Oliver Twist by Charles Dickens - Chapters 40 - 44

Oliver Twist by Charles Dickens – Chapters 40 – 44

Charles Dickens’ popular classic. Oliver Twist, is excellently read by Mill Nicholson.
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Mill Nicholson read this work for Librivox. Gary and Mill Nicholson have a web page at
The image I used for the cover is by Nestor Taylor, whose work can be found at nestortaylor.blogspot.com

Oliver Twist by Charles Dickens recorded by mill Nicholson chapter 40 a strange interview which is a sequel to the last chamber the girl's life had been squandered in the streets and among the most noisome of the stews and dens of London but there was something of the woman's a ritual nature left in her still and when she heard a light step approaching the door opposite to that by which she had entered and thought of the wide contrast which the small room would in another moment contain she felt burdened with the sense of her own deep shame and shrunk as though she could scarcely bear the presence of her with whom she had sought this interview but struggling with these better feelings was pride the vice of the lowest and most debased creatures no less than at the high and self-assured the miserable companion of thieves and ruffians the fallen outcasts of low haunts the associate of the scourings of the jails and hulks living within the shadow of the gallows itself even this degraded being felt too proud to betray a feeble gleam of the womanly feeling which he thought a weakness which alone connected her with that humanity of which her wasting life had obliterated so many many traces when a very child she raised her eyes sufficiently to observe that the figure which presented itself was out of a slight and beautiful girl then bending them on the ground she tossed her head with affected carelessness as she said it's hard matter to get to see you lady if I take an offence and gone away as many would have done you'd have been sorry for it one day and not without reason harder I am very sorry if anyone has behaved harshly to you replied Rose do not think of that tell me why you wish to see me I'm the person you enquired for the kind tone of this answer the sweet voice the gentle manner the absence of any accent of haughtiness or displeasure took the girl completely by surprise and she burst into tears ah lady lady she said in your hands passionately before her face if there was more like you there would be fewer like me they would they would sit down said Rose earnestly if you are in poverty or affliction I shall be truly glad to relieve you if I can I shall indeed sit down let me stand lady said the girl still weeping and do not speak to me so kindly till you know me bitter it is growing late it is that door sure yes said Rose recalling a few steps as if to be nearer assistance in case you should require it why because said the girl I'm about to put my life and the lives of others in your hands I am the girl that dragged little Oliver back to old Fagin's on the night he went out from the house in Pentonville you said Rose Maylie I like it he replied the girl I am the infamous creature you averred of that lives among the thieves and that never from the first moment I can recollect my eyes and senses opening on London streets have known any better life or kind of words and they have given me so help me God do not mind shrinking openly from me lady I am younger than you would think they look at me but I'm well used to it the poorest women fall back as I make my way along the crowded pavement what dreadful things are these said Rose involuntarily falling from her strange companion thank heaven upon your knees dear lady cried the girl that you are friend sit careful and keep you in your childhood and that you were never in the midst of cold and anger and riot and drunkenness and and something worse than all as I have been from my cradle I may use the word for the alley and the gutter wear mine as they will be my deathbed I pity you said Rose in a broken voice it rings my heart to hear you Evan bless you for your goodness rejoined the girl if you knew what I am sometimes you were pity me indeed but I've stolen away from those who would surely murder me if they knew I be near to tell you I've overheard do you know a man named monks no said rose he knows you replied the girl and you you were here for it was by hearing him tell the place that I found you out I never heard the name said rose then he goes by some other amongst us for joined the girl which I more than thought before some time ago and soon after Oliver was put into your house on the night of the robbery I suspecting this man listen to a conversation held between him and Fagin in the dark I found out for what I heard that monks the man asked you about you know yes said rose I understand that monks pursued the girl at seed him accidentally was two of our boys on the day we first lost him and had known him directly to be the same child that he was watching for though I couldn't make out why a bargain was struck with Fagin that if Oliver was got back he should have a certain sum and he was to have more for making him a thief which this monks wanted for some purpose of his own for what purpose ice rose he caught sight of my shadow on the wall as I listened in the out were finding out said the girl and there are not many people besides me that could have got out of their way in time to escape discovery but I did and I saw no mortal last night and what occurred then I'll tell you lady last night he came again again they went upstairs and I wrapping myself up so at me shadow would not betray me again listened at the door the first words I heard might say were these have the only proofs of the boy's identity lie at the bottom of the river and the old egg that received them from the mother is rotting in a coffin they laughed and talked of his success in doing this and monks talking on about the and getting very wild said that though he had got the young Devils money safely now he'd rather have had it the other way for what a game it would have been to have brought down the boast of the father's will by driving him through every jail in town and then all in him up for some capital felony which Fagin could easily manage after having made a good profit on him besides what is all this said Rose the truth lady though it comes from my lips replied the girl then he said with those common enough in my ears but strange to yours as if he could gratify his hatred by taking the boy's life without bringing his own net in danger he would but as he couldn't heed be upon the watch to meet him every turn in life and if he took the Vantage of his birth in history he might harm him yet in short Fagin he says Jew as you are you never laid such layers as I'll contrive for more young brother Oliver his brother excellent rose those were his words said Nancy glancing uneasily round as she had scarcely ceased to do since he began to speak for a vision of Sikes haunted her perpetually and more when he spoke the view and the other lady and said it seemed contrived by heaven or the devil against him that Oliver should come into your hands he laughed and said there was some comfort in that too for how many thousands and hundreds of thousands of pounds would you not give if you add them to no rule your two-legged spaniel was he'll do not mean said rose turning very pale to tell me that this was set in earnest he spoke in hard and angry earnest if a man ever did replied the girl shaking her head he is an earnest man when his a producer I know many who do worse things but I rather listen to them all a dozen times and to that monks once it is growing late and I have to reach home without suspicion of having been on such an errand as this I must get back quickly but what can I do said rose to what use can I turn this communication without you back why do you wish to return to companions you paint in such terrible colors if you repeat this information to a gentleman whom I can summon in an instant for the next room you can be consigned to some place of safety without half an hour's delay I wish to go back said the girl I must go back because helping I tell such things to an innocent lady like you because among the men now I've told you off there is one the most desperate among them all but I can't leave no not even to be saved from the life I'm leaving now you're having interfered in this dear boys behalf before said Rose you're coming here at so great a risk to tell me what you have heard your manner which convinces me of the truth of what you say your evident contrition and sense of shame all lead me to believe that you might yet be reclaimed Oh said the earnest girl folding her hands as the tears coursed down her face do not turn a deaf ear to the entreaties of one of your own sex the first the first I do believe whoever appeal to you in the voice of pity and compassion do hear my words and let me save you yet for better things lady cried the girl sinking on her knees dear sweet angel lady you are the first that ever blessed me with such words as these and if I had heard them years ago they might have turned me from a life of sin and sorrow but it's too late it is too late it is never too late said Rose for penitence and atonement it is cried the girl writhing in agony of her mind I cannot leave him now I could not be his death why should you be astros nothing could save him cried the girl if I told others what I've told you and led to their being taken he would be shouid i is the boldest and as been so cruel is it possible cried rose at for such a man as this you can resign every future hope and the certainty of immediate rescue it is madness i don't know what it is answer the girl i only know that it is so and not with me alone but with hundreds of others as bad and richard as myself i must go back whether it is God's wrath for the wrong i done i do not know but i'm drawn back to him through every suffering and ill-usage and i should be i believe if i knew that i was to die by his hand at last what am I to do said rose I should not let you depart from me thus you should lady and I know you will rejoin the girl rising you will not stop my going because I have trusted in your goodness and forced no promise from you as I might have done of what use then is the communication you have made said Rose this mystery must be investigated or how will its disclosure to me benefit Oliver or you are anxious to serve you must have some kind gentlemen