minit afore the time, to waylay the boy as wos a comin' in with the evenin' paper, wich he'd read with sich intense interest and persewerance as worked the other customers up to the wery confines o' desperation and insanity, 'specially one i-rascible old gen'l'm'n as the vaiter wos always obliged to keep a sharp eye on, at sich times, fear he should be tempted to commit some rash act with the carving knife. Vell, sir, here he'd stop, occupyin' the best place for three hours, and never takin' nothin' arter his dinner, but sleep, and then he'd go away to a coffee-house a few streets off, and have a small pot o' coffee and four crumpets, arter wich he'd walk home to Kensington and go to bed. One night he wos took very ill; sends for a doctor; doctor comes in a green fly, with a kind o' Robinson Crusoe set o' steps, as he could let down wen he got out, and pull up arter him wen he got in, to perwent the necessity o' the coachman's gettin' down, and thereby undeceivin' the public by lettin' 'em see that it wos only a livery coat as he'd got on, and not the trousers to match. `Wot's the matter?' says the doctor. `Wery ill,' says the patient. `Wot have you been a eatin' on?' says the doctor. `Roast weal,' says the patient. `Wot's the last thing you dewoured?' says the doctor. `Crumpets,' says the patient. `That's it!' says the doctor. `I'll send you a box of pills directly, and don't you never take no more of 'em,' he says. `No more o' wot?' says the patient-- `Pills?' `No; crumpets,' says the doctor. `Wy?' says the patient, starting up in bed; `I've eat four crumpets, ev'ry night for fifteen year, on principle.' `Well, then, you'd better leave 'em off, on principle,' says the doctor. `Crumpets is wholesome, sir,' says the patient. `Crumpets is not wholesome, sir,' says the doctor, wery fierce. `But they're so cheap,' says the patient, comin' down a little, `and so wery fillin' at the price.' `They'd be dear to you, at any price; dear if you wos paid to eat 'em,' says the doctor. `Four crumpets a night,' he says, `vill do your business in six months!' The patient looks him full in the face, and turns it over in his mind for a long time, and at last he says, `Are you sure o' that 'ere, sir?' `I'll stake my professional reputation on it,' says the doctor. `How many crumpets, at a sittin', do you think 'ud kill me off at once?' says the patient. `I don't know,' says the doctor. `Do you think half a crown's wurth 'ud do it?' says the patient. `I think it might,' says the doctor. `Three shillins' wurth 'ud be sure to do it, I s'pose?' says the patient; `Certainly,' says the doctor. `Wery good,' says the patient; `good night.' Next mornin' he gets up, has a fire lit, orders in three shillins' wurth o' crumpets, toasts 'em all, eats 'em all, and blows his brains out."

"What did he do that for?" inquired Mr. Pickwick abruptly; for he was considerably startled by this tragical termination of the narrative.

"Wot did he do it for, sir?" reiterated Sam. "Wy in support of his great principle that crumpets wos wholesome, and to show that he wouldn't be put out of his way for nobody!"

With such like shiftings and changings of the discourse, did Mr. Weller meet his master's questioning on the night of his taking up his residence in the Fleet. Finding all gentle remonstrance useless, Mr. Pickwick at length yielded a reluctant consent to his taking lodgings by the week, of a bald-headed cobbler, who rented a small slip-room in one of the upper galleries. To this humble apartment Mr. Weller moved a mattress and bedding, which he hired of Mr. Roker; and, by the time he lay down upon it at night, was as much at home as if he had been bred in the prison, and his whole family had vegetated therein for three generations.

"Do you always smoke arter you goes to bed, old cock?" inquired Mr. Weller of his landlord, when they had both retired for the night.

"Yes, I does, young bantam," replied the cobbler.

"Will you allow me to in-quire wy you make up your bed under that 'ere deal table?" said Sam.

"'Cause I was always used to a four-poster afore I came here, and I find the legs of the table answer just as well," replied the cobbler.

"You're a character, sir," said Sam.

"I haven't got anything of the kind belonging to me," rejoined the cobbler, shaking his head; "and if you want to meet with a good one, I'm afraid you'll find some difficulty in suiting yourself at this register office."

  By PanEris using Melati.

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