"A very good name, indeed," said Mr. Pickwick, wholly unable to repress a smile.
"Yes, I think it is," resumed Mr. Magnus. "There's a good name before it, too, you will observe. Permit me, sir--if you hold the card a little slanting, this way, you catch the light upon the up-stroke. There-- Peter Magnus--sounds well, I think, sir."
"Very," said Mr. Pickwick.
"Curious circumstance about those initials, sir," said Mr. Magnus. "You will observe--P.M.--post meridian. In hasty notes to intimate acquaintance, I sometimes sign myself `Afternoon.' It amuses my friends very much, Mr. Pickwick."
"It is calculated to afford them the highest gratification, I should conceive," said Mr. Pickwick, rather envying the ease with which Mr. Magnus's friends were entertained.
"Now, gen'l'm'n," said the hostler, "coach is ready, if you please."
"Is all my luggage in?" inquired Mr. Magnus.
"All right, sir."
"Is the red bag in?"
"All right, sir."
"And the striped bag?"
"Fore boot, sir."
"And the brown-paper parcel?"
"Under the seat, sir."
"And the leather hat-box?"
"They're all in, sir."
"Now, will you get up?" said Mr. Pickwick.
"Excuse me," replied Magnus, standing on the wheel. "Excuse me, Mr. Pickwick. I cannot consent to get up, in this state of uncertainty. I am quite satisfied from that man's manner, that that leather hat-box is not in."
The solemn protestations of the hostler being wholly unavailing, the leather hat-box was obliged to be raked up from the lowest depth of the boot, to satisfy him that it had been safely packed; and after he had been assured on this head, he felt a solemn presentiment, first, that the red bag was mislaid, and next that the striped bag had been stolen, and then that the brown-paper parcel "had come untied."
At length when he had received ocular demonstration of the groundless nature of each and every of these suspicions, he consented to climb up to the roof of the coach, observing that now he had taken everything off his mind, he felt quite comfortable and happy.
"You're given to nervousness, an't you, sir?" inquired Mr. Weller senior, eyeing the stranger askance, as he mounted to his place.
"Yes; I always am rather, about these little matters," said the stranger, "but I am all right now--quite right."
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