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returned and discharged her commission, by bid. ding the landlady immediately wake Mr. Jones, and tell him a lady wanted to speak with him. The landlady referred her to Partridge, saying, ‘he was 'the 'squire's friend; but, for her part, she never
called men-folks, especially gentlemen,' and then walked sullenly out of the kitchen. Honour applied herself to Partridge; but he refused, 'for my friend,' cries he, went to bed very late, and he would be
very angry to be disturbed so soon.' Mrs. Honour insisted still to have him called, saying, “She was ' sure, instead of being angry, that he would be ' to the highest degree delighted when he knew 'the occasion.' 'Another time, perhaps, he might,' cries Partridge; but non omnia possumus omnes. 'One woman is enough at once for a reasonable 'man.’ What do you mean by one woman, fellow?' cries Honour. • None of your fellow,' answered Partridge. He then proceeded to inform her plainly, that Jones was in bed with a wench, and made use of an expression too indelicate to be here inserted; which so enraged Mrs. Honour, that she called him jackanapes, and returned in a violent hurry to her mistress, whom she acquainted with the success of her errand, and with the account she had received ; which, if possible, she exaggerated, being as angry with Jones, as if he had pronounced all the words that came from the mouth of Partridge. She discharged a torrent of abuse on the master, and advised her mistress to quit all thoughts of a man who had never shewn himself deserving of her. She then ripped up the story of Molly Seagrim, and gave the most malicious turn to his formerly quitting Sophia herself; which, I must confess, the present incident not a little countenanced.
The spirits of Sophia were too much dissipated by concern, toʻenable her to stop the torrent of her maid. At last, however, she interrupted her,
saying, “I never can believe this; some villain • hath belied him. You say you had it from his 'friend; but surely it is not the office of a friend to
betray such secrets.' 'I suppose, cries Honour, 'the fellow is his pimp; for I never saw so ill' looked a villain. Besides, such profligate rakes as Mr. Jones are never ashamed of these matters.'
To say the truth, this behaviour of Partridge was a little inexcusable; but he had not slept off the effect of the dose which he swallowed the evening before; which had, in the morning, received the addition of above a pint of wine, or indeed rather of malt spirits; for the perry was hy no means pure. Now that part of his head which Nature designed for the reservoir of drink, being very shallow, a small quantity of liquor overflowed it, and opened the sluices of his heart; so that all the secrets there deposited run out. These sluices were indeed, naturally, very ill-secured. To give the best-natured turn we can to his disposition, he was a very honest man; for as he was the most inquisitive of mortals, and eternally prying into the secrets of others; so he very faithfully paid them by communicating, in return, every tỉning within his knowledge.
While Sophia, tormented with anxiety, knew not what to believe, nor what resolution to take, Susan arrived with the sack-whey. Mrs. Honour immediately advised her mistress, in a whisper, to pump this wench, who probably could inforın her of the truth. Sophia approved it, and began as follows:
Come hither, child; now answer me truly what 'I am going to ask you, and I promise you I will
I very well reward you. Is there a young gentleman
. ‘in this house, a handsome young gentleman, that
-- Here Sophia blushed and was confounded. ' A young gentleman,' cries Honour, that came ' hither in company with that saucy rascal who is now in the kitchen?' Susan answered, “There
* was.'—'Do you know any thing of any lady?' continues Sophia, “any lady? I don't ask you whe*ther she is handsome or no; perhaps she is not, * that's nothing to the purpose; but do
of any lady ?' 'La! Madam,' cries Honour, ‘you will make a very bad examiner.' 'Harkee, child,' says she, is not that very young gentleman now * in bed with some nasty trull or other?' Here Susan smiled, and was silent. ‘Answer the question, * child,' says Sophia, “and liere's a guinea for you.' · A guinea ! Madam,' cries Susan; 'La, what's a guinea ? If my mistress should know it, I shall certainly lose my place that very instant. Here's
' ' 'another for you,' says Sophia, and I promise you ' faithfully your mistress shall never know it.' Susan, after a very short hesitation, took the money, and told the whole story, concluding with saying, • If you have any great curiosity, Madam, I can 'steal softly into his room, and see whether he be
in his own bed or no.' She accordingly did this by Sophia's desire, and returned with an answer in the negative.
