Chapter 65803097

See chapter in newspaper

Chapter NumberVII. (CONTINUED.)
Chapter TitleTHE VERDICT
Chapter Url
Full Date1889-05-03
Page Number0
Word Count8646
Last Corrected0000-00-00
Newspaper TitleKyabram Union (Vic. : 1886 - 1894)
Trove TitleThe Curse of Carne's Hold, a Tale of Adventure
article text

THE CURSE OF. CARNE'S HOLD. A TALE OF ADVENTURE. By G. A. HRErr, anthor of " Under Drake's Flag," "With Clive in Indla,' "A Comrnet of 1osne," Etc. CHAPTER VII. (Coon-nruD.) vuin viaener. As soon as the crowd had turned away, Dr. .Arrcwsmith made his way to the point where Ruth had been standing. Somewhat to his sur. prise he found her still on her feet. She was leaning back in the corner with her yes closed, andthe tears streaming down her " Come, my dear," he said, putting his arm uader hers,'" let usbo moving. Thank God it has all ended right." "Thank God, indeed, doctor," she mur mured. " I hlud lhardly hoped it, and yet I have prayed so much that it might be so." The doctor found that though able to stand while supported by the wall, Iuth was unable to walk. With the aid of a policeman, he .supported her from the court, placed her in a vehicle and took her to an hotel. " There, my dear" he said, when Ruth had been assisted up to a bedroom by two of the maids, " now you can go to bed and lie there tillto.morrow morning. Iwillhavo a basin of strong broth sent you up presently. It is quito out of the questiou your tlhinking of going home to-night. I have several friends in the town, and ast glad of the excuse to stay over the mglght. I will call for you at 10 o'elclck in thomorning. The train goes at half-past 10. I will have your breakfast sent up here. I will go down to the station now. There are . lots of people over here from Carnesford, olid I will send a message back to your mother, saying that you have got through it better than I expected, but I wanted you to have a night's rest, and you will be home in. the * morning." "Thank, you, doctor, that is kind of you," Ruth murmured. " Help her into 'bed, girls; sire has been ill andha liada very trying day. Don't ask her any questions, but just got her into bed as soon as you can." Thenou the doctor went down stairs, ordered the broth and a glass of sherry for Ruth, and a bedroom for himelf, mid then went off to sco .hisfriends. In the morning he was surprised, when Ruth came down stairs, to scohowmuch botter she looked. " My prescription has doneo you good, Ruth. Iam glad to see you look wonderfully beotter .and brighter." ' I foelso, sir. I wcnt to sleep innncdllately I had taken the broth and wine you snet me ip, andl did not wake until they called me at" half-post 8. I have not sloept for an hour to ethr for weeks. I feel as if there was such a lond taken off my mind.", ":Why, -Ruth, you didn't know Captaisi , ifetyri to'speak to, did you, that you should feel such an interest in'him?" thodotorsald, .leoking at her sharply. " No, air I havo never once spoken to Idm "Then why do you care no muclh abouthis bein acquittcd ?" "It would have been dreadful if he had lbeen found guilty when he was innocoant all the .time." 't] ut thou no one know he was imiocont for .certain," the doctor said. if 'I felt sure he was innocent," Ruth replied. "Buttwhy did youfeel sure, Ruth ?" " I can't exactly say, sir, but I did feel that ho. wos innocont." t The doctor lookedpuzzled, but at this moment the cab arrived at the station, and the subject8 was not reinewed, but the doctor afterwards wondered to'himself more than' once whether Ruth could' have had :any particular reason for her .asurance of Ronald Mervyn's inno. cence. h Foranother teon days th Meorvyn trial was thegrcattolpi of conveoration throughout the county, an the verdict was canvassed with almost as much keenness and heat as the crime had been before the trial., Now tlmatRlomdd Mervyn was no longer in hmzard of his life, the feeling of pity which-had before told so strongly in his favour was wanting. If a manr so la forgota himseclf as to use threats to a woman Ihe must iot be. surprised if he gets into trouble. Of course, now the jury had given a verdict of " Not guilty," . there was no moreo to bhe said. There was no doubt t She.was a: very- lucky fellow, anl thel jusry had given himtho benefit of the doubt. Still, it,he hadn't donos itj-who had killed Margaret n Camern P Such was the geoueral opinion and altlhough r ,Ronald had still somen 'staunch adherents in liis I own neighbourhood, .the tide of feeling ran c 'gaisstliun. t Two .months after the trial, Mrs. Mervyn ,died, broken down by grief, and while, this niturally caused a renewal of the talk, it v eightened rather than otherwisoe the feeling I nginst her son. The general verdict was Slat it was his doing; whether lie killed h TMargaret Car?o' or inot, there was no p doubt Clat he had killed his mother. ' ll this was doubtlessunfair,but it was not unnatural; tC .and only.those who believed thoroughly in t Ronald's innoconcofelt how hard this additional I pain must be for him. , ,Inimedinatly the funeral was over, the two r ,girls moved away to London, and the house f was advertised. to lot, but the odour of the n econt tragscly hung over. it.. .No one f cared to take a house with which such k a story was connected. A month or two " later there was a salo of the furniture; a the house was then shut up mid lost to the f county: . . . . a T Ton days after the .trial it was announceed in thi Goaze:e that Ronald Moryop had retired from the service spon salo'of his commission. No one, had - seen him after he had left the ' ourt a free man. His horses wore sold t an: week :later,- and: his other belongings m forwarded fromntho regiment to an address he aveo inLondon. His mother and aister.had a lew days later gone up