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From Blackwood's Magazine. And who were the speakers of this short diaTHE CONDE'S DAUGHTER.
logue? Two dashing, spirited-looking young men,
who, at the close of it, reined in their steeds, in the “[ Should think we cannot be very far from our dilemma of not knowing where to direct them. destination by this tine."
Theirs was, indeed, a wild-goose chase. Their Why, were one to put faith in my appetite, we Chateau en Espagne seemed invisible, as such chamust have been at least a good four or five hours teaux usually are ; and where it might be found, en route already; and if our Rosinantes are not who was there to tell ?—Not one. The scene was able to get over a misère of thirty or forty miles desert—not even a bird animated it; and just bewithout making as many grimaces about it as they fore them branched out three roads from the one do now, they are not the animals I took them they had hitherto confidently pursued. for.'
After a moment's silence, the cavaliers both “Come, come—abuse your own as much as you burst into a gay laugh. please, but this much I will say for my Nero, “ Here's a puzzle, Alphonse !” said the one. though he has occasionally deposited me on thé “ Which of the ihree roads do you opine ?" roadside, he is not apt to sleep upon the way at “The left, by all means,” replied the other; “I least. Nay, so sure am I of him, that I would generally find it leads me right.” wager you ten Napoleons that we are not more " But if it should n't now?" than four or five miles from the chateau at this mo- " Why, then, it only leads us wrong.” ment."
But I don't choose to go wrong.” “Pas si bêle, mon cher. I am not fool enough “ And what have you been doing ever since you to put my precious Naps in jeopardy, just when I set out?” am so deucedly in want of them, too. But a truce “ True ; but as we are far enough now from to this nonsense. Do you know, Ernest, seriously that point, we must e'en make the best of the speaking, I am beginning to think we are great bad.” fools for our pains, running our heads into a peril- “ Well, why don't you?” ous adventure, with the almost certainty of a Why, if one only knew which was the best.” severe reprimand from the general, which, I think, At this moment the tinkling of a mule's bells, even your filial protestations will scarcely save you mingled with the song of the muleteer, came on from, if ever we return alive ; and merely to see, the air. what, I dare say, after all, will turn out to be only “ Hist! here comes counsel,” exclaimed the a pretty face."
young man whom the other named Ernest. “Hol" What!—already faint-hearted !-A miracle of la, señor hidalgo; do you know the
of beauty such as Darville described is well worth Conde di Miranda ?” periling one's neck to gaze upon. Besides, is not
66 Yes." that our vocation ?-and as for reprimands, if you 66 Where is it?" got one as often as I do, you would soon find out 6. Where it was." that those things are nothing when one is used to
- Near?” them.'
" That's as one finds it." “ A miracle !-ah, bah! It was the romance of "And how shall we find it?'' the scene, and the artful grace of the costume, " By reaching it.” which fascinated his eyes.”
“Come, come, hidalgo mio." No, no! he just.
Recollect that it was not “I'm no hidalgo,” said the man, roughly. Darville alone, but Delavigne ; and even that con- “ But you ought to be. I've seen many less noisscur in female beauty, Monbreton himself, diffi- deserving of it,” resumed the traveller. cult as he is, declared that she was perfect. She “ I dare say,” retorted the muleteer. must be a wonder, indeed, when he could find no - If you 'll conduct us within view of the castle, fault with her.”
you shall be rewarded.” I warn you beforehand that I am “As I should well deserve." fully prepared to be disappointed. However, as “Ah, your deserts may be greater than our: we are so far embarked in the affair, I suppose we purse. must accomplish it.”
