The Last Chronicle of Barset eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 1,014 pages of information about The Last Chronicle of Barset.

‘I have heard nothing to his discredit, Mr Toogood.’

’And that’s saying a great deal for a lawyer.  Well, Mr Crawley, if nothing else comes out between this and that—­nothing, that is, that shall clear your memory about that unfortunate bit of paper, you must simply tell your story to the jury as you’ve told it to me.  I don’t think any twelve men in England would convict you;—­I don’t indeed.’

‘You think they would not?’

‘Of course I’ve only heard one side, Mr Crawley.’

‘No—­no—­no, that is true.’

’But judging as well as I can judge from one side, I don’t think a jury can convict you.  At any rate, I’ll see you at Barchester, and I’ll write a line or two before the trial just to find out anything that can be found out.  And you’re sure you won’t come and take a bit of mutton with us in the Square?  The girls would be delighted to see you, and so would Maria.’  Mr Crawley said that he was quite sure he could not do that, and then having tendered reiterated thanks to his new friend in words which were touching in spite of their old-fashioned gravity, he took his leave, and walked back again to the public-house at Paddington.

He returned home to Hogglestock on the same afternoon, reaching that place at nine in the evening.  During the whole of the day after leaving Raymond’s Buildings he was thinking of the lawyer, and of the words which the lawyer had spoken.  Although he had been disposed to quarrel with Mr Toogood on many points, although he had been more than once disgusted by the attorney’s bad taste, shocked by his low morality, and almost insulted by his easy familiarity, still, when the interview was over, he liked the attorney.  When first Mr Toogood had begun to talk, he regretted very much that he had subjected himself to the necessity of discussing his private affairs with such a windbag of a man; but when he left the chamber he trusted Mr Toogood altogether, and was very glad that he had sought his aid.  He was tired and exhausted when he reached home, as he had eaten nothing but a biscuit or two since his breakfast; but his wife got him food and tea, and then asked him as to his success.  ‘Was my cousin kind to you?’

’Very kind—­more than kind—­perhaps somewhat too pressing in his kindness.  But I find no fault.  God forbid that I should.  He is, I think, a good man, and certainly has been good to me.’

‘And what is to be done?’

‘He will write to the dean.’

‘I am glad of that.’

‘And he will be at Barchester.’

‘Thank God for that.’

‘But not as my lawyer.’

’Nevertheless, I thank God that someone will be there who will know how to give you assistance and advice.’

CHAPTER XXXIII

THE PLUMSTEAD FOXES

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The Last Chronicle of Barset from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.