with greater elegance, he overheard, this dia-
logue. As soon as Jonas was gone, he beckoned
Nadgett to him with the feather of his pen, and
whispered in his ear,
" Who gave him my letter this morning?"
" My lodger, sir," said Nadgett, behind the
palm of his hand.
" How came that about ? "
" I found him on the wharf, sir. Being so
much hurried, and you not arrived, it was neces-
sary to do something. It fortunately occurred
to me, that if I gave it him myself, I could be
of no further use. I should have been blown
â€¢â€¢ Mr. Nadgett, you are a jewel," said Mon-
tague, patting him on the back. " What's your
lodger's name ? "
" Pinch, sir. Mr. Thomas Pinch.''
Montague reflected for a little while, and then
" From the country, do you know ? "
" From Wiltshire, sir, he told me."
They parted without another word. To see
Mr. Nadgett's bow when Montague and he next
met, and to sec Mr. Montague acknowledge it,
anybody might have undertaken to swear that
they had never spoken to each other confiden-
tially, in all their lives.
In the meanwhile, Mr. Jonas and the doctor
made themselves very comfortable up-slairs,
over a bottle of the old Madeira, and some
sandwiches ; for the doctor having been already
invited to dine below, at six o'clock, prefened a
light repast for lunch. It was advisable, he
said, in two points of view: First, as being
healthy in itself. Secondly, as being the better
preparation for dinner.
" And you are bound for all our sakes to
take particular care of your digestion, Mr.
Chuzzlewit, my dear sir," said the doctor,
smacking his lips after a glass of wine ; " for
depend upon it, it is worth preserving. It must
be in admirable condition, su* â€¢ perfect chrono-
meter-work. Otherwise your spirits could not
be so remarkable. Your bosom's lord sits
lightly on its throne, Mr. Chuzzlewit, as what's-
his-name says in the play. I wish he said it in
a play which did anything like common justice
to our profession, by-the-bye. There is an
apothecary in that drama, sir, which is a low
thing; vulgar, sir ; out of nature altogether."
Mr. Jobling pulled out his shirt-frill of fine
linen, as though he would have added, " This is
what I call nature in a medical man, sir;" and
looked at Jonas for an observation.
Jonas not being in a condition to pursue the
subject, took up a case of lancets that was lying
on the table, and opened it.
" Ah ! " said the doctor, leaning back in his
chair, " I always take 'em out of my pocket
before I eat. My pockets are rather tight. Ha,
ha, ha ! "
Jonas had opened one of the shining little
instruments ; and was scrutinising it with a look
as sharp and eager as its own bright edge.
" Good steel, doctor. Good steel ! Eh?"
" Ye-es," replied the doctor, with the faltering
modesty of ownership. " One might open a
vein pretty dexterously with that, Mr. Chuzzle-
" It has opened a good many in its time, I
suppose?" said Jonas, looking at it with a
" Not a few, my dear sir, not a k\v. It has
been engaged in a â€” in a pretty good practice, I
believe I may say," replied the doctor, coughing
as if the matter-of-fact were so very dry and
literal that he couldn't help it. " In a pretty
good practice," repeated the doctor, putting
another glass of wine to his lips.
" Now, could you cut a man's throat with
such a thing as this ?" demanded Jonas.
" Oh certainly, certainly, if you took him in
the right place.'" relumed the doctor. " It all
depends npon that."
"Where you have your hand now, hey?"
cried Jonas bending forward to look at it.
A WILD NIGHT IMPENDS.
" Yes," said the doctor ; " that's the jugular."
Jonas, in his vivacity, made a sudden sawing
in the air, so close behind the doctor's jugular,
that he turned quite red. Then Jonas (in the
same strange spirit of vivacity) burst into a loud
" No, no," said the doctor, shaking his head :
" edge tools, edge tools ; never play with 'em.
A very remarkable instance of the skilful use of
edge tools, by the way, occurs to me at this
moment. It was a case of murder. I am
afraid it was a case of murder, committed by a
member of our profession ; it was so artistically
" Aye ! " said Jonas. " How was that? "
" Why, sir," returned Jobling, " the thing lies
in a nut-shell. A certain gentleman was found,
one morning, in an obscure street, lying in an
angle of a doorway â€” I should rather say, lean-
ing, in an upright position, in the angle of a
doorway, and supported consequently by the
doorway. Upon his waistcoat there was one
solitary drop of blood. He was dead, and
cold ; and had been murdered, sir."