about you that will ear it as a secret and advise you want to do for join the girl but where can I find you again when it is necessary Astros I do not seek to know where these dreadful people live but where will you be walking or passing at any settled period from this time will you'll promise me that you will at my secret strictly kept and come alone or with the only other person that knows it and that I shall not be watched or followed ask the girl I promise you solemnly answered rose every Sunday night from eleven until the clock strikes twelve said the girl without hesitation I will walk on London Bridge if I'm alive stay another moment interposed rose as the girl moved hurriedly towards the door think once again on your condition and the opportunity you have escaping from it you have a claim on me not only is a voluntary bearer of this intelligence but as a woman lost almost beyond redemption will you return to this gang of Roberson to this man when a word can save you what fascination is it that can take you back and make you cling to wickedness and misery Oh is there no chord in your heart that I can touch is there nothing left to which I can appeal against this terrible infatuation when ladies as young and good and beautiful as you are provide the girl steadily give away your arts love will carry you all lengths even such as you who have home friends a dread Mara's everything to fill them Wayne such as I who have no certain roof but the coffin lid and no friend in sickness or death but the hospital nurse set our rotten Arts on any man and let me fill the place that has been the blank through all our wretched lives who can hope to cure us pity yes lady pity us are having only one feeling of the woman left and for having that turned by every judgment I'm a comfort and a pride into a new means of violence and suffering he will said rose after pause take some money from me which may enable you to live without dishonesty at all events until we meet again not a penny replied the girl waving her hand do not close your heart against all my efforts to help you said Rose stepping gently forward I wish to serve you indeed he would serve me best lady replied the girl wringing her hands if you could take my life at once for I felt more grief to think of what I am tonight than I ever did before and it would be something not to die in the hell in which I've lived god bless you sweet lady and sent as much happiness on your head as I have brought shame on mine thus speaking and sobbing aloud the unhappy creature turned away while Rose Maylie overpowered by this extraordinary interview which had more the semblance of a rapid dream than an actual occurrence sangd into a chair and endeavored to collect her wandering thoughts chapter 41 containing fresh discoveries and showing that surprises like misfortunes seldom come alone her situation was indeed one of no common trial and difficulty while she felt a most eager and burning desire to penetrate the mystery in which all of us history was enveloped she could not but hold sacred the confidence which the miserable woman with whom she had just conversed had reposed in her as a young and guileless girl her words of mana had touched Rose Malee's heart and mingled with her love for her young charge and scarcely less intense in its truth and fervour was her fond wish to win the outcast back to repentance and hope they purpose remaining in London only three days prior to departing for some weeks to a distant part of the coast it was now midnight of the first day what course of action could she determine upon which could be adopted an eight and forty hours or how could she postponed the journey without exciting suspicion mr. losberne was with them and would be for the next two days but Rose was too well acquainted with the excellent gentleman's impetuosity and foresaw too clearly the wrath with which in the first explosion of his indignation he would regard the instrument of Oliver's to recapture to trust him with the secret when her representations and the girls were half could be seconded by no experienced person these were all reasons for the greatest caution and most circumspect behavior in communicating it to mrs. Maylie whose first impulse would infallibly be to hold a conference with the worthy doctor on the subject as to resorting to any legal adviser even if she had known how to do so it was scarcely to be thought of for the same reason once the thought occurred to her of seeking assistance from Harry but this awaken the recollection of their last parting and it seemed unworthy offer to call him back when the tears rose to her eyes as she pursued this train of reflection he might her by this time learnt to forget her and to be happier away disturbed by these different reflections inclining now to one course and then to another and again recoiling from all as each successive consideration presented itself to her mind Rose passed a sleepless and anxious night after more communing with herself next day she arrived at the desperate conclusion of consulting Harry if it be painful to him she thought to come back here how painful it would be to me but perhaps he will not come he may write or he may come himself and studiously abstained from meeting me he did when he went away I hardly thought he would but it was better for us both and he arose dropped the pen and turned away as though the very paper which was to be her messenger should not see her weep she had taken up the same pen and laid down again fifty times and had considered and reconsidered the first line of her letter without writing the first word when Oliver who had been walking in the streets with mr. Giles for a bodyguard entered the room in such breathless haste and violent agitation as seemed to be token some new cause of alarm what makes you look so flurried astros advancing to meet him I hardly know how I feel as if I should be choked replied the boy oh dear to think that I should see him at last and you should be able to know that I have told you the truth I never thought you had told us anything but the truth said Rose soothing him but what is this of whom do you speak I have seen the gentleman replied Oliver scarcely able to articulate the gentlemen who were so good to me mr. Brownlow that we have so often talked about we're Astros get it out of a coach replied Oliver shedding tears of delight I didn't spit at him I couldn't speak to him for he didn't see me and I trembled so that I was not able to go up to him but gyres asked for me whether he lived there and they said he did look here said Oliver opening a scrap of paper here it is he is where he lives I'm going there directly Oh give me do me what shall I do want to come to see him and hear him speak again with her attention not a little distracted by these and a great many other incoherent exclamations of joy rose read the address which was Craven Street in the Strand she very soon determined upon turning the discovery to account quick she said tell him to fetch a hackney-coach and be ready to go with me I will take you there directly without a minute's loss of time I will only tell my aunt that we are going out for an hour and E ready as soon as you are Oliver needed no prompting to dispatch and in little more than five minutes they were on their way to Craven Street when they arrived there rose left Oliver in the coach under pretence are preparing the old gentleman to receive him and sending up her card by the servant requested to see mr. Brownlow on very pressing business the servant soon returned to beg that she would walk upstairs and following him into an upper room miss Meili was presented to an elderly gentleman a benevolent appearance in a bottle green coat at no great distance from whom was seated another old gentleman in Nankin breeches and gaiters who did not look particularly benevolent and who was sitting with his hands clasped on the top of her thick stick and his chin propped thereupon dear me said the gentleman in the bottle green coat hastily rising with great politeness I beg your pardon young lady I imagined it was some important person who I think you will excuse me be seated pray mr. Brownlow I believe sir said rose dancing from the other gentlemen of the one who had spoken that is my name said the old gentleman this is my friend mr. grimwig grimwig will you leave us a few minutes I believe interposed miss Meili but at this period of our interview I need not give that gentleman the trouble are going away if I am correctly informed he is cognizant of the business on which I wish to speak to you mr. brownlow inclined his head mr. grimwig who had made one very stiff bow and risen from his chair made another very stiff bow and dropped into it again I shall surprise you very much I have no doubt said rose naturally embarrassed but you once showed great benevolence and goodness to a very dear young friend of mine and I'm sure you will take an interest in hearing of him again indeed said Mr Brownlow Oliver Twist you knew him as replied rose the words no sooner escaped her lips than mr. grimwig who had been affecting to dip into a large book that lay on the table upset it with a great crash and falling back in his chair discharged from his features every expression but one of unmitigated wonder and indulged in a prolonged and vacant stare then as if ashamed of having betrayed so much emotion he jerked himself as it were by a convulsion into his former attitude and looking out straight before him emitted a long deep whistle which seemed at last not to be discharged on empty air but to die away in the innermost recesses of his stomach mr. Brandner was no less surprised although his astonishment was not expressed in the same eccentric manner he drew his chair nearer to miss Malee's and said do me the favour My dear young lady to leave entirely out of the question that goodness and benevolence of which you speak and of which nobody else knows anything and if you have it in your power to produce any evidence which will alter the unfavorable opinion I was once induced to entertain of that poor child in heaven's name put me in possession of it a bad one a leap ahead of he's not a bad one growled mr. grimwig speaking by some Ventrilo Creole power without moving a muscle of his face he is a child of a noble nature and a warm heart said rose coloring and that's power which are thought fit to try him beyond his years has planted in his breast affections and feelings which would do honor to many who have numbered his days