Uncle tom's cabin - online children's book

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40               UNCLE TOM'S CABIN; OR
Mr. and Mrs. Shelby had retired to their apartment for the night. He was lounging in a large easy-chair, looking over some letters that had come in the afternoon mail, and she was standing before her mirror, brushing out the complicated braids and curls in which Eliza had arranged her hair; for, noticing her pale cheeks and haggard eyes, she had excused her attendance that night, and ordered her to bed. The employment, naturally enough, suggested her conversation with the girl in the morning; and, turning to her husband, she said, care­lessly, —
" By the by, Arthur, who was that low-bred fellow that you lugged in to our dinner-table to-day ? "
" Haley is his name," said Shelby, turning himself rather uneasily in his chair, and continuing with his eyes fixed on a letter.
" Haley ! Who is he, and what may be his business here, pray ? "
" Well, he 's a man that I transacted some business with, last time I was at Natchez," said Mr. Shelby.
" And he presumed on it to make himself quite at home, and call and dine here, ay ? "
" Why, I invited him ; I had some accounts with him," said Shelby.
" Is he a negro-trader ? " said Mrs. Shelby, noticing a certain embarrassment in her husband's manner.
" Why, my dear, what put that into your head ? " said Shelby, looking up.