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verily thou art sore tired and wet, oh, I'll e’en do such sewing as needs by my poor man! wet as a newly wrung the bedchamber fire. So good-night to dishclout !”
thee, Sal, woman !” The good parson, being as wax in Whereupon, much to worthy Mistress his lady's right capable hands, forth- Trussbit's surprise, and somewhat to with sought his bedchaniber, where the detriment of her second-best cap, was ready lit a bright fire, most com- some great wave of feeling did incontiforting to his tired and chilled limbs. nently sweep Sally away with it, and in Having washed him, untied his points, a moment her arms were round her and said his prayers, he was soon be- mistress's neck, and she was sobbing tween the homespun sheets, blinking “Good-bye” in lieu of “Good-night.” at the twinkling of the fire on the pol- The clatter of plates, as his wife set ished oak panelling of the room, and down the supper-tray, did straightway already nodding unto slumber.
awaken the parson out of his doze. And, in sooth, while Mistress Truss- He sat up in his bed, with wild bit was superintending Simple Sally's eyes gleaming from beneath his nightpreparation of his supper, the worthy capped brows. man did, for a brief season, visit the “ Alice ! what meaneth this ringing land of dreams, as will be seen anon. of the church-bell ?"
But meanwhile, reader, I would fain Bell, Ezekiel! Why, what aileth introduce this same Sally to thee, as the man ?” playing no slight part in my narrative “I tell thee, Alice, I heard it clearly of what befell.
but now." A short, squab wench it was, with a For all answer Mistress Trussbit broad face and high cheek-boues ; stepped to the window and drew aside somewhat underhung withal. Flaxen the curtain. hair of a bleached appearance had The gale was at its height. It was Sally, and big, pathetic eyes of light yelping and tearing at the casement, blue. Not quite as other wenches was like unto a beast of prey, and anon, poor Sal. If haply accosted by a stran- failing to rend it, was sobbing and ger, or suddenly questioned by whom- moaning an' 'twere a lost spirit. What soever, as a covey of partridges is with this and the creaking of boughs as scattered by an unbroken pointer pup, the gust did strain them, to say nought 80 were poor Sally's wits put to the of the deep undertone of the surf's wing.
sullen roar on the distant beach, small Mischievous boys (myself, to my chance was there of hearing the sound shame be it said, among them) were of a bell, even had it been hard by. wont to fire off absurd questions at her But the church was on the leeward of set purpose to see the lopeless, side of the house, half a mile away, and vacant look spread, like a curtain, over the bell thereof, being of weakly, not the foolish, kindly face.
to say cracked, tone, was barely audiYet was Sal a right excellent hand- ble at the parsonage on the calmest of maid, and thrifty withal. Some years summer days. before there had fallen unto her a The parson drew the spindle-legged small bequest from an aunt, and this table nearer the bedside and said his she had carefully hoarded, as likewise grace before meat. had she the greater part of her earn- 6 What hath come over our Sally ings.
gladly would I give my best salting of There, Sally, lass,” said her mis- pork to know," said his wife as she tress, “I will myself take thy master settled to her sewing, having trimmed his supper. And do thou see the little the waning fire. ones abed and lock the doors, and, that! Mr. Trussbit paused in his meal with done, go thou thyself to roost, girl, for mute inquiry. 'Twas all the spur Mis'twas a beavy washing. As for me, I tress Trussbit needed, and forth with
she plunged into the tale of Sally's feathers, like a gamecock, and out with strange emotion. And even in the ribald and scurrilous abuse fit to shock very telling thereof did a sudden the boatswain of a man-o'-war, let thought flash upon her.
alone a quiet country clergyman. But, “Ezekiel, what if that wicked knave, when he proceeded to shake his fists Deadly Dick, hath been here again and and threaten violence, then did the seen the maiden ?"
parson, being a man of inches and And the little woman fushed with shoulder-width and as brave as a lion, indignation. Now the parson that day, summarily take the scoundrel by the in his long tramp to visit the wild scruff of the neck and administer unto fisher-folk at the uttermost extremity him so tough a hiding that the bully of his parish, had heard rumors of roared for mercy, and, on Mr. TrussDick being in the neighborhood. But bit's relaxing bis grip, did take himself he said nought of this, nor of the forthwith out of the parish, to the joy rustling in the bushes - which now, of all therein. he felt assured, was caused by Dick's Mistress Trussbit was about gatherspeaking off the premises – being lothing up her work, the kitchen-clock havto alarm his wife.
