Wlliam Gilmore Simms
Mellichampe: A Legend of the Santee >> Chapter XXXIX: Troubles of the Lovers >> Page 327

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Novel (Romance) | Redfield | 1854
Transcription TROUBLES OF THE LOVERS. 327
woman is peculiarly formed, and for which her gentle regards
and affectionate tendernesses make her particularly fitted.
They occupied her mind while they interested her heart the
more ; and so completely did they absorb thoughts and affec-
tions in the brief period of his confinement and sickness, that
she no longer heeded the hourly din of the military music
around her ; and the shrill note of the bugle, which heretofore
sent a thrill of dreadful apprehension to her soul whenever its
warlike summons smote upon her ear, now failed entirely to
remind her of those causes of apprehension to which she had
been before always most sensitively alive. From this dream
of pleasure, in which every thought and feeling which might
have counselled pain or doubt had been merged and lost sight
of, she had been too suddenly aroused by the cruel communi-
cation of Barsfield. The long train of pleasant sensations,
hopes, and joys, departed in that instant ; and in their place
rose up all the accustomed forms of fierce war and brutal out-
rage, with the additional horrors of that peculiar danger to
which the circumstances connected with her lover's captivity
and situation had subjected him. As these successive images
of terror rose up before her imagination and crowded upon her
mind, the strong resolution with which she had determined
upon their mastery quite gave way, and she fell upon the neck
of her lover, yielding to all the weakness of her heart, and
refusing any longer to contend with her griefs.
Nor could he for some time obtain from-her a knowledge of
her cause of sorrow. She could only sob, not speak. Once
or twice she strove earnestly to articulate, but the words choked
her in their utterance, and they terminated in convulsive but
unsyllabled sounds. He bore her to a seat, and knelt down
beside her, supporting her head upon his-shoulder. Earnestly
and fondly did he seek to sooth the paroxysm under which she
suffered, and vainly, for a long while, did he implore her to be
calm and speak forth her griefs. When at length she so
far recovered herself as to raise her head from his shoulder
and fix her eye upon his face, the glance was instantly
averted, as if with horror, and the tears burst forth afresh.
With that glance came the thought of the hour when that