for a day or two to town, and had methim thbre. He nul already d written. to them that he intended to go i abroad, and they did not seek tocombat his t resolution. . S"I can never come beck mother, unless this is claredup. Toumust feel aew?aos I dothat Ih tasiot show my face anywhere. I'trn surprised that I have got off myself, and indeed if it were f tot that 'Iam sure that I never got off my horse that night, I should somotimes suspect that I must for a time have lbeen really mad a and have done what they accuse me of. I bave already sent down a detective to the village. There must be some clue tonll this if one could only hit upon it, but I own that at present I do not see where it is to be looked for. I do not believe it wa' done by som poessing tramp. I npree with ev ry wordI that was said at my trial in that reslect. " Everything points to the fact that she was delbrerately murdered, tlhough who, except my. self, could have entertained a feeling of oni mosity against Margaret, God only knows. b :· minds at easeon n one point, which I have never - felt sure 'about before, that is thlat I have isot • iinherited the curse of the Carnmes. alsd I done so, the last two months would have made a coving hlsatio of me, whoreas I have inever felt my head cooler and my reason clearer thaun have since the day I was arrested. Baut you mustn't grievofor ue more then yoea can help, mother, now that it is over. I feel smore for you and the girls than I do for myself. I lmave a sort of consviction that somehows, though I don't see how, the thing will be cleared up some day. Anyhow, I mean to go o d lead s goughlifesomewhere tokeep myself frombrrood Singover it. The welghtwillreallyfall ulaon you, far more than upon me, and I should strongly adviso you to shut up the house, let it if you ean, and either comee up bere, or settle in some p ldace--either Brighten or lbestinos--awhtcre this story will bo oon forgotten ansd no oo will essociate your names witll this terrible buail ness." About that time a stranger arrived at Carnes ford. He announced that he wsasoacarpenter I from the north, and that he suffered from weak hlunge, and hadbeen recommended to live down Ssouth. After staying for a week at the Carnme's 1 Arns, he stated taol he liked the village so mucs that ho should settle there if he ntw a chance of making a livelihoaod, and as it hap - pened that there was no carpenter in thle village, the idea was received with favour, and a week lanter he was etabliehed in a cottage that lappenaed to be vaoant. As esowns : a ma s wsho seemod to anve travlled aloatt - Englahnd a good deal, und was well spokena and jiforined, ho soou took a good poesitio, inthel "slaco, and winas even adenitted to forn oto ofi lheparty in the snuggery, whtere he woul talk wel upon occasions, but was specially popular as an excellent listenier. ?,Ven spring came Itaere was o fresth sen s-t/on. Thle gardener at th0 Hold, is ,li,,gieg up soene grounad at tae cdao of thae shrubh'ary, to planstome rlhododendronas tlare, tsretd ut the nisainig watch and jewellery of Margaret a Canoe. It was all buried together a few iaachels e-la)w Slav soal, aitlaoust sny wsrapper or covesila a of etsy kiul. CapLiaa H-endncks arrived at Carnord as soon as the news of the discovery roochoed him. Iteginald Caomne wee himself 511 rlbt rese"?rvs

took place. M-ost of the servants had left at once; the old cook and a niece of hers alone ra maing in charge, and two stablemon from the garden also stayinmg in the house. Nothing came of the discovery, but it of course renewed the interest in the mystery of Marg?rot Carno's death, and the general opinion ws that it was fortunato indeed for Itonald Morvyn that the discovery had not been made before the trial, for it completely demolished the theory that the murder was the work of a burglar. It was possible, of course, that such a man, knowing the active hue and cry that would be ect on foot, and that it would be dangerous to offer the jewellery for sale, and still more dangerous to keep it about him, Ihad at once buried it, intending to go back some day to recover it, for as Reginald stated at the trial the missing jewels were worth fifteen hundred pounds. But had they been so hidden they would assuredly have been put in a box or some sort of cover that would protect them from the damp, and not have been merely thrust into the ground. Altogether the discovery greatly heightened, instead of diminishing, the impres sion that the murder was an act of revenge and not the outcome of robbery, and the cloud over Ronald Mervyn became heavier rather than lighter in consequence. Ruth Powlalt had gained health and strength rapidly after the verdict of " Not guilty" had been returned against Ionald Mervyn. She was still grave and quiet, and as site went about her work at home, Hesb.t wouldsome. times tell her that she looked more like I woman of fifty tlhan a girl of ninetee ; but hermind had been lighteed from the burden of her terrible secret, and she felt comparatively happy. She silent much of her time over at the Forr;ster's, for the old man and his wife were both ailing, and they kcnew there was little chance of their over aceing their son again, for the ggamekeeper who had been injured in the poachiing affray' lad since died, and as the evi donee given at the inquest all pointed to the fact that it ivas Georgo Forrester who had struck the blow that had eventually proved fatal, a verdict of" Wilful murder" had been returned against him. Ruth's conscience was not altogether free as to her conduct in the matter, and at the time of Mrs. Mervyn's death she suffered much. As for Ronald Mervyn himself, she had little com. passion for him. She would not have per initted him to be hung; but the disgrace that