|Chapter Title||THERE'S DANCING IN THE HALL.|
|Newspaper Title||Leader (Melbourne, Vic. : 1862 - 1918)|
|Trove Title||Gathered Rue. An Australian Novel|
TALES AND SKETCHES.
CATHERED RUE. AN AUSTRALIAN NOVEL.
By Ellkrton Gay. Author of "Drifting Under the Southern Cross," "Across tjib Gulf,"
Chapter IX.— There's Dancing- In the . Hall.
Since hie rindergradaato days Basil Tremayne bad never paid so much attention to tbo set of his tie, or tlio shape of his oollar and shoes, as ii« did in preparation for tho club ball the night after1 the picnic at Narong, tlio result of this ipeeial can being that beyond tbo deep bronze of- hie complexion there was nothing to mark him as one who had only just returned into
civilisation 'from "outude," aa tue exprcMivcly curt oolloquiaiiam terms the country boyond the tekch of telegraphs and township?. His in terest in the ball was cout red in Mora Kirby's presence at it. He acknowledged it quite frankly to kimBelf ; he -wanted to be able to mito a full account of hor and her doings and aayings to his brother. If he saw that Mora had forgotton all about Evelyn it would bo his. duty to break It to him gently, and he meant to be a k«en observer at the ball. If sho danced often with any one, or 41 Bat out" dances in secluded corners, he would draw his own couclusioui, and' would :write; & preliminary' warning to Evelyn. The. entrance to the temporarily ereoted ball room wai gaily decorated with gorgeous tropical Inxuriance. There numbers of young menatood about watching the arrivals and securing their partners boforo they entered tho ball room. \'2aiII was araorigat them, impatient for this arrival of the Kirbys. Ho began to think they wire never coming, not taking into considera tion the faot that Daniel Kirby's oflioial posi tion mads him so muoh &. person of noto that his arrival must be timod almost simultaneously wkntbatof the vice-regal party, and until they » ureoblod the hall would riot begin. In effect Daniel ICirby was tho tliird Minister to tualre his appearance, and almost immediately l r? 8 le ntfttioned in an ante- Wflmber for the purpose, atruck up God Save the Qncsn, to Announco tho approaoh of vioe- royally. Mora was surrounded by a group of admirers, programme wae banded over shoulders l i onjCr rDk> much to the disgust of Basil, wiio hated to be one of a crowd. He would f1 vf LUnerfl without spoaking to them, but Kir by saw him and saluted him with cordial Weofciau, pouring out a torrent of abrowd inter- rogatiotis about the Yowarrio property. R m J. 8j?0 ,eem muoh good my having put o.i. three times on my programmo," exolaimed 88 "h® dipped her hand through oerfethers arm. "For all I canaeo I am to be dancw I' Rtom during those I thought you would not havo one left for t j»i . "0,e meu had done with your oard. «»A2tno Wl1 f e'nharrasi you by recalling a promise you might find yourself unnblo to keep. My I have tho honor r tn.1 wrii kindly put down 3, 9 je last being a. supper danca, on that nnfl yours. "What 1 Have you askod no one to dance yet?"; tnni 1.wLa(> fcw peopla. Bosidcs I wanted to Th»» Jon were going to give mo first. " BfitiS wfr walking up tha ball room, and Basil appreciation tho charmiug Shft"3! 0f loth'» <«»"»", which was all itAhii.«,,?iUn8orD®» #xcepb for tho bouquot of wi mdenhair fern sbc carried, ftluiiiu ? comfortable little person was !.n:rioh bJaok velvet, and Mora's tliLu rr?uro vrhito; was admirably set off found him ance to tbe nn Uaail litllaa being amiably, smiled upon by t)rev!rm»i0 ' M-;a<luhitanoo he had made tho GthA iay' H4 "em to occur to Wh.