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for your horse, poor fellow ! Stay by I had not asked Martha whether she knew him, and keep him as quiet as you can. anything about my uncle's departure. She If he struggle, nothing will save him.” was never one to volunteer news, and, be
I got to the road as quickly as possi- sides, would naturally think I must be in ble, and galloped home as fast as Zoe his confidence. As soon, therefore, as I could touch and lift. Ere I reached the dismounted I went to the kitchen. stable-yard, I made a noise that brought She knew nothing of our expedition, as out all the men. I told them a lady had no one had gone into the house her horse fast in the bog. They bustled beard the horses and the voices, and wonand got ropes, put collars and chains ordered; so I told her what had happened, four draught horses, lighted several lan- and then proceeded to question her as to terns, and set out with me. I knew the any knowledge of my uncle's intentions. spot perfectiy. No moment was lost either But the moment I began, what with fatigue in getting ready, or in reaching the place. and anxiety, my strength gave way, and I
There were signs of struggle, but neither burst into tears. the lady nor her
horse were to be seen. " Don't be silly, Belorba !” cried MarThe horror of a great darkness wrapt tha almost severely. " You an engaged me round. I felt a murderer. I was not young lady, and tied so to your uncle's even free with regard to the horse apron-strings that you cry the minute he's dead under the peat-slime! He could out of your sight! You didn't cry when not bave got out, I knew. I had thought Mr. Day left to do my best for him; but what if the "No," I answered ; "he was going only lady could not get off him for lack of for a day or two!” the hand she had asked me to reach her! “ And for how many is
your uncle What if her habit was entangled, and he sank under her weight, and she was “ That is what I want to know. He dragged down with him! She might be means to be away a long time, I fear." on her way home on foot or her body I'll just see !” she returned. “I shall down there in the bog, to be found one know a little by the money he left for the day, bardly changed, erect still on her peat- housekeeping. But I won't budge till I embalmed steed! - no ill-fitting fate for see you eat. her, but a gbastly thing to me, who had Although quite faint for want of food, I had a hand, if but the hand of an instru- had no appetite. But I began at once to ment, in bringing her fate upon her! eat, and she left me to fetch the purse he And what would John say? Rebel as had given her as he went, which she had we might, and justly, was she not his not opened. mother? I told the meo to go home, all She came back with it, and looked into but two, who should mount a pair of the it- then at me with dismay. I took it horses, and go with me on the chance of from her hand; it was a pocket-book rendering assistance to Lady Cairnedge. and full of notes !
We took the way to Rising and had I learned afterwards that it was his gone about two miles, when we saw her habit to have money in the house, in through the starlight, trudging steadily readiness for any need of it that might along the road.
we came nearer, I suddenly arise, his one dread being lest saw she was in her under garments only; some day he should be parted from his she had had to disengage herself from her little one. habit, and let it go down with her ill-used horse.
I rode up to her, contriving to keep one of the men between us, and offered her one of the cart-horses to ride hoine
I That same night, within an hour, to would not have trusted my Zoe with her my unspeakable relief, John came home any more than with an American lion that at least he came to me, who he always lives upon horses. She declined the prof- said was his home. It was rather late, fer with scorn and undisguised though re- but we went out to the wilderness, where strained wrath. I offered her one or both I had a good cry on his shoulder, and felt men to see her home, but she refused in better, and hope began to show signs of such a manner that they were both glad | life in me. Then I told John all that had they had not to go. Nothing was left but happened since he went. It was worse to turn, and leave her to get home as she than painful to tell him about his mother's might.
letter, and what I had just learned from On the way home it occurred to me that my uncle, as well as my personal adven
ture with her so shortly before his arrival, But, oh, Joho, what am I talking of fairies but I felt I must. If a man's mother is a and angels! Whoever was your mother, devil, it is well he should know it.
God is your father! That is why you are He sat like a sleeping hurricane while I and must be good, my beloved ! spoke, saying never a word. When I had He made no reply beyond a squeeze of ended,
my hand. Then he asked me whether I Is that all?” he asked.
could lend him some horse or other to ride “ That is all — and enough,” I answered. home upon. I told him there was an old
“ It is,” he cried, with an oath that horse the bailiff rode sometimes; I was frightened me, and started to his feet. very sorry he could not have Zoe; she The hurricane was awake.
had been out all day and was too tired. I threw my arms round him.
I went to the stable with him, and saw “Where are you going?” I said. him ride away. What a determined look • To her,” he answered.
there was on his face ! He looked a middle" For what?"
aged man almost. “ To kill her," he said - then threw I have now to tell how he fared on the himself on the ground, and lay motionless moor as he rode home. at my feet.
