Pagina-afbeeldingen
PDF
ePub
[ocr errors]

CHAPTER XXXIII.

may not dispute your words; but, as spiritually speakDeath distanti-No, alas! he's ever with us,

ing, you are still but a burner of bricks in Egypt, And shakes the dart at us in all our actings:

ignorant of the freedom of the saints; for, as was well He lurks within our cup, while we're in health ; Siis by our sick.bed, mocks our medicines ;

shown to me by that gifted man, Nicolaus SchætferWe cannot walk, or sit, or ride, or travel,

bach, who was martyred by the bloody Bishop of But Death is by to seize us when he lists.

Munster, he cannot sin who doth but execute that

The Spanish Father. which is predestined, since"From the agitating scene in the Queen's presence "Silence!" said the Lady, interrupting him,-“ Anchamber, the Lady of Lochleven retreated to her own swer me not with thy bold and presumptuous blasapartment

, and ordered the steward to be called before phemy, but hear me. Thou hast been long the servant her.

of our house" "Have they not disarmed thee, Dryfesdale?" she "The born servant of the Douglas--they have had said, on seeing him enter, accoutred, as usual, with the best of me--I served them since I left Lockerbie : sword and dagger.

I was then ten years old, and you may soon add the “No!" replied the old man; "how should they? - threescore to it.' Your ladyship, when you commanded me to ward, *Thy foul attempt has miscarried, so thou art said naught of laying down my arms; and, I think, guilty only in intention. It were a deserved deed to none of your menials, without your order, or your hang thee on the warder's tower; and yet, in thy preson's, dare approach Jasper Dryfesdale for such a sent mind, it were but giving a soul to Satan. 1 take purpose. --Shall I now give up my sword to you?- thine offer, then-Go hence-here is my packet-1 A is worth little now, for it has fought for your house will add to it but a line, to desire him to send me a ill it is worn down to old iron, like the pantler's old faithful servant or two to complete the garrison. Let shipping knife."

my son deal with you as he will. If thou art wise, You have attempted a deadly crime-poison un- thou wilt make for Lockerbie so soon as thy foot ler trust.

touches dry land, and let the packet find another "Under trust?--hem!-I know not what your lady- bearer; at all rates, look it miscarries not." ship thinks of it, but the world without thinks the trust "Nay, madam,' replied he-"I was born, as I said, was given you even for that very end; and you would the Douglas's servant, and I will be no corbie-mesaave been well of' had it been so ended as I proposed, senger in mine old age--your message to your son and you neither the worse nor the wiser."

shall be done as truly by me as if it concerned another "Wretch !" exclaimed the Lady, "and fool as well man's neck. I take my leave of your honour." as villain, who could not even execute the crime, he The Lady issued her commands, and the old man had planned!"

was ferried over to the shore to proceed on his ex"I bid as fair for it as man could,” replied Dry- traordinary pilgrimage. It is necessary the reader fesdale; "I went to a woman-a witch and a papist should accompany him on his journey, which Provi- If I found not poison, it was because it was other dence had determined should not be of long duration. wise predestined. I tried fair for it; but the half-done On arriving at the village, the steward, although his job may be clouted, if you will."

disgrace had transpired, was readily accommodated "Villain! I am even now about to send off an ex- with a horse, by the Chamberlain's authority; and press messenger to my son, to take order how thou the roads being by no means esteemed safe, he assoshouldst be disposed of. Prepare thyself for death, if ciated himself with Auchtermuchty, the common thou canst."

carrier, in order to travel in his company to Edinburgh. He that looks on death, Lady," answered Dryfes The worthy wagoner, according to the established dale, "as that which he may not shun, and which custom of all carriers, stage-coachmen, and other has its own fixed and certain hour, is ever prepared for persons in such public authority, from the earliest days it. He that is hanged in May will eat no flaunes* in to the present, never wanted good reasons for stopmidsummer-so there is the moan made for the old ping upon the road, as often as he would ; and the serving-man. But whom, pray I, send you on so fair place which had most captivation for him as a resting. an errand ?"

place was a change-house, as it was termed, not very "There will be no lack of messengers," answered distant from a romantic dell, well known by the name his mistress.

