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The Works of Edgar Allan Poe Raven Edition Volume 1
"And you think, then, that your master was really bitten by the beetle, and that the bite made him sick?"
"I do n't tink noffin about it - I nose it. What make him dream bout de goole so much, if taint cause he bit by de goole-bug? Ise heerd bout dem goole-bugs fore dis."
"But how do you know he dreams about gold?"
"How I know? why cause he talk about it in he sleep - dat's how I nose."
"Well, Jup, perhaps you are right; but to what fortunate circumstance am I to attribute the honor of a visit from you to-day?"
"What de matter, massa?"
"Did you bring any message from Mr. Legrand "
"No, massa, I bring dis here pissel;" and here Jupiter handed me a note which ran thus:
MY DEAR --
Why have I not seen you for so long a time? I hope you have not been so foolish as to take offence at any little _brusquerie_ of mine; but no, that is improbable. Since I saw you I have had great cause for anxiety. I have something to tell you, yet scarcely know how to tell it, or whether I should tell it at all.
I have not been quite well for some days past, and poor old Jup annoys me, almost beyond endurance, by his well-meant attentions Would you believe it? - he had prepared a huge stick, the other day, with which to chastise me for giving him the slip, and spending the day, _solus_, among the hills on the main land. I verily believe that my ill looks alone saved me a flogging.
I have made no addition to my cabinet since we met.
If you can, in any way, make it convenient, come over with Jupiter. _Do_ come. I wish to see you to-_night_, upon business of importance. I assure you that it is of the _highest_ importance.
Ever yours, WILLIAM LEGRAND.
There was something in the tone of this note which gave me great uneasiness. Its whole style differed materially from that of Legrand. What could he be dreaming of? What new crotchet possessed his excitable brain? What "business of the highest importance" could he possibly have to transact? Jupiter's account of him boded no good. I dreaded lest the continued pressure of misfortune had, at length, fairly unsettled the reason of my friend. Without a moment's hesitation, therefore, I prepared to accompany the negro.
Upon reaching the wharf, I noticed a scythe and three spades, all apparently new, lying in the bottom of the boat in which we were to embark.
"What is the meaning of all this, Jup?" I inquired.
"Him syfe, massa, and spade."
"Very true; but what are they doing here?"
"Him de syfe and de spade what Massa Will sis pon my buying for him in de town, and de debbils own lot of money I had to gib for em."
"But what, in the name of all that is mysterious, is your 'Massa Will' going to do with scythes and spades?"