had fallen upon him, and the fact that he had been obliged to leave the country affected her a little. She had been greatly attached to her mistress, who had treated her rather is a friend than as a servant; and that he should have insulted and threatened Margaret was in her eyes an offence so serious that she considered it richly deserved the punishment tlhat had befallen him. Until she heard of Mrs. Mervyn's death, she } had scarcely considered that the innocent must. suffer with the guilty, and after that she felt far more than she had done before; that she had acted wrongly in keeping the secret, the more so since the verdict returned against George Forrester in the other case had rendered the concealment to some extent futile. But indeed Forrestor and his wife did not sofferanything a like the pain and shame from this verdict that they would have done had their son been proved to Uhave been the murderer of Miss C Care. PIublic oineion, indeed, ran against poaching as ageinst drunkenness or enliatingin the army, or other wild conduct; but it was t not consedered an absolute crime, nor was the result of a fight, in wldch a keeper might be killed by a blow struck in self-defence, ro garded us a murder, in wlmtever point of view the law might tako it. Still Ruth suffered and at imes told herself bitterly that although she meant to act for the best, she had dons wrongly an d wickedly in keeping George Forretoers secret. i Three months later, to the regret of all Carnosford, the ncpruter, who, although nots first-rate hand, had been able to do the work I of the village and neighbourhood, suddenly left. He had, he said received a lettertoell him he hadcoce into a little property up into b north and must return to see after it. So two days later the cottage again stood vacant, and Carnesford, when it wanted a crpentoen'sjob h done, was obliged to send over to the next village for a man to do it. h OHIIAPTER VIII. It was in Augusto, 1850. Some newly ar- o ried emigrants hlead just lauded from their a ship, and were walking through the streets of is Cape Town, watching with great amusement the novel sights, the picturesque groups of a swarthy Malays in hugeo beheve-shaped lisle with red and yellow bandanas round their tI necks, and their women in dresses of themost h gorgeous colours. Sottlers from inlandfarms he rode at a reckless pace through the streets ,.and w rugo waggous drawn by cight or ten bellocks fe camocroaking along, otten at a trot. One of v the part stoppel before a placard. Active young men wanted for the Cape m M[ounted Rifles. For full particulars as to serc vice and pay, inquir of the Adjutantatthe B Barracks of the Corps." a he" I thought they wre recruited in England," c Smuttered to himself. "I will round if presently and see about it, but I will look at the papersflrst. If there is any trouble on with i the natives is would suidt me -well bull cer tainly will not enlist merely to dawdle about in B the towns. I would rather carry outmy idea of buying a'farm acd going in for stock- .B aising." He went into a liquor shop, called p for some of the native wine, and took up a newspaper. It contained numerous lutters to freomsottiere on the frontier, anllsayingtlit the a attitude of- the natives had changoed greatly si within the last few weeks, and that all sorts of Y alaýmng rumours were current, and'it was m feared that in spite of lthq solemn treaties they had made two years beforoe, the natives-wero g again goin to take up arms.- .. , I think that's good endugh,"- he said. to I himself. "There are likely tobe stirring.times again here. Nothing would suit mycaso bettor m limn an active life, -hnard .work, and phlenty of ac oxcitomeut.". . -aving finished his. wine, he inquired thel h way to the barracks of the detachmuent of the sI corps stationed at 'Cape Town, and. :being directed to it, entred Ieergatos. He smiled to fc himself at his momentary feeling of surprise at di the sentry on the gate neglecting to salute him, and thea inquiring for the, he b went across the little barrack yard and entered. Theadjutant looked up from the tableat which lo was writingh.. . "I see a notice that you want meni air,?' the l neow comer said. - - -" Yes, we are raising ts-b fresh troops. What w agearm you P" " . - ."- at - "Twenty.eight." "You havo served before,' have yoe not ?"' the adjutant eid, looking at .the well-knit figuro standing before him . , " Yes, I lhave served before." .. " Iniantry or cavalry I" s " " The infantry, but ecan ride." " HR ve you your papers of discharge?" g ?N o." " Have you any one to speak tayour cha- 1 meter?" h " No on here. I ouly landed this morning a by the Tmlila, which cLmo in from England last night." -' Tht is awkwurd,' the tfflcer said. "You know that as a rutls we only enlist in England, a and only teke cepplicants of goodcharactor." g "I am naware of that, sir; butas jstatpre- n sectyou are likely to want men who can fight, character is not of so much importance." The adjutnt iniled hed again scutinisod the LThe man las been an officer," h said to I himself. "iWell. that is nothing Io mo; he has ' the cut of a soldier all over." he "Do you klow tie conditions of servico P You provide your own horse and uniform. Goverisnent provides arms. In the event of your not being able to find your horsn and uni- 1 form, Government will-as it is anxious to fill up the rank s as soon as possibl-provideothcm, and stop tles nmoney from your pay." e I can provide heorse and uniform." ".Very well, then, I will take you," the ofllcer aid. ee ".elst as ISarry Dlunt. I may say, seir, that I hnsuld lee very greatly obliged if, us I know my duty, you coeld post me toa troop already up the country instead of to one of a those you are raisncig, ond who