little outlay made in his behalf would be probably repaid, and he
was therefore furnished with a messenger on credit. This man was
first to call at Mr. M'Ruen's with a note, and then to go to
Charley's lodgings and get his brushes, razors, &c., these being
the first necessaries of life for which a man naturally looks
when once overtaken by such a misfortune as that with which
Charley was now afflicted.
In the process of time the brushes and razors came, and so did
'This is very kind of you,' said Charley, in rather a doleful
voice, for he was already becoming tired of Cursitor Street.
Mr. M'Ruen twisted his head round inside his cravat, and put out
three fingers by way of shaking hands with the prisoner.
'You seem pretty comfortable here,' said M'Ruen. Charley
dissented to this, and said that he was extremely uncomfortable.
'And what is it that I can do for you, Mr. Tudor?' said M'Ruen.
'Do for me! Why, bail me, to be sure; they won't let me out
unless somebody bails me. You know I shan't run away.'
'Bail you!' said M'Ruen.
'Yes, bail me,' said Charley. 'You don't mean to say that you
have any objection?'
Mr. M'Ruen looked very sharply at his young client from head to
foot. 'I don't know about bail,' he said: 'it's very dangerous,
very; why didn't you send for Mr. Norman or your cousin?'
'Because I didn't choose,' said Charley - 'because I preferred
sending to some one I could pay for the trouble.'
'Ha - ha - ha,' laughed M'Ruen; 'but that's just it - can you pay?
You owe me a great deal of money, Mr. Tudor. You are so
unpunctual, you know.'
'There are two ways of telling that story,' said Charley; 'but
come, I don't want to quarrel with you about that now - you go
bail for me now, and you'll find your advantage in it. You know
that well enough.'
'Ha - ha - ha,' laughed the good-humoured usurer; 'ha - ha - ha -
well, upon my word I don't know. You owe me a great deal of
money, Mr. Tudor. Now, what o'clock is it by you, I wonder?'
Charley took out his watch - the Cox and Savary, before alluded
to - and said that it was past seven.
'Aye; you've a very nice watch, I see. Come, Mr. Tudor, you owe
me a great deal of money, and you are the most unpunctual young
man I know; but yet I don't like to see you distressed. I'll tell
you what, now - do you hand over your watch to me, just as a
temporary loan - you can't want it here, you know; and I'll come
down and bail you out to-morrow.'
Charley declined dealing on these terms; and then Mr. M'Ruen at
last went away, leaving Charley to his fate, and lamenting quite
pathetically that he was such an unpunctual young man, so very
unpunctual that it was impossible to do anything to assist him.
Charley, however, manfully resisted the second attack upon his
'That's very blue, very blue indeed,' said the master of the
house, as Mr. M'Ruen took his departure - 'ha'n't you got no
huncles nor hants, nor nothin' of that sort?'
Charley declared that he had lots of uncles and aunts,
grandfathers and grandmothers, and a perfect wealth of cousins,
and that he would send for some of the leading members of his
family to-morrow. Satisfied with this, the man supplied him with
bread and cheese, gin and water, and plenty of tobacco; and,
fortified with these comforts, Charley betook himself at last
very lugubriously, to a filthy, uninviting bed.,
He had, we have seen, sent for his brushes, and hence came
escape; but in a manner that he had little recked of, and of
which, had he been asked, he would as little have approved. Mrs.
Richards, his landlady, was not slow in learning from the
messenger how it came to pass that Charley wanted the articles of
his toilet so suddenly demanded. 'Why, you see, he's just been
quodded,' said the boy.
Mrs. Richards was quite enough up to the world, and had dealt
with young men long enough, to know what this meant; nor indeed
was she much surprised. She had practical knowledge that Charley
had no strong propensity to pay his debts, and she herself was
not unaccustomed to answer the emissaries of Mr. Outerman and
other greedy tradesmen who were similarly situated. To Mrs.
Richards herself Charley was not in debt, and she had therefore
nothing to embitter her own feelings against him. Indeed, she had
all that fondness for him which a lodging-house keeper generally
has for a handsome, dissipated, easy-tempered young man; and when
she heard that he had been 'quodded,' immediately made up her
mind that steps must be taken for his release.
But what was she to do? Norman, who she was aware would 'unquod'
him immediately, if he were in the way, was down at Hampton, and
was not expected to be at his lodgings for two or three days.
