The Case Of Mr. Lucraft by Walter Besant
Available for free download: http://gutenberg.net.au/ebooks06/0602141.txt
This is not the kind of story you'll usually find at this site. It's sort of a "deal with the devil" story. Mr. Lucraft doesn't seem to make a deal with the devil himself, but it's that kind of contract that has to be signed in blood. And it's not a deal including his soul. That's part of what makes this a different kind of story.
Lucraft is a young man working in a traveling theater company. He and the daughter of the theater company's boss fall in love. The boss fires Lucraft telling him he'll reconsider if Lucraft shows he can make money. Lucraft goes off to London to make his fortune, but falls on hard times.
Lucraft is a man with an extraordinarily large appetite. So, his suffering from hunger is more than the average down-and-out fellow. He is approached by a man who takes Lucraft home and gives him a huge dinner with lots to drink. Satisfied with Lucraft's large capacity for food and drink, the older man offers to buy his appetite from him. Lucraft hesitates, but is tricked into signing the contract in blood.
It turns out that the other man gets to eat and drink in Lucraft's large amounts. Lucraft loses his sense of taste and smell. Worse, Lucraft pays the consequences of the other man's heavy drinking - hangovers, arrests for public drunkenness, being kicked out by his landlady for being a noisy drunk, etc. It did strike me that Lucraft could have attempted to show his inebriated behavior occurred without him drinking. However, there was no way for him to show who was truly responsible - especially since the other man was considered a pillar of society. This takes place in the 1820s when a young man with no connections was even less likely to be taken seriously against an older established man.
What's more, Lucraft learns that the other man has had this kind of deal with several other young men in the past. Each of those predecessors suffered deteriorating health and death as a result of the older man's heavy drinking...