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templation of scenes with which we our gleamed across his mind. " Does this selves have little or no connection. The belong to me?” he added with some eaantiquary, however, was not to be gerness, to veil these other and less easy balked. He looked at his young com- sentiments. panion with his head on one side like a “I know nothing about that,” said Mr. critical bird. “You are paying no atten. Bannatyne with a slight tone of contempt. tion to me,” he said half pathetically; . But it was the Lord of Methven's lodg. “but 'cod, man (I beg your pardon, mying in the days when Scots lords lived in lord !), ye shall be interested before I'm the Canongate of Edinburgh.” Then he done."

With this threat he hurried Wal-added, " There is a fine mantelpiece up ter along to the noisiest and most squalid stairs which you had better see. Oh, popart of that noble but miserable street body will have any objection, a silver key which is the pride of Edinburgh, and opens every door hereabout. If it should stopped short before a small but deep happen to be yours, my lord, and I were doorway, entering from a short fight you," said the eager little man, “I would of outside stairs. The door was black clear out the whole clanjamíry and have with age and neglect, and showed a sort it thoroughly cleaned, and make a museof black cave within, out of which all kind um of the place. You would pick up of dingy figures were futtering. The many a curious bit as the auld houses go aspect of the muddy stairs and ragged down. This way, to the right, and mind wayfarers was miserable enough, but the the hole in the wall. The doors are all mouldings of the lintel, and the spiral carved, if you can see them for the dirt, staircase half visible at one side, were of and you'll not often see a handsomer a grim antiquity, and so was the lofty ten- room.” ement above, with its many rows of win- It was confusing at first to emerge out dows and high-stepped gable.

of the gloom of the stairs into the light of “Now just look bere,” said Mr. Ban the great room, with its row of windows natyne, “these arms will tell their own guiltless of either blind or curtain, which story.'

was in possession of a group of ragged There was a projecting boss of rude, children, squatting about in front of the half-obliterated carving on the door. deep, old-fashioned chimney, over which

“I cannot make head nor tail of it,” said a series of elaborate carvings rose to the the young man; his patience was begin- roof. The room had once been panelled, ning to give way.

but half of the woodwork had been " Lord Erradeen,” cried the other with dragged down, and the rest was in a deenthusiasm, “this is worth your fattest plorable state. The contrast of the squal. farm; it is of more interest than half your or and wretchedness about him, with the inheritance; it is as historical as Holy: framework of the ancient, half-ruined rood. You are just awfully insensible, you grandeur, at once excited and distressed young men, and think as little of the rel. Walter. There was a bed, or rather a ics that gave you your consequences in heap of something covered with the bright the world He paused a little in patches of an old quilt, in one corner, in the fervor of his indignation, then added, another an old corner cupboard fixed into “ But there are allowances to be made for the wall, a rickety table and two chairs in you as you were bred in England, and the middle of the room. The solemn, unperhaps are little acquainted. My lord, sheltered windows, like so many hollow, this is Me'even's Close, bearing the name staring eyes, gazed out through the cold even now in its decay. It was my Lord veil of the mist upon the many windows Methven's lodging in the old time. Bless of an equally tall house on the other side me! can your young eyes not read the of the street, the view being broken by a motto that many people have found so projecting pole thrust forth from the niid. significant? Look here,” cried Walter's dle one, upon which some dingy clothes cicerone, tracing with his stick the half. were hanging to dry. The children hung effaced letters, " Baithe Sune and Syne.” together, getting behind the biggest of

Young Lord Erradeen began, as was them, a ragged, handsome girl, with wild, natural, to feel ashamed of himself. He elf locks, who confronted the visitors with felt a pang of discomfort too, for this cer- an air of defiance. The flooring was tainly bore no resemblance to the trim broken in many places, and dirty beyond piece of modern Latin about the con- description. Walter selt it intolerable to quering power of virtue which was on his be bere, to breathe the stifling atmofather's seal. The old possibility that he sphere, to contemplate this hideous form might turn out an impostor after all of decay. He thought some one, was

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229 looking at him from behind the torn pan. I just stands out in every hair, for all the els. “This is horrible," he said. "Igrime and the smoke. It is the legend hope I have nothing to do with it.” Dis beneath the shield that is most interest. gust and a shivering, visionary dread was ing in the point of view of the family. in his voice.