six times over I'm only 61 said Mr grimwig with the same rigid face and as the Devils in it if this Oliver is not 12 years old at least I don't see the application of that remark do not heed my friend miss Meili said mr. Baumer he does not mean what he says yes he does crowd mr. grimwig no he doesn't said mr. brownlow obviously rising in wrath as he spoke he ate his head if he doesn't growled mr. grimwig he would deserve to have it knocked off if he does said mr. brownlow and he done commonly like to say any man offered to do it responded mr. grimwig knocking a stick upon the floor having gone thus far the two old gentlemen severally took snuff and afterwards shook hands according to the invariable custom now miss Meili said mr. brownlow to return to the subject in which your humanity is so much interested will you let me know what intelligence you have of this poor child allowing me to promise that I exhausted every means in my power of discovering him and that since I have been absent of this country my first impression that he had imposed upon me and had been persuaded by his former associates to rob me has been considerably shaken Rose who had had time to collect her thoughts at once related in a few natural words all that had befallen Oliver since he left mr. Brownlow's house reserving Nancy's information for that gentleman's private ear and concluding with the assurance that is only sorrow for some months past had been not being able to meet with this former benefactor and friend thank God said the old gentleman this is great happiness to me great happiness but you have not told me where he is now mainly you must pardon my finding fault with you but why not have brought him he is racing in the coach at the door replied Rose at this door cried the old gentleman with which he hurried out of the room down the stairs up the Coach steps and into the coach without another word when the room door closed behind him mr. grimwig lifted up his head and converting one of the hind legs of his chair into a pivot described three distinct circles with the assistance of his stick and the table sitting in it all the time after performing this evolution he rose and limped as fast as he could up and down the room at least a dozen times and then stopping suddenly before Rose kissed her without the slightest preface Shh he said as the young lady rose in some alarm with this unusual proceeding don't be afraid I'm Ward enough to be your grandfather you're a sweet girl I like you here they are in fact as he threw himself at one dexterous dive into his former seat mr. bono returned accompanied by Oliver who mr. grimwig received very graciously and if the gratification of that moment had been the only reward for all her anxiety and care and Oliver's behalf Rose Maylie would have been well repaid there is somebody else who should not be forgotten by the by said Mr Brownlow ringing the bell send mrs. Bedwin here if you please the old housekeeper answered the summons with all dispatch and dropping a curtsey at the door waited for orders why you get blinder every day Bedwin said Mr Brownlow rather testily well that I do sir replied the old lady people's eyes at my time of life don't improve with age sir I could have told you that rejoined mr. Brownlow but put on your glasses and see if you can't find out what you were wanted for will you the old lady began to rummage in her pocket for her spectacles but all of his patients was not proof against this new trial and he led to his first impulse he sprang into her arms good be good to be tidy lady embrace him it is my innocent boy my dear old nurse cried Oliver he would come back I knew he would said the old lady holding him in our arms how well he looks and how like a gentleman Sonny is dressed again where are you been this long long while the same sweet face but not so peel assumed soft eye but not so sad I have never forgotten him or his quiet smile but I've seen them every day side by side with those of my own dear children dead and gone since I was a light some young creature running on us and now holding Oliver from her to mark how he had grown now clasping him to her and passing her fingers fondly through his hair the good soul laughed and wept upon his neck by turns leaving her and Oliver to compare notes at leisure mr. Brownlow led the way into another room and they heard from Rose a full narration of her interview with Nancy which occasioned him no little surprise and perplexity Rose also explained her reasons for not confiding in her friend mr. losberne in the first instance the old gentleman considered that she had acted prudently and readily undertook to hold solemn conference with the worthy doctor himself to afford him an early opportunity for the execution of this design it was arranged that he should call at the hotel at eight o'clock that evening and that in the meantime mrs. Maylie should be cautiously informed of all that had occurred these preliminaries adjusted rose and Oliver returned home Rose had by no means overrated the measure of the good doctors wrath Nancy's history was no sooner unfolded to him and he poured forth a shower of mingled threats and execrations threatened to make her the first victim of the combined ingenuity of mrs. blathers and Duff and actually put on his hat for powerfully to sallying forth to obtain the assistance of those worthies and doubtless he would in this first outbreak have carried the intention into effect without a moment's consideration of the consequences if he had not been dressed rain in part by corresponding violence on the side of mr. brownlow who is himself an irascible temperament and party by such arguments and representations as seemed best calculated to dissuade him from his hot brained purpose then what the devil is to be done said the impetuous doctor when they had rejoined the two ladies are we to pass a vote of thanks to all these vagabonds male and female and beg them to accept a hundred pounds or so a piece as a trifling mark of our esteem and some cited null event of their kind as to Oliver not exactly that we joined mr. Brownlow laughing but we must proceed gently and with great care gentleness and care exclaimed the doctor I'd send them one and all to never mind where interposed mr. browner but reflect whether sending them anywhere is likely to attain the object we have in view water object ask the doctor simply the discovery of Oliver's parentage and regaining for him the inheritance of which if this story be true he has been fortunately deprived naw said mr. losberne cooling himself with his pocket-handkerchief I always forgot that you see pursued mr. Brownlow placing this poor girl entirely out of the question and supposing it were possible to bring these scoundrels to justice without compromising her safety what good should we bring about hanging a few of them at least in all probability suggested the doctor and transporting the rest very good replied mr. Brownlow smiling but no doubt they will bring that about for themselves in the fullness of time and if we set him to forestall them it seems to be that we shall be performing a very quixotic act in direct opposition to our own interest or at least to Oliver's which is the same thing how inquired the doctor thus it is quite clear that we shall have extreme difficulty in get to the bottom of this mystery unless we can bring this man monks upon his knees that can only be done by stratagem and by catching him when he is not surrounded by these people for suppose he were apprehended we have no proof against him he is not even so far as we know or as the facts appear to us concerned with the gang in any of their robberies if he were not discharged it is very unlikely that he could receive any further punishment than being committed to prison as a rogue in vagabond and of course ever afterwards his mouth would be so obstinately closed that he might as well for our purposes be deaf dumb blind and an idiot then said the doctor impetuously I put it to you again why do you think it reasonable at this promise to the girl should be considered binding a promise made with the best and kindest intentions but really do not discuss the point my dear young lady pray said mr. brownlow interrupting Rose as she was about to speak the promise shall be kept I don't think it will in the slightest degree interfere with our proceedings but before we can resolve upon any precise course of action it will be necessary to see the girl to ascertain from her whether she will point out this monks on the understanding that he is to be dealt with by us and not by the law or if she will not or cannot do that to procure from her such an account of his haunts and descriptions of his person as will enable us to identify him she cannot be seen until next Sunday night this is Tuesday I would suggest that in the meantime we remain perfectly quiet and keep these matters secret even from Oliver himself although mr. losberne received with many wry faces a proposal involving a delay of five whole days he was fain to admit that no better course occurred to him just then and as both rose and mrs. maylie sided very strongly with mr. Brownlow that gentleman's proposition was carried unanimously I should like he said to call in the aid of my friend grimwig he is a strange creature but a shrewd one and might prove of material assistance to us I should say that he was bred a lawyer and quitted the bar in disgust because he had only one brief an emotion of course in 20 years whether that is recommendation or not you must determine for yourselves I have no objection to your calling in your friend if I may call in mine to the doctor we must put it to the vote replied mr. Brownlow who may he be that lady's son and this young ladies very old friend said the doctor motioning towards mrs. Maylie and concluding with an expressive glance attendees rose blushed deeply but she did not make any audible objection to this motion possibly she felt in a hopeless minority and Harry Maylie and mr. grimwig were accordingly added to the committee we stay in town of course said mrs. Maylie while there remains the slightest prospect of prosecuting this inquiry with the chance of success I will spare neither trouble nor expense in behalf of the object in which we are also deeply interested and I am content to remain here if it be for 12 months so long as you assure me that any hope remains hood rejoined mr. Brownlow and as I see on the faces about me a disposition to inquire how it happened that I was