"Because I didn't get on to it," answered Mr. Tooting, in response to a reproach for not having registered a warning--for he was Mr. Crewe's seismograph. I knew old Adam vas on the Railroads' governor's bench, but I hadn't any notion he'd been moved up to the top of the batting list. I told you right. Ridout was going to be their next governor if you hadn't singed him with the Pingsquit bill. This was done pretty slick, wasn't it? Hilary got back from New York day before yesterday, and Pardriff has the editorial to-day. Say, I always told you Pardriff wasn't a reformer, didn't I?"
"I prefer to believe the best of people until I know the worst," he said. "I did not think Mr. Pardriff capable of ingratitude."
What Mr. Crewe meant by this remark is enigmatical.
"He ain't," replied Mr. Tooting, "he's grateful for that red ticket he carries around with him when he travels, and he's grateful to the Honourable Adam B. Hunt for favours to come. Peter Pardriff's a grateful cuss, all-right, all right."
Mr. Crewe tapped his fingers on the desk thoughtfully.
"The need of a reform campaign is more apparent than ever," he remarked.
Mr. Tooting put his tongue in his cheek; and, seeing a dreamy expression on his friend's face, accidentally helped himself to a cigar out of the wrong box.
"It's up to a man with a sense of duty and money to make it," Mr. Tooting agreed, taking a long pull at the Havana.