Imagini ale paginilor
[ocr errors]







boat which he and a lad could manage. The damo's MAIDEN MAY.

baskets were, however, still well supplied with fish.

Honest Jacob, to his parents' joy, had arrived at

home. Adam was about to set out on his daily 'INCE we last met Adam Halliburt, the Nancy fishing.

had shared the fate of other craft; her stout "I will go with you, father," he said; "maybe with planks and timbers gradually yielding to age, she my help you will sooner be able to get back.” had become too leaky to put to sea, and had been The dame, glad that Adam should enjoy his son's broken up for firewood. Adam, having no sons to company, was willing to wait till their return to hear help him, had taken to inshore fishing in a small all Jacob had to tell them.

No. 1174.-JUNE 27, 1874.




They stood away under sail to the south, where hands and feet, or lıe soon will be dead," said Adam, the best fishing-ground lay.

as they carried the man into the room. Seldom had Adam been so happy as while listen- The sight seemed to calm instead of agitating the ing to Jacob's account of his adventures, and not old woman, for she set about attending to the man often had he been more successful in making a good in a more sensible way than might have been excatch of fish.

pected. While Adam and Jacob took off the man's The evening was drawing on, and it was time to wet clothes she brought a blanket that they might return, when the wind, shifting, headed them, and wrap it round his body. She then, kneeling down,

, they were compelled to take to their oars, Jacob and assisted them in chafing his hands and feet. A deep the boy pulling while Adam steered. They kept | groan showed that their efforts were successful, and close in shore to avoid the tide, which was running the man soon opened his eyes and gazed wildly at to the south ward. The wind increased too, and they them. The old woman threw some sticks on the fire, made but slow progress, so that night overtook them which, blazing up now for the first time, revealed before they had proceeded half the distance. his features more clearly than before.

There was still liglit sufficient to enable Adam to “Why, father, he is Miles Gaflin," exclaimed see a man on horseback galloping along the beach Jacob. under the cliff, the water already reaching up to the “I knew that,” answered Adam, “when rre animal's knees.

hauled him into the boat." “What can lie be about?” exclaimed Adam ; “he " Miles Gaffin !" cried Mad Sal. " The bloodmust be mad to try and pass along there; he will be thirsty and wretched man shall not live out half his lost to a certainty if he moves a few fathoms farther days; yet, as the sea refused to keep him, ive must on."

not be more cruel." Adam shouted at the top of his voice, and waved Gaflin made no answer, but continued to glaro his hat; but the horseman neither saw nor heard wildly at the faces bent over him. He occasionally him.

groaned and muttered a few unintelligible words. Presently, as Adam had anticipated, the horse What now to do was the question. Adam was unbegan to struggle violently in a vain effort to willing to leave him alone with the poor mad woman, escape from a soft quicksand which prevented it yet he was naturally anxious to return home. The either from swimming or wading. The next instant, sound of the wind, which howled and whistled up the a sea rolling in washed the rider from its back. He glen, warned him that he could scarcely hope to construck out boldly, making a desperate effort for tinue his voyage. life. Jacob and the boy pulled with all their might Telling old Sal that they would speedily return, towards him, but before they could reach him a sea Adam and Jacob went down to the beach and made had dashed him against the cliff. By a mighty effort safe their boat and fish. Then they sent the boy he got clear of it, when a receding wave carried him quickly to Hurlston with instructions to tell the towards them. Before the boat reached him, however, dame that they hoped to be home in the morning. he had ceased to struggle, and was sinking for the As they entered, they heard Gaffin's voice raving last time when Adam caught him by the collar, and incoherently. Mad Sal stood like a statue, the light with Jacob's assistance hauled him into the boat. of the fire falling on her pale features, gazing at him Jacob had at once•to resume his oar, for they were with a look of mingled astonishment and dread. so near the cliff that the boat might in another in- I am Martin Goul; that is my name.

No stant have been dashed against it. They got clear, one else would dare to claim it," cried Gaffin; but the tide had drifted them to the south.

