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z her Dieu de la danse, felt a great inclination to withdraw all her horrors and let her take her course. “Let her marry him,” thought Harriet, “and then Cuthbert will see what a delightful creature his daughter-in-law is.” The experiment would have failed ; but Kittington was not so to be caught. Well, Kate wandered, like Goosy Goosy Gander,
whence, I believe, my lady would very readily have ordered Foxcroft to
“Take her by the left leg, and throw her down stairs,”
but that the restlessness of her love-sick mind rendered the expulsion unnecessary. Wells went home—we dined—Sniggs did not appear—and I took his absence as a sort of barometrical symptom of his knowledge of the state of my influence at Montpelier, and I was obliged to be as agreeable as nature or the circumstances of the case permitted me to be to my two young friends. Scarcely however had the dessert been put down, and Kitty eaten three mouthfuls of Cuthbert's best preserved ginger, when the sound of carriage-wheels, rapidly revolving, followed by the sudden jam crash of a stop at the hall-door, made us all start. Jingle, whingle, whingle, bang went the bells—bark went the dogs—a rush of servants across the hall followed, and the usual sequel of clapping down carriagesteps and mingled noises burst upon our ears. “What's this?” said I. “Pappy,” said Kate. “Mrs. Brandyball,” said Jane. “The Deuce l’” said I. Open flew the dinner-room doors, and the servant announced “Mr. and Mrs. Nubley.” “Gracious me !” said I, starting from my seat, and advancing to welcome my most unexpected visiters. And sure enough in walked Mrs. Nubley, grinning and smirking, with her hand, as usual, over her mouth—Nubley following, having scarcely finished his directions to his servant as to what the post-boy was to be paid for a fourteen-mile stage. “Lauk ; Mr. Gurney,” screamed the lady, “here you are —who these two young ladies are I don't know. How is Mrs.
“As well as can be expected,” said I. “Lauks you are such a man!” replied the lady. “He he he l’” - “My dear friend,” said Nubley, in the most lugubrious tone, “you don't, I suppose, know the reason of our coming here yet!—How should he " added the worthy, in his soliloquising tone. “I guess,” said I, fully impressed with the belief that Cuthbert had begged Nubley to attend the remains of the lamented Tom to the grave. “Can't guess,” replied Nubley. “Sit down, Mrs. Nubley,” said I; “what can I offer you! —have you dined 4” “Dined " said the lady; “lauk ; Mr. G., you are so droll! Dined do you suppose my dear N. could have gone on without something to eat before this? He he he ” “It’s a bad business that has brought me here,” drawled out Nubley. “Yes,” said I, “a sad business; but I am glad you are come.” - “What, have you heard?” said the little man with the large head. “Qf course,” replied-I. “Here are two young ladies whosh you ought to know.” “They arn’t two of the Thompsons!” said Nubley. “Of the What?” said I. “Oh " said Nubley, “then you don't know. I'll take a little weak warm brandy and water,” continued he; “and, my love,” addressing his wife, “hadn't you better go and see Mrs. Gurney, and take off your things? We are come to stay a little with you.” “I conclude,” said I, “that my brother Cuthbert has written to you, and that you will remain here, at all events, a day or two after the funeral.” “Funeral " said Nubley, with the deepest grief depicted on his little countenance. “Funeral "screamed Mrs. Nubley. “He! he he? What a droll man you are, Mr. G !” - “Are you not aware, then,” said I, “that poor Cuthbert's favourite son-in-law is dead, else why is the house shut up — These are his sisters.” “Lauk " said Mrs. Nubley. “My " said Mr. Nubley, “that ugly baby!” And both the young ladies fell to sobbing incontinently. “So it is,” continued I; “and I concluded, when I saw you,
that Cuthbert had apprised you of the fact, and wished you to attend the ceremony.” “Not a bit of it,” said Nubley. “Dear me!—I am very sorry—nice boy, I suppose—poor little dears! Why, Mrs. Nubley, you knew their mother. Dear me !—are these—eh! —la !—how naked their shoulders are 1–eh !—what —don't you, my dear ** “Lauk! Mr. Nubley, to be sure I did,” said Mrs. Nubley; “and are you two really the dear little things I remember in Calcutta 4 Bless me, how you are grown " “They do grow,” said Nubley; and then picking the stubble from his chin, muttered, “umph what a foolish remark t— eh ! I'm very sorry about the boy. What did he die of 4” “Small-pox,” said I. “Not in the house!” said Nubley. “No,” said Kate,” “I wish he was, poor dear—for then we might take a last look at him.” “Poor dear!” said Nubley, “where have you put him to 4” “O,” said I, “I will explain all the circumstances by-and-by. Perhaps, Mrs. Nubley, you would like to see Harriet. Kate, dear, ring, and send for Foxcroft, and go with Mrs. Nubley to your aunt's room—go, Jane, love.” And by all these exertions I put the train in motion, and found myself left alone with my present absent friend, whose peculiarities I have already so particularly noted down in the first portion of my papers, as to render any further remark wholly unnecessary. “What, then,” said Nubley, when the ladies had retired, “brother Cuthbert isn't here 4” “No,” said l, “he is gone to live for the present at Bath.” “Do these young Falwassers stay here 4” “No,” said I, “they are here merely for the funeral of the brother.” “What, then,” said Nubley, “Cuthbert has given up the house to you altogether " . . “I hope,” said I, “he will soon return,” rather embarrassed by the question. Nubley, as was his custom, fixed his eyes full upon my face, and, as usual, stubbling his chin, muttered, “Not he—never, as long as you live. And these girls,” continued he, avowedly addressing me, “are two of the little children I remember being sent home by poor Falwasser. Good man, Falwasser— not wise—henpecked—talked to death by his wife—though he was a lawyer—eh ! And when do they bury the boy "
