Wlliam Gilmore Simms
Mellichampe: A Legend of the Santee >> Chapter XLVII: Cow-Chasing >> Page 395

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Page 395

Novel (Romance) | Redfield | 1854
Transcription COW-CHASING. 395
"No �I do not'; but I want to know a good deal that you
can tell me, so the sooner you begin the better. How is Airnest,
for the first ?"
He mos' well ; but here's de paper--read 'em--lie tell you
ebbry ting."
The scout seized the scrawl, and strove to trace out its
contents by moonlight, but, failing to do so, he drew a pistol
from his belt, and, extracting the load, flashed the priming
in a handful of dry straw which Scipio heaped together.
With some little difficulty he deciphered the scrawl, while
the negro kept plying the fuel to the blaze. Its contents
were soon read and quickly understood. Witherspoon was
overjoyed. The prospect of Mellichampe's release, even
though at the risk of a desperate fight, was productive to him
of the most complete satisfaction.
" Go back," he said, after a while, to the negro ; go back
and tell Airnest that you've seen me, and that all's well. Tell
him I'll go my death for him, and do my best to git others,
though the time is monstrous short."
You guine git 'em clear, Mass Wed derspoon, from de d
hook-nose tory ?" asked the negro.
I'.11 try, Scip, by the Etarnal !"" Da's a gempleman. But dem little guns da's jist what
Mass Airnest want. He must hab something, Mass Wedder-
spoon, for hole he own wid dem tory. Put de bullet in de
mout' of de pistol, I'll carry um."'Spose they find 'em on you, Scip?"
Enty I fin 'em. I pick urn up in de path. You tink dem
tory guine catch weasel asleep, when he 'tan' by Scip. No
notion ob such ting, I tell you."
The scout gave him both pistols, which the negro immedi-
ately lashed about his middle, carefully concealing them from
exposure by the thick waistband of his pantaloons.
Now go, Scip�go back to Airnest, and tell him I've set
my teeth to help him, and do what he axes. I'm guine back
now to the boys in camp, and I reckon it won't be too much
to say that Major Singleton will bring a smart chance of us to