Our Friend the Charlatan
Not less so to Mr. Lashmar's wife, a lady ten years his junior, endowed with abundant energies in every direction save that of household order and thrift. Whilst the vicar stood waiting for breakfast, tapping drearily on the window-pane, Mrs. Lashmar entered the room, and her voice sounded the deep, resonant note which announced a familiar morning mood.
"You don't mean to say that breakfast isn't ready! Surely, my dear, you could ring the bell?"
"I have done so," replied the vicar, in a tone of melancholy abstraction.
Mrs. Lashmar rang with emphasis, and for the next five minutes her contralto swelled through the vicarage, rendering inaudible the replies she kept demanding from a half rebellious, half intimidated servant. She