After some cogitation, Mrs. Richards resolved that there was
nothing for it but to go down to Hampton herself, and break the
news to his friends. Charley would not have been a bit obliged to
her had he known it, but Mrs. Richards acted for the best. There
was a train down to Hampton Court that night, and a return train
to bring her home again - so off she started.
Mrs. Woodward had on that same afternoon taken down Katie, who
was still an invalid; - Norman had gone down with them, and was to
remain there for some few days - going up and down every morning
and evening. Mrs. Woodward was sitting in the drawing-room; Linda
and Katie were with her, the latter lying in state on her sofa as
invalid young ladies should do; Captain Cuttwater was at Hampton
Court, and Norman was on the water; when a fly from the railway
made its way up to the door of the Cottage.
'Mrs. Richards, ma'am,' said the demure parlour-maid, ushering in
the lodging-house keeper, who in her church-going best made a
very decent appearance.
'Oh, Mrs. Richards, how are you?' said Mrs. Woodward, who knew
the woman very well - 'pray sit down - are there any news from
'Oh, ma'am, such news - such bad news - Mister Charley - .' Up
jumped Katie from her sofa and stood erect upon the floor. She
stood there, with her mouth slightly open, with her eyes intently
fixed on Mrs. Richards, with her little hands each firmly
clenched, drawing her breath with hard, short, palpitating
efforts. There she stood, but said nothing.
'Oh, Mrs. Richards - what is it?' said Mrs. Woodward; 'for
Heaven's sake what is the matter?'
'Oh, ma'am; he's been took,' said Mrs. Richards.
'Took!' repeated Mrs. Woodward. 'Katie, dear Katie - sit down, my
child - sit down.'
'Oh, mamma! oh, mamma!' said she, apparently unable to move, and
certainly all but unable to stand.
'Tell us, Mrs. Richards, what is it - what has happened to Mr.
Tudor?' and as she spoke Mrs. Woodward got up and passed her arm
around her younger daughter's waist - Linda also got up and
joined the group.
'Why, ma'am,' said Mrs. Richards, 'he's been took by the
bailiffs, and now he's in prison.'
Katie did not faint. She never had fainted, and probably did not
know the way; but she clenched her hands still tighter, breathed
harder than before, and repeated her appeal to her mother in a
voice of agony. 'Oh, mamma! oh, mamma!'
Katie had no very accurate conception of what an arrest for debt
meant. She knew that next to death imprisonment was the severest
punishment inflicted on erring mortals, and she now heard that
Charley was in prison. She did not stop to think whether it was
for his life, or for some more limited period. It was enough for
her to know, that this terrible misfortune had come upon him, to
him who, to her young fancy, was so bright, so good, so clever,
so excellent, upon him who had saved her life - upon him whom she
so dearly loved.
'Oh, mamma! oh, mamma!' she said, and then in agony she shut her
eyes and shuddered violently.
Mrs. Woodward was greatly afflicted. She was indeed sorry to hear
such tidings of Charley Tudor; but her grief was now deeper even
than that. She could not be longer blind to the sort of feeling
which her child evinced for this young man; she could not think
that these passionate bursts of overpowering sorrow were the
result of mere childish friendship; she could not but see that
her Katie's bosom now held a woman's heart, and that that heart
was no longer her own.
And then Mrs. Woodward reflected of what nature, of what sort,
was this man whom she had allowed to associate with her darling,
almost as a brother does with his sister; whom she had warmed in
her bosom till he had found an opportunity of inflicting this
deadly wound. With terrible bitterness she upbraided herself as
she sat down and bade Mrs. Richards go on with her tale. She knew
that nothing which could now be said would add to Katie's
Mrs. Richards' story was soon told. It simply amounted to this -
that 'Mister Charley,' as she always called him, had been
arrested for debt at the suit of a tailor, and that she had
learnt the circumstances from the fact of the prisoner having
sent for his brushes.
'And so I thought the best thing was to come and tell Mr.
Norman,' said Mrs. Richards, concluding her speech.
Nothing could be done till Norman came in. Linda went out with
Mrs. Richards to get some refreshment in the dining-room, and
Mrs. Woodward sat with her arm round Katie's neck on the sofa,
comforting her with kisses and little caressing touches, but
saying nothing. Katie, still unconscious of her passion, gave way
to spasmodic utterance of her own grief.
