Page:Hopkinson Smith--In Dickens's London.djvu/160

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"'It's no one particular, sir,' said Little Dorrit.

"'Stop!' cried the man. 'Let's have a look at you!'

"This caused her to turn back again, in the act of going out, and to present herself and her charge before him.

"'I thought so!' said he. 'I know you.'

"'We have often seen each other,' said Little Dorrit, recognising the sexton, or the beadle, or the verger, or whatever he was, 'when I have been at church here.'

"'More than that, we've got your birth in our Register, you know; you're one of our curiosities.'

"'Indeed?' said Little Dorrit.

"'To be sure. As the child of the—by-the-bye, how did you get out so early?'

"'We were shut out last night, and are waiting to get in.'

"'You don't mean it? And there's another hour good yet! Come into the vestry. You'll find a fire in the vestry, on account of the painters. I'm waiting for the painters, or I shouldn't be here, you may depend upon it. One of our curiosities mustn't be cold, when we have it in our power to warm her up comfortable. Come along.… Stay a bit. I'll get some cushions out of the church, and you and your friend shall lie down before the fire. Don't be afraid of not going in to join your father when the gate opens. I'll call you.'

"He soon brought in the cushions, and strewed them on the ground.

'There you are, you see. Again as large as life. Oh, never mind thanking. I've daughters of my own. And though they weren't born in the Marshalsea Prison, they