Wlliam Gilmore Simms
Mellichampe: A Legend of the Santee >> Chapter XLIV: The Cold Trail >> Page 366

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Novel (Romance) | Redfield | 1854
Transcription 366 MELLICIIAMPE.
knew nothing of the design of 11lellichanipe, and of the despatch
which had been sent by Scipio. He was certain that Melli-
clrampe would be slain, but he concurred in the supposed pref-
erence which the youth gave to the mode of dying, in the
stroke or shot of sudden combat, rather than by the degrading
cord. He was pledged to serve the maiden, and to comply
with her wishes was the best mode in his estimation.
He had concealed his pony, and covered himself by the thick
umbrage around him, in his old retreat, when the sound of ap-
proaching horses called for his attention. With a feeling of
gratified surprise he saw his enemy. But he was accompanied :
John Davis rode on one side of Humphries, and Lance Framp-
ton on the other�all well mounted, and carrying their rifles.
How easy to shoot him now," thought the half-breed Y
couldn't miss him now but it's no use :" and his rifle lay un-
lifted across his arm, and' he suffered the three to pass by in
safety. To forbear was mortifying enough. The party rode by
within twenty yards, seemingly in the greatest glee, laughing
and talking. A less cool and wary enemy than Blonay, hav-
ing a similar pursuit, could not have forborne. The temptation
was a trying one to him ; but, when he looked about in the woods
around him, and saw how easily they might be penetrated by
the survivers, even if he shot Humphries, he felt convinced
that the death of his enemy would be the immediate signal
for his own. His revenge was too much a matter of calcula-
tion�too systematic in all its impulses to permit him to do
an act so manifestly disparaging his Indian blood, and his own
desire for life, and his habitual caution. The cover. in which
he stood, though complete enough for his concealment while it
remained unsuspected, was otherwise no shelter ; and, subduing
his desire, he quietly and breathlessly kept his position, till his
ears no longer distinguished the tramp of their departing horses.
It was then that the half-breed rose from his place of shelter.
Gliding back to the deeper recess where his pony had been
hidden, he was soon mounted, and prepared to take the track
after his enemy.
He's gone to place the sentries and send out the scouts.
He won't have 'em with him by the time he Bits to the swamp,