's office beyond is a large room, tolerably well lighted, but seldom floored with wood.
I joined them, and distinctly heard the lawyer's clerk
demand a ticket for the Blackwater station I satisfied myself that he had actually left by the train before I came away.
"True," said the clerk
, shrugging his shoulders; "and yet you are the better off.
It is not the business of a hotel reception clerk
to appear surprised at anything.
A shorter clerk
came behind the first, a taller clerk
behind the second, a stripling of a dozen years rising behind the third.
The government clerk
with the sausages begins to melt, but he, too, desires to express his sentiments, and as soon as ever he begins to express them, he begins to get hot and say nasty things, and again I'm obliged to trot out all my diplomatic talents.
With those words, the clerk
opened a door, and ushered me into an inner chamber at the back.
The young clerk
twisted his head round in its vase of starch.
Presently a clerk
came in and then another; they glanced at Philip and in an undertone asked the office-boy (Philip found his name was Macdougal) who he was.
"No, your worship," returned the clerk
, "it is mine."
Just as in our country printing-offices the apprentice first learns how to sweep out and bring water; then learns to "roll"; then to sort "pi"; then to set type; and finally rounds and completes his education with job-work and press-work; so the landlord-apprentice serves as call-boy; then as under-waiter; then as a parlor waiter; then as head waiter, in which position he often has to make out all the bills; then as clerk
or cashier; then as portier.
IT is no part of mine to narrate the adventures of John Nicholson, which were many, but simply his more momentous misadventures, which were more than he desired, and, by human standards, more than he deserved; how he reached California, how he was rooked, and robbed, and beaten, and starved; how he was at last taken up by charitable folk, restored to some degree of self-complacency, and installed as a clerk
in a bank in San Francisco, it would take too long to tell; nor in these episodes were there any marks of the peculiar Nicholsonic destiny, for they were just such matters as befell some thousands of other young adventurers in the same days and places.