not in the way to corroborate Oliver's tale and had so suddenly left the kingdom let me stipulate that I shall be asked no questions until of such time as I may deem it expedient to forestall them by telling my own story believe me I make this request with good reason for I might otherwise excite hopes destined never to be realized and only increased difficulties and disappointments already quite numerous enough come supper has been announced and young Oliver who is all alone in the next room will have begun to think by this time that we have wearied of his company and entered into some dark conspiracy to thrust him forth upon the world with these words the old gentleman gave his hand to mrs. Maylie and escorted her into the supper room mr. losberne followed leading rows and the council was for the present effectually broken up chapter 42 an old acquaintance of Oliver's exhibiting decided marks of genius becomes a public character in the metropolis upon the night when Nancy having lulled mr. Sikes to sleep hurried on her self-imposed mission to Rose Maylie their advance towards London by the Great North Road two persons upon whom it is expedient that this history should bestow some attention they were a man and woman perhaps they would be better described as a male and female for the former was one of those long-limbed knock-kneed shambling bony people to whom it is difficult to assign any precise age looking as they do when they are yet boys like under grown men and when they are almost men like overgrown boys the woman was young but of a robust and Hardy make as you need have been to bear the weight of the heavy bundle which was strapped to her back her companion was not encumbered with much luggage as they merely dangled from a stick which he carried over his shoulder a small parcel wrapped in a common handkerchief and apparently light enough this circumstance added to the length of his legs which were of unusual extent enabled him with much ease to keep some half-dozen paces and advance of his companion to whom you occasionally turned with an impatient jerk of the head as if reproaching her tardiness and urging her to greater exertion thus they had toiled along the dusty road taking little heed of any object within sight save when they stepped aside to allow a wider passage for the male coaches which were whirling out of town until they passed through highgate archway when the for most travelers stopped and called impatiently to his companion come on can't you what a lazy bugger are Charlotte he's a heavy load I until you said the female coming up almost breathless with fatigue every or yet so in about what I am made for for join the male traveler changing his own little bundle as he spoke to the other shoulder well they are resting again well if you're ain't enough to tie anybody's patients out I don't know what is is he much farther said the woman resting herself against the bank and looking up with the perspiration streaming from her face much farther here as good as there said the long-legged Chomper pointing out before him look there those other lights of London they were good to Mar off at least said the woman responding Lee their mind whether they're to a mile or 420 said Noah Claypole for he had was but get up and come on or I'll kick you and so I give you a notice as now his red nose grew redder with anger and as he crossed the world would wanna speaking as if fully prepared to put his threat into execution the woman rose without any further remark and trudged onward by his side where do you mean to stop for the night Noah she asked after they had walked a few hundred yards how should I know replied Noah whose temper had been considerably impaired by walking near I hope said Charlotte now not near replied mr. Claypole they're not near so don't think it why not when I tell you that I don't mean to do a thing that's enough without any why or because either replied mr. Claypole with dignity well you needn't be so cross said his companion a pretty thing it would be he wouldn't it to go and stop at the very first public house outside the town so that Sowerberry if he come up after us might poke in his old nose and have us take them back and I caught with an cuffs on said mr. Claypool and a jeering tone now I shall go and lose myself among the narrowest which I can find and not stop till we come to the very out-of-the-way house I can set eyes on God you may thanks your stars I got aired for if we haven't gone at first the wrong road a purpose and come back across the country he would have been locked up Arden fast a week ago my lady and serve you right for being a fool I know I ain't niskanen as you are replied Charlotte but don't put all the blame on me and say I should have been locked up you would have been if I had been anyway you took the money from the hill yeah no you did said Mr Claypole I took it for you now 'dear rejoined charlotte did I keep it asked mr. claypole no you trusted in me and let me carry it like a deer and so you are said the lady chucking him under the chin and drawing her arm through his this was indeed the case but as it was not mr. Claypole habit to repose a blind and foolish confidence in anybody it should be observed in justice to that gentleman that he had trusted Charlotte to this extent in order that if they were pursued the money might be found on her which would leave him an opportunity of asserting his innocence of any theft and would greatly facilitate his chances of escape of course he ended up this juncture and to no explanation of his motives and they walked on very lovingly together in pursuance of this cautious plan mr. Claypole went on without halting until he arrived at the angel at Islington where he wisely judged from the crowd of passengers and numbers of vehicles that London began in earnest just posing to observe which appeared the most crowded streets and consequently the most to be avoided he crossed into st. Johns Road and was soon deep in the obscurity of the intricate and dirty ways which lying between brazen Lane and Smithfield render that part of the town one of the lowest and worst that improvement has left in the midst of London through these streets Noah Claypole walked dragging Charlotte after him now stepping into the kennel to embrace at a glance the whole external character of some small public-house now jogging on again as some fancied appearance induced him to believe it too public for his purpose at length he stopped in front of one more humble in appearance and more dirty than any he had yet seen and having crossed over and surveyed it from the opposite pavement graciously announced his intention of putting up there for the night so give us a bundle said Noah and stopping it from the woman's shoulders and slinging it over his own and don't you speak except when you spoke to what's the name of the house sorry what cripples said Charlotte three cripples repeated Noah and a very good sign till now then keep close at my heels and come along with these injunctions he pushed the rattling door with his shoulder and entered the house followed by his companion there was nobody in the bar but a young Jew who with his two elbows on the counter was reading a dirty newspaper he stared very hard at Noah and Noah stared very hard at him if no had been attired in his charity boys dress they might have mean some reason for the Jew opening his eyes so wide but as he had discarded the coat and badge and wore a short smock frock over his leathers there seemed no particular reason for his appearance exciting so much attention in a public house is this the three cripples Arce Noah debt is the Dave of this house replied the Jew a gentleman we met on the road coming up from the country recommended us here said Noah nudging Charlotte perhaps to call her attention to this most ingenious device for attracting respect and perhaps to warn her to betray no surprise we want to sleep here tonight I be dead sir did you CAD said Barney who was the attendant spite but I'll choir show us his hat and give us a bit of cold meat in a drop of beer while you're inquiring willya said Noah Barney complied by assuring them into a small back room and setting the required viens before them having done which he informed the travelers that they could be lodged that night and left the amiable couple to their refreshment now this back room was immediately behind the bar and some steps lower so that any person connected with the house undrawn a small curtain which concealed a single pane of glass fixed in the wall of the lastname department about five feet from its flooring could not only look down upon any guests in the back room without any great hazard of being observed the glass being in a dark angle of the wall between which and a large upright beam the observer had to thrust himself but could by applying his ear to the partition ascertain with tolerable distinctness their subject of conversation the landlord of the house had not withdrawn his eye from this place of a smile for five minutes and Barney had only just returned from making the communication above related when Fagin in the course of his evenings business came into the bar to inquire after some of his young pupils hashe said barney strategist it did X troupe arranges repeated the old man and whisper ah Hydra buds too added Barney from the country but sceptic in your way or Ivan mistaked Fagin appear to receive this communication with great interest mounting a stool he cautiously applied his eye to the pane of glass from which secret post he could see mr. Claypole taking cold beef from the dish and Porter from the pot and administering homeopathic doses of both to Charlotte who sat patiently by eating and drinking at his pleasure and he whispered looking round to Barney I like that fellow's looks he'd be of use to us he knows how to train the girl already don't make as much noise as a mouse idea and let me hear him talk let me hear him he again applied his eye to the glass and turning his ear to the partition listened attentively with a subtle and eager look upon his face that might have a pertained to some old goblin serif Romina be a gentleman said Mr Claypole kicking out his legs and continuing a conversation the commencement of which they can had arrived too late to hear now more jolly old coffins Charlotte but a gentleman's life for me and if your like you shall be my lady I should like that well enough dear replied Charlotte a tilt ain't to be emptied every day and people to get clear