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ships, think you?” and he laughed loudly, and nodded his head to his applauding band. “And my servants, especially Merry and Haverstraw, did they not endeavour to prevent you?” “To be sure they did—but we soon tripped up their heels, and stowed them away in the beer-cellar—and no bad place either, if your beer be as good as your wine, Marquis—and so here's wishing you no worse company than a jolly set like ourselves,” draining a goblet of the wine which he praised. Here Clinton came to the door also, and appeared surprised to see his father there. “How did you get in 7" said he ; “and where is Lady Hester 7” “I left her in Montreal,” was the reply to the last interrogatory. “I found the kitchen door open, and came through the servants hall.” “Did you see Jane and Mr. Lee ?” “I saw Mr. Lee—he gave me some idea of what was going forwards here, but any thing so bad as this I little expected to find.” “For heaven’s sake, sir, be cautious how you act! both I and Jane have already run no small risk from them—they are all intoxicated ; one of them now lies dead in the passage, shot by Gilpin, who interfered for Jane's protection.” “Is she in the house 7” w “No—she must have been hastening from it as you entered it. “Leave me, and look after her, Nicholas,” said the Pirate, speaking decisively. “Do not fear for me. I know how to manage these fellows, believe me.”
“Only be cautious, sir! for they are like devils let loose.” “I will, I will—go.”. This dialogue had not occupied half a minute, and had been spoken, scarcely above a whisper, in French, which only a few of the large number of the privateers understood. Clinton turned with hasty steps to look for the frightened Jane, and the Pirate advanced alone into the midst of the salon without the least hesitation. “Well, gentlemen, now be so good as let me know the meaning and object of this visit. You cannot suppose that I shall endure such insolent intrusions whenever it may please you to make them.” The tongues of the whole band of ruffians were straightway unloosed, and all speaking together, demanded money from him. “Give us fifty Louis-d'ors a piece l’’ cried some. “Give us four thousand dollars among us all!” cried others. “Your demands, gentlemen, are extremely moderate, I must allow,” said the Pirate, with irony, “extremely moderate. And how often do you intend to visit me for a repetition of the amount 7” “As you have come into a fort’n,” said the present captain, “we have a right to a share in it.” “So we have, Skipper!” was the clamourous response. “What are you better than us?” resumed their captain. “We have stood alongside of you in all weathers and never cried quarter to any man | Come, then— give us a good round heap of coin apiece, and we'll not trouble you again for three years. That's reasonable, isn’t it, my jolly buccaneers ?” “To be sure it is reasonable !” was the deafening echo. “And what's reasonable I hope will be agreeable,” continued the orator. “We want nothing whatever that's unfair! We have stood by you when the weather was squally, and now we wont let you break up partnership with us when it’s shiny. You’ve helped yourself out of our meal-tub, and we'll help ourselves out of your meal-tub.” “Indeed!” cried the Pirate: “let me ask you if the vessel which I suppose you have now was not mine, and all that was in it too ! And when I parted from you, did I not leave myself actually destitute of every thing excepting only the little money that had been given me by the persons whose lives I saved ? I know you afterwards gave me my cabin furniture - but what was that compared with what I left behind What did I gain among you ? Depraved as I knew you to be, I never thought you capable of despicable ingratitude like this ' Away with you ! false, worthless, scoundrels : You shall never sorce a dollar from me ! It is no use attempting to frighten me with your savage looks Contemptible rascals I am ashamed that ever I had connexions with you!” “Let us have the value of twenty Louis-d'ors each,” shouted the band simultaneously, “and we will be satisfied l’” “I will not!” fiercely returned the Pirate, with invincible determination. “I tell you I will not be compelled to give a single piece of money to any of you!
What have you known of me that could lead you to believe I would pay you for breaking open my doors, ransacking my house, and ill-using my servants 7 Perhaps you thought to force me to do your will by those weapons which I see you have in your hands—but depend upon it, it as difficult to intimidate the Marquis of Rougemont as it was Captain Anderson of the Vulture! I have faced death before to-day, gentlemen. I acknowledge that at this instant I am quite in your power, and I know you are base and dastardly enough even to attack a defenceless man. But you will not see me flinch ! Fire all of you ! I will give you nothing by compulsion l—nothing I say ! You all hear me—by heaven you shall extort nothing from me! Here is my breast—fire —worthless and ungratesul villains! fire on the man who beggared himself, and forfeited name and peace, to serve you!” His dauntless and commanding bearing staggered the crew, who looked at one another as if dubious of their own resolves. “We don’t want to do you the least injury at all,” said the present captain, in a conciliatory way; “only it’s no use your turning rusty about it; here we are, and it isn’t to be expected that we should go away without some satisfaction. Come, we'll meet you half way—there are something about fifty of us—give us ten Louis-d'ors each and we’ll go back to the ship directly.” “Not so much as a dollar!” repeated the Pirate very positively. “Not a coin in gold or silver, by heaven Had you come to me in a proper way I would have made you a present of not a mean value with the ut
most willingness of heart—but I will not be threatened into any thing!” “Then all hands shall stay here till you alter your mind, Marquis, that's all,” said the other, sitting down with a dogged air. “So you may do as you like. And here’s another thing it behoves me to speak of since you are so wonderful obstinate. At the time our vessel was lying-to off Toronto harbour two or three years back, when your son first came on board, we made him clap his name down in our books as a sworn buccaneer; well now, if you don’t let us have the money we want, and its no great deal to make a fuss about, one of us shall 'peach, and then good bye both to your Marquisship and him. So do as you like—do as you like. Here's your health—this is prime liquor—Teneriffe, I think it was ticketed in the cellar.” The coolness of the speaker was proportionate to the importance of his declaration. The Pirate was indeed taken at an advantage; he gazed at the other with a changing countenance. To be obliged to succumb now was insupportable. His pride, which constituted so large a portion of his character, revolted from the necessity. But at all hazards, he felt that he must preserve his son from public disgrace and ruin. “Brien,” he began in an altered voice, then stopped, and drew a deep breath, “Brien, let these men go from the house—I will settle the point with you alone, when I have consulted my son.” “No! no | no | That wont do for us!” returned the captain. “Now or never ! If you will tell down on this table ten Louis-d'ors of sound gold to every jolly buccaneer here, myself excepted, who of course shall