rom want of use. Perhaps, too, I am apt to take things too much _au grand sérieux;_ but I could not help thinking, while you were speaking, how sad it was that people were utterly ignorant of matters so vitally necessary to health."
"And I, perhaps, ought not to jest over the subject: but, indeed, with cholera staring us in the face here, I must indulge in some emotion; and as it is unprofessional to weep, I must laugh as long as I dare."
The Major dropped his coffee-cup upon the floor, and looked at Thurnall with so horrified a gaze, that Tom could hardly believe him to be the same man. Then recollecting himself, he darted down upon the remains of his cup: and looking up again--"A thousand pardons; but--did I hear you aright? cholera staring us in the face?"
"How can it be otherwise? It is drawing steadily on from the eastward week by week; and, in the present state of the town, nothing but some miraculous caprice of Dame Fortune's can deliver us."
"Don't talk of Fortune, sir! at such a moment. T
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