will have to a learn their drill and how to sit a horse before they cera be sent up on active duty." "I can do that," the oicecr said; lit ison yestenday that we called for recruit,, nd web havoonly had two or three applications at pro scent; tlhre is a draft going on roPort Eliza beth next week, and if I find you are, as you cy u in your drill, I will socnd you up ith "T Tlhnck you, sir, I am very much obliged to " The mayor will le here at 4 o'clock," the adjutaent satd " Cone in at that time, and you I cace be attected and sswec- in." ', After all," RIonald Mervyn said to himself, I iee he strode vway, e tlere's nothineg like rohliering. I hnew I sohould ave fretted lfor tie oid work if I had settled down on a faerm, or even if I hlad godo ice, en I half thought of eoblecg, for shlooteicg far a year or two bMforo ,ottieceg down. If tieose natives reallymean to iaeote trouebIe, we ceanl lectvec an exciting tiee of it, for tho men i linvo tIed cu-it'e o ue h des--li in the last war here say that they have any amount of pluck, and are enemies notto ie do splscOtl Now I will be oil and look for a horse. I'd?better not order my unforsr until 1

tam sworn in; the major may, perhape, refuse .me on the ground of want ofch erter." He went up to two or three young farmers who were stauding talking in the street. "I am a stranger, gentlemen, and have just lauded. I want to buy a good horse; can yo tel me what is the best way ;o set about it P" "You will have no difliculty about that," one of thein replied, for thero'd been a notice up that Government wants to buy horses, and at 2 o'clock this afternoon, thoso who have animals to dispose of fit for cavalry service are to bring them into the parade ground in front of the infantry barracks. Government have only asked for fifty horses, and there will probably be two or three tunes that number rought in ; we haveeachbrought in a horse or two, bt they are rather expensive animals. I believe the horses are intended for mounts for staff-ofliers. They want more bone and strength than is general n the horses here." "I don't mucn mind what I pay," Ronuald said carelessly. "However, entlemen, I may see you down there, and if Government does not take your.horses,;perhaps I may make ? deal with one of you." At the hour appointed Ronald'strolled down to the parade. There were a good many offi cers assembled there, and a largo number of youllg Doer farmers, each with one or more hores, led by natives. The major and adju. taut of the CaOe Mounted Rifles were examining the horses, wlhi were ridden up and down before them by their owners, the adjutant him self sometimes mounting and taking them a turn. Presently his eyes fell upon Ronald, who was closely scrutinising the horses. "That is the youn, fellow I was speaking toyoou about, major, hoe man isn the tweed suit examinilng that horse's mouth." "Yes, I have no doubt you are right, Law son; heohas the cut of a military man all over, and beyond alllsuestion a gentleman. Out-ran the 'constable at home, I suppose. Well, we will tnkehim anyhow for rough work ; men of that stamp make the very best soldiers. I fancy we have more tlsan one in our ranks now." ' No, yon must not bring that horse up," he broke o, addressing the yomug farmer, whose horse Ronald bad just been examining. "He's get some vice about him, or you would not be offering him at our prices". He's as good a horse as there is in the colony," the young Dutcl?man said; " but I ,nn not offering him at your price. I thought tlat some young officer might be inclinedto buy him, and I have broug it ldm down to show. There is no vice about him that I know of, but he Ihas only been mounted twice, and as he has never been off the farm before he is a bit " What do you want for him ?" the major asked, examining the horse closely. " I want a hundred and twenty poundsfor hin." " A hundred and twenty flddlesticks," the major said. ""My man, there axe not ten horses in the colony worth a hundred and twenty pounds." t c l "PPerhaps not," the young Dutchman said, coolly, "but this s one of the tone." - Several of the other officers now ceamo up and examined thehorse, and they were unanmnous In their approval of him. " He would be worth three hundred as a hunter at home'r" one of them remarked, "but nobody's going to give such a price as that out hero, when you can get a decent runner for twenty; but he is certainly the handsomest horse I have seen since I have been in the colony, and I have soon some •good 'ones, too." The farmer moved off with the homrse. Asho left the ground, Ronald- again walked up to. him. "I like your horse," he said, "and if ynou will take a hundred pounds for him. I will give t ]you." "Very well," the Dutchman said. "I will take it, but I wouldn't take a penny under. Have you the money hero I" "I have not got it itn my pocket," Itonald replied, "but I have letters of crediton the bank. Walk round with me- there, andI will i ive you the cash."' in ten minutes the money was obtained and handed to the farmer, who gave 2Ronald a re ceipt for it. Ronald took the halter from the I hands of the nativo, and at once led the horse to the stable of the hotel at which he had already left his luggage. Then he of the cases to be opened, and took out a saddle 1 and bridle which he had brought out with him I in view of rough colonial work. " I did not expect to be suited so soon," he said to himself, " and' certainly- did not expect I to find such a mount here. 1 like him better than either of my old hunters, and will-back him, after a couple of mouths' good handling, i to win any military eeeplechase. Thmt's money' t well laid out; when a man may have to.ride t or his life, money in horseflesh is a goodin- a vestment." He went downsat 4 o'clock, and was attested i and sworn illn. t " I saw you down on.the parade ground, I Ilunt," the adjutant said. " We have bought a score of horses for tih use of recruits. You can have one of them. at the Government price o if you choose." 