It was a darkish night, and had turned I kept silence. I thought with myself gusty, and rather cold. The moon would he was fighting the nature his mother had be up presently, however, he thought, and given him.
would be giving light enough before he He lay still for about two minutes, then reached the spot where his way turned off quietly rose.
from that to Dumbleton - át a very small Good-night, dearest !” he said; “and angle, and with a not very perceptible good-bye! It is not fit the son of such a track. mother should marry any honest woman!' The moon, however, did not see fit to
" I beg your pardon, John!" I said, “I rise so soon as John expected her; he was hope I may have a word in the matter! not at that time quite up in moons, any If I choose to marry you, what right have more than in the paths across that moor; you to break your engagement? Let us and as the old horse had not an idea where leave alone what has to be, and recall the bis rider wanted to be carried, and John fact that my uncle is in imminent danger confessed he did for a while fall into a of being denounced as a murderer! Some- reverie or something worse, he had to thing must be done. That he is beyond choose for himself, and chose a path personal danger for the present is nothing. which I believe he had often taken some Is he to be the talk of the country?” years before, being a horse of use for any
“No harm shall come to him," said thing and everything. John did not disJohn. - I'm off to the tigress! I know cover that he was out of the way, until he how to do with her. She has learned at felt that he was carrying him downward, least that what her stupid son says, he like Sleipner bearing Hermod to the realm does! I will swear to her that, if she of Hela, for the descent was rather steep. makes the slightest movement to disgrace But he allowed him to go on, wishing to your uncle, I will immediately marry you know, as he said, what the old fellow was right off, come what may; and then, if up to. He came at last to a dead halt. she goes on, will appear against her in John had not the least notion where court, and tell of her whatever may help to they were, but I knew the spot the mofrustrate her wicked design. But as I will ment he began to describe it. In digging not threaten what I may not be able to per- away the peat on the side of a steep slope, form, you must promise not to prevent me the laborers came on one of the bones of if she stands out."
the hill, a low-risen peak of rock, round I will risk it,” I said. "I will for my which had massed itself a quantity of the uncle's sake marry you without his pres- woody matter that goes to the making of
But I do hope she may not already peat. Some one took to blasting the rock have taken steps !”
for building withal, and quarrying went on “ Her two days are not yet expired. I for a good many years - was indeed shall be in good time. But I do wonder occasionally active still
. Above, it was you are not afraid to trust yourself alone rather a dangerous place. There was a with the son of such a mnother!”
tale of man and horse falling into it, and “ To be what I know you, John," I an- both being killed. swered, “and the son of that woman, John had never come across it or heard shows that a good fairy was not far off at of it. When in it, however, he was
say a good angel, rather ! aware of a certain indescribable feeling,
that made him wait the expected moon “Does that imply you mean to continue before attempting either to advance or your relations with those persons ? return. He thought afterwards it might “I mean to do so.” have been some sense of the stone of the “You mean to marry the hussy ?." quarry about him, but at the time he took “I mean to marry the lady to whom the place for an abrupt natural dip of the you give that epithet. There are those surface of the moor. Old Sturdy stood as who think you the last that ought to call still as if he had been part of it- stood names!” as if never of himself would he move She rose and came to him as if she again.
would strike him. John stood motionless. The light slowly grew, or rather, the Except a woman had a knife in her hand, darkness slowly thinned. All at once he said, he would not move an inch to John became aware that, about twelve avoid a blow from her. “ A woman can't yards from him, there was something hurt you much,” said John ; "she can whitish. A moment, and it began to move only break your heart! My mother would like a flitting mist through the darkness. not know a heart when she had broken The same moment Sturdy began to pull it !” he added. So he stood and looked his feet from the ground, and move after at her. the mist, which rose and rose until it came She turned away, and sat down again. for an instant between John and the sky; I think she felt the term of her power at it was a big white horse, with my uncle on hand. its back; Death and he, John concluded, “ Did the man tell you," she asked, were out on one of their dark wanderings ! “ that, if you did not come home directly, His impulse of course was to follow them. I would give certain information concernBut when he came up on the level, where ing him ?” the moon, showing a blunt horn above the “ I have not seen him for some days. I horizon, made it possible to see a little, have been to London." my uncle appeared already some distance " You should have contrived your story away, and Sturdy objected to follow. better; you contradict yourself. While John was trying to persuade him, “ I am not aware that I do.' the wbite horse and his rider disappeared “ You have the man's horse, but you
- in some shadow, or behind some knoll, did not see him." I suppose. Having o least notion in “I am told he is probably in Paris.” what part of the moor he was, in which Fled from justice! It shall not avail direction he ought to go, he threw the him!” reins on the horse's neck, and Sturdy had "It may avail you though, madam! It brought him back almost to the stable, is sometimes prudent to let well alone. before he knew where he was. He turned May I not suggest that a hostile attempt away into the road, for he had had enough on your part, might lead to awkward reveof the moor, and took the long way lations ?” home.