off after it chills be blowed said Mr Claypole there's more things besides tools to be emptied what do you mean asked his companion pockets woman's ridicules houses mail coaches banks said Mr Claypole rising with the porter but you can't do all that dear said Charlotte I shall look out to get into company with them as Ken replied Noah I'd be able to make us useful some way or another why are you you suffer worth fifty women I never see such a preciously sly and deceitful creature as you can be when I let you know have nice is to hear you say so exclaims charlet imprinting a kiss upon his ugly face hey that'll do don't you be too affectionate and case on cross with you said Noah disengaging himself with great gravity I should like to be the captain of some band and have the whopping of him and follow him them about unbeknown to themselves that would suit me and there was good profit and if we could only get in with some gentlemen of this sort I say it would be cheap at that 20 pound note you've got especially as we don't very well know how to get rid of it ourselves after expressing this opinion mr. claypole looked into the Porter pot with an aspect of deep wisdom and having well shaken its contents nodded condescending me to Charlotte and took a draught wherewith he appeared greatly refreshed he was meditating another when the sudden opening of the door and the appearance of a stranger interrupted him the stranger was mr. Fagin and very amiable he looked and a very low bow he made as he advanced and setting himself down at the nearest table ordered something to drink of the grinning barney a pleasant night sir but cool for the time of year said Fagin rubbing his hands from the country I see sir how do you see their ass Noah Claypole we have not so much dust as that in London replied Fagin pointing from Noah's shoes to those of his companion and from them to the two bundles you're a sharp fella said Noah only actually all it.why one need be sharp in this town my dear replied the Jew sinking his voice to a confidential whisper and that's the truth faked and followed up this remark by striking the side of his nose with the right forefinger a gesture which Noah attempted to imitate though not with complete success in consequence of his own nose not being large enough for the purpose however mr. Fagin seemed to interpret the endeavor as expressing a perfect coincidence with his opinion and put about the liquor which Barney reappeared with in a very friendly manner good staff that observed mr. Claypole smacking his lips dear said Fagin and then he'd be always emptying a table or a pocket or a woman's reticule or a house or a male co-star a bank if he drinks it regularly mr. Claypole no sooner heard this extract from his own remarks and he fell back in his chair and looked from the Jew to Charlotte with a countenance of ashy paleness and excessive terror don't mind me my dear said Fagin drawing his chair closer [Laughter] it has only me that heard you by chance it was very lucky it has only me I didn't take it stammered Noah no longer stretching out his legs like an independent gentleman but coiling them up as well as he could under his chair he was all were doing you've got it now Charlotte you know you have no matter who is bought it oh who did it's my dear replied fagin glancing nevertheless for the Hawks I at the girl and the two bundles I'm in that way myself and I like you for it hey what way asked mr. Claypole a little recovering in that way of business rejoined Fagin and so are the people of the house you've hit the right nail upon the head and are as safe here as you could be there's not a safer place and all this town than is the cripples that is when I like to make it so and I have taken a fancy to you and the young woman so I've said the word and you may make your minds easy Noah Claypole mind might have been at ease after this assurance but his body certainly was not for he shuffled and wired about into various uncouth positions eyeing his new friend meanwhile with mingled fear and suspicion I attained you more said taken after he had reassured the girl by dint of friendly nods and muttered encouragement I have got a friend that I think can gratify your darling wish and put him in the right way where you can take whatever Department of the business you think will suit you best at first and be taught all the others here speak as if you were an earnest replied Noah what advantage would it be to me to be anything else inquired Fagin shrugging your shoulders here let me have a word with you outside there's no occasion to shovel ourselves to move said Noah getting his legs by gradual degrees abroad again she will take their luggage upstairs the while Charlotte seat of M bundles this mandate which had been delivered with great Majesty was obeyed without the slightest tumor and Charlotte made the best of her way off with the packages by Noah held the door open and watched her out she's kept tolerably well under a tree he asked as he resumed his seat in the tone of a keeper who retained some wild animal quite perfect rejoined Fagin clapping among the shoulder yeah a genius idea why I suppose if I wasn't Tosh and beer replied Noah but I say she'll be back if you're lose time now what do you think so Fagin if you wants to like my friend could you do better than join him is he in a good way of business that's where it is responded Noah winking one of his little eyes the top of the tree employees at the power of hands I said very best society in the profession regular town raiders asked Mr Claypole neither countrymen among them and I don't think he'd take you even on my recommendation if he doesn't run rather short of assistance just now replied Fagin should I have to hand over said Noah stopping his breeches pocket it couldn't possibly be done without replied Fagin in a most decided manner 20 pound oh it's a lot of money not when it's in a note you can't get rid of half retorted Regan number and date taken I suppose payment stopped at the bank her it's not worth much to him it'll have to go abroad and he couldn't sell it for a great deal in the market when could I'll see him last Noah doubtfully tomorrow morning we're here hmm said Noah what's the wages here right a gentleman board and lodging pipes and spirits free half of all UN and half of all the young woman earns replied mr. Fagin whether Noah Claypole who's rapacity was none of the least comprehensive would have exceeded even to these glowing terms had he been a perfectly free agent is very doubtful but as he recollected that in the event of his refusal it was in the power of his new acquaintance to give him up to justice immediately and more unlikely things had come to pass he gradually relented and said he thought that would suit him but you see observe know her as she will be able to do a good deal I should like to take something very light a little fancy work suggested Regan ah something of that sort replied Noah what you think would suit me now something not to try in for the strength not very dangerous you know that's the sort of thing I heard you talk of something in the spy way upon the others my dear said Fagin my friend wants somebody who would do that well very much why I did mention that and I shouldn't mind turning my hand to it sometimes rejoined mr. Claypole slowly but it wouldn't pay by itself you know that's true I've served the Jew ruminating or pretending to ruminate now it might not what do you think then ask Noah anxiously regarding him something in the sneaking way where it was pretty sure working not much more risk than being an old watch do you think of the old lady's past vagin there's a good deal of money made in snatching the bags and parcels and run around the corner don't they lure out a good deal and scratch sometimes ask Noah shaking his head I don't think that would answer my purpose ain't there any other line open start said Fagin laying his hand on Noah's knee there Kinchin lay what's that demanded mr. claypole their kin Chin's my dear said Fagin is the young children that sent on errands by their mothers with six princes and shillings and the lay is just to take their money away they've always got it ready in their hands then knock him into the kennel I walk off very slow as if there were nothing else the matter but a child fallen down and hurt itself Road Mr Claypole kicking up his legs and an ecstasy Lord that's a very thing to me sure it is replied Fagin and you can have a few good beats choked out in camden town and that'll bridge and neighborhoods like the hats where they're always going errands and you can upset as many kitchens as you want any hour in the day with this they can poke to mr. Claypole on the side and they joined in a burst of laughter both long and loud well that's all right said Noah when he had recovered himself and Charlotte had returned what time tomorrow should we say Leah 10 du asked Fagin adding as mr. Claypole nodded assent what name shall I tell my good friend mr. bolter replied Noah who had prepared himself for such emergency mr. Morris bolter this is mrs. bolter mrs. Boulter's humble servant said Fagin bowing was grotesque politeness I hope I shall know her better very shortly do you hear the gentleman Charlotte thundered mr. Claypole yes no idea replied mrs. boater extending her hand she calls me now as a sort of fun way of talking said mr. Morris bolter late to claypole turning to Fagin you understand oh yes I understand perfectly replied Fagin telling the truth for once at night good night with many a dues and good wishes mr. Fagin went his way Noah Claypole bespeaking his good lady's attention proceeded to enlighten her relative to you arrangement he had made with all that haughtiness an air of superiority becoming not only a member of the sterner sex but a gentleman who appreciated the dignity of a special appointment on the Kinchin lay in London and its vicinity chapter 43 wherein is shown how the artful dodger got into trouble and Sarah always you that was your own friend was it asked mr. Claypole otherwise bolter when by virtue of the compact entered into between them he had to move next day to Fagin's house court I thought as much last night and free man's his own friend my dear replied Fagin with his most insinuating grin he hasn't as Adonis himself anywhere except sometimes replied Morris bolter assuming the air of a man of the world some people are nobody's enemies but their own you know don't believe that so friggin when a man's his own enemy it's