„ A" ,u® 10 tb.m to llanos, tills- '"""'esMniotiy, tho first quad, behln.l lit. r?r' ""'I took up a vontsgo point ti|n, . m y ''Ie Jeis and natolied Mora He-dal "iqr th0, Q"k w»Uz by a slim younq hlfdoiMI?ip in b eayastoftlio uuifonna ia 'bo roor|i. Ho '>#cs Willi w S? "utd Ills turn oamo to i» h H« thought of Evelyn away i»r to ; a - ' ;,bttido of tho. bush, listen. ®«-&e»iv-a»;3»?u '; ,th? uotivo dogs or 'Watllnlth t! u "lgllt ial'' '""t ooraparsd IkUinthll J tlie bright hco no around him, im- »C? Ulfr'!?0' fr tbe < what soimod 1'otto n-.hsU y u 'o PIoy wben lie liebUlbVi com for tably full, brilliantly 'b'Ks tUo "oVat uniforms of tko bay th.i n.' 'WiY sbip that bad anchored in be- bolloveil . Bssil lookud with what pretty, von',?? 'wportial oye ot all tho 'iioushtti i»r« #n ''"booted faces, hut ho Mors., waa notouo to- be dorapared with "J"' I'er came, and, lie felt Miatni atouif.1 k i4 !r0URll' ll''>1 " ba put Mima b«c alightifigur».iand folt tho,
fRbttouoh ol hsr hand on his arm. This per- . , ,or bouquet intoxioated him with its penetrating sweotnoss. The music, wliioh was ban.? «1>m V?7:i"CC;1,leir' tho"Eh eme'l. "'ring. band,.ssomed to him tha finest lie had evor hoard, lie put all Ins sensations down to the novoltv of isolation' att« !»'» life of work and "Why, Baiil, yon dance delightfully," Mora said, when they had takon a few turns. "I partners'"'18'' ia'rouo you to Bome eod . out her promise, hut was it of sot intent that the three or four girls to whom she introduced liim hnd no attractions beyond thoir beautiful danoing? At any rnto they ottorodliim no diatraotious to make liiin coasa to look for ward to the next number on hi. programme against.whioh Mora ICirhy's name stood. He had satisfied himsolf that sh. was heart whole, so far as any one present tlmt evening ivne conocrned, and, lie claimed as a further privilego, in liis brother's naine, to talio iicr into suppor. _They found places at a littlo tahlo at which Dick Brabazon with hi3 partner, Mrs. Sydney Bohun, wore sitting. Mrs. Bohim's vivacions faos wns set off by a ravishing toilet of maize satin and tulle. Iler bright eyes gave Basil Tremayne an invitation which he responded to oyaskinghor for adanoe. "Ob, why did you not ask me sooner ?" she said, consulting a muoh sorawlod on card, hidden amongst- the soft: ruohings of her bodies. "I must give you 0110 by throwing over someone else and porliaps getting into hot water. I shall nave to embroidery,. facta .with the meretricious colors. of fiction, anidcclaro that I have made a mistake." . "It is wolLfor you that olotbes are voiceless, or when yon wear that lovely gown again your reputation for veracity would bo shatterod," said Mora. .' -. . " Clothes aro not. voiceless, dear ; they ory 'out .with.a toqd' voloa the cbarnoters of thoso that' wear them." v " # pity, ".'said Dick Brabazon, V that: tasto ia such ttn abstraot quality that it oan only be apnitoiatod by those who possess it ? Those, that have it' are not unable to rccogniss.it in others and never experience tho want, of it." . "I bar# boon tortured the entire ovening," said Mora, " by tho vision of a oriard rod dress with eoru .trimmings ; it is imrasnss, volumin ous;. 11 pervades every portion of the club.- I began to think it had n marvellous property of ubiquity, or that it dwelt as a permanent im pression on miy disordered eyeballs, when for my peaoe of mind I discovered thoro aro two exaotly alike worn by Hebraio sisters." " What are you going to have, Mora? Some-' tiling more substantial than fruit, surely," said Basil. "No, Basil; I havo just roturned fiom a Ministerial tour, and tho feasting and junket ing day after day havo taken away all appotito. Turkey and ham, champagne and trifle, have palled upoh me. Can any one tell me why Queens land banquets always boast of n suoking pig amongst their dainties ?" "Don't mention suoking pig," said Mrs. Bohun in a tone of horror. " When I was at a largo school in New South Wales, onco we had fivo suoking pigs for dinner one day and nothing elso." "You wero saved tho embarrassment of olioioe," said Basil, laughing. " And the litter of piggies had tho poor satis faction of dying together," Mora said. " But can