It's a sort of rhyming slogan, or rather it's “ Your race has had plenty to do with an addition to the old slogan, ' Live, Me'. it,” said the antiquary. It was here, even,' which everybody knows." they say, that the warlock lord played most Walter felt a iningled attraction and of his pliskies. It was his warm study repulsion which held him there undecided of deals' like that they made for John in front of the great old fireplace, like Knox on the other side of the street. Hercules or any other hero between the These walls have seen strange sights : symbolical good and evil. He had a great and if you believe in witchcraft, as one of curiosity to know what all this meant, your name ought

mingled with an angry disinclination im• Why should one of my name believe possible to put into words. Mr. Bannain witchcraft? It appears," he said, with tine, who of course knew nothing of what petulance, “that I know very little about was going on in bis mind, took upon

himself the congenial task of tracing the " So I should have said," said the an. inscription out. It was doggerel, bad tiquary dryly. “But no doubt you have enough to satisfy every aspiration of an heard of your great ancestor, the warlock antiquary. It was as follows: lord? I'am not saying that I admire the

Né fleyt atte Helle, né fond for Heeven, character in the abstract; but an ances.

Live, Me'even. tor like that is fine for a family. He was mixed up in all the doings of the “ You will see how it fits in with time, and he made his own out of every the other motto,” cried the enthusiast, one of them. And then he's a grand "Baithe Sune and Syne,' which has a historical problem to the present day, grand kind of indifference to time and all which is no small distinction. You never its changes that just delights me. And heard of that? Oh, my lord, that's just the other has the same sentiment, 'Neinot possible ! He was the one whosether frightened for bell nor keen about death was never proved nor nothing about heaven.' It is the height of impiety,” he bim, where he was buried, or the nature said, with a subdued chuckle; “but that's of his end, or if he ever came to an end not inappropriate – it's far from inappro. at all; his son would never take the title, priate; it is just in fact, what might have and forbade his son to do it: but by the been expected. The warlock lord time you have got to the second genera- “ I hope you won't think me ungratetion you are not minding so much. I no. ful,” cried Walter, “but I don't think I ticed that the late lord would never enter want to know any more about that old into conversation on the subject. The ruffian. There is something in the place family has always been touchy about it. that oppresses me.” He took out from It was the most complete disappearance I his pocket a handful of coins. (It was can recollect hearing of. Most historical with the pleasure of novelty that he shook puzzles clear themselves up in time: but them together, gold and silver in one this never was cleared up. Of course it sbining heap, and threw half a dozen of has given rise to legends. You will per- them to the little group before the fire.) haps be more interested in the family “ For Heaven's sake let us get out of legends, Lord Erradeen ? "

this !” he said nervously. He could not * Not at all,” said Walter abruptly. “I have explained the sentiment of horror, have told you I know very little about the almost of fear, that was in his mind. “If family. What is it we came to see? - not it is mine,” he said, as they went down this wretched place which makes me sick. the spiral stair, groping against the black, The past should carry off its shell with it, humid wall, “ I shall pull it down and let and not leave those old clothes to rot in some air and clear the filth away.”' here."

