The Adventures of My Cousin Smooth eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 258 pages of information about The Adventures of My Cousin Smooth.
as he read it.  ’Indurable Pierce!’ he muttered, adding a languid sigh.  Then his portly figure seemed to expand, his hair to grow whiter, and his general appearance to assume a more venerable air, as he read the portion that particularly directed me to bag him, pro or con.  Indeed, his crooked eye became straight with indignation, while his neck no longer retained its wonted curve.  ’I have studied the man, but find I yet know little of him!’ said he, recovering his usual calmness, and shaking his head significantly.  I inquired if he meant Pierce.  He replied, testily, in the affirmative.  ’Several times has he made me cut a ridiculous figure in the eyes of the nation.  I cannot disclose my true position,—­he knows that, but will have me a partner to this most stupid of projects;—­well, well!’ Here he seemed in the act of yielding to his despondency, when to revive him I presented several private notes which I had received from Pierce, explanatory of his views with reference to the immense benefit that would accrue to the nation, and manifest destiny, from this great congress.  ‘Now Smooth,’ continued the old man, relieving his mouth of an encumbrance, which, missing its aim, took effect in the face of the cat, which set up a fearful yell and scampered out of the room, ’although I can’t understand Pierce, I have great confidence in you, and there is something so ridiculous about this affair that I feel like relieving my mind to you, which I do without prejudice.  I care not to examine your confidential notes; they are doubtless of a like character with those I have myself received from him on this very subject.  The man seems crazed.  He has inundated me with confidential trifles about Cuba, the affairs of Europe, the Central American question, and the holding a Congress at Ostend.  I am bored to death with his opinions, which, on the policy of the latter, are cheap indeed.’  The old man now became exceedingly nervous; indeed, he seemed like one laboring under the first symptoms of an over-dose of Parr’s Life Pills.  ’Smooth!  I am sacrificed; yes, sir, literally sacrificed to all his folly!  The despatch bag has groaned under the very pressure of his nonsense, which I am compelled to read and commit to the flames, lest our nation should suffer by its disclosures.  I have appealed to him on behalf of my conscience; I have reasoned from the depths of my experience; I have besought him to spare my reputation—­and here you bring me fresh proof that it has all gone to no purpose.’  I could not help pitying the venerable old man as he shrugged his shoulders, and gave such a desponding look.  ‘Pierce,’ he continued, ’will smash the democracy before he has done, by simply making it ridiculous.  Thrice have I remonstrated with him in all my power of persuasion; but it has fallen harmless at his feet, for here he is, up again and harping.  He singularly argues in his private despatches that Europe being in a fuzzle generally; that England having enough to do at keeping her grumbling
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The Adventures of My Cousin Smooth from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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