" Only one drop of blood ! " said Jonas.
" Sir, that man," replied the doctor, " had
been stabbed to the heart. Had been stabbed
to the heart with such dexterity, sir, that he had
died instantly, and had bled internally. It was
supposed that a medical friend of his (to whom
suspicion attached) had engaged him in conver-
sation on some pretence ; had taken him, very
likely by the button, in a conversational man-
ner ; had examined his ground, at leisure, with
his other hand ; had marked the exact spot ;
drawn out the instrument, whatever it was, when
he was quite prepared ; and "
" And done the trick," suggested Jonas.
" Exactly so," replied the doctor. " It was
quite an operation in its way, and very neat.
The medical friend never turned up ; and, as I
tell you, he had the credit of it. Whether he
did it or not, I can't say. But, having had the
honour to be called in with two or three of my
professional brethren on the occasion, and hav-
ing assisted to make a careful examination of the
wound, I have no hesitation in saying that it
would have reflected credit on any medical
man ; and that in an unprofessional person, it
could not but be considered, either as an extra-
ordinary work of art, or the result of a still more
extraordinary, happy, and . favourable conjunc-
tion of circumstances."
His hearer was so much interested in this
case, that the doctor went on to elucidate it
with the assistance of his own finger and thumb
and waistcoat; and at Jonas's request, he took
the further trouble of going into a corner of the
room, and alternately representing the murdered
man and the murderer ; which he did with great
effect. The bottle being emptied, and the story
done, Jonas was in precisely the same boister-
ous and unusual state as when they had sat
down. If, as Jobling theorised, his good digestion
were the cause, he must have been a very ostrich.
At dinner, it was just the same ; and after
dinner too ; though wine was drunk in abun-
dance, and various rich meats eaten. At nine
o'clock it was still the same. There being a
lamp in the carriage, he swore they would take
a pack of cards, and a bottle of wine : and with
these things under his cloak, went down to the
" Out of the way, Tom Thumb, and get to
bed ! "
This was the salutation he bestowed on Mr.
Bailey, who, booted and wrapped up, stood at
the carriage-door to help him in.
" To bed, sir ! I'm a going, too," said Bailey.
He alighted quickly, and walked back into
the hall, where Montague was lighting a cigar :
conducting Mr. Bailey with him, by the collar.
" You are not a going to take this monkey of
a boy, are you ? "
" Yes," said Montague.
He gave the boy a shake, and threw him
roughly aside. There was more of his familiar
self in the action than in anything he had done
that day; but he broke out laughing imme-
diately afterwards, and making a thrust at the
doctor with his hand, in imitation of his repre-
sentation of the medical friend, went out to the
carriage again, and took his seat. His com-
panion followed immediately. Mr. Bailey
climbed into the rumble.
" It will be a stormy night ! " exclaimed the
doctor, as they started.
CONTINUATION OF THE ENTERPRISE OF MR. JONAS
AND HIS FRIEND.
JKp^nHp^HE Doctor's prognostication in refer-
jl^OK^ ence to the weather, was speedily
WÂ§\ ver i fie d- Although the weather was
'^j^m^m not a patient of his, and no third
|CS=^^* party had required him to give an
HÂ§) opinion on the case, the quick fulfil-
jjp*' ment of his prophecy may be taken as
& an instance of his professional tact ; for,
unless the threatening aspect of the night
had been perfectly plain and unmistakable,
Mr. Jobling would never have compromised his
reputation by delivering any sentiments on the
subject. He used this principle in Medicine
with too much success, to be unmindful of it
in his commonest transactions.
It was one of those hot, silent nights, v.
people sit at windows, listening for the thunder
which they know will shortly break; when they
recall dismal tales of hurricanes and earth-
quakes ; and of lonely travellers on open plains,
and lonely ships at sea struck by lightning.
Lightning Hashed and quivered on the black
horizon even now; and hollow murmurings
were in the wind, as though it had been blowing
where the thunder rolled, and still was charged
with its exhausted echoes. But the storm,
though gathering swiftly, had not yet come up ;
and the prevailing stillness was the more solemn,
from the dull intelligence that seemed to hover
in the air, of noise and conflict afar off.
