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ble as a lawyer, or to cant as a churchman, is quenched, of shining occasionally in all those chaconfined to fellows who have no fire in their racters. And as a companion, he was too pleasing, composition. Give me but a bold set, and a fair and too well pleased, to keep that cool indifferthrow for it, and then for the life of a lord, or ence, which is the characteristic of him, who the death of a gentleman.”—“ I have had but should be always possessed of himself, and conlittle experience in the profession,” said Annes- sider every other man only as the spunge from ly,“ and should but throw away your money." whom he is to squeeze advantage. —“Never fear,” replied the other ; “ do but To the present party, however, he was unmark me, and I will ensure you : I will shew questionably superior ; and of course, in a short you our men ; pigeons, mere pigeons, by Jupi- time began to levy large contributions, not only
on the more inexperienced, whom Annesly and It was not for a man in Annesly's situation to his conductor had marked for their own booty, baulk the promise of such a golden opportunity; but likewise on these two gentlemen themselves, they dined together, and afterwards repaired to whose winnings of the former evening were now a gaming-house, where Annesly's companion in- fast diminishing before the superior skill of this troduced him, as a friend of his just arrived new antagonist. from the country, to several young gentlemen, But in the midst of his success, he was interwho seemed to be waiting his arrival.—“I pro- rupted by the arrival of another gentleman, who mised you your revenge,” said he, “i my dears, seemed also to be a well-known character in this and you shall have it ; some of my friend's La- temple of fortune, being saluted by the familiar dy-day rents, too, have accompanied him to Lon- name of Black-beard. This man possessed an don ; if you win, you shall wear them. To bu- unmoved equality both of temper and aspect; siness, to business.”
and though, in reality, he was of no very supeIn the course of their play, Annesly, though rior abilities, yet had acquired the reputation but moderately skilled in the game, discovered, both of depth and acuteness, from being always that the company, to whom he had been intro- accustomed to think on his own interest, and duced, were in reality such bubbles as his com- pursuing with the most sedulous attention every panion had represented them : after being heat- object which led to it, unseduced by one single ed by some small success in the beginning, they spark of those feelings which the world terms began to bet extravagantly against every calcu- weakness. lation of chances; and in an hour two, his asso- In the article of gaming, which he had early ciate and he had stripped them of a very consi- pitched on as the means of advancement, he had derable sum, of which his own share, though availed himself of that industry, and saturnine much the smaller, was upwards of three score complexion, to acquire the most consummate guineas. When they left the house, he offered knowledge of its principles, which indeed he had his conductor the sum he had lent him, with a attained to a very remarkable degree of perfecprofusion of thanks, both for the use and the tion. improvement of it. “No, my boy,” said he, Opposed to this man, even the skill of the “ not now; your note is sufficient: I will rather hitherto-successful Squire was unavailing; and call for it when I am at a pinch ; you see now consequently he not only stripped that gentlethe road to wealth and independence ; you will man of the gains he had made, but gleaned meet me here to-morrow.” He promised to meet whatever he had left in the purses of the infehim accordingly.
rior members of the party, amongst whom AnThey had been but a few minutes in the room nesly and his associate were reduced to their this second night, when a gentleman entered, last guinea. whom the company saluted with the appellation This they agreed to spend together at a taof Squire ; the greater part of them seemed to be vern in the neighbourhood, where they cursed charmed with his presence ; but the countenance fortune, their spoiler, and themselves, in all the of Annesly's companion fell at his approach :- bitterness of rage and disappointment. Annes“ Damn him," says he, in a whisper to Annes. ly did not seek to account for their losses otherly, “he's a knowing one."
wise than in the real way, to wit, from the suIn some degree indeed he deserved the title; perior skill of their adversary; but his compafor he had attained, from pretty long experience, nion, who often boasted of his own, threw out assisted by natural quickness of parts, a consi- some insinuations of foul play and connivance. derable knowledge in the science; and in strokes “If I thought that,” said Annesly, laying of genius, at games where genius was required, his hand on his sword, while his cheeks burnt was excelled by few. But after all, he was far with indignation. “Poh !” replied the other, from being successful in the profession: nature - 'tis in vain to be angry; here is damnation to intended him for something better; and as he him in a bumper." spoiled a wit, an orator, and perhaps a poet, by The other did not fail bis pledge; and, by a turning gambler; so he often spoiled a gambler liberal application to the bottle, they so far overby the ambition, which was not yet entirely came their losses, that Annesly reeled home,
singing a catch, forgetful of the past, and re- last, with a more settled horror in his eye, he gardless of to-morrow.
put on his sword, and without knowing whither he should go, sallied into the street.
