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speaking. At last, they halted and confronted each other with
blank and rueful faces.

‘Never mind,’ said Newman, gasping for breath. ‘Don’t be cast
down. It’s all right. More fortunate next time. It couldn’t be
helped. I did my part.’

‘Excellently,’ replied Nicholas, taking his hand. ‘Excellently,
and like the true and zealous friend you are. Only--mind, I am not
disappointed, Newman, and feel just as much indebted to you--
only it was the wrong lady.’

‘Eh?’ cried Newman Noggs. ‘Taken in by the servant?’
‘Newman, Newman,’ said Nicholas, laying his hand upon his
shoulder: ‘it was the wrong servant too.’

Newman’s under-jaw dropped, and he gazed at Nicholas, with
his sound eye fixed fast and motionless in his head.

‘Don’t take it to heart,’ said Nicholas; ‘it’s of no consequence;
you see I don’t care about it; you followed the wrong person, that’s

That was all. Whether Newman Noggs had looked round the
pump, in a slanting direction, so long, that his sight became
impaired; or whether, finding that there was time to spare, he had
recruited himself with a few drops of something stronger than the
pump could yield--by whatsoever means it had come to pass, this
was his mistake. And Nicholas went home to brood upon it, and to
meditate upon the charms of the unknown young lady, now as far
beyond his reach as ever.

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