BOOK THE SECOND - REAPING
1. Chapter I - Effects in the Bank (continued)
'It must be admitted,' said Mrs. Sparsit, 'that it's very
'Yes, ma'am,' returned Bitzer, 'if that's worth the money.'
'Besides which, ma'am,' resumed Bitzer, while he was polishing the
table, 'he looks to me as if he gamed.'
'It's immoral to game,' said Mrs. Sparsit.
'It's ridiculous, ma'am,' said Bitzer, 'because the chances are
against the players.'
Whether it was that the heat prevented Mrs. Sparsit from working,
or whether it was that her hand was out, she did no work that
night. She sat at the window, when the sun began to sink behind
the smoke; she sat there, when the smoke was burning red, when the
colour faded from it, when darkness seemed to rise slowly out of
the ground, and creep upward, upward, up to the house-tops, up the
church steeple, up to the summits of the factory chimneys, up to
the sky. Without a candle in the room, Mrs. Sparsit sat at the
window, with her hands before her, not thinking much of the sounds
of evening; the whooping of boys, the barking of dogs, the rumbling
of wheels, the steps and voices of passengers, the shrill street
cries, the clogs upon the pavement when it was their hour for going
by, the shutting-up of shop-shutters. Not until the light porter
announced that her nocturnal sweetbread was ready, did Mrs. Sparsit
arouse herself from her reverie, and convey her dense black
eyebrows - by that time creased with meditation, as if they needed
'O, you Fool!' said Mrs. Sparsit, when she was alone at her supper.
Whom she meant, she did not say; but she could scarcely have meant