Wlliam Gilmore Simms
Mellichampe: A Legend of the Santee >> Chapter XIV: Thumbscrew in Practice >> Page 127

image of pageExplore Inside

Page 127

Novel (Romance) | Redfield | 1854
Transcription THUMBSCREW IN PRACTICE. 127
those low tones which only the rich sensibility can understand,
and the generous, warm spirit, employ understandingly.
"And yet, dearest, those very sorrows have a sweetness.
Privation, pain, denial, even the lost love, Janet, are nothing
to the choice spirit which has faith along with its sympathy.
What consoles me ? What has consoled me in the perils and
the pains, the losses and the sorrows, which I have undergone
in this warfare, and within the last two years ? My confidence
in you ; my perfect faith that, however desolate, poor, denied,
and desperate, however parted by enemies or distance, I was still
secure of your. love ; I still knew that nothing, no, not even death,
my Janet, could deprive me of that. If you have that con-
fidence in me, my beloved, these sorrows, these trials, are only
so many strengtheners. You will then find that the sorrows
of love, borne well and without despondence, are the sweetest
triumphs of the true affection. They are the honors which
time can never tarnish ; they are the spoils which last us for
ever after. Janet, if, like you, I doubted, if I did not feel
assured of your unperishing truth, I should rush this night,
madly, and with but one hope of death, upon the swords of
these tory-troopers. I should freely perish under your eyes,
with but one prayer, that you might be able to behold me to
the last."
Speak not thus !" she exclaimed, with a shudder, looking
around her as she spoke ; and do not think, Ernest, from what
I have said, that I have not the same perfect faith in you that
you feel in me ; but I despair of all .our hope. I am truly a
timid maiden, and I am always fancying a thousand woes and
sorrows. I can not dare to believe otherwise than that our
loves are unblessed ; I can not hope that we shall realize them :
and oh, Ernest, your rashness, more than all things beside,
tends to confirm in me these apprehensions. Why will you
come to me when your enemies are abroad? Promise me,
dear Ernest, to fly from this neighborhood until the danger has
gone over. There is no dishonor none."" Ay, but there is, Janet ; but of this we need say nothing.
I could tell you much of friends, and good service to be done,
but may not. Let us speak of more pleasant matters : of our