Wlliam Gilmore Simms
Mellichampe: A Legend of the Santee >> Chapter XXXI: Scouting >> Page 265

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Page 265

Novel (Romance) | Redfield | 1854
Transcription SCOUTING-. 265

shoulder; it's like a log round the neck, to be always looked
after."
And why do you think that Singleton's men are also look-
ing out for you ?""'Cause one of them knows I'm in these parts, and he
knows I'm dangerous."
." But can he find you ?"" He's a born swamp-sucker like myself, and lee's dangerous
too. He knows I'm hereabouts, and I reckon he can't sleep
easy till he finds me or I find him."
Barsfield no longer objected, and together they penetrated
the covert until they reached a dry spot, where, with a fancy
as natural as it was peculiar, the half-breed had chosen his
temporary dwelling, in preference to that of the camp or plan-
tation. A few brands of the resinous pine, in which commodity
the country around was abundantly supplied, were huddled
together and in a blaze, which, though bright enough to illu-
mine all objects around them, was imperceptible on the outer
edge of the hummock, from the exceeding density of its foliage.
A huge gum-tree, that stood upon the bank, sent up bulgingly
above the surface a monstrous series of roots, which, covered
with fresh moss, had made the pillow of the inhabitant. A
thick coat of clustering oak-leaves, the tribute of a tree that
had made such a deposite probably for a hundred winters,
composed the sylvan couch of the outlier, while the folding
and thickly-leaved branches overhead afforded him quite as
gracious a cover from the' unfriendly dews as it was in the
nature of a form so callous to need or to desire. But the place
seemed cheerless to Barsfield, in spite of the genial tempera-
ture of the season, and the bright flame burning before him.
"And. you sleep here, Mr. Blonay ?" was his involuntary
question.
Yes, cappin, here or further in the bush. If I hear strange
noises that I don 't like, I slips down further into the bay, and
then I'm sure to be safe, for it's a mighty troublesome way to
take, and very few people like to hunt in such bottoms ; it 's all
sloppy, and full of holes, and the water's as black as pitch."
What noise is that ?" said Barsfield.
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