'n Iam mush' obligesd, to you, sir" Ronald t replied, " but I up myself." "' He will have' to; pass hpoction you know, v Blunt P" ..... .. "I think lie's good enough. to pans, sir,"- 1 Ronald said 'quietly. "I am considered a pretty good judge of a horse."' - :e "There is the address of a tailor " thoeadju tent said handing him a card; "he hae.get a I upoly of the right cloth, andhas contracted to supply uniforms at' a very reasonable price. t You need not come into. barracks until to. 't morrow, pnlesayou choose." d " I thank you,' eir I have a few things to t get, :and I' would raticr' not 'report myself s until to-morrow afternoon, if you will give me leave." , "Very ' well, then' I will not ration youto. torrow. ' Reportyoursel toSergeant lfnzese a any time beforel9 o'clock in- the evenings!' I ItRnald gave the military salute, turned ond his heel, and went out of barraeks. IHawent Iv straight to the tailor whose card had been given e to hbin. " I want to be measured for a uniformI for the Mounted Rifles," hoesaid. " Howsmuch do you charge?" " ' We sup lituie, jacket, andtwo pairs of breeches and.cap for nine pounds.!' . " When ?mnyou let me have them ?'.' - " In threoe days.!" - "I must have them by.tomorrow afternoon, by 6 o'clock, :andl I will pay you two pounds t extra to get them done by then..: 'But mind, 'I want ggood' fitting clothes. .Do. you underr standPY : ' - . . - " "You will pay eloven pounds for them if. I get them seady by 6 o'clock.. Very well,.then, t will tryanddo them." ' ' "' Of course you can do. them if you. choose," Ronald said. " If you get them cut out and e stitched together, I will come in at 9 o'clock in the mornng to try them on. Now where can I gaet ack-boots?" ' "The last shop down the end of this street. Moens is the name. He always keeps a lot by him, and the Mounted Rtlles here mostly deal with him." Ronald was fortunate enough to obtain. a pair of boots that fitted him well, and honow strolled back to his hotel.. The next morning, after trying on his uniform, which was of dark green, he went to the stables and saddleddhia onew purchase. The horse was fldgotty and nervous from its new surromndinge, aunl ro. fused for some time to lot ldm mount; batho stired and soothed it, and then putting eois Iand on the saddle, sprang into itat a bound. He rode at a walk through the streets, and when he got beyond the hemiti of the town touched the horse with his spur. Thenaimal i rared up, lashed out behind oe or towice, and then went off at a gallop. Ranald kept along he road until he was beyond the patches of and cultivated by the natives. When once in i he open country he left the road and allowed he horse to glop across country until its speed abated, y which time he waanearly ten I miles from Cape Town; then he turned its bead, and at a quiet pace rode back to the town. "A month's schooling," hlie said, " and it will be an almost perfeethorsue ; itsn pace is very easy, and there's no doubt about in strength nd wind. You are a beauty, old boy," he went on, as he patted the animal's neck, " we ahall soon be capital friends." The uniform was delivered punctually, and after saying good-iye to his fellow passengers who were staying at the hotel, Roncld put on his unifornn, fllleu the valise hehad tlhat after noon purchased with a useful kit, took out an txcollent sporting rileo that would carry iovernmlent ammunition, and a brace of re volvers, andm, gpacking ;up his other clothes and ordering all thie baggagu to be put away in a store until required, he mounted and rode into "V Wiere shall I fid Sergeant Menzies ?" lihe asked one of the men at the guard-rooer. " His quanrters are dver there, the last door in that corner." Ilonsld rode over to the point indicated, and then dismounteld. He entered the passage. Thosergeant's name was written on0 iece of paper flsteiiad on to the first door. Re cmem out shien Intald knmockd. " I was ordered by the adjutant to raport myself to you, ser geanst," toniald a~id, malhting. "IhHe tlshI o that ia recruit was coning, but how did you get thait uniform Wllyh you only enlisted yesterday." "I hurried them up a bit," Ronald said. "Where shalt I put my horse

The sergeant wet into hits quarters and came out with a lantern. .H helditup and examined the horse. " Well, lad, you have got a bonny beast, a downright beauty. You will have to got the regulationbridle, and then you will be complete. Let me look at you." He held up the lantern. " You will do," he said, " if you make as good a soldier as you look. You on!y want the sword and belt to be complete. You will got them given toyou in the morning. Now, come along and I will show you the stable." ItH made his way to the stable where there was a vacant stal, and stood by while Ronald removed the saddle and bridle and put it on the head-stoll. " You can take an armful of hay from that rack yonder. I can't get him a ration of grain to-night, it's too late.' I" Ilo's just had a goon reed," IRonald said, " and will not want any more; but I may as well aive him the hay to amuse himself -witl. It will accustom him to his now quarters. What shall I do withs my rifle and pistols !" " Bring them with you, lad ; but there was no occasion for you to lhave brought them. Government find arms." 1I happened to have them with me," lton"ld said, "andas the rie carries Govern. ment ammunition, I thought that they would let me use it." " If it's about the right length I have no doubt they will be glad to do so, for we have no very great store of arms, and we are