IN DICKENS'S LONDON
'I'm rather confined for room here. Walk in.' They had scarcely taken their seats when there was another double knock.
"'I hope that's Jack Hopkins!' said Mr. Bob Sawyer. 'Hush. Yes, it is. Come up, Jack; come up.'
"A heavy footstep was heard upon the stairs, and Jack Hopkins presented himself. He wore a black velvet waist-coat, with thunder-and-lightning buttons; and a blue striped shirt, with a white false collar.
"'You're late, Jack?' said Mr. Benjamin Allen.
"'Been detained at Bartholomew's,'—replied Hopkins.
"'No, nothing particular. Rather a good accident brought into the casualty ward.'
"'What was that, Sir?' inquired Mr. Pickwick.
"'Only a man fallen out of a four pair of stairs' window; but it's a very fair case very fair case indeed.'
"'Do you mean that the patient is in a fair way to recover?' inquired Mr. Pickwick.
"'No,' replied Hopkins, carelessly. 'No, I should rather say he wouldn't. There must be a splendid operation though, to-morrow—magnificent sight if Slasher does it.'
"'You consider Mr. Slasher a good operator?' said Mr. Pickwick.
"'Best alive,' replied Hopkins. 'Took a boy's leg out of the socket last week—boy ate five apples and a gingerbread cake—exactly two minutes after it was all over, boy said he wouldn't lie there to be made game of; and he'd tell his mother if they didn't begin.'
"'Dear me!' said Mr. Pickwick, astonished.