The Works of Robert Louis Stevenson - Swanston Edition, Vol. 10

By Robert Louis

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...THE WORKS OF
ROBERT LOUIS STEVENSON

...

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...21

V. THE PRODIGAL'S RETURN ...

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... 105

VI. WHAT BEFELL...

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... ...

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...FORTH ...

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...to the tight little
theological kingdom of Scotland might have listened and gathered
literally nothing. And Mr....

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...been a rare feast to him;
but his son's empty guffaws over a broken plate, and...

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..."You can get some. Go and borrow at your
tailor's; they all do it. Or I'll...

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...parted, Alan made a proposal that was startling in the
extreme. He would be at Collette's...

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...his doom.




CHAPTER II

IN WHICH JOHN REAPS THE WHIRLWIND


About half-past ten it was John's brave good...

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...and whose not very ardent heart
was just then tumultuously moved. The hill-top, the cool air...

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...from
which John now shrank in imagination as the hand draws back from fire.

Close under the...

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...tried. One of the
group was the son of a country minister, another of a judge;...

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...stillness reigned, broken by the deep ticking of the eight-day
clock. He put the gas out,...

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...father
set down to levity; but which sprang from the consciousness of worse
behind.

"Your mother's watch, too?"...

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...he was abashed to see
the marks of suffering.

"Well," said the old gentleman at last, "I...

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...then would
begin again that active agony from which, even in the dull ache of the
present,...

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...make a packet of a change
of clothes. Attired as he was, he slipped from the...

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...run the San Francisco Stock Exchange much as more humble
adventurers, in the corner of some...

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...he sat
before paper, attending on inspiration; that heavenly nymph, beyond
suggesting the words "My dear father,"...

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...himself into the hands of destiny.

I dwell, even at the risk of tedium, on John's...

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...he was well
acquainted with the tale of John's calamitous disappearance from
Edinburgh; and putting one thing...

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...keen
frosty air; the low, rosy, wintry sun; the Castle, hailing him like an
old acquaintance; the...

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...of possibility that she was married; but this dishonourable
doubt he dammed down.

There was the house,...

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...a
portly and successful gentleman in the shoes of the derided fugitive.

The time began to draw...

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...the accustomed hour, too, the bell had sounded
thrice to call the family to worship. And...

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..."for God's sake don't receive me this way. I've
come for----"

"Understand me," interrupted Mr. Nicholson; "you...

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...the uglier; for if some judicial
error were in act against him, who should set a...

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...was slapping his chest, for the night was bitter.

"I wish you would," said John, putting...

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...again.

"That they were down on me," said John. "I'm accused of murder, by what
I can...

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...said he; "go to bed. Don't mind me, John. You'll be sorry for me
when you...

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...no drunkard, though he could at
times exceed; and the picture of Houston drinking neat spirits...

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...thought; but hunger was beginning to grow stronger than
repulsion, and as a step to breakfast,...

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...fro walked John before the door. The extreme sharpness of the air
acted on his nerves...

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...he must not flee as he was, for he could not
carry his portmanteau, and to...

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...of two distasteful and perilous
alternatives: either to shut the door altogether and set his portmanteau
out...

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...no' saying," he added, with a fatherly
smile, "but what I would join ye mysel'."

John had...

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...flight, was his design, no
matter whither; but he had determined to dismiss the cabman ere...

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...I'm surprised at the like of you, Mr. Baigrey!"

"My name is not Baigrey!" broke out...

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...rebuffed. As he drove,
therefore, he counted his wrongs, and thirsted for sympathy and drink.
Now, it...

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...sitting, as he passed the end of his father's street,
he took one glance from between...

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...He heard the snap of the spring-lock like
something bursting in his brain, and sat astonied.

And...

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...to read, drink had so swollen them,
drink had so painted them, in tints that varied...

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...tall,
graceful maiden, skating hand in hand with a youth, on whom she bestowed
her bright eyes...

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...one after another; some San Francisco tram-car checks, one
cigar, no lights, the pass-key to his...

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...fence, thinking to drop into
the road, and found himself staggering, instead, among the iron furrows
of...

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...well--then he was insane, as he had long believed.

There, in his father's room, at midnight,...

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...was thus engaged when that bustling woman noiselessly re-entered.

"Have you eaten?" said she. "Then tell...