of Keirie Craigs. Attractions of a kind very different "By my hand, but there will,” replied the old man; from those which arrested the progress of John Auchyour castle is but poorly manned, considering the termuchty and his wains, still continue to hover round watches that you must keep, having this charge- this romantic spot, and none has visited its vicinity There is the warder, and two others, whom you dis- withoạt a desire to remain long and to return soon. carded for tampering with Master George; then for Arrived near his favourite houft, not all the authe warder's tower, the bailie, the donjon--five men thority of Dryfesdale (much diminished indeed by the mount each guard, and the rest must sleep for the rumours of his disgrace) could prevail on the carrier, most part in their clotnes. To send away another obstinate as the brutes which he drove, to pass on mạn, were to harass the sentinels to death--unthrifty without his accustomed halt, for which the distance misuse for a household. To take in new soldiers he had travelled furnished little or no pretence. Old were dangerous, the charge requiring tried men. 1 Keltie, the landlord, who has bestowed his name on see but one thing for it I will do your errand to Sir a bridge in the neighbourhood of his quondam dwellWilliam Douglas myself.”

ing, received the carrier with his usual festive corThat were indeed a resource !-And on what day diality, and adjourned with him into the house, under within twenty years would it be done?" said the Lady, pretence of important business, which, I believe, con

Even with the speed of man and horse," said sisted in their emptying together a mutchkin stoup of Dryfesdale; "for though I care not much about the usquebaugh. While the worthy host and his guest latter days of an old serving-man's life, yet I would were thus employed, the discarded steward, with a like to know as soon may

be, whether my neck is double portion of moroseness in his gesture and look, mine own or the hangman's.

walked discontentedly into the kitchen of the place, "Holdest thou thy own life so lightly?" said the which was occupied but by one guest. The stranger Lady.

was a slight figure, scarce above the age of boyhood. "Else I had recked more of that of others," said and in the dress of a page, but bearing an air ol the predestinarian.--"What is death ?—it is but ceas- baughty aristocratic boldness and even insolence in ing to live-And what is living ?-a weary return of his look and manner, that might have made Dryfes. light and darkness, sleeping and waking, being hun- dale conclude he had pretensions to superior rank. gered and eating. Your dead man needs neither had not his experience taught him how frequently candle nor can, neither fire nor feather-bed; and the these airs of superiority were assumed by the dotnes. ioiner's chest serves him for an eternal frieze-jerkin. tics and military retainers of the Scottish nobility,

[graphic]

w

"They that speak of Lochieven, and of those whom she had made a place of abomination ?--Nay, suur its walls contain," answered Dryfesdale, “speak of not from memy hand, though fast stiffening, has what

concerns the Douglas; and they who speak of yet force enough to hold thee-What dost thou aim what concerns the Douglas, do it at their peril." at--to wed this witch of Scotland?- I warrant thee,

"Do you speak from fear of them, old man, or thou mayst succeed-her heart and hand have been would you make a quarrel for them ?-I should have oft won at a cheaper rate, than thou, fool that thou deemed your age might have cooled your blood." art, would think think thyself happy to pay. Buc

"Never, while there are empty-pated coxcombs at should a servant of thy father's house have seen each corner to keep it warm."

thee embrace the fate of the idiot Darnley, or of the "The sight of thy gray hairs keeps mine cold,” said villain Bothwell—the fate of the murdered fool, or of the boy, who had risen up and now sat down again. he living pirate---while an ounce of ratsbane would

"It is well for thee, or I had cooled it with this have saved thee ?". holly-rod," replied the steward. “I think thou be'st "Think on God, Dryfesdale," said George Douglas one of those swashbucklers, who brawl in ale-houses and leave the utterance of those horrors- Repent and taverns; and who, if words were pikes, and thou canst-if not, at least be silent.--Seylon, aid me oaths were Andrew Ferraras, would soon place the to support this dying wretch, that he may compose religion of Babylon in the land once more, and the himself to better ihoughts, if it be possible. woman of Moab upon the throne."