But the man moved on. “ Most assuredly, unless you wish to be the “Halle-là, friend! I like your company so well laughing-stock of the whole regiment for the next that I must have it a little longer.” And the offimonth ; for, notwithstanding Darville's boasted cer pulled out a pistol. " Will you, or will you powers of discretion, half the subalierns, no doubt, not, guide us to the castle of the Conde ?” are in possession of the secret of our cscapade by “I will,” gruslly replied the man, with a look this time."
which showed that he was sorry to be forced to Well, then, Ernest, as we are launched on choose the second alternative. this wise expedition, let me sermonize a small por- Can we trust this fellow ?”' said the younger tion of prudence into that most giddy brain of officer to the elder. yours. Remember that, after all, if those ruthless 6. No-but we can ourselves ; and keep a sharp Spaniards were to discover the trick we are play-look-out.” ing them, they would probably make us pay rather • Besides, I shall give him a hint. Hidalgo too dearly for the frolic. In short, Ernest, I am mio
_” he began. very much afraid that your étourderie will let the “Señor Franzese,” interrupted the muleteer. light rather too soon into the thick skulls of those " What puts that into your head, hidalgo? magnificent hidalgos."
Franzesc—why, Don Felix y Cortos, y Sargas, y “ Preach away– I listen in all humility.” Nos, y Tierras, y, y-don't you know an English
“ Ernest, Ernest, I give you up; you are incor- man when you see him?" rigible!” rejoined the other, turning away to hide · Yes," muttered the Spaniard—“Yes, and a the laugh which the irresistibly comic expression Frenchman, too." his friend threw into his countenance had excited. No, you don't, for here's the proof. Why,
" Be it so.
what are we, but English officers, carrying de- I have guided you so far right, you will suffer me spatches to your Conde from our general?''
to resume my owo direction.” The muleteer looked doubtingly.
Yes, as there seems no possibility of making Why, do you suppose Frenchmen would trust any more mistakes on our way, you are free, themselves amongst such a set of”.
plied the gravest of the two. “ But stop one mo“ Patriots !” exclaimed the other stranger, has- ment yet, amigo," and he pointed to a little crosstily.
road which, a little further on, diverged from the * All I say," observed the man drily, " is, that camino real, “ where does that lead to ?”
are friends of the Conde, he will treat you “ Amigo !” muttered the man between his teeth, as you deserve. If enemies, the same. So, back-" say enemigo rather !” mrsi."
“An answer to my question, villano," said the Onward, you mean.”
young Frenchman, haughtily-while his hand inAye, for me; but not for you, señores, you stinctively groped for the hilt of his sword. have left the castle a inile to the left."
" To R- replied the man, as he turned I guessed right, you see," said Alphonse, silently and sullenly to retrace his steps. "When I guessed left.”
Holla, there !” Ernest called out; The muleteer passed on, and the horsemen fol- forgotten your money ;” and he held out a purse, luwed.
but the man was gone. “Va donc, et que le diable " I say, hidalgo mio,” called out Ernest, " what t'emporle, brutal !” added Ernest de Lucenay; 89't of a don is this same Conde ?"
taking good care, however, this time, that the " As how?" inquired the muleteer.
ebullition of his feelings was not loud enough to " Is he rich ?”
reach the ears of the retreating peasant.
found it! I would rather follow the track of a tiger " Proud ?”
through the pathless depths of an Indian jungle hi Yes.'
alone, than be led by such a savage cicerone. 66 Old?":
“ Never mind the fellow; we have more than "No."
enough to think of in our own affairs,” exclaimed " Has he a wife?"
his friend, impatiently. Let us stop here a mo"No."
ment and consult, before we proceed any further. " Has he children?"
One thing is evident, at all events, that we must 66 No."
contrive to disguise ourselves better if we wish to “No!"' exclaimed the cavalier with surprise. pass for anything, but Frenchmen. " No child!”
knowledge of the En
the English language, and acquaint" You said children, señor.”
ance with their manners and habits, trifling as it is, “ He has a child, then?”
I am perfectly certain of imposing on the Span6. Yes."
iards, without any difficulty ; but you will as cer" A son?"
tainly cause a blow-up, unless you manage to alter
your whole style and appearance. I dare say you “A daughter?"
have forgotten all my instructions already.”
