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membrance of all my mother's fond. ber the hours which must revolve ness, her more than maternal kind- before that in which Armitage had ness from my earliest infancy-the appointed to be with me. reflection that the step I was about Sleep, however, which I had to take might deprive her, at once hitherto rarely courted in vain, reand for ever, of the only solace of fused to visit my eyelids with her her declining years, the only hope of tranquillizing influence, and the grey her widowed heart—that my falling tints of twilight, fast flying before a in the encounter would too surely sun that rose in unclouded majesty, shake out with an unhallowed hand saw me pressing my disordered pilthe few remaining sands that yet lin- low in feverish restlessness. I got gered in Time's failing hour-glass, up and unclosed the window; the and “bring down her grey hairs fragrance of morning of the last with sorrow to the grave”-all con- morning on which I might ever inspired to unman me, and shook for hale it-revived me; I resolved to a moment the resolution I had form- seek, in the open air, and in activity, ed of meeting my incomprehensible that refuge from my own thoughts antagonist. Not that I was altogether denied me in the more confined atfree from some rather unpleasant sen-mosphere and retirement of my sations more purely selfish, when I chamber. Hastily arranging my considered the situation in which a dress, I placed on the toilet the letfew short hours might place me, and ter I had addressed to my mother, the more than questionable proposi- and, forcibly smothering a pang tion how far I might be justified, in which seized me as the action recallthus exposing my own life and aiming ed her image to my mind, descendat thatof another, before that Almigh- ed slowly and cautiously a back ty Being, whose denunciations against staircase which communicated with the crime of murder I could not shut the offices, and through them with out from my memory. In vain did I the park. My purpose was effected encourage myself by the argument without disturbing any of the in. that, as the usages of civilized society mates of the mansion, who, buried extend the principle of self-defence in sleep, dreamed not of the unholy from our persons to our reputation, errand on which I stole, like a thief, I was as much authorized to protect from the habitation of my fathers. that which was dearer to me than As I turned an angle of the buildlife as to defend my life itself ; a ing, the windows of my mother's voice, stronger than that of the apartment caught my eye. The world, told me I was wrong. The brilliancy of the morning sunbeams, awakening tones of conscience, which fell full upon them, rendered which I would fain have silenced scarce observable the faint flicker, had it been in my power, warned me ings of the watch-light within, the of the fallacy of my reasoning, and gleamings of which, now weak, now thundered in my ear, “Thou shalt bursting into momentary brightness, not kill.” Pride, that sin by which fell seemed
to announce that it was fast the angels, and a false shame, the sinking in the socket, soon to expire dread of what the world would say, and be no more. « And such," I still drove me on to disregard its whispered, “ may be the brief tefaithful admonitions, and crushed nure of my own existence here! Oh, the nascent intention of even yet my mother, if indeed the irrevocable avoiding to dip my hand in blood, fiat has gone forth, may He who while it presented to my view myself tempers the wind to the shorn a mark for scorn “to point its slow lamb’ support thee in the hour of and moving finger at," a wretched trial, and, by the blessed hope of a object loaded with the contempt and future meeting, assuage the poignan. derision of all who knew me. No! cy of thy grief for the loss of one, it was too late! The die was thrown, who now invokes thy blessing, as and I must stand the hazard of the he, from his inmost soul, implores a cast. With burning temples, and an blessing upon thee!” A shadow aching heart, I retired to my room passed across the room between the without daring to trust myself again light and the curtains, and seemed in my mother's presence, and, throw- to be approaching the window. ing myself on the bed, endeavoured Nothing doubting, but that it was to lose in the forgetfulness of slum- Martha, who remained in attendance
on her mistress, and fearing to be not be satisfied without burning a seen at that early hour, I ended my little gunpowder." apostrophe abruptly, and rushed “ Is he so determined an enemy? into the obscurity of the neighbour. Pray, what sort of a person is your ing shrubs.
antagonist ? " A few moments' exertion freed “ Upon my word, that is rather a me from the thicket in which I had puzzling question, as I am not sure ensconced myself, and placed me in that I ever set eyes upon him in my a path which, winding among their life. He holds a commission in the shady recesses in a circuitous direc- dragoons, and that is all I can tell tion, finally emerged near the end of you, being almost all I know of him the avenue that led from the Hall to myself.” the high-road. As I approached its “ It is altogether a very extraorditermination, the appearance of Ar- nary affair, returned Armitage. mitage, hastily advancing with a “ You shall not fight, however, if I small mahogany case under his arm, can prevent it; but stay, here is the told me that it was time to repair to old chapel, and yonder, if I mistake the place of our appointment. I not, come our men.” joined him immediately, and we He was right; a few seconds proceeded forthwith towards the brought us together; Captain Mascene of rendezvous.
