BLACK BEAUTY - online book

The Autobiography Of A Horse, With Fifty Illustrations.

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122
BLACK BEAUTY.
the stable, the door was pushed open ar;d a policeman walked in, holding the child tight by the arm ; another policeman followed and locked the door on the inside, saying, " Show me the place where your father keeps his rabbits' food."
The boy looked very frightened and began to cry; but there was no escape, and he led the way to the corn-bin. Here the policeman found another empty bag like that which was found full of oats in the boy's basket.
Filcher was cleaning my feet at the time, but they soon saw him, and though he blustered a good deal they walked him off to the " lock-up," and his boy with him. I heard afterwards that the boy was not held to be guilty, but the man was sentenced to prison for two months.
CHAPTER XXXI.
A HUMBUG.
My master was not immediately suited, but in a few days my new groom came. He was a tall, good-looking fellow enough ; but if ever there was a humbug in the shape of a groom Alfred Smirk was the man. He was very civil to me, and never used me ill; in fact, he did a great deal of stroking and patting, when his master was there to see it. He always brushed my mane and tail with water, and my hoofs with oil, before he brought me to the door, to make me look smart; but as to cleaning my feet, or looking to my shoes, or grooming me thoroughly, he thought no more of that than if I had been a cow. He left my bit rusty, my saddle damp, and my crupper stiff.
Alfred Smirk considered himself very handsome; he spent a deal of time about his hair, whiskers, and necktie
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