“ Bah! Alphonse. Let me alone for puzzling “Why, yes and no seems all you have got to the dons; I'll be as complete a Goddam in five
minutes as any stick you ever saw, I warrant “ It seems to answer all you have got to ask, you." señor."
Nothing can appear more perfectly un-Eng“Is the Doña very handsome ?" interrupted Al- lish than you do at present. That éveillé look of phonse, impatiently.
yours is the very devil;" and Alphonse shook his “Yes and no, according to taste," replied the head despondingly. muleteer.
“ Incredulous animal! just hold Nero for five “ He laughs at us," whispered Ernest in French. minutes, and you shall have ocular demonstration The conversation with the muleteer had been, thus of my powers of acting. Parbleu! you shall see far, carried on in Spanish-which Ernest spoke that I can be solemn and awkward enough to fairly enough. But the observation he thought- frighten half the petites maîtresses of Paris into the lessly uttered in French seemed to excite the peas- vapors. And so saying, De Lucenay sprang ant's attention.
from his saddle, and consigning the bridle into his “ Do you speak English ?” asked Ernest. friend's hands, ran towards a little brook, which “ Yes,” was the reply, in English. “Do trickled through the grass at a short distance from
the roadside ; but not before he had made his friend “Me English ? ab course. Speak well Eng- promise to abstain from casting any profane glances lish,” replied Ernest, in the true Gallic-idiom. on his toilet till it was accomplished. Then relapsing into the more familiar tongue, he Wisely resolving to avoid templation, Alphonse added, “ But in Spain I speak Spanish.”. turned away, when, to his surprise, he perceived
By this time the trio had arrived within view of the muleteer halting on a rising ground at a little a large castellated building, whose ancient towers, distance. * By Jove! that insolent dog has been glowing in the last rays of the setting sun, rose watching us. Scoundrel, will you move on?” he inajestically from the midst of groves of dark cy- exclaimed, in French, raising his voice angrily, press and myrtle which surrounded it.
when, suddenly recollecting himself, he terminated 'I'he muleteer stopped. “ There, señores," he the unfinished phrase by “ Sigue tu camin! Picasiid, “ stands the castle of the Conde. Half-a-ro! Bribon!” while he shook his pistol menacingmile further on lies th
R-, to which, ly at the man's head-a thre which did not seem seiiores,” he added, with a sarcastic smile, “ you to intimidate him much, for, though he resumed his can proceed, should you not find it convenient to journey, his rich sonorous voice burst triumphantremain at the Castello.. And now, I presume, as ly forth into one of the patriotic songs; and lung
after he had disappeared from their eyes, the usual portion of vanity that you have left none for me. ritournelle, “Viva Fernando! Muera Napoleon !" To spare the acuteness of your feelings, I will be rang upon the air.
the victim. Here goes !". And, so saying, he This short interval had more than sufficed for ripped up the lining of his coat, and scattered a few De Lucenay's mysterious operations. And before handfuls of wadding to the winds. " Will that his friend was tired of fuming and sacreing against do ?” Spain and Spaniards, Ernest tapped him on the "Oh, capitally! I would rather you wore it shoulder, and for once both the young officer's than me; it has as many wrinkles as St. Marceau's anger and habitual gravity vanished in an uncon- forehead.” trollable fit of laughter. “ By Jupiter! it is in- “ Forward, then, et vogue la galère !” exclaimed credible," he gasped forth, as soon as returning Alphonse, as De Lucenay vaulted into his saddle, breath would allow him to speak; while Ernest and the cavaliers spurred on their horses to a rapid stood silently enjoying his surprise.
“Well, what think you? It will do, will it “Apropos !” exclaimed De Lucenay, as they not? Are you still in fear of a fiasco ? " approached the castle ; we ought to lay our
Nay! My only fear now is, that the pupil plans, and make a proper arrangement beforehand, will eclipse the master, and that the more shining like honest, sociable brothers-in-arms; it would light of your talents will cast mine utterly into the never do to stand in each other's light, and mar our shade. By heavens! the transformation is in- mutual hopes of success by cutting each other's imitable. Your own father would not know throats for the sake of the bella.”
