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into the bargain. So I shut my eyes on Doctor
Hawley; never took part in any talk about him;
never abused him, nor complained of him. One
day's rumour indeed set forth that Pawley and
Hawley had been fighting with each other in
the street, and it is most true that I never
passed my partner and received the sneer which
he took care to thrust at me from a malicious
face, without a vigorous desire to lay my stick
upon his back. O! how I could have beaten
him! But I did nothing, and said nothing, and
looked nothing. I simply did my work;
quarrelled with nobody, bent before nobody; but
sturdily and determinately facing the whole
battery of persecution, looked neither to the
right hand nor to the left, kept a firm grasp
upon my plough, and went on with the furrow.

Care was, of course, taken to assure all my
creditors that I was penniless, discarded by my
family, already heavily in debt. Duns were thus
raised about me. Lawyers were set to bait me
for small debts. I had to give up my watch,
every luxury of furniture, my books, and even
yonder clock. Once even, in terrible want of a
shilling, I sold Deborah's first love-gift, a gold
locket. To fail here was utter shipwreck of our
lives. It was ruinous to flinch at any sacrifice.
Once, in spite of all, I had to spend a few nights
with a bailiff in my bedroom; but I held on, for
I would pull through.

Uncle James did not receive his interest at
the close of the first half-year, neither did Mr.
Tims receive his hundred pounds within a
twelvemonth. Even poor Deborah began to
think her Tom was mad, and clinging to him
hopelessly, kept up his spirits twice a week with
long, heart-breaking letters. How could I hope
to conquer so much trouble?

As the blood rises when the tempest beats
upon the face, and all the limbs grow vigorous
when buffeting the wind, so flute-playing Tom
Pawley was made, earlier than happens to
beginners in all cases, something of a man through
trouble. He saw no way out of his wood, but
a quick marching steadily in one direction. He
went into no by-path of false pretences; never
denied access to a dun, nor cheated a creditor
with more than fair expression of hopes, not in
all seasons to be fulfilled. He found that the
world was composed mainly of good fellows,
glad enough to be generous and trustful with
beginners who do not fear work, and who are
open in their dealings.

So Thomas Pawley did pull through: and here
I am! When I had worked quietly in
Beetleborough, through two years of sharp trouble,
and was clearly making way, Hawley had ceased
to persecute me. Then it happened that, one
evening when I was at tea, a middle-aged
gentleman knocked at my door. I rang
immediately for another cup and saucer, when I
knew his errand.

"I am told, sir," he said, "that you were
Doctor Hawley's partner."

"I was so," I replied, "by a deed that is not
acted on."

"I have been advised to come and speak to
you. I have just bought a partnership with
Doctor Hawley. Some doubt has arisen in my
mind. Things have been said to me——"

This gentleman had been a ship-surgeon; he
had earned money enough in Australia to buy a
practice in England, where there was a sweetheart
he longed to marry. Hawley had found him.
All his money was in Hawley's pocket.

"Can I make a practice here?" he asked.

"That," I said, "is what I now am doing."

"Hawley told me you were a young simpleton;
an interloper in the place, starving upon a
hundred pounds a year."

"I earn three hundred, but almost starve
upon that. Through Doctor Hawley I am
much oppressed with debt, and lose much that
I earn in lawyers' costs, forced on me by
impatient creditors. I shall succeed in the end.
There may be room for both of us."

"Ah no!" my friend sighed. "I must go
to sea again. The long hope of my life is at
an end."

He went away from Beetleborough. He gave
his last kiss to his sweetheart, and departed.

After this, I had no more obstruction from
my partner; who, within another year, was
himself taken from us all, to our great joy. In
London he had turned up a few wealthy simpletons,
one of whom was at last clever enough to
put him in the dock of the Old Bailey. He was
sent to the hulks; but I believe in my heart that
he ought to have been sent forty years sooner
to a lunatic asylum.

Meanwhile I stuck to Beetleborough, and time
healed my wounds. These rough miners made
festival about us, when the bells rang, and the
carriage, in which I brought Deborah home,
rolled to this door. We now have money,
children, troops of friends, daily activity, and
constant peace. We have pulled through, in
fact, by force of strong, straightforward effort.

Now ready, price 5s. 6d., bound in cloth,
(Containing from Nos. 1 to 26, both inclusive) of
To be had of all Booksellers.
Price 1s., uniform with PICKWICK, DAVID COPPERFIELD, BLEAK HOUSE, &c.With the Magazines, the Sixth Monthly Part of
With Two Illustrations on Steel by HABLOT K
To be completed in Eight Monthly Parts.