THE TALE OF MR. BUSYBODY
So he ran into the tent, leapt on to Old Man Jog-About's bed, shook him, and bawled loudly into his ear:
"THIEVES! ROBBERS! WAKE UP! "
Old Man Jog-About woke with a fearful jump and sat up in bed, his night-cap falling off his big white-haired head. He stared at Busybody in the greatest surprise.
" Get off my bed," he said, angrily. " What's the matter? Hie, Pipkin, Pipkin, come and throw this fellow out! "
" Pipkin's gone," said Busybody. " Ha, he's a bad fellow, that servant of yours—dirty, lazy, dishonest—and now he's gone off with the magic shoes and all your money! "
" Stuff and nonsense! " said Old Man Jog-About, putting on his night-cap again and glaring at Busybody.
" I tell you it's true! " said Busybody. " I saw him with my own eyes, the rascal! He's gone off down the road, and I'm going after him! I'll soon bring back your money for you, and the shoes too! I'm a fine fellow, lam!"
" Fiddlesticks and rubbish! " said Old Man Jog-About, and he looked so fierce that Busybody was quite alarmed for a moment.
" Now don't you get upset," said Busybody pushing Jog-About back on his bed. " I'll see to everything! "
Busybody ran to the door, turned back to nod and smile at Jog-About and then set off down the street. Jog-About leapt out of bed and went to the opening of his tent. He shouted after Busybody.
" Come back, you interfering fellow! Pipkin's all right! He wouldn't steal a thing from me! Come back, I say! "