not quite so particular about having everything exactly uniform as they are in a crack corps at home. As for the pistols there isno doubt ibeut them, asbeing in the holsters they don't show. Seoveral of the moen have got them, and most of the officers. NowI will take you up to the quarters." The room to which he led Ronald contained about a dozen men. Some had already gone to bed, others were rubbing bits and accoutroments, one or two were reading. " Hero's a new 'cerede, ladoe" the sergeant said. " Blunt's his name. He's now arrival from home, and you wvo't find him a green horn, for he has served already." Ronald had the knack of making himself at home, and was, before he turned ni an hour later, on terms of good. fellowship with his comrades. . I In the morning, after grooming his horse, he went into the barrack.yard, whoen the troop formed up for dismounted drill. "'Will you take your place at once in the ranks 1" Sergeant Monzice asked. " Doyou feel equal to it?" ,Ys ;I have not grown rusty," Ronald replied as he fell in. 'n hour's work sufficed to show Sergeant t iscizies, who was' drilling the troop, that the now recruit needed no instruction on tht I score, and that he wa s as perfect in his drill as anyono in the troop. 'Are you as woll up in your cavalry drill as in the infantry " heasked Ronald as the trooa fell out. a " No," Ronald sald, "but when one know a one, he soon gets well at home on the other. At anyrate, for simple work the system is exactly the same, and I think with two or three drills I shall be able to keep my place'." After breakfast the former formed up again in their saddles, and the oflicers took their places in, the ranks. As the sergeant handed to the adjutant some returns ; he had ;been compiling, the latter asked : " y the way, srgeant, didtho recruitlBlmlt r join last night " ' t " Yes' sir, and he is in his placenow in the ear rank. He was in uniform when he came, and I find this morning that he isa thoroughly n well up in his drill.. 'A smart soldier all over, I 0 should say.. I don't know that he wilt do so d wollmounted, but Idont think you will see him make many blunders.. He is evidently a' sharp follow." , "He ought not to. have taken his place until I. had passed his horse, sergeant. Still, I can do thatafte pamde-dril isover." ' n The adjutant tnii'prnceded to piut the troop through a number of easy movements, at such nas formhing fromline to- column, and back c' into line andowheeling. There was no room for anything elso in the barrack-yard, which was t a small one, as the barracks. would only hold a sngle troop. Before the movements were com. plted the major came out. When the troop a' was'dismissed Sergeant Henzies brought Ronald up to the two officers. He had in the morsing furnished him with'i the regulation ft ridle, blt, and. sword. Ronald drew up his orso at a lshort distance ffnomthe two officers to and saluted. ' . "There is no doubt about his horse" the major said " that is if he issaound. What ' a good-looking beast." C ' That he is, major ; by Jove, libore rs its the' very anilmal that young Boer asked: r. us one hundred and twenty pounds for yes terday; upon my word I believe it's the us same.!'" ' m "Ibellove it is," the major agreed.' "What so a soldierly.looking young fellow he is. I ti thought he woe the right 'stamp yesterday, but o Ihardly expected tosoe him tur'outsowell at it first." of The two officers walked up to Ronald, oza- w mi?sed his horse, saddle, and uniform.. H " That's not a reulation rifleyou have got w thero," the major said. be " No, sair; its ono I brought tmom England gs with me. I have been accustomed to its use, m and as it is the regulation bore, I thoughtper- mi hags I might carry it." Ur " It's a trifle long, isn't it P" the adjutant li s.ked. he " Yes ir; it's just two inchos.too long, but o Ica gelthat cut off by a gunsmith." . . SVerywell if you do that you can carry it," if themajor said. " Of course, it'smuchbettera fnished than the regulation one, but not much, mn different in appearance. Very wall, we pass, us the horse." Roland saluted and rode off to the so stables. w" '"Ho hasn't come out-penni~ess, inyhow," fa the major laughed. '" ... K "No, that's quite evident," the adjutant agred. " I dare say his frioeddgave hima P, hundred or two to start on a farm, and when iheo decided to Join us lie thought lie might'nas. i well spend it, and have a final piece of ti extravagance.' ' ' "I daresay that's it," the, major agreed.;: 9 " anyhow, I think we have got hold of a good. , ecruiit thistime." " Iwish they woroall likohumi the adjutant. m sighed, thinking ef the 'troubleho oftenhash to with newly-joined recruits. q " By the way," the majorsaid, " I have gob word'this morning that the draft is to be em" T barked to.morrow instead of next week.. cc They took up a ship for them yesterday.. It rc seams ourmen there are worked off their leg n for the Kafirs .are stealing cattle and horses 00 in all directions, and the colonists have sent in. re such a strong letter of complaint to the so Governor that even he thinks, that the hi police-force on the frontier ought to be pi strngthened. Not, of course, that he admits re in the slightest that there is any ground for r larin, or believes fern moment that the Kaffirs have any evil intentions whatever; still, th to reassure the minds of the settlers, he , thinks the troops may as well go forward at no once." " I.wish to goodness," the adjutant said, bitterly, " that Sir Harry Smith would take a colttage for two or three months. close to the rontier; it would not he long before hiaoyee 0 were opened a little us to the character andrn tentdon of the Kamrs."j 9 ot " It would be a good thing," the major Y1 ogreed, " hut I dbubt reen that would do it