The Doctor laughed. “It ha’ never seen a man just like you before,” he observed. “I saw Sir Jeffrey Amherst this morning and told him you were in London. He is fond of you and paid you many compliments and made me promise to bring you to his home.”
“I’d like to smoke a pipe with ol’ Jeff,” Solomon answered. “They ain’t no nonsense ‘bout him. I learnt him how to talk Injun an’ read rapids an’ build a fire with tinder an’ elbow grease. He knows me plenty. He staked his life on me a dozen times in the Injun war.”
“How is Major Washington?” the Doctor asked.
“Stout as a pot o’ ginger,” Solomon answered. “I rassled with him one evenin’ down in Virginny an’ I’ll never tackle him ag’in, you hear to me. His right flipper is as big as mine an’ when it takes holt ye’d think it were goin’ to strip the shuck off yer soul.”
“He’s in every way a big man,” said the Doctor. “On the whole, he’s about our biggest man. An officer who came out of the ambuscade at Fort Duquesne with thirty living men out of three companies and four shot holes in his coat must have an engagement with Destiny. Evidently his work was not finished. You have traveled about some. What is the feeling over there toward England?”
“They’re like a b’ilin’ pot everywhere. England has got to step careful now.”
“Tell Sir Jeffrey that, if you see him, just that. Don’t mince matters. Jack, I’ll send my man with you and Mr. Binkus to show you the new lodgings. We found them this morning.”
The fashionable tailor was done with Jack’s equipment. Franklin had seen and approved the admirably shaped and fitted garments. The young man and his friend Solomon had moved to their new lodgings on Bloomsbury Square. The scout had acquired a suit for street wear and was now able to walk abroad without exciting the multitudes. The Doctor was planning what he called “a snug little party.” So he announced when Jack and Solomon came, adding:
“But first you are to meet Margaret and her mother here at half after four.”
Jack made careful preparation for that event. Fortunately it was a clear, bright day after foggy weather. Solomon had refused to go with Jack for fear of being in the way.
“I want to see her an’ her folks but I reckon ye’ll have yer hands full to-day,” he remarked. “Ye don’t need no scout on that kind o’ reconnoiterin’. You go on ahead an’ git through with yer smackin an’ bym-by I’ll straggle in.”