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548 > Page 548 of Channings / by Mrs. Henry Wood.

548 The Channings go down to the office if you like.' ' My dear,' said he, ' I couldn't get up, much less get down to the office;' which I knew was the case, before I spoke. I wish I had had my wits about me !" somewhat irascibly went on Mrs. Jenkins; " I should have had his bed brought down to the parlour here, before he was so ill. I don't speak for the shop, I have somebody to attend to that; but it's such a toil and a trapes up them two pair of stairs for every little thing that's wanted." "I suppose I can go up, Mrs. Jenkins" "You can go up," returned she; "but mind you don't get worrying him. I won't have him worried. He worries himself, without any one else doing it gratis. If it's not about one thing, it's about another. Sometimes it's his master and the office, how they'll get along; sometimes it's me, what I shall do with- out him; sometimes it's his old father. He don't need any foreign things to put him up." "I am sorry he is so much worse," remarked Arthur. " So am I," said Mrs. Jenkins, tartly. " I have been doing all I could for him from the first, and it has been like working against hope. If care could have cured him, or money could have cured him, he'd be well now. I have a trifle of savings in the bank, young Mr. Channing, and I have not spared them. If they had ordered him medicine at a guinea a bottle, I'd have had it for him. If they said he must have wine, or delicacies brought from the other ends of the earth, they should have been brought. Jenkins isn't good for much, in point of spirit, as all the world knows; but he's my husband, and I have strove to do my duty by him. Now, if you want to go up, you can go," added she, after an imperceptible pause. " There's a light on the stairs, and you know his room. I'll take the opportunity to give an eye to the kitchen; I don't care to leave him by himself now. Finely it's going on, I know !" Mrs. Jenkins whisked down the kitchen stairs, and Arthur proceeded up. Jenkins was lying in bed, his head raised by pillows. Whatever may have been Mrs. Jenkins's faults of manner, her efficiency as a nurse and manager could not be called into question. A