FIRST PERIOD: THE LOSS OF THE DIAMOND (1848)
22. CHAPTER XXII
"Third, and last," said Sergeant Cuff, "you will, sooner or later,
hear something of that money-lender in London, whom I have twice
taken the liberty of mentioning already. Give me your pocket-book,
and I'll make a note for you of his name and address--so that there
may be no mistake about it if the thing really happens."
He wrote accordingly on a blank leaf--"Mr. Septimus Luker,
Middlesex-place, Lambeth, London."
"There," he said, pointing to the address, "are the last words,
on the subject of the Moonstone, which I shall trouble you with
for the present. Time will show whether I am right or wrong.
In the meanwhile, sir, I carry away with me a sincere personal
liking for you, which I think does honour to both of us.
If we don't meet again before my professional retirement takes place,
I hope you will come and see me in a little house near London,
which I have got my eye on. There will be grass walks,
Mr. Betteredge, I promise you, in my garden. And as for the white
"The de'il a bit ye'll get the white moss rose to grow,
unless you bud him on the dogue-rose first," cried a voice
at the window.
We both turned round. There was the everlasting Mr. Begbie,
too eager for the controversy to wait any longer at the gate.
The Sergeant wrung my hand, and darted out into the court-yard,
hotter still on his side. "Ask him about the moss rose,
when he comes back, and see if I have left him a leg to stand on!"
cried the great Cuff, hailing me through the window in his turn.
"Gentlemen, both!" I answered, moderating them again as I had
moderated them once already.
In the matter of the moss rose there is a great deal to be
said on both sides!" I might as well (as the Irish say)
have whistled jigs to a milestone. Away they went together,
fighting the battle of the roses without asking or giving
quarter on either side. The last I saw of them, Mr. Begbie
was shaking his obstinate head, and Sergeant Cuff had got
him by the arm like a prisoner in charge. Ah, well! well!
I own I couldn't help liking the Sergeant--though I hated him all