“Seyton !" answered the dying man; “Seyton! Is Now, by Saint Bennet of Seyton," said the youth, it by a Seyton's hand that I fall at last ?-There is "I will strike thee on the face, thou foul-mouthed old something of retribution in that-since the house had railing heretic!"

nigh lost a sister by my deed." Fixing his fading Saint Bennet of Seyton!" echoed the steward; eyes on the youth, he added, "He hath her very rea"a proper warrant is Saint Bennet's, and for a pro- tures and presence !-Stoop down, youth, and let me per nest of wolf-birds like the Seytons !-I will arrest see thee closer-I would know thee when we meet in thee as a traitor to King James and the good Regent. yonder world, for homicides will herd together there, --Ho! John Auchtermuchty, raise aid against the and I have been one.” He pulled Seyron's face in King's traitor !"

spite of some resistance, closer to his own, looked at So saying, he laid his hand on the youth's collar, himn fixedly, and added, "Thou hast begun young and drew his sword. John Auchtermuchty looked-thy career will be the briefer-ay, thou wilt be met in, but, seeing the naked weapon, ran faster out than with, and that anon-a young plant never throve that he entered. Keltie, the landlord, stood by and helped was watered with an old man's blood.-Yet why neither party, only exclaiming, "Gentlemen! gentle- blame I thee? Strange tums of fate," he muttered, men! for the love of Heaven !" and so forth. Aceasing to address Seyton, "I designed what I could struggle ensued, in which the young man, chased at not do, and he has done what he did not perchancc Dryfesdale's boldness, and unable, with the ease he design.-Wondrous, that our will should ever oppose expected, to extricate himself from the old man's itself to the strong and uncontrollable ride of destiny determined grasp, drew his dagger, and, with the-that we should strive with the stream when we speed of light, dealt him three wounds in the breast might drift with the current! My brain will serve and body, the least of which was mortal. The old me to questior. it no farther-I would Schætferback man sunk on the ground with a deep groan, and the were here--yet why ?-I am on a course which the host set up a piteous exclamation of surprise. vessel can hold without a pilot.--Farewell, George of "Peace, ye bawling hound!" said the wounded Douglas-1 die true to thy father's house." Herell info steward;

are dagger-stabs and dying men such convulsions at these words, and shortly after expireth rarities in Scotland, that you should cry as if the Seyton and Douglas stood looking on the dying house were falling ?-Youth, I do not forgive thee, for man, and when the scene was closed, the former was there is naught betwixt us to forgive. Thou hast done the first to speak. As I live, Douglas, I mear.t not what I have done to more than one--And I suffer this, and am sorry; but he laid hands on me, and what I have seen them suffer-it was all ordained to compelled me to defend my freedom, as I best might, be thus and not otherwise. But if thou wouldst do with my dagger. If he were ten times thy friend and me right, thou will send this packet safely to the follower, I can but say that I am sorry." hands of Sir William of Douglas; and see that my “I blame thee not, Seyton,” said Douglas, "though memory suffer not, as if I would have loitered on I lament the chance. There is an overruling destiny mine errand for fear of my life."

above us, though not in the sense in which it was The youth, whose passion had subsided the instant viewed by that wretched inan, who, beguiled by some he had done the deed, listened with sympathy and foreign mystagogue, used the awful word as the ready attention, when another person, muffed in his cloak, apology for whatever he chose to do-we musi exaentered the apartment, and exclaimed—“Good God! mine the packet.". Dryfesdale, and expiring!"

They withdrew into an inner room, and remained " Ay, and Dryfesdale would that he had been dead," deep in consultation, until they were disturbed by the answered the wounded man, "rather than that his entrance of Keltie, who, with an embarrassed councars had heard the words of the only Douglas that tenance, asked Master George Douglas's pleasure ever was false--but yet it is better as it is. Good my respecting the disposal of the body. ** Your honour murderer, and the rest of you, stand back a little, and knows," he added, " that I make my bread by living let me speak with this unhappy apostate.-Kneel men, not by dead corpses; and old Mr. Dryfesiale down by me, Master George-- You have heard that I who was but a sorry customer while he was alive, failed in my attempt to take away that Moabitish occupies my public room now that he is deceased, and stumbling-block and her retinue - 1 gave them that can neither call for ale nor brandy." which I thought would have removed the templation "Tie a stone round his neck," said Seyron, "and out of thy path-and this, though I had other reasons when the sun is down, have him to the Loch of Ora, to show to thy mother and others, I did chiefly pur- heave him in, and let him alone for finding out the pose for love of thee."

boitom." · For the love of me, base poisoner!" answered “Under your favour, sir,'' said George Donglas, Douglas, "woulds: thou have committed so horri. “it shall not be so. - Keltie, thou art a true fellow 10 ble, so unprovoked a murder, and mentioned my name me, and thy having been so shall advantage thee with it???

