Wlliam Gilmore Simms
Mellichampe: A Legend of the Santee >> Chapter XX: Sharp Passages at Arms >> Page 178

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Page 178

Novel (Romance) | Redfield | 1854
Transcription 1.78 MELLICHAMPE.
a move, it was a sort of wire and screw exhibition a dread-
ful operation in mechanics, as if a clumsy inventor, armed
with thumbs rather than fingers, and mortally apprehensive
that his work would go to pieces before he could get it safely
out of his hands, had wheeled it out, and was wheeling it in,
soured and sullen from a consciousness that, in so wheeling it,
the rickety thing had not shown to advantage. And these are
soldiers ! Well, Heaven save us, I pray, as much from their
love as from their anger. The latter might bayonet one, it is
true ; but I should as surely die of the annoyance and ennui
that would inevitably come with the other. Look up, my dear
cousin, and tell me what you think."
It was thus that the lively Rose Duncan discoursed of the
tory troop to her cousin. Janet replied quietly� a pleasant
but subdued smile touching her lips, softly and sweet, as a
faint blush of sunlight resting upon some drooping flower by
the wayside.
" And yet, my dear Rose, you have no reason to complain;
you certainly made a conquest of the young lieutenant, Mr.
Clayton. His eyes spoke eloquently enough ; and his mouth,
whenever it was opened, was full of the prettiest compliments.
You must not be ungrateful."
Nor am I. I do not complain of, nor yet will I appropriate,
the ` goods the gods provide me.' I take leave to congratulate
myself on their leaves-taking�all�not to omit my simper-
ing, sweet, slender Adonis, the gentle lieutenant himself.
Pshaw, Janet, how can you suppose that I should endure such
a whipt-syllabub sort of creature ? You must have pitied me,
hearing, with no hope of escape, his rhapsodies about music
and poetry rnoorilight and bandana handkerchiefs ; for he
mixed matters up in such inextricable confusion, that I could
have laughed in his face, but that it required some effort to
overcome the stupid languor with which he possessed me.
You .needn't smile, Janet--lie did lie was a most delicate
bore."
And you really desire me to believe, Rose, that he has
made no interest in your heart ?" was the response of Janet to
all this tirade. The graver maiden of the two seemed dis-