ing long gone eleven, when the parson, As for Mistress Trussbit, she be- for the third time, awoke. came thoughtful and silent, and more- Alice, love! It boots not talking. over wished her husband to betake 'Tis a matter I must see to." himself to the sleep he so sorely did “ Hast heard the bell again ?” need, which presently, much to her “Ay, that have I. And unravel this content, he did.
coil will I without more ado." But about ten of the clock he awoke And, with the word, he set about atwith a start. " Alice ! Hark to that tiring himself with all speed, his wife bell! 'Tis a-ringing lustily !"
the while, far from offering hindrance, But again did his good wife with finding him all such garments as he gentle persuasion allure him, being would require. Nor made she any sign drowsy and heavy of the eyelids, into till just as he was sallying forth of the as sound a slumber as ever.
door, when, raising herself on tiptoe, Yet did the thought keep knocking she kissed his lips with a “God bless at her heart's door, as she plied her and keep thee, husband !” anıl so back needle,
quietly to pray in her chamber, and, “What if shipwrecked mariners had that done, to get ready a hot cup of in sooth, got into the church and were coffee and a bright fire for Mr. Trussringing the bell to summon aid !" bit's home-coming.
But she resolutely put the fancy from By this, the storm having worn itself her, as being nought but a figment of out, the night was calm and clear. an anxious brain, and her meditations Like a sleeping infant lay the quiet did again gather, as they had done oft earth, kissed by the moonlight. Only that night, round her domestic's strange from the shore there came to the ear demeanor.
the thud of the rollers as they thrashed Deadly Dick was the terror of that the shingle. Uvderfoot 'twas seething country-side. The tale ran that he was wet, and the parson had to pick him a a murderer and a pirate ; certes he was way among the puddles left by the both poacher and smuggler, and the rain. ill-repute of many foul and cruel acts At length, after tedious and slippery did besmirch his ill-omened name. walking, he fetched Deadman's Lane,
Once Parson Trussbit had interfered winding up the side of the hill to the when this gallows-bird was for striking churchyard. a woman, to wit, Dame Porcot, in one Of a sudden the parson halted, and of his frenzied fits of sudden anger. he heard his own lips saying, “What's Whereupon the knave did ruffle his that yonder ?” with the strange feeling that it was not himself that spake the the bank till he got abreast of a gnarled words.
and stunted elder-bush which sprawled The question thrilled through every along the top of the hedge, not unlike nerve of his body, and loudly did his in shape to an unskilful rider crouching heart thump it at the gate of his ribs. on his steed and clutching its mane.
A female figure, closely veiled and Here he halted, and, warily peering dressed in white, was coming towards through the twisted boughs, spied, him down the lane. This at dead of lurking in the porch, the form of a night in full sheen of the moon ! sailor man. More he could not dis
Mr. Trussbit stood as though rooted cern, and that but dimly, for the porch to the spot. Do what would he, his was in shadow. tongue did refuse utterance.
Now a more valiant man than Mr. The spectre was the first who did Trussbit never trod neat's leather. break the dread silence. “Master Moreover, his heart did burn within dear! 'Tis good o' thee to come to my him for ire, at the dastard act of bemarrying. But I've clean forgot my guiling a poor, witless maid into so money. 'Tis sewed into l'other gown. lonesome a spot, doubtless with some And Dick, he was terrible angered and felon purpose, at such an hour of sept me back for ut. But I'll be back night. ere thou count twenty, and 'twill be a So, without counting the danger if bonny bridal.”
haply, as afterwards proved to be the Poor Sal's eyes shone with unwonted case, the other man were equipped excitement as she prattled on.
with firearms, he was over the hedge At the very first tones of her voice and for the porch at speed. the parson was himself again and able Whereupon Dick, for it was he, out to give keen attention to her words, with his pistol and fired. But, by the which did in sooth reveal unto him the mercy of God, the wretch's aim being peril wherein she stood, as a fashı of uncertain for the suddenness of the lightning, on a darksome night, mak- unexpected encounter, the bullet did eth clear the edge of a precipice. whistle harmless past the parson's ear.
