。， Oliver had been sojourning at the undertaker's some three weeksor a month. Mr. and Mrs. Sowerberry--the shop being shutup--were taking their supper in the little back-parlour, when Mr.Sowerberry, after several deferential glances at his wife, said,
'Goodness gracious! Is that you, Mr. Bumble, sir?' said Mrs.Mann, thrusting her head out of the window in well-affectedecstasies of joy. '(Susan, take Oliver and them two bratsupstairs, and wash 'em directly.)--My heart alive! Mr. Bumble,how glad I am to see you, sure-ly!'。，
Mr. Gamfield gave an arch look at the faces round the table, and,observing a smile on all of them, gradually broke into a smilehimself. The bargain was made. Mr. Bumble, was at onceinstructed that Oliver Twist and his indentures were to beconveyed before the magistrate, for signature and approval, thatvery afternoon.。， Oliver roused himself, and made his best obeisance. He had beenwondering, with his eyes fixed on the magistrates' powder,whether all boards were born with that white stuff on theirheads, and were boards from thenceforth on that account.
Oliver was about to say that he would go along with anybody withgreat readiness, when, glancing upward, he caught sight of Mrs.Mann, who had got behind the beadle's chair, and was shaking herfist at him with a furious countenance. He took the hint atonce, for the fist had been too often impressed upon his body notto be deeply impressed upon his recollection.。，
。， 'Though I must say,' continued the undertaker, resuming thecurrent of observations which the beadle had interrupted: 'thoughI must say, Mr. Bumble, that I have to contend against one verygreat disadvantage: which is, that all the stout people go offthe quickest. The people who have been better off, and have paidrates for many years, are the first to sink when they come intothe house; and let me tell you, Mr. Bumble, that three or fourinches over one's calculation makes a great hole in one'sprofits: especially when one has a family to provide for, sir.'
。， For some time, Mr. Bumble drew Oliver along, without notice orremark; for the beadle carried his head very erect, as a beadlealways should: and, it being a windy day, little Oliver wascompletely enshrouded by the skirts of Mr. Bumble's coat as theyblew open, and disclosed to great advantage his flapped waistcoatand drab plush knee-breeches. As they drew near to theirdestination, however, Mr. Bumble thought it expedient to lookdown, and see that the boy was in good order for inspection byhis new master: which he accordingly did, with a fit andbecoming air of gracious patronage.
'Ay, my man,' said the gentleman in the white waistcoat, with acondescending smile. 'What of him?'。， 'Yes. I do, when I'm at home,' replied the boy. 'I suppose youwant some place to sleep in to-night, don't you?'
， For a long time after it was ushered into this world of sorrowand trouble, by the parish surgeon, it remained a matter ofconsiderable doubt whether the child would survive to bear anyname at all; in which case it is somewhat more than probable thatthese memoirs would never have appeared; or, if they had, thatbeing comprised within a couple of pages, they would havepossessed the inestimable merit of being the most concise andfaithful specimen of biography, extant in the literature of anyage or country.。， 'Ah! mercy indeed, ma'am,' was the reply. I only hope this'llteach master not to have any more of these dreadful creatures,that are born to be murderers and robbers from their very cradle.