Mrs. Perkin's Ball, by William Makepeace Thackeray

After Supper.

Miss Martin and Young Ward

I do not intend to say any more about it. After the people had supped, they went back and danced. Some supped again. I gave Miss Bunion, with my own hands, four bumpers of champagne: and such a quantity of goose-liver and truffles, that I don’t wonder she took a glass of cherry-brandy afterwards. The gray morning was in Pocklington Square as she drove away in her fly. So did the other people go away. How green and sallow some of the girls looked, and how awfully clear Mrs. Colonel Bludyer’s rouge was! Lady Jane Ranville’s great coach had roared away down the streets long before. Fred Minchin pattered off in his clogs: it was I who covered up Miss Meggot, and conducted her, with her two old sisters, to the carriage. Good old souls! They have shown their gratitude by asking me to tea next Tuesday. Methuselah is gone to finish the night at the club. “Mind tomorrow,” Miss Trotter says, kissing her hand out of the carriage. Canaillard departs, asking the way to “Lesterre Squar.” They all go away — life goes away.

Look at Miss Martin and young Ward! How tenderly the rogue is wrapping her up! how kindly she looks at him! The old folks are whispering behind as they wait for their carriage. What is their talk, think you? and when shall that pair make a match? When you see those pretty little creatures with their smiles and their blushes, and their pretty ways, would you like to be the Grand Bashaw?

“Mind and send me a large piece of cake,” I go up and whisper archly to old Mr. Ward: and we look on rather sentimentally at the couple, almost the last in the rooms (there, I declare, go the musicians, and the clock is at five)— when Grundsell, with an air effare, rushes up to me and says, “For e’v’n sake, sir, go into the supper-room: there’s that Hirish gent a-pitchin’ into Mr. P.”

Last updated Sunday, March 27, 2016 at 12:00