“A person we much need,” said Glanmoregain, patting the general on the shoulder; “and if he have seven newspapers at his bidding, why, if he but know how to use them in making victories of defeats, I will wager my life on the success of my enterprise. And if you can get that foreign mission you speak of, so much the better. Let it be to the King of the Kaloramas, and you can then use your privileges to get such a knowledge of the weaknesses of the court as will enable you to overthrow it with the greatest facility.”
The preliminaries being arranged, the general promised to proceed strictly according to the advice of Glanmoregain, and to lose no time in proceeding to Washington to secure his appointment. He also promised to keep his own counsel; and to prove their good faith, they sat down to a bottle of old port, which, when they had finished, Glanmoregain took his departure, promising to call on the following day, and left the general to pack up his baggage, preparatory to taking his departure.
In which general Potter finally secures the services of Mr. Tickler; and, together with Pekleworth Glanmoregain, they visit the opera before setting out for Washington.
Glanmoregain went home thinking within himself that the general was, mentally, not quite up to what he had expected to find him. However, as generals were not always to be judged either by their epistles or conversation, so the rotund figure, he thought, might prove himself a dabster in war as well as politics. Further, he did not so much want a general who would have his own way in every thing, (for then there was danger of his holding what he got, under the rules of war,) but rather one whom he could mould and direct according to his desires. In fine, the man, he thought, might reflect the follies of a fool, and in the quality of wars he intended to prosecute, be exactly the general he wanted. The general, on the other hand, commenced setting himself down as the most fortunate military man of his day. Indeed, all the pedantry of his extravagant nature was excited to a degree that made him already begin to contemplate himself the hero of endless victories. He also cast a stray thought to old Battle, and fancied himself mounted upon him at the head of a victorious army, returning proudly home after having demolished several kingdoms and built up as many republics. He also lost no time in writing a second letter to his wife Polly, in which he set forth, with much flourish, that he had been so elevated in the opinion of the nation, that now he was offered the command of an army; which he had accepted, and was about to invade the kingdom of a foreign prince. And this letter he sealed and dispatched with all possible speed, hoping in his heart that it might reach his wife Polly in advance of the other.