I know I am undeserving of your bounty; but if I were to tell you what hardships I have undergone—to what frightful extremities I have been reduced—and to what infamy I have submitted, to earn a scanty subsistence for this child's sake, —if you could feel what it is to stand alone in the world as I do, bereft of all who have ever loved me, and shunned by all who have ever known me, except the worthless and the wretched,—if you knew (and Heaven grant you may be spared the knowledge!) how much affliction sharpens love, and how much more dear to me my child has become for every sacrifice I have made for him,—if you were told all this, you would, I am sure, pity rather than reproach me, because I cannot at once consent to a separation, which I feel would break my heart. ’ ‘But, sister, I—’ ‘Get along!’ Melusine gave Jack a smile as he cast a worried look at her, and nodded dismissal. ‘And so you sneak back,’ she threw at him, ‘like the jackal that you are. Crack went the whip, and away floundered the heavy vehicle through the deep ruts of the ill-kept road, or rather lane, (for it was little better,) which, then, led across Southampton Fields.
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