“Oh, as for me, you are welcome to all my • He would not be the only one in such an interest in the Doña's heart beforehand ; for I never unhappy case, then."
felt less disposed to fall in love than I do at presNothing certainly could have been more absurd ent.' than the complete metamorphosis which, in those “You are delightful in theory, caro mio; but as few moments, De Lucenay had contrived to make your practice might be somewhat different, suppose in his appearance. With the aid of a little fresh we make a little compact, upon fair terms, viz., water from the rivulet, he had managed to reduce that the choice is to depend on the señora herself; the rich curly locks of his chestnut hair to an almost that whoever she distinguishes, the other is to reQuaker flatness ; the shirt collar, which had been linquish his claims at once, and thenceforth devote turned down, was now drawn up to his cheek- all his energies to the assistance of his friend. We bones, and with his hat placed perpendicularly on cannot both carry her off, you know; so it is just the crown of his head, one arm crossed under the as well to settle all these little particulars in good tails of his coat, and the other balancing his whip, time.” its handle resting on his lips, the corners of which “Oh! as you please. I am quite willing to were drawn puritanically down, and his half-sign and seal any compact that will set your mind closed eyes staring vacanıly on the points of his at rest; though, for my part, I declare off beforeboots, he stood the living picture of an automa- hand.”
“Well, then, it is a done thing; give me your “ Well, would you not swear that I was a regu- hand on it. Parole d'honneur !” said De Lucelar boule-dog Anglais ?” exclaimed Ernest, stalk- nay, stretching out his. ing up and down for his friend's inspection, while “Parole d'honneur,' returned his friend, with a he rounded his shoulders, and carried his chin smile. in the air, in order to increase the resem- “ But to return to the elopement”blance.
“Gad! How you fly on! There will be two “Excellent !-only not so much laisser aller ; a words to that part of the story, I suspect. Doña little more stiff-more drawn up! That will do— Inez will probably not be quite so easily charined oh, it's perfect!” And again Alphonse burst into as our dear little grisettes ; and she must be cona peal of laughter, in which De Lucenay, notwith- sulted, I suppose ; unless, indeed, you intend to standing his newly-assumed gravity, could not carry the fort by storm ; the current of your
love refrain from joining.
may not flow as smoothly as you expect. “Let me see that coat fits a great deal too Oh, as for that, leave it to me. Spanish well, too close. We must rip out some of the women have too good a taste, and we Frenchmen wadding, just to let it make a few wrinkles ; it are too irresistible to leave me any fears on that ought to hang quite loosely, in order to be in score ; besides, she must be devilishly difficult if character.”
neither of us suit her. You are dark, and I fair" Gently, mon cher !” interposed De Lucenay, you are pensive, and I gay-you poetic, and I as his friend drew out a pen-knife. “ To satisfy witty. The deuce is in it, if she does not fall in. you, I have injured the sit of my cravat, I have love with either one or other !” hidden the classic contour of my neck, I have de- " Add to which, the private reservation, no stroyed the Antinous-like effect of my coiffure- doubt, that if she has one atom of discernment, it is, those curls which were the despair of all my rivals a certain volage, giddy, young aide-de-camp that in conquest-I have consented to look like a wretch she will select.” impaled, and thus renounce all the bonnes fortunes Why, if I had but fair play ; but as my tongue that awaited me during the next four-and-twenty will not be allowed to shine, I must leave the caphours; and now you venture to propose, with the tivation part to my yeux dour. Who knows, coolest audacity, that I should crown all these sacri- though ?". fices by utterly destroying the symmetry of my « Oh, vanitas vanitatum!” exclaimed Alphonse, figure. No, no, mon cher ! that is too much ; with a laugh. cut yourself up as you please, but spare your “I might say the same of a certain rebellious friend.”
