Wlliam Gilmore Simms
Mellichampe: A Legend of the Santee >> Chapter XVIII: The Half-Breed is Winded >> Page 159

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Page 159

Novel (Romance) | Redfield | 1854
Transcription THE IIALF-BREED 'IS WINDED. 159
So ho ! Here ! Torn Jennings," calling to a lanksided sand-
lapper, be off quickly, and hunt up Zeke Turpin, and send
him here. Tell him that Lieutenant Porgy's horse has colic
from eating his master's dinner by mistake."
All ! villain, you take advantage of my grief," said Porgy,
with an effort to smile.
"He'll cure it if anybody can ! So give -yourself no con-
cern. Only, you must put yourself in readiness as soon as
possible. That's the order now."" What's. to be done, Humphries ?"
Work ! Fight's the word !""Fight ! With whom now ?"" The tories !"
The tories ! Whereabouts do they gather ?"
At Sinkier's meadow, where there's to be a mighty gather-
ing. They are promised arms and ammunition from the city.
We are to have warm work, they tell us, for there's to be a
smart chance of the rascals together; but devil take the odds.
The job will pay for itself, Porgy, since they're to have a bar-
becue and plenty of rum.""All, ha! That's encouraging as a prospect, Humphries ;
and now the question is, whether we shall let them feed be-
fore we fight them, or fight them before they feed."
I don't see why that should be a question. We've got to
fight them as soon as we can get a chance at them, and
whether before or after the barbecue don't matter very much.""An opinion that argues great simplicity on the part of
Lieutenant Humphries," was the reply of Porgy. The dif-
ference is vastly material to our interests, and ought to govern
our policy. If we let them feed before we fight them, we shall
find them easier customers, since every third man will be
surely drunk, and no second man sober.""Well, there's something in that, certainly," said Hum-
phries.
"Ay, true ; but look at the other side. If we fight them
before we suffer them to feed, wo shall have the greater spoil,
since barbecued beef and Jamaica, which have been already
consumed by a hundred or two starving tories, is- so much