**** ROTATE **** **** ROTATE **** **** ROTATE **** **** ROTATE ****

Find this Story

Print, a form you can hold

Wireless download to your Amazon Kindle

Look for a summary or analysis of this Story.

Enjoy this? Share it!


Done for the Double
by [?]

Bill owed more to Sausage II. than he owed to his creditors.

Brought up as a pet, the little animal was absolutely trustworthy. He would carry a lady or a child, or pull a sulky; in fact, it was quite a common thing for Blinky Bill to drive him in a sulky to a country meeting and look about him for a likely “mark”. If he could find a fleet youth with a reputedly fast pony, Bill would offer to “pull the little cuddy out of the sulky and run yer for a fiver.” Sometimes he got beaten; but as he never paid, that didn’t matter. He did not believe in fighting; but he would always sooner fight than pay.

But all these devices had left him on his uppers in the end. He had no feed for his ponies, and no money to buy it; the corn merchant had written his account off as bad, and had no desire to make it worse. Under the circumstances, what was he to do? Sausage II. must be sold.

With heavy heart Bill led the pony down to be inspected. He saw Mr. Algernon de Montgomery Smythers, and measured him with his eye. He saw it would be no use to talk about racing to him, so he went on the other track.

He told him that the pony belonged to a Methodist clergyman, who used to drive him in a “shay”. There are no shays in this country; but Bill had read the word somewhere, and thought it sounded respectable. “Yus, sir,” he said, “‘e goes lovely in a shay,” and he was just starting off at twenty words a second, when he was stopped.

Mr. A. de M. Smythers was brusque with his inferiors, and in this he made a mistake. Instead of listening to all that Blinky Bill said, and disbelieving it at his leisure, he stopped his talk.

“If you want to sell this pony, dry up,” he said. “I don’t believe a word you say, and it only worries me to hear you lying.”

Fatal mistake! You should never stop a horse-dealer’s talk. And call him anything you like, but never say you doubt his word.

Both these things Mr. Smythers did; and, though he bought the pony at a high price, yet the insult sank deep into the heart of Blinky Bill.

As the capitalist departed leading the pony, Blinky Bill muttered to himself, “Ha! ha! Little does he know that he is leading Sausage II., the greatest 13.2 pony of the century. Let him beware how he gets alongside anything. That’s all! Blinky Bill may yet be revenged!”

Chapter III. — Exit Algy

Christmas Day came. Algy’s father gave orders to have the pony saddled, and led round to the front door. Algy’s mother, a lady of forty summers, spent the morning superintending the dinner. Dinner was the principal event in the day with her. Alas, poor lady! Everything she ate agreed with her, and she got fatter and fatter and fatter.

The cold world never fully appreciates the struggles of those who are fat — the efforts at starvation, the detested exercise, the long, miserable walks. Well has one of our greatest poets written, “Take up the fat man’s burden.” But we digress.

When Algy saw the pony he shouted with delight, and in half a minute was riding him up and down the front drive. Then he asked for leave to go out in the street — and that was where the trouble began.

Up and down the street the pony cantered, as quietly as possible, till suddenly round a corner came two butcher boys racing their horses. With a clatter of clumsy hoofs they thundered past. In half a second there was a rattle, and a sort of comet-like rush through the air. Sausage II. was off after them with his precious burden.