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Traddles, in whom I have an unaffected interest. You may, perhaps,
be prepared to hear that Mrs. Micawber is in a state of health
which renders it not wholly improbable that an addition may be
ultimately made to those pledges of affection which - in short, to
the infantine group. Mrs. Micawber's family have been so good as
to express their dissatisfaction at this state of things. I have
merely to observe, that I am not aware that it is any business of
theirs, and that I repel that exhibition of feeling with scorn, and
with defiance!'

Mr. Micawber then shook hands with me again, and left me.


Until the day arrived on which I was to entertain my newly-found
old friends, I lived principally on Dora and coffee. In my
love-lorn condition, my appetite languished; and I was glad of it,
for I felt as though it would have been an act of perfidy towards
Dora to have a natural relish for my dinner. The quantity of
walking exercise I took, was not in this respect attended with its
usual consequence, as the disappointment counteracted the fresh
air. I have my doubts, too, founded on the acute experience
acquired at this period of my life, whether a sound enjoyment of
animal food can develop itself freely in any human subject who is
always in torment from tight boots. I think the extremities
require to be at peace before the stomach will conduct itself with

On the occasion of this domestic little party, I did not repeat my
former extensive preparations. I merely provided a pair of soles,
a small leg of mutton, and a pigeon-pie. Mrs. Crupp broke out into
rebellion on my first bashful hint in reference to the cooking of
the fish and joint, and said, with a dignified sense of injury,
'No! No, sir! You will not ask me sich a thing, for you are
better acquainted with me than to suppose me capable of doing what
I cannot do with ampial satisfaction to my own feelings!' But, in
the end, a compromise was effected; and Mrs. Crupp consented to
achieve this feat, on condition that I dined from home for a
fortnight afterwards.

And here I may remark, that what I underwent from Mrs. Crupp, in
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