“The day is not fixed,” said I, “nor will be till to-morrow. You will attend the funeral 7" “Why, that depends,” said Nubley—“not being asked— can't say.” “Oh,” said I, “I am too proud to ask you.” “You!” said Nubley; “ah! that’s all very well—but—however, we’ll see—Cuthbert hasn't, you know—and so—but never mind—what I have come here about—never thought of a funeral –Captain Thompson, or whatever his name is, who has taken Chittagong Lodge—with his nieces—and they all have cousins—I never heard of such a number of cousins; I am told they are playing old Nick with the place—and the dilapidations are great, and rent not certain, eh?—let furnished —can't distrain my own chairs and tables;–and so—not knowing of all this—we came down to beg a night or two's houseroom—never thought of the death—wouldn't have come if I had heard of it.” That there was room for their accommodation in the house at Ashmead could not be denied; but it did really seem the most vexatious addition to all my other calamities, that this most eccentric couple of people, in their separate ways, should be quartered upon me just at a moment when I was almost overwhelmed with difficulties of even greater importance. I smiled a new welcome, which was scarcely ended when Mrs. Nubley and the young ladies returned to us, having been, as it was evident to me, ejected with very little ceremony, from what, by courtesy, was still called Harriet's “sick-room.” “Lauk! Mr. Gurney,” screamed Mrs. Nubley, “what a beautiful babby!—quite a ’Ercles!—I never did see. He he he 1–you are such a mans and dear Mrs. G., how well she is looking ! I have asked all about the family—’specially after Fanny, and dear little Lizzy—Bessy, you call her.” “I do,” said Kate; “I’m very fond of Bessy, and so is she of me.” “Do you recollect much of your mother, my little dear!” said Nubley. “Sir” said Kate, colouring crimson all over her neck and shoulders at being addressed in the paternal manner which Mr. Nubley chose to adopt. “You don't recollect much of your poor mother?” “No I should think not!” said Kate, tossing her head aside. “It is more than ten years since I was in India.” “Dear me,” said Nubley, “is that possible —eh ! Mrs. N., ten years : . Well, to be sure —eh! And you have been at school all this time, my little love?”
“I’ve left school now,” said Kate, looking stilettos at her examiner. “Only for a time, Kate,” said I. “For ever, I hope,” said Kate. “The minute Mrs. Brandyball retires, I am never to be pestered with school any more. Why should I?” “And what is your name, my pretty child?” continued Nubley, addressing the other Falwasser. . “Jane, sir,” said she. “Lauk " said Mrs. Nubley, “you were called after your aunt—I remember now. And are you both very clever !—I suppose so. Your mamma was a charming woman—great friend of mine—many a pleasant day we have passed together. But it's no use talking of that now. He he he ” To this sort of conversation—if conversation it might be called—I was destined to listen till tea and coffee were produced; during the exhibition of which (Kate doing the honours) Mrs. Nubley detailed all their apprehensions as to the mischief that was going on at Chittagong, and their anxiety to know its extent, and the means of obtaining legal redress;– the by-play of the scene being kept up most assiduously by the young ladies of the party, who, whenever an opportunity occurred, indulged themselves in making the most grotesque faces at each other, in the highest degree expressive of disgust and contempt, which the proceedings of the newly-arrived guests had excited in their youthful bosoms. Seeing all this in progress, I felt it imperative on me not to hand over the antiques to the good-breeding of the moderns, by leaving the room, which I was most anxious to do, in order to communicate with Harriet upon the arrangements necessary in consequence of the arrival of our unexpected guests. It required a good deal of manoeuvring to manage this matter, and I at last resolved to detach Mrs. Nubley, or rather carry her off with me to Harriet's room, to get her out of harm's way—not so much caring about Nubley, who, in his quaint, odd manner, might make a tolerable fight against the pertness of my young connexions; but there I was defeated, for the moment I suggested the lady's visit to my wife's room, both the dear girls volunteered to accompany us, and persisted in their intention, in spite of my remonstrances against their leaving Mr. Nubley by himself. It is not worth while putting down in detail the various little schemes and stratagems by which the evening, in a house where mirth and amusement were interdicted, was consumed; but it is important to observe that a conversation which I had