aristocrat, who lays claim to the euphonious patro"Vive Dicu!” laughed Alphonse. “It is lucky nymic of La Tour d'Auvergne, with a pedigree that. that
you have absorbed such an unreasonable pro- dates from the flood, and a string of musty ances-
tors who might put the patriarchs to the blush ; but centre of which two antique and richly-sculptured I am more generous ;” and De Lucenay began fountains were casting up their glittering jets d'eau carelessly to hum a few bars of La Carmagnole. in the proscribed form of fleurs-de-lis, to be received
“Softly!” said his more prudent friend. “ We again in two wide porphyry basins. Traversing are drawing near the chateau, and you might as the patio, they ascended a fine marble staircase, well wear a cockade tricolor as let them hear from the first flight of which branched off several that.”
suites of apartments. Taking the one to the right, It was an antique, half-Gothic, half-Saracenic the young men had full leisure to observe the splenlooking edifice, which they now approached. A dor that surrounded them, as they slowly followed range of light arcades, whose delicate columns, their conductor from one long line of magnificent wreathed round with the most graceful foliage, rooms into another. Notwithstanding many modseemed almost too slight to sustain the massive ern alterations, the character of the whole building structure which rose above them, surrounded the was too evidently eastern to admit a doubt as to its pian terreno. Long tiers of pointed windows, Moorish origin. Everywhere the most precious mingled with exquisite fretwork, and one colossal marbles, agates, and lapis-lazuli, Oriental jasper, balcony, with a rich crimson awning, completed porphyry of every variety, dazzled the eye. In the the facade. Beneath the portico, numbers of ser- centre of many of the rooms there played a small vants and retainers were lounging about, enjoving fountain ; in others there were four, one in each the fresco. Some, stretched out at full length on angle. Large divans of the richest crimson and the marble benches that lined the open arcades, violet brocades lined the walls, while ample curwere fast asleep; others, seated à la Turque upon tains of the same served in lieu of doors. But the ground, were busily engaged in a noisy game what particularly struck the friends was the brilliant of cards. But the largest group of all had col- | beauty of the arabesques that covered the ceilings, lected round a handsome Moorish-looking Anda- and the exquisite chiselling of the cornices, and the Jusian, who, leaning against the wall, was lazily frame-work of the windows. rasping the chords of a guitar that was slung over “ The palace is beautiful, is it not ?" said the his shoulder, while he sang one of those charming Biscayan, as he perceived the admiring, glances little Tiranas, to which he improvised the usual they cast around them. " It ought to be, for it nonsense words as he proceeded; anon the deep was one of the summer dwellings of il mellow voices of his auditory would mingle with and those ereticos malditos cared but little what the “Ay de mi chaira mia! Luz de mi alma!” treasures they lavished on their pleasures. It came &c., of the ritournelle, and then again the soft into my master's possession as a descendant of the deep tones of the Andalusian rang alone upon the Cid, to whom it was given as a guerdon for his air.
services." As no one seemed to heed their approach, the “What a numerous progeny that famous hero two young men stood for a few moments in silence, must have had! He was a wonderful man !” listening delightedly to the music, which now cxclaimed De Lucenay, with extreme gravity. melted into the softer strain of a Seguidilla, now “Si, señor–un hombre maravilloso en verdad,” brightened into the more brilliant measure of a replied the Spaniard, whom, notwithstanding his Bolero. Suddenly, in the midst of it, the singer natural acuteness, the seriousness of De Lucenay's broke off, and sprining on his feet as if inspired, he manner and countenance had prevented from disdashed his hands across the strings. Like an elec- covering the irony of his words. tric shock, the well-known chords of the Tragala señores,” he continued, as they reached a golden aroused his hearers—every one crowded round the tissue-draped door, "we are arrived. The next singer. The players threw down their cards, the room is the comedor, where the family are at loungers stood immovable, even the sleepers supper." started into life; and all chorusing in enthusiasti- Then, perhaps, we had better wait a while. cally, a burst of melody arose of which no one We would not wish to disturb them.” unacquainted with the rich and thrilling harmory “Oh, by no means ! The Conde would be furipeculiar to Spanish voices, can form an idea. ous if you were kept waiting an instant. The
said La Tour d'Auvergne in a English are great favorites of his. Besides, they whisper, we shall never conquer such a people : must have finished by this time.” And raising the Napoleon himself cannot do it."
