BOOK XII. CONTAINING THE SAME INDIVIDUAL TIME WITH THE FORMER.
8. Chapter viii. In which fortune seems...
In which fortune seems to have been in a better humour with Jones than
we have hitherto seen her.
As there is no wholesomer, so perhaps there are few stronger, sleeping
potions than fatigue. Of this Jones might be said to have taken a very
large dose, and it operated very forcibly upon him. He had already
slept nine hours, and might perhaps have slept longer, had he not been
awakened by a most violent noise at his chamber-door, where the sound
of many heavy blows was accompanied with many exclamations of murder.
Jones presently leapt from his bed, where he found the master of the
puppet-show belabouring the back and ribs of his poor Merry-Andrew,
without either mercy or moderation.
Jones instantly interposed on behalf of the suffering party, and
pinned the insulting conqueror up to the wall: for the puppet-show man
was no more able to contend with Jones than the poor party-coloured
jester had been to contend with this puppet-man.
But though the Merry-Andrew was a little fellow, and not very strong,
he had nevertheless some choler about him. He therefore no sooner
found himself delivered from the enemy, than he began to attack him
with the only weapon at which he was his equal. From this he first
discharged a volley of general abusive words, and thence proceeded to
some particular accusations--"D--n your bl--d, you rascal," says he,
"I have not only supported you (for to me you owe all the money you
get), but I have saved you from the gallows. Did you not want to rob
the lady of her fine riding-habit, no longer ago than yesterday, in
the back-lane here? Can you deny that you wished to have her alone in
a wood to strip her--to strip one of the prettiest ladies that ever
was seen in the world? and here you have fallen upon me, and have
almost murdered me, for doing no harm to a girl as willing as myself,
only because she likes me better than you."
Jones no sooner heard this than he quitted the master, laying on him
at the same time the most violent injunctions of forbearance from any
further insult on the Merry-Andrew; and then taking the poor wretch
with him into his own apartment, he soon learned tidings of his
Sophia, whom the fellow, as he was attending his master with his drum
the day before, had seen pass by. He easily prevailed with the lad to
show him the exact place, and then having summoned Partridge, he
departed with the utmost expedition.