As the author of ‘Artful’ I was pleased to have been sent an old box from an anonymous source. Imagine my amazement when I looked inside and found a packet of dirty, worm-eaten letters which related to the chief character of my novel.
I thought that it was in the interests of historical accuracy to share these thoughts with the world.
These are the thoughts of Nancy:
Don’t believe what Fagin says, whatever it is. Jack Dawkins is a lovely boy, a right little genelman. He always looks after me and the other girls. Tips his hat to me whenever he sees me and if he’s stole a choice silk scarf he’ll keep it from the Old Un and give it me.
He should of course after all I’ve done for him. Not that I expect it and not that I’ve told him everything. Some things are best kept from the young uns, I say.
Fagin’s boys look up to him as well. He’s like a hero to them. They all want to be like Dodger. He’s such a marvel, you see. He’s the best pick-pocket in London and London’s full of ‘em. But there’s none half as good as Dodger, not on either side of the river, not in the City or the East End or the Other End. No one half as good in the whole bloomin Empire probably.
I wish sometimes he’d get away from Fagin. But he won’t, I know he won’t. He seems to dote on the old villain. Not that Fagin hasn’t been good to him. Gave him a roof over his head, and me as well, and fed us even if it were little better than scraps. And he gave Jack a trade into the bargain, trained him up to thieving.
But I still wish Jack would get away, set up for himself. He’d keep all he took then and not have to give it all up to the Old Un. But whatever he does, he’ll be all right. He’ll never get caught and he’ll always be around to look after his old Nancy.
Read about Dodger’s adventures in my novel ‘Artful’. It is available on Kindle Select for $3.99, £2.54 or €3.11.