Mariah Tomkins

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Once, when Stephen Black is returning to his duties in Harley-street after visiting Mrs Brandy, he finds himself quickly made the master of a complete set of royal regalia, viz. a crown, a sceptre and an orb. He wants none of them, but all are forced upon him in a way that makes it impossible for him to refuse. The crown is pressed upon him by Toby Smith, who has found it in Mrs Brandy's shop and believes he has often seen Stephen wear it; the sceptre is given to him by an impulsive gentleman from whom it had lately been stolen (Stephen had timely rescued it from the fleeing thief); and the orb appears rolling towards him of its own volition over the cobbles of Pepper-street. Stephen attempts to ignore the latter but is then hectored into carrying it away with him by a woman who appears suddenly at the window of a nearby house. Accusing him of deliberately treating Pepper-street like a midden, she scolds him like any fury until he takes it with him. This is Mariah Tomkins.

It is of course all thanks to the magical agency of the gentleman with the thistle-down hair, who delights to see Stephen equipped with kingly accoutrements, foreseeing as he does that he will one day be a king[26].