It was very dark; but in the murky sky there
were masses of cloud which shone with a lurid
light, like monstrous heaps of copper that had
been heated in a furnace, and were growing
cold. These had been advancing steadily and
slowly, but they were now motionless, or nearly
so. As the carriage clattered round the corners
of the streets, it passed, at every one, a knot of
persons, who had come there â€” many from their
houses close at hand, without hats â€” to look up
at that quarter of the sky. And now, a very
few large drops of rain began to fall, and
thunder rumbled in the distance.
Jonas sat in a corner of the carriage, with his
bottle resting on his knee, and gripped as tightly
in his hand, as if he would have ground its neck
to powder if he could. Instinctively attracted
by the night, he had laid aside the pack of
cards upon the cushion ; and with the same
involuntary impulse, so intelligible to both of
them as not to occasion a remark on either
side, his companion had extinguished the lamp.
The front glasses were down ; and they sat
looking silently out upon the gloomy scene
They were clear of London, or as clear of it
as travellers can be, whose way lies on the
Western Road, within a stage of that enormous
city. Occasionally, they encountered a foot-
passenger, hurrying to the nearest place of
shelter; or some unwieldy cart pi
onward at a heavy trot, with the sam
view. Little clusters of such vehicles were
gathered round the stable-yard or baiting-place
of every way-side tavern ; while their drivers
watched the weather from the doors and
windows, or made merry within. Everywhere,
the people were disposed to bear each other
company, rather than sit alone ; so that groups
of watchful faces seemed to be looking out upon
the night and than, from almost every house
It may appear strange that this should have
disturbed Jonas, or rendered him uneasy : but
it did. After muttering to himself, and often
changing his position, he drew up the blind on
his side of the carriage, and turned his shoulder
sulkily towards it. But he neither looked at his
companion nor broke the silence which pre-
vailed between them, and which had fallen so
suddenly upon himself, by addressing a word
The thunder rolled, the lightning flashed ;
the rain poured down, like Heaven's wrath.
Surrounded at one moment by intolerable light.
and at the next by pitchy darkness, they still
pressed forward on their journey. Even when
they arrived at the end of the stage, and might
have tarried, they did not ; but ordered horses
out, immediately. Nor had this any reference
to some five minutes' lull, which at that time
seemed to promise a cessation of the storm.
They held their course as if they were impelled
and driven by its fury. Although they had not
exchanged a dozen words, and might have
tarried very well, they seemed to feel, by joint
consent, that onward they must go.
Louder and louder the deep thunder rolled,
as through the myriad halls of some vast temple
in the sky ; fiercer and brighter became the
lightning ; more and more heavily the rain
poured down. The horses (they were travelling
now with a single pair) plunged and started
from the rills of quivering fire that seemed to
wind along the ground before them : but there
these two men sat, and forward they went as if
they were led on by an invisible attraction.
The eye, partaking of the quickness of the
tig light, saw in its every gleam a multitude
of objects which it could not see at steady noon
in fifty times that period. Bells in steeples,
with the rope and wheel that moved them;
1 1 nests of birds in cornices and nooks;
faces full of consternation in the tilted waggons
that came tearing past : their frightened teams
tng out a warning which the thunder
ned; harrows and ploughs left out in fields;
. upon miles of hedge-divided country, with
the distant fringe of trees as obvious as the
scarecrow in the bean-field close at hand ; in a
ling, vivid, flickering instant, even
and plain: then came a 'lush of red
into the yellow light; a change to blue; a
brightness so intense that there was nothing
else but light.; and then the deepest and pro-
The lightning being very crooked and very
dazzling, may have presented or assisted a
curious optical illusion, which suddenly rose
before the startled eyes of Montague in the
carriage, and as rapidly disappeared. He thought
he saw Jonas with his hand lifted, and the
bottle clenched in it like a hammer, making as
if he would aim a blow at his head. At the
same time he observed (or so believed), an ex-
pression in his face : a combination of the un-
natural excitement he had shown all day, with a
wild hatred and fear : which might have ren-
dered a wolf a less terrible companion.
He uttered an involuntary exclamation, and
called to the driver, who brought his horses to a
stop with all speed.
It could hardly have been as he supposed, for
although he had not taken his eyes off his com-
panion, and had not seen him move, he sat
reclining in his corner as before.
"Whafsthe matter ?" said Jonas. 'â€¢' Is that
your general way of waking out of your sleep ?"
" I could swear," returned the other, " that I
have not closed my eyes !"
