Charles Dickens

'We air going to part, sir,' said Pogram.

'Pray don't distress yourself,' said Martin; 'we must bear it.'

'It ain't that, sir,' returned Pogram, 'not at all. But I should wish you to accept a copy of My oration.'

'Thank you,' said Martin, 'you are very good. I shall be most happy.'

'It ain't quite that, sir, neither,' resumed Pogram; 'air you bold enough to introduce a copy into your country?'

'Certainly,' said Martin. 'Why not?'

'Its sentiments air strong, sir,' hinted Pogram, darkly.

'That makes no difference,' said Martin. 'I'll take a dozen if you like.'

'No, sir,' retorted Pogram. 'Not A dozen. That is more than I require. If you are content to run the hazard, sir, here is one for your Lord Chancellor,' producing it, 'and one for Your principal Secretary of State. I should wish them to see it, sir, as expressing what my opinions air. That they may not plead ignorance at a future time. But don't get into danger, sir, on my account!'

'There is not the least danger, I assure you,' said Martin. So he put the pamphlets in his pocket, and they parted.

Mr Bevan had written in his letter that, at a certain time, which fell out happily just then, he would be at a certain hotel in the city, anxiously expecting to see them. To this place they repaired without a moment's delay. They had the satisfaction of finding him within; and of being received by their good friend, with his own warmth and heartiness.

'I am truly sorry and ashamed,' said Martin, 'to have begged of you. But look at us. See what we are, and judge to what we are reduced!'

'So far from claiming to have done you any service,' returned the other, 'I reproach myself with having been, unwittingly, the original cause of your misfortunes. I no more supposed you would go to Eden on such representations as you received; or, indeed, that you would do anything but be dispossessed, by the readiest means, of your idea that fortunes were so easily made here; than I thought of going to Eden myself.'

'The fact is, I closed with the thing in a mad and sanguine manner,' said Martin, 'and the less said about it the better for me. Mark, here, hadn't a voice in the matter.'

'Well! but he hadn't a voice in any other matter, had he?' returned Mr Bevan; laughing with an air that showed his understanding of Mark and Martin too.

'Not a very powerful one, I am afraid,' said Martin with a blush. 'But live and learn, Mr Bevan! Nearly die and learn; we learn the quicker.'

'Now,' said their friend, 'about your plans. You mean to return home at once?'

'Oh, I think so,' returned Martin hastily, for he turned pale at the thought of any other suggestion. 'That is your opinion too, I hope?'

'Unquestionably. For I don't know why you ever came here; though it's not such an unusual case, I am sorry to say, that we need go any farther into that. You don't know that the ship in which you came over with our friend General Fladdock, is in port, of course?'

'Indeed!' said Martin.

'Yes. And is advertised to sail to-morrow.'

This was tempting news, but tantalising too; for Martin knew that his getting any employment on board a ship of that class was hopeless. The money in his pocket would not pay one-fourth of the sum he had already borrowed, and if it had been enough for their passage-money, he could hardly have resolved to spend it. He explained this to Mr Bevan, and stated what their project was.

'Why, that's as wild as Eden every bit,' returned his friend. 'You must take your passage like a Christian; at least, as like a Christian as a fore-cabin passenger can; and owe me a few more dollars than you intend. If Mark will go down to the ship and see what passengers there are, and finds that you can go in her without being actually suffocated, my advice is, go! You and I will look about us in the meantime (we won't call at the Norris's unless you like), and we will all three dine together in the afternoon.'

Martin had nothing to express but gratitude, and so it was arranged. But he went out of the room after Mark, and advised him to take their passage in the Screw, though they lay upon the bare deck; which Mr Tapley, who needed no entreaty on the subject readily promised to do.