yon imagine the appearance of tho festive board," continued Mrs. Bohun plain tively, "with these five poor littlo chuckies in a row, each with a lemon in its moutli and a onrly little frizzled taiL It has been a nightmare to mo croc since I The excuse was that the butohor had failed to call for orders." "I was reduood once to oating parrot pie under somowbat similar circumstances, and, moreover, tho girl' I was staying with had to shoot the parrots, or wo should not havo had oven them to stay our hunger," Mora said. "I think, Mr. Brabazon, you may give me another quail,"- said Mrs, Bohun ; "as our talk is of eating,, pray let us eat at the aame time." "Talking of being put to straits in (he com missariat department," said Basil, " wait until you have livod. as far from civilisation as Yowarreo for three yeara before' you compara strange experhnoos! We have been for weoks without flour, and after haying eaten every thing in the farinaceous line down to the Inst wsovily box of macaroni, wo havo had nothing but pig weed, boiled like spinach, to vary tho etorual diet of beef !" "And with thousands of cattle on tho run," aid Dick Brabazon, " of course you had neither milk nor butter." " We should not'have hnd but for tho care and pationce of my brother, who has wonderful ways with animals, and generally mnnnges to have a fow oows for milking. You remember what per severance he has. Mora ?" " Indeed I do," said Mora heartily. " I never knew him give up anything beoauso the task was difficult. I wish you did not— both of you— live out in that droailfnl country, where you may be starved or killed I" " It all comes in the day's work," Basil said, smiling. "Happy tho man who walks with a noose round his neck, If no worse fate befalls him than to trip over tho end of tha rope 1" " Tho noose does not eount for muoh if the hangman does not lay hold of the otbor end !" Brabazon said. " All tlio same, I don't envy your life of work and hardship out west, Tre mayne. " " Miss Kirby! chimed in one of Mora's de serted partnors in an aggrieved tono. "This is our danes. I have been lookiug for you ovory. where." "Exhausted nature demanded a restorative," Morn said lightly. "Just sit down and mako yourself agreeable while I finish my peach." " Will yon givo me the fifth extra instead? ' said tlio youth who was an enthusiastic dnncer, "and I will try to find another partnorfor this one. I'lease do, Miss ICirby." " I will, certainly, hnd, moreover, if thorn is not a fifth extra I will give you the first extra at the Judge's to-morrow night." Mora saw her partner depart with pleasure ; she did not wish to be torn away from Basil yet. There was something so entrancing to her in this renewal of her girlhood's friendship she hardly knew what to put it down to. Sho rcoallcd tho youthful adoration , Evelyn had bestowod on-ber and Iter lnughing acceptation of it. Sho had eome to think that sho likod it more; than sho knew at tho time, and lookod book at it through nn iiloaliiod modium ns something mono lionost and true titan any of tlio homage sli» was constantly reaeiving ns a .'.'como-out " young lady. Althoogb Basil resembled Evolyn in nothing, sho was satisfied that the pleaauro sho felt in his society was beoauso of Ills relationship to the ardent young lovor of her girlhood. To hoar , about him, to call up. his open frank, young faoo wliiio looking- into .tho dork handsome faoo of his brotbor,' was a dolioious sensation to her. Her heart had never boen stirred so agreeably before, she longed to ceo; Evolyn lignin that: this feeling should be given full soopo and' cxpressipu. If it was so inexpressibly delight ful to her nbout him, how muoh mors so must it he to have.him besido her. Basil roquirod no urging to talk about Evolyn to bor. Of himsslf and his ownproweoo- lie novor. spoke, but 011 tbo subject7 of his bro ther ho could bo aa- expansivo us sho wished.
