Wlliam Gilmore Simms
Joscelyn: A Tale of the Revolution >> Chapter X: The Old Tiger in His Den >> Page 99

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Page 99

Novel (Romance) | The Reprint Company | 1975, 1976
Transcription JOSCELYN99
"Sir, Mr. Dunbar, I have not deserved this treatment."
"Good morning, sir."
At that moment Miss Janet Porter entered the apartment, a tall,
thin, stately lady, simple of manner and costume, and of features
rather calm than rigid, more grave than sad, evidently a person of
well-balanced character, influential without being demonstrative, and
impressive if not solicitous.
"Mr. Joscelyn�Martin"�said she kindly, "good morning."
"That's what I've been telling him for the last twenty minutes,
but the party seems quite too demented properly to understand the
King's English."
The old maid seemed at once to understand the situation. She had
possibly overheard something of the dialogue between the parties. At
all events, the temper of her brother-in-law was no enigma to her.
She smiled good-humoredly to Martin, but only to be seen by him-
self, as she said:
"Go, now, Mr. Joscelyn. Your business is understood. Your mis-
sion is properly at an end. What is proper for us to do will be done;
make yourself sure of that."
"And what the deuse do you know about the matter, madam?"
Martin Joscelyn did not wait to hear her answer to this apostrophe.
As she had said, his mission was fulfilled, and no further speeches or
language would avail, he well knew, to make the old man a more
patient listener, or render him more accessible to reason.
He left the room with a sense of relief, Cudj o following close
behind him, but gazed in vain about him for a last look at, or word
with, Annie Dunbar. Cudj o held the horse as Martin mounted, and,
as the latter witnessed the broad grin upon the negro's countenance,
he said, throwing him a shilling:
"There, Cudj o, old fellow. You are to remember to shut the gate
in my face, should I come again."
"Ki! Mass Martin, what ob dat? Enty you kin hitch de horse
'mong de scrubby oak, and slip round to de back ob de garden? You
knows de way by dis time, I reckon."
Cudj o'had evidently some experience of the ways and means of the
young people, and just as evidently had no such hostile feeling to
Martin Joscelyn as his old master entertained. He picked up the