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The Golden Dustman


The Golden Dustman
Abeautiful girl of eighteen was sitting in a dirty, untidy room. Her pretty face was sad and she was twisting and pulling her thick, brown hair angrily. She looked up at the round faced little man who was sitting beside her. Here I am in this ugly, black dress, Pa,’ she said. I’m like a widow who has never been married. I was going to be rich and now I have nothing. No husband, no money. It was bad enough
to be told to marry a stranger. But it’s worse, much worse, when the man gets himself drowned!’ I don’t suppose he meant to, Bella, my dear,’ her father answered. Reginald Wilfer was a cheerful man, but a poor man with a large family has little reason to he happy. He was very fond of his daughter, Bella, and he knew she hated being poor. Now John Harmon was dead, she would never marry a rich man. There was a quiet knock on the door and a pale young man of about thirty came into the room. He had a handsome face, but he was very shy and awkward. When he began to speak, he looked down at the ground. I have seen the rooms upstairs, Mr Wilfer. I would like to move into them as soon as posible. If you can write out an agreement, I’ll pay you three months rent now. Mr Wilfer was Abter delighted. He had soon written and signed John the agreement and the young man added his name - Rokesmith. Let me be witness, Pa, said Bella taking the pen from her father. As she bent over the paper, Mr Rokesmith looked at her beautiful face with the greatest interest. After Mr Rokesmith had paid his money and gone, Bella said with a laugh, Well, Pa, I think we’ve got a murderer or a robber for a lodger. He cannot look anyone in the face!’ Perhaps he was a little shy of you, my dear. But his money will pay our rent.
Oh, why do we have to be poor, Pa? I might have been rich enough to take you away from here. Why did old Mr Harmon have to make such a fool of me?’
He only saw you once, said her father. You were angry with me, stamping your little foot and shouting. The old man laughed at your bad temper. Then he asked me for your name, and that was all.’ And now I’ll never be rich and we may all be murdered by that strange Mr Rokesmith, Bella said with a laugh. But Bella would not have laughed if she had known one thing. Mr Julius Handford and Mr John Rokesmith were surely the same man.
Now John Hamon was dead, all his father’s money went to the old servant, Noddy Boffin, who had helped in the business for so many years. Noddy Boffin was a broad, round~houldered old fellow with bright grey eyes. He wore thick, heavy clothes and always carried a strong stick. He and his wife were simple and uneducated, but they were honest and kind people. Mr Boffin had gone to see Mr Mortimer Lightwood who was now his lawyer. 
‘Well, Mr Boffin,’ said Mortimer. I am happy to tell you that Mr Harmon left a hundred thousand pounds which now belongto you. 
 I don’t know what to say, said Mr Boffin. It’s a great deal of money, but it never did the old man any good. And it’s done no good to his poor, dead boy. Mrs Boffin often cried over that child. His father sent him away to a foreign school when he was only seven years old. And now he has been wickedly murdered.

 Mrs Boffin and me gain by his death, Mr Boffin went on. ‘So we have decided to offer a reward of ten thousand pounds. Ten thousand pounds to the man who finds John Harmon’s murderer.’ Mr Boffin, that is too much, far too much.’ But Mortimer Lightwood could not make Mr Boffin change his mind. The old man walked slowly home, thinking about the troubles
that the money might bring to his wife and himself. Now then, what’s the trouble? said Mr Boffin, stopping suddenly and looking hard at the young man. You don’t know me and I don’t know you.’
‘I am nobody,’ said the young man. But I know you are the rich Mr Boffin. ‘Rich? So that is it. I thought money would come into it. What is it you want? I want a job. I would like to be your secretary. You would find me useful and honest.I am not interested in money, believe me.’ Where have you come from? ‘From many places. But at present I am living in Mr Wilfer’s house. My name is John Rokesmith ‘Wilfer? Bella Wilfer’s father. Now that’s very strange. Well, I like the look of you. Come and see me in about two weeks’ time. Mr Lightwood will send you our new address. Mrs Boffin and I are moving into a bigger house. Ms Boffin wants to go into society. And she wants to go in for Fashion in a big way!’ As soon as he got home, Mr Boffin told his wife about the strange young man. ‘Perhaps we shall need a secretary, Noddy dear, she said. We’ll be living in a grand, new house and someone must take care of the bills. Now I’ve something to tell you. I’ve been thinking about that poor girl. She has lost a husband and all the money too. We haven’t any children of our own. Why don’t we ask Bella to live with us?

Well, that’s a good idea,’ said Mr Boffin cheerfully. ‘What a clever woman you are, Mrs Boffin! It’s a pleasure to know you! It’s been a pleasure to know you for many years.’ And the old man gave his wife a hug and a kiss. That same evening, Mr and Mrs Boffin drove up to the Wilfers’ house in their fine, new carriage Mrs Boffin and I have come to say that we want to help your daughter, Bella, Mr Boffin told the Wilfers. If Miss Bella will make her home with us, we shall be very happy. We plan to go into society and meet the very best people. A beautiful girl like Miss Bella will do very well in society, we are sure.’ ‘You are very kind You are much too prettry to keep yourself shut up said Mrs Boffin kindly. We are going to live in a grand, new house. We’ll go everywhere and see everyhing You mustn’t dislike us because of the money, my dear.’ Bella had a kind heart too. She smiled at Mrs Boffin and kissed her And so everything was into their new home, Bella would go and live with them. ‘By the way,’ said Mr Boffin he stood up to go, ‘I believe you have a lodger. ‘There is a gentieman living upstairs, ‘Mn Wilfer replied. ‘His
name is Mr John Rokesmith.’ So Mr John Rokesmith is Our Mutual Friend,’ said Mr Boffin. ‘What sort of fellow is he? Do you get on well with him? ‘Mr Rokesmith is very quiet and polite. A very sensible
young man.’ I’m glad to hear you speak well of him, Mr Boffin answered. Mr Rokesmith is at home now,’ said Mr Wilfer. ‘In fact, I can see him standing at the gate. He is waiting to see you, perhaps, Mr Boffin?
When Mr and Mrs Boffin left, Bella walked to the gate
with them. How are you, sir? said Mr Boffin, turning to the yourng man. This is my wife, Mrs Boffin. Mr Rokesmith, my dear.’ The Boffins got into their carriage, and Mrs Boffin waved cheerfully out of the carriage window. ‘Goodbye, Bella,’ she called. We’ll meet again soon.’ Bella stood by the gate with Mr Rokesmith. She was quite sure that Mr Rokesmith thought her beautiful. Did Bella like him or not? She could not make up her mind. But she certainly thought a lot about him .The Boffins are good people,’ John Rokesmith said at last. Do you know them well, sir? asked Bella in her most polite voice.
‘I have only heard people talking about their kindness. They call Mr Boffin the Golden Dutman. The Boffins will be good friends to you, Miss Wilfer I am sure you know why they are being so kind.’
Bella did not answer snd very soon she went back into the house. But Mr Rokesmith stood by the gate for a long time, alone with his thoughts.

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إذا أعجبك محتوى مدونتنا نتمنى البقاء على تواصل دائم ، فقط قم بإدخال بريدك الإلكتروني للإشتراك في بريد المدونة السريع ليصلك جديد المدونة أولاً بأول ، كما يمكنك إرسال رساله بالضغط على الزر المجاور ...

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