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reflection by and through whom these calamities were inflicted:"
As she thus spoke, she turned upon her companion a countenance whose faded cheek attested the reality of her sufferings, even while it glowed with the temporary animation which accompanied her language. The horseman was not insensible to the appeal; he raised his hand to his brow with the sudden motion of one who feels a pang shoot along his brain, passed it hastily over his face, and then pulled the shadowy hat still deeper on his forehead. The movement and the feelings which it excited did not escape Edith, nor did she remark them without emotion.
"And yet," she said, " should the person of whom I speak seem to you too deeply affected by the hard opinion of—of—an early friend, say to him, that sincere repentance is next to innocence; that, though fallen from a height not easily recovered, and the author of much mischief, because gilded by his example, he may still atone in some measure for the evil he has done."
"And in what manner V asked the cavalier, in the same suppressed, and almost choked voice.
"By lending his efforts to restore the blessings of peace to his distracted countrymen, and to induce the deluded rebels to lay down their arms. By saving their blood, he may atone for that which has been already spilt;—and he that shall be most active in accomplishing this great end, will best deserve the thanks of this age, and an honoured remembrance in the next."
"And in such a peace," said her companion, with a firm voice, "Miss Bellenden would not wish, I think, that the interests of the people were sacrificed unreservedly to those of the crown?"
"I am but a girl," was the young lady's reply ; " and I scarce can speak on the subject without presumption. But, since I have gone so far, 1 will fairly add, I would wish to see a peace which should give rest to all parties, and secure the subjects from military rapine, which I detest as milch as I do the means how adopted to resist it."
"Miss Bellenden," answered Henry Morton, raising his face, and speaking in his natural tone, "the person who has lost such a highly-valued place in your esteem, has yet too much spirit to plead his cause as a criminal; and, conscious that he can no longer claim a friend's interest in your bosom, he would be silent under your hard Censure, Were it not that he can refer to the honoured testimony of Lord Evandale, that his earnest wishes and most active exertions are, even now, directed to the accomplishment of such a peace as the most loyal cannot censure."
He bowed with dignity to Miss Bellenden, who, though her language intimated that she well knew to whom she had been speaking, probably had not expected that he would justify himself with so much animation. She returned his salute, confused and in silence. Morton then rode forward to the head of the party.
"Henry Morton!" exclaimed Major Bellenden, surprised at the sudden apparition.
"The same," answered Morton; "who is sorry that he labours under the harsh construction of Maj°r Bellenden and his family. He commits to rhy Lord Evandale," he continued, turning towards the young nobleman, and bowing to him, "the charge of undeceiving his friends, both regarding the particulars of his conduct and the purity bf his motives. Farewell, Major Bellenden— All happiness attend you and yours—May we meet again in happier and better times!"
"Believe me," said Lord Evandale, "your confidence, Mr. Morton, is not misplaced; I will endeavour to repay the great services I have received from you by doing my best to place your character on its proper footing with Major Bellenden, and all whose esteem you value."
"I expected no less from your generosity, my lord," said Morton.
He then called his followers, and rode off along the heath in the direction of Hamilton, their feathers waving and their steel caps glancing in the beams of the rising sun. Cuddie Headrigg alone remained an instant behind his companions to take an affectionate farewell of Jenny Dennison, who had contrived, during this short morning's ride, to reestablish her influence over his susceptible bosom. A straggling tree or two obscured, rather than concealed their tete-a-tete, as they halted their horses to bid adieu.
"Fare ye weel, Jenny," said Cuddie, with a loud exertion of his lungs, intended perhaps to be a sigh, but rather resembling the intonation of a groan,—" Ye'll think o' puir Cuddie sometimes—an honest lad that lo'es ye, Jenny; ye'll think o' him now and then V
"Whiles—at brose-time," answered the malicious damsel, unable either to suppress the repartee or the arch smile which attended it.
Cuddie took his revenge as rustic lovers are wont, and as Jenny probably expected,—caught his mistress round the 'neck, kissed her cheeks and lips heartily, and then turned his horse and trotted after his master.
