“He kept a very tight ‘old o’ the next pint, and as ‘e set down at the table he looked round nasty like and asked ‘em whether there was any more as would like to do ‘im a kindness, and Henery White said there was, and he went straight off ‘ome arter fust dropping a handful o’ sawdust into Job’s mug.
“I’m an old man, an’ I’ve seen a good many rows in my time, but I’ve never seen anything like the one that ‘appened then. It was no good talking to Job, not a bit, he being that unreasonable that even when ‘is own words was repeated to ‘im he wouldn’t listen. He behaved like a madman, an’ the langwidge ‘e used was that fearful and that wicked that Smith the landlord said ‘e wouldn’t ‘ave it in ‘is house.
“Arter that you’d ha’ thought that Job Brown would ‘ave left off ‘is talk about being teetotaler, but he didn’t. He said they was quite right in trying to do ‘im a kindness, but he didn’t like the way they did it. He said there was a right way and a wrong way of doing everything, and they’d chose the wrong.
“It was all very well for ‘im to talk, but the chaps said ‘e might drink hisself to death for all they cared. And instead of seeing ‘im safe ‘ome as they used to when ‘e was worse than usual he ‘ad to look arter hisself and get ‘ome as best he could.
“It was through that at last ‘e came to offer five pounds reward to anybody as could ‘elp ‘im to become a teetotaler. He went off ‘ome one night as usual, and arter stopping a few seconds in the parlour to pull hisself together, crept quietly upstairs for fear of waking ‘is wife. He saw by the crack under the door that she’d left a candle burning, so he pulled hisself together agin and then turned the ‘andle and went in and began to try an’ take off ‘is coat.
“He ‘appened to give a ‘alf-look towards the bed as ‘e did so, and then ‘e started back and rubbed ‘is eyes and told ‘imself he’d be better in a minute. Then ‘e looked agin, for ‘is wife was nowhere to be seen, and in the bed all fast and sound asleep and snoring their ‘ardest was little Dick Weed the tailor and Mrs. Weed and the baby.
“Job Brown rubbed ‘is eyes again, and then ‘e drew hisself up to ‘is full height, and putting one ‘and on the chest o’ drawers to steady hisself stood there staring at ‘em and getting madder and madder every second. Then ‘e gave a nasty cough, and Dick and Mrs. Weed an’ the baby all woke up and stared at ‘im as though they could ‘ardly believe their eyesight.
“‘Wot do you want?’ ses Dick Weed, starting up.
“‘Get up,’ ses Job, ‘ardly able to speak. I’m surprised at you. Get up out o’ my bed direckly.’
“‘Your bed?’ screams little Dick; ‘you’re the worse for licker, Job Brown. Can’t you see you’ve come into the wrong house?’
“‘Eh?’ ses Job, staring. ‘Wrong ‘ouse? Well, where’s mine, then?’
“‘Next door but one, same as it always was,’ ses Dick. ‘Will you go?’
“‘A’ right,’ ses Job, staring. ‘Well, goo’-night, Dick. Goo’-night, Mrs. Weed. Goo’-night, baby.’
“‘Good-night,’ ses Mrs. Weed from under the bedclothes.
“‘Goo’-night, baby,’ ses Job, again.
“‘It can’t talk yet,’ ses Dick. ‘Will you go?
“‘Can’t talk–why not?’ ses Job.
“Dick didn’t answer ‘im.
“‘Well, goo’-night, Dick,’ he ses agin.
“‘Good-night,’ ses Dick from between ‘is teeth.
“‘Goo’-night, Mrs. Weed,’ ses Job.
“Mrs. Weed forced herself to say ‘good-night’ agin.
“‘Goo’-night, baby,’ ses Job.
“‘Look ‘ere,’ ses Dick, raving, ‘are you goin’ to stay ‘ere all night, Job Brown?’
“Job didn’t answer ‘im, but began to go downstairs, saying ‘goo’-night’ as ‘e went, and he’d got pretty near to the bottom when he suddenly wondered wot ‘e was going downstairs for instead of up, and lading gently at ‘is foolishness for making sich a mistake ‘e went upstairs agin. His surprise when ‘e see Dick Weed and Mrs. Weed and the baby all in ‘is bed pretty near took ‘is breath away.