This alarm put an immediate stop to the disputation of the three doctors, who, upon this notice of his being awake, rushed into his chamber, without ceremony; and two of them seizing his arms, the third made the like application to one of his temples. Before the patient could recollect himself from the amazement which had laid hold on him at this unexpected irruption, the room was filled by the rest of the faculty, who followed the servant that entered in nike air max 90 hyperfuse obedience to his master’s call; and the bed was in a moment surrounded by these gaunt ministers of death. The colonel seeing himself beset with such an assemblage of solemn visages and figures, which he had always considered with the utmost detestation and abhorrence, was incensed to a most inexpressible degree of indignation; and so inspirited by his rage, that though his tongue denied its office, his other limbs performed their functions. He disengaged himself from the triumvirate, who had taken possession of his body, sprung out of bed with incredible agility, and, seizing one of his crutches, applied it so effectually to one of the three, just as he stooped to examine the patient’s water, that his tie-periwig dropped into the pot, while he himself fell motionless on the floor. This significant explanation disconcerted the whole fraternity; every man turned his face, as if it were by instinct, towards the door; and the retreat of the community being obstructed by the efforts of individuals, confusion and tumultuous uproar ensued. For the colonel, far from limiting his prowess to the first exploit, handled his weapon with astonishing vigour and dexterity, without respect of persons; so that few or none of them had escaped without marks of his displeasure, when his spirits failed, and he sank down again quite exhausted on his bed. Favoured by this respite, the discomfited faculty collected their hats and wigs, which had fallen off in the fray; and perceiving the assailant too much enfeebled to renew the attack, set up their throats together, and loudly threatened to prosecute him nike air max 90 em severely for such an outrageous assault. By this time the landlord had interposed; and, inquiring into the cause of the disturbance, was informed of what had happened by the complainants, who, at the same time, giving him to understand that they had been severally summoned to attend the colonel that morning, he assured them that they had been imposed upon by some wag, for his lodger had never dreamed of consulting any one of their profession. Thunderstruck at this declaration, the general clamour instantaneously ceased; and each, in particular, at once comprehending the nature of the joke, they sneaked silently off with the loss they had sustained, in unutterable shame and mortification; while Peregrine and his friend, who took care to be passing that way by accident, made a full stop at sight of such an extraordinary efflux, and enjoyed the countenance and condition of every one as he appeared; nay, even made up to some of those who seemed most affected with their situation, and mischievously tormented them with questions, touching this unusual congregation; then, in consequence of the information they received from the landlord and the colonel’s valet, subjected the sufferers to the ridicule of all the company in town. As it would have been impossible for the authors of this farce to keep themselves concealed from the indefatigable inquiries of the physicians, they made no secret of their having directed the whole: though they took care to own it in such an ambiguous manner, as afforded no handle of prosecution. Chapter 71 Peregrine humbles a noted Hector, and meets with a strange Character at the House of a certain Lady. Among those who never failed to reside at Bath during the season, was a certain person, who, from the most abject misery, had, by his industry and art at play, amassed about fifteen thousand pounds; and though his character was notorious,nike air max 90 insinuated himself so far into the favour of what is called the best company, that very few private parties of pleasure took place in which he was not principally concerned. He was of a gigantic stature, a most intrepid countenance; and his disposition, naturally overbearing, had, in the course of his adventures and success, acquired a most intolerable degree of insolence and vanity. By the ferocity of his features, and audacity of his behaviour, he had obtained a reputation for the most undaunted courage, which had been confirmed by divers adventures, in which he had humbled the most assuming heroes of his own fraternity; so that he now reigned chief Hector of the place with unquestioned authority. With this son of fortune was Peregrine one evening engaged at play, and so successful, that he could not help informing his friend of his good luck. Godfrey, hearing the description of the loser, immediately recognized the person, whom he had known at Tunbridge; and, assuring Pickle that he was a sharper of the first water, cautioned him against any further connection with such a dangerous companion, who, he affirmed, had suffered him to win a small sum, that he might be encouraged to lose a much greater sum upon some other occasion. Our young gentleman treasured up this advice; and though he did not scruple to give the gamester an opportunity of retrieving his loss, when he next day demanded his revenge, he absolutely refused to proceed after he had refunded his winning. The other, who considered him as a hot-headed unthinking youth, endeavoured to inflame his pride to a continuance of the game, by treating his skill with scorn and contempt; and, among other sarcastic expressions, advised him to go to school again, before he pretended to engage with masters of the art. Our hero, incensed at his arrogance, replied with great warmth, that he knew himself sufficiently qualified for playing with men of honour, who deal upon the square, and hoped he should always deem it infamous either to learn or practise the tricks of a professed gamester. “Blood and thunder! meaning me, sir?” cried this artist, raising his voice, and curling his visage into a most intimidating frown. “Zounds! I’ll cut the throat of any scoundrel who has the presumption to suppose that I don’t play as honourably as e’er a nobleman in the kingdom: and I insist upon an explanation from you, sir; or, by hell and brimstone! I shall expect other sort of satisfaction.” Peregrine (whose blood by this time boiled within him) answered without hesitation, “Far from thinking your demand unreasonable, I will immediately explain myself without nike air max 1 reserve, and tell you, that, upon unquestionable authority, I believe you to be an impudent rascal and common cheat.” The Hector was so amazed and confounded at the freedom of this declaration, which he thought no man on earth would venture to make in his presence, that, for some minutes, he could not recollect himself; but at length whispered a challenge in the ear of our hero, which was accordingly accepted. When they arrived next morning upon the field, the gamester, arming his countenance with all its terrors, advanced with a sword of a monstrous length, and, putting himself in a posture, called out aloud in a most terrific voice, “Draw, d — n ye, draw; I will this instant send you to  
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