Sho toyed in a lolsuroly mannor with lior poach, that Basil Bhould not think sho wished to hurry away. Sho enjoyod sitting theru with him watching him cat his supper mora than going back to tho ballroom to bu handed over to another, partnor. She was in a droamy mood of pcrfeot contentment, and hardly Batoned to Mrs. Boluin'e lively banter. - Memory distorts like impressions on had blot- ting paper— a blur and a smudge— tiion some thing clearer which may porohanoo ho read by being hold to a mirror providing tho light of later experiences as a refresher of the original impression. Mora's mirror was Basil, but she did not understand what sha rend, so uncon sciously distorted was it by tlio modium through which it had passed. "I havo learnt noror to oxpeot a stern resolu tion from a recumbent person," Mrs. Bohun was saying. " When Sydney is lying in a hammock after dinnor I never approach him with difficult questions. I trust to that clnstia material— cir- oumstnncea — to gain my snd." " How delightful to ho managed by a woman with so muoh tnot," oxoisimed Brabazon ironically, " and how envious it makes a poor bachelor." " Thero speaks the leaden bias of masouline prejudice," Mrs. Bolium retorted. "Of course you think Syduoy a poor spirited wretoh of a humblo mnrricd man ; when, if you ask -him, ha will say that he doss exactly as he likes and has liis wife under thorough control." " Of aourso, being ono of the initiated, lis - Is hound to keep secrot tho mysteries of the 7ii cnagc, or bachelors would not be lured on to become Bouodiota," said Brabazon. - - "Your oynioiani does not ait easily on' you, Mr. Brabazon," Mora said. "You aro like'- a man walking between two policemen who- ia unable to abow both wrists free. If Barbara wore here to-night "He would not lie taking mo into supper," said 'Mrs. Bohnn.' "Come, Mr. Brabazon, let us go baok to tlie ballroom.- The twentioth dance, remember, Mr. Tremayne." " "Thank you, I shall ocrtaiiily not foreei," said Basil. " Would you liko to go too, Slora V he said, turning to her and finding her oyea fixed- upon him with an absent gaze. Sho started and blushod. " Oh, my thoughts word milts away in a scrub at Oontlalla, where Evolyn and I onoe almost lost ourselves. ' I thought I smelt tho strong sweat scent of the new orchid wo found that day— I suppose it was my atophnnotis. Perfumes always excite my memory strongly. I suppose we must -go baok or no shall only have onr partners coming to disturb us." Basil was trilled with tho noto of I roluotanoo in her. voice. "What a luolty follow Evolyn will be," ho thought, " but, dear follow, he will doservo his good luok." "I suppose there is no ohnnoo of niy having anothor danoe with you this evening ?" ho saiiL " Cortainly not !" sho oxolaimod with a laugh. "I never daiico mora than three dances with anyone. But yon will bo at Judgo Feather- solo's to-morrow evoning ; I will give you somo than." " Then I must remind Mrs. Fcathersolo of tho faot of my existaneo this ovening. I have hitherto steered clear of that broad expanso of whits shoulders and blaek satin whioh I re cognised as hor." The lingering pressure of Mora's flngora on his arm as tboy passed along tho corridor to the ballroom was singnlarly magnetic. Basil thought it was the cliarm of lief youth and beauty joined to the friendliness of the old acquaintance whioh caused him to thrill ro- sponsively. - Chapteb X.—" Thy Love Shall Hold Me-. . ... FAST.". "7 Basil's, business in . tho oapital might easily have been oomprosscd into a few days, but weeks slipped by and ho still lingered, - Every time that be thought of fixing a time for his return to Yowprroe. Creek. some tempting. en gagement offered itself, and its acceptation was a sufficient oxcuse for farther postponement of his doparturo. Ho pat it to himself that! ho was indemnifying himsolf for his long abionco from social lifo, -and further was discounting the rcnowal of his life of work and isolation. For cvory week of holiday and idleness that ho allowed himself ho vowed that Evolyn should havo two, for would he not havo an ospooial objeot for his visit whioh wai wanting to his