Wlliam Gilmore Simms
Southward Ho! A Spell of Sunshine >> Chapter XIII / The Bride of the Battle. A Tale of the Revolution. >> Page 293

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Page 293

Novel (Romance) | Redfield | 1854
Transcription MARRIAGE AND CAPTIVITY. 293
see that it will hurt him if I marry you now ; and there is some-
thing in the life we have spent together the last few days, that
tells me we ought to be married, Richard."
This was spoken with the sweetest possible blush upon her
cheeks.
"Do you consent, then, dear Frederica ?" demanded the en-
raptured lover.
She put her hand into his own ; he carried it to his lips, then
drew her down to him where he lay upon his leafy couch, and
repeated the same liberty with hers. His shout, in another
moment, summoned Elijah Field to his side. The business in
prospect was soon explained. Our good parson readily concur-
red in the propriety of the proceeding. The inhabitants of the
little camp of refuge were soon brought together, Brough placing
himself directly behind his young mistress. The white teeth of
the old African grinned his approbation ; the favoring skies
looked down upon it, soft in the dreamy twilight of the evening
sunset ; and there, in the natural temple of the forest�none
surely ever prouder or more appropriate�with columns of gi-
gantic pine and cypress, and a Gothic luxuriance of vine, and leaf,
and flower, wrapping shaft, and cornice, capital and shrine, our
two lovers were united before God�our excellent preacher
never having a more solemn or grateful sense of the ceremony,
and never having been more sweetly impressive in his manner
of performing it. It did not impair the validity of the marriage
that Brough honored it, as he would probably have done his
own, by dancing Juba, for a full Lour after it was over, to his
own satisfaction at least, and in the absence of all other witnes-
ses. Perhaps, of all his little world, there were none whom the
old negro loved quite so much, white or black, as his young
mistress and her youthful husband. With the midnight, Fred-
erica left the camp of refuge under the conduct of Elijah Fields.
They departed in the boat, the preacher pulling up stream
no easy work against a current of four knots with a vigorous
arm, which, after a, tedious space, brought him to the landing
opposite old Sabb's farm. Here Frederica landed, and the dawn
of day found her standing in front of the old log-house which
had been assigned her parents, and a captive in the strict custody
of the tory sentries.