only because he's too much his home friend not because he's careful for everybody about himself hoo-hoo-hoo-hoo there ain't such a thing in nature there oughtn't to be if there is replied mr. bolter that stands to reason some conjurus say that number three is the magic number and some say number seven it's neither my friend neither its number one hahahaha cry mr. bolter number one forever in a little community like ours my dear said Fagin who felt it necessary to qualify his position we have a chin law number one without considering me too as the same and all the other young people how the devil exclaimed mr. bolter ear see pursued Fagin affecting to disregard this interruption we are so mixed up together and identified in our interests that it must be so for instance it's your object to take care of number one meaning yourself certainly replied mr. bolter you're about right there well you can take care of yourself number one without taking care of me number one number two you mean said bolter who is largely endowed with the quality of selfishness now I don't retorted Fagin I'm of the same importance to you as you are to yourself I say interrupted mr. bolter you're a very nice man and I'm very fond of you but we ain't quite so thick together as all it comes to only think said Fagin shrugging his shoulders and stretching out his hands only consider you've done what are very pretty thing and what I have you for doing but what are the same time would put the cravat around your throat that's so very easily tied and so very difficult to unloose in plain English the altar mr. bolter put his hand to his neckerchief as if he faulted inconveniently tight and murmured an assent qualified in tone but not in substance there gallons continued Fagin the gallows my dear is an ugly finger post which points out a very short and sharp turning that has stopped many a bold fellows career on the broad highway to keep in the easy road and keep it at a distance is object number one with you of course it is replied mr. bolter what do you talk about such things for only to show you my meaning clearly said the Jew raising his eyebrows to be able to do that you depend upon me to keep my or business or snug I depend upon you the first is your number one a second my number one the more you value your number one the more careful you must be of mine so we come at last to what I told you at first there regard for number one holds us all together and must do so unless we would all go to pieces in company that's true rejoined mr. bolter thoughtfully a year a cannon old codger mr. Fagin saw with delight of this tribute to his powers was no mere compliment but that he had really impressed his recruit with a sense of his wily genius which it was most important that he should entertain and the outset of their acquaintance to strengthen an impression so desirable and useful he followed up the blow by acquainting him in some detail with the magnitude and extent of his operations blending truth and fiction together as best to served his purpose and bringing both to bear with so much art and mr. Boulter's respect visibly increased became tempered at the same time with a degree of wholesome fear which was highly desirable to awaken it's this mutual trust we have in each other that consoles me and a heavy losses said fagin my best hand was taken from me yesterday morning you don't mean to say he died cried mr. bolter no no replied fagin not as bad as that not quite so bad what I suppose he was one kid interposed vacant yes he was wanted very particular inquired mr. bolter now replied fagin not very he was charged with attempting to pick a pocket and they found a silver snuffbox on him his how a my dear is home for he took snuff himself and was very fond of it they remanded him till today they thought they knew the owner ah he was worth fifty boxes and I give the price of as many to have him back you should have known the Dodger my dear you should have known the Dodger well bar shall know in my hope don't you think so said mr. bolter I'm doubtful about it replied fagin with a sigh if they don't get any fresh evidence it'll only be a summary conviction and we shall have him back again after six weeks or so but if they do it's a case of lagging hey now a clever lad he is he'll be a lifer they make the artful nothing less than a lifer what do you mean by lagging and a lifer demanded mr. bolter what's the good of talking in that way to me why don't you speak so as i Glander stand you Phaethon was about to translate these mysterious expressions into the vulgar tongue and being interpreted mr. bolter would have been informed that they represented that combination of words transportation for life when the dialogue was cut short by the entry of masturbates with his hands and his breeches pockets and his face twisted into a look of semi comical well it's all up Fagan said Charlie when he and his new companion had been made known to each other what do you mean I found the gentleman hands the box two or three wars are coming to identify him and the articles book for a passage out replied masturbates I must have a full suit a morning Fagin a nap band to wizard him in before he sets out upon his travels to think of jet Dawkins love me check the Georgia The Artful Dodger going abroad for a common tongue me a nice knees box I never thought he'd had done it under a gold watch-chain seals at the lowest oh why didn't he rob some rich old gentleman of all his wala bulls and and go out as a gentleman and not like a common trig without now honor nor glory with this expression of feeling for his unfortunate friend masturbates sat himself on the nearest chair with an aspect of chagrin and despondency what do you talk about his having neither honor nor glory for exclaimed Fagin darting an angry look at his people wasn't he always the top soja among you all is there one of you that could touch him or come near him on any scent hey not one replied masturbates and a voice rendered husky by regret not one and what do you talk of replied Fagin angrily what are you blubbering for course it isn't on the REC board is it said Charlie chafed into perfect defiance of his venerable friend by the current of his regrets of course it can't come out in the diamond cause nobody will never know off of what he was how will he stand in the new great calendar that's not be there at all oh my my i wa blowies cried Fagin extending his right hand and turning to mr. bolter in a fit of chuckling which shook him as though he had the palsy see he whatever I mean they take in their profession my dear he did beautiful mr. bolter not a descent and Fagin after contemplating the grief of Charley Bates for some seconds with evident satisfaction stepped off to that young gentleman and patted him on the shoulder now reminds Johnny said Fagin soothingly it'll come out it'll be sure to come out they all know what a clever fellow he was he'll show it himself and not disgrace his old pals and teachers in carry on he is – what is distinction Charlie to be left at his time of life well it is an honour that is said Charlie a little consoled he shall have all he wants continued the Jew he shall be kept in the stone jug Johnny like a gentleman Hika gentleman with his beer every day and money in his pocket to pitch and toss with if he can't spend it no Charlie though right Charley Bates high the Hat he shall replied Fagin and really have a big wig Charlie one this got the greatest gift of the gab to carry on his defense and he shall make a speech for himself too if he likes and we read it all in the papers heartful Dodger shrieks of laughter here the court was convulsed hey Charlie hey he laughed master Bates what a lark that would be wouldn't it vacant I say how the artful would bother him wouldn't he would cried Fagin he shall he will ah to be sure so he will repeated Charlie rubbing his hands I think I see him now cried the Jew bending his eyes upon his pupil so – I cried Charley Bates he hi I see it all afore me upon my soul I don't Fagin what a game what a regular game all the bigwigs try to look solemn and Jack Dawkins addressing of him as intimate and comfortable as if he was a judge's own son making a speech or a dinner heee in fact mr. Fagin had so well humid his young friends eccentric disposition that masturbates who had at first been disposed to consider the imprisoned Dodger rather in the light of a victim now looked upon him as the chief actor and a scene of most uncommon and exquisite humor and felt quite impatient for the arrival of the time when his old companion should have so favourable an opportunity of displaying his abilities we must know how he gets on today by some handy means or other said Fagin let me think shall I go Oh charlie not for the world replied Fagin are you mad my dear stark mad as you'd walk into the very place where no Charlie no one is enough to lose at a time you don't mean to go yourself I suppose it's a Charlie with a humorous lira that's wouldn't quite fit replied Fagin shaking his head then why don't you send this new Cove asked master Bates laying his hand on Noah's arm nobody knows him why if he didn't behind observed Fagin mind interposed Charlie what should he have to mind really nothing my dear said Fagin turning to mr. bolter really nothing oh I dare say about that you know observed Noah backing towards the door and shaking his head with a kind of sober alarm no no none of that is not in my department that ain't what Department has he got Fagin inquired master Bates surveying Noah's lank form with much-discussed the cuttin away when there's anything wrong and the enola wit also and there's everything right is that his branch never mind retorted mr. bolter and don't you take liberties with your superiors little boy or you'll find yourself in the wrong shop Master Bates laughed so vehemently at this magnificent threat and it was some time before Fagin could interpose and represent to mr. bolter that he incurred no possible danger in visiting the police office that in as much as no account of the little affair in which he had engaged nor any description of his person had yet been forwarded to the metropolis it was very probable that he was not even suspected of having resorted to it for shelter and that if he were properly disguised if we a safe a spot for him to visit as any in London in as much as it would be of all places the very last to which he could be supposed likely to result of his own free will persuaded in part by these representations