He happened to meet in his way some of CHAP. XV.
those boon companions with whom his nights
of jollity had been spent ; but their terms of saAnother attempt to retrieve his Circumstances, the lutation were so cold and forbidding, as obvi, consequences of which are still more fatal. ously to shew that the account of his circum
stances had already reached them; and, with Though the arrival of to-morrow might be them, he who had every thing to ask, and nooverlooked, it could not be prevented. It rose thing to bestow, could possess no quality aton Annesly, one of the most wretched of man- tractive of regard. After sauntering from strett kind. Poverty, embittered by disgrace, was to street, and from square to square, he found now approaching him, who knew of no friend himself, towards the close of the day, within a to ward off the blow, and had no consolation in few paces of that very gaming-house where he himself by which it might be lightened : if any had been so unfortunate the evening before. A thing could add to his present distress, it was sort of malicious curiosity, and some hope of be increased by the absence of Sindall, who was knew not what, tempted him to re-enter it. He then in the country, and the upbraidings of his found much the same company he had seen the female companion, who now exclaimed against preceding night, with the exception, however, the folly which herself had caused, and the ex- of his former associate, and one or two of the travagance herself had participated.
younger members of their party, whom the About mid-day, his last night's fellow-suffer- same cause prevented from attending. er paid him a visit: their mutual chagrin at Strolling into another room, he found an inmeeting, from the recollection of misfortune ferior set of gamesters, whose stakes were lowwhich it produced, was evident in their coun- er, though their vociferation was infinitely more tenances ; but it was not a little increased, when loud. In the far corner sat a man, who preserthe other told Annesly he came to put him in ved a composure of countenance undisturbed by mind of the sum he had advanced him two days the clamour and confusion that surrounded him. before, for which he had now very pariicular After a little observation, Annesly discovered occasion. Annesly answered, that he had frank- that he was a money-lender, who advanced cetly told him the state of his finances at the time tain sums, at a very exorbitant premium, to the of the loan, and accepted it on no condition of persons engaged in the play. Some of those he speedy payment; that he had, that same even- saw, who could offer no other security satisfying, offered to repay him when it was in his ing to this usurer, procure a few guineas from power; and that he could not but think the de- him, on pawning a watch, ring, or some other mand ungentlemanlike, at a time when he inust appendage of former finery. Of such he had beknow his utter inability to comply with it. fore divested himself for urgent demands, and
“ Ungentlemanlike !" said the other ; " I had nothing superfluous about him but his don't understand what you mean, sir, by such sword, which he had kept the latest, and which a phrase ; will you pay me my money, or not?" he now deposited in the hands of the old gere
"I cannot."-" Then, sir, you must expect tleman in the corner, who furnished him with me to employ some gentleman for the recovery a couple of pieces upon it, that with them he of it, who will speak to you, perhaps, in a more might once more try his fortune at the table. ungentlemanlike style than I do.” And, so say. The success exceeded his expectation : it was ing, he Aung out of the room.
so rapid, that in less than an hour he had in“ Infamous wretch !” exclaimed Annesly, creased his two guineas to forty, with which he and walked about with a hurried step, gnawing determined to retire contented; but when he his lips, and muttering curses on him, and on would have redeemed his sword, he was informhimself. There was another gentleman want- ed that the keeper had just gone into the other ed to see him below stairs-'Twas a mercer, room, where, as he entered to demand it, he unwho came to demand payment of some fineries fortunately overheard the same gentleman who his lady, as he termed her, had purchased: he had gained his money the former night, offer. was, with difficulty, dismissed. In a quarter ing a bet, to the amount of the sum Annesly of an hour there was another call—'Twas a dun then possessed, on a cast where he imagined the of a tailor for clothes to himself-he would take chance to be much against it. Stimulated with no excuse. “ Come,” said Annesly, with a look the desire of doubling his gain, and the sudden of desperation, “to-morrow morning, and I will provocation, as it were, of the offer, he accepted pay you.”
it ; and, in one moment, lost all the fruits of his But how?-he stared wildly on the ground, former good fortune. The transport of his pasthen knocked his head against the wall, and sion could not express itself in words, but ta. acted all the extravagancies of a madman. At king up one of the dice, with the seeming coolness of exquisite anguish, he fairly bit it in two, Meantime, the gamester returned to the house and, casting a look of frenzy on his sword, which he had just quitted, with the account of his dishe was now unable to ransom, he rushed out of aster. The whole fraternity, who could make the house, uncovered as he was, his hat hanging no allowance for a robber of this sort, were on a peg in the other apartment.