own? Motives, like seasoning of herbs, should be guessed at rather than discovered. Basil's motivo for studying Mora so -long and bo earnestly was to satisfy himself that ahe would make Evelyn a good wife, at least hs was fairly; aatisBed that that was his reason, and did not seek a deeper ono. > All his observations of her tonded- to the one. question — What ohanco had Evelyn of gaining her? Ho accepted it as a good augury for Evelyn's success that, though she aocopted the homage of all, shs did not further 7 euooursgo any of her constant admirers, that she frequently Bpoko of Evelyn with frank affeotlon, almost tonderly at times ; and that forEvoiyn's brother she showed a distinguishing kindness and consi deration that if he had been a vainer man he might have taken to himself. Thero were fow days on whioh hs did not see lior for longer or shorter periods ; during long rides together in the beautiful oiivlrons of the oapital, at tennis parties, at oflioial dinners, informal danoes, or in moonlit Ioitor- ing on the river, while Mrs. Wilmott fondled her fox torrier in tho stern of tlio boat, and Mora and . Basil gontly stirred tho ocrs and talked of old days and adventures when Mora had been a email child and Basil a tall, strong youth. Mora novcr ' for one Instant changed lior manner of frank camaraderie, though there was a moist shining in her eyes when ho baid good bye, and a quiver on her lips which Basil re marked with a dim unconscious pleasure. " Yon will bo kind to Evolyn when lis comes down as you havo boen to mo," Basil said, turn ing baok and speaking in a somewhat tremulous tone. "Oh, ever so much moro so," Mora said, putting out hor hand again for a renewed fare well. "We shall not sea you again, though, for years? Good-byo, onoo more. I wish you woro not going so far away !" Ho found himsolf thinking of that hand shako curiously of ton during his long journey to Yowarree. Evolyn met him on tho way, boing so anxious to hoar all his brother's nows, and was wildly delighted to find that Basil moant him to start south immediately, to tako aa long a holiday as ho liked, only when ho was ready to roturn he. was to bring haak witli him a small fiook of ohoioo rams which -Basil had seleotcd for-later delivery. - .Yoivarroe Crook seemed toliavp lost some- of its powor of absorption for Basil, hut ho ' was foiin to attribute, it to Evelyn's absence. Ho grew: woary -of his work anil'kopt calculating tho months that must elapss beforo his arrange ments would ho auffiaieiitly advanced for him to leavo the. station in ohargo of any manager, how- ovor trustworthy and capable. Tho. few lotters whioh reached him ffOra Evelyn were full of Mora's charms and per fections' and her ewcot kindness to him. Thou a short noto, .written after ho had started with tlie sheep, allowed Basil that a lottor had missed him.: It was.evidoiitly aii important ono— Baiil
know that before Evelyn loft ho meant to know liis fnto from More. Basil was intensely chagrined that, this pnrtiouiar letter should havo boon lost; Ho longed desperately for tho knowledge of Evelj-n's success. He found on inquiry that tho mailman, wliiia crossing a flooded crook, lmd lost one of tho bags ; it had ultimately boon rcoovorcd after the subsidence of the flood,7 but only a very fow of thocontcnto were legible enough to be forwarded to their destinations. Evolyn was travelling with Andrews, a trust worthy shepherd from. Oondalla, in ohargo of tho sheep. Thoy had with them a huge negro who had summarily taken his discharge flora his post as oook on hoard an American soiling vessel, anil to avoid arrest for desertion had taken servico with Evelyn in the samo capacity, and to hoip -watoh the sheep at night. - Their paoo was naturally slow, and Basil, con sumed with impatience to learn tlie contents of tlio missing letter, detormined to shorten tho dolay by starting away from Yowarree and travelling steadily on until ha met hia brother. The canny Scotch manager oommended his notion, attributing it. to hia anxioty for tho snfety of tlie valuable stud Blioep. Basil took with him two paokhoraes and tho identical stock man who, on their first journoy