but overborne in a much greater degree by his fear of Fagin mr. bolter at length consented with a very bad grace to undertake the expedition by Fagin's directions he immediately substituted for his own attire a Waggoner's frock Velveteen breeches and leather leggings all of which articles the Jew had at hand he was likewise furnished with the felt hat well garnished with Turnpike tickets and a Carter's whip thus equipped he was to saunter into the office as some country fellow from Covent Garden Market might be supposed to do for the gratification of his curiosity and as he was as awkward ungainly and raw-boned a fellow as need be mr. Fagin had no fear but that he would look the part to perfection these arrangements completed he was informed on the necessary signs and tokens by which to recognise the artful dodger and was conveyed by master bates through dark and winding ways to within a very short distance of Bow Street having described the precise situation of the office and accompanied it with copious directions how he was to walk straight of the passage and when he got into the side and pull off his hat as he went into the room Charley Bates bade him hurry Arne alone and promised to bite his return on the spot of their parting Noah Claypole or Morris bolter as the reader pleases punctually followed the directions he had received which masturbates being pretty well acquainted with the locality were so exact but he was enabled to gain the Magisterial presence without asking any question or meeting with any interruption by the way he found himself jostled among a crowd of people chiefly women who were huddled together in a dirty frowsy room at the upper end of which was a raised platform railed off from the rest with the dock for the prisoners on the left hand against the wall a box for the witnesses in the middle and a desk for the magistrates on the right the awful locality last-named being screened off by a partition which concealed the bench from the common gaze and left the vulgar to imagine if they could the full majesty of justice there were only a couple of women in the dock who were nodding to their admiring friends while the Clark read some depositions to a couple of policemen and a man in plain clothes who leant over the table a jailer stood reclining against the dock rail tapping his nose listlessly for the large key except when he repressed an undue tendency to conversation among the idlers by proclaiming silence I looked sternly up to bid some woman take that baby out when the gravity of justice was disturbed by feeble cries are smothered in the mother Shore from some meagre infant the room smelt close and unwholesome the walls were dirt discolored and the ceiling blackened there was an old smoky bust over the mantel shelf and a dusty clock above the dock the only thing present that seemed to go on as it ought for depravity or poverty or an habitual acquaintance with both had left a taint on all the animate matter hardly less unpleasant and the thick greasy scum on every inanimate object that found upon it Noah looked eagerly about him for the Dodger but although there were several women who would have done very well for that distinguished characters mother or sister and more than one man who might be supposed to bear a strong resemblance to his father nobody at all answering the description given him of mr. Dawkins was to be seen he waited in a state of much suspense and uncertainty until the women being committed for trial but flaunting out and then was quickly relieved by the appearance of another prisoner who he thought at once could be no other than the object of his visit it was indeed mr. Dawkins who shuffling into the office with the big cooked sleeves tucked up as usual his left hand in his pocket and his hat in his right hand preceded the jailer with a rolling gait altogether indescribable and taking his face in the dock requested in an audible voice to know what he was placed in that ear disgraceful situation for Howard yet sang willya said the jailer oh I'm an Englishman Knight I rejoined the Dodger where am i privileges you'll get your privileges soon enough but ordered the jailer and pepper with them we'll see what the Secretary of State for the Home Affairs has got to say to the Beeks if I don't reply mr. Dawkins now then what is this ear business I shall think the magistrates to dispose of this here little affair and not to keep me while they read the paper for I've got an appointment with a gentleman in the city and as I am a man of my word and worried punctual and business matters he'll go away if I ain't there tomorrow time and then perhaps there won't be an action for damages against them has kept me away oh no certainly not at this point the dodger with a show of being very particular with a view to proceedings to be had thereafter desired the jailer to communicate the names of them to files as was on the bench which so tickled the spectators that they laughed almost as heartily as master Bates could have done if he had heard the request silence there cried the jailer what is this enquired one of the magistrates a pickpocket in case you worship has the boy ever been here before he ought to have been and many times replied the jailer he has been pretty well everywhere else I know him well your worship how you know me do you why the artful making a note of the statement very good that's a case of defamation of character anyway here there was another laugh and another cry of silence now then where are the witnesses said the Clark oh that's right added the Dodger where are they I should like to see him this wish was immediately gratified for a policeman stepped forward who had seen the prisoner attempt the pocket of an unknown gentleman in a crowd and indeed take a handkerchief therefrom which being a very old one he deliberately put it back again after trying it on his own countenance for this reason he took the Dodger into custody as soon as he could get near him and the said Dodger being searched had upon his person a silver snuffbox with the owner's name engraved upon the lid this gentleman had been discovered on reference to the court guide and being then and their present swore that the snuff box was his and that he had missed it on the previous day the moment he had disengaged himself from the crowd before referred to he had also remarked a young gentleman in the throng particularly active in making his way about and that young gentleman was the prisoner before him have you anything to ask this witness boy said the magistrate I wouldn't advise myself by descended out no conversation with him replied the Dodger have you anything to say at all do you hear his worship ask if you've anything to say inquired the jailer nudging the silent Dodger with his elbow I'll beg your pardon said the Dodger looking up with an air of abstraction did you read ress yourself to me my man I never see such an errand out young magibon your worship observed the officer with a grin do you mean to say anything you young shaver no replied the Dodger not here for this ain't the shot for justice besides which my attorney is a breakfast in this morning with the vice-president of the House of Commons but I shall have something say elsewhere and so only a cell will a very numerous and spectable circle of acquaintances as well make them beaks wish they'd never been born or that they got their footmen to hang him up to their own pigs before they let him come out this morning to try it on upon me aisle there he's fully committed interpose the clock take him away come on said the jailer Oh ah I'll come on replied the Dodger brushing his hat at the palm of his hand ah to the bench it's now you you're looking frightened I won't show you no mercy not a hypothermic you pay for this my fine fellows I wouldn't be you for something I wouldn't go free now if he was to fall down on your knees and ask me here carry me off to prison treat me away with these last words the Dodger suffered himself to be led off by the collar threatening till he got into the yard to make a parliamentary business of it and then grinning in the officers face with great glee and self approval having seen him locked up by himself in a little cell Noah made the best of his way back to where he had left Master Bates after waiting here some time he was joined by a young gentleman who had prudently abstained from showing himself until he had looked carefully abroad from a snug retreat and ascertained that his new friend had not been followed by any impertinent person the two hastened back together to bear to mr. Fagin the an amazing news that the dodger was doing full justice to his bringing up and establishing for himself a glorious reputation chapter 44 the time arrives for Nancy to redeem her pledge to Rose Maylie she fails adept as she was in all the arts of cunning and dissimulation the girl Nancy could not wholly conceal the effect which the knowledge of the step she had taken brought upon her mind she remembered that both the crafty Jew and the brutal Sikes had confided to her schemes which had been hidden from all others in the full confidence that she was trustworthy and beyond the reach of their suspicion file as those schemes were desperate as were their originators and bitter as were her feelings towards Fagin who had led her step by step deeper and deeper down into an abyss of crime and misery whence was no escape still there were times when even towards him she felt some relented Lester disclosure should bring him within the iron grasp he had so long eluded and he should fall at last richly as he merited such a fate by her hand but these were the mere wanderings of a mind unable wholly to detach itself from old companions and associations though enabled to fix itself steadily on one object and resolved not to be turned aside by any consideration her fears for Sikes would have been more powerful inducements to recoil while there was yet time but she had stipulated that her secret should be rigidly kept she had dropped no clue which could lead to his discovery she had refused even for his sake a refuge from all the guilt and wretchedness that encompasses her and what more could she do she was resolved though all her mental struggle was terminated in this conclusion they forced themselves upon her again and again and left their traces too she grew pale and thin even within a few days at times she took no heed of what was passing before her or no part in conversations where once she would have been