Charles Brock, Willie and Donald Creaton, partners in Mackenzie Lyall & Co., who were my greatest friends, but alas! are no more, were very prominent members, and there is one more whom I must on no account forget to mention, and though he (or she) comes almost last, does not by any means rank as the least. I refer to “Jimmy” Hume, as he was then known to his confreres, but who is in the present day our worthy and much respected Public Prosecutor, Mr. J.T. Hume. In “London Assurance” he portrayed the important part of Grace Harkaway, and a very charming and presentable young lady he made.
But I must not forget to mention that his very laudable ambition to obtain histrionic honours was at the outset very nearly nipped in the bud. He, of course, had to disclose the fact that in his earlier life he had committed a pardonable youthful indiscretion and had had both his forearms fancifully adorned in indelible blue tattoo with a representation of snakes, mermaids, and sundry. A solemn council of the senior members of the company was forthwith held, presided over by the Mem Sahib, “Old Party,” and “Syl” Dignam. After a good deal of anxious thought and discussion as to how the disfigurements could be temporarily obliterated some one suggested gold-beater skin, which was finally adopted and proved eminently successful. Not one of the audience ever had the slightest suspicion that his (or her) arms were not as they should have been, and such as any ordinary young lady would not have disdained to possess.