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coat, though invited to do so. He merely
buttoned it tight. The Frenchman threw
off his blouse, and appeared in his waistcoat.
He had a broad chest, a strong arm,
and the usual tendency of most young
Frenchmen to fulness below. Tom's was a
narrow, wiry chest, slight arms, a slighter
throat, and a pale, delicate face. He was a
little overgrown, and surveyed his opponent

Many years later, seeing a piece called
the Floating Beacon, in which a combat
takes place on the deck of a vessel between
the atrocious captain of the craft and a
guileless passengerthe way in which the
abandoned captain prepared himself for the
combat, his starts, his drawing back, his
advance on one leg, his gaunt spasms of
preparationsall suggested something
familiar. It soon took the shape of Mr. Leah,
who tried his wrists, had them tried by
others, whispered his friends, and was
whispered by them. We did not know till later
that Mr. Leah was a man of reputation in le
boxe. Tom remained quite quiet, smiling,
while these preparations were being made.

I never shall forget the way that Frenchman
came on. It struck us with something
as like horror as with astonishment. For,
advancing as if on the ordinary system, he
suddenly dropped his head, and, with his
bullet-like os frontis, drove straight at Tom's
middle. The shock was tremendous, and
it sent the blood up into Tom's pale face.
Then the struggle began. The savage,
strong arms were wound tightly round
Tom's slender limbs, Leah striving to heave
him off his legs, and go with him to the
ground, where, as we all knew, he would
bite, and kick, and stamp at his fallen foe
all fair in the French mode of fighting.
Such, at least, was our belief. But Tom,
though taken by surprise, contrived a clever
triphe was from Cumberlandand, while
the native was thus unsupported, gave him
a desperate heave over to one side, and
shook himself free. The savage looked
wildly and thirsting for blood, as we
thought, and a little scared.

"Now, boys, see how I'll match him this
time and his wild Indian tricks!"

Tom waited, still with the old contemptuous smile,
something out of breath,
something flushed, but with his womanlike
fists in a new and suspicious attitude;
the other, very red, and breathing hard
from his incipient corpulence, was crouched
down like a tiger about to spring. He
came on as he had done before ; but Tom
received the bullet-head in the part he had
received it before, and having got it there,
we saw with delight the splendid reception
it met with. He had the round coarse
head, and a shower of blows rained on
itrained on the ear, on the cheekbones
four times. The delicate fists, worked
as if by steam-powerthe Frenchman had
unwittingly placed his own head "in Chancery"
a distinction other pugilists are most
anxious to avoid. We roared and cheered
with delight as the combatants went round
and round, Tom's fists going up and down
like a piston, smashing, pounding, battering,
until at last the wretched Frenchman
had to abandon his strategy, and raise a
blazing, flaming, mauled face, all stripes
and welts, from the place into which it had
been thrust. Then Tom saw his opportunity,
and following the great Duke's tactics
towards the close of the ever glorious day
at Waterloo, rushed at the face which was
lifted and came on him with a crushing
"left-hander." It was " Up, Guards, and
at 'em !" now. Then he came on with
the right, and Leah staggered and reeled
back. The combat was virtually over.
The great Leah was defeated, and defeated
for ever !

That splendid victory of the British
arms was long remembered. The French
power was utterly humiliated. They never
rallied. We might turn into their orchards
for challenge or even plunder, but they
never showed. Alas! the hero of that
glorious day had but a short time to enjoy
his glory. One morning some strange
men were seen at the captain's gate, striving,
it would seem, to get in, and rattling
it savagely. Some of the English
experienced in such matters said, " Bailiffs, of
course!" It was not, of course; it was the
landlord of the premises. The one-armed
captain had gone in the night with his
family. The English steamer sailed at
midnight. The French were "done," as
they have been done so often since.

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