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'Be calm, my dear ma'am,' said Mr. Chillip, in his softest accents.

'There is no longer any occasion for uneasiness, ma'am. Be calm.'

It has since been considered almost a miracle that my aunt didn't
shake him, and shake what he had to say, out of him. She only
shook her own head at him, but in a way that made him quail.

'Well, ma'am,' resumed Mr. Chillip, as soon as he had courage, 'I
am happy to congratulate you. All is now over, ma'am, and well

During the five minutes or so that Mr. Chillip devoted to the
delivery of this oration, my aunt eyed him narrowly.

'How is she?' said my aunt, folding her arms with her bonnet still
tied on one of them.

'Well, ma'am, she will soon be quite comfortable, I hope,' returned
Mr. Chillip. 'Quite as comfortable as we can expect a young mother
to be, under these melancholy domestic circumstances. There cannot
be any objection to your seeing her presently, ma'am. It may do
her good.'

'And SHE. How is SHE?' said my aunt, sharply.

Mr. Chillip laid his head a little more on one side, and looked at
my aunt like an amiable bird.

'The baby,' said my aunt. 'How is she?'

'Ma'am,' returned Mr. Chillip, 'I apprehended you had known. It's
a boy.'

My aunt said never a word, but took her bonnet by the strings, in
the manner of a sling, aimed a blow at Mr. Chillip's head with it,
put it on bent, walked out, and never came back. She vanished like
a discontented fairy; or like one of those supernatural beings,
whom it was popularly supposed I was entitled to see; and never
came back any more.

No. I lay in my basket, and my mother lay in her bed; but Betsey
Trotwood Copperfield was for ever in the land of dreams and
shadows, the tremendous region whence I had so lately travelled;
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