THE MIDNIGHT CHARM.
"Bought it off'n Ben Rogers two weeks ago for a hoop-stick."
"Say—what is dead cats good for, Huck? "
"Good for? Cure warts with."
" No ! Is that so ? I know something that's better."
" I bet you don't. What is it ? "
"Spunk-water! I wouldn't give a dern for spunk-water."
"You wouldn't wouldn't you ? D'you ever try it? "
" No, I hain't. But Bob Tanner did."
"Who told you so!"
"Why he told Jeff Thatcher, and Jeff told Johnny Baker, and Johnny told Jim Hollis, and Jim told Ben Rogers, and Ben told a nigger, and the nigger told me* There now! "
" Well, what of it ? They'll all lie. Leastways all but the nigger. I don't know him. But I never see a. nigger that wouldn't lie. Shucks! Now you tell me how Bob Tanner done it, Huck."
" Why he took and dipped his hand in a rotten stump where the rain water was."
"In the day time? "
" With his face to the stump ? "
" Yes. Least I reckon so."
" Did he say anything? "
" I don't reckon he did. I don't know."
"Aha! Talk about trying to cure warts with spunk-water such a blame fool way as that! Why that ain't a going to do any good. You got to go all by yourself, to the middle of the woods, where you know there's a spunk-water stump, and just as it's midnight you back up against the stump and jam your hand in and say:
"Barley-corn, Barley-corn, injun-meal shorts, Spunk-water, spunk-water, swaller these warts."
and then walk away quick, eleven steps, with your eyes shut, and then turn around three times and walk home without speaking to anybody. Because if you speak the charm's bustedI' 5