Augustus Cheffington had made an unfortunate marriage. That was admitted on all hands. When he was a Cornet in a cavalry regiment quartered in the ancient Cathedral City of Oldchester, he ran away with pretty Susan Dobbs, the daughter of his landlady. Augustus's friends and family—all the Cheffingtons, the Dormer-Smiths, the Castlecombes—deplored this rash step. It was never mentioned, either at the time or afterwards, without expressions of deep commiseration for him.