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...died, and she was left alone, had taken to nurse others, partly from
habit, partly to...

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...got wind of you, you would be taken up?"

"It depends on whether they've found the...

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...post-office, and thence to the High Street
about the dead body. The police ought to know,...

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...ten years ago, tapping at the door. The winter sunrise was
painting the east; and as...

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...old
seat, under Uncle Duthie's picture. Flora will be there to keep you
countenance; and we shall...

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...out all night?"

"All night, as you say, sir. I have been to the telegraph and...

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...always kept resolutely curtained in his own
mind; for he was a man who loved to...

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...lay
furled by his side.

But presently Flora came to the rescue. She slid into the silence...

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...police looking for him. All
understood. Keep mind quite easy.--AUSTIN." Having had this explained to
him, the...

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..."the other man" who fired the shot are in the country
to this day. But that...

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...S._
_Skerryvore,
Bournemouth._




KIDNAPPED

CHAPTER I

I SET OFF UPON MY JOURNEY TO THE...

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...and be well
liked where he goes.'"

"The house of Shaws!" I cried. "What had my poor...

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...first put me on my guard
against a considerable number of heresies, to which I had...

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...had come at a sort of jogging run. It might
have been laughable to another; but...

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...Essendean, the trees about the manse, and the big rowans in the
kirkyard where my father...

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..."not Mr. Ebenezer?"

"Ou, ay," says the man; "there's the laird, to be sure, if it's...

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...good; but the house itself appeared
to be a kind of ruin; no road led up...

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...of wrought-iron, a pair of hurdles were tied across
with a straw rope; and as there...

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...with a letter," I said, "to Mr. Ebenezer Balfour of
Shaws. Is he here?"

"From whom is...

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...the face. What he was, whether by trade or birth, was
more than I could fathom;...

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...spoon, "they're fine,
halesome food--they're grand food, parritch." He murmured a little grace
to himself and fell-to....

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...bade me go in,
for that was my chamber. I did as he bid, but paused...

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...na," said he; "I'll deny you nothing in reason."

He fetched another cup from the shelf;...

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...or two. I'm nae warlock, to find a fortune
for you in the bottom of a...

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...I wouldn't buy your
liking at such prices."

Uncle Ebenezer went and looked out of the window...

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...This was an entry on
the fly-leaf of a chap-book (one of Patrick Walker's) plainly written...

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...folk singing, of a
poor lad that was a rightful heir and a wicked kinsman that...

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...I said to myself there was something
thundery and changeful in the weather, and little knew...

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...nae banisters. But the stairs are grand under foot."

Out I went into the night. The...

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...feeling before me every inch,
and testing the solidity of every stone, I continued to ascend...

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...his back towards me at the
table. Ever and again he would be seized with a...

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...a chair and looked at him. It is true I felt some pity for
a man...

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...future; it must have been of other stuff than
burning coal; for in all the shapes...

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...out."

"Stay, brother!" he cried. "Have you no fun about you? or do you want
to get...

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...cabin-boy so far
protected me. Once there, I believed I could force on the visit to...

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...poor cabin-boy had
taught himself to admire as something seamanlike and manly. He would
only admit one...

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...he cried and carried on! I made a fine fool of him, I tell
you! And...

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...ye, I suppose. But what are
we standing here for? It's perishing cold; and, if I'm...

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...the firth, the smell of the sea-water was exceedingly salt and
stirring; the _Covenant_, besides, was...

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..."He's a wicked auld man, and there's
many would like to see him girning in a...

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...my
own part, I like your looks. I wish I was for longer here, that we...

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...a little
dizzy with the unsteadiness of all around me, perhaps a little afraid,
and yet vastly...

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...too strong for us,
and we were firing signals of distress. The thought of deliverance, even
by...

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...glimmer of the lantern, as a trap opened, shone in like the
heaven's sunlight: and though...

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...say the lad will die----"

"Ay, will he!" said Mr. Riach.

"Well, sir, is not that enough?"...

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...from them at the Ferry pier, as
though they had been unclean beasts. No class of...

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...he was sober, and Mr. Shuan would not
hurt a fly except when he was drinking....

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...there was a growl of quarrelling all day long from berth
to berth; and as I...

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...their arms; and the ship at that moment giving a great sheer into the
sea, and...

