but I was not prepared to hear that it was consummated. Has she really secured him 4”

“She 1" exclaimed Hull, “who is she 4–what d'ye mean by she?' My dear friend, you don't mean to tell me that you are in the dark—hasn't he written to you?”

WOL. II. 13

“No,” said I, falteringly, for I did not like to let even Hulf know how sadly I had been deprived of a fond and kind-hearted brother's affection and confidence, “he has told me nothing about it.” “Dear, dear!” said Hull, wiping his forehead, which exhibited signs of unseasonable heat, evidences of warmth of interest rather than of weather; “my dear Gurney, he is ruined —lost—done or rather undone; instead of investing his money in the funds here, or in buying estates, or what not, he left it all in the hands of Messrs. Chipp, Rice, and Hiccory, of Calcutta, and they have smashed. Cuthbert has not a shilling to bless himself with—not a penny.” Now came upon me the whole truth of Nubley's statements—now did I see the reasonableness of his mystery, and the justness of his apprehension lest he should involve the characters of respectable people by letting me into the secret —now did I see the fallacy of my hopes, that Mrs. Brandyball's reputation was the one of which he was so tender—and now, moreover, did I see, in the strongest possible colours, my own doom and destitution. I suppose, being of a candid disposition, and the countenance being the index of the mind, the expression of mine did not appear to Hull as conveying any thing like a sense of obligation, or a feeling of gratitude, in return for the information with which he had favoured me, for he forthwith dressed his laughing face in a garb of sorrow, holding his glass in his hand at an angle of forty-five from his nose, made that sort of noise which people are in the habit of adopting when they are very sorry for having said or done something which they ought not to have said or done, and which cannot be spelled or written, but which is produced by a sort of cluckling monosyllabic sound against the roof of the mouth of S't—s’t. It is as useless to endeavour to put it upon paper as it would be to reduce to writing the encouraging somethings which a coachman says -to his horses when he performs a certain evolution with his tongue against his teeth, or sucks in a mouthful of air to give them a cheering “chirrup,” something in the nature of whistling reversed. At the moment when I saw Hull puzzled, I was puzzled also. I was quite undecided whether his apparent vexation at having abruptly imparted to me the ruin of my poor brother, was or was not more than counterbalanced by the delight he constitutionally felt at being the first bearer of the earliest intelligence of an event, the eventual effect of which is to a newsmonger not of the slightest importance; one feeling of my heart at the moment however could not be transcended– r Ashmead must be surrendered—poor dear Cuthbert would all into distress—and in that there was one cheering and redeeming hope—I—yes—I myself, with my paltry, trumpery independence, might relieve him from embarrassment and perhaps even poverty; and, oh! how happy would Harriet be 1– doubly happy, if that might happen, and we yet could rescue him from the besetting influence under which he was now labouring, and with our small pittance show our generous feelings towards the man who, with the best natural disposition in the world, had been fascinated away from us, and taught almost to hate and despise us. Hull saw by my countenance that something was passing in my mind. “My dear friend,” said he, looking at me with his glass at his eye, “when I say Cuthbert is ruined, I don't mean to say that he will be a beggar, going about the streets holding out his hat for halfpence. Pooh pooh! No:—I happen to know something about the matter. He may scrape a good deal out of the fire. I have known thousands of men—all intimate friends of my own—when I say thousands I mean two or three-who have smashed just like Chipp, Rice, and Hiccory, and yet, when every thing was gone, there was always something left:—my dear friend don't tell me.” “I was not thinking of that,” said I. “My brother, so long as I have a guinea in the world, shall be welcome to half of it; I am thinking rather of the new connexion with which he has got entangled at Bath.” “I know,” said Hull, winking diabolically, as I thought at the moment, “Mother Brandyball—always call her mother— eh 4—knew her husband intimately—nearly forty years older than her, when they married—have danced her on my knee —and a beautiful babby she was.” Is it Ahasuerus or Methuselah! said I to myself, marvelling to hear my excellent friend talk of having dandled the Gorgon Brandyball on his knee. Having played leap-frog with Doctor Johnson, or trundled a hoop with Sir Joseph Banks, would have been nothing to it. “Never mind her,” said Hull, “we can talk of her another time—Nubley is working there—” “Why,” said I, opening my eyes to their extreme width in astonishment, “how do you know that Nubley is there?” “How !” exclaimed Hull, with a crow of exultation, “haven't I told you a hundred and fifty times that I have no