Send or take the body to the chapel at Scotland's * And wherefore not, George of Douglas ?" an. Wall

, or to the church of Ballingry, and tell what swered Dryfesdale. "Breath is now scarce with me, tale ihou wilt of his having fallen in a brawl nith but I would spend my last gasp on this argument. some unruly guests of thine. Auchterruchty knop Hast thou noi, despite the honour thou owest to thy naught else, nor are the times so peaceful as to admit parents, the faith that is due to thy religion, the truth close looking into such gecounts. That is due to thy King, been so carried away by the "Nay, let him tell the truth,” said Seyton," so far charms of this beautiful sorceress, that thou woulds! as it harms not our scheme:-Say that Henry Seytoa gave tielped her to escape from her prison-house, and met with him, my,good fellow; I care noi a brass icnt her thine arın again to ascend ihe throne, which 'Doddle for the feud.

[ocr errors]

"A feud with the Douglas was ever to be feared, they are now about to try how famine will work
however," said George, displeasure mingling with his upon us.
natural deep gravity of manner.

Lady Fleming was somewhat alarmed at this sur"Not when the best of the name is on my side," mise, but comforted herself by observing, that the replied Seyton.

chimney of the kitchen had reeked that whole day in *Alas! Henry, if thou meanest me, I am but half a manner which contradicted the supposition.a Douglas in this emprize--half head, half heart, and Catherine Seyton presently exclaimed, 'They were half hand.-But I will think on one who can never be bearing the dishes across the court, marshallea hy tlie forgotten, and be all, or more than any of my ances. Lady Lochleven herself

, dressed out in her lughes: tors was ever.-Keltie, say it was Henry Seyton did and stiffest ruff, with her partlet and sleeves of cyprus, the deed; but beware, not word of me!-Lei Auch- and her huge old-fashioned farthingale of crimson termuchiy carry this packet” (which he had resealed velvet." with his own signet) "to my father at Edinburgh ; "I believe on my word,” said the page, approach. and here is to pay for the funeral expenses, and thy ing the window also, it was in that very farthingale loss of custon.

that she captivated the heart of gentle King Jamie, And the washing of the floor," said the landlord, which procured our poor Queen her precious bargain which will be an extraordinary job; for blood, they of a brother." say, will scarcely ever cleanse out.

"That may hardly be, Master Roland," answered But as for your plan," said George of Douglas, the Lady Fleming, who was a great recorder of the addressing Seyton, as if in continuation of what they changes of fashion, "since the farthingales came first had been before treating of, "it has a good face; but, in when the Queen Regent went to Saint Andrews, under "our favour, you are yourself 100 hot and too after the battle of pinkie, and were then called Vertu. young besides other reasons which are much against gardins”. your p uying the part you propose.”

She would have proceeded farther in this inportant "We will consult the Father Abbot upon it,” said discussion, but was interrupted by the entrance of the the youth, "Do you ride to Kinross to-night ?". Lady of Lochleven, who preceded the servants bearing

-Ay-s0 I purpose," answered Douglas; "the the dishes, and formally discharged the duty of tasuing night will be dark, and suits a mulfled man.* --Keltie, each of them. Lady Fleming regretted, in courtly I forgot, there should be a stone laid on that man's phrase, that the Lady of Lochleven should have ungrave, recording his name, and his only merit, which dertaken so troublesome an office. was being a faithful servant to the Douglas."

After the strange incident of this day, madam," “What religion was the man of ?'' said Seyton; said the Lady, "it is necessary for my honour and " he used words which made me fear I have sent Sa- that of my son, that I partake whatever is offered to tan a subject before his time.".

my involuntary guest. Please to inform the Lady “I can tell you little of thal,” said George Douglas; Mary that I attend her commands." "he was noted for disliking both Rome and Geneva, "Her Majesty," replied Lady Fleming, with due and spoke of lights he had learned among the fierce emphasis on the word," shall be informed that the sectaries of Lower Germany-an evil doctrine it was, Lady Lochleven waits. if we judge by the fruits. God keep us from presump- Mary appeared instantly, and addressed her hostess tuously judging of Heaven's secrets !"

