Uncle tom's cabin - online children's book

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LIFE AMONG THE LOWLY                3
rejoined the other. " Why, last fall, I let him go to Cin­cinnati alone, to do business it. me, and bring home five hundred dollars. ' Tom,' says I to him, ' I trust you, be­cause I think you 're a Christian, — I know you would n't cheat.' Tom comes back, sure enough; I knew he would. Some low fellows, they say, said to him, ' Tom, why don't you make tracks for Canada ? ' ' Ah, master trusted me, and I could n't,' — they told me about it. I am sorry to part with Tom, I must say. You ought to let him cover the whole balance of the debt; and you would, Haley, if you had any conscience."
" Well, I Ve got just as much conscience as any man in business can afford to keep, — just a little, you know, to swear by, as 't were," said the trader, jocularly; " and, then, I 'm ready to do anything in reason to 'blige friends ; but this yer, you see, is a leetle too hard on a fellow, — a leetle too hard." . The trader sighed contemplatively, and poured out some more brandy.
" Well, then, Haley, how will you trade ? " said Mr. Shelby, after an uneasy interval of silence.
" Well, have n't you a boy or gal that you could throw in with Tom ? "
" Hum! — none that I could well spare; to tell the truth, it's only hard necessity makes me willing to sell at all. I don't like parting with any of my hands, that's a fact."
Here the door opened, and a small quadroon boy, be­tween four and five years of age, entered the room. There was something in his appearance remarkably beautiful and engaging. His black hair, fine as floss silk, hung in glossy curls about his round dimpled face, while a pair of large dark eyes, full of fire and softness, looked out from beneath the rich, long lashes, as he peered curiously into the apart­ment. A gay robe of scarlet and yellow plaid, carefully made and neatly fitted, set off to advantage the dark and rich style of his beauty; and a certain comic air of assur­ance, blended with bashfulness, showed that he had been not unused to being petted and noticed by his master.