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...light by day; and after dark there was a lamp always burning. It
was burning when...

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...sea-boots and
obeyed.

"Ah!" cried Mr. Riach, with a dreadful voice, "ye should have interfered
lang syne. It's...

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...He never grew used to my being there, stared at me continually
(sometimes, I could have...

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...rebuffed me like
a dog and would not hear a word; and as the days came...

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...in stature, but well set and as nimble as a goat; his
face was of a...

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...sort of civil
broils, takes the name of honesty for its own).

"Why, sir," replied the captain,...

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...make a fool's bargain," said the other. "My chief, let me tell
you, sir, is forfeited,...

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...said he. "But I'm saying, Mr.
Betwixt-and-Between," he added, "this bottle of yours is dry; and...

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...ye can do it cleverly,
I'll bear it in mind when it'll be good for you...

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...of no farm-midden to clap to the hind-end of it."

And having administered this rebuke, as...

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...my mind strangely.

"First of all," said he, "how many are against us?"

I reckoned them up;...

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...up your vermin to
your back, sir, and fall on! The sooner the clash begins the...

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...back at the window, before five men, carrying a spare yard for a
battering-ram, ran past...

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...like men taking
orders. By this, I made sure they were coming on again, and told...

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...and fired.

I might have stood and stared at them for long, but I heard Alan...

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...a little clearer, and then clearer still; and then out he burst
with a great voice...

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...a brave lad and wanted nothing
but a sleep.

"I'll take the first watch," said he. "Ye've...

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...most--cold water.

"And depend upon it," Alan said, "we shall hear more of them ere long.
Ye...

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...friend. They
might speak at the window."

"And how do we know what treachery he means?" cried...

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...man, it's peetiful."

Hoseason flushed red.

"No," continued Alan, "that'll no' do. Ye'll just have to set...

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...no
blame of mine: they keep the cruisers thick upon this coast, ye ken who
for. Now,...

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...side (the wind being straight
astern), and smoked a pipe or two of the captain's fine...

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...it appears, was wishful to see Hieland
swordsmanship; and my father and three more were chosen...

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...are a condemned rebel, and a
deserter, and a man of the French King's--what tempts ye...

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...all my mind was occupied with the generosity of these
poor Highlanders.

"I call it noble," I...

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...common Whig!" cries Alan. "But when it
came to Colin Roy, the black Campbell blood in...

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...he, "it's well seen it was a Campbell taught ye! It would be
a convenient world...

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...boot-soles. I have
fished a water with a sentry on the other side of the brae,...

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...other things to
think of--my brig's in danger!"

By the concerned look of his face, and above...

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...the end of Mull as we can take her, sir;
and even then we'll have the...

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...the helm, and
Hoseason himself would sometimes lend a help; and it was strange to see
three...

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...seemed he was struck stupid. He stood
holding by the shrouds, talking to himself and groaning...

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...moon with rings and bubbles. Sometimes the whole tract
swung to one side, like the tail...

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...perils and those of my friend. To walk by the
sea at that hour of the...

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...from shore I plumped
in head over ears; and if ever I was heard of more...

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...Of these two I made my
whole diet, devouring them cold and raw as I found...

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...sides (like a man that was
hunted), between fear and hope that I might see some...

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...supposed he must have swum the
strait; though what should bring any creature to Earraid was...

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...open ocean, so that a boat could thus come quite near me upon
that side, and...

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...horrible life of mine) I
found my bodily strength run very low. But the sun shone,...

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...word.

"Yes, yes--yes, yes," says he, and then he looked at the other men, as
much as...

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...be roads for them that know that country well; but for my part
I had no...

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...I was eating, and after that when I was
drinking the punch, I could scarce come...

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...to buy snuff (by their account) and
would give no change.

To be sure, this was no...

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...gentleman should leave his table after the bowl was
brewed; so there was nothing for it...

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...barefoot and disarmed. I chuckled to
myself as I went, being sure I was done with...

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...and told my wonder.

"Ha!" says he, "that's nothing. Would ye believe me now, that before...

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...the Highlands than it is with us, perhaps as partaking of
hospitality, or perhaps because the...

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...that passed the ferry with me were almost all
of that clan. The skipper of the...

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...the boat, even as they bent at the oars; and the circumstances
and the music of...

