hae heard, Mr. Osbaldistone.—But ae thing bides wi’ me o’ what Nicol said.—I’m vexed for the bairns—I’m vexed when I think o’ Hamish and Robert living their father’s life.” And yielding to despondence on account of his sons, which he felt not upon his own, the father rested his head upon his hand.

I was much affected, Will. All my life long I have been more melted by the distress under which a strong, proud, and powerful mind is compelled to give way, than by the more easily excited sorrows of softer dispositions. The desire of aiding him rushed strongly on my mind, notwithstanding the apparent difficulty, and even impossibility, of the task.

“We have extensive connections abroad,” said I; “might not your sons, with some assistance—and they are well entitled to what my father’s house can give—find an honourable resource in foreign service?”

I believe my countenance showed signs of sincere emotion; but my companion, taking me by the hand, as I was going to speak farther, said, “I thank—I thank ye—but let us say nae mair o’ this. I did not think the eye of man would again have seen a tear on MacGregor’s eye-lash.” He dashed the moisture from his long grey eye-lash and shaggy red eye-brow with the back of his hand. “Tomorrow morning,” he said, “we’ll talk of this, and we will talk, too, of your affairs—for we are early starters in the dawn, even when we have the luck to have good beds to sleep in. Will ye not pledge me in a grace cup?” I declined the invitation.

“Then, by the soul of St. Maronoch! I must pledge myself,” and he poured out and swallowed at least half a quart of wine.

I laid myself down to repose, resolving to delay my own inquiries until his mind should be in a more composed state. Indeed, so much had this singular man possessed himself of my imagination, that I felt it impossible to avoid watching him for some minutes after I had flung myself on my heath mattress to seeming rest. He walked up and down the hut, crossed himself from time to time, muttering over some Latin prayer of the Catholic Church; then wrapped himself in his plaid, with his naked sword on one side, and his pistol on the other, so disposing the folds of his mantle, that he could start up at a moment’s warning, with a weapon in either hand, ready for instant combat. In a few minutes his heavy breathing announced that he was fast asleep. Overpowered by fatigue, and stunned by the various unexpected and extraordinary scenes of the day, I, in my turn, was soon overpowered by a slumber deep and overwhelming, from which, notwithstanding every cause for watchfulness, I did not awake until the next morning.

When I opened my eyes, and recollected my situation, I found that MacGregor had already left the hut. I awakened the Bailie, who, after many a snort and groan, and some heavy complaints of the soreness of his bones, in consequence of the unwonted exertions of the preceding day, was at length able to comprehend the joyful intelligence, that the assets carried off by Rashleigh Osbaldistone had been safely recovered. The instant he understood my meaning he forgot all his grievances, and, bustling up in a great hurry, proceeded to compare the contents of the packet, which I put into his hands, with Mr. Owen’s memorandums, muttering as he went on, “Right, right—the real thing—Baillie and Whittington—where’s Baillie and Whittington?—seven hundred, six, and eight—exact to a fraction—Pollock and Peelman—twenty- eight, seven—exact—Praise be blest!—Grub and Grinder—better men cannot be—three hundred and seventy—Gliblad—twenty, I doubt Gliblad’s ganging—Slipprytongue—Slipprytongue’s gaen—but they are sma’ sums—sma’ sums—the rest’s a’ right—Praise be blest! we have got the stuff, and may leave this doleful country. I shall never think on Loch Ard but the thought will gar me grew again.”

“I am sorry, cousin,” said MacGregor, who entered the hut during the last observation, “I have not been altogether in the circumstances to make your reception sic as I could have desired—natheless, if you would condescend to visit my puir dwelling—”

“Muckle obliged, muckle obliged,” answered Mr. Jarvie, very hastily. “But we maun be ganging—we maun be jogging, Mr. Osbaldistone and me—business canna wait.”

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