till ni be hazrd the KIafllrs breakingishis doors; then " he enlighltennent weould cornme too late to be of aly service to the colonIy. By the bye, the colonel told me yesterday he would send me orward next week to see after things. He D says that, of course, if theorols anyseerieoi tc rouble he shallgo forward hims?c'., w - Tlio following mornngn thl draught of Cape ounited Rifles enmbarked on beard a steamer and were taken down toAlgo Bflay and landed at Port Elizabeth, drenched to the skin by the passago through the tremendous surf that beats upon the coast, and were marched to some euta whichhadbeen erected for them on a bare a andhill behind the town. Ronald Mervyn was amnused at the variety of the crowd in the strugglitg streetsof Port n Elizabeth. Boor farmers, HIottenotts, Mdahlys, and Fingocs, with complexions varying through every shade of yellow and brown up to black; oome gaily dressed in lighst cottons, somne wrapped in a simple cowhidne or a dety bluket, many with but 'little clothing beyond their t, brass and copper ornaments.. d The country around was most monotonous. f As far as the eye could see it was nothing but suesoloas of hbire sandy atiaa, and 'boeond these, hills sprinkled with bhlsh and occasional clumps of aloes and elephant trees. Upon dhe following morning the troop marcheld, ollowetl by a wvaggon contauing their n haggog and provieions, drawnby ten oxon. A al littlontuked bhy marcetod at the head of thie oxon as th~ir guide, and they were drivt lty a t Ilottenttot ertoed withi a tremudtlots whip of in immuons loength, mndioof plaited hide, fsstened ' o the top of~ a baooo pole. After a fourteen tl miles march they reached ttho Zwart Kop river, tl •.id, crossig the ford, eoncasmpoeld rulaong the b ecttcred minlosaesn, and numrouel waita-Mit T thorns. The horses were thiea halteredt, and 8 thte and the oxna were turned out to food till o night. The next day'smarch was a very)- long 1 aosi, and for tihe 0,ost part oCro?s a sandly 01 desert to the Sunday ILivsr, a souggfhhir steu.ti, in whioh, as seou as the tents were pitched, b the whole party enjoyed a bath. 5' " To-morrow we salll reach the Addooaush,

id Dt at," one of his comrades, whor knew the Id ceosty well, remarked. " This s near the bounty of what you may call this Kafire a untry, although I don't think they have their o kraals so far mouth as this, though there . was fihting hero in the last war, and may be again.' a But I thought our territorylextendedl e Sfar as the Kei Itiver "' " So itdoetnomeinally," the other said. " All the country as for as that was declared to be forfeited ; but in point of fact the Kaffirs remaiedln Inossesion of the country, on con. dition that they declared their alle'i.ucc to theo Crown,and thateachchief was maae responsible f for any cattle or other robberies, the spoor of which could be traced to his kneal. Of course, they agreed to this, as in fact they would agre to anything, esIt LDýiastT, to break the conditions u soon 0 s it suited them. Local nli?uitrates and cosnuissioners are scattered about among them, a1nt there have been It lot of schoots and ctiseonary stations started, nThey say that they are having great success. Well, we shall see ahout thuat. in the last war the so-called Christian native wtreo uanong the first to turn angainst us, and I expect it will be the samue here, for it's just the Ltziest and the worst of the natives who pretend to become Christians They get patches of hiued lgiven them, and help is building their huts, and all sorts of privileges. In about half a day's work each week, they can raise enoIugh food to live upon, and all that is really required of them is to attend service oil a Sunday. The business exactly suits them, but as a rule there are a great many more IHottentots than Kaffirs among the converts. I can give you a specd moen of what sort of men they are. Not long reinc agentleman was coming down with a waggon and a lot of bullocksfrom King Williamstown.. The drivers all took it into their heada to desertoneday-it's a way these fellows hatoe, one of themathinkis he will go, and then the wvhole-l6t go, anda settlerwakes: upin the morning ancd finds there isn't. i aingl hand loft on his place, aud o has-'per. haes fiour or five hundred cows to bho milked and ,twice as 'many oxen , and horses to look after. Well, this hapnened within a mile or so. of a miesiosary station, so the gentleman rodo over thereanid asked if some of the meon would go with him down to Beaufort, a couple of days' march. Nobody would go. HIu raised his otfers, and at last offered live tiimes the usual rate of pay but not one of the lazy brutes would move, and he had at last to drive the whole lot down himself, with the aid of a native or two he picked up on the way. However, there has been pretty good order along the frontier for thi last two years, lPrtly duo to tho chiefs having to pay for all cattlo traced to their krls, partly to the fact that we have gotfour hundred Ifalfir police-and an uncommon'sninrt lot of fellows they aro scatteredall alongthe frontier, instead of being, like us, kept pnncipally in towns. You see, we are considered more asamilitary body. Of course, we have a much casier time of it than if we were knocking about in small parties among -the border settlements ; but there is a ot more excitement -in that sort of life, and I hope that if there is trouble they wil send us out to prot t the settler men "I hopoe so," Rocaldsald, cordially. "Bar. rack life at adull little town is the slowest thing in the world. I would nevor'lmvo en listed forthat sort of thing." " Well, if. what the settlers saylturms out right, you will have plecty of excitement, I can toll you. I was in the la.t war, and I don't know thatI want to go