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Tiptoe, when in extremis, became aware of this
fact, and deposited me with the pawnbroker.
As a matter of course, Mr. Tiptoe lost the
pawnbroker's ticket, and at the expiration of a twelve-
month-and-a-day, or some such mysteriously
romantic period, I was sold off at a grande battue
of unredeemed pledges.

My next proprietor was a dealer in second-
hand articles of all kinds, whose customers did
not go the length of having tailors, boot-
makers, hatters, and shirt-makers, of their own,
but, as it were, "chanced it," for any article
of dress they might happen to require. To him
came one evening a journeyman hairdresser,
anxious, as he said, to "come it strong" in the
way of fine linen, but desirous of doing so at
the lowest figure for which fine linen was
procurable. The hairdresser's reasonsneed I say
what Mr. Washball's reasons were for seeking
this luxury?—well,—he was thinking of being
married; to tell the truth, the lady had
consented, the day was named, the banns were to
be read for the third time on the following
Sunday, and as Thursday had arrived, it was
high time that Mr. Washball should give his
mind to the necessity of procuring not the least
indispensable of his wedding garments. The
second-hand dealer, who made a point of selling
everything under prime costthat condition
of things having no reference to the amount he
had givenaccommodated Mr. Washball by
mulcting him of nearly a week's wages in
exchange for my valuable self. Though the
society into which I was thus thrown was not
first-rate, I could not complain; for had I
not been a prisoner for more than a year, and
are not daylight and sunshine precious to the
emancipated? Solitary splendour had been my
fate while the slave of Lord Millstone; then
came a gleam of liberty while I flaunted on the
person of Mr. Tiptoe; but those hours of freedom,
during which I saw something of the
world, were dearly paid for, by my confinement
in an obscure garret, a ticketed but unnoticed
bundle. On Mr. Washball's wedding-day I was,
to a certain extent, myself again; once more I
rejoiced in the pleasures of those who were at
once happy and innocent, and if Anna Maria,
the bride, whose Christian names were a
stumbling-block to Alfred Washball, did not equal
Aglaë in beauty, she was quite her match in
light-hearted merriment. It was a satisfaction
my weakness must be pardonedto be once
more associated with white kid gloves and
whiskers redolent of bergamot; but it was a
greater satisfaction to me to be pressed as
Alfred Washball pressed me to the throbbing
bosom of Anna Maria, when the ceremony that
ends in "amazement" had been duly performed,
and we headed the procession that issued from
the church of St. Martin's-in-the-Fields on our
way in cabs to the Waterloo station. Our
destination for the day was Kew. We rowed
on the Thames, Alfred, without coat and waistcoat,
exhibiting me and his muscular energies
in perfection; we made "the Gardens"
our own, roaming through the rhododendron
vale, racing along the velvet turf, climbing
the spiral staircase in the Palm-house, playing
at hide-and-seek behind the treeswhen Anna
Maria was always caught by Alfred, and the
two bridesmaids by their respective young
menand then returning to the Rose and
Crown, we dined on "all the delicacies of
the season;" or, if any were absent from the
banquet, none of the party missed them, so
perfect in everybody's opinion were all the
arrangements.

I confess to having led a very agreeable life
during my sojourn with Mr. Washball, and not
the less so because I was much envied by my
master's friends whenever I was worn. Anna
Maria always looked to my washing, plaiting,
starching, and ironing, herself: in fact, I held
a place in her estimation not second even
to the muslin dress which had arrayed her
own fair form on the happy day at Kew.
For the first twelve months of his married life
Alfred was as proud of me as he could possibly
be of anything made by hands; after that period,
an object that naturally made its appearance
usurped my place in his regard. Still I was not
by any means neglected. At more than one
christening I shone out in all my original
splendour; when Anna Maria's next sister, Eliza,
was married, to one of the hide-and-seek young
men, I again appeared before the altar; I
should no doubt have graced an event of a less
joyful naturethe funeral of Anna Maria's
fatherbut unfortunately I was unpegged from
the clothes-line, and carried off by an
unprincipled and unsympathising appropriator of
other men's goods and chattels who caught a
glimpse of me over the garden wall. And as
that was the only obstacle between his desire
and its accomplishment, it follows that I was
forthwith stolen.

The gentleman who had thus surreptitiously
acquired possession of my person, though he
occasionally bore a fine historical name, was
neither a member of the aristocracy, a
legislator by law or popular choice, nor the
proprietor of a large landed estate: in point
of fact, he had no estate whatever, whether
large or small, not so much as would fill a
flower-pot; owning nothing more than the
personal tenement covered by his hat, and not
always the uncontrolled proprietor of that. But
if not in either House of Parliament, he yet
belonged to a numerous and influential body:
being one of the class euphemistically described
by the newspapers as "Members" of the Swell
Mob. A first-rate linen shirt, though beginning
to manifest some symptoms of the wear and tear
that accompanies old age, instead of the
traditionary "honour, love, obedience, troops of
friends," was a godsend to one in the position
of the Honourable Percy Plantagenet Mowbray
Fitz-Howard, as Mr. Thomas Rumball, alias
"The Mizzler," at that time called himself.
Allusion has already been made to the hermetical
process by means of which the shirtless make a
figure in society, and it only remains to be
observed, that The Mizzler was an adept in art;

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