Wlliam Gilmore Simms
Joscelyn: A Tale of the Revolution >> Chapter XXVI: A L'outrance >> Page 232

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Novel (Romance) | The Reprint Company | 1975, 1976
Transcription 9
CHAPTER XXVI.
A L'OUTRANCE.
Lovers have modes of telegraphing each other without waiting on
the wires. Somehow, Martin Joscelyn could always discover when
the field was clear for him at the Sand Hills when old Dunbar
retired early when Major Alison was about and briefly, when
there was no danger of any intrusion upon his tete-a-tete with the
fair Annie. It is just possible that Alison suspected these secret meet-
ings, if the father did not. But Alison was not the person to declare
his suspicions. He was not the less vigilant, though silent. We shall
see.
When Walter, gloomy to desperation, descended the stairs to the
parlor, he found Martin quietly sitting beside his sister. The good
aunt had graciously retired also, but not till after Martin arrived.
The young men shook hands; Martin as eagerly as ever; but he
recoiled suddenly from the passive surrender to his own, of the hand
of his ancient comrade and friend. There was no grasp no cordial
gripe, full of assuring friendship ; and when the eyes of the two met,
the vacant, blank, unmeaning glance of Walter utterly astounded
Martin.
"Why, Walter, what's the matter? Are you sick? Has anything
happened?"
The other answered evasively.
"You know that I leave for the hill country to-morrow."
"Yes, Annie has been telling me. How long will you be
"I know not. It is on business of my father."
Martin watched the face of the speaker, uncertain what to gather
from its expression, or rather want of expression. But he resolved to
go on talking to, or at him, in order to bring him out. Annie Dun-
bar, whose countenance betrayed thought and anxiety, seemed not un-
willing to second this object, and freely joined in the conversation.
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