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鈥?quoted her aunt; 鈥渂ut there is a time for all things. An鈥?if y鈥檜 don鈥檛 teach a gurl like Maria a lesson, she will go far wid you.鈥?

鈥淪he is a very rude young ooman!鈥?exclaimed Mr. Proudleigh with indignation, following up his 鏉窞閰掑簵瓒虫荡 sister鈥檚 remark; he felt that he must lend his daughter his moral support. 鈥淓f I was a 鏉窞妗戞嬁鍏ㄥ younger man,鈥?he went on, 鈥淚 would . . . I would . . . well, I don鈥檛 know what I wouldn鈥檛 do! But Mother Smit is a dangerous female to interfere wid, and de cramps is troubling me in me foot so badly dat I wouldn鈥檛 like 鈥檈r to put 鈥檈r hand 鈥檖on me at all.鈥?

鈥淓f she ever touch you,鈥?his wife broke in, 鈥渙ld as I is, she an鈥?me would have to go to prison.鈥?

鈥淵ou was always a 鏉窞瓒崇枟灏忓贩鍦ㄥ摢閲?courigous gal, Mattie,鈥?said the old man approvingly; 鈥渂ut I don鈥檛 want to see y鈥檜 get into any quarrel; an鈥?to tell you de trute, I don鈥檛 t鈥檌nk I could help you at all. Susan is goin鈥?to bring up Maria, an鈥?that is a satisfaction. I are going to de court-house wid 鈥檈r to encourage her.鈥?

鈥淏ut suppose Susan lose the case?鈥?Catherine suggested. She had been a witness of the 鏉窞澶滅敓娲荤綉绔?encounter, and though she fully intended to forget every fact that would make against Susan 鏉窞涓婇棬鐨勫彲淇′箞 in the court-house, she was sagacious enough to realize that Maria鈥檚 friends would not do likewise.

鈥淟ose me case?鈥?asked Susan incredulously. 鈥淭hat can鈥檛 be done! She provoked me first, an鈥?the judge must take note of that.


Besides, I am goin鈥?to put a good lawyer on her: not a fool-fool man that can鈥檛 talk, but a man who will question her properly an鈥?make her tell 鏉窞妗戞嬁缃戠珯 de truth.鈥?

鈥淒at is right,鈥?said Mr. Proudleigh with proud anticipation of coming 鏉窞瓒虫荡瀵绘ml victory. 鈥淪ue, I advise you to get de Attorney-General.鈥?

鈥淚 never hear about him,鈥?Miss Proudleigh remarked; 鈥渁n鈥?it won鈥檛 do for Susan to get a lawyer we don鈥檛 know. But who to get?鈥?

As Mr. Proudleigh knew nothing about the leader of the local bar except his name, he decided not to urge the claims of that high official upon his daughter. One after another, the names of the 鏉窞鐖辨儏鏁呬簨spa姝h涔?several lawyers of whom the family had heard were mentioned, and their various merits were discussed. As this was to be the most important case ever tried鈥攐r at least so the family thought鈥攊t was of the utmost importance that the brightest legal luminary should be obtained: the difficulty was to select one from the many whose reputation for ability commended them all as fit 鏉窞鎸夋懇鐖借 and proper persons to prosecute Maria Bellicant for assault and abusive language. At last Miss 鏉窞娲楁荡涓績鎸夋懇 Proudleigh suggested a lawyer whose cleverness in handling witnesses determined to perjure themselves had often appealed to her admiration. Having once mentioned his name with approval, the worthy lady thought it was incumbent upon her to argue away all that might be said against him and all that might be urged in favour of other solicitors; and at length Susan decided 鏉窞澶滅敓娲荤兢 that she would go to see Lawyer Jones in the morning. Miss Proudleigh was so delighted with the prospect of having Mr. Jones proceed against Maria