with courtesy, which even approached to something Amen!" said the young Seyton, “and from meet- more cordial. “This is nobly done, Lady Lochleven, ing any encounter this evening.

she said ; " for though we ourselves apprehend no “It is not thy wont to pray so," said George Dou- danger under your roof, our ladies have been inuch glas.

alarmed by this morning's chance, and our meal will "No! I leave that to you," replied the youth, I be the more cheerful for your presence and assurance. " when you are seized with scruples of engaging with Please you to sit down." your father's vassals. But I would fain have this old The Lady Lochleven obeyed the Queen's com man's blood off these hands of mine ere I shed more mands, and Roland performed the office of carver and --I will confess to the Abbot to-night, and I trust to attendant as usual." But, notwithstanding what the have light penance for ridding the earth of such a Queen had said, the meal was silent and unsocial; miscreant. "All I sorrow for is, that he was not a and every effort which Mary made to excite some score of years younger-He drew steel first, however, conversa uon, died away under the solemn and chill that is one comfort."

replies of the Lady of Lochleven. At length it became plain that the Queen, who had considered these

advances as a condescension on her part, and who CHAPTER XXXIV.

piqued herself justly on her powers of pleasing, beAy, Pedro, -Come you here with mask and lantern,

came offended at the repulsive conduct of her hostess. Ladder of ropes and uther moonshine tools

After looking with a significant glance at Lady FlemWhy, youngster, thou mayst cheat the old duenna, ing and Catherine, she slightly shrugged her shoulFlatter the waiting woman, bribe the valet;

ders, and remained silent. A pause ensued, at the end But know, that I her father play the gryphion,

of which the Lady Douglas spoke : 1 perceive Tameless and sleeplers, proor io fraud or bribe, And guard the hidden treasure of her beauty.

madam, I am a check on the mirth of this fair comThe Spanish Father. pany. I pray you to excuse me I am a widow-.

alone here in a most perilous charge-deserted by my The tenor of our tale carries us back to the Castle grandson-betrayed by my servant-I am litile wor. of Lochleven, where we take up the order of events thy of the grace you do me in offering me a seat at on the same remarkable dav on which Dryfesdale had your table, where I am aware that wit and pastime been dismissed from the castle. It was past noon, the are usually expected from the guests." usual hour of dinner, yet no preparations seemed made "If the Lady Lochleven is serious," said the Queen, for the Queen's entertainment. Mary herself had we wonder by what simplicity she expects our preretired into her own apartment, where she was closely sent meals to be seasoned with mirth. If she is a engaged in writing. Her attendants were together in widow, she lives honoured and uncontrolled, at the the presence-chamber, and much disposed to specu- head of her late husband's household. But I know at late on the delay of the dinner; for it may be recol- least of one widowed woman in the world, before lected that their breakfast had been interrupted. "I whom the words desertion and betrayal ought never believe in my conscience," said the page, "ihat hav- to be mentioned, since no one has been made so bit ing found the poisoning scheme miscarry, by having terly acquainted with their import.". gone to the wrong merchant for their deadly wares, "I meant not, madam, to remind you of your mis.

* Generally a disguised man; originally one who wears the fortunes, by the mention of mine," answered the Lady cloak or mantle muttled round the lower part of the face to Lochleven, and there was again a deep silence. conceal his countenanco. I have on an ancient piece of iron Mary at length addressed Lady Fleming, We can the representation of a robber thus accoutred, endeavouring to make buis way into a house, and opposed by a mastitt, to whom commit no deadly sins here, ma bonne, where we are he in vain offers fuod. The motto is Spernit dong ndes. It is

so well warded and looked to; but if we could, this part of a fire grate said to ha' belonged to Archbishop Sharpe. Carthusian silence might be useful as a kind of nen. ince. If thou nast adjusted my wimple amiss, my "You see, madam, the bloody maxims and practica Fleming, or if Çatherine hath made a wry stitch in of the deluded papists," said Lady Lochleven. her broidery, when she was thinking of something "Nay, madam," replied the Queen, “say rather you else than her work, or if Roland Græine hath missed see the deserved judgment of Heaven upon a Calvina wild-duck on the wing, and broke a quarrel-pane* istical poisoner." of glass in the turret window, as chanced to him a Drysesdale was not of the Church of Geneva, o weck since, now is the time to think on your sins and of Scotland,” said the Lady Lochleven, hastily. to repent of them."