berly and his friend advanced from As we walked along with quick an adjoining field, the latter wrapped undeviating footsteps, the good-na- up in a large surtout, which he untured lieutenant enquired more folded as we drew near, and revealed particularly into the cause of quar- the person of my fellow-passenger rel, hinting at the pleasure it would on the mail, whom I had pulled out give him should the matter admit of of the river two days before. I cansuch an explanation as might allow not say that I was altogether unprethe affair to be accommodated with. pared for this recognition; the posout prejudice to the feelings or cha- sibility of it had more than once ocracter of either party. This I felt curred to my mind since Maberly's to be impossible, but contented my- visit, and the supposition bad acquiself with telling the worthy fellow red additional weight from some pasthat he was nearly as well acquaint- sages in his letter, which I found it ed with the real grounds of the dis- otherwise difficult to comprehend ; pute as myself; that I merely obeyed still I had some doubts on the subthe summons of a gentleman, who, ject, as I could scarcely believe it as I verily believed, was visiting on possible that the most sanguinary of my head the aggression of another; mankind would, whatever his pribut that, as my endeavours to con mary intentions might have been, vince him of his mistake had been persist in raising his hand to deprive in vain, we must abide by the deci- that man of life who had so recently sion to which he thought it necessary preserved his own, and that too in a to appeal. This account increased the quarrel in which he could feel but desire, which the lieutenant had from little personal interest-but little inthe first entertained, of terminating terest? A thought flashed upon my the business without bringing it to mind with the rapidity of lightning, the issue of mortal arbitrement; and and dissipated in an instant the rehe entreated me to permit him, pre- luctance I had hitherto felt to comviously to any thing else taking mence hostilities. Amelia Staffordplace, to use his endeavours to pro- for her he had come to contend, and cure an amicable adjustment of a her he was determined to possess, difference, which, after all, as he though the removal of so formidable observed, had evidently originated an obstacle as myself, by any means, in mistake.
was a necessary preliminary. She “ It will be useless, Armitage,” I was the object of his, perhaps mer. replied; “nevertheless, act as you cenary, attachment, whom he had think proper. I know you too well rescued from a plot contrived, in all to fear that my honour will suffer in probability, by himself, and which your hands; but, from the terms in my death was indispensable to conwhich his invitation is couched, I ceal from eventual detection! This am convinced my gentleman will indeed presented a ready solution
to the mystery; as the champion of upon the ground, his arms folded her cause, and the avenger of her across his breast, which heaved high injuries, he would stand on a proud at intervals, as if from the effect of eminence, and challenge her love some strong internal emotion. I with a powerful, perhaps irresistible, turned from gazing on him to watch claim ; while in my destruction he the motions of our two “ friends”. would not only lay the foundation so they call the people who load the of his hopes, but obtain the removal pistols that are to blow your brains of a rival, doubly dangerous from out—who were now deeply engaged the well-known wishes of her father in conversation. In a few moments in my favour, and the power I must Maberly quitted his companion, and, inevitably possess of unmasking him rejoining Fortescue, made a commuto Lord Manningham, a single
inter- nication to him; a short but anima. view with whom might be sufficient ted discussion took place between to level with the dust the flimsy su them, at the close of which Maberly perstructure which his arts had rai- returned to my “friend,” who, after sed. That the whole personation of listening to him for a few moments, myself, the elopement, and pretend- stepped up to me and informed me ed rescue, were but parts of a syste- that he was the bearer of a proposal matic and Willanous plot, of which from Captain Fortescue, who, from my destruction was to furnish the the great reluctance which he felt to dénouement, I no longer entertained proceed against one from whom he a doubt, and the indignation this con had recently received so great an viction gave rise to in my mind, ope- obligation, was prepared, he said, to rated so strongly upon me, that it drop the dispute, and consent to sink was with the utmost difficulty I could the past in oblivion, provided I would restrain my impatience, while our offer such an apology to Miss Stafseconds were arranging the neces ford as he should feel warranted in sary preliminaries. I burned to chas- recommending her
to accept. tise the villany I fancied I had de “ Tell Captain Fortescue,” I extected, and to inflict a severe retri- claimed, half-choked with passion, bution for my defeated pretensions “ that the most ample concessions and vilified character.
he could offer me would now be inWhile Armitage and Maberly, who sufficient to appease the sense of had retired a few paces apart, were injury which I feel, or avert the preparing the weapons, and confer vengeance I am determined to exact. ring on the business which had Let bim take his ground!” brought us together, Captain For Armitage retired in silence, and tescue remained at a short distance proceeded to measure out twelve from me, leaning against a tree. His paces, at either extremity of which face was pale, almost livid, his air my antagonist and myself took our abstracted, and he appeared to be stations; the weapons were delivered labouring under the deepest dejec- to us, and Maberly having given the tion. He had raised his hat to me signal by dropping his handkerchief, when we first met, and seemed as if each discharged his pistol at the wishing to address me, but, enraged same instant. Fortescue's aim was at his ingratitude and bypocrisy, I but too correct; his ball struck me, shewed no corresponding inclina- and I fell; the blood flowed copioustion, and he accordingly renounced ly from my breast, and in a few mohis intention, if indeed he had enter ments I became totally insensible to tained it. His eyes were now fixed all that was passing around me.
