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impaled upon an enormous bill-guard rose before his eyes. "You can't file a lady; it's impossible!"

"Impossible or not, it must be done before any further steps are taken. Let me see; I believe that Dr. Probate is the sitting Registrar at Somerset House this sittings. It would be well if you made an appointment for to-morrow."

"Yes," said John.

"Well," went on James, "I think that is all for the present. You will, of course, let me have the instructions and other papers with all possible speed. I suppose that other counsel besides myself will be ultimately retained?"

"Oh! that reminds me," said Eustace: "about money, you know, I don't quite see how I am going to pay for all this game. I have got about fifty pounds spare cash in the world, and that's all; and I know enough to be aware that fifty pounds do not go far in a lawsuit."

Blankly James looked at John, and John at James. This was very trying.

"Fifty pounds will go a good way in out-of-pocket fees," suggested James, at length, rubbing his bald head with his handkerchief.

"Possibly," answered John prettishly; "but how about the remuneration of the plaintiff's legal advisers? Can't you"-addressing Eustace-"manage to get the money from some one?"

"Well," said Eustace, "there's Lady Holmhurst.

Perhaps if I offered to share the spoil with her, if there was any——”

"Dear me, no," said John; "that would be 'maintenance.'

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"Certainly not," chimed in James, holding up his hands in dismay. "Most clearly it would be 'champerty'; and did it come to the knowledge of the Court, nobody can say what might not happen."

"Indeed," answered Eustace, with a sigh, "I don't quite know what you mean, but I seem to have said something very wrong. The odds on a handicap are child's play to understand beside this law," he added sadly.

"It is obvious, James," said John, "that, putting aside other matters, this would prove, independent of pecuniary reward, a most interesting case for you to conduct."

"That is so, John," replied James; "but, as you must be well aware, the etiquette of my profession will not allow me to conduct a case for nothing. Upon that point, above all others, etiquette rules us with a rod of iron. The stomach of the Bar, collective and individual, is revolted and scandalised at the idea of one of its members doing anything for nothing."

"Yes," put in Eustace "I have always understood that they were regular nailers."

'Quite so, my dear James; quite so," said John, with a sweet smile. "A fee must be marked upon the brief of learned counsel, and that fee must be paid

to him, together with many other smaller fees; for learned counsel is like the cigarette-boxes and newfashioned weighing-machines at the stations: he does not work unless you drop something down him. But there is nothing to prevent learned counsel from returning that fee, and all the little fees. Indeed, James, you will see that this practice is common among the most eminent of your profession, when, for instance, they require an advertisement, or wish to pay a delicate compliment to a constituency. What do they do then? They wait till they find £ 500 marked upon a brief, and then resign their fee. Why should you not do the same in this case, in your own interest? Of course, if we win the cause, the other side or the estate will pay the costs; and if we lose, you will at least have had the advantage, the priceless advantage, of a unique advertisement."

"Very well, John; let it be so," said James, with magnanimity. "Your cheques for fees will be duly returned; but it must be understood that they are to be presented."

"Not at the bank," said John hastily. "I have recently had to oblige a client," he added by way of explanation to Eustace, "and my balance is rather low."

"No," said James; "I quite understand. I was going to say 'are to be presented to my clerk.''

And with this solemn farce, the conference came to an end.

CHAPTER XVII.

HOW AUGUSTA WAS FILED.

THAT very afterooon Eustace returned to Lady Holmhurst's house in Hanover Square, to tell his dear Augusta that she must attend on the following morning to be filed in the Registry at Somerset House. As may be imagined, though willing to go any reasonable length to oblige her new-found lover, Augusta not unnaturally resisted this course violently, and was supported in her resistance by her friend Lady Holmhurst, who, however, presently left the room, leaving them to settle it as they liked.

"I do think it is a little hard," said Augusta, with a stamp of her foot, "that, after all I have gone through, I should be taken off to have my unfortunate neck stared at by a Doctor some one or other, and then be shut up with a lot of musty old wills in a Registry."

"Well, my dearest girl," said Eustace, "either it must be done or else the whole thing must be given up. Mr. John Short declares that it is absolutely necessary that the document should be placed in the custody of the officer of the Court."

"But how am I going to live in a cupboard, or in an iron safe with a lot of wills?" asked Augusta, feeling very cross indeed.

"I don't know, I am sure," said Eustace; "Mr. John Short says that that is a matter which the learned Doctor will have to settle. His own opinion is that the learned Doctor-confound him!-will order that you should accompany him about wherever he goes till the trial comes off; for, you see, in that way you would never be out of the custody of an officer of the Court. But," went on Eustace gloomily, "all I can tell him is, if he makes that order, and takes you about with him, he will have to take me too."

"Why?" said Augusta.

"Why? Because I don't trust him-that's why.. Old? Oh yes; I dare say he is old. And, besides, just think: this learned gentleman has practised for twenty years in the Divorce Court? Now, I ask you, what can you expect from a gentleman, however learned, who has practised for twenty years in the Divorce Court? I know him," went on Eustace vindictively-“I know him. He will fall in love with you himself. Why, he would be an old duffer if he didn't."

"Really," said Augusta, bursting out laughing, "you are too ridiculous, Eustace."

"I don't know about being ridiculous, Augusta; but if you think I am going to let you be marched about by that learned Doctor without my being there to look after you, you are mistaken. Why, of course he would

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