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had thrown "her silver mantle over the sceneit seemed a perfect representation of peace. The feelings of Arbridge did not accord with the sweet scenery around him. He thought on the words he had heard, on the cruelty with which Lord Norford had spoken of men, perhaps driven to crimes through want, and the contemptuous tones of Sir Richard and the others. Surely, surely these men were all selfish.

His gloomy reflections were interrupted by a voice behind him. He paused, and the next moment Lord Hewiston was at his side.

"I thought I should find you here," he exclaimed. "Shall I interrupt the current of your thoughts?"

"Not at all."

"Well, then, I'll take a stroll with you. How refreshing it is here, after that hot room. I have a great deal to tell you, and I may as well say now, as it's too soon to go to the ladies, I suppose."


"Ah! Harry, your heart's there; pray don't stop with me."

"Never mind, there is time enough. I have not told you about my canvassing."

"I am glad you have given up the silly fancy."

"Yes, I have given it up indeed, and you shall

hear why. My project was not quite so senseless as in your wisdom you imagine. Of course I did not expect to get in-I did not wish it. But what I wanted, was to learn the sense of the people, and see what sort of influence the Duke possessed here. I have heard a good dea. about these pocket boroughs, as they are called, and this one in particular, so I hit on this plan; I assure you it answered very well-I learned rather more than I wished. But you shall hear it all, and then you will own, at least, there was method in my madness. I sent round some circulars, as I told you, declaring that I was prepared to come forward and contest the borough; that I was of good old Tory principles; that I should represent their true interests in a manly, independent spirit, &c., &c. Well, I sent these round; and this morning I went out to canvass."

"It was a mad affair, Harry."

"Wait awhile. I told you I wanted to understand matters. Well, I got to the town-a queer little place it is, too-and I paid a few visits to the independent electors. At first they thought it was Lord Norford himself, and they treated me like-what shall I say?-an angel."

"Like an angel?"


'Yes; they were full of respect and admiration; highly honoured by the condescension, yet

half afraid, and secretly very anxious to get rid of me. Is not that just the way you would treat an angel?"

"Well, go on. You undeceived them?"

"Yes; I told them, that, so far from being Lord Norford, or any other celestial visitor, I was a gentleman who had come to oppose him! The effect was electric; they would not hear reason; they would not hear a word; they turned me to the right about. In fact, instead of regarding me as an angel, they treated me likeno, that won't do-we always receive his infernal majesty very politely. Well, this was not very pleasant; however, I walked on, proudly superior to such petty insults, when a dirty little ragged urchin came up, and whispered me to follow him. I am always ready for adventures, you know; so, of course, I complied. My conductor, satisfied that I was following, walked on hastily, turning down lanes, and round corners; in fact, I had some difficulty in keeping up with him. He led me out of the town towards a deserted-looking building, and there he consigned me to the care of a very respectable-looking man, who invited me to enter. It required a second invitation to make any one venture in; for it was horribly dirty, and I thought, perhaps, I was going to be murdered. However, I entered; and

my friend led me to an inner room, where I found ten or twelve very respectable men waiting for me. I was rather surprised, but I soon found that these were electors of Norford-tenants at will, and others dependant on the Duke. They had read my address, and were anxious to know if there were any chance of my beating the Marquis if they assisted me. They had used all this secresy, for fear it might come to the ears of the Duke, as they wanted, if I lost, at least to preserve themselves. When I first entered, my conductor addressed me.

"You will excuse the little ceremony we have shown, but it was necessary. We are to understand that you are prepared to oppose Lord Norford?'

"And you, gentlemen, are prepared to support me?'

"Why that depends. . . .' answered another. That is why we wish to speak to you. Will you have the kindness to answer one plain question: if we support you, can you answer for your success? It is necessary we should know this before we act; for it is no light matter to oppose Lord Norford. Many of us may be ruined—we risk every thing; but this we are willing to do, if we can only succeed. Therefore, Sir, if you can assure us that you will win, you shall have our

hearty support. Only, you see, it's no use voting if you lose, as then we shall risk every thing, and not be revenged, either.'


"Yes, of course, that's what we want. Your principles may be very good; but one chief reason for supporting you would be to punish the Duke.'

"And it would punish him,' rejoined another; 'he's very tenacious of his rights; he'll have every one vote as he pleases, and it's too bad. That's why he refuses me a lease.'

"What has that to do with it?"

"Why, of course, if I had a lease, I should be independent of him, at least for a time; but, being only tenant at will, if I thwart him, he turns me out at once, and I'm done for.'

"But would he be so severe ?'

"Severe, Lord bless you, he'd think nothing of that; my cousin was ruined that way. But he was a fool: first he spent all his money in his land, and then he voted the wrong way, and lost it all.'

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""Well, Sir,' said the first speaker, you see how it stands perhaps we're over free with a stranger, but we're grown desperate, and, cost what it may, we'll all vote for you; and there's many will join if we're sure of beating the Duke.'

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