"He was a heretic, however,” replied Mary; "thero "Madam, I speak with all reverence," said the Lady is but one true and unerring guide; the others lead Lochleven; "but I am old, and claim the privilege of alike into error." age. Methinks your followers might find fitter sub, "Well, madam, I trust it will reconcile you to your iects for repentance than the trifles you mention, and retreat, that this deed shows the temper of those who so mention-once more, I crave your pardon-as if night wish you at liberty. Bloodthirsty tyrants, and you jested with sin and repentance both.".

cruel man-quellers are they all, from the Clan-Ranald "You have been our taster, Lady Lochleven," said and Clan-Tosach in the north, to the Ferniherst and the Queen, "I perceive you would eke out your duty Buccleuch in the south-the murdering Seytons in with that of our Father Confessor--and since you the east, and" choose that our conversation should be serious, may Methinks, madam, you forget that I am a Seyton?" I ask you why the Regent's promise--since your son said Catherine, withdrawing her kerchief from her so styles himself-has not been kept to me in that face, which was now coloured with indignation. respect? From time to time this promise has been "If I had forgot it fair mistress, your forward bear renewed, and as constantly broken. Methinks those ing would have reminded me," said Lady Lochleven. who pretend themselves to so much gravity and sanc- *If my brother has slain the villain that would tity, should not debar from others the religious suc- have poisoned his Sovereign, and his sister," said cours which their consciences require.

Catherine, "I am only so far sorry that he should "Madam, the Earl of Murray was indeed weak have spared the hargman his proper task. For aught enough," said the Lady Lochleven, " to give so far further, had it been the best Douglas in the land, he way to your unhappy prejudices, and a religioner of would have been honoured in falling by the Seyton's the Pope presented himself on his part at our town of sword.” Kinross. But the Douglas is Lord of his own castle, "Farewell, gay mistress," said the Lady of Lochand will not permit his threshold to be darkened, no, leven, rising to withdraw; "it is such maidens as not for a single moment, by an emissary belonging to you, who make giddy-fashioned revellers and deadly the Bishop of Rome."

brawlers. Boys must needs rise, forsooth, in the "Methinks it were well, then," said Mary," that grace of some sprightly damsel, who thinks to dance my Lord Regent would send me where there is less through life as through a French galliard." She scruple and more charity."

then made her reverence to the Queen, and added, “In this, madam," answered the Lady Lochleven, "Do you also, madam, fare you well, till curfew "you mistake the nature both of charity and of reli- time, when I will make, perchance, more bold than gion. Charity giveth to those who are in delirium the welcome in attending upon your supper-board.medicaments which may avail their health, but refuses Come with me, Randal, and tell me more of this those enticing cates and liquors which please the cruel fact.” palate, but augment the disease."

""Tis an extraordinary chance," said the Queen, "This your charity, Lady Lochleven, is pure cruelty, when she had departed; "and, villain as he was under the hypocriucal disguise of friendly care. I would this man had been spared time for repentance. am oppressed amongst you as if you meant the de- We will cause something to be done for his soul, struction both of my body and soul; but Heaven we ever attain our liberty, and the Church will permit will not endure such iniquity for ever, and they who such grace to a heretic.-But, tell me, Catherine, are the most active agents in it may speedily expect ma mignonne-this brother of thine, who is so frack, their reward.”

as the fellow called him, bears he the same wonderful At this moment Randal entered the apartment, with likeness to thee as formerly ?" a look so much perturbed, that the Lady Fleming "If your Grace means in temper, you know wheuttered a faint scream, the Queen was obviously start ther I am so frack as the serving-man spoke himn." led, and the Lady of Lochleven, though too bold and "Nay, thou art prompt enough in ali reasonable proud to evince any marked signs of alarm, asked conscience,” replied the Queen; “But thou art my hastily what was the matter?

own darling notwithstanding-But I meant, is this “Dryfesdale has been slain, madam," was the reply, thy twin-brother as ļike thee in form and features as "murdered as soon as he gained the dry land by young formerly? I remember thy dear mother alleged it as Master Henry Seyton."

a reason for destining thee to the veil, that were ye It was now Catherine's turn to start and grow pale, both to go at large, thou wouldst syrely get ihe credit "Has the murderer of the Douglas's vassal escaped ?" of some of thy brother's mad pranks." was the Lady's hasty question.

