There were other papers rolled up, and I asked him what they were. 'Why, ay,' says he,
'that's the question I wanted to have you ask me'; so he unrolls them and takes out a
little shagreen case, and gives me out of it a very fine diamond ring. I could not refuse it,
if I had a mind to do so, for he put it upon my finger; so I made him a curtsy and
accepted it. Then he takes out another ring: 'And this,' says he, 'is for another occasion,'
so he puts that in his pocket. 'Well, but let me see it, though,' says I, and smiled; 'I
guess what it is; I think you are mad.' 'I should have been mad if I had done less,' says
he, and still he did not show me, and I had a great mind to see it; so I says, 'Well, but let
me see it.' 'Hold,' says he, 'first look here'; then he took up the roll again and read it, and
behold! it was a licence for us to be married. 'Why,' says I, 'are you distracted? Why,
you were fully satisfied that I would comply and yield at first word, or resolved to take no
denial.' 'The last is certainly the case,' said he. 'But you may be mistaken,' said I. 'No,
no,' says he, 'how can you think so? I must not be denied, I can't be denied'; and with
that he fell to kissing me so violently, I could not get rid of him.
There was a bed in the room, and we were walking to and again, eager in the
discourse; at last he takes me by surprise in his arms, and threw me on the bed and
himself with me, and holding me fast in his arms, but without the least offer of any
indecency, courted me to consent with such repeated entreaties and arguments,
protesting his affection, and vowing he would not let me go till I had promised him, that
at last I said, 'Why, you resolve not to be denied, indeed, I can't be denied.' 'Well, well,'
said I, and giving him a slight kiss, 'then you shan't be denied,' said I; 'let me get up.'
He was so transported with my consent, and the kind manner of it, that I began to think
once he took it for a marriage, and would not stay for the form; but I wronged him, for he
gave over kissing me, and then giving me two or three kisses again, thanked me for my
kind yielding to him; and was so overcome with the satisfaction and joy of it, that I saw
tears stand in his eyes.
I turned from him, for it filled my eyes with tears too, and I asked him leave to retire a
little to my chamber. If ever I had a grain of true repentance for a vicious and
abominable life for twenty-four years past, it was then. On, what a felicity is it to
mankind, said I to myself, that they cannot see into the hearts of one another! How
happy had it been for me if I had been wife to a man of so much honesty, and so much
affection from the beginning!
Then it occurred to me, 'What an abominable creature am I! and how is this innocent
gentleman going to be abused by me! How little does he think, that having divorced a
whore, he is throwing himself into the arms of another! that he is going to marry one that
has lain with two brothers, and has had three children by her own brother! one that was
born in Newgate, whose mother was a whore, and is now a transported thief! one that
has lain with thirteen men, and has had a child since he saw me! Poor gentleman!' said