" when my son marries the heiress of Texford, The man lay unconscious, but still living. There I will shout it out to all the world. She will was not a momont to lose, and in the dim light they be his bride before many hours are over, and then struck out quickly with the one thought of bringing those who have scorned me will liave to ask favours their burden to shore. A sea lifted the boat, and at my hand. They did not know that I possessed though the surf broke on board, in another minute the secret of her birth-that it still lies locked up in she floated on and dropped down safely into a pool, the chest, guarded safely in the vault beneath the where there was no danger of her being carried mill, and that it will be beyond their reach before away. Adam and his companions, jumping out, to-morrow. Ah! ah! ah!” and he broke out into a hauled the boat up on the beach. Leaving the boy cry of maniac laughter. in charge of her, he and Jacob then carried the man The old woman passed lier hand across her brot, they had rescued, and who was still insensible, and took another stride, which brought her close to towards Mad Sal's hut, which could just be distin- where Gaffin lay. guished on the side of the ravine by tho glare of “ Answer me, I adjure you ; again I ask you, are light coming through the chinks in the window and you the Martin Gonl who years gone by was door.

' pressed' and carried off to sea ?” Adam knocked loudly.

“Yes, I am that Martin Goul, the pirate, smuggler, “Who comes to disturb me now?” exclaimed the spy, murderer!” ho shrieked out, raising himself; old woman from within. “Is my solitude constantly " thero are no deeds I have not dared to do. I by to be broken in upon by strangers ?”

forged letters kept Ranald Castleton from his home, We bring you a well-nigh drowned man, who and willingly would I have allowed his innocent will die if you refuse him your aid, good dame," said child to perish. Now I have answered you, what Adam. “In mercy, do not keep us outside.”

more would


learn from mo? Ah! ah ! ah!" ho The door was opened.

shouted out, as if impelled by an uncontrollable im"What, another victim murdered by tho cruel salt pulse to utter the very things he would have desired sea !” exclaimed old Sal, as she saw the burden to keep secret. Adam and Jacob carried.

"It's false, it's false!” cried the unhappy woman ; “We must have off his wet clothes and warm his “my son was wild and extravagant, but he could


[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]


[ocr errors]

not have been guilty of the crimes you name. Il vuuring to burst in the front door. They fled at was the mother of young Martin Goul; he was the the first sound of the horses' steps. only being on earth I loved. Oh, the salt, sait Harry announced his arrival. "Stay, it may

only be a trick," he heard Miss Jane observe. “You my mother? you !" shrieked out the wretched “Oh, I am sure it is Harry; I know his voice. I man, and he again burst forth into a fit of hideous am not afraid of opening the door,'' exclaimed May. laughter, which froze the hearts of Adam and his The bars and bolts were quickly withdrawn, and son. "Begone, old hag, begone, begone!” he the next instant Harry pressed May to his heart. shouted.

He quickly narrated all that had happened, and Miss The old woman gazed at him like one transfixed. Jane and Miss Mary rere very grateful for his comSuddenly the fire sent up a bright flame which fell ing so opportunely to their rescue. on his faco.

“ And I too am glad to greet you, Mr. Castleton,'' “Yes, yes,” cried the unhappy creature. "I said Mr. Shallard, stepping forward. “You may know you now; you are my son, my boy Martin.” be surprised at our calmness," he observed, “but But the person she addressed no longer heard her. the truth is, I expected every moment the arrival of a

It was an awful moment. The old woman stood party of the sea-fencibles, and fully belioved that they like one in a stupor. The revelation seemed to leave would come in time to stop the ruffians in their only greater confusion in her bewildered mind. The attempt to break into the house, and to capture the suuden silence brought Adam Halliburt into the room, whole of them into the bargain. Till they appear and a glance told him the dreadful truth.

it may be prudent to retain the soldiers." Adam had noted what the dying man said with The dragoons had started at daybreak to scour regard to the chest and the little girl.

the country, but not succeeded in capturing a single * Could he have been speaking of our Maiden smuggler. They had discovered, however, in a May? and how camo he to call her the heiress of cottage, a man dying from a gunshot wound, and Texford ?"

from the description given of him Ilarry had little “He did call her so, there is no doubt about that,” doubt that he was young Gaflin. May appeared at obserred Jacob; "he cannot tell us now, though, breakfast, looking as bright and fresh as ever. As what he meant."

soon as the meal was over, Harry and Mr. Shallard, 6 But the chest may. I was always sure tliat assured that the ladies were in no further danger, Gaffin had visited the wreck and carried off some- were on the point of setting out for Texford when thing of value, but little did I think all the time Adam and Dame Halliburt arrived. that he knew who our Maiden May was,” said After the dame had expressed her joy at seeing Adam.