I believe, madam," said Catherine, "there are "There was none to challenge him but old Keltie, some unusually, simple people even yet, why can and the carrier Auchtermuchty," replied Randal; hardly distinguish betwixt us, especially when, for "unlikely men to stay one of the frackesit youths in diversion's sake, my brother hath taken a female Scotland of his years, and who was sure to have dress," - and, as she spoke, she gave a quick glance friends and partakers at no great distance."

at Roland Græme, to whom this conversation convey "Was the deed completed?'' said the Lady. ed a ray of light, welcome as ever streamed into the

'Done, and done thoroughly,” said Randal; "a dungeon of a captive through the door which opened Şeyton seldom strikes twice-But the body was not to give him freedom. despoiled, and your honour's packet goes forward to He must be a handsome cavalier this brother of Edinburgh by Auchtermuchty, who leaves Keltie- thine, if he be so like you," replied Mary. "He was Bridge early to-morrow-marry, he has drunk two in France, I think, for these late years, so that I saw bottles of aquavitæ to put the fright out of his head, him not at Holyrood." and now sleeps them off beside his cart-avers.

" His looks, madam, have never been much found There was a pause when this fatal tale was told. fault with," answered Catherine Seyton; "but I l'he Queen and Lady Douglas looked on each other, would he had less of that angry and heady spiri as if each thought how she could best turn the inci- which evil times have encouraged amongst our olent to her own advantage in the controversy, which young nobles. God knows, I grudge not his life in was continually kept alive betwixt thera-Catherine your Grace's quarrel; and love him for the willingSeyton kept her kerchief at her eyes, and wept. ness with which he labours for your rescue. But • Diamond-shaped ; literally, formed like the head of a guar. servingman, and stain at once his name with such a

wherefore should he brawl with an old ruffianty u, or arrow for the crossbow.

broil, and his hands with the blood of an old and • Cart-horses.

ignoble wretch ?''

[ocr errors]

Boldest-most forward.

* Nay, be patient, Catherine; I will not have thee “Nay, fear nothing for that, fair Catherine," traduce my gallant young knight. With Henry for swered the page "I am well able to protect myself methinks I am like a princess of romance, who may That is to say, " replied she, “that you would shortly set at defiance the dungeons and the weapons fight with my twin brother to show your regard for of all wicked sorcerers. But my head aches with the his sister? I have heard the Queen say, in her sad agitation of the day. Take me La Mer des Histoires, hours, that men are, in love or in hate, the most and resume where we left off on Wednesday.-Our selfish animals of creation; and your carelessness in Lady help thy head, girl, or rather may she

help thy this matter looks very like it. But be not so much heart !-1 asked thee for the Sea of Histories, and abashed-you are no worse than others." thou hast brought La Cronique d' Amour

You do me injustice, Catherine," replied the Once embarked upon the Sea of Histories, the page, I thought but of being threatened with a Queen continued her labours with her needle, while sword, and did not remember in whose hand your Lady Fleming and Catherine read to her alternately fancy had placed it. If your brother stood before me, for two hours.

with his drawn weapon in his hand, so like as he is is personlarind' in my heart yo resist tinued in secret intent upon the Chronicle of Love my life's blood ere notwithstanding the censure which the

Queen him to his injury. seemed to pass upon that branch of study. He now * Alas!" said she "it is not my brother alone. But remembered a thousand circumstances of voice and you remember only the singular circumstances in manner,

which, had his own prepossession been less, which we have met in equality, and I may say in inmust surely have discriminated the brother from the timacy. You think not, that whenever I re-enter my sister; and he felt

ashamed, that, having as it were father's house, there is a gulf between us you may by heart every particular of Catherine's gestures, not pass, but with peril of your life. Your only known words, and manners, he should have thought her, relative is of wild and singular habits, of a hostile notwithstanding her spirits and levity, capable of and broken clan the rest of your lineage unknown assuming the bold step loud tones, and forward forgive me that I speak what is the undeniable

truth." brother's hasty and masculine character. He en- "Love, my beautiful Cathering, despises genealodeavoured repeatedly to catch a glance

of Catherine's gies," answered Roland Gråme. eye, that he might judge how she was disposed to "Love may, but so will not the Lord Seyton, ook upon him

since he had made the discovery, but rejoined the damsel. he was unsuccessful; for Catherine, when she was The Queen, thy mistress and mine, she will inter; not reading herself, seemed to take so much interest cede. 0! drive me not from you at the moment I in the exploits of the Teutonic knights against the thought myself most happy and if I shall aid her Heathens of Esthonia and Livonia, that he could not deliverance

