|Newspaper Title||Kerang Times and Swan Hill Gazette (Vic. : 1877 - 1889)|
|Trove Title||Adventures of Three Young Ladies|
ADVENTURES OF I THREE YOUNG LADIES 'Welcome my wndering niece ," said the bat net, w th a singula-lydark scowl. How is it we lind you alone, under a palm tree in the decsrt. 'Alone unde- a palm tree,' she gasped, and added to bereelf, 'was he angry?-aond did he a soldier and an English gentleman, desert me? Never-' 'You do not answer me.' continued her guardian sneeringly. 'What answer should I give, except that I know not what bitter misfortune has once more placed me is you power. Better had I died torn to pieces by w tId beasts,' she answered proudly. 'Nay, Miscs Montague,' said the carl, with an effort of manly heartness that ill became him, 'youlforget aP. that I your aff rsced husband. have suffered by your sinoular absence. 'f-tter the ,nave,' she said coldly; better the foulest fete that c-u hbefal a oman than be the wife of such a m'n. Am I a prisoner.' The two men exc'anged signifieant glances but turde no eepey, as at this moment the cor' sair cameiushillg ill. 'A'lahlkerhc. we must away, the infelnal mooll:h is croesing the plain with his imperial guard. The earl advanced to snacch up Edich. But she had caceht bold of the word moollah and prepared fora desperate resistance, drew her long dagger, and gave vent to sericsof hrill sh iehs shat ewete heaed for away. ,Follow me fools,' said the pirate; 'who stays bee;nd dies.' Andhe dashed away to where his horse stood followed by she two Englishmen' uttering carces both lound nd deep. tLoo;ing aonund they saw the moollah and the lesptendentlguard ot the highipriest and vizer not more than a hundred yaids dis tant. 'For our lives, replied the corsair who was livid .th dread. 'Event moment is woeth an age. And bowing low on his horse, he urged it to the"utmost speed, Meanwhile the calvaca le had come sweep'n3 up. ufeside the moollah rode the captain who, wandering over the plain in search of Edith, had ;allen in with the minister of the *emperor Marking out the;tent of Suleiman in the e is tance, the moolloh pretty well guessed the truth. As they uears the tent and saw the lying cavaliers, their doubt became a cectainty, but where was Edith lMontague. Doubtless in the hands of unscrupulous foes. 'Forward, shouted the moollah; down with the obbers of the desert. :It is the v'Ilacous slave dealer. Edith is once ,,ore in his hands, answered the captain. ' I am here, cried Edith, standing forth at the opening of the tent. The two men reined in with a sudden jerk, wnhich nearly brought thei- Lorses on the' hanoches. Then with a gravity of demeanour, admir able and cleverly aseume l if net real, the moollah waved back his followers and drew off slightly, while the captain alighted and ap-. roched Edith. A bitter pang passed through the breast of the young girl, as she saw the moollah stern and cold aloof. 'By what merciful chance do we meet again? cried the captain; 'flow came you to leave me?' 'I wee carried away by my guardian and the slave dealer,' criedXlEdith. with a furtive glance at the still impassible moollah. 'I feared you had fled from ome wlllingly, said the traveller, in a tone of deep ropraach. No, but wherere e we going now? I should, wish to return to my friends,' cried Edith. The captain coloured deeply under his sun burnt complexion. 'You must cousult the moollah,' he replied in a sliht.y aarc-wrtic tone. a. he turned to.the priest-vizer, and summoned him to their coun Though his eyes shot out fiery glances, which denoted the real death of his feelings his manner was cold and impassible. Giving his horse to one of his attendanls, he entered the tent, and bowing low to Edith, awaited her pleasure. 'In what can t serve or pleasure you lady?' he said very distantly, very coldly These men stood side by s;de like two fierce unimals ready to leap at one another- 'They were polite very polite, but when they spoke their was a metallic ring in the voice, a steels like glitter in the eye, which was very sug gestive. 'I wish to -eturn:to my friends. While we are in this Late;ul country, I desire to be together,' she said in earnest pleading tones. 'Why did you leave them lady lhe an, swered. 