thing in the world to do but to know every thing?—besides, in this case I am rather interested.” “In which case ?” said I, “will Cuthbert suffer very seriously " “My dear friend,” said Hull, “that is at present a secret, or at least a doubt—nobody knows—at least very few—eh I am in it—besides, I am personally concerned, I tell you—I have money depending.” This announcement certainly qualified my astonishment at his omniscience as affecting this particular business; however —as he no doubt meant it should—his intelligence had given an entirely new turn to my thoughts, and, in the midst of my apprehensions that a fall from our present position might be the result, and I did not think the chances against us much increased by the occurrence, seeing that I considered our fall finally settled by the Brandyball affair, I could but feel an anticipation of the pleasure I should receive in proving to Cuthbert the sincerity and immutability of my affection, by offering him a share of my income, humble as it was. From Hull's manner I was convinced that he was sincere in his determination of not stopping to dine, but I begged him to stay for luncheon, in order that I might introduce him to Harriet, and, if I could secure his attendance, get my fatherin-law to be of the party; not more for the purpose of enlivening my guest than to give him another triumph over my neverending doubt as to the universality of his acquaintance. In this last attempt however I failed, Wells was absent—but my wife was made acquainted with my friend, and we sat down *i; and I thought of other days. “Sweet spot, Ma'am, this,” said Hull; “in summer it must be lovely.” “You have a very nice place of your own, Hull,” said I. “Me " exclaimed my friend; “pooh pooh!—a box—a band-box—good garden—plenty of fruit—gooseberries—currants—but this l—pooh it is Paradise.” I could scarcely refrain from irritating my old friend into a vindication of his apple-crop, which I knew I could have elicited, but I was afraid of Harriet, who, having heard of his peculiar sensitiveness with regard to the “bushels” of that popular fruit which loaded the trees of his Tusculum, I restrained myself—I almost repented that I had, for, much to my alarm, (my better half being present,) Hull began to talk of Daly; and when he did talk, his delight being to show how intimately he was acquainted with everybody's business, he generally

became more communicative than I had any desire he should be, touching my earlier acquaintance with my faithless friend. “You have heard of Daly 4” said Hull, who according to his profession ate no luncheon, and merely went through the motions for sociability's sake, which gave him the more time for eloquence—“to be sure you have.” “Yes,” said I, falteringly. “My dear friend, he is going to be married to a widow— pooh, pooh, worth a million of money.” I gave him a look which I wished him to understand, expressive—at least I meant it to be so, of a desire not to touch upon the matrimonial part of Daly's history, for, although I , had concealed nothing from my Harriet of any real importance, but on the contrary had told her the truth, it might be that I had not told her the whole truth, inasmuch as there were sundry incidental circumstances connected with my youthful proceedings, her knowledge of which did not appear to me likely to increase her respect for my prudence, or elevate my friend Daly in her estimation. Hull, however, mistook the expression of my countenance, and evidently construed it into a sign of incredulity as to the amount of the intended Mrs. Daly's fortune, for the moment our eyes met he continued— “When I say a million, I mean probably twenty or thirty thousand pounds—and quite enough too. Poor Emma:—eh! —you dog!—she hasn't been dead more than five or six months, but Daly very soon got into a new connexion. I suppose, Ma'am,” added he, looking at Harriet, “you know all about that, eh?” Harriet made an equivocal inclination of her head. “His versatility is curious,” continued Hull who would talk, and would not eat; “to think that he should have taken to that line—” I was rather astounded, and said really inquisitively, “What line?” “The preaching,” said Hull. “What " said I, “preaching?” * Oh, you dog s” said Hull, “you know—don't tell me—he has got into what is called a connexion—in less than a week the whole thing was settled—when he came to town he sold his book of travels in Tomfoodledoo, or whatever foodledoo the place is called, which he told me you had not seen, to an eminent publisher—he was then asked by Miss Somebody to give a lecture upon the probable effect of a missionary expedition to the scene of his labours; he did it—and the effect he produced was such, that—don't tell me—he was the very next

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