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Chapter 49: MONKS AND MR. BROWNLOW AT LENGTH MEET. THEIR CONVERSATION, AND THE INTELLIGENCE THAT INTERRUPTS IT (continued)
Monks was plainly disconcerted, and alarmed besides. He hesitated.
'You will decide quickly,' said Mr. Brownlow, with perfect firmness and composure. 'If you wish me to prefer my charges publicly, and consign you to a punishment the extent of which, although I can, with a shudder, foresee, I cannot control, once more, I say, for you know the way. If not, and you appeal to my forbearance, and the mercy of those you have deeply injured, seat yourself, without a word, in that chair. It has waited for you two whole days.'
Monks muttered some unintelligible words, but wavered still.
'You will be prompt,' said Mr. Brownlow. 'A word from me, and the alternative has gone for ever.'
Still the man hesitated.
'I have not the inclination to parley,' said Mr. Brownlow, 'and, as I advocate the dearest interests of others, I have not the right.'
'Is there--' demanded Monks with a faltering tongue,--'is there--no middle course?'
Monks looked at the old gentleman, with an anxious eye; but, reading in his countenance nothing but severity and determination, walked into the room, and, shrugging his shoulders, sat down.
'Lock the door on the outside,' said Mr. Brownlow to the attendants, 'and come when I ring.'
The men obeyed, and the two were left alone together.
'This is pretty treatment, sir,' said Monks, throwing down his hat and cloak, 'from my father's oldest friend.'
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