alarmed at the accident; every one was busied The agitation of his mind was such as denied in inquiry, and a thousand questions were askall attention to common things; and, instead of ed about his appearance, his behaviour, and the taking the direct road to his lodgings, he wan- route he had taken. The chairmen, who had dered off the street into an obscure alley, where been somewhat more possessed of themselves at he had not advanced far, till he was accosted by the time of the robbery than their master, had a fellow, who, in a very peremptory tone, desi- remarked the circumstance of the robber's wantred him to deliver his money, or he would in- ing his hat. This was no sooner mentioned, stantly blow out his brains, presenting a pistol than a buzz ran through the company, that the at less than half a yard's distance. “ I can give young gentleman, who had gone off a little you nothing," said Annesly, “ because I have while before, had been observed to be uncovernothing to give.”-“ Damn you," returned the ell when he left the house ; and upon search other, “ do you think I'll be fobbed off so? made, his hat was actually found, with his name Your money, and be damned to you, or I'll marked on the inside. This was a ground of send you to hell in a twinkling," advancing suspicion too strong to be overlooked : meshis pistol, at the same time, within a hand'sa sengers were dispatched in quest of the friend breadth of his face, Annesly, at that instant, who had introduced him there the preceding struck up the muzzle with his arm, and, laying night; upon his being found, and acquainting hold of the barrel, by a sudden wrench forced them of Annesly's lodgings, proper warrants the weapon out of the hands of the villain, who, were obtained for a search. not choosing to risk any farther combat, made When that unfortunate young man arrived the best of his way down the alley, and left An- at home, he was met on the stairs by the lady nesly master of his arms. He stood for a mo- we have formerly mentioned, who, in terms of ment entranced in thought.-" Whoever thou bitter reproach, interrupted him with tears, inart,” said he, “ I thank thee; by Heaven ! thou veighed against the cruelty of his neglect, in instructest and armest me; this may provide thus leaving her to pine alone, without even the for to-morrow, or make its provision unneces- common comforts of a miserable life. Her censary.” He now returned with a hurried pace to sure indeed was the more violent, as there was the mouth of the alley, where, in the shade of little reason for its violence; for she had that a jutting wall, he could mark, unperceived, the moment dismissed, at a back-door, a gallant who objects on the street. He had stood there but was more attentive than Annesly. He, who could a few seconds, and began already to waver in very well allow the grounds of her complaint, only his purpose, when he saw come out of the ga- pleaded necessity for his excuse. He could but ming-house which he had left, the very man mutter this apology in imperfect words; for the who had plundered him of his all. The richness perturbation of his mind almost deprived him of of the prize, with immediate revenge, awaken- the powers of speech. Upon her taking notice of ed together in his mind; and the suspicion of this, with much seeming concern for his health, foul play, which his companion had hinted the he beckoned her into a chamber, and dashing night before, gave them a sanction of something the purse on the floor, pointed to it with a look like justice. He waited till the chair, in which of horror, as an answer to her upbraidings. the gamester was conveyed, came opposite to “What have you done for this?” said she, place where he stood ; then covering his face taking it up. He threw himself into a chair, with one hand, and assuming a tone different without answering a word. from his natural, he pulled out his pistol, and At that moment the officers of justice, who commanded the leading chairman to stop. This had lost no time in prosecuting their informaeffected, he went up to the chair, and the gen- tion, entered the house; and some of them, actleman within having let down one of the glass- companied by an attorney, employed by the genes to know the reason of its stop, the stopper tleman who had been robbed, walked softly up clapped the pistol to his breast, and threatened stairs to the room where Annesly was, and bursthim with instant death if he did not deliver his ing into it before he could prepare for any demoney. The other, after some little hesitation, fence, laid hold of him in rather a violent manduring which Annesly repeated his threats with ner ; which the lawyer observing, desired them the most horrible oaths, drew a purse of gold to use the gentleman civilly, till he should ask from his pocket, which Annesly snatched out him a few questions. “I will answer none,” of his hand, and running down the alley, made said Annesly; “ do your duty."-" Then, sir," his escape at the other end ; and, after turning replied the other, “ you must attend us to those through several streets, in different directions, who can question you with better authority; and so as to elude pursuit, arrived safely at home I must make bold to secure this lady, till she with the booty he had taken.
