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The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn

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“THEY told you I would. Whoever told you’s ANOTHER lunatic. I never heard the beat of it. Who’s THEY?” THEY told you I would?! Whoever told you that is a lunatic. I’ve never heard anything like it. Who’s THEY?”
“Why, everybody. They all said so, m’am.” “Well, everyone. They all said so, ma’am.”
It was all she could do to hold in; and her eyes snapped, and her fingers worked like she wanted to scratch him; and she says: She did all she could do to hold her anger in. Her eyes snapped, and her fingers moved like she wanted to scratch him. She said:
“Who’s ’everybody’? Out with their names, or ther’ll be an idiot short.” “Who’s ‘everyone?’” Tell me their names, or there’ll be one fewer idiot in this world.
He got up and looked distressed, and fumbled his hat, and says: He got up, looking worried. He fumbled with his hat, and said:
“I’m sorry, and I warn’t expecting it. They told me to. They all told me to. They all said, kiss her; and said she’d like it. They all said it—every one of them. But I’m sorry, m’am, and I won’t do it no more—I won’t, honest.” “I’m sorry—I just wasn’t expecting this. They told me to do it. They all told me to. They all said, ‘Kiss her.’” They said you’d like it. They all said so—every single one of them. I’m sorry, ma’am. I won’t do it again. I won’t, honestly.”
“You won’t, won’t you? Well, I sh’d RECKON you won’t!” “You won’t, huh? You better believe it!”
“No’m, I’m honest about it; I won’t ever do it again—till you ask me.” No, ma’am, honestly. I won’t ever do it again—until you ask me, that is.”
“Till I ASK you! Well, I never see the beat of it in my born days! I lay you’ll be the Methusalem-numskull of creation before ever I ask you—or the likes of you.” “UNTIL I ASK YOU?! Well, I’ve never heard anything like it my whole life. You’ll be as old as

Methuselah

man from the book of Genesis in the Old Testament who lived to be more than 900 years old

Methuselah
before I ever ask you or anyone else like you.”
“Well,” he says, “it does surprise me so. I can’t make it out, somehow. They said you would, and I thought you would. But—” He stopped and looked around slow, like he wished he could run across a friendly eye somewheres, and fetched up on the old gentleman’s, and says, “Didn’t YOU think she’d like me to kiss her, sir?” “Well,” he said. “This sure is a surprise to me. I just don’t understand. They said you’d like it, and I thought you would, but….” He stopped and looked around slowly, searching for a sympathetic eye. He looked at the old gentleman and said, “Didn’t YOU think she’d like me to kiss her, sir?”
“Why, no; I—I—well, no, I b’lieve I didn’t.” “Well, no. I… I… well, no, I don’t believe I did.”
Then he looks on around the same way to me, and says: The Tom looked around the room again and said to me:
“Tom, didn’t YOU think Aunt Sally ’d open out her arms and say, ’Sid Sawyer—’” “Tom, didn’t YOU think Aunt Sally would open her arms and say, ‘Sid Sawyer….’”
“My land!” she says, breaking in and jumping for him, “you impudent young rascal, to fool a body so—” and was going to hug him, but he fended her off, and says: “My word!” she interrupted. “You little rascal! To fool me like that!” She was going to hug him, but he evaded her, saying:
“No, not till you’ve asked me first.” “No, not until you’ve asked me first!”
So she didn’t lose no time, but asked him; and hugged him and kissed him over and over again, and then turned him over to the old man, and he took what was left. And after they got a little quiet again she says: She didn’t waste any time, but asked him, and then hugged him and kissed him over and over again. Then she turned him over to the old man, who hugged him too. After they quieted down a bit, she said:
“Why, dear me, I never see such a surprise. We warn’t looking for YOU at all, but only Tom. Sis never wrote to me about anybody coming but him.” “Dear me, I’ve never had such a surprise. We didn’t expect you at all, only Tom. Sis never said anything in her letters about anyone else coming except Tom.”
“It’s because it warn’t INTENDED for any of us to come but Tom,” he says; “but I begged and begged, and at the last minute she let me come, too; so, coming down the river, me and Tom thought it would be a first-rate surprise for him to come here to the house first, and for me to by and by tag along and drop in, and let on to be a stranger. But it was a mistake, Aunt Sally. This ain’t no healthy place for a stranger to come.” “That’s because no one PLANNED for anyone else to come except Tom,” he said. “But I begged and begged until she finally said at the last minute that I could come too. So, while we were coming down the river, Tom and I thought it would be an excellent surprise for him to come to the house first and for me to drop in later and pretend to be a stranger. But that was a mistake, Aunt Sally—this isn’t a good place for a stranger.”
“No—not impudent whelps, Sid. You ought to had your jaws boxed; I hain’t been so put out since I don’t know when. But I don’t care, I don’t mind the terms—I’d be willing to stand a thousand such jokes to have you here. Well, to think of that performance! I don’t deny it, I was most putrified with astonishment when you give me that smack.” “No, not for little rascals like yourself, Sid. I don’t know the last time I’ve been that shocked—I ought to smack you in the mouth. But I don’t care—I’m willing to be the butt of a thousand jokes just like that one in order to have you here. And what a performance you put on! I’m not going to lie, I was shocked to death when you kissed me!”
We had dinner out in that broad open passage betwixt the house and the kitchen; and there was things enough on that table for seven families—and all hot, too; none of your flabby, tough meat that’s laid in a cupboard in a damp cellar all night and tastes like a hunk of old cold cannibal in the morning. Uncle Silas he asked a pretty long blessing over it, but it was worth it; and it didn’t cool it a bit, neither, the way I’ve seen them kind of interruptions do lots of times. There was a considerable good deal of talk all the afternoon, and me and Tom was on the lookout all the time; but it warn’t no use, they didn’t happen to say nothing about any runaway nigger, and we was afraid to try to work up to it. But at supper, at night, one of the little boys says: We had dinner in the little open passageway between the house and the kitchen. There was enough food on the table to feed seven families. And it was all hot too. There wasn’t any of that fatty, tough meat—the kind that’s been stored in a cupboard in a damp cellar all night and tastes like a hunk of cannibal meat in the morning. Uncle Silas said a pretty long blessing before we ate, but it was worth it—the food was so hot that it didn’t cooled by the time he finished praying, the way food usually does. We talked all afternoon. Tom and I paid close attention to what everyone said, but it turns out we didn’t need to be so careful since no one said anything about a runaway n-----. We were too afraid to bring up the topic ourselves. But at supper one night, one of the little boys said:
“Pa, mayn’t Tom and Sid and me go to the show?” “Pa, may Tom and Sid and me go to the show?”

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