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...you hear; the sea in all this part running deep into the
mountains and winding about...

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...far as to
Kingairloch. As we went, he stopped and spoke with all the wayfarers and
workers...

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...to hang back he would get a dirk in his wame."

"You make a poor story...

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...he has to
drive out the tenants; and indeed, Mr. Balfour (to be open with ye),
it's...

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...rough world among cold, proud people; but
Mr. Henderland had their very speech upon his tongue....

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...time I had seen
King George's troops, I had no good will to them.

At last we...

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...have known the tartan
to be of the Argyle (or Campbell) colours. This servant had a...

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...to
plainness. If ye had asked me the way to the door of James Stewart on
any...

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...side, and had got a good way up,
when a voice cried upon me to stand.

I...

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...we traced
back again across the mountain side by the same way that we had come,
only...

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...tell of the
story of the Man and the Good People?"--by which he meant the fairies.

"No,"...

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...added. "Do you know that man in
the black coat?"

"I have nae clear mind about his...

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...but must both flee that country; he,
because he was a deserter, and the whole of...

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...Of all deaths, I
would truly like least to die by the gallows; and the picture...

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...Aucharn, each of us
narrated his adventures; and I shall here set down so much of...

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...and that here was both revenge and wealth
upon a single cast. It was seven against...

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...pleasure of a run, which is
aye good for a Campbell. I'm thinking it was a...

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...his hands.

"Hoots!" said Alan, "ye must take the sour with the sweet, man. Colin
Roy is...

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...crouched upon the floor, running over a great mass of papers,
and now and again setting...

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...on behalf of the tenants, that he could
only scrape together three-and-five-pence-halfpenny, the most of it...

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...be papered
anyway; Mungo Campbell'll be sure to paper him; what matters if I paper
him too?...

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...to put a fair face on my consent, for I saw Alan
troubled; and, besides (thinks...

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...heard
already of the murder. In the others, as well as I could make out
(standing back...

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...and shuddered.

The next minute Alan had set the brandy bottle to my lips, and forced...

Page 171

...a word, and had run and climbed with
such a savage, silent frenzy of hurry, that...

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...he. "Well, then, ye may depend upon it there was nae
time to be lost. And...

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...till night?" I asked.

"Lie here," says he, "and birstle."

That one good Scots word, "birstle," was...

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...have never grown used to it; nor yet altogether
with the English grammar, as perhaps a...

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...time towards the mountains,
we drew steadily away from their neighbourhood. But the business was the
most...

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...it was in its last
quarter, and was long beset with clouds; but after a while...

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...worse times, but with a rivalry that much amused us, we spent a
great part of...

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...and tying in a little
sprig of birch and another of fir, he looked upon his...

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...not so very rife hereabout_; and then he will come
and give us a look up...

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...hands of us.

I thought Alan would be gravelled at that, for we lacked the means...

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...a man may look in a mirror, partly as he might look into the barrel
of...

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...the purse in his pocket, "but
it'll do my business. And now, John Breck, if ye...

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...therefore, in a howe of the hill-side till the mist should
have risen, and made ourselves...

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...saw; but at least it was clear of
troops, which was our point.

We went down accordingly...

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...out in the shape of a fan and riding their horses to and fro in
the...

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...soon grown to be so unbearable
that I would gladly have given up. Nothing but the...

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...of the
night, the shapes of the hills like things asleep, and the fire
dwindling away behind...

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...moment we were lying on our backs, each with a dirk at
his throat.

I don't think...

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...much
refreshed by his sleep, very hungry, and looking pleasantly forward to a
dram and a dish...

Page 190

...persons with some
comfort. A projection of the cliff had been cunningly employed to be the
fireplace;...

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...we all touched glasses and drank. I am sure I wished no ill to
King George;...

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...Highland clan; and this with a proscribed, fugitive chief;
his country conquered; the troops riding upon...

Page 193

...of Whiggish, canting talk is this, for the house of
Cluny Macpherson?"

"I will put my hand...

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...barber-gillie, who was a doctor too, was called in to prescribe for
me; but as he...

Page 195

...with
provisions and reports; for, as the coast was at that time clear, you
might almost say...

Page 196

...they carry away yours in their pouches! I have said before
that I grant your generosity;...

Page 197

...on my knee.

Doubtless it was a great relief to walk disencumbered; and perhaps
without that relief,...