“God bless me!” cried the antiquary " Oh!” cried liitle Mr. Bannatyne, in horror and distress, "you will never do with a shudder. “I never suspected Ithat. The finest street in Christendom, was bringing in an iconoclast. That man- and one of the best houses! No, no, Lord telpiece is a grand work of art, Lord Erra. Erradeen, you will never do that!deen. Look at that serpent twisted about When Mr. Bannatyne got back to the among the drapery - you'll not see such club, be expressed an opinion of Lord work now; and the ermine on that mantle Erradeen, which we are glad to believe

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further experience induced him to modify: his power. No doubt it was arranged He declared that old Bob Milnathort had that he should be brought to that intolgiven him such a handful as he had not erable place, and all the spells of the past undertaken for years. “Just a young called forth to subdue him by his inagCockney!” he said, a stupid English. ination if never through his intellect. man! with no more understanding of his. What did they take him for? He was no tory, or even of the share his own race credulous Celt, but a sober-minded Enhas had in it than that collie dog-in- glishman, not likely to let his imagination deed, Yarrow is far more intelligent, and run away with him, or to be led by the a brute that is conscious of a fine descent. nose by any diablerie, however skilful. I am not saying that there are not fine They might make up their minds to it, lads among some of those English-bred that their wiles of this kind would meet young men, and some that have the sense with no

Walter was by no to like old-fashioned things. But this means sure who he meant by they, or why young fellow is just a Cockney, he is just they should endeavor to get him into their a young cynic. Pull down the house, said power; but he wanted something to find he! Spoil the first_street in Europe ! fault with some way of shaking off the We'll see what the Town Council not burden of a mental weight which he did to say the Woods and Forests — will say not understand, which filled him with disto that, my young man ! And I hope I comfort and new sensations which he have Bailie Brown under my thumb!” could not explain. He could almost have the enraged antiquary cried.

supposed (had he believed in mesmerism, Meantime Walter made his way through according to the description given of it the dark streets in a tremor of excitement in fiction) that he was under some mes. and dislike of which he could give no ex. meric influence, and that some expert, planation to himself. Why should the old some adept, was trying to decoy him withhouse have affected him so strongly? in some fatal circle of impression. But There was no reason for it that he knew. he set his teeth and all his power of rePerhaps there was something in the sud- sistance against it. They should not find denness of the transition from the combim an easy prey. fortable English prose of Sloebury to all the old-world scenes and suggestions which had a disenchanting effect upon The drawing-room in Moray Place him. He had not been aware that he was seemed in the partial gloom very large more matter of fact than another, less and lofty. It must be remembered that likely to be affected by romance and his. Walter was accustomed only to the comtorical associations. But so it had turned paratively small rooms of an English

The grimy squalor of the place, the country town where there was nobody bad atmosphere, the odious associations, who was very rich — and the solid, tall had either destroyed for him all the more Edinburgh houses were imposing to him. attractive prejudices of long family de. There was no light but that which came scent, and a name which had descended from a blazing fire, and which threw an through many generations or else, irregular ruddy illumination upon every: something more subtle still, some internal thing, but no distinct vision. He saw the influence had communicated that loathing tall windows indefinitely draped, and lookand sickness of the heart. Which was it? ing not unlike three colossal women in He could not tell. He said to himself, abundant vague robes standing against with a sort of scorn at himself, that prob. the wall. In a smaller room behind, ably the bourgeois atmosphere of Sloe- which opened from this, the firelight was bury had made him incapable of those still brighter, but still only partially lit imaginative flights for which the highest up the darkness. It showed, however, a and the lowest classes have a mutual apti- table placed near the fire, and glowing tude. The atmosphere of comfort and with bright reflections from its silver and respectability was against it. This idea china; and just beyond that, out of the rather exasperated him, and he dwelt depths of what looked like an elongated upon it with a natural perversity because easy chair, a piece of whiteness, which be bated to identify himself as one of that was a female countenance. Walter, constolid middle class which is above or be- fused at his entrance, made out after a neath fanciful impulses. Then he began moment that it was a lady, half reclining to wonder whether all this might not be on a sort of invalid chaise longue, who part of a deep-laid scheme on the part of raised herself slightly to receive him, with oid Milnathort to get him, Walter, under a flicker of a pair of white, attenuated

CHAPTER VIII.

