'You see,' said Mr. Peggotty, 'knowing as you was partial to a little relish with your wittles when you was along with us, we took the liberty. The old Mawther biled 'em, she did. Mrs. Gummidge biled 'em. Yes,' said Mr. Peggotty, slowly, who I thought appeared to stick to the subject on account of having no other subject ready, 'Mrs. Gummidge, I do assure you, she biled 'em.'
'Your regulation is rather awkward to strangers,' said Miss Murdstone.
In one violent corkscrew of motion, Bond's body twisted up from the floor. The knife flashed.
Mary Goodnight looked shocked. Eyes Only was a top-sacred prefix. But Bond's jaw was jutting out dangerously. Today was not a day for argument. She sat on the edge of the bed, opened the machine, and took a cable form out of her bag. She laid her shorthand book beside the machine, scratched the back of her head with her pencil to help work out the setting for the day-a complicated sum involving the date and the hour of dispatch of the cable-adjusted the setting on the central cylinder and began crank-hag the handle. After each completed word had appeared in the little oblong window at the base of the machine, she recorded it in her book.
Derek's last term came to an end, and we had exchanged four letters each. His first one had begun "Dearest" and ended with "love and kisses," and I had compromised with "Dear" and "love." His were mostly about how many runs he had made, and mine were about the dances I had been to and the cinemas and plays I had seen. He was going to spend the summer at his home, and he was very excited about a second-hand MG his parents were going to give him, and would I come out with him in it? Susan was surprised when I said that I wouldn't be coming up to Scotland and that I wanted to stay on in the flat, at any rate for the time being. I hadn't told her the truth about Derek, and because I always got up earlier than she, she didn't know about his letters. It wasn't like me to be secretive, but I treasured my "love-affair," as I described it to myself, and it seemed to be so fragile and probably full of disappointments that I thought even to talk about it might bring it bad luck. For all I knew, I might be just one in a whole row of Derek's girls. He was so attractive and grand, at any rate at school, that I imagined a long queue of "Mayfair" sisters, all in organdy and all with titles, at his beck and call. So I simply said that I wanted to look around for a job and perhaps I would come up later, and in due course Susan went north and a fifth letter came from Derek saying would I come down next Saturday on the twelve-o'clock from Paddington, and he would meet me with the car at Windsor station?
'What does he say his handicap is, sir?'