ΧΡΗ ΔΕΝ ΣΥΜΠΟΣΙΩ ΚΥΛΙΚΩΝ ΠΕΡΙΝΙΣΣΟΜΕΝΑΩΝ
PHOC. ap. Ath.
C. N. ap. Ambr.
Scene—The Leads of the Lodge—Present, North, TICKLER, the SHEPHERD,
This fancy beats a', and pruves o' itsell, sir, that you're a poet. In fine weather, leevin' on the leeds! And siccan an awnin'! No a threed o' cotton about it, or linnen either, but dome, wa’s, cornishes, and fringes-a' silk. Oh! but she's a tastefu' cretur that Mrs Gentle-for I see the touch o' her baun in the hangins, the festoonins, the droopins o’ the draperiesand it's a sair pity that ye twa, who are seen to be but ae speerit, are na likewise ae flesh. Pardon the allusion, Mr North, but you'll never be perfectly happy till she bears your name, or aiblins you'll tak' hers, my dear auld sir, and ca’ yoursells Mr and Mrs North Gentle; or gin you like better to gie hers the precedence, Mr and Mrs Gentle Christopher North. But either o' the twa would be characteristic and euphonous--for you're humane, sir, by nature, though by habit rather savage, and a' you want to saften you back into your original constitution is to be a husband
TICKLER, And a father.
SHEPHERD. As likely to be that as yoursell, Mr Tickler, and likelier too; and a' the warld would admire to see a bit canty callant or yelegant lassie trotting at his knee
A panorama! What? wad you wush to hae a panorama o'weans ?
NORTH. Poo-poo-my dear Shepherd-you wilfully misapprehend my meaning -look round you over land and sea!
I canna look farrer than the leeds. Oh! but it's a beautiful Conserva..
tory! I never afore saw an Orange-tree. And it's true what I hae read o'them-blossom and fruit on the same plant-nae doot an evergreenand in this caulder clime o' ours bricht wi' its gowden ba's as if we were in the Wast Indies !—What ca' ye thir?
These are mere myrtles.
Mere myrtles! Dinna say that again o' them-mere; an ungratefu’ word, o' a flowery plant a' fu' o' bonny white starnies—and is that their scent that I smell?
NORTH. The balm is from many breaths, my dear“James. Nothing that grows is without fragrance
Hooever fent. I fand that out when a toddler—for I used to fing awa' or drap whatever I pu'd that I thocht had nae smell-till ae day I began till suspect that the faute might lie in my ain nose, and no in the buds or leaves—and frae a thoosan' sma' experiments I was glad to learn it was saeand that there was a scent—as ye weel said the noo—in a' that grows. Wasna that kind in Nature! Hoo else could that real poet Tamson hae said, “ the air is bawm !”
TICKLER. I desiderate the smell of dinner.
SHEPHERD. What'n a sensual sentiment! The smell o' vittals is delicious whan the denner's gettin' dished, and during the time o' eatin', but for an hour or mair after the cloth has been drawn, the room to ma nose bas aye a close het smell, like that o' ingons. It's no the custom o' the kintra to leave wi' the leddies—but nae drawin'-room like the leeds.-What'n frutes !
Help yourself, James.
They are suspiciously dark in the colour-but perhaps you like the bitter
They're nae mair ceevil than yoursell—but genuine St Michaelers—and as they're but sma', half-a-dizzen o' them will sharpen the pallet for some o'thae American aipples that never put ane's teeth on edge-which is mair than you can say for Scotch anes, that are noo seldom sweeter than scribes.
Crabs. Mr North, we maun tak’tent what we're about, for it wou'd na answer weel to stoiter owre the edge o' the leeds ; nor yet to tummle down the trapdoor-stairs.
The companion-ladder, if you please, James.
Companion-ladder ? I suppose because only ae person can climb up at a time though there's room eneuch, that's true, for severals to fa' doon at ance--but the term’s nowtical, I ken—and you're a desperate cretur for thinkin' o' the sea.
Would that Tom Cringle were here—the best sketcher of sea-scenery that ever held a pen !
And painter too, sir.
I ken little mair, or aiblins less o' ships than Tam Cringle kens o' sheep -but in his pages I see them sailin' alang