Sophia now trembled, and turned pale. Mrs. Honour begged her to be comforted, and not to think any more of so worthless a fellow. Why
there,' says Susan, “I hope, Madam, your ladyship won't be offended; but pray, Madam, is not your ladyship’s name Madam Sophia Wes
tern?' How is it possible you should know me?' answered Sophia. "Why that man that the gentle
woman spoke of, who is in the kitchen, told • about you last night. But I hope your ladyship ' ' is not angry with me.'
with me.' 'Indeed, child,' said she, * I am not; pray tell me all, and I promise you I'll
'Why, Madam, continued Susan, • that man told us all in the kitchen, that Madam
Sophia Western--- Indeed I don't kuow how to : bring it out. —Here she stopt, till having received encouragement from Sophia, and being vehemently
pressed by Mrs. Honour, she proceeded thus:
He told us, Madam, though to be sure it is all a ' lie, that your ladyship was dying for love of the
young 'squire, and that he was going to the wars, 'to get rid of you. I thought to myself then he was a false-hearted wretch; but now to see such a fine, rich, beautiful lady as you be, forsaken ' for such an ordinary woman; for to be sure so 'she is, and another man's wife into the bargain. 'It is such a strange unnatural thing, in a manner.'
Sophia gave her a third guinea, and, telling her she would certainly be her friend, if she mentioned nothing of what had passed, nor informed any one who she was, dismissed the girl, with orders to the post-boy to get the horses ready immediately.
Being now left alone with her maid, she told her trusty waiting-woman, “That she never was more
easy than at present. I am now convinced,' said she," he is not only a villain, but a low despicable 'wretch. I can forgive all rather than his ex
posing my name in so barbarous a manner. That • renders him the object of my contempt. Yes,
Honour, I am now easy; I am indeed; I am very easy;' and then she burst into a violent flood of tears.
After a short interval spent by Sophia, chiefly in crying, and assuring her maid that she was perfectly easy, Susan arrived with an account that the horses were ready, when a very extraordinary thought suggested itself to our young heroine, by which Mr. Joves would be acquainted with her having been at the inn, in a way, which, if any sparks of affection for her remained in him, would be at least some punishment for his faults.
The reader will be pleased to remember a little muff, which hath had the honour of being more than once remembered already in this history. This muff, «ver since the departure of Mr. Jones, had been the constant companion of Sophia by day,
and her bed-fellow by night; and this muff she had at this very instant upon her arm; whence she took
) it off with great indignation, and, having writ her name with her pencil upon a piece of paper which she pinned to it, she bribed the maid to convey it into the empty bed of Mr. Jones, in which, if he did not find it, she charged her to take some method of conveying it before his eyes in the morning
Then, having paid for what Mrs. Honour had eaten, in which bill was included an account for what she herself might have eaten, she mounted her horse, and, once more assuring her companion that she was perfectly easy, continued her journey.
CHAP. VI. Containing, among other Things, the Ingenuity of
Partridge, the Madness of Jones, and the Folly
of Fitzpatrick. It was now past five in the morning, and other company began to rise and come to the kitchen, among whom were the serjeant and the coachman, who, being thoroughly reconciled, made a libation, or, in the English pirrase, drank a hearty cup together.
In this drinking nothing more remarkable happened than the behaviour of Partridge, who, when the serjeant drank a liealth to King George, repeated only the word King; nor could he be brought to utter more; for though he was going to fight against his own cause, yet he could not be prevailed upon to drink against it.
Nr. Jones being now returned to his own bed (but from whence he returned we must beg to be excused from relating), summoned Partridge from this agreeable company, who, after a ceremonious preface, having obtained leave to offer his advice, delivered himself as follows: