`What do you mean, woman?' said Mr. Dombey, glaring at her. `How do you dare?'

`What I mean, Sir, is to speak respectful and without offence, but out, and how I dare I know not but I do!' said Susan. `Oh! you don't know my young lady Sir you don't indeed, you'd never know so little of her, if you did.'

Mr. Dombey, in a fury, put his hand out for the bell-rope; but there was no bell-rope on that side of the fire, and he could not rise and cross to the other without assistance. The quick eye of the Nipper detected his helplessness immediately, and now, as she afterwards observed, she felt she had got him.

`Miss Floy,' said Susan Nipper, `is the most devoted and most patient and most dutiful and beautiful of daughters, there an't no gentleman, no Sir, though as great and rich as all the greatest and richest of England put together, but might be proud of her and would and ought. If he knew her value right, he'd rather lose his greatness and his fortune piece by piece and beg his way in rags from door to door, I say to some and all, he would!' cried Susan Nipper, bursting into tears, `than bring the sorrow on her tender heart that I have seen it suffer in this house!'

`Woman,' cried Mr. Dombey, `leave the room.'

`Begging your pardon, not even if I am to leave the situation, Sir,' replied the steadfast Nipper, `in which I have been so many years and seen so much--although I hope you'd never have the heart to send me from Miss Floy for such a cause--will I go now till I have said the rest, I may not be a Indian widow Sir and I am not and I would not so become but if I once made up my mind to burn myself alive, I'd do it! And I've made my mind up to go on.'

Which was rendered no less clear by the expression of Susan Nipper's countenance, than by her words.

`There an't a person in your service, Sir,' pursued the blackeyed, `that has always stood more in awe of you than me and you may think how true it is when I make so bold as say that I have hundreds and hundreds of times thought of speaking to you and never been able to make my mind up to it till last night, but last night decided of me.'

Mr. Dombey, in a paroxysm of rage, made another grasp at the bell-rope that was not there, and, in its absence, pulled his hair rather than nothing.

`I have seen,' said Susan Nipper, `Miss Floy strive and strive when nothing but a child so sweet and patient that the best of women might have copied from her, I've seen her sitting nights together half the night through to help her delicate brother with his learning, I've seen her helping him and watching him at other times--some well know when--I've seen her, with no encouragement and no help, grow up to be a lady, thank God! that is the grace and pride of every company she goes in, and I've always seen her cruelly neglected and keenly feeling of it--I say to some and all, I have!--and never said one word, but ordering one's self lowly and reverently towards one's betters, is not to be a worshipper of graven images, and I will and must speak!'

`Is there anybody there?' cried Mr. Dombey, calling out. `Where are the men? where are the women? Is there no one there?'

`I left my dear young lady out of bed late last night,' said Susan, nothing checked, `and I knew why, for you was ill Sir and she didn't know how ill and that was enough to make her wretched as I saw it did. I may not be a Peacock; but I have my eyes--and I sat up a little in my own room thinking she might be lonesome and might want me, and I saw her steal down stairs and come to this door as if it was a guilty thing to look at her own Pa, and then steal back again and go into them lonely drawing-rooms, a crying so, that I could hardly bear to hear it. I can not bear to hear it,' said Susan Nipper, wiping her black eyes, and fixing them undauntingly on Mr. Dombey's infuriated face. `It's not the first time I have

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