curtain, they entered an immense frescoed hall, Perhaps," replied his friend in the same tone. which was divided in the centre by a sort of transThey are desperately national ; it will be tough parent partition of white marble, some fourteen or work, at all events. But, come on; as the song fiftcen feet in height, so delicately pierced and is finished, we have some chance of making our chiselled, that it resembled lace-work much more selves heard now.” And De Lucenay spurred his than stone. A pointed door-way, supported by horse up to the entrance. At their repeated calls twisted columns, as elaborately carved and ornafor attendance, two or three servants hastened out mented as the rest, opened into the upper part of of the vestibule and held their horses as they dis- the hall, which was elevated a step higher. 'In the mounted. They became infinitely more attentive, centre of this, a table was superbly laid out with a however, on hearing that the strangers were Eng-service of massive gold; while the fumes of the lish officers, the bearers of dispatches to their mas- viands was entirely overpowered by the heavy perter; and a dark Figaro-looking laquey, in whose fume of the colossal bouquets of flowers which siood lively roguish countenance the Frenchmen would in sculptured silver and gold vases on the plateau. have had no difficulty in recognizing a Biscayan, Around the table were seated about twenty pereven without the aid of his national and picturesque sons, amongst whom the usual sprinkling of costume, offered to usher them into the presence sacerdotes was not wanting. A stern, but nobleof the Conde.
looking man sat at the upper end of the table, Their guide led the way through the long and and seemed to do the honors to the rest of the lofty vestibule, which opened on a superb marble company. colonnade that encircled the patio or court, in the The Conde—for it was he-rose immediately on
66 But now,
receiving the message which the young officers had |“ Señorita, I–I-," when fortunately Le Lucenay sent in ; while they waited its answer in the oriel came to his assistance, with one of those little wellwindow, being unwilling to break in so uncere- turned flattering speeches for which French tact is moniously upon a party which seemed so much so unrivalled; and as the company politely made larger, and more formal, than any they had been room for them, they seated themselves beside her. prepared to meet. Their host received them most “ Don Fernando,” said the Conde to a haughty, courteously as they presented their credentials-grave-looking man, who sat next to De Lucenay, namely, a letter from the English general, Wilson, while he resumed his place at the head of the who commanded the forces stationed at the city of table, you and Inez, I trust, will take care of our S- about sixty miles distant from the chateau. new friends. Pobrecitos, they must be half-famAs the Conde ran his glance over its contents-in ished by their day's expedition, and this late which the general informed him that within three hour.” or four days he would reach R- when he in- But the recommendation was superfluous; every tended to avail himself of the Conde's often prof- one vied with his neighbor in attending to the two fered hospitality, till when he recommended his strangers, who, on their part, were much more two aides-de-camp to his kindness—the politeness intent on contemplating the fair mistress of the manof their welcome changed to the most friendly cor- sion, than 'on doing honor to the profusion of friandiality.
dises that were piled before them. “Señores,” he said, “I am most grateful to his Doña Inez was indeed beautiful, beyond the excellency for the favor he has conferred on me, in usual measure of female loveliness : imagination choosing my house during his stay here. I feel could not enhance, nor description give an idea of proud and happy to shelter beneath my roof any of the charm that fascinated all those who gazed upon our valued and brave allies.—But you must have her : features cast in the most classic mould-a had a hard day's ride of it, I should think.” complexion that looked as if no southern sun had
“Why, yes, it was a tolerable morning's work,”' ever smiled on it. But the eyes !—the large, replied De Lucenay, who felt none of Alphonse's dark, liquid orbs, whose glance would now seem embarrassment.