May and the ladies safe, Adam described to Harry "If we can get the chest wo shall soon know all and Mr. Shallard the events which had occurred on about that, father; and it will be the thing of all the previous evening, and gave them the information others that Lieutenant Castleton will like to know; he had obtained from the dying man. May listened and I shall be glad to help him liud it out."

with breathless eagerness. Was, indeed, the secret As neither Adam nor Jacob felt disposed to go to of her birth to be at length disclosed? The heiress sleop after the sceno they had witnessed, they sat up of Texford! That seemed impossible : it must have discussing the subject till dawn. They were ro- been a fancy of the dying smuggler's. She might, luctant to leave the poor demented woman, but could indeed, be proved to belong to a noble family, and not longer delay. The scene of excitement had left Sir Ralph's objections to her might be removed ; or, her in a state of helpless stupor. The wind having on the other hand, her birth might be such that still shifted and the sea gone down, they launched their greater obstacles might arise, or the proofs, hail they boat, and sailed before the wind for Hurlston. As existed, might have been removed. Fears and hopes they passed close under the mill they saw a vessel alternately gaining the mastery, she in vain endeacast on the beach, which they recognised as Gaffin's voured to calm her agitation. Miss Mary stood holdlugger. They afterwards discovered that, having ing her hand, her sightless eyes turned towards the been left with only two or three hands on board, speakers, listening to all that was said; while Miss she had been driven on shore, and, like the Nancy; Jane erery now and then threw in a word, gave her having seen her best days, had been quickly knocked advice, or cross-questioned Adam, with an acuteness to pieces by the heavy sea which had for a short time which won the lawyer's admiration. broken on the coast.

As they were still speaking, a dense wreath of Young Jack had arrived safely and delivered the smoke, with flickering points of flame rising beneath message Adam had sent the dame, so that she had not it, was seen in the direction of the cliff. been auxious about them. But she had a terrible “ The mill has been set on fire,” exclaimed Mr. account to give of the erents which, according to Shallard; "men ought to have been stationed to report, had taken place at Texford and Downside, guard it. We may yet be in timo to save the chest.” and which had caused her the greatest alarm, and she The gardener having been despatched with an was only waiting their arrival to set off to ascertain order to the fencibles to lasten to the mill, tho the truil.

party from Downside hurried in the same direction. They were soon at the spot, and at work.

In the midst of the confusion several men mere ILARRY and the dragoons, after Gaffin's escape, seen emerging with a heavy chest, which they gallopod rapilly to Downside. IIe would soon have carried between them. distanced them liad le not feared that they might “We have got it, Mr. Castleton—we have got it!” lose their way. He kept urging them to spur on cried Jacob, as several of the bystanders sprang forwith greater speed. Tho gato was opened, and as ward to his assistance. they approached the house a thundering sound was In another minute the whole house was in a blaze, hearl, and he caught siglt of several men endea- and the rafters which supported the vault catching

[ocr errors]


[ocr errors]



fire, the tall mill fell with a loud crash, and a huge who was alone in his study engaged in writing. He fiery mass alone marked the spot where it had stood. was so absorbed that he scarcely noticed her en

If you will restrain your curiosity for a short trance. She had to repeat what she had said. time, Mr. Castleton, we will have the chest carried "Foolish boy!” he exclaimed, without expressing up to Downside and examine it there," said Mr. any satisfaction. “If he knew the position in which Shallard; “it will be a fitter spot than the open I am placed he would see that I have greater downs."

reason than ever for objecting to his making that Plenty of bearers were found, and the old lawyer match. a proper pride and a sense of what is due had some difficulty in keeping pace with them, as, to his family no longer restrains him, let him underfollowed by half the population of Hurlston, they stand that his father is a mere beggar dependent on bore it up to the Miss Pembertons' cottage.

the will of another; though you have nothing to fear, as I may tell you that he acknowledges your lover as his son, and insists on my sanction to your

marriage." The attack of the smugglers and the pursuit had “My dear father," exclaimed Julia, “I had hoped aroused Sir Ralph Castleton's keenest interest, but indeed that all impediments to my happiness would the presence of Mr. Hastings still more disquieted be removed, but how can that affect you or Harry?" him. There was something in his presence which “You shall know all in time," answered Sir made a more intimate conversation imperative, and Ralph, gloomily. "Till the arrival of Captain now the baronet, who was unusually pale and Headland I am prohibited from saying more. Leave agitated, had invited his guest to meet him in his me now; only, if you have any feelings of affection

, study. What transpired during the conversation and duty, you will use your influence with Harry. I was not known. Lady Castleton had remarked the do not wish to make an enemy of my only son, but agitation Mr. Hastings's appearance had caused her tell him, while I live I will never be a party to his husband, and she dreaded the effect it might produce committing so rash an act.” on him.