“Ah! - But where could slander find a fitter soil to grow in, than the heart of a son with whom the prayer of his mother is powerless !!
“ The prayer of a mother that never In the morning he breakfasted alone. prayed in her life! Of a woman that A son with a different sort of mother might never once cared for the happiness of any then have sought her in her bedroom; but but herself! I don't believe you are my Joho had never sought his there, and after mother. If I was born of you, there must what be heard the night before could have been some juggling with my soul in hardly be expected to do so now for the antenatal regions. I disown you !" cried first time. Within half an hour, however, John with indignation. a message was brought him, requesting They were awful words. It was bis presence in her ladyship's dressing. wonder the bloom upon her face turned to
ashy white; but whether it was through He went with his teeth set.
consciousness, or from fear, or only with “ Whose horse is that in the stable, rage, her son could not tell. John?” said his mother, the moment their She was silent for a moment. Then eyes met.
recovering herself, · He's an old horse of Mr. Whichcote's, “And what, pray, would you have me? madam,"answered John ; mother he could Your slave?" | ;
“I would have you my mother, my real 3794
MOTHER AND SON.
mother. Oh, mother! mother!” he cried He told me all I have just set down. bitterly.
"I have already begun to learn farm“And what else, I beg,” she said with ing,” I said, as we talked. scorn, “is the will of my son in regard to " You're the right sort,” said John. “ I his mother?"
shall be glad to teach you anything I 6. That she should leave me unmolested know." in my choice of a wife. It does not seem If you can show me how a farmer to me an unreasonable demand."
keeps his books,” I said, “ so that I shall “ Nor does it seem to me an unreason. understand the bailiffs, I should be greatly able reply, that any mother would object obliged to you. As to the dairy and to her son's marrying a girl whose father poultry-yard and that kind of thing, Martha she could throw into prison to-morrow can teach me as well as any." with a word!”
“I'll do my best,"''said John. “ That she does not happen to be his “Come along then, and let's have a talk daughter, signifies nothing. I am very with Simmons! I feel as if I could bear willing she should pass for such. But anything after what you saw last night. take care.
He is ready to meet whatever My uncle canpot be far off after all! He you choose to say. He is not gone for is somewhere about with the rest of the his own sake, but only to be out of the guardian angels ! ” way of our happiness — to prevent you from blasting our pleasure with a scandal. If you proceed in this, we will marry at once." “How are you to live and support a
From The Fortnightly Review.
AN ISLAND DEER-FOREST. family?”
Madam, that is my business,” an- When we speak of a deer-forest in Norswered John.
way — which much-enduring land is once “ Are you aware of the penalty on your more the scene of my article we must marrying without my consent?" pursued dismiss from our minds the image of vast his mother.
treeless wastes, so dear to Highland stalk“I do not believe there is any such ers, and adhere to the original and popular penalty.”
idea of abundant trees, as represented by “ You dare me?"
the final half of the compound word. For I do."
in that country the red-deer, although they “Marry then, and take the conse- resort occasionally to the open hillsides, quences.
and here and there have no other choice, “ If there were any, you would not warn belong essentially and as a tribe to the
woodland, or, to quote the accurate defini"John Day, you are no gentleman!" tion of a forest, to “a wild, uncultivated
"I shall not ask your definition of a tract interspersed with wood.” It may be gentleman, madam.”
said that the greater such interspersion, “ Your father was a clown !”
the greater the chance of deer, because “My father is not present to defend the more certain is the existence of suithimself. If he were, he would show him-able food and shelter. I think it might be self a gentleman by making you no an- fairly argued that all the larger kinds of
If you say a word more against my deer would take habitually to the woods father, I leave the room."
if they had the chance that is, if they “ I tell you your father was a clown and could find or know of the existence of a fool like yourself !”
woods to take to. Even the tame rein. John turned and went straight to the deer, accustomed to roam over the barren stable, had old Sturdy saddled, and came expanse and crop the arid mosses of the
high fjeld, will frequently drift down by On his way over the heath, he spent an hundreds into the low forest, and there hour trying to find the place where he had remain for weeks, fattening on the natural been the night before, but without suc- pasturage which is nowadays the birth
I presume Sturdy by this time right of the farmer's domestic cattle. Is wanted his stall, not the quarry. As often there anything unreasonable in the belief as John left him to himself, he went home that their wild kindred, sprung from the ward. When he turned his head in an- same stock, but always associated in the other direction, he would set out in that sportsman's mind with stony summit and direction, but gradually work round for snow and glacier, would gladly do the the farm.