He answered her very quiet and as “Stop and face me like a man !” one speaketh to a child,
roared Mr. Trussbit, like unto a bull of “ I'm thinking, Sally, 'twill be over Bashan. late, by the Act of the Parliament, for Last thought of Dick's was that. In thee to get wed to-night, seeing 'tis lieu thereof, with a malediction on his gone midnight. I'll on and explain the pistol, he was off, doubling round the law to Dick, and do thou hie thee west corner of the church with the home, lass, and warm some supper for agility of a wild cat, and the parson thy sweetheart and thee. And to. after him hot-foot. morrow he shall wed thee in light of Not without purpose took Dick that day for all the folks to see. 'Twere course, as Mr. Trussbit found when he pity this brave finery o’thine were plumped head forward into something wasted.”
of the nature of a trench, and so lay Sally's assent was hearty.
stunned for a space, while the sailor, " That will i, measter. • 'Tis what with a mocking laugh, vanished into I've always said to Dick. But he's a the night. masterful man. And, for all my brave When the parson came
to he did duds, I be a shiver o’ the cold."
perceive that what he had stumbled And off she went, crooning to herself into was, to his horror, a new-made fragments of a sea-song which had grave. There, on the wet grass nigh caught her fancy, while the parson, to it, lay pick and spade. 'Twas dug puiling his hat over his brows and under an old yew-tree, on the north grasping his good stick tightly, made side of the church, where the good folk for the church. Not, low beit, without of the parisha prayed never to be buried caution, for he crept under shadow of among the nameless drowned.
" 'Twas meant for poor Sally,'
From Temple Bar. mused Mr. Trussbit, who did forth with
“ MADAME." unlock the church door (having brought “ MADAME" - the name by which the key with him), and in the dim for nearly fifty years she was best moonlight did kneel in the giving of known by her contemporaries — Charthanks, 'neath the great east window, lotte Elizabeth, Princess Palatine, for that he had escaped the assassin's Duchess of Orleans, mother of the too bullet, and had been the humble in- notorious Regent, and ancestress of the strument, through a God-sent warning, numerous branches of the Orleans of saving a fellow-creature from an family-tree, was born at Heidelberg, awesome fate.
September 7th, 1652. Her father, Never more was Deadly Dick seen in Charles Louis, the son of Elizabeth those regions. Never more was Sally Stuart, the luckless “ Queen of Hearts," teased, as of yore. None told her (for succeeded to his father's palatinate, reverent pity) the true story of that and married Charlotte of Hesse-Cassel. night, which ever died into whispers if The union was a very unbappy one, she happened by.
and eventually the elector procured a Only she knew that Dick returned divorce and married again morganatnot to redeem his troth, and into the ically. Charlotte Elizabeth and one great blue eyes, often turned seawards, brother, who died without issue, were there crept the wistful look of one who his only legitimate children, but by waits expectant.
his morganatic spouse he had a large A matter of two years had passed family, with whom Madame was away. One spring morning there most affectionate terms. “It is not sounded in the little bay below the your fault,” she writes to one, “ that parsonage the plash of oars. 'Twas we did not have the same mother." the chaplain of a man-o'-war in the She was chiefly brought up by her offing, who had come in one of the aunt, the Electress Sophia, the mother ship's boats to smoke a pipe with bis of our reigning house, for whom she old schoolmate, Parson Trussbit. had an almost daughterly love, writing
From him did the parson learn that twice every week to her during the Dick had died repentant in foreign whole of her life, and always speaking parts, with Sally's name upon his of her with respect and affection. dying lips.