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hands. “You are very welcome, Lord This was a sentiment so entirely unlike Erradeen,” she said, in a sweet, feeble what Walter had expected to hear, that voice. “Will you excuse my rising – for for the moment it took from him all power I'm a great invalid — and come and sit of reply. 6. That would be hard upon andown here beside me? I have been look tiquity," he said at length, "and I don't ing for you this half-hour past.” The know what the artists would say, or our hand which she held out to him was so friend Mr. Bannatyne." thin that he scarcely felt its light pres.

“ He would have me burnt for a witch,” “If you have no objection," said the invalid said, with a sweet little laugh; Miss Milnathort, "we will do with the and then she added, " Ah, it is very well firelight for a little longer. It is my fa. to talk about art; but there was great vorite light. My brother sent me word I sense in that saying of the old Reformwas to expect you, and after your cold ers, ' Ding down the nest, and the crows walk you will be glad of a cup of tea.” will flee away. She did not pause for any reply, but went “ I expected,” said Walter, “to find you on, drawing the table towards her, and full of reverence for the past, and faith arranging everything with the skill of an in mysteries and family secrets, and — accustomed hand. “I am just a cripple how can I tell? - ghosts perhaps." He creature,” she said. “I have had to learn laughed, but the invalid did not echo his to serve myself in this way, and Robert is laugh. And this brought a little chill and extraordinarily thoughtful. There is not check to his satisfaction. The sense that a mechanical convenience invented but I one has suddenly struck a jarring note is have it before it is well out of the brain highly uncomfortable when one is young. that devised it; and that is how I get on Walter put back his chair a little, not reso well with no backbone to speak of. flecting that the firelight revealed very All this is quite new to you,” she said, little of his sudden blush. quickly shaking off one subject and tak: “ I have had no experience in what you ing up another, with a little swift move. call ghosts,” she said gravely. I cannot, ment of her head.

to tell the truth, see any argument against “ Do you mean Edinburgh, or "them, except just that we don't see them;

I mean everything," said the lady. and I think that's a pity for my part.” “ Edinburgh will be just a bit of scenery To this, as it was a view of the subject in the drama that is opening upon you, equally new to him, Walter made no reand here am I just another tableau. Iply. can see it all myself with your young eyes. “Take you care, Lord Erradeen,” she You can scarcely tell if it is real.” resumed hastily, “not to let yourself be

“ That is true enough,” said Walter, persuaded to adopt that sort of nomen"and the scenery all turns upon the plot clature.” There was a touch of Scotch so far: which is what it does not always in her accent that naturalized the long do upon the stage.”

word, and made it quite in keeping. " Ay!” said Miss Milnathort, with a “Conclude nothing to be a ghost till you tone of surprise, “and how may that be ? cannot account for it in any other way. I don't see any particular significance in There are many things that are far more Holyrood. It is where all you English surprising,” she said; then, shaking off strangers go, as if Edinburgh had no the subject once more with that little meaning but Queen Mary."

movement of her head, “ You are not tak. “ We did not go to 'Holyrood. Weing your tea. You must have had a tiring went to Lord Methven's Lodging, as 1 day after travelling all night. That is hear it is called: which was highly appro- one of the modern fashions I cannot make priate."

up my mind to. They tell me the railway “Dear me,” said the lady, “ do you is not so wearying as the long coach jourmean to tell me that John Bannatyne had neys we used to make in the old time.” that sense in him ? I will remember that

can scarcely remember the the next time Robert calls him an auld old coach journeys ? Why, my motherfoozle. And so you saw the lodging of “Very likely I am older than your Methven? I have never seen it myself. mother; and I rarely budge out of this Did it not make your heart sick to see all corner. I have never seen your mother, the poverty and misery in that awful but I remember Captain Methven long, street? Oh, yes, I'm told it's a grand long ago, who was not unlike the general street: but I never have the heart to go outline of you, so far as I can make out. into it. I think the place should die with When the light comes you will see I am the age that gave it birth.”