treughainotlecr for these beggars fight a groat deal too well for it to be pleasant, I can toll you. The job of carrying despatches or escorting waggons through a bush wheore tlhese fellows are known to bolhirking is about as nasty a one as a man eanwish. At any moment, without the last notice, you may have half a dozen assmgais stuck. i, your boldy. And they can shloot straight, too; their guns are long and clumsy, but thoy carry long distances quite as far as our rilles: while, as for the line muskets, they haven't a chance with them." - _''w aysa more mrarcing ana the troop arrived, at Gramamstown. Here they on- d o?mnpd nearFort England, wheore a wing of the Ilet Regiment was quartered, and tho next fortnight was spent in comant drills. T'e 'riles - werethen ordered forward to King Williamse. town, where two days later they were the infantry. t - lforo. starting, the adjutant had specially ialled, the attention of Captain Twentynm, who commanded the trodp, to. hies last-joined recruit. ., . ' " Yonwill find that man Blunt, who Joined us yestordayr s. good soldier, Twentyian. It maybe. he has been an offieer, and has got into t some row-at home and been obliged to leave w the sersico..Of course, you noticed his horseo onparade this morning; we have nothing like o it in the corpe. The farmer who, owned it offeredIit';to usnyesterlay afternoon, and wanted. a hundred andtwouty pounds for it. m He ;said that both its amr and dam were ?English hunters: the sire he had P bought from an English officer, and the" gndsiirn- wa. a thoroughbred horse. Tihe i man has a largo farm, about twenty-five P miles-fror Cipe Town, and goes in for horse roeeding:l but I havoeeen nothing before of ji his as good as that. I expect the young fellow w has spent id last penmny in Of o esursedl'ndo.'t know whalt ]io will turn out it ti the."way of. conduct; but you will, find t if he:is nall right in that respect, thalmt he will make a first-rate non-co ismssiout offi ocer, and, mounted?amshe is, will, atany rote, be a most\ meful:man- for; carrying despatches and that 0 sortoLthlding. I coniess I am very much taken withOhim. He.has a steady, resolute sort of face ; looks pleasant and good-tempered,;too. Keoep-youroye?nnon him." - " - 0'. .''-,--i, h ' Captain Tveatyman mhat donue so tung tine voingo, and on the line of march, aidRonald's c quckloeos- and alacrity, and aequanintanco with k his. duty, onvinced him the adjutant's sugges tionwae~ a correct one. - :" By Jove, Twentymrn," an officer of the o1st said, as he was standling beside him when Ronald. rode up and delivered a message. " That fellow of yours is wonderfully well moantod.. He'a fline, ooldiorly.looking follow,U too, and I doe't know why, but hisfacoscemes quitefamiliar to me,." "I fancy he has beona an officer," Captain e Twentyman replied, "we have several in the corps-men iwho hare ban obliged,. for some reason, or other, to sell out, aol whoi, finding I nothing- else to do, have enlisted wlith us. You n oee-the pay in a grelt deal higher, than in the hi regularcavalry, and the men as a whole are a i superior claso, for you see theoyfiud their own horses and uniforms, so the lif im altogether plcasanter for a man of that kind than the c regular service. Almost all the meon oreo of o respectable family." ' w "I certainty seem to knotshis face," said thi officer, thoughtfully, "although where I hi soa itI have not the least idea. What is his nam.e " " He enlisted as Hariy Blunt, but no doubt I that's not lhis rel name. Very few men of his kind who enlist in the army do so under their own names." " I don't know anyone of tha:t name," the officer said, " but I certainly fancy I have seen your man bofore; however, I don't sueoppos in any oem he would like being rccogisied; men -hioare under a cloud don't core about meeticrg feormer acqaintances." A week later, to Rlonnld's great satisfaction, a party of twenty men, under Troop-Lieutenant Daniels, were ordered to march that afternoon to the Kalousio Rivor, whence the settlers had written pr'yictg that a fores iiiglht be sent for their protection, as the Hafoirs in the neigh- - bourhood were bvcoming more antd moro hiso. I lent in their manner. MIany of their cattle d had been driven off, and they were in I daily expectation of an attack. lonald was ouo of the party tols off, and small sholter.tents weru served out; theao would be carried on their horses. No bag. - gage wastaken, as there would be no difficulty hi obtaining provisions from tLhe farmers. The i men chonen for the nervice were all in high leo ct tle prosopet of a chane from tie ulns of th lf at Kinug IVilliamotown, e tud were the objects of envy by their eom rodes. The start was made at daybreak, and after two days' long marching, theoy reached ,their destination. The country was a fertiloneoo, thlo farmhouses were feqluont, most of them cem bodded in orchards and vineyards, showing signs of comfort and prosperity. " This is the first place I have seen since I reached ltho colon-," Itonald satid to the trooper riding next to him, " where .I..should care about settling." " There are a god many similar spots in this part of the country," the mact said, "and I believe the folks iero are everywrhero doing well, anod sroll d., bettler if it were ,cot for I these native troubles. The- milfered a lot ini the last war, nld will, of course, bear tihe brunt of it if the natives break out again. Tilero are a g iood mncy ,Enlish anid fcotch settlers in this part. There are, of course, some Dutchl, but as a rulo thevgo in soro for cattlc-farming on a hig ocale. lcsides, they do not rare about Engisih nsi.-,hbours: they are an unsocihablo est of brutes, the Dutecu, and keepl th".o-lIves to them. 1 soelresas much as possible. (vo a uoiroecee'.