plan that he had made to permit Pan-at-lee's escape from
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'A fine way you found of laying them up!'
'It proved the way to get them back.'
'I do not understand your objection. You had laid up that sum--your fair earning.'
'There it was: it had accumulated without positive intention on my part; I mean that I had of course taken my due, and not found occasion to spend it. It is the writing solely for gain, with malice prepense to save it,--that is the stumbling-block. I don't feel as if I was justified in it, nay, I cannot do it; my ideas do not flow even on matters wont to interest me most. It was all very well when waiting on Arthur was an object; but after he was gone, I found it out. I could not turn to writing, and if I did, out came things I was ashamed of. No! an able-bodied man of five-and-thirty is meant for tougher work than review and history-mongering! I have been teaching a ragged school, helping at any charities that needed a hand; but it seems amateur work, and I want to be in the stream of life again!'
'I will not say what most would--it was a pity you resigned your former post.'
'No pity at all. That has made a pair of good folks very happy. If I had kept certain hasty judgments to myself, I should not have been laid on the shelf. It is no more than I deserve, and no doubt it is good for me to be humbled and set aside; but work I will get of some kind! I looked in at a great factory the other day, and longed to apply for a superintendent's place, only I thought it might not be congruous with an Honourable for a wife.'
'You don't mean to give up writing?'
'No, to make it my play. I feel like little Annie, when she called herself puss without a corner. I have serious thoughts of the law. Heigh ho! Good night.'