answer some questions also. The lady saved
him the trouble ; for being now pretty well sa- gavest me being ! take back that life which thou tisfied that her hero was at the end of his career, didst breathe into me for the best of purposes, she thought it most prudent to break off a con- but which I have profaned by actions equally nexion where nothing was to be gained, and mischievous to thy government, and ignominis make a merit of contributing her endeavours to ous to myself. The passions which thou didst bring the offender to justice. She called, there- implant in me, that reason which should bafore, this leader of the party into another room, lance them is unable to withstand : from one and being informed by him that the young gen- only I receive useful admonition ; the shame, tleman was suspected of having committed a that could not prevent, now punishes my crimes. robbery scarce an hour before, she pulled out Her voice for once I will obey; and leave a state, the purse which she had just received from him, in which it I remain, I continue a blot to naand asked the lawyer, “ If it was that which ture, and an enemy to man.” had been taken from his client?"_" Ay, that He drew a penknife, now his only weapon, it is, I'll be sworn,” said he ; "and here (pour- from its sheath-he bared his bosom for the ing out its contents,) is the ring he mentioned horrid deed--when the picture of his father, at the bottom."-" But,” said she, pausing a which the good man had bestowed on him at little, “it will prove the thing as well without parting, and he had worn ever since in his bothe guineas.”-i. I protest,” returned the law, som, struck his eye-(it was drawn in the mildyer,“ thou art a girl of excellent invention- ness of holy meditation, with the hands folded Hum--here are fourscore; one half of them together, and the eyes litted to heaven)-“Mer. might have been spent-or dropt out by the ciful God !” said Annesly-he would have ntway, or—any thing may be supposed ; and so tered a prayer, but his soul was wound up to a we shall have twenty a-piece. Some folks to be pitch that could but one way be let down-he sure would take more, but I love conscience in flung himself on the ground, and burst into an those matters.”
agony of tears. Having finished this transaction in such a man- The door of the apartment opening, discoverner as might give no offence to the conscience of ed the jailor, followed by Sir Thomas Sindallthis honest pettifogger, they returned to the pri- “My friend in this place ?" said he to Annessoner, who contented himself with darting a look ly,—who covered his face with his hands, and of indignation at his female betrayer; and, after replied only by a groan. being some time in the custody of the lawyer and Sindall made signs for the keeper of the prihis assistants, he was carried in the morning, son to leave them ;-" Come," said he, “my along with her, before a magistrate. The seve- dear Annesly, be not so entirely overcome; I ral circumstances I have related being sworn flatter myself, you know my friendship too well, to, Annesly was committed to Newgate, and the to suppose that it will desert you even here. Í gamester bound over to prosecute him at the may, perhaps, have opportunities of comforting next sessions, which were not then very distant. you in many ways; at least I shall feel and pity
your distresses.”—“ Leave me," answered the
other, “ leave me; I deserve no pity, and me CHAP. XXI.
thinks there is a pride in refusing it."-" You
must not say so; my love has much to plead The Miseries of him whose Punishment is inflicted for you ; nor are you without excuse even to by Conscience.
the world."-"Oh! Sindall,” said he, “ I am
without excuse to myself! when I look back to Though Annesly must have suffered much that peace of mind, to that happiness I have during the agitation of these proceedings, yet squandered !-I will not curse, but-oh! fool, that was little to what he felt, when left to re- fool, fool !”—“ I would not,” said Sir Thomas, flection, in the solitude of his new abode. Let “ increase that anguish which you feel, were I the virtuous remember, amidst their affliction, not obliged to mention the name of your fathat though the heart of the good man may ther.”-“My father !” cried Annesly ; - O hide bleed even to death, it will never feel a torment me from my father !”“Alas !” replied Sindall, equal to the rendings of remorse.
" he must hear of your disaster from other For some time the whirling of his brain gave hands; and it were cruel not to acquaint him of him no leisure to exercise any faculty that could it in a way that should wound him the least." be termed thinking ; when that sort of delirium --Annesly gazed with a look of entrancement subsided, it left him only to make room for on his picture ; “ Great God !” said he, “ for more exquisite, though less turbulent anguish. what hast thou reserved me? Sindall, do what
After he hail visited every corner of resource, thou wilt-think not of such a wretch as I am ; and found them all dark and comfortless, he but mitigate, if thou canst, the sorrows of a fa. started at last from that posture of despair in ther, the purity of whose bosom must bleed for which he sat, and turning the glare of his eye the vices of mine.”-“ Fear not,” returned Sir intently upwards :
Thomas ; “ I hope all will be better than you “ Take back," said he, “ thou Power that imagine. It grows late, and I must leave you
now; but promise me to be more composed for « no place could frighten me where my poor the future. I will see you again early to-more Bill is"- " Then you shall go, my child, and row; nor will I let a moment escape, that can I shall be the better for thinking that you are be improved to your service."-" I must think," with him : tell him, though he has wrung my said Annesly, " and therefore I must feel ; but heart, it has not forgotten him. That he should I will often remember your friendship, and my have forgotten me, is little ; let him but now gratitude shall be some little merit left in me remember, that there is another Father, whose to look upon without blushing."
