“He wants a thousand pounds, Emmanuel.”
“Dat is a large sum—one tousand pounds’ he does not vant any more?”
“No,” replied I, “that will be sufficient.”
“Vel, den, I have de monish in my pocket. I will just beg de young gentleman to sign a little memorandum, dat I may von day receive my monish.”
“But what is that to be?” interrupted I.
“It will be to promise to pay me my monish and only fifteen per shent, when you come into your own.”
“That will not do,” replied I; “I have pledged my solemn word of honour, that I will not borrow money on interest.”
“And you have given de pledge, but you did not swear upon de book?”
“No, but my word has been given, and that is enough; if I would forfeit my word with those to whom I have given it, I would also forfeit my word with you. My keeping my promise, ought to be a pledge to you that I will keep my promise to you.”
“Dat is veil said—very veil said; but den we must manage some oder way. Suppose—let me shee—how old are you, my young sir?”
“Auh, dat is a very pleasant age, dat twenty. Veil, den, you shall shign a leetle bit of paper, that you pay me L2000 ven you come into your properties, on condition dat I pay now one tousand. Dat is very fair—ish it not, Mr Major?”
“Rather too hard, Emmanuel.”
“But de rishque—de rishque, Mr Major.”
“I will not agree to those terms,” replied I; “you must take your money away, Mr Emmanuel.”
“Veil, den—vat vill you pay me?”
“I will sign an agreement to pay you L1500 for the thousand, if you please; if that will not suit you, I will try elsewhere.”
“Dat is very bad bargain. How old, you shay?”
“Vell, I shuppose I must oblige you, and my very goot friend, de Major.”
Mr Emmanuel drew out his spectacles, pen, and inkhorn, filled up a bond, and handed it to me to sign. I read it carefully over, and signed it; he then paid down the money, and took his leave.
It may appear strange to the reader that the money was obtained so easily, but he must remember that the Major was considered a person who universally attached himself to young men of large fortune; he had already been the means of throwing many profitable speculations into the hands of Emmanuel, and the latter put implicit confidence in him. The money-lenders also are always on the look out for young men with large fortunes, and have their names registered. Emmanuel had long expected me to come to him, and although it was his intention to have examined more particularly, and not to have had the money prepared, yet my refusal to sign the bond, bearing interest, and my disputing the terms of the second proposal, blinded him completely, and put him off his usual guard.
“Upon my word, Newland, you obtained better terms than I could have expected from the old Hunks.”