“ You have seen by my letter,” she Even as he told the tale a moan of writes in 1699, “ the anguish I have mortal anguish smote upon the ears of suffered about the illness of my aunt, narrator and listener, and there stood the Electress of Brunswick. Thank Sally behind them, white as driven God, she is well again. I hope that he snow! She had come in unobserved, will spare her yet many years. I sent by her mistress on some house- would rather die myself than lose my hold errand.
beloved aunt. She is the person I love From that day she pined away, and the most on this earth !” gradually betook her to a sick-bed. As Madame was a living example of
One stormy night (such an one as the old proverb about calling a spade a that memorable by Mr. Trussbit's spade, as she fairly revelled in scandal, dream) the cloud which had so long and was remarkable always for laying floated o'er her dimmed intellect did an unsparing finger on every one's lift, as a sea fog rolls away from the shortcomings, it is in itself a suffisurface of the deep, and there Hashed ciently remarkable proof of the depth into the gladdening eyes a look of rece of her attachment, that she was never ognition,
known to utter a depreciatory remark “ Dick!"
about her aunt. And with the word passed the gentle Great-great-granddaughter of Marie spirit.
Stuart, granddaughter of the Queen R. PARDEPP, of Hearts, and great-grandmother of
Marie Antoinette, she was the link in a rather - for it was a pure mariage de line of fair women ; but she herself convenance, in which so unpractical a fairly belied the tradition of her race: matter as affection played no part— to “ frightfully ugly," says M. Walck- " Monsieur Philippe d'Orleans, only enaër. Quite as outspoken about her brother of Louis XIV. His first wife self as about any one else, she candidly had been Henrietta Stuart, the lovely acknowledges her want of beauty. In daughter of Charles I., Charlotte Elizher utter carelessness as to her personal abeth's “ Welsh aunt.” The two wives appearance, she probably contrasted as of the lazy, rotund, jewel-bedizened sharply with her contemporaries as she Monsieur might have sat for studies of did in her embarrassing habit of stat- poetry and prose. ing with startling directness the truth Never lived a Stuart who was not and the whole truth on every subject at least picturesque, and Henrietta's and occasion.
youth, beauty, and tragic death by “ All my life,” she writes, “and from poison made her story pitifully paearly youth, I knew myself to be so thetic ; but the second " Madame": ugly that I never took much trouble was made of very pronounced and about dress. Jewels and fine clothes prosaic reality. “ They are killing her draw attention on those who wear with worry,” she writes, in 1690, them. It was fortunate that I felt the dying dauphine. “Everything was this indifference about my attire, other once done to reduce me to a like wise the late Monsieur ' [her hus- state ; but I am a harder nut to crack band],“ who was extremely fond of than the dauphine, and before they jewellery, would have been perpetually have come to the end of me, the old quarrelling with me as to which of us women will break some of their teeth." should wear the best diamonds."
Henrietta Stuart left two little daugh“I send you a flask of white balm,” ters, afterwards Queen of Spain and she writes to her half-sister, the Mar- Duchess of Savoy, to whom Charlotte gravine Louise. "I know many ladies Elizabeth was both a kind and wise here who put it on their faces. Mon- stepmother. Her husband she made sieur once wished to try some on mine, the best of. The best was not very but I would not have it; I prefer brilliant, to be sure, but her attitude wrinkles to having grease on my coun- towards hin seems to have been one of tenance. I detest every kind of skin half-contemptuous but good-humored lotion, and cannot bear rouge.”
tolerance. She had three children of “ Since I have had the small-pox I her own : a son, who died in infancy, have not cared to be painted,” she re- to her intense sorrow (“I do not think marks with refreshing candor; “just that grief can kill,” she says ; “ were now I am uglier than ever.”
it so I should certainly have died before In an age when dressing well was a now"), the notorious Regent, and science, and clothes were one of the Charlotte Elizabeth, afterwards Duchmost weighty facts of life, Madame, ess of Lorraine. Though her French the second lady in the kingdom, pro- was execrable, and she had neither nounced : “I do not understand why beauty nor charm, Madame speedily people require so many different became a power. A person possessed dresses ; my only costumes consist of of such vigor of phrase and such fine my grand state robe, and my riding- breadth of denunciation, and who was, habit when I hunt on horseback, noth- moreover, absolutely indifferent to the ing else. I never in my life wore a censure or satire of any one, was dressing-gown or wrapper, and in my lusus nature in the French court. wardrobe there is but one bed-gown, in True, gossip could not be more rife, or which I get in and out of bed.” No slander more virulent than it was at wonder she and the court dames had Versailles ; but cleverly veiled innubut little in common !
endoes and graceful insinuations did In 1672 she married - was married, the work of destroying reputations.