'Oh, mamma!' she said - ' what can be done? What can we do? You
will do something, mamma, won't you? Poor Charley! Dear Charley!
Harry will do something - won't he? Won't Harry go to London, and
Mrs. Woodward did what she could to quiet her. Something should
be done, she said. They must wait till Harry came in, and then
settle what was best. Nothing could be done till Harry came in.
'You must be patient, Katie, or else you will make yourself
Katie became afraid that she would be sent off to bed on the
score of her illness before Harry had come, and thus lose the
advantage of hearing what was the step decided on. So she sat
silent in the corner of her sofa feigning to be asleep, but
pondering in her mind what sort of penalties were the penalties
of imprisonment, how dreadful, how endurable, or how unendurable.
Would they put chains on him? would they starve him? would they
cut off his beautiful brown hair?
Mrs. Woodward sat silent waiting for Harry's return. When first
she had watched Katie's extreme misery, and guessed the secret of
her child's heart, she had felt something like hard, bitter anger
against Charley. But by degrees this feeling softened down. It
was by no means natural to her, nor akin to her usual tenderness.
After all, the fault hitherto was probably more her own than his.
Mrs. Richards was sent back to town. She was thanked for the
trouble she had taken, and told that Mr. Norman would do in the
matter all that was necessary to be done. So she took her
departure, and Linda returned to the drawing-room.
Unfortunately Captain Cuttwater came in first. They none of them
mentioned Charley's misfortune to him. Charley was no favourite
with Uncle Bat, and his remarks would not have been of the most
At last Norman came also. He came, as was his wont, through the
drawing-room window, and, throwing himself into a chair, began to
tell the girls how much they had lost by not joining him on the
'Harry,' said Mrs. Woodward, 'step into the dining-room with me
for a moment.'
Harry got up to follow her. Katie and Linda also instantly jumped
from their seats to do the same. Mrs. Woodward looked round, and
motioned to them to stay with their uncle. Linda obediently,
though reluctantly, remained; but Katie's impulse was too strong
for her. She gave one imploring look at her mother, a look which
Mrs. Woodward well understood, and then taking silence for
consent, crept into the dining-room.
'Harry,' said Mrs. Woodward, as soon as the dining-room door was
closed, 'Charley has been arrested;' and then she told him how
Mrs. Richards had been at the Cottage, and what was the nature of
the tidings she had brought.
Norman was not much surprised, nor did he feign to be so. He took
the news so coolly that Katie almost hated him. 'Did she say who
had arrested him, or what was the amount?' he asked.
Mrs. Woodward replied that she knew no more than what she had
already told. Katie stood in the shade with her eyes fixed upon
her cousin, but as yet she said nothing. How cruel, how stony-
hearted must he be to hear such dreadful tidings and remain thus
undisturbed! Had Charley heard that Norman was arrested, he would
have been half way to London by this time. So, at least, thought
'Something can be done for him, Harry, can there not? We must
contrive to do something - eh, Harry?' said Mrs. Woodward.
'I fear it is too late to do anything to-night,' said Harry,
looking at his watch. 'The last train is gone, and I could not
possibly find him out before twelve.'
'And to-morrow is Sunday,' said Mrs. Woodward.
'Oh, Harry, pray do something!' said Katie, 'pray, pray, pray,
do! Oh, Harry, think of Charley being in prison! Oh, Harry, he
would do anything for you!' and then she burst into tears, and
caught hold of Harry's arm and the front of his coat to add force
to her entreaty.
'Katie,' said her mother, 'don't be so foolish. Harry will, of
course, do whatever is best.'
'But, mamma, he says he will do nothing; why does he not go at
'I will go at once, dear Katie,' said he; 'I will go now
directly. I don't know whether we can set him free to-night, or
even to-morrow, as to-morrow is Sunday; but it certainly shall be
done on Monday, you may be sure of that at any rate. Whatever can
be done shall be done;' and, without further talk upon the
subject, he took his hat and went his way.
'May God Almighty bless him!' said Mrs. Woodward. 'How infinitely
greater are truth and honesty than any talent, however brilliant!'
She spoke only to herself and no one even guessed what was
the nature of the comparison which she thus made.
As soon as Norman was gone, Katie went to bed: and in the morning
she was pronounced to be too unwell to get up. And, indeed, she
was far from well. During the night she only slept by short
starts, and in her sleep she was restless and uneasy; then, when
she woke, she would burst out into fits of tears, and lie sobbing
hysterically till she slept again. In the morning, Mrs. Woodward
said something about Charley's misconduct, and this threw her
into a wretched state of misery, from which nothing would rouse
her till her mother promised that the prodigal should not be
thrown over and abandoned.
Poor Mrs. Woodward was in a dreadful state of doubt as to what it
now behoved her to do. She felt that, however anxious she might
be to assist Charley for his own sake, it was her bounden duty to
separate him from her child. Whatever merits he might have - and
in her eyes he had many - at any rate he had not those which a
mother would desire to see in the future husband of her daughter.
He was profligate, extravagant, careless, and idle; his prospects
in life were in every respect bad; he had no self-respect, no
self-reliance, no moral strength. Was it not absolutely necessary
that she should put a stop to any love that might have sprung up
between such a man as this and her own young bright-eyed darling?
Put a stop to it! Yes, indeed, most expedient; nay, absolutely
necessary - if it were only possible. Now, when it was too late,
she began to perceive that she had not known of what material her
own child was formed. At sixteen, Gertrude and Linda had in
reality been little more than children. In manner, Katie had been
more childish even than them, and yet - Mrs. Woodward, as she
thought of these things, felt her heart faint within her.
She was resolved that, cost what it might, Charley must be
banished from the Cottage. But at the first word of assumed
displeasure that she uttered, Katie fell into such an agony of
grief that her soft heart gave way, and she found herself obliged
to promise that the sinner should be forgiven. Katie the while
was entirely unconscious of the state of her own feelings. Had
she thought that she loved him as women love, had any thought of
such love and of him together even entered her mind, she could
not have talked of him as she now talked. Had he been her
brother, she could not have been less guarded in her protestations
of affection, or more open in her appeals to her mother that he
might be forgiven. Such was her present state; but it was doomed
that her eyes should soon be opened, and that she should know
her own sorrow.
On the Sunday afternoon, Norman returned to Hampton with the
tidings that Charley was once more a free man. The key of gold
which he had taken with him had been found potent enough to open
all barriers, even those with which the sanctity of Sunday had
surrounded the prisoner. Mr. Outerman, and the bailiff, and the
messenger, had all been paid their full claims, and Charley, with
his combs and brushes, had returned to the more benign custody of
'And why didn't he come down with you?' said Katie to Norman, who
had gone up to her bedroom to give her the good tidings.
Norman looked at Mrs. Woodward, but made no reply.
'He would probably prefer remaining in town at present,' said
Mrs. Woodward. 'It will be more comfortable for him to do so.'
And then Katie was left alone to meditate why Charley should be
more comfortable after his arrest in London than at Hampton; and
after a while she thought that she had surmised the truth. 'Poor
Charley! perhaps he is ashamed. He need not be ashamed to come at
any rate to me.'
EASY IS THE SLOPE OF HELL
The electors for the Tillietudlem district burghs, disgusted by
the roguery of Mr. M'Buffer, and anxiously on the alert to
replace him by a strictly honest man, returned our friend Undy by
a glorious majority. He had no less than 312 votes, as opposed to
297, and though threatened with the pains and penalties of a
petition, he was not a little elated by his success. A petition
with regard to the Tillietudlem burghs was almost as much a
matter of course as a contest; at any rate the threat of a
petition was so. Undy, however, had lived through this before,
and did not fear but that he might do so again. Threatened folks
live long; parliamentary petitions are very costly, and Undy's
adversaries were, if possible, even in more need of money than
He communicated his good fortune to his friend Alaric in the
following letter: -
'Bellenden Arms, Tillietudlem, July, 185-.
'My DEAR DIRECTOR,
'Here I am once more a constituent part of the legislative wisdom
of the United Kingdom, thanks to the patriotic discretion of the
pot-wallopers, burgage-tenants, and ten-pound freeholders of
these loyal towns. The situation is a proud one; I could only
wish that it had been less expensive. I am plucked as clean as
ever was pigeon; and over and above the loss of every feather I
carried, old M'Cleury, my agent here, will have a bill against me
that will hardly be settled before the next election. I do not
complain, however; a man cannot have luxuries without paying for
them; and this special luxury of serving one's country in
Parliament is one for which a man has so often to pay, without
the subsequent fruition of the thing paid for, that a successful
candidate should never grumble, however much he may have been
mulcted. They talk of a petition; but, thank God, there are still
such things as recognizances; and, moreover, to give M'Cleury his
due, I do not think he has left a hole open for them to work at.
He is a thorough rascal, but no man does better work.
'I find there is already a slight rise in the West Corks. Keep
your eye open. If you find you can realize L4 4s. or even L4,
sell, and let the West of Cork and Ballydehob go straight to the
devil. We should then be able to do better with our money. But I
doubt of such a sale with so large a stock as we hold. I got a
letter yesterday from that Cork attorney, and I find that he is
quite prepared to give way about the branch. He wants his price,
of course; and he must have it. When once we have carried that
point, then it will be plain sailing; our only regret then will
be that we didn't go further into it. The calls, of course, must
be met; I shall be able to do something in October, but shall not
have a shilling sooner - unless I sell, which I will not do under
'I was delighted to hear of your promotion; not that you'll
remain in the shop long, but it gives you a better name and a
better claim. Old Golightly was buried yesterday, as of course
you have heard. Mrs. Val quite agrees with me that your name had
better be put in as that of Clem's trustee. She's going to marry
that d - - Frenchman. What an unmitigated ass that cousin of
yours must be! I can't say I admire her taste; but nevertheless
she is welcome for me. It would, however, be most scandalous if
we were to allow him to get possession of her money. He would, as
a matter of course, make ducks and drakes of it in no time.
Speculate probably in some Russian railway, or Polish mine, and
lose every shilling. You will of course see it tied up tight in
the hands of the trustees, and merely pay him, or if possible
her, the interest of it. Now that I am once more in, I hope we
shall be able to do something to protect the fortunes of married
'You will be quite safe in laying out Clem's money, or a portion
of it, in the West Corks. Indeed, I don't know how you could well
do better with it. You will find Figgs a mere shadow. I think we
can pull through in this manner. If not we must get - to take our
joint bill. He would sooner do that than have the works stopped.
But then we should have to pay a tremendous price for it.
'So we were well out of the Mary Janes at last. The take last
month was next to nothing, and now she's full of water. Manylodes
hung on till just the last, and yet got out on his feet after
all. That fellow will make a mint of money yet. What a pity that
he should be such a rogue! If he were honest, honest enough I
mean to be trusted, he might do anything.
'I shall leave this on Wednesday night, take the oaths on
Thursday, and will see you in the evening. M'Carthy Desmond will
at once move that I be put on the West Cork Committee, in place
of Nogo, who won't act. My shares are all at present registered
in Val's name. It will be well, however, to have them all
transferred to you.
'M'Cleury has pledged himself to put me in again without further
expense, if I have to stand before the next general election, in
consequence of taking place under Government. I earnestly hope
his sincerity may be tried.'
During the month of July, Alaric was busy enough. He had to do
the work of his new office, to attend to his somewhat critical
duties as director of the West Cork Railway, to look after the
interests of Miss Golightly, whose marriage was to take place in
August, and to watch the Parliamentary career of his friend Undy,
with whose pecuniary affairs he was now bound up in a manner
which he could not avoid feeling to be very perilous.
July passed by, and was now over, and members were looking to be
relieved from their sultry labours, and to be allowed to seek air
and exercise on the mountains. The Ballydehob branch line had
received the sanction of Parliament through the means which the
crafty Undy had so well understood how to use; but from some
cause hitherto not sufficiently fathomed, the shares had
continued to be depressed in value in spite of that desirable
event. It was necessary, however, that calls should be paid up to
the amount of L5 a share, and as Undy and Alaric held nearly a
thousand shares between them, a large amount of money was
required. This, however, was made to be forthcoming from Miss
On the first of August that interesting young lady was married to
the man - shall we say of her heart or of her feet? The marriage
went off very nicely, but as we have already had one wedding, and
as others may perhaps be before us, we cannot spare much time or
many pages to describe how Miss Golightly became Madame
Jaquetanape. The lady seemed well pleased with everything that
was done, and had even in secret but one care in the world. There
was to be a dance after she and her Victoire were gone, and she
could not join in it!
We, however, are in the position, as regards Clementina, in which
needy gentlemen not unfrequently place themselves with reference