The Queen of Hearts
Brother Morgan's Story Of The Dream-Woman
I HAD not been settled much more than six weeks in my country practice when I was
sent for to a neighboring town, to consult with the resident medical man there on a case
of very dangerous illness.
My horse had come down with me at the end of a long ride the night before, and had hurt
himself, luckily, much more than he had hurt his master. Being deprived of the animal's
services, I started for my destination by the coach (there were no railways at that time),
and I hoped to get back again, toward the afternoon, in the same way.
After the consultation was over, I went to the principal inn of the town to wait for the
coach. When it came up it was full inside and out. There was no resource left me but to
get home as cheaply as I could by hiring a gig. The price asked for this accommodation
struck me as being so extortionate, that I determined to look out for an inn of inferior
pretensions, and to try if I could not make a better bargain with a less prosperous
I soon found a likely-looking house, dingy and quiet, with an old-fashioned sign, that had
evidently not been repainted for many years past. The landlord, in this case, was not
above making a small profit, and as soon as we came to terms he rang the yard-bell to
order the gig.
"Has Robert not come back from that errand?" asked the landlord, appealing to the waiter
who answered the bell.
"No, sir, he hasn't."
"Well, then, you must wake up Isaac."
"Wake up Isaac!" I repeated; "that sounds rather odd. Do your hostlers go to bed in the
"This one does," said the landlord, smiling to himself in rather a strange way.
"And dreams too," added the waiter; "I shan't forget the turn it gave me the first time I
"Never you mind about that," retorted the proprietor; "you go and rouse Isaac up. The
gentleman's waiting for his gig."
The landlord's manner and the waiter's manner expressed a great deal more than they
either of them said. I began to suspect that I might be on the trace of something