She returned to her mother, who had sufficiently At last the hungry guests, Those dinner had been recovered to come downstairs. The guests had gone so long postponed, assembled in the dining-room, into the grounds, with the exception of Mr. Hastings where they were joined by the master of the house and and General Sampson. Mr. Hastings. Sir Ralph still looked nervous, and The general came hurrying into the drawing-room instead of exhibiting his usual self-possession his from the hall, exclaiming, “ A post-chaise is driving manner was subdued, and his mind evidently dis- up the avenue ; ” and taking Mr. Hastings by the tracted. He treated Mr. Hastings with marked atten- arm, he added, “I do not know whether you or tion, while he seemed at times to forget the presence Miss Castleton should be the first to greet the occuof the marquis and his other titled guests.

pant. I must leave you to decide.” Julia excused herself from coming downstairs on "Let my future daughter have that happiness," the plea of having to attend to her mother, who was answered Dr. Hastings, by a violent effort calming

, really unwell from anxiety and alarm. The general his evident agitation. tried to make amends for Sir Ralph's want of atten- He imprinted a kiss as he spoko on the young tion to his guests, and talked away for the whole lady's brow. “Go and bring my son to me, when party.

you have exchanged greetings. Do not dotain him “I hope, Mr. Hastings,” said the general, draw- long." ing him aside after dinner, "you have convinced my Julia hastened to the ante-room, scarcely daring to friend Sir Ralph that your gallant son is a fit hope that the general was not mistaken. From the match for his fair daughter, Miss Julia, and I should window she sair the carriage approaching. She had like to be able to give the young lady a hint.” not long to wait. Captain Headland sprang from it,

"I think, my dear general, that her father will followed by another person whom her eyes, from the no longe object to the match; but I have agreed to mist which stole over them, failed to recognise. She retain my incognito till the arrival of my son, whose heard his step in the hall. In another minute he ship was announced as having reached Spithead was supporting her and listening to the account she yesterday evening, and as I obtained leave for him had to give. She led him into the drawing-room, at the Admiralty, he will come on here at once.where Mr. Hastings was seated alone.

The general, who was as much at home at Tes- .“I require no one to tell me you are my son,” he ford as at his own house, found means to give Julia said, embracing them both. the satisfactory intelligence.

They spoke for some time. Julia Jould have Next morning the marquis and Lord Frederick, retired, to leave the father and his son alone, but the who had not been unobservant of what was taking former detained her. place, though somewhat puzzled, were prepared for “For your sakes alone should I desire to resume the hint which the general conveyed to them, that my name and take the title which is lawfully mine," the heart and hand of Miss Julia Castleton vere he continued. “I am your father's elder brother, engaged. Regretting that their stay should have my dear Julia; but I know that when you become been so short, they paid their respects to the master my son Ranald's wife you will endeavour to console and mistress of the house and took their departure, him and your brother Harry for the loss of an empty much to Sir Ralph's satisfaction.

title, of which I may be compelled to deprive him. Julia, who had become somewhat alarmed at not | But I am happily able to leave him in possession of hearing of Harry, was much relieved during the a fortune equal to that which he at present enjoys." course of the morning by receiving a message from Believing that you did not desire to hold the him, saying that he was at Downside, and hoped baronetcy, I would gladly have resigned my future shortly to return to Texford. She hurried to Lady right to it in favour of Harry,” said Headland. Castleton to inform her, and thon went to Sir Ralph, As, however, you gave me leave to consult any

[ocr errors]


child as

friend in whom I had confidence, I at once went to retaken the vessel. They searched in vain for her. my old captain, Admiral Fancourt, who of all people, It was believed with savage satisfaction by the as my uncle's brother-in-law, was the most capable French that a wreck we fell in with two days afterof giving me advice. I placed the whole matter wards, which went down before she could be boarded, before him, and he assures me that should my uncle was our ship. I had no reason to doubt that they were desire a baronetcy, Government will readily grant wrong in their suspicions, and mourned my him one for his political services, so that he will lost to me for ever.” consequently not be deprived of the rank he prizes. All listened with breathless interest to what Mr. Having known me from my early days, and being Castleton was saying Harry's satisfaction can convinced of the truth of the account I gave him, he better be imagined than described. accompanied me here that he might satisfy my uncle's “I am very sure that you are Sir Ranald Castleton ; mind and assist in arranging matters."

