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Check to Your King


page 225


It is done, Charles. I only hope you will not be too much annoyed. When I first understood how this dunder-headed world had treated you, you know best what I wanted to do, and how that sentiment was aggravated by the sight of your own handwriting, setting forth your wrongs, until, like those terrible cannibals of yours at Cambridge, I could not part from you without a copious flow of tears. And then to discover, from an ancient sexton quite like a billy-goat, that he did not know where your grave was, among the slip-shod cream roses and wild onion-flowers of old Grafton Cemetery, because there was no sign, ancient or modern, to mark it! But, when patient investigation had at last uncovered the site, how much worse it was to find planted at the foot of your grave a rusty iron tin, once intended for bouquets, but at the time filled with drowned flies.

Time and thought, however, convinced me that we gain nothing by charging bull-headed at your old enemy, the brick wall of materialism. There are other means. And there are things within your gift which do not belong to other principalities; people will see that for themselves. It is not too late for you to be a very resplendent monarch. Many modern kings might be pleased and surprised to find their own boundaries march with those of so good a neighbour.