"Will you pledge your honour to make no attempt at escape on the road?" asked the pawnbroker on his return.
"I'll see you d----d first," replied the prisoner.
On this he was handcuffed, and helped into the dog-cart.
They went up to town by the midnight train; but, to Alfred's astonishment and delight did not take a carriage to themselves.
However, station after station was passed, and nobody came into their carriage. At last they stopped at a larger station, and a good many people were on the platform: Alfred took this opportunity and appealed in gentle but moving terms to the first good and intelligent face he saw. "Sir," said he, "I implore your assistance."
The gentleman turned courteously to him. The keepers, to Alfred's surprise, did not interrupt.
"I am the victim of a conspiracy, sir; they pretend I am mad: and are taking me by force to a madhouse, a living tomb."
"You certainly don't appear to be mad," said the gentleman.