The old man had gained the street corner, before he began torecover the effect of Toby Crackit's intelligence. He hadrelaxed nothing of his unusual speed; but was still pressingonward, in the same wild and disordered manner, when the suddendashing past of a carriage: and a boisterous cry from the footpassengers, who saw his danger: drove him back upon thepavement. Avoiding, as much as was possible, all the mainstreets, and skulking only through the by-ways and alleys, he atlength emerged on Snow Hill. Here he walked even faster thanbefore; nor did he linger until he had again turned into a court;when, as if conscious that he was now in his proper element, hefell into his usual shuffling pace, and seemed to breathe morefreely.。，
'Only hear him!' exclaimed the Jew, shrugging his shoulders.。， Matters being thus amicably and satisfactorily arranged, thecontract was solemnly ratified in another teacupful of thepeppermint mixture; which was rendered the more necessary, by theflutter and agitation of the lady's spirits. While it was beingdisposed of, she acquainted Mr. Bumble with the old woman'sdecease.
'Am I?' cried the girl bitterly. 'It's no fault of yours, if Iam not! You'd never have me anything else, if you had your will,except now;--the humour doesn't suit you, doesn't it?'。， 'What's that?' whispered the other man.
'It's as dark as the grave,' said the man, groping forward a fewsteps. 'Make haste!'。， It was within an hour of midnight. The weather being dark, andpiercing cold, he had no great temptation to loiter. The sharpwind that scoured the streets, seemed to have cleared them ofpassengers, as of dust and mud, for few people were abroad, andthey were to all appearance hastening fast home. It blew from theright quarter for the Jew, however, and straight before it hewent: trembling, and shivering, as every fresh gust drove himrudely on his way.
'The little word?' said Mr. Bumble, bending over the bashfulbeauty. 'The one little, little, little word, my blessedCorney?'。， 'It beats anything I could have believed,' observed the matronemphatically. 'But don't you think out-of-door relief a very badthing, any way, Mr. Bumble? You're a gentleman of experience,and ought to know. Come.'
。， 'That wasn't my doing,' said the other man, feeling his way. 'Thewind blew it to, or it shut of its own accord: one or the other.Look sharp with the light, or I shall knock my brains out againstsomething in this confounded hole.'
， 'What is it?' pursued Fagin, mad with rage. 'When the boy'sworth hundreds of pounds to me, am I to lose what chance threw mein the way of getting safely, through the whims of a drunken gangthat I could whistle away the lives of! And me bound, too, to aborn devil that only wants the will, and has the power to, to--'。， 'Are you going up to the Cripples, Fagin?' cried the little man,calling after him. 'Stop! I don't mind if I have a drop therewith you!'