the loudest at other times she laughed without merriment and was noisy without a moment afterwards she sat silent and dejected brooding with her head upon her hands while the very effort by which she roused herself told more forcibly than even these indications that she was ill at ease and that her thoughts were occupied with matters very different and distant from those in the course of discussion by her companions it was Sunday night and the bell of the nearest church struck the hour Sikes and the Jew were talking but they paused to listen the girl looked up from the low seat on which she crouched and listened to eleven and I this sod a midnight said Sikes raising the blind to look out and returning to his seat jock and heavy is too not for business this replied fagin what a pity bill my dear that there's none quite ready to be done yeah right so once replied sikes roughly he is a pretty forearm in the humor to fakin sighed and shook his head responding Lee we must make up for lost time when we got things into a good train that's all I know said Sonics that's the way you did talk my dear replied fagin venturing to pat him on the shoulder it does me good to hear you that's you good does it cried Sikes well so be it [Laughter] laugh taken as if you were relieved by even this concession you know like yourself tonight bill cry like yourself I don't feel like myself when you lay that with an old claw on my shoulder so take it away said Sikes cussing off the Jews hand it makes you nervous bill you're behind you're being nabbed as it said Fagin determined not to be offended reminds me of being nabbed by the devil returned Sikes there never was another man with such a face is yours unless it was your father and I suppose he is singe in his grizzled red beard by this time unless you came straight from the old one without any father at all we tricked you which I shouldn't wonder a bit they can offered no reply to this compliment but pulling Sikes by the sleeve pointed his finger towards Nancy who had taken advantage of the foregoing conversation to put on her bonnet and was now leaving the room hello cried Sikes Nance where's the gal going to at least ammonite not far what answers that retorted Sikes do you hear me I don't know where replied the girl then I do so –sykes more in the spirit of obstinacy and because he had any real objection to the girl going where she listed no way sit down I'm not well I told you that before rejoined the girl I want a breath of air put your head out on a window replied sikes there's not enough there said the girl and what in the street then you won't have it replied sikes with which assurance he rose locked the door took the key out and pulled her bonnet from her head hung it up to the top of an old press there said the robber now stopped quietly where you are earlier it's not such a matter as a bonnet would keep me said the girl turning very pale what do you mean bill do you know what you're doing no what I Oh cried Sikes turning to Fagin she's out of her senses you know or he did talk to me in that way he'll drive me on something desperate what of the girl placing both hands upon her breast as though to keep down by force some violent outbreak let me go will you this minute this instant now said Sikes tell him to let me go a vacant you're better it'll be better for him dear me cried Nancy stamping her foot upon the ground yeah you repeated Sikes turning round in his chair to confront her I I neither I hear you for half a minute longer the dog shall have such a grip on your throat as or tear some of that screaming voice out or come over you Jade what is it let me go said the girl with great earnestness and sitting herself down on the floor before the door she said bill let me go you don't know what you're doing you don't indeed for only one hour do do my limbs off one by one cried Sikes seizing her roughly by the arm if I don't think the girl stark raving mad get up not so you let me go home no till you let me go never scream the girl Sykes looked on for a minute watching his opportunity and suddenly pinioning her hands dragged her struggling and wrestling with him by the way into a small room adjoining where he sat himself on the bench and thrusting her into a chair held her down by force she struggled and implored by terms until twelve o'clock had struck and then we read an exhausted cease to contest the point any further with a caution backed by many oaths to make no more efforts go out that night Sykes left her to recover at leisure and rejoined Fagin said the housebreaker wiping the perspiration from his face what our precious strange gal days you may say that bill replied Fagin thoughtfully you may say that what did she take it into her head to go out tonight for do you think our Sikes come you should know her better than me what does it mean I'm still asleep woman's obstinacy I suppose my idea well I suppose it is growled Sikes I thought I had tamed her but she's as bad as ever worse said Fagin thoughtfully I never nearly like this for such a little cause nor I said Sikes I think she's got a touch of half fever and her blood yet and it won't come out hey like enough a little blood without troubling the doctor if she's took that way again said Sikes they cannot an expressive approval of this mode of treatment she was hanging about me all day and night – when I was stretched on me back and you like a backer hearted wolf as you are kept yourself aloof said Sikes we was poor – or a time him and I think one way or other is worried and fretted her and that means a beer so long has made a restless hey that's it my dear replied the Jew in a whisper hush as he uttered these words the girl herself appeared and resumed her former seat her eyes were swollen and red she rocked herself to and fro tossed her head and after a little time burst out laughing why now she's on the other tech exclaimed Sikes turning a look of excessive surprise on his companion Fagin nodded to him to take no further notice just then and in a few minutes the girl subsided into her accustomed demeanour whispering Sikes that there was no fear of her relapsing Fagin took up his hat and bade him goodnight he paused when he reached the room door and looking round asked if somebody would light him down the dark stairs light him down said Sikes who was filling his pipe is a pity shall break his neck himself and disappoint the sightseers sham a light nancy followed the old man downstairs with a candle when they reached the passage he laid his finger on his lip and drawing close to the girl said in a whisper what is it Nancy dear what do you mean replied the girl in the same tone their reason of all this replied Fagin if he he pointed with a skinny forefinger up the stairs he's so hard with you he's a brooch Nancy a brute beast why don't you well said the girl as Fagin palms with his mouth almost touching her ear and his eyes looking into hers no matter just now we have told her this again you have a friend in me hence a staunch friend I have the means at hand quiet and close if you want revenge on those that treat you like a dog like a dog worse than he dog for humorous him sometimes come to me I say come to me he is a mere hound of a day but you know me of old Nance I know you well replied the girl without manifesting the least emotion goodnight she shrank back as they can offer to lay his hand on hers but said goodnight again in a steady voice and answering his parting look with a nod of intelligence closed the door between them Fagin walked towards his home intent upon the thoughts that were working within his brain he had conceived the idea not from what had just passed though that had tended to confirm him but slowly and by degrees that Nancy wearied of the house breakers brutality had conceived an attachment for some new friend her altered manner her repeated absences from home alone her comparative indifference to the interests of the gang of which he had once been so zealous and added to these her desperate impatience to leave home that night at a particular hour all favoured the supposition and rendered it to him at least almost matter of certainty the object of this new liking was not among his murmured ons he would be a valuable acquisition with such an assistant as Nancy and must thus Fagin argued be secured without delay there was another and a darker object to be gained Sikes knew too much and his ruffian taunts had not gold Fagin the less because the wounds were hidden the girl must know well that if she shook him off she could never be safe from his fury and that it would be surely wreaked to the maiming of limbs or perhaps the loss of life on the object of her more recent fancy with a little persuasion thought Fagin what more likely than that she would consent to poison him women have done such things and worse to secure the same object before now there would be the dangerous villain the man I hate gone another secured in his place and my info was over the girl the knowledge of this crime to back it unlimited these things pass through the mind of Fagin during the short time he sat alone in the house breakers room and with them uppermost in his thoughts he had taken the opportunity afterwards afforded him of sounding the girl in the broken hints he threw out at parting there was no expression of surprise no assumption of an inability to understand his meaning the girl clearly comprehended it her glance at parting showed that but the half she would recoil from a plot to take the life of Sikes and that was one of the chief ends to be attained how thoughtful has he crept homeward can I increase my influence with her what new power can i acquire such brains are fertile and expedience if without extracting a confession from herself he laid a watch discovered the object of her altered regard and threatened to reveal the whole history to Sikes of whom she stood in no common fear and there she entered into his designs could he not secure her compliance I can said Fagin almost aloud she does not refuse me then not for her life not for her life I have it all the means are ready and shall be set to work I shall have you yet he cast back a dark look and a threatening motion of the hand towards the spot where he had left the bolder villain I went on his way missing his bony hands and the folds of his tattered garment which he wrenched it tightly in his grasp as though there were a hated enemy crushed with every motion of his fingers


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