those who doubt it have only to examine your picAs Headland, or rather Captain Castleton, ceased ture in the study. Though I recognise you, I doubt

I speaking, the door opened, and Admiral Fancourt not so will the old steward, Mr. Groocock, and many entered the room. He at once recognised Sir Ranald others who knew you in your youth," said Mr. Castleton, as Mr. Hastings was henceforth to be Shallard, as Sir Ranald warmly greeted him as an called, and expressed his satisfaction at his return, old friend. assuring him that he would have no difficulty in Harry, after a satisfactory interview with his establishing his claims.

father, could no longer restrain his eagerness. He Lady Castleton shortly afterwards joined the party, set off again for Downside. He had not to go far and having been introduced to her brother-in-law, before he met the carriage. Returning with it, warmly welcomed her nephew. Headland received he had the happiness of handing out his beloved a still more enthusiastic welcome from the old Maiden May and introducing her to her father general, who quickly made his appearance.

and brother. And here comes Harry and another gentleman galloping along the avenue as if the fate of the Two weddings shortly afterwards took place by kingdom depended on their.speed,” he exclaimed. special licence at Texford Hall, Sir Ranald and Sir

Julia and the captain went out to meet them, and Ralph giving their daughters away. in another minute returned accompanied by Harry A fête was held in honour of the occasion in the and the lawyer. Harry could scarcely speak. Julia Park, at which the Miss Pembertons were present, knew by the way he embraced her and his mother and Adam and Dame Halliburt, with their two sons that his heart was bounding with joy.

—for Sand had just returned from sea-were among “She can no longer be looked upon as unworthy the most honoured guests. of marrying a Castleton, for she is a Castleton her- “I knew our Maiden May was a real young lady, self

, though all my May desires is to bear my name,” though little did I think she would one day be Lady he exclained, at length; "but Mr. Shallard will Castleton,” said Adam. explain the discovery we have made more clearly Sir Ranald insisted on settling an annuity on old than I can.

Our good cousins promise to bring her Adam and his wife. Honest Jack Headland, the here as soon as a carriage can be obtained."

only one now of the name, not unwilling to remain Sir Ranald, as may be supposed, listened to this on shore, was appointed to a post at Morbury suited announcement with the deepest interest, as he did to to his taste. the account given by the lawyer.

Though the young officers, while the war conMr. Shallard, after briefly describing the discovery tinued, again went afloat, they did not object to of the chest which had been so long hid by Martin home service. Harry, who had purchased Downside Goul in the old mill, then went on to state that on the death of his cousins, spent a portion of every having examined the documents in it, he had summer at the place which was so endeared to him no doubt whatever that the little girl who had been and his beloved and still blooming May. rescued from the wreck on board which the chest had been found was the child of the long-lost Ranald Castleton. This was corroborated by the locket with the initials of “M. C." which she had on, and which with the dress had been carefully preserved THE RUSSIAN AND ENGLISH NATIONAL by Dame Halliburt, while several of the articles in

ANTHEMS. the chest had the Castleton arms and crest. The eyes of those who knew Sir Ranald were


'HE union by marriage of the royal families of turned towards him.

Great Britain and Russia has led to the “Through the mercy of Heaven my two children National Anthems of the two countries being perhave been restored to me on the same day,” he ex- formed alternately, in fashionable assemblies by claimed. “I had embarked for England after her professionals, in public places by military bands, mother's death with my little daughter and her both at London and St. Petersburg, at Edinburgh native nurse. While we were still in ignorance that and Moscow, at Dublin and Kiev, at Liverpool and the war had broken out, we were captured by a Odessa, at Manchester and Riga, in honour of an French privateer. A heavy gale was blowing at the event which promises fair for the maintenance of time, and I with other passengers had just been peace between the respective nationalities of eastern removed when all further communication between and western Europe. The Russian song, to which the ships was prevented by the fury of the wind and Marie Alexandrovna has often listened on the sea. I was almost driven to despair when I found banks of the Neva, is far more thoughtful than the that the ships had separated during the night. It English, and differs also in being entirely free from was the opinion of our captors that, only a few men political allusions, while written in a strain of correct 1 aving been put on board, the crew had risen and I religious sentiment and feeling. It consists of six

[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]
« ÎnapoiContinuați »