Wlliam Gilmore Simms
Mellichampe: A Legend of the Santee >> Chapter VI: The Plot Thickens >> Page 55

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Page 55

Novel (Romance) | Redfield | 1854
Transcription THE PLOT THICKENS. 55 .

SLOWLY, and with an expression of sorrow in his counte-
nance, corresponding with the unelastie and measured move-
ment of his body, Thumbscrew took his way back to the hollow
where he had left his more youthful companion.
" Well, what have you seen to keep you so long, Thumb-
screw ?" was the impatient inquiry of the youth. The answer
of the woodman to this interrogatory was hesitatingly uttered,
and he first deliberately told of his encounter with Blonay, and
the nature of the unsatisfactory dialogue which had taken
place between them. He dwelt upon the cunning with which
the other had kept his secret during the conference ; but I
found him out at last," said he, and now I knows him to be
a skunk´┐Ż a reg'lar built tory, as I mought ha' known from the
first moment I laid eyes on him."
Well and where is he now, and how did you discover
this ?" was the inquiry of the other.
This inquiry necessarily unfolded the intelligence concern-
ing the troop of horse, whose number, wagons, and equipments,
he gave with all the circumspectness and fidelity of an able
scout ; and this done, he was silent ; with the air, however, of
one who has yet something to unfold.
"But who commanded them, Thumbscrew ?" asked the other,
and what appeared to be their object? You are strangely
limited in your intelligence, and, at this rate, will hardly
justify the eulogy of Major Singleton, who considers you the
very best scout in the brigade. Can you tell us nothing more ?
What sort of captain had they ?"