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Huck Finn by Mark Twain-Original Text Online-Adventures of Huckleberry Finn
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CHAPTER TWENTY-FIVE (continued)

“It’s a most amaz’n’ good idea, duke-you have got a rattlin’ clever head on you,” says the king. “Blest if the old None-such ain’t a heppin’ us out agin”- and he begun to haul out yaller-jackets and stack them up. It most busted them, but they made up the six thousand clean and clear. “Say,” says the duke, “I got another idea. Le’s go up stairs and count this money, and then take and give it to the girls.” “Good land, duke, lemme hug you! It’s the most dazzling idea ‘at ever a man struck. You have cert’nly got the most astonishin’ head I ever see. Oh, this is the boss dodge, ther’ ain’t no mistake ‘bout it. Let ‘em fetch along their suspicions now, if they want to-this’ll lay ‘em out.” When we got up stairs, everybody gethered around the table, and the king he counted it and stacked it up, three hundred dollars in a pile-twenty elegant little piles. Everybody looked hungry at it, and licked their chops. Then they raked it into the bag agin, and I see the king begin to swell himself up for another speech.

He says: “Friends all, my poor brother that lays yonder, has done generous by them that’s left behind in the vale of sorrers. He has done generous by these-yer poor little lambs that he loved and sheltered, and that’s left fatherless and motherless.

Yes, and we that knowed him, knows that he would a done more generous by ‘em if he hadn’t ben afeard o’ woundin’ his dear William and me. Now, wouldn’t he? Ther’ ain’t no question ‘bout it, in my mind. Well, then-what kind o’ brothers would it be, that’d stand in his way at sech a time? And what kind o’ uncles would it be that’d rob-yes, rob-sech poor sweet lambs as these ‘at he loved so, at sech a time? If I know William-and I think I do-he-well, I’ll jest ask him.” He turns around and begins to make a lot of signs to the duke with hands; and the duke he looks at him stupid and leather-headed a while, then all of a sudden he seems to catch his meaning, and jumps for the king, goo-gooing with all his might for joy, and hugs him about fifteen times before he lets up. Then the king says, “I knowed it; I reckon that’ll convince anybody the way he feels about it.

Here, Mary Jane, Susan, Joanner, take the money-take it all. It’s the gift of him that lays yonder, cold but joyful.” Mary Jane she went for him, Susan and the hare-lip went for the duke, and then such another hugging and kissing I never see yet. And everybody crowded up with the tears in their eyes, and most shook the hands off of them frauds, saying all the time: “You dear good souls!- how lovely!- how could you!” Well, then, pretty soon all hands got to talking about the diseased again, and how good he was, and what a loss he was, and all that; and before long a big ironjawed man worked himself in there from outside, and stood a listening and looking, and not saying anything; and nobody saying anything to him either, because the king was talking and they was all busy listening. The king was saying-in the middle of something he’d started in on “-they bein’ partickler friends o’ the diseased. That’s why they’re invited here this evenin’; but to-morrow we want all to come-everybody; for he respected everybody, he liked everybody, and so it’s fitten that his funeral orgies sh’d be public.” And so he went a-mooning on and on, liking to hear himself talk, and every little while he fetched in his funeral orgies again, till the duke he couldn’t stand it no more; so he writes on a little scrap of paper, “obsequies, you old fool,” and folds it up and goes to goo-gooing and reaching it over people’s heads to him.


The king he reads it, and puts it in his pocket, and says: “Poor William, afflicted as he is, his heart’s aluz right. Asks me to invite everybody to come to the funeral-wants me to make ‘em all welcome. But he needn’t a worried-it was jest what I was at.” Then he weaves along again, perfectly ca’m, and goes to dropping in his funeral orgies again every now and then, just like he done before. And when he done it the third time he says: “I say orgies, not because it’s the common term, because it ain’t-obsequies bein’ the common term-but because orgies is the right term. Obsequies ain’t used in England no more, now-it’s gone out. We say orgies now, in England. Orgies is better, because it means the thing you’re after, more exact. It’s a word that’s made up outin the Greek orgo, outside, open, abroad; and the Hebrew jeesum, to plant, cover up; hence inter. So, you see, funeral orgies is an open er public funeral.”

He was the worst I ever struck. Well, the iron-jawed man he laughed right in his face. Everybody was shocked. Everybody says, “Why doctor!” and Abner Shackleford says: “Why, Robinson, hain’t you heard the news? This is Harvey Wilks.” The king he smiled eager, and shoved out his flapper, and says: “Is it my poor brother’s dear good friend and physician? I-” “Keep your hands off of me!” says the doctor. “You talk like an Englishmandon’t you? It’s the worst imitation I ever heard. You Peter Wilks’s brother. You’re a fraud, that’s what you are!” Well, how they all took on! They crowded around the doctor, and tried to quiet him down, and tried to explain to him, and tell him how Harvey’d showed in forty ways that he was Harvey, and knowed everybody by name, and the names of the very dogs, and begged and begged him not to hurt Harvey’s feelings and the poor girls’ feelings, and all that; but it warn’t no use, he stormed right along, and said any man that pretended to be an Englishman and couldn’t imitate the lingo no better than what he did, was a fraud and a liar. The poor girls was hanging to the king and crying; and all of a sudden the doctor ups and turns on them. He says: “I was your father’s friend, and I’m your friend; and I warn you as a friend, and an honest one, that wants to protect you and keep you out of harm and trouble, to turn your backs on that scoundrel, and have nothing to do with him, the ignorant tramp, with his idiotic Greek and Hebrew as he calls it. He is the thinnest kind of an imposter-has come here with a lot of empty names and facts which he has picked up somewheres, and you take them for proofs, and are helped to fool yourselves by these foolish friends here, who ought to know better.

Mary Jane Wilks, you know me for your friend, and for your unselfish friend, too. Now listen to me; turn this pitiful rascal out-I beg you to do it. Will you?” Mary Jane straightened herself up, and my, but she was handsome! She says: “Here is my answer.” She hove up the bag of money and put it in the king’s hands, and says, “Take this six thousand dollars, and invest it for me and my sisters any way you want to, and don’t give us no receipt for it.” Then she put her arm around the king on one side, and Susan and the harelip done the same on the other. Everybody clapped their hands and stomped on the floor like a perfect storm, whilst the king held up his hand and smiled proud. The doctor says: “All right, I wash my hands of the matter. But I warn you all that a time’s coming when you’re going to feel sick whenever you think of this day”and away he went.

“All right, doctor,” says the king, kinder mocking him, “we’ll try and get ‘em to send for you”- which made them all laugh, and they said it was a prime good hit.

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Huck Finn by Mark Twain-Original Text Online-Adventures of Huckleberry Finn

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