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There was that peculiar something about him which proclaimed him a remittance man as unmistakably as if the fact had been placarded on his back. The eye-glass, the indications of approaching seediness in the fashionably - cut clothes (like the first tinge of brown in autumnal leaves), and the expression of temporary embarrassment on the aristocratic, if slightly flushed and puffy features, were unfailing signs that the remittance man, if not exactly in the winter of

his discontent, was out in the cold. He was, in fact, in one of those periodical cocoon stages of the remittance man which intervenes between the chrysalis of mail-day and tbe'subsequent butterfly period of a bank-balance. He was on the grandstand at the la3t races, and was enjoying the excitement with all the zeat of a millionaire, exchanging a nod. here and there with some acquaintance whose warmth of affection was smouldering until the chrysalis period, ogling the barmaids, and bowing with extreme condescension to the fashion ably-at tired daughter of the boarding-house keeper.

, In the lull tbat preceded the nexb race, the remittance man took a rapid survey of his r>rospocts of an invitation to drink. Apparently the outlook was not hopeful, for he lounged aimlessly towards the luncheon-room, mechanically turning over in his trousers' pocket the ghosts of departed coins. But suddenly his features lighted up with an expression of eagerness, he sniffed the air with the critical keenness of a 3harp appetite. His quick eye had caught sight of a goodly feast, and the artistic decorations on sundry plethoric bottles. Taking a rapid survey of the position, he made a descent on the " spread," and in the shortest time on record had demolished it. Then, taking out a dainty toothpick, and wiping his moustache "with a suspicious looking pockethandkerchief, he lonnged out with an air of languid unconcern, and joined the excited throng just in the nick of time to see the finish of another race.

Shortly afterwards it seemed that something unusual had happened in the region of the luncheon-room. A flunkey, with an expression of consternation on his face, was wringing his hands with the energy of despair, and uttering loud lamentations over some dire catastrophe. Stewards, waiters, and members of the ion ton were rushing about frantically in search of some missing article, and there was general commotion among the crowd, as the dreadful news was repeated from mouth to mouth that " someone had scoffed the Governor's lunch." The look of childlike innocence on the face of the remittance man as the awful fact was communicated to him waa a study for an artist. But never till the Day of Doom when tho secrets of all hearts shall be laid bare, and the recording angel shall summon up the guilty to anavrev for unpunished crimes, will the momentous problem be solved — " Who stole the G-ovornor's lunch ?"

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Bibliographic details

WHO PRIGGED THE GOVERNOR'S LUNCH ?, Observer, Volume 6, Issue 139, 12 May 1883

Word Count

WHO PRIGGED THE GOVERNOR'S LUNCH ? Observer, Volume 6, Issue 139, 12 May 1883

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