Many educated ladies give their attention to the cards, and some
have acquired great proficiency in the art. On board a steamer
sailing for New York, on one occasion a French lady among the
saloon-passengers undertook to amuse the party by telling their
fortunes. A Scotch young gentleman, who was going out to try and
get a commission in the Federal army, had his fortune told.
Among the announcements, as interpreted by the lady, was the
rather unpleasant prospect that two constables would be 'after'
him! We all laughed heartily at the odd things that came out for
everybody, and then the thing was forgotten; the steamer reached
her destination; and all the companions of the pleasant voyage
separated and went their different ways.
Some months after, I met the young gentleman above alluded to,
and among the various adventures which he had had, he mentioned
the following. He said that shortly after his arrival in New
York he presented a ten-dollar note which he had received, at a
drinking-house, that it was declared a forged note, and that he
was given into custody; but that the magistrate, on being
conclusively convinced of his respectability, dismissed the
charge without even taking the trouble to establish the alleged
fact that the note was a forgery. So far so good; but on the
following morning, whilst at breakfast at his hotel, another
police-officer pounced upon him, and led him once more on the
same charge to another magistrate, who, however, dismissed the
case like the other.
 It appears that this is allowable in New York. The
explanation of the perverse prosecution was, that the young
gentleman did not 'fee' the worthy policemen, according to custom
in such cases.