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along the lane outside Basset Wood. uTony never
thinks of anything except getting home to his tea/'
he added.

We then exchanged horses, and though the hounds
did very little more that afternoon, our enthusiasm
about my unexpected purchase kept our tongues busy;
we marvelled more and more that anyone could be
such a mug as to part with him for fifty pounds. As
we rode happily home to the Rectory, Cockbird
jogged smoothly along with his ears well forward.
Demure and unexcited, he appeared neither to know
nor to care about his change of ownership.

"Mr. Pennett can go to blazes!*' I said to myself,
while I was blissfully ruminating in my bath before
dinner. Stephen then banged on the door and asked
if I intended to stay in there all night, so I pulled
the plug out, whereupon the water began to run away
with a screeching sound peculiar to that particular
bathroom. (Why is it that up-to-date bathrooms
have so much less individuality than their Victorian
ancestors? The Rectory one, with its rough-textured
paint and dark wooden casing, had the atmosphere
of a narrow converted lumber-room, and its hot-
water pipes were a subdued orchestra of enigmatic

While the water was making its raucous retreat my
flippant ultimatum to the family solicitor was merged
in a definite anxiety about paying for Cockbird. And
then there was (an additional fifteen guineas) the
question of my subscription to the RingwelL

"Of course, you'll enter him for our point-to-
point/' Stephen had said while we were on our way