, said not yourself that you and she would surprise her eye even for a second. But when, closing become my debtors ?" the book, the

Queen commanded their attendance in "All Scotland will become your debtors,” said thgarden, Mary, perhaps of set purpose, (for Ro-Catherine; "but for the active effects you might lund's anxiety conld not escape so practised an ob- hope from our gratitude, you must remember I.am server,) afforded him a favourable opportunity of wholly subjected to my father; and the poor Queen accosling his

mistress. The Queen commanded them is for a long time, more likely to be dependent on the to a little distance, while she engaged Lady

Fleming pleasure of the nobles of her party, than possessed of in a particular and private conversation; the subject power to control them.” whereof, we learn from another authority, to have "Be it so," replied Roland; "my deeds shall conbeen the comparative excellence of the high standing trol prejudice itself—it is a bustling world, and I will ruti and the falling band, Roland must have been have my share. The Knight of Avenel, high as he duller and more sheepish than ever was youthful now stands, rose from as obscure an origin as mine. lover, if he had not endeavoured to avail himself of Ay!" said Catherine, there spoke the doughty this opportunity.

knight of romance, that will cut his way to the im"I have been longing this whole evening to ask prisoned princess, through fiends and fiery dragons ? of you, fair Catherine," said the page," how foolish "But if I can set the princess at large, and proand unapprehensive you must have thought me, in cure her the freedom of her own choice," said the being capable to mistake betwixt your brother and page,

"where, dearest

Catherine, will that choice The circumstance does indeed little honour to Release the princess from duresse, and she will my rustic manners," said Catherine, since those of tell you," said the damsel; and breaking off the cona wild voung man were so readily mistaken for mine. versation abruptly, she joined the Queen so suddenly, But I shall grow wiser in time, and with that view that Mary exclaimed, half aloud I am deterinined not to think of your follies, but to "No more tidings of evil import-no dissension, I

trust, in my limited household? Then looking on " It will be the lighter subject of meditation of the Catherine's blushing cheek, and Roland's expanded two," said Roland. * know not that," said Catherine, very gravely; all is well-Ma petite mignonne, go to my apartment

brow and glancing,eve." No-no," she said, "I see I fear we have been both unpardonably foolish.” I have been mad,” said Roland," unpardonably der box.

and fetch me down--let me see ay, fetch my pomanmad. But you, lovely Catherine

And having thus disposed of her attendant in the " I," said Catherine, in the same tone of unusual manner best qualified to hide her confusion, the Queen gravity, "have too long suffered you to use such added, speaking apart to Roland, "I should at least expressions towards me--1fear. I can permit it no have two grateful subjects

of Catherine and you; for longer, and I blame myself for the pain it may give what sovereign but Mary would aid true love so willyou.

** And what can have happened so suddenly to petite Aanberge a rien there. Well, short time will change our relation to each other, or alter with such show r all the good be true that is protested to us! sudden cruelty, your whole deportment to me?" hear them toll curfew from Kinross. To our cham"I can hardly tell," replied Catherine, unless it ber—this old dame hath promised to be with

us again is that the events of the day have impressed on my at our evening meal. Were it not for the hope of mind the necessity of our observing more distance to speedy deliverance, her presence would drive me dis each other. A chance similar to that which betrayed tracted.

But I will be patient. to Henry the terms you have

used to me: and, alas! "I would I could be Henry, with all a man's privi to you the existence of my brother, may make known I profess," said Catherine, who just then entercii his whole conduct, as well as his deed this day

A broken clan was one who had no chief able to find secu makes nie ton justly apprehensive of the conse- rity for their mod behaviour-1 clan of outlovas and ina

Grærnes of the Deba tenhle Lend were in that condition.

You

[ocr errors]

correct my own.

[ocr errors]

quences."

« VorigeDoorgaan »