Page 198

...if
you have anything, ye'd better say it."

"O," says I, "I have nothing."

He seemed disconcerted; at...

Page 199

...has passed over an
offence without a word, you would be blithe to let it lie,...

Page 200

...had no want of water.

This was a dreadful time, rendered the more dreadful by the...

Page 201

...would
blow by. For the same length of time I stayed in myself, nursing my
anger, roughly...

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...no one else's; but I was too miserable
to repent. I felt I could drag myself...

Page 203

...mockery of General Cope's
defeat at Prestonpans:--

"Hey, Johnnie Cope, are ye waukin' yet?
...

Page 204

...wondering at myself. I would have
given the world to take back what I had said;...

Page 205

...stitch is sore! Is there nae house?"

"I'll find a house to ye, David," he said...

Page 206

...was not only welcome for his name's sake, but known by
reputation. Here then I was...

Page 207

...and above all about that time, that
they could fail to put one thing with another,...

Page 208

...the
surgeon that marched with our clan and cured my brother's leg when it
was broken in...

Page 209

...I wouldna wonder," said Alan. "The gentleman I have in my mind
had the ill-taste to...

Page 210

...number of civilities, Robin took
the pipes and played a little spring in a very ranting...

Page 211

...a great piper. I am not
fit to blow in the same kingdom with ye. Body...

Page 212

...and coming to the edge of the hills saw the whole Carse of
Stirling underfoot, as...

Page 213

...lay, and bemoaned
herself and the long way she had travelled; and then set forth again...

Page 214

...says Alan, "or I'm the more
deceived."

"Ay, and such a thing as money," says I. "But...

Page 215

...from
a good-looking lass that was the servant. This we carried with us in a
bundle, meaning...

Page 216

...for her in explanation, helped me to a chair,
called for a tass of brandy, with...

Page 217

...see to him--and
here he must tramp in the dubs and sleep in the heather like...

Page 218

...that."

"No," said he, "ye're not that kind. But I'll tell ye what ye would do,
ye...

Page 219

...the clachan as soon
as might be, and lie close in the bit wood on the...

Page 220

...matter was
in haste and silence; and so, what with one thing and another, she had
set...

Page 221

...houses, my concern
and despondency grew ever the blacker. I saw now that I had no...

Page 222

...and taking heart
of grace, asked him to direct me to the house of Mr. Rankeillor.

"Why,"...

Page 223

...proving your identity?" asked Mr. Rankeillor.

"No, sir," said I, "but they are in the hands...

Page 224

...off to be a slave by the very man that
(if I rightly understand) is your...

Page 225

...of my identity seemed fully granted.

"Sir," said I, "if I tell you my story, I...

Page 226

...gave the name of "Mr. Jameson, a Highland chief." It was truly the
most open farce,...

Page 227

...QUEST OF MY INHERITANCE


I made what change I could in my appearance; and blithe was...

Page 228

...with a long countenance; and one
day--by your leave!--resigned the lady. She was no such fool,...

Page 229

...to think the more of money. He was
selfish when he was young, he is selfish...

Page 230

...to his charge. He may not
have told you all. His name may not be even...

Page 231

...the time I had appointed with Alan, we set out from the house,
Mr. Rankeillor and...

Page 232

...length I had the
pleasure to hear it answered and to see Alan rise from behind...

Page 233

...come when we came in view of the house of Shaws. Ten had
been gone some...

Page 234

...business; and it shall be here
or nowhere at all whatever; for I would have you...

Page 235

...nae call to interfere."

"Ay, ay," said Alan, "I see what ye would be at: pretending...

Page 236

...scrambling to his feet, "give me a meenit!
What's like wrong with ye? I'm just a...

Page 237

...good ye can do leeing. And I must plainly say ye drove a
fool's bargain when...

Page 238

...come my way, I judged you must refer to that you had in baptism."

This was...

Page 239

...prospect, and my heart jump with pride.

About my clear duty to my friend, the lawyer...

Page 240

...Then for his kinsman, there is no better way
than that you should seek the Advocate,...

Page 241

...and though I would
seek to jest with Alan under the name of Mr. Thomson, and...

Page 242

... PRINTED BY CASSELL AND COMPANY, LIMITED, LA BELLE SAUVAGE, LONDON, E.C....