almost dazzling in its excessive brightness, and now " Pablo, place seats for their excellencies,” said melted into all the softness of Oriental languor, as the Conde to one of the domestics who stood the long, gloomy Circassian lashes drooped over around ; while he motioned to the soi-disant Eng- them! As Alphonse looked upon her, he could lishmen to enter the supper-room, in which the have almost fancied himself transported to Mohamclatter of tongues and plates had sensibly dimin- med’s paradise, and taken the Spanish maiden for ished, ever since the commencement of the mysteri- a houri; but that there was a soul in those magous conference which had been taking place beyond nificent eyes—a nobleness in the white and loftv its precincts. “ You must be greatly in want of brow-a dignity in the calm and pensive calmness, some refreshment, for the wretched posadas on which spoke of higher and better things. the road cannot have offered you anything eata- But if her appearance enchanted him, her manble.”
ners were not less winning ; unembarrassed and They were not very tempting, certainly; how- unaffected, her graceful and natural ease in a few ever, we are pretty well used to them by this moments contrived to make them feel as much at time," replied De Lucenay. “ But, Señor Conde, home as another would have done in as many really we are scarcely presentable in such a com- hours. Much to the young Frenchman's regret, pany," he added, as he looked down on his dust- however, they were not long allowed to enjoy their covered boots and dress.
aparté in quiet; for a thin, sallow-looking priest, “What matter? You must not be so cere- whom Doña Inez had already designated to them monious with us; you cannot be expected to come as the Padre Confessor, interrupted them in a few off a journey as if you had just emerged from a minutes, and the conversation became general. lady's boudoir," answered the Conde with a smile. “ It is a great satisfaction to us all to see you “ Besides, these are only a few intimate friends here, señores,” he said. 6. First, as it procures us who have assembled to celebrate my daughter's the pleasure of becoming personally acquainted fête-day.” And, so saying, he led them up to the with our good friends and allies the English ; and, table, and presented them to the circle as Lord secondly, as a guarantee that we are not likely to Beauclerc and Sir Edward Trevor, aides-de-camp have our sight polluted by any of those sacrilegious to General Wilson. 66 And now," he added, “I demons the French, while you are amongst us.' must introduce you to the lady of the castle ; my “Gracias a Dios !” energetically rejoined the daughter, Doña Inez;” and turning to a slight cappellan-a fat, rosy, good-humored looking old elegant-looking girl, who might have been about man, the very antipodes of his grim confrère. sixteen or seventeen, he said—“Mi queridita, these"The saints preserve me from ever setting eyes on gentlemen have brought me the welcome news that them again! You must know, señores, that some our friend the English general will be here in three six weeks ago I had gone to collect some small or four days at the latest; the corps will be sums due to the convent, and was returning quietly quartered in the neighborhood, but the general and home with a lay brother, when I had the misforhis aides-de-camp will reside with us. Therefore, tune to fall in with a troop of those sons of Belial, as they are likely to remain some time, we must all whom I thought at least a hundred miles off. do our utmost to render their stay amongst us as Would you believe it, señores! without any reagreeable to them as possible.”
spect for my religious habit, the impious dogs laid “ I shall be most happy to contribute to it as far violent hands on me ; laughed in my face when I as it is in my slight power,” replied Doña Inez in told them I was almoner to the holy community of a low sweet voice, while she raised her large lus- Sancta Maria de los Dolores; and vowing that trous eyes to those of Alphonse, which for the they were sure that my frock was well lined, actulast five minutes had been gazing as if transfixed ally forced me to strip to the skin, in order to upon her beautiful countenance.
despoil me of the treasure of the Church! LuckStarting as if from a dream, he stammered out, ily, however, the Holy Virgin had inspired me to