'I did not leave them willingly,' was the buick reply, we intended escaping together.' 'A,\d yet you had all promised to trust in me,' he continued, still coldly and sternly. -The hope of flight--of escape, overcmne every other thought,' she pleaded. 'It is well; you shall return to your'friends,' he said, and summoning a domestic, the white buinous, rough and soiled, was brought. In this she was co coaled, andimounted on horseback, before one of the slaves mn atten dance on the emoollah. 'I suppose,' cried the captain, keeping down his fierce and savage passion, 'that I ant no longer wanted, 'I am deeply grateful,' said Edith, in whose presence this conversation occured but I can not leave the sheltering protection of Mrs Bacon. 'Nothing is altered,' observed the moollah. 'If you and your friends will only act with common prudence, all may yet be well.' 'But it is madness for Miss Montague to re turn to her prison,' said the captain, 'Better that than be wandering alone about the do-eor, with no other escort save an En glishman,' was the cold answer. You have already seen the consequences. Will you ride captain:' The angry offEcer acquiesced, though with a very il greace, and the cavilcade continued,on its way. The mool!ah was bound on a very unplea. sant errand. It was to anouncein ne noweek the emperor would come in person to fetch awny his brides. The emperor's short--lived fancy for the Oircassian girl was nearly over. Her influence was still sufficant to cause this short delay, but it was not expected she would be able any longer to prevent her downfall. Like so many others, she was the favourite of an hour, the prisoner of a life tiena. The moollnh had no opportunity to explain any of those things to Edith' as she rode at some distance from him. lo felt no inclination to be commtunicative to the capt:in. These two brave, noble, earncest gentlenene. ero por " -, as coumpletely separated aslif they had been old and hereditary foes As they neared the castle, a short and abrupt colloquy took place. 'IiHero we part' said the moollah. 'To meet again, I presume?' was the pold responce. 'Yes; if yon ktep to your hiding-place. Probably, to-night-who knows? Something must be dose at once,' continued the moollnh and waving his hand, rode away. 'My curses onihim,' said the captain, between his set teeth, 'I do believe hoe has bewitched the girl. To reach seven and twenty without a woman touching my heart, to laveo with the whole power of my being, and then to be de frauded by a renigade, a trator to his religion and his country. And very energetically the captain swore, a vice by no means uncommon in,those days, even among gentlemen, Put curses were of no avail, and after some few moments he turned and galloped osi in search for some of his companions, who,, by this time, must have thought his absence boded no good. The moollah meanwhile was thoughtful. : Apart from his own individual feelings of rags 4 and despair, aggravated by his Orcental ideas at finding Edith wandering alone in the wilds with a young and ardent lover he had a most dificult part to play.
Edith was the favourite of tbevoluptous and luxurous emperor. DI)id he discover her esc spade, she had no'hing but death to ex. pert. Unless he could silence the vindictive em pres-mother, the whole affair would be exposed S? idenly his face'lighted up. He had hit upon a most daring and fearless line of policy. He rode up to the gates of the fortress palace and on being admitted at once demanded to see the empress alone. He knew that his demand was not likely to be refused, and alighting, bade Edith follow him, still wrapped in:her burnous. She obeyed, very timorous and actually shivering with dread. Without exactly understanding the moollah feelings, the knew that she had offended him. She might, had shebeen a little older, have known that he was jealous. Her heart fluttered wildly, for it was impos sible to say what would be the consequences to all. The empress deeply veiled, awaited them im a kind of ante-chamber to the throne room. She was painfully egiated. The private intervieu to her mind boded no good. Secret punishments were common in that despotic land, and behind the ambassador often came the executioner. She stared wildly at the trembling figure concealed by the burnous. (To be continued.)