Wlliam Gilmore Simms
Joscelyn: A Tale of the Revolution >> Chapter XXVI: A L'outrance >> Page 235

image of pageExplore Inside

Page 235

Novel (Romance) | The Reprint Company | 1975, 1976
Transcription JOSCELYN235
Annie Dunbar settled upon her brother with a mournfully pleading
expression. Martin stared wistfully anxious and more bewildered
than ever. Even Alison was silent during a long pause, which he at
length broke abruptly.
"Then I must see him to-night."
"That you can not, sir," said Annie Dunbar, with much firmness
of tone and manner. "My father suffers too much under those at-
tacks, and every disturbance increases his suffering and irritation. You
will please reserve your communication for the morning."
"Impossible! I must ride to-night."
Saying this, he paused, and seemed to meditate. Suddenly his
countenance changing completely, and now wreathed in smiles, he
bowed towards the young lady, and in a manner much more familiar
than courtly, said, while he pointed to the harpsichord:
"Will you give me some music, Annie, before I go?"
The flush covered the cheeks of Annie Dunbar. She gazed steadily
at the offender, and in silence; but the voice of Walter Dunbar rang
sharply over the apartment :
"Miss Annie, sir, if you please."
"Oh! Lady Annie, sir, if you please."
The lady rose, her bosom heaving with indignation. Martin Josce-
lyn strode towards Alison with flashing eyes, and fists clenched; but
Walter darted forward, flung Martin aside, and, confronting Alison,
who sate carelessly smiling on the sofa, exclaimed in suppressed but
emphatic tones:
"This insolence, sir, deserves the horsewhip, and shall have it."
Terribly effective was the sarcastic rejoinder:
"Let the infliction take place in my school-room, with a score of
my boys about me, and I shall feel myself honored by it."
Walter staggered back as if under a blow. His humiliating secret
was then already blown abroad ! Shame stared him in the face on
every hand. But he recovered himself in another instant, and ad-
vancing towards Alison, he said hoarsely, but distinctly:
"You shall hear from me, sir."
"No, Walter," interposed Martin. "He shall hear from me."
"You!" said Alison, scornfully.