The first instalment of the Flashman Papers sees the fag-roasting rotter from Tom Brown's Schooldays commence his military career as a reluctant secret agent in Afghanistan. Expelled from Rugby for drunkenness, and none too welcome at home after seducing his father's mistress, the young... read more
“Anyway, he gave me a fine holy harangue, about how through repentance I might be saved - which I've never believed, by the way. I've repented a good deal in my time, and had good cause, but I was never ass enough to suppose it mended anything. but I've learned to swim with the tide when I have to, so I let him pray over me, and when he had finished I left his study a good deal happier than when I went in. I had escaped flogging, which was the main thing...”Flashman
“So I rode into town, puzzling over how my father would take the good news. He was odd fish, the guv'nor, and he and I had always been wary of each other. He was a nabob's grandson, you see, old Jack Flashman having made a fortune in America out of slaves and rum, and piracy, too, I shouldn't wonder, and buying the place Leicestershire where we have lived ever since. But for all their moneybags, the Flashmans were never the thing - "the coarse streaks showed through, generation after generation, like dung beneath a rosebush," as Greville said. In other words, while other nabob families tried to make themselves pass for quality, our didn't, because we couldn't.”Flashman
“My own father was the first to marry well, for my mother was related to the Pagets, who as everyone knows sit on the right hand of God. As a consequence he kept an eye on me to see if I gave myself airs; before mother died he never saw much of me, being too busy at the clubs or in the House or hunting - foxes sometimes, but women mostly - but after that he had to take some interest in his heir, and we grew to know and mistrust each other.”Flashman
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