to Yowarree-, had enlivened tlio whole of every day witli tho aingio vorse of his only song. Undaunted by .Basil's silent, companionship Jim Brown still hummed, Bang or. whistled— Iteonnd goes tho wnrrulil, . - Its troubles ol defy, Its jogging aloug to-gether , , Mo ould groy mare and I. Basil's -restlessness end constant absorption in one set of thoughts at last broughthome to bim a truth which be lind been alow .to acknowledge 'oven to himself. Ho had known it all along, the truth had been thore; but ho had hugged it tight and- kept it out of sight, silenced and humbled ; but how it had sprang out of the re- acsses of his heart and faced bim with an im perious snmmons, to bo acknowledged. Lot it hurt him as it must, ho know at last that hs wits in lovo with Mora Kirby — in lovo witli ths girl he had sped Ids brother forth to mako love to and many, believing that ho stood every chance of success with her. Now, in a few days ho would moot the enraptured lover fresh from his conquest, coming back to Yowsrree only, be cause lie wss bound to bring tbo sheep, but hop ing to return to olaim his beautiful bride almost immediately. With every iteration the long miles of gum forest or deeply grassed plain 7 were travelled to tho same weary thought. By tlio camp fire; in ths saddlo ; asleop or awake ; listening to long yarns from Jim Brown or timed ' to tho canter of hia bono; through tha roll of a tsrrifia thunderstorm, or under the baking heat of the fierce red sun ; the one subject was ever present and insistent. He realised that he had given his love once and for ever. Ho knew it was not possible that, ho could change ; but he knew also that ho could aot aa if his lovo did hot exist, had never existed; but he wore himsolf out in fruitless longings, and dreaded what he longed for, the mooting of tho happy Evelyn. He never allowed himsolf to think that Mora would re fuse Evelyn, because that idoa opened the door of such a rush of hope and such a tremor of: rejoicing that it seemed like disloyalty to tha brother- ho loved so well; so ho pushed oh all tho quiokor to oiler his hearty congratulations, taking his horses fabulously long stages, anil even succeeding in deadening by fatigue tho aeutenesB of his suffering. Meanwhile Evelyn was pursuing his slow and monotonous journoy, not without his troubles and anxieties. Sam, the negro, was the soorco of unending annoyance, IVhen ho had travelled a few hundred miles with them, and folt secure from pursuit by the harbor police, ho mado Bovcral attempts to ovade their vigilance, and getting possession of a horse ondeavored to escape the necessity of fulfilling his obntrsot and going any further with them. Once he had so far succeeded that only a shot from a revolver by Evelyn's unerring aim whistling oloso past bis ear brought bim back. He mado ono moro attempt, which also foiled, and then seemed to settle down with tlio conviction that as osoapo was imposiiblo lis must rosign himself to the necessity of going all tho way to Yowarree Orcein When the brothers wore no further apart than a day's journey on either side (though Evelyn- was unaware of Baail'a vicinity) Sam found an opportunity of executing tlie escape he had been meditating so long, and never hesi tated to use the most terrible means to affect his objeot. It was -a gloriously fresh morning after a nigbt of rain ; tbe oun was veiled with moist flocoy clouds) tho creek by whioh bo had camped hummed past olouded with mud and ladensd with d£brit of dead wood and fallen trees, ths dust was washed from the short grass, and it looked green and freah under tho alanting rays of tho' rising sun. Tho loose black soil, heated with - the fierce sun of many wcoks, tent up a grateful steam7 to appease her tyrant. ' Sam was replenishing tbo fire to grill the wild dnoks that Evelyn had shot and to boil the tea. The wood was drenched with tho storm and burned slowly and smokily; Sain fotobsd his tomahawk to out out some dry wood from the rotten hoart of a box tree. The atookman had tnkan the sheep a little way out in the direction they were to travel that thoy might be feeding slowly on
