Wlliam Gilmore Simms
Mellichampe: A Legend of the Santee >> Chapter V: The Tory Squad >> Page 54

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Page 54

Novel (Romance) | Redfield | 1854
Transcription 54 MELLICIIAMPE.
and the speaker looked down upon his own bulky frame with some complacency " it will be devilish hard, I say, if I do not try successfully. Her old father, too, will back me to the utmost, for he is devilish scary, and, being a good loyalist, is very anxious to have a son-in-law who can protect his cattle from the men of Marion. They have half frightened him already into consent, and have thus done me much more service than they ever intended."" But your maiden herself, the party chiefly concerned ?" said Clayton, inquiringly.
She fights shy, and does not seem over-earnest to listen to my courtier speeches ; but she is neither stern nor unapproachable, and, when she replies to me, it is always gently and sweetly.""Then she is safe, be sure of it," was the sanguine response of the other.
Not so," said the more sagacious Barsfield, " not so. I am not so well satisfied that because she is gentle she will be yielding. She can not be otherwise than gentle she can not speak otherwise than sweetly, even though her words be those of denial. I would rather a cursed sight that she should wince a little, and tremble when I talk to her ; for then I should know that she was moved with an interest one way or the other. Your cool, composed sort of woman, is not to be surprised into any foolish weakness. rIllhey mustlisten long, and like to listen, before you can do anything with them. But you shall see her soon, for here her father's fields commence. A fine clearing, you see, and the old buck is tolerably well off´┐Żworks some eighty hands, and has a stock that would fit out a dozen Scotch graziers."
Thus discussing the _hopes and expectations which make the aim and being of the dissolute adventurer, they pricked their way onward with all speed, to the dwelling of those who were to be the anticipated victims.