- if only they dared; and readily
learn to habituate themselves to the shel- | belongings. How often and how enthuter and warmth and rich herbage of the siastically did we recognize the beauty of lowlands ? Shall we not regard them as some quiet nook where we had found originally unwilling but now resigned game -(query: would its beauty have seceders from the more luxurious habits been as striking bad we not found it?) of their remote ancestry? What hard- How often did we select some spot by the ships are not preferable to enduring servi- margin of tarn or brook, or on the smooth, tude to a Lapp?
level of an upland lawo, as the one choice In Norway the red-deer are at present site whereon to build a hut, and live re. confined to a limited number of small tired from the human race. At all events, scattered areas. A good many years ago I thought of that island periodically for Professor Friis, of Christiania, published twelve years, and then revisited it, to find a charming book entitled “ Tilfjelds,” that no one else
no sportsman, at least which was in 1878 translated by Mr. W. - had been there during that long interG. Loch, under the title of “Sporting Life val; after which it was suddenly, unacon Norwegian Fjelds." To this work is countably, and viciously snapped up, toappended a map indicating, by different gether with much of the adjoining district, tints, the localities where wild reindeer, by a speculative sporting Scotch syndielk, and red-deer are to be found in Nor- cate, which, in default of finding a tenant, way. As regares red-deer these are, had to relinquish it after twelve months' according to that authority, eleven in possession. Then I took a lease of my number — namely, three islands, of which old love, some of whose charms I shall the well-known Hitteren is the most im- now attempt to describe. portant, and eight points of the mainland She is, as I have said, rudely triangular, close to the sea, the majority of the latter divided from the high rugged coast of the being insignificantly small. "If to this list mainland by an inner channel not wider we add an island of tolerable size in the than five hundred yards at the narrowest Namsen Fjord, and one or two islets in point, and from the dreary grey rock the Hitteren group, it may be taken as ridges of lower Hitteren by about two and complete so far as our present knowledge a half miles of outer sound. Across both goes. I am about to try to amuse the of these friths the red-deer stags are in readers of the Fortnightly by a sketch of the habit of swimming to and fro, so that one of the islets last mentioned.
their presence on the island at any given It is but a little place, rudely triangular, time must be more or less a question of about six miles in length and five across caprice; but, as there appears to be a fair the base, and has but small pretensions as stock of attractive resident hinds, the a deer-forest; but when I and a friend first chances are always in favor of there beset foot on it, some fifteen years ago, it ing also a few gallant stags. About two seemed to us, from its natural beauty and miles from the apex of the triangle the seclusion, a veritable paradise - I employ isle is divided almost in twain by an inlet the last word in its ancient Oriental mean- running in a direct line from the inner to ing, that of a beautiful pleasure.ground and the outer channel; the short, narrow isth. chase combined, such as delighted the mus which still prevents their waters from Persian monarchs of old, and still, I be- meeting may be covered in a hundred lieve, delights the modern shah.
paces from margin to margin. South of At that time the red-deer were pro- this neck lies a tract of low rolling ground, lected by law throughout the whole dis- with clumps and thickets of fir, birch, and trict of Aure, to which the island belongs, juniper, and boulders half hidden amongst and consequently, although their traces a thick growth of heather. Deer are but were conspicuous, we did not trouble our rarely seen on this part of the island, but heads about them. Blackgame we found it affords a delightful range to the unin plenty, some willow.grouse and caper- ambitious stroller with “scatter-gun and cailzie, and altogether had excellent sport; smell-dog.". During our first visit we but I think that even in those days of always used to find in the vicinity of the possibly greater keenness, the charm lay in isthmus a certain number of wary old ihe island itself. Then, as now, the few blackcock, which gave us infinite trouble inhabitants lived among their little plots before we could secure even a single bird. of arable and grass land on the very edge From this point there runs round a portion of the sea, and in the autumn at least, of both divisions of the island a border of when the wandering cattle had been velvet-like sea-turf, separating the woodbrought down to the homestead, the inte- land and low moorland from the rough rior was undisturbed by man and man's shingle which forms the actual beach, the