while they had their brsalcfast, ana isvelyn was stooping half naked over a bucket of water that ho had dipped up from the creek to wash in, in lieu of bathing in Us uninviting and unsafe tur bulence. Hia uncovered baok and ehest sliono as white os a child's in oontrast to tho sunburn of his face and throat— so white that it attracted Black Sam's attention in tho middle of his task a fow paces off — so white that it curled his lips with a oritel smile of longing to spoil its whiteness, and to stay the hand that had fired at him. No compunction for his youth or for his unvarying juatioo and kindness stayed his hand. One moment his tomahawk was poised in both hands ovor tho unconsoious Evelyn as ho bent ovor the buolcet sluicing his bright young faoo in the oold water ; then with all tlio ovil force of his sinowy armB Sam brought hia sharp tomahawk down across his haolr, cutting through a sinew and bone with a gush which reaohed the hoart and poured out hia lifo blood in a moment. Evelyn foil prone on hia sido without a struggle or aught but ono convulsive shudder. Then with hardly a glance to judgo the effoot of hie stroke Sam turned, leaving the tomahawk in the wound, mounted Evolyu's best horse, whioh was oIobo at hand ready saddled, aud rodo off at a gallop. i Tlio shophord had turned hack with his dogs at his beds, loafing his sheep quiotly feoding, only in time to catoh sight of tlie flying figure. He waited a few! minutes, gently walking for ward at a good paco, expooting to son Evelyn mount anothor horse ami rido after him, or to hear a pistol-shot sont after -Sam to arrast Ills flight; : Finding that hqilllar of' those oxpootcd events followed ho- suspcotod treachery, and; leaving' his doga in charge of the sheop, ho ran forward to tho oamp. Olio inomont and he saw tho whole dread story, and the lifulesa form ot his young mabter was in hie arms, hie-fair hair still wot from the water lie .had drenched it with, and with a calm undisturbed - look- upon .the pallid sunburnt face.,' Androws, the faithful7 shophord; who had
33 known him Bineo he was a baby, laid the body down and wopt bittorly in his helplessness. He could not seo what it was his duty to do. His first impulse was to tako Evelyn's rovolvcr and ride after tlio murderer until he succoeded in shoot ing him like a dog ; lint to do this ho must leavo his master's dead body to the mercy of tlio - carrion hawks, and must leavo, too, liis valuable charge of sheep. Ho watohed those spread out to food under tho careful guardianship of the well known sheop dogs, and-sat down in hislonc- liness nnd moaned under the terribls tragedy which thc mad, selfish-cruelty of the bruto, call ing- himsolf a man, had wrought . in that deso late spot. He sat silent and bewildered for hours; busy ing himself solely in keeping flies and insects from the dead man, utterly helpless as fat as making any plan- for himsolf went. ' At fast ho roused himself to do something. . He corn posed ' the limbs and closed the blank, nnsecing eyes, and covered the body reverently with a blanket, bui ding over it a ltttlo pent house of branches with some vague udea that -he must keep the - sun, .whioh wao now Bcorohing hot' in, the ' hcavensj from it. His shcep- wandered farther and farther away without his. noticing it." 1Vhcn the snn went down grief and awb had partly be- reft him' of consciousness ; he occupied himself with useless tasks— olenning bite aud pannikins with ashes and sand, forgetting to eat or drink, but muttering ovor and-ovcr somo half forgotten versos of a hymn-. That night Basil, riding long and late by moonlight,- was startled' to como suddenly npen an.orderly flock of sheep spread ont and feeding with only two tired looking dogs in obargc of them. , i He recognised them fay. their, marks as his own, -and,- startled nnd uneasy, rode rapidly oh, closely followed by Jim Brown, who was ops of tho -best -trackers (for a white man) m, the colony, .and who easily followed the devious ' ' tracks of the sheep to tho camp they had lctt jn tho mornhig;., ' ' The 'scene that awaited thorn there wis one that- Basil never, forgot to his dying day. - ' (to be continued. )