Page:Oliver Twist (1838) vol. 2.djvu/180

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164
Oliver Twist.

though—let me see that he is in visiting order first."

Stepping before them, he looked into the room, and motioning them to advance, closed the door when they had entered, and gently drew back the curtains of the bed. Upon it, in lieu of the dogged, black—visaged ruffian they had expected to behold, there lay a mere child, worn with pain and exhaustion, and sunk into a deep sleep. His wounded arm, bound and splintered up, was crossed upon his breast, and his head reclined upon the other, which was half hidden by his long hair as it streamed over the pillow.

The honest gentleman held the curtain in his hand, and looked on for a minute or so, in silence. Whilst he was watching the patient thus, the younger lady glided softly past, and seating herself in a chair by the bedside gathered Oliver's hair from his face, and as she stooped over him her tears fell upon his forehead.

The boy stirred and smiled in his sleep, as