"Deil's in the fallow," said Jenny, wiping her lips and adjusting her head-dress, "he has twice the spunk o' Tarri Halliday, after a'—Coming, my leddy, coming— Lord have a care o' us, I trust the old leddy didna see us!"
"Jenny," said Lady Margaret, as the damsel carhe up, "was not that young man who commanded the party the same that was captain of the popinjay, and who was afterwards prisoner at Tillietudlem on the morning Claverhouse came there V
Jenny, happy that the query had no reference to her own little matters, looked at her young mistress, to discover if possible, whether it was' her cue to speak truth or not. Not being able to catch any hint to guide her, she followed her instinct as a lady's maid, and lied.
"I didna believe it was him, my leddy," said Jenny, as confidently as if she had been saying her catechism, "he was a little black man, that." 14 v6i,. 11.
"You must have been blind, Jenny," said the Major: "Henry Morton is tall and fair, and that youth is the very man."
"I had ither thing ado than be looking at him," said Jenny, tossing her head; "he may be as fair as a farthing candle for me."
"Is it not," said Lady Margaret, " a blessed escape which we have made out of the hands of so desperate and blood-thirsty a fanatic 9"
"You are deceived, madam," said Lord Evandale; "Mr. Morton merits such a title from no one, but least from us. That I am now alive, and that you are now on your safe retreat to your friends, instead of being prisoners to a real fanatical homicide, is solely and entirely owing to the prompt, active, and energetic humanity of this young gentleman."
He then went into a particular narrative of the events with which the reader is acquainted, dwelling upon the merits of Morton, and expatiating on the risk at which he had rendered them these important services, as if he had been a brother instead of a rival.
"I were worse than ungrateful," he said, " were I silent on the merits of the man who has twice saved my life."
"I would willingly think well of Henry Morton, my lord," replied Major Bellenden; "and I own he has behaved handsomely to your lordship and to us; but I cannot have the same allowances which it pleases your lordship to entertain for his present courses."
"You are to consider," replied Lord Evandale, " that he has been partly forced upon them by necessity; and I must add, that his principles, though differing in some degree from my own, are such as ought to command respect. Claverhouse, whose knowledge of men is not to be disputed, spoke justly of him as to his extraordinary qualities, but with prejudice, and harshly, concerning his principles and motives."
"You have not been long in learning all his extraordinary qualities, my lord," answered Major Bellenden. "I, who have known him from boyhood, could, before this affair, have said much of his good principles and good-nature; but as to his high talents"
"They were probably hidden, Major," replied the generous Lord Evandale, "even from himself, until circumstances called them forth; and, if I have detected them, it was only because our intercourse and conversation turned on momentous and important subjects. He is now labouring to bring this rebellion to an end, and the terms he has proposed are so moderate, that they shall not want my hearty recommendation."
"And have you hopes," said Lady Margaret, "to accomplish a scheme so comprehensive?"
"I should have, madam, were every whig as moderate as Morton, and every loyalist as disinterested as Major Bellenden. But such is the fanaticism and violent irritation of both parties, that I fear nothing will end this civil war save the edge of the sword."
It may be readily supposed, that Edith listened with the deepest interest to this conversation. While she regretted that she had expressed herself harshly and hastily to her lover, she felt a conscious and proud satisfaction that his character was, even in the judgment of his noble-minded rival, such as her own affection had once spoke it.
"Civil feuds and domestic prejudices," she said, " may render it necessary for me to tear his remembrance from my heart; but it is no small relief to know assuredly, that it is worthy of the place it has so long retained there."
While Edith was thus retracting her unjust resentment, her lover arrived at the camp of the insurgents, near Hamilton, which he found in considerable confusion. Certain advices had arrived, that the royal army, having been recruited from England by a large detachment of the King's Guards were about to take the field. Fame magnified their numbers and their high state of equipment and discipline, and spread abroad other circumstances which dismayed the courage of the insurgents. What favour they might have expected from Monmouth, was likely to be intercepted by the influence of those associated with him in command. His Lieutenant-General was the celebrated General Thomas Dalzell, who, having practised the art of war in