" When you have sworn it," said Jonas, com-
posedly, "we had better go on again, if you
have only stopped for that."
He uncorked the bottle with the help of his
teeth : and putting it to his lips, took a long
" i wish we had never started on this journey.
This is not," said Montague, recoiling instinc-
tively, and speaking in a voice that betrayed
his agitation : " this is not a night to travel in."
" Ecod ! you're right there," returned Jonas :
" and we shouldn't be out in it but for you. If
you hadn't kept me waiting all day, we might
have been at Salisbury by this time ; snug abed
and fast asleep. What are we stopping for ? "
His companion put his head out of window
for a moment, and drawing it in again, observed
(as if that were his cause of anxiety), that the
boy was drenched to the skin.
" Serve him right," said Jonas. " I'm glad of
it. What the devil are we stopping for ? Are
you going to spread him out to dry?"
" I have half a mind to take him inside," ob-
served the other with some hesitation.
" Oh ! thankee ! " said Jonas. " We don't
want any damp boys here : especially a young
imp like him. Let him be where he is. He
ain't afraid of a little thunder and lightning, I
dare say ; whoever else is. Go on, driver !
We had better have him inside perhaps," he
muttered with a laugh ; " and the horses."
" Don't go too fast," cried Montague to the
postillion ; " and take care how you go. You
were nearly in the ditch when I called to you."
This was not true ; and Jonas bluntly said so,
as they moved forward again. Montague took
little or no heed of what he said, but repeated
that it was not a night for travelling, and showed
himself, both then and afterwards, unusually
From this time, Jonas recovered his former
spirits, if such a term may be employed to
express the state in which he had left the city.
He had his bottle often at his mouth ; roared
out snatches of songs, without the least regard
to time or tune or voice, or anything but loud
discordance ; and urged his silent friend to be
merry with him.
" You're the best company in the world, my
good fellow," said Montague with an effort,
"and in general irresistible; but to-night â€” do
you hear it ? "
" Ecod, I hear and see it too," cried Jonas,
shading his eyes, for the moment, from the
lightning which was flashing, not in any one
direction, but all around them. " What of
that? It don't change you, nor me, nor our
affairs. Chorus, chorus !
It may lighten and storm,
Till it hunt the red worm
From the grass where the gibbet is driven ;
But it can't hurt the dead,
And it won't save the head
That is doom'd to be rifled and riven.
That must be a precious old song," he added
with an oath, as he stopped short in a kind of
wonder at himself. " I haven't heard it since I
was a boy, and how it comes into my head now,
unless the lightning put it there, I don't know.
' Can't hurt the dead ' ! No no. ' And won't
save the head '! No no. No ! Ha ha ha !"
His mirth was of such a savage and extraor-
dinary, character, and was, in an inexplicable
way, ' at once so suited to the night, and yet
such a coarse intrusion on its terrors, that his
fellow-traveller, always a coward, shrunk from
him in positive fear. Instead of Jonas being
his tool and instrument, their places seemed to
be reversed. But there was reason for this too,
Montague thought ; since the sense of his de-
basement might naturally inspire such a man
with the wish to assert a noisy independence,
and in that licence to forget his real condition.
Being quick enough, in reference to such sub-
jects of contemplation, he was not long in
taking this argument into account, and giving it
its full weight. But, still, he felt a vague sense
of alarm, and was depressed and uneasy.
He was certain he had not been asleep ; but
his eyes might have deceived him ; for, looking
at Jonas now, in any interval of darkness, he
could represent his figure to himself in any
attitude his state of mind suggested. On the
other hand, he knew full well that Jonas had no
reason to love him ; and even taking the piece
of pantomime which had so impressed his mind
to be a real gesture, and not the working of his
fancy, the most that could be said of it, was,
that it was quite in keeping with the rest of his
diabolical fun, and had the same impotent ex-
pression of truth in it. "If he could kill me
with a wish," thought the swindler, " I should
not live long."
He resolved, that when he should have had
his use of Jonas, he would restrain him with an
iron curb : in the mean time, that he could not
do better than leave him to take his own way,
and preserve his own peculiar description of
good-humour, after his own uncommon manner.
It was no great sacrifice to bear with him ; " for
when all is got that can be got," thought Mon-
tague, " I shall decamp across the water, and
have the laugh on my side â€” and the gains."