pardon is more momentous.” Sindall bade him farewell, and retired ; and Harriet having therefore intrusted her father at that instant he was less a villain than he to the friendship of Mrs Wistanly, set out, acused to be. The state of horror to which he saw companied by a niece of that gentlewoman's, this young man reduced, was beyond the limits who had been on a visit to her aunt, for the of his scheme ; and he began to look upon the metropolis, where she arrived a few days before victim of his designs, with that pity which de- that which was appointed for the trial of her pravity can feel, and that remorse which it can, unhappy brother. not overcome.
Though it was late in the evening when they reached London, yet Harriet’s iinpatience would
, not suffer her to sleep till she had seen the poor CHAP. XVII.
prisoner; and, notwithstanding the remonstran
ces of her companion, to whom her aunt had His Father is acquainted with Annesly's situa- recommended the tenderest concern about her tion. His behaviour in consequence of it. young friend, she called a hackney-coach im
mediately, to convey her to the place in which That letter to old Annesly, which Sindall
Annesly was confined ; and her fellow-traveller, had undertaken to write, he found a more diffi when her dissuasions to going had failed, very cult task than at first he imagined. The soli, obligingly offered to accompany her. citude of his friendship might have been easily They were conducted, by the turnkey, through expressed on more common occasions, and hy- & gloomy passage, to the wretched apartment pocrisy to him was usually no unpleasing garb; which Annesly occupied : they found him sitbut at this crisis of Annesly's fate, there were ting at a little table, on which he leaned, with feelings he could not suppress; and he blushed his hands covering his face. When they enter. to himself, amidst the protestations of concern ed, he did not change his posture; but on the and regard, with which this account of his mis- turnkey's speaking, (for his sister was unable fortune (as he termed it) was accompanied. to speak,) he started up, and exhibited a coun
Palliated, as it was, with all the art of Sir tenance pale and haggard, his eyes blood-shot, Thomas, it may be easily conceived what effect and his hair dishevelled. On discovering his it must have on the mind of a father; a father sister, a blush crossed his cheek, and the horror at this time labouring under the pressure of dise of his aspect was lost in something milder and ease, and confined to a sick-bed, whose inter- more piteous—“Oh! my Billy !” she cried, and vals of thought were now to be pointed to the sprung forward to embrace him. “ This is too misery, the disgrace, perhaps the disgraceful much," said he ; " leave, and forget a wretch death, of a darling child. His Harriet, after the unworthy the name of thy brother.”—“Would first shock which the dreadful tidings had given my Billy kill me quite ? this frightful place has her, sat by him, stilling the terrors of her gen- almost killed me already! Alas! Billy, my dearest tle soul, and speaking comfort when her tears father!"_“Oh! Harriet, that name, that name! would let her.
speak not of my father !”—“Ah !” said she, “ if His grief was aggravated, from the considere you knew his goodness; he sent me to comfort ation of being at present unable to attend a son, and support my brother; he sent me from himwhose calamities, though of his own procuring, self, stretched on a sick-bed, where his Harriet called so loudly for support and assistance. should have tended him.”-“Oh! cursed, cur
“ Unworthy as your brother is, my Harriet," sed !”-“Nay, do not curse, my Billy, he sends said he," he is my son and your brother still; you none; his prayers, his blessings rise for you and must he languish amid the horrors of a pri- to heaven; his forgiveness be bade me convey son, without a parent or a sister to lessen them? you, and tell you to seek that of the Father of The prayers which I can put up from this sick all goodness!"-His sister's hands were clasped bed are all the aid I can minister to him ; but in his ; he lifted both together. “ If thou canst your presence might sooth his anguish, and hear me,” said he,-“ I dare not pray for myalleviate his sufferings. With regard to this self ; but spare a father, whom my crimes have life, perhaps-Do not weep, my love-But you made miserable ; let me abide the wrath I have might lead him to a reconciliation with that deserved, but weigh not down his age for my Being, whose sentence governs eternity! Would - offences ; punish it not with the remembrance it frighten my Harriet to visit a dungeon?"- of me !" He fell on his sister's neck, and they “ Could I leave my dearest father,” said she, mingled their tears ; nor could the young lady