an old woman. It is just possible that

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this is why I am so fond of the firelight,” | better not to ask any direct questions. she said with a laugh; “ for I'm really very The light had faded much, and was now young though I was born long ago. Rob- nothing more than a steady red glow in ert and me, we remember all our games place of the leaping and blazing of the and plays in a way that people that have Hames. He scarcely saw his entertainer had children of their own never do. We at all. There were two spots of brightare just boy and girl still, and l’ve known ness which moved occasionally, and which us after a long talk, forget ourselves alto- represented her face and the hands which gether, and talk of papa and mamma!” she had clasped together (when they were She clapped her hands together at this, not flickering about in incessant gesture) and went into a peal of genuine laughter, in her lap. But there was something alsuch as is always infectious. Walter together quaint and strange in the situalaughed too, but in a half-embarrassed, tion. It did not irritate him as the men half-unreal way. All was so strange to had done. And then she had the good him, and this curious introduction into a sense to agree with him in some respects, half-seen, uncomprehended world the most though the mélange of opinions in her curious of all.

was remarkable, and he did not under"I would like to know a little about stand what she would be at. There was yourself,” she resumed, after a moment. an interval of quiet in which neither of “ You were not in the seci that it was them said anything, and then a large step you who were the kin? It was strange was audible coming slowly up-stairs, and your father should have left you in the through the other drawing-room. dark."

Here is Robert," the invalid said with "I can't remember my father," said a smile in her voice. It was nothing but Walter hastily.

a tall shadow that appeared, looming huge “ That makes little difference; but you in the ruddy light. were always a strange family. Now you, “ Have you got Lord Erradeen with Robert tells me, you're not so very much you, Alison ? and how are you and he getof an Erradeen you take after your ting on together?” said old Milnathort's inother's side. And I'm very, very glad voice. to hear it. It will perhaps be you,

if

you Walter rose hastily to his feet with a have the courage, that will put a stop to feeling that other elements less agreeable

many things. There are old rhymes were at once introduced, and that his upon that subject, but you will put little pride was affronted by being discussed in faith in old rhymes; 1 none at all. I be. this easy manner over his head. lieve they are just made up long after the “We are getting on fine, Robert. He occasion, just for the sake of the fun, or is just as agreeable as you say, and I have perhaps because some one is pleased with great hopes will be the man. himself to have found a rhyme. Now are late, and it will soon be time for dinthat one that they tell me is in the Canon- ner. I would advise you to show our gate -- that about . Live, Me'even

young gentleman to his room, and see “I thought you said you didn't know that he's comfortable. And after dinner, it?"

when you have had your good meal, we'll “I have never seen it; but you don't have it all out with him." suppose I am ignorant of the subject, “I am thinking, Alison, that there is a Lord Erradeen? Do you know I have good deal we must go over that will be been here stretched out in my chair these best between him and me." thirty years ? and what else could I give “ That must be as you please, Robert, my atiention to, considering all things? my man,” said the lady, and Walter felt Well, I do not believe in that. On, it's like a small child who is being discussed far too pat! When a thing is true it is over his head by grown-up persons, whom not just so terribly in keeping. I believe he feels to be his natural enemies. He it was made up by somebody that knew rose willingly, yet with unconscious of. the story just as we do; probably a hun- fence, and followed his host to his room, dred years or more after the event.” inwardly indignant with himself for hav.

Walter did not say that he was quite ing thus impaired his own liberty by forunacquainted with the event. His inter- saking his inn. The room however was est perhaps, though he was not aware of luxuriously comfortable, shining with fireit, was a little less warm since he knew light, and a grave and respectable servant, that Miss Milnathort was his mother's in mourning, was arranging his evening contemporary rather than his own; but hic clothes upon the bed. had come to the conclusion that it was “This is Symington,” said Mr. Milna

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