Such were his reflections from hour to hour ;
his state of mind being one in which the same
thoughts constantly present themselves over and
over again in wearisome repetition ; while Jonas,
who appeared to have dismissed reflection
altogether, entertained himself as before. They
agreed that they would go to Salisbury, and
would cross to Mr. Pecksniff's in the morning ;
and at the prospect of deluding that worthy
gentleman, the spirits of his amiable son-in-law
became more boisterous than ever.
As the night wore on, the thunder died away,
but still rolled gloomily and mournfully in the
distance. The lightning too, though now com-
paratively harmless, was yet bright and frequent.
The rain was quite as violent as it had ever been.
It was their ill-fortune, at about the time of
dawn and in the last stage of their journey, to
have a restive pair of horses. These animals
had been greatly terrified in their stable by the
tempest; and coming out into the dreary inter-
val between night and morning, when the glare
of the lightning was yet unsubdued by day, and
the various objects in their view were presented
in indistinct and exaggerated shapes which they
would not have worn by night, they gradually
tne less and less capable of control; until,
taking a sudden fright at something by the road-
side, they dashed off wildly down a steep hill,
flung the driver from his saddle, drew the car-
riage to the brink of a ditch, stumbled head-
long down, and threw it crashing over.
The travellers had opened the carriage door,
and had either jumped or fallen out. Jonas
was the first to stagger to his feet. lie felt
sick, and weak, and very giddy, and reeling to a
five-barred gate, stood holding by it: looking
drowsily about, as the whole landscape swam
before his eyes. But, by degrees, he grew more
conscious, and presently observed that Mon-
tague was lying senseless in the road, within a
few feet of the horses.
In an instant, as if his own faint body were
suddenly animated by a demon, he ran to the
horses' heads ; and pulling at their bridles with
all his force, set them struggling and plunging
with such mad violence as brought their hoofs
at every effort nearer to the skull of the prostrate
man, and must have led in half a minute to his
brains being dashed out on the highway.
As he did this, he fought and contended with
them like a man possessed : making them wilder
by his cries.
"Whoop!" cried Jonas. "Whoop! again!
another ! A little more, a little more ! Up, ye
devils ! Hillo ! "
As he heard the driver, who had risen and
was hurrying up, crying to him to desist, his
" Hillo ! Hillo ! " cried Jonas.
" For God's sake," cried the driver. â€” " The
gentleman â€” in the roadâ€” he'll be killed ! "
The same shouts and the same struggles were
his only answer. But the man darting in at the
peril of his own life, saved Montague's, by drag-
ging him through the mire and water out of the
reach of present harm. That done, he ran to
Jonas ; and with the aid of his knife they very
shortly disengaged the horses from the broken
chariot, and got them, cut and bleeding, on
their legs again. The postillion and Jonas had
now leisure to look at each other, which they
had not had yet.
" Presence of mind, presence of mind ! " cried
Jonas, throwing up his hands wildly. "What
would you have done without me ! "
" The other gentleman would have done
badly without me" returned the man, shaking
his head. "You should have moved him first.
I gave him up for dead."
" Presence of mind, you croaker, presence of
mind ! " cried Jonas, with a harsh loud laugh.
" Was he struck, do you think?"
They both turned to look at him. Jonas
muttered something to himself, when he
him sitting up beneath the hedge, looking
'â€¢ What's the matter ? " asked Montague. " Is
anybody hurt ? "
ALARMING CONDITION OF MR. BAILEY.
3 2 9
" Ecod ! " said Jonas, " it don't seem so.
There are no bones broke, after all."
They raised him, and he tried to walk. He
was a good deal shaken, and trembled very
much. But with the exception of a few cuts
and bruises this was all the damage he had
" Cuts and bruises, eh?" said Jonas. "We've
all "ot them. Only cuts and bruises, eh ? "
" I wouldn't have given sixpence for the
gentleman's head in half a dozen seconds more,
for all he's only cut and bruised," observed the
post-boy. " If ever you're in an accident of
this sort again, sir ; which I hope you won't be ;
never you pull at the bridle of a horse that's
down, when there's a man's head in the way.
That can't be done twice without there being a
dead man in the case ; it would have ended in
that, this time, as sure as ever you were born, if
I hadn't come up just when I did."
Jonas replied by advising him with a curse to
hold his tongue, and to go somewhere, whither
he was not very likely to go of his own accord.
But Montague, who had listened eagerly to
every word, himself diverted the subject, by